Belly of the Beast

The team is brought together to a special area, that none of them have ever been to before. They are met at a large elevator by Douglas.

"Welcome, your team is about to make history and become a deciding factor in the future of our world, as well as the future of generations to come." said Douglas.

"The area you are about to enter is extremely top secret and only high ranking personal and special scientist normally have access. An exception has been made for your team, because of the nature of this mission. Everything you see and hear down here must be kept completely confidential, not even other members of the organization must know what you have seen down here."

Once elevator doors had open, and the group stepped inside, a strange red beam passed over each member of the group. "Don't be alarmed, it's just a special scan. It won't hurt, much," Douglas said smiling, waiting for the rest of them to enter first. The scan moved over each member as they enter the lift. The scan caused each member to tingle slightly, with the exception of Agthork, and Viper where it actually causes pain and discomfort to their cybernetics.

As the group descended deeper into the complex, Douglas began to explain what their mission was about.

"It's a simple mission really, we want you to take out a Crystal Rose manufacturing plant. Yes I know this is something that normally an Alpha team might do, but your team has some special experience in this area that we think will benefit you very well," Douglas explained.

When they reach the bottom, the lift stopped and the doors open in to a long plain, white, hall. The air was filled with a very strange, kind of antiseptic smell. There are speakers running down the length and on both sides of the hall.

"The area we are now in is the heart of S.N.A.I.L., very few people even come this far down, or even know about it. The speakers you see are playing what is called, white noise. The smell you are experiencing is the result of a very particular attempt to keep everything as clean as possible. This area has to be as germ free as it can," said Douglas.

The team was taken down a long hall, with large glass viewing windows. As the team passed the windows, they could see scientist working on strange, and even unusual equipment, and devices. Some of them were even working on creatures that don't even look like they are from this Earth.

The team was brought to a room where at the door they were met by two guards in full heavy armor, as well as being armed with SN-17s. Douglas leads them into the room, after the last member had entered, the door closed behind them. Standing before them was a man about 5'9" dressed in a lab coat.

"Welcome gentlemen, I am Dr. Jerry Lynch, and we feel that you team would be perfect for this mission." said the man as he motioned to a second door. The other door opened and a frog-like man walked out, dressed in what looked like overalls. He was followed by two armed guards. He had a large metal collar attached to his neck.

"You my remember your friend here from one of your previous encounters. He is one of the crew of the spacecraft that you investigated about six months ago. He has volunteered to help us take down a Crystal Rose manufacturing plant, that is being run by other members of his race. You see, he and the other members of his race that you captured have been very helpful in gathering information on the possible threats to our planet here. They have been most helpful in the problems we have been having with the propulsion systems of the crashed ship we found some time back. But I'll let him explain the rest to you."

"Hello, my name is Grecoricatillas. The people here like call me Kermit," he said in a kind of garbled, gurgling voice. "I am, or was an engineer for the Sollreotin Empire before your group captured me in the engine room." (See Crash Landing)

Kermit continued, "I never fully agreed with what my race had done, but I was too afraid to come out and speak openly about it. I don't know if others feel the way I do, but when your group found me, and brought me here, I saw a chance to really change the ways of my people, and bring them back to serving themselves, rather then someone else.

"Anyway, the mission is that we must enter this one small complex, and destroy the main computer, along with the machines that refine the drug for use by your people. The complex consists of seven levels and a loading bay. One of the levels will be a set of labs; another will be the living quarters for the scientist and the guards that are there. The last five levels will have the refineries. These levels will be filled with toxic gas, that is a byproduct of the refinement process. We must were face masks as well as full body protection. I know the gas will affect my race, in a mater of seconds causing us to hallucinate, as well as become very violent, but I do not know what it will do to you."

Dr. Lynch interrupted saying, "The drug will have the same affect on your team as well, except that it will take about 30 seconds to be absorbed threw your skin and effect you, but if inhaled it will take about 5 seconds before you start to feel the effects. We will be giving you some mood stabilizers that should help slow down the effect and cause it to pass threw your system quickly. You will also be given special environmental armor that will protect you from the chemical."

Kermit continued, "Once inside we will need to go down to each of the five levels with refineries and set explosives on each of the main reactive chambers. They will be several large domes, or cylinders all grouped together. This is where the main process of the drugs chemical composition takes place. This is also one of the most reactive, and should give us a very nice explosion when it goes up.

"There will most likely be about ten to fifteen guards there, about fifteen to twenty scientist, and about five to ten workers. They will be located on one of the three upper levels. There will be several worker robots in the chemical areas, it is unknown how many will be there, it all depends on how much crystal rose they are tying to produce."

