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Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Ted Willis

Another goddamn boat, another predawn goddamn wait before assaulting another goddamn beach. They said this one wasn't going to be a hard target, but hell, the intel bastards said that pretty much every time you landed on a beach. At least this time they were confident enough to not have God's Own Armada of battleships hanging out in the area 'just in case' you needed some support- not that Ted would ever let a destroyer gunner buy his own beer, not after Omaha- or thousands of bombers overhead to completely fail to make his life an easier one. And this time, well, it was... a sideshow, wasn't it? The big one was going down in Germany, or already gone down, kicking in Hitler's door and setting the house on fire. This out here was periphery, but a bullet you stopped in the periphery would kill you just as dead.

Sergeant Willis stands first in line to get in the dinghy, outwardly wholly unaffected by the ocean conditions. "You should have seen," he finally says after a few seconds thought, "How bad the surf was before we landed in France." Reaching up, he scratches his stubble- he hadn't smoked yet this morning, and wouldn't until the job was done. Could never tell who was sniffing for him and would appreciate the help of a note of tobacco. Another long pause, the kind that people tended to fill or assume the worst, and then Ted volunteers, "Wasn't a fun ride. Wasn't fun on the beach either. This will probably be easier than that was." And less than half of them would die within 5 minutes of landing. Probably. That alone would make it 'easier', but Ted didn't much care to elaborate on that in case he started remembering again. After another pause, he gives the other sergeant a nod. "He's right. Check your gear, then have one of us who have landed on a beach in combat go over your things as well. I have enough high explosive to kill everyone here before we know what is happening, so the sergeant will double check me as well." He blinks slowly. "If I am running quickly away from something that might possibly be something we want blown up, assume it is about to blow up and do not be there, quickly. If your gear breaks, especially the radio, sir," he speaks a little slower for the Russian- odd bird but neither his momma nor his drill sergeant raised him to not give an officer all due respect. "I will fix it if it can be fixed before we have a break in combat." He lapses into silence at that, turning back to the ocean and staring fixedly into the night. Hell, the Russian was a lieutenant. Only folks who were lieutenants were either newbies who deserved tolerance or promoted up from the ranks who deserved pity. If he was any good and lucky he wouldn't be a lieutenant long, either way.

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Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

He doesn't turn around. "Big Red One." He says simply, and then, "Omaha." That said about all that needed to be said. He looks up at the sky and then back to the noncombatants and decides to add, "Be sure you know how to cut yourself loose from your pack in case you get off the boat into water taller than you are." