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Author: MrCorsair

Pacific Quest: On Patrol

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 Author| Post time: 2016-4-13 07:23:39
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B) We've got to get these wounded to the med bay.

"We can't save them all, but damn us if we can't save one. Langley I'll need that radio, keep it open and make sure the others are reporting." The two of you start checking the wounded, trying to diagnose and prioritize the wounded. It's grizzly work. The writhing, bleeding sailors aren't anything like the plastic dolls or compliant cadets you had when completing first aid training. 'Bleeding, breathing, shock. Bleeding, breathing, shock.' you say under your breath as you continue. The mantra helps keep you calm as you try to ignore the whimpers.

Langley does her best to keep you updated, even as she tries her best to make the wounded more comfortable. Most of the news is good, the fires in the engine room are finally out, and the trio guarding Osage have repulsed another attack. (complete with argument over who gets credited for the kills) No word from Marblehead or Northampton though. Most of the abyssals seem to be biding their time below the waves.

Good news aside, you do have a decision to make. You've done what you can to stabilize people with what you had on hand, but now you need to start moving critical cases to the medbay.

A) Captain Tams. He's gone pale, you suspect the bullet grazed his liver.

B) Bennings. You aren't sure how well that tourniquet you applied is holding up.

C) Uhh...Martins? That's what his nametag says. Was shoved aside and trampled while trying to get off the bridge and got a nasty looking blow to the head. He's breathing but unresponsive.

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 Author| Post time: 2016-4-17 09:08:18
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A) Captain Tams. He's gone pale, you suspect the bullet grazed his liver.

You reach down and try to pick up the captain. The old man is much, much heavier than Lewis. Tams shakes his head and motions towards some of the other wounded. His mouth is moving, but you aren't certain if he can't form words or your hearing hasn't recovered. Your calves and quads burn as you barely manage to hoist the man a few inches off the ground.

"Lieutenant Walters!" Langley half-shouts, or maybe she is shouting the top of her lungs, you can't tell. It begins to dawn on you how much being deaf sucks. Having gotten your attention, she gently pulls you away from the captain. With you no longer in her way she leans over and hoists the rotund man without even a grunt. You stop gawking long enough to grab the captains legs. You had been told how strong these girls were in your laughably short orientation. Hell, you'd seen it a few times but it isn't until now that you've seriously felt the difference.

On the way to the medbay you do your best to direct sailos back to the wheelhouse so they can help bring in casualties. You drop off the captain and do your best to tell the corpsman what's wrong. He grunts at your ramshackle first aid work and once more tosses you out of the room. Langley taps you on the shoulder. You turn and awkwardly tilt your head so your good ear can hear her.

"Sir, there haven't been any new contacts. Pennsy thinks they're regrouping, but we can't know when they'll make another attack. It could be ten minutes from now, or it could be ten days."

A) Keep Pennsy, Chicago and Helena in position, have Langley send out a plane to make contact
with Northampton and Marblehead. I want to know what happened to them.

B) Have one of the girls take Osage under tow. The last thing you want to be is a sitting duck, and
we can take the whole damn ship over there if they need repairs.

C) Get somebody on the crane. We need to get the everyone rearmed and refueled.

D) Other, or some combination of the above. (write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-4-17 09:09:06
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Edited by MrCorsair at 2016-4-20 08:39

A) Keep Pennsy, Chicago and Helena in position, have Langley send out a plane to make contact with Northampton and Marblehead. I want to know what happened to them.

"Langley, can you send a plane over there? Give them a flyover and see if you can find out what's wrong." you ask. It's hard to see much through the smoke, but you start scanning the horizon for Marblehead and Northampton.

"Right away." Langley replies as she begins testing the wind. In the meantime you flag down one of the remaining deck crewmen and borrow his binoculars. You spot a pair of biplanes zip off as you resume your search. It's disconcerting that you couldn't actually make out the buzzing of the planes over the buzzing in your ears.

Langley spots them before you do and helpfully points them out. The two of them are waving and shouting something at Langley's fighters and...

Hang on.

"Langley, pull them back." you warn. "I think they're telling them to stay away." The carrier nods and closes her eyes, sending the order to her fairies. In the distance Northampton removes her tar flap before grabbing Marble's sun hat. It isn't until she starts waving them around that you realize what she's doing.

"S-O-S/F-E-Y/H-U-R-T/H-E-L-P/N-O/S-G" you read aloud as Northampton repeats the message. "SG?" bewildered, you turn to Langley.

