Seeds of Freedom

The Mountain Route

As the refreshed escapees and Team Echo, now reunited with Sebastian, decamped, they decided to cut across the rough terrain of the Montana hinterlands, making a beeline for Great Falls. They chose this location due to the fact that Michelle’s enemies wouldn’t be looking for her right in the middle of their seat of power, the arez controlled by Baron Tanaka, and she had allies there who could help them as well, easing their passage to Cascade.

The group set out, using their knowledge to make good time during their first day, as well as pushing on past the regular time for setting up camp, in order to minimize their time in Hill People lands. They made camp at a location that, while lacking on the defensive front, allowed them to rest and recuperate up from the hardships of the day’s trek.

The following day, the terrain got a bit rougher, and the group was not able to make as much time as the previous day, and they decided to halt their progress at the allotted time of day, in a campsite very similar to the one used before. During his watch, Sebastian deployed the drone he was carrying in order to scout ahead, and found troubling information: there was a group of Hill People in the hills, smack in the middle of their route. Having given this information to Robert Granger, the soldier decides, after some deliberation with his teammates, to head into the ambush and spring it, since these Hill People would probably track them down and accost them at another time if they decided to go another way, all due to their superior speed, endurance and knowledge of the encompassing area.

It is this way that the party hatched a plan, in which Fredric O’kerrigan, assisted by John Doe, would snipe at enemies from a hillock overlooking the ambush site, while the rest of the group handled the mutants that came at them in close range.

Both groups went their separate ways, however, Fredrick and John got turned around and arrived at a wrong hill, one away from their destination. Robert, and the rest of the group had arrived at the foot of the hill where the ambush would take place. Having been alerted to the ambushers, Robert was able to pick out a couple of them hiding in the shrubbery. As he gave the ready signal and waited for an answer, the lack of an immediate response made his instincts kick into overdrive. He faked stumbling on a rock and adjusting his boots, trying to buy some time, however, he knew that any further delays would arouse suspicion, and so he walked forward. However, as he rounded the first bend, he was able to clearly pick out an amusher, which prompted him to raise his rifle and shoot the mutant, killing it instantly.

Then everything seemed to happen all too quickly. Two mutants leaped down in front of the group, mauling the Sergeant before being brought down. Robert advanced and threw a smoke grenade to confuse the other mutants, receiving a couple of hurled spears for his trouble. Momentarily stunned by this attack, he then fell back to the rest of the group, where he fired his automatic weapon, taking out a couple of the mutants. Meanwhile, Fredrick was already in position, firing at the mutants, with the aid of John as his spotter. Peter moved up a bit and lobbed one of his homemade grenades at a couple of mutants, hurting one and blowing apart an another. Howevwr, a couple of other mutants rushed him and clubbed him to the floor with furious blows, battering him senseless and within an inch of his life, as Robert yelled for the group to fall back.

Seeing his teammate go down prompted Robert to stand next to Peter and try to staunch the bleeding from the grievious wounds, while tne rest of his teammates managed to down the rest of the mutants.

Team Echo had been victorious, but at a high cost.

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Floods, Fears and Opportunities

Marsh-hood-flood.jpg

As the smoke cleared, Team Echo and the fleeing group of local-timers regrouped. Robert Granger immediately set to tending the wounded sergeants and also Fredric O’kerrigan, all of whom had suffered substantial injuries during the preceding battle. Once this had been done, and the whole group had been sufficiently patched up, more dire news was made known. An ever-increasing rumble in the earth gave some early warning to what was presently confirmed by Sebastian: a flood was bearing down on the group.

Immediately, Robert yelled at everybody to get to higher ground, and proceeded to climb the nearest tree. Everybody went their own separate way, some climbing trees, others climbing the rocky overhang which abutted the river next to the ambush site. In a manner of seconds, the water came roaring down the river, and during the onslaught, one of the sergeants was unable to keep his grip, and was swept downriver. Everybody else managed to hang on, some being battered by the rocks and branches that accompanied the veritable wall of water rushing about and below them.

After an hour had passed, the water level finally ebbed, and everybody was able to climb down. Gerald insisted that the group search for their fallen comrade, who we found, deceased a couple of hundred meters away from the ambush site, impaled upon an outthrust branch. The group proceeded to bury their fallen comrade, and then they began walking away from the site of all the previous tragedy.

