[color=#800000;]IC(NPC) X-Calibur [/color][color=#000080;]@ Coalition Mine Hideout[/color]
Ultionis glared at X-Calibur. Beneath the headgear his expression wasn't actually readable, but the mere motioning of his head was enough to convey the gesture. "If he'd had a defense against that, you'd have just disabled half the team for him."
"If he'd had a defense against that, I could have deactivated the thing," X-Calibur retorted, a little defensively. He scooped up the marble and pointed at the unconscious Dragonfly. "How long will that last?"
"I gave him a twenty-four hour dose."
X-Calibur nodded. "Makes it easier if we can just leave him here. Now er, before we go on, anyone mind filling me in on what I've missed?"
Over the course of the next several minutes the group relayed to X-Calibur their additional findings - the confirmation that whatever the facility existed for was being kept on the lowest level accompanied by a villainness called 'Triple Helix', though they hadn't been able to access it through the lift shaft due to the lift blocking their way. X-Calibur shared his own experiences, which were chiefly fighting his way through squads of Sharkmen until Dragonfly joined the fray. As they spoke Loadstone used his powers to carefully disassemble Dragonfly's armour, just enough so that on the off-chance he awakened prematurely it wouldn't operate any more.
When that was done with the group resumed following the now battle-scarred corridor. No more enemies or obstacles confronted them, which in a way was more concerning than if they had done. Contained within a limited pool of light, and with no sound but that of their own footsteps, it was unnervingly clear to them how deep and isolated underground they were.
Soon they came to what might be described as an r-junction. The main corridor curved toward the right, though a small alcove extended left where a thick iron door stood. It was labelled EMERGENCY ACCESS SHAFT and was bordered by yellow and black hazard stripes.
"If we can't get down through the elevator shaft..." suggested Epsilon, jerking a thumb toward the door.
X-Calibur stepped forward and studied it. He tentatively placed a hand on it and felt around its edges. Then he looked at the others. "Seems like an ordinary door to me. No alarms, no booby-traps."
Ultionis and Loadstone examined the door too, with their equipment and powers respectively, and agreed with the assertion. Ultionis opened the door as Loadstone and Skyra prepared to deflect any triggered projectiles, but nothing was revealed save for a dark vertical shaft. It resembled a narrower version of the lift shaft; unlit, undecorated, with pipes and cables snaking in and out at various levels. Up above, strips of light illuminated the edges of doors on higher levels. A metal ladder was fastened to the wall, adjacent to the doorway.
The heroes descended. Ultionis went first, his night-vision goggles allowing him to view their environment in full clarity. Skyra, in the rear, closed the door behind him so as not to alert any patrols as to where they had gone. They tried their best to reduce the clanking sounds of their feet against the rungs.
When they had reached the bottom another door provided access to a similar r-shaped junction. On high alert, the heroes moved forwards. The corridor was surprisingly short, and in less than a minute an overhead light was flickering into life to reveal another door, this one labelled SECURITY ANTECHAMBER. Opening this (it was electronically locked, but it was nothing a mini-EMP from Loadstone couldn't bypass) revealed another elevator. Its only button was labelled SUBJECT TESTING FACILITY.
"Jackpot," murmured Epsilon.
"Alright, this is the final chance to prepare," Ultionis advised them. "Whatever's down there must be worth building this whole facility to contain and filling it with guards. So expect defenses."
"If it is Danielle Thomas," said X-Calibur, "or anyone, really - a captive of some sort - we need to make sure that whatever fighting goes on doesn't put them in harm's way."
"We'd need to secure them ASAP. If we back the Coalition into a corner then they might try to use them as a hostage," nodded Ultionis.
"And if it's not? Not a person I mean?" Asked Skyra.
"If it's not a person then it's a machine," said X-Calibur. "If it's still being built then we just stop them from building it. If it's finished we stop them from activating it. In either case, we destroy it..."
OOC: Getting the finale started is turning out to be a bigger IC than I expected, so I'm splitting it across two posts. Feel free to interject something Rumpelstiltskin.