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Chapter 4:
CAPTURED!

CAPTIVES WITHIN LUNA

UPON CAPTURE, the expedition will be taken directly to Tereshkovitch's cavern for questioning. On the way, they will pass through the Selenite main settlement, centered on the pictured series of connected spherical caverns.

The details of the Selenite Villiage, and their society, originally appeared here, but I felt it would be better organized if it appeared as a separate article. It can be found at Appendix - Selenites.

RUSSIAN TIRADE

YOU ARE securely bound and, accompanied by four armed Selenites, taken to a chamber fitted out as a study and office for Tereshkovitch. It has a desk, bookshelves and books, a torn, but comfortable, leather chair, an orrery, and considerable quantities of scientific apparatus. Tereshkovitch is seated at the desk. His hair and fingernails have grown quite long, and his complexion is pallid from lack of sunlight. He looks thin and sickly, but his eyes burn with the feverish energy of madness.

He rises as he greets you. "You don't know how happy I am to see you, Mr. Grant. As you no doubt stumbled across my ether flyer, it must be obvious that I have been stranded here for some time. I'm not exactly sure how long; the days are so hard to weasure down here," he says sarcastically, gesturing to his walls of eternal light.

Vladimir Illyich Tereshkovitch (Veteran NPC)
AN INVENTOR of some renown in Russia, Tereshkovitch was in the forefront of the research on precision modulation of the ether flow and made several trips to Luna testing his governing devices. After discovering the Selenites and the diamonds embedded in the rock walls of the caverns near them, he returned to Earth and obtained a supply of breech-loading carbines. In 1887 he returned to Luna but crashed on arrival and has been stranded here ever since. He has gone quite mad and murdered his own crew gradually over the course of the last two years. He has also grown physically weak, as the fungus diet he has subsisted on is lacking several vitamins and nutrients important for humans.
AttributesSkills

Str:3 Fisticuffs 4, Throwing 1,
Agl:5 Stealth 4, Mechanics 4 (machinist), Marksmanship 4,
End:2 Wilderness Travel 3 (mountaineering),
Int:5 Observation 4, Science 4 (physics), Engineering 4 (naval architecture),
Chr:3 Eloquence 3, Linguistics 3, (English, German, French)
Soc:5 Riding 4 (horse)
 

     Motives: Greed, Madness.

"When I stumbled upon these caverns the first time, I was struck with the great riches here. Diamonds. Diamonds!'' He reaches into his desk drawer and pulls out a black leather bag, dumping the contents onto the desk. He has about 50 diamonds, some huge. Grant flashes you a look as if to say, "That big one will suit our purposes."

"Of course, I had to return to Earth to get further supplies. I also found that these Selenites were unwilling to work for me until I had some 'muscle,' if you will, to back me up. The rest of my crew wouldn't cooperate, intending to 'serve the Czar.' I had to kill them, of course." He shrugs and gestures to the armed Selenite guards around him. "Fascinating creatures, but their discovery alone would not make me rich, now would it?"

He reaches into a canister on his desk and grabs a handful of gray fungus, shoving it hungrily into his mouth, "Oh, you'll learn to adapt. It's not that bad, really, and it's all there is to eat." Giggling to himself, he continues, "You'll have plenty of time to adapt, too. You see, you've given me a ticket back to Earth. I knew someday someone would come this way again, and I would be able to escape.

My guards are out searching for your ether flyer now. Considering it has taken the players about a week to get here from the site of their flyer, it is unlikely that a handful of selenites will be able to find it at all, and certainly not in the short time they have.

Once they find it, I'll repair it and be on my way. How does Tereshkovitch know the flyer is damaged? The players are unlikely to volunteer this information. He has visited this region once before without crashing, and would probably assume the players have landed safely. Once he realizes that the flyer is a seven day climb (if he figures out where it is at all), he will be pretty pissed. His guards are not likely to find it, and he will probably expect that it is simply parked outside the cave complex.

They think that I'll return with more technological treasures for them; they are quite gullible. I shall leave you to puzzle out a way to make my excuses for me, eh?" He scoops his diamonds back into his bag and shoves it back into his desk. "Au revoir, gentlemen." Tereshkovitch then issues some clicking commands, and the guards lead you away.

IMPRISONED
IN THE DEPTHS OF LUNA

Tereshkovitch HAS the characters taken to the small chamber between the two hive chambers (see map). Four Selenite guards will remain with them. All equipment in excess of their individual clothing will be taken from them, to remain in Tereshkovitch's cavern.
The Selenites do not really understand clothing, and will not search the characters very thoroughly, so characters with concealed weapons, like a Derringer up their sleeve or a jacknife in their boot will still retain these weapons. Let the characters feel that these precautions they have made are paying off, since when they make their escape attempt they will already be armed.

Grant speaks up, "Those diamonds he has will do the trick for repairing the Ether Propeller Governor. Tereshkovitch must be pretty far gone or he'd see that those diamonds are badly flawed. Not worth 10,000 for the lot, but the big one will get us back to Earth." Grant adds, "And if we can get some of these critters to lead us back out of this maze to the gorge, we're in business. We're home free if we can get rid of Tereshkovitch!"

10,000 is going to be enough to make most beginner players drool, particularily if they come from lower social classes with little starting cash. Better to make it 1,000, though Grant will refer to US currency, in which they are worth $5,000. The value is still substantial, but probably not enough to impel the characters through greed.
"Kyou klar not kuman like k'Doctor?" The voice is a horrible abomination of English, speaking with the inset sideways jaws of one of the guards.


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