This logfile is imported from aitelogs2 and may contain errors or wrong timestamps.
#MSVJackOfDiamonds – December 21, 2017
Leah gives a loud sigh to herself. It's not exactly the answer she was hoping for, but it is what it is. She still has a job to do. She gives a nod Oxaris' way before tapping the final door panel and raising her Mattock once more.
Oxaris moves behind Leah, before looking to her with an odd expression beneath her helmet. She glances over her shoulder and shoulders the stock of her Locust to her, sucking in a deep breath. "I thought this was too easy..."
Ilyna lets the barrier dissipate and begins moving towards the hallway. "Understood," she says, not over comms. "Let's go home." A biotic shimmer still surrounds her as she prepares to put the barrier back up on a moment's notice. It's clear they're not out of the fray just yet, but at least she can protect her now.
The final door leads to what appears to be the ship's passenger quarters, although the room is clearly in disuse. Crates and boxes are stacked along the walls, and there's a thicker layer of dust than the rest of the ship. There is no sign of anyone in the room.
Zaylus lends his absent focus to the comm chatter as he points his light up and around the cargo hold, obviously vexed by the rumbles and groans.
Ehanis nods to herself. "Got it," she says over comms while frantically looking around the cargo hold from her position by the door to the hallway, expecting something to pop out of the walls any moment now. "We've got nothing here yet."
Leah isn't leaving anything to chance. She's quick to rush in and do a sweep, her headlamp scanning from corner to corner. "Aside from the bridge, it looks like we're all clear out here." she announces over comms.
Jattic rolls his shoulders, his bulky pauldrons clattering as he does. "Whatever that rumble was, it could not have been good."
Oxaris moves in besides Leah, sweeping her light around as she nods. "We should move back and secure out exit out of here."
Nathan glances at Jason, eyebrow furrowing in concern beneath his helmet as he folds his M-3 onto his hip and once more pulls out his Argus. "Then let's get the hell out of here. I'll take point again. It's a straight shot across the cargo hold." He shoves the stock to his shoulder and starts moving to the exit, sweeping out into the hallway and moving to the entrance of the cargo hold.
Senya stops in the doorway to the airlock, furrowing her eyebrows as she looks into the room. She disappears out of view into the airlock while activating her comms, still holding onto Lucy.
Jason slides his blade back into its sheathe and nods to himself, Jattic's observation not exactly adding anything new to the concerns already flooding his mind. His gaze moves to Ilyna and Li but, despite the relief provided by seeing her in the asari's arms, a smile never fully manifests. He's well aware that none of this is over until they're back safe and sound and everybody has been cleared for infections. "Which is all
the more reason for us to hurry the fuck up." he responds over comms in response Jattic's concerns. As Nathan goes to lead the way, he reaches out, stopping him with a hand on his shoulder. "But we're not done yet. We have no idea where the artifact Mingxia used to infect James is and I don't plan on wasting time searching through every crate on this ship. Last thing we need is someone investigating this mess and getting
a bunch of unsuspecting people sick. Ten and Jess? You're up. Elena, get up here and get the bridge door open. Figure we can plant some charges and jump the ship. Make sure it's far away from here when it detonates. Zaylus? You're with us. You can help us make sure nothing is waiting to ambush us on the bridge. Everyone else keep the way back to the airlock clear."
Elena nods a couple of times as she listens, activating her comms to give a quick "On my way." She gives another glance toward James' bullet-riddled corpse before heading down the corridor for the bridge.
Mingxia 's eyes suddenly light up with a red glow, and in a motion that should be impossible, she returns to her feet without ever pushing off from the ground, as if simply reversing her fall. She tilts her head as glowing eyes scan across the room beneath strands of black hair. The bullet holes in her chest still bleed, dripping from soaked clothes. "I am but a vessel for the god-machine." she says, her voice its usual soft
self, but there is no emotion left in it. A mechanical monotone. And underneath, there is a subtle echo of something else, a - to some - familiar rumbling that seems to reverberate inside the heads of everyone in the room.
Ilyna leaves the hallway, and upon hearing Nathan being reassigned, she decides to brave the cargo holds without anyone taking point. She is already out of range of Mingxia's voice, especially consdiering the outside noise and the activity around her. Or maybe she's pretending she doesn't hear her.
Nathan opens his mouth to respond to Jason, turning back to throw a few ideas his way in regards to turning this ship into scrap when he sees Mingxia rise from the ground like some techno-mummy. And what does one do when the dead suddenly rise before him with glowing red eyes and a voice that seems to speak directly into his mind. "Watch out!" He makes to push Jason out of the way and he immediately would snap his
rifle up, letting the heavy calibre weapon thunder in his hands as he aims to rip apart her body in a barrage of gunfire.
Zaylus moves out into the corridor to follow the others, looking into the room as the terrifying scene begins to unfold. "Spirits." He bites down on the word, overcome by confusion and too lacking in clear lines of sight to help from where he's standing now.
Ehanis moves out into the cargo hold, headed for the door to the other. She shouldn't stand still, as that would be asking for an ambush should these things start jumping out of the walls.
Leah gives a nod to Oxaris, already starting back towards the airlock when Jason's orders come through. "Copy." she says, "Me and Oxaris are already on the move."
