10719/Probing the Boardwalk

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Probing the Boardwalk
Date of Scene: 10 April 2022
Location: Boardwalk - St Martin's Island
Synopsis: An impromtu gathering on the boardwalk is disrupted when a glowy flesh ball with tentacles falls from the sky. It is promptly sent to Death Valley before being returned to the sky.
Cast of Characters: M'gann M'orzz, Sarah Rainmaker, Pol Hevonen, Kian, Kaida Connolly, Terry O'Neil, Colette O'Connail

M'gann M'orzz has posed:
    The sun hangs low near the horizon casting a myriad of colors across the water towards St. Martin's Island as darker blues and purples begin to creep across the sky with the coming of sunset and night's approach.  As the natural light starts to fade, the exterior lights of the shops and stalls of the boardwalk come on, a boardwalk once again attracting more traffic as temperatures continue to warm up.
    Among those drawn to the boardwalk is the young Megan Morse, taking a break from the trials of university and crime fighting under various guises (and faces) to get out of Gotham and enjoy a day trip out exploring the sights of Metropolis, with all of its color and vibrancy (at least by comparison).  The red-headed teenager walks down the wooden strip, ice cream in hand, before stopping to look out over the water at the setting sun and take a selfie with that giant T-shaped tower in the background.

Sarah Rainmaker has posed:
    Along the Boardwalk, Sarah Rainmaker is busy getting some sushi.  By 'getting some' she's going fishing.  The quick and easy way.  Namely a quick burst of lightning into the water where a fish would go up to stun it, a gust of wind to yank it out of the water, then a knife to quickly clean and gut it.  Then going to bite into it.  It had to be more hygenic than the things sold at the Boardwalk, right?

Pol Hevonen has posed:
    Cas Hevonen is loitering, and deliberately ignoring the nagging voice in his head saying that there are finals very soon and he needs to study.  Because he doesn't need to study.  Between himself and his virtual twin (and it's Pol's turn to hang in the Astral Ramparts) they already know everything they're going to need for the three actually difficult classes, and Metro U is requiring them to take some of their "basic idiocy" stuff that they should've been allowed to test out of, and which both Pol and Cas could do in their sleep.
    So instead the excessively tall young man is watching the woman with the lightning.  That has GOT to be illegal.  That's kind of like dynamiting the fish.  Still.  That's lightning.  Stay away from it.
    And besides, Pol's muttering something about metahumans.  Of course there are metahumans, that woman just tasered a tuna.  Or whatever that thing was.  Oh wait, you mean there are OTHER metahumans?  Here in the not-so-distant shadow of the Titans Tower?  Inconceivable!

Kian has posed:
    Kían spirals down from above, depositing both himself and Vorpal on a clear enough spot on the boardwalk.  Even though the birdman is quite a bit shorter than his passenger, he doesn't appear overburdened, and the touchdown is light.  Graceful, even.
    "So it's called a boardwalk because you walk on boards.  Unbelievable—something on Earth actually makes sense!"

Kaida Connolly has posed:
    "And that's why you never walk off down a dark alley alone!" Kaida says to a pair of kids who seem enraptured by the little mouse girl who is pointing at the one on the left before she puts her hand up and the other over her heart.
    "I swear!"  She nods her head.  "It happened and trust me, I'm a mouse.  I know dark alleys!"  She nods and then the kids gasp and then they run off chatting about giant man eating monsters.  She then races off toward the landing Terry and Kian, having heard them before seeing them and frankly smelled them, too.  She scampers over to where they touch down and she leaps up on to the top of a stand to look down at the pair.
    "Don't let it fool you!" she calls out to Kian as she leans over the stand top.  "Sometimes they call it a duckboard just because it is over wet or marshy land so it doesn't always make sense."

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    "Hey Kay," Vorpal says to Kaida in greeting.  He had returned to the tower after a few days—that is, after testing out that there wasn't another otherworldly extrusion ready to pounce on him and endanger those around him.  So far so good.  Knock on wood.  "It is as our friend says, Kian.  And I haven't even covered the issues with Driveway and Parkway.  I am sure your English tutor will be glad to address those."  He smirks.
    Truth be told, he welcomed this.  Stepping out of the tower and pretending everything was fine and that their friend hadn't been replaced by some other-dimensional version of her.  And that it all might just be hanging over his head.
    He blinks at the flash of lightning.  "Is that Sara over yonder?" he says, pointing.  "And the flagpole over there is Pol."

