Author Topic: Catnips Odd Trip  (Read 1233 times)

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saltmummy626

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Re: Catnips Odd Trip
« Reply #90 on: June 04, 2019, 07:53:06 am »
Something touched Catnip's shoulder lightly and although the touch didn't feel particularly aggressive, Catnip spun with a snarl and brandished her fists before seeing who it was that had accosted her. The leftover gale from the stones discharge had masked L's approach from Catnip's whiskers and her smell from Catnip's nose. That same calamitous exhale had also seemingly blown Catnip's ear drums. That second lost sense had confused Catnip and she'd spent the better part of a minute between bouts of retching and heaving. L said something, but Catnip only cocked her head and gestured to her ears. All she could hear was a high ringing keep at the center of her head.

"What?" Catnip shouted, tottering on her feet. Balance wasn't coming easy, and just as she'd thought she had finally got it back, the walkway suddenly rose up to meet her and the blackness of unconsciousness took her.


Below, the barrier had fallen and the Shattered Helm and Searing Spear were filing into the complex and seeking out those infected with Mycus. It wasn't difficult. The howling tower did most of the work for them. Those infected were stricken with shooting pains through their body, and those too far gone to help simply screamed in pained agony. several stories below L and Catnip, the form that had been Tenny Parsons stayed deathly still among it's rapidly fading cloud of spores, and the grey dusty smear of the mycus that couldn't remain in cohesion about the withered corpse. No one could really figure out why she'd turn on the project and the town it was meant to protect, but L could guess. Later, she would collect the small silver chain from what was left and muse over it while waiting on Catnip at the clinic. As she figured it, Tenny hadn't been able to move on.

"Some people turn to the needle or the bottle Nip..." She would say to Catnip while she lay unconscious under a constant regime of RX12 and antifungal medication, "Some people turn to dice... If they're really desperate, they might even make a deal with the devil." L would slip the chain into a deep inside pocket of a new vest along side the rolled up paperwork. L wasn't free from debt, but her contract would be passed onto Catnip, as per her request to the Misling council, should the mechanic survive.

As for Catnip, it would be a week before she would be allowed to leave the clinic bed and another month before she could leave the clinic. A sprained wrist was the least of her problems. The pins in her back had kept her spine from breaking on impact with the railing, but the half cell that had rocketed out of her hands and hit her in the stomach like a ton of bricks had done more than a serious amount of damage. Three broken ribs, a ruptured gut, and a bruised lung. She'd heal fine thanks to the quick and proficient surgery of the clinics doctor, Efram Marsh, and a dangerously high dose of RX12, but like all the wounds the mechanic suffered over the course of her life, they would add up. She also needed to be on antifungus at all times. Back in New England, it had been a trivial matter to use the panacea that was RX12 on just about everything, but here in Arizona it was risky. The medicine had it's normal, deadly, side effects of course, but the real problem was this; it promoted the growth of Mycus in the body. If Catnip was infected, then it was a serious risk even with the Howling tower going full tilt.

L turned over something else she'd recovered. Something had told her that it would be needed, that Catnip would need it. The wind cell lay not far from where Tenny's sad existence had finally come to an end, and inside the somewhat misshapen half she found, was a pristine pink stone the shape of a tear drop and covered in tiny little depressions. Each was placed irregularly about the surface of the stone and no two were the same depth or size. The stone itself seemed to have been carved into a shape like one of the cone spiral shells some sea mollusks had. Her eyes were drawn to it. Drawn into the little depressions and following the line of each as they twisted down and down into some unseen infinite apex. L had to shake herself sometimes and wrench her gaze from it, as it felt like she would be sucked into the thing if she stared too long. It felt right though.

