"I said work and payment, I won't demand something for free. You can pay me information, what is in the dome should be more than sufficent. And our friend Balthazaar doesn't need to hear about our arangement, from what I heard about him, if he finds out I was involved in this mission he sent you on, it could get ugly for me." Ian slid the card into a pocket on his duster. "By the way, I don't think we have been proberly introduced," Ian held out his hand to Blake, "My name is Hunter."
Marcus looked at the card. "Well, there's only one way to find out. Anything else in here you want to check out?" He said.
Outside, the sky was darkening, the clouds had reached the dome and the low rumble of thunder could be heard over head. Lightning streaked across the sky miles behind the dome, and the first, soft drops of rain were hitting the floor.
Blake glanced down at Hunter's proferred hand before looking the man up and down. Satisfied that he wasn't a mutant, Blake gripped his hand firmly and shook it.
"Blake Rheinhart," He stated before releasing Hunter's hand and stepping past him towards the desk. "Balthazaar has a lot to answer for..." He said, opening the dusty drawers. Looking up, Blake fixed the two men with his pale eyes, "After this is done, I plan on finding out what he's up to. Violently, if need be."
Satisfied that the desk and it's surrounding area had nothing of use, Blake approached the open door and gazed out into the approaching storm. "Shit, Marcus," he croaked, "we better quicken the pace." He turned to Hunter and pointed to the distant dome. "You go with Marcus and test out that card, I'm gonna search this place more thoroughly...there could be something of use in here."
Ashe arrived at the scene with shotgun still aimed at the wounded man. From the looks of it he had been in the fight with the insects but it was a wonder on how he passed out. All the blood seemed like it was from the insects but just to be sure Ashe looked him over.
"Looks like he was the one that did all the killing here. You wouldn't eat yet... he might know a thing or two with this place." At that moment a thunder clap sent a roar in through the hangar and Ashe hurried her movements.
"Here, let's bring him back to the group. I'll just get his guns..." Ashe took the man's katana and his pistols just to be sure.
Mortis found himself scrounging through the tangled abyss of the complex's labyrinthine ventilation system. About halfway through the vine cloaked air ducts, Mortis found himself faced with a new implication. The vines that seemed to be nothing more than a simple obstruction seemed to develop small thorns that become more pronounced the further he made his way in.
As Mortis was crawling through those pitch, black, metallic tunnels he found himself questioning and hypothesising the nature of this great structure. It was large and clearly built to last, but was unpopulated. The place required a great deal of energy to do whatever function it served, but the power that been disabled. Things seemed to fail to add up.
The clunking of Mortis' now claustrophobic advances into the complex were becoming more muffled by the influx of vegetation as he drew deeper. The vines were like needles tearing into this coat and jacket, shredding them into ribbons and the sheer bulk was making it difficult to progress. Finally, pushing himself to the furthest reaches of the dome that he could, Mortis used his remaining good arm to remove a rust coated panel that covered a shaft that descended beneath him.
Mortis, disregarding the human instinct insisting him to desist, coiled into position and let himself fall down the shaft with his mauled appendage swiftly joining him on the ride down. Mortis' fall was interrupted by another grate that covered a vent opening leading into a wide open room. However, momentum decreed that Mortis' frame was more than enough to pry it loose and Mortis soon found himself embraced by a cold, grime coated base in a nihilistic black room.
Promptly unfastening his limb and supplies from around his ankle he reached into a sealed portion of the bag and removed a vial of fluorescent green 'bug blood', guiding it over his arm examining it for damage.
Marcus made his way to the blast door, checking the sky as he went. It was getting dark. As he reached the door, Marcus took the key card from Ian and slid it into the slot by the side of the blast door. The switch flickered on and flashed green. Suddenly a bright orange light flashed over his head as a light switched on. Then a deafening klaxon went off, as the door slowly slid open. Inside, the ground was overgrown in plant life, like a greenhouse gone wild over the centuries. As the door opened, a scream came from within. "HELP US!" Followed by several gunshots, a terrifying screech came from within, as some great beast was wounded. Marcus peered inside, but the darkness was complete, the only visible item was a giant crashed Airship, in the middle of the dome, above it a massive hole was torn in the dome, creating a shaft of light peering down onto the ship.
