Log Title: Assault on the Citadel
Year: June 25, 2007
Summary: Luminous finally leaves her fortress, and Cobra is ready to move in when she does.
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Activity at the Citadel, boss."
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "Report, Armada. What's going on?"
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Citadel doors opening. Looks like Luminous herself is on the move."
Viper Squad 1416> Luminous hovers out in front of her Citadel, a few of her Priests walking stiffly out behind her.
Viper Squad 1416> Stark, Viper #77 and the leader of Squad 1416, spies Luminous exiting the citadel and his jaw drops in awe. "Sonuva--" he breathes. "Will you look at *that*?"
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "Keep an eye on her, Armada. I'll put some forces on standby. Keep me informed."
Viper Squad 1416>Viper 24 gasps, "Ah, man. This sucks! That thing could smoosh us all in an instant!"
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Will do, guvvie."
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd growls, "Kindly use proper forms of *address* on official channels, Armada."
Viper Squad 1416> Stark glares at 24. "She's a Transformer. What did you expect?"
Viper Squad 1416> Luminous seems uninterested in any human watchers. Without a visual sign from Luminous, the Priests move around the citadel, and some begin making modifications to its smooth exterior while others stand guard. Luminous herself continues to hover, looking upward at the sky above.
<Cobra (IC)> Backbreaker seems to be muffled by a hand placed over his microphone, as he mumbles, "'Guvvie?'"
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "Disregard, Backbreaker."
Major Bludd glares at Backbreaker.
Backbreaker strikes a match and lights his cigar, oblivious to the glare. Yeah, there's probably a reason he gets a lot of crap assignments. This is probably that reason.
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Acknowledged, Major."
"You want some of this or not?", Bludd asks, still glaring.
Backbreaker puffs thoughtfully on his stogie, weighing the options. Giant #@$^ing space robot..or shooting more monkeys out of trees? "..Can I use a bigger gun?"
Major Bludd says, "I want you to use whatever you're qualified in that has a chance of taking down Transformers."
"Yes SIR. I think I've got just the thing." The SAW-Viper double, nay, triple times it towards the motor pool, barking a few clipped orders at a squad of regular blue-shirts along the way. Oh, what fun he shall have..
Viper Squad 1416> Luminous suddenly shoots upward, disappearing rapidly out of sight into the night sky.
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Uh,.... Luminous left, sir. Shot straight up into the sky, at speeds defying imagination, sir."
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "What's the status of her defences on the citadel, if you can tell?"
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Priest-BATs deployed defensively around the perimeter, with another set doing something to the outer walls of the citadel itself."
Viper Squad 1416> Mistress Armada is on top of a building in the northwest sector of Brasilia, watching the Priests of Primus as they guard and work on the Citadel.
Viper Squad 1416> Bugs. Lots and lots of bugs swarm through the villages and trees, flitting about on tiny wings. Not entirely odd, considering it's the season for seventeen-year locusts. But these aren't locusts at all. As a matter of fact, they look like boll weevils.
Major Bludd takes control of Thunderhead X-97RC #738, he handles the controls expertly.
Major Bludd turns the key, and the ignition turns over.
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "I want that citadel. Backup is on the way."
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Oh! Well, I'll prepare to move in then, Major, unless you would prefer otherwise."
Viper Squad 1416> Mistress Armada sits up, and starts breaking down and packing up her sniper rifle.
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "Do it."
Brazil - South America
Outside, Mistress Armada sheds her urban camouflage gear, and dons her battle-ready catsuit. She collects her gear, stashing anything disposable and bringing the rest with her in a compact pack as she climbs down the side of her high-rise perch.
In the Citadel of Primus, robotic minions dressed as monks and priests attend to Luminous. Those familiar with Cobra technology would recognize them as gold-plated, and presumably upgraded, Battle Android Troopers.
Outside, Priests of Primus continue to work on the superstructure of the Citadel, while others methodically scan the blasted area around the keep.
Outside, A Cobra cargo plane lands at the hidden Brasilia airstrip and disgorges its cargo of vehicles.
Outside, Mistress Armada moves through the city, towards the Citadel from the city side. She stays out of sight, moving through the largely-abandoned part of the city closest to the Citadel.
Outside, Thunderhead X-97RC #738 moves off toward the Citadel.
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Shall I bring in the Shadow-Vipers as well, or leave them in position to observe, sir?"
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "Leave them in reserve for now, Armada. We'll bring them in if we need them."
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Roger that."
Outside, Maggot #722 rumbles along behind the Thunderhead. Backbreaker grins wickedly from the commander's station: he has the great-grand pappy of giant guns and he is extraordinarily happy.
Outside, Priests of Primus seem yet unaware of the approaching doom.
