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Author Topic: Torkularis  (Read 1608 times)

Rettsu

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Torkularis
« on: April 08, 2021, 08:59:15 PM »

Parts 0 and 1 written to create a backstory for the hero and try to describe how he got to the planet. Further parts will be based on the events taking place in the game.

(I`m sorry for some mistakes in text. English is not my best language.)

Part 0. An obscure feeling.

Have you ever felt that your whole life is slowly but surely going downhill? That the just end is inexorably creeping up to you from your back, unnoticed, like a cat creeping towards an unsuspecting mouse? At times I had that feeling. But I was throwing this feeling out of my head. Unfortunately, it came back over and over again. Like that same cat. A dangerous game.

The computer assistant at the Douglas Hotel set the alarm on exactly at eleven o'clock in the morning. The groovy pop melody of a famous music group on this planet burst into my ears and interrupted another beautiful dream. Somehow, opening my eyes, I tried to turn off the alarm with my voice - only a hoarse cough escaped from my mouth. Rolling over on my side, I began to feel the floor with my hand for a bottle of water. A few seconds later, my fingers found the plastic container. After taking a few greedy sips and wetting my throat, I ordered the alarm clock to shut up, after which the assistant began to casually read the headlines of the news feed. I listened to it half-heartedly, trying to figure out how my body would react to my morning dose of dihydrogen monoxide. This is not the first time I have had to sit all night hacking the servers of various large corporations. Of course, in such matters you need to understand what awaits you. One unforgivable mistake - and a squad to fight cyber terrorism rushes in to you. These people politely lay you face down on the floor and then take you and your equipment away. And this is the best case. At worst, you might just get shot on the spot. But I was lucky so far. However, in the "Trinity" hacker group there were only the best of the best - and I was just one of those.

Yes, our group was famous in many worlds of our galaxy. Many corporations feared her like wildfire and did everything possible to hide all of her members behind bars. Or even much further, if only these people do not poke around in all that dirty linen that is absolutely everywhere. The last major hack occurred about 30 years ago, when Alistair Wass (one of "Trinity's" executives) hacked into the main server of "Void Solutions", an event known on the intergalactic network as Voidgate. The corporation tested the new material "void" on the planet Seton-4. The laboratory and test site was located near the main city of the planet. One of the corporation's former scientists hinted that the material is highly unstable and that testing should be done on a desert planet or even a distant moon. However, a few weeks later, the scientist was found dead at home with no signs of a violent death. After that, communication with Seton-4 was interrupted for some time.

Later it became known that the laboratory was allegedly attacked by terrorists from the anti-progress group - they disabled the security and defense systems of the complex, after which a cargo ship filled with antigrain warheads fell from orbit onto them. The blast wave wiped out from the face of the earth not only the laboratory together with the test site, but also a part of the city located 25 kilometers from the laboratory. About five million people died. The Seton system authorities reacted very harshly - almost immediately they found the organizers of this entire attack, and exemplary trials were held. "Void Solutions" in an official press release apologized, paid all compensation, partially rebuilt the city and promised that such a tragedy would never happen again. This version of events could have taken root ... if not for Alistair.

The reports found said that a new, second, unstable form of "void" was being synthesized in the laboratory. The first form of the "void" was distinguished by high stability and was used to create the skin of spaceships and personal protection. The material was not only incredibly strong and lightweight - it dissipated a huge amount of energy without any problems. Bullets of any caliber bounced off the thin sheet of the void. The laser weapons left no trace. The explosives were ineffective. Only high-temperature plasma coped with this material. However, this type of weapon (despite several thousand years of progress) was not available in all worlds. And if scientists have made an indestructible shield, then why not make an indestructible sword from the same material? After all, the atom was not always peaceful either - in history textbooks you can read about the "Cuban missile crisis" on Earth. The corporation tried to create a weapon against its own defenses, without considering the possible consequences. And when the unstable "sword" touched the stable "shield"... there was an explosion.

What happened next? Investigation, lawsuits, search for the real culprit. It turned out that the "organizers" of this whole attack were in fact innocent - they were forced to confess to a crime they did not commit. But despite the widespread publicity, condemnation and reports of testing, "Void Solutions" remained afloat. None of the members of the corporation were punished. The situation was simply hushed up, because the "Void Solutions" provided the space fleet with first-class protection. Void's security team somehow managed to figure out Alistair's whereabouts. Nobody heard anything more about him, and the "Trinity" group went to the bottom for a while.

All these thoughts rushed through my head in a few seconds. Getting out of bed and stretching my stiff muscles, I looked around the room. Most of the things were in place. Usually I take the necessary minimum with me, if suddenly events happen according to an unpredictable scenario. Just a precaution, nothing more. There was already a mug of hot strong coffee on the table - the automation in this hotel was at a very good level. Refreshed, I dressed, packed my things and looked around the room before leaving. Nothing unusual. Taking a deep breath, I left the room and closed the door behind me.

An automated taxi was already waiting for me at the door of the hotel. The computer with a pleasant voice greeted the passenger, specified the address of the trip and asked to buckle up. Modern (by the standards of the galaxy) cars with safe and compact thermonuclear engines powered by Helium-3 were immediately brought to Geyama - all for the sake of preserving the environment. This terrestrial planet was inhabited quite recently - about 300 years ago. However, its pace of development was very high. Corporations have poured trillions of dollars here because the planet is in a system very rich in rare metals. Well, in itself, it is very attractive in terms of climate and recreation. In general, it is amazing how quickly humanity has spread across the galaxy. After reaching the technological singularity in 2079, a series of discoveries took place on Earth, after which a very rapid spread of people through space began: first through the solar system, and then to nearby stars. The main thing was the discovery "the zero element" - with its help, scientists managed to create a field of dark energy, under the influence of which the mass of the object decreased. Thus, any object in the field of dark energy could be accelerated to a speed equal to, or many times higher than the speed of light. And yes, Albert Einstein could sleep well - the principles of general relativity were not violated.

After about 15 minutes, the taxi quietly drove up to a small three-story building with one entrance. There was a sign at the door: "Dr. Kreutz. Plastic surgery". Leaving the car, I went to the entrance. There were no cameras outside, and the doctor himself, according to numerous customer reviews, was quite an experienced and reliable specialist in such matters. Before ringing the bell, I turned around - the taxi was no longer on the street. The environment on the street seemed somehow unnaturally quiet and for a moment I hesitated. Should I trust him at all? After all, there was another option... Gathering my courage, I pressed the button. The door opened and I went inside.

An electric shock to the back, a bag on the head, a ringing silence. The cat caught the mouse.

Part 1. One way ticket.

