[Ashen Snow] At Amy's Mountain [Bo 7.4]

edited January 2013 in In-Game
The ride to Amy's Mountain was quiet. You stayed on Fries' bike with him. He's quiet, out of respect. He didn't know Jin, but he senses this was awful. As you know from your days with Juck, there are two kinds of gangers, the ones who are part of the gang and the ones you are tight with. Fries sees that everyone is tight here. In gang-world, that's a bigass circle of folks to care about. Pretty risky.

The roads as you get near Amy's Mountain are in good shape, much better than around the hold. You come up a small hill and on the right, you see a small old roadsign. Most bikers take road signs as trophies, or weapons. But this one is still here.

Amy's Mountain is a series of huge concrete buildings, webs of fences and razorwire, machine gun nests, and power. There are lights and working ovens and refrigerators and all kinds of pre-Fall wonders, Rothschild told you all about them.

You've seen Amy's Mountain glowing at night, that odd phosphorescent glow it has.

Wolf and all of you talked you war past the gate and were allowed as guests to Amy's place. In fact, she invited all of you to eat lunch with her, which according to the guy in fatigues at the gate, is unheard of. Wolf told the guard, his name is Ittich, that Jin was dead. He said he'd get Jin's brother to take the body, make sure his body was cared for. Ittich had some guys take Jin's body and Wolf and the others didn't fight them over it.

Fries is clueless about Amy's Mountain other than rumor. As you're sitting there on the bike, watching this odd procession as he turns the bike off to save fuel, you look around at the scant people watching with haunted eyes. No children. None.

"This place is spooky, Emmy." Fries says quiet for you to hear, trying to stay respectful even still.


  • "Yeah." I say back in a low voice. I'm watchin' the people with haunted eyes. What's happened to 'em to make 'em look like that?

    I've never been to Amy's Mountain before. Just heard about it from Rothschild. An' he mostly just talked about the wonders of lights an' electric pre-fall luxuries. Sometimes I wondered if he was tryin' to convince me to move there. But that was back when Ambrose was tyin' me to Evan like an anchor, even if I'd never have admitted that in a million years.

    Speakin' of Rothschild, I wonder if he's here. He vanished back to the Mountain shortly after the whole Harridan an' Jin thing.

    Jin. I didn't miss that Wolf mentioned his brother. Jin's brother is here? Jin's brother is gonna be handed Jin's dead body. I know a thing or two about how it feels to see your brother dead. The numbness in my chest seems to spread to my entire body. I shouldn't have asked Wolf's pack to fight for us. If I hadn't asked 'em to do this, Jin might still be alive.
  • Ittich and three others, all in dark blue uniforms with nice guns, escort all of you into the Mountain. It is a mountain of concrete and wires and metal. You take a freight elevator down for about five minutes. It isn't fast, but it is obvious that you're going deep.

    It gets cold. Not freezing, but cave cold. The shaft is filled with exposed wires and electronic crap, track lights, all pieced together, not designed.

    Then you head down a shaft and past four guards in those same unis and a machine gun nest. Two thick, solid metal doors open into a chamber.

    There's a long wood table with this woman sitting at the end of it, the head of it. It must be Amy.

    She's got wires literally coming out of her, and the place is cold and it glows, the walls glow and it is cavernous, filled with the remnants of an old power plant, rummaged and fixed together to work in some painfully Weird designs. Spector is vibrating here, excited and scared. It is powerful here. And it pulls on you to get more.

    Amy nods to Wolf, he makes introductions and you all sit down to a freshly cooked meal. Its your favorite meal form back home. What did she serve you?
  • I'm shivering in my seat, partly from the cold an' partly from Spector's nervous energy. This place is more than spooky. I'm tryin' not to stare at Amy with all those wires in her. It makes me feel kinda queasy. I don't think I like this place very much. I can see now how Wolf was exposed to somethin' here that made him infertile. There's weird stuff here. Stuff that shouldn't be messed with. I can feel it.

