Steampunk Empires

North to the Arctic
November 15, 2012

You must go to Germany. You will be an attache to the consulate. Taking the first available means to Germany I was introduced to the ambassador who was concerning himself with the dirigible service. The latest ship was being prepared for a trip to the Arctic. Naturally, I was to be given the assignment of being the English Empire’s representative on this voyage. What experience do I have with the chill of the Arctic I inquired? Do as you are told. So I met with the captain and officers of the airship and was allowed to attend the current officer’s meeting. Upon arrival at the meeting three separate duels ensued.

At the rapid completion of the duels, one which was so quick the end was almost immediately followed from the start. We then proceeded to visit the ship to be settled in. The rapid duel winner was assigned an officer position to the airship complement. Another russian was also newly upon the airship, and I was myself to be an observer with no assigned rank. We were issued clothing and I noticed the enhanced rifles and pistols of an officer to whom I asked about how I might obtain my own version. These were promised me upon the departure in the following morning. We recieved our clothing issue which was flight leathers and winter gear and then were assigned bunks. The russian is to be my ward mate. A special scarf with the name of the airship was presented and to be worn at the celebration that was to happen that very day.

The party began at the captain’s residence and I engaged the captain in engineering discourse for most of the night. The russian played gambling games with the quartermaster. And the Japanese officer who was now ranked on the airship was in attendance and engaged Bismark himself. Speaking and drinking into the night I endeared myself with our dear captain who was impressed with my engineering capability. We digressed from engineering into hunting and its merits. Following the hunting chat we moved into equine selection and preferences. Upon tiring and succumbing to his weariness the captain departed the group. I moved to observe the continuing games. The Japanese officer had finished with Bismark and had done some small talk with the other officers at the party. The game of quartermaster and russian was also completed. The Japanese officer then played into the night against the russian. I observed and then upon the tables closing up went to my room to sleep. I was to arrive at dawn upon the airship.

Smoke on the Horizon
November 16, 2012

Finding myself on the deck of the ship I sought the engineer and asked for boiler duty as the most likely bottom most engineering position on the ship. I was directed to the boiler room and given coveralls for wear. I changed and made myself useful in the boiler room. The flight was to take 2 weeks. I attempted to bond with my ward mate and was extremely busy in all training for artic survival, learning prussian, fire arm and sabre training, and of course boiler room assistance. For my own gratification I attempted to master the newly given fire arms. In this manner the first week passed. I was then asked to select another focus of engineering having proved I could now be of use in the boiler room. I selected Steam Engine mechanics and proceeded to learn all I could on that subject here. In the midst of all this training the weather was good, and no mishaps were noticed. I began to understand the nature of being an air ship man now.

Upon arrival on the North Pole, we were lowered from the sky and were fastened to the ice. The scientists and equipment were moved to the snow, and my general quarters assignment of protecting the scientists was in effect. The Japanese officer, the russian, and other security members of the airship were assigned to a perimeter sweep 2 miles out from the established tents and secured ship. The sweep began with the magic user doing something to our gear which became almost comfortable in this frigid weather and told the spell would last 72 hours during which we had 24 hours to make the perimeter sweep.

Half of the sweep was completed when I sighted smoke directly away from camp on the horizon. I looked through my telescope and determined the smoke was most likely coal based. We then returned directly to camp to inform the Commander who was captain of the ship. As we returned to the ship, the smoke was dissipating.

Bristling Battleship Approaches
November 29, 2012

After completing the journey back to camp, we announced the discovery to our commander. We are now to investigate in earnest. We proceed carefully towards the smoke which has begun to increase dutifully. After some time as we approach within a mile, we come upon a perimeter alarm system. Above the ice by a narrow margin, is suspended a string which extends into the distance with a large circumference. We mark the location with pitons and step over the magically enhanced suspension string and proceed inwards. I glimpse a shiny object in the far distance near the source of smoke. After a short while we proceed further toward the smoke. Our danger senses are prickled and we immediately return outside the string circle near the pitons. After the danger immediately halts, we carefully retrace out path towards the smoke again. We are joined by a member of the crew and head back towards the smoke. As we get closer, the shiny object is determined to be a periscope scanning an area in a wide arc. Determining the edge of the arc, we head to that edge and proceed inward again. We come along the edge of scanning and find the source of the smoke which is a chimney with the smoke deflector in a poor state.

