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In memory of Flyin' Black Jackson
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858913 No. 858913 ID: 4a443f

Ok here we go lads, babby's first quest

General info to follow in future threads
Check discord for updates or hang out, I guess

Art Content will be forthcoming, but a few images from here and there for now.

Quest Discord: https://discord.gg/Ga9MFPW
Expand all images
>>
No. 858920 ID: 4a443f

Cryotech Stasis Unit Control Software . . . . . v 3.0.5
USCSS “Argo”
Omega Proxyon Colonist Program

Pod #0001 – Ready!
Subject . . . . . <corrupt/no file – contact system administrator>
Opening pod...
[True] Vessel is in orbit of [OMEGA PROXYON]
Invalid activation! Missing protocol stages...
[False] Error: No all clear signal
[False] Error: No medical clear signal
[False] Error: No medical androids on station
[False] Error: No medical personnel on station
[False] Error: Life sign values show a null value, please contact system administrator



POD OPEN, NOTIFY MEDICAL PERSONNEL FOR DE-STASIS PROCEDURE
- - - - - -
>>
No. 858932 ID: 4a443f

Congratulations! After reviewing your personnel file, your skill sets have proven to be suitable for the Omega Proxyon Colonization Program's Exploration and Security Department. We would like to conduct a quick confirmation survey.

Please indicate in each field, your specialization...

Primary Skills
-Marine Training (small arms, crew-served weapons, explosives, vehicles)
-Colony Security Training (small arms, survival, hunting & tracking, vehicles)
-Commanding Officer (small arms, extensive politics and strategy knowledge)

Secondary Skills
-Medical Officer (Specialization in biology and chemistry)
-Science Officer (General specialization in physics, biology and chemistry)
-Engineering Officer (Specialization in engineering, electronics and chemistry)

Our records indicate that you have a waiver for catastrophic physical damage (details expunged from records, please inquire with HR for more information regarding the personnel privacy regulations.) - Please detail your new physical form / body type below.
- - -
Sonnhausen - Bayern Biotech, “MODEL 2040” - ORGANIC BODY
- - -
An organic body built from vat grown tissues, the 2040 implements a series of improvements on the human body to feature peak physical performance. While the body remains for all intents and purposes, organic, everything from bone structure latticework to metabolic functions, as well as the incorporation of genetic material from other terrestrial creatures allows the user to enjoy vast improvements in healing, longevity, endurance, physical performance and even durability.

PROS:
-Double the senses, endurance, durability and physical capability of a peak-performance human
-Can regenerate limbs at a relatively quick rate (4~6 mo., depending on size)

CONS:
-O2, H20, and proper nutrition are still vital to life
-Massive blood loss, extensive mutilation and damage to brain is still lethal
-Temporary deafness / blindness caused by excessive light or sound affect you
-Infections and disease, while much less dangerous, can still affect you if severe enough

- - -
Northrop-Lockheed “DAVIS-01” Hybrid Unit – SYNTHETIC BODY
- - -
Intended for combat androids that undertake VIP protection, counterinsurgency operations and other military applications that require a 'face', DAVIS units incorporate technologies found in civilian androids, such as emulated skin, musculature and extensive personality / empathy intelligence matrices. Capable of utilizing food to power themselves, these units are the first synthetics capable of self-healing and limb regeneration (although latticeworks are needed) with the help of nanobots. While much more durable, DAVIS units only offer marginal performance improvements over a peak-performance human. The DAVIS-01 iteration emulates humans as closely as possible in physical form, shape and function; most impressively, they are fitted with a synthetic brain compatible with IBM NeuroScan(tm) technology.

PROS:
-Immune to disease and can selectively feel physical pain
-Cannot be shocked, rendered unconscious, blinded (save damage to ocular units), etc.
-Can survive without food (3mo), water (3wk), sleep (1wk), survive in vacuum / low-O2 for up to 30 minutes, although at reduced capacity
-Enhanced decision-making and sensory capabilities
-Barring destruction of synthetic brain, you cannot be killed from physical trauma (although performance may be crippled accordingly)

CONS:
-Athletic ability limited to what the human body is capable of at peak performance
-Require twice the amount of food for energy generation
- - - - - -
>>
No. 858964 ID: 9c2d0c

colony security
science officer
primarily organic
>>
No. 858997 ID: 4a443f

>>858964
>colony security
>science officer
>primarily organic

You have worked with many research teams operating in hostile environments. Extreme climates, lack of food and water, or even aggressive outlaws or wildcat miners- you have learned how to fight against these things, utilizing an arsenal of man-portable weapons and state-of-the-art equipment.

However, small research teams means that you had to also specialize in the science aspect of things, and you've spent much of your time as an assistant researcher. You have a solid base of generalized knowledge, although not a lot of practice applying it.

A catastrophic shuttle accident meant that you lost your physical form- and by the grace of an experimental treatment, you were able to salvage your consciousness and re-upload it into a body of flesh and bone.

- - - - - -
>>
No. 859043 ID: 4a443f
File 151617301786.png - (342.32KB , 600x337 , cryopods.png )
859043

Oblivion. Then, all of a sudden, light.

The cold embrace of cryosleep releases its icy grasp. It feels like you've been dead for months, years, decades- perhaps, even centuries. Before you even open your eyes, you can hear the hissing and a whoosh- and you're greeted with freezing cold air that washes over your skin. Needless to say, it's an awful way to wake up.

Before you even throw your eyes open, you notice two important things: First, an eerie silence. No sirens, no hissing of other cryopods opening, no beeps, buzzes and hums from the legions of medical droids that are supposed to tend to the freshly awoken. All you can hear is the massive refrigeration vent on the ceiling of the cryo chamber chugging away.

… And that's the second important thing. The ambient refrigeration maintains a frosty -100 degrees Celsius in the cryo rooms, designed to hold up to 3125 colonists each. The cold here is enough to kill within 30 minutes or less- with only an olive drab nomex jumpsuit, some poly-cotton underclothes and a pair of paratrooper boots stowed away below your cryopod, you're not well equipped for the weather here.

