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Through a glass, but Darkly..

Maelstrom Vortex

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Geoffrey stood in his throne room, unspecific faces around him. But he sat not on his throne. He felt no cold, no warmth, he just was. He looked towards his throne, in it sat static. He approached it.. wondering what was sitting on his seat. As he approached it spoke with a human-like voice..

Through A Glass, Darkly

Through the travail of the ages,
Midst the pomp and toil of war,
Have I fought and strove and perished
Countless times upon this star.

In the form of many people
In all panoplies of time
Have I seen the luring vision
Of the Victory Maid, sublime.

I have battled for fresh mammoth,
I have warred for pastures new,
I have listed to the whispers
When the race trek instinct grew.

I have known the call to battle
In each changeless changing shape
From the high souled voice of conscience
To the beastly lust for rape.

I have sinned and I have suffered,
Played the hero and the knave;
Fought for belly, shame, or country,
And for each have found a grave.

I cannot name my battles
For the visions are not clear,
Yet, I see the twisted faces
And I feel the rending spear.

Perhaps I stabbed our Savior
In His sacred helpless side.
Yet, I've called His name in blessing
When after times I died.

In the dimness of the shadows
Where we hairy heathens warred,
I can taste in thought the lifeblood;
We used teeth before the sword.

While in later clearer vision
I can sense the coppery sweat,
Feel the pikes grow wet and slippery
When our Phalanx, Cyrus met.

Hear the rattle of the harness
Where the Persian darts bounced clear,
See their chariots wheel in panic
From the Hoplite's leveled spear.

See the goal grow monthly longer,
Reaching for the walls of Tyre.
Hear the crash of tons of granite,
Smell the quenchless eastern fire.

Still more clearly as a Roman,
Can I see the Legion close,
As our third rank moved in forward
And the short sword found our foes.

Once again I feel the anguish
Of that blistering treeless plain
When the Parthian showered death bolts,
And our discipline was in vain.

I remember all the suffering
Of those arrows in my neck.
Yet, I stabbed a grinning savage
As I died upon my back.

Once again I smell the heat sparks
When my flemish plate gave way
And the lance ripped through my entrails
As on Crecy's field I lay.

In the windless, blinding stillness
Of the glittering tropic sea
I can see the bubbles rising
Where we set the captives free.

Midst the spume of half a tempest
I have heard the bulwarks go
When the crashing, point blank round shot
Sent destruction to our foe.

I have fought with gun and cutlass
On the red and slippery deck
With all Hell aflame within me
And a rope around my neck.

And still later as a General
Have I galloped with Murat
When we laughed at death and numbers
Trusting in the Emperor's Star.

Till at last our star faded,
And we shouted to our doom
Where the sunken road of Ohein
Closed us in it's quivering gloom.

So but now with Tanks a'clatter
Have I waddled on the foe
Belching death at twenty paces,
By the star shell's ghastly glow.

So as through a glass, and darkly
The age long strife I see
Where I fought in many guises,
Many names, -- but always me.

And I see not in my blindness
What the objects were I wrought,
But as God rules o'er our bickerings
It was through His will I fought.

So forever in the future,
Shall I battle as of yore,
Dying to be born a fighter,
But to die again, once more.

(ooc: Thank you General Patton.)

Geoffrey asked, "Who are you?"

It replied, "I am also you." As if to continue the poem.

Geoffrey woke up in sweats.. he didn't understand the meaning of his dream. He told his wife about it but she shrugged in her own confusion, consoling him.. telling him to get some rest that it was only a dream.

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[b]The Next Morning.. Not all that glitters is gold.[/b]

The Chateau of Angers, prior to its re-occupation by the royal family, had served as a museum. The Museum was being relocated. Many of the royal guards had been enlisted to assist the Museum in the movement of the delicate artifacts. In the past several months, most of those artifacts had been moved out into a larger new building for the Museum which would accommodate more displays and a larger viewing group.

As Geoffrey sat in the throne room one day, the guards were walking past with a dusty old box. On the front of it was labeled the words GDE. The guards stopped and looked to Geoffrey, "Sire, we found this in an area where they were mixed in with Museum Items and Royal Items.. we're not certain who they belong to. We were wondering if you could verify who it belongs to."

Geoffrey looked the box over. "Did you open it to check?"

"No Sir, if it were personal items we thought that would be inadvisable." The senior officer replied.

Geoffrey had him unlock the box. He lifted the lid. Christine came over and looked over his shoulder. On the top was a gilded medallion of a 5 fingered dragon. It was beautiful. Though it belonged to the Museum, he lifted it and lightly ran his fingers over it. "This definitely is the museum's box."

Christine scolded him, "Then you really shouldn't be messing with these items Geoffrey." She gently moved to take the medallion from him and replace it in the box.

Geoffrey felt a mechanical latch on the medallion as she moved to remove it. "Just a moment Love, I just want to see what it is. This looks new, not like something that should be in a Museum." Curious as to what the latch did, he moved it. The medallion's head snapped around and bit himself and Christine on their fingers. They dropped it.. both bled from cuts caused by the vicious little 'child's toy', or at elast was what had been in Geoffrey's mind before it bit him.

Both recoiled. Christine commented, "What a dreadful device. Why would anyone make anything like that?"

Geoffrey shook his head, "Beyond me my love.. let alone why a Museum would want to keep it."

"You're very lucky it didn't break my dear. That very well could have been a priceless thing to replace." She chided him.

Geoffrey looked to the Guardsmen, "Put that.. thing.. back in the crate.. and get it to where it belongs. Send a nurse as you go out with some bandages and alcohol."

They saluted, put the medallion back in the crate, closed the top, relocked it, and left for the Museum. A few moments later the Chateau nurse came in and cleaned and wrapped the fingers of the King and Queen. The contents of the box would soon be on display under an exhibit, "Atrocious Relics of the Second Dragon Empire."

Edited by Maelstrom Vortex
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[url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KXs-wPVO5Hs"]The Voice[/url]

[i]"Jeanne...Jeanne...wake up Jeanne."[/i]

It had been over six hundred years since her name had been called in such a way. The Savior of France, the Maid of Orleans, La Pucelle, had died at the hands of English Tyranny and oppression, all the while her own countrymen had betrayed her in turn. Over the passing years, from the lands of spirits, the Maid watched as France grew and prospered away from such treasonous thoughts. At times, the young girl watched happily as her beloved France grew strong and spread its culture and acclaim across the four corners of the globe. She cried when the land went barren and gave what little strength she had to the soldiers and resisters who sought to keep France alive during her darkest hours. Legends even said that her face could be seen in some nurses who took of the arms when Germany came across the Somme and the ladies who kept the resistance alive when those same Germans took Paris. Her spirit was imbued in Napoleon, in De Gaulle, and in Zelle, but now; the spirit of Jeanne d'Arc was called once again to save her most treasured France from yet another insurrection.

"What?" Her ghostly visage crawled up from the grounds of the fairy tree in Domremy as a being who had not seen earthly life for centuries gazed once again, teary eyed, at the pleasant French countryside. "Blessed Virgin, Dearest Lord, Saint Michael, Saint Catherine, Saint Margaret, I can hear you, my Voices, they have returned?"