    I'm sittin' between Wolf an' Fries, kinda hunched like I'm tryin' to make myself look real small. I give Amy a quick nod an' glance when Wolf introduces me, but then I go back to bein' incredibly interested in my fingernails. I'm pretty sure I won't be able to eat anythin. I keep seein' Jin's torn up face. But then they bring out the food an' I actually do a double take. The main meal is some sorta stew that smells real good, an' there's bread. Real, fresh baked bread. But what's caught my eye is the bowl full of strawberries. I haven't seen strawberries since I was a kid, back home. They were my favorite. Dune always teased me that my skin was gonna turn red, I would eat so many. Wolf would always tell me I was gonna make myself sick. Wolf was usually right.

    I take a couple strawberries an' put 'em on my plate for last. The smell of the stew is makin' my stomach growl, so I try a spoonful. It's good an' hot an' I'm hungrier than I thought. It spreads warmth through me, helpin' ease the shivers. I get a few spoonfuls in before I realize what that familiar taste is. There's some of that spicy red powder that Jin liked in this soup. The stuff he put in that nasty ass soup to try an' make it taste better. An' maybe it's the warm stew or maybe it's that memory, but it feels like my numb, frozen insides thaw a bit an' I'm suddenly blinkin' back tears. I duck my head a little to try an' hide it. Jin was nice to me from the very beginning, an' I refuse to believe that was Harridan's choice. It was Jin who tried to see if I was ok when I was runnin' away, who brought me my jacket when I fled without it, who tried to make my soup taste better, an' then probably ate it when I couldn't...

    I put my spoon down an' ball my fists up in my lap, tryin' to get control of myself before I totally lose my shit in front of everyone.
  • edited January 2013
    The pack has been here before, you can tell. While they aren't talkative, lost in their own thoughts, the guards give them respect. Not fear, these guards are sort, of blank. But their posture changes when Wolf and all come in. Jersey hasn't woken up, by the way. Jin's brother Coyfish took him. Coyfish looks maybe five years older than Jin. He accepted the news without much surprise, but he wasn't thrilled. Sable insisted on helping, so she didn't come down with you. She's lost in her sorrow, didn't even tell you good luck like you might have expected.

    Back to now. The food tastes amazing, the berries are fresh, like you'd pulled them off the bush. Fries is chowing down on them, even though he eats the stems, even lifts the stew bowl up to pour it down his throat. He eats like he hasn't seen it in a couple days and maybe, just maybe, someone will take it away if he doesn't take care of it.

    Amy talks first, she has a metallic rasp to her voice, it is... unsettling, "Wolf. Nuff. Scar. Mac." She inclines her head to you, "You have Wolf's eyes. Are you Emmy?"

    You can feel Wolf tense a bit, protectively when she addresses you. Nuff looks up from his bowl of stew, his face unreadable, but he's obviously interested in this.
  • I don't know what exactly to make of everyone else's reactions when Amy addresses me, but I know enough to be wary here. Her voice gives me a chill up my spine, but at least the adrenaline that comes with the fear helps me get control of myself. I reluctantly lift my gaze to her face an' try not to shudder.

    "Yeah. I'm Emmy." I mean for it to sound polite, but it comes out kinda nervous. My shoulders are tense. What is it about this woman that unnerves me so much? I try to channel that cold, clinical, doctor part of me, studyin' her.
  • Read Amy
    #DiceRoller( 2d6+2 )
  • Holding 1.
  • Amy nods slightly, then looks to Wolf, "She didn't kill your brother?" The statement is only a question in the most technical sense. Wolf looks away for a second, shakes his head no.

    Nobody interrupts her and Amy looks back at you with her inhuman eyes. She continues in that metallic rasp. Her tones are slightly off, distracted, as if sentences aren't always connected, "You are pretty. Rothschild wasn't lying. Not a face to launch a thousand ships. Not worth losing the Mountain over. I like your hair."
  • I glance sideways at Wolf. How many people am I gonna have to clear my name with? But I'm distracted by the fact that Wolf isn't really sayin' much....or makin' eye contact with Amy.

    Then Amy continues, an' I don't even try to hide the confusion on my face. I have no idea what she's talkin' about. Rothschild told her about me? Why? I don't like feelin' like everybody here knows somethin' I don't, somethin' important. It puts me on edge.

