Chapter 12: The Deep Stone Crypt, Part 3

Accessing File: The Drifter

The Drifter is a smuggler originating from the Gaia Union. Whether making jokes or making threats, the Drifter never loses his smirking, irreverent temperament, or his affable manner of speech.

He once owned a bar on the frontier of the Gaia Union, but it was destroyed in a brawl.

The Drifter is a suspicious and secretive figure. The only side he's ever on is his own. At various times, he has associated himself with others before, such as the Eliksni crime lord known as the Spider.

He has been stuck in situations were he almost starved to death; this seems to have developed into a fixation with food, which has developed further into a complete willingness, even eagerness, to consume other sentient races to keep himself alive.

Another of the Drifter's eccentricities is his lack of name. He refuses to give people his real name and has since gone by and discarded several others. These include Germaine, Eli, Todd, and Wu Ming (which can be read as "Nameless" or "No Name" in Mandarin Chinese). "The Drifter" itself started out as a nickname given to him by other people.

Close File

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Accessing File: Eris Morn

Born Erisia Pyatova-Hsien, Eris Morn comes from the Gaia Union and has lived a relatively normal life for sixteen years.

When she turned sixteen, she discovered that she possesses the gift of magic.

Erisia was eventually discovered by a group of magi who taught her how to use her gifts.

As the years went by Erisia secretly practiced dark magic associated with the Pit of Hate. She used this dark magic to pierce the veil and see into other universes. One universe was shrouded and did not want to be seen into, especially from a mortal sorcerer.

Erisia however was young and reckless and would not let anything stop her from seeing into this reality. Calling on dark powers from the Pit of Hate she was able to glimpse into this reality and saw an alternate version of herself. But the body of this version of herself was altered by dark powers. This Erisia had pale skin, three glowing green eyes hidden behind a veil, and a black stream of shadow came down from her eyes and stained her face.

However, Erisia's forbidden actions did not go unnoticed.

The window she created to see into other realities changed and showed her the legendary Dark Tower, the physical form of Gan himself. He was angered by Erisia's actions and struck her with his mighty powers. Erisia's form changed to match that of her alternate self as a form of punishment so that the coven would realize what she had done and as such she was caste out.

Taking the name Eris Morn she would set out into the universe but now she could hear whispers from dark forces whether they be from the Pit of Hate or other dark places as punishment from Gan.

Close File

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Battle Report: Riis-Prime

Eliksni Revolutionary has arrived at the planet's capital city of Riis-Prime and has engaged the loyalist forces in combat.

Skolas, Wolf Kell is confirmed to have been killed in the battle. House of Wolves Archons Nixis and Keldar confirmed KIA. Wolf Prime Servitor Orbiks confirmed to have been destroyed. Wolf Prime Servitor Kaliks is confirmed to have been captured by Revolutionary forces.

Craask, Kell of the House of Kings has been confirmed to have been killed by Misraaks, Kell of Light. House of Kings Archons KIA. Prime Servitors belonging to the House of Kings have been captured by Revolutionary forces.

Accessing video log of the fight between Craask and Misraaks:

Two Eliksni Captains circled each other both with dual Shock Cutlasses drawn. One of the Captain's was twelve foot tall and wore golden armor and had a three-pointed yellow cloak. He walked with an air of superiority that looked down on others, this was Craask the Kell of Kings.

His opponent was a nine-foot-tall captain wearing mismatched colored armor. His chest, helmet, and upper right gauntlets were blue, while the rest of his armor was gold colored. His eyes were blocked by a visor that had a purple glowing circle on the right side of it and two purple glowing lines covering the rest of it. He walked with a sense of what was right and wrong and would stop at nothing to remove the corruption that his people have been experiencing since they made first contact with the Gems. This Eliksni was Misraaks, the Kell of Light.

The two stop and face each other, silence filled the room until a piece of metal breaking off the wall hits the ground.

KLANK!

As the sound it made died the two Eliksni charge forward at each other. Craask swings his swords at Misraaks, but Misraaks dodges the attack and sidesteps the Kell of Kings and slashes his back.

Craask howls in pain and turns around to face Misraaks.

SLINK!

Craask looks down to see that Misraaks' swords managed to stab him in the gut, with the Kell of Kings own reddish purple blood staining the blades. Craask is speechless at this new development before. Misraaks then forcibly pulls out the Shock Cutlasses and Craask falls onto his back, gurgling a bit on blood that managed to pile up into his mouth.

