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File 131698984616.jpg - (83.82KB , 648x504 , Abacus1.jpg )
352535 No. 352535 ID: aa6f62


Can you tell me what I am?
Expand all images
No. 352537 ID: bf95d9

No. 352542 ID: e79d6a

Looks like your head is some kind of Spirograph drawing.
No. 352550 ID: aa6f62
File 131699150136.jpg - (87.52KB , 648x504 , Abacus2.jpg )


My head looks like a drawing made by a spirograph
an instrument for recording breathing movements?

How odd.

Can you tell me who I am?
No. 352554 ID: 1854db

I think that is more for you to decide.
No. 352557 ID: 46681b

you are a powerful wizard emperor in a generic fantasy setting on the path of world domination and also the acquisition of babes for your harem. Also you have an awesome beard
I think this is character creation. We need to decide on gender, race, and class... probably
No. 352559 ID: 6a5a08

You are Greg, a lazy layabout in his mother's basement. You are presently dreaming.

Wake up and do something with your life, Greg.
No. 352562 ID: aa6f62
File 131699593260.jpg - (120.44KB , 648x504 , Abacus3.jpg )

Greg? A wizard emperor?

I am neither of these things. My apologies.

There is no kingdom here, no mother's basement.

There is only myself, and the Abacus.
No. 352565 ID: 978c33

So, unknown traveller, do you remember anything? Maybe investigating the Abacus will jog your memory a little.
No. 352566 ID: 1854db

Sounds like you are the guardian of the Abacus.
No. 352600 ID: aa6f62
File 131700216194.jpg - (265.98KB , 648x504 , Abacus4.jpg )

I'm not its guardian, but I know it, somehow.

It's the only thing I know.


I.. The Abacus holds secrets, I'm sure.

But it's scary.

Really, really scary.
No. 352644 ID: bdb895

Good thing you -don't- know fear! Go right up to that thing and learn ALL the secrets.
No. 352648 ID: 1854db

Perhaps you are part of the Abacus.
No. 352680 ID: aa6f62
File 131701675533.jpg - (268.61KB , 648x504 , Abacus5.jpg )


I don't know. Maybe.


Alright. Abacus, here I come!
No. 352681 ID: aa6f62
File 131701680493.jpg - (287.88KB , 648x504 , Abacus6.jpg )


What do you make of this?
No. 352682 ID: 692e92

Those walls look mighty tasty.

Lick dem' walls, and if you don't have a tounge just rub yourself up against the walls.
No. 352684 ID: 1854db

Hard to say. Try seeing if you can manipulate the panel that's covered in... veins? wires? vines?
No. 352697 ID: ae92af

...that doesn't look like an abacus.
No. 352700 ID: aa6f62
File 131702854111.jpg - (291.15KB , 648x504 , Abacus7.jpg )


I touch the strange substance covering the walls; it at first looks strong and resilient, but as I touch it it washes away as if it were a liquid.

Wiping away at the walls, I uncover a perfectly clean monitor and a ruined plaque.


It's not an abacus. It's the Abacus.

I don't know what the distinction is. I'm sorry.
No. 352702 ID: ae92af

hug wall, read plaque.
No. 352703 ID: aa6f62
File 131702891311.jpg - (44.80KB , 300x200 , Abacus8.jpg )

After a bit of fiddling, I uncover the whole plaque.

It says 'Otarch Research'.
No. 352706 ID: ae92af

rub the walls some more, you filty animal. any input devices or something around? what do the mnitors read?
No. 352771 ID: 692e92

No. 352847 ID: 1854db

Hey, be careful. Getting rid of all this stuff might alert whatever made it. Do uncover the monitor a bit more, though.
No. 353029 ID: aa6f62
File 131708856773.jpg - (273.08KB , 648x504 , Abacus9.jpg )

As I brush away the substance, I accidently touch the monitor's keyboard.

Instantly, words appear on the screen.

> Hello? Who's there?

What should I do?
No. 353134 ID: 692e92

Something along the lines of...