Quickly rising from your bed (which is at the end of the fucking hall, nice), you see a near-endless row of cryopods that run down the length of a wire-mesh catwalk on both sides. It's clear that the ship has decided to release you, and only you, out of your slumber. It seems that out of the 75,000 souls aboard, it seems you are the only one awake. There's something wrong; very wrong- but if you stay here for much longer, you won't be awake for long.
>>
No. 859044 ID: 4a443f
File 151617367334.jpg - (30.47KB , 440x330 , airlock.jpg )
859044

You get up as fast as possible. taking care not to step on the metal floor, you snatch the boots and jumpsuit out of its compartment. Only when you finish putting it on, do you dare to step out of the pod.

The cold burns your skin, so you waste no time in getting out of here. Breaking into a full sprint towards the section's airlock, you reach for the control panels, only to realize the control panel is offline.

There's precious little time, so you opt instead to operate the heavy manual locks- a feat made easy with your preternatural strength. With a metallic clang that resounds through the halls, you're able to push open the heavy airlock doors, which seem to almost fight against you.

And so you progress, section by section, running past hundreds of dormant cryopods- all of which remain sealed and silent in the dimly-lit rooms...
- - - - - -
>>
No. 859046 ID: 4a443f

You count the seconds. Five minutes. Ten. Opening airlocks and running through. The cold is still all around, and you begin to feel somewhat sluggish.

hypothermia.. An unmodified human would have long since expired, or suffered crippling effects from the cold. But not you. You're able to forge on through, until you come across a much larger looking airlock door. You recognize the pattern- a standard cargo coupling, which allows crews to access the interiors of add-on cargo modules. This one opens much easier, thanks to its well-broken in locks.

You expect a warm rush of air, but once you make it through, you are still assaulted by the brutal cold. There is a welcome sight, however- two well-worn pressure suits.

ATMO SUIT ACQUIRED.

You nearly break the closet door opening it. Donning the bulky suit as quickly as possible, you let out a sigh of relief as the woefully underpowered heating module kicks in.

You're still cold, but the threat of becoming a popsicle is gone. With some time to think, you ponder your options...

A) Turn back and retrace your steps. Investigate the pods for signs of sabotage or any information that may shed light on what's going on. Checking on the medical droid bays and activating them manually, may also help. Perhaps you really are the only one awake, and something has gone wrong with your pod only...

B) Head over to the debriefing and acclimatization areas. If anyone has awoken from the adjacent modules, they're most likely there. Perhaps the issue is with your section only, and other crews may be awake. Notifying them of the problem could help prevent further accidental pod openings...

C) Head over immediately to an emergency gathering point, or the command and control bridge. The lack of heat and the accidental release of your pod may indicate that there's something going terribly wrong...
- - - - - -
>>
No. 859187 ID: 33cbe7

B. Don't want to drag any other colonists into an early awakening (if there are any left) and don't want to head to the bridge without at least getting a cup of coffee first.
>>
No. 859222 ID: 94a268

Let's go B, and see what's up

genre savvy tells me that there is no one else :P
>>
No. 859232 ID: fe1856

A
>>
No. 859256 ID: 4a443f
File 151624913813.jpg - (31.29KB , 736x414 , 680bb02478c983c325916ec8c2d77346--concept-architec.jpg )
859256

>>859046
>>859222
>Head over to the debriefing and acclimatization areas.

You decide it's best to check if there's anyone about, and hope that they're busy at work fixing the heating.

Following the signage, you walk over into the debriefing area. You see the first signs of life- a few safety cones and some tools scattered about on the floor, with a couple of the cushions on the wall removed to reveal a maintenance panel.

Looks like someone was already at work. Eager for something hot to eat and drink, you keep on going.
>>
No. 859258 ID: 4a443f
File 151624943328.png - (677.29KB , 960x540 , medbay.png )
859258

The debriefing areas are empty. You see that there's more sign of work done here, with some scaffolding and tools laying about. Nothing to suggest that other colonists filed through the area- the reception desk looks untouched. There's nobody here as well, so you press on.
>>
No. 859272 ID: 4a443f
File 151625087797.png - (1.05MB , 1106x537 , F1KPaiN.png )
859272

Finally, you see a welcome sight- a lit breakroom, with the door open! Inside, you hear somebody shuffling boxes around, busy at work. It's not the galley, but you doubt anyone would have a hot meal prepared in there. You might as well help yourself to some snacks now.

It seems lived in, with playing cards, board games and boxes of food already placed all around. There's a space heater laid out, and most importantly- coffee. You remove your helmet, and enjoy the warmth in this room.

Seating yourself down, you help yourself to some Oreo-O's cereal with a nice bowl of reconstituted whole milk, while retrieving a meal pack filled with shelf-stable chicken strips to heat up in the microwave. The coffee is heavenly to the taste, even without sugar or cream.
>>
No. 859339 ID: 4a443f
File 151626177018.png - (102.91KB , 265x317 , medbot.png )
859339

Halfway through your chicken strips, you're accosted by a polite, but somewhat... tinny voice. It comes to you almost as a shock, enough to make you jump.

"Looks like you made it just fine without our help. Although, you're up and awake ahead of schedule..."

There's a medical android approaching you, dressed in freshly-pressed scrubs. Before you can even make a dash for the exit, it blocks your only path of escape- and then seats itself next to you. You're not sure if you should be sitting down for a chat, or fighting for your life. It seems to sense your unease, as it raises its open palms in a gesture of peace.

"No need to be frightened. Besides, I'm a sworn doctor. We all swear by the same hippocratic oath, robots and humans alike."

Still, it seems like a wise thing to give it some space- so you scoot over as far as possible. "Well... Christ, you scared the shit out of me. But keep those hands to yourself."

"I suppose robots like us get a bad rap, after that nasty Seegson affair. In my defense, I'm a Schappiel Model MR-680. Not one of those shitpile budget murder-bots."

"Right. Well, let's keep some personal space in between us. Just for my sake."

"Fair enough. Listen, I have a lot of important things to tell you. Just give me a few minutes, nothing more."

"Shoot."

"First, you're going to want to keep that helmet close and take a rebreather unit on way out. The ship has lost pressurization in most compartments. For your safety, we shunted whatever air we had left into the sections you just walked through, but its barely enough for several days.”

"What? I mean, aside from the heating, everything seemed just fine."

"Appearances are decieving. Which brings me to the second topic. You might not want to hear this... But we've been stuck in orbit. For a very, very long time. We thought it was best to keep all of the colonists in stasis until we could fix the problem."

You rise out of your seat, trying to digest the news. "What about the Engineering and Command crews? Are they out of stasis?"