Outside, Mistress Armada moves silently to the edge of the blasted-rubble circle surrounding the citadel. She settles in with her assault rifle.
Outside, The Viper Squad moves slowly closer to the Citadel, covering each other using standard squad tactics and low-crawling where necessary to avoid being spotted by the Priests.
Outside, The Priest BATS seem to sense... something. They become more visibly alert, and spread out slightly, increasing the frequency of their sensor sweeps.
Outside, Thunderhead X-97RC #738 approaches the citadel. Inside the tank, Bludd monitors its sensors, carefully watching for the appearance of potential threats.
Outside, Maggot #722 just keeps rolling. Rollin' rollin' rollin'..keep that Maggot rollin'..rawhide! Backbreaker and the gunnery crew work out a firing solution for the Citadel while the Maggot's WORMS driver keeps an eye out for nasty ambushes and such.
Outside, The Priest BATS aren't very ambushy... they stand in plain sight. =^)
Outside, Stark, Viper 77 and leader of Squad 1416, continues to lead his men toward the Citadel.
Outside, The Priest-BATs continue to scan the area, looking a tad more alert in a Star Wars Combat Droid kind of way, but don't seem to have locked into any approaching troops yet.
Outside, Thunderhead X-97RC #738 comes in sight of the BATs surrounding the Citadel. Bludd scans them with his vehicle's systems and locks his weapons systems onto them.
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "Visual contact established. Commence the attack."
<Cobra (IC)> Backbreaker says, "You wanted in that thing, Major? Let's knock."
Outside, Maggot #722> Backbreaker barks a few orders at his gunnery crew, as the Maggot's 150mm cannon elevates into attack position. A near maniacal grin spreads across the SAW-Viper's face as his gloved hand mashes down the firing control.. There's a blast of fire and smoke, and an ear splitting BOOM as a rocket-assist shell streaks across the sky towards the citadel.
Outside, The Viper Squad come within range of the Priests of Primus and dig in for action.
Major Bludd grins at the sight of the computer's response and the locked symbol on his displays. He launches a flurry of rockets at the stolen and modified BATs. Outside, At the sudden explosion, the BATs begin to swarm in apparent confusion, reacting slowly to the assault.
Outside, Beautiful calligraphy is blasted from the side of the Citadel, and for a moment, its brilliant lights dim, then flicker out, plunging the area into darkness.
Outside, Mistress Armada aims her assault rifle carefully from cover, and fires off a tight three-round burst.
Outside, Under Stark's direction, the Vipers initiate a field of fire, spraying the group of Priests with automatic weapon fire.
Outside, Priests of Primus start to get their collective act together, and move for what little cover is left (since they specifically cleared out most of it, leaving them sitting ducks). They activate their various weaponry.
Outside, The Citadel is damaged and dark, but still standing.
Outside, Priests of Primus start returning fire, focusing on the larger targets first.
Outside, Shadow-Viper Squad stay out of sight and observe
Outside, The BATs focus on the vehicles and open fire.
Major Bludd grits his teeth as the hail of bullets strike the vehicle. He calls in an order over his radio as he advances toward the Citadel and its guardians.
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "Stark, Armada, move in toward the Citadel. Backbreaker and I will keep the BATs busy."
<Cobra (IC)> Backbreaker says, "@#$^ robots and their @#$! lasers.."
Outside, Stark barks his acknowledgment into his comm, then signals his men forward toward the Citadel.
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Roger, that. Moving in."
Outside, Mistress Armada breaks cover, and moves quickly towards the Citadel, running in a zigzag line, trying to avoid the BATs' fire.
Outside, Maggot #722> Backbreaker swears loudly as a chunk of armor gets burnt off the side of the Maggot. "We're too @#$^ slow here. Pull around and flank 'em," he barks into the artillery unit's intercom. The Maggot's trailer lowers a set of four pylons into the earth, rising up and detaching from the drive segment. The tractor section rolls past the Thunderhead, its WORMS driver locking onto a group of BATs with its radar-guided laser.
Outside, Citadel of Primus suddenly lights back up, and once again begins to glow and thrum with power.
Outside, << Maggot #722 strikes Priests of Primus with Laser. >> Major Bludd maneuvers off to one side, trying to draw the BATs away from the Citadel so Stark and Armada can get inside. He fires another volley of rockets at the BAT guardians.
Outside, Mistress Armada fires at the BATs as she runs towards the damaged citadel.
Outside, Priests of Primus start dropping like flies, as laser beams and rockets tear through them. With the bravery of the non-sentient, they continue to return fire, mostly on the vehicles, but a few breaking off to attack the troops on foot.
Outside, The Vipers dash toward the Citadel, taking shots at any of the BATs who come too close.