"I think she doesn't want us to send a shipgirl." she bites her lip. "To be honest I'm more worried about the first part. If something's happened to the little dears... I don't even want to think about it." she touches her flight deck. "I know some of us make it look easy, but these are harder to use than they look. We rely on the faries for so much, imagine Osage with only one crewmate to do everything." she holds up the flight deck as her fairy planes start to make their approach.

You frown. The RHIB was still on the Osage, but sending a rubber boat out would be a death sentence if the flying fish came back. Of course, those two would be easy pickings if something larger and more dangerous were to appear.

A) It's too risky to try. We'll have to hope the both of them can make it on their own.

B) It's to risky NOT to try. Ask around for volunteers to send out on the RHIB.

C) Other. (Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-4-17 09:09:47
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Edited by MrCorsair at 2016-4-24 09:44

A) It's too risky to try. We'll have to hope the both of them can make it on their own.

You gaze over at the stranded cruisers and crunch some very ugly numbers. You don't like what you come up with, so you calculate again. Then you do it a third time. It's no good. With the seas still swarming with abyssals sending somebody to help them would be a death sentence, a waste of life.

Knowing that it's the perfectly rational and logical thing to do doesn't help. Your mind flashes to every jackass sitting a million miles away at his safe comfy desk as he callously decides which grunts get thrown to the sharks. It's a sense of kinship you never wanted. The vision of hell you just witnessed on the bridge is nothing compared to the knots your stomach is twisting into now.

It doesn't change the facts. Trying to help would be worse than doing nothing.

Amazingly, the searchlight over the wheelhouse is undamaged. A quick hop up the ladder and you send your reply. You don't need binoculars to see Northampton's shoulders slump. She returns Marblehead's sunhat, and the two start trying to figure out how to help themselves out of their mess.

An hour passes, and their attempts do little more than cause them to zoom around in large circles. Fed up from repeated failure and (you guess) bad puns from Marblehead, Northampton decides to simply try walking several kilometers back to the Osage. Marble follows behind her just out of earshot.

You haven't seem much of the abyssals, other than a few popping their heads out long enough to remind everyone that they were still there, probably waiting for someone to let their guard down.

It's not all bad news though, the fires have been put out, and the engine room is safe enough for the snipes to start working on it. A few burned locks of hair aside, Dolphin is ready.

A) Keep Dolphin near Osage, use her sonar to locate the abyssals for everyone else.

B) Let Dolphin go after the abyssals, those she doesn't take out will be forced to surface.

C) Other (Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-4-27 07:57:14
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A) Keep Dolphin near Osage, use her sonar to locate the abyssals for everyone else.

"Stay close." you tell the sub. "Track and call out those contacts for everyone else." Dolphin gives a curt nod before diving into the sea. The next half-hour is eerily calm. Langley perks up like a puppy at dinner every time there's chatter on the radio.

Finally the abyssals break the silence. One of the flying fish leaps out of the water, hoping to taunt Osage and her protectors. Pennsy quickly brings her guns to bear and blasts it out of the sky like a clay pidgeon. The crew cheers at the sight of the tumbling and disintigrating abyssal.

"SIR!" you barely surpress the urge to jump as the carrier screams into your ear.

"Go ahead." you reply, rubbing your ear.  Damn  it all, that buzzing was just beginning to fade out.

"Dolphin says they're all grouping up for one big attack." she says as she preps a flight of fairy biplanes to launch.

A) Send the biplanes to intercept directly. You'll be sacrificing the fairies, but they're all but guaranteed to distrupt the attack.

B) Maneuver the fairies to a good attack angle. It will maul the incoming fish, but a few might still get through.

C) Trust everyone's AA ability and keep the fairies in reserve. If they break and start fleeing the fairies can chase them down.

D) Other (Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-5-1 09:35:59
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B) Maneuver the fairies to a good attack angle. It will maul the incoming fish, but a few might still get through.

"Langley put the fairies at a good angle. Everyone keep an eye open, this could be a distraction." Langley nods at your reminder as the final biplane launches. Each flight zips upward, nearly stalling in their attempt to gain altitude as quickly as possible. The little guys are just barely slower than the flying fish, and the increased speed as they dive will hopefully give them the edge.

Ten minutes later Helena spots the incoming fish and calls them out.  Squinting, you can just barely you can pick out lines of tracers descending upon an angry formation of dark dots. Langley's fighters are doing their best to tear into the enemy, but their light armaments and limited ammo force many of them to break off before they can finish off their prey. At least they're easier to spot now, most of them are smoking and more than a few burn up and disintegrate in mid-air.