"A friend."
No. 353145 ID: 1854db

Type in that you don't know who you are. Ask who they are.
No. 353256 ID: fa0fb5

you are squiddles. tell him that.
No. 353505 ID: aa6f62
File 131718373827.jpg - (278.47KB , 648x504 , Abacus10.jpg )

"I don't know who I am."

>I've been so lonely. Please, come in.

I hear the door beside me begin to crack open.
No. 353544 ID: 1854db

Go in. Remove the residue from the door so that it can move better, if necessary.
No. 353549 ID: c6a053

That: But proceed cautiously.
No. 354585 ID: aa6f62
File 131750810887.gif - (0.98MB , 608x504 , Abacus11.gif )

No. 354586 ID: aa6f62
File 131750827453.jpg - (297.53KB , 648x504 , Abacus12.jpg )


No. 354587 ID: aa6f62
File 131750960761.jpg - (178.61KB , 648x504 , Abacus13.jpg )

As I enter, brilliant light washes over everything, seeming to be reflected and emitted by everything around me.

A hallway stretches out into the Abacus, while to my right there's a door with 'Display Area' written next to it in hovering letters.

What should I do now?
No. 354591 ID: 70a300

open it?
No. 354604 ID: 1854db

Let's check in the door.
No. 355315 ID: aa6f62
File 131763119578.jpg - (176.88KB , 648x504 , Abacus14.jpg )



As I approach, the door opens with a soft whirr. There is, at first, only darkness. Then..
No. 355319 ID: aa6f62
File 131763198430.jpg - (252.91KB , 648x504 , Abacus15.jpg )

..It's as though there was light all the time.

In front of me, two people are speaking. They don't seem to notice me. One of them is gesturing excitedly.

"Yes, but Esper, this is going to be the finest achievement that Otarch has ever produced! You can't say you aren't a little interested."
"Interested, perhaps, but nothing more. Fidio, these dreams, this 'grand design', it's tearing you apart."
"It doesn't matter what it does to me. As long as it's completed, I'll recover."
"That's a bad attitude, Fidio. You can't take the risk that your dreams will destroy you. This facility is Otarch's last hope. If you waste your chance on this, you won't get another."
"At least let me show you what my plans are before you kill the project."
"Fine. But I'm going to need a lot of impressing."
The excited one motions toward the back window.
"This is the place where it will go. It's not quite ready; we haven't even finished installing the diodes yet. But when it is, it will without doubt be a sight to see."
"Without doubt."
No. 355344 ID: 36b100

uh. do you know these dudes?
No. 355383 ID: 1854db

Say hello.
No. 358407 ID: aa6f62
File 131872103696.jpg - (249.90KB , 648x504 , Abacus16.jpg )


They stop speaking and fall still, staring at me.

I feel awkward. What should I do?
No. 358836 ID: aa6f62
File 131882467992.gif - (869.59KB , 648x504 , Abacus17.gif )

"This is impossible." the smaller one says. "Nobody is supposed to be here. Who-"
Suddenly his voice fades out as though there was some sort of static over it, and it becomes very hard to tell what's going on.
No. 358837 ID: 1854db

How odd. Back out slowly.
No. 358838 ID: aa6f62
File 131882513123.jpg - (240.38KB , 648x504 , Abacus18.jpg )

The people have vanished, and instead of an empty room, the windows display a strange, towering device that fills the expansive area.

Suddenly, a voice emanates from everywhere around me. It's a soft voice, one that pronounces carefully, as though it is afraid of saying something wrong.

"Tell me, if you had done a very bad thing, would you do anything to change it?"
No. 358847 ID: c7b6c2

"I would try."
No. 358849 ID: 1854db

No. 358918 ID: 0d7a83

Not if the "anything" was worse then the first thing.
No. 358958 ID: 6fa1ef

Anything that doesn't invoke trading one guilt for another.
No. 359150 ID: 7e9c15

depends on the amount of bad I caused... and even more on the amount of effort I'd have to spend. I mean shit happens all the time; I can't run around scooping up every little bit of it.
No. 361563 ID: aa6f62
File 131977397234.jpg - (88.92KB , 648x504 , Abacus19.jpg )