However, before long, Gerald, unable to contain his unease at having to deal with Team Echo’s apparent heresy, demanded that they explain themselves. Who were they? Where did Team Echo come from? John Doe then spoke at length, saying that Team Echo comprised a diplomatic and scientific team sent by Chief Bar, from the District of Columbia. He was appointed as the ambassador, Robert Granger was the head of security, Fredrick O’Kerrigan was the wilderness expert, and Peter Witekirk was the science expert. As to their strange weapons, they explain their advanced nature is due to the workings of science, which ellicit fearful looks and prayers from Gerald and the surviving NCO.

Their fear and mistrust was evident, and Gerald wanted to part ways with Team Echo. Robert, at this point, mentioned that, if they were being secretive and evasive, so was the other group, particularly in relation to Mike, revealing his knowledge of her true gender, which brought surprised looks from everybody. Due to this revelation, Mike explain that she really was Michelle Davis, daughter of Baron Davis. There was a recent problem with the High Commander, King of Montana and the Dakotas, which apparently involved her, which put her father in conflict with the King. With the help of Gerald and the guards, she was able to escape.

She then goes on to explain that they are going to Cascade in search of a group of moderates who will take her in and hide her from her pursuers, the Green Wardens, pseudo-Gestapo / anti-science police. She also adds that this group of moderates has more information regarding the “ancients”, and they would fight the oppression of the High King. Last but not least, she warns Echo of the canadian barbarians to the north, the forgotten lands to the west and the Magic Mountain Kingdom to the south, leaving the East as the only possible way for the group to travel (through Hill People territory).

Finally, after all this, Gerald acquiesces and relents from denying Echo’s aid, more due to Michelle’s insistence than their ability to convince them, and the group sets out in the general direction of the Ark.

Throughout all this, Sebastian managed to get more information from Athena regarding the previous Ark groups, all the meanwhile working on upgrading the drones for increased performance and carrying capacities.

As the group neared the Ark, Robert convinced Michelle and the others to wait and rest in an encampment they’d found. Meanwhile, he and Peter went back to the Ark to report, resupply and hand in the samples Peter had gathered. The next day, the group set out once more, following the remains of a road headed due east.

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Run to the Hills

Dawn breaks over the foothills of southern Montana, as you preare to make your way through the land of the Hill People.mountain-at-dawn-wallpaper.jpg

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Fire and Thunder, Shock and Awe

Liutenant Robert Granger’s Journal
h2. Day 7 PA (Post-Awakening)

With the first rays of dawn, Team Echo readied itself alongside the group of locals. According to the discussion held the previous evening, both groups would go their separate ways; distrust and fear permeated of Gerald and both senior NCO’s. However, Mike’s curiosity continued unabated.

We offered to share food, water and treat them for injuries, and Mike commented on my novel approach to dealing with these. It was then that I noticed what wasn’t obvious at first glance, something which this whole group had been hiding for some reason: Mike was a woman. I decided to keep this to myself for the time being, until such a time where I could broach the subject with Mike. Obviously he (or she, might as well keep it in mind) was important to some degree, and the group of soldiers were doing their utmost to keep her identity a secret.

As Team Echo prepared to make its departure, Sebastian notified us that a large group of people, being led by a couple of these so-called Hill People, were scouting out the camp where we picked up the trail of our erst-while cave-dwelling companions. These humans, by the look of them, wore green cloaks over mail armor; and according to Sebastian, were quickly back on track following the trail left by the four people we had decided to save.

When we asked Gerald who they were running from that would have forced them into Hill People territory, he was very reticent, but Mike sensed that this was a way we could help, and started telling us about how the Green Wardens had been chasing them for being part of a group of people who were a voice of dissent against the ruling of Kingdom of Montana, and apparently these Green Wardens were meant to capture them, as leverage or bargaining chips. Either way, they did not hold Mike, Gerald or the other’s best interest at heart.

Seeing as that they apprently represented a group with a more moderate outlook, and being a bit more open to the weird circumstances which led to their salvation, after some brief consultation with my comrades, I made the executive decision to help them reach a safe destination. This would be the Town of Cascade, which happened to be North of our current location. This, however, presented the problem that we would cross paths with the hunting party, and right now we could not afford to let our new “allies” be aware of our technological prowess, lest we reinforced their ideas of our employment of witchcraft.