[i]"Jeanne...you have been called...France is once again in need of your aid."[/i]

"What has happened? Why am I called? I know that the English pretenders have once again come to France, but my people welcome them. I cannot change their minds."

[i]"It is beyond that Jeanne, it is another spirit, a great dragon, a beast that has risen from the East. With the dawning of the sun, the end grows nigh."[/i]

"This Beast, it threatens France?"

[i]"It will destroy France, you must do all that is in your power to stop the ravaging of your blessed homeland. Jeanne, you must take up your sword again, you must take up your armor. You must ride again."[/i]

With those words, Jeanne could feel the ghostly visage that she had belonged to for so many years, her spirit beginning to fade and the purity and strength of her flesh coming back to life. Upon that hill looking down at Domremy, she could feel her hair fall back to her shoulders and sweat bead on her neck. The ashes of her death had been wiped away and once again, the pristine knight stood in her silver armor, the sword of Charlemagne at her side and the banner of the Virgin Mother at her feet.

[i]"Go! Go to Anjou! You will find the Beast there, slay his visage and save France!"[/i]

She knelt to the ground and crossed herself before starting her walk down the hill. The world had changed, but she was still in need of a horse.

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[size="6"][b]Angevin Natinal News [/b][/size]

[size="5"][b]King Geoffrey and Queen Catherine fall ill. General Joseph de'Plantagent in power.[/b][/size]

Angers, Angevin France - The King and Queen have fallen ill reporting flu like symptoms and have been isolated to an undisclosed hospital facility. The strain has not been identified and is exhibiting unusual symptoms. Medical experts nation wide have been called in to evaluate the new, unidentified virus. There are concerns that the new virus bears the hallmark of an assassination attempt or a biological attack. Details of the new symptoms have yet to be released as they are also still under ongoing analysis.

Shortly before being admitted into critical care, the King appointed Military Commander Joseph de'Plantagenet, his Nephew, as temporary monarch and commander of the nation given the military crisis occurring nearby. In his first press announcement coming to power Joseph proclaimed the following, "We stand by the Delian League and its members, particularly the statements of Athens, in its handling of this crisis. Readiness levels of the Monarchy have been raised to accommodate for the escalating tension. We warn against further encroachment in Europe by foreign powers and strongly recommend that actions be taken by the Kingdom of Cochin to relieve the tension. There is no need for their presence in Europe and there is no need for blood shed to alleviate that presence. I give the people of France my word, that as my Uncle lies ill, I shall do my best to provide solid, calm, and steady leadership through this crisis and strongly warn the financial markets against panic due to the Tension. There is no need for you to fear risk that is not present in the system. The Angevin People need to protect their assets.. and emotional knee jerking is not the way to do so effectively. As of this time, all forces are ordered to Defcon 3. Our allies are hereby publicly notified of our intent to call them if we are attacked as part of this dispute."

Edited by Maelstrom Vortex
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[b]Lets just say that the meeting between Paul and the Noverian president has already ended.[/b]

[b]An hour after the king and queen of Angevin are bitten.[/b]

[b]Damion calls Paul.

Damion: [/b]We have a problem. King Geoffrey and his queen Christine have fallen ill back in Angevin. As Duke of Andorra you need to get back there to be with them.

[b]Paul: [/b]It is what he would want me to do. OK, call Jesse and tell him what is going on, at this point I do not care if he comes with us or not.

[b]Damion then calls Jesse.

Damion: [/b]It seems we are going to have to leave a little sooner than we hoped. If I were you I would get my ass over here pronto.

[b]Jesse: [/b]OK, We are on our way.

[b]Brian: [/b]What about Daniele?

[b]Jesse: [/b]It is gonna have to wait. Besides we can talk to her later over the phone if we have to.

[b]Jesse and Brian get back into the car and start heading back to the airport.

Paul: [/b]You are to get behind the limo I am in and follow me back to the airport. I already told them you are gonna come with me back to Angevin to see your families and help me with something.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Oh I have a bad feeling about this.

[b](OOC: Just because they don't have magical powers does not mean they can't protect the world from evil forces.) [/b]

[b]Brian: [/b]What do you mean.

[b]Paul: [/b]Jesse has a good reason to be worried. I was able to get more info about what happened from my friend Adrien. He was able to get his hands and security tapes of what had happened. They found a medallion with a Dragon on it and the King tried it on.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Never trust those !@#$@#$ medallions that have dragons on them.

[b]Paul: [/b]The head seemed to turn around and bite them both on the finger.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Oh $%&@!

[b]Paul: [/b]What?

[b]Jesse: [/b]That is what turned Kang into a dragon back in Korea. Dang those Dragon cultists just don't know how to die and stay dead.

[b]Paul: [/b]The king and queen are not cultists. They found it in an old box deep in the Angers Castle.

[b]Jesse: [/b]We need to get there now!

[b]Paul: [/b]Follow my limo to the airport and they should let you through. We need to take out the Dragon cult once and for all but first we need to go to that hospital and see how the king and queen are doing.

[b]Jesse: [/b]I see it. Lets go.

[b]They follow him to the airport. I anyone askes why Delta is following him Paul says that they are with him. They get on and head to Angevin.[/b]

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[b]On the plane heading back to Angevin.

Brian: [/b]Jesse you need to tell the others what is going on. Why they need to have anything to do with this.

[b]Jesse: [/b]The only ones that do not know what happened in Korea are Nathan, Ben, and Anthony. You are right, after the death of my grandfather this did become personal. The cult set up that ambush and killed him while he was defenseless. This will not end until every cultist is dead and their bases are destroyed.

[b]Paul: [/b]You cant blame the king for what happened. If he had known what that thing really was he would never have touched it.

[b]Jesse: [/b]That is also what worries me. What if he already knew what it was and he let it happen.

[b]Paul: [/b]He did not know that would happen Jesse, he couldn’t have known, he is not a cultist.

[b]Brian: [/b]Jesse has a point, Geoffrey might have known that doing this will turn him into a dragon and that is the reason he might have done it. He could have known that it might make him like Maelstrom and he wants it to happen, so that they can have the power that Maelstrom once had.

[b]Jesse: [/b]There is a problem though. The virus has been mutating over the past years and it could turn them into something much worse than just Dragons. Who knows how much it can alter them and their minds. If this thing had mutated enough than once the transformation is over the king and queen you once knew Paul will be gone. We are gonna first see how they are doing and then we will look for answers for why this happened and how we can stop it.

[b]Pilot: [/b]We are approaching the western Angevin coast. There is a tropical storm within the vicinity so landing will be a bit bumpy once we make it to Angers.

[b]Brian: [/b]Oh this is going to be fun.

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[b]Airport outside of Angers
The cross winds would make for a fun landing at Angers. Joan, Jesse, everyone heading in that direction encountered the brutal beating the coast was taking. The ever rare tornado even made its appearance as often comes with these storms.. wrecking small towns and glancing off suburbs of larger ones. The EMS teams were constantly in the field.

