Thursday, January 1, 2015

Koreshi Chronicles - Chapter VIII: Tome Raiders

Oscar sent the final spike through the remote server. The entire Temple Heights Research Center mainframe would crash without a backup. All the security footage of the infiltration, all traces of the virus Dawn had uploaded onto their system and preliminary scans of the The New Avalon Cycle would be lost.

He moved to the rendezvous point with Doc Grimm’s bag. He didn’t notice the two lovebirds approach as he chatted with the BCG gear pilots. Oscar admired how elegant it was to use the very heavily armoured convoy which had delivered the tome to the THRC as their personal escort as they fled the theft of said document mere moments after it had been delivered.

Gabrielle was feeling positively giddy. It wasn’t a feeling she was used to. The op had gone off well, if not perfectly. About now the local police would pick up the SRID goon she had knocked out with the sfika. The weapon and the pictures she had planted as well as her cover would, at least, point to them orchestrating the theft, even if she would have prefered not letting them get their hands on the tome.

Professor Sandu was a pawn and his granddaughter was as good as dead. The New Avalon Cycle would disappear into a private collection or disappear altogether like the rest of the Ashanti library.

But all that was incidental. She had helped Torgath. She looked at him by her side, holding her hand, and he grinned.

Dawn or Gab or Summer gave Torgath a wink and broke off to get her stashed gear. Oscar was talking to the caravaners so Torgath saw this as the perfect opportunity to glance over his prize. His data pad had the digital scan of The New Avalon.

The book appeared to be a collection of accounts of Prime Knights who had escaped to Mars where they were sheltered by a sect of Prime refugees from Kir Arya. These knights were to be the new round table, to return from Avalon when they were most needed.

The mythic tales recounted that a thousand years passed and the Knights moved still further afield, using prototype Tanhauser ships, reaching Terra Nova over a century before other explorers.

Some accounts purported that remnants of the Knights’ genetic treasures remained in the hands of a secretive Martian society for the preservation of the Commonwealth of man, to be used one day in reuniting mankind.

Gabrielle poked him affectionately; he had become engrossed in the tome.

“Time to saddle up and get out of Dodge,” she said affectionately.

She hoped the book was good, because the other stuff the professor offered up in “payment” had seemed pretty lame. The account of the early colonists of the Urquhart expedition disappearing into the Western Desert a thousand cycle before and some Mekongese research article by Prof. Laganiere didn't seem all that interesting.

“Torgath, my sweet,” Gabrielle said, wrapping her arm around his, “what was Prof. Sandu talking about at the end there? You know, about classic Sand Rider phenotypes: blond hair and long earlobes?”

"It doesn't concern me?"

He answered shrugging. She could feel there was more to it, but Oscar had come to bid them farewell.

“Dawn, it has been of the utmost pleasure to meet you. You are a delight to behold and know and I am very looking forward to seeing more of you.”

She gave him a hug.

“And you, Dirk, my beautiful Dirk. Here is your decrypted Zelanis data." Oscar began with a sly look. "You have found someone who may adore you more than even I. This is very good! La Sandero I bid you a fond farewell.”

Oscar in turn gave Torgath a hug which seemed to make the later slightly uncomfortable.

“Oscar? If I might ask, why do you call him that?”

“He may not be dressing the part now, but he is a Sand Rider, he and Kes and Quinn.”

Gabrielle knew as much, the first time they had met she had laid her hands on his drevis knife.

“In the UMF,” Oscar continued, “in Equatorial Hispanic, that is what we call the Sand Riders: Las Sanderos.”

Heavy Gear Roleplaying Game


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