Jessica furrows her brow as she hears Jason's orders. With a couple of nods to herself, she begins to detach one of the home-made devices locked to her waist. "Mmm. Where is this reactor?" she asks aloud, unaware that it's probably not likely they'll be able to reach it if their way to Engineering is blocked off.
Jason stumbles backwards a few steps as he's shoved aside, his gaze snapping to the recently-deceased Mingxia. That's more than enough for him to raise his Phalanx towards her once again. But his finger doesn't make it to the trigger before that hollow, metallic vibration in his head brings back a familiar sensation. An emptiness that has haunted him ever since their return from Di Yu. His eyes shut and his grip loosens on his
weapon, his free hand shooting to the side of his helmet, clawing at it as if he may be able to tear the sounds free if he tries hard enough.
Oxaris starts to follow Leah when she stops at the sudden sound of a weapon being discharged. "Wait," she says to Leah, turning her gaze to the room where Zaylus has frozen outside of.
Leah is right in step with Oxaris, swiveling on her heels and raising her rifle down the hall as soon as the shots ring out. She lowers her weapon once Zaylus comes into view. "What in the hell is going on in there?" she calls out over comms.
Mingxia takes several hits from Nathan's rifle, blowing a chunk of flesh and rib from her left side. She staggers, but remains standing, letting out a shrill shriek that reverberates in a deep metallic tone throughout the fore of the ship. A blast of red biotic energy follows the noise, striking Nathan with enough force to easily topple him. She raises her other hand at Jason, arcs of unnaturally red electricity striking
him, wreaking havoc on his shielding. The nauseating sound of cracking bones and ripping skin follows as her limbs contort in unnatural angles, glimpses of metal showing through underneath. With another noise she leaps onto the ceiling, skittering away with alarming speeds, nothing but the glowing red points of her eyes visible in the darkness unless shone upon.
Nathan watches with wide eyes as she doesn't go down, quickly responding over comms. "We've got a con- oof!" He is torn off his feet, hitting the deck with a loud thud. He is, however, quick to recover and uses his array of weapons on his back to prop him up and grant him an angle to fire on the horrific creature before him, ears ringing as the shriek pierces his eardrums. Pain later, enemy now. He pulls the
trigger again, using the light of his rifle to illuminate Mingxia as the Argus tears through its clip, each squeeze of the trigger sending a trio of rounds at her. "It's a fucking monster!" Is the only way he can describe it over the channel, panic now starting to grip his heart.
Elena stops mid-step as Mingxia flees the quarters, letting out a surprised cry as she stumbles, scrambling to raise her weapon. "WHAT THE SHIT?!"
Zaylus finally breaks from his hold with a sharp hiss, snapping the Carnifex back to his waist and taking the Avenger into his hands as he rushes forward. But he is quickly sent back again as the creature scuttles into the hallway, and he shoots nearly straight up as he hurriedly backpedals.
Jason tightens his grip on his weapon, willing himself to fight through the echo in his head and the weight that begins to tug at his limbs, urging him to lower his weapon as if barbells have been attached to his hands. But soon enough he finds his Phalanx shifting, as if the weapon- no, his arms- have a mind of their own. And it doesn't take a rocket scientist to see where the dangerous end of the Phalanx is moving to.
Jason's eyes go wide, hidden behind his visor as he looks on with horror, unable to stop his own limbs from sighting in on Nathan. "No-... Fuck! Nathan!" he calls out, his voice strained as every muscle in his body tries, and fails, to fight back against his cybernetic limbs, "I can't-.... You have to go! Now!"
Ilyna walks as fast as she can while holding Li and keeping her biotics ready. She weaves through the maze of crates using the same path she took getting here. "It's going to be okay," she murmurs, but it's clear that she doesn't even believe it; not completely. The sounds of gunfire is getting closer, and there's a monster moving around.
Ehanis jogs through the door into the second cargo hold, and starts making her way around the crates.
Oxaris blinks and even her venerated mind baulks at the creature that comes charging out of the room. There is a moment where her body freezes and her mind goes blank, but she is quick to recover as she snaps her SMG towards it and pulls hard on the trigger, emptying the entire clip at it in perhaps the most unprofessional move she has done.
Leah's green eyes lock on the skittering figure that tears out of the room, latched onto the ceiling. "Fu-... Don't let that thing get away!" she shouts, immediately snapping her Mattock back up as a blue glow begins to envelope her and the stacatto of gunfire erupts throughout the hallway.
Jattic grips his Vindicator, taking a few heavy steps towards the second cargo hold. But he has his orders. Despite every bone in his body telling him to charge in and assist his team, he holds his ground. "What is going on up there?" he growls into comms, the chatter from the front only furthering his concern.
Jessica frowns at Jattic, seemingly mistaking his ability to follow orders for cowardice. With a sneer on her face, she reattaches the device to her waist and grips the Katana with both hands once more, quick to fall in line with Ehanis.
