PHD #043: EVENT - Parnassus Scavenger Hunt
Parnassus Scavenger Hunt
Summary: A salvage mission to the anchorage manages to answer a few questions…but raises several more.
Date: 10 Apr 2041 AE
Related Logs: None
Lunair Marko Hawke NPC 
Parnassus Anchorage
The storage, engineering, and medical decks of the anchorage, plus the cavernous hangar bay.
Post Holocaust Day: #43

The flight to Parnassus was, by all standards uneventful. Uneventful, that is, if you don't mind the sight of a shredded battlestar hanging in space around a toxic planet, a minefield of devices armed with nonspec depleted uranium, and turrets heavily modified beyond their original specifications. Or if you don't mind having rad badges clipped to your gear to indicate when your exposure is too great.

Cleared for takeoff from Cerberus' port hangar bay, two Raptors and crews have made the short hop to Parnassus Anchorage's main hangar bay.

It's difficult to find a place to land amidst the debris on deck: the shredded remains of four shiny new Viper Mk. VIIs, three Raptors, and a few Colonial military transports. The most free space seems to be provided from the area of deck where a scorched floor and heavy scraping and denting of the deck indicate the Heavy Raider currently in Cerb's repair bay was extricated.

The majority of the usable parts from the hangard deck have been picked over pretty carefully by previous crews; there's nothing of any great value here. It is, merely a place to set down and collect one's bearings before proceeding on to the other decks. The light here is dim but steady, and the air breathable.

Lt. Hawke looks around him, shaking his head. Battlefield scenes were not that different from bad urban accidents… just bigger. His own med bag is here in case someone gets hurt but his first priority is finding as many medical supplies as possible. So until he comes across a sickbay or supply closet, he is content to follow, regardless of rank. His field training was fairly minimal, after all.

Lunair is getting eerily used to this. Doesn't mean she likes it. But she is quietly here, dark purple eyes peering here and there. At least there's a doctor, so no one has to ask if there's one in the house. She frowns at the debris though. "Guess I'll take point, unless someone really itches to."

"Seeing how you're the Marine, that probably would make sense." Marko adds, double checking his sidearm and trying very hard to conceal just how nervous he really is. ECOs usually don't do this kind of thing, and, at the moment, this particular ECO's having difficulty sussing out why he is.

Amongst the people here on mission are a handful of deckies and engineers, two docs, and a small escort of four marines. The station has been scoured on the surface by marine teams to check for Cylons, but it's not their job to salvage for equipment. The orders have come down from the heads of the respective divisions. "Alright folks!" one of the deckies calls out. It's a teeny tiny chick, hair pulled back and dressed in her orange coveralls.

"We all know the plan. This is our entrance and exit. We're going to head up to the storage deck, three decks up. Seems like the likeliest place for supplies. Our goals are anything usable and useful. Meds and food are always a priority." In order to speak, she's climbed up on one of the Raptor wings. "Engineering, you're looking for parts we might need to replace on board. If you can't carry it yourselves, tag it, note it, and make provisions on the next run. Deck, docs…same, but you're looking for your own special stuff. Any questions?" She looks at the Raptor pilots and ECOs. Either stay with the birds, or come with.

A faintly amused smile at Marko. She nods and looks to him. Poor Marko. Lunair takes a deep breath. She smiles at the deckies and nods. Of course. "None here," Lunair replies quietly. She seems to be more serious than usual, her demeanor peaceful and solemn.

Hawke nods. "Lead the way, if I see anything that might be useful, I'll shout out to slow down. And watch yourselves. If you start feeling short of breath or nauseus, just let me know. We really can't be too careful…"

"Anything in particular we're looking for?" Marko asks whoever might be listening. "Right…" he adds to Hawke's comments. "Shortness of breath and nausea equals 'bad'. Important safety tip. Thanks for that Doc." he chuckles nervously.

With the silent agreement of the majority, the group moves along. Two marines in front, two in back, boxing the rest of the entourage in. First thought, given the salvage nature of the mission is to head fore, where the elevators are on these stations, which are quite tall. From the exterior, the door looks fine. Heck, the light even glows when it's pressed! The problem lies in the fact that the elevator doesn't sound like it's moving. The normal sounds of operation don't commence.

