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File 163011236129.png - (257.12KB , 1280x1024 , Title.png )
1008879 No. 1008879 ID: 736b7e

(This will probably be a short, sketchy quest. Updates will be slow. Criai created by Cirr)
Expand all images
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No. 1008880 ID: 736b7e
File 163011240603.png - (254.89KB , 1280x1024 , 001.png )
1008880

It’s been months since our exodus from Dunra. We have heard from no other criai for nearly as long. We’ve been making blind jump after blind jump, desperate to ensure the Kiter could not follow us. We have run ourselves dry and have to stop. This world is far from ideal, but it’ll have to make do.
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No. 1008881 ID: 736b7e
File 163011249008.png - (459.76KB , 1280x1024 , 002.png )
1008881

We were the last ship to leave our city. I am the only one on board who is not a civilian. As such, I am the only one to be the pointman. Luckily, this planet is empty. No artificial electrical signals were detected. Nothing is here but animals. Still, I’ll have to make sure the area is clear.

The airlock hisses and a ramp drops down with railings for me. It is hot as hell.
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No. 1008882 ID: c92a02

Do a tactical roll down the ramp and shoot anything that moves.
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No. 1008883 ID: 094652

Scan everything for flesh-eating bacteria or what-have-you.
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No. 1008887 ID: d052fd

Take inventory before you disembark. What do you have and what do you need?
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No. 1008892 ID: 7ed0fe

Poke your head out before getting on the ramp. Are there any creatures nearby, aggressive or otherwise?
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No. 1008893 ID: 50c8ca

>>1008892
Do this
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No. 1008903 ID: 815672

The heat might be an issue. How likely can we relocate to one the poles on the planet? It'd be more comfortable there, for sure. Would there be any resources available, is the question.
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No. 1009043 ID: 43bfc0

What kind of tools do you have for exploration? Even if there's nobody here but animals, do you have anything to keep your group safe from potential predatory creatures, or scout them out ahead of time?
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No. 1009046 ID: 2f6ee3

If it's hot in this spot then it's unsuitable for colonization unless you have some climate control solution. Do you?
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No. 1009168 ID: 736b7e
File 163044885923.png - (303.57KB , 1280x1024 , 003.png )
1009168

I have not much equipment left. Any explosives were used in the process of trying to leave. I just have a laser rifle and a survival knife. The laser rifle will probably overheat in this weather very easily, so I’ll have to be careful with it.

Rolling down this ramp would probably break my neck. I’m not concerned with the wildlife but I should probably at least appear like I’m doing my job. I shoulder my rifle and carefully move down the ramp. Nothing is out here except for trees and bushes. Any wildlife seems to have fled from the ship as it landed. It looks like there are maybe birds out in the distance, but nothing is really nearby or threatening. I signal to the group leader that the coast is clear.
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No. 1009169 ID: 736b7e
File 163044889653.png - (313.51KB , 1280x1024 , 004.png )
1009169

Jui was a civilian working at a pharmaceutical lab. She has some knowledge and experience leading a team of people but it doesn’t perfectly transfer to a small group of starving criai on an alien planet. Scanning for dangerous microbes would be a smart thing but there’s not really any way for us to avoid them even if we wanted to.

The landing site was chosen because this area was the coolest we could find that also seemed like it might have the resources we need to hopefully keep the lights on and feed us. We have almost nothing left to power ship thrusters, so we are stuck with our choice now. Normal machinery and climate control inside the ship should be fine for a while. The poles were barren blocks of ice.

Right now, my job is just to watch her while she explores. The ship shuts the door behind us so nothing can get to the rest of the civilians. Jui nods to me, pulls out a small mobile computer, and seems to pick a direction at random. She starts walking and I’m expected to follow.
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No. 1009170 ID: b081a5

Follow her!
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No. 1009171 ID: c92a02

Pay special attention to her butt. This is important.
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No. 1009177 ID: e7848c

>>1009169
I would try and be by her side if not directly ahead of her with her guiding. Need to keep the weapons up front
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No. 1009219 ID: 3513c8

>>1009177
I agree with this. Get next to her or a little bit ahead of her.
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No. 1009287 ID: 43bfc0

Ask her if she's heading somewhere in particular.
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No. 1009374 ID: 7ed0fe

Follow her, but keep your eyes on the trees. No telling what could be hiding behind them
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No. 1009381 ID: 736b7e
File 163071727547.png - (530.31KB , 1280x1024 , 005.png )
1009381

Jui heads off into the jungle. There’s really no ideal position for me to cover her alone. I decided to trail slightly behind. I don’t want to lose track of her.