A hail of gunfire strikes the ceiling, some shots hitting what was once Mingxia, but most miss, the creature skittering across the ceiling with alarming speed. Close quarters and the blur of darkness and flashlights doing little to help accuracy. Oxaris is jumped with enough force to knock her into the wall, a sharp metal spike laced with lines of glowing red portruding from Mingxia's arm and stabbing at her armor. Luckily the
attack is not strong enough to fully penetrate. Another arc of lightning is sent Leah's way, with similar effects on her armor as on Jason's. "YOU HAVE FELT OUR POWER AND STILL YOU STRUGGLE!" The voice is not Mingxia's. Not anymore. It comes from everywhere at once, overwhelming. The twisted form scurries off across the floor just as fast as it came, taking a few shots from Elena and Zaylus before pushing them aside and
switching to the wall. Like a spider it moves, fast and agile. Ceiling now, and gone into the darkness of the cargo hold. Metal scraping and skittering steps, unseen.
Nathan gets ready to push himself up and pursue the abomination, but he freezes when he sees Jason turn his pistol on him. "Wha- Jase, what are you doing?! It's me!" Despite saying that, he quickly makes to roll to the side and push himself onto his feet, spinning around to half-raise his rifle, then lower it as he stares at his boss, his friend. He's not too overly worried about the shot as, despite the hit he
took, his shields are still holding up well. But for him, it's more of the confusion and hurt at seeing his comrade aim at him. "That thing is out there, going after Ilyna and Li, Jase! Pull yourself together and let's go kill that fucking thing!" He starts to rapidly move to the doorway, only glancing over his shoulder to make sure he doesn't trip.
Oxaris slams into the wall, the air driven from her lungs as she gasps sharply, followed by an exclamation of surprise as a spear plunges into her armour. She can feel the area sting and bruise, but thanks the spirits for her sturdy gear. She doesn't have time to aim and shoot as it skitters away, her gaze falling to her rupture.
Ehanis catches up with her sister, holsters her weapon and grabs her Avenger from her hip. "Move!" she shouts, frantically aiming the weapon around. She's untrained in that class of weapon, but from the sounds of the others' gunfire, she needs the extra firepower. A biotic shimmer forms around her as she impatiently waits for something to jump out at her.
Ilyna starts running a bit faster, but after a near-stumble, she stops and holds up a barrier around them. The sounds of gunfire are only getting closer, and until she gets a status update, she finds the risk of moving higher than that of holding her ground. Besides, the danger won't be over until everyone is out of the ship anyway. The asari is near the doorway to the other cargo hold by this point.
Ehanis is staying close to her sister's position. She wants to run in with the others, but Jason's order was clear.
Leah raises an arm, prepping to slam the creature against the wall biotically when her shields begin to fizzle out. Suddenly and without warning, her body fails her. A numbness overtakes her lower body, completely immobilizing her and causing the powerful biotic's body to crumple to the ground like a paper doll and sending her Mattock skittering against the wall. Panic fills her voice as a number of terrified groans fill the
comms. "My legs! I can't-... I can't feel my legs!" she shouts, already pushing herself up with her arms, but her legs remain motionless.
Jason gives a pained roar as he continues to fight against his own arms. The muscles in his chest and shoulder ache and burn as he silently pleads with his body to obey him. "Ten-..." he lets out with a grunt, a shake of his head following. "This isn't me, buddy. I've got-... I've got no control here..." Another loud, painful, exhausted groan escapes him as the Phalanx fires off another shot in Nathan's direction which is
thankfully off its mark due to Jason contorting his body away from his ally as best as he can to keep Nathan out of the line of fire. But his arms continue to fight him, the material digging into the flesh around them as they pull. "I can't-... I can't stop it-... You have to-..." he winces, eyes clasping shut, "...I can still feel it in my head, Ten.... You have to kill that bitch! Now!"
Jessica comes to a sliding stop about partway through the second hold, gunfire and headlamps illuminating just enough for her to see an inhuman figure skitter up into the darkness overhead. "What in the fucking fuck was that?!" she gasps, Katana lifted upwards as her headlamp scans the ceiling. "Fuck! Shit! Fuck!"
Zaylus is pushed effortlessly aside by the creature, the expression on his face suggesting he thought the combined gunfire should've torn her apart, if only she wasn't so quick. He rolls himself back onto his legs, looking back at the unlucky pair down the corridor. He runs down to them, first kneeling next to Oxaris but snapping his attention to Leah as she crumbles helplessly on
the ground. "Spirits!" He snarls. "Alright? Can you move?" He looks back at the turian as he puts his hands out to Leah, trying to coax her frantic self to let him help her.
Skittering sounds echo and spread across the cargo hold, but no matter how quickly Jessica moves she can't seem to catch more than a glimpse of moment or a flash of red eyes just outside the flashlight's cone. Elena storms into the hold, joining her in aiming around. "Where'd it go?!" Jessica would hear a sudden clank of metal behind her just as Ilyna exits the room, likely leaving Ehanis in view of Jessica. The possessed
Mingxia strikes Jessica with a blast of biotic energy, the flesh of her arm seeming to rip and in the process, red glow eminating from within as if her body cannot contain the power within it. With a shriek it lunges at Ehanis, a deformed hand clawing at her chestplate with sharp metal fingers.