Nearby, Catnip's breath hitched. Dr. Marsh had told her that it was normal, her right lung had been injured after all. L gave the stone another look before placing it back in Catnips bag, and she could have sworn that as she did so, the bag seemed to aspirate, and Catnip's breathing regularized with it. It was a ridiculous notion, but all the same... L went out from Catnip. There would be time to come back again and contemplate the strange object more tomorrow and visiting hours were almost over. L had a deposition to make on the just what had happened in the Howling Tower facility, and she didn't want to be late. A look back and then she was gone. Strolling up Chief Street L felt her step grow lighter and realized that she had finally begun to heal, and move on.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2019, 07:57:13 am by saltmummy626 »
I'm really just a sexy skeleton in a suit.
Fingering techniques are very important
Quote from: Six
Using guns while sober? Sounds like you're a coward.
Yes, little hats for every noodle.
Everyone is forks it seems.
"Everything is fucked forever, and ever, and ever." -Forrest 2016

saltmummy626

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Re: Catnips Odd Trip
« Reply #91 on: June 07, 2019, 10:21:50 pm »
INTERMISSION: The Howling Towers and Singing Towers


The Howling Tower

The Howling tower initiative came about after concerns about the virulence of the fungal lifeform hereafter refered to as "Mycus," became too great to ignore. In the lab, the Mycus proved to be not just virulent, but effective as well. Plans to weaponize the fungal agent we're scrapped at a very early stage when the Mycus proved impossible to control. Simply containing it, should a problem arise, became the primary concern of all labs associated with Mycus research. For the purpose of dealing with the problems associated with handling the Mycus, there were suggested many solutions. Incineration has always proved an effective way to eliminate said fungal infestation of areas, while certain antifungal agents could be administered to persons infected by Mycus spores. At some point though, individual Mycus life forms develop a resistance or outright immunity to high temperature while subjects who are infected for long periods of time become resistant to antifungal agents or become one with the infection themselves. It was discovered though, through testing, that the Mycus suffers from a sensitivity to sound. The mechanism behind this sensitivity isn't understood in the least, except that said sensitivity can be exploited to hinder Mycus cohesion. By no means will it remove or totally stop infection/infestation, but it will make finding the effected easier and slow the spread of Mycus dramatically.

There was a great deal of testing and trial and error involved in finding the optimal harmonic waveform for the purpose of suppression of Mycus lifeforms and in the end we had to resort to a facility which, in layman's terms, consists of an upscaled expensive weathervane. More precisely though, the Howling Tower is a facility consisting of offices, a small lab and barracks facilities for military staff, storage for [REDACTED] as well as [REDACTED] for operating the facility independently of the local power grid. The facility is also outfitted with a rudimentary but sophisticated "F&F" security matrix. The tower itself is a specially designed structure attached to the main facility consisting of a large [REDACTED] generator connected to a super alloy axle seated in an egg shaped rotunda. Above this, attached to the axle at the top is a secondary [REDACTED] supported by a tower of steel girders supplemented by an alloy superstructure. The parabolic dishes affixed to [REDACTED] are fashioned from an alloy of super alloy heavily supplemented with [REDACTED] supplied at great cost by [REDACTED].

The facilities construction ensures that it can remain functional indefinitely off grid, but is outfitted with numerous fail-safes should the worst occur. Electrical subsystems can be easily rerouted in the event of a short or swapped out entirely in the event of major damage due to [REDACTED]. The axles composition means that while it may suffer surface deformation over time, it will not wear away or lose it's main shape so much as to compromise it's function. Each dish is perforated at mathematically determined points in such a way as to allow air to pass through them as they spin. The material and design, as well as the device providing rotation, ensures that a sound is produced at the exact harmonic wavelength for optimal disruption of Mycus cohesion.

See handbook CC11X2, fungal/floral containment procedures, for details concerning operation of the Howling Tower and for instructions on remote activation procedures in case Howling Tower installation suffers heavy damage or Mycus infestation.


The Singing Tower

Construction of a Singing Tower is functionally identical to that of a Howling Tower, except that the dishes are fabricated from [REDACTED] and perforation is more regularized between them. This leads to a sound which is more sonorous and pleasing to the ear. The sound also happens to resonate much more violently with the environment. As such, Singing Towers are much less stable. To understand how Singing Towers effect Mycus, one must understand the relationship between the Mycus and the Triffids.