Colette O'Connail has posed:
    Colette is sitting on a bench close by awaiting the arrival of Cat and Bird, and when they touch down she gets to her feet and strolls over to greet them.  "Hey Terry, Hey Kian.  No last-minute emergencies, then?  No sudden invasion force of Changralynians showing up on scanners, no banks being robbed by weird metahumans with the power to shoot guns out of their mouths, no mysterious artifacts showing up that turn you all into robot versions of yourselves?  Must be a nice change of pace for you guys, you're actually on time.
    "I hate to break it to you, Kian.  But boardwalks aren't named so because they are boards you walk on.  The first beachside boardwalk that was given the name was in Atlantic City, and it got its name from the guy who came up with the idea, an architect called Alex Boardman.  True story.  You're letting Earth get to you.  Just keep in mind that nothing ever makes sense on earth."
    Colette follows Terry's pointing to Pol and Sarah, the first of whom she has met before, the second she has not.  She shrugs her shoulder slightly.  "Busy day at the Boardwalk.  I see an ex-student of mine from Happy Harbor here too," she says, nodding her head in the direction of Megan.  However, it's Kaida, who she also hasn't met, who attracts most of her attention.  Colette doesn't really know how to react to a talking super-mouse, so she just looks on in mild bafflement.

M'gann M'orzz has posed:
    Thunderbolts and lightning, very very frightening.  But not really, it's not like it's fire.  It does however get Megan's attention.  Once her selfie is taken, she puts her phone away and begins to wander in the direction of the bright flashes and small cracks of thunder, curious.
    Meanwhile as the sun sinks on the horizon, points of light begin to dot the darkening sky as the stars start to come out, though one in particular seems rather bright for so early in the evening.

Sarah Rainmaker has posed:
    Her own lunch handled, Sarah Rainmaker goes to take a few moments to lick off her fingers.  The others don't immediately stand out until she hears the train of thought of someone that suddenly ends over in bafflement.  Which has her looking over at Colette, which then has her attention noticing Terry and then Kaida.  She would wave.  "Hello."  She would go to head over towards the group of others while she would go to take out from a sack on her back a small box of Oreos.  Moving to take a bite of one of them.  Sometimes you just had a craving.  "Boardwalks are places that tend to be not safe, overpriced, and can be a blight to the environment.  They're dangerous, not well maintained, and aimed at tourists.  When the attraction dies, large areas of the city will be abandoned and badly maintained."

Pol Hevonen has posed:
    Oh good.  It's a flash-mob of Titans.  Wait, that IS good.  Someone can introduce those guys.  Cas walks over to the birdman and the neon cat man, and smiles when he sees Kaida.
    "The flagpole is actually Cas, this time," he says.  He didn't hear it clearly but he can read lips.
    He reaches across and slightly up to the stand, leaning nonchalantly, in case Kaida wants run across to sit on his shoulder like she did earlier.
    <<Psst.  Cas.  Lightning Lady is joining the gang.  Maybe someone will introduce us,>> Pol says from the Bulwark.
"I get the feeling I don't know some of you," Cas hints.

Kian has posed:
    At first, Kían looks a little surprised—but yeah, he should be used to this sort of thing by now, and greets his friends and teammates with his usual bow.  "Well, for now, I like this.  But then, I like being near water.  I like the sound of the waves on the shore."  He spreads and re-folds his wings.  "I don't go in the water, of course.  That would be craz…"  He glances at Terry.  "It wouldn't be a good idea."
    The scent of chocolate is in the air.  Kían can't help but look in Sarah's direction, but he behaves himself.  So far.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Vorpal shrugs at Kian's explanation, looking at Sara.  "We go where Kian wants to go.  I will still get him in the pool."  He glances at Kian.  "Seriously.  You have nothing to fear.  I can hold you if you want.  It's just water.  I'm a cat.  You should be ashamed."
    He gives Colette a grinnin' greeting and then he gestures.  "Ah, Sara, this is Cas.  Who is sometimes Pol.  Pol, meet Sara.  You both go in and out at the tower, but have not met yet.  Introductions are made, and Colette," he says to the Martian, "That's Kaida.  Kaida, that's Colette, known to many as The Meddler, but I cannot elaborate lest I get punched."

Kaida Connolly has posed:
    Looking in the direction of Colette, Kaida tilts her head first left and then right.  She suddenly leaps off the top of the building she is on and spins in the air to land on Terry's shoulder before leaping over to Kian.  She leaps off of him to send herself by Colette's face.
    "Close your mouth, you're letting the bugs in."  She says it fast as she passes before sliding to a stop before Cas and smiles up at him.
    "Hi!"  And then she races off of to a food stand nearby to collect food from it, specifically a giant pretzel with mustard dipping sauce.