The fairy fighters break off as the flying fish enter the range of the fleet girl's anti-air fire. The attacking formation melts away as the fleet girls pick them off, but a few stubborn abyssals make it through. Luckily they seem to focus on the already-trashed and empty wheelhouse up top.

One strafing run is all the fish are able to get as flak clouds erupt around them. Finally the last abyssal tries to cut and run and dives for the waves. It is it's last mistake. The battered abyssal bounces across the waves, shattering like fine china dropped on a concrete floor.

It's over. It takes you a few moments to realize it, but the tension in your body starts to release as that fact sinks in. For now, at least the danger's passed.  

End of part two. No votes today.

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 Author| Post time: 2016-6-3 02:30:32
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You cover your mouth as you let out a long, tired yawn. You replace the cap on your pen and toss it back onto your desk. The paperwork horde may be endless, but you managed to  push it back quite a bit. Nothing has burned, broken or died since the attack a few days ago, so your optimistic side wants to call this a good day.

Then again Osage's radio has been destroyed, so the rest of the world could be burning for all you know. While the fleetgirls did have communication systems of their own and could pick up signals, they didn't have the oomph to broadcast very far on their own. Rather than sitting back and waiting for help that might not even come, Captain Tams' last real order was to send the ship north towards Hawaii and try to reestablish contact with the rest of STEC.

Tams' injuries and the XO's death have placed you effectively in command of the Osage. It's not how you would have wanted to get the position, or that you would have wanted a battered and limping ship to be your first command but it's certainly something.

(You would be in the captain's chair, if that wasn't destroyed. How do you feel about that?)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-6-8 08:29:51
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(Determination)

Riiiip

You set your feet up and lean back in your chair. You have a newfound sense of conviction brought on by the fight a few days ago. The scallop was sad- pathetic even. For a while you had silently wondered if the abyssals were really the threat the brass made them out to be. Not anymore. Witnessing that twisting, howling mass of gnashing teeth and endless hate as it burned the wheelhouse cleared away any doubts  in your mind. You aren't going after some poor blackmailed freighter captain who's only smuggling drugs because he's worried for his family. Your mission; STEC's mission is clear and their purpose is noble.

Teeeaaar

You don't quite feel ready to be in this position, but all you have to do is get the Osage to Hawaii without incident. More than a week, possibly two before you are relieved as acting captain. All you have to do is get there without things getting worse, or allowing them to disturb Mahan's delicate work. All it would take would be the cooperation of the fleetgirls and the surviving crew.

Shreeed

Thankfully, there wasn't much of a problem on that front.  For the most part the girls seemed to like sailors, for the most part viewing them as crude distant cousins. For their part the sailors liked the fleetgirls too. Perhaps too much. You hadn't heard of any harassment going on but you suppose Dolphin would probably have raised holy hell about it after breaking the enlisted man into tiny pieces.  

Reeend

Okay. You've had enough of whatever that sound is. You glance over your shoulder and almost tip over when you see what's happening.

Given your current 'condition' an impromptu fairy circle was set up in your room. Carefuly duct-taped to the floor is a small collection of old rivets, tufts of colored ribbon and mushrooms. The ship's fairies naturally gathered around these spots, treating them the same way normal workers would use a water cooler. Right now the circle was a hotbed of activity as the fairies mangle a magazine some crewman smuggled aboard. Ads, headlines and any other bits of large print were torn out and pasted onto small napkins and post-it notes held up by toothpicks.

One of the signs is already completed. A pair of fairies hoist the tiny banner aloft. They raise and lower it, timing their movements with small chirps. Other formerly idle fairies gather around and join in the chanting. You catch a quick glimpse at the cut out text on the flag.

"UNION!"

A) Stop right there! (Disperse the gathering mob.)

B) Oh, God. I need help with this. (Who do you go to for help?)

C) Ask what their demands are.(Negotiate.)

D) Other (Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-6-11 07:22:12
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B) Oh dear God. I need Langley and Dolphin's help with this.

Yeeeaaah. No.

You've only recently managed to wrap your head around the idea that lovecraftian horrors actually exist. The fairies are something else entirely. You aren't certain how true the old stories you heard at your grandmother's knee were, but you aren't eager to find out if they'll such your blood and swap your children with Changelings.

It's probably best not to think about any of that and get some help. Langley would probably be best to calm the little critters down, whereas Dolphin could probably shout them down. Yeah. Good cop-Bad cop is probably the way to go here.