Stan stood up, and moved toward the back of the room, to the second exit. "It is also vital that you get any and all information from their computers before you destroy it, they hold the answers to the questions we have been asking for years. Oh, and if you can, bring me back something nice."

Stan, and the other guards moved to the back of the room, as the team followed them to their transport. When they reached the transport, Douglas was waiting for them. He gave them a quick run down on the special equipment they would have to use.

"Ok guys, the environmental armor you will be using, has been, modified a bit to fit this case," Douglas said as he held up a green suit, that looked a lot like Kermit. "The suit has been covered with a special foam rubber that gives it the look and smell of a Sollreotin, but don't let them touch you, this stuff feels like rubber, and not really smooth like a frog. Also the actual outfit will look as if you are a frog, in a protective suit with a special helmet. Kermit and his friends have been so kind in helping us get the look of the outfits just right. Your visibility will be a bit less, sense you will be looking threw the frog's mouth, and not its eyes, but not to worry when you talk your mouth will actually move a bit. You will also have on what look like extended oxygen tanks, but really these will hold the explosives, the medical gear, an extra suit of light flex-steal, and a set of clothes. To get to the explosives or medical gear, you remove the pack, and there is a special panel that you remove, and you can pull out what you need. This pack will also be able to care a small or disassembled weapon. The guys in R/D had a field day with this stuff, they love this kind of stuff."

"Also you will be given, these," he was holding a small disk that looks something like a lifesaver, or washer, about the size of a quarter. "This my friends, is a voice augmentation system, or VAS for short, this little baby will make you sound like a frog man. Only draw back is if you talk too much, like if you try to give a big speech, you are going to hurl. This little baby is planted, or swallowed part way down your throat, where it will lodge itself, and alter your vocal cords. A good idea is if you have to talk a bunch, is to pause as much as you can, and drink a lot of water, it helps to lubricate your throat and keep you from gagging.

"Also on the trip there, you will be given a brief lesson on how to speak, and understand simple Sollreotin. Not much, just enough to keep you from getting found out right away. You will be taking a plane to about half way there, and then you will drive the rest of the way in special van. This van will be made to look like one of their transport truck, and it should let you into the loading area rather easily. It's nothing special, so if you have to trash it, or leave it behind, that's ok. Pick up will be at a small town about 30 miles from the sight, a standard evac-team will be there waiting. We know they watch the skies a lot, so it is best to come in low, and at night. They are so sure of themselves; I don't believe they will even know you are there till it is too late.

The team then loaded into transport, and began to go over the mission, and learn some of the Sollreotin language. What they learned of the language was: stop, halt, identify, identification, and surrender. They also learn some phrases: "We are workers, here is out identification." "We are here to fix a problem with the machines." The team was also taught some basic symbols and signs, such as exit, enter, warning, toxic, gas, and simple things like that.

The team arrived at the small mining town where the transfer from the Sollreotin to the human drives takes place. The team changed into the full frog suits at this point. Viper was driving, as Kermit directs him in the passenger seat. The rest of the team was in the back of the truck holding on. As the team began to get deeper into the mountains, they came across a side road that led to an abandon mine. As the team moved toward the end wall, Kermit told Viper that he had to be going at least forty miles per hour in order for the wall to open. Viper increased his speed, and just a few moments before he would have hit the rock wall, it moved apart, and a second steal door opened, and the truck entered. Before Viper could even slow down the truck, some force grabbed the truck, and brought its speed down to a stop.

The inside of this area resembled a warehouse, with a raised walkway that encircled the building, along with concert ramps leading up to the walkway from either side, as well as one ramp that lead from the floor to the walkway then to what looked like an elevator. There where also ladders that lead from the floor to the walkway. In the air was a heavy amount of mist and vapor of some kind. It was believed that this was a way to help keep them from drying out. Inside the team could see seven other trucks parked on either side of this warehouse. Two of the trucks had what looked like workers going over some cargo that they were loading into the trucks. There was also two guards that where walking around the building, on the walkway. As the team brought the truck to its parking spot, they could see what looked like a fancy car parked next to the ramp leading to the elevator. What was most odd about this was the fact that the car had no wheels of any visible kind. Kermit made the comment that it was a hover car, and it would most likely belong to someone important. Hacker said, "You know, Dr. Lynch said to bring him back something nice, and that's about as nice as we can get."

