Comic 1158 - Turn Ilworth's power back on

Posted on 2nd Jan 2019, 10:04 PM in Like a Bullet from Behind
Turn Ilworth's power back on

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Author Notes:

Morgenstern 2nd Jan 2019, 10:04 PM edit delete
You don't think the worm can hear you... but you thank them for the building, anyway, and tell them they can return whenever they want.

You consider sending blobs to investigate the new bunkers--however, as you're still recovering, you're not sure even that much of a drain is a good idea.

You decide to get Ilworth's power up and running. You send a message to Caius to gather up everyone from Mars, as they may be able to help get everything going. You also ask him to bring some tools to work on the wires and such with.

Fuse and Dr. Finch begin figuring out what all's necessary; most of the station was for generating power, not necessarily for redistributing it. The sections that route power to the city are the only components that need to function, as the power proper will be siphoned from the bunker system.

You also confirm that--past the webs in the main hallway, which were brought down during your group's storming of the station to 'save you'--is another door, with a staircase leading to the bottom of the chamber once occupied by the silkworm.


It takes the rest of the day to get everything back up and running--even just focusing on the most important parts, the damage that the silkworm did was... prolific.

While everyone works on repairing wires, sealing pipes, and just determining what all goes where, you ask Caius about how he stays so determined.

"I dunno," he says with a bit of a shrug and a smile. "I jus' don't think about it, I guess? I know stuff's dangerous, I just... kinda blow off how dangerous, and go at it like I'd go at anything else. I don't even like knowin' what tha odds are half tha time, I just dive in there."

You also stop and ask Pierce about repairing the mind, after... uh... having part of your ghost eaten.

"That..." he pauses, "is slightly outside my expertise, I'm afraid. Most of my experience with astral projection is... theoretical. I haven't done as much practicing as I have reading, and I've certainly never dealt with losing any significant portion of my astral form. If... I had to guess, perhaps centering yourself, collecting your thoughts, and refocusing on who you are could help."

You also ask Pierce about the potential of singing as a form of magic.

"There is precedent," Pierce states. "Not explicitly in the books I've read, but I've seen it referenced, and a few of the other cultists spoke of ritual work along those lines. More personal rituals often involve... aligning oneself with the mindset of the invoked, if that makes sense--getting on their wavelength, becoming closer, briefly, to what they are. It makes it easier to cooperate with the entity when one is seeing things from their perspective, and appropriate music often aids that. The same idea holds true for rituals that demand multiple casters--song can get everyone... well, synced up, and on the same page."

He thinks about it for a moment before speaking up again. "There's also--supposedly--songs that, themselves, have arcane properties, though that may just be superstition. Even among those that practice actual magic, there's many urban legends about what gods exist, and what spells can actually accomplish. At the very least, music has the potential for bringing people together on a deep, spiritual level."

You help out some with the repairs--what you can manage to do yourself, anyway, with little mechanical know-how outside of syncing--before getting out of the way and taking Pierce's advice. You do some meditating, focusing on collecting yourself, realigning your idea of who you are, and... basically putting yourself back together.

You're not sure how long you're out for, but you're snapped out of it when the building suddenly shakes. You do feel less drained than you did before, though, at the very least.

You make your way to the massive chamber where the worm was. The huge machine at its core is now active--parts of it spinning, sparks sometimes leaping off the metal surface.

"We did it," Fuse says, sounding equal parts relieved and exhausted.

"Yes we did," agrees Dr. Finch. "There should be functioning power throughout Ilworth now... well, not accounting for any wiring in the individual homes that may have worn down over the years--"

"Don't," Fuse mutters, shaking his head and giving a weary smile. "We'll... worry about that shit later. There's gotta be a house somewhere in town that's still got everything working, right?"

Michelle speaks up. "I'll help the Mars gang look at some places, figure out what's livable... you guys go get some rest. It's gotta be night time back home by now."

Fuse and Dr. Finch nod, and start making their way out of the power station.

Michelle shakes her head, watching the giant machine do its thing. There's a handful of new cables sticking out of it, running into the walls and back toward the bunker. "Weird to think we got our own town now. I mean, like... we had our own town, but now it can do town stuff."



Skullrama 3rd Jan 2019, 1:24 AM edit delete reply
So, here's an idea for tackling the Nil-Carpenter base that I'd like to run past our pals, see what they think.