    "Sorry..." I start off hesitantly, meetin' her gaze again. I also don't like that I'm afraid of her. I try my best not to show it, squarin' my shoulders. "I don't know what you mean. What about losing the Mountain? Is Rothschild here?"
  • Amy tilts her head to the side while looking at you, like she's studying you, Bones. You notice about then that she doesn't blink. Or at least she hasn't. Not once. Fries is shifting uncomfortably beside you, this is seriously freaking him out. Scar has her fork in her hand, pointed downward, like she could stab something right now.

    Finally, Amy answers, "Yes, he is here. He returned from the Element to recruit my people to fight against Harridan. I've given him a place to. Reconsider his actions."

    Mac blurts out, "Whaddya mean? Did ya kill im?" He looks tense, unnerved and jumpy. There are no guards in this inner sanctum, none. You've got her completely outnumbered, you know you've got her outgunned, too. But the pack's posture right now, to a one, they are acting like Amy has a grenade in her hand and she's pulled the pin.

    She keeps watching you when she answers Mac, "Rothschild is not dead. But after I let you all go, I can't afford to lose him, too." She abruptly changes subject, "Tell me about Harridan, Emmy. I don't. Get out much." The corners of her mouth twitch up into a mockery of a smile maybe?
  • My fingernails are diggin' into my palms. What did she do to Rothschild? An' what was Rothschild tryin' to do? Stage a rebellion....cause of me? I guess he was there when Wolf told the pack what had happened inside the church, but still. I jump a little when Mac blurts out his question. Amy is freakin' me out enough by herself, but the jumpiness of the pack is makin' it much worse.

    I'm still holdin' her gaze, listenin' in growin' horror, but then she changes the subject an' I kinda stiffen. I don't want to talk about Harridan. I don't want to think about Harridan an' my experience with him. Especially now...now that Jin...

    Her attempt at a smile is almost more horrifyin' than her regular expression. What game is she playin' here? Did she hurt Rothschild? He tried so hard to save me from Wolf's pack when he thought I was in trouble. An' now he's in trouble cause of me. I owe him.

    I steel myself an' try to keep my voice flat. "Tell you what, I'll tell you everythin' I know about Harridan if you let me see Rothschild."
  • Manipulate Amy
    #DiceRoller( 2d6+3 )
    highlighted for 1xp
  • As a result of my 12+ roll, I get to change Amy's nature. Instead of a threat I choose that she is an ally in the form of guardian (impulse: to intercept danger)
  • Amy stares at you for far too long before answering. You aren't sure she breathes, except to have air to speak. But, maybe that's a trick of the greenish light?

    "Yes, Emmy. That is acceptable. I will take you to him now. Then you tell me about Harridan," she says in that odd monotone. She stands up, moving less like a heavyset woman and more like a marionette, her back rising up before her weight shifts. You hear a couple air pressure pops and the wires disconnect from her back and she starts walking around the table.

    Wolf's eyes are a little wide and he barely shakes his head no. Fries stands up, he was sitting between you and Amy. He says quickly, "Hey, Mizz Amy, I'd like a tour, too. Is that ok? Roths-biled and I, we go way back." He gestures the length of time with his hands. He's a hand talker.

    Amy replies flatly, "Child, do not speak unless spoken to. Emmy is in no danger." Nuff leans back, this is primetime TV good in his opinion. Scar looks like she's thinking about how much damage a fork would do to Amy's head.

    What do you do?
  • I'm tryin' my best not to look like I'm kinda scared outta my wits. What the hell are those wires for? That noise they made when they disconnected from her was....disturbing. I reach under the table to squeeze Wolf's hand tightly for a second. I don't want to go anywhere with Amy by myself either, but I have to check on Rothschild. What if he's hurt? He helped me. I gotta try to help him.

    I let go of Wolf an' stand up, placin' a hand on Fries' arm as I do so. He just keeps surprising me. "It's fine." I say more confidently than I feel. I kinda glance around at the table, tryin' to smile reassuringly. Then I turn to Amy, forcin' myself to meet her creepy gaze. "Alright. Let's go."
  • Spending my hold: What does Amy intend to do?
  • Amy walks past you to the double doors, saying to Wolf and the pack, "Make yourselves comfortable. We will be back in thirty minutes."

