Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Grist Town: Your gate. Your town. Your tawdry details.

By TalkLoud, FNF staff gossip columnist

Imperial aid to Taranis: Act of Good Will or Act of Lust?

By now we have all heard of the exciting events of the previous week. A speeding battle train with an atomic payload crashed into the gate in Taranis, only to…not detonate. This is, of course, after a pitched battle at the first node out from the planet, in which the so-called Army of the Covenant (rebranded after realizing that the name Army of the Scourge just wasn’t getting them invited to the classier parties) helped route the retreating Szgany forces. How was this army able to be deployed in such a timely manner? Why, it was the work of the Champions of the Covenant! The real question is why were these champions so involved in the defense of Taranis? Is it as it seems? Is it simply a case of the Imperial Champions defending the homes of the Fringers they call friends? Is it the work of the Empire to show good faith to King Rama or is it something less benevolent? Did the Imperial Champions send their forces simply because they wanted to keep being allowed to make sweet, sweet love to their Fringer women?

Word on the street is that there is tension amongst the Champions when it comes to what aid should be given, with those with “close ties” to Fringer women crowing for full support whenever and wherever. One of the female champions has been linked with a certain cold-shouldered Kshathran. This same Kshathran has been seen in the company of one of the Fringer women with “close ties” to another one of the Champions, and is maybe idolized by at least one more of them. Other Fringer women have been heard to swoon over the stolid man of the cloth who is the spiritual leader of the Champions. Will he give into their crushes? It’s difficult to say one way or the other.

Those urging more thought are met with the aggression that stems from potential nights spent on the couch. One has to wonder of the intentions of the Imperial Champions. Their deeds might not be as pure as they first seem. They might simply be trying to protect their way of life…if you know what I mean. Still, it’s not like you can fault the Imperial men. I’ve seen the Fringer women. I’m fairly certain that the striped socks are an experimental form of kinetic mind control. For the ladies, who wouldn’t want a hulking, powerful silicate playmate?

The Middian Black Widow

You’ve all seen her. She’s always there. She’s in the shadows, stalking her pray, waiting for her moment to strike. She studies her prey, learning their weaknesses, the way to approach them without making them nervous, while still trying to provoke responses. The subtle allure she exudes as she waits for her moment to strike. She’s a certain Meurlain photojournalist.

Let’s look at the facts. Not much is known about this photog. She claims to be a photojournalist, a perfect cover for a deadly killer. She always has an excuse to try and learn more about her victims before she strikes. She has recently been seen cozying up to a certain “sword and wolf” Baron, a glowing gun-slinging Baron, and an agent of the Tulku Council with some dance-hall drawers. All three are men of potential import in their respective areas. Coincidence? This reporter doesn’t think so.

By all accounts, The Widow stunned the gathered masses with her glamorous outfit and looks during Baron Sword-and-Wolf’s Battle Day celebration. However, she then proceeded to maintain her glamorous outfit through the course of the rest of the evening, including a fight against the forces of Sorrow. During the course of the evening, one brave adventurer was heard to opine, “I like socks”, while dreamily looking at the Middian Black Widow.

Her strands have been cast wide, slowly drawing the men of Gate Town into her nefarious web of desire.

What will she do once she has all of the men under her sway? Only time will tell…

Gossip Scraps:

  • “Silver Alloy”, of Insane Ideas, LLC., has become obsessed with something he calls the “Fertile Void”. Is the madness of the Epherium becoming too much for the skilled Web Guide?
  • Tulku Council playboy? A certain agent of the Tulku has been seen in the company of several lovely Meurlain ladies recently. After a “private” excursion with The Widow to Ushas, the agent was spending a lot of his time planet-side with The Lady of the Argent Fire. He claims this was in the name of science, but the Yazatas claim that about everything.
  • Fears of a Cyborg Plague have reached Middian. A cyborg man was seen spewing blood near as he looked for Baron Sword-and-Wolf. Witnesses say he was a cyborg and was under the effects of a deadly sickness that only affects the technologically enhanced. Others say that he was expressing a mutation, and that his body was at war with itself. The body was whisked away before too many questions could be answered.
  • Yazatas using “hammock diplomacy”? One Yazata has become something of a local celebrity for her use of a hammock as place to sleep. She is now renting out the hammocks to others as they are becoming more and more popular. As a result, she has become more trusted and respected in the Gate Town community. This, of course, leads to the question, what are they laced with?
  • The lack of any Zealanders being seen on Zealand has led many to speculate that the Zealanders are masters of invisibility and are way more sophisticated than first thought. After a silent alarm was tripped, a horde of tamed dragon wolves were dispatched to dispose of the “miracle crops” grown on the weapons platform. Rumors persist that some received visions of a dark and terrible woman whispering “Nothing shall remain for the interlopers”. These seers could not be reached for comment following the successful defense of the crops.
  • The shores of Zealand played host to a beautiful and private ceremony wedding the fearsome gladiator Sharkzor and the powerful psion Displays-His-Abs. Those that were in attendance say the ceremony was presided over by a certain Yazata doctor, and that the vows exchanged were intense and private. No one is sure which party provided the dowry.
  • Further rumors have the Empathic Cyborg Web Guide having a cybernetic camera installed in his ocular cavity. He has reportedly signed a deal with an undisclosed corp. to air a Middian Reality Vid. His disappearing for hours at a time begins to make much more sense.
  • Beachgoers have been heard relating a story that is difficult to swallow. They claim that the Zealand beach was attacked by shark creatures that spewed flame, and that they were not only quelled by the Mistress of Fire, but that afterwards she tamed the shark-beasts and is in the process of teaching them to be her aquatic means of conveyance.

Monday, May 16, 2011


By FNF Staff

Dr David Lorani
Brilliant researcher believed lost.
Wife continues to search.

Myrena Lorani wondered where her husband was.

David’s research was ever important to him, and not just because of his almost dogged loyalty to FallTech; the science of nature intrigued him. Talking about it genuinely made him happy. She remembered a time before he was hired by FallTech, though – a time when Dr. David Lorani was a poor graduate and struggling to get his foot in the door. None of the major corporations wanted a zoologist; Myrena knew this and David knew this, and yet he chose his path anyway. She supported him because he was always loyal – to her, to any cause he decided to take up, to his friends and family. Loyalty defined who he was.

Myrena remembered the stories David told her of his childhood, how he always preferred to be outside, under the night sky; how his father had the hardest time keeping him inside during the rare rainstorms. David Lorani grew up loving the wild, loving nature, and loving Myrena, for she was one of the few people in his life to embrace David for what he was, rather than abuse his kindness and loyalty. “Animals are honest, at least,” David would often say, “even if you have to learn how to read them. People will just lie to you.”

Of course, that time had come to an end, and once more, his loyalty – and his dreams – were being used against him once more. David had always wanted to grow closer to the beasts he loved – “What if you could grow gills like a fish, and swim in the ocean? Or wings, like a bird, and fly? What would stop you from exploring your world?” – and FallTech gave him his chance to realize that dream. They hired David to assist, and eventually head, research into a drug capable of imbuing the imbiber with bestial qualities and features. They underpaid him and overworked him, but he didn’t care; he was so focused on his research that he often forgot to eat or sleep. Myrena had the cot removed that David had brought into the lab. Myrena was happy for her husband, that he was so close to realizing his dream, but really…

…where was he? The cot stood empty next to her; he hadn’t taken it back to the lab (again). She tried his comm, got nothing. Myrena had just gotten up to go to the lab and drag her husband home when it rang.

“Mrs. Lorani?”

The voice was somewhat familiar – it was Dr. Jonathan Greitz, who was in charge of the FallTech satellite office on Tyranis. It was not a happy-sounding voice.

“I don’t think Dr. Lorani will be coming home tonight.”

Related Article: Heroic 'War Bees' Defend Taranis


By Doctor Carlyle La’Broche, guest columnist

Shocking Experiments Revealed!

This reporter has been waiting on the final confirmation of Imperials being in their in final testing stage of Web Way device that uses captured Meurlain brains. Obviously this is an atrocity, but reports have just come in that confirm the Imperials are not the only ones to possess such technology. The Zigany have apparently possessed this knowledge for centuries. It has now become apparent that the Imperials recovered this technology two years ago from the first encounters they had with the Ahramni.

There have been three key top-secret labs among two of the major Imperial Houses identified as testing grounds. All three facilities have been reported as existing on Ottar without the knowledge of House Vinro. Reports indicate that no less than 43 Meurlain have gone missing last month alone! Their only connection being that they were students on the Planet of Ogun and that they had been assigned to various psionic/web-way projects originally commissioned by a joint effort of House Cormac and House Svarog.

The basis of the technology was explained by Dr. Romulus De’Luing

On a physical level, the human brain consists of four principal parts: the brain stem, diencephalons (consisting of the thalamus and hypothalamus), cerebrum, and cerebellum. Although all four are important, we’ll be discussing the cerebrum. Found in the upper area directly beneath the top of the skull, the cerebrum is the largest part of the brain. The surface area of the cerebrum is known as the cerebral cortex or neo-cortex. Billions of neurons are contained in the neo-cortex. On an evolutionary scale, this is the most recently evolved or developed area of the human brain.

On a psychic and spiritual level, the crown Shiak’tianra is positioned over the top of the head and the cerebrum. It is through the crown Shiak’tianra that the Universal Intelligence above directs energy downwards. This energy – known as Tul flows from the crown and into the top of the head.

A spiritually awakened or enlightened person can work with this energy. Through meditation and other techniques such as psionics and dancing, the individual can sometimes feel this universal energy on the top of the head as a warm pleasant feeling. This means that the crown Shiak’tianra or energy center has “opened up.”

As the universal energy expands downwards into the brain itself, tingling sensations will be felt all over the head and within. This is an indication that the Tul energy (which is also known as divine light) has stimulated the neo-cortex causing many neurons to “fire.” These firing neurons send electrical energy to other parts of the brain, in particular the rest of the cerebrum. The divine light also travels to these areas of the brain during this event. This has also been related to being a Web Guide and “feeling” the path.

The doctor goes on to explain that work has been done to preserve the minds of some of the best in order to better understand both their nature and to reproduce their results.

Enter the Zigany; from reports of conflicts on the mysterious planet Eclipse, the Zigany possessed unnatural and amazing control of the web-ways. Their ability to control such things was beyond understanding until a group effort from House Huron and House Svarog contested and drove them back. Some secretly recovered tech showed they were able to utilize the brains directly of web guides. It is for this reason presumably that they have been taking so many prisoners. Tapping directly into such energy burns out the brains after only a few jumps. Below is the reconstruction mock up of the recovered device.

Reports indicate that House Svarog contacted the Imperial Church immediately and that is when House Cormac became involved. Further reports indicate the current friction between House Huron and House Svarog and House Cormac have stemmed from this conflict of stolen technology.

Once the funding from the two Imperial Houses came in, it was not long before the research took a more nefarious turn. Hiding the facilities on Ottar has certainly caught the attention of the Zigany. Attempts to recover the technology have lead to wide spread and sporadic attacks all over the planet. With this latest attempt of Zigany to take Taranis, it is the Fringe that is reaping the results of the Imperial plunder.

Further reports have come in, about teams utilizing this new technology to bypass standard Web-way procedures and nodes. My sources include a doctor who claims to have worked on the research team. Her identity is being kept secret until confirmation of her voluntary involvement has been confirmed.

How the device works is still unknown and the Imperial Wainwright guild had little to say on the matter.Allegedly, the devices that have allowed Imperials to go “under” the current Web-ways similar to the Zigany attacks.

Of course standard means of Web travel are still the most efficient which is why the Zigany are desperate to hold both a gate and a world in which they can fuel their web-guide-brain devices.

The Tulku Council had no comment on the missing Meurlain and refused to confirm the viability of Meurlain brains as useful in and of themselves. However, their press representative could not hide her disgust at the knowledge that the Imperial houses would do such a thing. Other experts have reported that House Svarog has been involved in such experiments for some time.

This reporter expects there to be a lot more fall out and a lot more cover up before all this is done. There is no indication if Tribe brains can be used for such dastardly uses. We intend to uncover just how many people and what races the Imperials have utilized thus far.

More to come…

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


By TalkFast -
Originally Posed 5/6, Multiple updates below

Last message from the defenders describes crisis.

[Voice transcription]
"This is going out live because I don't know how long before they take control of the Gate! The Zigany have sent in several .... JERDA'S MASK!!! Sorry, that one was close. They appear to have a ton of functional Gate breaching machines that look like armored web trains...They crashed through the damn Gate and hit the soldiers there like a battering ram! And then another one came through, and another and another!

The square around the gate has been destroyed and everyone down there looks dead. All these troops just started unloading from the trains and they were getting mowed down pretty good by the remaining weapons platforms in the gate square but then these...these things came out and they can't be hit by bullets! I've never seen so many mutants in one fight! They've got these huge guns and ... SONOFANIMPERIALWHOREMONGER!!! Move, MOVE they're coming this .... "
[communication breaks here]
FNF offices on Taranis are cut off, and all attempts to contact Taranis have failed since the time of the above transmission, but offworld staff members will continue to publish news here as the crisis unfolds. Anyone who received other information is asked to please contact TalkFast

Note: This message was likely sent out three hours before this posting.

Story Updates:
2:53PM, Webguides on Eclipse report that the Taranis gate has been locked.

3:15PM, An expert source (name withheld until permission given) reports, "There was just quite a struggle over the Taranis Gate. We could feel the Gate lock and unlock multiple times, but it is now unlocked and has been for a small time. Perhaps they were able to overcome the forces holding their Gate."

5/10 (Link) Exclusive Embedded report by Mason Havok!

5/11 8AM Unconfirmed report from multiple sources that the Forlorn Hope, the legendary military imperial gate smasher, has been taken by the Zigany. That it will be seen entering Tribe space soon.

5/11 1:08 pm
Transmission from "inside the Arahmni Empire" claims a Battletrain attack approaching Taranis. Link: AENN Update

5/11 2:39pm
An FNF Field contact reports that a train engaged in a firefight with another train in the webway on the Gmir/Taranis trade route.

Related Articles
Zygany abduction of children
Zygany infiltrate Fringe Space
Refugee Influx to Taranis


Zigani Soldiers Swarmed

By TalkFast

An amazing story has emerged from the fierce fighting to repel Zigani invaders from the planet Taranis. An unknown defender of the planet has released a swarm of armored "War Bees" to drive the Zigani from Fringe territory!

The elite, genetically modified bees are protected by armored carapaces that are impervious to ordinary swatting. They are fitted with tiny gps devices and rumored to be controlled by a handler, though it is not clear whether the control is technological or psionic, or even who the mysterious handler may be. Other reports say that the bees are trained to sniff out explosives, search for hidden enemies, and attack on command!

FNF staff members interviewed Jonas Faern, a local man who claimed to have witnessed the swarm in action from atop a nearby building:
"Them Gizanees were marchin' up like the owned the place, but then I heard this weird buzzing noise, like an engine in the distance that's not quite running right, and the next thing I saw, those soldiers started slapping and hopping and a couple of 'em fell over rollin on the ground. It was really somethin' to see!" [all sic.]

No official confirmation of these swarms has been made, but it seems likely that such a weapon would be kept a secret.

Missing Scientist
Dr David Lorani
One source has speculated that the bees are the work of noted Taranis researcher Dr. David Lorani, former employee of Falltech industries, who was rumored to have been working on something “revolutionary”, involving animal genetics, before his mysterious disappearance and an explosion in his lab. Lorani's wife could not be reached for comment, but prior to the Zigani invasion, she was actively seeking information on his whereabouts.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


Exclusive Embedded report by Mason Havok!
(used by permission, Free Eclipse Newsfeed)

Related Article:


by Tom Topptin - FNF Staff

The universe today can be a scary place. Are YOU ready for war, should it come to you? We here at the Fringe News Feed have compiled our Top Ten Tips for Surviving an Interstellar War so that YOU, our dear readers will be ready for anything that comes at you.

1. Don't Panic - Unless you are currently in a war zone or live very near your local Gate, take some comfort in knowing that the majority of fighting probably won't involve YOU. Running around and screaming, while emotionally satisfying, is probably not helping you and your loved ones.

2. Be Prepared - Have you cleaned your armor lately? Spent some quality time repairing that broken hunting rifle? Now is a great time to get all those chores you've been putting off done. Tidy up the workroom, dig out those clips you've been meaning to fix, and get your house in order so that when the doors get busted down during a house to house raid, the enemy will appreciate how nice the place is, providing you with valuable seconds to escape.

3. Drill Baby Drill - Have you worked out escape routes from your home and place of business? Run "invasion drills" with your family and friends? You haven't? You should maybe consider it. When fleeing from an enemy that can enslave your body via drugs to do their dark bidding, you don't want to try and figure out the best direction to run right there and then. Drill and practice make for flawless execution!

4. It Takes a Village - Organize a meeting with your neighbors and pool your resources. There is safety in numbers and being on good terms with your co-workers and neighbors can be an extra helping hand when you need it. Also, potluck dinners are a great way to both build communities and clear out some leftovers.

5. Need Before Greed - When deciding what to pack into your "trouble" bag, be sure to only bring what you need to survive. Sure, where else are you going to get another set of commemorative Teela O'Malley ceramic dishes at such a good price, but wouldn't you rather have, say, 2 weeks worth of food rations instead? Ceramic doesn't taste good, and doesn't trade well in refugee camps.