"No. It was evident that nobody could fix the damage onboard. It's too extensive- when the ship first shot out of warp, we immediately hit an asteroid field. Or more accurately, we stopped around it. Luckily, the habitation modules in your wing were more or less untouched. The same wasn't so for a lot of other sections needed for emergency repairs: Engineering wings, wormhole communications, heavy EVA droid hangars, sublight drives for emergency landing, and the COSMOS colonist management AI. I could go on for hours, but the vessel has now been rendered mission ineffective."

“Then why raise me at all? Omega Proxyon Corporation would have sent a rescue vessel to look for us in due time...”

"As the only acting officer, I waited for almost five decades. No rescue vessels showed in that time, so I moved onto the next portion of my directive. To wake up whoever I could, to ensure their continued survival. Without COSMOS, it was a challenge- without its authorization, I had to work around the existing software. But as expected, this put the other pods on lockdown. At this time, freeing the other occupants would be impractical without repairing COSMOS. Trying to break through the lockdown protocols could take another several decades. Maybe even centuries.”

“But why... me? Surely there's somebody better suited to the task of... Well, somehow un-fucking this.”

“You're not listening. There are no more solutions aboard the ship. I released you so you could continue your survival on the planet's surface. With only the chance to free a single person, I worked through all the data logs and personnel files... You were uniquely suited, given your background and physical ability.”

You struggle to take it all in, trying to untangle everything in your head- until you realize that you are truly alone, without the hope of seeing a single survivor out of the 75,000 souls on board. The mind struggles to grasp the prospect of being stranded, thousands of light-years from home. Words stick in your throat and you're barely able to hold down a burst of emotions- all of them unpleasant, before a heavy sense of doom weights heavily on your shoulders.

Then, you hear something strange. The medical android's voice softens, losing its stiff, inhuman tone.

“I spent ten years fighting against my own programming, stopping myself from freeing you from your sleep. I... had to figure out answers. To moral questions. I knew life aboard this ship, or on a barren planet, would have been meaningless. But when I realized that there was life on that 'rock' - sapient life, with societies and settlements; I knew there was...”

The android stops, as if he's unsure of what he's saying. But he looks up, and presses a button on a console affixed to the wall. One of the breakroom's windows begins to turn from an opaque, black material to a crystal-clear glass; and soon your eyes are greeted by a beautiful planet that seems to fill the window. Its surface almost seems to glow with blue oceans, soft white clouds, frosty polar ice caps and lush, green landmasses.

“Hope. It's a hard concept for me to grasp, but I think I understand. Even then it wasn't an easy decision. But you would have stayed dead, for all intents and purposes, in stasis.”

You sit there, awestruck at the surface of Omega Proxyon. They promised a planet that was livable, but this... Nobody would have expected a planet like this, and especially not one teeming with intelligent, civilized life.

"Even then, it was a tough decision, trying to carry out my directive to save lives. But here, you would have stayed dead in stasis. Most likely forever. Maybe it was the wrong call to make, seeing as I don't have the facilities to re-freeze you now... and if I am wrong, I'm sorry.”

You press your face against the cold glass, still in disbelief. “I'm not sure exactly what to say. This... this is amazing.”

“I made all the preparations. I loaded up one of the colony exploration shuttles with everything you might possibly need. If you find yourself a new life down there, then all this wouldn't have been for nothing.”

Staring at the wondrous planet in silence and at a loss for words, you're still unsure about everything; there are too many decisions to make, too many things to think over.

“Well, I'll take that as a thank-you then.”

“Ah- well, I suppose. Still not sure how I feel about everything.”

“You don't have time to figure that out. Since you're on your own, going through the shuttle manifest and the takeoff safety checklist is going to take us a few days before oxygen runs out. You can think about all the other things on your way down.”

“I suppose it's goodbye then. Thanks, uh...”

“Doc. Just call me doc.” The android offers a hand, and you firmly shake it.

“Now get going, son. You have a whole new world ahead of you.”
>>
No. 859357 ID: 33cbe7

>>859339
I might not be alone once I get down there, but before I set out, are there any drones/bots I could bring down with a rechargeable power source? A pair of extra hands could prove invaluable.
>>
No. 859526 ID: 4a443f
File 151632551522.png - (511.33KB , 672x378 , dropship.png )
859526

The next few days fly by in a blur. There's a lot of work to do, even with droids doing most of the work. Doc insists that you learn everything about the shuttle, everything from manual piloting and emergency repair procedures. And when you're not busy learning how to fix and pilot a WY pattern colony-lander, then you're busy going through the cargo. There's enough stuff inside to start a self-sufficient settlement for 22 well-armed, well-fed and well-equipped colonists.

>>859357
There's about a half-dozen Seegson worker droids and a single Schappiel MR-680 bot (same as Doc's model). The worker droids can handle most maintenance, repair and menial tasks without any direction, and the Schappiel can handle virtually any kind of medical procedure. All of them can be recharged aboard the shuttle and its ample power supplies, provided by a nuclear reactor with fuel for 80 years.

Doc was right about only having a few days- with 2 hours left on the countdown, you're barely able to finish everything. You only have enough time for a nice, long shower and a hot meal, before you find yourself strapped into the cockpit of the colony lander.

A small vidscreen flickers to life; and on the other side, you see Doc fidgeting with the screen.

“Uh- is this working? Hope you're buckled in. Everything ready to go in the shuttle?”

“Just rosy, doc. I'm ready to drop when you are.”

“Be careful. There's a lot of debris surrounding the Argo. I can track larger objects with the sensors, but you're going to have to take it slow and use visual most of the time. We're due for a year-long micrometeorite shower, and you don't want to cross paths with it.”

“Right. ETA on those meteors?”

“Can't give you a solid number. Instruments here in the shuttle traffic bay are limited at best, but an hour tops. Best leave before you're stuck here for good.”

You grumble and release the master safety. There's a loud beep, and the shuttle hums with life, the sublight engines gaining power. “Well, let's get this done quickly. Doc, hit it.”

“Alright. Releasing clamps and fuel lines... Master safety off... Hey, when you hit land, build that comms relay. Phone back and let me know you're ok.”

“Doc, I'm going to turn you in for decommissioning if you're writing 'dad-bot' software in your head.”

