The Fall of Atlantis

Playlist: Burn City - Nightcore

Side Temple, Temple of Poseidon, Atlantis, Date Unclear, Around Noon

TacMap - click it for larger image!

Anné had worked her way out to the left hand side, and as Liesel Maurer stepped back for a second, her sword arm circling dangerously, the sniper took her shot. L'Etranger coughed and the 7.5mm bullet crashed into the side of Maurer's chest. Coughing, she staggered to her knees. "You may have won this battle," she snarled through bloody teeth, "but the Reich will win the war. Heil Hitler!" She toppled forward to the stone floor and lay still.

The two Nachtwölfe technicians were now cowering against the far right-hand wall, but Birapeer was not in a forgiving mood. A short burst of Bren fire scattered them like dolls, and the Nazi contingent was done.

Coughing to attract the Atlanteans' attention, Marcus lifted his pistol high, and laid it on the floor in front of him. Compared to the heavy weapons the others carried, it wasn't an enormous demonstration of disarmament, but the guards seemed to relax a bit. The party spread out and began checking the Germans were all dead, and collecting their ammunition - resupply might be difficult here!

The leader of the guards approached Marcus, asking if he was the group's leader. "No," he said, "I'm the Archaeologist." Despite the perfect translation apparently granted by the Bifrost gate, the Atlantean was puzzled; no such science existed in Atlantis. He introduced himself as Captain Thomiedes, commander of the Palladion Guard as Joe joined the group.

Cyril unpacked his medical kit and gingerly did what he could for his wounds. It wasn't much; there were clearly still bullets in there, but he wasn't bleeding so much once he was finished.

Birapeer had searched Maurer's body, finding a slender sword - like the Canon's degen but made of regular steel - a pistol, ID and tags, a book of what might have been spells, a sheaf of bloodstained orders and a small clay object embossed with runes very similar to those on the Gate from Peru and marked with dried blood - not Maurer's. At the same time, Marcus had picked up the Mirror of Viracocha from the Blue Lama's corpse, as well as a sheaf of papers written in Tibetan. Thomiedes' eyes widened as he glanced over at the complete Palladion and back to the identical piece in the stranger's hands.

Carefully, Marcus, Joe and Birapeer explained to the Captain as much as they could of their quest for the Palladion - carefull making no mention of the Fall of Atlantis.

Senator Telamon

Senator Leandros

"What is the meaning of this?" came a ringing voice from the doorway. At the head of the stairs stood two new arrivals, tall proud-looking men in sweeping, majestic robes, trailed by four more Atlantean guards. Just for a moment, Thomiedes' eyes met Joe's, and a spark of empathy crackled. Both soldiers, both wearily accustomed to Brass and VIPs demanding to know what was going on... The Atlantean turned to the newcomers and bowed.

"Honored Senator Telamon," the older man nodded briefly, "Honoured Senator Leandros. These strangers," he gestured at the corpses, "from another time I am told, attacked us and tried to steal it. These other strangers," he stressed, "from the same time where they are at war with those, came to our aid in defeating them." Huh! thought Joe, Your aid? We did all the bloody work!

Telamon came regally down the stairs, nodding graciously to Marcus, Joe and Birapeer before heading for Thomiedes. To that latter's amazement, he began to explain that the Senate had taken the decision to break up and hide the Palladion, in an attempt to stop the quakes caused by the Burrower Beneath. The Captain was dead against this, and the argument showed signs of going on for some time, as another tremor slammed into the ground and small pieces of the ceiling fell to the floor around them.

Birapeer and Joe exchanged glances; with the Germans dead, the threat of the original Palladion falling into Nazi hands seemed to be averted; maybe it was time to get going. As they reached the stairs, however, Telamon seemed to have pulled rank. Leandros strode over to the pedestal, paused for a moment and then lifted the relic from its' place.

Instantly the Palladion's golden glow vanished, and a vast shock ripped through the ground, throwing everyone to the floor. A terrible noise, concussion and tearing, filled the air, and significant pieces of the building's roof crashed to the floor, raising great clouds of dust. Those with military experience were quite clear - this was not a building to remain in. With one accord, everyone headed for the exit.

As the group passed out of the temple's main entrance, they paused to acquire more helmets from the slain soldiers on the steps, then turned sharply left into the side garden temple from whence the rainbow-coloured flare of the Past end of the Bifrost had come. As they stepped into the gate, Joe and Cyril noticed that two German soldiers with MP40s were crouched in cover behind a large fountain. Behind and to their right was a huge rainbow-glowing arch with a pit in Greenland visible through it.