In the end, John Doe managed to convince them that their best chance lay with following us out of Hill People territory, crossing the river ford, and then hug the Lake northward until we reached the river mouth that would lead us to Cascade.

As we set out towards the place we built our makeshift rope-bridge, we avoided tracing our steps and made a beeline towards the designated crossing area. We reached the location with the onset of nightfall, only to be rewarded with dire news: the hunting party was only half a day’s march behind us, despite being more than a day’s time from our initial position. They were gaining on us, and quickly!

This time, our agitation must have been more apparent, for Mike and Gerald demanded to know what it was that we knew. Despite the real possibility of them turning against us due to fear of the unknown, I told them that we had learned, through methods beyond our ability to explain to them, that the Green Wardens were closing in on us. We told them that their only chance to survive and be free was to help us defeat them in an ambush (this would also help us from being tracked back to the Ark).

Throughout the current and previous day, Sebastian managed to isolate an apparent radio signal of some sort coming from the Green Wardens, emitted at set intervals during the day. Apart from this, he managed, according to what he reported, to up his security clearance with Athena, which enhanced our inventory, through smoke bombs and night vision goggles, which he air-dropped from a jury rigged drone.

The next day, as we prepared for the ambush, we laid out a plan of attack, in which the men with crossbows would shoot first, in order to keep our firearms secret for the longest possible time, and prevent the hunters from crossing the bridge in large numbers.

As one of the Hill People crossed the river, he set up the rope thrown by one of the green wardens, and quickly two others crossed. As they finished crossing, I signaled the start of the attack. Gerald and the two crossbow men managed to down one of the soldiers and scathe the mutant. However, this immediately triggered the apprearance of the rest of the Wardens, who began shooting at us. As soon as they became visible, Team Echo joined the battle. The roar of rifle fire, the hiss of a smoke grenade muffled the shouts of the Wardens, but most of them held on to their discipline when faced against our strange weapons (save for one who ran quaking in fear). We quickly dispatched 6 Wardens and the mutant, but not before some of our own were injured (both NCO’s and O’Kerrigan). At this juncture, the enemy leader rang a retreat. Mike stood still for the duration of the battle, petrified by the destructive and unfamiliar power of our weapons.

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Now they know..

The echo of the guns still thunders over the canyons, and the bodies of those you shot down are still fresh. Your allies lie in shock of the power and awe of your weapons… Your secrete is out.

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Friends?

Day 6

You awake tired and hurt, after a brutal night battle against the Hill People. You are in a small cave with 4 suspicious strangers, there itchy hands never straying far of their weapons.

Friendly

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Not Alone in the World

The mutated people were rapidly closing in on the party hidden on the cave. Quickly Granger took control of the situation and ordered team echo to take out their knifes to ambush the attackers. The goal was to surprise the enemy and keep hidden.

Unfortunately, Peter tripped creating a huge ruckus. The element of surprise was lost. The two mutants were sent as sentries to investigate the disturbance. Team Echo managed to regroup and hide among the trees waiting for the chance to surprise the coming attackers.

The first two mutants were dispatched easily by Robert and Fredric. Unfortunately Peter overcome by anxiety rushed noisily towards the mutants, alerting the other four attackers. These mutants were tougher than the previous two. Their Hide armor was thicker and they were armed with sharper and deadlier spears. Fredric was able to land many blows against the mutants but their hide armor protected them. Meanwhile Granger had problem fighting in the dark and was missing repetitively the marks. The fight was slowly turning in favor of the mutants with Peter also missing hits and John does precise sneak attacks but that dealt insufficient damage.

“Use your damn guns” Rollerboy screamed over the Drone comm-link.

Granger and Doe pulled out their glocks and started firing at the mutants. Granger missed at first while John improved his aim was slowing down the onslaught from the right. Meanwhile Fredric and Peter continued to use their combat knifes with better results. However, the mutants also landed some serious blows at the attackers.

By using firearms the fight turn back in favor of Team echo and the mutants stared their retreat. At that moment the last two attackers were put down with precise shots by Peter and Robert.

Once the fighting was over. Robert headed to cure Fredric and Peter since both had suffered great blows from the mutants.