After they landed, a foreign affairs secretary greeted them at the airport while thunder rolled in the distance. "You should have used the bullet trains. Would have been much safer." William de'Finistere said over the roar of the winding down jet engines. He hastened them towards the waiting limo.. when they got in he knocked a little water off his drenched over-coat.

"I have some bad news gentlemen. The virus we're seeing is unlike anything our doctors have seen. It has some kind of engineering work done to it but appears based off of a rhinovirus protein nucleic injector shell.. or so the doctors tell me. I don't understand any of it. All I know is they're somewhat frightened. They have the King and Queen in quarantine, though as of yet it appears designed only to spread via direct fluid contact. Hell, only the Royal Guard has security access to see them now. They say it's disfiguring them somehow and there are concerns they will not survive. And this strange character showed up a few days ago... some.. Julian Karnell who had been working as a doctor in the South of France. He claimed his father made the thing, and begin talking about.. mechanisms in the medical sciences that flew over most of our pathologists heads. He said he's going to try and stop it, that it had cost his father his life, but that at this point the King and Queen were nearly to far gone. Best he said he might be able to do is save their lives."

"Joseph is really worried for them. There are some real nightmarish stories about what is happening to them coming out of the quarantine and I find it hard to believe half of what is being said.. except that it's coming from people I know have all their live been strict professionals not subject to superstitions. We're not sure they're going to be able to rule even if they live. Joan Clemenceau sends her best wishes, but she's dealing with trying to save her property from this storm. Fortunately, I live on high ground in the city."

The Limo driver stopped as they traveled towards town. He spoke back over the words of William. "Bridge out. I'm going to try and find a way around gentlemen. I'm going to remove the national markers as the new route is not one we had pre-secured." He got out of the vehicle, removed the flags from the antennae of the vehicle and the side placards.

They drove through the dark, intermittently well lit countryside as the storm raged til the driver found a steel girder reinforced bridge that was suitable for crossing and then got back on route.

Edited by Maelstrom Vortex
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[b]Jesse: [/b]I can't believe you did not see this thing coming sooner Paul. I watch the news and watched it go through the atlantic and then turn, these storms are actually normal for this time of the year, it just happened to be at a bad time for us and this one seemed to be a bit stronger as well.

[b]Paul: [/b]You saw how good our pilot did with the landing. Although it was a little more bumpy than normal is was not that bad.

[b]Jesse [looks at William]: [/b] You said there was nightmarish stories about what is happening to them. What exactly?

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"Well, last I heard, they were losing large sections of their skin and hair. Like a person going through Chemotherapy, but at a much more rapid pace. Amazingly, they're not bleeding out. We thought at first it might be ebola. When the skin slides off though there's tougher tissue under it.. they're analyzing it trying to figure out what it is. It looks kind of like that stuff the "Tree Man" in Indonesia was growing, but they're rather certain this is not warts."

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[b]This was done in an IRC chat with Maelstrom.[/b]

[b]In the limo on the way to the Angers Hospital.[/b]

[b]Brian: [/b]You thinking what I am thinking Jesse.

[b]Jesse: [/b]There has to be something else. If they did this on purpose than who knows what they are planning, plus I thought it was their own leaders that they used the virus on, now other world leaders.

[b]Brian: [/b]We need to know how and why this happened.

[b]Jesse: [/b]They may not be able to tell us what exactly happened but I might be able to find out myself.

[b]Brian: [/b]Do you still have the medallion from Kang?

[b]Jesse: [/b]I took it off his body just after the other guy beheaded him so yes.

[b]Jesse [looks back at William]: [/b]I have a theory on what happened but lets just say you would have to be a bit open minded to believe it, but you might be able to help me see if it is corrrect. Can you show us the medallion they were holding before they became ill?

[b]William: [/b]They didn't do this on purpose. They were just moving things out from the old Museum in the Chateau. Umm... yes we still have it, but it's the ownership of the Angers Museum of History. We'd have to get their consent and it's considered to be a priceless relic among which there are few, and if your allegations are true that may actually increase its value for its historic infamy... though it'd need steralized.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Things are never as easy as you want them to be. Well since we cant go see the king and queen yet you might as well take us there first. We are gonna have to take a look at it to figure out what we are dealing with.

[b]William knocked on the Driver's glass. [/b]"Take us to the new museum."

[b]Brian: [/b]You really think we can save them Jesse?

[b]Jesse: [/b]We are gonna at least try.

[b]Driver replied, [/b]"We can't go to the museum sir.. they're under lock down as is all other commerce right now due to the storm. They're probably boarded up due to all the glass windows in the structure."

[b]Jesse: [/b]Those glass windows probably won't be there tomorrow if this thing keep us.

[b]A tree fell across the narrow countryside road.. the driver swerved to avoid it.. [/b]"It's kind of dangerous right now as well.."

[b]William: [/b]I think they said 48 hours til it completely passes.

[b]Jesse: [/b]They don't have that much time. With how fast this thing works they may have less than 24.

[b]William asked the driver looking over his shoulder, [/b]"How much further to the Hospital? It's a well built structure we'll at least be safe there."

[b]The driver replied, [/b]"Five minutes, we're almost in town now."

[b]Jesse: [/b]You said that their doctor was the one that created it?

[b]William: [/b]Son of the doctor who created it. He blames the virus for the life of his father. I think he has the best chance of unraveling it, but he said at this point.. it would kill them. He's not on our normal staff. He came into town when he heard about the incident in the press.

[b]Paul: [/b]A good question is how he knew what it was. I saw that press release and there was not much good info on it.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Good think to ask him once we meet.

[b]Brian: [/b]Plus if you have a video feed into the room where they are we may want to look at that as well.

[b]William: [/b]Do no rough him up.. He is doing all he can to help. Now is not the time to cross or interrogate him. He's the only chance they might live. We do not keep cameras in operating room. Violation of patient privacy laws.

[b]Jesse: [/b]These are your leaders we are talking about. At this point I would say screw...

[b]Brian: [/b]Not now Jesse.

[b]William: [/b]You can talk to the doctors though.

[b]Jesse: [/b]OK. I promise not to hurt any of them.

[b]Brian: [/b]Unless one of them tries to hurt him first in which case Jesse might kill him. Nothing to worry about here though.

[b]The driver turned the corner into the Hospitals emergency drive in. He pressed a button on the car.. and instead of walking in.. the car was lowered under ground...[/b]

[b]Brian: [/b]Its gonna be one of these places huh?

[b]As they drove in, Jesse would see the hospital is currently guarded to the teeth by covert ops including a few SAM spots ont eh roof.[/b]

[b]William: [/b]Considering we weren't aware as to what this is.. yes. We thought it was a biological attack or an assassination attempt, so we took them to our most secure facility.

[b]Jesse: [/b]At least these are not like the tunnels and catacombs beneath Edmonton and Nadrink. Those things go on forever.

[b]Paul: [/b]With what is going on between Athens and Cochin right now they can't be too careful. Especially during this type of storm as well.

[b]The car stopped lowering 1 floor down.. the driver pulled into an underground garage and parked.

