Chapter One - The Discovery on Ikan - Part IV
Everyone looks speechless at the hole in the ground, and it takes a while until everyone regains his countenance.
Quickly, ropes and flashlights are fetched, and the team starts to prepare the descent.
After a while, the team manages to reach a kind of elevator platform, old and rusty, stuck in the duct for ages.
Obviously, it once connected the surface hatch with a place deep down below.
On the platform they find Captain Willis, unconscious but alive. The power armor absorbed most of the momentum of the downfall. While the last team members just arrive there, one soldier and Peggy already take care of Willis, who slowly recovers.
"Well, not the typical theme park drop tower. Lousy safety precautions. Would only give one of five stars."
"It looked like you`ve seen far more stars quite recently."
"Maybe. But now, back to our mission! Didn`t you notice the platform started moving?"
Just as Willis says this, the other team members feel it, too. With the weight of all the people, the elevator platform starts to slowly deepen the final meters to the ground of the duct...
With a metallic screech the platform stops near the ground level, releasing the view on a scantily lighted corridor.
"Concentration, everyone. I sense that a big discovery lies in front of us!"
The team slowly proceeds down the corridor, using the sensors of their equipment to gain a little information of the surroundings.
"Jeez, most of my horror holovid collection starts with such an ambience..."
"Oh, not only horror vids begin that way. Especially with that lighting..."
"Oh, would you both just put a cork in it, please?"
"Heh, heh. They don`t only put corks in..."
"WILLIS! JUST SHUT IT, WOULD YOU?"
The team approaches a thick metal door, with some simple buttons beside it.
"Sensors say there`s a large room behind this door. No signs of biological, electric, ionic or crystal activity."
"Hmm. Open sesame?"
"I`d prefer a more... physical method of opening that thing, unfortunately the door is at least 2 bricks thick. Our whole supply of explosives would not overcome its 3d10 armour."
"Not even with some critical success rolls?"
"Plot says no. I guess we`ll just have to find the password in the data we recovered."
"How do you know that it`s in these files?"
"I read the script. It`s amazingly predictable."
And so, after a few minutes of research in the data files found on the ship, Amanda Taekin manages to find a list of passwords related to a picture that looks a lot like the door they stand in front of. She enters the code on the buttons, and immediately, a loud metallic rumble starts. Like many old mechanisms started working after a long, rusty sleep...
The door slowly opens and reveals a big chamber lit by pale, red lamps. The air inside smells moldy, with a fine scent of ozone.
In awe-stricken silence the expedition team slowly enters the room. The sensors still show no activity.
"What is this place?"
Amanda Taekin examines the old computer consoles. They show no activity. She sees some Magtapes lying around. The labels read names of factions, planets and teknology that she doesn`t know about...
"Tharcan Galaxy, A-Gate blueprints, Immortal Empire, Children of Dew... this is a complete archive of what The Ancestors knew and who they met! This...this is..."
Amanda fumbles for words, her thoughts spinning around like in a particle accelerator.
"If we can restore and process all of this data, StarCorps. LLC could create the largest knowledge based information system in Henndirro! What possibilities and technical advantages! A leap in science and robotics and..."
She nearly hyperventilates regarding all the information they are just about to get from these tapes.
"She`s having a sciencegasm again..."
"Peggy! Shut Up! And the rest of you: GET THOSE READING DEVICES RUNNING IMMEDIATELY!
We have libraries to fill!"
End of Chapter One