Don’t think I ever seen the security shuttle bay so busy as it has been today. Had to get the cook hall guys to shift the spare supplies they been storing in it to make room. Eight new prisoners in one day must be a record for the station. And not more than a few hours' warning on any of them. That's more than a quarter of all our bunks. Ain’t been more than five prisoners at one time since I was made chief. And these people, I read their dossiers, they aint the drunks and corpo debt violators we usually get. These are serious criminals. Not sure where they all come from or why they all got to be in the same cell block but it makes our lives easier and I didn’t get to sit in the big chairs by disobeying orders.
Tried to get through to Phobos station and Mars all day to find out what the heck is going on but comms have been down all day. Asked one of Alecia’s tech monkeys when they would be back up and they just gave me a bunch of techno nonsense back. Still pretty sure they said something about the having comms back by tomorrow. I’m going to make a real nuisance of myself till someone tells me when they gonna come pick this rabble of thieves and murders up. Also need to get overtime approved for all of the security team and some food chits for the volunteer forces. Got the whole of Stat Sec guarding these freaks so the volunteers are manning the access ports and patrolling the station. Hopefully, those idiots don't break anyone's legs this time.
In better news Alison’s replacement also turned up today. Man’s name is Nathaniel Weil. According to his file he's done seventeen years on the job in the Galfflex Corpo prison in the belt. Guess he must be looking to take it easier. Clearly he ain't too lucky then. Still, they seemed nice and after I walked them through how we do things around here, he offered to patrol the gantry over the cells tonight. He’ll make himself real popular around here if he keeps that sort of thing up.
Hopefully, the next report I write will be done with emptier cells.
Station Security Chief Roger Davies
The man known to his new compatriots as Nathaiel Weil leaned his arms against the gangways railings and grinned, the gentle orange glow of the cigarette in his fingers. The air around him was filled with the comforting cacophony of the station's life support systems. Below him, through the gentle haze of the energy barriers that topped the cells, the outlines of the station's newest involuntary residents were just visible through the gloom. The man didn’t trouble himself with wondering about what was going through their heads. Instead, he took another long drag on his cigarette.
Moments like this were the smoking man’s favorite. He felt like a gambler about to launch the dice. Right now the threads of the weaves of fate were all open to him. Soon the die would be cast and those same threads would grasp and pull at him. There was a certain thrill in that knowledge. An eternity wouldn’t be enough time to tire of this feeling.
“If you keep pricking around like that, this isn’t going to work.”
A shower of sparks and ashes floated through the air as the cigarette flew from his hand and spun through the darkness to the cell floor at the sudden interruption of his thoughts by the staticy female voice in his ear.
“I was enjoying the ambience, my little firefly.”
“Call me that again and I’ll let the station security know who you really are and you can enjoy it until you rot.”
The lazy grin that had slipped from the man’s face in the moment of surprise sidled back its former position.
“I take it that everything is ready on your end.”
“Has been since about ten minutes after I dropped you off, so unless you’ve changed your mind, quit stalling and get things moving.”
A quiet throaty laugh rolled gently across the dark cell block quickly followed by a heavy metal click.
“Well then, hit the lights darling, let's give 'em a show, oh and don’t forget to activate the intercoms this time.”
The gloom of the cell block was wiped away, harsh light surging into every corner, nook and crevice as an artificial dawn happened in an instant. Through hardened polycarbonate the occupants of the four cells that surrounded the central common area had a clear view as one of their jailers apparently descended on a rope into their midst. Anyone who had thoughts about rushing the fool as he detached himself from the line would quickly notice the door to their cell was still locked, either by the presence of a blinking red light on the locks, or the unyielding nature of the doors themselves. The only option was to watch as a pair of metallic red cylinders and a roll of paper were pulled out of a small pack and placed on one of the tables bolted to the cell block floor.For someone who was, one way or another, definitely somewhere he shouldn’t be the man moved with supreme confidence. He even took some time to carefully and methodically roll up the sleeves of his uniform and fuss with his hair, using the fuzzy reflection cast in the polished metal to slick back a few errant strands. Once he was apparently happy with how he looked, the strange interloper flicked his eyes between the four cells, making sure he had the attention of everyone confined within them before breaking into a broad, easy smile.
“Ladies, Gentlemen, Beloved inorganic companions. I apologize for disturbing you at such a strange hour, but I have come to make you an offer.”
Pausing for a moment, eyes that seemed to almost sparkle flicked around the room once more.
“I’ve done my research. I know the best that any of you can reasonably hope for is perhaps a decade in an Alliance prison; a few of you are lucky you haven't been spaced already. That just seems like a, aha.. a criminal waste of talent to me. I have a better idea about how you could use your skills. I’m hunting for a prize that would make us all rich enough to buy everyone you love a mansion on Earth as well as an official pardon from the Senate and I need a crew to help me.”