The Triffids are a species of plant life forms spanning genus many and varied. These plant like life forms are one of a very small number of creatures capable not only of resisting the Mycus, but also of preying upon it. For this reason it was decided that rather than relying heavily on Howling Tower installations, the much more disposable Singing Tower. These installations, rather than suppress Mycus growth, promote plant growth. Much like more terrestrial plants, Triffids are effected by the vibrations caused by sound waves, jostling their cells and promoting further growth. The melodic resonance from a Singing Tower has been tuned for just this purpose.

By promoting Triffid colonies, the hope is that Triffid life will spread further and faster than the Mycus, which will be slowed by the Howling Towers. There is of course the chance that the Triffids will prove too sedentary to grow too far from the towers once they are active. Another worry is that Triffids could grow out of control and overtake the local environment much as the Mycus would. Use of the Singing Tower may also lead to the cultivation of Triffid “gardens.” Such Gardens would be an easily renewable source of food, building material, and Triffid toxin used to make antifungal agents and defoliants.

See handbook CC11X2, fungal/floral containment procedures, for details concerning operation of the Singing Tower and for instructions on remote activation procedures in case Howling Tower installation suffers heavy damage or Mycus infestation. Damage to tower is likely to occur as Triffid growth takes place.


The Screaming Tower and Operation Windchime
[REDACTED]
I'm really just a sexy skeleton in a suit.
Fingering techniques are very important
Quote from: Six
Using guns while sober? Sounds like you're a coward.
Yes, little hats for every noodle.
Everyone is forks it seems.
"Everything is fucked forever, and ever, and ever." -Forrest 2016

saltmummy626

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Re: Catnips Odd Trip
« Reply #92 on: June 30, 2019, 04:31:16 am »
Outside Pinkies Pleasure Palace, Chief street was a dark dead river, lit here and there by the aging arc sodium's that lined it. Pricetown was asleep, but these days Pricetown never slept too deeply. There's was too much to worry about, too much to do, and there was a fight brewing. Cousin emerged from the alley beside Pinkies and approached the side door where he knew Minx would be waiting. He was disappointed to find that she wasn't, but all the same excited to see that she hadn't forgot about him. Minx had been out, and she had left him something. A bowl of heavenly scraps and a little something extra. The extra, the peyote, eased his mind and gave him respite from the many voices, sharpening them into one voice. One soothing voice to ease the aches of his psychically battered brain. With the scraps down and the drugs doing their work, he rested on the step and listened. The voice spoke to him amidst the sound of the distant Howling Tower, graced him with what wisdom he could understand. It was the voice of the vortex, the song of the cyclone, and 'she' had brought it. 'She' was even then sitting in a room high above him, working on the final touches of a gift for a far away friend. Cousin knew that it would see use long before that friend got to see it, but that would be fine all the same. It was being made to be used.

Then he heard it, the thing he had truly come to hear. The humming. It lilted down to him from on high, just as he knew it would. The discordant sing song nothing tune of the inventors humming while she worked. If the peyote soothed Cousins mind, then it was the humming that rubbed the balm of it into every crease of his brain. Catnip created and when Catnip created, others followed suit. Cousin could never look at her though, even if he liked the music she made, Catnip was just too... Brilliant. She made cousin nervous with her strange nature. No one else saw it, but then again no one else had cousins gift. Cousin could see. Cousin knew. He let the ballad of invention wash over him, and let the foreign images play out in his head. A tiny lady with spots, a man in a suit of armor, a train, a farm, a terrifying girl with several arms, chocolate, and so many more faces and things. Beneath it all, deep down, there was the machine. The roiling mass of gears and cogs and steam and boilers. There was a shifting maze of sparks and wires and all manner of invention. The great engine, a young God. More interestingly, there was another younger God present. It flitted formless and weightless, but not presenceless, from place to place. A small thing filled with power. Filled with potential. The song of Catnip was the song of this other.

The door next to him creaked open and bumped him, only shaking him from his musings a little until he heard the voice.

