HAPPY NEW YEAR!
2015!

    Storm over Pandora: A roleplay now a story.

    Share
    avatar
    Guest
    Guest

    Read Me Storm over Pandora: A roleplay now a story.

    Post by Guest on Tue Jun 28, 2011 3:49 pm

    STORM OVER PANDORA
    (An Avatar RP which I am posting as a story. I'm not saying this is 'how' you should RP, I just think it is a very good example of how an RP can be done)

    Pandora- Two years before the events of Avatar
    2512 AD, 1931 hours.

    The ISV Lightning Hawk has been in space for five years, seven months, eleven days, four hours, twenty minutes and five seconds, and is moving into the range of the moon of Pandora in the Alpha Sentari A system. The crew are starting to wake up the large group new blood that are prepared to go down to the planet.

    But a message comes though the ships speaker systems. Something has happened down on Pandora, a 'tribal' rebellion or something. Everyone is being off-loaded early, and at best speed.

    What could have happened on the ground? Why was everyone so worried? In short, what the hell was going on here?!?
    ----------
    I know, not exactly the most spetacular of intros, but it's flexable, which is what I like about it.

    This RP is going to be a 'Third Person' roleplay, in which you semi-step into the shoes of your character and write out their actions and thoughts as if you were on the other side of a window, watching everything they did.

    For a example of how this works, read a Harry Potter book or Percy Jackson and the Olympians, or something like that. It should give you a good example of what a Thrid Person narrative looks like.

    Read the 'How to Forum Roleplay' thread that you may have passed on your way over here for the basic rules.
    -------
    Now, I have a 'goal' for this RP.
    By the end of the RP, I want the participents (five or six people besides me) to be able to converse in Na'Vi at least moderently well. Because of this, I am looking for one or two people who know and can type in Na'Vi moderently to extreamly well to help the four or three other Skxawng's (besides me) to converse in Na'Vi.
    The plot will build along the way, but let's let that build around our characters, if that's ok with everyone?

    Good. Alright, that's about all I have for now, If I think of more I'll post it.
    JAX
    ISV Lightning Hawk
    Pandora Orbit
    1932 HRS

    Jax wasn't happy about having to wake up.

    Specificly, he wasn't happy that he had to wake up out of cyro sleep.

    It was always the same drill. They woke you up, pulled you out, asked a few basic questions to ensure your brain survived the flight, and then let you out to grab your crap, get some food, and shove you onto a Valkyrie or some other kind of drop ship to send your ass down though orbit to get food. Jax sighed, he had gone though this drill four times now.

    "Always another hell hole." He said with a sigh as his cyro pod slid open, allowing him to free-float a little behind the harness that held him in place.

    "Morning, sunshine." A doctor said, smiling at Jax as he floated over to him to check on his vitals. "At 1933 hours? f*** morning, evening is more like it." Jax muttered before responding to the doctor. "Morning. I'm free to get the hell out of this thing so I can grab some gear and some grub?"

    The doctor blinked in surprise as he quickly scanned down Jax vitals and personel list, and then nodded when he saw the 'vetrian' symbol. "Right. Yeah, here, let me unlock you and you're free to go."

    "Thanks." Jax said with a nod as the doctor unlached him.

    Now then, where was the mess hall on this boat?

    Valkyrie dropship "Pandora Air"
    Pandora, enroute to Hell's Gate.
    2000 HRS

    "Come on in, come on in," said a big, burly bald Black guy, probably a former Marine. Jax didn't like Marines, they didn't really care about the gunships unless they were a pilot like them. Only all that 'this is my rifle' bullshit.

    "Take a seat, kids, and strap in for a wild ride!" the man said. He and some assistants went up and down the rows, checking the seatbelts and shoulder harnesses, sending hand and arm signals up th eline to let the crew chief know they were ready.

    "Alright, kids, before we go, double check and make sure you got your rebreather kits with you, that's right, pat your mask carrier, I want to hear a good firm slap of palms on canvas--" the inside of the shuttle resounded with a ragged collection of pats. "--all-righty-then, when I tell you to put those masks on, you put those masks on and no whinin' and cryin'. Just put it on or you'll be doing the kickin' chicken within 20 seconds and I'll be thinkin', 'hey, that's a nice watch'." Some of the security types, the ex-military types in company uniforms, laughed at the gallows humor. Some of the civilians did too, but probably for the wrong reasons. They didn't know the crew chief was serious.

    "Hang on; express elevator to hell, goin' down!" the chief said. His hand grasped the safety handle just as the shuttle decoupled. The atmosphering insertion was smooth at first, but it soon started to get bumpy.

    Jax smiled and sat back, totally relaxed as they went down. This was his enviroment. The sky was his playground, his home, his element. He never felt right on the ground, but as soon as he was in the sky, he was always in control.

    The bumpy ride though the atmosphere was pretty standard, in fact, it wasn't as bad as his first trip though, and he acually felt like chuckling when a bunch of the civys and a few of the vets looked like they were going to puke up all the 'valueable nutrience' of the crummy space crap they were force fed back on the Lighting Hawk.

    The ride smoothed out, right when Jax thought it would. He smiled in spite of himself, glad that he hadn't lost his insticts for flying while he was crammed in a box for the last few years. The Valkyries trip down to planet side was quick and smooth, and they landed at Hell's Gate precicely when they should have, exactly 2125 hrs military.

    "Let's go, children!" the crew chief bellowed, "masks on, remember what I said: unconscious in twenty seconds, dead in four minutes. I have better things to do than fill out paperwork if you get careless. Now move!" The ramp opened and they filed out, into the Pandoran atmosphere for the first time.

    Jax had the 'privlage' of being the first man out. It was quite a sight, and he kept his head on a swivl as he headed towards the Hell's gate complex.

    Jax was already past one of the 'old' guard guys, who was yelling something at the rest of the 'fresh meat' behind him. Jax shook his head. Yep, it was GREAT to be back in the military again.