Mortis' eyes traced the cuts running up and down the disembodied arm. The thorns had done some damage but surprisingly it ended up being purely superficial. Mortis cautiously connected the fresh tissue of his arm to the torn gap just below his shoulder, allowing the blood to freely flow once more. He quickly sent the message through his 'blood' from the foreign organ grafted to his heart to seal the wounds together and make Mortis whole once more. The process was excruciating as always, those familiar jolts along the nerves that arced through his body. How he cherished this feeling it was almost euphoric. The reassuring siren that screamed that he was still alive, Pain.
Once Mortis' surgery was complete he made his way through the dimly lit room stretching out around him. A single globe hung from the metallic ceiling by a rusted chain with a blood red wire intertwined with its coils. It proved to the the singular source of light that he had found during his entire exploration of the Dome. Mortis rose slowly, making sure not to exert pressure on his recently reattached limb. Once on his feet he made his way towards the light aloft in the corner of the room, as he drew nearer a prominent audible humming began to ring inside of Mortis' cranium. At first he assumed it was a side effect of his fall but soon came to realize that the sound had direction, pattern and consistency.
In the dancing shadows behind the swaying, flickering light-bulb was small side room, it's door barely on it's hinges. Inside was an assortment of machinery, Tesla coils with sparks firing off randomly behind reinforced glass, cogs and gear that had come to slow churns and all of it cloaked in a thick, sticky web. As Mortis was preparing a slot in his doctors bag A loud noise resonated throughout the chamber. Mortis glanced in the direction of the scream to note a flight of stairs ascending through the cobwebs into the lush vegetation. Mortis had recognized the words "Help me" and began making an advancement hoping that a prospect to dissect a freshly killed corpse would be his. As his foot made contact with the first step a resounding, inhuman screech wafted through the chambers followed by the roaring blasts of gun fire.
The smile on Mortis' carved up face grew wide as he bolted up the stairs to witness what that horrifying call was. The thick flora made his strides arduous but when he had made it to the top he was gifted with a vision that made him weak at the knees. Before him, amongst the rich emerald green vines and under the stream of light cascading radiantly from a hole at the peak of the dome, was a great creature that made the arachnids in his childhood tomes look tame. It was gargantuan in size, its fangs the size of Mortis' forearm. The legs spread keeping it suspended above the vegetation. It had six gleaming eyes that bulged from it's stark black thorax and in it's two forelegs were the impaled bloody pulps of the body of some fool who had made contact with the beast.
"It's beautiful, I must have it!" Mortis whispered under his breath while unslinging his rifle and bringing the iron sight to his eye.
Finding nothing of interst to him in the building, Blake jogged towards the dome just as the doors opened. Evidently, the card that Ian had found was correct.
As he approached the two men, Blake peered through the dark interior of the structure towards the shaft of light spearing what Blake could only assume was the airship that Balthazaar had tasked them to find. Surprised at the sheer volume of vines and weeds dominating the dome's interior, Blake whistled quietly and turned to address Marcus, but before he could open his mouth a terrified scream pierced the darkness, closely followed by gunfire.
"Shit," he sighed, turning to the other two men. "We goin' in without the others?" Blake took a few steps towards the ominous shadows whilst holstering his beretta and setting up his crossbow.
"Smell different" Delrath grumbled sniffing the man, What does he taste like? He smells so... Unique Delrath let his tongue drift near the man's unconscious body, a small bit of salvia dropped onto his face, a brief spark of electricity sparked from his face. Delrath growled "Ability" and tightly gripped the man's arm easily throwing him onto his shoulder, Delrath's bone spikes lightly poked into his body. "Quick dead" Delrath said to Ashe positioning the man's head near his large shoulder spike.