Nathan ducks to the side as the gunshot goes wild and he sharply inhales, glancing over to Leah over his shoulder. He looks between them, pauses... "You got it." He immediately turns into the corridor, pushing Jason and Leah to the back of his mind for the moment. Kill the abomination. Kill it. Kill. He points at Zaylus, saying, "Carry her out of here. Oxaris, get Jase if you can, you're escorting them out! Keep
them safe and blast that creature if you see it!" He then chimes into comms, sprinting out into the cargo hold as he grits his teeth. "Everybody, listen up! Wolfe and Mercier are down for the moment. Jattic, we got a creature roaming free! Slaughter it if you see it. Jess, I want you to turn this ship into fucking slag once we're off it. Set everything you got. Everyone else, get ready to evac!" His chest
heaves as he starts sprinting through the cargo bay to the other side, where he can hear the sound of biotics flaring. He would have his rifle raised and, as soon as he clears the containers, would start blasting everything at Mingxia. "Hey! Heeeey! Come here you bitch!"
Oxaris grunts as she pulls herself to her feet. "I'm fine. Get her up," she says, shouldering her SMG and stopping at the doorway into the room Jason is in. She presses against the side and leans her head around the corner. "Wolfe, it's Oxaris. I'm coming in! We're getting out of here."
Ehanis had little time to react, and the weapon in flung out of her grip before she can pull the trigger. "Fuck! Fuck!" she shouts. Losing her weapon did buy her a second before she'd claw at her chest plate again, so she grits her teeth and lets our biotic energy in a warp field aimed at it.
Ilyna watches the dooway in horror as Ehanis is fighting the thing, out of view from where she's holding up her barrier. Her instincts are telling her to drop the barrier, but that would leave Li defenseless. And the thing is going to attack her if she relents her barrier. "Ehanis!" she shouts before enabling comms, also shouting, "It's attacking Ehanis!"
Elena runs alongside Nathan, following his light and opening up on Mingxia alongside him, firing a carefully aimed burst to avoid hitting Ehanis.
Jessica brings her shotgun up, rattling off a set of poorly aimed shotgun blasts that always seem one step behind Mingxia. Blast. Rack. Blast. Rack. Blast. "I don't fucking know!" she manages to get out to Elena and, before she's able to rack her shotgun again, the clang behind her causes her to spin in place. Her eyes go wide as she gets sight on Mingxia a moment too late and she's sent sailing backwards before slamming into a
Leah's helmet shakes back and forth, her headlamp casting light all about the hallway. "I can't-... My cybernetics!" she says, holding her body up as she looks to Zaylus, "Whatever she did it-... My cybernetics-..." she trails off, a grunt escaping her as she fruitlessly attempts to get her legs under her once again. Another shake of her head follows her failure and Nathan's order. "Go! Help the others! I'll be fine!" she
Jason shakes his head a bunch of times as he hears Nathan's words over the comms. "That's a negative, Oxaris! Don't you dare come in here!" he orders, his gaze snapping to the doorway, his arm already straining against the rest of his body to bring his Phalanx up towards the turian. "I-... I can't guarantee I won't hurt you I-..." he swallows, sweat beginning to bead across his forehead beneath his helmet from the exertion
of trying to fight against his own limbs, "You need to put that thing down!" Even now, a million thoughts rush through his head. Will killing Mingxia even matter? Maybe this is how it begins? The infection? Is it already too late for him? He's unable to put that final image of Vasquez out of his head, watching as he boarded the shuttle. Leah's voice and mention of her cybernetics causes him to calm himself. It's just the
Zaylus hesitates, considering Nathan's order against the urgency in Leah's voice. With a frustrated grunt he takes her by the shoulders, moving her up against the wall and rearranging her legs so she's in a normal sitting position. He scrabbles for her Mattock and thrusts it back into her hands, jumping up to his feet. "I'll be close. Call out if you see anything." He instructs
quickly as he bounces backwards on the balls of his feet, turning sharply from her to rejoin the fight.
Several shots strike the twisted creature atop Ehanis, showering the asari with blood and viscera as what's left of her torso is reduced to little more than bone and metal. It's plain to see that much of her skeleton has been replaced with cybernetics that seem to have grown inside her. Most of her is glowing red now, her human form an insufficent container for whatever is in control. As the warp hits another shriek sounds, and
the possessed husk of a corpse scurries off to hide amid the maze of crates, trailing blood. It doesn't stay hidden for long, pouncing from the shadows at Elena and starting to rip into her armor with its claws.
Elena lets out an incoherent cry as she comes face to face with the deformed remains of Mingxia. She struggles to keep it away as her chestplate is dug into with a metal claw. With something halfway between a warcry and a panicked shout she activates her omni-tool, a glowing, rotating blade forming as she starts to cut into the arm that is tearing at her armor, the omni-buzzsaw sending sparks flying as it meets alien
Nathan turns as it leaps at Elena and he snaps his gun around. However, he sees that at this range and with the chaos of CQC, he won't be able to get a solid shot without hitting Elena. His HUD flares to life and the array of explosives around his body seem to activate in sequence. He drops his Argus and his knife slips into his hand as he charges at the creature to tackle it and try and rip the creature off, using
the knife carrying hand to try and wrap it in a chokehold. With his other, he snatches a grenade from his belt and tries to slam it onto the creature and stick it on, snarling beneath his helmet. He would do everything within his power to keep a hold until the 'nade is stuck, only then would he try and release it, push it away whilst taking a wild slash at it.
