Episode 1

Michael Harrel: Going from ship to ship, its ankles clasped and its arms so rudely pinioned, it's Cogs! Brought to you by Zukkerman's Famous Pork Rinds — "They're radiant!"

And now, back to Cogs.
INT - The Engine Room.

Luka throws a wrench at the wall and screams in frustration, before leaning against the wall and sliding to the ground.

luka arlexi: Luka swears profusely.

Genevieve Sparling: On the bridge, Sparling picks herself up and staggers to the speaking trumpets. "All crew report in."

Newton Falk: Newton begins to pick himself up "Well, any landing you can walk away fro- Oh wait, I think my leg is broken…"

Michael Harrel: Felix groans from underneath a pile of maps. "A bit shaken, captain, but no permanant damage."

Newton Falk: Newton continues to test his leg. He wears an expression of curiousity and pain. But mostly curiousity.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: Evelyn has fallen to the floor in the crash. She looks unconcious.

Genevieve Sparling: "Felix, see if you can find a loose table leg and we'll make a splint for Mr. Falk."

luka arlexi: Luka reluctantly gets up and makes her way over to the trumpet. "Here, Captain."

Michael Harrel: Felix looks over to where his navagational table used to be. It's now a wreck. "I've got enough for his other leg and both arms, too," he says.

Genevieve Sparling: "Good, then we can plummet into the ocean three more times."

Newton Falk: "The leg'll do Felix. Just take it across the back of my head when I'm not looking."

(People were laughing, so I mentioned the audience pool here).

Newton Falk: Newton tests his leg a few times, then realizes he should keep an eye on Felix.

luka arlexi: Fan Mail: 1 to the Captain, 1 to Newton

Genevieve Sparling: Sparling looks out the nearest window at the placid sea. "I'll go see what's keeping the doctor from using her speaking trumpet. As soon as you're both mobile, gentlemen, we'll start deflating the envelope and make ourselves less of a target."

Newton Falk: "Aye, Capt."

Genevieve Sparling: She leaves the bridge and heads aft to the laboratory.

Newton Falk: "Put it down, Felix"

luka arlexi: Luka hangs her now-singed coat up on broken pipe, and begins brushing ashes off of the various pipes and instruments and trying to examine the readings.

CUT TO: INT - The laboratory.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: Evelyn is laying still on the floor.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: She appears to be unconcious, but uninjured.

Michael Harrel: The mechanical bug wanders up in front of her. Its antennae wave.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: She waits until it is close to her. When it is well within reach, her eyes snap open and she jumps on top of the bug, jar still in hand.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "Gotcha, little bugger!" She laughs at this unintended pun.

Luka Arlexi: ((Fan mail —1 point to the crazy lady))

Genevieve Sparling: ((Seconded.))

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: She examines the little beetle up close.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "What are you?" she mumbles at the mechanical creature.

Michael Harrel: behind her, another beetle, much like the first but made out of entirely different materials, scurries past.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: Roll(3d6)+0:

Michael Harrel says: Roll(2d6)+0:

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: The Beetle scurries behind her and under her cot. Evelyn is so preoccupied with examining the first beetle, she doesn't see it. After a minute or two, she hears a faint scraping sound near the far wall.

Genevieve Sparling: Sparling arrives and sees Evelyn examining the beetle. "Kakogo chyorta…"

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "Close the door, quickly!"

Genevieve Sparling: Sparling shuts the door.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "I think I heard something, watch this and the box. Maybe close the box."

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: She starts to get up, but leaves a finger on top of the glass.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: She looks at the captain, expectantly.

Genevieve Sparling: Sparling furrows her brow. "First, would you please explain exactly what it is I'm watching?"

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: Evelyn looks at her like she's daft. "What?"

Genevieve Sparling: Sparling sighs. "Yes, fine, I'll watch your… strange… beetle thing."

Michael Harrel: There's a crinkling sound from under the bed.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "Aha!" Evelyn gets up and darts to the cot, overturning it with wild abandon.