Looking around, the interloper took a moment to catch and hold each of his audience members' gaze.
“But hopefully we can talk about that later. Right now I’m offering an express ticket for all of you off this station and out of the Senate and Corps clutches. Oh and a dinner that hasn't had to be rehydrated. I doubt you will get a better chance to grab your freedom and a get good meal if you wait a Neptunian century.”
Reaching forward, the speaker plucked the roll of paper from the table and held it aloft for all to see.
“This here is the blueprint of this charming little station. Marked on it is your current location and the location of the waste processing center. Me and my ship will be waiting for you there. My associate has disabled the security systems in this room and after I leave you here, they will open your cell doors. It’s up to you to get yourselves to our rendezvous.”
Now the two red tubes were picked up and held aloft.
“As I am sure some of you know, these are thermite grenades. Give the cap a twist and they are good for melting through a meter of high-grade plasteel.”
A couple of slightly metallic thuds rang around the cell block as heavy rubber soles bounced off the cell block floor.
“Use them to melt your way into the ventilation system. Use them to melt through a door. Or if you need to, use them to melt through a few guards. I don’t really mind, just know this is all the help you are going to get. Consider this your job interview. I sincerely hope you pass with flying colours.”
Putting the grenades down, the man turned towards the heavy doors that secured the cell block before a thought apparently occurred to him. Spinning around on his heels, he grabbed the rope he had descended on and leaned his weight on it.
“Where are my manners? I quite forgot that none of you have read my file. My name is Alexander Street, Captain of the Intrepid Scout and it has been a pleasure to meet you.”
Raising his free hand, Street snapped his fingers and the brilliant light that filled the room vanished as suddenly it arrived but a few minutes before.
“Have fun kids, try not to get caught again.”
In the new inky darkness, the sound of the heavy cell block door opening and closing was the only sound for several moments before a gentle buzzing filled the chamber as all at once red diodes turned green, the cell doors unlocked and the lights flickered back on.
It is time to do this. If you want to flash backs etc of arriving and what's happened since then feel free. There is a map on the discord server that gives you the layout of the prison area. Anything with a crown on is a door (its a watermark for the program I used). Red dots indicate guards (I trust yall to use meta knowledge responsibly). The captain mentioned a couple of ways you could get out of the cell. There are a couple more ways I can think of, maybe you have some others too. I’ve left the rest of the station for the theater of the mind, but if you want I can knock something up for that. As ever, if you have questions hit me up in my messages or the discord.
If you are going for flashbacks etc, your cell pairings are as follows
Before the intrepid captain dropped out of the ceiling, the (new) inmate had decided to make her own entertainment. A smuggled music player blasted heavy metal at full volume, the inmate sprawled against one wall mimicking hitting a drum kit in front of her. If it bothered her cellmate, she didn’t seem to care.
As for their visitor, she hadn’t even bothered to listen to his speech— well, until the mention of money anyways.
She’d seriously considered he was just a particularly flamboyant guard to start.
A hand clicked off the player, her entire attention now drawn to the man who was addressing them. Hidden eyes made it difficult to tell where she was looking.
Her expression remained as he outlined their plan, and finally she cracked a smile, looking at her cellmate.
”Looks like this is our lucky day, bud,” she said, cracking her fingers. Casually she stood up, packing her things as if she was going on a weekend camping trip, rather than a breakout. ”Now whether this is a white hat security check…”
If that was the case, they’d better ask their money back, and stop hiring theater troupes. She slung the bag over her shoulder, unwrapping and eating a sucker from some hidden stash.
“Probably oughta go together. Buddy system,“ she said to her cellie, expression just a second too slow as she grinned wide.
As Zen sat motionless on the uncomfortably hard bed, he felt utterly lost. The cellblock in its grey monochromatic design was bleak, and seemed to suck the life out of him. The plasteel and other metals surrounding him were cold, and made for an inhospitable environment. Even the other people occupying the cells appeared unnerving, and he tried his best to avoid them.
This place was nothing like the warm home he had come from. Zen missed his family. He wondered how the kids were doing. Did they understand what was happening? Though, the longer that he dwelled on the past, the worse that he felt. Sometimes, he regretted having emotions.
When his cellmate began to play their loud music, Zen found the noise obnoxious. The sound was blaring from the music player, and he couldn't quite understand why someone would like to listen to such an angry noise. But, the longer that he listened, he soon felt his chest thump along with the beat. It felt weird, but when it happened, Zen felt alive. It was invigorating. And soon, his mood had improved and he was nodding along to the music. Was this how normal humans felt, he wondered to himself.