At that moment torches were thrown from inside the cave towards its entrance.

Peter seeing this, takes out his lantern and using Morse code sends the following message:

“Enemy destroyed we mean no harm.”

The team had suffered severe blows from the mutants and was starting to feel the strain from the day´s events.

Granger and John Doe headed toward the cave to parley peacefully with the strangers and hopefully rest at the cave.

“Halt, don´t come closer or two of Montana´s finest crossbowmen will shoot you down.” commanded a voice full of experience.

“We come in peace, knowing that your party was in danger from the six Neanderthal-like beings. We proceeded to stop them from attacking you. It was a rough and dangerous skirmish which has drained us. We just want to make sure you are OK, and hope we can rest at cave to compose ourselves.” Explained John Doe.

Doe´s diplomatic skills proved their worth and team Echo was allowed to rest at the cave. However the strangers were overcome with uneasiness.

The eldest of the four introduced himself as Gerald. He wore a metal breastplate. The youngest of the four was introduced as Mike and he was the most intrigued with team echo. The two crossbowmen were silent tough looking soldiers that remained anonymous.

Gerrald sent one of the two soldiers to verify Doe´s story. After heavy whispering Gerald said.

“My soldiers verify your story, but state that the way you took down 6 Hill people has never been seen and that you must be sorcerers that create light and vanquish your foes with those strange Halberds.” as he pointed at Granger´s M4 assault rifle.

“However, you did save us from the Hill people, and we are in their lands. The gods must be on our side and I believe you will hold your promise. I suggest we each stay guard, sleep for the rest of the night, and in the morning we each get on our separate ways.” continued Gerald.

Mike was still intrigued but he followed Gerald’s command.

Guard duty was arranged, John Doe was relieved from it by Granger so he could fully recuperate from the night´s events.

Conclusions:

  1. The mutants are referred as the Hill people.
  2. The humans know that we live in Montana, so geographic knowledge has been kept.
  3. However, recollection of technology is non-existent. They don´t distinguish firearms, and use medieval weaponry.
  4. Religion in the region has changed, talk of magic, a polytheistic pantheon are evidence of great changes in theological aspects compared to 21st century standards.
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Water?

Next morning Team Echo continued their search for a clean water source. Peter collected samples from nearby vegetation and the bear. Fredric failed to skin the bear properly due to the severity of the injuries it had received.
After a few hours combat Granger was the only individual not caught by surprised the large feline creature marauding nearby. Unfortunately for Fredric, first in lead of the members, the white tiger viciously charged him, biting his arm and slashing his chest, dealing Fredric some serious wounds. Fortunately for him, Robert and John shot the tiger delaying it enough for Peter to surprisingly land another deft stroke with his bowie knife, and allow Fredric to release himself from the tigers hold. A last round of attacks from John and Robert finished of the wild tiger. Fredric toughly tried to skin the tiger but his injuries had proved to severe and failed his task again. His hunter skills and toughness were not in dispute to the party, although the party was starting to question if he had indeed ever skinned an animal.
After this deadly encounter team echo reached the lake, where Peter took some samples to test for purity. At that moment a drone overflew us, where Rolo (aka Rollerboy Juan tu personaje despues le ponemos el nombre que deseas) informed us that he was in control of them and had spotted smoke on near the city of Townsend.
The party decided to search the source of the smoke to find out more information about it. They had to cross the river. Together the party located a sector to cross where Peter developed a pulley and rope system to facilitate the crossing and avoid watering and damaging the equipment.
After crossing, they decided to build a bridge for their journey back. The primitive bridge was built and finished after they rested for the day.
The next day, they reached Townsend, a small abandoned village, roughly held a population of 100, and most of their houses had been ravaged by the forces of nature (Overgrown vegetation, flooding and thunderstorms).
They continued towards the source of the smoke and found a campsite for 4 individuals, and that a second bigger group had come in pursuit of them.
Rolo informed us that the first group consisted of 4 humans with one teenager, who were armed with medieval weapons. About the pursuit party Rolo only ascertained that it was composed of 6 individuals.
After some intense debate between Peter and Robert about contacting the party of 4, they finally decided to catch up with the parties to study the situation but to not disclose their position to any of them.
Night arrived and Rolo informed that he managed to obtain the location of the first party and that they were hiding in a nearby cave, and that the party of six was composed of strange mutant looking humanoids armed with clubs.
Peter activated the tablet to connect with the drone’s night vision system. They were able to see that the mutant party was preparing to ambush the human foursome. Peter after being convinced by John and Robert to take action and prevent the attack, started to prepare together with Rolo and Robert the tactical plan to control the situation.

