Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

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Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

Post by Atom » Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:03 pm

Epidermal layer is nearly impenetrable by almost all metals.

Biopsy shows shifted density at wrist and hand, allowing for subsequent higher mass, it seems.

Physiology seems to be a slight deviation from human.


”Wish I had the full fuckin’ body,” Mitchell breathed out, rubbing his clean-shaven head absently. His fingers grazed over the fresh scar from his brain surgery— a result of his close encounter with a mass of living mercury and the closest he’d ever been to death. It was a miracle he was still alive and able to achieve regular coordination— perhaps it was due to his own suit’s countermeasures, or maybe it was the fact that the mercury was concentrated in specific places along his body— he didn’t know, and he didn’t care. This was life giving him a second chance, he hoped.

To his right [and feeding directly into the inside crook of his right elbow] was an intravenous bag and tube, hooked to a wheeled stand and feeding in a drug cocktail of DMSA and DMPS, two cleansing agents that were able to bind to the remaining mercury in his system. The head operation was mainly to release his brain from the stress upon his skull and directly attempt to cleanse the mercury from his nervous system, a surgery that, for the most part, worked.

Mitchell turned his attention back to the arm of Cyrolus, which by now had been sliced open and pulled apart to view each specific part of the Vaxian physiology. The main point of interest was the incrediblt durable nature of the skin and muscle— something the Promethean CEO intended to exploit and counter.

Stervos wrote the remaining notes into his composition book and glanced to the entryway into the examination room. He’d contacted Nicolas and asked him to swing by as soon as possible to help with “certain recent developments”, though he was purposefully unclear about the nature of what Pendragon was to help with. Truthfully, he didn’t know if Icarus knew he had the arm— or wanted him to have it, for that matter.

One thing was clear— there was a way to stop events like D.C. from ever happening again, and it was on a table right in front of him.

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Re: Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

Post by Terminus » Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:33 pm

Image
Nicolas Pendragon arrived at the Promethean building inside the Terminus. A state-of-the-art suit of armor, on the bleeding edge of technology. It was perhaps the closest to actual AI that anyone had ever come, not to mention a massive leap forward in nano-technology research.

He was beginning to loathe it.

Pendragon entered Mitchell's office through the window, accessing the electronic system that controlled it with trivial ease. After closing it behind him, he landed, and removed the armor. This time, instead of dressing like a homeless person, he was actually wearing a suit. He loathed that, too. It itched, and not just physically. He'd bought it for not just this occasion, though that was a factor, but as part of a commitment. If he wanted to succeed in his goal- save the world- he would need help. Help meant going public, eventually. And that meant looking respectable. Part of that was why he was here.

Futilely, he adjusted his tie. Behind him, the Terminus re-formed, and stood off to the side, watching the two geniuses talk with its soulless eyes. Nicolas shot a look at it, as if urging it silently to behave itself.

"Mitch. Good to see you. Not that I wouldn't have taken a social call, but I assume this is about--" He cut himself off, witty quips falling short when he saw the state his friend was in. "Are you all right? It looks like you should be in a hospital bed, not trying to figure out alien physiology."

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Re: Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

Post by Atom » Wed Aug 08, 2018 1:24 am

Mitchell looked to Nicolas with a half-hearted wave in response, not even having the heart to have a smirk across his face as he stared down at the notes he’d written.

“If I can stand, I can work.” He stated in response, barely finding the strength to do either action as his palms pressed hard upon the metal table.

”So, that big motherfucker at D.C.— you already know I got his arm. The thing is, it’s not that he’s got impenetrable skin because of the material it’s made out of. Well, that does a majority of the work, but it’s not the full reason that concentrated energy did jack shit against him. His hand and wrist— its density was shifted, increased so that it struck with more weight and mass. Also tougher to get through.”

He breathed out, angling a screen towards Nicolas that showed Cyrolus’ tightly-packed cells.

”God fuckin’ knows how we can get through it easily. I’ve been debating about whether or not to pursue some type of molecular-edged blades and firearms that could bypass the density, but— it’s expensive, even for me.”

Stervos rubbed his head, fingers absently drifting over the scar again.