However, as the unusual man appeared, he quietly watched him. Zen was only curious about the situation, until the man's greeting of 'inorganic companions'. It was then that he was instantly put on guard. Zen had been hiding his identity as an android and had been successful so far. Yet, it seemed that this person was aware of his real identity.
While Zen listened to the man's speech, he was suspicious of what his motives might be. Surely he could have found other crew members? Ones with a better reputation than themselves. Zen was still learning about the workings of the world beyond domestic servitude, but even he could see that this offer seemed too good to be true.
As the man left them the blueprints of the prison, and some grenades, Zen was still considering his options. In truth, he was paralyzed by the idea of having to make such a big decision himself. It was all so much easier when someone just gave him an order. However, it appeared that his roommate had already decided that they were going to try and escape.
Zen watched as she packed up her belongings, and determined that he would rather go with her than be left behind. Since he didn't have any person items himself, he simply just stood from the bed, tentatively stepping a foot out of the cell. He was half expecting for an alarm to go off, but, as he exhaled the breath he was holding, the block remained silent.
While Zen glanced around, looking to spot any camera's before turning back to his cellie, "So, do you have any ideas? I think going through the ventilation will probably be the safest…" He commented. Zen was hoping that they could get out without any violence, or even seeing a single gaurd.
It was Kel Ellion’s first time being locked up in a prison cell, and she found that she didn’t like it one bit. Everything was dark and cramped. Several others were locked inside the other cells in the block, but it was hard for her to see who or what they were aside from the cell directly across from hers.
Thankfully, her cellmate hadn’t bothered her much since they’d arrived. Most of them actually seemed pretty content to keep to themselves, especially in the darkness. Kel made a face at the mention of lasagna flavoring. Honestly most of the rehydrated crap she’d gotten since getting arrested isn’t something that she’d even consider feeding a pet.
When the lights flicked on, it was so sudden and nearly blinding that Kel raised up a hand to shield her gold eyes until her pupils constricted down enough for her to even try and make out what was going on.
The man that repelled down from the ceiling piqued her interest immediately, and Kel rose from the small metal bunk she’d claimed as her own and headed for the barred doors of her cell. Once her eyes adjusted, they honed in on the thermite grenades and her pupils dilated. Wasting a chance at freedom wasn’t an option. And while Kel had been raised with somewhat more of a moral compass then her other companions, she wasn’t ready to sit idly by and rot in a cell for who knows how long.
Captain Alexander Street. . . The name seemed familiar, but Kel couldn’t quite place it. Perhaps he was someone she’d heard about in passing, and more than likely ran similar circles or dealt in the more unsavory types of business that she’d gotten into since her military discharge.
As soon as the cell doors buzzed open, Kel was ready and slipped through as quickly as she was able. “I don’t know about you lot, but I’m getting the fuck outta here,” she says into the now more dimly lit space, heading right for the table and palming one of the thermite grenades while she examined the surrounding area.
Two others emerged from their cell together, and Kel examined them both from head to toe. "I think vents is a good idea. No point in drawing a bunch of attention to ourselves if we don't have to. Anyone else good with that?"
Before him, the fire raged on. It was a lovely thing, the flames, for they danced with supernatural grace and quickness, leaping from moment to space to moment, flickering in and out of existence. The reds and oranges entranced him, and his eyes hardly blinked. The blues and the whites, though. They were the best. The represented pure passion, fanatical focus, destructive drive. From one pile of melted slag to another, they leapt, consuming everything in their wake in a most delightful and cheery manner.
As beautiful as was the fire, however, something else eclipsed it. Debris, granite and iron and carbon fallout the size of boulders, rained upon the station of degenerates, bringing molten death to its occupants. It brought no little joy, he considered, that such small amounts of tannerite, nitroglycerin, C-4, and some other compounds mixed and applied in just the right way could forge such hypnotic chaos. The resulting deaths were icing on the stellar cake. From behind, he heard the captain's harsh voice: "the HELL did you do!?"
Viktor opened his eyes, the memory gone. Another waking period in the cell. Hard to call them days; without any external sign of the passing of time, the minutes, even the hours, blended together. His nostrils flared, fingers twitching with them. He longed for the smell of ozone, for the feel of the pressure bubble. But no, this cage had none of that. And it'd be his home for many a decade to come.
"Schedule said protein and fiber today," Vik said vaguely to the darkness around them. "Lasagna flavoring. Hooray."
He got no answer in reply. Or at least, not from whom he expected. His roommate, Kel- something, haven't been terribly communicative, and he hadn't complained. Just because they were locked in a cell together didn't mean they had to become friends. No, Vik was startled out of his thoughts by the cell block's sudden and uninvited guest. Squinting at the sudden brightness, Vik had dismissed the intruder as some whackado who had more ability than sense, to break into the high security wing like this. Shaking his head, he went to close his eyes.
