Lancer: Shots in the Dark- Mission 4

“…to the last I grapple with thee; from Hell’s heart I stab at thee; for hate’s sake I spit my last breath at thee.”

-Herman Melville

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Players

Body Count LL: SSC Monarch 3, SSC Black Witch 1- played by Insuling

Duke LL: HA Napoleon 2, IPS-N Blackbeard 2- played by Pyro

Spao LL: SSC Mourning Cloak 3, HORUS Pegasus 1- played by Marlow

Dvoretski LL: HORUS Goblin 3, HORUS Lich 1- played by Dr. Hobo

Sleeper LL: HA Saladin 3, IPS-N Drake 1- played by Dansi212

NPC’s

  • Rashida Talib: Union Administrator. Overworked Union personnel, it’s almost all this poor woman can do to deal with the nonsense and dumb asses on the Dunsany, to say nothing of what happens outside of the station. Something Angrboda is no doubt aware of, to the point where it is wondered if she is either on the take, or Angrboda is sending dissidents and troublemakers to keep her off balance so she won’t focus more on them
  • Wolfgang Bachman: Harrison Armory representative. Believes he has ‘precognitive’ dreams from the cutting edge brain augmentations he had installed. Wary, detached, thin, prematurely aged, and paranoid. Wears rumpled suits and smokes a lot. Sounds like Hunter S. Thompson
  • Molly Razor: former Red Dog Pirate and drug addict. Now free agent. Still a drug addict. Trained in the Karrakin Trade baronies, she later joined the Ungratefuls for a period of time before finally leaving after some disastrous event. Stubborn, surly, favors undercut and a tactical-punk look. Really good with a knife, keeping quite a few monoblade knives on her person.
  • Koli Laufey: CEO of Angrboda. Pompous, bombastic, and dangerously competent, running a successful company that may be on the verge of challenging the major corprostates. Former Union naval officer and decorated Lancer Pilot. Took over company on the death of his father. Developed a taste for rotgut rum in the navy and still drinks it to remind himself where he came from. Remains a consummate military man with a forthright and direct manner
  • Storm “Ice” Hausmann: Frustrated surrealist artist, single mother, skilled killer. Wears Motocross leathers, rides a cyberbike, feminist. Favors a pair of sleek shoulder mounted microwavers. Works almost exclusively for HA, as she cannot stand Tomiko Miyazawa. Ryan Edwards is her baby daddy. Thinks Sady Sakura is a dangerous amateur, that Slade Bennett is a scumbag, and that Pandora Frost is one of the few competent mercs on the station (secretly jealous)
  • Ryan “Romeo” Edwards: Wealthy with an impressive property portfolio, soldiers for fun. Well groomed, expensive clothes, open, arrogant. Favors a compact stutter laser. Mostly amused by all other mercenaries, except for Plastic Bernard. They have a mutual loathing. Does most of his work for Angrboda, but branches out for HA and SSC when the job is particularly interesting.
  • Pandora “Minerva” Frost: Classically-trained pianist, combat medic, lives in her mech. Muscular, tall, casuals, do-rags. Arms have built-in SMG’s. Has done a bit of work for everyone, primarily Union contracting. Gets on well with most but Spiros Giannopoulos irritates her, while she has a (somewhat) friendly rivalry with Storm Hausmann.

Locations

  • The Dunsany space station: if anything can be considered the capitol of the Pegana system, it is the Dunsany. Sitting in orbit of Mung, the Dunsany is a massive cylinder spinning around a central control shaft. A crossroads and often first stop in arrival in the Pegana system, the Dunsany is a melting pot in the wild frontier of Union space. Nominally owned by the Angrboda, the station has been leased by the Union and houses the current system Administrator and all Union personnel. While the upper levels maintain a modicum of law and order, the lower levels are a bit more… lax in their policing, a side effect of the rough and tumble mixture of pirates, mercenaries, miners, and ne’er-do-wells seeking their fortune
  • Limpang-Tung: one of the more livable worlds in the system, this planet is named for the god of mirth and melodious minstrels. A temperate climate, Limpang-Tung is the center of Angrboda’s power.
    • Slid: while Limpang-Tung is mostly temperate, the northern hemisphere is almost completely covered by turbulent seas, all but for the ice caps on the northern poles. Supposedly running all the way to the planets core, all manner of megafauna are said to swim in the depths of the vast oceans taking up over half the planet. A number of cities float along the surface of the ocean, harvesting vast amounts of plankton and other resources.