You get up from your chair and scoot along the walls, keeping as much distance as possible between yourself and the angry collection of wee men. You slip out just as the word "strike" was torn out of the sports section and pasted to another banner.

You navigate your way down to the shipgirl's quarters only to find Diaz blocking the way. He's not trying to impede you, but he's shoving against the builkhead with all his might.

"Seaman." you grab his attention. He looks equal parts terrified and frustrated. "You are going to have to explain this to me."

"Holding up the bulkhead, sir. Miss Dolphin's orders." Ah. At least she didn't order him to swab sunshine off the deck.

"Well I need to speak with her. Which way did she go?"

"She's still in their room." He nods his head in that direction. "She, uh-might not be dressed yet. Just saying."

"I was going to ask what you did to deserve this. I think I can put two and two together, though."

"It's not like that, sir. I-I needed to ask what the faeries were doing carting off her torpedoes, and I sort of...forgot. To knock. It was an accident."

"What?" you growl.

A) Whatever those faeries are doing sounds bad. Diaz, lead the way.

B) Knock on Dolphin's door. I came here for her help.

C) Other (Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-6-16 05:27:12
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B&C) Diaz keep an eye out on the faeries and report any drastic behavior. I'll talk to dolphin and figure out whats going on with the faeries.

You rub at your temples for a few moments. You've had a constant headache since you had to take command. A part of you is worried that it's some vile abyssal influence in your mind, but it's most likely the same headache felt by every commander in history.  The lack of sleep was just a bonus prize.

"Just...go. Trail the fairies. If they do something bad with the torps you let me know. Hell, let everyone know." You order.
"Aye aye."Diaz sheepishly nods and after a quick heads after the little troublemakers. Turning around, you pound on the heavy metal door.

"Dolphin, I need to-"

"OW, GOD DAMN IT!" The sub cuts you off.  

"DOLPHIN? WHAT'S WRONG?"  you shout. Worried, you frantically pound the door again.

"JUST A SECOND, SIR! Useless hunk of rusty scrap..." Her voice trails off except for a few angry expletives. You hear some quick shuffling and the door opens. The shipgirl snaps off a quick salute.

In the few weeks you've known her you've never seen Dolphin look quite so messy. Hair that stretched down to her thighs has been cut to just past her shoulders. Her shapely legs are covered in band-aids and even her hat is askew. You figure  the bags under her eyes don't count- right now everyone has those. You barely manage to catch yourself before you tell her she looks like hell warmed over.

"You don't look like you're feeling well. Maybe I should ask someone else."

"I'm fine, sir." She insists. "What is it you need?"

A) I need someone intimidating. Ever break a strike before?

B) We're having a little labor dispute with the faeries. Can you translate what they're saying?"

C) Other (Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-6-21 07:25:57
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B) We're having a little labor dispute with the faeries. Can you translate what they're saying?

"We're having a little labor dispute with the faeries." you state simply. "Can you translate what they're saying?" It takes Dolphin a few moments before she responds.

"Ha. Nice joke, commander. You almost had me." she doesn't sound amused in the slightest.

"No, I'm serious." you insist. "They have little banners and slogans and everything."

"Impossible." The sub crosses her arms and raises an eyebrow. They aren't smart enough for that."  

"Well you can head up to my stateroom and tell the little crowd of faeries that yourself. And by the way, it sounds kinda sinister if you say your workforce isn't smart enough to demand payment."

"I didn't mean it that way. The faeries showed up at about the same time we did and just started working. A few get attached to us, mostly if they look like someone who served on us back when...well." she taps her knuckles against the Osage. "They never asked for anything unless they needed it for their duties. Even the ones who are smart enough to speak almost never ask for anything personal. That's doesn't even count-"

"Okay. Stop." you place a hand on her shoulder and start guiding her out into the hall. "I am going to have a dozen or so questions about what you just said, but right now we need to head up to my stateroom and handle this. Understood?"

"A-Aye aye, commander."  Once she's out in the hall it seems she doesn't need any more coaxing and continues on without you half-pushing her. Good. Now you just need to-

"Commander." a pair of dainty arms wrap around your waist from behind. You feel a face bury itself into your back and sob gently. "I'mb shorry commander." The sharp smell of alcohol stings your nose. Oh hell. Marble's a weepy drunk.



A) Marble, let go. I need to deal with something right now.

B) All right, Marble. What are you sorry for?

C) Marblehead, where did you even get alcohol on this ship?