Outside, Mistress Armada is struck as she runs by machine-gun fire. Although the ceramic plates in her Kevlar armour absorb most of the impact, she's still driven sideways to the ground, as BAT forces advance toward her.
Major Bludd swears as his displays and control panels erupt in sparks. He swats out a small fire on one panel with his gloved hands.
Outside, In the center of the fray, the massive doors of the Citadel slam shut, although one doesn't quite fit flush thanks to the massive damage done to it by the Thunderhead. Around the sides of the citadel, panels slide back, revealing hidden weapons emplacements...
Outside, Maggot #722> The WORMS is a damn fine driver, managing to wrangle the Maggot's tractor segment away from the hostile lasers. He's close enough to the citadel to spot the weapons coming to bear, and starts relaying info back to Backbreaker on the artillery platform.
<Cobra (IC)> Backbreaker says, "Aw hell.. Don't tell me these things. Major, that shack's packin' heat."
Outside, The Vipers manage to make it to the front of the Citadel just as the doors close. Two of them approach the ill-fitting doors, trying to wedge them open, on Stark's orders.
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada grunts. "I'm hurt, sir, but continuing my advance.
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "Say again, Backbreaker?"
<Cobra (IC)> Backbreaker says, "Driver says there are gun ports openin' up in the walls."
<Cobra (IC)> Backbreaker says, "SPACE guns."
Outside, Stark radios the squad's position and activities.
Outside, The doors are too massive to wedge open, but there may be enough room to climb in through the warped doors, although any attempt would leave the Viper a sitting duck to any attacking BAT. At least at close range the Viper team seems out of the line of fire from most of the Citadel's turret-mounted weaponry.
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "All units, be advised: Citadel is armed. Armada, help Stark's men take out the rest of the BATs. Backbreaker, think you can damage the weapons systems without bringing the place down on our boys' ears?"
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Acknowledged, sir."
Outside, Mistress Armada braces herself, and opens fire full-auto into the approaching BATs.
<Cobra (IC)> Backbreaker says, "'Course I can. WORMS, get me a reading on that.."
Outside, The Citadel weaponry locks on the Cobra vehicles as the remaining BATs close in on the ground-based troops.
Outside, Stark acknowledges the Major's order and directs his men to attack the BATs. He presses his back up against the wall of the Citadel behind him and opens fire.
Outside, Maggot #722> Backbreaker adjusts the turret angle back towards the Citadel, as the drive section beats a hasty retreat. The SAW-Viper glares at the gun-studded structure through his targeting reticule. "Got somethin' for ya, alien freaks." He pounds the firing controls as another shell explodes forth from the massive cannon.
Outside, Mistress Armada's assault-rifle deflects off the Priests' enhanced golden armour without noticable effect.
Major Bludd's hands fly across the control board, redirecting displays and rerouting power with the flicking of switches and turning of dials. "I've been waiting too long for this," he mutters to himself, finally able to bring his weapons to bear again on the Priests of Primus.
Outside, Mistress Armada scrambles out of the way of the BATs' attack, retreating a bit to make some room between her and them as she pulls a grenade from her combat webbing.
Outside, The citadel's armament locks onto the Cobra vehicles and opens fire.
Outside, Farmer, Viper #401, ducks out of the swiping attack of one of the Priests as the android swings at him with a claw-like attachment. He straightens up and slams into the BAT with his shoulder in the same way Major Bludd taught him when the Vipers had been learning Australian Rules Football from their commander. But a BAT's a lot harder than a human... Farmer's blow does little to move the android, despite the big man's size.
Outside, Citadel of Primus continues to reconfigure, more weapons platforms emerging as localized forcefields pop up to protect vital areas. Still, the main doors remain slightly ajar, the damage done still preventing them from sliding closed.
The cockpit of the Thunderhead fills with smoke, the rocket attack striking the tank a major blow. Bludd coughs and chokes on the noxious fumes, his eyes tearing. "C'mon, you damn thing, just one more go..." Unable to re-target to deal damage to the Citadel's weapons, he settles for firing off the last of his rockets at the remaining BATs.
Outside, The Priest BATs are badly damaged, and at this point few remain to menace the ground troops. Still, three of them are on Mistress Armada as she retreats, and two more attack the Vipers crouched at the top of the stairs leading up to the citadel doors.
Outside, Maggot #722> Backbreaker shields his eyes as a fireball bursts onto the Maggot's open-topped artillery platform. Though the SAW-Viper is unharmed, the poor blue-shirt loading the cannon finds himself quickly ignited.
"Stop, drop, and roll," Backbreaker shouts, leaping out of the gunner's seat. He almost grabs a fire extinguisher, but instead grabs another shell and shoves it into gun's breach. Letting his crewman smolder, the SAW-Viper lunges back into his station. "I'm really startin' to lose my temper, now."