Ian raised his pistol in front of him, "Sounds like people are still in here, or another scavenger crew found another way in." Ian took a few steps into the dome but froze when he spotted the spider. He froze in his, eyes riveted to the creature. He felt his entire body break out in a sweat, limbs shaking and mind blank as his old phobia returned with an added vengence. He felt time slow and his heart stop as he saw the spider turn towards him. For what seemed like an eternity, he stared into the creature's eyes. In a momentary flash of lucidity, his instinct kicked in and he fired 3 shots into the spider. One tore into one of its eyes, another into its leg, and the last took a chunk out of the abdomen. He heard the creature shriek in pain and retreat into the bush. Ian slumped to the floor, head in his hands as painful memories were reawoken. "Of all the creatures in the fucking world, it just happened to be fucking spiders bigger than of fucking cows," he sobbed out, "Fuck this, I'm better off with the rain."
As Ashe made her way to the trucks she saw the doors were open and what sounded like a fierce fight echoed through. Ashe drew her shotgun again and pointed to Delrath.
"Sound like the others need us! Drop that guy on the ground and let's get to them!" Ashe said as she hurried into the recesses of the dome. Right then and there she noticed the airship followed by the huge spider. It was truly unlike anything she had seen before. The vines and the thick foliage in the large building only heightened Ashe's sense of dread as she could hear one of those things emerge from behind her.
Ashe turned and fired at the large spider. The shot cleared the two of the thing's leg in one volley making the creature hobble back and forth, hissing at her. Ashe fell back and noticed her other teammates in the thick of it and doing their best to survive.
Turning to the sobbing Hunter, Blake kicked a cloud of dust towards him. "Then go sit in the rain! We got some abominations to kill!" With this, Blake glanced at Marcus and ran into the foliage, thick with darkness, towards the shaft of light.
Vines clutching his ankles and thorns snagging at his clothes and skin, Blake fought through the black void, mind fixed on theimage of the giant spider that Hunter had shot. In all his years on this Twisted Earth, the grizzled mutant hunter had never encountered such creatures. Clearly the Good Man was guarding this place for a reason. Blake figured it must be a sacred place, something the Good Man cherished in order to protect it with the grotesque arachnid.
Suddenly tripping, Blake was jolted out of his reverie and found himself sprawled amongst the bushes, crossbow still gripped in his hands. Pushing himself to his knees, he felt a stab of pain and noticed the sliding sting of a sharp object removing itself from his stomach. Lightly patting the spot, his hand came away slick with blood, the white-hot pain spreading across his body.
Staring up at the shaft of light, Blake again envisioned the Good Man watching over this sacred ground and felt the sudden urge to not be encroaching upon this place. However, the airship was there, people nearby were screaming for help and firing at the mutated spiders and Blake remembered Balthazaar's expectation.
Torn between his faith and his professional duty, Blake caught sight of a spider, lowering itself from the top of the shaft of light. Raising his crossbow, Blake watched it through his make-shift scope. So beautiful, so graceful at it lowered itself using only the glittering silk. Surely this creature wasn't an abomination? Surely it was the perfect child of the Good Man...
As he followed the spider in his sights, Blake breathed heavily, his heart rate began to increase quickly, and his vision blurred momentarily before clarity again returned to him. Blinking once, Blake fired at the descending creature, the bolt lodging itself halfway into the spider's head.
"All the abominations must die!" Blake roared through the darkness as he jumped to his feet and contiuned on towards the airship, with renewed vigour.
As Blake pushed forward, he swung his crossbow wildly and roared primitively, the stab wound in his stomach forgotten, and almost healed. The rage had gripped Blake and nothing was going to stop him.
Marcus raised his rifle, seeing the outline of a Spider. It was massive. With a quick squeeze of the trigger, he let of a burst. The roar of gunfire bounced off of the dome walls. The shots connected with the beast, but done little to it. The Spider turned to see where this new prey had shot it from and upon seeing the group moving into the dome, it let out a screech.
At once, a shuffling of grass and plants echoed around the room and then it went silent, eerily quiet. Nothing stirred. The only sound coming from the storm outside and the pitter-pattering of the acidic rain hitting the ground, broken by the occasional roar of thunder.
The Airship lay in ruins on the floor. A slight drag mark behind it, where it had hit and torn up some of the foliage. The ship was nearly fifty metres in length and had multiple floors. The sails were made from strange material, black and sleek with square panels stored all over them. The ship itself looked like an old galleon, but far larger. On the back, two huge propellers were dug into the floor, laying to one side, broken and bent. On the side of the ship, two cannons were attached, each with multiple chambers and what looked like fireworks, stored near them. A massive hole was torn from the side and from that, came the moan of an injured human.