    Hell's Gate
    Briefing Room
    2200 HRS

    "Ladies and gentlemen, this is not Disneyland," the battle-scarred ex-Marine said as he strode to the front of the room. Every eye followed his movement; every head turned to follow his actions. Jax knew this old drill. Keep your men focused on everything you say and do, and you ensure you can pick out the bad apples.

    It was a old time drill-sargent move. The sargent would order eyes on, and then start to walk around. If someone unfocused, he would be on that man like a large group of yellow-jackets, stinging at every weakness he could find. However, Jax would bet money that this man was just doing this so that people payed close attention. Dead men and women means they need more men and women, and that means more money the RDA has to pay out to the greaving families.

    "My name," the man said, "Is Colonel Quaritch. I am the head of security here at RDA's Hell's Gate station. And your safety is my number one concern. Despite that, and the best efforts of myself and my security staff, it is almost guaranteed that some of you will be going home in a box-- especially if you do not listen to what I have to say to you about paying attention."

    "Outside these steel-rebar reinforced triple-layer ceramo-cement walls is the world of Pandora," Quaritch said, "It is deadly, it is dangerous, and it does not give a flying tinker's damn about you except how you taste. You will pay attention to the safety briefing I give you, and you will obey the instructions of my security staff, or the RDA will be cashing out another set of survivor's benefits paperwork for your family..."

    Jax smiled. Ah, the safety briefing. Yep, it was like he was flying for the USMC all over again.

    0100 HRS

    The brief had finished and Jax was just about to leave when the Colonel approced him. "Sir." Jax said, reflectivly snapping to salute.

    "At ease, Sargent. At ease." Quaritch said, looking Jax over. "You're my new Gunship pilot, correct me if I'm wrong?"

    Jax nodded. "Gunny Sargent James "Jax" Legain, reporting for duty fit and ready."

    Quaritch chuckled. "You are a marine. No one else would report like that. Again, at ease soldier, I'm not debreifing you or anything, I just want a quick moment with my new pilot. I want to know my soldiers."

    Jax chuckled and held out his hand, "Good to meet you then, Colonel."

    Quaritch shook Jax's hand. "I read your file. Let me tell you, I was glad to see I was finally getting a combat pilot who knows what the hell he's doing with his gunships instead of one of the dumb-as-brick louts that I normally get as pilots. You've done some good work in your time, I'm impressed."

    Jax nodded. "Thank you sir. I just like to fly, that's all. So I figure, why not be the best, neh?"

    Quaritch nodded. "Indeed. Listen, Jax... you're going to be working for Dr. Augustine's science pukes, getting them around Pandora. If you ever need anything that you can't get from Augustine, let me know. I take care of my own."

    Jax nodded back and saluted again. "Aye, sir. Can do."

    Quaritch clapped Jax on the shoulder. "Good to hear. Your first pilot mission is at 1100 HRS. Talk you again."

    Jax smiled as Quaritch walked off. Oh yes. It was GOOD to be back in the military again.
    Ariel
    ISV Lightning Hawk
    Pandora Orbit
    1947 HRS

    The first sensation Ariel could understand was darkness. Even without opening her eyes, she could sense the darkness around her; it pressed heavily in the cramped space. That was the second sensation her muddled brain processed, a cramped space. And frankly, that scared the crap out of her.

    "Holy s***" Ariel yelled thoughtlessly, thrashing against the strips that ran taught across her body. "s*** s*** s***!" She felt the panic run through her as her stomach twisted and turned, and then a crack of light appeared across her eyes.

    "Seems we have another live one!" A man dressed in scrubs was floating towards her. Wait, floating? Then everything rushed back to her, being hired by the company, being informed of the six year mandatory cyrostasis, fighting the doctors tooth and nail as they tried tying her down. The last thing Ariel remembered was a woman's voice, frantically calling for a sedative to subdue the irate patient.

    The doctor grabbed at a bar right above her head and came to a stop directly above her. "Aren't you the one that made the fuss getting into cyro? No problem, we'll just get you untied here and you can collect your belongings. We'll be making the decent soon so you might want to hustle and get a good seat on the drop ship." With that comment, he simply pushed and floated off to help other awakening company employees.

    Ariel frantically tore off the needles, the straps, everything keeping her tied to the bed. Once undone however, she started floating up in the air in the most ungraceful manner. Struggling to keep her wits about her, she let out a shrill scream and waved her arms in a futile attempt to reach one of the walls.

    What the hell am I doing here? I hate small spaces, I have motion sickness, and now I'm trying to swim through zero gravity! I'm a freaking lawyer for christsake! Shouldn't there have been some sort of VIP section of this nonsense they could have stuck me on? She thought as she continued to wave her arms and legs around like some disturbed version of the doggie paddle when a passing doctor mercifully gave her a shove towards her locker.

    What on earth had she gotten herself into?

    HELL'S GATE
    COURTYARD
    2220 HRS

    The trip down to Pandora had not been a fun one. It was hard to ignore the suppressed sniggering of the more experienced fliers as she very nearly threw up what little was in her stomach. She had managed to slowly and stiffly move off the transfer plane or whatever that piece of hellish machinery was called. Ariel fought nausea with every step and worked hard to avoid snapping at the skinhead moron who was telling her to get a move on.

    I did not spend five years in college to be ordered around by a guy that looks like an ape. She thought to herself, and walked across the tarmac to reach the inner sanctions of Hell's Gate. Ariel stopped for a moment to look around her before entering the airlock and dropped her belongings in astonishment. Close to her was a huge cement yard surrounded by a wire and concrete fence. To be honest, it looked quite a bit like the courtyard of a prison, barring the giant robotic machines walking around and the leering soldiers. She flipped off a particularly scummy cluster of skinheads, much to their amusement. Ariel tuned out the raucous laughter and attempted to see beyond the fence, and what she saw surprised her. Pictures of the greenest rain forests at home had nothing on the environment outside Hell's Gate. It was beyond Ariel's comprehension to process the giant green trees, the strange animal calls, the phosphorous glow clinging to all the organisms. Her breath caught in wonder of it all.