Colette O'Connail has posed:
    "Bugs are nutritious," Colette tells Kaida archly.  She narrows her eyes in Terry's direction.  This whole mouse business is obviously his fault, along with the guy who's twenty percent horse, by her calculations.  The Titans used to just have regular normal superhero types and Gar.  If they have Gar, why do they need to expand the menagerie?  It's because the allowed a cat in.  It has to be.  Technically Colette ought to consider herself somewhat responsible for this, but that would require her to consider herself responsible for anything.
    "Hello Zappy Woman and Supermouse.  I'm Colette.  I teach Kian English," she explains, totally ignoring the fact that Terry has actually provided names.  "Apart from the bits that Victor teaches him.  My policy is you start with grammar and basic vocabulary, get on to symbolic usage, compounding and metaphor, and only then start teaching colorful insults.  Victor feels that superheroing requires colorful insults from an early stage, so if Kian has ever called you a 'dikhed' that's Victor's fault, not mine."
    Colette watches Kaida's interactions at the pretzel stand.  "Terry.  Your mouse is purchasing food larger than she is."

M'gann M'orzz has posed:
    And Colette is there, too.  This is not too surprising for Megan, she knew her old teacher had ties to the Titans, the inhabitants of the aforementioned selfie-worthy giant 'T' shaped tower.  Still, even after graduation it's weird seeing teachers outside of school, like they're really actual people with actual lives.  "Miss O'Connail!"  Megan offers a friendly wave walking over.
    Meanwhile that strange early bright star seems to have changed positions, and as it gets closer seems to be visibly moving, yes moving.  And now it has a streaking fiery tail like a shooting star, a shooting star that is headed this way.  Thankfully whatever it is doesn't seem to be getting any larger as it approaches on a collision course with the beach.

Sarah Rainmaker has posed:
    Sarah Rainmaker is moving over towards the others and is about to talk over to them.  Then she goes to turn her attention up and into the air.  "That doesn't seem…"  Normal?  But it's definitely coming towards them.  And Sarah Rainmaker goes to tense.  First maneuver going to be use the winds to lift herself up and then a blast of air to press the pressure 'away', giving them clearer view as she would clear out the area.  Ready to blast up to fly on an intercept course and coordiante with the group.  Calling out quickly.
    "We have incoming!"

Pol Hevonen has posed:
    Cas grins at Kaida, who is still on her eternal quest for salty snack foods.  He would ask her to get him one but that would be not enough because he wants two of them.
    "Hello, Sarah," Cas says to the woman with the taser.  Magical taser?  Not… necessarily.  Didn't feel like magic.
    Colette being named The Meddler.  Wait who does that kind of thing?
    "Was that a self-chosen nom-de-vide or is it something someone else inflicted?" Cas asks Colette.  He may have been told this but if so it was his brother who was told and he has no actual idea.
    Cas whips around to spot the incoming missile-like object.
    "METEOR!" he echoes, and his armor appears, chainmail ink over his body.  Looks like Sarah is faster though.

Kian has posed:
    Kian snickers at Colette—and then snaps to attention when Sarah and Cas do.  In hopes that it's a nickel-iron meteorite—and not terribly big—he pushes back with a strong wave of magnetic repulsion.  It's the only useful thing he can think of to try.
    And yes, he's careful not to clobber innocent bystander equipment.  That would not be appreciated, he's sure.

Kaida Connolly has posed:
    Walking back with a pretzel that is certainly bigger than her, Kaida looks through the holes of the pretzel while dragging behind her a cup of mustard wrapped up in her tail.  She blinks as she looks up at what everyone else is looking at and then sighs.
    "Why do disasters happen whenever I find food?!" she asks of no one in particular and then sets the mustard in front of her and starts devouring the pretzel at an incredible rate.
    Always best to deal with space objects on a full stomach.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    "She's not my mouse, Colette, she's her own—"
    Terry's next words are lost to the world as the thing from the sky starts making a dive towards them.  Colette's student doesn't get a greeting, alas, because Vorpal is in emergency mode now.  Kian is already in action and everybody else is gearing to do whatever they can.  That leaves him with crowd control, because he's the only one with the powers to do so in this group.
    "Everybody, brace for evacuation.  Incoming Rabbit Hole to Metropolis Park!" he shouts, his voice amplified by his illusion magic.  He produces a Rabbit Hole that advances towards the groups of people, highlighting by illusion magic to make it easier to see.  If Kian can't repel the object, he's going to try something else—but first, he has to at least try to get as many people out from the Boardwalk as he can.