"I don't claim to be an expert," Hawke remarks, dryly, "But excited though the button seems at having lit up, I don't think the lift is actually doing anything. We might have to do this the old fashioned way."

Lunair smiles at the conversation a little. She's up front it seems. Wouldn't have it any other way really. She looks around there. Hmm. A frown at the elevator. "Hope no one minds stairs," She peers at the elevator curiously.

One enterprising deckie, curious about the functional power supply, manages to muscle open the doors to the elevator. What's inside clearly reveals why the thing isn't working: the car sits at the end of the shaft, rather smashed from the fall. Only the strong doors separating it from the bay have kept the resulting smash from blowing them out; had this been a passenger deck, with less-reinforced doors, parts might have been thrown free.

"Stairs are fine." Marko shrugs a little, nodding towards the still closed doors. "Feel a lot better about all of this if I knew what was behind those doors, though." he says. "Trouble is, that's only half of me. The other half isn't sure it wants to know. Kind of a dilemma."

<FS3> Marko rolls Alertness: Good Success.
<FS3> Lunair rolls Alertness: Failure.
<FS3> Hawke rolls Alertness: Success.

You paged Marko and Hawke with 'If either of you wants to peek inside the shaft, now that the door's open, you'd see the ends of the cables are shredded.'

You paged Marko with 'If you look closer, you'd see that the roof is a bit distorted, and not from the crash. Looks like it was heated and the metal weakened. Might explain the scorching on some panels as well.'

"Hawke grimaces as he looks past the doors. "Cables shredded all to hell. Walking is good for circulation, though. Electric shocks, not so much. Unless you are in REALLY bad shape, of course."

"Look at that." Marko says, pointing to the top of the smashed car. "That didn't happen in the crash." he says, indicating an area with a severe distortion and what looks to be scorching. "Looks like it was partially melted." he adds, pulling his light and shining it on the car. "The frak did that?" he frowns. "If it was toasters, why wouldn't they just rip the top of the car open?" he asks, playing his light over the affected area. "Why try and burn through it?"

"Not… not that bad of a shape," Lunair contests, "Slightly round is a shape too," She murmurs. Her eyes are narrowed though, she seems to be more worried about things that go 'beep boop ima cylon.' She does turn to look over her shoulder. Headcount! She peers though, as Marko points this out. "Maybe someone tried to escape or - the toasters weren't in their right minds after all," She points out quietly. She doesn't quite seem to notice it as much but she'll take their words for it.

So, looks like it is the stairs after all. If the group should decide to check the aft elevator, they'd find it in a similar state: the car crashed at the bottom of the shaft, the impact contained by the sturdy doors of the hangar bay, cables and roof a little melted, scorched, and snapped, as if an explosion took out the mechanisms far up the tall shafts.

The stairs are on the port and starboard sides of the station, of which each deck is an octagon, divided (or left open, in the case of the hangar bay) in a fashion fitting for each purpose. The first deck on their docket is the supplies deck, three up. That's a lot of steps! Looks like their salvage mission just got a little more tedious, with the capacity now limited to what they can carry in their arms.

"Okay folks, this is the first stop. Then we're heading back down to the hangar bay and our ride home. Remember to check your rad badges…." The deckie that seems to be delegating the instructions quickly contributes to cutting the door to the deck open from the stairwell with another deckie, each using a small plasma cutter.

Inside, this deck is a bit more eerier than the deck; the light inside is low, and flickers. More than one overhead light dangles from its chain. The air here is stale.

Hawke makes a face, frowning as he tastes the air. "First things first… air hasn't been circulating for awhile. Are the internal systems salvageable? If not, we're on a pretty tight clock here."

Lunair frowns a little. She looks down, rad badge! Not awesome superpowers or 80s rad. Just cancer causing. She takes point, although she does seem to look for the small arms. "I think I may check the small arms or whatever they've got here. AP rounds are ever so helpful," Sagenod. "For now though, I will defer to medical and deck and engineering and-" And a Marko. She's a well mannered ground pounder.

