Krogenar: Dreams of Vector

[247] Krogenar: GRP: Dreams of Vector - 1   
Sun Mar 15 19:08:51 2015
To: all
OOC: I meant to publish this earlier, so this role is backdated!

Blood trickled from his twisted mouth, found its way into his nostrils.
The strider snorted out the blood, and the memories that came with it.
Docrob lifted the half-orc's head by his hair, raised a square shaft
of ironwood and smashed downwards again, tears streaming down his
face. A guard watched at a respectful distance, watching the outside
corridor -- wary of the sawyer perhaps taking things too far.
Krogenar dangled by his feet from the chains, and said nothing.
Every charm and minor magic he knew had been useless. No doubt the
Tyrrans who had built the jail had mixed their holier-than-thou tears
into the mortar, to prevent any magical escape. Shush and Ashesh were
nowhere near, likely driven away by the same enchantment.
Docrob swung again, connecting with the half-orc's jaw.
A tooth clattered against the dungeon's uneven stones. Krogenar's
tongue, cut and bleeding, slithered into the new space and
investigated the damage -- a clean knockout.
His mouth metallic with freshly running blood, the strider stared at
the man who's daughter had been murdered.
Both men sighed from exhaustion, steam puffing out in the cold cell.
The sawyer sniffed, raised the wood back for another blow. Krogenar
squinted through blackened, blood-filled eyes, trying to gauge the
strike. He hardly breathed, the stink of the room was only blood,
death, sadness and desperation.
Docrob stared down at him, his face shining from tears.
"She was only eight winters old..." The strike spun Krogenar in his
chains and his mind swam down into the darkness of his deepest past,
gliding in cold waters he could not have visited without Docrob's help.

The cage rattled into the corner of the Vectorian laboratory. It was a
simple affair -- a warehouse with medical equipment, with
makou-carrying conduits covering the floor like bloated serpents.
"I said that's enough. No more specimens for now."
Roteach turned to the MagiTek recruit, his eyes magnified by goggles.
These new recruits were pathetic - even the most basic intructions
seemed to bounce off their foreheads. "Go. No more for today."
The recruit, in the black, flanged metal armor of Vector's elite
troops, hesitated, wide-eyed, then pushed more cages into the room.
(to be continued)

[248] Krogenar: GRP: Dreams of Vector - 2   
Sun Mar 15 20:10:30 2015
To: all
The reason for the recruit's infuriating recalcitrance followed behind
the cages. General Gezpal entered, smiling, his hands held in the
small of his back. Roteach hated not seeing his hands, and as he
thought this, Gezpal's smiled wider, his too-white teeth perfectly set
- like someone who had (through long effort) mastered the art of
Roteach moved protectively towards his desk at the same time as the
General. But it was too late.
Gezpal was looking it over, his smile slowly fading as he read
Roteach's notes aloud: "Strain extraction is the future -- far better
than --"
"Mastication processing allows for bursts of power that gives MagiTek
soldiers the edge they need in active combat." Roteach put his hands
up, confessing the fact as rote gospel.
"And mastication will -always- remain a viable method - but for
long-term missions strain extraction holds significant benefits."
The general adopted a receptive facade, the face one would use with a
child explaining a useless fantasy, and pretended to hear him out.
The Vectorian scientist ignored this, and pointed to the subjects in
their enclosures. The general ran a hand along the glass capsule, with
a metal lid. "These look very --"
"Reusable." Gezpal finished for him, while suppressing an angry look.
"The subjects have received the needed prep work, glossal, phelangal
and ocular." The general settled back against a table, to hear the
pitch, crossing his arms.
"Post-processed subjects are encapsulated, and then straining
commences--" the Vectorian paused for dramatic effect, "-- at a
variable rate."
Did he sense a break in the general's reserve, some interest?
He continued, proud of this new development, and the doors it might
open for his scientific career.
"By varying strain intensity, the long-term energy extraction shows a
75 percent increase." He let that number sink into the resulting
silence, and watched the general's arms uncross. Gezpal crossed to the
scientist's desk, picked up a clipboard. "And you have the numbers to
prove this?"
Roteach nodded. "My process requires far, far fewer ... moving parts.
Mastication requires more maintenance." He gestured to the Espers
kneeling in their glass tubes.
"Strain extraction is the future." He said the last word longingly.
General Gezpal tossed the clipboard back on the desk, and sought some
handhold to push against. He found it in a small cage in a corner.
"Every process has its problems, it's disadvantages. What's this here?"
The cage's occupant, curled into the corner had reddish-brown hair,
it's ribs plainly visible. It flexed its hands strangely, slowly.
It wasn't in a glass processing tube.
"This? An oddity, nothing relevant to the project. An experimental
abberation -- more of a hobby than anything else."
(To Be Continued)

[258] Krogenar: GRP: Dreams of Vector - 3   
Wed Mar 18 17:28:44 2015
To: all
"A ... hobby?" General Gezpal stared at the occupant of the cage.
Hate-filled eyes stared out from beneath a shock of red-brown hair.
Its skinny arms were bound at the wrists. The jaw jutted predictably
but before the half-orc could launch spittle at the Vectorian it
collapsed in a quaking heap.
As the half-orc shook, its teeth clenched, Roteach kept the button
on a handheld device depressed.
"Did you want to see it ruin my uniform? Why did you wait?" the General
protested. Roteach smirked. "It was your face I saved. Its aim is
remarkable." The General focused his attention on the hand-held device
the scientist held.
"This? Another minor project. It uses something akin to lightning for
training purposes."
Inside the cage, the half-orc felt lightning surging through his body,
from the metal rings on his wrists. His teeth were pressing together
more powerfully with each passing moment. Tears streamed from his eyes
as the pressure grew.
The General asked, "What do you call this 'lightning' effect?"
The scientist shrugged, "It's just a useless phenomena, really. Of no
real use."
"The Espers here," the Vectorian scientist gestured to a nearby
capsule, his finger still depressing the punishment button, "they can
be drained for enormous quantities of energy." He shrugged, tediously.
"But eventually, the process kills them."
The half-orc's spasms settled into a rigid cringe. The teeth in his
jaw now felt fused as a single tooth shaking from the steadily
increasing pressure. He tried to bring his hands to his mouth, but
could not.
"This thing, though - I could leave it in a capsule for days, at
maximum extraction, and it wouldn't kill him." The General was
looking bored.
There was a crunch in his jaw. A metallic taste filled his mouth, and
the fragments of his tooth began pushing into his raw, bleeding gums.

Roteach clicked off the device - and a sob was heard -- and tossed it
to his desk.
"It's not a lot of power, barely a trickle charge -- not even enough
to keep a MagiTek armor powered up. I've tried the process on other
half-orcs, and they die, as expected."
They talked more, these two strange things, as his shaking hands
tried to pull the fragments of his tooth from his mouth. Pain swam
through his mind - but also something else. A voice that became
clearer as the pain subsided. He peered through red-rimmed eyes at
one of the tall things that had a surface he could see into -- the
one with a person inside. He couldn't see them, but he could smell them.
"I know you can hear me. What's your name?"
The half-orc's hands moved slowly, signing, "Father loves me."
"'Father-Loves-Me', you're leaving this place."
(To Be Continued)