2019-11-07 - The Subway Part 2


Scandal investigates the mysterious tunnel.

Log Info:

Storyteller: n/a
Date: 2019-11-07
Location: The Subway

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Scandal resists the urge to attempt any witticisms about hot leads or jumping down rabbit holes - after all, her one-woman audience might not share her sense of humour, if she even possesses one, and seeming professional might be wise. Instead, she peers at the opening. "Tunnel, slanting down. Looks like it was melted through the rock," she murmurs into her throat mike, while carefully surveying the entrance and early portions of the cored rock for any tripwires or devices. Then she clambers on up and in, staying bent-over so that she can crab her way downwards without constantly banging her head off New York's underbelly.

Mera has a sense of humor! Though she rarely takes it with her. The mics are working, so the mission is off to a good start. "Atlantean mining technology" she muses. "Unless the surface dwellers have something as advanced." That may have said in a snide tone.

There are no boobytraps. Nothing that looks like security as the tunnel descends deeper and deeper. It is, as expected, dark down there. Whoever made it doesn't seem interested in lights either, though after about thirty minutes of wary progress, a faint glow can be seen ahead. And a sound. The thud of heavy machinery.

Top-end spy kit does come with some funky goggles to wear for occasions… well, at least *similar* to this. And they seem to serve well enough in giving Scandal enough vision to navigate down towards that glow. She bites her tongue, with regard to Mera's comment, at least until she can hear that machinery. "There's something heavy and mechanical thumping away, up ahead," she reports - voice a little hoarse after so long without use… and not at all sure that the comms will carry to the (friendly?) Atlantean anyway.

"Be careful" Mera replies - she does care! "Observe what is happening and then return. Do not give away your presence or attempt to prevent what they are doing. For now." Telling Scandal her job as well.

The tunnel opens into a cavern that may have even been used for smuggling once, though the entrance to the sea caved in long ago. And the armored figures that are in the cave are trying to reopen the access. The sound coming from what looks like a large weapon being aimed at the rockfall. The figures gesturing to each other - both looking annoyed - until a switch on the weapon is flicked. It hums into louder life and the annoyance seems to be over.

"Understood," Scandal sends back, not sure if Mera would respond with queries as to who 'Roger' might be. Instead, she opts to perch in the shadow of this end of the tunnel, trusting to her more-than-natural regeneration to ensure that nothing seizes up after so long bent over and scuttling. For there to be just two here seems… a little odd, though perhaps they're simply feeling wholly safe. She does look around for signs of any more - Atlantean intruders or equipment, as well as further exits or bored tunnels. If there's a base of operations down here, or this is 'just' a new access route being excavated, she'd like to know…

There are others. Another pair sit against one of the cavern walls in the universal style of those bored out of their minds. Another is returning from a tunnel bored in the opposite direction that the weapon points. They must be communicating with each other via helmet comms the way that they gesture. The pair relaxing finally stand as the machine starts to glow. Then a beam of blue shoots out to hit the rockfall. It bores slowly into the obstruction, creating a tunnel like the one that Scandal hides in.

Scandal takes careful note of the outfits worn and equipment carried by each set, in case there are any illuminating differences - and adds a number of pictures (no flash, of course!) of both them and the cavern, as well as the boring-device in action. Does it seem to be the source of the thumping sounds earlier heard, or are those separate?

It was the source of the thumping sounds though now they have given way to a gentle hum - they fixed whatever was causing that horrible noise. The figures are all dressed the same though the one that was complaining the most next to the machine does have a red stripe down the side of his otherwise cream colored helmet.

Steam issues out of the newly bored tunnel - it must have hit water - and after a few moments, the machine is turned off. Another few moments and water starts to flow out. Not a huge torrent but enough to start covering the floor of the cavern. High fives all round from the figures before one of them approaches the new tunnel to inspect it.

Scandal readies herself to start back up 'her' tunnel in case anyone starts moving in her direction but opts to linger just a little longer - finding out whether the renegades approve of their handiwork might be worthwhile, after all. As might learning if anything goes drastically wrong, now that they've put a hole in a retaining wall.

They seem happy with their handiwork…until the one at the tunnel crouches down. He must have said something over the comms as the others start to wander over. The croucher dips his gloved hand into the water, lifting it again to find it now covered with a black goo. He holds it up to the others and one of them shrugs. Another points to another section of water - more dark goo. It is obvious they weren't expecting this.

Scandal decides that it very probably *was* worth the risk of hanging around this long, and even takes a couple of additional pictures - not that she expects much of anything about the goo to be visible at this range. "They've bored a hole through a rockfall to let water in; with it is coming some kind of black ooze. They're concerned," she sends to Mera… very much hoping that the intruders don't notice the transmission.

"Black ooze?" Mera's tone now seems concerned. "Do not touch it. If anything happens, return here at once." There is no argument to be had about this.

Back in the cavern, the one with the ooze covered glove can't seem to get rid of it. He too is growing concerned. More goo is now crawling up his legs. Others grab for what must be weapons, but they have all been touched by now. The black goo leaping from limb to limb, seeping into the supposedly sealed suits. The figures are all panicking now; weapons dropped, arms flailing, hands tugging at the oily ooze.

Two of the figures fall to the ground and are soon still. Another two still struggling. The fifth, the one with the stripe, running for Scandal's hiding place. Its fingers clutching at its mask. Scandal can see the horrified face through a clear visor, illuminated by the suit. She can also see the black ooze moving slowly across his face. Some of it pushing into his screaming mouth. More of it trickling into the corners of his eyes.

Scandal snapped a couple of pictures during the early stages of the attempts to clean it off… but soon enough she realised how it was going, and not only stowed her little spy-device but readied herself to depart at speed once again. Now, she does so - a minor pang of guilt at leaving someone to what looks like a decidedly unclean and ignoble death… but that makes it all the more decidedly one in which she does not want to share.

At his last moment it seems the man saw Scandal. He reached out for help before dropping to the floor like the others. The water continues to flow slowly into the chamber as Scandal clambers upwards through the tunnel. "What is happening?" asks Mera over the comm.

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