He was at the door in a moment, the words hardly out of the stranger's mouth. Thermite. He could smell it, feel it on his fingers. Taste the acrid atmosphere of post-explosion shock on his tongue. It was a better drug than any stimulant, artificial or otherwise. A need rose in him. Ignoring everything else said, ignoring everything else done, Viktor crammed himself through the doorway as the door slid open, nearly shoving Kel aside as he did so. He only had one goal, one obsession: the thermite.
The woman got to it first. Fortunately, Kel only grabbed one of the grenades, or else Viktor might have done something he'd regret. As it was, the second grenade in hand, he stood transfixed, staring at it, caressing it, smelling it.
It'd been so long.
Finally, he opened his eyes again.
"Don't misuse that," he said, an edge of threat in his voice. After a pause, he continued. "Please."
Being locked in a cramped cell was just not Turing’s way of doing things, not his style, his jam, his vibe, whatever one wanted to call it. When the offer came to escape he didn’t think twice, it was the spacer’s way. Ask fewer questions, move faster, grab whatever chance and hope for the best, but always run, never tread. Turing did just that, his lips curling up in a wide smile, the palm of his hands meeting loudly as he half-turned towards his cellmate, the lovely Adalind, and probably closer to murdering Turing for all of his antics in the duration they had been stuck together.
“Inter- whatever Streed Scout, I don’t care, I accept!” Turing declared, meeting with the rest of the inmates with sweeping arms rolling out his sore shoulders and aching neck. Lying down never had been his way of spending leisure time, anyway, as his constant beating against the walls had proven itself to be along with his even louder beatboxing, or whatever sound he had fancied at the moment, off-beat and off-tune. “Let’s gooooo!” Turing roared one last time before turning his eyes up at the vents and to the side, towards the hallways his lips pursing in his first silent thought.
“Processing, right?” Turing exclaimed, his chin jutting into the direction of the hallway and cell 1, “should be that way, too bad we only got two,” he continued, thinking of the possibilities if the bombs were a little more potent or if they had more at their disposal. It was a fun thought, a booming one, more interesting than climbing through vents, but Turing couldn’t be picky.
Not too picky, that is, seeing as he had no idea where exactly he was. “I’m willing to bet that this place ain’t all that secured,” Turing spoke, his lips curling up into a wide smirk as he bops his head, as if finding himself so very astute in his observation, though he left out any of his reasonings to support his claims, instead following up with a;
“Could have some actual fun, jostle some guards, do a full blow prison break, maybe hijack this station, make our own Nassau.”
In the dark, Dr. Dan penned a love letter. Mentally, of course. Naturally, perhaps not. Assuaged of discomfort by his own meticulous thoughts, the man examined the two instruments most responsible for both the good and the vile actions he had fulfilled throughout his tumultuous career. Bathed in shadows, he held them before himself, staring with singular focus. Hands had brought him comfort once. They still did.
A patient presents to you with distal pain in the right radius going down to the fingers.
Ghostly pale, his fingers wiggled like spiders.
There were the distal, immediate, and proximal bones, matters of which he hardly concerned himself as fingers were a tidy system that tended to mend come what may. Now the carpals, on the other hand, yes – what a nasty bit of business those were. He’d drilled it into many a student’s head, even employing a naughty mnemonic where memory failed them. Some lovers try positions that they can’t handle, he would remark to subsequent titters and smiles. But then he would speak again: SLTPTTCH. Scaphoid, Lunate, Triquetrum, Pisiform, Trapezium, Trapezoid, Capitate, Hamate.
The carpals. Get it?
There was nothing wrong with his own hands, save age and perhaps the blood guilt they carried. He thought about the last significant thing he’d done with them, which was–
Ah yes. Signing his statement of confession.
No contest there. He’d done the crime, and not a lick of remorse had been present in him at his sentencing. Titus hadn’t really planned for those students to be harmed, but surely, in the name of science, a chosen few could bear the pains of progress for the good of all. His hands had done that too; releasing the pathogen and all, unintentionally though it may have been. It’d been the distal phalange that had pressed the release on the cage. What a naughty thing the fingers were, indeed.
“Terrible,” He muttered.
His cellmate wasn’t in on the conversation. It was some woman; he hadn’t caught the name nor cared to. Hadn’t really said anything to her either or so much as thrown a look in her direction. If she was a killer, he was quite sure she had more than a few opportunities to end him should she so please. An unfortunate conclusion to the night, to be sure, but a possibility that he hardly feared. In the meantime, he would continue his private study undeterred.