"Is it true?" Misraaks asks the Kell of Kings. "Is it true that you, Skolas, Draksis, and Solkis made a secret alliance…with VILGAX?!"

"Yes…their was no other option…for our race's…survival." Craask weakly said to the younger Kell before him."

"What are you talking about?" Misraaks asked.

"As you know…90 keltons ago the former leader of the Cabal Empire…Dominus Ghaul led his Red Legion into the Shadow Realm system…*cough* *cough* *cough*" Craask weakly said. "He tried to conquer Vilgax's home system…and failed. The Cabal's Red Legion never knew defeat before, and no warrior has ever defeated Dominus Ghaul…until Vilgax did the impossible. He killed Dominus Ghaul, destroyed the Cabal's sun killer vessel The Almighty, and broke the Red Legion itself."

"And you believed allying yourselves with him would keep our people safe!?" Misraaks said angerly. "You are a coward for choosing to side with that monster!"

"We had to…*cough* *cough* to keep our people safe" Craask said as he struggled to pick himself up. "What force in the universe could stop him?"

"It is better to die free then to live as a slave." Misraaks said to the older Kell.

Craask quietly looked at Misraaks before he pulled out a data pad and tossed it to the younger Kell.

"Me and the other high Kells only allowed a trusted few to know of our secret alliance with the Chimeran warlord…*cough* *cough* *cough" Craask says to Misraaks. "This data pad has all of their names. If you truly wish to be better than me and the other Kells then fix the mistakes we have made and do right by our people…like we always should have done…Kell of Kells."

Craask manages to stand on his own two feet and pick up his swords. He crosses them together to perform an ireliis bow towards Msiraaks. It was a sign of respect the Eliksni warriors would perform to those they respected. After a few seconds Craask's breathing stops and he falls onto the floor dying from his heavy blood loss.

Misraaks sadly bows his head to the dead Eliksni before him. Despite all of Craask's flaws he only believed in keeping the Eliksni safe from further danger.

Aftermath:

Moderate losses for the Revolutionary forces. Massive losses for the loyalist forces.

Misraaks hands the data pad over to the Plumbers so that they may find the Eliksni on the list. Some on the list have been confirmed to be deceased, captured, and missing.

Eliksni government is currently undergoing restructuring in the wake of the uprising's end. A council consisting of the Kells from all the Houses has been made so that power is not consolidated to a few Houses like before. The practice of Docking, a procedure used to enforce control on dissidents and failed Eliksni soldiers in the wake of the First Contact War with the Gems has been removed putting an end to the Dreg and Vandal classes. All Eliksni traveling outside of Eliksni controlled territory are to have the same amount of Ether rations and are not allowed to take more than what they are allowed to have. A unanimous vote has been made by the council for Misraaks to serve as Hierarch, or Kell of Kells as he has been nicknamed by the citizens, of the Eliksni race.

With great humility Misraaks has humbly accepted the position, stating that he will not see himself as a leader put rather as a servant, as he always has done since he became a Captain.

Estimated time for all Eliksni soldiers to reach the form of Captain is about 8 months.

Close File

Xxx

G3 Headquarters, Earth

In the headquarters of the Galactic Guardians Group agents were hard at work, whether it be training, building weapons, research, or keeping taps of extraterrestrials on Earth.

However, the attention of one particular G3 member was of something not on Earth.

"And this station just appeared?" Asked a man with white hair who was dressed in black clothing and wore red goggles. This Solomon the leader of G3.

"Yes sir." An agent stated. "It appeared just moments ago, and we've managed to gather information on it."

The agent pulls up the information on the computer and shows it to Solomon. From Solomon can see the station was built three decades and by…

"Clovis Bray I." Solomon says as he read off the file.

Ever since the corpse of Clovis Bray II showed up in St. Petersburg a few months ago with no one seeing the body's arrival G3 had confiscated it and performed on autopsy. They discovered that this body of Clovis II was a clone and required investigation, and from what they could gather a little over twenty years ago Clovis II was sick and that his father Clovis I had something that could help him. Everything after that Clovis II's return from that treatment was unknown but from what G3 has learned the clone's age seems to start with Clovis II's 'return.' Around that time the real Clovis II must have died and Clovis I replaced his son with the clone.

G3 has since been trying to get in contact with Anastasia Bray to talk to her about it but she has been difficult to reach. She'd either be on the secret colony of Reach or just refuse to see G3 when she was on Earth.

"Prep a ship and get a team ready." Solomon ordered the agent. "We need to investigate this at once."

Solomon could wonder what else Clovis I was hiding from the world

Xxx

Bang!