I woke up from a bright light that cut across my eyes. And then a good blow to the jaw followed. The picture in my head dimmed, the sound became muffled. By some miracle, I didn't fall off the chair and onto the floor. However, I would not mind lying down. Intellectually, I understood that I had fallen into a trap - somewhere a mistake had been made and I was, as they say, burned. But how? And where? These questions tried to overcome the aching pain in the jaw. It seems that I will have to pay a visit to the dentist - I definitely lost one tooth. However, such an opportunity is unlikely to appear in the future.

Someone grabbed me by the shoulders and helped me to take a normal position on the chair. I notice that my hands were handcuffed. The eyes were still not used to the bright light, and the recently drunk coffee began to beg to return to freedom. Having suppressed the attempt to escape, I tried to focus my vision on the person who was with me in this room.

- Mr. Shinto Kanizawa...

The man's voice was calm, but loud and powerful.

- Listen, you are wrong. I'm not who you want...

The attempt is weak, but I had to try. Another blow came to the jaw. The head shook to the side, a metallic taste was clearly felt on the tongue.

- Listen here, piece of shit. I know perfectly well who you are and what you do. Do you think we didn't know that you were coming to Geyama?

The interrogator stood in front of me and I managed to make out his face. Short dark hair. Brown eyes. Massive jaw. Broad shoulders. Height is about two meters, weight is more than one hundred kilograms. But most of all I was attracted by his hands. Cybernetic implants of a model unknown to me. A barely noticeable bluish glow emanated from them - the exact same glow I had seen before, but because of two missed blows to the jaw, I could not remember exactly where...

- Let me refresh your memory, otherwise I seem to have overdone it a little. I still can't get used to the force of the blows. Especially people. Usually, one blow is enough for a person to die on the spot. But you're in luck today. Twice! - With these words, the giant patted me on the shoulder. I thought he broke a couple of my bones. Then he went to the corner of the room to get another chair. At that moment I looked around. A room five by five meters, without windows and doors. Smooth walls. How did we get here? And where are we anyway?

- Buddy, do not make any sudden movements, - the giant put a chair in front of me, and then slowly sat down on it, as if afraid to break it. - You got yourself into some special shit, Jack. Yes, we all know about you, Jack McKean. This is your real data. We know more about you than your own mother. You have crossed the line with your criminal actions. And you know what? Some people didn't like it. Therefore, now you are here with me. And today I will decide your fate.

- Who the hell are you? - I hissed through clenched teeth.

- Who I am is absolutely unimportant, - The giant shrugged and smiled. - However, I can tell you, since you will still go to a place where this information will be useless. My name is Jeremy Irons. Major of the special sixth division. Special operations and countering cyber terrorism.

Irons. Well, of course! It was he who had a hand in the capture of Alistair Wasse. "Void Solutions" praised him greatly in their reports. And on the videos one could see his new implants. But that was about thirty years ago... Why hasn't he aged? Completed an intensive rejuvenation course?

- You know, I’m short on time, Jack. To me, you are just a small pawn in this big chess game. Sooner or later, we'll catch the whole "Trinity" group. We will catch all of you. The incident at the Kallus thermonuclear station has become your doom.

- You don't understand, it was a mistake! This shouldn't have happened!

- But it happened! - Irons jumped to his feet. His chair flew into the wall with great speed and crumpled, as if it were made of cardboard.

- You do not understand what you are doing, - Irons loomed over me like a mountain - You think this is all a damn game of cat and mouse. Many people have suffered because of your actions. You only see trees, but you cannot see the forest behind the trees. However, - here Irons grinned, - You will have the opportunity to see the forest with your own eyes. If luck hasn't left you yet.

With these words, he pulled a pistol from his belt and pointed it at me.

- Let me tell you one last thing, Jack. I'd love to shoot you on the spot, but one person has other plans for you. You will be sent into exile on Torkularis-15. The planet with anomalous flow of time. Your life, if you are lucky enough to survive, will pass six times faster than usual. You just rot out there in the back of the galaxy. You will rot on a planet where garbage like you has been dumped for almost a thousand years. No one has yet returned from there. Even Alistair couldn't. And you are unlikely to find him in good health - Irons smiled - after all 180 years have passed there. If you find his grave, say hello to him.

The handle of the pistol crashed into my head with great speed. Falling to the floor, I tried to remember the last time I spoke to my mother. How long has it been... Where has this game taken me? And what will happen next? I didn't care anymore.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2021, 03:32:47 PM by Rettsu »
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Rettsu

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Re: Torkularis
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2021, 04:25:58 PM »

(Finally! We on a planet. But game still on pause (sic!). I added a few details to make it clear how one person can build all these things and machines.)

Part 2. Countdown.

Torkularis-15. Planet mystery. Prison planet. The only habitable planet in the Torkularis system. However, it did not immediately become a prison. It was first stumbled upon by a reconnaissance unit commanded by Harry Ellison in 2193. This planet became for him the fifteenth in the list of planets he visited. Torkularis was a small terrestrial planet with a breathable atmosphere, diverse biomes, oceans and seas. Torkularis was also home to a variety of animals that had never been seen anywhere else. But there was no intelligent life here. Detachments of scouts and scientists visited the planet for study, but did not stay on it for a long time. Why - no one knows. They noted only the fact of very rapid growth of plants and trees, which was very useful for future colonizers.

In 2200, the colonization of Torkularis began. The first cities began to appear from small settlements. Roads were built, infrastructure developed. In 2202, local residents began to sound the alarm. The entire population of the planet was growing up and aging several times faster than people living on other planets. Panic began in the cities, many wanted to fly away from the planet. The authorities decided to carry out a full-scale evacuation of the population. A certain part of the people still remained to live on Torkularis, despite the fact that their life will become six times shorter than usual.

In 2203, a ban was issued on visiting Torkularis-15 due to the anomalous passage of time. Torkularis-15 status changed in 2215, five years after the onset of the Martian Crisis. Martian rebels and criminals began to be sent to the planet. In orbit, Torkularis-15 was placed satellites with powerful laser weapons, which were controlled by AI. Any spacecraft that did not pass authorization was immediately destroyed. There is no information in open sources about successful escapes from the planet. It is believed that it is impossible to escape from Torkularis-15.

And here I am lying in an overload chair, bound hand and foot. It looks like I was put into an escape pod. The capsule navigation display turned on, reported that all systems were operating normally, after which it announced that the capsule firing procedure had begun. Countdown digits began to flash on the screen.
Five.
"Hope the capsule doesn't fall apart in flight."
Four.
"If I fall into the ocean or sea, I'm finished."
Three.
"The jaw still hurts ... damn Irons ..."
Two. One. Start.

The capsule shook palpably. The safety belts are pressed into the body - it looks like the launch was carried out directly from orbit. Another human life in a metal cocoon rushed towards its destiny.