Michael Harrel: One of the instruments on Evelyn's desk jingles, as if something has nudged it.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "Oh, not interested in my bed? Good thing I suppose. Come here!" she walks over to the desk.

Genevieve Sparling: Sparling notices the open box and mutters, "Well, we won't be getting paid for this one."

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "Sure we will."

Michael Harrel: The instrument has been damaged slightly: there is a bolt missing from it.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "Bolt thief?"

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: She puts it down and continues looking for the other bug.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: Seeing some heavy work gloves, she puts them on.


Felix is tying the table leg onto Newton's leg. Newton grimaces in pain, tips his head back.
As he opens his eyes, he sees, far above, three dots circling in the sky.

Newton Falk: "Well, shit."

Michael Harrel: "Sorry," says Felix. "Trying to be careful."

Newton Falk: "It's fine." Newton says getting up and wincing. He gingerly steps to the horn. "Helm to the Capt. We have an enemy sighting."

Genevieve Sparling: Sparling keeps her hand on the glass containing the beetle and responds, "Singular or plural, Mr. Falk?"

Newton Falk: "Plural, three on high. Continueing to monitor."

Genevieve Sparling: "Keep me posted."

Newton Falk: "Helm to Engineering. Do we have an ETA on engines?"

Luka Arlexi: "A few hours, if we're lucky." Luka does not sound as though she believes in luck. "Why?"

Michael Harrel: EXT: a wide shot of the ship. Something splashes into the water near it.

Newton Falk: "Oh, no reason. Well, there are those three airship looking things up there. Might be nice to be gone when they get here."

Luka Arlexi: "Shit."

Michael Harrel: Outside the ship, there is a V in the water, where somthing indiscernable underneath the surface is moving toward the Aether.

Newton Falk: "Helm to the Capt. More trouble."

Genevieve Sparling: "Could you elaborate?"

Newton Falk: "Looks like something coming to kill us from under the water too. Not our day it seems."

Genevieve Sparling: "And I forgot to pack my harpoon gun. Damn it all." Sparling turns away from the speaking horn. "Doctor, find something heavy to put on top of this jar; I'm needed at the bridge."

Michael Harrel: Evelyn looks up. Behind her, two of the beetles scurry past.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "Hm? Oh, just give it here."

Newton Falk: "Does the Doctor have a harpoon gun, Capt.?"

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "I could make one."

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: She looks up interested.

Luka Arlexi: ((^1 to "Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham))

("^" became shorthand for Fan Mail; it's an arrow pointing toward the title of the chat.)

Genevieve Sparling: ((One fanmail to the doctor.))

Genevieve Sparling: "Er… you might want to cannibalize one of those for parts." Sparling points past the doctor.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: She scoops up the jarred beetle and seals it. Setting it on her desk, she turns away to start working on a harpoon.

Genevieve Sparling: Sparling heads back to the bridge.

Michael Harrel says: The dots in the sky are still circling, getting larger.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: Evelyn grabs her goggles, shuts and locks her door and follows the captain.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: Then she unlocks it, opens it and grabs her lab coat from a hook by the door. And then reshuts the door.

Michael Harrel: As Evelyn moves toward the bridge, she hears an odd clanging sound coming from outside the hull. It sounds like something is climbing up the side of the ship.

CUT TO: The Bridge

Capt. Sparling enters. Newton has hobbled over to his chair, and Felix is scooping up his fallen maps and charts.

Newton Falk: "Capt on the bridge."

Genevieve Sparling: Sparling glances up at the three ships circling them, then out at the water. "So where's our white whale?"

Michael Harrel: The ships circling above are more visible now: there seems to be some writing on their hulls. The letters aren't comprehensible yet.

Newton Falk: "Capt., permission to beg Luka to give us enough steam to open fire, with the later option of doing so?"

Genevieve Sparling: "Granted, Mr. Falk."

Newton Falk: "Helm to Engineering."

Luka Arlexi: "What?!"

Luka Arlexi: "I'm working as fast as I can!"