    Fries gives you a look like he's ready to just go, but you shut him down and he sees Wolf, who is just sitting there. Wolf mouths the words, Be careful, Em.

    Then you follow her to the doors, right? She walks along, this odd gait of her like her legs aren't moving naturally and she manages without it seeming to affect her. The guards snap to attention when she walks through them, then you head to the elevator. She punches in a code on the keypad inside, closes the metal gate door and you start going down.

    "Tell me about Harridan?"

    Amy likes you. She loves your spirit, she thinks you could be good for her mountain. She also thinks the outside is a threat and so she should protect you.
  • I give Wolf a tiny nod, resistin' the urge to beg Amy to let him come with us. This stuff here, it's like stuff out of my nightmares.

    I watch her punch the code into the keypad, tryin' to memorize it if I can. You never know. It can't hurt to be careful. Then we're goin' down. Further down. I really don't like this, this bein' below the surface thing. I never thought I'd call the air outside "fresh," but it's better than the cold, stale air down here. Knowin' that we're underneath tons of dirt an' rock makes me feel kinda panicky.

    Harridan. I'm silent for a spell, then finally my voice comes out all distant an' clinical. "He's a brainer. Very powerful. An' evil. He can spread his strings like the flu. He hurts an' kills people like it's nothin, like they're his toys. He thinks he's fulfillin' some sorta legacy by takin' over The Baths at Evan. But he's not actually a man. His mother was Domino, which means he can't be that old. I think he's just a kid...though he sure as hell doesn't have the mind of a child. I don't know who his father was, but Harridan's got some sorta physical birth defect."

    I rattle off all the facts an' then fall silent. Hopefully that was enough to appease her. I skirted away from talkin' about my personal experience bein' strung, an' I don't want to talk about it anymore.
  • You catch the code, its a ten digit numeric code. Amy didn't hide it with her hand or even notice you looking over her shoulder when she punched it in.

    The silence between you is a gulf. The hum of the elevator is loud enough to fill the gaps. Then you share the horrid details of Harridan and she listens, her head turned to put an ear towards you while she stares at the rock sliding by past the gate as you head ever downward. All told, its maybe five minutes of travel, but it feels like a lifetime. The elevator stops with a jerk and Amy sliges the gate up and starts walking down a rough hewn corridor of limestone.

    She beeckons for you to walk beside her and its a tight fit, two walking side-by-side, but I assume you do, right? As you head towards a metal door with no handle, you notice the place is slick wet and chilly. Amy says, "He sounds like a threat. I do not understand brainers. They are very... imprecise. You are suffering from malnutirion, Emmy. I have some vitamins and medical supplies I will give you when we get topside. It will help you."

    She produces a metallic card from her coveralls when you come to the door and swipes at a holster on the wall. The door slides open smoothly and inside is a tiled hallway. The decor looks like an office, pre-Fall style, like an aboveground building in a big city.

    The hallway has a buzz of flourescent lights and a feeling that it is rarely used, forgotten. It splits after about twenty feet, heading left and right into who knows where. But Amy wants you to go into this office right here. The place smells like harsh chemicals and bleach. Sterile but nauseating, not that Amy notices. She heads to the third door and opens it, gestures you inside. She does that weird smile thing with the right corner of her mouth, nods her head to the door, "Rothschild is in here, Emmy."

    What do you do?
  • "He is a threat." I say grimly as I walk carefully beside her, tryin' not to touch her. "An' he's not gonna stop with Evan. He wants the whole world. He might come for you an' your Mountain next."

    I wonder what she meant by brainers bein' imprecise? What...what is she? I ignore the malnourished thing. I'm fine. I've gained back some weight. I don't look sickly anymore. But sure, whatever, I'll eat vitamins if it'll appease her, although her bein' strangely concerned about my well-being might be even more creepy.