The landing was hard. On impact with the ground, part of the capsule collapsed, and I lost consciousness for a while. Coming to my senses, I gently moved my limbs - nothing seemed to be broken. It took me a few minutes to free myself and get out of the capsule. I stepped on the ground and looked around. By the will of fate, I was carried into a wooded area. Oaks and poplars towered all around. Mountain goats peacefully nibbled grass nearby. The air was fresh and cool. I looked at the sky - the sun was just beginning its journey across the sky. So it’s morning.

To some extent, I was lucky - at 34, I could boast of a good experience of survival in various conditions. My childhood was quite difficult, I had to fight for every piece of food. My father left the family when I was three years old. Mom always supported me, taught me various things. Unfortunately, not all urbanized worlds in the galaxy can provide all people with normal living conditions and good jobs. On almost every planet in large cities there are dark corners where people do not live, but survive. And there are entire planets mired in chaos. Although, it would seem, the future. Fourth millennium.

At 18, I joined an opposition group that fought against the local authorities. We believed that much was being done wrong: the quality of life was deteriorating, taxes were rising, the rich were getting richer, and the poor had no choice but to get crumbs from the master's table. I could not become a full-fledged citizen, even though I had outstanding abilities in mathematics and a phenomenal memory - simply because I was born in the wrong family. After some time, I received an offer from a dictator of the middle world in a neighboring system. He needed a person who would take care of the financial part. He did not trust computers, because he believed that they were too vulnerable to hacking. In part, he was right - nowadays, people are better at keeping secrets than machines.

For the next eight years, I worked for this dictator, in parallel getting carried away with shooting and improving my survival skills. Then, the Trinity group came to me. For a long time I doubted about their activities, but ultimately agreed to cooperate with them. Not that I needed money, I was just offered a sum that hardly anyone could refuse.
My left hand suddenly trembled. Under a protective suit made of synthetic fabric, a strange device was found on the left forearm. I tried to disconnect it but couldn't. The device vibrated again, after which a wild pain pierced the left arm that lasted for several seconds. Then, the pain subsided, and a green light came on on the device.

- Checking the systems... All systems are OK. Personal Autonomous Complex "Sigma" is ready to work. Please confirm the use of the virtual identity - the voice came from the device, although no speakers were visible.
- What the... - I could not understand where he came from. Before the interrogation of Irons, I had nothing of the kind. Who installed it? And for what?
- Please confirm the use of a virtual identity. - The device repeated stubbornly.
- Um… confirm… - I said hesitantly.
PAC Sigma vibrated again. The light changed color from green to blue.
- Check, check, one, two, three... - The voice coming from the device changed. He became more cheerful and perky. And very familiar... - Hey, Jack, hello. This is Link. Remember me?
- Link? - I could not believe my ears. Link was the only person from Trinity whom I knew by sight and seen in person. We crossed paths with him three years ago in a bar in Verona. Oh, and it was fun then... - Wait, but... how? Virtual personality?
- Well, yes, but what is it? - the device vibrated softly, as if trying to laugh at me, - You are disappearing nowhere. You are missing important technological discoveries. Human consciousness can already be transferred to a virtual environment. Imagine! Digital immortality! Not for me, though... - Link's voice immediately became quieter.
- In what sense?
- Consciousness is simply copied. Strictly speaking, I am just a copy of my original. I have his memory, his habits, his way of thinking. But I'm not him. It's hard to explain... The technology is still experimental, but I decided to give it a try. You know I'm an experimental freak.
- Okay, okay... Let's say I believe you. Did you put the device on my forearm?
- No, of course not! - the light on the device quickly blinked, - I was asked to copy my consciousness into "Sigma".
- Who asked?
- I do not know this. Look, the whole operation was going on in a wild rush when they found out that Irons was following you. The customer is unknown to me, as well as the details of the plan. All I know is that I have to help you get out of this planet. Until you...well, this...did not get old here.

This thought cleared my mind abruptly. I've been standing here for ten minutes now, chatting with a virtual copy of a human. More precisely, ten minutes have passed by the standards of the galaxy. And by the standards of Torkularis, an hour had passed. I need to move.

- Listen, Link, - I looked around as there could be various predators in the area. Yes, and people could notice the drop of the capsule on the radar. If there are radars at all. - How can you help me?
- Knowledge, my friend. Knowledge and technology. - "Sigma" gently vibrated on my forearm, - A huge amount of information and drawings is loaded into the memory of this machine: from primitive tools and soft chairs to solar panels and spaceships. Plus, I can scan my surroundings with your eyes. And also...
- Wait... - I sharply waved my left hand, as if trying to shake off the device, - Have you connected to my body?
- I can't read your thoughts, but it's easy to analyze materials, objects or your body for the presence of various diseases or fractures. Just make sure you don't get shot off your left hand.
- What will happen if it suddenly happens? - I asked.
- Well… you'll lose your arm. Nothing is likely to happen to me. Sigma is a very strong thing in itself. Judging by the specifications, it has been heavily upgraded: a reinforced titanium case, water, dust and overload protection. This little thing can work even in outer space! A simple molecular splitter was also added here - as a weapon it will not work, but it will do quite well for creating the simplest tools. And a compact void cell energy source...
- Void cells? But, as far as I know, the Void cannot be in such a state... - I tried to remember everything that I knew about the development of the "Void Solutions". Link interrupted my thought process.
- You just don't know, Jack. The third form of void is very stable and capable of generating enormous amounts of energy. But creating even one cell costs an incredible amount of money. I can't even imagine what someone had to do to get one such thing. Typically, Sigma is powered by an ultra-high density graphene battery. But here the situation is special, so the device is special, and the power source is special. - Link winked with a green light.
- Yeah... - I looked around again. The forest was calm and quiet. But my soul was completely restless. - Well, where do we start?
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Rettsu

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Re: Torkularis
« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2021, 04:26:48 PM »

Part 3. House for two.

The first rule of survival is to be prepared for anything. Or at least try to be prepared for anything without panicking. When you find yourself face to face with an unknown planet, to which rebels, maniacs, murderers and various robbers have been exiled for hundreds of years, you should be very careful.

With the help of instructions and a molecular breaker, I made primitive tools very quickly. I wandered around and found some berry bushes - Link scanned them and said they were quite edible. A wreck of an unknown ship was lying near the bushes. Perhaps it is worth remembering where it is - it will be returned to it later in order to get useful parts during disassembly.

Having dumped the picked berries on the ground, I went on to explore the surroundings. Someone left pieces of iron not far from where I would land. In the memory of "Sigma" there was just a drawing of a well. I have not yet seen a lake or river nearby, so I have to work hard to get water.