We usually form the red into something and then pull it out - blood, meat, whatever. But what if we opened up a portal and pulled out the red as is? The concept of the formless, infinite red, just draw it out of a portal to where we're standing.

Is it possible? If it works - are we in complete control of the red-space occupying real space?

This has the potential to be stupid dangerous to the laws of physics and fabric of reality if we were to do it, normally, but... the Nil-Carpeter base seems to exist in it's own extra-dimensional space - I have a feeling that what happens there is contained there.

It may be the sort of thing we run past the Tradesmen first in the info ritual, just to ask if there are potential disastrous consequences from doing such a thing.
Cyanic 3rd Jan 2019, 1:28 AM edit delete reply
that is a crazy idea that I'm super on board with

and +1ing the Tradesmen question first, though they may not know, so we should also ask BigRed
Limrix 3rd Jan 2019, 7:57 AM edit delete reply
I have two concerns about pulling one dimension into another, and they both boil down to dimensions aren't supposed to mix. Because of this, it will be quite taxing on Mine to attempt this, and if we do succeed, it may anger the guardians of reality or something. We can check with the Tradesmen about the second issue, but this is still going to be very draining on Mine.
Some Random Guy 3rd Jan 2019, 8:26 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
This is obviously one of the more dangerous things that we have thought of doing. We may accidentally mess up the space-time continuum, or anger other Lovecraftian beings, and we already have some problems to attend to.
Skullrama 3rd Jan 2019, 10:19 AM edit delete reply
That is why I propose asking the Tradesmen about consequences first AND why I only propose doing it' in the Nil-Carpenter zone. Since they've shielded it from the view of god like entities (or at least the Tradesmen), we can probably get away with a lot of BS in there without pissing any particular entity off.

Make no mistake, I very much do NOT advocate trying this in our normal, home dimension. There are too many things it could screw up really badly.
Frission 3rd Jan 2019, 9:53 AM edit delete reply
Now that you've brought this idea up, it makes me realize that 'drinking deep' was probably this exact concept in reverse -- siphoning everything INTO the Red.
Cyanic 3rd Jan 2019, 1:24 AM edit delete reply
Let's visit Red, see if our realigning helped make her feel better and less eaten

What I'm concerned with is that we straight up spent a whole other day fixing the power plant and we've made small progress with astral stuff, at this point I think we may want to hit up Bunker X before we finally start moving against Nilpenter

Also if we wanna go down the determination rabbit whole we could try a force-sync with Caius if he's ok with that
Limrix 3rd Jan 2019, 8:03 AM edit delete reply
+1 to checking in on Red. I do not think we should be sending any humans into Bunker X, especially not with Mine in a compromised condition. If we're really concerned with the time limit on Carpenter, we could send him an advance notice of when we'll attack, like a week from now. Maybe make it a date with some significance. I think the most important thing with regards to beating Nilpenter is constructing remote biomechs and a bunch of muscle snakes, and the most important thing for that is accelerating Mine. That's what I'd like to focus on tomorrow.
Macheman7 3rd Jan 2019, 1:30 AM edit delete reply
Maybe now would be a good time to talk about potential romance stuffs, and if either would be interested in pursuing them, and if so, when. And/or idol worship because we know Michelle has a literal statue of us in her mindscape.
And that was a long time ago.
Also probably consider getting a move on to attack Nilpenter. They could be done on the next couple of days.
Some Random Guy 3rd Jan 2019, 5:01 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
I don't vote for this because I don't know the proper way to bring any of this stuff up in a conversation right now, but I'm not voting against it, as we might as well tackle the mind statue stuff at some point.
Some Random Guy 3rd Jan 2019, 5:06 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
I mean, I guess we could start by asking if she's gay or something . . . cuz if she isn't, or if she isn't into us, hitting on her would be a bit unsettling, right? I don't know . . .
winger 4th Jan 2019, 6:12 PM edit delete reply
it was confirmed a long time ago that as far as we know all lab grown people are gay
and yes i used that term since lab meat sounds racist
Limrix 3rd Jan 2019, 8:05 AM edit delete reply
I don't think just before a big fight we're not yet prepared for is the best time to bring up romance.
Some Random Guy 3rd Jan 2019, 8:24 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
Yeah, maybe there’s a better time for this.
Guest 3rd Jan 2019, 10:17 AM edit delete reply
I would think some other time, when we are not about to face possible death and despair, would be better.
I also believe we should let her bring it up on her own, when she wants to talk about it.
Skullrama 3rd Jan 2019, 10:28 AM edit delete reply
Michelle's conversation with us over dinner on the spa day convinced me that she really has her shit together at this point, knows what she wants, and is capable of setting healthy boundaries for herself. I think she's fully capable of making a sound decision on whether such a relationship would be good for her or not, at this point.