“Are you looking for anything specific?”

“There was a river in this direction. We should see if it’s a reasonable source of water for us. We’ll look for possible food sources on the way there and back.”

Sounds good enough to me. Something draws me to her rear. It’s probably just the motion of her tails that cover her lower body. They’re pleasantly fluffy. She must take very good care of them.

She stops.

“That’s… strange. Is there an oil field around here..? It shouldn’t be sitting on the surface like this.”
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No. 1009382 ID: 736b7e
File 163071730228.png - (211.24KB , 1280x1024 , 006.png )
1009382

I look where she’s looking. There’s a… splash of a black substance. It looks like someone pressed a huge water-- … I guess an oil balloon in this case, against this tree until it burst. There’s droplets of this oil splashed everywhere. Jui seems to be examining the oil while we walk closer to it. I scan the area while she approaches…

This… oil seems to be all over this area. Little droplets spread out as if dropped by something walking along. It continues on along the game trail before creating a deep pool that seems like it exploded outward.

I turn back towards Jui.

She is reaching towards the splotch of oil on the tree.
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No. 1009383 ID: c92a02

What do you make of this stuff, Dr. Science? Looks like the food chain around here is active.
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No. 1009394 ID: 36784c

>>1009382
>oil
Are you sure that’s what that is? It could be something else.

>Jui is gonna touch it.
Grab her hand and pull it away! The first thing she wants to do is touch a strange substance with her bare hands?! Are you absolutely sure she’s the best person to be the leader if she’s gonna do something so stupid?!

At least get a stick to poke it first!
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No. 1009403 ID: 10123b

Stop her. That is almost guaranteed to be some sort of predator's trap.

Poke it with a stick, obviously. Then shoot it if it does something weird.
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No. 1009413 ID: 815672

Offer her a stick to touch it first. Do you think it might be blood from a large creature?
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No. 1009567 ID: 7ed0fe

Does her mobile computer have any kind of scanner built in? Might be a better way to examine the substance without risking her hand; it could be very toxic for all you know!
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No. 1009611 ID: 736b7e
File 163095502882.png - (269.39KB , 1280x1024 , 007.png )
1009611

“What the hell are you doing!?” I quickly reach out and grab her by the arm. A bit harder than I intended.

She reacts about as well as you’d expect someone to who had unexpectedly been grabbed hard. She lets out a short scream in surprise. Surprise quickly turns into anger. “Let me go! I’m just trying to see what it is!” I release her and she grips her arm and rubs it. “Oil wouldn’t be that bad to get on my fur.”

She’s definitely shaken up and slightly pained by my grab. I feel a little bad. “Well… at least use a stick or something.” I look around and find a palm frond lying on the ground. I cut off, strip away part of it, and bring it back.
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No. 1009612 ID: 736b7e
File 163095507057.png - (208.65KB , 1280x1024 , 008.png )
1009612

She rips the stick from me and gives me an annoyed look. She dips it into the liquid and scoops off a bit of it.

“It seems… weirdly viscous. It’s clumping together more than oil should. It’s almost like it’s some kind of jelly.”

She shakes her head. “I wasn’t expecting to find anything like this but it’s clearly not what we’re looking for. We should move on to the river. I don’t have tools to examine anything like this with me.”

She backs away, drops the stick, and starts following the trail again. She’s looking at the “oil” trail and the pool I noticed earlier. Getting closer, it seems shallow, like a small puddle. The patterning is very odd if it were blood. It doesn’t look like a fight of some kind. It just starts and ends at the tree and this puddle. There’s no remains or anything if something bled out here and it doesn’t look like anything leads away from the puddle.