”I need your help— obviously, or else I wouldn’t have called you. If you, y’know, designed that suit of yours, surely you could help me figure something out.”

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Re: Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

Post by Terminus » Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:08 pm

Good work ethic. I can respect that. Nicolas put his concerns aside, for the moment. They were here to do a job.

The data on-screen was fascinating. Suddenly, Pendragon's mind was racing with ideas, including on how to mimic the density-shifting tech. He could tell the Terminus had already downloaded the data, through his implants.

Not entirely sure 'designed' is the right word for how I built the damn thing. Still, doesn't mean I'm not clever enough myself, vision quest or no.
Image
"My initial thoughts trend towards some kind of disruption-field, destabilizing whatever mechanism causes the density shifting in the first place. Still, with only dead tissue available, we can't really study how it activates and deactivates." He paused. "No idea where the rest of the body is, I assume? I'd love to get a look at the brain, see if he has the extra wetware I'd assume is necessary to make that kind of thing work."

With a gesture, Nicolas conjured a dozen holographic screens in front of him. Technically, the armor was projecting them from across the room, but he could manipulate it with his hands. Much if it would probably be indecipherable, especially to someone who didn't have the relevant machinery literally wired into their brains. Still, Mitch was clever. He might well get more that Nicolas expected. A good portion was data that the Terminus had recorded during the fight, including Cyrolus's speed and strength. One screen was a scrolling readout of Pendragon's subconscious, which would occasionally highlight a relevant thought or two and save the idea for later.

As well as the information, there was also several holographic representations of the Terminus, and the ASAP suit. Next to them were models of the shrinking devices Mitchell had been using, and even the individual nano-machines that made Pendragon's suit up. Dwarfing the rest of it in size was a full-color representation of something that, while undeniably resembling the Terminus, looked far less refined, even for bleeding-edge tech.

"Maybe it's irrational of me," Nicolas said, gesturing to it, "but the idea of punching the next one of those assholes in the face with a mech-suit sounds really appealing."

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Re: Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

Post by Atom » Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:42 pm

Upon Nicolas’ inquiry into the whereabouts of Cyrolus’ body was, Mitchell gave a small response of silence as he took his attention off of the notes he was writing and gave a momentary glance towards him out of the corner of his eye. Stervos shook his head.

”If I knew where it was, it’d be here.” He muttered lowly, the half-hearted lie being disguised behind the mental duress he’d been under for the past few weeks. Pendragon was much smarter than that, though, and he suspected that his vague dodge of an answer wouldn’t be satisfactory. Thoughts of what Icarus would do to him if he slipped up and told somebody were not pleasant, to say the least. They’d probably fuck his brain up even more than it already was.

”I was thinking we could attempt to exclusively isolate and reanimate the arm and provoke a nerve response to see how it worked. The limb has been... exceptionally preserved between its own natural durability and the storage I’ve been keeping it in.”

With the holographic display flashing across the room, Mitchell raised an eyebrow. Digital information was nice, but the Promethean CEO had taken a liking to jotting his thoughts down upon physical paper and locking them in a safe for the time being. Maybe it was the paranoia, but... he couldn’t trust technology. Not now, not after how horribly his eagerness had cost him.

Upon hearing Nicolas’ words, Mitchell’s hand tensed and ground the fine point of the pencil into the paper page, graphite chips scattering across white as he dropped the writing utensil.

”After what that monster did? ‘Appealing’ is an understatement.”

He barely stopped himself from yelling before breaking into a small pace from one end of the room to the other, looking to Nicolas as he began a tirade.

”They won’t stop with D.C., Nick; there’s more like him— hell, he has a fucking empire that’s just waiting to fuckin’ kill all of us, apparently. Not that I believed that horse-shit for a second. The arrogance of that prick— even with one arm, he fucking mocks me from inside that fucking—“

Mitchell had naturally gravitated back to the desk he’d been working at, slamming his fist upon the table and letting out a grunt of anger.

”FUCK!”

He’d slipped up. Fucking Christ.

”We need to find a fucking weakness for this... thing. Whatever it is he fucking does.” Stervos muttered, angrily gesturing to the arm before the two of them. he only had so much time left— he needed this. To help save humanity as a last project, at the very least.