Minutes before the Storm starts
A familiar smack to the face sends Shaun flying a meter across the concrete, and an older man with a brown goatee speaks "NO, no, Shaun you have to parry below, don't try to dodge it", "I still say it doesn't work!" A younger moaning Shaun says while wiping blood off his face, "Well don't come crying to me when you die because you tried to dodge it rather then parry the blow" the older man says with a smirk, suddenly a bald middle aged man walked into the small training room and calls out "Shaun, time for your exams!", "I don't want to do the stupid fuc..." Shaun says with a pout on his face before a palm swipes over his face before he could say the next word "He'll be there in a second Mister Raids" the older man speaks "Good Chief Dred, i'll see you in a second Shaun" the middle aged man called Raids said before walking out of the room.
A flickering light shines above Shaun as he opens his eyes, a blunt feeling of pain runs down his spine and it reminds him of what happened before he passed out, As Shaun's eyes come into focus a big dark cloud hangs above him and he starts to get up and flex his muscles.
As Shaun fixes his clothes up he hears gunfire incoming from the dome, as Shaun reaches for his back sheath where his sword should be stored he feels nothing in his hand, he fingers through his pockets and there is nothing as well.
"Aww fuck they're got my weapons, I cant leave without the weapons they advance technology" Shaun says with a sigh and walks slowly to where the sounds are coming from and hopes to find his weapons and hopefully his new friends. A thunder bolt rattles the sky as he starts to walk.
Mortis was staring intently down his sight as he watched the chaos unfold. The wild and instinctual firing of one of his teammates echoed through the dome mere moments before the man's collapse into some sort of repressive trance. Mortis could never truly be sure without extensive investigation but he assumed that the individual must share some sort of phobia of arachnids, It was common among humans and the reaction bared striking similarities to one of the experiments he had performed on small rodents back when he was a child.
Mortis resisted the urge to squeeze the trigger of his borrowed rifle as he watched the beast scramble in surprise at the small onslaught of projectiles. None of the fired rounds seemed to damage the beast except the lone bullet that pierced one of the spiders large bulging eyes. The creature reacted to it's injury in hisses and clicks with it's mandibles, a signal of surprise and animosity as the rest of Mortis' companions began to take to the stage. Ashe, Delrath's little lap dog, had begun providing cover fire as Blake, their local xenophobe with crossbow in hand, had bolted into the darkness without a second thought. From within those shadows a projectile glistened in the ray of light during mid launch, although it proved to be ineffective and simply lodged into the layer of it's thick armour-like thorax, failing to even draw blood.
Mortis' intrigue in the gargantuan arachnid was swayed for a moment as he heard the wild and primal screams echoing from the darkness, words were shouted but in a manner from which they could hardly be registered. Are there more spiders in hiding? Mortis' train of thought was swiftly interrupted but the ringing noise of gunfire. However, this time the shots were concentrated and hinted at a great proficiency causing Mortis to return attention to beast once more. The visage of their pseudo leader, Marcus emerging from the darkness, his prized weapon in hand as he provided bursts of light as his bullets simply bounced off of the advancing monster gave Mortis the insight necessary to understand the futility of his situation.
Mortis took this gracious opportunity that his comrades presented to make a tactical retreat. This great arthropod aroused every bit of scientific curiosity that ticked in Mortis' twisted little mind, but he knew attacking it head on would be playing with fire. Instead he opted to return to the chambers he had just risen from and examine in greater detail, just exactly what he was to expect in this little greenhouse of nightmares.
"Have fun, make sure to leave it's body, If you kill it of course." Mortis whispered under his breath allowing a macabre giggle to resonate on his slow descent.
Ashe went forward into the darkness, trying to feel her way to the airship. What little light remained came from outside and the storm didn't help either. Ashe pushed forward though as she cracked a flare that she kept from the raiding the truck. The crimson light illuminated the area around her and she slung the shotgun to her back and used her MP-7 instead as one could hold it with one hand. The airship was huge and each of her steps closer emphasized the gargantuan nature of it.