    The wonder was quickly erased however, as an incoming army person rudely shoved her out of her revere and started babbling on about needing to hear the briefing of safety procedures or some other such nonsense. Honestly, who did they think they were dealing with? She would NOT be one of the brain-dead morons out combing the jungle waving a gun around like a badge of honor. That's why she was assigned one of those body things, so she could do her work from the safety of Hell's Gates' inner chambers. Still, she picked up her bag with a huff and headed through the door.

    Once inside, she found herself a few minutes too late into the welcoming speech, if you could call it that. Barely paying attention, she spent her time looking around the room to see who she'd be spending the next six years dealing with on a daily basis. There's so much testosterone in this room its unbelievable! Ariel thought wrinkling her nose and sitting down on one of the metal tables I bet this is the kind of place where they keep rulers in the shower to better measure the size of their...

    "It is deadly, it is dangerous, and it does not give a flying tinker's damn about you except how you taste. You will pay attention to the safety briefing I give you, and you will obey the instructions of my security staff, or the RDA will be cashing out another set of survivor's benefits paperwork for your family..." the Colonel or General or other army whatsit finished and strode back to the front of the room. Ariel supposed this would be a signal that they could finally get on with business and collected her bag. It was time to finally meet a civilized human being, but where was Selfridge hiding?

    Hell's Gate
    Briefing Room
    2300 HRS

    "You are one damn hard man to find Mr. Selfridge." Ariel announced as she stepped into the man's office. "You know, maybe its just me with an overly inflated ego, but I had really expected that someone would be able to meet me at the plane bus thing and help me with my luggage so I didn't have to haul all my personal belongings around looking for my boss. But you know, I just figured that was a benefit with the salary you guys are paying me, so since when does seven figures amount to crappy service?"

    Selfridge looked up from the papers he had been leafing through and leaned back with an arrogant smile, "C'mon Dauphanis, you're a big girl! Since when does a individual like yourself need babysitting to get through a tiny little base like this?" He sighed and threw the papers down on his desk. They scattered across the edge and a few fell to the floor, although neither individual made a move to pick them up. "Look, I'm sorry for the bad reception, call me Parker, ok?We've had a few important problems to deal with lately, namely getting the blue monkeys that live here to move so we can start mining in the new district. Please tell me you come ready with some legal mumbo jumbo that'll let us 'temporarily' move them until we're done or something?"

    Ariel narrowed her eyes, she could tell that Selfridge was one of those men with the Napoleon syndrome, a.k.a. the short s*** syndrome. Nonetheless, she could deal with this type, as she had often done before.

    "Well, ah, Parker, if we're sticking with first names, it'd just be easier to call me Ariel. As for your problems, its a bit more complicated than that" Ariel said sauntering across the office and falling sideways into a chair. Damn I wish I was wearing heels and a skirt... I'll just have to use asset that next time "I need to know more about the way the native populace views land and territory. Is it going to be like the Native American way of thinking, like 'we all share the land, nobody owns it' or are we dealing with a more developed sense of ownership like what the Europeans embraced? I can't tell you a damn thing about legality or not until I've talking to someone more about how they claim property and have seen the land myself."

    Selfridge sighed with a laugh, "And here I was hoping not to have to grace the doctor's presence today. Look sweet-cheeks, I think the Docs off playing with the little puppet show at the moment, so you're better off heading to your room and getting settled in. I can introduce the two of you later and you can talk your hearts out about the habits of the savages."

    Ariel had to bite her lip at the 'sweet-cheeks' comment, but other than a slight narrowing of the eyes the charming smile didn't change. Because frankly, her room was starting to sound pretty good about now. Something about sleeping for six years made her terribly in need of a nap.

    "You win Parker, now be a gentleman and show a lady to her room? And it better be private, I'm not spending the next six years sharing my personal space with a woman who looks like the wolfman..."
    Alex
    ISV Lightning Hawk
    Pandora Orbit
    1936 HRS

    The strange thing about cryo is it doesn’t feel like sleep. You wake up tired, more importantly you wake up weak, hungry, irritable, and with one hell of a headache. It’s also hard to maintain your cool when you’re first coming out of it. Lucky, there was a crack, a hiss, and a slight blue glow on the “Living Coffin” they stuffed Alex into.

    “Morning….uh…” the Doc trailed off as he saw Alex’s arm and the missing finger.

    “Alex, is my name Doc, and don’t worry, you didn’t do this.”

    “Right, Alex. Well, let’s get you unstrapped and out of this. You gotta be planetside soon enough, go get your stuff from the locker and get something quick to eat.”

    You can’t really call it food. Nothing that stays good for the better part of 6 years is food, but out of cryo they could feed you raw beef and you would be grateful. Might even be better than the s*** they served.

    Valkyrie dropship "Pandora Air"
    Pandora, enroute to Hell's Gate.
    1958 HRS

    “Let’s move civilian, we gotta go!” A rather large Black man with the tone of voice that makes you want to move just a little bit faster. Alex went for the first open seat he could see, then checked all the strapping’s and contact points. "Come on in, come on in," the walking mountain called. Alex hated relying on other peoples work for his safety, and his arm was a daily reminded of that. Finding the seat suitable enough, he sat down.