Colette O'Connail has posed:
    "Hey Megan.  You can call me Colette now you've graduated."  Colette gestures her over.  "Come meet the Titans.  This is Birdy Buddy, Insane Catboy, The Twenty Percent Horse, SuperMouse and Zappy Lady.  It's not all the Titans of course.  There are about fourteen thousand of them at this point."
    None of these names are on the roster of known members of the Titans, but no doubt Megan will be able to recognize several of them herself.
    "Very much not self-inflicted," Colette tells Cas.  "The irony of being called 'The Meddler' by a bunch of self-appointed super-vigilantes does however amuse me immensely.  I believe it was Captain Marvel who came up with it first.  It's because when Kian first arrived on Earth I tried to make sure he didn't end up getting dissected by nosy SHIELD scientists."
    When people start shouting about meteors, Colette ignores Terry's attempts to evacuate people and instead stares up at the incoming object with a distinct lack of concern.  "It might not be a meteor," she suggests.  "No need to panic just yet.  It could easily just be an invading alien war fleet.  That kind of crap happens a lot."

M'gann M'orzz has posed:
    Megan kind of blinks at the introductions and looks at Colette and then at the Titans and then back at Colette.  "You have interesting friends… Colette."  That will take some getting used to.  But then there is the scramble with the strange incoming not star and for a moment she tenses, unsure of what she should do.  In the end though she doesn't reveal herself, instead watching to see how the Titans handle things.
    It's a strange phenomenon, the 'meteor' never seems to get much bigger and also does not even seem to be metal let alone nickel-iron.  In the end the object is actually even small than it seems.  The collision with the beach kicks up a cloud of sand creating an instantaneous dust storm in all directions, but when it clears, all that is left is a pearlescent white object perhaps the size of a beachball vaguely pulsing with a soft glow in the center of a crater.
    Suddenly though, Megan falls to her knees holding her head.  "Augh!  Make it stop!"  Her hands cover her ears as if to block out some sound and yet there doesn't seem to be any noise.

Sarah Rainmaker has posed:
    Sarah Rainmaker doesn't know the others well.  She doesn't know M'Gann.  She does however get that the other girl is in pain and distress!  She would call to Terry, "Teleport her out of here to somewhere safe!  Anyone that knows what that is and can help us secure it would be appreciated!"  Sarah Rainmaker goes to take out her hand, moving to then try and if she could freeze the falling white thing over in a solid block of ice in a wide diameter.  Not sure what was going on, so not wanting to blast it or try and whip it up into the heavens and away.  So hopefully just to isolate and secure it so that they can get M'Gann safe and then figure out what is going on!
    Sarah would snap her head back while attempting to freeze to see if anyone would have any more specifics… and of course to abort evacuating Ms. Morse.

Pol Hevonen has posed:
    <<Shields up!>> Pol says, and as a result of the Astral Ramparts being closed, Cas only staggers and mutters, "Ice cream headache meteor, of course it aims at us…."

Kian has posed:
    Kían makes a strange sort of strangled squawk—the only possible comparison might be the noise an eagle might make if you punched it—and then he has his hands to his temples, dislodging his translator.
    What little "Kianese" Terry and Colette have picked up isn't going to be any help.  He sounds like he's in a lot of pain, and slumps back against a wall with a *thud*.  "Turn it off!" he grinds out.  "In the name of all the Gods, turn it off!"

Colette O'Connail has posed:
    Colette watches the object crash into the beach with some curiosity, and walks forwards a little to get a closer view.  "You don't know that I'm wrong," she calls back.  "It could still be an invading alien war fleet if the aliens are really small."
    When first Megan, then Cas and Kian, start acting the way they do, Colette looks back at them, her attention particularly on Megan.  She takes a few steps back and raises a hand up towards Sarah.  "That's not going to do any good," she says of the icy tomb the Sarah seems intent on.
    She stares at the sphere a little longer, then turns to Vorpal and says, "Terry, stop rabbit holing people away, and rabbit hole that thing away instead.  Send it into the sun.  Uh… not directly into the sun, for reasons we… you know.  Send it about four million miles from the sun.  No… wait.  Scrap that.  Send it to the moon.  Remember that empty Russian base? Send it there.
    "It's alien technology and someone who knows about alien technology should take a look at it.  I strongly suggest your green pal.  J'onzz that is, not Gar.  He's alien, he's bound to know all about it.  Tell him to go take a look at it, and warn him to approach it slowly."
    "Kian… KIAN!  Listen to me.  Try to concentrate.  Internalize your thought processes as much as you can.  Try to talk to yourself, concentrating as hard as you can on your inner voice, while thinking about music at the same time.  Locate your sense of self and imagine constructing… oh fuck, there's no time for that."
    Why try teaching someone the basic techniques of erecting mental shielding when you can just overwhelm the signal instead?  Colette makes a grab for Kian's arm, to put him in physical contact with Terry and a dose of Wonderland psychedelia.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Change of plans.  With Kian keening like that, and Colette's student also reacting poorly, and then Po—CAS complaining, it's clear that that bauble from outer space is no good.  He can't hear anything, with his feline senses, so he has to assume some other sense, sixth or otherwise, is being tickled.
    "One-way ticket to Death Valley, coming up!"
    The Cheshire cat redirects his Rabbit Hole from evacuation to… well, evacuation.  The object and destination are different, but it's the same principle, right?

M'gann M'orzz has posed:
    Megan continues to hold her head for a moment, but eventually her hands come away as formidable Martian mental shields spring into place silencing the painful brain static.  Deep breaths, to call the experience unpleasant would be a vast understatement if TV static was razor blades and stabbing your thoughts.
    She turns just in time to see Sarah conjuring an icy prison around the thing.  To Colette's point, the icy tomb doesn't bother whatever it is in the slightest, but it doesn't seem to like the constraint.  Cracks appear across the ice and then strange tentacles and pseudopods break through lashing about seemingly at random, what almost look like eyes appearing along their length as the chaotic mass seems to have no set shape.
    And then it's gone.  Well not truly gone, whatever that faintly glowing amorphous white horror was it is now in Death Valley.
What could go wrong?

Pol Hevonen has posed:
    <<Hang on, I'm building a defense,>> Pol says, and begins tapping different constellations… but just as it solidifies, and Cas can start applying it, whatever the tentacular monstrosity IS, it isn't here.
    "OK, is this normal?" Cas asks.  "I know Raven isn't here, so Elder Horrors shouldn't be visiting right?"

Kian has posed:
    Kían instinctively jerks away from Colette, not even remembering that he can't reach her mind, because he doesn't want her feeling what he is.  He ends up clinging to a lamp post with his eyes screwed tightly shut, wings spread, feathers ruffled out.  "Make it stop make it stop make it stop!"

Colette O'Connail has posed:
    Colette's attempt to protect Kian's brain through the power of insanity don't seem to be getting anywhere as Birb resists, but she stops trying promptly when Vorpal renders the attempt unnecessary by sending the device away.  To Death Valley.
    STARES at Vorpal.  "Terry.  Terry.  Tell me that was just an awkward metaphor, likening Death Valley to the lifeless wastes of the Moon.  Tell me that you didn't just send that thing to like… actual Death Valley.  On planet Earth.  Tell me that you didn't ignore the incredibly important things I was just telling you, and instead just decided to poof it three thousand miles west of here.  Tell me that you didn't think that sending a piece of alien technology to another point on the same planet was a good idea."
    Colette continues to STARE at Vorpal.  "You know how listening to me is generally a really good idea?  How we have established that it's actually a pretty good way to avoid, you know, horrible things happening?"  It's a point many may argue, but if so their attempts to shift Colette's opinions on this would certainly be in vain.
    Colette STARES some more.  "You sent it to Death Valley, didn't you."
    Colette continues to STARE.  "ACTUAL Death Valley."
    Colette sighs, shuts her eyes, and counts to ten.
    "Terry?  Be a dear and open that Rabbit Hole back to Death Valley so I can go deal with the horribly dangerous item of alien biotechnology you just unleashed on California, please?  There's a good Chaos Cat."

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    "Cas, see if you can help Kian, I've gotta take care of this…."  The Cheshire cat rubs his forehead.  "Yes.  Actual Death Valley.  I put it there so we could get these guys," he gestures to M'Gann and Kian, "out of whatever agony they're in.  It takes me a few seconds to concentrate to get to the moon, and with what was going on I didn't want to accidentally open a hole to the sun and fry us all.  That being said, the two of us can go to Death Valley now and take that thing to the moon without worrying that Kian's brains are gong to be scrambl— frie— discombobulated."
    He holds a hand up to countdown, so that Colette knows he's going to open the hole.  They're going to have to jump through it quickly so he can close it and spare the rest of the team telepaths… and Colette's student… another round of brain scrambles.

