Comic 1128 - Put the recon on hold

Posted on 22nd Nov 2018, 9:23 PM in Like a Bullet from Behind
Put the recon on hold

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Author Notes:

Morgenstern 22nd Nov 2018, 9:23 PM edit delete
"Alright," Michelle begins, "I'm officially callin' this mission off. The menacing chewin' sound, the thing that eats ghosts, we ain't ready for this."

Caius scrunches his face up, looking from Michelle to the distant door. "Man... if we keep bailin' we ain't ever gonna get through this place, though. We need that power hooked up."

"Yeah," Fuse replies, "but if we rush it we're gonna die. Like, straight up, that thing's gonna eat our souls or turn us into zombies or... I dunno, dude, it eats metal. And ghosts. We need bigger guns."

Michelle nods. "We at LEAST need Blondie here."

Caius sighs, and holds his hands up. "Yeah, you guys are prob'ly right. ...I jus' don't want that to be what this thing wants. We bring Blondie here, we might be playin' right into its hands. Or... whatever spiders got."

"Wouldn't be the first time we walked into a trap," Michelle says with a grin.

"Wouldn't be the first time we blasted our way out of one, either," Fuse adds. "I'm with Michelle--we're dealing with some serious shit here, we need to act like it."

"Yeah," Caius concedes. "I hate backin' off, but this place gives me tha willies an' I don't wanna be turned into a zombie ghost. Let's roll."

The three of them--cautiously, while watching both the back and front--return to the entrance of the building, and begin heading back to the bunker.


You tell Dr. Finch that you were using the power of imagination. You motion with your hands to further add to the implied magic.

"I... see," he replies, adjusting his glasses. "You know, I'm not especially creative myself but I don't believe electrical feedback is a normal part of the imaginative process. Perhaps I've been doing it wrong..."

You elaborate a bit--well, as much as you can. It's kind of hard to explain that you were trying to force-will the ghost body of your mental manifestation of your alien side into having different clothes.

Dr. Finch just... stares at you, trying to process your story for a few moments. Several long, slow blinks later, he nods. "Hmm. Hm hm hm. Your imprint state was empowered by reenacting Incident F... and I imagine that level of control over the mental plane would NORMALLY take a great deal of time, possibly years to truly master. The excess energy you obtained in Incident F may be attempting to... say, compensate, in a way, for the lack of experience on your end--replacing the appropriate training and focus with raw brute force to MAKE changes occur. Purely speculation on my part, but I don't know why else you would be... sparking up, as it were."

It's especially odd, because you already got rid of a lot of excess energy right after Incident F. You had some trouble, err, fitting your astral form back into your body correctly--you ended up shuffling a lot of electricity off into the red.

Dr. Finch nods again. "The process may have caused some permanent alterations to your electrical state, not just granted it an abundance of additional energy. It... it it it may be easier for you to generate energy in general, now, moving forward. I have not the faintest idea what that may suggest in regard to simple brain functions--I would hate to think a neuron could fire too hard and damage you physically--but we've discussed in the past, and toyed with, the idea of manipulating the body's electrical currents to to to various ends. Your main limitation, previously, was... well, a prominent lack of sufficient electrical power. The body makes for a poor battery, most of those electrical signals are necessary for one task or another... but, but but, between all the work you've done examining and changing neurological pathways AND..."

He waves his hand at you. "--Whatever THIS is... hm. Hm hm. There may be a great deal of potential here... a great deal of potential indeed."

Michelle, Caius, and Fuse return.


"Oh, no," Fuse remarks. "You've turned into one of those mall goths."

Red scowls, and points. "You! I blame YOU for this! You and your fondness for... dumb, fiddly jackets."

"That jacket was not dumb," Fuse retorts. "It was awesome, and-- I don't think I can have this argument without looking like a psychopath."

"Too late," Caius chuckles. "You're talkin' to tha air there, buddy."

"As y'might know already," Michelle begins, "whatever's in that power plant? It can jerk around with the lights, eat metal, and prob'ly eat ghosts. We got surrounded by what looked like spirit zombies yellin' about a prophecy before we bailed."

"It wanted to know if we 'brought her,'" Fuse adds. "We're assuming it wants you, because... why not, at this point."

"So it's not simply a bug, then?," inquires Dr. Finch.

"We got no idea," Caius replies. "Might still be a spider or somethin', 'cuz there's webs all over tha place."

"A giant, ghost eating, prophesying, light flickering spider," Fuse summarizes. "We didn't get to actually see it, because uhhh fuck all that noise."

Michelle gives a few, short nods. "Yup. We figured we're past doin' recon--if we're headin' back into that place, we need to treat it like we're hittin' it, hard. Anything with that kinda firepower could be a legit threat, even for us."

