So, the acolytes had just met a daemonic entity possessing an inmate of the prison tower. Sister Valentina cleansed the body with a shot from a flamer and a few verse of the Catechism of Hate before they inspected the interrogation room. It came to no surprise that Master Jaspar, who laid on the floor in his own blood, was dead. But that the medical servitor that was present (to prolong the life of those questioned) spoke to Sister Valentine, proclaiming that “He is here”. The Sister of Battle first thought that Master Jaspar, who was kybernetically linked to the tower and had once proclaimed that he in fact IS the tower, would have somehow transferred his mind into the drone in the moment of death. Mechanica Silicia, hearing such claim, came down to the room at once and had to reveal an information that in fact came as a little of a shock: this medical servitor had no speakers and no other capability to form an audible sentence.
Valentina suggested that the machine should be cleansed as well, but Silicia was against it, telling her that she might have just -thought- hearing the machine speak. During all the missions, Silicia who was a trained Medica-Interrogatoress was more worried about the treatment of the creations of Mars than about the fate of human beings, and again she made sure that a machine was spared. While Valentina was against it, Silicia claimed that she had the right to have the final word about what happens to something with a machine-spirit, as she would not interfere when Valentina was dealing with the human flock, either.
Now, the characters needed to bring a bit of order into the tower. Arbitrator Eisenstein took it upon him to inform the remaining mind-wiped guards about the death of Master Jaspar and ordered them into a small briefing room, explaining the situation with the omission of as much details as possible. The fact that the guards were not really conditioned to question orders was playing into his hands here, so that he at first claimed that “all three of us” would now be in charge was something the staff of the tower was simply not able to cope with. As they insisted that there must be ONE person at the top of the hierarchy (and acting more like shocked children than anything else), Arbitrator was frustrated enough to explain that he was the one in charge. As all of the remaining nine guards made the sign of the Aquila in front of him and acknowledge his new office as “Master of the Tower”, Eisenstein was less than happy. [the player of Eisenstein works as something that roughly translates a educator, and he has his share of children to deal with on a daily basis].
The acolytes and the guards holed up in the upper levels of the tower, Valentina leading the guards in prayer while Eisenstein had an eye on the shaft and the stairs as Silica went about dominating the machine spirits of the towers security. She was pretty much up to the task and unlocked the the towers sub-systems one by one. To her dismay, the she only had “electronic eyes” (cameras) in the cells and the floors leading to them, a total of a little more than 300 of them. The security systems indicated that all the other prison cells were still locked (magno-bolt-systems) and everything else still running and in place. She proceeded to go through the prisoners files, searching for both the Magos they have brought along..and for Julius Hesentanz, as they suspected (rightly) that he might have something to do with him. Meanwhile, Eisenstein and Valentina had decided to venture down into the lowest level.
Master Jaspar had forbidden them to go their, but they knew that a Machine-Priest named Alumion had to be there, together with a Techno-Arcana installment to mind-wipe people (and of course, the rest of the vital systems of the tower). As Alumion was not responding to any hails via the internal communication system of the tower, they already feared that he might be possessed as well. On their way down, roughly at the 8th level, something HAMMERED against one of the cell doors from within and moments later, the door burs out of the frame as another possessed inmate attacked them. The creature head no head but a large maw at its place and was thick with deformed muscles, but attack two guards they had brought along first. Eisenstein was able to make quick work of it, not without wounding one of the guards with friendly fire.
[All the while and till the end of the scenario, I had forget to ask for even ONE Fear test. This is something I -always- forget about. Next time I gamemaster DH, I swear that I will write the word “FEAR” onto the back of my left hand, just to remind me]
Silicia (with her Doc Octopus like implants) decided that she would now follow the two, always staying one level higher as them so that she could bring her sniper rifle to bear when another creature would attack. And so, they went further down. The lowest level was not as well lid as the others had been, and it was a more vast as it included all of the towers vital systems [so, everything important was located at the center, as I simply did not had the time to prepare a proper dungeon with all its regular trappings]. As they searched the rooms, Valentina would stay outside in the “court yard” that the rooms were arranged around while Eisenstein and Silicia entered the rooms.
They found the Tech-Priest Alumion in his work-shrine, were he had committed suicide by linking his cyber-mantle to a source meant to re-charge las weapons, electrocuting himself. All where sorry for the fate of the Tech-Priest, so none was sure if it had something to do with the self-destruct that was started earlier on or if Alumion simply had seen (or experienced) something he could not endure. The three also found the device to mind-wipe and re-condition people installed in that room. Silicia was in awe as those devices are techno-arcana and spend a brief moment in veneration. A large tank in the center of the complex and arcane installation contained a prison Mastar Jaspar had been about to mind-wipe and re-program. While Silica was not aware if the exact rites, the runes and glyphs on the screen told her that the process was still ongoing. As the man inside the tank opened his eyes wide all of a sudden, Eisenstein decided that this was not a time to take risk and went about shooting the man inside. Silica stopped him from damaging the machine but ordered him to open the tank and then shoot the man without damaging the machine. At this time, the door to the mind-wipe-room closed by itself and Valentina (still on the other side) noted strange noises from the work-shrine (were the corpse of the Tech-Priest still laid). Valentina slowly started to investigate while Silica bypassed the door in record time. The noises came from the corpse of the Tech-Priest, the cybernetic limbs twitching due to energy that was still pumped through the them. Valentina separated the power cables to put an end to this and they all went back up again. Back up and at the cogitators, Silicia identified the cell of Julius Hesentanz, but found the electronic eye not to be working. Instead, a word formed onto the screen: COME.
[I wanted to end the game this session, so I was in a bit of a hurry bringing it all through].
My group had a clever plan to deal with what they supposed to be a daemon possessing Julius Hesentanz: they poured promethium into the cell from under the door (which formed a huge puddle) and intended to light it up with a flamer from a distance. Eisenstein would be waiting nearby and Silicia would wait across the shaft, at the same level, long las at the ready and having an eye on the scene with her Augur Array. Just as Valentina lid up the promethium, the Daemon-Thing teleported out of the cell and right behind Silicia.
[Due to me forgetting about FEAR-tests AGAIN and making the ONE big mistake I always preach about to other peoples, this final battle was both quick and un-dramatic. In addition, I -should- have checked for surprise but did not. I might be a creative guy, but I often fail as an active GM]
Fully aware of the thing behind her, Silicia dropped down into the shaft to get out of the way and out of its line of sight. She risked death by dropping multiple levels down if she her mechandrites would not be able to grab anything. Eisenstein and Valentina turned to face the foul thing, but were hit hit by the ASSAIL telekinetic power while they saw some of their attacks simply disappearing or losing force before actually hitting the possessed body. They still managed to deal quiet some damage (as both the daemon and me forgot about dodging…mew!). In the meanwhile, Valentina swung about one level lower (she managed her acrobatics rolls quiet well) and started to aim with her longs las. It all ended with another glorius long las blast, doing next to maximum damage.
In the aftermath, they were picked-up about four days later by Siegwahn, the confessor of their Inquisitor. Confessor Siegwahn was send both to pick them up and to “check” on Master Jaspar. The situation needed some explanation to him, and he decided to stay back to assess the situation at the tower himself, “taking care” of things if need be. At this point, I had the cell Hammsermite on their way back home and ended the story for now.