Marko wastes no time pulling his flashlight and starting to explore the area while fishing out the big bag he'd brought along for carrying purposes. "Whoa…frak me…Got some blood on the floor, here." he notes with a wince. "Definite signs of small arms fire, but nowhere near like what you'd expect." he says, pausing at a storage bin and starting to fill his bag with ration packs. "There were fifteen hundred people on this station, right? Where the frak are the bodies?"

From around the deck, the sounds of scavenging can be heard. Collapsed pannels and flipped tables are moved around to check under for signs of…anything. The deckies and engineering crews seem to be having an easy time of it, as most of the electronic components, the circuit boards for jump computers, replacement screen components, flight suit components, small tools, all the stuff used to maintain ships that would stop here are mostly intact. If Cylons came, they weren't interested in raiding, just killing.

Hawke gives Marko a nod as he locates usable meds. He grimaces at one container… two hundred units of blood, spoiled when containment was blown. Tragic waste. "Chimaera was similar, almost all usefull technology, and most of the bodies, removed. I'd say the Toasters are studying us. Hmm… morpha doses. "I could use a strong back to help me with these. Morpha will be worth more than gold in the near future…"

Lunair sighs. It is all a waste. "Well, I'll help carry that," She offers. Might as well be a good grunt? "Which ones do I lift first?" If nothing else, Lunair is a darn good grunt - allowing herself to be ordered and steered as needed. "They could well be. That's a creepy though," Shiver. She prefers not to think of herself as a future experiment subject. She looks to Marko and nods though. Hrm. "It looks like one fellow was left along the way to small arms."

"Ouch…just.." Marko begins, swallowing hard. "Just keep thinking those happy thoughts, Doc." he sighs, adjusting the collar of his flight suit. "Still, does stand to reason. Helps them kill us more efficiently or something." he shrugs, popping the last of the ration packs into his bag. "Okay…I saw…somewhere…..yes." he says to himself as he makes his way back to the bin filled with cigarette cartons and starts loading. "Not gonna be able to get all of these." he adds to whoever's listening.

Hawke spots the cigarettes and sighs. "And here I was, trying to find a way to get our people off of that particular habit." Good luck to him, right? "I may requisition those, later. See if we can't use some of the cigarettes to create a patch system, or something."

If Lunair is perturbed, her bearing hides it. Her face is calm, steady. She betrays nothing. She'll help lift Morpha. "I don't smoke, it makes me sneeze," She admits quietly and smiles at Marko. Though she will help him stash a few, lest their pilots go into withdrawl. "We'll see how it goes."

"Heh, considering how stressed out everyone is at the moment, Doc. The only way you'll be getting anyone to stop smoking is to knock them out with morpha." Marko chuckles. "But patches might be a good idea for when we really do run out. Otherwise, I don't wanna think about how pissy everyone'll be getting." he says, giving Raine a little smile. "Sneezing's not so bad."

"Ohhhh, we'll help with those," the ever-so-helpful deckies declare. More than one of them hurries over to begin stuffing cigarettes in every available pocket and pouch on their jumpsuits. Curse those deckies and their jumpers, with all those storage cavities, like the uniform was designed to carry stuff! They must help save the cigarettes though, even as they snatch up some parts that they'll likely need in the future.

The doc is not forgotten either. He indeed gets a strong back from deck. His pockets are already bulging with transistors and tiny electrical components for Viper manuevering controls, and he hardly looks like the sort to be playing around with the wiring under the panels inside those cockpits, but here he is! "Hey Doc…what do you make of this? You think the radiation did…something to them? Or you think this was all Cylon?"

It's true that it could be either. There are hardly enough bodies accounted for on a station this large. The radiation IS quite high, and this is a deck that's not terrible. If they were up higher, their mission would be minutes in length, rather than hours.