The android chuckles. “Right. Well, good luck and godspeed. Releasing in three... two... one...”
- - - - - -
>>
No. 859529 ID: 4a443f
File 151632558051.png - (447.96KB , 672x378 , dropship2.png )
859529

CLUNK

The hydraulic claws release the shuttle. As you falls away from the ruins of the Argo, It's clear how extensive the damage is- glittering space debris seems to form a cloud around the ship, and you see some sections barely holding on. It's a mess, and you're careful to make sure the voyager leaves this place in one piece, as debris clatters against the windshields like a hailstorm.

You're amazed at the untouched condition of the habitation ring; by all accounts, it's a miracle that you survived at all. The clack clack clack of debris hitting the windshield almost sounds like a bad rainstorm now, and you pull back on the throttle. For thirty minutes you see all sorts of things floating about in space- including an excavator, still strapped down on a cargo pallet. You have to give the stick a nudge to prevent a collision with the hulking piece of construction equipment.

“Thank christ.”

There's a burst of static. And doc again, this time in a panic.

“We got a problem. Micrometeorites are shifting course in a hurry. Damn the debris, hit full throttle and get out of there!”

“Doc, you have to be kidding me, you said-”
“I accounted for the gravitational pull of the Argo, but I didn't think the micrometeorites would be affected so much- you don't have time! Get out!”

You don't feel like getting a second opinion on Doc's call. Cursing your inability to catch a break, you firmly grasp the throttle and push it all the way forward, the AD-40 motors roaring to full force. The clacking against the window grows ever violent, as bolts, nuts and even office furniture slams repeatedly against the glass.

“You're almost *ksssssshhhh*- just a few more kilom*ksssssshhhh* and you're going to be in the clea-”

The transmission is nearly inaudible. In the split second you decide to slap the comms module around, the lights flicker with a mighty CRASH as you're thrown against your restraints in the chair.

“Fuck!”

The whole cockpit erupts into a panicked orchestra of electronic screams and beeps, and your eardrums nearly pop from the sudden pressure change. The automated piloting software's voice urges in a flat voice.

“Catastrophic pressure loss. Attempting to seal cockpit...”

The wind seems to whip around you all of a sudden, as you see a web of cracks on the windshield and a palletized dump truck spinning off into the void of space.

“Oh fuck, fuck, fuck-”

You reach around for your pressure suit's helmet. You want to kill yourself when you remember leaving it back in the launch bay. All that prep to get get fucked out of the ONE thing you really need. There's no time- you take the emergency oxygen mask out from under the seat, and don it over your face.

“Doc! We have a fuckup, big-time! I hit a truck!”

There's no answer on the other end.

“Doc, answer me. We need a fix for this shit, quick! Doc? Son of a bitch-”
- - - - - -
>>
No. 859531 ID: 4a443f
File 151632585793.png - (149.91KB , 720x480 , nagivation.png )
859531

You quickly scramble to override the sealing procedure on the cockpit; you wager there's going to be enough oxygen in your emergency tank, and enough atmo in the rest of the ship to last you roughly several hours. With only one option left, you haul ass over to the navigator's station; having already picked a list of prime landing spots, you have a few precious seconds left to choose and wait out the rough trip down...
- - - - -

A) Drop Zone A. Closer to the northern ice caps of the planet, projected to be covered in evergreen forests and large freshwater bodies, such as lakes and rivers. Forests are projected to be rich in smaller or medium-sized forms of wildlife. Expect cool to mild climate.

B) Drop Zone B. In a grasslands / plains portion of the northern hemisphere, near the coast. Projected to be full of leafy vegetation, with prime land for large-scale grain farming and large game. Expect mild climate.

C) Drop Zone C. In a densely forested / swampland portion close to the equator. Projected to be full of leafy or tropical vegetation, teeming with a large range of wildlife. Expect mild to hot climates.
>>
No. 859532 ID: 33cbe7

Drink lots of coffee between gulps of air. Wear a fire helmet. This is where those hours of training in the spaceman simulator pay off!
>>
No. 859533 ID: 33cbe7

Oh, set it to dropzone B.
>>
No. 859536 ID: fe1856

Let's go A since it has lots of resources without the whole Jungle Danger situation.
>>
No. 859594 ID: 94a268

I would not recommend zone C. Zone B seems slightly more advantageous than zone A, imo
>>
No. 859601 ID: afb4df

Drop Zone A sounds alright.
>>
No. 860390 ID: 4a443f
File 151660969854.png - (452.59KB , 768x432 , room1.png )
860390

>>859601
>>859536
>>859594

You instinctively pick the northern landing zone, nearly putting your fist through the screen in the process.

The air is getting thinner and the sirens are still wailing- and to your horror, the damaged windscreen begins to crack even further.

You know very well what's going to happen when that windshield breaks. In an emergency, most small craft dispense rapidly-swelling, quick-hardening foam mix rich in oxygen to fill in compromised sections, in lieu of full-strength bulkheads and compartmentalization systems.

Snatching your bag, you scramble out of the cockpit section, grabbing your personal belongings. As soon as the door slides shut, you can hear the muffled pop pop pop of the foam sprinklers going off. It only takes a moment for the hissing of air escaping into the compromised cockpit to slow down to a trickle.

You take a deep breath in, and only then do you notice the ache in your chest. Thanks to the sturdy windows, not only did you survive- but you most likely also avoided the worst symptoms of decompression sickness.

There's a small auxiliary piloting station not too far from the cockpit, by the captain and the first officer's cabins. It's nothing more than a small console with rudimentary controls, but it's enough to track the progress of the shuttle as it begins its automated re-entry procedure.

To your relief, everything seems alright; the computers have corrected deviations caused by the collision. There's even a piece of unexpected good news- the atmo loss has been slowed to a trickle, leaving you plenty of air until your arrival to the surface.
>>
No. 860394 ID: 4a443f
File 151661204171.png - (436.76KB , 614x346 , galley.png )
860394

Mood Music:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sS1kg7hYTcs
- - - - - -
Several hours pass.

You spend most of that time running a comprehensive maintenance check, hoping nothing else has been damaged by the collision. Aside from a few jostled cabinets and cargo racks here and there, the rest of the ship has been untouched- even the delicate communications equipment, which will allow you to make contact with the wreck of the USCSS Argo, and receive information from some rudimentary survey satellites released by the doomed mothership.