Outside, Mistress Armada lobs a grenade into the center of the Priests attacking her, and then dives for cover. The blast shreds the attacking androids, and the feedback causes the two menacing the Viper squad to stagger back. They halt their attack, and seem to just stand there a moment. The Viper's helmet radios pick up some static interference...
Outside, Citadel of Primus continues to fire on the vehicles, even those on fire already.
Outside, Evil Weevil Swarm flits and flutters around and between Vipers, BATs, and other concerned parties. The swarm's controller wants inside that citadel, and this confusion might be his chance.
Outside, Mistress Armada climbs up off the ground, covered in mud and oil.
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "BATs neutralised, sir."
Outside, Above, in the sky, a light flashes, like a distant star...
Outside, Stark shouts at his men, "Now's our chance!" The Vipers clamber in through the battered doors of the Citadel.
Outside, Maggot #722> Backbreaker watches his last shell sail right over the top of the citadel, exploding somewhere off in the rain forest. "Oh fer the love of.." He's cut off by a burst of fire from the turrets, which shatter huge chunks of Maggot armor and demolish vital linkages. The massive cannon sways and topples forward, crushing the drive module and killing its WORMS pilot. Coughing on smoke and fire, Backbreaker makes a leap out of the turret and hits the ground hard.
<Cobra (IC)> Backbreaker says, "Every #$@^ time.."
Major Bludd sees the laser turrets of the Citadel come to bear on him. As the barrels of the great weapons light up, he shouts some choice words and clambers quickly out of the vehicle. He leaps to the ground and throws his arms over his head instinctively as the lasers tear through the battered armour of the tank.
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "Both our vehicles are down, mates. We're on foot from here on out. All units, report your position and status!"
Mistress Armada starts running again, approaching the Citadel once again. As she runs, she shouts into her radio.
<Cobra (IC)> Mistress Armada says, "Still approaching the Citadel, sir. Hurt and on foot, but moving forward."
The Citadel's weaponry continue to batter the immobilized tanks, but seem to have a harder time with smaller, human targets.
Backbreaker locks and loads the Gun From Hell, and takes off towards the Major. Sure, he's a heartless, cold blooded killer, but he's still not going to let his CO get smoked.
<Cobra (IC)> Backbreaker says, "Still alive, and I've got my little friend. Headin' your way, sir."
Major Bludd moves away from the remains of the Thunderhead, since the Citadel seems to be interested in smashing it into its component atoms. There's not much cover to be had out here, and he wants in that Citadel. He starts running in that direction.
Mistress Armada is covered in mud and oil, but still moving as she zigzags towards the citadel.
One of the many tiny insects in the area clips itself onto Mistress Armada's web gear, nestling in amongst her equipment nice and mostly hidden-like. She'll probably never notice.
Overhead, the light in the sky grows brighter....
Backbreaker jogs up beside the Major. For a guy lugging several hundred pounds of gun, ammo, and armor, he's pretty quick. "Ya know, the last time I went into one of these mysterious alien buildings, I damn near got my arm chewed off. I should charge you guys double."
Major Bludd looks up as the sky brightens. "What the hell is that?"
Mistress Armada reaches the entrance of the Citadel, and climbs inside.
Backbreaker looks up at the sky, shielding his eyes a bit. "...nothin' good." Yeah, he's very astute too.
Viper Squad 1416> The Vipers stand around dumbly, staring in awe at the interior of the fortress. "My God, they really *do* have people in here!" Farmer breathes.
The light grows increasingly brighter...
Viper Squad 1416> Mistress Armada climbs in behind the Viper Squad, and looks around in the semi-darkness at the glowing walls.
Viper Squad 1416> Bombshell climbs slowly up Armada's back, compound eyes casting looks about in every direction. 'God,' yes. The human does not know how close he is to the truth.
Luminous descends from above, still many kilometers away, but glowing brightly enough to be seen from the ground.
Caught between a rock and a hard place, Bludd stands frozen for a moment. Before him is Luminous' citadel, which his curiosity demands he see the inside of. But that light in the sky is as ominous as they come, and is more than likely Luminous herself come to clean out her home of its human pests. He might see the inside of the citadel, but it could be the last thing he ever sees...
Major Bludd receives a radio transmission.
Major Bludd blinks in surprise at his radio.
(Radio) Major Bludd transmits, "Yes! Luminous is on her way back here right now! Any help you can provide will be greatly appreciated!" to Blaster.
Major Bludd turns to Backbreaker. "We've got help coming," he grins. "From the Autobots. I've got to see the inside of that place. You can stay out here if you'd like, but --" he points to the sky, "Mum's comin'." He dashes up the steps to the Citadel and scrambles inside.