That determination continued even in the wake of a minor kerfuffle beyond the cells. Some man saying some nonsense things…something about a crew cut, thermal mugs, pancakes–
The pendulum of attention swung towards the cell doors in the dark. They were open now.
Titus did not so much walk as he crept out, cautiously and slow, as if any step might lead to a bomb exploding under his feet. The other denizens of the prison were excitedly babbling over one another as they discussed modems of escape. The bombs, one crowed. No no, the vents, another brayed. The disgraced doctor’s eyes panned between the lot of them, assessing a certain detail about them.
Naturally, he shared with the class.
“Some are too big for the vents,” He stated with surgical precision. “You would be shot down.”
Yes, he was ninety-nine percent sure of it, especially the dreadlocked man there, and the bespectacled woman there. Rather unwisely, he almost said, but a last minute distraction saved him; a blinking signal by a door at the end of the cells.
The pneumatic hiss of the bulkhead door sliding closed behind the swaggering and now casually dressed figure of Alexander Street was suddenly drowned out by a burst of deafening static. Coming to a halt, he ducked towards the edge of the tunnel as scarred fingertips brushed through gray speckled black hair while the heel of the hand those fingers belonged to rubbed at the man’s ear.
“Can’t you do something to stop the wretched thing half deafening me everytime a call comes in?”
Silence rang loudly in the captain’s ear for a moment.
“Well, can you?”
“I’ll just leave it on your ben-”
“Or you could stop being cheap and buy a new one rather than wasting my time.”
The captain’s one visible eye rolled as he resumed his journey towards the rendezvous point.
“Whatever, what do want?”
“They’re still where you left them.”
“Are you sure about these people? We handed them the key to their freedom, and they are just standing around talking.”
Ducking around a corner, Street stepped around an apparently very amorous couple of colonists before stepping his palm up to the access panel on a maintenance hatch. The diode on the flashed green and the hatch swung open.
“I am, about the ones I picked out anyway. How long do you think before someone notices our friends aren’t where they should be?”
“Not long. The chief is already muttering someone ought to go check on them. I can cause a door or two to malfunction if you want?”
“No, I told them it was a test. Let's see how they do when the pressure is on.”
Location: Deimos Station Security Center
Officer Peebles stopped at the top of the metal stairs that lead from the security hanger to the gantry that overlooked all the cells in the detention center and wheezed. He wasn’t used to the weight and awkwardness of the armor he wore. Normally no one bothered with it. He had had to blow the dust off of it when he had pulled it out of his locker for fuck sake. Why wasn’t the new guy the one doing this bullshit anyway.
“Going to do the count now, Chief.”
Down below, the slightly portly figure of the head of security raised a hand in acknowledgement. Trudging up to the heavy security door, Peebles muttered complaints under his breath. As the computer identified him. When the door finally opened, the guard waddled forwards to stand in front of the next security door and repeated the process all over again with more mumbled complaints.
The light was the first thing Peebles noticed as the door to the detention area opened. He had no idea why the system was running the day simulation program, not that he really cared that much. Like a moth to a flame though, and more out of curiosity than duty, the heavily armored guard wandered along the gantry to the illuminated cell block and leaned over the railing.
“HOLY FUCKING SHIT!”
The sight of the open cell doors and the prisoners milling about in the communal area below him sent a chill down Peebles’ spine. How the hell had they all gotten out of their cells? Then something worse caught the panicked guard's gaze. Two of the convicts each held something that Peebles had played enough V-SIM games to know were grenades.
If anyone had watched him entering the detention area, they would have been amazed at just how fast Peebles exited it, the security door sliding shut to the sound of him hammering on the next one and screaming for the Chief.
Well the element of suprise has been lost. Best hurry before people with a little more backbone get involved. The next GM post will be in three weeks as per, but if I see places where I think it will be useful, I will add in small posts just to keep things moving. Also dont hesitate to get my input/advice etc for you own posts if you get stuck.
Zen watched as more prisoners came out of their cells. One by one he observed the individual closely, trying to determine who would be best to stay away from and who might make a good ally. While some of them appeared more outwardly dangerous, such as his own cellmate, Zen also had to wonder what might be lying under the surface for the more normal ones for them to end up here. But, like himself, he supposed that they all had their secrets, and it was best to be wary of everyone.
As more people gathered in the common area, he soon realized that this block had been occupied by more people than he first thought and they were quickly assembling a fierce-looking ragtag group of escapists.
When the red-haired woman agreed with him about the vents, he felt relieved. It was nice to see that there was another person who had some sensibility, even among a group of criminals. However, it seemed that some of the others weren't so keen on the idea. Zens gaze flickered towards a muscular man, who spoke excitedly about jostling guards and even the possibility of hijacking the whole station.