"Yes. I would try, at least. As long as it didn't involve trading one guilt for another."
"And.. And what about.. No, I suppose it's too late for confessions."
The lights go out, suddenly, eerily. I can't feel anything around me, or within me.
"When you do something bad, you have to change what you've done or atone for it. This is a rule. Though every mistake may teach me, the lessons taught must matter in the end. I'm sorry, padre. I've let you down. But I'm going to set it right. You, visitor and witness to what might have been.. I put my trust in you."
I feel a rush of color and heat.
"Find the Abacus. Change it. Let my sins be mine alone, not shared by any other. And I'm sorry. I truly am."
The voice ceases.
No. 361601 ID: aa6f62
File 131978370836.jpg - (140.48KB , 648x504 , Abacus20.jpg )

I can see again.

I'm in a different place than I was before. There's a wall computer here, and a sign pointing toward the 'Common Area'.

You've advised me this far. Please help me further. Tell me what to do next.
No. 361610 ID: 063c28

Examine the computer. We have a critical lack of information right now, so let's try to resolve this. Dig out any information on where (and when) you are, and if anything significant is currently happening. It sounds like some sort of reality modification device has run afoul, but that's just a guess for now.
No. 361620 ID: aa6f62
File 131979574870.jpg - (142.09KB , 640x513 , Abacus21.jpg )



The computer appears to be fairly useless. I can't find a keyboard, and all the monitor shows is a map of the facility.

The top-right corner of the map helpfully informs me that it is, in fact, a map. The top-left corner shows a little logo and the words 'Otarch Research'. The lower left shows what I assume are security levels; black is zero, yellow is one, blue is two, purple is three, and red is four.

Finally, the lower right shows me that I am the little dot. Good to know.
No. 361621 ID: 35e1a0

the fact no alarms are going off says you at least have security lvl 1. let's see what is around in here.
No. 361624 ID: 1854db

Take a look further into this room.
No. 361675 ID: 13ed99

the sign on the wall, what's it read?
No. 361854 ID: aa6f62
File 131984600875.jpg - (115.81KB , 640x513 , Abacus22.jpg )


'Common Area This Way'. Cross-referencing it with the map, it appears to be pointing toward the central circle of the building.



Deeper into the hallway, I come across a door, which appears to demand some sort of key. I can hear a conversation going on beyond it, however.

"Donde estoy?"
"Tú esta en el laboratorio de sociología, padre."
"Bueno. Your foreign languages are coming along, Abbie. Soon you'll be better than me."
"Never, father."
"Aw, don't think that. Everybody is capable of error. The important thing is that every mistake can teach you things, if you just listen."
"Is that how you got to be so smart, father?"
"Er, I suppose. I didn't go around looking to make mistakes, though.."

The door appears to be rather impenetrable, and there's nothing else in this direction. If I want to get through here, it looks like I'm going to need some clearance.
No. 361872 ID: 1854db

Alright. Let's look around in the common area, then.
No. 362074 ID: 13ed99

go the other way, then.

alternatively, knock.
No. 362631 ID: aa6f62
File 132004974993.jpg - (229.29KB , 640x513 , Abacus23.jpg )


I knock, but there's no sign the people inside have noticed. Either they're ignoring me, or they really can't hear me.


Alright, here we go.


No. 362743 ID: 6e44d2


Uh, ask one of them for help?
No. 362761 ID: 1854db

Speak to the one in yellow. Ask for a brief explanation of the layout of this place.
No. 363179 ID: aa6f62
File 132021077762.jpg - (241.70KB , 640x513 , Abacus24.jpg )


"Excuse me.."

"Oh, hello! Wow, you're not part of the facility. It's been a while since I've seen anyone from the outside. You're visiting, is that it? Yes, of course. You must be someone important if you're here. A friend of Esper or Amp, maybe. Is there any way I could help you?"

He seems a little scatterbrained.

"Could you briefly explain the layout of the building?"