Viper Squad 1416> Mistress Armada loses her usual unflappable cool, and gazes around in shock. She'd heard rumours, but faced with the actual sight...
Backbreaker says, "@#$^ great. More space robots."
Viper Squad 1416> Mistress Armada suddenly feels something move on her back, and, freaked out already, she spins, brushing at the bug on her back frantically.
Citadel of Primus
The interior of Luminous's Citadel of Primus is dominated by a large, golden throne, raised in the center of a stepped dais. The throne is connected to the rest of the fortress through a series of circuits and wires running throughout the entire stronghold. The walls are lined with cubbies and nooks, each one containing a Battle Android Trooper or human. The humans have been shaved and stripped, with tubes attending to biological functions. Both androids and humans have electronic connections implanted in their heads, linking them to the bastion itself. The captives seem docile and barely conscious, and are constantly guarded by the Priests of Primus.
Outside the Citadel> Backbreaker takes off after the Major. Shooting people is what he's paid for, and there may be people to shoot inside. Outside will just be giant robots in a minute.
Outside the Citadel> Luminous approaches the Citadel rapidly, glowing brighter by the moment.
Major Bludd receives a radio transmission.
(Radio) Blaster sends Major Bludd a radio transmission, 'Roger that, Major. I'll pass on the word, and may be there to help soon.'
(Radio) Major Bludd transmits, "Soonest would be best, or we may be paste before ya get here." to Blaster.
Mistress Armada is standing in the main hall, beholding the humans honeycombed into the walls. She looks a little freaked out, which is very not-her.
Major Bludd receives a radio transmission.
(Radio) Blaster sends Major Bludd a radio transmission, 'Hold on, Major Bludd. We are bringin' the wolf.'
Major Bludd gazes about the interior of the Citadel with a mix of awe and anger. It's beautiful, but -- "The rumours are true," he says, wandering over toward one of the humans plugged into the wall.
Backbreaker's jaw drops. Sure, he's seen about a million ways that a man can be killed or maimed. He's even invented a few new ones himself. But this..this is just..
"Weird. Sick and weird."
(Radio) Bludd transmits, "Understood." to Blaster.
Mistress Armada nods, for once in agreement with Backbreaker.
The Vipers have spread out in the main hall, awaiting further orders. Stark is quite obviously avoiding looking at the unfortunate human guests of Luminous, but, despite his efforts, he's looking a bit green about the gills.
Outside the Citadel> Luminous arrives outside the citadel, looking around at the destruction around her keep.
There's a brief, excited sounding clicking and buzzing from some..thing..somewhere in Armada's equipment.
Bombshell receives a radio transmission.
Mistress Armada glances down at her web, and says to Bludd, "Sir... this might be out of our league."
The buzzing.. almost sounds like someone whispering. A very tiny someone.
Bludd peers at the man in the cubbyhole, tubes and wires protruding from various places on his body. "What is she *doing* in here?
"Ya think?" Backbreaker scowls, leveling his machine gun at one of the poor bums plugged into the walls. "I'm not usually a nice guy, but I say we put the #@$^@s out of their misery and get out of here. Sir."
Major Bludd says, "What's all this for?"
Mistress Armada approaches a wall, still glancing down at the interference her belt equipment seems to be picking up.
Stark, swallowing hard, turns toward the Major. He cracks one eye open in an attempt to look at his commanding officer while speaking. "With all due respect, Major," he says weakly," I have to agree. It'd take our guys ages to work out what all this is for." He squints his eyes shut, fidgeting. "And it's seriously creepy, sir."
Outside the Citadel> Luminous hovers on a half-circle, her attention moving to her damaged Citadel, whose weapons systems have fallen silent.
The tiny, buzzing voice chirps up again for a brief moment, then falls silent. Sssh. He's hiding.
Major Bludd approaches Armada and her clicking, squeaking equipment. "Armada, are you carrying a box of very small mice or something?"
Mistress Armada glances down, but as the tinny chatter falls silent, she turns her attention to the growing light outside the warped citadel doors.
Backbreaker swings the Gun around from the man in the wall, back towards the door. "Ever get that sinkin' feelin'?"
Some of the Vipers turn toward the doors as well, fumbling nervously with their weapons.
Mistress Armada gets herself together, and resumes her usual composed, detached battle persona. "Belt equipment picking up some interference, sir. Our Tele-Vipers picked up some massive radio activity coming from this place. Must be screwing with my set.
Whatever-it-is in Armada's gear attempts to skitter out of Major Bludd's sight, hiding behind a spare rifle magazine or something.
Outside the Citadel> Luminous raises her hands, and the warped doors start to creak and shudder.
Mistress Armada turns her attention to seemingly more important matters, like the doors of the Citadel suddenly creaking and moving.