As the group started to leave the truck a guard motioned for them to come over, and said something, that the group didn't understand. Kermit went over to the guard, showed him some papers, and they where on there way. Before the group pilled into the elevator, Kermit mentioned that there would most likely be cameras in there, but they wouldn't have audio.

The team got into the elevator, where they discovered that there was nine floors rather then the eight they had known about. Kermit and Hacker decided to investigate the bottom most floor, Viper and Glory went for the top floor, and Crusher and Agthork chose the second to the bottom most floor. Menagerie took the floor just above that.

The elevator went up letting Viper and Glory off first. What they saw was a long hallway, about forty to fifty feet down, and about four to five feet wide. They could see six doors, three on each side. And at the end of the hall they could see a camera pointing strait down the hall and panning from left to right. The two opened the first door on there left. When they got in they found that it was an empty lab, about fifteen feet wide, and across. The lab itself looked as if it had been used recently, but there where several experiments that seemed to have been left unattended, or abandoned during the middle of them. There was also a camera here, but it did not seem to be on at the time. A smaller door was also in this room, at the far end. Glory opened this other door, and found a room exactly like the other one. Across from here was yet another door. This door also lead to an empty lab. Viper and Glory went to the door across from the one they had first entered. In this room they found a great mess. It would seem that some kind of experiment had been going on, and then exploded taking out some of the safety glass, and had started a small fire. Viper accessed the computer and began a data dump of what ever he could get. Glory opened a metal locker that had something that looked like a warning label on it, and took four bottles of unknown chemicals. After the dump was finished, the two members went for the elevator, and waited for its arrival.

Menagerie had gotten off next. When he got off the elevator he could see three huge tanks or vats in front of him. They where giant sized version of the ones that had been seen on the crashed ship. (See Crash Landing). He could also see a grouping of machinery that looked like a set of conveyer, or posibly an assembly line of some kind. He could also see two sets of metal cabinets, one to is left, and one to his right. There was also a large secondary room off to his right. It had those plastic flaps over the entrance, like those used to help keep the temperature in the room colder then the outside.

Crusher and Agthork reached their level, and saw exactly the same thing, although they didn't know it at the time. As the two moved into the center of the room they could see three robots moving around the conveyer belt. As they got closer, one of the robots came up to them and said several words in Sollreotin. All the two could understand was "identification". Agthork said, in Sollreotin, that they where there to fix something. Just after he said that an alarm went off. The other two robots stopped what they where doing, and moved in on the two. The robots fired head lasers at the two. Agthork got hit a couple of times, but his suit was still holding together.

Agthork took his maglight and smashed it over the head of the robot, trying to destroy the head laser. Crusher pulled back, and removed her back pack so that she could get to her gun. The Agthork was using his heavy set of pliers and managed to take out the lasers on two of the three robots. Crusher took her gun, and destroyed the head of one of the robots. The robots where then using their heavy work arm to grab and punch Agthork. After a bit of regrouping the two agents had managed to take out the one tred of one of the robots by removing its arm, and using it as a crowbar. They disabled the other two. The one missing the tred was the one that Crusher had removed the arm from. The two, thinking the fallen one was helpless, went and set the bombs around the base of the vats, and where the pipes from the three vats joined.

Menagerie started to move his way over to the first locker when one of the robots came up at him, at this point is when Menagerie realized that an alarm was now sounding. The robot tried to shoot him, but he moved out of the way. As he backed up, the other two robots in the room made their presence known. Menagerie ran right at one, trying to knock it down, but the robot was so bottom heavy, it would not tip. Menagerie got fed up with dodging and parrying their attacks, that he picked on up, and threw it at the other one. He managed to take out all three robots in this manner.

After Agthork and finished setting the charges, they saw some bright sparks coming from the robot they had left still working. The robot had pulled itself across the floor using a smaller utility arm. It was now trying to weld a replacement tred from parts of the other ones. The two o them made short work of this robots efforts. The two moved quickly to clean up the remaining levels.

Glory and Viper where on their way down to the next level when the alarm sounded. The two stepped out of the elevator into the arms of a guard. This floor looked just like the one they had just been on. The guard quickly asked them something, but none of the two had a clue as to what he was saying. The guard quickly brought up his rifle, but Glory was quicker and smashed in the guards head with the butt of his own rifle. At the same time the Glory was dragging the body into the elevator was when several scientist came out of the two doors on either side of the hall. Once the scientist saw the dead guard, they quickly closed the door. Viper went to the left door, and Glory took the right. Glory had given Viper the rifle.