Oxaris stays outside the door for a moment, looking inside for a moment as her omni-tool primes. She considers for a moment on just overloading his arms, but she pushes that to the back of her mind. She nods once. "Understood!" She starts to run out after Zaylus, using her jumpjets to propel her up onto the containers and hop from one to the next.
Ehanis gets to her feet and moves to get her weapon, then to stand in the doorway between the holds. "Lyna, move!" she shouts. "I'll let you know when it gets past me." She's shaken by the last close encounter, and doesn't think to prepare her biotics again. She doesn't fire on the creature, as she cannot aim well enough to avoid hitting Nathan or Elena.
Ilyna lets out a small sigh of relief as she sees Ehanis in the doorway, but her worry is not ceasing. But she cannot do anything other than trust her. "Follow as soon as I'm out of here," she says to her before the barrier drops, and is replaced by a biotic field reducing Li's mass enough for her to run unencumbered across the empty cargo hold. She just needs to get to the airlock, and then she'll have a
Jessica slumps onto all fours after colliding with the crate. "Fucking bitch!" she growls through the metallic tinge of her helmet. She nods a couple of times to herself as she shakes the cobwebs loose, Nathan's orders giving her something to focus on. "Mmm." she agrees, getting up just in time to see Nathan grab ahold of the creature. A pang of anger that surges through her tells her to just open up on the creature with her
shotgun, Nathan be damned. But she pushes that down and reaches for one of the big-boom charges at her waist. As a pang of pain surges through her back, she grunts her way over towards the corridor and begins planting a charge across the hall from Leah.
Leah initially tries shrugging Zaylus off as she believes he's attempting to lift her up. It's not until she realizes what he's doing that she stops making things difficult. With a resigned nod, she accepts her Mattock and shifts against the corridor wall with a grunt. "Go!" she says, casting another nod down the corridor. As Jessica begins working across from her, she furrows her brow. "...You-... uhh.... You know what
Jessica sticks the charge to the wall, teeth biting down at the tip of her tongue as she begins to poke at her omni-tool. "Mmmm?" she hums disinterestedly. "...Kind of. I press buttons. Shit blows up. Is simple."
Leah sucks in a deep breath. "...Great." Crippled from the waist down with a lunatic planting explosives next to her.
Jason's left hand grasps at his own throat, the synthetic materials pressing tightly against his skin, causing him to jerk back instinctively in an attempt to dodge the attack... Only the arms come with him. Because they're his arms. The movement causes his whole body to jerk backwards, slamming into the wall behind him.
Jattic emerges through the door to the hold, already reholstering his Vindicator as he analyzes the close proximity of the creature to his teammates and what Nathan is attempting to do. With a deep, guttural roar, he balls both hands into fists as a deep red holographic light encompasses and stomps forward, aiming a hard right punch at the creature in an attempt at keeping it from wriggling free as Nathan attempts to attach
Elena manages to sever the huskified corpse's arm and scrambles back as soon as she's freed by Nathan's grappling with the creature.
The monstrous being shrieks and claws with it remaining arm at Nathan as he sticks the grenade into the shredded and broken remnants of its ribcage, its flesh now crackling with glowing red power. Its head is struck by Jattic and there's a crunch as Mingxia's skull cracks and her neck snaps. But her body is still moving. In a last-ditch effort it sends out a biotic shockwave in all directions, hurling Nathan and Jattic away and
Zaylus weaves through the cargo with the avenger held up in front of him. As he gets closer to the action he quickly takes in the sight, gritting his teeth and stalking around the monster, still at some distance. He ducks his head against the biotic shockwave, having to jump hard to the side to avoid a hurtling crate.
Nathan is ripped from the ground and turns head over heel, cracking hard against the wall with a thud. He drops to the ground, the air driven from his lungs and a sharp pain digging into his chest. He wheezes, eyes wide as he feels something give way inside his body, but the sudden administration of medi-gel affords him a brief moment of respite. He looks up, his HUD highlighting the charge nestled deep inside
Mingxia and he pushes himself to his feet, drawing his M-3 and aiming at her. He fires at her to draw her attention. If he does, or if he doesn't, he thanks the creature for clearing everyone around it. And, over the comms he barks, "Feuer im Loch!" and activates the charge.
Oxaris jumps onto a crate, arriving just as the rest of the contents of the hold is sent flying. Her crate heaves upwards and she is sent spiraling, turning over and over as she hits the ground hard near Zaylus. She rolls onto her back, eyes wide as she sees a crate descend towards her. Her thrusters flare and she is sent screeching across the ground in a shower of spark to avoid it.
Jattic is sent sailing to the ground, the red glow from his enforcement gauntlets lighting the area around him as he comes to a sliding stop. Teeth bared behind his helmet, he slams one heavy fist to the ground as he bounces right back to his feet, another roar escaping him as he poises for another attack.
Jason finds himself pressed against the wall, held in place by his own betraying limb. Thankfully, his armor is enough of a hassle to make things unwieldy for the hand clawing at his throat, but it's not long before it has a firm grasp. "Kill! Her!" he manages over comms, "Now!"
