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 Renewed Determination

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Zoe

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Location : Nacogdoches, TX

PostSubject: Renewed Determination   Mon 27 Oct 2014, 22:35

"Damn it, Zoe!"

The dark-haired Black Fury snarled at the clumsy child, who had just tripped and spilled her soup on the cabin floor. She threw a dirty rag at the girl and gestured furiously at the floor.

"Clean it up, you stupid child!"

Zoe's eyes, wide with fear, began to well with tears as she dropped to her hands and knees and began sopping up the mess.

"Sorry, mama," the little girl whimpered.

Agatha Kostas' hands curled into fists, but she kept her back to her daughter as she drew in a deep breath. When Zoe finished cleaning the floor, she brought the rag to her mother, still sniffling through her tears.

"Here, mama," Zoe whispered as she lifted the near empty bowl and rag toward her mother.

Agatha turned quickly, startling the girl, who spilled what was left in the bowl on her mother's skirt. A stream of curses that Zoe was all too familiar with flowed from the woman's mouth as she backhanded the child across the face. Zoe fell to the floor, scrambled to her feet, and ran for the door.

"Go ahead! And don't come back this time, you pathetic excuse for a Garou!"

Her mother's words rang out into the field as Zoe darted for the Angelina River. As she drew closer to the river, she heard the cackling of little girls and their echoing words.

Better to be an orphan than to live with a widowed parent who hates you...hates you...hates you...

Zoe awoke with a start behind the altar of the Masonic lodge in Zavala. Her brothers had begun to make preparations for her departure, but she must have fallen asleep while she was trying to disconnect the telegraph machine.

She gave her head a few good shakes to clear the dream away. She had no reason to believe anything those girls had ever said, yet so much of it they already knew to be true. There was only one way Zoe would know for sure how her mother really felt about her.

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Zoe

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PostSubject: Re: Renewed Determination   Wed 29 Oct 2014, 12:31

In the meantime Zoe set to work analyzing the machine in order to determine the best way to transport it. She certainly did not wish to damage it and hoped that her hasty wire cutting had not done irreparable harm. The world faded away as the Iron Rider toyed with the machine. It appealed to her on both a technological and spiritual level. Not that it was all that fascinating for a piece of technology to have spiritual components or that long-distance communication was anything new to the Iron Riders, but it was certainly new to the humans.

"O'Toole would love to get his hands on this."

Zoe felt nearly confident enough to begin disassembling the machine, but she decided it best to consult their pillbug friend before doing so. It was late morning, but she decided to take a chance at stepping into the Umbra to speak with the servant of cockroach.
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PostSubject: Re: Renewed Determination   Wed 29 Oct 2014, 15:05

As Zoe crossed the town square, she also passed into the penumbra. The whirling, whispering clouds of day circled around her, and in them she could occasionally see the passing of leech-like bane larvae, squirming through the miasma. Strangely, she wasn't bitten, and they seemed to ignore her, all of them rushing past and getting lost in the gloom.

The Iron Rider approached the metal structure that was the Masonic Lodge, its surface pitted and scored with corruption. Walking inside provided no relief from the wind, and Zoe wondered where the unnatural breeze was coming from. Ahead lay the gleaming telegraph machine, the contraption appearing much in the umbra as it did in the physical world. Metal Noise was no where in sight.

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PostSubject: Re: Renewed Determination   Wed 29 Oct 2014, 21:38

Zoe narrowed her eyes as she searched around the machine for Metal Noise. Her first thoughts were annoyed at his absence then quickly shifted to fear for his safety. The exceedingly bizarre penumbral atmosphere intoxicated her curiosity. She was desperate to know where the strange wind was coming from and why the banes seemed to pay her no attention. She took a few cautious steps in the direction of the wind then stopped and shook her head.

"No, Zoe. No. We've done enough foolish things already since we got to this hell hole. The last thing the pack needs it to have its Theurge gobbled up by the source of this wind because she was stupid enough to go wandering around the penumbra...during the day...alone."