That said - whilst we're in the middle of trying to prep for a doomsday event is probably not a good time to add it into the mix. Maybe after.
Kumondo 3rd Jan 2019, 11:01 AM edit delete reply
Allow me to third(?) postponing discussions of romance for the time being. There are so many reasons not to pursue a romantic relationship between Mine and Michelle right now, first and most importantly, my quiet crusade against shipping. Between the constant life and death scenarios, the myriad number of other pressing concerns, and oodles of self discovery, there's the current leader-follower dynamic skewing things as well. As much as things may be going in that direction, it would be wise for all parties involved to wait until a new, non life threatening emotional normal is reached before further exploration into that territory.
1977 3rd Jan 2019, 4:08 AM edit delete reply
Now that Mav and Crease can finally have a bedroom for themselves we can start a longterm experiment:
Is Mine able to control the newborn baby or not?
Now that they are out of the lower tiers is the newborn a mutant or not?
Guest 3rd Jan 2019, 7:15 AM edit delete reply
There was another door that was webbed shut wasn't there? That we peered into with Blobbert but didn't enter? Ought to check that out too.
1977 3rd Jan 2019, 7:37 AM edit delete reply
You mean this door?
Some Random Guy 3rd Jan 2019, 8:22 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
We should aks if the team went in that room whilst they were fixing everything up, and if they actually haven’t, then we can go ahead and check if there’s anything left over that we can take.
Kumondo 3rd Jan 2019, 10:35 AM edit delete reply
I feel that room has been somewhat handwaved as "scavenged for parts" by this entry. I don't think we'll find much else specific in there.
undeadDreamer 3rd Jan 2019, 8:21 AM edit delete reply
Maybe cuddling Michelle and talking about stuff would be a good way to center herself? Mostly I feel like after all this Mine would want to cuddle and relax. I'm pretty sure Michelle would be willing to help with the cuddling part. We should probably also talk to red at some point.
Taenidia 4th Jan 2019, 2:01 PM edit delete reply
+1 to giving Mine more recovery time to talk about things and center herself. Maybe even take a nap. Checking in with red internally may also be good.
psychoshen 3rd Jan 2019, 9:30 AM edit delete reply
If we ever have more people living in Ilworth, I would love to see the guy that takes on the job of maintaining the power station.
Kumondo 3rd Jan 2019, 10:46 AM edit delete reply
Mayhaps during the evenings activities, which should include a good solid meal, we should relay what we've learned so far about spiritual defences to the rest of the team. They'll be going up against Nil to, so it would be good for them to have a strong sense of self and otherwise be prepared mentally and spiritually, as well as physically.

We may also want to briefly stop by the first residents of Illworth to see how they're getting along.
Flaninious 3rd Jan 2019, 11:45 AM edit delete reply
Since we have a town, maybe we should ask Macland and Genesai for advice on what we can use it for from a financial standpoint.
It is another country, but hopefully they’ll have some advice
Taenidia 4th Jan 2019, 2:07 PM edit delete reply
+1, and we could also ask the same question of the people in the nearby English town/city. Check if they have an employment office or something.
Archon 3rd Jan 2019, 5:09 PM edit delete reply
Things seem to be coming along well enough, so no immediately actionable suggestions on my part.

As for a non-immediately actionable suggestion, I would be interested in coming back to the power plant in the future.
Getting the place running was good work on our team's part, but there is a difference between jury-rigging and a full repair.
(At the very least, cleaning the corrosion where we can and moving any remaining webbing to storage would be good.)
Departure_Dave 3rd Jan 2019, 5:42 PM edit delete reply
Patton is a city, town is Mine... I think we're catching up.
Crestlinger 3rd Jan 2019, 6:18 PM edit delete reply
Blood the main power bank wires around the repaired areas (hehe bandages) so if Mine ever has an abundance of electrical energy to discharge or Need of one she can access the city's main grid. As we have a town now, should also check into fortifying the entrances and exits with blood bugs and local animals as surveillance. Then rest until fully healed.
We're going to have to approach dealing with Nilpenter carefully as it has already expressed interest in taking over us and our red to further its own aims, so whatever we use for there From the red had better have a self-destruct capability in place lest they find a back door into their goal.
Twyll 3rd Jan 2019, 6:25 PM edit delete reply
Right, time to do some intensive resting. Check in on Red, do a bit of walking then some gentle stretches. Eat healthy but filling food.

Tomorrow we need to prepare to take on Creepenter. I am really *really* hoping we can come up with SOME way of allowing our allies to help us attack Carpenter without putting themselves in too much danger-- if at all possible, we need to at least consider if we'll be able to get at least one remote control biomech set up.

If not, we're going to have to focus on making it so Jane is powerful enough that our allies won't be horribly murderkilled, and we may need to admit that we're gonna have to go in alone at least initially.

Things we can practice tomorrow after getting some good rest today:

1) Try astral projecting without doing the ritual. Incident F may have strengthened our imprint to the point that we can do this naturally now.

2) Practice changing our astral form. We can do this while astral projecting, and/or while force-syncing. First change our clothes as we had Red do, then try pulling items out of our pockets like syringes and bandages, then try summoning whole separate items like a chair. Someone suggested playing dress-up with the ghost girls in the Discord-- this could actually be a fun way to get in a bit of practice with this, if we join them in ghost form. See if we can dress up in a ghostly magical girl outfit, and summon a ghostly tea set.

3) Try changing the environment during a force sync. We know that changes we make during a force sync don't actually affect the person-- we have to change people's minds consciously, and can't change their minds subconsciously. So, if we can manage to alter the environment we find ourselves in during a force sync, that would be a good way of practicing extending our astral willpower against opposition (since the environment would naturally want to stay the way it is).
Skullrama 3rd Jan 2019, 6:53 PM edit delete reply
Assuming Red is recovered, I would like to try force syncing with Mom's Red. I think we stand to learn a lot more that's applicable to a fight with an alien being by syncing with our own, non-hostile alien being.
Twyll 3rd Jan 2019, 7:04 PM edit delete reply
I do like that idea.

We also should get in touch with Jury and ask if she has any advice. She can't help us with Carpenter directly, perhaps, but she should at least be able to advise us on what we should be thinking about when it comes to breaking into a fortified location to extract a very powerful criminal from it.
Skullrama 3rd Jan 2019, 8:12 PM edit delete reply
Filling in Jury would be good. I wonder though - is mentioning of entities like Nil enough to trigger her anti-magic routines? Nil is exactly the sort of entity these spells invoke.

Would Jury just maybe be able to label it as 'Yeah, a powerful alien, okay' and move on? Hmmm.
Taenidia 4th Jan 2019, 2:09 PM edit delete reply
+1, good thought. Rest, then try to sync with mom's red.
Kumondo 3rd Jan 2019, 9:30 PM edit delete reply
If mentioning Nil to Jury activates Anti-magic protocol D17-Gamma that should be fine, as it would be against Nil and not us. I do second the idea of trying to get information, tips and tricks from her regarding operation Storm the Ethereal Castle, as that's one of the things we're lacking most on, information. That's one of our biggest tactical advantages so far; our ability to gather information on our targets and tailor our plans ahead of time. Nilpenter's base is exceptionally well fortified against all our usual and unusual methods of scrying and spying, so any other means of gathering information is paramount.
Matanui3 4th Jan 2019, 12:25 AM edit delete reply
Oh good, a convenient shortcut now that we've beaten the boss.
Mr. thought 4th Jan 2019, 8:58 AM edit delete reply
you know maybe we are going about this all wrong. Instead of beating Carpenter and Nil have them beat themselves. Nil hates existence. Carpenter no matter how bad a guy he is probably wants to exist. Get Nil to destroy Carpenter and thus destroy his connection to this world.
Night Ot Eternity 4th Jan 2019, 12:26 PM edit delete reply
I just re-read the whole archive and some ideas came up.

1. Upgrade Bunker A bunk beds, at least the futons. I do not think our groups wants to should move to the town just yet, not with things still needed to be done.

2. I do not know if came up before, but check what happened to Mine's eye back before Chapter 1? We really do not want Carpenter ,Thale or whoever keeping their hands on it. May be clear up blood on Mine's bed as well?
Taenidia 4th Jan 2019, 2:14 PM edit delete reply
We probably have *some* scrap left over from the power plant renovation, and maybe the family can find some interesting things in the houses while they settle down. Might we want to leave that for the Proto-Juries, and see if they can make anything from it?