    "Take a seat, kids, and strap in for a wild ride!" the boat caller said. Not long after that a few men came by checking straps, making sure no one was going to bounce around the cabin. "Alright, kids, before we go, double check and make sure you got your rebreather kits with you, that's right, pat your mask carrier, I want to hear a good firm slap of palms on canvas" Alex checked both of his, primary and backup. Walking out an airlock without one on his first tour was more than enough to convince him to have not just one, but two, at all times. “all-righty-then, when I tell you to put those masks on, you put those masks on and no whinin' and cryin'. Just put it on or you'll be doing the kickin' chicken within 20 seconds and I'll be thinkin', 'hey, that's a nice watch'." Alex smirked. What used to be Marines and Army boys were not just hired guns kept under control by the threat of being shipped back Earth side. He wouldn’t put it past any of them to do just that before saving the poor soul laying there.

    “Hang on; express elevator to hell, goin' down!" and with that he felt the hooks holding their Valkyrie dropship uncouple, and they were free. Alex hated atmosphere entry, something about it never really sat right with him. Could be because most pilots were idiots, and were excessively rough on their machine, didn’t matter if it was an AMP suit or a Gunship, all pilots were the same. Reckless, pushing the limits, and blaming the mechanic if anything went wrong. Lost in his thoughts Alex didn’t even notice the turbulence till it was too late, and it bounced the back of his head straight into the very hard, very metal bulkhead behind him. What a great way to start the day. Wasn’t too long after that till they were on final for Hells Gate, and not soon enough, Alex needed to get out and move.

    "…masks on, remember what I said: unconscious in twenty seconds, dead in four minutes. I have better things to do than fill out paperwork if you get careless. Now move!" Alex barely heard the man over his own thoughts, but he put his mask on, checked the seals, and then patted down for his backup. The ramp dropped and people began filing out, and one of the welcoming committee stepped in and started shouting for people to get a move on.

    Alex finally stepped out, and onto solid ground for the first time in nearly six years. The gravity and pressure felt strange, but his eyes were sharp and quickly spotted the repair bay; his new home. He started walking towards the area when he was stopped by one of the standing guards.

    “You gotta go and be processed in first, listen to the welcome speech. After that you’ll be told where to go.”

    Ugh. Alex hated meetings, and it’s not like he needed some safety lesson to repair Gunships and AMP suits. Whatever. Might as well follow the procession. Falling into the quasi-line he noticed all sorts of things. One of the gunships to the right had a strange engine whine as it started up, probably a loose bearing. An amp suit walking past had a slight catch on the left leg servo, that would have to be taken care of before it ground the gear out. Ahead of him though is what caught his attention. It was that cute little thing that was freaking out in cryo when she came out, Amber…Ariel..Anes.. Eh it didn’t matter, she seemed the “im better than this and I know it” type. Still, nice scenery from behind. Ah well, lots of time to look at the “scenery” later, for now he had a meeting to get to, and with that he was off.

    Hell's Gate
    Briefing Room
    2200 HRS

    "Ladies and gentlemen, this is not Disneyland," said the guy who seemed to be in charge as he walked up to the front of the room. AMP suit pilot by his stride, and the way he held his arms.

    "My name," the man said, "Is Colonel Quaritch. I am the head of security here at RDA's Hell's Gate station. And your safety is my number one concern. Despite that, and the best efforts of myself and my security staff, it is almost guaranteed that some of you will be going home in a box-- especially if you do not listen to what I have to say to you about paying attention."

    Well, at least he kept a chain of command. Better than Alex expected.

    "Outside these steel-rebar reinforced triple-layer ceramo-cement walls is the world of Pandora," Quaritch said, "It is deadly, it is dangerous, and it does not give a flying tinker's damn about you except how you taste. You will pay attention to the safety briefing I give you, and you will obey the instructions of my security staff, or the RDA will be cashing out another set of survivor's benefits paperwork for your family..."

    At this point Alex stopped listening. Why should he care what’s outside the walls? It wasn’t like he was going to be heading out there anytime soon…right?

    0100 HRS

    Meeting over, finally. Three hours of that was enough to drive any man insane. The guy had the ability to keep most eyes on him though, that’s half the battle most of the time.

    “Well, might as well see where im at” Alex said to himself. He walked down a hallway labeled “Administration”, and upon reaching a desk with a grumpy looking soldier behind it, saw the tablet with names, room numbers, and assignments on it.

    “Newta’ Hells Gate?” Alex couldn’t place the accent, but that didn’t matter.

    “Yeah, im Alex, I came here to work the Repair Bays.”

    “Great, we’ve needed a new wrench turna’ for a while”

    Heh, great. Wrench turner. With that Alex found his name and took a look at his room number.

    “Be seein ya, wrench turna’.” the soldier said with a smug grin.

    “Its Gears, and thanks.” Alex turned and walked back down the hall, lookin for the dorms.
    Oscar Woods - Mycro
    ISV Lightning Hawk
    Pandora Orbit
    0200 HRS - 24 HRS before Military wake-up

    As per usual, Oscar had trouble sleeping. This was, however, odd, since he was supposed to be in stasis. Unlike the doctors, who had been up for a week, he had just woke up, more than a day ahead of schedule, probably due to a malfunction in the machinery. He did consider himself lucky for not simply freezing to death, though. Great way to start a new life.
    He tried yelling at first. No responses. The doctors weren't expecting anyone to wake up any times soon, so they probably weren't checking their monitors.
    He had, just before entering the pod, noticed something that might be of use. When glancing at one of the monitors in passing by, he saw a bar. 5 green lights, two orange and one red. He was willing to bet his life on it the staff would be on high alert when the bar entered orange, or even red. He didn't know what would set off the bar, but he wasn't going to wait two days to ask.
    He yelled, he banged the insides of his 'coffin', and finally managed to break his nose on his ceiling. He was cursing as little droplets of blood started floating in front of him. And then, the alarm went off, because the humidity in his coffin had reached a critical level. After all, if there's too much moist in a cryo-chamber, it might freeze onto the body and do permanent damage.
    And that's how they lifted him out of his pod. Cursing, with a swollen nose and and blackened eyes.
    He'd never been so hungover.