"Ok folks! Looks like our badges are getting worse and worse. We're going to have to call it on this floor. Whatever you have, get it, and get moving. Back to the door! We've got two more decks to check out before we go…that's what command says!" So off they go. Tally from this deck: some always-needed morpha, at least a dozen cartons of cigs, spoiled blood from a refrigerator left open…and only one dead body that they found. The merry band carries on…to the next deck down. Highest rads first, then down.

Hawke shakes his head. "Not rad poisoning, well, at least, that wasn't what killed him. If it had, you would see…" ahh, surgeons, and their wonderful sense of bedside manner! "Some really horrible stuff. Yeah, let's keep moving." He gets his load to capacity on drugs, and then he follows the party.

Lunair will load herself up as best as she can. She frowns. She does not want to be a microwaved mini marine. She's full of string, confetti and foil which are all horrble things to put in a microwave. Festive if she explodes though. She nods at the call to move and starts to moev. Bein' on point. A wince. "Oh Lords-" She blinks. "Hey - someone look, that's really odd," ONce they arrive on the engineering deck, one of the walls has a zodiac with a strange resin partially covering it. "I wonder if that's where he was from?"

"Hey, got something here." Marko says, swiveling his light onto a bank of smashed computers. "That's not gunfire, that's physical." he says, gesturing to the ruined machines. "Doesn't look like Toasters, either. Okay, now I am really getting creeped out here. What the gods damn hell were these people up to out here?" he muses, pausing to check the machinery over for anything useful.

Hawke seems more interested in the resin. "Curious makeup… clearly biological but not natural by any means. They brought some of it over for us to analyze and it confused the frak right out of us." Hawke glances again at Marko. "They were dying. People do odd stuff when there is no hope."

Lunair is looking over quietly. She blinks at Marko, "Maybe they smashed it to keep the toasters away from it?" She offers. "I know if I were about to die, I'd try to get rid of any useful stuff to spite whomever is about to whack me."

"Yeah, that's what I'm thinking, too, Lu…LT." Marko replies nodding and wincing a bit at his slip of the tongue. "Or to keep them from finding out what it was. I knew guys back on Caprica that were involved with some really shady stuff, computer wise. One of 'em had his machine rigged with a shotgun shell. Cops or Global Defense tried to hack it, it'd blow the hard drive to smithereens." he says, double checking his radiation badge. "Hey, Doc, that resin-like goopy stuff. Was that electrically conductive?"

Aside from the strange markings, deliberate, clearly, and the actions of a doomed solider as a way of saying remember me!, the engineering deck seems to have fared the same as the storage deck. The signs of conflict are all around; blood spatters, small-arms impact on the bulkheads, but once again, the lack of bodies is out of the ordinary.

Even though the machines that aren't deliberately smashed continue to function, they're mundane: station readouts, atmospheric controls, reactor status, on and on. Some flash red, most are just an amber color, indicating that without some serious help, the station may or may not continue to function. The real interesting stuff was almost certainly inside those computers, but they're smashed to hell, screens down to cabinets. It'd be rare, if not impossible, to find a drive from these things. Very careful observation would be required to find a drive that wasn't smashed, and even then, good look getting it to work. Who knows what those radiation spikes do to these things?

There's few pieces of salvageable equipment here, and most of the crews find very little to carry off. All of them leave with the sight of that Colonial zodiac on the wall in blood: is it Aerilon? Maybe Caprica? Tauron? Virgon? The image is too distorted, smeared, and covered with that resin to really be distinct.

"Docs…snipes…we got nothing here. How about you?" the deckies are asking. Most folks are milling about, but already they're gathering up to truck it down to the last deck to pick over…the medical deck. Nobody's without something in their hands though, which is not a bad haul.

"I think I've picked up what I can without being slightly more useless," Lunair comments softly. She seems sympathetic to the fallen soldier. Hard to tell. She says nothing, but nods at Marko. She can grasp that. There's a faint smile cracking through her bearing. GASP. She says nothing more for a moment though. "I think I'll gather those AP rounds and go. I don't want to sprout tentacles or anything from the rads," A soft joke.