6. Don't Get Cocky - Should you find yourself in an occupation situation, remember that you should always be on your guard. Don't think to yourself "Well, they won't come after me. I'm not a mutant/cyborg/soldier/etc...". That doesn't matter. Sure, they didn't come looking for you today, but what about tomorrow? Stay alert, keep your head down, prepare for the worst, pray for the best.

7. Move Along - It can be difficult in these tough times to keep living your life. Don't let fear consume you! Take reasonable precautions (like those outlined in this article), but do not let it ruin your day to day existence. Take in a vid, read the feeds, perhaps attend a local talent show. Remember, if you are constantly huddled in a corner of your house, gibbering to yourself about "them", then the enemy has already won. Of course, when the shooting starts, feel free to run like heck.

8. Cardio - Living a state of constant fear and worry is no way to live, but you can do something about it! Exercise and proper nutrition can keep you alert and ready to move at a moment's notice. As a side bonus, it should help relieve stress and keep you focused on the tasks at hand.. After the trouble passes, you'll be ready for a night on the town too!

9. Know Your Foe - There is a lot of tension in the universe these days, and what you might have to deal with depends greatly on where you are, dear reader. Research the most likely threats to you and yours so you won't be caught off guard!

10. News You Can Use - Turn to trusted information sources to keep abreast of happenings in YOUR area! Stay tuned to the Fringe News Feed and your local feeds for the latest information on the growing Arhamni threat, the looming Imperial Civil War, and other happenings throughout the galaxy!


Huron sides with Covenant, Mutants. What will this mean?

After Duke Huron of Taiowa made a startling series of declarations, the Empire’s High Inquisitor has declared Huron a traitor, called for his death, and called for the people of Taiowa to rise up in rebellion. The Imperials say he’s siding with the Zygani, but what’s really going on here?

After calling for the validity of mutants within the Empire, Huron accused Regent Cormac of putting a false baby Empress on the throne. Huron declared himself for the Army of the Covenant, previously known as the Army of the Scourge, a vicious holy army within the Empire.

After mutinying against their previous Warmaster, the Army of the Scourge/Covenant is now under the command of 10 Imperials thought to reside on Eclipse. Who are they, what are they going to do with their Army? Is the baby Empress a fake? What of rumors that the Empress faked her death, or that she was a secret mutant? Have the former Warlords been reborn in these 10 so called "Champions?" And, if so, where is their Jerich Al'Eld?

Update 3/11
"Mr. Ion," a noted Imperial preacher, spoke out against divisions in the Empire in a recent speech:
"We must follow the will of the divine in this matter. Let us not squabble. The truth will break free, and we will all know the Scion of Ehieh".
Is this meant as prophecy?
Who is the "Scion of Ehieh?"
Should Fringers care about Imperial religious matters?
Share your thoughts in the comments section.

Monday, May 9, 2011



By TalkFast

The Fringe Newsfeed reported last month on the mysterious disappearance of ships in the waters near the Varja city of Voreko and eye-witness accounts of strange apparitions in the sky.

More recent reports say that normal weather has returned to that region, and that local CEO, Eric Bransen, of Kagome Shipping led an expedition to search for the lost. Bransen’s group found the wreckage of twenty-two ships, including seven that had not previously been reported missing. Only fourty three survivors were recovered, clinging to a reef and close to death. over 1,500 other sailors are still missing, now presumed dead.

Mack Headen, recovery diver for Kagome Shipping, reports on what he found in the sunken ships:
"It was like someone had been summoning demons or something! There were all these weird markings on the hulls, swirly designs and sigils I didn't recognize. Gave me the absolute creeps! You find this stuff in scary children's stories, not on a ship with no crew! I swear, I surfaced so fast I thought the bends were gonna be the death of me! But I'll tell you one thing, that Eric Bransen, he's a real hero, you know. Didn't have to go looking for those people or those ships, coulda written the whole thing off and no one woulda blinked. Real hero to go after those men."

The rescued survivors were found in a near-comatose state and are currently hospitalised. FNF attempts to interview them or get statements were unsuccessful, though we are told that their condition is slowly improving. Medical staff did admit that other than the effects of exposure, the doctors can find no explanation for the symptoms. One unnamed source said that, “none of the survivors can really talk, but a few mumble about ‘SHADOWS’.”