There was a hush over the Great Hall when the Cardmaster lumbered in, made his way up the aisle and stepped onto the dais. He turned to face the waiting duelists with an extremely somber expression. Sarinon and Scar hopped onto a seat together at the back of the hall while the old man cleared his throat and began to speak.
“Best not to waste time, eh? There are to be no more duels until this can be sorted out. We all need to pitch in for the cleanup job and after that is done we can endeavor to find the cause of this calamity. Everyone must hand their decks in to me before they leave this hall today. Thank you.”
Scar scowled. “He knows more than he’s telling us,” he hissed, his fur standing on end slightly. Sarinon looked down at her paws and contemplated. “Can we trust him?” she looked into Scar’s sapphire eyes. The kitten looked back at her mournfully. “We don’t have a choice.”
Suddenly, a wall of the Great Hall shattered inward, showering the crowd with bits of masonry and rubble. Screams and shouting filled the air as light poured in through the newly made door, illuminating the cloud of dust, through which could be seen a figure silhouetted and vaguely humanoid. Then a voice spoke into the ruin.
“Children of the Stars, you have taken what is ours. Free our brethren or be destroyed. We return at dusk tomorrow to claim our shackled brothers. You have been warned.”
In a fit of rare bravery, Scar bolted forward, clambered over the wreckage of the wall and pounced on the figure, sinking his claws and teeth into its leg. The figure passed, glanced down and then brushed him off as if he were no more than a minor nescience. Scar flew back several feet and landed in a sprawling tangle. Sarinon rushed over and nuzzled him gentle.
“Are you ok? Are you hurt?” she gasped. Scar groaned and a short burst of affirmation escaped him. “Where?” asked the fox. Scar looked up at her. “My pride,” he replied, “but I got a look at the thing and he’s big, armoured, spiky, scary … and not human at all.” The kitten leaped to his feet, wincing slightly, but determined. He advanced on the Cardmaster and snarled angrily, baring his teeth.
“This is more than just a game, now, Cardmaster, so you had better tell us what’s going on. We want the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth!” Sarinon half expected the wizened man to utter the cliché line that normally comes in reply to demands for the truth, but he didn’t. Instead he signed, looked down at his feet and then looked up again with an expression of extreme sadness on his face.
“Alright, he said, “let me start from the beginning.”
Please finish up the duels you are currently in but do not start any more.
Last Edit: Jun 10, 2010 20:59:49 GMT -5 by Deleted
“Does anyone know,” began the Cardmaster wearily, “how the TCG came to be?”
All around the hall, people shook their heads like little schoolchildren when their teacher asks them if they’ve done their homework. The Cardmaster sighed deeply and sat down on a large chunk of what had previously been wall. He folded his arms onto his lap, coughed, cleared his throat and began his story.
“Long ago, Spacefleet was not the only thing floating around. Many people do not know of this, but when Spacefleet was still an unknown entity, there was an … incident. A few strange ships showed up on the scene and set about destroying Spacefleet. I was there, just a nervous little scientist, when the Commander himself came to visit our laboratory. He demanded that we think of a way to create an army and then he swooped out with the promise that, if we failed, we would all be executed.”
“Pressure breeds sloppy work, but one of my colleagues came up with an idea. What if we could create soldiers that could be re-used? We started working on a few theories and eventually came up with what we called a gem. We created some cards which, to the naked eye, looked just like your average playing card, but which were encrypted with specifications for a fighter. We then set about figuring a means of activating it and we came up with something simple, yet elegant. Radio signals.”
“We created a machine which would broadcast a specific frequency that activated any card within range. The card’s manifestation would then be free to move around, apart from its origin card. It would remain solid as long as it stayed within the broadcasting radius.”
“The Commander liked it and set about implementing it right away, untested and potentially dangerous. We protested, but you don’t argue with the Commander, so in the end we all did the only thing we could. We stole a jumper ship and headed landside. As a scientist, one does not simply leave behind one’s very important and potentially revolutionary work, so we took all of our research and all the cards we had made that the ommander wasn’t using, all the blueprints and everything else we could think of.”