"Nothing here, we already have a supply of the resin growing." Hawke looks over to Marko, clearly missing any gaffes made. He is most likely to answer to Doc, anyway. "Hadn't thought to test it for conductivity, I'll bring that up next time I'm in the lab."

"'re _growing_ it? Like a culture? Okay…that is far too strange for words." Marko says, shuddering a little. "LT's got the right idea, I'm thinking." he nods to Lunair. "I'd try to pull one of these machines apart to look for a good drive, but that'd take way too long and still no guarantee what we get'd even function correctly." he sighs, shrugging a little at the lost opportunity. "Anyone know how this place got so hot? We found the radiation on our recon, never could figure out where it was coming from."

"We got up to the top four decks…but there was some weird stuff going on up there. Those doors are rad-sealed like a mother frakker…can't even get in on those decks, the sealing AND rads are so bad. You ask me…it's like they set off a frakkin' nuke in there or something. Gods only know what these people were doing in there," a random deckie says, having overheard Marko.

One of the snipes that's gone ahead a bit, is stopped in the stairwell. On each landing is a small medkit, and a fire extinguisher. Safety first! "Hey Doc…looks like only the rad meds are gone," he says, rummaging through the box. "Yeah, nothing else looks touched. It's all sealed and sterile. Morpha might be gone, but only the rad meds are used. Strange, since the med deck is just one flight down. Wonder what could've kept them from going down one more?"

Lunair is listening and nods, "Perhaps sometime." Not like it's going anywhere. "Just maybe less when I feel like I might get bitten by something and become a hero," She notes wryly. She shakes her head. "None here, unless some shielding were broken. All I can think of is damage to protective surfaces and space radiation but then it'd be more even no?" Her eyebrows lift. Lunair shrugs at that and goes quiet. She follows the snipe, to make sure she gets shot first. "Yeah. No idea either." Frown. She goes quiet to listen.

Hawke mutters to himself as they walk. "Rads all taken. A nuke inside the facility would have been a bit more dramatic. This feels different, somehow. Dunno yet. Remind me to…" he looks at the deckie who said the words "strange, and med bay" in the same sentence. "If this was a horror movie, I'd expect we are about to see something really bad…"

"Or they were playing with something highly radioactive and it got away from them." Marko adds in reply to the deckie, nodding a little. "My guess is, with help from the toasters." he says, wincing a little. "This is starting to feel like something that really wasn't supposed to be going on, ya know?" he adds. "Something very illegal and kept way off the books." he grumbles. "And maybe something that pissed the toasters off."

"In fairness, the whole minefield business and military escalation out here was hardly legal, though some of the higher higherups were very pro-build-up because they felt the Cylons would be back," Lunair notes quietly. "Sad to say they were right, but I think you may be too. Nuclear research," Sigh. "Way out far away where the Quorum won't stick their noses in or can't because they're busy," She considers. A shrug at that. "Whatever it was…" It's done for now. "Nigh impossible to get in there anyway," Lunair shakes her head.

Thump thump thump thump the boots go down the steps. One last deck to go through, and arguably, one of the more important ones. With the radiation in this sector, even higher levels on-board and near this station, rad meds are at a premium. Sure, the other booty is welcome too, and it will definitely be used. But the rad meds are the platinum coins in the treasure chest…if there's any to be found.

The badges of just about every Colonial are nearly fully changed now, from their pristine white to that black color that indicates when their time is up. They're going to have to be quick. When they see what's inside, they might want to be quick too. Unlike the other decks, the doors to this deck are neither sealed, nor locked. In fact, from this stairwell, the doors stand ajar.

There's no light visible from inside beyond the sporadic flickering of a few small intruments, completely the opposite of the storage deck where the lighting was operational but intermittent. Despite the air systems working, it's impossible to hide the smell of death that eminates from this room. If the other parts of the station were devoid of bodies, this deck seems to be where the majority of the (far fewer-than-expected) corpses remain.

Hawke closes his eyes for a moment. "Anyone with weak stomachs, don't watch this." He turns to one of the deckies. "Light, please?"