”And we need to find one fast.”

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Re: Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

Post by Terminus » Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:41 am

After what Mitchell said, Pendragon didn't notice the accidental slip-up. Not consciously, at least. The designation next to Cyrolus' name changed quietly from 'deceased' to 'living,' but he didn't register it. The magnitude of the statement was still settling in his brain.

An empire.

"An empire. Mitch, that means-- fucking forget the mech, we need to start thinking about planetary defense! Drone fleets, counter-armies, biological warfare." His voice dropped a level. "Planet-killers. If we have to."

In reflection of his thoughts, the display had expanded significantly. From a dozen screens, there now appeared to be at least a hundred. Most on the smaller side, but several of high importance were the same size as they'd been before. One, a DNA strand. It was only partially sequenced, but further examination of the limb would likely solve that problem.

"If we can find and exploit a biological weakness in him, we could War of the Worlds them, end the fight before it's even started. Columbus nearly wiped out the Native Americans by mistake, think what we could do by design."

The Terminal Transhuman's focus shifted to a different screen. "Maybe a Dyson Sphere? The resources would be a bitch to get-- unless we started mining asteroids. Harness the Sun's energy, feed it into a big enough weapon..." He trailed off, but the holograms did a decent enough job of illustrating his point. Planet-killers.

Nicolas chuckled weakly. "Doesn't mean we can't still kick the shit out of them, though."

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Re: Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

Post by Atom » Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:19 am

Planet-killers.

The thought of building a weapon that could exterminate planetary bodies was terrifying to Mitchell. Designing such a device would make him an exterminator of civilizations. Entire worlds. It would be genocide on a scale hitherto undreamt of.

The death of billions to secure the future of a singular planet.

”Dyson Sphere? I have money, but... not enough. Not to make it in time. Construction like that would require the cooperation of all the major nations, and they certainly wouldn’t listen to me. However, I—”

Stervos paused, unsure of whether or not he wanted to actually tell Nicolas.

”I have something that I’m working on. It’s... experimental. Uses the Atlas Particle. It might be what we need, it might not. I don’t know. All I know is that... it has incredible destructive capabilities, but it can also give us a needed advantage over the Vaxians.”

The Promethean CEO shook his head, his expression laced with doubt.

”It’s dangerous, but— if it helps secure the future of Earth, it’s worth the risks.”

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Re: Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

Post by Terminus » Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:38 am

Again, Nicolas almost-entirely missed any discomfort that Mitchell was signaling, at the idea of weapons of mass destruction. His single-minded focus on his goal was strong enough that little things like the well-being of others had to be brushed aside.

"Money... well. I think I could manage to get around that. We don't have to build an entire sphere- even two percent of one would be an absurd amount of energy. Keep it mobile, so people won't notice... all we'd really need to do is design something to mine the asteroid belt, and ship the raw material to our construction site. With my nanotech, it'd be easier than normal." He paused. "I'll admit, getting nations to agree to it would be difficult, but... fear-mongering won't be hard, considering the last guy made a dent in the damn Washington Monument. And he was one man."

Pendragon gestured at the Terminus, and one of the armor's gauntlets flew off, wrapping it around his own hand. Then, he pressed it to Cyrolus' own arm. The suit began sequencing the conquerors' DNA, and hopefully finding a way to exploit some heretofore unknown weakness in them.

"Maybe we could ind a way to weaken their control over the density shifting," he mused aloud. "Leave them all intangible."

His train of thought halted, as Stervos' words got his full attention. He began hypothesizing about what the 'secret weapon' could be- the Atlas Particle's properties meant there was a myriad of possibilities.

"Destructive capacity sounds like precisely what we need. If it's us versus a race of people like him, I'm not going to have much remorse."

Unless the asshole was his race's version of Hitler, and the rest of them are just people. But... if he's got an army, we can't afford to take that chance.

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Re: Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

Post by Atom » Sat Aug 11, 2018 4:08 am

Mitchell kept the consideration of a Dyson... Panel in the back of his mind. Stervos had a relatively small level of influence on the world stage, but Nicolas was entirely correct— the threat that Cyrolus posed to D.C. would, hopefully, be enough to convince national leaders to put their differences aside in the face of a much greater threat.