Major Bludd notices some odd movement in Armada's web gear (not that he'll admit to actually looking that closely), but at that moment the doors begin to move and his attention is drawn away. He turns toward the Citadel's entrance.
Backbreaker stares at the doors as they start to move, his mouth forming silent syllables that would get him slapped if he where anywhere near civilization. He may even shudder a bit, but the rifle remains steady. God bless gyro-stabilizers.
(Radio) Blaster sends Bludd a radio transmission, 'Hold on, Major. We're on our way!'
The Vipers, as one, back away from the doors and raise their weapons.
(Radio) Bludd transmits, "She's here." to Blaster.
Mistress Armada says, "Um.... plan, sir?"
Major Bludd mutters flatly into his radio.
Mistress Armada raises her assault rifle and looks for cover. She moves behind some sort of Transformer-sized raised platform.
Major Bludd takes cover behind the golden throne, and motions the Vipers to do the same.
Backbreaker says, "Where the #$@^ are your little space friends, Major?"
Outside the Citadel> One door of the citadel freezes up almost immediately, but the other wrenches free. Brilliant light pours into the citadel interior...
Mistress Armada looks unusually worried, but tries to keep it together in front of the other Cobra.
There's an agitated flutter among Armada's gear, as the light catches in the insect's tiny gold eyes. A rasping whisper murmurs, "By the Pit.."
The Vipers scramble to take cover, some heading for the throne, others diving for whatever structures they can find to hide behind. Stark fetches up beside Bludd, his eyes trembling in terror.
All of Armada's attention is focused on the flowing entity outside...
Major Bludd pokes his head out from behind the great throne, squinting at the light pouring in through the ruined doors.
Outside the Citadel> Luminous says, "Well, well, well. What have we here..."
Backbreaker starts falling back, one foot behind the other. He's doing pretty well, considering he's scared to death.
Outside the Citadel> Luminous flies closer, in through the open door... Luminous has arrived.
Luminous hovers in the doorway, filling the citadel with her blinding light. She casts her burning gaze throughout the great hall.
Major Bludd's gaze locks onto Luminous' glowing form. It's the most beautiful, most deadly-looking thing he's ever seen. He stares, rapt.
Mistress Armada mutters to herself, "... Bollocks...."
Bombshell's compound eyes take in the otherworldly beauty of this bizarre prophet, lenses repeating the image a thousand times over. He is stunned, awestruck, fascinated..he wants to get into her brain.
In spite of insurmountable odds, Armada braces herself, and takes up an attack position, aiming her assault rifle at the glowing prophet of Primus.
In the far distance behind Luminous, another, much fainter light appears, almost swallowed by her brilliance. It grows rapidly, taking the form of an approaching Autobot shuttle...
Outside the Citadel> Autobot Shuttle <Federation II> has arrived.
Backbreaker swallows hard, staring at the horrible, beautiful, glowing...thing. Almost reflexively, he fishes another cigar out of his gear, and clamps it between his teeth. "#$^# it," he says, striking a match. "The space zombie was bigger."
(Radio) Blaster sends Major Bludd a radio transmission, 'What's your position, Bludd?'
The majority of the Vipers stand stunned with fear, unable to think, let alone move. Stark alone seems to have his wits about him, and gazes with concern at the glassy-eyed stare of his commander.
(Radio) Major Bludd transmits, "We're within the Citadel. God, she's so beautiful." to Blaster.
Outside the Citadel> Autobot Shuttle <Federation II> flies into the area at top speed, approaching Luminous's citadel. Luminous herself is visible in the doorway of her damaged keep, glowing brightly. Outside the fortress, burned BATs and tanks litter the field like broken toys.
Outside the Citadel> Federation II> Blaster says, "The Cobra are in the Citadel, Prime. Bludd sounds like he's losing it..."
Mistress Armada keeps her rifle trained on Luminous.
Outside the Citadel> Federation II> Typhoon says, "Target locked, Prime. Open fire?"
Outside the Citadel> Federation II> Optimus Prime considers, but not for very long. "Fire at will."
Luminous spots the humans lurking in her lair, but before she can act, she seems to sense the incoming shuttle behind her. Turning, she projects her radiance back outside...
Backbreaker puffs thoughtfully on his cigar, not taking his eyes off the killer space robot. He edges slowly towards the Vipers. "Stark, get ready t'drag the Major outta here by his suspenders, if ya have to. I think the fireworks are startin'."
Mistress Armada gulps, glancing back at her wide-eyed commander.
Outside the Citadel> Federation II> Typhoon grins manically. "You got it!"
Outside the Citadel> Autobot Shuttle <Federation II> trains its weapons on Luminous at maximum range, and opens fire!
Major Bludd blinks and seems to come back to himself as Luminous leaves the building. "Where'd she go?" he asks quietly, moving out from behind the throne.