"I must admit," Dr. Finch begins, "I am quite intrigued as to what this entity could actually be... or if it's a single entity at all. It could merely be a series of unusual circumstances--mutated webweavers, drawn for some plausible, natural reason to a place with a strong EM field... a place that also, of course, produces an abundance of imprints. It was once thought that spiders traveled on the winds, launching silk strands skyward and letting the breeze carry them--but a great deal of research revealed that spiders can, in fact, repeat the act in a sealed chamber. It's believed instead that spiders can sense electrical currents, and use THOSE to fly through--"

Michelle interjects. "I really don't wanna know about flyin' spiders. Is there, like, an opposite of cleantex? I wanna forget this whole couple o' days, at least all the parts that involve spiders."

Fuse shrugs his shoulders, smiling a little. "There are definitely drugs that can wipe out memories."

"Yeah," Caius responds, "it's called beer."


Golnor 22nd Nov 2018, 10:42 PM edit delete reply
Yeah, when we go back in, we gotta be ready to level Michelle if spiders. Panicked minigun spraying is not as useful as focused minigun spraying.
Tych 22nd Nov 2018, 11:12 PM edit delete reply
no but it is hilarious to those of us on the other side of the fourth wall
Twyll 23rd Nov 2018, 4:09 PM edit delete reply
Honestly I find it rather worrying personally.
wierdweblurker 22nd Nov 2018, 10:46 PM edit delete reply
Welp, lets get to the power plant. Bring a Mine-golem and some gasoline, because whatever's in there is getting killed. Killed with fire.
Cuttlefish 23rd Nov 2018, 4:44 AM edit delete reply
Give the golem a can of bug spray and let it go wild.
Reactinator304 25th Nov 2018, 6:34 PM edit delete reply
I wonder what would happen if we traded up some regular bug spray. Maybe we'd get better bug spray that kills different ghosts? Or maybe some bug spray with a built-in flamethrower attachment, or something, etc, etc. It'd be stupid and maybe funny to time travel and swipe the rest of that pesticide from way back at the hospital and try to bring that or trade it up, just because. Its likely nobody would care too strongly if that went missing from the timeline considering how wrecked that hospital got, and how easy I imagine it'd be to get more elsewhere. Then we could test the time travel idea out too, even if we never use it again.
Sonico 23rd Nov 2018, 10:12 AM edit delete reply
It's a power station they need - burning to the ground is NOT a desirable outcome.
Cyanic 22nd Nov 2018, 10:53 PM edit delete reply
alright! Multiple things to do:
*First suggest that the 'she' the ghosts may be referring to might be Faraday, or at least the the woman/girl that created the imprint sisters (just suggest though, we're definitely not bringing any of the sisters to a battlezone until it's completely safe) because she was a unique enough case that Z50 went after the sisters to do experiments (and it's imprints giving the prophecy so it kinda makes sense?)
*Second use the imprint strengthening ritual on Red (maybe for later)
*Third let's finish the biomech and test run it in the power plant

Let's also get ready to pull out that electrical discharge (that we deposited in the red) once we go to the power plant in case a big shock might be needed
undeadDreamer 22nd Nov 2018, 11:45 PM edit delete reply
Let's do the imprint strengthening ritual on Red if we can't strengthen her by force of will. Sure. I wanna see what happens.
Limrix 22nd Nov 2018, 11:31 PM edit delete reply
Let's bring Mine to the power plant and flood it with blood.

We have discussed flooding a building with blood for use against Carpenter and Nil. Flooding the power plant would be a relatively low risk way to find out what's inside, and also lets us practice with flooding and measure its effectiveness.
Some Random Guy 23rd Nov 2018, 8:12 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
A certain amount of this extended blood-flooding combined with a Blood Bug and/or Flesh Golem sounds like an okay idea.
Twyll 23rd Nov 2018, 4:05 PM edit delete reply
Maybe not flood the whole building, but at least flooding the floor and like, having it climb up the walls would work. I wonder if we can make it so our allies can move through our blood easily while our enemies get slowed down by it?
undeadDreamer 22nd Nov 2018, 11:44 PM edit delete reply
Let's try turning up the power to make Red more visible.
Some Random Guy 23rd Nov 2018, 8:10 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
If we could do that, it would make Fuse seem less insane talking to her, so okay then.
Gigafreak 22nd Nov 2018, 11:51 PM edit delete reply
Mine has an electric ability, but no idea how to direct it just yet. Firing off weapons-grade levels of lightning is extremely inadvisable, so maybe we should start with just generating and controlling smaller sparks. That way, a backfire will merely jolt Mine rather than cause life-threatening complications (such as traveling backward into the bloodstream to stop the heart and fry the brain).