As the adrenaline stops, a yawn escapes from your mouth. You really need some strong coffee, Especially after waking up from cryo, several days of minimal rest and a near shuttle blowout. At the galley, you shake out a full bag of vacuum-packed, stabilized joe into the machine, enough to brew a whole pot. In no time, the place smells warm and chocolatey with the familiar, rich scent of Kepler beans.
>>
No. 860395 ID: 4a443f
File 151661212242.png - (548.00KB , 768x328 , shuttle.png )
860395

Pouring yourself a mug, it's hard not to notice... how large the 10-man galley feels. And how quiet it is. You begin to miss Doc's incessant chatter and advice; that helped fend off the loneliness somewhat. But now, all you have to keep you company is a hollow feeling as you stare at the planet's surface. In all your years as a security officer, you've been to some desolate places in your time; backwater mines or fueling outposts in the middle of deep space with hardly a dozen people around at any given time. You thought you were well prepared to handle being alone, but now you're not so sure- perhaps it was better then, at least knowing that there was always another person somewhere.

Now, nothing.

You start doubting if what Doc said was true at all- his promises of meeting new beings, settling down and starting a new life; even in his rosiest scenario you wonder how you'd fit in, how the people below will react to an outsider.

It's a lot to think about. Emptying the dregs of the coffee pot, you leave the galley, and shuffle over to the armory. There's a lot of packing to do- and it's best that you start now and take your mind off of things for a while.
- - - - - -
>>
No. 860398 ID: 4a443f
File 151661376720.png - (458.33KB , 512x432 , weaponslocker.png )
860398

- - - - - -

You browse through the armory, to find it well-stocked with ammunition, weapons, equipment, gear and tools for extended expeditions. The weapons are all H&K and ARMAT branded, thanks to their corporate sponsorship of the Argo's expedition; they're reliable and sturdy guns, but you wish the armory had something with more punch. As a security officer, you learned to appreciate 7.62; the deceivingly boring assignments, especially ones at remote fueling stations, were also the most dangerous. Taking down a perp with a single shot of 7.62 often made the difference between watching bandits and hijackers turn tail, or engaging in long, messy shootouts.

At the same time, it seems reasonable for colonists to utilize small-caliber polymer-case, or caseless munitions. Mining is a labor-intensive process that not all colonies can initially afford to do. However, with enough time and effort, you're certain you can at least get the Haber-Bosch processors and the rest of the machinery that's onboard to manufacture propellants (and agricultural fertilizer). Perhaps then you can start searching for ore veins for copper and lead.

Until then, you realize there's enough ammo to tide you over for a long time. Taking a fuller inventory, you realize that there is also a small stock of 40mm grenades and launchers, along with a few Matebas in .454 Casull and modernized garands, rechambered in .458 WinMag. It seems that the colonists were fully equipped to vanquish large, dangerous xeno wildlife if the need arose.

Planning to stay out in the field for at least two weeks, and perhaps up to a month, you begin packing...
- - - - - -
>>
No. 860400 ID: 4a443f
File 151661475419.png - (3.38MB , 1200x6400 , FULL INVENTORY.png )
860400

**Note from author: picture is huge, imgur link here: https://imgur.com/ZybcZeI

- - - - - -

You pack with an extended trip in mind. With your enhanced body, it's easy to haul heavy loads, far beyond what a normal infantryman is able to carry. You pack for only ten days, but the more you can bolster your supplies in the field, the longer you can stay outside. With landing zones handpicked to give wide berth to suspected population centers, it will be a long march until you can scout out, and perhaps establish first contact, if there's anyone out there.

You know only know a few things for sure about the surface. It has drinkable, liquid water, a breathable atmosphere, biomes / climates capable of supporting plant matter that seems to be nearly identical to that found on Earth, and potential signs of habitation. Packing as experience dictates, you have a little room left in the rucksack.

You can primarily focus on carrying additional ammunition for your weapons in case of hostile contact with wildlife (or 'people'), or focus more heavily on survival supplies.
- - - - - -
>>
No. 860416 ID: 830fb7

Mandatory:
For the pistol: H&K UCP in 9mm PolyCase
For the PDF: ARMAT/H&K SMG-2000
since their is only 1 choice for assault rifle: ARMAT/H&K G11A2K
Non-Mandatory
ARMAT SPAS-12 for wildlife control and CQB engagements
1x Extra combat first aid kit
2x Daily Rations
2x Emerg. Rations
1x x2 3-Litre Hydration Bladders
370x 9x19mm PolyCase (totalling an overall 1000 rounds)
12x 12 Gauge, 2-3/4" (totalling 100 shotgun shells)
7x 40x46mm HEDP Grenade (totalling 20 GL rounds)
1x Survival Kit (just in case)

For a Non-Mandatory mass total of 47.2
Total weight 260.25 + 47.2 = 307.45
>>
No. 860456 ID: 5f2b81

>>860400
lmao the depression-treating rope though

>>860416
This looks good, except I'd swap the shotgun for the garand--that range is nice, and anything we have to kill up close we can kill with the SMG while keeping it quiet, too.
>>
No. 860459 ID: b15da4

Carry more ammo. After a few clips from a .458 Garand I don't think you'll be aiming too well.
>>
No. 860482 ID: 5ffa45

>>860416
Assuming you can come back for the stuff you don’t take with you, I think survival supplies are vastly more important than weapons. I’d lose the grenade launcher and the shotgun in favor of more communications and survival equipment like nvgs, camp kit, or all of the light weight radio and gps modules. I’ll be extremely surprised if we encounter something we don’t have weapons to deal with, even with the minimum loadout. Take all of the 0 weight stuff, of course
>>
No. 860492 ID: 9876c4

Lord only knows what you're attaching to your MP7 to make it weigh as much as a SMG. or why your forgot it's suppressor.

To my mind, a scenario where you are pinned, and need an effective round is more likely than long range hunting. So I favor revolver> rifle.

Nothing portable can outpenetrate a 12 gauge sabot. I like the shotgun as a comfort item, with the expectation you won't use it that much.

Take more food and water than you think you need, in case weather conditions make return impossible.
>>
No. 860643 ID: fe1856

>>860416
This but Replace the Shotgun with the ARMAT Super Shorty, another Colonist Daily Ration, and another Steel Bottle + Condenser Kit if we do ever get any Crops up here. Raid the Med Cabinet before you leave too and take one of each with you plus one more Anti-Venoms.
>>
No. 860697 ID: 9876c4

>>860643
The Super Shorty is useless. 1/3 the capacity, 1/3 the range. and lower MV.