Events

Awakening from their celebration, the team sets about gathering their equipment and returning to the station. Having returned to the Shatterdome with the body-chassis of one of the Maw-Draugr, Spao is the first to wake, heading out to check on the package. As he arrives near the quadcon containing the body of the eldritch machine monster, Jedediah is standing out front, teary eyed and muttering to himself. Turning to the approaching mercenary, Jedediah’s mutterings become louder, as he shouts, “yeh fools. Yeh durned fools. I’ve seent death out on them sands. Stared it in the face more’n once. I reckoned the big one was out there, deep down under them thar hills. But ya had ta bring it back. Ya had ta bring it back here. Ya let the monsters out. Ya let death out, and it’s coming. It took mah tear ducts, and it’s comin’ fer me again. It’s comin’ fer us all.” With that, Jedediah Harrington draws a pistol and splatters his brains across the concrete. Horrified, Spao quickly leaves to gather the rest of the team, alerting them of what happened. When they return, an examination shows little but evidence of a hard lived life on Harrington, while checking the logs reveals the old man muttering to himself more of the same before Spao showed up. Notifying the local security, the team grabs the rest of their gear and departs, their good mood soured.

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Arriving back on the Dunsany, the team is called in for a meeting with Administrator Talib. On arrival, the mercenaries are met by the Administrator and a guest. The guest is a tall man in an impressive military uniform and cape with a long white handlebar mustache. Rashida introduces him as Most Loyal Wing Nigel Hubert Humphrey Cummerbottom III, esq., the leader of Albatross Wing Perun. The “God of Thunder,” as his callsign goes, Nigel is the commander of the massive Albatross Ship Perun and the commander of the Albatross wing bearing the same name. While the party is able to report a successful mission, Spao, MSMC through and through, is distrustful of the “Seagulls,” getting into an argument with the Albatross commander as tensions rise and tempers flare, though fortunately it does not devolve into blows as cooler heads prevail. The Commander finally leaving, the Administrator informs the team that she has worked with the Abatross Wing Perun in the past as a scientist with the Union Science Bureau, and had sent a message looking for allies in the wake of the news that the enemy that threatened the Pegana system was something extra dimensional. The Albatross ship Perun is perhaps the greatest singular war machine within the system currently, able to match the planetary defesne capabilities of anyone planet within the system, though it would still remain outstripped by the combined fleet power of Angrboda. Asking the team to make nice with Most Loyal Wing Nigel before they depart on their next mission, Admistrator Talib inquires about their further plans. Informing her that their plan is to deal with project Jormungandr on Limpang-Tung, the team departs to prepare for the mission, after arranging for the body of the slain Maw-Draugr to be transported for Union scientists to examine, to the delight of the Administrator, who remains first and foremost  a scientist. This combined with the footage and gathered data from the previous mission serves to garner the team more favor from Union.

After leaving the Administrator’s office, the team receives a communique from their newest employee, Molly Razor. Sounding particularly chipper, Molly informs Duke that she has a surprise for him back in their private hangar. Curious as to what that might be, the team meets up with Molly inside one of the larger storage crates, finding three brutalized men and Molly grinning like a wolf. Screaming at one to stop crying and the rest to tell the team what they told her, the men begin spilling their guts. They were hired by a man named Saber Numan to come after the team and make it look like an accident. Originally hitmen who worked for the Vovychyanchan family, the team recognizes the name of the man who hired them. According to captured Sons of Atum cell members, Saber Numan had originally been in charge of coordinating the insertion and arming of sleeper cells on the Dunsany space station. Pressing the failed hitmen for more information, the team finds out that Saber Numan was a former freak fighter who was injured in a bout. (freak fighting is essentially MMA matches between cybernetically augmented or android fighters) Numan currently coordinates various activities for the Vovychyanchan crime family and other extra-legal groups through a fighting gym on Limpang-Tung. Only to eager to spill their guts, the team again debates at what to do with them. Despite urging from Molly to just space them and be done with it, Dvoretsky and Body Count set them up on passage out of the system, as since the hitmen spilled the beans they’d be as good as dead if they stayed.