While Zen took in the man's words, his eyes went wide before he quickly glanced around at the others, wondering what they might think of the idea. Luckily, an older man stepped in to speak, pointing out that it would be difficult for some to fit in the vents. Zen glanced up, noting the size of the vents before glancing back down at the group. The old man was most likely right about the vents being too dangerous.
“That’s a good point,” Zen added, softly. “So, that leaves us with either splitting up or staying together and breaking through the door.” He added, glancing over to see the old man looking at something. “My vote goes to staying together” Even though Zen was just as eager as anyone else to break out, he also wasn't entirely sure that he had the guts to do what might be necessary. Just the thought of throwing one of those termite grenades toward a living person caused his mind to flood with worrisome thoughts as if he was drowning. He rapidly came to the conclusion, that if he could simply coast along, and let the others do any necessary violence, that would be ideal.
That security officer was honestly quite lucky that none of the now freed prisoners did anything before he left and started another lockdown procedure, the door slamming shut and locking behind him.
"Andromeda's fucking tits," Kel swore under her breath, pocketing the thermite grenade and heading for one of the ventilation shafts. "Well, the rest of you can stand around debating what to do. But now that we've lost the element of surprise, I'm moving my ass."
Clearly the facility didn't expect a breakout like this because it was fairly easy for Kel to wiggle and pull - using the strength and extra dexterity in her prosthetic arm to pry the grate off the front of the vent. "Let's not make this a total bloodbath huh?" she called over her shoulder. "We're not trying to take over this station, we're trying to get the fuck off of it as fast as we can. "
So much talking. It was the bane of any group of size: paralysis by analysis. While it was true that this was a group suddenly thrown together into a scenario none of them could have prepared for, having to account for factors they didn't have time to learn or figure out-
The standing about cost them. Vik winced at the clang of the door. And yet, despite it all: more discussion. Only one seemed to be taking any action at all, and that in despite of the voiced concerns with taking the vents: Kel, his former cellmate. Fine; if she was to take the one path, he, being the only other bearer of the explosives, would provide a way for the others.
There was nothing to be said on his part, and he only spared a sad look to that which he so recently obtained. Ah well: all in service of the greater good. And he would be lying to himself if he said the following explosion wouldn't bring him immense joy. Vik fiddled with the grenade a moment, setting it to just the right power with precisely the right timing, cocked his arm back, paused one, two, three eternal seconds, then hurled it toward the secured door. He gazed at it lovingly as it flew, bidding it farewell in his mind even as it loosed the demon it held within.
The explosion rocked the room, its shockwave exacerbated by the enclosed, metal walls. A blinding flash later, and Viktor was grinning stupidly at the door, eyes glimmering in manic happiness. With a crackling "Come!" he sprinted for the new exit.
Yeah, they ended up spending way too much time talking. Honestly, though, Xandra wasn’t in a rush. She’d been walking around the perimeter of their little prison, cataloguing and marking doors, the gantry, security. It was only a matter of time before someone figured out the little birdies had got out of their cage.
What they needed was an open window.
Before they could do much, an officer wandered out in dusted gear that looked like it hadn’t seen fluorescent lighting since the water wars, and Xandra had to chuckle at that as he scrambled back.
”Looks like the planning phase is done. Damn — I want a cigarette,” she muttered as she sucked her lollipop.
One went up a vent, and the another convict tossed a grenade at a door on the gantry after the poor schmuck who’d ratted. The blast ruffled her hair, briefly deafened her. She stood rooted to her spot, eyebrows raising. She looked it the others with a sigh, gesturing they oughta go up.
She hopped up on the table, taking the rope Street left, and frog climbing to swing back on the gantry.
“No time like the present, up you get, come on,” Xandra stated, abruptly barking at the people under her to move it. “Want out or not? MOVE.”
This gantry should lead to the shuttle bay. She’d seen the same metal grating on the stairs, and this had to have an outlet. It was the most solid bet she could make right now. Strength in numbers for now— they could be sponges for whatever rounds coming her way between now and the waste processor. Not to mention they might end up her new coworkers. She offered a hand to whoever was up next.
As soon as Xandra had both feet squarely on the gantry it was obvious that the grenade had been a sacrifice well made by Viktor. The door, through which guard Peebles had so recently disappeared, had been blasted into a twisted art piece by the explosion. Even the heavy frame that it sat in had been warped and buckled. The second of the pair of doors had suffered a less dramatic fate, but one that still served the needs of someone who wished to vacate the cell block. While not broken, its counterpart had taken the bulk of the grenades power, the superheated metals ejected by the grenade had eaten a sizable hole through the bottom of the second door; a hole through which sirens and frantic shouting could now be heard.
