September 12, 2020 Sidebar

“Systems at critical…repeat systems at critical…”

Rhom pulled back on the control levers, his knuckles white with the strain. He could hear the engines of his dragon ship whine in sharp protest as every bit of quintessence was channeled into them to try to pull him free of the giant monster’s tendrils. “I need more power. We can’t shake free…”

Even as the bulkheads began to buckle as the pressure on the dragon ship reached its final limits, the calm measured female voice responded. “There is no additional power to divert to the engines. Structural integrity is about to collapse.”

Rhom swore a rather complex expletive in Infernal as two panels crumpled and water exploded into the cabin. The dragon ship roared with Rhom’s outburst and the maw stretched open. There was a gathering of thousands of firefly like motes, and then darkness before a solid lance of pure radiance lashed out, punching a hole through the creature and into the one beyond it. The attack shook the ship free and for an instant the entire ship went dead…every ounce of power gone as systems attempted to come back on. The creature in its anger grabbed the ship again and wrapped all its tentacles around it, metal screeching as the ship began to fully break.

Inside Rhom was trying to get the ship to respond in any way but nothing. On the main panel on front of him however a new icon stood out. A singular red button that was pulsing faster and faster. Rhom reached out for it, realizing that it was matching his own heart beat. He slammed his fist down on it, and all at once the world seemed to halt as he saw the words “Command Acknowledged” float on the view screens. Light exploded out from the coils wrapped around the ship as the creature was forced to let go. The dragon ship began to fold and unfold different parts as its shape changed. Inside the cockpit, the controls shifted and the seat lowered into the floor. Rhom found himself standing in his command location, the new arrangement designed to complement the outside’s new form.

Where there had been a metal dragon ship now floated a humanoid fusion between the dragon ship and its pilot. Metal wings unfurling behind it, and clutching a massive long sword in its left hand, the mecha opened several vents and stabilized itself in the water. A pedestal rose beside him and two slots opened. Rhom drew his blade and rod and slid the two into place. The ship spoke, “Attack programs 1 and 2 are activated captain, awaiting interface command.”

Rhom took a breath and centered himself, as he opened his eyes he felt at one with his ship. “Give me manual control.” The ship shuddered as his movements began to directly control the mecha. As he raised his hand, so did the mecha and he could feel the resistance of the water. So…looks like the dragons had some secrets left in them after all. And with that Rhom charged back into battle, globes of eldritch force arcing from his mech’s right hand at the monster threatening his friends.