Jul 06, 2022 9:46 PM
The Origin Trade Consortium makes contact with Patalon
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This next world is the best potential they've had in a while. Strong readings on all three of technology, magic, and habitability - it's quite possible the society down there will have something that'll better the OTC as a whole. There is, of course, also the possibility that it's one of the nastier Hells, something like Cthonia.

Standard procedure is to send a Thorn. This one is dark-haired, pale-skinned, and modified for physical and mental resilience. She carries an enchanted pistol and an athame on her belt, a backpack full of survival gear on her back, and a standard suite of spells engraved on her skin in a series of twining knotwork tattoos.

She holds up a Chron - 5.26 seconds of time when you need it - and snaps the glass prism between her fingers. A little bit of extra leeway, just in case. 

Her door appears on the D-Folder's pad. She opens it, and steps through to an alien world.

 

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She lands outside of a structure - actually, a row of them. They're... chirping? An extremely ugly woman - her face looks like it was made of gray clay and then someone squeezed it; her eyes are bugging out and her jaw barely has any definition despite the teeth sticking out from between her lips - is pushing a wheelbarrow toward one of the structures and doesn't notice Thorn immediately. She has an ugly baby strapped to her back.

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Sentients come in all shapes and sizes. If these are the natives, though, she's going to stick out a bit. Nothing for it, though. 

She approaches the woman. "Excuse me," she says. Her translation suite should convey her meaning.

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"- hi, what can I do for ya?" says the woman, seeming surprised but in a rather mundane way by Thorn's presence and not much at all by her appearance. "Didn't think humans liked crickets."

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"Is that what these are? I've never seen one before. I'm afraid I'm very lost. Can you tell me where I am?"

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"Yeah, this is a cricket farm. It's near Randkokan, that way." She points. "Planet's Laga. ...world's Patalon."

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Thorn is a trained professional and just barely manages to keep her shock off her face. "Thank you," she says. "Uh, do you know the way to the nearest transit station?"

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"Randkokan has a bus stop. We're on the Porandaum line, if you want to get to a big hub take that to Ened."

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"Thanks again, you've been a tremendous help."

She starts walking in the direction the woman pointed.

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Randkokan is a town! It's surrounded by farms that rather suddenly give way to buildings in the five to fifteen story range. There's awnings over the streets, and orcs everywhere, arguing about who is at fault for a bicycle crash and playing ball in the street and selling stuff in stalls and breakdancing. There are clothing stores and a school for little orcs and a gigantic amazing playground right in the middle of town as well as smaller but also amazing playgrounds in every individual neighborhood.

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Lively and industrialized, and the streets are wide enough for cars, but she hasn't seen a single car yet. Either this is a backwater or there's other transport technology in use - quite possibly both, given the magic readings on this place and the woman from earlier's comments on a "big hub."

She looks around for something that looks like a bus stop.

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There is a sign that says BUS STATION over there! It's a substantial building with no visible way for a bus to drive up to it.

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She'll walk into the bus station, then.

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Inside there are buses! It's laid out sort of like a subway station with platforms, but there are no tracks. Just buses, big ones, with people - mostly but not all orcs - piling on and filing off. If she waits a moment she will see one teleport out of existence, and another one pop into place behind it. The platforms are labeled with what route they go to, and there's a big chart on a screen in the middle of the main room.

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She gravitates towards the big chart on the screen. Hopefully it will be conveniently labelled.

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It's a little arcane, but with some squinting she can figure out where to go for a bus on the Porandum line that will terminate at Ened.

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It's not too easy to judge scale, but nonetheless at this point she should call home. 

She stands off to the side, fishes in her pack for her beacon, and punches in a code. Interplanar civilization, scale unknown. 

She doesn't have the technology with her to make further transit without help, and they're not going to bring a D-folder into another interplanar civilization's territory. She could ride the busses which are presumably interplanar, but that risks stranding her, and in any case they may cost something and she has no currency this world is likely to accept. Given the givens... 

She keys in another code. Requesting formal envoy.

Then she sets the beacon down on the floor and takes a step back.

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A door appears in midair, and an androgynous woman in a crisply tailored business suit steps through. The door vanishes behind her.

She nods to Thorn.

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Thorn retrieves the beacon, and puts it back in her pack. Then she steps towards the Porandum line.

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The envoy trails along behind her.

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The orcs are kind of surprised by the doorway. Apparently that's not a normal way for teleportation to work. But nobody's going to confront them about it.

They do not have bus tokens, which will stop them at the turnstile.

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Morning-glory looks at Thorn amusedly. "Any bright ideas?"

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"When in doubt, accost a local." 

She looks over at a concentration of surprised orcs, and calls out to them. "Excuse me! We're from offworld and we need to reach an embassy, could any of you help us out?"

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"- yeah, do you especially want to take the bus or do you just need the mail label for the imperial office?"

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"Mail would work, but I'll need instructions for sending it."

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"Yeah, you write, uh -" There's a sign on the wall, actually, with mail labels for various emergency situations. "I guess for this one you want 'Mir Imperial office miscellaneous/other rabbit sparkle fork'? Write it down just like on the sign, don't translate it."

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