Sending the amateur hitmen on their way, the team can finally focus on their preparations. Sadly, Gearhead finds himself called away, reassigned to another detail, and with a heavy heart bids the rest of the team adieu. Down a member sadly, the rest of the mercenaries double down on their projects. Duke heads out to do some politicking, starting first with the Administrator, doing a bit of wooing and working his team even more into her good graces, then moving on to speak to Most Loyal Wing Nigel Hubert Humphrey Cummerbottom III. After a nice chat where Duke uses his noble background to smooth over any ill will, Nigel tells them that his ship and Wing will be there to support them on their next mission, as Rashida had already spoke to him and called in a favor to ensure his cooperation. Relieved, Duke leaves to join with team, spending some more time chatting with Molly in the meanwhile. For their parts, Dvoretskiy and Body Count spend some time recruiting from the local talent, with Dvoretskiy interviewing Ryan “Romeo” Edwards and Pandora “Minerva” Frost, Frost mostly for her piano skills. Body Count is able to interview and hire on Storm “Ice” Hausmann, brokering a particularly good deal. Last but not least, Spao decides to do something about some of the local gangs on the Dunsany.  The Speedball Prophets, a group of tech savvy sex-predator party artists that hormone-farm captive young males to sell online, has caught his attention. Using some contacts from other members of the team and calling in some favors, Spao sets up a listening post in one of the hab blocks the Speedball Prophets have their main hangouts in. Setting up shop, Spao is content simply to monitor. For now.

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Several days later, the team convenes with Oculus to go over the briefing for the next mission. The target is Project Jormungandr, of which the files taken from the Sons of Atum state the Sons had summoned an enormous demon from the Blaspheming Garden, a leviathan of truly awe inspiring size. The Sons then further plan to place cybernetic augments and machinery to turn the demon into a battleship that would threaten the entire system. While it would normally be a simple matter to scan for a creature of that size and nuke it from orbit before the ship becomes operational, the matter is not that simple. The paracausal matter that the demons are made from means that conventional scanners are useless, and the northern hemisphere of Limpang-Tung is a vast ocean, known as Slid, which would be a perfect place to hide the enormous monstrosity. Floating cities dot the ocean of Slid, so before the team can strike at the Sons of Atum facility, they must first identify which floating city the Sons are using. Once the target can be identified, then the team can use the Mjolnir-class cannon of the Albatross Wing Perun, a weapon capable of taking down capitol ships, to kill the enormous paracausal entity. The current obstacle is finding where the Sons are holed up. To that end, Molly Razor pipes up, pointing out that they have a few inroads. The first is that this “battleship” still requires parts, so the team reasons that if they can get an idea on where a lot of capitol ship parts are going, they may be able to get a line on the location. Saber Numan is the current person of interest, having already gained intelligence that he has at least been working with the Sons if he is not already an adherent. If they can locate Numan and interrogate him, they may be able to get the location out of him. Of further frustration is procurement of arms, as local laws preclude the importation of weapons without special permits, meaning that while the team will be able to get on to Limpang-Tung, the seat of Angrboda’s power, but they will have to procure their own weaponry and mechs on planet. To that end, the team decides to set up a meeting with the CEO of Angrboda, Koli  Laufey himself, reasoning that if they could impress upon him the necessity of their mission, they might be able to get access to a 3d printer and Angrboda shipping information on the planet, making it that much easier to track the shipments. With that, the mercenaries decide to trade the other parts of the Maw-Draugr and intelligence on the paracausal entities to Wolfgang Bachmann in exchange for setting up a meeting with Koli Laufey, of which Wolfgang happily accepts.