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Outside?
S01E02 Prologue

The doors open, and the light blinds you. How has the world changed? What is out there?

John Doe, Bob Granger, poshy Irish hunter Fredric and Scientist Peter Witekirk, geared up their teeth with weapons, trail rations and their hazmat suits went outside through the main entrance tunnel.

Peter activated his geyger counter and radiation levels were below early 2000’s average values. Peter checked the rest of the geyger counters and they read the same values, contradicting Athena’s sensor readings.

Peter decided to check the sensors to detect if they were malfunctioning. Checking two sensor points, small radioactive residues were detected on them used to deceive Athena’s reading.

Conclusions:

  1. Somebody wanted to deceive Athena’s radioactivity readings in order to keep the ark inhabitants inside.
  2. Whoever it is knows the Ark’s sensor infrastructure

After these disturbing discoveries the party continued exploring the sector surrounding the Ark’s entrance cave. They observed a dense forest and a river. Upon seeing these vegetation and the geyger counter low readings the party removed their hazmat suits to increase their mobility.

They followed the road towards the river until they came across a short cliff. Using their rope they descended. Robert went down first, followed by Peter who slipped half way falling unconscious forcing the party to rest.

After resting and continuing their search for water, The party encountered a huge grizzly bear who charged Peter, miraculously the animal failed to injured the scientist however grappling him. Thankfully Fredric’s and Robert’s aim was true and slowed the bear enough for Peter to take out his bowie knife landing a lucky hit on the bear’s skull killing the great mammal.

After this ordeal they rested for the night at camp to continue their journey towards the river.

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Waking up, Matrix style
What's going on? S01E01 Summary

Nos despertamos en una habitación iluminada por la luz roja y asaltados por el ruido de las alarmas. Robert Granger, el médico-soldado, es el primero en reaccionar y se desconecta de la implementación de crio-stasis. Su inexperiencia con el cableado le causa un shock a su cuerpo, dejandolo moderadamente herido. Sin embargo, persevera y empieza a revisar las otras cápsulas de la habitación, empecinado en librar a los demás ocupantes, debido a que ya se daba cuenta que algo estaba mal (afuera de las alarmas, según los dirigentes del programa, los congelados debían ser despertados mediante un proceso asistido, y esta situación indicaba que algo andaba muy mal).

A continuación libera a un hombre alto, caucásico, de pelo negro, y su inexperiencia con el cableado lo vuelve a traicionar. Sin embargo, a los siguientes dos, un hombre sin mayores rasgos reconocibles, y otro que aparentaba ser atleta en sus tiempos de gloria, los logra desenchufar sin inconvenientes. A continuación, los últimos 3 ocupantes de la sala opta por dejarlos dentro de sus máquinas de estásis debido a que sus signos vitales se encuentran muy por debajo de lo normal, y prefiere no arriesgarlos antes de saber con que están lidiando en el Arca.

Mientras Robert hacía esto, John Doe, así misteriosamente auto-identificado, se acerca a la terminal, junto a Peter Witekirk, el pseudo-atleta, y averiguan que hay un incendio en una bodega en uno de los niveles inferiores del Arca. En ese momento, aparece una proyección holográfica de una mujer, que se nos presenta como Athena, una IA. Les urge apurarse a apagar el incendio ya que puede peligrar toda la instalación si sigue su transcurso. Les promete más información una vez que hayan completado dicha tarea, y también les indica qué han pasado casi 250 años desde que ingresaron a la instalación ARK. De ahí los dirige a una sala de lockers con jumpsuits para que se vistan, y luego se dirigen hacia la zona del incendio.

Después de un largo tramo, superando varios obstáculos de distintas índoles, logran encontrar la fuente del incendio y apagarlo. Con esto, Athena les indicó una bodega con pertrechos que podían usar, y ahora preparan planes para ver que hay tanto dentro, como afuera, de la instalación.

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