As Ashe inched closer to the craft she could hear Blake's primal screams in the darkness. Making sure of keeping her distance from those scream, Ashe hurried her steps until she was mere meters from the airship. A moan lightly resonated from the ship and instinctively Ashe raised her weapon towards it.
"Hello?" She carefully yelled out.
As Shaun entered the overgrown Dome it started to rain outside, but this is no ordinary rain, due to the new nature of this world this is an acid rain storm, so it's not a good idea to stay outside.
"Shit, that was close" Shaun spoke quietly to himself as he entered, there was little light now coming from the top of the dome since the storm blocked the sun's irradiating rays, but Shaun could still see the airship in the middle of the dome, he than heard an eerily moaned for help.
Shaun knew he couldn't just sit there and do shit, he has to help this man, but he also thought about the fact that there were other people in here, Shaun wants to know what happened to them, and if something did happen to them he is still worried about the fact that he has no weapons.
Cautiously and eagerly Shaun stepped into the overgrowth and prayed silently to himself that he would get to the airship safely and hopes even more that the survivors are still alive, as well as the other rescuers.
From the darkness of the Airship, a figure crawled out. As it reached the opening in the side of the ship, it turned and looked at the small group moving towards it. One arm lay draped across his chest, a slight glimmer visible in the low light. The man raised an arm, towards the group. "H-h-help me..." He groaned before passing out.
Marcus looked around the dome, the group was now sat next to the giant airship. But it was the roof of the dome that intrigued Marcus. It seemed to be rippling, like thousands of waves in the ocean. Then it dawned on him. his face dropped. Raising his flash light, he shone it across the roof. His eye's widened, in fear. "Oh, fuck." He moaned.
Above them, crawling across the roof, a dozen giant spiders could be seen, little more than shimmers in the darkness. The Airship was surrounded. The bushes came alive with movement, as more spiders began to crawl out of their nests and make their way towards the group.
Ashe forward to help the injured man but then the rustle of extensive foliage around her made her turn around to see the shimmering of some figure around them. Ashe turned with her shotgun now drawn to see the flare's light failing and the red dying. Ashe quickly cracked another flare and her eyes quickly darted all over the place as dozens, maybe even hundreds of spiders descended on them. Ashe's grip on the shotgun began to shake. Her movements began to cease as she looked upon these monsters.
Then Ashe looked back towards the airship. As broken as it was it might just be their safe haven if they secure the inside and seal off any unwanted exits inside. This might be the dumbest idea ever but Ashe wasn't willing to die just yet.
Ashe raised her red flare as high as she could, signalling anyone nearby.
"INSIDE THE AIRSHIP!" Ashe yelled.
The tiring Shaun was walking in the greenery around him, he next spotted a rusted rod attached to the ground "Fuck, I at least need a weapon", Shaun than grabbed a nearby rusty metal rod, Shaun put enough strength into it and a loud "SNAP" came from the rod, it snapped in half enough to be long enough like a spear, it also had a sharp pointy end to it, "Eh, good enough" Shaun said to himself with a smirk as he started to walk again.
Shaun was admiring the new life of this world and looked all around him as he was walking towards the middle of the dome, Shaun was noticing the increase in noise surrounding him, he didn't know if it was people or something else, a loud skitter went past behind Shaun and he turned around quickly to the anomaly, "Who's there!" Shaun says to the pitch darkness, as Shaun speaks this a giant figure comes out of the foliage to the side of him and the only thing Shaun could spot was eight eyes and legs, "Aww shit, why does it had to be spiders!" Shaun moans as he extended his spear towards the beast.
The pointy spear was three meters away from the spider, and Shaun didn't know what to do, he was afraid that if he journeys towards the airship that he would be corned and become mince meat, but he knew he that there was a man in danger. Then suddenly a loud crack and a red light ascended into the dome's airspace, the light shone light on tens, no hundreds of spiders crawling around the roof of the dome, the flare died and another one took its places, and it was followed by a loud scream shouting "INSIDE THE AIRSHIP", Shaun knew he would be screwed if he stayed out here and he started to turn tail and run for his life.
