Links to other parts here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
This page continues the chronological log of our Votoms Campaign. 

7214.02.17 -PLANET SUNSA (Game 10)

Before leaving Rostoh to find the Jijirium Cache they buried during the war, the Gilcut Team repair their ATs, and notice something odd.  There's a tracking device on Pent's Fatty.  And one on Quey's Barking Turtle!   But there isn't one on Goug's Berserga.  They must have been installed before they met Goug... probably at the Battling Ring on Melkia.  Pulling them off their ATs and crushing them underfoot, there's a good bet they are being followed by someone...  There's little more they can do about it though.

Loading up into the AT Carry, the team drives to the location of the cache.  But someone has already gotten there before them!  Searching the empty site, they find traces of the Balarant military.  If the cache was found during the war, there's a good bet it was transferred to a military supply depot nearby.  Consulting the map, they locate the site of one and drive across the wastelands, into a narrow valley choked by metal structures and debris.

Arriving at the supply depot, it is clearly the site of a recent battle.  Wrecked Fatty and Standing Tortoise ATs litter the twisted wreckage of the depot.

Taking no chances,  Chet volunteers to stay behind and guard the truck.   The rest of Gilcut team get in their ATs and explore the wreckage, hoping for some sign of the Jijirium in the twisted wreckage.

Pent manages to find an accessway in the depths of the depot that wasn't totally destroyed by the fighting.   Pent and Quey investigate on foot, and discover...

... a strange back room, with mostly empty Jijirium containers.   Someone had hooked up a Jijirium liquidizer to some sort of bathtub, probably conducting some bizarre experiment beyond the team's comprehension.  Gathering up the scant remains of Jijirium, they prepare to leave the supply depot when they get an alarming radio communication from Chet- unidentified aircraft approaching, probably hostile!

Chet's transmission is cut off by the roar of jets, gunfire and explosions.  The rest of the team don't even know if he's still alive!  A troop transport lands and deploys grim, masked foot soldiers that look all too familiar...

As the soldiers fan out and search the complex,  they come across the team's ATs.  Somehow, the team must get into their ATs if they hope to escape.  Pent tosses down some scrap metal to distract the troops, and  Quey tackles the remaining guard from above before sealing himself in his AT.

The soldiers attempt to flee when they realize what is happening, but are too late to escape Quey's ruthless barrage.  The explosions futher distract the remaining soldiers, giving Pent a chance to get to his AT.

Goug takes advantage of the chaos to tackle the guard near his Berserga, knocking him down and jumping inside.

But just as the team break for the exit, a new threat arrives.  A heavy shuttle lands and disgorges an entire squad of Red Shoulders!  The sinister squad broadcasts grim news- they claim to have captured Chet, and demand the team come out if they want to see him alive again.

But as soon as the team expose themselves, the Red Shoulders attack mercilessly!   With no way out of the complex, Pent knows when to beat a hasty retreat, dodging the Red Shoulders attacks and falling back to the depths of the supply depot.

Meanwhile, Quey catches some of the Red Shoulders off guard with a well placed mortar barrage, seriously damaging one of the Red Shoulders...

...who returns fire with his own barrage of missiles. Miraculously, Quey dives for cover and avoids destruction, despite the place falling to ruins around him.

Pent fires half his rockets at the advancing Red Shoulders, to cover Goug's retreat.

Goug uses his Berserga to finish off a damaged Red Shoulder before escaping into the complex amidst the chaos.

Pent saved some rockets for a reason- to blast a hole in the back of the depot, big enough for their ATs to escape into the wreckage beyond...

With the Red Shoulders only temporarily delayed, the others follow Pent deeper into the treacherous wreckage.

As Pent threads through the ruins, he notices a clawed arm left behind from some earlier struggle.  Despite the imminent threat of pursuit, he tucks the souvenir under one arm and proceeds to the top of an impossibly deep shaft.

With no where else to go, he and the others work their way down into the precarious shaft, as debris rains down from above.  The pursuing Red Shoulders launch a barrage that collapses the already unstable wreckage, and everyone plunges into the shaft,  landing messily at the bottom!  Pents Fatty is demolished by debris, but as Goug pries him out of his crushed cockpit, he spots a most unusual find.  A blue AT of unknown design is trapped in the wreckage, clearly the owner of the claw arm found earlier.

The Red Shoulders abandon the site, convinced their prey is wiped out by the collapse.  Pent, Quey and Goug must devise an escape from the pit.  They manage to cobble together the Blue AT and get it running, and using the brute strength of their ATs, clear a path back to the surface.

Returning to the surface, the three are relieved to see the Red Shoulders have left, but each is silently wondering if Chet is even alive, and if so, where he might be...

On to part 9!

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