William: [/b]It's not a nuclear bunker, although there is one built 100 feet below us. We didn't think the situation that dire yet.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Good to know. We are gonna need accurate details on what is happening to them. If these doctors are too terrified to give us good descriptions we are screwed.

[b]William: [/b]They're not... it's an ice cold terror that doctors exhibit. You can see the concern in their eyes.. but they don't show it. They have to work.

[b]William got out. He thanked the driver who nodded and went to have a coffee break. He walked with them down the corridors of the underground facility through a series of check points with Royal guards. Finally, they ended up in the care center. A set of physicians worked at a desk monitoring vitals and heart rate. [/b]

Jesse: Paul, see if Adrian can get you more info while we talk to the doctors. Anything he has might be able to help us. Also keep Damion outside so he can tell us what the storm does.

[b]William looked to Jesse, [/b]"I understand you're worried for our Queen and King, but I'm not sure of the nature of the concern.. you keep talking about someone called Kang.."

[b]The lights flickered in the facility as the power generators switched on as the main external grid went down.[/b]

[b]William: [/b]Welp, there go the lovely lights of Angers.

[b]Jesse: [/b]This is nothing like what I've seen the blizzards in Noveria do. This storm is nothing compared to those blizzards. Try getting buried under 10 feet of snow and then come back to me.

[b]Jesse would look down the hall.. and would see something that looked like faint static or a distortion of the air... fade through a wall..[/b]

[b]Brian: [/b]Jesse what is it, from the look on your face it is as if you saw a ghost.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Lets just hope I didn't.

[b]Brian: [/b]Do you have it with you?

[b]Jesse: [/b]Yea but I don't think this is the best place to show him. [b][looks at William][/b] Kang was someone we faced in Korea. Another one of those people planning to take over the world. He had a medallion like the ones they were looking at before they became ill. Lets just say he was affected by a virus like this one. What happened to him was something no one here would believe.

[b]Brian: [/b]I'll make it simple for you. He turned into a giant reptile with wings and a tail.

[b]One of the doctors looked up, [/b]"We'd believe it. We've already been told exactly what this virus was and its history from Dr. Karnell while William was out. It's also beyond anything we've seen in medical science... the man who designed it must have been a certified genious."

[b]Jesse [to the doctor]: [/b]Is there anything else you can tell us about it? What it is doing to their bodies?

[b]Doctor: [/b]I'm Dr. Bob Livingston. It's a custom engineered virus. It was designed in the era of the Dragon Empire by one Dr. Greogry Karnell. It was designed using a database of all known DNA chromosomes on the planet. It was meant to be a super soldier that took the form of the Nation's Heraldic symbols. It has the assets of many known predatory species. It is not a reptile.. it's more amphibian..

[b]Jesse: [/b]Another one of those !@#$@#$ super soldier things. How many super soldier programs have we foiled over the years Brian?

[b]Brian: [/b]Enough to where I lost count.

[b]Jesse: [/b]I've seen what it does and lets just say it is not pretty.

[b]Brian: [/b]Even after we used all our clips that thing was still alive.

[b]Doctor Bob: [/b]When the first victim of the strain fell ill to radiation induced cancer.. Dr. Gregory Karnell with the assistance of Saborian scientists, perfected a delivery system to change the human body so that it would somewhat generate using chameleon DNA and mend tissue damage. Later, some people took samples of Maelstrom Vortex's DNA and the delivery system and used it to formalize a virus form of the strain which we are seeing here. That person was Gregory Karnell, who briefly was a high priest in the Dragon Cult.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Why that !@#$@#$ !@#$%^&. I'm surprised you let his son into the city.

[b]Bob: [/b]Our Dr. Karnell tried to stop his father, but couldn't get him to do so. He said his father was extremely eccentric.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Does not mean I trust him. You are sure his son is not a cultist?!

[b]Brian: [/b]Remember Jesse, control your temper.

[b]Jesse: [/b]You're right. But I just want to make sure this guy wont try to stab me in the back with something.

[b]Brian [to the doctor]: [/b]His grandfather was killed in a cultist ambush in Korea just before we killed Kang. Right now his goal is to basically wipe them out of existance.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Reminds me of what I am fighting for.

[b]Brian: [/b]We are still gonna need to be sure this guy can be trusted.

[b]Jesse: [/b]The sins of our fathers.

[b]Brian: [/b]Ain't it a !@#$%*.

[b]William: [/b]There are no cultists in all of France that we are aware of. Global oppression drove the Faith of Dreams into the wood works.I'm fairly confident this man is not a cultist. His father nuked himself at the south pole after failing to nuke Cochin in an attempt to become some messiah of sorts.

[b]Some lights began to flash "CODE BLUE." Nurses and doctors scrambled into the room that held the Plantegenets...[/b]

[b]Jesse: [/b]And I am sure Cochin does not have anything to do with this incident. Their worry is with Athens right now.

[b]The doctor stated, [/b]"After hearing his story, we think the whole incident is a macabre accident involving a cult instrument or relic."

[b]Jesse: [/b]That is why in the past we have tried to destroy their relics. They contain power that no one understands and never will.

[b]Damiom [on radio]: [/b]This storm does not seem like it is gonna let up anytime soon, it may get worse before it gets better. You guys are gonna have to hunker down there for the night. Lets just hope the generators hold.

[b]The image of the distortion in the air was walking into the room with the Angevins.. shortly after the code blue lights went out. A nurse sighed, [/b]"We almost lost them." [b]She said to Livingston.[/b]

[b]Jesse: [/b]They are not gonna survive the night. They will either die or complete transformation between now and dawn. If the generators go out I am so gonna kill Damion.

[b]Brian: [/b]He is also one of the best mechanics we know. If anyone can keep them running it is him.

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Doctor Livingston interjected, "It won't be by dawn. This virus is slow, methodical. It doesn't reproduce like other viruses which do so to excess to that they destroy a great quantity of cells. They appear to select one cell, use it to reproduce into the hundreds.. infect others, but only 2 more new cells actually reproduce.. the others just conform to the new programming. So you convert 100 cells, destroy 2. It is preserving the tissue while allowing conversion to new protocols. At least, that's my best assessment and this stuff is well beyond anything I've studied here. Current projections are the virus is going to take at least 1 week to run its full course."

"You should get some rest. Since the Plantagents have no other direct family than some nieces and nephews.. you can use the accommodations we have down the hall for overnight stays of immediate family members. However, if you do that, we have to confiscate your guns. We have a rule here, only Angevin authorities are permitted to carry weapons at any time. Sorry if it offends you, but it's our standard protocol for our Monarch's safety. We're sure you understand."

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[b]Jesse: [/b]Yea we understand.

[b]They give their guns to the Angevin authorities.

Brian: [/b]So we have 1 week to try to stop this.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Well in the morning we better get started.

[b]They go down the hall to where the overnight accommodations were set up.[/b]

[b]Jesse: [/b]Are you going to stay up all night Paul?

[b]Paul: [/b]King Geoffrey has been my friend for as long as I can remember and I intend to stay with him until the end. It is what he would want me to do.

[b]Jesse: [/b]But he would also want you to get some rest as well. We are going to figure out how to stop this.