Jessica flinches instinctively as crates get sent all about the hold, her gaze briefly shooting in that direction, a look of panic hidden behind her helmet as she partially expects to see the creature coming her way. When that isn't the case, her gaze snaps back to her omni-tool interface and she pokes at it frantically. "I am done with the first one!" she announces.
Leah keeps the stock of her Mattock pressed against her shoulder, doing her best to get a look into the action in the hold but it's mostly obscured by the crates. Well, that is until they get sent all over the place. But even then it's mostly just a ballet of headlamps and lights, a bright red glow at the center of the display.
Ilyna reaches the hallway and without a glance behind her, she enters the airlock. "I'm almost out," she says over comms. "Ehanis, you can start moving."
Ehanis is hit by one of the crates, but is far enough away that all it does is make her stumble... and lose the Avenger again. She watches the creature, biotic energy surrounding her, as she waits for any sign of movements. Maybe the display of biotics was its final death throe. She either missed Ilyna's order, or she ignores it.
The possessed Mingxia is suddenly turned into a cloud of red mist as the breaching charge is detonated, the directed explosion evaporating her body and rocking the cargo hold, shredding the floor beneath the huskified remains. Metal and bone splinters shower the surrounding area, but not with enough force to do harm. All that remains after everything settles are three mangled limbs and a head that is no better off, the grisly
sight masked by what's left of her long black hair. In an instant it is as if a dark presence has been lifted from the ship. The flashlights seem to shine just a bit brighter. Heads just a bit clearer. And Jason and Leah would find their cybernetics slowly returning to their own control, an undoubtedly strange and unsettling sensation, as much as it is relieving. Ilyna would find strange noises coming from beyond the airlock.
Clanging and shuffling. The door is closed and locked for some reason. Senya and Lucy are nowhere to be seen.
Nathan heaves and, over the comms, begins to laugh. "Fuck you! Fuuuuck you! Take that you bitch! Aahahaha!" He then immediately winces, clutches his side and grunts. "Ow...". He takes a moment to collect himself before turning back towards the bridge and half-jogging in that direction. "Alright, we're clear for the moment. Everyone exfill to the ship. I'm going back for Jase and Leah. Zaylus with me." He navigates
the wreckage and eventually comes back into the hallway, moving straight for Leah. "Hey, you okay? Can you move now?" He asks, allowing a moment to let his worry shine through as his visor shimmers to see his eyes.
Elena brings up a hand to shelter her head, still lying on the floor when the explosion goes off. She pants heavily as she looks around and spots the aftermath, a relieved laugh of her own slipping out as she starts to scramble back to her feet and get a grip on the situation. "Mierda..." she says breathlessly, walking up towards the remains of Mingxia with a tight grip on her SMG.
Zaylus holds the tension in his body for a just a bit longer, until Nathan's laughter subsides. Then, with a low, unsure grunt, he rips his gaze from the wreckage of the creature and jogs back to the corridor. Seeing Nathan attending to Leah, he instead goes to check on Jason.
Jason clenches his teeth as synthetic fingers clutch at his throat and he finds himself unable to draw in another breath and then, suddenly-.... Nothing. A loud cough escapes him as he slumps against the wall and begins sliding down it, coming to rest in a seated position as he sucks in deep breaths. It takes a moment before he tests his arms, slowly opening and closing his left hand that was, merely moments ago, hostile. He
slides the index finger of his right hand out of the trigger guard of his Phalanx and leans his helmeted head back against the wall. "...Good work, Ten." he finally manages through heavy breathing, "...Good work everyone." His gaze falls to his left hand as it comes to rest on his knee.
Ilyna stops as she finds the airlock door closed, and she raises her barrier again. "Our airlock is closed, and I hear strange movement," she reports over comms. "Halisi, do you copy?
Ehanis watches the thing explode, flinching as drops of blod hit her visor. "I ddin't think it could ever die..." she says, to nobody in particulary. A grunt escapes her as she hears Ilyna over the comms. "Breaks over," she mutters to herself before replying over comms, sounding dejected, "I'm moving."
Leah tilts her head away from the explosion as it rocks the cargo hold and finds her body limply listing to the side. With a grunt, she tries to scramble back against the wall and push herself into a seated position. But, as if a breaker had been thrown- from 'off' to 'on'- she finds her legs cooperating. A tingling sensation sets in, as if her entire lower body had just been asleep for the past couple of minutes. She looks
as confused as relieved, but she gives a couple of distant nods as she hears Nathan's voice. "I-... Yeah." she nods again, "...Yeah." With a grunt, she gets a knee on the ground and presses one gauntleted hand against the corridor wall to assist her in climbing to her feet. Her movements are shaky, but she's doing her best to hide it. "...Is everyone alright?"
Jattic seems about ready to charge Mingxia when she erupts into a bath of blood and bone which he makes no attempt to protect himself from. Now coated in a visceral warpaint that would make his ancestors proud, he takes a few heavy breaths and unclenches his fists. The deep red glow slowly pulls back from his gauntlets, dissipating into nothingness. With a glance Elena's way, his deep voice thunders out. "Now you understand
Zaylus hesitates a moment at the door, but seems reassured by Jason's voice on the comms. He steps inside, cocking a head at the human but saying nothing of what he's thinking. Slowly he steps over, dragging a hand against the wall he leans against, and then crouching low next to him. "Ya alright, Boss?" He asks, knocking a probing hand against Jason's shoulder.