Mortis finally reached the base of the stairs he had ascended moments before. He took extra care to move silently as not to disturb the growth of webs. Mortis remembered a holodisc he had read while in his forced isolation, how spiders used an enhanced sense of touch to trace along their silk to locate their prey.
He glanced around the web coated room. The walls (beneath the drapes of spider silk) were lined with pipes. In the center was a large engine that ran on pistons, gears and cogs and in the four corners were faulty Tesla Coils that provided burst of illumination when bolt irregularly sparked within their cracked glass casings. The room would have appeared large were it not for the assortment of machinery.
As Mortis maneuvered through the clutter he was brought to a halt as he witnessed a thick shadow looming through the doorway to the small room illuminated by the single swaying bulb. From within a loud clicking noise followed by loud crunches could be made out clearly. He quietly pulled his rifle up to his eye and peered around the corner into the small room.
Inside was another large spider, black as sin, gnawing on what appeared to be the remains of some poor traveler that had wandered into this little hell-hole in a manner similar to Mortis' little group. The gore of the torn apart human was spread out along the clean tiled floor as the spider devoured it's prey.
Mortis was fortunate enough that the spider was not facing in his direction as it dined, Mortis was unsure whether it would cease it's feeding frenzy to peruse a fresher meal but he was thankful that he was not to find out. As Mortis slowly pulled away from the opening of the doorway he was stuck in deep thought as to how to deal with the situation. It was a good thirty seconds before the memory of the green insects from before returned to his memory.
Mortis silently reached into his doctors bag with great familiarity and pulled out a coil of surgical wire. The crunches on the great arachnid echoed through the chamber as Mortis began to tie a strand of wire around a thick vine that ran along the ceiling and a tiny loop around his pinky finger. He then, with zero hesitation, proceeded to twist the tiny appendage until it came loose from the rest of his person. Mortis took a step back, looking over the lure he had made with a hunters eye and realized the final, necessary adjustment to his little trap. He returned to his lab-coat pocket and removed the vial of glowing 'Bug Blood' and poured it over the dangling piece of meat.
Mortis coiled up in the darkest section of the room he could find and began methodically removing the webs with his scalpel taking extra care not to alert the beast in the next room.
Groggily, Blake opened his eyes to the same darkness as before and wondered where he was and what had happened. In an attempt to move his arms, he found himself bound by something thick but fairly loose.
Holding back the bile rising up in his throat, Blake remembered. There was darkness, foliage, spiders....and an airship. Clarity foggily returning to him, Blake ignored his pounding head and twisting stomach as he struggled free from the vines that had tangled him during his rage. Hoping nobody had noticed his illness, Blake turned his attention to the nearby noises emanating from the shaft of light, the crash site of the sought-after airship.
Shouts and panicked footsteps were audible amongst the hissing and rustling of the spiders. Blake realised that the abominations were making one last attack. Sighing as he slowly crouched to pick up his crossbow, Blake cautiously pushed through the undergrowth towards the light, his insides on fire from the aftermath of the rage.
Just as Blake emerged from the foliage into the light, he saw chaos above as dozens of spiders prepared to strike. Raising his crossbow with effort, he held one of the creatures in his sights and noticed in slighgt surprise that it had a crossbow blot jutting out of it's head. "Inconceivable..." Blake breathed.
Suddenly he heard a familiar voice screaming for eveyone to get into the airship. It was the girl, Ashe. Snapping his head in the direction of the voice, Blake saw that he was standing only a few feet from the rest of the group, his back slightly turned to them.
Grunting, Blake lowered his crossbow and headed towards the airship's opening.
The passing greenery made a loud noise as Shaun ran through it, "How the hell will I get out of this one" Shaun laughed to himself as he saw the wreck of the airship, "Finally!" He spoke.
As Shaun broke free of the foliage he just came from he quickly checked to see it that spider was following him, he saw the same spider but Shaun noticed that it was being followed by two or three more.
"Shit" Shaun made a remark as he turned around only to see a group of people and one person walking into the ship, everyone had their weapons aimed at the greenery and their gazes where aimed at Shaun, "I think it would be a good time to run" Shaun spoke as he ran into the opening of the ship too, ignoring their gazes.