”I haven’t been getting much sleep. Been working on this by myself— not even my team on the ASAPS knows about this, and they’re practically glued to my fuckin’ side after what happened in D.C.; had to replace half of them, too, for how much they fucked me over.

The Promethean CEO gestured for Nicolas to follow him, unhooking the IV line from
his arm before moving to the exit of the office room and stepping past the Terminus suit with a furrowed brow, opening the glass door into a rather bland-looking light-grey hallway. Overhead lights illuminated the wave of mixed surprise and confusion that spread across his face.

”The fuck are you doing here? Who the hell gave you clearance?” Stervos asked with a hurried tone, making sure not to swear with the two new arrivals currently making their way towards him.

His ex-wife, Veronica. Of all fucking people, of all the fucking times she could have arrived.

”I came to see you because I was worried. God knows why I even come—“

”What? Is this about Jean? Look, I already told you that—“

”Mitchell, at this point, I don’t want to fucking look at you— but I have to, because you need to get help. Now.”

”I don’t need help. I am perfectly fine, and capable of looking after myself.”

”I don’t fucking believe you, Mitch. Your head— I realize that the—“

”That’s ENOUGH, Veronica. Don’t believe I’m fine? I’ll prove it to you.” Mitchell spat, looking back to Nicolas for a moment of discomfort before snapping his gaze back to his ex-wife. The thought of having a pointless argument in front of an old friend was not something he wanted to do. Jesus, he wasn’t even sure if they remembered one another. Hopefully not— it would make things much easier if Mitchell didn’t have one more thing to worry about in addition to the equipment unveiling, his fucking brain, Jean’s disappearance, not to mention—

”I don’t have time for this, Mitch. Please.”

”5 minutes. That’s all I ask. Just— Christ, give me a chance.”

Veronica’s eyes gained a layer of moisture.

”I’d done that our entire fucking marriage—“

Veronica for Chrissakes we have COMPANY so I really don’t want to get into this right now.”

That reply seemed to shut her up for the moment and Mitchell continued further down the hallway, turning a corner and heading down a narrowing path before arriving at a large set of blast doors. Stervos made sure to block the keypad with his body as he punched in the combination, the heavy metal entrance opening with a drawn-out rumble as the contents of the room were revealed.

It was a spacious testing chamber, various pieces of equipment along the stark-white walls; on one side of the room was a circular piece of equipment containing a blue mechanical box, and on the opposite wall was a series of connected circular lines of metal laid over a flat platform. The general shape they formed was some sort of gate, at least from what Veronica and Terminus would be able to deduce. Connecting the two pieces of machinery was a thin strip of metal, most likely connecting wires or... whatever it was that her ex-husband had been working with. Mitchell beckoned for the two to follow and Veronica, at the very least, reluctantly complied, trailing behind him to the piece of equipment containing the glowing azure box.

”This is it. What I’ve been working on for so long— hopefully it’s enough.

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Re: Lasting Legacy [CLOSED]

Post by Terminus » Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:32 am

Pendragon looked on detachedly, as Mitchell had personal problems. He barely remembered the woman- he'd been living a hedonistic, materialistic lifestyle when she and Mitch had gotten together. It was all a blur of alcohol and 'superheroics,' in the hunk of junk he'd called the Titan suit. Speaking of his armors, the Terminus was following him, as he and Veronica followed Mitch to his secret project. The armor was cloaked, of course. Silencing it's own footsteps was trivial, with short-range sound cancellation tech.

Finally, they arrived at the... device. Nicolas considered it with a clinical eye, trying to deduce it's purpose without the use of his implants. Partly, to prove to himself that he could. He had always been smart, and it was starting to feel like cheating, to use the AI wired into his bran to figure things out. Ultimately, he had little luck.

"Hopefully," he repeated. Nicolas had never much been one for hope. Much smarter to rely on probability. Statistics. Numbers are cleaner than feelings. Hope matters very little when your projected chances of success are next to nil.

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