Glory found four Sollreotin scientist in here. She took one of the unknown bottles and smashed it on his head. The scientist screamed in pain as the acid began to eat hat his head. Before the man could fall to the ground, she grabbed his arm, and used him to bash one of the other scientist. They seemed more as playthings to her then as a possible problem. Viper was not having the same luck. He also had four frog scientist, but they had knocked over a heavy table and where using it as cover. He was doing his best to try and get them to surrender, when a huge energy blast came from the far end of the hall striking him full force, almost knocking him off his feet. The blast was so strong that it almost totally destroyed her armor. If his suit once looked like a Sollreotin it was impossible to tell that now. Viper felt the lesser of two evils was best, and jumped into the room with the four frog scientist, nd started taking them out one by one. He took a more damage, and this was enough to destroy the armor he had on. He radioed the rest of the team to give him support, but the others where busy setting the charges, but Hacker said that they had found something, and would do what they could.

In the lowest part of the complex, Hacker and Kermit where working there way through an office and small science lab they found behind a secret door. Hacker and Kermit could not make heads nor tails of the odd device they found. The device itself was about the size of a large back pack, it didn't weigh very much, but had two large handles on either side of the device. On the top of the device was a group of knobs, dials, electrical read-outs, and a number pad or keyboard of some kind. What the two could figure from the device was that it was not a Sollreotin device nor was it human. It was something totally new. It seemed that the lead researcher of the base was testing this copy or another device they had found, similar to this one. Kermit was able to read the notes that had been left behind. The last entry was about two days ago. It said that they where getting ready to activate the device, and see if there speculation that it was a real temporal portal device. From what the two could guess from what they found, was that it malfunctioned, and "took" a large portion of the base personal with it. The two also found some kind of reverse shadows cast across the walls and floors. It looked as if three people had been caught at the focal point and vaporized. The two of them took the notes, diagrams, and the device and returned to the task of setting the charges, and getting back to help there friends.

As Viper called for help. She quickly looked down the hall where she say two Sollreotin troupers mounted behind a large tripod Ion cannon. Glory used some of her explosives and shaped a small charge. Then running very fast halfway down the long hallway she tossed the charge toward the cannon. The two troops thinking it was a grenade, jumped out of the way. When then "grenade" did not go off, they moved in a little to see what it was, and that is when Glory set of the charge, destroying the gun, and hurting the two guards greatly.

Viper took this time to change his armor, having defeated the other people in this room. Glory ran up on the two dazed guards, and threw one of the unknown bottles at one. It smashed on his armor, but didn't seem to do much more then get him wet. The two pulled pistols on her, and shot at her. She didn't even seem to care as the weapons took chunks out  of her armor. She still didn't have her gun out, but that didn't bother her, she took a screwdriver from off her belt, and jammed it into the skull of one of them. He screamed with pain, as he tried to pull out the screwdriver. The other one, seeing his friend, like he was, took of through a door behind him. Glory finished off the one left, and ran after the other one. She found a video room, and could see the guard running down a hall on the camera, and then could see him exiting outside, and so she let him leave.

The teams regroup and set charges on the remaining of the floors, leaving Viper, because his protective suit was trashed, to explore the remaining of the level he was on. Viper found some living quarters, a cafeteria, bathrooms, and a small weapons room. He gathered up some ion rifles and a couple pistols. The rest of the group had almost no problems setting the rest of the charges, now that they knew what to expect.

As the group got back to their truck, they saw that the two other trucks that had been there where gone. Kermit helped them to load the hover car onto the truck. As the group sped off they looked in the rear view mirror and could see the complex going up in a huge fire ball. They couldn't send a message to the pickup team or anyone telling them that the mission went of with out any problems because of all the interference created by the explosion. The group now began to relax and settle in for the 30 miles to the pick up sight. Agthork was playing with the controls in the hover car, as Hacker looked over the engine. Kermit was in the seat next to Agthork. Crusher was looking over Viper as Glory was driving with Menagerie next to her.

When they were about fifteen miles from the pick-up point, Kermit seemed to figure out the device, and was trying to show it to Hacker, but was having a problem holding on to it, and trying to unfold the diagrams. The truck hit some ruff patch of the road, causing Kermit to lose his grip on the device, dropping it into the engine. There was a huge flash of green light. Everyone was blind. They could feel a kind of pull on there bodies, like something had grabbed a hold of every part of them, and was trying to go in every direction at once. At the point where it felt like the force was going to pull them a part it stopped. The green glow begin to fade away, and they can once again see, they fond themselves still sitting in the truck where they where. 1