Shudde M'Ell Rises

At that moment, a shock surpassing anything that had gone before shook the ground, bringing down a substantial portion of the temple they had just left. A sound like the end of the world battered their ears. Turning, they beheld an unbelievable sight.

A gigantic tentacle-mouthed worm-like creature, hundreds of yards across, had smashed up through the city and now loomed over it. Huge chunks of masonry, great timbers, cloth, paper, bodies, hurled into the air by its violent emergence seemed to almost float high above the city, deceptively tiny dots against the cerulean sky at the tops of their arc.

Near its entry point, hundreds of smaller versions had emerged and were scattering into the city, destroying and slaying. From the reading he had done, Marcus recognized them as chthonians and the giant creature as Shudde M'ell - Great Old One and Lord of the Chthonians.

The two German soldiers were transfixed for a moment, staring upwards with pale faces, and then one of them hurled his weapon away, snarled wordlessly and hurled himself glassy-eyed and dribbling on his comrade, trying to bite his throat out. As the other man recoiled in horror, his hand spasmed on his trigger and a burst of fire went up in the air.

Leandros, slowed by the burden of the Palladion, was making for the Gate, having deduced that this was the escape route the party was heading for. Telamon was ahead of him and Birapeer backed into his path, gun raised. We can't let them take it through, he thought, are we going to have to kill them too?

The ongoing roaring and tearing of the destruction made communication very difficult. Joe and Marcus screamed into Telamon's face "You can't take it with you!" but the fear had got the better of the older senator and he pushed on towards the Gate.

Marcus, pistol once more in hand, put two rounds into the German still in possession of a gun and he went over backwards. Joe fired at the insane German, an act of mercy as much as war, sending him sprawling into the pool with a splash, his blood turning the clear water slowly crimson.

Cyril confronted Telamon. "Can't we use that as a weapon?" he asked, pointing at the Palladion. "No!" screamed the senator, "it's the cause! It's where the whispering comes from!" This close, Cyril realized that Telamon's eyes were as mad as any he'd ever seen.

Soundless in the ongoing din, small bits of the rubble blasted into the sky began to fall into the garden, some striking Thor Morgensen as he staggered in through the entrance and up to Leandros. Thor by no means understood all that was going on - but he realized that the big relic was something his leaders wanted left here. He grappled with Leandros for the heavy icon, pulling it away from him. Under his fingers, it thrummed with power like something alive or motorized.

One of Thomiedes' men stepped up and placed his spear against Thor's throat. "Give that back," he said in a voice like a slab of lead. Joe yelled at him, "That cannot go through the Gate! It must not!"

With a hysterical scream, Leandros grabbed a dagger from his robes and stabbed at the Dane. His strike was wild, and not only did it miss Thor, it hit the Palladion instead. The effect was perhaps unfortunate - the Palladion disintegrated into its' component parts, leaving Thor holding just one piece - the Agneya Weapon of Flame, though he didn't know what it was.

The Fall of Atlantis

As this was happening, Telamon tried to slip past Birapeer to the Gate. The Sikh balked at shooting him, in the end, and clubbed him back with the butt of his Bren. The senator staggered backwards - and vanished under a pile of masonry that plunged from above. Another stamped out the life of an Atlantean guard. Marcus, still clutching the Mirror of Viracocha from their own time, screamed: "I must be last through!", though only Joe and Anné could hear him.

Two of the remaining guards picked up pieces of the scattered Palladion - as did Leandros, while the third prepared to kill Thor if he didn't relinquish his piece. As the Dane considered his next move, a slab of stonework the size of a motorcar dropped from the sky and crushed the Guard to jam. Splinters scored Thor's cheek and blood flowed down his face but he was miraculously unharmed. Anné and Cyril chose that moment to dive into the portal, disappearing into the Future.

If it goes through, thought Joe, we can always chuck it back... "Drop it, and come on!" he barked at Thor. As Thor's piece clattered to the stone, the tanker sprinted to the Gateway and through. Thor looked down at the Weapon of Flame for a moment, and gave a moment's serious consideration to just picking it up again. Then he turned and ran, emerging from the portal just behind Birapeer. A moment later, Marcus came through, followed by Senator Leandros....

Session Date: 14th April 2020 - in CyberSpace!