Outside the Citadel> Luminous laughs brightly as the laser fire is absorbed harmlessly into her glowing armor.
Mistress Armada says, "She's outside, sir. The Autobots are firing on her."
(Radio) Blaster sends Bludd a radio transmission, 'Engaging the enemy, Major. You all OK?'
Stark looks at his commander, who still seems to be somewhat out of it. He seizes the opportunity and starts barking orders in Bludd's ... absence, rallying the Vipers to him.
Backbreaker says, "#@$^ good thing, too. Can we go home, yet?"
Mistress Armada says, "Sounds good to me. Move out, sir?"
Mistress Armada takes a grenade from her webbing.
Outside the Citadel> Luminous says, "Oh. You want to play? Allow me to share the Light."
Outside the Citadel> Federation II> Optimus Prime performs a last-minute weapons check. All is well, although he's not about to use his laser cannon on her. "Slow just enough for me to jump out. More targets for her means that we are collectively safer."
Outside the Citadel> Luminous brings her palms together, and bathes the shuttle in a brilliant flash of light.
Bombshell scampers out from where he was hiding, finding the human female's hand invading his sanctuary. He winds up clinging to her wrist. "..."
Omen splits apart into her components, revealing Luminous in a brilliant flash of light.
Major Bludd shakes his head, blinking rapidly. "What the hell?" He looks around at his troops, who are all looking expectantly at him. "Er, yes," he says, looking at Armada. "Let's get out of here."
Outside the Citadel> Federation II> Blaster says, "Activating defensive systems."
Stark shouts, "GO!" at the Vipers, who waste no time in rushing to the Citadel doors.
Mistress Armada nods, moving quickly to the citadel doors, where she remains, covering the retreat.
Outside the Citadel> Federation II> Typhoon says, "Roger sir."
Outside the Citadel> Autobot Shuttle <Federation II> slows, activating dampening systems that deflect Luminous's light burst harmlessly.
Outside the Citadel> The Federation II unseals its hatch.
Major Bludd walks to the Citadel doors, turning to gaze one last time at its marvelous interior.
Backbreaker runs to the point, making sure to put a hole in any BATs they may have missed on the way in. Sure, the view might be better from behind Ms. Armada, but the work is up front.
The Vipers pile out of the Citadel, spreading out to cover the officers' movements.
The weevil flits away from Armada, concealing itself in a darkened corner of the throne room. There is too much here to abandon just yet. Too much to learn.
Outside the Citadel> Luminous's few remaining BATs move away, giving a wide berth to the remaining big boys. They merely watch as the Cobra troops depart, making no attempt to stop them.
Major Bludd turns around and jogs out of the Citadel.
Brazil - South America
The latest incarnation of this machine has almost completely done away with the hybridized technology. Still standing at an even 22 feet in height, and still sporting her feminine design, the trademark silver armor covers the majority of her sleek body. Hexagonal paneling covers her back, with her fly systems sprouting out of the back like a pair of wings. Gone are the tapered cylinders of the old flight-pods. What has replaced them are two clusters of five smaller versions, each coated in silver armor and spreading out like avian wings. The armor is slightly seperated at her joints, revealing orange, sinewy clusters of a muscle-like substance. Her arms are extremely slender, affording a grace that belies her strength. Long, dextrous black fingers stretch out of the silver palms. Finally, sitting between the shoulders, is a silver head set into a black helmet. The features are unmistakably feminine, and the optics are an almost blinding white.
Federation II> Typhoon brings the shuttle down lower to the ground, locking its weapons on Luminous once more as its shuttle bay opens.
Autobot Shuttle <Federation II> fires a missile at the glowing silver prophet.
Stark and the Vipers move with the other Cobras, keeping a close eye on the remaining BATs though it doesn't appear they are interested in attacking.
Backbreaker bursts out of the citadel with the other Vipers, with standard Angry Staff Sergeant shouting. "Go, Go, Go!" He doesn't break for the trees just yet, though, hanging back to make sure the Major doesn't go all to pieces again.
Luminous is blasted backwards by the massive explosion of the missile, as she shields her face with her arms. When the fire and shrapnel boil away, hover, the glowing femme still appears in good shape.
Luminous laughs again, and glows brighter in intensity.
<< Luminous projects a forcefield over herself. >>
Mistress Armada follows the other Cobra out, chucking a grenade behind her as she beats a retreat.
Major Bludd emerges from the Citadel. His attention is immediately drawn firstly by the firefight, and secondly by the form of Luminous, whose sleek design is more visible to him now that her blinding light is not directed at him. He spends a moment in admiration before reluctantly charging off with the rest of his troops.