"Hey! Finally decided to show up you old Coy? I see you found what I left for you. Silly old dog." Minx said, splitting the quiet night with her gentle voice. Cousin rolled his head over to look up at her and grinned langorously. The coyote blinked slowly at the images fleeing from his ken in favor of the image above him. She scratched his ear and he rolled over to expose an unusually well kept belly ready to be rubbed. The humming was soothing and the images were enlightening, but the ministrations of his favorite human were just divine. No coyote had ever known such pleasure as the ear scratches or belly rubs of a favored human.

"I see a field of roses in bloom..." He said. Minx hadn't asked for a horoscope, but it seemed he was going to give one anyway. "I see trees of green, a faraway place. An engine which screams and the loss of all hope. Trials begin, blood will flow, resolve will be tested. Victory precipitates a dizzying fall. The outsider stirs, his siblings wait beyond. First will come the Void Star, the council will call him soon. Plague strider will stop him and be reshaped in her despair. My vision dims, and thus the mirror of prophecy is darkened."

Cousin lay were he was for a long time watching Minx with his clouded eyes, and she watched him right back while she sorted through what he'd told her. The prophecy wasn't meant for her but it wasn't really meant for the person it was for either. A general horoscope then? Minx scratched the top of his head again and his eyes cleared. Soon he was grinning up at her with his daffy dogs grin, and asking if there would be anymore food or peyote of, god forbid, "smash." Above, Catnip's humming went on uninterrupted, her work nearly at its end and soon to face all the trials it's future owner would put it through himself.
I'm really just a sexy skeleton in a suit.
Fingering techniques are very important
Quote from: Six
Using guns while sober? Sounds like you're a coward.
Yes, little hats for every noodle.
Everyone is forks it seems.
"Everything is fucked forever, and ever, and ever." -Forrest 2016

saltmummy626

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Re: Catnips Odd Trip
« Reply #93 on: July 03, 2019, 04:15:59 pm »
"YEEHAW!" Cried the bandit as he made the jump from motorcycle to fuel truck before being picked off the side like a beetle struck by a stone. His body flipped over and dropped, not yet lifeless until the truck rolled over him and crushed what was left of it into oblivion. Another bandit made the jump from the back of a Jeep and managed to make it all the way to the cab before the Shattered Helm sniper managed to pluck him from the trucks hide.

"Shields up men!" Ordered the captain under a hail of returning fire coming from the fast approaching truck and it's unwanted convoy of harriers. The shields came up like a wall on either side of the road, bristling with the glinting barrels and scopes of shotguns and long rifles. When the order to fire was given, the wall of shields erupted into one of smoke, licking flames, and thunderous gunfire before the shield in front seemed to fold up and new shields took their place and yet another volley of lead and steel met the harassing bandits. Blood flew in a mist and motorcycles toppled. The pursuing Jeep swerved once towards the semi, then back and off the road to twist itself into a heap against a pair of old pines. A falling bandit squeezed the trigger of his gun, some automatic thing by the looks, and stitched a line up the side of the tanker releasing a spray of black onto the asphalt.

"Clear a path men, that tankers loaded with crude! Move! Move!" The captain shouted at the sight of the impending disaster.

"That ain't oil cap'!" One of his men shouted back, "Oil don't fuckin' scream when the sun hits it!" The black fluid ran in spurting screaming runnels down the side of the tanker. The Shattered Helm scattered to and fro, unexpectedly in a life or death battle with an entirely different but familiar for. The blob came on, shrieking and sprouting crusted claws and teeth only to be blown apart again. The captain caught sight of the trucks driver as the vehicle passed and locked eyes. What he saw was something not entirely human in those strange empty eyes.