The well was ready for dinner. I was even surprised how quickly everything turned out. Link explained that the timing anomaly affects more than just biological processes - different actions also take less time. At least now we had food and water. Having had a bite of berries, I lay down to rest on the ground. Apparently, the warm sun warmed me well, which is why I fell asleep for a while.

I woke up from a strong vibration in the area of ​​my left hand.
- Jack, get up. You’ll sleep like that all your life. Have you forgotten about the local temporary rates? An hour in six.
- Yes, yes, I remember - I muttered, stretching and looking at the sky - It seems the sun is starting to set. It is worth making a fire and chopping wood. Sleeping on the ground is still uncomfortable.
- You should consider some kind of refuge. The local fauna certainly loves to taste new settlers. Do not give them that opportunity - "Sigma" slightly vibrated.
- Here I agree with you - I answered, trying on a suitable tree with my eyes.

Without a proper ax, wood harvesting for the fire was very slow. Finally, I cut down the first tree on Torkularis. I hope that there are no conservationists here that I will have to fight back. For a while, the fire did not want to flare up, but after a few minutes a bright flame began to drive away the approaching darkness. The water from the well was damp, so I boiled it a little over the fire. Without Sigma, I would not have lasted long here. After knocking down a couple more trees, I hastily made a primitive bed so as not to sleep on the ground. The first day turned out to be very difficult, so the dream overwhelmed me instantly.

The night passed very calmly - apparently, the local predators either had not yet discovered my presence, or they were frightened off by the flame of the fire. Waking up before dark and drinking water, I began to clear a place for my future shelter. Sleeping outdoors is dangerous, and it's cold here at night. While I was chopping trees, a small purple beetle, the size of a cat, jumped out from behind the bushes. He looked around, and went to my berries. I threw a few logs in his direction, after which the beetle quickly retreated into the bushes. He's lucky that I don't have a weapon. However, beetle meat can hardly be called tasty.

- Jack, this is our second day here, and I think we need a weapon to defend ourselves. And best of all, it should be long-range - Link flashed a green light on the Sigma's hull.
- A very sensible remark, buddy - I said - The problem is that I have always used ready-made tools or weapons. But I never did them in such conditions.
- It's very sad! - The light changed from green to yellow - However, you can practice a little. You can start with something simple. For example, from arrows for a bow or a club made of wood. The club is not the best weapon, but sometimes it is better to have at least something on hand than nothing.
- It would be better if they gave me a pistol than that talking piece of titanium on my hand… - I said, pulling a large marble boulder aside.
- Hey, I want to help you! - Link continued resentfully - I have no desire to stay on this planet. For certain reasons.
- For what reasons? - I asked, wiping the sweat from my forehead.
- Certain! - "Sigma" vibrated - Come on, you cleared the clearing. Shelter needs to be made. And then we will deal with weapons.
- Okay, okay - I replied - Just don't whine.

By the evening, the shelter was built. It turned out to be a small house, about five by four meters and with one entrance. I really hoped that fires do not often rage in the local forests - I did not want to lose my new home almost on the very first day. Leaving the shelter, I went to the fire to boil some water. Well water was okay too, but it had a strange taste that I didn't like. The flame flashed merrily over the fire, unfamiliar stars shone in the sky.
- What are you thinking, Jack? - Link blinked green.
- I think where this thing has a volume control - I answered jokingly.
- It's strange that you're still joking in this situation, - Link replied doubtfully.
- I just never lose heart and try to find pluses in everything. Even now, we are still alive, and not hanging out somewhere in outer space. Not bad already, right? - I looked at Sigma as if trying to see Link's face there.
- Yes, you definitely will not be lost - the device body gently vibrated - Wait...someone is coming...
- What? Who? Where? - I jumped to my feet, looking around. It was almost midnight, the darkness surrounded the fire with a solid wall - Is it a beast?
- Worse. Human. It looks like he is alone.
- How do you know? I hear nothing.
- But I can hear. Sigma's sound sensors can pick up very quiet sounds. If it were a predator, I would hardly have heard it.

I peered into the darkness, trying to make out the stranger. A human figure appeared from behind the wall of the house. She walked slowly towards us into the light of the fire. Finally, we saw an intruder. It was a woman.
And there is a revolver in her hand.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2021, 05:31:45 PM by Rettsu »
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Rettsu

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Re: Torkularis
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2021, 08:03:24 PM »

Part 4. Coffee with iron flavor.

- So... - I said, as calmly as possible. I didn't want to get shot from a revolver on the second day of my prison leave. - I have no gold or expensive things. If you don't believe, you can go into the house and check it yourself.
- Actually, you have me - Link said, vibrating slightly with the Sigma, - And if the robber chooses between you and me, then the odds are clearly not in your favor.
- Listen, stall for even a minute - I hissed at the device, not taking my eyes off the woman.
- I don't need gold. And your device on the hand is also not needed. My name is Agatha. I want to join - the woman answered without any emotion.
The silence that hung in the air was broken only by the crackling of logs in the fire.
- Wait, wait... I don't know who you are and where you came from. Maybe now I will take you to my team, and then you will betray me, shoot me and rob me. Or call your friends and you will sell me into slavery. Or…
- If I wanted to do it, I would have done it already - the woman answered coldly - One cannot survive here. You have no idea where you got to. Plus, you'd better accept my offer, since I have a weighty argument.

The revolver in the girl's hand trembled slightly. I realized that she was not joking. Actually, I really wanted to sleep, and then this happened... I decided that I could take the risk.

- Okay! - I exclaimed and spread my arms out to the sides, as if trying to hug an old friend - Welcome to our glorious team! Our conditions are not at the level of a five-star hotel, and the house is small, as you can see. If this suits you, then...
- It suits me, - Agatha said calmly. She went to the fire and sat down next to him - You can go to sleep, I'll be here in case the wolves appear.
- And you um...would you like to give me your revolver? - I'm like a leader and...
- I don’t think I can trust you with my weapon. I can't yet - Agatha said without looking at me.
- Well, okay - I shrugged my shoulders and went to the house, hoping that the bullet would not come in my back - There is some water by the fire. True, the food is already over, so...
- I have some food and water, - the woman replied.
I wonder what else she has? Maybe a spaceship ticket? I stopped at the door and turned around.
- My name is Jack. Jack McKean. I'd love to chat and all, but life isn't easy here, so I'll go to bed. Pleasant dreams. - with these words I pushed the door and went inside. The door closed behind me.

It had been about thirty minutes local time, and I could not sleep. Every now and then my eyes jumped towards the front door. Various thoughts were spinning in my head, which I tried to drive away. Did I do the right thing? Can I trust her? Who is she? There were more questions than answers.
- Listen, Jack — Link’s voice was very low — I’ll hear if our guest tries to get in without knocking. If anything happened, I'll give you a sign.
- This is very encouraging, buddy - I replied, trying to hide the excitement in my voice - but I would be calmer if this equation did not have a revolver.
- And what would you do if you had a revolver in your hand at the time of the meeting? - Link asked - Would you shoot first like Han Solo?
- Who the hell is Han Solo? - I asked, falling asleep.
- There was such a character in ancient times... - Link thought for a moment - but about him another time. Good night.
And the local river of time carried me the next day.