Michael Harrel: ::sound of wrench clanging on metal::

Newton Falk: "Sorry to bother you. But could we have a few tons of steam pressure so I can blow those airships out of the sky before they get close enough to talk to?"

Luka Arlexi: "I don't know, are you volunteering yourself as dry fuel to help get the engines going again?"

Newton Falk: "Someone's gotta fire the things, sweetness."

Genevieve Sparling: ((1 fanmail.))

Genevieve Sparling: Meanwhile, Sparling peers out of the bridge's windows, trying to see the outer hull and whatever has climbed onto it.

(A conflict, to see if Luka can get enough steam to work the cannons.)

Luka Arlexi says: 2, 1, 1, 4

Michael Harrel says: Roll(3d6)+0:

(She succeeds; technically I got narration but I let her go with it.)

Luka Arlexi: "I swear by whatever machine god cursed me by letting you come into existence, I will dismember you piece by piece and rebuild you into the most overcomplicated toilet ever seen on the face of the Earth if you do not START WORKING NOW!"

The machine remains silent. Luka sighs, and then kicks it half-heartedly. It produces a tentative whirring noise.

"I know, that wouldn't work on me, either." Luka looks left, and then right, before leaning in close to the console. "Please?" she whispers.

After a few moments, the Aether shudders as the engines roar to life.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: ((mail))

Luka Arlexi: "Well, Mr. Falk, I believe you have your guns now."

Newton Falk: "Thank you, ma'am! And if we get out of this, remind me to take you someplace I don't like but you do."

Luka Arlexi: "Do you have to come too?"

Genevieve Sparling: ((One mail to each?))

Michael Harrel: INT. The Bridge. The ships are clearly visible now. The letters MIGDMP are clearly visible on the hull of the largest of them.

Newton Falk: "Capt, do you have preference on who I should perferate first?"

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: Evelyn raises her hand.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham: "The one in the middle!"

Genevieve Sparling: "Take your pick, Mr. Falk. But before you do, have you a sidearm to spare?"

Luka Arlexi: (^bekka)

Newton Falk: Off handedly tosses a sawed off shotgun from under the helm while bring the guns about.

Genevieve Sparling : "Thank you. I'm stepping outside for a bit." Sparling goes to the bridge's emergency exit and cranks it open; the channel's waves lap at the bottom of the doorway. She climbs onto the ladder that leads up the Aether's exterior and goes to find whatever it is that's clinging to the ship.

(A conflict to fire the cannon. If Newton wins, he destroys the main ship and the other two retreat. If I win, the Aether gets boarded.)

Michael Harrel : Roll(4d6)+0:

Newton Falk : Roll(4d6)+0:

(I win.)

Newton Falk : "Damn it, I missed. Knives out, Felix. Here they come." Newton draws his Big Scary Pistol(TM) and begins dragging the broken chart table in front of the door.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham : Evelyn runs back to her lab.

Michael Harrel : The cannonball cuts through hull of the larger ship, right where the letter D is. The ship wobbles unsteadily, but all three continue their descent. "Airship Aether!" Comes a loud voice from the ships. "Drop your weapons and prepare to be boarded!"

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham : Evelyn begins frantically mixing chemicals into beakers and stopping them with corks or appropriate stoppers. She's making chemical grenades.

Michael Harrel : There is a loud BOOM as a gangplank slams onto the Aether's hull.

Newton Falk : "Ah, hell. I think they mean it…"

CUT TO: The engine room. Luka is standing with her hands on her hips, looking proudly at the running engine.

She hears something behind her and turns — there's a man standing in the doorway, wearing a wetsuit and holding a large clockwork knife.

Luka Arlexi : "You've got to be kidding me."

Newton Falk : ((^Point))

(The references to the last Firefly episode abounded at this point: I was instructed rather insistantly that this man should *not* threaten to rape the engineer; which hadn't been my plan anyway.)

Luka Arlexi : Luka backs away from the door, grasping around behind herself to try and find some sort of tool usable as a weapon.