Marcus saw the closest spider, front legs ready to pounce. Without Flinching, Marcus Squeezed the trigger. The Rifle beat into his shoulder and the thunderous roar echoed around the dome. Spent cases went flying from the ejector and disappeared into the undergrowth. Marcus continued firing, letting out a scream of rage as he emptied an entire magazine into the beast. The spider came apart, the rounds tore through it's legs and the volume of fire minced through it's abdomen. A dark blue liquid burst from the creature, splashing over Marcus as he continued to fire into the beast. As his magazine emptied, he continued screaming at the beast, that now lay on the floor, in a puddle of blood and it's own flesh. Marcus quickly slapped another magazine into place and turned and made his way into the Airships body.
All her teamates around her passed in a swirl of shadows and blurs as the light from the flare crackled. From what she could tell the spiders began descending on them like ants to a piece of on the ground.
Ashe clambered into the hole and began firing into the piercing darkness, only being illumanated for a few spilt seconds from muzzle flashes. The spiders didn't seem to stop and after a few bursts from her MP7 soon she ran out. The bursts left their mark as a few of the spiders dropped back from the impact of the armor piercing bullets tearing through their bodies.
As Ashe fired away one of the group bumped into her on the way in. She turned her gaze away from the firing for a split second to see that it was the man that she found in the hangar before. All he had was a lead pipe by the looks of it, a pitiful weapon for holding down the Alamo.
"Hey, you! I have your guns!" Ashe yelled before she fired a shell of buckshot into the incoming horde.
"ARGGGH" Delrath roared grabbing a spider mid-air before it reached Ashe. He slammed it into the group, breaking one of it's legs before it pushed off and limped away. Delrath could smell the creatures everywhere slowly circling, waiting to tear them apart. He stood back-to-back with Ashe, his body dwarfing her in comparison. Another quickly charged him but a swift stomp shattered it's back and left it crippled. He scanned the darkness, his eyes were useless but his nose wasn't. He could sense the other's fighting but they had to deal with the creatures before they could help them. "Shoot" Delrath ordered Ashe as he threw a spider towards her.
At the opening of the ship stood Shaun looking over to the one person fighting the oncoming horde, "What is he doing, there are a heap of them!" Shaun thought to himself while he was ducking.
"He can't last long by himself, he needs to get out of there" Shaun muttered to himself as he was about to jump out of the opening but suddenly the person shouted "Hey, you! I have your guns!" as he pointed towards Shaun.
Shaun jumped out into the opening and dashed towards the person, then "ARGGGH" a loud screamed pierced through the dome, it was a giant and he just joined the fight, Shaun kept dashing towards them while pulling his spear out hoping to spear a spider close to them.
Ashe threw the man's weapons before him and as Delrath ordered her to shoot at the spider she happily obliged. The shotgun tore through the spider's soft bottom resulting in a bloody mess for anyone around her. Ashe reached inside her bag for the red shells and the crimson shell greeted her touch. She slid the shell into the shotgun again and stepped a little closer knowing the range of the incineration rounds.
Ashe fired into a throng of spiders coming towards them and within an instant they erupted into flame. The flames engulfed the group like the dragon's breath in one of the stories that her father told her. A brave knight going against a dragon. She couldn't help but smile at the flames or her admiration to the story.
The frightened Shaun looked at the flying weapons in mid-air and said "Fuck, throwing it could...ahh never mind!", Shaun's boots screeched as he made a sudden stop and launched the spear into the pack of spiders hoping to nail one of them.
The three mid-air weapons were then caught by Shaun, he put his two guns into his pockets and caught his sword just into time to grab it by the classy hilt, Shaun then looked into the now flaming pack of spiders and gripped his sword and muttered "Bring it!" as he prepared for the onslaught.
Kreth had come over to the dome after hearing the door open. He had wandered around the outside of the buildings, not entering them, as he was somewhat suspicious of a possible ambush. By what, he didn't know, but in the Crucible he had taken part in too many to discount the possibility. No hidden force came out to attack them though and so he was free to enter the dome with the others.