D) Other (Write in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-6-24 11:45:23
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B) All right, Marble. What are you sorry for?

You briefly consider asking where Marblehead would have found any alcohol, but between her gentle sobs and her arms coiled around your midsection that question seems less relevant.  Come to think of it, it feels like Marblehead's been avoiding you for the past few days. Might as well try to clear the air.

"All right, Marble. What are you sorry for?"  you hear a popping sound as you ask. It takes you a second to realize it's your spine. There's a tiny split-second of relief before pain shoots through your spine. You wonder how something that feels so soft could be this powerful. The kid would make a great chiropractor.

"The last battle! I don't know what happened! All of a sudden I couldn't move! I tried to tell Northampton not to come over but she couldn't hear me until it was too late!" You can feel her wiping her face against your back. "Now Northampton's mad and you think I'm useless-"

"You're not useles-Arggck!" Dear god, it felt like she almost cracked a rib! You struggle, but that only causes her to squeeze tighter.

"Yes you do! I didn't do anything at Jarvis, I screwed up in the last fight! It seems like the only thing I'm good at is filing papers. It would be better if I wasn't a shipgirl at all!"

"Marble, listen. You had some bad breaks. We all do." Your mind races. This isn't the first time you've had to console a distraught drunk. You just need to take control and steer the conversation to something happier.  "Marble, this feels nice and all, but could you let go? People are going to talk if they see us."

"Do I have to?" she whispers. She's not crushing you anymore, but you can feel her pull herself closer.

"Commander." a there's a low growl coming from the ladder ahead.

Crap. You hadn't expected anyone to actually see you.

You hear an ominous thud with each step Dolphin takes down the ladder. Her face is beet red as her glare flicks between you and Marblehead. "Care to explain the hold up?"

(Think fast! What do you do/say?)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-6-29 07:19:22
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("Marble seems to be a bit sad....and drunk if I might add")
("Marble's... not feeling well.")

"Marble's...not feeling well." you feel Marblehead's arms slowly begin to constrict you again. "She seems to be a bit sad." You force a smile as another vertebrae gives a loud pop.

"Drunk."  Dolphin continues her slow, ominous pace towards the two of you.

"I don't suppose you could help convince her to let go, could you?"

"No, don't!" the drunk girl pleads. "I don't want to be thrown away!"

"Come on, Marble." you coo reassuringly. "Nobody's going to thro-" Dolphin makes her move.

She strides up to Marblehead's flank and drives and knife-hands her with one swift movement like she's done it a thousand times. The cruiser's releases her grip as she drops to her knees and then to the floor. Oxygen rushes back into your burning lungs as you regain the ability to breathe properly. After a few seconds of coughing you kneel to check on Marble and note that she's started lightly snoring.

A) Not bad.

B) What the hell, Dolphin?

C) We can't leave her in the hall like this.

D) Other. (Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-7-2 08:56:41
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C) We can't leave her in the hall like this.

You aren't entirely certain what to make of what just happened. On the one hand you really don't want Dolphin to be in the habit of attacking fellow crewmates, but Marble isn't throttling the life out of you like a damned anaconda anymore. You decide to not make too much of a fuss over it.

"We can't leave her in the hall like this." you manage to say in between coughing fits. "Come on, lets get her into her bunk." Dolphin flashes a toothy grin.

"That's very forward of you, Commander. Not certain we can trust you in the same room with a drunk shipgirl."

"Don't get cute with me." You lift the sleeping Marblehead and carry her into the Shipgirl's quarters and gently place her on her bunk. It's hard to stay mad at Marble when she's sleeping like a baby. You barely catch Dolphin pretending not to stare at the two of you. Is she jealous?

"We're burning daylight, sir. Are you going to show me what's going on with the faeries?"

Nah. Couldn't be.

The two of you quickly make your way back to your quarters. You can hear the rhythmic squeaks almost as soon as you get to the top of the ladder. It sounds like the little group of protesters has grown to several dozen angry wee men. Dolphin stops dead in her tracks when she hears.

"Let me guess, they're calling for my head?" the sub shakes her head.

"They aren't saying a damned thing. It's gibberish." she takes off her cap and scratches her scalp a few times in thought.  "They aren't people. Only a few of them even think the same way we do. Most of them can barely form a complete sentence."

"Well something's obviously changed. Come on."

You had only expected a few dozen faeries in your room. Here there are easily over a hundred. While only a fraction are chanting, most of them are gleefully tearing up your stateroom. A pair stand on your desk and play-fight with some pens, getting ink everywhere. More of them are bouncing on your bed. Most of them seem to be collected around a mug of...orange juice?