Plans in hand, the team is met by reinforcements sent by MSMC HQ, a lancer pilot with the Call Sign Sleeper. After quick introductions are made and the new team member is brought up to speed, the Mercenaries make their way to Limpang-Tung, the capitol planet of the Pegana system and the heart of Angrboda’s power. Their Union credentials getting them through immigrations and customs without any issues. As the team exits the space port, they are met by a motorcade of limousines and nearly a dozen men in black suits and concealed weapons. Before things can come to blows, Koli Laufey, the CEO of Angrboda, steps out from one of the limo’s, walking up unconcerned to shake the hands of the mercenaries. Waving off his security detail, Koli invites the mercs to join him somewhere they can speak freely. He says he bears them no ill will, and in fact, is quite impressed with their skills. Wary but willing to listen, the team joins the Angrboda CEO. After a short ride through the city, the mercs and Koli arrive at a small, hole in the wall pub. Leaving his security detail outside, Koli leads them into the pub, a dimly lit smoky bar with an old woman wiping down glasses behind the bar. Sitting down, Koli tells the team to order whatever they want, the bar containing a fairly impressive stock of expensive booze, while Koli himself drinks rotgut, bottom shelf rum. When Spao asks him why, Koli maintains that he got a taste for it back in the Union Navy, and now he drinks it to remind himself where he came from. Getting down to business, Koli tells the party that again, he bears them no ill will for their actions Hoodrazai, in fact he wants to thank them as it shows the holes in his security as well as the deficiencies within Angrboda security, something they can now correct. Koli is more concerned with the Sons of Atum, and how these terrorists grew like a cancer within his organization. Not opposed to outsourcing and now not quite sure who in Angrboda may be compromised, Koli proposes a temporary agreement. Koli will allow them access to the local Angrboda Omninet and will outfit the team with any gear they might need as long as the party goes after the Sons of Atum and shares any information about the Sons’ assets within Angrboda so that he can shut it down personally. Enemy of my enemy and all that. Still wary, the team tentatively decides to side with Koli, agreeing to share information in exchange for access. Smirking, Koli has the old bartender wheel out a weapons cart for the team to arm themselves while he has one of his printers get to work on their mechs.

Using their newly granted access to the local Omninet, Sleeper runs a search for their first target, Saber Numan, using a combination of facial recognition software and cross referencing by properties linked to the Vovychyanchan syndicate, eventually getting a hit on a local Freak Fight MMA gym that Numan used to train out of. Downloading local blueprints, the team heads to the warehouse district the gym is located in. stepping into the gym, the mercs are hit with the smell of sweat as the space is occupied by numerous fighters, some more obviously augmented than others, all either grappling, hitting pads or lifting weights. A short, stocky, bald man who had been giving instruction to two grapplers moves to cut off the team as they enter the gym, immediately beginning to question them. Seeing he’s just the coach, Spao spots Saber Numan near one of the rings on the back of the gym, inching towards a rear door. The team learns that yes, this place is owned by the Vovychyanchans, but the coach just trains fighters for freak fights. As the team attempts to get more information, the fighters begin to circle the party. Once the conversation moves to Numan, he attempts to make a break for it, fleeing out the back. Duke manages to get the fighters to back down, holding them back with a steely gaze while Spao, Sleeper, and Molly Razor quick duck out the front door. Sleeper quickly pulls the blueprints of the local area, sending them to Spao and Molly’s heads up display as the two move to cut off Saber Numan. Just as the freak fighters appear about to attack, Duke and Dvoretskiy spring into action, Duke dropping an emp grenade to short out the more augmented fighters before laying about with his power armored fists. Not to be outdone, Dvoretskiy quickly draws pistols, dropping nearby enemies with ruthless efficiency, finally ending with a barrel to the Coach’s head, everyone else neutralized or cowed. Meanwhile, Molly manages to navigate the alleyways, engaging Saber Numan in a whirlwind of knives against his cybernetically augmented limbs. Mangaing to just hold him off, Sleeper and Spao are able to take him down, with Spao driving a combat knife through the control nodes in Saber Numan’s cybernetics, quickly neutralizing the one time fighter.

Dragging Numan into a nearby warhouse, the mercs prepare to do some field interrogations. Rousing up the fighter-turned-fixer after tying him to a chair, the team starts asking questions. Knowing how these things go, Numan is surprisingly forthcoming, telling the party that he was hired to help organize assets and set up insurgent groups. Weapons and intelligence would be disseminated to small cells scattered throughout the system, each with their own targets and goals, to be activated on receiving a coded message from Numan. Going through the PCU collected form Numan, the team discovers shipments of starship parts being sent to one of the floating cities out in Slid along with other machined parts going to the moon of Roon over Dorozhand.