    ISV Lightning Hawk
    Pandora Orbit
    1940 HRS

    Most of the military personnel was up and about now. They seemed surprised to see one of the science-geeks awake. He'd seen them mocking him for his broken nose. Oh, well. He joined some of them at the mess hall.
    "How the hell did you break your nose in cryostasis?" One of the marines asked.
    "I forgot my seat-belt". Though it wasn't the best of jokes, the marines seemed to think it funny, and he left it at that. If there's one way to get the testosterone-brigade to like you (even just a little bit) it's being amusing, non-threatening, and self-critical. He hadn't won their hearts, but their minds seemed to open up. If he managed to get into an argument before he landed on pandora, this was sure to be a great day.

    ISV Lightning Hawk
    Pandora Orbit
    1948 HRS

    "No! No, I don't want a tranquilizer, I want you people to stop patronizing me!" He yelled at the girl from medical, who was easily five years older than he was, but still intimidated. He thought she'd start crying, but he hated it when people automatically wanted to tranquilize him when he was feeling chipper. Not that it mattered anymore, anyway, because his mood was ruined now.
    "Please sir, if you'll just sit down, and I'll bring you some water." The girl tried her best not to start crying, but Oscar saw the tears forming in her eyes.
    He mumbled an apology, and sat down. The way down was bumpy, but not impressive. Like being on a roller-coaster for longer than anyone could find fun. He fell asleep during the last part of re-entry, and assumed he missed a security briefing when he woke up and saw everyone wearing filtered masks. Good thing he read about those, back on earth. Now, to slip them on... er...
    He had a little more trouble he'd expected, and felt a bit of panic rise when he heard the shuttle land. He'd managed to get the thing over his head, but it felt like he put a plastic bag over his head. There was supposed to be this... thing, near the chin, a valve. He managed to twist it in the right direction as the ramp slowly opened, and everyone got out. He got out of the ship, and looked around him.
    "Oh." That was all he managed to say. Everything was amazing. Heck, even the military camp looked amazing. He'd never been in a military camp, and Oscar was a man of experiences. That is to say, he hardly had any experience, but he lived for new ones.

    Hell's Gate
    Briefing Room
    2200 HRS

    "... outside these steel-rebar reinforced triple-layer ceramo-cement walls is the world of Pandora," Quaritch said, "It is deadly, it is dangerous, and it does not give a flying tinker's damn about you except how you taste. You will pay attention to the safety briefing I give you, and you will obey the instructions of my security staff, or the RDA will be cashing out another set of survivor's benefits paperwork for your family. So if you manage to get yourself killed: please, get yourself eaten as well, because I ain't haulin' your ass back to base for a proper burial." Nervous laughter erupted.

    Oscar looked around. He saw a variety of people, but most of them looked like they could lift him with one hand. The guy next to him even more so. The guy in question was looking at woman, a few seats in front of them. Oscar understood why. The woman had a great body. He also knew that, if she was working anywhere near him, he'd have loads of fights and arguments with her. He knew the type. Xenology and Law school shared most of the same buildings. They were the kind of women that...well... rejected him, without giving it much thought. He understood why, but he didn't have to like it.

    Hell's Gate
    Science lab
    2300 HRS

    He was assigned this and that, but had failed to listen. He'd dragged himself to bed, to really sleep for the first time in 40 hours. He was surprised he managed to stay awake that long.
    ISV Lightning Hawk
    Pandora Orbit








    Aw, crap.

    It was Arik Shaham's first thought as consciousness returned. It adequately described how he felt, and what seemed to be in his eyes, and the taste in his mouth. In the back of his mind, a stray thought wandered: do they throw out these mattresses after six years of sleep sweat? He was interrupted by the opening of the cryo-container, and a nurse floated up to check his vitals.

    "Wake up," the woman said, smiling.
    "I don' wanna go to school," he mumbled, smiling back.
    "Well, that's original," the nurse replied, "Usually I get either 'are we there yet' or some sleep-fogged pickup line."
    "I'm still warming up," Arik replied.

    "You check out. Go ahead and get dressed, there, Prince Charming." She floated off to the next container.

    Arik uncoupled himself from the straps and floated to his locker, where he got his clothes. Before long, they did some quick motor-skill coordination checks, to see who needed observation before reorienting to gravity, and moved them to the shuttle. It felt good to move around-- his muscles felt tight. He looked for his sister, Na'ama, in the crowd but couldn't see her.

    "Come on in, come on in," said a big, burly bald Black guy, probably a former Marine. He had that 'Crew Chief' mannerism to him, Arik thought, a manner familiar to him from his years in the Army. Arik was wearing civilian clothes, though, with his RDA jacket on. "Take a seat, kids, and strap in for a wild ride!" the man said. He and some assistants went up and down the rows, checking the seatbelts and shoulder harnesses, sending hand and arm signals up the line to let the crew chief know they were ready.

    "Hang on; express elevator to hell, goin' down!" the chief said. His hand grasped the safety handle just as the shuttle decoupled. The atmospheric insertion was smooth at first, but it soon started to get bumpy.

    "You ever do this before?" one of the civilians next to him asked.
    "Once," Arik said, "On Mars. You?"
    "First time," the man said, "I think I'm going to be sick."
    "Aim that way," Arik said, pointing away from him. The civilian looked where Arik pointed, right at a big, burly Hispanic security man with a lantern jaw. The security man glared at them and shook his head 'no'.

    "I don't think I can," the civilian said.
    "There's always your mask bag," Arik teased, "Actually, I think that's the worst of it. Should be okay now. Once you land, get some soy milk. It helps."
    "Really?"
    "Really."

    The shuttle's engines were audible outside the skin of the craft as they rumbled through the atmosphere, and soon the pitch of the engines changed, as did the pull of gravity within the ship, as they rotated for landing attitude.