"Retreat! Everyone fucking retreat! The shriekers will just sink back into the earth if you give em nothing to go after! Get that fucking truck and bring it to a-" he began. Then, the tanker split open. An infernal metal egg with a screaming still born. "Get the fuck out of here! Go! Go! Go!"
I'm really just a sexy skeleton in a suit.
Fingering techniques are very important
Quote from: Six
Using guns while sober? Sounds like you're a coward.
Yes, little hats for every noodle.
Everyone is forks it seems.
"Everything is fucked forever, and ever, and ever." -Forrest 2016

saltmummy626

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Re: Catnips Odd Trip
« Reply #94 on: July 31, 2019, 05:58:48 pm »
Catnip reached out her window and fished around until she found what she'd hung outside to finish. Meanwhile, Minx was telling her about current events. It seemed these days that Catnip went out less, and so wasn't getting the news. In reality, she wasn't going out when other people were so thick in the streets. The episode in the Howling Tower had a profound effect on her. Where large groups of people had been Catnip's jam back in new england, making her feel somewhat safe, here in Arizona there was a kind of unease. Mix that with the threat of infection that seemed so common among Pricetowns Misling residents, Catnip couldn't bring herself to go out. When the sun had retreated in the sky a bit and the mazey heat haze of day had receded to something that baked off of everything, unseen. She could move around easily then and get away with much more than she normally could.

She tested the enamel on what she'd made, tapping it with a small dental hook to make sure it didn't take a mark. "Yeah, it was a disaster alright." Minx went on as though Catnip had given her any input on what she was saying. "Draft is on now I guess. Lucky you and I are safe from that stuff."

"What's a draft?" Catnip asked. Her only experience with "draft" was in making rough plans or beer.

"Uh, It's a thing where you have to be in the military against your will. You and I are safe because we work here." Minx explained incredulously. Catnip nodded slowly at that, unsure of what to make of it. Personally, she moved a lot and said little, but heard much. She was unsure because she had heard the negotiations that went on behind Pinky's closed door. There was nothing to worry about, but it still gave her pause. Since escaping the Howling Tower, Pinky had been made many offers for Catnip. Nothing for L though. Technically, L didn't belong to anyone except Catnip and Catnip wasn't willing to say that she "owned" her. Catnip on the other hand was an accomplished and proven master mechanic and craftsman. The Shattered Helm wanted her for their maintenance crew, the owners of the aeroponics plant wanted her for the line, and many many water merchants and bullet farmers wanted her for their own profit making schemes. Since the attack on the Shattered Helm barricade a few days before, and the sudden overt aggressive moves from Pricetowns northern neighbor, Algol, The Shattered Helm and Aeroponics facility had doubled down in a desperate attempt to give themselves the upper hand in their branches of Pricetowns hierarchy.

Catnip wouldn't bother with it. She wouldn't be here much longer anyway, or so she thought. There were plans above her table, rough schematics using her newly recovered holy relic. She'd once seen a helicopter and it had been the basis for her plan. Build herself a flying machine and fly all the way home. The real problems were finding somewhere to build it safely, and finding her way home once it was built. Minx passed her a boiled egg which she took with thanks before the talk went on for awhile. When the day grew dim, Minx would leave and Catnip would put the final touches on her gift for a certain knight out of time. Then she would go out. After, sleep Then...


Catnip woke early the next day to Pinky screaming at someone up the hall, and an envelope sliding it's way under her door.

I'm really just a sexy skeleton in a suit.
Fingering techniques are very important
Quote from: Six
Using guns while sober? Sounds like you're a coward.
Yes, little hats for every noodle.
Everyone is forks it seems.
"Everything is fucked forever, and ever, and ever." -Forrest 2016

saltmummy626

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Re: Catnips Odd Trip
« Reply #95 on: August 08, 2019, 06:11:01 am »
YOU CAN'T FUCKING DO THIS!" Pinky shrieked, momentarily deafening the man slipping envelopes under doors and at least one other doing the same thing further down the hall. "I'LL HAVE YOUR... your... YOUR FUCKING BADGE!"

