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Back! To the FUTURE!
Fri Jun 4, 2010 2:20am

Oceans of black swirled, persistently inconsistent in their invisible but unmistakable undulations. Waves of quantum foam crashed over Kaze's consciousness, jerking him awake with the touch of a feather-soft meteor strike. A thousand imperceptible paradoxes played out around him as spacetime writhed silently, and a few more obvious ones presented themselves more alarmingly. The lower half of his body suddenly twisted into a Mobius loop, and then back again without so much as an uncomfortable twinge. Unlike most of the mercenaries, he'd had the rare experience of temporal dilation, and even with that firmly under his belt this was completely baffling to him. Focusing on anything proved futile, as spacial relationships were drawn and redrawn as slivers of quantum fabric continually repatched themselves into an undefinable quilt. What seemed like minutes passed before he began to wonder why he hadn't been ejected at some other point in time; or perhaps he had. Maybe this was the inside of some black hole a million lightyears from Earth, or the singularity that in some non-measurable amount of time (if there was such a thing) would explode into becoming the universe. Being lost in weightlessness was unnerving, and the realization dawned on Kaze that his fists had been balled around something immaterial for the duration of his tenure, and he let go of nothing, thinking himself foolish for seeking a handhold here.

To his surprise, the feeling of velocity was both immediate and powerful; he had indeed been holding on to something, probably owing to his aura's tendency to interact with subatomic structures. Without his anchor, he found himself being pulled in to a darkness that was somehow greater and more ominous than what he was sure would have been named Oblivion Black had any person been able to witness it safely. Resisting was a pitiful kind of hopeless, so he crossed his arms over his chest and arrowed his legs towards whatever great attractor was pulling him. His sense of speed increased, and a whirling howl told him he'd entered some literal tunnel. By the time he'd realized there was a light at the end of it, it was too late to do anything but squint through the overwhelming brightness. It was the portal out.

A sound between glass crashing and thunder cracking in his ears made his head spin and dots swim across his vision, and it wasn't until he had already started to fall that he realized his vision was now a pale blue. Wherever he had been ejected in time, he had been ejected two miles above the surface of a horizon-to-horizon expanse of ocean. A moment of panic sent his hands shooting out to grab at something, but not even the portal remained. The water was a long way off, and would be lethal by the time he impacted if he didn't slow his descent. He called on his magic, and was greatly pleased to find his trip through spacetime had done nothing to dillute it. Already having velocity allowed him to forego braking; he instead applied his skill towards directional control and leveled out, coming to a horizontal glide shortly after having passed the first mile down.

The view was disheartening to say the least, but still very picturesque. Water, water everywhere, and not so much as a barely submerged sandbar to land on. The moon loomed plainly overhead even in midday, but it looked alien and mechanical. It crossed his mind that this may not even be Earth, but he wasn't completely hopeless on sensationalized topics; the odds of there being a like-Earth planet were astronomical to begin with, and the odds of him randomly landing on one that would support breath (which it obviously was) was so far removed from likelyhood that he swept the whole notion aside. This WAS Earth, in some form or another. Had to be.

So he flew on for hours, using his strong points to gain altitude to burn in a glide when he needed to rest. The faintest hints of orange tint started to creep across the sky in front of him, so he must have been flying West. Worry was trying to become fear when on the horizon stuck up a prick of black, like a sewing needle stuck into a sapphire. He strained his eyes, and it was more and more apparent that whatever this spire was, it was man made. And massive. It took another hour to arrive, pushing himself to arrive before sunset, and the spire had evolved from a tiny twig on the horizon to a towering mammoth that would have dwarfed the tallest buildings in existence from his own time. It looked like a model concept of a space elevator, with literal docks all around the upper areas and a horizontal blast door at the top. More and more details became apparent, most importantly that lights were springing to life as the sun went down. It was either populated, or very well automated. Deck guns menaced what appeared to be landing areas, but none of them moved, so he used the ledge between one and the ocean as a stealthy landing point of his own.

Kaze suddenly felt very naked. Fighting back on the beach in swim trunks? Fine. Being pulled into netherspace by a mage in swimtrunks? Fine. Self-propelled flight for the better part of an afternoon in swimtrunks? Fine. But crouched in the darkness, listening to the electric lines inside the massive cannons hum, he found himself desperately wanting his equipment. At least the scan-capable helmet. Maybe some explosives, but that was just assuming the worst about the place. His sword snapped to life in his palm at his command, which was his only remaining tool aside from his magic. (Which it really was anyways.) He dispelled it and considered his options. There was a plainly marked door right across the platform, but what was beyond it was out of guessing range. He didn't want to walk blindly into a vaporizing laser trap, which appeared to be within the technological means of whoever it was that ran the show here.

At a loss for any carefully considered plan of attack that might not end up getting himself thrown off what appeared to be the only dry land on the planet, he did the polite thing. He crossed the cold corrugated sheet metal platform, set his jaw, and knocked.

Nothing. He knocked again.

Still nothing. The door was primitive compared to the rest of the place; little more than hardwood with metal plates to reinforce it. He took the doorknob and twisted. The door swung free, and a cacophony of everyday life instantly overtook the distant crash of waves. Primitive or not, it seemed to be soundproofed. More cannons were inside, set on heavy railroad tracks over dull grey metal so they could be wheeled out in case of... something you'd need cannons for around here. But there was nobody to be seen. An elevator nearby took him down a level, the noise getting louder. Beyond the elevator doors he found a civilization of humans dressed suspiciously old-world in style for their high-tech lodgings. In fact, everything seemed to be a little bit of the old and the new. The cylinder housed many buildings arrayed in a circle around a common ground; the buildings were made of hand-cut stone and wood, but the floor was titanium-x grating, allowing one to look down onto another level below. A banner stretched across the buildings directly across from the elevator. It spelled out a colorful and happy message that, though strange in text form, was entirely readable.

"Welcome to Ruminoa City"


I don't know how many of you played the Legends series, so here's a little info. Ruminoa City is basically what I described it as above. It's a spike-shaped anti-pirate fortress in the middle of the ocean with fuckall for hundreds of miles around. The lower areas and center of the pillar are all civilian, though. This is roughly 3000 years after the X series, and the world is post-apocalyptic in the sense that 95% of land is covered in water, but it's better than most of the other series settings in that natural plants will grow unaided and pollution is nonexistent.

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