    "Let's go, children!" the crew chief bellowed, masks on, remember what I said: unconscious in twenty seconds, dead in four minutes. I have better things to do than fill out paperwork if you get careless. Now move!" The ramp opened and they filed out, into the Pandoran atmosphere for the first time.

    It's hazy, Arik thought. At first he dismissed it as smog, but then realized that the thick atmosphere would be normal. The prickly sensation of humidity coated him and glued his clothes to his body, an unusual sensation. All around were security guys with rifles and breather masks, and guys on perimeter patrol in AMP suits. Nearby, a Dragon gunship was parked, and several Samsons roared overhead. Jesus, this is like Abuja, he thought to himself.

    "Let's go, fresh meat!" one of the Security guys yelled, "Get inside, tourists get eaten!"







    Hell's Gate
    Briefing Room
    After Landing








    "Ladies and gentlemen, this is not Disneyland," the battle-scarred ex-Marine said as he strode to the front of the room. Every eye followed his movement; every head turned to follow his actions. Arik smiled somewhat; he'd seen style of public address before, during his time in the Army, and in a way he appreciated the familiarity. Next to him sat his younger sister, Na'ama, who'd found him in the minutes before the briefing started.

    "My name," the man said, "Is Colonel Quaritch. I am the head of security here at RDA's Hell's Gate station. And your safety is my number one concern. Despite that, and the best efforts of myself and my security staff, it is almost guaranteed that some of you will be going home in a box-- especially if you do not listen to what I have to say to you about paying attention."

    "God, what a tightass," whispered Na'ama, "Shove some coal in that ass on Friday night, pull out diamonds by Monday."
    "Shh," Arik said, "Listen up."

    "Outside these steel-rebar reinforced triple-layer ceramo-cement walls is the world of Pandora," Quaritch said, "It is deadly, it is dangerous, and it does not give a flying tinker's damn about you except how you taste. You will pay attention to the safety briefing I give you, and you will obey the instructions of my security staff, or the RDA will be cashing out another set of survivor's benefits paperwork for your family..."





    A Few Hours Later





    "Arik Shaham?" the man asked, smiling and offering his hand. "Warren Childs. I'm the chief coordinator for the Survey team."
    Arik shook his hand. "Pleased to meet you," he said. "I was given a briefing by a Max something-or-other who told me about my, um, Avatar?"
    "Yessiree," Dr. Childs said. "I have to say you're a real welcome addition to the team. A researcher who is also fit & military trained? The company loves guys like you. Having you on the geosurvey team means one less security member on the team, so the company saves a ton of money."

    "I understand that," Arik said, "And I'm cool with it, really, but no one's really answered my question-- am I supposed to be part of the survey team, or the security team?"
    "Oh, you are 100% part of the survey team," Dr. Childs said. "Trust me, if we could, we'd find guys like you and hire them for the survey side of things and leave the goon squad out of this entirely. Dr. Augustine says that there's been too many incidents with the natives."

    "What do you mean?" Arik asked.
    "Well, the security guys tend to see the locals as a... problem to be solved. They have a confrontational mindset from the beginning. It sorta puts a negative frame on every meeting."
    "I've heard it's a dangerous place," Arik said, "So, um, is there a chance of meeting any natives?"

    "How much orientation did you get back on Earth?" Dr. Childs asked.
    "Just the Av-driving," Arik said. "I was in the walk-simulators mostly, that and the background information about Pandoran geology."
    "So, no language training, no anthropological stuff?"

    "No," Arik admitted, "They said I didn't need to worry about that. I mean, my training was done in about six months. Said the dedicated anthropologists could handle the contact stuff; I was here to look at rocks."
    "Hmm," Dr. Childs said, "Well, I'm sure that also saved a ton of money, too, so we take the bad with the good. You'll be on a team with two other people, both Av-drivers, at least one will be an anthropologist with training, the other will be a senior geologist who you will eventually be replacing when the Venture Star gets here in two years."

    "Awesome," Arik replied. "When do I get started?"
    "We can have you walking in your Avatar by tomorrow morning. Some familarization drills, mostly, to test motor response, that sort of thing. It'll be a week or so before you actually go outside the wire. Any questions?"
    "Maybe... um, my sister is on the anthropology team. Any chance we can get teamed together?"

    "Sister, huh? She been here awhile? With Dr. Augustine?"
    "No, we came here together. It's because of her I have this job; we didn't see each othe rmuch growing up. Our parents divorced when we were kids and I went with dad, she went with mom. So Pandora is kind of a family reunion for us."

    "I'll put in a word," Dr. Childs said, "On the one hand they want two experienced people with one newbie, but that's usually for teams in direct contact with natives. On the other hand, the company cares about employee morale. I can't make any promises, but I'll talk to the higher ups."
    "Thanks."

    "Don't mention it. It's, umm.." he looked at his watch. "It's already halfway through lunch. Go ahead and get something too eat and come back about 1330; we'll get you started. Maybe show you your Avatar."

    "Thanks, Doctor."
    "Warren," he said, smiling. "You can call me Warren. Stay away from the meatloaf. The cooks like to... experiment with local stuff."
    "Cool," Arik said.
    "Irayo," Warren said, "Start practicing your Na'vi..."

    "Irayo..."
    Ralph
    ISV Lightning Hawk
    Pandora Orbit
    1936 HRS

    "Uhhhh... My head..."
    Ralph tried to grab it, but something stopped him. He struggled once, than again. Adrenaline started to flow throught his body when he was starting to panic. Happily after few second all memories were back. That was just a cryo. His first... He slowed down his breath and began to whait for a doctor. That is what they told him to do after wake up.

    After few minutes his pod was oppened and he was floating to the exit after quick test. Zero gravity. This is always great. No matter how many times you will have occasion to experience it it will still feal awesome.

    After picking up his staff, and getting some so called "food" he took his place in Valkyrie dropship heading to Hell's Gate.