There is no response from Halisi. Or anyone else aboard the Jack for that matter. The sounds on the other side continue.
Jessica falls forward as the explosion rings out, catching herself against the corridor wall to remain upright. "Fuuuuck!" she groans, somewhere between frustration and admiration at the explosion. As Nathan rushes back to the corridor, she looks to him for further direction, her hand shooting to the second charge at her waist. "Where I am planting this one?" she asks, giving the device a pat with a gauntleted hand.
Oxaris lays there, alone, allowing a moment to drop her stony persona and drink in what just happened. She breathes rapidly, hands racing across her body to make sure she is in one piece. She is. She relaxes for just one moment... then she's back on her feet, running towards the airlock. She notices something on the floor, scoops it up and attaches it to her back. "What's going on, Ilyna?"
Elena gives a few distant nods, glancing Jattic's way. "Y-... yeah." she says quietly, her gaze going over to James' corpse as her mind is starting to settle and process what happened. His body is halfway hidden underneath a small crate now. "I-... I need to get him back to the Jack..." she says, still out of breath. She heads over, lifting one end of the crate and moving it aside with a grunt of exertion. "Damn it,
Nathan doesn't try to ignore it. He makes to help her up, doing a once over her before looking at Jessica. "We're getting into that reactor and setting your present there. Get Elena to help you with that door and if you aren't or shouldn't go in... Well, you tell me. You think that has enough force to blow through that door and hit the reactor when we're clear?" He chuckles and flicks his head in that direction,
turning back to look at Leah. "We got it, Leah... we got it. Come on, we're going home. You're not getting outta that dinner that easily."
Jason's gaze remains fixed on his left hand even when he feels the turian's touch on his shoulder. He gives a couple of slow nods, not voicing the concern in his mind. "Walking on sunshine." he says, albeit a bit distantly. It's not until he hears Ilyna's voice over comms that he seems motivated to action. Of course that couldn't be the end of it. There is no end. He presses back against the wall, every muscle in his body
still burning from the effort he put forth in an attempt at fighting off the creature's control. "Fuck... Ilyna, don't you open that airlock until we're back!" he says, exhaustion will have to wait.
Jattic stomps right behind Elena, a deep, guttural snarl coming from him as he presses his hand against the crate atop James and holding it in place so Elena's unable to move it. "Leave him! Did you not see what this disease-.... this virus is capable of?!" he growls.
Jessica furrows her brow, following Nathan's look. She considers it for a moment before nodding a few times. "Is a big boom." she says, confident that she packed enough explosives into her little home brewed disaster devices to level whatever is in the room beyond that door. "If this reactor is in there? The bomb will get it. Not much more, though, I am thinking."
Leah initially tries to shrug off Nathan's help, but when its clear her legs still haven't fully recovered she seems to relent, grasping at his shoulder to pull her up. As he comments on their future plans, she gives a small, humorless snort. "...This better be one damn good dinner." she mutters, holding her Mattock loosely at her side.
Zaylus snorts at the sarcastic response, not having expected much else. He almost turns to leave him, confident in the human's own strength, but his struggles bid Zaylus to reach out to steady him. With one hand on his arm and the other grasping his shoulder, he tries to help heave Jason up. "Ain't done yet." He growls, unintentionally mirroring the other's thoughts.
Ilyna looks expectantly at the door. "Halisi?" she asks over comms again. "Please... answer me." She lets another few seconds pass without an answer before replying to the turian. "I think they've gotten into our ship," she says over comms, the worry clear in her voice. She holds Li tightly, very aware that her own lack of composure is not helping her right now.
Ehanis draws her pistol when entering the airlock, and takes cover by a crate overlooking the other door.
Elena frowns at Jattic, although her expression is obscured beneath her helmet. "Wh-... I have to-..." She trails off, a heavy sigh escaping her as she points in the direction of the airlock. "I don't know how you people do it but we bury our dead! I can't just leave him here!"
Li hasn't said a word since Mingxia was reanimated. Her face is still buried against Ilyna, and she's holding on tight.
Oxaris grunts as she looks at the door. "Alright, get to the back. Do what you can with your biotics but stay clear." Oxaris advances cautiously to the door and she raises her hand. She hits the door twice before immediately backing up, raising her SMG. "Away team to Jack, do you copy, over?"
Nathan nods at Jessica as he steadies Leah, huffing a laugh. "Good answer. Take my two frags from my belt. Add them to the pile if you need to. Go on, quickly. We need you ready to blast some more monsters if it comes down to it." He then turns back to Leah and grins under his helmet, running on adrenaline and small bouts of elation of ripping apart that abomination. "You bet. I told you, make a mean burger. Proper
beef too, all the way from Earth." He would start slowly walking with her down the hallway, half-way between helping her and letting her get sensation back, immediately backing off when she can walk on her own once more.