I dreamed about the Colosseum and the chariot race. I tried desperately to win the race, but the horses could not overtake my opponent. He was big and muscular. And he had the face of Irons. Looking around, I saw that the road behind us was falling apart. And then Irons pulled out his revolver. I took out my revolver and fired first. But I missed. Irons fired back and hit. I looked at my chest, on which a large red spot spread. There was no pain, only surprise at what had happened. And then... I woke up. And grabbed my chest. A quick examination revealed that it was just a bad dream. Excessive impressionability goes sideways to me.
- Wow, you are early today - Link said - it's three o'clock in the morning, and you don't seem to be taking over the night watch around the fire.
- I just can't sleep - I answered, yawning - I got enough sleep.
- Well, I see - "Sigma" vibrated - will you have coffee?
- I'm ready to sell this thing for a cup of strong coffee - I said, waving my left hand.
- I'm surprised you were hired to work with finances at all, - retorted Link.
- I make a living with humor, buddy - I said, going to the door - We need to find out who this woman is. Perhaps she knows more about this world than we do.

I pushed the door and went outside. Cool air immediately enveloped me and knocked the last remnants of sleep out of my body. Agatha was sitting by the fire and boiling water. Well, she wasn't wasting her time. The revolver hung from her belt. I went to the fire and threw a couple of logs into it. The woman did not seem to notice me and continued to follow the process of boiling water.
- Good morning! - I said as friendly as possible - Although, it's still too early for the morning...
- I got more water from the well - Agatha answered, not taking her eyes off the fire - there should be as much supplies as possible. It is not known what might happen the next day.
- A very sensible idea! Jack, I think you should write it on the wall of your house - Link blinked green.
- Write down in the memory of "Sigma", in a file called "List of advice from Link, which I will never follow" - I answered Link, and then asked the woman - So where are you from? Also fell from heaven for your sins?
- No - Agatha looked up from the fire and looked at me - I'm from the city called Tiness. It is located north of here, between the Kamino Ridge and the Purple Cliff. More precisely, there was...a city - the woman fell silent.
- What happened to the city? - I asked, feeling that the answer would not be very pleasant.
- He was destroyed. Completely. - Agatha's voice became harder - They killed everyone: men, women, old people. Even children and pets. No one survived this massacre. No one. Except for me.
- But who could have done such a thing? - Asked Link - not the best representatives of humanity live here, but why destroy the whole city and kill everyone... Are people capable of such a thing?
- People may not be able - Agatha shook her head, as if trying to throw off the surging memories - But the attackers were not people.
- But if not people... then who? - I asked, lost in conjecture.
- It was them - Agatha answered coldly - the Mechanoids.
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Rettsu

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Re: Torkularis
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2021, 12:42:52 PM »

Part 5. Friend or foe?

The conversation over the fire continued until dawn. It turned out that Agatha was the product of a classified troop-rearing program on Torkularis. This is quite obvious: time goes faster here, so the soldiers grow faster. But that didn't really fit in with the planet being a prison for criminals. If secret experiments are being carried out here, and there are also mechanoids, the origin of which remained unknown, then... what other secrets can this planet hide? Agatha does not know who is responsible for this experiment - the laboratory was destroyed along with the city. She managed to escape, taking with her some supplies, an armored jacket and a revolver. The only thing she knew how to do was kill. And she had practically no information about this world.

Be that as it may, now there were two of us. I didn’t count Link as he didn’t need food or water. I built a second bed, a couple of chairs and a table so that we could eat properly, sit and think about our future. A torch at the door was responsible for lighting. Putting a second fire inside was unsafe and too wasteful in terms of resources. We decided to share responsibilities: Agatha is in charge of water and cleaning, I do the rest. Well, Link supports us with knowledge, advice and good mood. At lunchtime, another purple beetle came running to our meadow, led by the smell of berries - this time it was the size of a dog. Agatha pulled out her revolver and prepared to shoot the food thief. The beetle turned out to be very shy and immediately disappeared among the trees. I hope there are no bigger beetles here.

At night it started to rain and our fire, as expected, went out. I started a new fire next to the wall of the house and made a small shelter to keep out the rain. On the right side of the house, I cleared the area of ​​trees and stones in order to expand our cramped space - materials, water and food did not fit inside. At lunchtime I went to pick berries. Agatha was filtering the already boiled water over the fire. I think that now we will definitely not catch any infection from the water. Returning back, I heard a shot. Then another one. Throwing the berries, I ran to our hideout. The rain for the whole day turned into a downpour. A solid wall of water made it difficult to see anything. I saw Agatha shooting someone. Shot. Another shot. Then she turned and fired twice more. Then she hid the revolver and waved her hand at me. I went up to her.
- Hey! What happened? - I spoke as loudly as possible, trying to shout down the downpour.
- Wild animals. Birds. There. - Agatha answered and pointed to the side.
We came a little closer.
- Oh, so it's the drakes. - Link responded - apparently, they brought it from Earth during colonization. Look, one is still alive.
One of the drakes fluttered on the ground. His right paw was shot off, his torso was shattered by a revolving bullet. In his eyes, you could clearly read the rage.
- Where did you get it from? - Agatha asked.
- Oh, you don't know... This is a long story, and it is better not to tell it in the pouring rain. We'd better go inside. - Link blinked yellow.

We hurriedly entered the house. The water flowed from us in a stream.
- Why did these...drakes attack? Are they aggressive? - I asked Link.
- Actually, no, - Link said thoughtfully. - Drakes are aggressive only during the mating ritual towards females. But they don't attack people.
- I saw that they were running at me. - Agatha answered - I instinctively took out my weapon and started shooting.
- A real soldier - I muttered, trying to remember something... - Wait, you fired a revolver. How many rounds did you have?
- When did you come here? Ten - Agatha pulled out a revolver.
- And how many are left?
- Three... - Agatha counted the bullets - Yes, only three.
- So we spent more than half of our ammunition on two birds - summed up Link - It seems that our chances of surviving here are decreasing every day.
- Let's not rush to conclusions - I said to Link - We can make a weapon ourselves. I think that in a couple of days I will definitely succeed. As for those ducks... I think they can be butchered and cooked over a fire. What do you think?

Everyone liked the idea. I took the birds corpses inside the house and butchered them. Then I went for the remaining pieces of iron that I had found earlier. The day was approaching evening, and the downpour did not think to calm down. In addition, it was very hot outside - the temperature exceeded twenty-five degrees Celsius. I decided to sit around the fire for a while. At that moment, a new visitor came to our glade. It turned out to be a boar.

