A burst from one of the agents winged a sleeping devil bat, which awoke and carried the agent to the edge of the Devil’s Tower. Trixabelle was fast to lasso the bats legs and with Felix’s help dragged it on the Plateau, where the posse use blade and bullet to subdue it. Ned almost became a victim of the bat’s grabbing claws, but managed to roll free of it’s grasp and wound the creature, a hail of bullets from another agent causing Ned to stumble backwards as the gatling rounds tore apart the wings and life of the final Devil bat.
Carter McCormick crawled from under the flipped auto-gyro, and mumbled about needing to perform a couple of minor adjustments to the flipped and damaged machine. Meanwhile the posse and agents searched the plateau, starting with the Devil Bat’s nest. Avoiding the two young bats, which flew out and away after a quick swipe of their claws, the posse pushed around the bones (rabbit, deer and a few human) to find a couple of strange devices. The first was a semi-spherical device that upon being squeezed acted as a light, without any exhaust fumes or familiar smell of Ghost rock ?!
Another device lay next to a strange, lizard-like humanoid skeleton, which Zachariah refered to as “alien”. The device was a claw-like glove with a long metal cable attached. When tried on by Trixabelle, it came to life, the cable winding up her arm and the end opening up sharp needles as if to bury itself into her shoulder ! Felix and Ned sprung forward and helped her wrestle the device down, which fell into inertness upon being removed. Trixabelle stowed it for all of 10 mins before curiosity struck again, and outside of the nest she put the device on again, allowing it to burrow into her shoulder.
Crying out in pain, the Chinese girl dropped to her knees in sheer agony. As the posse and agents came running, she arched forward and all could see the cable pushing it’s way into her back on towards her spinal column. As blood flowed gently from the wound, a moment of mercy permitted Trixabelle to pass out from the shock. Minutes later, she came around, sore and weak, but with surprisingly little blood loss from such an invasive assault. She looked down at the claw attached to her much strengthened arm and thought if the jutting out blades would be permanently attached. As this thought came, the blades retracted. Upset at their disappearance, she frowned, and the blades shot back out again. They seemed to react to her whims. The posse and agents all stood in wonder; and one step further away than normal. Whilst this arm offered strength and utility, it would bring stigma to many folk – many of the posse recalling the cybernetically altered pit fighters from The City O’ Gloom and the reactions they got from regular folk.
As they stood in quiet wonderment at this gadget, Felix’s attention was drawn to bushes shaking in the wind… yet shaking as if the breeze was below them. Investigation revealed a long shaft which Felix volunteered to explore, along with the newly found handtorch. Lowered down by rope, he stopped 50 feet down to investigate a small ledge which contained a small flight of mantabats. Scared from Felix’s light, they flew up and down the shaft, stinging Trixabelle on the way out, the venom weakening her further. After this, the posse’s way was clear to the bottom of the shaft, and a large metal grate that covered the bottom.
Felix and Trixabelle heaved the grate up, but it’s weight was too much and they dropped it, hitting the floor with a loud clang. They quickly jumped down into a large cavern lit by electric lights, within which grew trees and gardens of many fruits and vegetables, most familiar to the posse, all seemingly grown indoors in this humid and well lit climate. Tending these crops were the gardeners, equipped with basic tools and sprays. It was not the equipment that first caught the posse’s attention though. It was that the gardeners were 4 1/2 foot tall humanoid lizard people.
Attempts to communicate failed, and the lizard creatures fled chittering in a strange language. the posse skirted around the garden produce, both familiar and foreign and explored more carefully rather than follow the fleeing gardeners. In a storeroom they found another one of the creatures, now dubbed as “aliens” by Zachariah, this time a child who snarled in fear before running past the posse down a ramp.
With few other directions to explore, the posse took this ramp too, making there way slowly down around 100 feet further into the devil’s tower structure. Here, the tunnel opened up into a floor of doors and corridors, whilst also continuing deeper. The posse crept around this floor – seeming somewhat quiet on one side. The other side saw larger doors and noisier rooms. Noise of crowds chattering, large groups working and silent study came from the larger rooms. Exploring a smaller room yeilded a small living quarter – a simple animal hide pallet without blanket (the whole structure was a constant cool temperature) and pegs on the wall were all that furnished the room. The walls though were covered with strange hieroglyphics; writing that started large across all the walls, but grew somewhat smaller as it came toward the floor, where it stopped a couple of feet short.
The party decided to move on, rather than explore too far, for they were injured and could not afford to let curiosity get the best of them. However, it seemed the fleeing “alien” gardeners may have taken news of the posse’s arrival deeper into the tower, for a long wailing siren started up and started to drone around the whole floor, perhaps the whole tower. Noises of doors being flung open started around the corner, and the floor seemed suddenly a buzz with activity and apprehension…