Michael Harrel : "Luka Arlexi," says the man. "You are hereby ordered to surrender your genetic material and come with me."

(Conflict: Can Luka throw a screwdriver at the man and hurt him enough to leave an impression?)

Luka Arlexi : "That gets creepier every time I hear it."
Luka Arlexi : She throws a screwdriver at him.
Michael Harrel : Roll(1d6)+0:

Luka Arlexi : 3,3

(Apparently not, though she does win narration.

Luka Arlexi : The screwdiver sails over his shoulder. He is unimpressed. Luka shrugs.

Michael Harrel : Behind the man, three beetles grab the screwdriver and drag it away to parts unknown.

Luka Arlexi : "It was worth a shot?"

(Here I asked for a Steampunk-ish word for an artificial womb)

Newton Falk : ((Hydrodynamic Incuvac))

Genevieve Sparling : ((One for Chris.))

Michael Harrel : "Do you know what a Hydrodynamic Incuvac is?" says the man. "It's an artificial gestation chamber. It means, we don't need your brain to be functioning. We don't need your engineering skill. All we need is enough of you to get a viable sample, and then mix it with that of your male counterpart."

Luka Arlexi : Luka looks reasonably disturbed.

Michael Harrel : "Your life is nothing to us, Ms. Arlexi. All we care about is what you're made of."
Michael Harrel : "So, are you going to come along willingly, or do I have to carve a sufficient amount of material out of you?"

Luka Arlexi : "You don't have any idea what I'm made of."

Genevieve Sparling : ((^))


(I went to get a drink. When I came back, Chris (Newton) had typed:

Newton Falk : "When you have to part with your genetic material, trust nothing less than a genuine Incuvac Artifical Gestation Chamber. It's powered by highly efficient hydrodanamic goodness. It's a baby factory!"

In-cu-vac, make it part of your plan. When you get your ba-bies out of a can!

Luka Arlexi : ( ^ )

Genevieve Sparling : ((^))

(And he got two fan mails out of it! At this point I knew everyone had the hang of it.)

Michael Harrel : And now, back to Cogs.

EXT. The hull. Multiple people are climbing over the gangplank onto the Aether from the other ships. Genevieve is at the hatch, firing her pistol into them. They return fire, and she ducks behind the door and then cranks it shut.

Michael Harrel : A few seconds later there's the sound of someone pounding on the other side.

Michael Harrel : "Luka?" says Felix at the horn. "Now would be a great time to get us in the air again."
Michael Harrel : "Luka? Hello?" There's no answer.

Newton Falk : Newton scans the windows. "If I can get some steam to the mains I can take her forward across the water. That would put us back in the game at least…"

Michael Harrel : "Luka?" says Felix. "If you can hear me, we just need enough to skim the water."

Genevieve Sparling : "Something's wrong. I'm going aft." Shotgun in hand, Sparling leaves the bridge.

Newton Falk : "Lovely, say 'Hi' to Luka for us. We'll entertain the guests."

Michael Harrel : At the hatch, there's an odd silence on the other side, and then Newton hears what sounds like….a fuse sizzling.

CUT TO: The lab. Evelyn has constructed the mother of all harpoon guns, with chemical-grenade slingshots on either side.

Michael Harrel : There are several beetles on the floor around her, but she ignores them.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham : "If ONLY I had more time!"

Luka Arlexi : ( ^ )

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham : One bumps into her foot. "Oh, I'll get you later."

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham : Picks up the gun, Whirls towards the door, flings it open and cackles madly.

CUT TO: The engine room.

Felix's voice comes over the horn, telling Luka they need to get going. The man slices the tube from the bridge, and Felix's voice is cut off in mid-sentence.

Luka Arlexi : Luka looks around, trying to gauge the distance between the man with the knife, the door, and the control panel. "So. Ah. Out of curiosity. Does anyone ever choose the easy way, once things go this far?"

Michael Harrel : "Not on a good day."

Luka Arlexi : Luka grimaces. "Oh. Well, it's… ah… good to enjoy your work?"