[b]Paul: [/b] And if we can't before it is too late?

[b]Jesse: [/b]Do what you feel is right and you shall find your answers.

[b]Brian: [/b]I didn't know you were that good at wisdom poetry?

[b]Jesse: [/b]My grandfather used to tell me that one a lot. It seems to have stuck with me.

[b]Brian: [/b]Lets go to sleep, and lets also hope that this storm dies down so we can look at the medallion and figure out if it says how we can stop it.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Do you really think this thing will kill them?

[b]Brian: [/b]Too early to tell right now. My 2 conclusions are that it will either kill them or transform them into Dragons like what we saw with Kang.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Even if we can't stop the transformations in time lets just hope that they at least don't turn insane.

[b]Jesse turns out the lights in the room and they both go to sleep. Paul will stay up with the doctors to make sure the king and queen don't die in the middle of the night.[/b]

[b]Damion [radio to Paul]: [/b]This thing probably will not let up until dawn at earliest. I will make sure the generators hold.

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[b]Jesse had a weird dream that night. His grandfather had an urgent message for him.

Grandpa John: [/b]I cant tell you everything Jesse, but what I can tell you is that Angevin, Andorra, the whole region of France is in danger. An ancient evil comes to destroy France and everything in it. Andorra would also be one of the places destroyed as well.

[b]Jesse: [/b]What the $%&@ does this have to do with the King and Queen of Angevin going ill?

[b]John: [/b]You are going to have to find that out yourself.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Why can't you tell me what is coming. What will happen.

[b]John: [/b]There are rules Jesse, rules that cannot be broken no matter what. You know that I am dead and that I was killed in a cultist but you didn't know the exact reason for why they ambushed me. The thing is I have been on Earth for a long time. I have been protecting it from the forces of evil for over 500 years just like you are doing right now. What is coming is an ancient evil thing comes from the east that is bent on destruction and chaos. And unless it is stopped all will be lost, not just King Geoffrey and Queen Christine but all of France as well.

[b]Jesse: [/b]You still have not told me what the $%&@ this thing is?

[b]John: [/b]That's just it Jesse. I'm not entirely sure what it is. It is an evil thing that comes from the east to wipe out everything in its path. The ancient spirits of France are already rising up to fight it but they won't be enough. The past of our family has finally caught up with us.

[b]Jesse: [/b]What the hell are you talking about.

[b]John: [/b]In time you will find the answers that you seek.

[b]Jesse than wakes up. It is still nighttime outside and the storm is still raging with lightning, thunder, and pouring rain.

Jesse: [/b]Oh crap. More things come to join the party.

[b]Paul was sitting in the chair on the other side of the room.

Paul: [/b]What Jesse?

[b]Jesse: [/b]Nothing. How are the King and Queen doing?

[b]Paul: [/b]Good for now. Their transformation is still progressing, but the doctor was right in the fact that it is going slowly.

[b]Jesse: [/b]We still don't have much time. In the morning we need to go to that museum to look at the medallion. Storm or not.

[b]Paul: [/b]I will see what I can do. Go back to sleep, you will need your rest.

[b]Jesse: [/b]OK.

[b]Jesse then goes back to sleep.[/b]

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[center][url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IFu2YY5nHsE&feature=related"][b]The Storm Raged on...[/b][/url][/center]

Another day of horrific weather passed. All throughout it, Jesse would see the strange static specter coming in and vanishing intermittently. It was periodic, almost to a fault. Yet no one else seemed to see it. It acted much like a person would.. and seemed to be checking in on him and his party on a regular basis as if monitoring them.

All during the time the doctors would share status reports. The good news was that the primary internal organs seem to still be working and there is no sign of an end of brain activity for the King and Queen. They were still holding onto life. New organ systems had been seen to form in them that had not been in their bodies before. The tissue that was replacing their skin was reported to be pearl white and seemed to be quite conductive. The doctors had to resort to using thicker rubber gloves from latex ones after a surgeon had been seriously electrically shocked examining one of the new organs which appeared to be the electrical sacs system of an amazonian electric eel or salamander.

Then some bad news came in.. the storm had stalled over angers. Which lead to something quite creepy outside as it still had somewhat of the remnant of its eye. The moon could be seen through it like a giant pupil for the storm. The sky above the city and the weather.. was usually clear. Though sometimes the eye collapsed and would fold back in on itself. It was clearly weakening.. or was it winking?

The doctors wheeled in a C.A.T. scan machine and scanned both of them. They were making sure to document every step in the process as it occurred to keep up to date with patients that currently appeared to have changing anatomy.

Civil alert sirens began to chime the tornado warning pattern in the suburbs around the hospital...

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[b]Jesse: [/b]A tornado, here on all places?!

[b]Nathan: [/b]We were in Meteorology class together in college before we joined the military and what this storm is doing shouldn’t happen. It stalled over the city and with how big the eye is it should be a category 2 hurricane or over yet it is still only a tropical storm. Makes me wonder if this is an artificial storm.

[b]Jesse: [/b]As far as I know no one has the technology capable of creating one yet. And this makes no sense with what my grandfather told me last night in my dream.

[b]Brian: [/b]Your what said what?

[b]Jesse: [/b]My dead grandfather came to me in a dream and said an ancient evil is coming from the east to destroy France and that the ancient spirits of France are rising up against it. Can’t be the hurricane because it came from the west.

[b]Brian: [/b]Ancient enemy of France. England was an enemy, and who do we know that currently has troops in it from the east.

[b]Jesse: [/b]UFE? This couldn’t have been planned by them. If it was them the armies of the world would bear down on them. The UFE may be strong but they are not that strong plus they are probably not that stupid. It is not them.

[b]Nathan: [/b]The ancient spirits of France, ancient enemy. Joan of Arc was the savior of France and she helped end the hundred years war between France and England. Could that mean something?

[b]Jesse: [/b]I don't think England has anything to do with this. My grandfather said it was coming from the east, not the north or west. Anyways King Geoffrey and Queen Christine continue to change and although we have 5 days before the transformation completes we only have 1-2 days before it is too late to stop it. What happens in their transformations next depends on what type of Dragon they turn into.

[b]Ben: [/b]There is more than one type?

[b]Jesse: [/b]There are 3 basic types of Dragons. There is the Chinese Dragon which is long like a snake. There is the water Dragon which is more like a fish. Then there is the Western 5 fingered Dragon which is the type you see in the medieval stories from France and England. They were not able to show me the medallion itself yet but I was handed a picture of it by William. The medallion had a five fingered Dragon on it so that is the type I think they will turn into but then there is the whole electric organs thing which doesn't make any sense at all with any of them. They whole changing process may take a long time but within a day or two their tails and wings will probably start to form and stopping it during that process will either kill them or put them in endless pain. We either stop it before that part or let the the whole transformation continue and complete.

[b]Ben: [/b]How do you know all this stuff about Dragons and stuff like that?

[b]Jesse: [/b]My grandfather used to be the worlds best expert on mythological things. Before he died he taught just about everything he knew to me so now I am an expert on mythology.

[b]Paul: [/b]This is all my fault.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Don't say that. You didn't know that they would find a Dragon medallion that would bite them.

