Daniel’s dad continued, “Guardian’s giving the asteroid a quick once over, checking if the asteroid’s anything more than a big rock. We’ve got a few ideas as to how we can handle it if it’s just a dinosaur killer, but we don’t want any surprises.”
I’d set the suit to monitor Stapledon communications and the Heroes League team channel for activity. There wasn’t much of anything going on between our team. Like me, they were likely all listening to the Defenders. The Heroes League channel showed a lot of activity between Haley and Kayla at first. After that, Camille, Sydney, Marcus, and Chris all came online.
Chris? That was cool. Haley was calling in everybody. If Grand Lake had an asteroid with its name on it, they’d have a decent chance of taking it out between the League jet, Camille’s anti-gravity powers, and Chris to think things through.
If the people who were guessing that the asteroids were a feint were correct, they’d need everyone they could get. Fighting the machines had been too close, and who knew what the Hrrrna were like?
I wished I was there. I wished I had time to pay attention to what they were saying.
Continue reading Stardock: Part 12
Lim continued, “We’ll be using the strategies and tactics we practiced yesterday, so you shouldn’t have had time to forget them yet. There will be one additional wrinkle. We’re already evacuating Stardock just like we are the rest of the city. That means that if we do decide to blow Stardock, we won’t be looking for you to evacuate the people below. We’ll need you to watch out for each other. Don’t leave anyone in your unit behind.”
He paused, looked us all over, and then, when we thought he’d finished, he said, “There’s one more thing. Stardock isn’t the only alien technology in New York City. We fought the Abominators in the 1970’s, and we collected everything we could find. I’m not going to tell you where it is, but none of you should be surprised to discover that we’re studying it, or that we’re doing our best to reverse engineer it. When you fight, you need to use tools that can do the job. Our own tools won’t, so we’re getting better tools.That’s why we may redirect a few of you if we have to blow Stardock. Don’t hesitate if we call you in. Trust me, it will be important.
Continue reading Stardock: Part 11
Just letting people know that tomorrow’s post will appear around noon tomorrow (Michigan time). My wife and I are doing something tonight, and while I’ve got the next update half finished, I won’t be able to get it done. Fortunately, I’m taking tomorrow off, and can easily finish the next post tomorrow morning.
Thus, I’m letting you know.
I wondered what Lim thought we’d even be able to do. Sure, Izzy might be able to redirect part of a planetary bombardment on her own, but she wouldn’t be able to handle all of it. She’d be kind of redundant to whatever Guardian and the various Defenders units were likely to manage. The ones that couldn’t fly in space had ships made at Stardock to work with.
With a slightly sick feeling, I wondered what Haley hoped to do. The jet might be able to destroy or redirect asteroids. For that matter, Camille could control gravity, and I didn’t know what her limits were. If she was anything like Sean, her half brother, she might be extremely powerful.
Lim’s voice broke through my thoughts. “Everyone! Now! I’ll brief you when you’re done.”
Continue reading Stardock: Part 10
With that debacle over, we went back to our dorm, changed out of costume and ate. I could write more about hanging out in our rooms that night, but there’s not really much to tell. Sunday morning allowed time for people who wanted to attend worship services to do so, and then we spent most of Sunday afternoon practicing first aid.
By five, we were all waiting in an airport somewhere near NYC. I hesitate to say a “secret” airport because it was clearly used, but it definitely wasn’t commonly used by passenger planes. I don’t think I saw any, but I couldn’t be sure because we rode there in a cargo truck with no windows–just seats in the back. The roof was made of a partially transparent, but not clear, plastic.
We unloaded the truck inside the hangar. I happened to look through the mirrored windows on the door as we waited for our plane to arrive. Even though it wasn’t snowing, it still wasn’t warm. A Fedex jet landed on the runway as I watched, but it didn’t taxi in our direction afterward. I decided that watching for our jet was probably more akin to waiting for a pot to boil than it ought to be, and considered finding someone to talk to.
Continue reading Stardock: Part 9
Whether I liked the people I was with or not, however, it was time to practice. Brain Gang ran us through multiple scenarios and exercises, and we were okay if not brilliant. They were all based on the assumption that we had to hold off invading aliens long enough to evacuate and blow up the base. In short, we’d already lost, and it was now a question of how we’d deal with it.
At least that was my take. Basically, it was Star Trek’s Kobayashi Maru exercise but with specific orders on how we were handle the problem.
So far as I could tell, our orders required us to die a lot, but at least we won most of the time–assuming your definition of winning didn’t necessarily include personal survival.
The last exercise didn’t even go that well.
Continue reading Stardock: Part 8
Hey folks, I have a public service announcement…
Wildbow (writer of Worm) started a new serial today. If you want to read it, it’s here: Pact.
Brain Gang, a short man with dark skin and short, black hair, stood in front of the group of us. He wore a green suit (with matching mask and hat) that to my eye appeared to include material similar to that in my stealth suit. The material on the outside seemed normal, but the suit appeared to be stiffer and just a little thicker than normal material.
I recognized Brain Gang’s name. I’d heard it from Grandpa. Either this was a descendant of the original Brain Gang, or the original was still around. Given that this guy appeared to be in his thirties, I leaned toward descendant.
The parking lot held no cars, and for good reason. If you were going to be training a bunch of college students, many of whom were still learning to use their abilities, would you want to have your car where a stray blast of energy could destroy it?
Continue reading Stardock: Part 7
“Uh…” I tried to think of a response that would calm the situation down. The honest response, “Yes, Daniel explained it to Haley and me, but not you,” didn’t seem likely to do that.
Izzy let out a breath, seeming to deflate as she did it. “Look, I’m not going to–” She paused, not saying anything. “I’d like to talk about this privately. Do you have a good sense of when we’d be out of his range?”
I had a pretty good guess as to whose range she meant.
Go ahead, Daniel told me. It’ll be okay.
Izzy raised an eyebrow, and gave a half smile. “He’s talking to you, isn’t he?”
“Yeah,” I shrugged. “Sorry. I think we’ll be out of range in a minute or so, but I’ll want to get my jacket.”
Continue reading Stardock: Part 6
Sean’s faced tightened up, and he said, “I still didn’t do it, and besides, he didn’t hurt you or anything. It was just a stupid prank.”
“It doesn’t matter,” I said. “Based on what happened last fall, anyone who looks at this is going to assume you told Jody to do it, and you’ll probably get kicked out. I know you didn’t. That’s why I’m not going to say anything unless it happens again. If it does, I’ll report it, and I’ll tell them about this one too.”
Sean gritted his teeth, and said, “Then let Jody go, okay? I’m done with this. Jody, you leave him alone.”
Jody held his hands in the air. “Okay, you got it.”
The Jenny nearest me said, “I’ll let him free,” in the same tone of voice that she might have used to say, “It’s your funeral.” Continue reading Stardock: Part 5