(Conflict: Luka tries to release steam directly into the man's face. If she fails, he grabs hold of her and puts his knife to her throat. We weren't clear as to whether someone could use their fan mail to effect somone else's roll. I seemed to recall that they could, so we went with it.)

Michael Harrel : Roll(4d6)+0:

Luka Arlexi : 6,4,1,2,3 (16)

Newton Falk : Roll(2d6)+0:

(With Chris' extra success, Luka wins).

Luka Arlexi : Luka dives for the control panel, hitting the switch to vent the engine steam near the door. The man screams in pain as the engine run-off is directed into his face.

Michael Harrel : While the man writhes about, Luka reroutes the steam into the main engine.

CUT TO: The bridge - Newton's gauges show the main pumps fully pressurized

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham : Evelyn steps onto the bridge. "Who wants to die?!" She still has her goggles on.

Genevieve Sparling : ((^))
Luka Arlexi : ( ^ )

Newton Falk : Newton sees the gauges peak. "Not me, Hang on to something solid!" Punches it.

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham : Evelyn falls to the floor, keeping her weapon safe.

Newton Falk : Newton brings that wallowing Aether between two of the airships. He takes it hard to the right and clips one of them. Splashes aren't heard over the roaring of the engines and rushing of water, nor is the faint hissing from the hatch….

Genevieve Sparling : Somewhere in the corridor between the bridge and engine room, Sparling fights to keep her balance and hears distant noises of the would-be boarding party and their gangplanks falling to the hull and then sliding off.

Newton Falk : "Hi. I'm Sterling Mortlock, but most of you know me as Newton Falk on the hit BBC 11 sci-fi show 'Cogs'. There's nothing I like better after a daring flight through a dystopian alternate past than the crispy softness and authentic barnyard taste of Zukkerman's Famous Pork Rinds. Now with real imitation pork! They're Radiant!"

CUT TO: The Engine room. The man, flailing about, manages to grab hold of Luka as the ship jetting forward causes both of them to stumble into each other. We get a clear shot of his face: his skin is all burned off, his eyelids melted shut. He slices at her with his knife.

(This was the last of my budget. If Luka wins, she kicks the man into something spikey. If Genevieve wins, she shoots the agent before he can stab Luka. If the man wins, he stabs Luka.)

Luka Arlexi : (3,5,1)
Luka Arlexi : (5,1)
Genevieve Sparling : Roll(3d6)+0:
Michael Harrel : Roll(3d6)+0:

(Er…no one won. Luka got the highest dice, though, so she took narration.)

Luka Arlexi : Luka shoves him back towards the door, and tries to kick him into the stray tools she has lying around on the floor. He grabs onto her leg, taking another wild swing at her, when the door swings open, bashing him forward. The knife glances Luka's shoulder as she and the man tumble forward. Genevieve stands in the now open door.

Michael Harrel : TO BE CONTINUED!!!!!

Michael Harrel : Next time, on Cogs:

Genevieve Sparling : Sparling eyes the pipes and gauges lining the engine room, glances at the man struggling with Luke on the floor, turns her shotgun around in her hands, and swings the grip at the man's head.

Newton Falk : "Well that was exciting," Newton stands in front of the helm, camera pans to view him with the bridge behind "Felix, get a mo—" A massive explosion busts from the hatch

"Dr" Evelyn Higgenbotham : Evelyn sits at her desk and studies the beetle, making calculations and sketching something on a pad in front of her. A beetle walks close to her hand and she grabs it, looking at the underside as the little legs continue walking in mid-air. She pokes at it a bit then puts it down. Other beetles are walking around her room.

Luka Arlexi : Voice Over (A younger Luka is being bandaged up by a Doctor in what looks like the back room of a factory): "Scars don't always mean something monumental. Sometimes, a scar just means you were in the wrong place at the wrong time, and then you moved on."

Michael Harrel : Fade to black.

Michael Harrel : Roll credits.

Fan Mail at end of session:
Evelyn: 7
Genevieve: 0
Luka: 0
Newton: 1

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