The bullet from Cayde's gun struck against Taniks' helmet but it was absorbed by an energy shield and barely left a mark on the mercenary. The Scarred merely growls in annoyance and fires his Shrapnel Launcher at the Terrans standing in the room along with the other Eliksni. Thinking quick the Terrans move out of the way and into cover while firing at a few of the Eliksni.

"So, what is the plan exactly?" Drifter asked as he reloaded his revolver.

Elsie took a peak over their cover to see three receive stations on the right side of the room and one deposit station on the left side.

"We'll have to disable the cores manually." Elsie said as she pointed to the receive stations. "If I input a code into that station it will send in the nuclear cores." Then she pointed at the deposit station. "Then we bring the nuclear core over there to be disarmed."

"Good plan you guys do that, and I'll handle Taniks." Cayde said as he was about to leave the cover but gets pulled back by Banshee-44.

"Cayde the cores are to hot for organics and need to be held by Exos." Banshee said to his friend. "You, me, and Elsie have to handle the cores while the rest distract the Eliksni."

"But Taniks-" Cayde argued before being cut off.

"I get it he's caused you a lot of pain, but your vendetta will have to wait so we can survive and stop Europa's destruction." Banshee reasoned.

Cayde was quiet for a few seconds and then took a deep breath and said, "Alright, stop the moon's destruction, survive being in a falling space station, and then deal with Taniks."

With their objective clear the raid team split up into two groups, Exos in one group and humans in the other. Elsie and her group made their way through a crowd of Eliksni. The Exo woman brought out No Time to Explain and shifted it into its sword form and turned on a special feature on it. The blade was surrounded by another blade made of blue energy that she then swinged at an Eliksni captain charging at her. The captain swung his Shock Cutlasses, but the blades were cut by Elsie's energy blade that then cut the captain in half. After fighting the Eliksni in their way the group made it to the receive stations. Elsie approached a panel and began inputting a code. Cayde turned around to see Ana and her group fighting Taniks and the other Eliksni.

Eris Morn had conjured green fire into her hands and threw them at the opposing Eliksni, while the Drifter fired Stasis blasts at the aliens and fired his revolver at them. Meanwhile, Ana fired her rifle a few times before changing it into its glaive form and cut down many Eliksni and their automatons with its energy blade. The tide of battle was on their side however it was about to change.

Taniks opened fire at the group causing them to disperse from his attacks. The Eris launches a green fireball at him, but he uses his teleporter to blink a few feet away from the attack. Drifter conjures up a charged Stasis crystal that he then uses to throw at the mercenary with, but Taniks grabs a Shock Grenade from his belt and throws it at the crystal. They make contact and explode in a flash of Arc and Stasis energies.

The Drifter was blinded for a moment but Taniks rushes at him and hits him with his Shrapnel Launcher. The Drifter is send tumbling a few feet away. Eris gathers up green fire and turns it into a sword that she then swings at Taniks with. The mercenary blocks with his Shrapnel Launcher and then he teleports to Eris' side and then fires the gun at her. Eris is tumbling away and then Ana jumps into the air with her energy glaive and the ready to stab through Taniks' head with.

Expecting her to make that attack Taniks ducks and grabs the Polaris Lance by its shaft and throws Ana across the room.

"Any time now Elsie?!" Cayde asked impatiently.

"It's done." The future Elsie said as three glowing red cores were brought into the receive stations. "Grab one and get to the deposit station, we'll have to deposit each core one at a time."

"And we might want to hurry!" Banshee-44 said as he pointed to the window to show that it has already caught fire from reentry into Europa's atmosphere.

The three Exos each grab a core and rush across the room. They did their best to avoid Taniks' notice but after the mercenary was pushed back from a blast of green fire from Eris he took notice of the group, specifically the one who killed him multiple times.

"CAYDE!" The mercenary shouted before he blasted Eris away and began to chase the three Exos.

The Exos make it to the deposit station and take notice of Taniks approaching them.

"I'll make the first deposit." Cayde said as he put his core in first and it started to be scanned by the deposit station. "I'll handle Taniks!"

The Exo bounty hunter charges at the towering mercenary who tries to slam down all four of his mechanical fists onto his archenemy.

SLAM!

Taniks' fists only hit the floor as Cayde had rolled to his right and drew out his hand cannon and began firing at the 12 ft tall Eliksni mercenary.

BANG!

BANG!

BANG!

The shots are absorbed by Taniks' energy shield. He grunts in annoyance and uses his teleporter to blink a short distance away from Cayde and then he draws out his Shrapnel Launcher and returns fire with it. The two mercenaries kite around the room shooting at each other, with their shots either missing each other or managing to land on their opponent. Eventually Cayde uses his Semblance to create three fire daggers that he uses to throw at Taniks, the Eliksni dodges two of them but the third manages to hit him. The fire dagger explodes and makes Taniks stagger for a bit with his absorption shield flaring from the attack.

The two rivals lock eyes for a bit with silence being the only thing in the room.

"Nuclear descent protocol deactivated.

Orbital collision remains imminent."

The voice of the Crypt A.I. rings out in the room catching the two enemies off guard. Cayde looks to see that Banshee and Elsie have regrouped with the others.

"Cayde we have to get out of here!" Elsie said to the Hunter as she inputted a command into a nearby access panel causing a door in the center of the floor to open up with her and the others jumping down it. "Follow us!"

Cayde quickly grabs a flashbang grenade from his bandolier and throws it at Taniks' face.

BANG!

The grenade goes off and Taniks is left disoriented as Cayde-6 jumps down the shaft to follow the others. He uses his thruster pack to slow his descent and once he makes it to the new level, he sees the others going down a hall and Elsie grabbing what looks like a medical kit from a wall.

"There's a safe room we can lock ourselves in to survive the Morningstar's reentry into Europa!" Elsie explained as she ran down the hall. "Hurry!"

"I'm hurrying!" Cayde responded as he began to run down the hall.

When he was halfway through the others hade made it into the safe and then-

CRASH!

He glances back to see that Taniks had jumped down the shaft and began to chase him and the others.

"Close the blast doors now!" Cayde shouted to the group who did exactly what he told them to.

If his body was still human, then his heart would be beating at a fast pace. He could practically feel Taniks getting closer to him, and Cayde's own breathing was becoming heavy and fast with panic. Either Taniks gets him before he could reach the safe room, or he's not fast enough and the doors close before he can reach them.

'Only one shot.' Cayde thought to himself as he saw doors getting closer to closing.

Cayde lunges forward and activates his thruster pack for an extra boost that propels him through the doors before they fully close. He lands on his side with Drifter and Banshee helping him up as the blast doors finish closing.

BANG!

BANG!

BANG!

The group turns to the door after hearing three loud knocks and then a howl of anger behind it, all courtesy of Taniks, the Scarred.

"This is the station's only safe room." Elsie says to the group. "He'll need a miracle to survive the crash."

"Fingers crossed he doesn't make it." Cayde says grimly.

The group remains quiet as they feel the station begin to violently shake from the reentry.

"Now what?" Ana asked her sister's future self.

Elsie-1 only had one thing to say. "Brace for impact."

The shaking became more violent and suddenly everyone was thrown into the air and then they hit the ground hard.

Xxx

Former Gem colony, Cabal Empire territory

5 years ago

The Drifter was a man who always found business with many kinds of people, whether they be respected authority figures, mercenaries, or even some of the galaxy's most wanted. But business with the Cabal Empress? Now there was no way he was going to pass up on a deal like that.

He made his way through the ruined gem buildings lined with shattered gemstones and dead Cabal and Psions. The soldiers wore red uniforms signaling them as Red Legion. From what the Drifter knew from history 90 keltons ago Empress Caiatl's predecessor Dominus Ghaul tried to conquer the Shadow Realm system but were defeated by Vilgax with the Dominus and his best generals dead. Once word had spread the Incurseans figured that the Cabal would be demoralized and launched an invasion of their capital world of Torobatl. How wrong they were.

The planet's forces were rallied by Heir Apparent Caiatl daughter of Ghaul's predecessor Emperor Calus. Calus was a hedonist, a narcissist, and a ruthless Cabal when his wishes were denied. When he had become Emperor of the Cabal he overthrew the corrupt Praetorate that controlled the Legions. Calus had made the Empire better for its people with his hedonistic approach and 'Grow fat from strength,' motto. However, many saw him as weak for his approach to ruling the Empire. Led by then current Primus Ghaul a coup was made to overthrow Calus and Caiatl was one of the conspirators. Calus and his supporters were placed on the planet consumption ship, the Leviathan, and set it on a fixed course to exile them far from the Cabal domain.