M'gann M'orzz has posed:
    "I'm fine," Megan offers standing up straight again.  Acting as if nothing happened.  What telepathic static?  "Do what you need to do."  She does still have something of a wide eyed look in her eyes, like what the hell was that thing.
    Meanwhile in the middle of a scorching desert in Death Valley, where the sun still hasn't set due to timezone differences, from a shimmering rabbit hole a writhing pearlescent mass of tentacles falls with a plop and begins to flail in the desert heat.

Pol Hevonen has posed:
    The 'attenuate psi noise' defense is functional, and it just takes a touch to enable.  So Cas moves to Kian, and expecting him to still be turtling, he spreads the "aura" to about 3 feet, overlapping Kian with the sense of stillness and mental quietude.
    "Are you there, Kian?"

Colette O'Connail has posed:
    Does Colette buy Terry's logic?  Or does she consider it to be flailing excuses?  She's not revealing.  This probably counts as progress.  She hasn't punched Terry's arm.  Definitely progress.
    She stares at him a little longer, then nods her head.  "Right," Colette says.  "Let's go deal with it.  Myth, can you check up on Megan as well as Kian?  Terry and I will be back in a little while, after we've dealt with the… thing."  She might have been about to say something other than 'thing', but 'thing' it is.
    When the Rabbit Hole opens on Terry's count, Colette jumps smartly though the hole and into the hot sun of Death Valley, where she and Terry will indeed deal with the 'thing'.  At this point it's entirely possible that dark and unspeakable shadow magics may be involved in this process of 'dealing' as well as further Rabbit Holes to the lifeless surface of the Moon.

Kian has posed:
    Kían opens one eye, hoping it's not a bad idea.  When that doesn't cause a stab of pain, he opens the other.  "What was that?"  His voice is quiet and a shaky.  "That was… that… I haf never felt anythin' like that and I don' want to ever feel it again."
    The translator isn't far and he quickly retrieves it and puts it on.  "Where are Terry and Colette?  I didn't see what happened… are they okay?  Where did that thing go?"

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Death Valley.  It's not much to look at.  It's hot, and the only thing to really visit is that strange theater in the middle of nowhere where, until her death, that eccentric opera singer would sing entire recitals to audiences painted on the walls of an empty theater.  No, really, look it up.
    It's kind of the pits.
    "One Rabbit Hole to the moon, Alice, coming up.  Unless you want to do the honors of blasting it to smithereens," Vorpal offers Colette.  It's the polite thing to do.

M'gann M'orzz has posed:
    It is just not the best day to be a strange white fleshy tentacle ball.  First blindsided by some orbital debris, then crashing into the planet surface, chucked into a blasted heat death desert, before being manhandled by shadow magic and sent to the Moon.  Well, at least the Moon is cold and its skin isn't blistering anymore.  Slowly it begins rolling about the Moon, however with no outside stimuli the tentacles eventually retract and it just sort of stops moving, at least for the moment.
    Megan looks between Kian and Cas, "I think they went to Death Valley," says the freckled red head, who is definitely not a Martian.

Kian has posed:
    Kían's mental leakage is mainly confused, and he's rapidly getting it under control.  "I would really like to be able to go somewhere and not have something crazy happen," he says grumpily.  "What was that thing?  The closest I've ever felt to anything like that was when a robot malfunctioned and feedback got into the mindport channel—but that wasn't near as loud and was easily turned off."  He blinks rapidly.  "And there… there aren't any more, I hope!"
    Under normal circumstances he would reach out to M'gann's mind directly, but he's still too rattled to do it with any grace or delicacy.  For the time being, it's best to keep his mind to himself.

Colette O'Connail has posed:
    "It was a Thing," Colette replies as she steps back through the Rabbit Hole, accompanied by Vorpal.  "Never mess around with Things.  They can be dangerous.  It's a fair bet that there are more Things out there, because it's quite unusual for Things to be singular in nature.  Nevertheless it's unlikely that there's another one coming, because Things rarely travel in pairs.  I'm an expert in Things, you can trust me on this."
    Colette dusts off her hands as if they are dirty from hard work, though in fact she did not pick the 'Thing' up with her hands, because she's not stupid and doesn't make a habit of handling potentially hostile bio-technological probe devices.  "Actually I made that up.  But it's dealt with now anyway.  Yes, we went to Death Valley, but the nightlife there sucks, so we came back.  Everyone okay?  Let's go find a bar."