At the other side of the cell block, the ventilation shaft so recently peeled open by Kel held an almost eerie quiet to it, the gentle hum of distant fans being the only real noise traveling along the tight metal corridor. Light too was a stranger to the cramped space. The darkness, for anyone curious enough to stick their head into the shaft, only being broken by faint glows that suggested the location of other vents.
The sight of the guard sent a shockwave through the group. With the alarms blaring overhead, it appeared that they had already lost the element of surprise. However, this turn of events lit a fire under their ass and provoked a decision. Whether it was the right one…only time will tell.
In the heat of the moment, Zen followed Kel toward the vents, picking up the map as he went. When considering which option would be the least violent, he decided that climbing through the ventilation toward their destination would be the most logical decision. It also helped that she seemed to share his nonviolent mindset.
When Kel ripped the grate off of the shaft, he remarked "I'll be right behind you." As she entered, he handed her the map and quickly followed behind. An explosion hit his back, pushing him deeper inside the darkness and cramped space of the ventilation shaft. After crawling for a short time, he called up, "Are we going the right way?" He asked, trying to peek through passing grates to get a better baring of their location.
Too much diddle daddling, too little action. It came with the unfortunate effect that they had no plan. No splitting the team, or sticking together, just pure instinct and chaos.
Turing loved it, a wide smile spreading across his face as he let go of an excited roar. No need for silence now that the surprise was gone. Even an explosion was added!
“I like it!” he yells over the noise of the grenade, approving of the new door created, the blaring alarms and the chaos beyond promising only more excitement that Turing couldn’t wait to be part of as he rushes over after Viktor.
Well, beggars couldn’t be choosers, and Xandra wasn’t gonna stand around looking pretty. Looking down thr hall, it seemed more or less clear. She felt naked without a vest, something to shoot, even a knife would have been nice. Alas, she had a stick to the lollipop she’d finished, and her clothes, and that was truly it.
Beggars couldn’t be choosers indeed.
At the least some of these schmucks had some get-up-and-go. She watched one of their number take off after Viktor into the open doorway. She pounded pavement (metaphorically) behind them. Below them would be processing, some other recreational bays for the guards, but that bang was gonna mean that—
She put a booted, unlaced foot to the broken door at the end of the hall, and sure enough there was already a welcome wagon come to cart them back to their cells in riot gear in the stairwell to block them in. Xandra felt a smile slowly spread across her face with the rapidity of spilled paint.
”Ally-oop,“ she said, as she raced for the railing. She took it in hand and vaulted over, moving to dangle off of the side of the stairwell for a split second before dropping down. Her teeth grit as she felt her ankle slightly roll, a small hiss escaping her, but she pushed through to roll forward and displace some of that energy.
It was sprained, but better than dealing with the crowd up top.
A lone, unlucky guard noticed her escape, racing toward her with a shock prod as she gathered her bearings. Her eyes tracked him, hands loose, as he jabbed forward with the prod— dodge the end— grab a wrist— heel of the hand to an unguarded nose—
It broke, blood splattering warm in her hand, as she followed through forward, putting her weight behind it to unbalance him, a ready leg sweeping him. The prod was in her hand now, and she started towards the middle of the bay. Now where was waste-processing….? She scratched the back of her head, realizing she had no clue where to go.
Location: Deimos Station Security Center Shuttle Bay & Gantry.
Gurgling, bubbling moans of white-hot pain filled the shuttle bay. All the rustling of fabric, thumping of rubber souls on plate metal and muttered cursing seemed to fall away in an instant. Underneath their hastily donned helmets, the guards stacked up on the stairways faces radiated pure terror and revulsion as they stared at their fallen colleague. Turing, Viktor and only god knew who else may have stood before them, but their focus was on the almost robotic looking woman in the middle of the bay with blood dripping from their hands.
This gruesome tableau was shattered after all but a few brief seconds by the pneumatic hiss of opening doors at the base of the stairway. They revealed a figure bulkier, or perhaps portlier, than the rest whose armor bore the insignia of command.
Chief Roger Davies was not a complicated man. From where Xandra stood, his face was an easily read book. Shock and fear flashed across his broad face before being replaced by something close to grim resolve.
“WHAT ARE YOU ALL DOING JUST STANDING THERE? GET HER!”
Twisting, the Chief reached behind him, pushing another guard through the threshold.
“AND FOR THE LOVE OF SOME OF YOU GET TO THE CARGO DOORS!”
The doors in question were large rectangular affairs that separated this shuttle bay from the rest of the station. They were closed right now as they routinely were during what passed for night on the station. Unlike the doors the escapees had already passed through, these weren't prison grade affairs, but rather rolling shutters of linked steel designed to stop drunks and rats from wandering where they shouldn’t.