Dolphin looks like she's about to blow her top. She's clearly grinding her teeth, although you can't hear that over your new semi-permanent tinnitus.

"Ask them what their demands are."

Dolphin kneels in front of the protesters. She pokes a sign holding fairy in the cheek.

"You heard the commander. What do you want?" the chanting stops. The mob slowly forms a huddle as they whisper among themselves. Finally a fairy with a post-it note rolled up into a makeshift megaphone steps out and coos it's reply.

"WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU DON'T KNOW?" Dolphin shakes with rage  as she shouts. "THEN WHY IN THE NAME OF NEPTUNE'S BALLS ARE YOU-" you place a hand  on her shoulder.

A) Make the faeries a genuine offer (what do you offer?)

B) Try and trick them.

C) Other-(Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-7-11 16:58:10
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C) Other: Try to be patient, ask again, but keep note if they seem to be stalling.

"Keep an even keel, chief." You tell dolphin. "Ask them again. Maybe they misunderstood." she spins and you can see the look of pure fiery rage in her eyes that you've seen on almost every non-com at some point in your career. That look that says that she is trying light your head on fire using nothing more than her hate.

None of that matters. You are the officer here. It's her job to deliver a boot up the ass of enlisted to get them to do their jobs, but it's your job to keep calm and prevent anyone from doing anything mindbogglingly stupid in a fit of anger.

She opens her mouth, but after seeing your calm expression whatever obscenities and curses she was about to fling at you die in her throat. You can still hear her teeth grinding, but she's no longer in danger of using one of the faeries as an impromptu hacky sack. She turns back to the mob.

"What. Do. You. Want?" she hisses. The megaphone fairy tilts her head to the side in thought for a few moments before squeaking back it's reply. "Well then do it!" the sub's reply is met with renewed chanting. Dolphin turns back to you. You see a vein bulging on her neck. "Pissant here says that what she really wants is to get back to work. I told her to do just that and she says she has to strike."

"Did she say why?"

"No, and I doubt th-"

"L-Lieutenant Walters?" you hear a muffled Diaz from the other side of the stateroom door. "I found what they're doing with the torpedoes. They're cracking them open and draining the alcohol out!"

A) This is dangerous. We need to stop them.
B) This could tell us what's really going on. We need to monitor them.
C) Other (Write-in)

Second vote!

A) Dolphin, stay here and try to see what you can get out of the protesters.
B) Dolphin's blood pressure is high enough as it is. We'd better take her along.
C) Other (Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-7-15 11:14:56
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A) This is dangerous. We need to stop them.
B) Dolphin's blood pressure is high enough as it is. We'd better take her along.

You take a moment to wipe some sweat from your brow. For a moment you're tempted to try and figure out what the hell the faeries are really up to, but conclude that you don't really care as long as they stop dicking around with explosives.

"Okay, where the hell did you see this?" you ask Diaz.

"Bow storage."

Dolphin practically body-checks the door in her rush to get out of the room. You sigh and exit after her. You help Diaz off the floor.

"Really now... Alright, Dolphin you're coming with me to go check this out. Diaz, go get Langley. Tell her to meet us there." While Dolphin's 'smack now, ask questions before they can see straight' methods may have been handy a few times you wonder if a softer option might not also be useful. Diaz nods and heads off as you turn to chase after the sub.

You follow Dolphin down the Osage's corridors. Thankfully your stride is much longer than hers and you have no trouble keeping up despite her head start. As you approach the storage area you notice Chicago peering through the door. She hears the two of you barreling down the halls and slams the door shut.  The cruiser spreads her arms wide and steps forward, doing her damnedest to stop the sub.

"Dolphin, wait, don't go in there!" her pleas fall on deaf ears. The furious woman puts her small frame to good use as she ducks and jukes under the taller brunette's grasp.  Chicago dips to the side, but it's not enough.

It also brings her other arm up high enough to clothesline you. You turn to the side and erupt into a coughing fit. Doing your best to keep your breakfast down you look up and see that Chicago is mortified at what she just accidentally did, but her eyes shoot between helping you and stopping Dolphin as she reaches for the door.

Her sense of duty to her superiors wins out over her desire to keep what's going on in there hidden. She offers you a hand up and you gladly take it just in time for Dolphin to burst through into the storage room.

"YOU LITTLE SYPHILITIC SHITBIRDS BACK THE HELL AWAY FROM-" her tirade is drowned out by the report of submachine gun fire.