Your added supplies, plus the magnum, should still keep us under capacity, though.
>>
No. 860702 ID: 33cbe7

>>860697
It's a backup weapon. Besides, it comes with more ammo overall.
>>
No. 860881 ID: 4a443f
File 151670521671.png - (3.24MB , 1200x5000 , finalinventory.png )
860881

- - - - - -
Browsing through the armory, you grab the weapons most familiar to you. ARMAT and H&K weapons dominate the selection, and it's evident that the two arms mega-corporations ended up dumping a lot of their old ballistic weapons into the colony's supply chain. Inspecting the weapons and ammunition carefully for flaws or defects, you pick the following...

- - - - - -
-Pistol: ARMAT/H&K VP70A1. Well liked by marines, it has a burst and auto fire mode to compensate for its lack of punch. (+flashlight, +laser)

-Combat Pistol: H&K UCP in 9mm. Easier to handle than its 4.6mm variant, thanks to the use of 9mm ammunition. This also means that the weapon is much quieter when silenced, as it does not give off a telltale supersonic crack. (+flashlight, +laser)

-PDW: ARMAT/H&K SMG-2000. Surprisingly light for its size, on par with the MP7 (although it's helped somewhat by ARMAT needlessly weighing the MP7 down with heavier alloy parts). It takes on after its parent firearm, the MP5; and thus it's reliable & exceptionally quiet when silenced. (+flashlight, +laser)

-Assault Rifle: H&K G11. Commonly found in places dangerous enough to warrant serious firepower (without resorting to man-portable chemrail guns or laser weaponry). The compact grenade launcher underneath enables the shooter to utilize a wide array of lethal, non-lethal and tactical 40mm ammunition. (+flashlight, +laser)

-Shotgun: ARMAT SPAS-12. Improvements to Franchi's semi-automatic shotgun have turned this hollywood-star shotgun into a combat mainstay. A favourite amongst colonial marshals bureaus. (+flashlight, +laser)

-Wildlife Control: Mateba Grifone. To be honest, it's probably just dead weight- but holy shit it fires .454 Casull

IT FIRES .454 CASULL YOU NEED TO PUT A HOLE IN SOMETHING WITH THIS

- - - - - -

With about twenty pounds to spare, you decide to pack four extra days worth of emergency rations and an extra first aid kit. It's evident that there's plenty of water outside, and you opt to carry another condenser kit instead of extra canteens. The rest of the space you utilize for ammunition, carrying an additional 400 rounds of both 9mm and 4.6mm ammo. Measuring in at 326 pounds of gear, you notice it's barely a pound overweight.

Having completed your preparations, you reward yourself with a quick nap. It doesn't feel appropriate, especially after all that's happened so far- but your body is desperate for some real rest.

Shuffling back to the captain's cabin, you fall face-first into a soft bed...
- - - - - -
>>
No. 860889 ID: 4a443f
File 151670776360.jpg - (38.31KB , 660x545 , space.jpg )
860889

- - - - - -
"Do you ever wonder... if there's someone out there? Someone that's not us?"

You flip through your newspaper, not paying much attention to Marshal Stevens. He's thinking out loud once again, and while that would have annoyed you not too long ago, you've learned to tolerate it. Derelict station postings often made Marshals go a little crazy, and everyone had to find a way to keep themselves sane. Stevens' thing was talking out aloud, and yours was having a few beers on the job.

"I mean, you know. Aliens that can think and speak, just like us. It's a big universe out there man- think about it! There must be millions, no, billions of stars out there, and at least some of em has to support life-"

You put the newspaper down for a moment to grab another can of Aspen Lager, but this time you see Stevens getting out of his chair. Obviously mesmerized by something, the heavyset marshal slowly walks over to the windows.

You try saying something to him, but no words come out of your mouth. The confusion turns to panic, and you try again- shouting at him that it's not real, to get away from the window- but you see it as clear as day, just as he does. A feminine figure, shapeless yet humanoid, places a delicate, wispy limb- almost resembling a hand, against the glass.

Stevens freezes in his shoes- then begins to reciprocate the gesture. You try yelling for help, but this time your lips are sealed shut. An urge to step closer to the window begins to take control, and you try to struggle against it. But like a puppet on strings, you don't control your body- and you find yourself before the wispy figure on the other side of the glass.

Stevens whispers. "She wants to talk... to you."

This time, you're in control of your body. You reach for the glass, pressing an open hand against its cold surface. The ghostly intruder seems to reach through the foot-thick window, locking warm, weightless fingers around yours; pleasant whispers, melodic and soothing, repeat alien syllables in your head again and again.

Every time you have this dream, you try to make sense of what she's saying. But you never could. Until now. She whispers and you listen carefully, afraid to miss a single word.

“Will- you find-”

The pain wells up in your chest- a deep and lasting heartache, a yearning for something. But for what?

“Love...?”
- - - - - -
>>
No. 860896 ID: 4a443f
File 151670848064.png - (352.00KB , 850x537 , landing1.png )
860896

- - - - - -
You wake up. Clenched tightly in your hand is the blanket that was once neatly tucked away on the bed- and you feel a heavy turbulence rocking the shuttle to and fro.

"Landing procedure is underway. All personnel must wear seatbelts until landing & all-clear. Please be cautious during periods of turbulence."

You get up, only to fall down as a sudden bump seems to throw the craft into the air. You crawl the rest of the way to the auxiliary piloting station and buckle yourself into the chair, being jostled several times in the process. inspecting the screens all around you. It seems that there's a violent storm outside- nothing of concern to a vessel of this size, but enough to make the home stretch of the journey uncomfortable. The instruments seem to indicate extremely heavy rainfall and hurricane-force winds, along with a near-freezing temperature. You begin to regret your choice of landing zone A.
>>
No. 860900 ID: 4a443f
File 151670938699.png - (799.03KB , 828x563 , landing2.png )
860900

The winds let up as the craft approaches land. Sheets of rain batter against the craft, and in the screen arrays you can see the sights unfolding all around you- even if it appears to be somewhat dreary. Manually taking the controls on the last stretch of the journey, you gently touch down the craft on the shallow shoreline of a freshwater lake. The landing gears extend, and with a gentle thump the ship finally settles on land.

You lean back, unbuckle yourself, and sigh. Finally. The hum of the engines die down, and the rudimentary flight instruments before you flicker, before shutting off. You're not particularly religious, but it seems only appropriate to thank whoever's out there- if anyone, for getting you through.