[b]Paul: [/b]But if I told everything we knew about the cult and our fight against them they might not have touched it in the first place.

[b]Jesse: [/b]There is no way you can know that. Even if you told them they would probably have still touched it anyways. People tend to do things they are told not to do a lot. Especially when it comes to leaders, they can supposedly do anything without being punished.

[b]Paul: [/b]Are you talking about them or me?!

[b]Jesse: [/b]It makes no difference. People do stupid things and think they won't have to face the consequences but it does not matter who you are because you will face them anyways. Your father knew what he was doing when he went into that amusment park in Korea and he faced the consequences for his actions. Maybe they should do the same.

[b]Later Jesse was sitting down looking at the C.A.T scan results when he sees the something wierd. Across the room seemed to be the air specter he saw earlier and then it vanished.

Jesse: [/b]Oh great. More fricken ghosts.

[b]Brian motions for Jesse to come see him privately.

Brian: [/b]Jesse, what is going on. You have the same look on your face as you did yesterday. Did you see a ghost again?

[b]Jesse: [/b]I don’t know what it is, for all I know it could be the ghost of my grandfather watching over me, or something else entirely.

[b]Brian: [/b]You are currently the only one that can see whatever it is. That has to mean something.

[b]Jesse: [/b]I don’t know but I think we are going to find out soon.

[b]Later Brian finds Jesse sitting down in the same chair in the waiting room staring at the medallion he took off of Kang.

Brian: [/b]So that's just it, you are going to give up.

[b]Jesse: [/b]I am about to let this thing bite me and then donate my body to science to see if that will save them.

[b]Brian: [/b]You are not going to get rid of yourself that easily.

[b]Jesse: [/b]If we can't find a way to stop it soon we might as well let it complete itself. There is nothing in these Brain scans that suggest their behaviors are changing so they should still have control when it completes so we might as well let it happen.

[b]Brian: [/b]The doctor thinks they are going to die if this continues.

[b]Jesse: [/b]The doctor is lying. I'm not saying he is a cultist but he is hiding something from us and he doesn't tell us what it is than I can't keep my promise about him not getting hurt. William said it was not the virus that killed his father. It was what his father did after trying to become some sort of savior. After failing in a mission to destroy Cochin he blew himself up with a nuke down in Antartica. If he wanted to kill himself why didn't he just shoot himself? A bullet to the brain solves everything.

[b]Brian: [/b]Now that puts a new meaning to the word suicide. Maybe his father couldn't kill himself using the more conventional methods.

[b]Jesse: [/b]He probably used the virus to turn into a Dragon and went on his mission to destroy Cochin but he failed and when he tried to commit suicide the pistol bullet at point blank bounced right off. We need to hear the full story from the young Dr. Karnell so we know what we are dealing with.

[b]Brian: [/b]Lets go ask him.

[b]Meanwhile Paul went to ask Doctor Livingston something, [/b]"Is it possible for me to go in and talk to either of them or are they unconscious? At this point I do not care how dangerous it is. Maybe there is something King Geoffrey can tell me that will help us figure out what is going on and how to stop it."

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Livingston observed, "They're on the precipice of consciousness, but their fevers are too high to get anything out of them but delirium. I've been overhearing some of the talk of your crew and yourself. The rooms are small and the relatively empty hallways carry echos well. I tried not to eavesdrop, but it's hard not to in this place. I want to make something clear to you. Whatever these things are, they are not dragons. They were made to look like them aesthetically.. but they are in fact a very complex life form that is difficult to classify. Outside of saying they are a chimera of many species, there is little more that can be said. They will look human in terms of gait and stance. They will not have wings. Apparently the wings on the one you called Kang were aberrant. It is possible Kang had his own customized variation on the strain given he was from the cult that had preserved it. They will have a tail that is like an alligator's in appearance, but that functions more like those on a lizard in terms of providing a counter balance to the weight of the jaw structure that is being added to their face and as a third balancing limb. The design on this is a masterpiece, but the King and Queen.. I'm not sure they'll be so happy with what they're getting. Also, we do not want you in the room with them when they waken. We expect the discovery as to what they have become will result in severe psychological trauma as they had no preparation for this. We have counselors on staff already preparing to attempt to help them cope."

"Also, that static thing you're seeing. People have started to call it the Ghost of Angers.. it only seems to appear to a select group of people.. and apparently we Angevins have no difficulty seeing it. We largely ignore it. We do not know why foreigners and only select people see it. Scientifically, we can't even prove it's actually there. I've seen it as well, I just don't acknowledge that it is there. For the most part, our scientists think it is an electromagnetic anomaly caused by the region and think the only reason that foreigners are not as aware of it... is they're not here long enough to see it. But to be completely honest, it has us confused. There's also a possibility it is a mass hallucination based on a few regional reports about anomalies.. much like big foot or UFOs."

"Additionally, I think you need more rest. I think the stress of getting here and friends being in trouble has caused you to start having your own hallucinations. You might dream about him, but thinking you're actually hearing the voice of recently dead relatives, is not healthy. I could have one of our counselors check you out if you want."

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[b]The next part was in an IRC chat between me and Maelstrom. This is what we have so far.[/b]

[b]Paul: [/b]Jesse is not crazy. Stuff like this has happened before and it saved their butts on more than one ocasion. And I am sure that their is a scientific explanation for this ghost thing as well.

[b]Jesse: [/b]People have forgotten about the magical mythological things that have happened in the past. People may think we are crazy but we are not. The scientific community has advanced a lot in the past and recent centuries but they still do not prove that some mythological things did not happen in the past. There are things most people here could not even imagine that happen every day.

[b]Livingston interjected, [/b]"This thing is not a myth. I've got a sample of its DNA sitting to the right of me. The static thing.. I simply am uncertain as to what it is."

[b]Paul: [/b]That is exactly what he means. It could be anything.

[b]Jesse: [/b]But seeing and analyzing the DNA will help as well.

[b]Doctor Livingston: [/b]Well, you have some great white shark in there.. some alligator, some spider.. which has me confused as we see nothing spidery about it it.. some scorpion.

[b]Jesse: [/b]They better not have stingers in their tails when they get them.

Livingston: There's cobra and coral sea snake... I'm guessing one is for fangs.. the other for Venom. Whoever designed this researched a long time on natural weapons.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Surprised there is no bat dna as well.

[b]Livingston: [/b]There's pit viper as well.... and there looks like some that is from bat, but not much.

[b]Jesse: [/b]So there might be wings. But probably not.

[b]Livingston remarked, [/b]"No.. when I think of bats I think of two things.. wings.. but also echolocation."

[b]Paul: [/b]Too bad. A King and Queen that could fly would have been real cool.

[b]Livingston shook his head, [/b]"Anyone familiar with the aerodynamics of living beings understands that to power something the size of a human requires an incredible amount of energy."

[b]Jesse: [/b]You are right, and I guess your Dr Karnell has not found a way to stop it yet.

[b]Livingston: [/b]Oh, there's a way to stop it. But it'd kill them both.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Than never mind.