Agatha immediately took out her revolver and aimed at the animal.
- Stop! - I shouted to her - Don't shoot!
- Why? - Agatha shouted back - He looks more dangerous than those birds! He is our enemy!
- Let's first understand the situation - I said - Put the gun down.
Agatha hesitated. The animal stood peacefully in the pouring rain.
- You see, this boar does not attack - I said quickly - if he were as aggressive as those birds, he would have already smeared me on the wall of this house.
Agatha's revolver sank reluctantly.
- If something suddenly happens, - Agatha said, fastening the revolver to her belt, - Three bullets will be enough for me to kill him.
I took a deep breath. We managed to solve one problem. The second remained, weighing 70 kg and covered with elastic bristles.
- Okay, buddy - I said to the animal, slowly approaching him - Let's make friends. You want to make friends, right?
- Jack, what are you doing? - the light on the "Sigma" case blinked red - Are you tired of living?
- Not at all, - I replied, approaching the boar. - It seems to me that he is not dangerous.
- The risk is not justified - the device vibrated on my hand - Agatha could have shot him, and we would have got a good piece of meat.
- And we would have been left without weapons - I answered - absolutely defenseless.
- But you said yourself that you can make a weapon, didn't you? - Link blinked green.
- Yes. But the bullets will also be useful to us, - I said, almost coming close to the boar.

The animal stood peacefully in the pouring rain and wagged its short tail. I sat down and slowly raised my hand above the boar's head, hoping that he would not regard this movement as a sign of aggression. Finally, my hand rested on the animal's head. I slowly stroked his head, scratched behind his ear - the animal grunted and buried its muzzle in me. Agatha stood under the canopy by the fire and calmly watched the whole scene.
- It looks like he also wants to join us, Link - I said, not taking my eyes off the boar - Do you think we will take him to our team?
- I don’t think we have a choice, - Link said. - At least we have a defender. And friend.

I spent the rest of the evening building a wall on the east side of the house. Then, I took apart the old wall, after which there was enough room inside for all our supplies. I fell asleep almost instantly. And the rain continued to erupt on us from heaven.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2021, 12:46:06 PM by Rettsu »
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Rettsu

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Re: Torkularis
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2021, 06:44:49 PM »

Part 6. First battle.

Fourth day. And it seems as if we have been here for ages. It was necessary to resolve the issue of housing, since it is simply impossible to sleep together under the same roof: the door creaks, someone is constantly walking... The wild boar also comes inside. By the way, it turned out that this is a female boar.
The downpour still did not calm down. After breakfast, I set to work. First I made arrows for our future bows. Then I made one club from wood. Then I ran out of wood and decided I needed to cut more wood. Agatha went somewhere, but I did not attach any importance to this. Having cut down a couple of trunks, I went to the next tree. And at that moment I heard a quiet click behind my back.

- Better not move, buddy - a woman's voice was drowned out by a continuous stream of falling water - I didn't mean to kill you, but I have no choice.
- What? - I turned around and saw that Agatha was standing behind me, and her revolver was aimed at my back - You! I knew you shouldn't be trusted!
- You had no choice, - the woman replied angrily. - As you can see, I have a weighty argument.
- Damn, bad business, Jack! - Link blinked a red light.
- Let's do everything quickly, Jack - suggested Agatha, taking a step forward - you will not resist and calmly give your friend in a titanium case. And also your supplies of food and water.
- What do I get in return? - I asked. Of course, I was not going to give Link back.
- Like what? - Agatha was surprised - Fast and painless death. My revolver will help with this. As you can see, I have a very favorable exchange rate. For me, of course - The woman smiled at her own joke.
- It is, of course, great... - I began - But, we are connected with Link. It just can't be taken off your hand.
- Oh, I understand - Agatha took another step forward - Then you have to endure while I cut off your arm. However, you'd better be dead when that happens. This way you won't feel pain. The Tererlior guys will give me good money for your device.
- You know, I have a better plan! - I answered sharply and tensed.
- Really? What plan? - Agatha was surprised.
- Now you will find out! - I shouted, jumping to the side, hoping that the first bullet would not hit the vital organs.

A shot rang out. The bullet passed nearby and dug into the wet ground. I remembered that Agatha only had three rounds. Of course, she could have lied about their number. In my mind, I thanked the two ducks that attacked us the day before. Dodging ten bullets is much more difficult than three. There are two left.

Agatha began to back away, trying to get me on the fly. The rain poured down like a bucket, making it difficult to see. I grabbed a log lying on the ground and rushed to the traitor. At the last moment, I jumped to the side again. A shot rang out. The second bullet dug into the trunk of the tree. The last bullet remained.

Agatha tried to increase the distance between us, but she had to choose: either to back away and try to shoot me, or to run away at full speed, forgetting about shooting. She backed up to the corner of the house. There were a few meters to her. As if in slow motion, I saw Agatha raise her revolver. At such a distance, only the owner of incredible reflexes or super-powerful motor augmentations can dodge a bullet. At that moment, a wild boar came out from behind the house. The woman collided with the animal, the barrel of the revolver moved to the side. Shots rang out. Miss. At that moment I took her out.

The first blow hit her body. Immediately I saw a sharp thorn emerge from her left knee. I tried to block the blows of her knee to avoid bleeding. The fight was very hard - I would even say that in terms of close combat, she was in some ways superior to me. My blow passed by, but the woman hit me in the head with her fist. My head rang. The spike tried to plunge into my torso, but I partially blocked the blow. I carried out a series of blows, but I myself received several bruises in response. Another thorn hit the left hand. In response, I struck a powerful blow to the woman's head. Agatha collapsed to the ground.

I stood over the body of a woman who turned out to be a traitor. Sitting on the ground, I tried to catch my breath. Agatha's revolver was lying nearby on the ground. There was no use for him now. I looked at the body lying on the ground - I wanted to kick her one more time for all the deeds she had done.
- If you want to finish her, then it makes no sense - said Link - I don't see her breathing.
- Wait... - My thoughts were confused - Are you saying that she's dead?
- Most likely - there was no doubt in Link's voice - You can check her pulse if you want.
- No... - I sat on the ground and tried to realize the fact that for the first time in my life I killed a human. With my bare hands. Even in the fight for my life.
- Come on in the house, there is nothing to sit here on the ground and look at the corpse - said Link, after that "Sigma" vibrated on my left hand.
- Yes, yes... - I got up and dusted myself off. The body ached with pain. I haven't practiced close combat for a long time. Picking up the still warm revolver from the ground, I slowly wandered towards the house. Going inside, I threw the revolver into the corner of the room and sat down on the bed.
- So… - Link said. - You have a few bruises. Nothing serious, but try not to overwork yourself with physical work. The food and water supply will last for several days, so you can take a break.
- You forgot about the boar - I replied, lying on the bed - She's not a robot.
- As you can see, you are also not a man of steel - Link blinked green light - And to defeat you, kryptonite is not needed.
- Crypto...what? Again, some kind of reference to distant times? - I said, trying to sleep, not noticing the aching pain in my right shoulder.
- I will tell you. It was a great time. - Link said dreamily - I'll tell you when...