Suddenly a hatch begins to unscrew near the group of four. We immediately become prone on the ground and I ready my pistol at close quarters. The hatch falls to the side and a fuzzy human of fox type emerges from the ground and begins to become alarmed drawing a pistol. He is quickly struck in the back with a knife and halts the pistol draw. The bear begins to wrestle him to the ground. At the same time our dragon Japanese officer replaces the hatch and begins to secure it again down on the hole. The new officer who joined the group fastens the hatch securely with a piton. The odor of fuse is detected then the sound of its burning. The bear knocks the fox unconscious and we begin to depart quickly the way we came. The hatch bursts open and falls on the ground and grenades are scattered from the hole about the surface. We are rapidly departing and are having pursuit begun by panda bears.

We are making good speed and gunfire from the pandas is missing us and we are distancing to the west of the string circle and beyond. We eventually begin traversing in the sky from a spell cast by the bear. Upon coming back down to earth and now out of sight of our pursuers, we change from westerly flight and head to camp.

The captured fox is bound and has his wound attended to. The captain begins the interrogation after commanding the scientists to gather equipment for quick immediate departure. The fox is Chinese and claims to be a member of STAR (Sabotage, Terrorism, Assassination, and Revenge) which hopes to change the control of Empires and end the current established country controls of expansion and domination. There are several bases and this one is about 2 miles in diameter under the ice. Plenty of supply has been established and roughly 2 thousand people are here with 1 thousand military and supporting members. There are large guns and ammo that brought down the last ship from Britain here about a year ago. The base was begun about 14 months ago. Several supply ships from various empires come to the base on an irregular basis including the Tirpitz Battle Airship and the British Hood naval ship which comes by sea and sends dog sled teams to bring supplies and equipment to this base. There are other bases in the world the main one in the Pacific Ocean and one in Africa and continental USA.

After the scientists board our ship a warning from above announces that the Tirpitz is closing on our location. We then board the airship and battle stations is called. I gather my wits about me and direct the scientists to keep the barriers down and prepare for combat. The bear is about some sorcery and the dragon officer is preparing the new rocket weaponry.

Terpitz Terminated and Return to Germany
December 12, 2012

Combat ensues and the rockets give a heavy amount of incendiary damage with the cannons keeping our enemies damage parties active. We are taking no damage as we avoid the effective range of the battleship. Then the battleship fails to extinguish a large amount of fanned flames and falls to the ground in massive explosions. We collect the ship’s bell and the captains log where we determine much false information has been written with a pair of flags. One we determine is of our new foe S.T.A.R. and the other the German flag for the ship. We then attempt to collect some more of the science equipment still on the ground. We spy the advance scouts of our foe, and prepare to bomb the infantry forces using our ship. As we collect equipment for 45 minutes the foe is gathering in a column on our location. We arise and attempt to drop bombs to damage this gathered infantry to little effect as they scatter once we are airborne above them. We then return to the science site and collect the remaining supplies. The infantry advances on our location and we use our artillery and gather a storm to disperse them as they flee after being fired upon with great effect. We then climb high into the sky and drop the remaining bombs from our maximum height while anti-airship explosions occur not far beneath us, our bombs hit the ice above the power source beneath the ice, but we are not sure if any lasting damage is made.

Then we depart to Germany. We make rapid time and arrive in record 12 days. Then we are hurried to the palace to share the events with the chancellor. The meeting takes place and much is discussed. Dayne agrees to let the chancellor handle the information to be delivered to England and hands over documents for that purpose. Dayne still will need to deliver his report to the embassy here in Germany. The other officers have concurred with the events and the reports given and provided their insights. All officers from the respective countries involved are tasked to remain on the airship to serve as officers and eliminate the S.T.A.R. base located somewhere on the America’s colonied continent.