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November 26, 2019 17 mins

In a race against time, Synøve Pan makes her way through the chaos of Atlas Station in an attempt to bring the truth of what happened back to the surface. Everything hangs in the balance, and a force of unimaginable horror stands in her way.

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Episode Transcript

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Speaker 1 (00:01):
Following the production of my art raining. This episode contains
depictions of strong violence, drug use, and sexual coercion. A
second oil rage. I'd barely climbed out of the airlock

well before the proteus suit disgorged me. It opened up
like a great clam and spilled me out onto the
dive room floor. I glanced back just in time to
see the armored shell cave in on itself, melting back
down the well as a column of slime, warning security breach,

Please proceed to the nearest, coated in a patina of
alien fluid. I rose to a crouch and marked the
rhythmic blinking of alarm strobes, the smell of blood over
by a cluster of lockers, The dive boots of a
corpse poked out from behind an overturned bench, A smashed

graph ink pro lay by its side. Hoffman, I rose
to my feet and took a cautious step forward. The
severity of his wounds made me grimace. Blood and hemorrhaged
brain tissue pooled beneath his shattered skull. A burn in

the shape of a human hand branded his upper face
and forehead. It wasn't the work of Triton or neread.
It could only be the other, the void walker, the
thing that wore veils consciousness as a mask. I studied

his frozen expression, his eyes brimmed with vacancy. Did the
thing wear Hoffman? Now, I wondered? Did it? Rushed aboard
a departing sub with his face his communit his we
have a story for you. What had happened here? While

I hunted for Bouklan and apathists tested their handiwork something
from the outside, something nearly mythic, even to the Triton's
lashed out at both surface and deep. In doing so,
it framed me and, by extension, dux itself. My escape

only cemented the presumption of guilt. What version of the
truth would it bring to the surface? In Hoffmann's guise,
I could guess its ends might be uncertain, The methodology
was clear, So division set uncertain allies against each other.

What better place than here? I checked the lockers and
found a dive knife. It wasn't engineered for zero spin throwing.
It didn't sharpen at my touch, but it would do
the job against all but one. I stepped over Hoffman's
body and left him for the inevitable clean up crew.

The room's only door unlocked and slid into the wall.
At my approach, triggered by Jack's communit, a vacant corridor
opened up before me. Blinking emergency lights played off the
naked pipes and wires. I knew what I needed to do.
I knew what Veil would have done. I had to

bring the truth back to the surface. It might be enough.
I wormed my way through the vacant halls. I followed
the blood past body after body, Land spoke and recombined
the like dismembered with unmistakable precision, though none of them

bore the Burnemark Hoffman head. They slumped against walls and portholes,
all reduced to the same lifeless meat. I felt the
tug of the black drug's absence as I passed the
first crew cabin cluster. I wondered if they'd had time
to search my room, where there's still two vials of

Basilisk tucked away in my bag, an umber black blade
wrapped in a spare shirt. If I could just tighten
my will and reactions, upgrade my weaponry, then a head
a hatch flew open, and two Youdex security guards slumped
out into the hall, entangled in sensual embrace, hands pawing, searching, lips, frothing.

They hit the opposite wall and slid down to the floor.
Fetis emerged behind them. I ducked down a converging hall
and froze against the bulkhead. I readied the knife in
one trembling hand. Now I didn't have to see to

know good. My breathing is too loud. My heart, I
knew she'd hear me, reach out to my mind before
I could strike. I was no match, not like this.
Closer and closer. Another door rolled open. When it closed,

I moved. I leaped over the two doomed guards as
they chewed into each other's faces, moaning with the cross
wired pleasure of mutilation, eyes rolling back like something from
the poles of Hell. I didn't look at that. Yeah,

m hmmm, Ladies and gentlemen, Peter Booklem, thank you, thank you.

I know you've heard a lot of great speakers today.
You've heard a lot of amazing ideas about how we
can change course, how we can harness the forces of
innovation for a better world, for brighter tomorrow. And no,
I don't mean deeper oil wells. I don't even mean hydrothermal,
which I realized is something of us prize coming from me.