I didn’t hear the answer  - the dream completely overcame me.
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Rettsu

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Re: Torkularis
« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2021, 11:10:42 PM »

Part 7. The agony of choice.

I woke up a few hours later. The Sigma indicated that it was still two hours before midnight. I slowly got out of bed - my right shoulder still hurt, but much less. Still, the rapid passage of time has its advantages. After drinking the filtered water, I lay down again and tried to sleep. But the dream did not go.

"Hey, Link" - I said quietly - "What do you think... What Agatha said... About the experiment with soldiers, the ruined city, mechanoids ... Do you think it's true?"
"Who knows, buddy" - Link blinked a green light - "The truth is somewhere nearby."
"But she mentioned some guys from Tererlior" - I tried to get comfortable in bed - "Maybe it's some local gang of criminals?"
"If so, then we better be on the alert" - said Link - "Perhaps these guys will worry that Agatha has been gone for so long and they decide to visit us. This event is unlikely, but it is also worth considering."
"Yes, you are probably right..." - I yawned and continued - "Do you know what else bothers me?"
"What"
"When I fought with Agatha... I used to have sparring when I worked for a dictator of one middle world. Several groups of mercenaries worked for him, and some of the guys taught me the art of close combat. But now... Now everything is different."
“You’ve never had to kill people before?” - Link asked quietly.
"Of course not." - I tried to remember all the cases in which I hurt someone - "There were broken faces, a couple of times broke someone's hand. Mostly in bars. You know, I like strong alcoholic drinks, although I don't touch them too often."
“And you almost broke me then, on Verona,” - Link said.
"Yes, then I went over a little... This is what I mean." - sleep gradually crept up to my mind, thoughts became all heavier and heavier - "When I beat her, I felt some kind of pleasant rage. I do not know how to explain. Like, somewhere deep inside, I really wanted to kill her. And now I do not feel regret that her corpse is lying there on the ground. Is it normal?" - I asked, looking at the Sigma's titanium hull.
“Every normal person is actually only partially normal,” - Link replied.
"Hmm, a very deep thought. Wait..." - I yawned again - "It's not you invented, right?"
"Of course not, it was Sigmund Freud" - Link blinked green light again.
"I see" - I said, falling asleep - "So, he was not normal too"

The next day I lay in bed and waited for the bruises and abrasions to heal by themselves. I only got up to eat and drink water. By evening, the wounds were completely healed, and I was on full alert. After a quick bite of berries, I decided that it was better to carry a wooden club with me. With her, I looked more formidable. I also kept the trophy revolver with me - let it hang on my belt.

Coming out into the glade, I looked around. The earth had completely dried up during my rest and nothing reminded me of the powerful downpour that hit our heads two days ago. The boar ran away somewhere - apparently, she had her own, boar business. I turned and saw the body of Agatha lying not far from the wall of the house. After standing for a while, I went into the depths of the forest. Finding a flat area, I began to dig a grave. In spite of everything, I still remained a man and believed that it was necessary to bury someone in the ground, and not leave him to be devoured by animals. Even if this person tried to kill me. Having dug a shallow grave, I went back to the house. Placing the woman's corpse on my back, I again made my way to the dug grave. I was not tormented by my conscience about all the actions I took. If I was given the opportunity to go back in time, I would kill her again. Having buried the corpse, I stood at the grave for a while and went back to the house. At that moment, the earth shook.

"What is this?" - I asked aloud - "Earthquake?"
“Doesn't sound like an earthquake,” - Link replied - "The sound came from the north. I think it's worth a look."
“You know, I don’t want to meet face to face with the next owner of the revolver. Or, even worse, with some kind of mechanoid, if they exist at all."
"We can go back to the house and pretend that we didn't hear anything" - Link vibrated with "Sigma" - "But if there is a problem there, it will not disappear if we just close our eyes to it."
"Okay, convinced" - I grumbled - "Let's see what crashed there."

For several minutes I walked carefully through the trees, clutching a club in my hand. Finally, the trees began to thin, and I saw an escape pod next to a small hill.

“Wow, escape pod,” - exclaimed Link, - “Usually, these can hold up to six people, plus some good cargo."
"Or dangerous" - I added.
“There could be anyone in this capsule,” - Link said thoughtfully. - "At least it didn't open right away. The mechanism may have jammed. Or, those who are inside, unconscious. We don't have to open it if you don’t want to."
"Well, no, since we came, it's worth a look" - I said, heading for the capsule - "If anything happened, I have a weighty argument in the form of a club."
"The revolver looks more weighty, in my opinion." - Link replied.

A small panel with several buttons was visible on the capsule. One of them glowed yellow. I have not seen such capsules before, but intuition told me that it is worth pressing the yellow button.

The capsule servos started to move. The metal panel slowly climbed up, but stopped half way. It looks like the mechanism was indeed defective. I bent down and tried to see what was inside. Suddenly, four small brown beetles appeared from the capsule, which immediately rushed in different directions. I bounced off the door and prepared to fend off a possible attack. But nobody attacked. After waiting a minute, I again approached the half-open panel of the capsule. Bending down, I went inside. The main lighting was off, and a lone emergency light illuminated the entire area. A woman was sitting in one of the seats - blood was flowing from her left hand and head, and she herself was unconscious and practically without clothes. A long rifle lay at her feet.
"What the devil!" - Link exclaimed excitedly - "Jack, look here! It's a jackpot!"
"Are you talking about a girl or a weapon?" - I asked, wondering whether to help the woman who fell from the sky, or leave her here to die.
"Of course about weapon!" - "Sigma" vibrated like an abnormal - "It's a Gauss rifle! By our standards, this is quite an antiques. Although, admittedly, it is still very effective."
"It's great, but..." - I pointed to the girl - "What to do with her?"

I moved closer so that Link could analyze the wounds of the capsule passenger.

“Bad news,” - Link replied. - "She has a gunshot wound to the head and a stab wound to her left arm. If we had medicine, she would have scrambled out. But in our current situation, there is practically no chance. Even if we can somehow stop the bleeding, sepsis may begin..."
"So that's how..." - I thought.
"You are not obliged to help everyone here" - reminded Link - "You have one task: survive and get out of this planet. And I don't think the locals can be trusted. Even if they came from space."