(What do you do?)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-7-19 07:02:09
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A) Order Chicago to leave us for the moment and focus her efforts on dragging Dolphin out of there before Dolphin does something reckless, then slam the door shut.

"Get in there and drag her out. I don't care if you're gentle or not." Your head is still spinning from the blow you took, but you can still tell that gunfire, explosives and flammable liquids don't mix. Whatever's gotten into the faeries means they aren't going to listen to orders, or reason.

Chicago nods and bolts into the storage compartment. Dolphin howls with rage as a million pinpricks dot her skin, allowing the cruiser time to move up behind her unnoticed. The taller woman slips her arms around the sub girl's waist and hoists. Dolphin explodes into a flurry of punches, kicks and foul language as she is carried out like a petulant kindergartner.

"Knock it off damnit!" Chicago barks as a heel is driven into her shin. The second she crosses the doorway you surge forward and slam the door shut, the dull thwacking of bullets splintering against the thin covering continues.

"CHICAGO YOU FUCKING TRAITOR!" Dolphin screams as she tries to pry free from the cruiser's grip. "I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU'D JUST LET THEM RUN AMOK IN-"  You've never been more grateful to be half-deaf before.  Rage and willpower may move mountains, but it seems they can't beat a stronger grip.  

You feel a tugging at your sleeve. Looking down you see Mahan, staring up at you with all the warmth and friendliness of an unfed feline.  She lifts her crumpled beret and you see a small figure thrashing to get out, not unlike Dolphin. You can guess what she's about to say.

"Lieutenant." Mahan pauses to adjust her glasses. "Would you be so kind as to inform the faeries that the laboratory has nothing worth extorting? I would very much like to work uninterrupted."

"Back up, they tried to extort you?"

"I believe that is what I stated, yes. This particular specimen," she opens her hat wide enough to see the fairy inside. "intruded onto the laboratory and approached me while I was busy. I was about to shoo her away when she announced that I 'had a lovely place here, shame if something happened to it." you see her nose crinkle. She seems more disgusted at having to use poor grammar than at the chaos of her current surroundings. "She then proceeded to shatter several petri dishes. I am aware my 'social' abilities are not as adept as some of my peers, but I believe the little vandal's intentions were clear enough."

"And that's when you stuffed her in your hat?"

"Indeed. I surmise that if the faeries are setting up some form of extortion racket then there must be someone in charge of said racket.  I was hoping you Would track him down and deliver my message." She offers the mashed beret to you.

A) Mahan, we have a minor bomb situation here. You need to take a number. One of the other girls might be able to help.

B) Hey, Dolphin! This guy knows who's leading the faeries!

C) I trust that Langley can talk these faeries down.  I'll search for their leader myself.

D) Other (Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-7-23 14:23:16
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C) I trust that Langley can talk these faeries down.  I'll search for their leader myself.

"Chicago, keep dolphin steady. I'm going to see if I can find whoever's responsible for all this." The cruiser maintains her hold, despite the sub's thrashing.

"Are you certain that's a good Idea?" Chicago asks. There's something odd about her tone, something reminiscent of a small child that doesn't want you to open a closet.

"Is there some reason it's not? You've been acting strangely, Chicago. If you know something, tell us." The raven-haired girl clams up. You would have called it an awkward silence, had it not been for the still furious Dolphin. "Chicago?"

"No, sir." she replies flatly. You aren't convinced.

"All right, then. Mahan, I need you to ask your little friend something. Where was he supposed to take what he extorted from you?" a few muffled responses come from Mahan's hat. The young girl adjusts her glasses and raises an eyebrow before eyeing you suspiciously.

"He said he was supposed to take it to your stateroom, sir."

A) Head back to your stateroom immediately.

B) Ask the captured fairy something else. (What do you ask?)

C) Ask a shipgirl something. (What do you ask?)

D) Other (Write-in.)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-7-28 07:33:51
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D). (Basically B + C) Ask the captured fairy what exactly it was suppose to get and why it needed to be brought to our room. Afterwards, question Chicago about anything she knows relating to the current fairy problem, do not take any denials for an answer. If she still continues to deny involvement at least ask her what she was doing with the fairies before we arrived.

You rub your temples. It's been a long day. Hell, it's been a long month. You're tired of people trying to be coy and give you the run around. If there's one thing you've never been good at it was sitting down and accepting what you've been told, a trait that made you very unpopular among teachers and pastors alike.