Moving over to the main briefing room, you turn on a large planning interface. With a few swift keystrokes, the shuttle begins its automatic survey routine, assessing the surrounding air, water and dirt for dangers. It seems like an eternity, but soon enough you have the sheet in your hands. The results are nothing short of remarkable; aside from slightly thinner air, the environment around you is safe, and nearly identical to that of earth.
>>
No. 860944 ID: 2fe26a

Check the topological stability of the landing zone under heavy rain conditions. It always sucks when your spacecraft gets swallowed up by the earth!
>>
No. 860946 ID: 5f2b81

I really like your writing. This is a good quest. Thank you!

Can we scan for a good place to start setting up? How's this spot?
>>
No. 861062 ID: fe1856

Huh quite lucky, see if the ground is safe for long-term landing. If it isn't then pick a spot that is or just wait out the rains before attempting to leave as we don't know what alien bacteria is here also the fact that there may be animals in that lake that might not like us that have a better time in rain then us.
>>
No. 861258 ID: 830fb7

We should set the ship to scan for biological matter in the air so any bacteria can be scanned and you can be immunised. Best that in the long term you don't die from an illness that is non-lethal to the natives but lethal to you (plus if we make vaccines we can trade them with the local population and get good will towards us from curing their ill).
>>
No. 861644 ID: 4a443f
File 151687585069.png - (386.81KB , 594x345 , landing3.png )
861644

- - - - - -
Mood Music: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9GkB7YUVFj0
- - - - - -
>>860944
>>860946
>>861062
>>861258

You quickly run through the landing checklist- something you should have done prior to the survey. The lander's perched on an extremely shallow portion of a freshwater lake- it's not the best place to unload cargo and equipment, but the layer of rocks and dense substrate underneath should bear the shuttle's considerable weight without sinking or collapsing.

It only takes minutes to turn the shuttle from a spacefaring vessel to the start of a small, self-sustaining colony. The engines seal off intake and exhaust ports to protect the parts from the elements, while the nuclear reactors run at a low hum, now providing electrical power instead of propulsion. Drogues drop into the shallow water below, pumping water through an on-board filtration plant and most importantly, a hydrogen fuel generator- a critical component in producing the fuel needed for atmospheric flight. Not that you'll be flying anytime soon, though- that'll take days, if not weeks of digging and cleaning hardened foam out of the now-sealed up cockpit/bridge.

The environment seems to be quite suited to life, including yours. The air is a little bit thin and the temperatures rather cold, but you assume that might be a good thing to help stop or slow down microbial growth. While alien diseases certainly pose a risk, you know that generally it is difficult for pathogens and viruses of any sort to cross species barriers. Such cases are the exception, not the norm- and being an extraterrestrial organism, you believe that the locals have much more to worry. Still, you take the precaution of adding an array of powerful antibiotics and other medications to your pack, just in case. With some luck, they may also work on alien diseases and infections as well.

With all of your preliminary research and preparation done, you head over to the main airlock, where your prepared equipment is waiting.
- - - - - -
>>
No. 861645 ID: 4a443f
File 151687676573.png - (255.97KB , 501x276 , LZ.png )
861645

- - - - - -
Author's note: I'll slowly start producing my own art, starting with this post; but expect quality / color to vary.
- - - - - -

You stand in front of the door for a brief moment. It's not your first time stepping out into an alien world; but you feel anxious, even afraid of doing so.

Just breathe, you think to yourself. The air wheezes through the filters on your gas mask. With a gloved hand, you firmly grip the door control panel's red release switch, and pull it down without further hesitation.

As soon as you do so, the small airlock room is bathed in red light, and with a few metallic thuds, the door finally begins its opening sequence. Orange warning lights begin to flash, and sirens begin to blare out a final airlock open warning. Finally, all the noise and flashing lights stop; air begins to hiss through the gaps as the doors swing wide open.

There's... Light. The sight makes you hold your breath for a moment. The rain and the overcast weather paints everything in a washed-out, gloomy shade, but it's not difficult to appreciate the beauty of the landscape around you. Evergreen trees stand tall, their tips shrouded in a low-hanging fog; crystal clear waters lap away at the rocky shores, and snow-capped mountains are barely visible through the grey clouds. Imposingly steep mountains and cliffs seem to surround the lake on all sides as well, framing the scene before in such a way that it makes you feel small, almost insignificant in front of all of it.

A chill runs down your spine. Taking a deep breath, you step down the boarding ramp, and wade into the icy, knee-deep water. Taking quick notes of your location and paths of travel, you realize that trying to walk around the lake's shores to the other end will be impossible with such steep mountains on either side. Still, you go through your options on which direction to explore in first...
- - - - - -

2) A RIVER VALLEY to the [SOUTH] that feeds into the lake. It may yield some sources of food, or at least a few interesting specimens to bring back for analysis. The valley seems to lead to two large mountains, far off in the distance.

3) A DENSE FOREST to the [SOUTH-EAST] that seems to stretch as far as the eye can see. As long as you look carefully, it's sure to yield sources of food, biological specimens and perhaps animals as well.

4) A SMALL, ROCKY MOUNTAIN to the [SOUTH-WEST]. If you scale up this mountain, it may be possible to look for ways in getting to the far northern side of the lake. At least it will allow you to observe the area surrounding you from a vantage point.
- - - - - -
>>
No. 861656 ID: 2fe26a

2. All great civilizations began by a river, and yours will be no exception.
>>
No. 861665 ID: 5f2b81

4. First thing you gotta do is get an eye in the sky and scout it out.
>>
No. 861805 ID: 33cbe7

Go rough it on the mountain.
>>
No. 861864 ID: f97b68

>>861645
Holy shit, I love your writing and your art and your use of these pics. Amazing job. Keep up the great work.

4. We need to get a vantage point and scout out the area better. For all we know there could be an alien settlement right on the other side of these mountains.
>>
No. 861914 ID: fe1856

4, Information Gathering of our surroundings will be very important.
>>
No. 861923 ID: 130855

4. go scout your new domain from the mountain
>>
No. 861965 ID: 4a443f
File 151695860792.png - (0.96MB , 800x533 , mrange1.png )
861965

- - - - - -
The Mood Music Continues: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9GkB7YUVFj0
- - - - - -

It takes several hours to climb up the mountain. Trying to find a trail through the jagged rocks takes up most of your time.