Seeing the darkness inside, Kreth moved to remove his cloth strip from his eyes, using his light-sensitive sight to get a good view within. The dome was filled with vegetation, more than Kreth had ever seen in one place. He could also hear something moving about inside the foliage and he found out soon enough that it was huge spiders.
As the other members of the group began to open fire with their guns, Kreth found himself having trouble dealing with the sudden stimulation to his sense of sight. The light from the muzzle flashes messed with his vision with the quick changes between darkness and sudden light. Figuring that he didn't want to lose any of his precious crossbow bolts, Kreth simply kept his knives out and waited for any spiders to come near. He didn't have to wait long before some obliged him. They were quick and strong, but his skill with his blades made sure they didn't overwhelm him. Their numbers on the other hand, might be a problem.
And so it was without hesitation that Kreth broke off from his skirmish with some of the arachnids when he heard calls for the group to rally at the airship. He made his way through the foliage as fast as he could, before finally coming to the group's objective. The light made him squint in near pain as he made his way over to the group, covered in the blood of several spiders. And no doubt some from himself, if the pain from the cuts were any indication.
Mortis' rigorous yet delicate sawing at the thick spider webs in the room was halted by the delayed recognition of the silence that wafted through the air. Mortis, very slowly, half turned to get a quick glimpse of his trap as it hung in the doorway between him and the spider, hoping that the creature would take the bait.
The silence was broken in mere moments as the scuttling sound of the spiders great legs scratched along the tiled floor. Mortis lay coiled in the shadows against the cold concrete wall where he had been operating. His face was alight with anticipation, smile in full as the head of the giant arachnid peered through the doorway. It's eight eyes rolling around independently, scanning the room for more prey. Dangling just before the monsters fangs was Mortis' tiny finger.
All eyes of the beast came to a halt fixated solely on the dangling piece of flesh. It elevated itself with it's hind legs and began thumbing the tiny piece of food over in it's giant mandibles. Mortis sat watching as the beast finally crushed his pinky finger into a mush and swallowed it down.
HA! I win, I win, I win.
Mortis rose confidently from the darkness and skipped out to the greet the spider who, by Mortis' hypothesis, had just sealed his own doom. As he came into the dim light the spider was caught of guard, The beast seemed unfamiliar with direct and sudden confrontation.
" itsy bitsy spider crawled up the water spout.
Down came the rain, and washed the spider out.
Out came the sun, and dried up all the rain,"
Mortis extended his hand with the absent finger in an exaggerated flourish and took a mocking bow, as he did the spider reared back and started foaming a vibrant green ichor from some form of primitive mouth. In mere seconds the spider had entered a violent spasm and collapsed
"And the itsy bitsy spider, never climbed again." Mortis finished with a eerie giggle that resonated throughout the chamber.
Throwing himself inside the airship, Blake caught his breath and watched the carnage outside. Some of the spiders were alight from Ashe's incendiary rounds and the others were desperately trying to defend their position. Unsure of their chances, and with his own body aching from the brief rage that had gripped him, Blake decided to stay away from the ensuing battle for now and search the airship for something that could finish the eight-legged abominations.
Ashe fell back into the hole as she frantically loaded shells back into her shotgun. Out of the corner of her left eye she saw Blake navigate the airship going away from the battle.
"The mighty mutant killer!" Ashe yelled sarcastically as she fired a shell into a spider's thick hide. The thing tried to push its way into the hole but a shell and a kick pushed the thing back. Ashe saw the man that she threw the weapons to catch them. Ashe scoffed and fired another round into another spider.
"Hold them here! They're not big enough to get through the hole! Make sure that they don't find another way in!" Ashe yelled to anyone in particular.
Shaun followed Ashe into the airship and kneeled down against some cover and pulled out his not forgotten pistols, Ebony and Irony.
As Shaun looks over the rip of the airship he sees the onslaught of giant spiders coming, "Well...this sucks" Shaun makes a quick remark to Ashe as he fired one of Ebony's bullets at the horde.
"And what is that guy doing, I thought we had more people!?' Shaun said while looking at the last appearance of Blake before he disappeared into darkness as another loud gunshot came Ebony.