The man, despite the feral shrieking woman, seemed to be taking all this in stride said simply, "We don't have badges." This of course set the Albino Misling off on another tirade of deafening screaming and obscenities the likes of which would have Kathrine fainting dead away. Pinky was practically frothing with rage, but undeterred the man went on. "It's not in my hands anyway Ma'am. The Misling and city councils have handed down the order personally. You can take it up with them if you want. Personally though, I'm with you. My son-"

"YOUR SON?!" Pinky cut in sharply, "WHAT ABOUT MY STAFF? WHAT ABOUT MY BUSINESS!?" It went on and on, Pinky heaving all the abuse she could at the man, a soldier of some kind by his dress, and he simply standing there and taking it. It was clear to Catnip that he was a person who'd seen a great deal of this kind of treatment in his time, and in a way sort of enjoyed it.

"Your staff will be trained enough to go out and come back, we need every hand we can get. They'll mostly be digging trenches and-" he began.

"DIGGING TRENCHES!?" Pinky howled, "THE ONLY TRENCHES MY STAFF SHOULD BE DIGGING ARE THE ONES BETWEEN-"

"Mister Os- sorry, Captain Ostler?" Asked a young woman in loose fitting Pricetown fatigues who'd managed to sneak up while the man, Ostler, had been trying to be reasonable with the establishments proprietor, "I've run out of draft slips sir." Pinky waited as patiently as a boiling pot for Captain Ostler to give the lady, more girl than lady, Pinky noted angrily, a fresh stack of envelopes to feed under the doors of the brothels bedrooms. When that business was concluded Pinky had regained a bit of composure and went on more calmly.

"This is bullshit you know, absolute bullshit. Whatever happened to my influence here in town?" She asked.

"Gone with King I'm afraid." Ostler stated matter of factly.

"We both know I'm not going to get them all back." Pinky seguied. She looked up the hall to where Catnip was standing and watching them, a plain white envelope held with both hands. The sight seemed to nettle Pinky, so she shot her glare back on the Captain. "She's not even going to go onto your maintenance line, is she? Catnip, get your butt in your room goddamnit." Catnip, feeling the tension now, did as she was told. Slowly.

"That's the one Command has been dickering with you over?" The Captain asked before going on, "Not likely. She'll end up in the regs. If she's lucky and shows a bit of aptitude, maybe the Shattered Helm. Listen Ma'am, from what I've seen so far your staff are living pretty soft compared to the rest of Pricetown. Chances are, most of them aren't going to get past the basic physical and they'll be right back between the sheets in no time."

"So? Some of them will pass. She'll pass it, no problem." Pinky huffed, thinking of Minx. Minx was plenty soft, but Minx's unique augmentation would make her an asset, if the draft could find her. Chances were they wouldn't, but still. Pinky tapped her foot angrily, then huffed again. "What it boils down to is I missed out. I missed my chance to cash in my chips and I'm about to take a hit to my pocket book?"

"I don't know about that. When she comes back-" he began

"IF she comes back." Pinky corrected.

"Alright, if. If she comes back, she's going to have a great deal more experience than she had before, maybe come back a hero. Wouldn't that be good for business?" Ostler asked.

"No." Pinky said sneering a little, "It would be good for business if she worked from her bed, but she doesn't. No, if she comes back then it's either gonna be in a body bag or with even more trauma than she's got already."

Ostler didn't tell her that the Sanguine council rarely sent people back at all, and those that they did send back would be better off dead. Telling her that wouldn't make it any better, and the woman was clearly loathe to give the mechanic up. He didn't tell her that any fighting would likely be a hellish ordeal, Regs and Shattered Helm trying to beat back the swarm of screechers coming out of Algol in tanks disguised to look like water deliveries. The events of the road block still stuck out in his mind vividly, and it was that horrendous image that kept him thinking, "How did they get so much of it into a fuel truck, and why? Algol had a regular army, so why send such an unpredictable thing to Pricetown?" He shook his head to himself. Questions to be answered. They would find out soon enough.
I'm really just a sexy skeleton in a suit.
Fingering techniques are very important
Quote from: Six
Using guns while sober? Sounds like you're a coward.
Yes, little hats for every noodle.
Everyone is forks it seems.
"Everything is fucked forever, and ever, and ever." -Forrest 2016

 

NOCTIFER IS A FAGGOT