The emergency light dimmed. Was this a sign indicating that life is gradually leaving the body of this stranger? Should I save her? Or is her fate already a foregone conclusion, no matter what? I had to make a choice.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2021, 11:14:24 PM by Rettsu »
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Rettsu

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Re: Torkularis
« Reply #7 on: April 13, 2021, 09:30:05 PM »

This is a great story. I really enjoyed this.
Glad you liked it!
______________________________________________________________________

Part 8. In the wilds of tranquility

I was returning to our hideout. Alone. I know I should have done otherwise, but... This is not a mission to save everyone. More precisely, I had to save myself. Perhaps even at the cost of other lives. Other lives... I completely forgot about Annie. I had to give up this job on Geyama. Annie discouraged me, but I didn’t listen. She knew what I was doing - I just couldn't lie to her. And now we were separated not only by light years, but also by time itself.

On the way home, I collected some medicinal roots. As Link said, they can be used to make medicinal herbs for treating wounds. At the entrance to the shelter, I saw our boar - she was sitting not far from the fire and looking thoughtfully at the tongues of flame. After standing for a while at the door, I went inside, drank water and went to bed.

At about 3 am I woke up and decided to return to the place where the escape pod fell. I was sure that that girl had already died of blood loss. So I can take her weapon and supplies. After all, the dead don't need them.

On the way to the capsule, I noticed a human body lying on the ground near the stones. Coming closer, I saw that this was another woman. Her blue hair was scattered on the ground, and there was no clothing on her body. It seems that this planet attracts women like a magnet. The main thing is that there are no warlike Amazons here. Trying to walk as quietly as possible so as not to disturb the sleeping woman, I moved on. The capsule was very close.

The emergency light inside the escape pod was very dim. I tried not to look at the face of the already dead passenger and began to rummage through the backpack that was lying in the corner of the capsule. Some gold, electronic details and water - that's all the catch for today. After checking the rifle, Link and I were upset - it was unloaded. The jackpot turned out to be a dummy. Having collected all our things, we went back to the house. The dark sky gradually took on a rosy hue - dawn should have come any minute. After breakfast I went to cut trees. Materials for the wooden clubs were needed.

- You know, Link - I said, pulling away another felled tree - In our house there are two units of firearms. And both are empty. If God exists, then he has a peculiar sense of humor.

- Much funnier that we were attacked by two ducks that should not have attacked - said Link.

- Yes, but still - I stopped to take a breath - Don't you think this planet is somehow strange?

- Not yet - Link blinked a light bulb on the Sigma case - for a prison planet, where time is accelerated 6 times, quite acceptable events are taking place. Just never mind.

- I hope you're right, - I said.

Towards noon, I again moved to our shelter. In a couple of hours I made three more clubs and a short bow. It was very poor quality, but it performed its function of shooting arrows at the target. After a short training session with a tree as the target, I went on another berry hike. Now we had weapons and we could fight back anyone. Almost.

Dusk was slowly falling on the forest. Link advised me to fry the berries over a fire - the likelihood of poisoning in this case was less than if I ate the berries raw. Towards evening I decided to have some fun and made a peg for throwing horseshoes. The horseshoes themselves, like the peg, were made of wood, but this did not bother me - it was necessary to somehow distract myself from all these situations. Otherwise, you can go crazy.
In the evening, while lighting a fire, I noticed several bright lights in the sky. It seemed that they were flying at us, but at the last moment they changed their trajectory and fell somewhere in the forest. "Meteor shower," Link remarked. "Lucky they didn't fall on us." Later, falling asleep, I noted that this day was the calmest in our entire short journey. Whether it was the traditional calm before the storm or just coincidentally, no one knew for sure.

The next day began with further clearing of the eastern wall of the house for expansion. Having reduced the forest fund of Torkularis by a few more trees, I built a new wall. Now there was enough space inside. Link advised to build an agronomist's table and a table for cutting stone: the first was needed to create medicinal herbs and obtain seeds from plants, and on the second one could cut stone fragments into blocks and build stronger walls from them. True, it has not yet been possible to make medicinal herbs - we decided to stop at cutting granite fragments and creating an ax from the blocks obtained. The rain that started at lunchtime made me bored to death, so I decided to go to bed at about ten o'clock in the evening.

Several days passed in peace and quiet. The granite ax helped a lot in felling trees, and the new wooden shelves inside the house and outside housed various objects of our everyday life. I removed the second bed, because so far there was no need for it and even started laying marble tiles on the floor of our modest home - I was already tired of living in mud and wanted at least some comfort.

During another walk in the woods, we were again attacked - this time by two cats. The animals showed all the same signs of aggression as the two ducks that attacked us on the third day. I tried to get away from them by shooting on the run. And even got hit once. But the animals caught up with me, knocked the bow out of my hands, and I had to use my weighty argument in the form of a club. When all the aggressive animals were calmed down, I went home to heal the wounds - the cats left me a laceration in my left ear. And I almost lost my eye. Link put forward a theory that perhaps the aggression comes from some source. Or animals were exposed to this source, after which they became aggressive. Personally, I didn’t care who or what made them so insane, as long as these test subjects didn’t run around in our area.

After recovering from minor injuries, I continued to lay marble tiles under the various stories Link told. Time passed very quickly, and already more than half of the earthen area of ​​our dwelling was hidden under beautiful and even blocks of marble. Sitting on a stool, I decided to take a break. At that moment there was a knock on the door.

- It seems we are not expecting guests, right? - I said to Link, grabbing the bow.

- Right - said Link - And we didn't order home delivery either.

There was another knock on the door, but much more insistently.

- Shall we pretend no one is home? - Link blinked a yellow light.

- I don’t think it will work, - I replied, watching the door tensely.

- Then our guest will have to treat with a couple of arrows - summed up Link.

At that moment, the door slowly opened. I drew my bowstring and prepared to shoot an arrow at the slightest sign of danger. I was already pretty tired of the surprises of this planet and wanted to start playing by my own rules. The doorway slowly increased in size, and I could already make out the silhouette of a man who decided to disturb us. I thought over various options for who could come to visit us: from a lost traveler to the guys Agatha mentioned. But the planet once again chose the most incredible and unpredictable option for me.

Annie stood in the doorway. My wife.
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kclace

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Re: Torkularis
« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2021, 10:46:41 PM »

Just wanted to say I'm really enjoying the story and I hope you continue writing. Would also be interested to hear which mods you used. Sounds like vanilla expanded, events is in there!

Had one suggestion for the story. The part about time moving differently on this planet reminded me of the movie Interstellar.

Maybe this planet is close or even in orbit of a singularity (black hole)? That would offer a scientific explanation for the time shift. Also another reason why its so hard to escape from.

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