Ghaul's death 90 keltons ago gave the Incurseans the idea that they could remove their biggest rivals in galactic conquest but their invasion turned into a massacre for them. Caiatl had led Torobatl's defense and made sure that no Incursean made it out alive. Though the frogs were defeated they still managed to cause damage to the capital. Caiatl was crowned Empress and made her own reforms to the empire. She did away with the tradition of exiling their own soldiers unless they conquered the system they were sent to invade. She gave the Psion race back their freedom and granted them full citizenship in the empire. Caiatl proved herself to be an honorable and pragmatic figure who valued the preservation of her peoples traditions. Though her choice of agreeing to an armistice with the United Stellar Alliance wasn't the most popular, with some of her soldiers deserting and becoming outlaws.

The Drifter didn't care much for politics but he did know something she was after, the location of the one who sent assassins after her. As he made his way through the battlefield he came across three 9'10 ft tall Cabal in blue armor with a squad of Red Legion Legionnaries behind them. The leader of the group wore ornate silver armor with blue in it. The leader had tusks showing that she was female and had orange eyes. In her hand was an ocean jasper gemstone that she then crushed in the palm of her hand once she saw the Drifter.

"You said you have information for me smuggler." Empress Caiatl said to the Drifter.

"Indeed I do your royal tuskiness." The Drifter said casually. "The location of the man who's been trying to kill you for the past 90 keltons.

Caiatl squints her eyes at the Drifter. "You know where my father is?"

"Indeed I do. The Leviathan's stopped in the Large Magellanic Cloud." The Drifter said to the Empress. "I can take you to it's exact location? For the right price of course."

The soldiers present were uneasy of the human's words though Caiatl on the other hand was willing to negotiate.

"Let's talk." The Empress says in response.

Xxx

Present

"Drifter wake up!" Cayde shouted waking up the smuggler.

"Huh…what happened?" Drifter asked after being women up from his memory recollection.

"We fell from orbit is what happened." Ana said as she drank from a vial Elsie gave her.

Drifter looked around the room to see that it was wrecked. Walks were broken, wires and cables were hanging out, and the lights had gone out.

"Oh yeah that's right." Drifter said as Elsie approached him and pulled out a green vial from the medical kit.

"Drink this it'll replenish your Aura." Elsie said as she handed him the vial.

The Drifter drank it and noted the tangy taste that it had.

"Come on we can't stay in here." Banshee said as he slid the doors open. "This place is already unstable."

The group followed him through the doors and made their way through the wreck the station's remains had become. Everywhere they looked they saw dead Eliksni, wrecked Shanks and Servitors, and broken machinery from the Morningstar. As they looked around in the dark they saw light streaming in from a hole in a nearby wall. The group rushes toward it and make their way through it. On the other aide they found themselves in front of the entrance to the Deep Stone Cryot except with wreckage from the space station everywhere.

"It looks cle-" Ana said before she was cur off by a rustle in a nearby pile of junk.

Slowly the group approaches it with their weapons ready. As they got close to the pile they see something burst from it, or rather someone. It was Taniks but he was in great pain. The group saw that his legs were gone and several metal bars had been lodged into his chest. On his back wires had been attached to him and they lead to a broken Heavy Shank in the pile of junk.

"Looks like he tried fusing himself with that Heavy Shank." Drifter said motioning to Taniks and the Shank. "Looks like he didn't finish in time but it helped him survive the crash."

"Now the new question remains." Eris said as she looked at the crippled Eliksni. "What is to be done with Taniks?"

"Easy." Cayde says darkly as he activates his Semblance and points his hand cannon at Taniks. "Say goodnight Gracie."

He fires three molten fire shots at the downed mercenary causing what remained of his organic body to be incinerated and turning his cybernetics into molten slag.

"Welp, that solves that problem." Drifter said as he clapped his hands together. "So what now? We done here?"

"First we need to check on the Gem of Creation." Elsie explained. "And then-"

"Guys, we might have another problem." Ana said as she pointed up at the sky.

The Ketch they saw by the Morningstar was on approach with the Crypt. Ready to strike.

"Oh that's right we forgot about that Ketch." Cayde said upon realization.

BOOM!

Suddenly the Ketch is destroyed by a group of unknown red colored fighters flying in the air.

"I'm not complaining." Banshee said.

The fighters fly overhead with a ship that was a little bigger and colored black lands in front of the group. A group of soldiers in red uniforms exists the ship with a man in a black uniform and red goggles approaches the raid team. He takes notice of Cayde-6, Banshee-44 Ana Bray, and Elsie-1 who he knew was still in the psychiatric hospital.

"Would someone mind telling me just what the heck is going on?" Solomon demanded from the group.

The raid team all look at each other with Ana turning her attention to Solomon.

"Do you want the long version or the short?" She asked.

Author's note:

Merry Christmas everyone.