    Valkyrie dropship "Pandora Air"
    Pandora, enroute to Hell's Gate.
    2000 HRS

    "Move!", "Come on in!", "Get inside!" Do they think we are idiots? Slaves? I know i have to get in, but Black guy was shouting at everything and everyone trying to force constatnt stream of people to take their places. Ralph passed him without a word, and took place on the left side, between some soldier, and some technician.

    "Take a seat, kids, and strap in for a wild ride!" he heard when other guy was checking seatbelts. After quick safty check he heard: "Hang on; express elevator to hell, goin' down!" and than he felt jerk when shuttle disconnected from mothership.

    It wasn't pleasant flight. It never is when you tear atmosphere with huge speed and everything shakes so hard you barelly see anything. But it is normal. It happend every time when I was going back from Earth's orbit after some space specific training.

    After landing we were all sent to briefing room.

    Hell's Gate
    Briefing room
    2200 HRS

    "Ladies and gentlemen, this is not Disneyland," Said well build man while going back and forth in front of soldiers, scientists and workers who just arrived.

    "My name, Is Colonel Quaritch. I am the head of security here at RDA's Hell's Gate station. And your safety is my number one concern. Despite that, and the best efforts of myself and my security staff, it is almost guaranteed that some of you will be going home in a box-- especially if you do not listen to what I have to say to you about paying attention."

    Whole speach lasted over 3 hours. First Ralph was listening with interest trying to learn some interesting staff, but he quicly got bored, and stood there mindlessly folowing Quatitch's movments.

    Hell's Gate
    Science Lab
    0100 HRS

    I was extreamly tired but noone could stop me from seeing my Avatar, after briefing i rushed to the science lab where in big tanks filled with fluid Avatar were floating. Noone stopped when i was going between tanks trying to locate one where my Blue clone was.

    "How do you like him? It's your Avatar."
    I quicly turned my head and saw Dr. Augustine. "Kalti" i said quicly trying to impress her, but she cann't be impressed by single world in Na'vi, especialy bad one.

    "It's Kaltkxi. you should go get some rest now. There is no point telling you anything if you will forget everything by tomorow morning" She said and dissapeard behind desks, computers and other equipment.

    So i left my Avatar, and went to my small room to get some rest. I thought that emotions will keep me awake for long time, but cryo plus long briffing, but esspecialy cryo made me fall asleeap almost immediately after laying down.

    Please note: I have provided translations for my longer sentences in beige. Highlight to read the text. This won't spoil it for you if you want to work it out yourself, but it doesn't force you to either!

    Tireamokri was riding her ikran when she saw them. Those metal birds, what were they called? Kunsìp? Or were these different? Quickly she asked her mount to land. Kinä, her ikran of three years now, landed high in the trees on a large branch. With silent footfalls, she climbed and leaped higher, to the thinner branches where she could get a better look.

    Several metal planes plummeted towards the ground, slowing only when they had almost landed. No, these were not kunsìp. They only had little weapons. And they were landing at the base of the Sawtute, that sacrilege of treelessness, that wretched, dying apostasy towards Eywa.

    She could feel the death even here, surrounded by living creatures, surrounded by Eywa. Every time her eyes touched that spot, it was as if a piece of her heart were torn away, leaving a gaping wound that would never close.

    And yet... she had, before, crept close enough to see them, the clumsy little creatures who walked as if they owned everything they saw, and all that they didn't see as well. It made her skin crawl to think of it. "Skxawng!" she hissed, baring her teeth in a snarl at that distant patch of death.

    How could one walk like that? How could it be that a Tawtute-- all of them, even, which was stranger still!-- could be so ignorant, so blind, and yet think themselves so mighty? "Sawtuteri ke'u kamänge," she scowled under her breath. "Nìwotx! Ayfo ke kame ftxängey. Ulte ke nì'ul sìltsana ayuniltìranyu längu," she spat. <<I'm disgusted that Skypeople can't See. All! They choose not to see. And the Dreamwalkers are no better.>>

    She chirped to Kinä, making Tsahaylu, and flew off towards her Hometree. Kinä sensed her anger and flew haphazardly, crashing into small branches and narrowly avoiding larger ones. What am I doing? she thought. Mawey, Tireamokri. Mawey.

    Taking a deep breath, she changed course and flew towards Utral Aymokriyä, the Tree of Voices. It had always calmed her before, to hear the sibilant murmurs of her ancestors.

    She left Kinä outside the grove, and slowly walked in. The sight of the tree, dripping with bioluminescence, swaying softly in the breeze, did not fail to move her. She knelt beside the trunk and made Tsahaylu with the tree, letting her eyes flutter shut and succumbing to the lilting strains of voices from days long past.

    Eywa, she thought, and ancestors. You see what is happening. What do we do? They are acting so foolishly. She thought of all the things she had seen: the landing ships, the men with guns, the giant metal monsters. The death of the trees, and the plundering of the land. And across it all, across the vision of her inner eye, she saw an atokirina', floating effortlessly. She watched it in her mind, floating across the land and coming to rest on a building. It was that building that the Sawtute had made, to lure the People to it and convert them in their horrid ways. Their tree-killing heresy.

    What? she thought. Eywa, what is this?

    The seed fluttered in an unfelt breeze above the school building, waiting.

    Tireamokri walked back to Kinä and, her mind spinning, flew home. Kinä sensed her mental state and flew the route herself, letting Tireamokri rest.
    ((Warning: I don't censor curses. Don't really see the 'why' in that thought.
    Anyway, read on.))
    DAY 1 (On Pandora)
    0630 HRS
    The dormetories of Hell's Gate.

    "LIGHTS LIGHTS LIGHTS!"
    Jax knew that it wasn't really a early morning drill-call. He knew it was his alarm clock, set to wake him at exactly 0630. It was a bit early, but he wanted to get a early morning run in before he went down to the hanger to start his flight check.

