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 Post Posted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:24 pm 
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Location: Currently on expedition.
"I'm in, but I don't know much about spying. I know more then you could ever want about how to give someone or a collection of someones a really bad day, but unfortunately little about spying."

Jason downs the last of his not-tea-like substance.

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 Post Posted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 9:40 pm 
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Location: What matter wounds? For each time he falls, he shall rise again and woe to the wicked!
"What precisely will we be looking at, or for?" Tom looks toward the patiae. His plate is already empty. "Evidence that we can bring to you, that you might be able to show proof? After all, I imagine that humans attempting to testify for humans would be viewed with ridicule and derision."

The man snorts with derision. "This is what happens when you let the scientists run things. Let them stick to the labs and let the people who have done some real work."

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 Post Posted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 11:21 pm 
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Location: Somewhere doing something.
Richard can hardly stand all the talking. He finally says, "I'm sorry if it's been stated before, but I just spent a week processing only the thought 'Defeat humans, get girl'. What do you need us for?"

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 Post Posted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 11:34 pm 
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Cecil just out his lower jaw, takes on a vague, unfocused air, and adopts a careful, shuffling gait. Once outside this room, he'll flinch from any sudden movement while projecting a fear of getting hit; but whether in this room or not, his quick eye will take in every detail. The total effect is supposed to give an impression of Cecil being a total imbecile, suited for manual labour by an inability to understand any complex task. Yes, what do we need to carry, and where from and to? We can certainly keep our eyes open during the process, and see what there is to see.

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 Post Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 12:53 am 
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Location: Wishing I was not in Kansas anymore
You're not looking for proof for the people, Lykke says grimly. You're looking for evidence for the Outlier Head. We are one of many teams investigating the new development with the humans on Earth, and we want to figure out just what is going on before we plan out next move. Gil? Sisu? Move out.

The patiae nod, and lead the humans to the elevator.

The cover task is simple, Sisu says as the levels whip passed them. Since you're humans, you're expected to do the manual labor. Go in to the warehouse, find our wares, load them on a dolly and bring them back to the ship.

The elevator opens on to a cargo hold about 50'x40'. Gil and Sisu lead the human Unit to the far end of the hold, and Gil presses a button on the wall. The floor shifts and lowers into a ramp. Sisu nods at Gil, and a warm, tingling sensation coats the humans as Sisu protects them. Gil places another layer of mental protection over the humans and gently probes their minds.

Your doors. Lock them tight! he says as Gil and Sisu lead the Unit down the ramp onto a gray, dusty floor and past the underbelly of the Brawler. Play dumb. Play HAPPY. You are happy, Controlled humans who want nothing more than to load boxes on dollies all day. When you're in the warehouse, keep your eyes peeled. Look around. No one will notice a bunch of dull humans wandering the warehouse, looking for the right one. We're looking for signs of overproduction, here. If you see anything suspicious, lock on to it with your eyes. Stare it down. Take a picture. Get every detail that you can. Oh, and don't forget to smile!

They clear the ship, and are treated to the sight of a massive, clear dome that stretches from the gray, dusty floor to far, far above the Brawler and three other cargo ships lines up next to the Brawler. Stars sputter, millions of pinpricks of light unhindered by atmosphere. The dome comes to a stop at a blue wall opposite the ships. There are windows at the top of the wall, though they are too far away to see in to. At ground level is a large door, big enough to admit the Brawler. Humans with dollies flit from the door to the other ships and back again, patiae standing around and supervising. The maroon patiae stands next to the door, tapping at a pallet.

It's about time, he says huffily. The others are almost loaded up. I'll have to let them go out the barrier before you're finished, you know. Lock the air lock. Wasted time for all of us. Delivercargo 4 is in warehouse 43. Well, get on with it!

You heard him, Sisu says calmly. I'll be waiting.

Yeah, come on you thicks! Gil says, leading them past the door into a cavernous hallway, large as the opening, with a ceiling that cannot be seen. Open doors are seen at intervals down the hallway.

I have to stay here, Gil says. It's unseemly for me to help you out. Good luck! You have about half an hour or so before people start wondering what's up with you!