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Suddenly interrupting their questioning, a tall man with a wicked smile wearing a fine tuxedo of red velvet and a top hat emerges form the darkness like ringmaster onto the main stage. “Ladies and gentleman, boys and girls, children of all ages, I’ve come here to inform you that the Carnival is in town, and we’re arriving with a bang!” he announces in a boisterous voice then bowing deeply, as Saber Numan, up until this point nonplussed, begins quaking in fear. Hearing the tell tale beeping of explosives, the mercenaries throw themselves from the warehouse and it erupts in a fireball. Picking themselves up off the street, they are met by a large black man in tactical gear, wielding a machete and holding the head of the coach of the freak fight gym, a wild slasher’s smile splitting his face. In a breathy voice, the man whispers, “I will make you beautiful,” as he advances raising the machete. Already done with this shit, Spao empties the magazine of his handgun into the man’s chest. Staggering back, the machete wielding psychopath abruptly stands, again raising the weapon, the smile on his face growing even wider. Sleeper follows on, emptying his SMG and nearly taking off the main’s head as the bullets rip through his neck. Disturbingly, the head is still muttering as the main rights it back his shoulders, the head bobbing grotesquely yet still about beauty. Quickly checking the flanks, Duke spies an enormously fat woman in a tutu, moaning about hunger and carrying a torch advancing from the right, while Dvoretskiy spies a horde of grotesque, monkey like creatures with bits of exposed clockwork poking out of their flesh being guided by a stooped elderly main playing a calliope. Rather than stick around, the team chooses to hit one direction, and hit it hard to escape. Taking off towards the right, Duke launches a volley of grenades of which the fat woman either dodges with preternatural grace or devours before spitting out a gout of flame. Ducking behind available cover, Sleeper is able to hack into the city grid and find the team the fastest way out as Spao takes to the rooftops in an attempt to cover the rest of the team. Once they manage to get past the ravenous fat woman, the horde of creatures must still be dealt with as the hired mercenaries fire off round after round to hold the things off. Moving stealthily across the roof tops, Spao spots a fleshly, androgynous naked man in a sniper’s position behind a massive cannon-like rifle. Moving quietly as a ghost, Spao slits the man’s throat before shots rain down upon his comrades, though as he does, the body rapidly dissolves into a pile of foul smelling white goo. Below, the rest of the team is performing a firing retreat, pumping shots into the horde of creatures and menacing assailants. Quickly stepping into an alcove, Dvoretskiy waits for the machete man to stalk by, quickly disabling him, at least temporarily with a stab to the base of the neck before tossing him into an oncoming blast of fire courtesy of the fat woman. As Duke covers the rest of the mercs with the last of his grenades, the team emerges into a more populated area. Taking stock, the foes that pursued them are nowhere to be seen. To be sure they are no longer followed, Sleeper quickly pulls up security footage from local cameras, noting something disturbing. Sleeper is able to find the tuxedo wearing man from earlier, skipping down the street, though when he walks out of frame in one camera, he appears in another several blocks away as though he teleported. Cycling through the footage as the other mercs catch their breath, the tall man finally come to a halt in the middle of the deserted streets the team just left, looking at the camera and bowing, mouthing something before walking out of frame. Unable to find any other indication they are still pursued besides the destruction and bullet holes left behind, the team sticks to public areas before relocating to a safe house set up by Koli Laufey.

Secure in Angrboda security forces barracks, the team takes a few days to check the data they’ve gathered and plan their op. Cross referencing the parts Saber Numan had coordinated with shipping manifests, Sleeper is able to ascertain the location of the floating city where the Sons would be holed up. As they prepare to leave, Oculus contacts them, telling them he’ll be running their TOC from the Albatross Ship Perun in orbit. If the size of the demon is to be believed, the mercenaries will need the fire support from the Perun’s Mjolnir-class cannon. To that end, the team is given three targeting rods to direct the shots from orbit. Analyzing the floating city from a satellite feed, the team sets up a drop zone right on top of enemy heat signatures they detected, while Duke plans to hit the server farm on the city with Molly.