"Of course, yes, I'm sorry. The building is pretty simple, if you find a map, but, um, I suppose that won't help, since all the maps are stupid and don't have the name of the different labs and stuff on them. I work in Civilian Applications, right here. It's a series of labs designed to rework some of the less dangerous technologies into stuff people like you can use outside. It's a yellow place, hence my robe. Yellow is all about the nonviolent or experimental sciences, which I like.
Blue covers the military and security labs, and we all sleep in these giant rooms in the blue part of the facility. I'd show you them, they're giant and huge and impressive, but I can't even go into that section in the daytime unless I transfer to blue, and blue is all stodgy and dumb, so that's never gonna happen. If you can, though, you should definitely see the bunk rooms, they're crazy.
The purple lab is some secret project of Fidio's. You probably saw it on the way in; nobody but the Purples and Reds know what it is, but we're all guessing. Personally, I think it's some giant cake-maker or something, because everybody knows Esper thinks it's a waste of time and space, and Fidio always is a little kooky. Smart guy, though. I bet the cake-maker will be a good one.
Red is the super-secret top-quality area of the building. Nobody knows what happens there, but it's probably where all the crazy experimental stuff goes on. Don't bother talking to a Red except for Amp, because they're hard to find and very quiet. Amp's a cool guy. He's the Red leader, and even though he never says anything about the red stuff, he'll talk about anything otherwise! I think that's it.. Oh, duh, names! My name's Ote, what's yours?"

"I, uh.."
No. 363203 ID: 1854db

Hmm let's say Gemini. Or Idiom Alpha if that's not just the author's name?
No. 363207 ID: 35e1a0

maybe Abacus
No. 363230 ID: f78d49


I don'tt know. I spend too much time in Hengsha.
No. 363897 ID: aa6f62
File 132056913458.jpg - (372.78KB , 648x504 , Abacus25.jpg )

Designation Received.

"Call me.. Gemini."


"I'm sorry, I didn't hear you call me Gemini."

"Okay, Gemini."

"That's better."
No. 363898 ID: aa6f62
File 132057015415.jpg - (235.47KB , 640x513 , Abacus26.jpg )

"Well, I have to go work, sorry. Have fun around the facility! Oh, and watch out for the antsy Blues, they'll hit you up for an I.D., and if you don't happen to have one, since you're visiting, they'll throw you in a cell. Toodles!"

Ote has left.

I need a goal. I need to understand. I'm lost, and I'm sick of it. I want some answers, and I need your help to get them. Where should I start looking first? And where do I get security clearance? So many variables.. I need help. Give me something to work towards, please. Something I can focus on.

Give me a reason to exist.
No. 363935 ID: 9c8d4f

have sex with everything.
No. 363954 ID: 1854db

We need to get an ID. Ask the purple guy how you can get one.
No. 364115 ID: bb0df0

Well, for one thing, you've got to avoid those blues until you have an ID. Try talking to the purple guy. Ask him what you need to do to get an ID, or at least security clearance of some sort.
No. 365150 ID: aa6f62
File 132107256908.jpg - (202.08KB , 648x504 , Abacus27.jpg )


Sure! Just as soon as you tell me what 'sex' is.


"Excuse me.."

"Hello. Are you here visiting the memorial?"

He gestures towards the monolith in the center of the room. The sentence it projects seem to to follow me wherever I go.

Remember What We Work To Protect.

"Oh, yes, I know, it's not a memorial, it's a 'monument'. Yet it seems more and more each day that our monuments shall be our memorials, our last shadows for the unknown peoples of the future to find. That is, if we can even hope that our Expected Guests won't destroy them as well. Otarch is on the edge, my friend, and we are all about to fall."

There's an awkward silence.

"Uh, that's cool and all, but.."

"Ah, yes. I apologize. How may I help you, visitor?"
No. 365157 ID: 1854db

Request an ID.
No. 371379 ID: a133a1
File 132360382884.jpg - (203.82KB , 648x504 , Abacus29.jpg )


"Er, I seem to need an I.D., so if there's any way you could..?"

Though until this point polite, he rounds on me with a looming presence that sets me on edge.