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 Post Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:05 am 
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Just to shut her mental "door" extra tight, María re-envisions the portcullis dropping into place with a loud bang, and the drawbridge chains clanking, culminating in a thud of wood against stone. She adds a few more reptiles to the moat for good measure. Then she moves forward with what feels like the dumbest smile on her face. Half her mind is in front of the portcullis, spewing mindless drivel: Loading pallets! My favorite thing! It makes me so happy to load pallets for the Masters! I bet if I do a really good job, they'll let me do even more of it tomorrow! The other half mounts the battlements of her mental fortress, on the lookout for anything that seems suspicious. The hard part, she muses, is knowing what's suspicious and what's just a typical day in Alien Land. Still, she tries to get a sense of how normal Patiae stand and move and think, and to see if anyone looks or thinks differently.

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 Post Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:11 am 
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Jason plasters a big, dumb grin all over his face, as he stuffs his thoughts behind the gray wall, and heads toward the warehouse with the others, his eyes scanning back and forth and up. His muscles are relaxed out of habit, allowing for faster reaction time. Behind the gray wall, he wishes he had a weapon.

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 Post Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 2:13 am 
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Location: What matter wounds? For each time he falls, he shall rise again and woe to the wicked!
Tom puts a slight, contented smile on his face. A full smile always looked horribly fake to him... though then again, perhaps that's only because he could always tell a fake smile from a true one. Mentally, he starts whistling to himself.

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 Post Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 3:06 am 
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Outside his door, Cecil puts thoughts of contentment, of happiness. Sneaking in amidst them is what a good meal I just had - just outside his door, where any probing Patiae would presumably see it first, Cecil puts his memory of eating.

That, he suspects, will... discourage trespassing.

Keeping the words behind his bankvault door, facing the wall so his lips can't be seen moving, he waits until there's no-one besides the group in earshot and quietly tells the others "Remember, Patiae are deaf. If they want to hide something, they'll probably make it look innocent but won't bother to make it sound innocent. So everyone keep your ears open."

He follows his own advice, listening for sounds of overproduction and looking towards them.

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 Post Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 9:15 am 
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Location: Wishing I was not in Kansas anymore
The human Unit (Hunit? -- no, too silly) walks down the hallway, passing open doors, seeing nothing really of interest. The doors have symbols next to them, and each door has a counterpart across the hallway. From time to time, a human with a dolly passes them, smiling.

They reach a break in the walls: another wide hallway crosses their path. To the left there is a distant humming noise. To the right, murmurs both vocal and internal can be heard. Forward, the numbered doors continue.

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 Post Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 10:15 am 
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Smiling at the walls, Cecil promptly turns left.

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 Post Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:23 pm 
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María accompanies Cecil. Hearing him broadcast thoughts of food, María does the same.


EDIT: Fixed an incomplete sentence.


Last edited by AlternateTorg on Fri Jun 24, 2011 8:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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 Post Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 2:55 pm 
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Jason pauses for a moment, trying to listen to the murmurs.

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 Post Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 7:34 pm 
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Location: What matter wounds? For each time he falls, he shall rise again and woe to the wicked!
Tom holds and waits with Jason. If he sees someone coming, he'll walk straight ahead so as to not look like he's malingering.

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 Post Posted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 11:15 am 
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The murmurs seem to be an argument:

"Can't -- well, if you -- when -- why are you -- didn't have --you aren't -- leave --"

***

The whirring sound grows louder. The walls on either side of the path expand out, and the doors grow larger and larger. As Cecil and Maria approach the sound, they run into more and more humans scurrying back and forth with empty dollies, then full dollies. Some of the dollies are loaded with white boxes of all sizes and shapes, labeled with the alien text. Other, very wide dollies carry molded sheets of metal, some as small as 2 ft^2, some as large as 10 ft^2. The humans ignore Cecil and Maria.

The reach a large opening, and in the distance machinery can be heard, whirring and rumbling: shhvvvvvvclang! shhhvvvvvclang! Closer to the two humans are stacks of goods: molded metal sheets, molded pods, molded tables, shower heads, chairs. Patiae pack boxes with the pods, tables, shower heads, chairs, while humans load the boxes and metal sheets on the dollies and pull them into the warehouse.

A number of patiae oversee this work, directing patiae who come to this loading area with more product where to pile the goods.

Hey, you two! A blue patia packing boxes says, pointing at Cecil and Maria. Go on, what are you standing there for? Take this for me! He points at an empty dolly and a number of boxes in front of him.

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