Mech Battle by Jessada-Art on DeviantArtlink

Early the next morning, aircraft drop Sleeper, Spao, Dvoretskiy, and Body Count right in the midst of Sons of Atum forces. Spao is able to sneak up a dispatch an enemy sniper while Sleeper and Body Count engage in vicious hand to hand, supported by the vicious attack programs of Dvoretskiy. As the assault mechs advance on the team, supported by unseen Mirages, Body Count takes to the sky, unleashing a vicious barrage of missiles, decimating the enemy forces, allowing for the rest of the team to make short work of the remaining foes. Meanwhile, Duke and Molly strike a server farm across the floating city, engaging in vicious close quarters battle with flame spewing mechs. Quickly downloading relevant data from the server farms, Duke finds information about project Surt, a Sons of Atum operation on Sish where a shape changing demon is supposed to be summoned and augmented to be a prototype infiltration and assassination mecha, and project Thrym on the moon of Roon, where the Sons work to perfect the cybernetic augmentation of demons to turn them into living mecha for their best pilots. Meeting back up, the team runs some quick repairs on their mechs, preparing to find where exactly this “leviathan” is. Their question is soon answered as the world shakes. Rising out of the water is a serpent, though calling it a “serpent,” would be like calling a skyscraper a shack. The beast’s head is easily the size of the battleship the city floats on. Run through with metal and cybernetics, the beast spews a horrid yellow gas, toxic and highly radioactive. Quickly mounting back up, the mercs make their approach, climbing the scales of the beast as demons formed from the scales, the cybernetic components, and the very poisoned air move to bar their path. Meeting demonic claws and plasma blasts with bullet, missile, and blade, the team climbs towards the head of the leviathan through the poisoned air and radioactive environment. Already battered and bruised, the team reaches the head choosing one of the 8 eyes of the monster, the horde of enemies seemingly endless. Driving forward, the first targeting rod is placed, and a massive bolt of lighting accompanied by a crack of thunder like the hammer of god as the Perun fires, mutilating a vast chunk of the eye, yet the beast still moves. More targeting rods are placed though the tide of enemies is inexhaustible, as Body Count, Duke, and Sleeper all take enough damage to destroy their mechs, exposing them to the poisoned air. Just as all seemed lost, Sleeper reprograms the wreckage of his mech to be a targeting signal, the final shot from the Mjolnir cannon piercing the skull of the massive demon, sending it careening into the sea. Managing to activate emergency flotation devices while Spao escapes into blinkspace, the rest of the mercs are able to get to safety as the extradimensional entity sinks below the surface. To their horror, the monster unleashes one final shot, a burst of pure radioactive paracausal energy that lances up into the heavens striking the Perun, smiting it from the sky as though by the hand of God. Explosions rip through the capitol ship as it begins its slow fall, the damage catastrophic. Swimming through the massive waves, the mercs are able to get onto the solid surface of the city, just in time to receive a final transmission from Oculus. Strangely calm as all around him is chaos, Deshawn “Oculus” Jones gives the mercenaries his best, apologizing that he won’t be there to see this through to the end, and asking the other MSMC members to give those Sons of Bitches a punch in the eye for him. With that, the transmission ends and the team can only watch as the Perun falls from the sky, erupting in flame before it follows the leviathan beneath the waves.

Forced to wait, the team is eventually picked up by Angrboda transports, one hell of a debrief awaiting. The leviathan is dead, but at what cost?

Entities

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Kathenist-6, The Pontifex Yryaiha, the Scorn of the Fivefold Opalescence: perhaps the greatest weapon mortals have against the emptiness of the void is reality and the infinite possibility of life. Through human ingenuity and the indomitable will of the human spirit, we may change our very environment to suit ourselves. In contrast, the beasts born of the Void simply force their will upon reality in a violation of the worst sort. The most heinous perpetrator of these vile acts is the Pontifex Yryaiha. The Scorn of the Fivefold Opalescence is a scourge upon the natural world like few of its brethren are as the land bubbles and burns at its steps. A rapist of the worst sort, the Pontifex warps reality on a whim, clawing at the very fabric that holds the world together. The defilement of existence is its prerogative, mutating and ripping everything away from its purpose before finally pitching away its plaything when it has finished. The Scorn of the Fivefold Opalescence is the ending of mutation, the ultimate desecration. When the Pontifex Yryaiha deigns to show itself, it takes a roughly humanoid form, though the lower body is a vast forest of tentacles and skittering claws made of fluid obsidian ran through with cracks of glowing orange light. Its torso is made of sickly green crystal that contains a perpetually detonating nuclear explosion, covered in robes of woven starlight like some alien approximation of a magister. Its right arm is formed of purest alabaster shot through with glowing purple light, and it bears a gemstone rod of such magical potency that the air around it boils. Its left arm appears to be an ultra-dense chitin that forms a pincer, and to crack the claws together will split atoms. Its head is that of a flowing supernova concealed behind a cracked porcelain mask, straining against the energies contained within. The Pontifex dwells in the Blaspheming Garden, an empty city of crystal towers, each crystal having captured one of the endless atrocities the Pontifex or its followers have committed upon reality that the Scorn of the Fivefold Opalescence may relive each crime over and over again, relishing each moment. Following in its footsteps is a menagerie of grotesque and mutated, a veritable forest of freaks that serves the Pontifex in its mission of devastation

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