Backbreaker looks about ready to grab Bludd by the scruff of the neck and drag him away from Luminous. Fortunately for all involved, the Major started running under his own power. The SAW-Viper waits for Armada to emerge from the citadel, asking her quickly, "Saw you take some flak earlier. You good t' run?"
Mistress Armada nods, hiding a grimace of pain. "Let's move. Left a little present for Luminous, and don't want to be here when it goes off."
Federation II> Optimus Prime steps out of a moving aircraft. That's not normally a good plan, but y'know, sometimes it works. The metal giant moves in a predictable direction, and lands on his feet, his knees neatly absorbing much of the impact force. Let's hear it for superior alien military suspension.
Autobot Shuttle <Federation II> covers Optimus Prime's unconventional disembarking by opening fire on Luminous once again.
<< The forcefield protecting Luminous deflects Autobot Shuttle <Federation II>'s Rocket! >>
Backbreaker grunts, and takes off behind Armada, just in case she's not as tough as she says. He's not sure what the punishment is for leaving behind an officer, but he bets it's a lot worse than accidentally bringing down a ninja raid on one of the Commander's pet puppet governments.
Luminous laughs as her forcefield destroys the Autobot rocket before it can get close enough to do any further damage.
Bludd and his Vipers slow down and stop when they reach the cover of the trees. Bludd turns to watch the battle while they wait for Armada and Backbreaker to arrive.
(Radio) Blaster sends Bludd a radio transmission, 'Bludd. Your people getting out OK?'
Mistress Armada catches up quickly, running OK in spite of her possibly broken ribs. Adrenaline... what a plus. Behind her, a small muffled explosion can be heard inside the citadel.
(Radio) Bludd transmits, "We're all clear, er, Blaster. Thank you for your timely assistance." to Blaster.
Luminous frowns, turning at the sound of the explosion inside her citadel. Her optics burn dangerously, and she scans the treeline for sign of the human interlopers.
(Radio) Blaster sends Bludd a radio transmission, 'No problem, Major. Glad to help you when you're tryin' to do some good.'
Mistress Armada moves under cover quickly, hissing in pain as she hides from Luminous's penetrating gaze.
Backbreaker is the last one to the trees, all but diving for cover as he reaches their relative safety. He hits the ground, cradling his gun like a precious infant or something.
Autobot Shuttle <Federation II> tracks the glowing crazybot, bringing other weapons online.
Optimus Prime seems, thus far, to not have Luminous' attention. That will change. And now, she's looking the other way... Of course, Prime isn't allowed to shoot people in the back. That's what Decepticons are for. He can, howver, close a lot of the distance between them.
Luminous drops her forcefield, reabsorbing its power in preparation to burn the humans out of the nearby jungle.
<< The forcefield protecting Luminous fades away. >>
Major Bludd has the wherewithal to crouch down, at least, as Luminous eyes his position. He peers intently at her, trying to commit every detail of the sleek, silver creature to memory.
Backbreaker says, "..there's that sinkin' feelin' again."
Mistress Armada takes the moment to painfully catch her breath, and prepare to withdraw further when ordered.
Autobot Shuttle <Federation II> lacks Prime's noble sensibilities. Seeing Luminous focus her attention on the humans' last position, it prepares to open fire.
Twin speakers from the Federation II boom "Hey, bright and ugly. Want to tone it down? People are trying to sleep!"
Mistress Armada feels a little secure on her slight cover, not quite grokking that Luminous could burn it and her away with ease.
The Vipers crouch nearby, awaiting orders. Stark approaches Bludd from behind and clears his throat. "Uh, sir," he says quietly, glancing about nervously as if he's embarrassed for the Major, "what now?"
Autobot Shuttle <Federation II> fires a disruptor at Luminous
Optimus Prime reads from Luminous' body language that she is preparing to open fire. On small, soft, fleshy targets. That's against the rules around here. The big red one leaps at Luminous, in a flying tackle.
Major Bludd turns around at the sound of Stark's voice. "Let's head back to the airstrip," he calls. "It's a long walk from here."
Luminous turns slightly at the taunt from the shuttle, as her glowing armor absorbs the shuttle's disruptor attack harmlessly. This leaves her completely unprepared, however, as Prime flying-tackles into her silver slender frame. Luminous is thrown sideways, and actually lands on the broken ground, sliding several meters.
Federation II> Typhoon says, "Well, that didn't seem to do much. What else does this thing have?"
Autobot Shuttle <Federation II> rotates out the disruptor, and locks a different weapon into place.
Luminous stands, brushing the mud from her usually-pristine form. Her optics glow intensely. "You dare lay a hand on the Voice of Primus?"
Luminous holds out her own hand, extending silver claws from each glowing finger.
Mistress Armada raises her rifle, and starts the long walk with Bludd back to the hidden airstrip.