[b]Livingston: [/b]If you stopped the process mid-way through the immune system would attack one version of the gene system or the other. It'd either attack human.. or chimera.. depending on how far the evolution had progressed. The virus starts in the immune system to temporarily neutralize it and prevent rejection during transofrmation. If it fails to fully convert the body attacks itself. You gents should really relax.. wait for Geoffrey and Christine to have gone through their initial shock and we'll let you visit.

[b]Jesse: [/b]I guess we are going to have to let it finish then.

[b]Livingston: [/b]I'm pretty certain.. you will hear them wake up..

[b]Brian: [/b]Should I put tranquilizers in my gun just in case?

[b]Jesse: [/b]What do you think?!

[b]Livingston shook his head. [/b]"Can you imagine.. waking up after passing out from being ill... To be exposed to a vast array of new incoming data directly wired to your own mind.. that you do not yet understand. It'd like being a baby.. all over again."

[b]Jesse: [/b]What do you know Brian?! I'd say that might be a yes.

[b]Livingston: [/b]We have it covered. Their state of consciousness is being closely controlled and so will their awakening. We're going to have them strapped in when they do.

[b]Jesse: [/b]And how long will it probably be until then?

[b]Livingston: [/b]We're thinking 2 days.

[b]Damion [on radio]: [/b]Another weather report. This thing is still stalled over the city but it looks like it is weakening.

[b]The storm was starting to fade as an organized system on radar. The sky over Angers was slowly starting to clear.. it was getting down to a drizzle as it progressed later into the night. However.. there was a river running through the road down the hill the hospital sat on.. not a literal river, but a lot of water.[/b]

[b]Jesse: [/b]We are still going to need to talk to your Doctor Karnell before then. If there is anything he is hiding he needs to tell us.

[b]Karnell walked out of the emergency room, [/b]"They're stable again.." [b]He sighed and sat in a chair.. he looked like he had run a marathon.[/b]

[b]LIvingston observed, [/b]"Here's your chance."

[b]Jesse: [/b]We would like to ask you a few questions Doctor Karnell. Preferably somewhere private.

[b]Karnell: [/b]Here is fine, I learned the danger of keeping too many secrets from my father.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Then what is it you are not telling us? We are trying to help but given the info about what it is so far we don't have much to work with. What happened with your father? Every detail will help.

[b]Karnell: [/b]My Father was the head Phsyician for Maelstrom Vortex and a geneticist who pioneered viral alteration of organisms. He created this virus with the aid of Saborian scientists, because our country did not have the technology or the research center to effect his ideas. The purpose, at the time, was to use his research to save Maelstrom Vortex's life. The man was a cancer patient.. who had saved many in his nation by nearly sacrificing his own life going out into ongoing fall out to get them to shelters where they could be decontaminated. Maelstrom Vortex was not a very arrogant man. He ran his country. He was a dedicated Christian. All the same, there were some in his circle who would have raised him to the status of a god because he unified so much of Asia. When he passed.. there was no one that could really fill his shoes. Some in our secret service.. started a cult around him. They alledge he could one day return that he dreamed us all into existence. They say that, at least so far as Bob goes.. Christ made him.. and he made Bob.. that's what's so confusing. Unfortunately, in his later years.. the eccentricities of my father had turned to delerium.. he fell in with the cult. The empire was collapsing due to mismanagement.. He and the cultists tuned the virus up a little bit.. and spread it throughout the world using the cultists' medallions as delivery mechanisms.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Just like this one.

[b]Jesse shows him the medallion he took from Kang.[/b]

[b]Karnell: [/b]Right. The goal was to restore Maelstrom to his old body. My dad was crazy enough he volunteered himself for it. [b][he nods when he sees Kang's medallion] [/b]That's one of them.

[b]Jesse: [/b]What happened to your dad after that?

[b]Karnell: [/b]My father was so into the Maelstrom Delusion that he used the cult to find and activate some old DE warheads.

[b]Brian: [/b]Oh boy.

[b]Karnell: [/b]He wanted to restore India to Dragon Empire control.. but it and Dragonisia had all crumbled. He was so angry with Cochin occupying india, they smuggled a live nuke into Bengal and almost set it off on the runway. Cochinese intel barely stopped it. Seeing that it wasn't going to work.. he apparently gave up.. they had a base in the antarctic. Well.. he figured that since he was the dreamer... he'd just make a new world. Headed south to the poles where he thought he might create some form of dimensional rift that would create a new world using some kind of ritual and the electromagnetic fields of earth.. What none of these people never realize.. is that the real.. living Maelstrom Vortex.. would have never done any of that. He'd have called it Pagan idolatry.. and shot it down.

[b]Jesse: [/b]I guess that nuke didn't accomplish what he planned.

"Would we know if it did?" [b]Karnell shrugged. [/b]"All I know is I'm out a Father and the world has sucked for me.. his shadow has loomed over me my entire life. I spent most of my life.. trying to help the poor people.. he harmed."

[b]Jesse: [/b]I guess I can't say I know what it is like. I lost both of my parents when I was very young. My grandfather John was the closest thing me and my brother Damion had to a real father. Paul is more like a brother to us even though he is actually our uncle, but my point is that you are not the only one facing these hard times. Your father did some bad things and made some bad decisions and he payed the consequences for his actions. Everyone will face the consequences for their actions sometime in their life, the only way to make sure they are not severe is to be good and do the right things, and you have been doing that. Making up for what your father did will not make them forgive him but it will get everyone to be a lot nicer to you. Just remember that not every good thing you do will make up for all the bad ones but if you are prepared to face the consequences than you will be able to do almost anything.

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[b]A while later.

Jesse: [/b]Don't have much time until they wake up and even though we didn't stop their transformations I can't help but think that it is not over yet. There is something else going on here that we need to figure out.

[b]Brian: [/b]They found the medallion in the Chateau. Maybe there is something else there that could help us.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Just about all the ancient artifacts that were there have been moved to the museum in town, until we can get in we are basically screwed.

[b]Brian: [/b]Your grandfather has never lied to use before and just because he died does not mean he would stop helping us. His advice and intel has saved us before, just because he is dead does not mean he has stopped helping us. Something else is going on and we need to find out what.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Paul, did they have any children whatsoever?

[b]Paul: [/b]Not that I know of.

[b]Brian: [/b]Are you sure?!

[b]Paul: [/b]Yes, as far as anyone here knows they did not have any children. If they did I would know, me and Geoffrey have been friends for who knows how long. I was born down south near Andorra but I lived most of my life here before I started governing the area down there. You can say that we were best friends since childhood. That is why I feel I should stay with him until the end. If he had any children I would know one way or another.

[b]Jesse: [/b]OK, there goes that theory.

[b]Brian: [/b]That museum supposedly holds many artifacts from the old Dragon Empire, maybe one of those will help us figure out what is missing.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Brian, Nathan, and Anthony will go search the museum when they can. The rest of us will stay here and wait for the King and Queen to wake up.

[b]Brian: [/b]Come on guys, lets get ready to move.

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[b]Brian: [/b]Jesse before we go we are still going to need permission from William to go there and get the stuff.

[b]Jesse: [/b]OK, let me handle it.