"You lack identification? Suspicious. Highly suspicious. We're at war, you know. You could be an ENEMY AGENT. How can you prove you're not one of THEM?"

He points accusingly and with great purpose, leaving me at a loss for words.
No. 371380 ID: a133a1
File 132360394266.jpg - (48.37KB , 648x504 , Abacus30.jpg )

"Whoops, turns out I was fucking with you. "

He throws me a ridiculously thin sheet with ID printed on it.

"Here you go. It's only temporary, mind. As long as you're not staying, though, that should be good for level one access. If you do plan to stay, well, just talk with Amp, Esper, or Fidio. They'll set you up. I've got to go, myself. I can't keep the.. The experiment waiting, after all. Goodbye. Hope to see you again and all that."
No. 371416 ID: 6e44d2

No. 371422 ID: 1854db

Excellent, now we don't have to worry about the blues. And I suppose we can enter the rooms in the yellow areas now?

Hey, let's go talk to the blues next.
No. 371819 ID: a133a1
File 132373128046.jpg - (248.81KB , 648x504 , Abacus31.jpg )


No need. It looks like they've come to talk to me.

As they approach, I hear the last lines of a quiet conversation.

"We shouldn't be doing this, Ree." the larger one says.

"We have to do this. It's been too long since the last one." the thin one says. "Excuse me.. You are a visitor, are you not?" he continues on before I have a chance to respond. "You're the first visitor we've had in a long time. What's happening out there? Tell us." He speaks with authority, as though he's used to such questions being answered.

"I.. I'm not sure." I say, because it's true.

"Damn it all, Ree! I can't believe we risked ourselves on this idiot!" the larger one explodes. "Listen, you. You have to know something. You can't be completely ignorant. Tell us anything. Have the panics stopped? Have the Guides brought any plans to the public? Come on, just say something."

"I'm sorry, I really don't know."

"Damn you! Damn everyone like you! It's this kind of ignorance which will kill us all! You're basically an agent of the Vexing-!"

"Silence yourself, Ker!" the thin one, Ree, snaps. The larger one, Ker, does fall silent, immediately, though he carries a look of cold fury which is pointed at me.

Ree makes an apologetic gesture. "I am sorry, visitor. I never meant for this to become an interrogation. My associate has been under stress recently. All of us have, of course. But.. Is there truly nothing you can tell us?"

"Nothing at all. I'm sorry."

"Hm. No, I believe we are in error. We expected too much and offered too little. Please, for whatever reason you have come here, enjoy your stay. If you need anything, please do not hesitate to ask. Do hurry, though. We are not supposed to approach visitors. Again, my apologies."

I pause. I do have questions, a lot of questions. But where to begin?
No. 371830 ID: 1854db

Okay I think we can conclude at this point that the secret project is the Abacus. We need to get purple clearance, eventually, and to do that we need to talk to Amp, Esper, or Fidio. Right now we need some information about the world in general, I think. Ask them about Otarch.
No. 372295 ID: a133a1
File 132385571370.jpg - (190.24KB , 648x504 , Abacus32.jpg )


"Could you tell me more about this place? About Otarch?"

Ree seems confused for a moment. Ker scowls. "You want to know about.. Huh." Ree says. "Alright, I suppose. Otarch Research is the emergent center of scientific study on Exethir. It is divided into sections, usually referred to by color. Yellow is generally about civilian applications of things discovered here. Blue is about.. Well, I can't say anything about blue. Not unless you have clearance."

He stares at me with a questioning glance. I don't say anything. He continues. "Purple, too, is highly secret. It mostly is the personal study group of Fidio. Red is completely cut off from the rest of the base. Usually only its leader, Amp, can be found outside of that part of the base. He's friendly enough, I suppose, but he won't say anything about red section, as well he shouldn't. We don't know enough about the Vexing to be flippant about information. Speaking of which.." He coughs. "If there are any other questions I can answer, please put them forth, but if we are seen speaking, there may be trouble. I would like to avoid that. Be brief, please."

Ree and Ker seem to be just barely able to stand still; they continually shoot glances around the room, as if they fear somebody is watching.
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