You paged Hawke with 'You can assume one of the deckies forks over a light, of course. One or two would volunteer to help get the doors open, but there wouldn't be too many to volunteer to go in. Most of those would have a morbid curiosity, but you wouldn't be alone in rummaging around.'

Marko turns out to be one of those idiotic people whom, upon being cautioned not to look at something, finds himself immediately overcome by the kind of morbid curiosity that plagues drivers passing the scene of an accident. He knows he shouldn't look. That no good of any kind could possibly come from looking. In fact, a whole lot of bad is likely to result. But he just…cannot look away.

Marine is a bad profession if you've a weak stomach. Provided one's lucky enough not to get shot in said stomach. Lunair flinches. And alas, poor Marko has Trainwreck Syndrome! She seems sympathetic and will pat him on the shoulder. "We've not much time… so I'd gather what you can, say a prayer for those here and move."

Hawke nods, takes a light from one of the deckies and turns it on. He doesn't really expect to find any medicine worth saving, but if the bodies were here for any reason other than horrific rad poisoning, he needed to see it for himself. His practiced surgeon's eye prepares itself, then peers into the room, walking forward. If there is something here worth salvaging…

The prayers are already being said, as whispers of what's inside begin to creep back through the ranks of people at the door.

The interior of the place is…nothing short of a bloodbath. There's no shortage of bodies; some are on tables, some on the beds. There are three or four bodies that have severe radiation sickness, all the classic signs: hair loss, burns and blisters, where the skin hasn't sloughed off…all varieties of grim symptoms. The vast majority, however, seem to have passed from more 'traditional' methods, i.e., Cylon bullets. One doctor is slumped over his desk with a gun near his hand and a bullet hole through his temple; not a lot of mystery there.

The low lighting is provided by a vitals monitor or two, displaying (gasp!) flat lines, and zeroes.

There's one medicine cabinet that's shot to hell, but one seems intact. The same goes for a samples fridge; the drug fridge is out of commission, however.

Ew. A wince. Lunair offers aa quiet prayer of her own. "I suspect it is best you find what is in those cabinets and scootch a long once prayers are done. I hate to be a blasphemous killjoy, but-" She also doesn't want to be a microwaved snack either. She'll help grab some of the precious drugs at least. But she is eager to move on. Radiation sickness is not funtimes.

The young ECO's face turns chalk white at the sight of so much carnage. He doesn't throw up, or pass out, but its evidently a struggle to keep from doing either. Fortunately, there is always the option of turning his back on the scene, which he does so immediately. The expression he wears is now one that belongs to someone for whom this isn't all some elaborate video game anymore.

Hawke walks in, and stops at the desk for awhile, looking down at the doctor. Reaching forward, he retrieves the man's dogtags, which go into a pocket, and then without a word he starts to rifle through the medicine cabinet, grabbing what is good and directing it to the brave deckies who followed him before opening the samples fridge to see if there is anything interesting, keeping especially an eye open for the resin in its advanced stages.

From within the cabinets, the doctor and helpers are able to retrieve a few doses of anti-rad meds…a combination of the nausea meds, the anesthetics, and the preventive drugs. It looks to be enough to maybe keep Cerberus running another week, if nobody else steps on the station. And that's stretching the dosages of the liquid in the vials thin to start. Combined with the morpha and the smokes though, the trip should be considered a success. Some more of the mystery is unraveled, but even more is laid to bare.

"Ok, badges are black! That means, get back to the frakkin' birds. They should be warmed up and ready to get the hell out of dodge! Go go go!" Them's the orders, so with some heads bowed in prayer, a few glances back over the shoulder, and pasty white faces, the troupe carries the loot back to the Raptors for the flight home.

Marko needs no further encouragement and books it for the hangar in silence.

Lunair winces and scoots along. She is pale(r) than usual and books it along with the others.

Hawke nods, and soon is legging it with the others, already sorting the additional meds in his head and mentally preparing his report. His thoughts linger on the dogtags he took, though. That was NOT going to be his way out. And another thing. "The Cylons hit them and left them. A slow death sentence." He mutters in the Raptor. Bastards.

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