Mine has an ally who can mentally direct a force of nature, with risk of backfiring onto himself: Fuse. It may be a good idea to ask Fuse for details on how he does it, as it may be applicable to directing sparks of electricity or minimizing risk to herself while doing so.
There's also the fact that Fuse is directing a mental force of will into an actualized result, and this concept is essential to fighting Nil. Fuse's insights could be another piece of the puzzle for the showdown against Carpenter and Nil.
pkrankow 23rd Nov 2018, 7:42 AM edit delete reply
Yes, talk to Fuse about elemental powers. Pause the forray to the power plant if necessary.
Some Random Guy 23rd Nov 2018, 8:08 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
Also, since the electricity is shoved into the Red, can't we just drop blood unto something and then let the electricity out of that?
Loose Cog 23rd Nov 2018, 12:36 AM edit delete reply
Loose Cog
Okay so this is an idea. Since the limiting factor that prevents people other than Mine from traveling through the red is, as far as I know, the consious acknowledgement of the infinity of the red, or blood speech or something, we may be able to transfer the ghost girls through the red if they are put in their containers. They have described being in the tube similar to sleeping, which I assume means that they are unconscious from the time it is closed to the time it is opened. They also are manifested energy, so the physical restrictions we'd have to worry about probably don't apply.

Since Red is also an imprint (or close enough to one at this point) we could test it with her, to see if when she is in the tube, she is completely disconnected from the red.

Of course, this is all only useful for the transportation of the ghost girls and any other beings that behave similarly inside the tubes.
white 23rd Nov 2018, 2:42 AM edit delete reply
Talking to things other people can't see or hear, Fuse, there's a time and a place for hallucinogenic drugs and this is not the time.
X 23rd Nov 2018, 2:59 AM edit delete reply
Questions for the Tradesmen in no particular order:
1: ask whether the creature in the power plant and the spirit zombies are connected, or coincidental.
2: ask about what the spirit zombies want "her" [with the presumption of it being Mine they want] for, specifically, and whether they could go in and out of that particular situation safely with current equipment and skills.
3: ask about the metal-eating thing, whether it really is a spider and how the best way to remove it would be. if removal is too expensive a question, ask whether you could safely deal with it with current equipment and skills, or if there is another tool or bit of knowledge which would serve better.
3.5: if we need another tool or bit of knowledge, what is it and/or how do we get it.
that's about all i can think of
1977 23rd Nov 2018, 3:10 AM edit delete reply
The ghostgun was a part of the odinproject, right?
Kind of a way to use the imprint strengthening ritual without using the ritual itself.

We could try to blood the gun and then sync with it to see how it works.
This way Mine can use the powers of it on her own and become Odin, or maybe Thor since she would be shooting lightning.
undeadDreamer 23rd Nov 2018, 10:08 PM edit delete reply
The ghost gun imprisons ghosts not strengthens.
Golnor 23rd Nov 2018, 7:42 AM edit delete reply
Huh. Can Red see things we can't? Like if we went into the next room, could she tell us how many fingers Caius is holding up? Does Fuse's presence matter in this case?
Some Random Guy 23rd Nov 2018, 8:14 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
Oh my God, I never thought of this. Lets test it.
Guest 23rd Nov 2018, 9:19 AM edit delete reply
Of Course, we would be able to know that without her.
ReikoLupus 23rd Nov 2018, 9:18 AM edit delete reply
We need to prepare weapons before going again.
Caius, that machete isn't going to be a good weapon against a giant-soul-eater-spider XD. it's time to give you a decent weapon XD.
Let's start giving Caius gauntles and a halberd of high density bone, with some flesh se we can transfer electricity to it when needed.
Limrix 23rd Nov 2018, 3:54 PM edit delete reply
Agreed, Caius needs a more appropriate weapon.
Twyll 23rd Nov 2018, 4:11 PM edit delete reply
I'd love to see a bone lucerne hammer or bec-de-corbin. I think we could make it especially dense and thus make the hammer bit really effective. Alternatively, Caius might enjoy a bone scythe, because that would be metal as hell.
PurpleKetchup 23rd Nov 2018, 1:24 PM edit delete reply
Re: I would hate to think a neuron could fire too hard and damage you physically
As long as Mine keeps her biology human, she can just keep an eye on her electrolyte levels. Their balance is how we develop action potentials in muscles and neurons.
Of course, Dr. Finch is probably right in positing the incident F machine changed how she generates potentials, considering how strong they end up (arcing in dry air is 5~6-digits volts territory), and human stuff might just be irrelevant now.

No more Brawndo for you, Mine. Just to be safe.

Also: a great deal of potential indeed.
Don't think the pun went unnoticed there.