[b]Once he finds William.

Jesse: [/b]I need to know if it is OK to send Brian, Nathan, and Anthony to the museum to get the medallion and any other cult artifacts to bring them here so your scientists can analyse them to see if any of them contain a cure for what is happening to the King and Queen.

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"That's fine. I'll send you with a notice of warrant from the office of the King. It'll allow you to get through the looting prevention patrols and museum private security should also protect it. Be careful with the items. Once they're confirmed sterile we'll want to try to return them to the Museum in as a good of a condition as we are able."

Karnell interrupted, "There is no cure. Not within our technological means. Once the virus starts showing symptoms... as with most viruses.. there is little that can be done to stop its natural progression. Be extremely careful with those artifacts. Some could still be contaminated. I would strongly recommend Class VI biohazard protection measures."

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[b]Nathan: [/b]What exactly does he mean by that?

[b]Jesse: [/b]It means be careful when touching the artifacts. We don't want any of you turning into one of those chimera things either.

[b]A while later.[/b]

[b]Brian: [/b]Our objective is simple. We are to get into the museum, and then we bag and tag the items in the Dragon Empire exhibit and bring them back to the hospital for further examination.

[b]Nathan: [/b]With our warrent the private security should let us through and so will the soldiers in the streets in front of it.

[b]Brian: [/b]Once inside we are to find the Dragon Empire artifacts and bring them back to the hospital for proper study.

[b]They arrive at the museum.

Anthony: [/b]So are we gonna go through the front doors or the side?

[b]Brian: [/b]Doesn't really matter which. I say the front so we can check in with the security first and then start bagging and tagging. I don't care about the maps or paintings. In simple terms look for anything relating to the Dragon Cult itself.

[b]Nathan: [/b]You got it.

Edited by jesbro
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Security reviewed their papers, nodded their assent, "Please be careful with them. They may represent a dark part of history, but that's the part we need to remind the people not to repeat." They would find the medallion, still packed in its crate with most of the cult items meant for display. They hadn't had time to unpack them before the storm was upon the museum and so were still neatly together.

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[b]Nathan: [/b]Should we actually bag and tag them or just bring the whole crate?

[b]Brian: [/b]If we just bring the whole crate we wont have to touch them but if we drop it we won't hear the end of it from both William and Jesse.

[b]Nathan: [/b]Just give it to me. I'll take it back to the van and we will then go back to the hospital.

[b]Brian: [/b]Just don't drop it.

[b]They bring the crate back to the van while being very careful. They carefully place it in the back of the van and close the door.

Brian: [/b]OK, lets get back to the hospital before something bad happens, bad stuff always seems to happen to us whenever we do something like this.

[b]Nathan: [/b]Well I was able to get it into the van without any problems. I'm sure it will be good this time.

[b]They then head back to the hospital. Meanwhile Jesse and Paul were waiting outside the room that has holding the King and Queen.

Jesse: [/b]It should be about time for them to wake up. You ready?

[b]Paul: [/b]I'm going to have to talk to him sometime soon. Might as well be once he is ready.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Take your time and go slowly with him. He didn't do it on purpose like Kang did so it will be a lot to take in.

[b]Paul: [/b]We have been friends since childhood. I hung out in the Chateau with him when we were kids, we would do lots of stuff in the garden together.

[b]Jesse: [/b]This is not the time for a childhood story.

[b]Paul: [/b]If he is ready than so am I.

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The King and Queen had been carefully awakened and counseled.. there had been cries of shock and some dismay from the room, but Geoffrey quickly simply sighed.. and resigned himself to what he had become. Christine was having a harder time of it, but she at least had her husband near to her and alive. After giving them a few hours to calm down.. Geoffrey was told they had visitors and was advised how long they had been waiting.

Geoffrey nodded, "Such loyal friends.. send them in."

The 4 were lead in. The King and Queen were in hospital robes laying on their beds, still in recovery. The Virus had turned them albino. They had scaled skin like an alligator or serpent, per the design fashioned so long ago.. it was thick and very durable while based on natural design, it had been modified to deflect or stop low caliber bullets. But it was snow white. Their eyes were those like an eagles, but the irises were a pinkish red. Their jaws were like a crocodile's snout and had rows of 3 rows depth of serrated teeth. Horns grew out of their heads upwards and back from just behind their brows. A fin-like set of griffs lined their cheek bones and gills could be seen closed upon their necks. At the foot of their bed, a tail just longer than their legs had the stinger laden tip showing just beyond the ends of the blankets. Talons, not nails, came from their finger tips and toes. The structure of their feet had changed with a reverse facing digit like an eagle's foot although that couldn't be readily seen.

As the 4 entered, they were keenly aware of the scents of them before they even appeared around the privacy curtains in the ward. When they saw them, they saw them in visual light and could see the heat given off by their bodies as well through the viper's pits on their snouts. Geoffrey held his head.. he was still getting adjusted to the new senses and it was causing him headaches. His mind was still struggling to understand and integrate the information, much like a babe using its eyes the first time.

When the 4 saw them, they would notice the strike markings on the King and Queen's faces.. although albino, there was one distinct mark on them. A natural mark as a result of their alteration. It looked like St. Georges cross was centered right in the center of their foreheads.. with the lower limb of it extending somewhat down their nose, ending between their eyes.

"Paul, Jesse.... I've been told you and your friends.. have been here the whole time. I'm surprised my illness brought you here. How are things outside.. how's Joseph handling the country?" Geoffrey asked with somewhat of a lisp from what was now a serpent's tongue.

Christine kept close to Geoffrey, her bed had been moved over next to his and she clutched his right arm and rested her head on his shoulder. She still seemed somewhat shaken from the ordeal.

Edited by Maelstrom Vortex
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[b]Paul: [/b]The hurricane did some damage but not a lot. It was mostly just a nuisance. The cleanup has already begun and most of the major roadways should be reopened within a day or so. Also it looks like Athens may be declaring war on Cochin soon if they do not get out of Europe. Now why Jesse is here is some story.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Paul's father has been hunting down the cult for a long time. They supposedly killed Paul's mother a long time ago but I don't think that was the real reason. I went to help him in Korea a few weeks ago and he was killed in a Cult ambush that looked like it was specifically set for him. I don't know how far or deep his history with the cult goes back but since his death I have been continuing his fight whenever I could.

[b](OOC: Since I am not doing the family of Dragons thing I had to change the reason as to why he was fighting the cult.)[/b]

[b]Paul: [/b]Once we heard what happened to you we came here to figure out how and why this happened.

[b]Jesse: [/b]Right now everyone is calling it a freak accident but I am not entirely convinced.

[b]Paul: [/b]With all the info we have so far it does look like it was an accident, but...

[b]Jesse: [/b]Something like this does not usually happen by accident. Right now we are still trying to put all the pieces of the puzzle together. I don't think the cult even had anything to do with this besides the fact that the guy who created the virus was with them but I have a feeling that something else is still going on.

[b]Paul: [/b]Has anything happened recently that you would consider strange or weird? Anything at all?

[b]Jesse: [/b]Besides the obvious?

Edited by jesbro
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