    The smell in this room makes me want to gag. It doesn't even smell like a medic station. It smells...off. An' that smile thing...all of my instincts are screamin' at me to get out of here. So I hesitate. Spector, what is this place?
  • Opening Brain
    #DiceRoller( 2d6+3 )
    highlighted for 1xp
  • Spector fills you and you see these same halls, but they look fresh, polished, the tiles practically gleaming. People in suits, like Corbett's, but clean and new, are walking the halls, wearing white coats and talking about ideas, production, even gossip. Then you see one of them, she looks oddly familiar, like you've seen someone like her, but not her. She's pregnant, its obvious from her slight body and swollen belly. She's still walking with another man, talking, she fits in like all the rest, busy little beavers in an office.

    Then the world shivers and the floor shakes and people stagger or are thrown to the ground. You track down the hallway and take a turn to see the floor split open and a couple people fall into the crack. All around you, people are screaming and the air turns so hot that you see skin blistering. It flashed back to the pregnant woman, she shrieks and runs, runs, runs down the hall away from the destruction, desperate to get out. Anything to save her child. She'd already named her, even in her womb. She had to save her lovely little Amy.

    Then you're out of it, standing there, looking at Amy, looking back at you with that unreadable expression. She repeats, in exactly the same tone as before, that metallic rasp giving the words a cold feeling, "Rothschild is in here, Emmy."
  • I blink, comin' back to the present, my eyes on Amy who is anythin' but lovely or little. What happened to her? Was she born here....in the middle of the fall? What price did Amy have to pay to survive? But then she speaks again, her voice joltin' me, an' I kinda numbly step forward. I approach the door, tryin' to ignore the dread that's gathering in the pit of my stomach. I have no idea what I'm gonna see inside that room, but I have to look.
  • You enter the room and Amy stands at the door, holding it open for you. That bleach smell, it is coming from here. It masks everything else.

    The room is small, lit with that same harsh white electric light, the hum here is the strongest sound. There are also machines here, rhythmic machines that hiss and chunk. You see Rothschild is lying on a cold metal gurney with a large metal helmet strapped to his head, wires running out of it into the floor and several machines. There is a breathing tube in his mouth and electrodes hooked up on his bare chest. He is asleep. Or in a coma. Still, completely unaware and unresponsive. You see a wealth of medical devices hooked up, an IV drip, heart monitor, EKG reader. You could buy a small hold with what is in this room. These things could keep him alive forever.

    Other than his unconscious state, Rothschild is unharmed. Amy doesn't stop you from walking in the room to take a closer look. She stays at the door, watching. She looks, oddly proud of her work, perhaps? Over your shoulder, she says, "I'm reminding him. Of his oath to me. He will be free to go very soon. The process is very short. Hmn."

    What do you do?
  • I stand there, takin' everythin in with wide eyes for a few seconds. Then I step up to Rothschild's side, my cold hands gently touchin' his bare arm. I've only seen this kinda equipment in books, but what is that helmet thing? He doesn't seem hurt, but it freaks me out to see him like this, completely helpless, under Amy's control. Did he fight her, I wonder? Did they have to drug him? Drag him down here? I feel sick.

    "What do you mean?" I shoot a glance at her, morbidly curious despite myself. "What oath? What are you doin' to him? What process?"
  • Amy is looking over at you. Her body language is interested, she wants to see what you think of her work. She replies, "Rothschild was given a short time to attend to personal matters. When he returned, he asked me to send soldiers to the Element. When I told him I would consider it. He tried to take them. From me." She frowns, "I am reminding him of his oath to serve the mountain."
  • I try to keep my expression blank. I move one hand to gingerly touch the helmet on his head. "What is this? What is it doin' to him?"
  • edited January 2013
    Amy answers simply, "Reminding him.... re-mind-ing him. It is painless. The process is very short. Hmn."
  • I look down at Rothschild's peaceful face, my hand tightening on his arm. "What happens when he wakes up? Will he remember everythin, who he is, what happened? Or does it wipe his memory?" My voice is flat an' clinical, but my face is slightly pale.
  • Amy shakes her side to side, replies with a touch of dismay, "No. Not yet. Working on it. Wiping the slate makes the patient useless. Only good for spare parts then. He is still Rothschild, but I layered on more memories, creating new responses to same stimuli. Can you wipe a memory? Would be easier if. It worked."
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