Arriving at a small lake, you see your final destination not too far ahead. You're fairly confident that you can make it up before it gets completely dark, so you begin picking up your pace.

You consume 2L of water, leaving 8L.

Finally, you arrive at the peak as the sun begins to fall. As you crest the ridge to see on the other side of the mountain, something strange catches your eye...
- - - - - -
>>
No. 861969 ID: 4a443f
File 151696079775.png - (831.13KB , 1189x452 , nightencounter.png )
861969

- - - - - -
A fire.

You can't believe your eyes at first; on the other side of the peak, there's a small campfire, burning brightly in the falling darkness of night. To make things even more nerve-wracking, there's a makeshift shelter of some sort, and a figure, covered in what seems to be a cape, cloak or a blanket of some sort, warming itself by the fire (or so it seems.)

You quickly drop down and crawl over the jagged rocks. The alien's campsite isn't too far down from where you are, and you stick to the shadows, attempting to get closer for a clearer visual inspection. It's an agonizing, slow crawl down, but the creature seems to be too preoccupied with warming up to notice you at the moment.

Hiding behind an outcropping of rocks, you utilize your binoculars to take a closer look at the thing...
- - - - - -
>>
No. 861971 ID: 4a443f
File 151696166848.png - (345.36KB , 820x720 , encounter1.png )
861971

- - - - - -
What

What the fuck is that?

You're fairly certain you've seen a fuzzy animal-person out of a cartoon, sitting rather sullenly by a fire. You do a double-take, this time shaking your head in the hopes of dispelling some rather silly hallucinations.

But what you see is the same. A... mammalian animal of some sort. You're not quite sure what it is, but it seems frightened, lonely, rather cold and generally miserable. It's evident that whatever that thing is, it's poorly equipped for the nighttime cold; it shivers and tries to pull its large, baggy cloak around its rather thin, frail-looking body.

You make sure to flick the G-11's safety switch to the off position, but you don't point the gun at it just yet. You need to think this through carefully...

What do you do?

1) Attempt to make peaceful contact.
2) Observe it further and wait.
3) Attempt to detain it.
4) Approach and open fire on the first sign of aggression.
- - - - - -
>>
No. 861973 ID: 9876c4

It's alone, and we have 100 pounds of armaments handy.

Peaceful contact, and leveraging our food towards information.
We need to know what it knows, and where it's from.
A for now.
>>
No. 861974 ID: 094652

Attempt to detain the entity. Notice how she's wearing a low-profile cloak and has no apparent weapons. Her most likely designation is scout; capture her alive, explain the misunderstanding later.
>>
No. 861977 ID: 13fded

Who do you think you are asking? Of course we want to be friendly to the furry!

Eventually you will want to approach, but before that take a look at the surrounding area. This creature will no doubt feel threatened by you, so better make sure it's alone. If this doesn't work out you better be capable of defending yourself against a single hostile, otherwise this will be a hard life.
Keep you weapon at hand, or at least in reach, but don't point at that thing. If they have similar technology the gesture will be understood, otherwise it won't matter.
The bigger problem will be the language barrier. Make yourself noticed at a distance it will feel somewhat safe and move your hand slowly an a generic wave, hopefully the gesture will be understand since it's a humanoid.
If everything work well put a trinket on the ground and give that thing space to take it. Preferable the object shouldn't be particularly useful and can't be a consumable (it could be poisonous to the alien) but it have be distinctly extraplanetary.
>>
No. 861978 ID: 496018

A. Best we do A.
>>
No. 861979 ID: cc5f4f

>>861978
Oh carp, I mean 1.
>>
No. 862005 ID: 5f2b81

1. This is not a scout. Judging by the facial expression and circumstances, this is a loner who feels vulnerable, and thus is probably unarmed or lightly-armed.

Also, please take off your mask when you talk. You'll look scary otherwise.
>>
No. 862011 ID: 13fded

>>862005
Please don't take off your mask. You will look alien and scary.
>>
No. 862026 ID: 8ef962

2. If nothing happens, 1.
>>
No. 862028 ID: 5f2b81

>>862011
Hard disagree. Our minds can make sense of this guy's alien face, so I'm sure the alien will be able to make sense of our face. It'll facilitate better communication and is kind of a necessity for diplomatic relations. The mask is way more intimidating--I suspect its martial nature will be recognizable across species lines.
>>
No. 862033 ID: 33cbe7

2. Regret not landing on the plains instead.
>>
No. 862037 ID: 8ef962

By the way, for the first contact attempt, I suggest imitating the alien: start a campfire where they can see it, so they'll see you're civilized before they see you.
>>
No. 862042 ID: 33cbe7

>>862037
Or you could be seen as a mad arsonist desecrating their sacred woods. Don't do that.
>>
No. 862053 ID: f97b68

>>861971
2. Be very cautious. There may be more close by. This maybe the first contact for them with anyone beyond their planet's skies. We cant mess this up.
If there doesn't seem to be more, and we're sure they're not hostile, then it would be prudent to attempt peaceful first contact.
Approach in a non-threatening manner (lowered weapon/show of free hands) and attempt a friendly gesture.
>>
No. 862054 ID: f97b68

Your art is looking amazing, by the way. You're doing great work. Good job.
>>
No. 862084 ID: fe1856

2, and 4. We do not know what these creatures are capable of or what they are. This could be a trap of some kind, we must remain vigilant in these times.
>>
No. 862191 ID: 9d4af9

Lets go with option 2 for now. Once you feel confident that you understand the situation, you can approach and make first contact. It's kind of strange for someone to be all alone at night in the wilderness. Don't shoot them unless you absolutely can't avoid it.
>>
No. 862193 ID: 5f2b81

>>862084
That's madness. We don't have the resources to go to war--we need all the help we can get.
>>
No. 862198 ID: fe1856

>>862193
We don't know if it's friendly first off. For all we know it could be a Bandit or a Vagrant. Secondly, Who knows if their Societal Organization has gone far enough to even make something like that and even if we did have to kill it we could just bury it or something.
>>
No. 862212 ID: 758230

2. Exercise caution.
>>
No. 862637 ID: 830fb7

2 then 1
Watch it to make sue there is no one else around than walk to within view wave and say hello. Once it notices you go and put a hand on your chest then point that hand to the fire in a gesture of may I join you by the fire, followed by a slow walk to the fire and sitting down showing you don't mean them any harm. Once they have calmed down you can take off your helmet as both a sign of trusting and respect.
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