Location: Deimos Station Security Center Ventilation Shaft
The cool dark confines of the ventilation shaft embraced all who entered in a tight hug. Progress along it came at no more than a literal crawl. The darkness of the passage was no obstacle to progress, each panel being joined almost perfectly smoothly to the next with welds only a fabrication droid could have achieved.
At the front of the group, Kel had the best view of the path ahead, although in its entirety that view was the pool of light cast by the next ventilation. Reaching this oasis of vision in the desert of darkness revealed three things to the golden eyed merc.
One was that a few meters ahead of her, the ventilation shaft apparently came to an end with only a slight pit of darkness to indicate that traveling further along it would require the ability to climb smooth polished metal.
The second thing revealed to Kel was that she was next to what looked to be some sort of locker room. Clothes lay scattered across benches, pools of water trailed from the shower basins and locker doors hung ajar. All of this evidence pointed to two possible conclusions. One; the guards on this station were a group of incorrigible slobs or two; the locker room had been hastily vacated recently.
The third and final revelation was a cloud of steam coming from a closed off shower capsule at the far end of the room. Despite everything that was happening, someone was taking a shower.
A glimpse was all he'd gotten of that blueprint, but a glimpse was all he'd needed.
Xandra's push through the chaos Vik himself had created had helped him focus, and he'd pounded steel after her. The ease with which they cleared the gantry and its approach had surprised him, yet his stomach twisted in uncertainty. This was too easy; a high security prison wouldn't be so lax.
Nor was it, and the rush of rapid response was admittedly impressive. More impressive than the sudden foolhardy leap off the walkway that Xandra suddenly took. The silly woman could at least have come down a few steps first. With a glance at Turing, he did exactly that.
A guard, more quick to action than his partners, was perhaps five feet up, shock prod at the ready. Viktor twisted, trying to imitate Xandra's style, but he was no soldier. Like searing hot needles in his flesh, the probes made contact with his prison garb, lancing electricity through the paper thin fabric and into his skin. He cried out, twitching as he tumbled over the stair railing. His shoulder took the brunt of the fall, bruising from the impact. Standing, sweating profusely from the flash of pain, he glanced about. The captain's (or whomever) barked orders weren't unnoticed, and Vik felt the pressure of panic mount in his subconscious, but they became unimportant as he drew on the particular skill that made him so good at what he did: focus. As if he was on uppers, his eyes darted too and fro, gathering information as his brain tried to pair what he was seeing with the layout of the map their sponsor had provided. If only-
There! With a strained hey!, he gestured to his partners before pointing and sprinting for his life. His goal was a small, non-descript entry. If his memory served him, it would lead to waste processing and their escape.
The former cop‘s expression didn’t much change from her careful nonchalance. She checked the stun baton she had pilfered — battery was still charged all the way, the prod on for ‘contact’, not ‘manual‘. She looked back at the guards in the stairwell, and she knew she needed to figure out moving somewhere fast. First was bottlenecking them at the stairs.
Next was breaking out the neural nasties in pellet form. Like a funny bone packed into a pellet that’d make your eyes roll back and your mouth foam. She’d know. She used them often enough.
And there they were, more of the fuckers, like ants smelling the siren song of a dying cockroach. They had pellet guns (you didn’t want to use kinetic rounds on a station — like waving around a needle inside of a balloon),they had masks, they had shields, the works.
Viktor yelled and pointed in a direction, and she tracked his finger to the entryway. It wasn’t going to be easy.
She hiked her shirt up over her face as an impromptu mask, just as she heard the pop of pellets against the ground, quickly tracking backwards towards the doorway presented. A rising steam started to dissipate, a stinging, pinging sensation across her skin where the nerve agent made contact. She muttered something under her breath as she ignored it, racing for the door across the open floor with a lopsided gait. A guard without a pellet gun attempted to intercept her, getting a swinging prod to the head, but his helmet did its job, the prod glancing off as he managed to grab hold of her shirt, wilding swinging his own baton and smacking the side of her head.
Xandra jabbed the crook of thumb and forefinger at the man’s throat, making him choke, but another man was advancing. Her head rang from the beating, but she could at minimum think through pain. Swinging her full weight, she used the first cop as a shield, the second stabbing with his prod into the wrong person, finding a slip of exposed skin to make contact.
The effect was electric of course, but Xandra was part of the circuit. Her bones lit with lightning, her teeth gritting, her vision static for a few seconds as she locked up. The first cop only let go as the second backed off, and Xandra was off again at a loping, uneven, but purposeful run to the door — or in its general direction.
She could just barely see, but she wasn’t about to let them know that.