"Chicago, what the hell were you doing here in the first place?" You notice her squeeze down on Dolphin as you ask, eliciting another round of cursing.

"I was trying to stop all this before it got out of hand." she replies in a clipped monotone, like a civilian trying not to give a cop a reason to arrest him. That just makes you want to dig deeper.

"You know what? You've been acting suspicious as hell ever since we came down here. You want to tell us how you were going to 'stop all this?'"

"No, sir." Dolphin stops struggling at that. She cranes her neck to glare murder at her captor. You're fairly certain you're giving her a similar look right now."

"The fuck?"

"I'm not a snitch, sir. Even if he is hard to deal with."

"Un-fucking-believable! You do know who it is." You may have encouraged this sort of bullshit with Marblehead, but this is way over the line.  You wave your hand at Dolphin. "Let her go. She's a goddamned psycho, but right now I trust her more than I trust you." Slowly she releases her grip on the smaller woman. To your surprise, Dolphin doesn't dash back into the storage, but just stares at Chicago with a a mix of rage, confusion and hurt. You have other leads to follow up on and time is of the essence. You leave the pair to their shattered friendship and start making your way back with Mahan.

"Mahan?"

"Lieutenant."

"Ask the fairy what it was supposed to get from you. Please for the love of god tell me it wasn't the abyssal claw or anything like that."  muffled yips come from the destroyer's hat.

"It is not a complete translation, sir. Fairies do not think or communicate in quite the same we you or I would. I believe it roughly correlates to 'bring boss money.' Unfortunately for him I try not to keep hard currency on me when I do not need to. It's far more sensible to keep-"

"I don't care about your piggy bank, Mahan." you snap. You regret it, but damn it if the frustration isn't getting to you. "I'm sorry. Ask it who the boss is." a long hiss escapes from the beret.

"Naturally. The boss is the one in charge. That is the definition of a boss. We want to know who the boss is."
A disturbing thought enters your mind. What if you're this boss? What if the abyssals mindfucked you worse than anyone thought, and you've been sleepordering the fairies to sabotage the ship? According to everything you know about how fairies and shipgirls work that shouldn't be possible since just being near them would stop the abyssal influence, but what if the abyssals had a new trick up their sleeve? Maybe you were just too badly mindfucked for them to soothe? Your internal worries keep you quiet as Mahan argues with her captive.

The first thing you notice is that the mob of faeries is gone. You aren't certain if that's a good thing or a bad thing. You and Mahan enter and hear several tiny slides being pulled back. Faeries step out from behind cups, books and pillows all aiming at you and Mahan. Your chair slowly swivels around, revealing a fairy in a black pinstripe suit holding a large, normally-sized cigar and a lighter. It gives you the most smug shit-eating grin you've ever seen as it flicks the lighter.

"Nyeh, see?" he asks. At least you think he asked.

"He said he's been expecting you. He seems far more articulate than a normal fairy." Mahan whispers.

A) A fairy gangster. Cute. Tell him to knock this off.

B) Stay calm. We can talk this over.

C) Those fairy popguns might hurt, but they probably won't cause any real damage. I'm just going to start hitting him. I don't know when I'm going to stop.

D) Other (Write-in)

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 Author| Post time: 2016-7-31 09:13:20
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B) Stay calm. We can talk this over.

Your fists ball in anger. You're tempted to scream at him, to tell him off, or to find out just what would happen if you stomped him like a pinstriped roach. A small part of you warns you that anything that could stop a rampaging, furious Dolphin is not something to deal with lightly. Looking around you guess that there are probably more of those thompson toting faeries here than you heard in the bow storage.

You take a deep breath to clear your head. The little ganster notices this and puffs a smoke ring into your face. He's trying to provoke you. Make you angry and throw you off your game. It's working, but not well enough.

"What do you want?"  The little bastard sneers at you in reply.

"Nyeh!" he waves a dismissive hand at you.  "Nyeh!"

"He says he does not understand why you should be in command. He claims that without 'those shinies on your neck' you would simply be another dull, stupid, uneducated, witless-"

"You can skip over that." Mahan is making her best poker face, but you suspect she's enjoying the chance to toss a few insults your way without it being insubordination.

"Nyeh, see?" the fairy points at his palm, right where the claw was embedded.

"He said he knows abyssal entities have damaged your mind. He claims that at best  you are crazy, and at worst the abyssal claw has turned you against everyone."


A) Say something in your defense. (What do you say?)

B) He might be on to something.

C) Tell him to get to the point.

D) Other (Write-in)
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