“We got away safely, what with everyone being distracted by the galactic war, and set up a makeshift lab not far from where we are now. We wanted to know for sure if there would be any side-effects to the system, or if it was likely to fail. So we built a new transmitter, not as great as the old one, and started running some tests. We got pretty far, too, and found only a few bugs. Or course, nothing this fantastic stays secret for long. One of the younger scientists working with us as an assistant saw a window of opportunity and took it for his own profit. He was always a greedy bugger.”
“He took our cards and sold them off as a game. Our only consolation upon discovering his treachery was that he hadn’t managed to get the transmitter machine, though he had disappeared and even to this day, we have no idea where he went. We decided to destroy the transmitter machine rather than have it cause trouble if the cards were activated in its vicinity. That was over 30 years ago. We scientists, left with nothing, simply moved on. I heard of the birth of the TCG and came as quickly as I could. I wanted to watch over it and make sure nothing bad happened and somehow I gained a reputation as a know-it-all rules-lawyer. Well, people who think they know better than me don’t like rules-lawyers, they cramp style, so I faded into the background and so it has been ever since.”
His story finished, the old man leaned back in a grandfatherly fashion and rubbed his hands together, glancing around nervously as though someone might suddenly try to attack him. It took a while before the information sank into Sarinon’s brain. It churned and whizzed and beeped until it finally produced a response.
“And you’re sure this transmitter was destroyed? Beyond repair?” she asked, her voice shaking somewhat. The Cardmaster nodded.
“So,” Scar piped up, “so … that thing was one of the attacking aliens? Why was it after its “brethren” … I mean, we don’t have any alien hostages or anything.”
“You’re smart for a kitten, and I don’t have answers to those questions. We lost touch with Spacefleet when we went planetside. I only know that they did eventually win, but I have no idea what happened to the aliens or to the card-based army used by the Commander. But I do know that, whatever that thing was, its coming back, and there are more like it. They want something from you … from us, and if we don’t’ deliver then I’m willing to bet they are powerful enough to exact vengeance.”
“So what can we do? We don’t even know what they want!” wailed a duelist Sarinon recognized as Candy.
The Cardmaster turned his gaze upon her with a momentarily surprised expression, as if he had forgotten that every duelist stood, sat or crouched around him, listening in. He coughed softly and managed a small smile. “I think I have an idea. If you don’t know what they want, then your only chance is to fight them.”
He got up and started making his way out of the hall. Every single duelist stood up as well and began to follow him as if he held the bread of life itself. The old man continued to talk as he ambled down the street.
“We built the transmitter machine with certain features. A failsafe, if you like. There are settings and frequencies that have different functions, and most of it was destroyed, but if I can find the right parts …” The Cardmaster made his way down a small alley and into what looked like an overgrown junkyard, in the middle of which stood a rickety shack. He pushed the door open and it fell off its hinges.
“Cardmaster!” Sarinon yelled, confused and desperate, “Please, tell us what you have planned.”
He ambled back to the crowd and crouched down in front of the fox. She looked up into his milky eyes and gasped as the gleam of a mad scientist appeared.
“I’m going to modify that old wreck into a transmitter that will dominate every frequency. One frequency to rule them all. Whatever communications they use, it’ll be destroyed, if they used frequency based weapons, they won’t work. It’s brilliant! But …” he raised a finger, “it needs something to power it up.”
“What do you need?”
“I need … KOs.”
This is where I stop babbling and you come in. Check the first post for details. =D
Last Edit: Jun 12, 2010 18:53:01 GMT -5 by Deleted
Sarn won't be gone for too long. She's taking a break for her exams and I'm taking over from her for a little while. I've got access to her account and she to mine, so PMing either of us will certainly get you involved. Just remember to include the numbers you have assigned to each card in your deck with your PM.
Thank you sweetheart for the wonderful fox and Leoness for the Scarn picture of love ^_^
In the interests of getting as many people as possible involved, I'm extending the signup period for another two weeks. This means you have until the 11th of July to sign up.
And since it'll now be taking such a long time before the poor Cardmaster (the senile old crook) gets the transmitter patched up, I see no reason why y'all can't start dueling as normal again. I will remind you all one week before the 11th that you should finish up your current duels and not enter any more. ^_^
Cool, I can sign up, go on vacation, and be back by the time it starts ^^ I was planning (and hoping) that I come on on the 11th or 12th XD Of course, first I need to figure out HOW I'm getting home <.<