Jason accepts Zaylus' help with a grunt and an appreciative nod. But there's no time to waste. With Halisi and the others on the Jack not responding, there's little chance of them getting this ship ready for a jump. Ilyna's assumption only further dampens his mood. "Alright. New plan. Without Lucy or Pivin to walk us through this, I doubt we're gonna be able to jump this thing. Plant the explosives and then we get back to the
Jack." he says, "And make it quick. Sounds like our people might need us." He steps out into the hall, trailing behind Nathan and the others as he swaps his Phalanx for his Revenant. "...Never thought I'd say this, but I sure wish Vicky was here right now..."
Jessica is quick to nod at Nathan's suggestion, and unclips a couple of grenades from his belt. "Don't worry, beauty queen." she taunts with a glance towards Leah as she migrates the explosives to from Nathan's her own boom-belt (Patent pending), "I am being very careful with my hands."
Leah has little interest in bothering with Jessica's petty bullshit, and quickly limps on with Nathan down the hallway as soon as Jessica is done. Despite not being entirely steady, she puts her best soldier face on and releases her grip on him once they're back in the hold. Her legs feel heavy and partially numb, still. But they feel. That's what's important. Both hands on her Mattock, she starts towards the airlock.
Jattic continues to glare at Elena. "Then you are dooming the rest of your people as well!" he growls. As Ilyna speaks up, he thrusts a hand back towards the airlock. "Do you not hear that? Others need you. Now you can spend your time with your dead, or you can come and try to keep others alive!" And with that, he turns on his heels, stomping back down the hallway and unfolding the Firestorm from his back.
The airlock door suddenly unlocks, and slides open just a moment later. A swarm of large insects, akin to something halfway between a bloated roach and a mosquito, spills into the airlock, the buzzing of their wings filling the room as they zoom towards Oxaris, immediately starting to crawl all over her until they find a soft spot in the armor and sting. She'd quickly find herself entirely paralyzed. Many more head right for
Ilyna, but they are rebuffed by her barrier, slamming against it and wobbling around in disorientation. Some of the swarm continue to try and penetrate her barrier, while others start to flow around her, heading straight for Ehanis and repeating what they did to Oxaris. Cover provides little benefit against such foes. The air is thick with the vile little creatures, and they are quickly spilling out into the corridor.
Elena blinks, her attention turning to the radio chatter as she looks toward the airlock. She nods a few times, drawin her Hurricane and joining Jattic in heading toward the airlock as she curses quietly under her breath.
Oxaris 's eyes widen and she quickly yells. "Contact!" Over the comm, firing a burst into the swarm until she freezes, finding herself unable to move as she watches the creatures swarm across her arm and over her visor. She tries and tries to force herself, but all she can do is silently scream.
Nathan blinks and he listens, hearing the sound of buzzing and, out of perhaps some weird hidden instinct, pulls out his Firestorm and ignites it with a flicker of flame. He charges towards the airlock, shouting, "Move out the way, movemovemove!" He darts around the crates, barreling past the others before him and stopping before the corridor. He hefts the flamethrower, but is hesitant to use it with so many
Ehanis swats off the bugs going for her, too slow to realize what it is before she's paralyzed. She has a very light armor, easily stung compared to the turian's.
Ilyna holds the barrier up, which seems to be very effective at keeping her and Li safe for now. She turns her head to look at the others in the room. "Ehanis?" she asks as she sees her sister not moving anymore. Not getting a response from her, she gets on comms. "We're being attacked by insects," she says. "They paralyze. Keep your distance."
Jattic comes to a stop in the doorway just beside Nathan. He doesn't seem to have the same hesitations as Nathan. Confident that the others won't just run into his stream of fire, he gives a loud roar and begins spewing flame into the airlock door the bugs are spilling forth from.
Leah's soldier instincts kick in the moment danger is apparent, and snaps her Mattock up despite her less-than-solid footing. Unfortunately, there's not much her rifle can do against such a small enemy, and she quickly abandons that plan. Ilyna's call out causes a blue glow to once again envelope her. Holding her Mattock in her left hand, she reaches out with her right, dispelling a bit of biotic energy in an attempt at
sweeping the horde of insects throwing themselves at Ilyna's barrier into Jattic's river of fire. "Pull back, Ilyna!"
Jessica stops behind the others, frantically looking about for any way that she might be able to assist. "Shit, shit, shit-..." she mutters, backpedaling from the doorway.
Jason isn't able to do much from his position in the rear. All he can do is look on and hope Jattic and the others are able to stop the swarm. "Can you get to one of the rooms in the hallway, Ilyna?!"
Nathan blinks. Oh in that case. He unleashes a torrent of flame down the corridor too, adding to the inferno.
Ilyna sighs. "I can't move without dropping the barrier," she says into the comms. "That's not an option!" While she's very good at what she does, moving the barrier is something she has never practiced. And now is definitely not the time to try.
Jattic comes to a stop in the doorway just beside Nathan. "Shit!" he mutters, finger tapping at the trigger slightly to keep the Firestorm primed. He begins to pull back to create room between him and Ilyna & Ehanis in case he needs to use it.
Leah's soldier instincts kick in the moment danger is apparent, and snaps her Mattock up despite her less-than-solid footing. Unfortunately, there's not much her rifle can do against such a small enemy, and she quickly abandons that plan. Ilyna's call out causes a blue glow to once again envelope her as she lowers her Mattock and prepares to repel the bugs with a blast of biotic energy.