She turned back to the machine and decided she would simply summon Metal Noise and see if he would or could respond. Chanting in the mother tongue flowed from Zoe's lips as she gestured calmly with her arms, willing the spirit to grant her its presence.
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PostSubject: Re: Renewed Determination   Fri 31 Oct 2014, 18:56

The small armored spirit rolled out from behind the bulky telegraph machine and unfurled in front of Zoe, its feelers swaying in the unnatural wind. The rushing in the Iron Rider's ears couldn't quite blot out the Onesong, but it was even more faint and indistinct than it was the night prior.

"Hello Hears-the-Song. Do you require assistance?"

Metal Noise's typically measured speech was rapid, hurried.
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PostSubject: Re: Renewed Determination   Fri 31 Oct 2014, 20:00

Zoe matched the spirit's speedy speech, not wanting to spend more time in the umbra during the day than was necessary.

"Yes. My pack and I wish to depart from this town as soon as possible with this machine in tow, otherwise I would not bother you here during the day. I do not wish to cause this creation any harm as we disassemble, relocate, and reassemble it. Can you help me with that?"

She remembered her conversation with Zas and added. "Could you also tell me more about how the machine works and what it is capable of? There are some among our party who fear the machine may be more dangerous than we realize and believe it may be best to destroy it. What is your connection to the machine and to Morse? Have you been with the device since its creation? Does it work without you?"

She ceased her rapid-fire questioning, looking eagerly at the armored-spirit in anticipation of learning more information about this fascinating piece of technology.
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PostSubject: Re: Renewed Determination   Fri 31 Oct 2014, 20:33

Her first query was met with a burst of rapid beeps and pauses."Disassembly of the telegraph machine? Risky. Extremely risky! You have no example. This is the prototype. With what will you compare the dissolute parts? Will you be able to recreate it successfully? How would you test it? The network is compromised, gone. I do not like this plan."

The arthropod-like spirit seemed to brighten when it addressed her other questions. "I will explain what I know, yes, gladly. The machine functions through magnetism. Also electromagnetism. Both. Atoms and electrons moving in synchronization. The telegraph harnesses these aspects of the Mother, temporarily forcing them to align. Patterns of flux convey coded messages. Surges of power. Needles on dials dancing so that words may be interpreted. Complex, difficult task, but instantaneous. Information spread in a literal flash."

At Zoe's mention of Zas' concerns, Metal Noise's chirps and squelches grew slightly indignant. "Advancement is inevitable, laudable! Do not fear my machine, only its abuse." The wind roared in a sudden raging gale, nearly cutting off the technology spirit. Zoe steadied herself, and as quickly as it began, the ether quieted back down to a constant breeze.

"Morse and the human behind the name I have heard. Nothing more. This machine no longer belongs to him. I myself am... I am..."

"What a strange question. Allow me to parse it. What am I? I am. The machine. Manifest. I am the information potential. The spirit-dream of an adaptive future held in your head and soul! Yes! That is what I am."

"Isn't that exciting?" Metal Noise's appendages fluttered happily.
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PostSubject: Re: Renewed Determination   Fri 31 Oct 2014, 20:57

Zoe held up her hands in mock defense as the spirit chittered on about the hazards of disassembling the machine.

"I apologize. You're correct. We will find a way to transport it safely without removing any of its parts. I am simply so curious to see the inside and to better understand how it works. You speak of things called atoms and electrons. I would like to see these things and how they work together to convey messages!"

The sudden surge in ethereal energy piqued Zoe's interest in the source of the wind, but once again she thought better of exploring the daytime penumbra without her pack.

" I do not fear advancement or your machine. My father creates new technologies, and my tribe welcomes advancement with open arms, though some Garou believe our arms should be crossed a bit more often. Not moving forward is to move backward and there is no benefit in that."

Zoe replayed the spirit's final words in her head a few times, attempting to grasp their full meaning.

"You are the machine? The information potential? You are certainly a servant of Cockroach if that is the case. An adaptive future certainly does sound exciting! But this machine it does not create information, correct? It merely transmits messages from a sender to a receiver. I do not mean to lessen your importance, but you spoke of being the information potential, yet the potential information is only as great as the number of informed users using it."

She paused a moment then added. "What are your hopes and dreams for the future of this machine?"
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