I do believe that's the future of energy. It sustained
the Triton's from millennia, and it can do the same
for all of us. But now what I want to
suggest to you goes beyond even benign exploitation of our
planet's resources. Today, I want to talk to you about
the science of despeciation, the necessary process by which two

species become one. Depis the horrible transt. They'll call me

through our word later tomorrow. Want this silent later written
a word on traditional specifical well Satis patrols persons around yan.

I cut through the bazaar. Its empty alleyways, wet from
the rain of sprinklers, A burned out fry shop and
a looted storefront told me all I needed to know.
A worker lay in two halves beside a glitching tero machine.
Empress and scepter flashed across the blood splattered screen. I

pushed on through the alley of saints and oceanic gods,
their altars washed in the blood of their last attendance.
The triton shaped bust of mother hydra lay toppled and
shattered across the grated floor. There was still no theetis
to block my path, but she knew where I'd go.

If not my quarters, then the subs I sprinted the
remaining lengths of hallway, ignoring my wound, more blood, more
abandoned gear, and baggage, to mark an increasingly frenzied evacuation
footprints in the gore A technician clutching a dive knife.

There's spinal column laid bare. Please proceed to the nearest
evacuation hub. I reached the docking station module. The door
rolled aside to grant me entrance, and there it was
one remaining docked vessel, the very Gladious class sub I'd
arrived on, and no fetis. I ran across the cargo bay,

weaving among its stacked and sordid crates shipments from the
surface compressed garbage tubes bound for return. I shot into
the Gladious sub's open cargo bay and slammed the manual
switch to close it behind me. Please, great community, The

great door rolled into place, and I caught one last
glimpse of Atlas station alarm lights gleaming in trails of blood,
and just a hint of movements before the door blocked
my view and the locking bolts shot home. A pale pursuer.
Welcome passengers are Hanka Jacks. I stalked across the empty

cargo hold to the crew module. Even without my own community,
the automated system would recognize Jacksons and follow evacuation protocol. Okay.
I opened the door and saw two blood smeared communits
on the cot, and she stood beside it. Blonde hair

fell to shoulder length, the jeans and jacket of a
surface pedestrian now soaked in gore. She held one human
arm out to the side, blood still dripping from the fingertips.
My knife hand tensed the muscle, memory of training and instinct.

It would have given me a chance against any other
foe veil. She turned casually, as if this was but
a social call. She regarded me with those same eyes,
flawlessly human eyes. I know you're in there, I know

you're more than just a mask. We can stop this.
Why would we stop it? It wants us at war
with each other, at war with ourselves, wants only silent death,
no life across a billion world, silence in the mind veil. Tabitha,

you came for the truth, a message of change. Her
face twitched, her eyes trembled. I want to try it. I.
Her flesh loosened like an unraveling shroud, dry membranous wings

of indeterminable shape, shredded her blood soaked clothes, and fanned
the stagnant air of tune and all ruin. Within the
whirlwind of flesh, I caught the scarcest glimpse of its
true form, the thing that lurked beneath the layers of semblance,

and enacted it's inhuman will. It's because your mind's had
a turning place. The eyes were still veils, but the
swirling tissue was already reforming in the likeness of a
woman's bloodied and bruised rows of horizontal black bars tattooed

over scalp, forehead and throat the one who would deliver
its message. You're stronger than this thing. You're the one
who believes. I know you can resist. She moved, and
I felt the burn of her palm against my forehead.

And history is a spiral m m m M. The

second oil age was produced by Robert Lamb Alex William
Slowen's Vogel Bomb and Josh Than. This episode featured on
Joe Masters as SnO Khan, Lauren vogelbaumb as Tabotha Veil,
Helen Lorn as Thetis, and Nicholas Dacosti as Peter Gluckman,
supporting voice work by Gina Rakii and Josh Clark intro outro,

and supporting music created by a weird in Module. Learn
more at Module dot dom camp dot com. Mm HM

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