    He didn't want to get out of bed, but in his drowzy head, he knew that "Lights lights lights" really ment "if you don't get the f*** out of bed, you're going to be taking a long swim in the river to wake your sorry ass up."

    A favorite tatic of his old Drill Instructor, Gunnery Sargent Rush. Jax had been thrown in the river before, and he was never late getting up again.

    In a few moments he was up, out of bed, and dressed, pulling on a pair of sneakers he brought with him speficily for running in the mornings.

    Quickly and quietly he left his small room. He got lucky, snagging a private room that was close-by to the hanger. Unfortionally, it also ment that he was on standby, 24-7, so if any kind of flight operation was going to take place, he was part of it.

    The price you pay for a private room.

    Jax walked down to the airlock and went in, pulling on his Exopack's mask and setting it as the room depressurised and let in the toxic Pandorian air. Walking outside, he took a deep breath before he started running, humming a old Marine running chantie as he went along. "Around, her hair, she wore a yellow ribbion..."

    0800 HRS
    "Alright..." Jax muttered to himself as he heard the light klaxon wail on his watch. It was a aviators watch, specialy made for him as a going away present from his Master Gunny back when he left Aviator School back on Earth. The specially designed wristband was basicly a miniture computer, it could be set to any timeframe, could detect altitude, lat-long, pitch and yaw, roll, and could be plugged into a gunship of just about any build to detect fuel levels, flight time, strutucal intregrity, and give the pilot constent data about how the gunship was preforming.

    It was a handly little tool, one that Jax always had on him, mainly because it saved his life a few times before, warning him before he ran out of gas, alerting him to a gear problem on the lower left roater of the Scorpion he was piloting, and one time takeing a bullet for him, quite literally.

    He loved the little watch, how well it worked. So when the klaxon went off, he let it wail for a moment before he silenced it. His run time was over. It was time to get to work.

    Jax needed to find a new engineer. Apparently, he had flown in with him to Pandora just the other day. A real master of technology named 'Gears.'

    Jax smiled. He wasn't much into makeing friends, but he enjoyed talking to the engineers. They made good drinking compainions and were often more intelleigent conversation then most of his fellow pilots. Maybe one of them had a good story about some broken machine or another they would tell over a few rounds, and they would discuss ways to fix the problem.

    Jax sighed. He missed his old drinking buddy, a old coot of a engineer that called himself Dingo, considered by most of be the best of the best. Jax belived it too. The old man had fixed several problems on his Samson SA-2 and taught him more about machines then anything he had ever learned from flight school. The old man also fixed up his watch when it had been blasted to bits during combat.

    The old man had died a few years back... though Jax sighed as he re re-ajusted his mental clock. Several years back, before he left for Pandora. Jax knew the old man wanted to visit, and he had acually made a promise with the old man. He was going to leave the ashes of the master engineer to the top of the tallest tree and scatter the ashes to let them soar across the world.

    It was a bit of a pipe dream, in Jax's mind, but he had the ashes still, and figured he would do it when he got the chance.

    He quickly focused in. He needed to get to the hanger to find this 'Gears', so he could introduce himself and check on his SA-2.
    <OOC: Profanity is in beige, because we have minors >

    Oscar Woods
    Second day on Pandora
    Hell's Gate
    Science Lab - Dormitories
    0930 HRS

    Oscar felt horrible. For one, he hadn't slept enough. Besides that, he was going to be late for his first day in the science lab.
    "s***" He said.
    "s*** s*** s*** s*** s***" He kept cursing as he jumped up, hit the ceiling of his bunk, tried to tug on his new pants, fell out of bed and banged his head against the closet. He got up, looked in the mirror, and managed no to start sobbing. Barely. His first bang had given him a bump on the forehead, just over his right eye. His second a bump over his left eye.
    "Great. I won't even need an avatar to pass for Na'vi now."
    He brushed his teeth, put on the rest of his clothes and was 15 minutes late.

    Science lab
    1030 HRS

    Dr. Grace Augustine looked at him. Not a flicker of a smile. A fresh cigarette was currently being lit, while she observed the "fresh meat". She inhaled, blew out some smoke, and finally gave her opinion.
    "Good thing you're no driver."
    And that was that. Oscar felt like banging his head against the walls some more. Coming to Pandora might just have been the worst mistake of his life. He hoped to be a driver in a month, maybe less, but for now, he had to change the sheets on the avatar's beds. Joy.

    Science Lab - Na'vi Shelters
    1330 HRS

    He'd been cleaning out the shelters for the past 3 hours, when he finally got his break. He was trying his very best, to make sure they didn't just put him on the first ship back home. He spent his break in one of the watchtowers. The marines didn't mind, as long as he didn't get in the way. So while he was finishing his lunch, he could look at that gigantic jungle out there, and dream. And while dreaming, he saw one of the avatars, outside the perimeter. But... there weren't supposed to be any excursion today, were there?
    "Eh, private? Corporal? Dude?" The marine finally looked his way, with a look of both amusement and disdain.
    "Is that a Na'vi?" He pointed at the blue humanoid he saw before. It was sitting high up in a tree.
    The Marine immediately had his full attention, and aimed his rifle at the very non-threatening little speck, at least half a kilometer away. He radioed it to the other Guard towers, just in case this single Na'vi might try to slaughter the entire camp. As if. From what Oscar learned, the Na'vi weren't stupid. He got out his binoculars, and looked at the Na'vi. It was obviously a female. A beautiful one, at that.
    Did I just look at an alien and think: huh, that's sexy? He thought. That disturbed him a bit. Weren't the Na'vi supposed to be savage? He took a few pictures of the woman, who was looking very angrily at the camp, for later examination. This was his first 'contact' with a Na'vi, after all. He might even report it to Dr. Augustine. She might not even put out her cigarette in his eye.
    The day was looking up for him. About bloody time, too.

      Current date/time is Sat Aug 19, 2017 9:49 am