Following the “oil” trail, however, I can now see something that looks like tracks. Very pointed-looking… footprints maybe? They seem quite large and spread apart, as if what left them behind had a large gait but small points of contact on the ground. They start near the tree and end near the puddle.
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No. 1009614 ID: c92a02

Perhaps it was injured at the tree, staggered over and collapsed into the puddle, and then an airborne predator took away the body. Watch the skies.
Now lick the oil. Lick it!
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No. 1009615 ID: 4b4bc4

Let's keep moving. Remember this location. We can go investigate this area again later with the proper tools.
>>
No. 1009617 ID: 5232cd

>>1009612
Large gait implies a tall creature. The tracks start at the tree? There aren't any tracks leading up to the tree? That would imply the creature lives in the trees or the skies.

I think this trail would make sense if the tree was an impact point of a creature breaking open something very juicy then setting it down to eat. Maybe the goop isn't edible but the solid matter is? Maybe the object was heavy, which would explain why there are no tracks elsewhere?

Anyway, I think this site should be revisited with the correct tools. We're looking for resources right now, and it really doesn't seem like a good idea to taste test the goop.
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No. 1009689 ID: 815672

>>1009615
Oh, don't forget to apologize for grabbing her arm a little too roughly. You are understandably a little on edge in an alien world.
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No. 1009755 ID: 7ed0fe

Continue with her towards the river, but keep your eyes on the trees. Whatever left those tracks might still be around here.
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No. 1010219 ID: 736b7e
File 163138004687.png - (351.67KB , 1280x1024 , 009.png )
1010219

Jui steps around the puddle and continues onwards. Things settle down as we move, though we continue to find little bits of... whatever this oil is all over the place. While scanning the treeline, I notice Jui massaging her arm. I speak up. “Sorry... but you just shouldn’t be touching weird things you just found.”

“I know, I wasn’t thinking clearly.” There’s a pause as we walk. “I’ve been feeling… numb on board the ship. This was the first time we’ve been out in what feels like ages. I guess I was just too eager to see something new."

I’ve been feeling it too. The heat isn’t helping either.

Things are quiet and peaceful. Only the sound of birds and other animals. The buzzing of insects somewhere.
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No. 1010220 ID: 736b7e
File 163138007278.png - (431.74KB , 1280x1024 , 010.png )
1010220

A slight breeze blows. The trail seems to be opening up. A river can be seen at the trailhead. Jui clearly sees it and perks up. She hurries towards the river. I pick up the pace to match.

"Careful in the clearing; animals sometimes gather at the water's edge." Or at least I think I’ve heard that somewhere before.

She enters the open and freezes. I catch up and follow her line of sight. It takes a moment to register what I’m even looking at. It’s some kind of aquatic-looking creature, but it’s huge. It’s barely shorter than the treeline. It seems to be sleeping but I stand between it and Jui, just to be safe.
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No. 1010221 ID: 96c896

>>1010220
And it's got that oil on it. So... this is some kind of infection? Or... pus?
Maybe the big pool was this thing vomiting.

Well, you found water at least. Stay put for a while and observe its behavior. Can you see if it's breathing? If it's not visibly breathing you could approach carefully and confirm if it's dead or not.
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No. 1010222 ID: 3b0217

Is there any way to tell if it’s a predator, prey, or a scavenger?
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No. 1010223 ID: 8233ee

Approach carefully from the treeline and check out them big ol black balls
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No. 1010229 ID: 815672

>>1010220
Circle around some more. You want to put as much distance as you can between this and you. As for that oil, do you think it's some sort of infection? Mold maybe?
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No. 1010233 ID: c92a02

Say hello to the local wildlife with laser fire.
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No. 1010329 ID: 43bfc0

Is this thing big enough that it'd be dangerous to the ship if an aggressive one showed up? You might need to worry more than you have been.
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No. 1010682 ID: 736b7e
File 163173932962.png - (455.67KB , 1280x1024 , 011.png )
1010682

I take aim at the creature and Jui pushes herself in front of me with teeth bared. She hisses to me in a low voice. “Don’t shoot it! Who’s acting like an idiot now? What if you don’t kill it? What if you do kill it? We don’t even know if it’s hostile. We don’t know if we can eat it. It’d be a huge risk with practically no reward.” She looks over her shoulder at it. “Let’s just get the water sample and go. We can deal with it another time if we have to.”

She makes a convincing argument, though I mostly just wanted my rifle on it in case it decided to get up and attack us.

“... I want to get a better look at it. Just stay here and get your sample.”
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No. 1010683 ID: 736b7e
File 163173937072.png - (354.35KB , 1280x1024 , 012.png )
1010683

Jui seems frustrated but she really can’t stop me. I inch my way over towards it while keeping track of the treeline. It definitely seems to be sleeping. It is lying quite still and seems to be breathing with a regular, relaxed cadence. It almost seems cute as I get closer to it. I am no biologist but it does seem to be a predator of some sort. I don’t think I can tell if it is a scavenger or not. I think you’d have to watch its behavior to figure out something like that. I don’t think it would be a threat to the ship; it would take a lot to damage ship hull. It also can’t be the only one. If it is a threat, we’ll probably have to live with them. On the plus side, aquatic means it probably stays near bodies of water.

I approach on a side close to one of the blobs so I can get a good look at it. It’s large, round, and sticks out quite a bit from the body of the creature. It seems to gently quiver and bounce with the breathing of the creature. Even so, it seems to hold a solid form; always settling back to a blobby, spherical shape. Something seems off and I’m not sure what it is.

… I feel like I am being watched.
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No. 1010686 ID: 96c896

Get the water sample and leave. Investigation of the infected creatures can come later, with a full team outfitted for hazmat and weapons.
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No. 1010691 ID: c92a02

Sentient, parasitic blobs, you should content yourself with the inert sample from the trees and head back to report this sighting.
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No. 1010696 ID: e7848c

Eyes up, we just need to get the water sample and exfiltrate.
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No. 1010838 ID: 911208

Keep your eyes on the trees, but ask Jui if she thinks the blobs came from the sleeping creature or if something else might’ve put them there
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No. 1011054 ID: 43bfc0

They don't have eyes, but they might be able to sense you somehow. Keep an eye out and keep your distance to make sure you don't get jumped by one.
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No. 1011452 ID: 736b7e
File 163243864608.png - (439.42KB , 1280x1024 , 013.png )
1011452

I look back over towards Jui. She is waving her hands wildly with a vial outstretched in one, continuing to be annoyed and wanting me to come right back. I take one last look at the creature from where I am. I don’t think the oil is coming out of it. The creature looks like it's been rolling around in it or something. There’s little traces of the oil all over it and there doesn’t seem to be anything emitting it. I back up and walk over to Jui.

She whispers at me in a rushed tone. “Let’s just get out of here!”

There’s a snorting noise behind me and Jui seems to go pale. I turn back and the creature stretches and stands up. It looks at the two of us warily for a bit while we freeze up. It must be unimpressed because it yawns, then wanders off into the water and leaves.
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No. 1011453 ID: 736b7e
File 163243867625.png - (379.43KB , 1280x1024 , 014.png )
1011453

With that heart attack out of the way, Jui and I head back and decide that maybe we should just go back to the ship. It’s another quiet walk back. We pass by the oil and confirm that it hasn’t gotten up and walked away. We don’t really have a better way to deal with it at the moment and Jui seems like she just wants to be back with the others, so we ignore it.

We arrive at the ship. Not much must have happened since we left. The others on board must have seen us and started opening the ramp as we approached. Several of them start hauling what little equipment we have out. Jui starts trying to set up some sort of test with the water vial and nervously talking about what she’d seen. She thinks it would be better to form a larger group for searching for food next. I feel like I disagree but I get the feeling she’s just shaken after the encounter with the creature.

Now it’s back to guard duty while the others set up camp. Things still seem quiet, though I feel like that insect buzzing is starting to get to me. It seems louder than it used to be.
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No. 1011454 ID: 96c896

>>1011453
Check the exterior cameras. Is there a giant bug nearby?
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No. 1011455 ID: 8eb122

>>1011454
This
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No. 1011492 ID: c92a02

Have a medic examine you, make sure you didn't bring back any contagions.
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No. 1011507 ID: 96c896

If you're outside already, scan the skies.
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No. 1011521 ID: 815672

Let's keep things relatively small. If there's going to be teams it's going to be no larger than four. Preferably three. Two hands, one scientist and one guard.


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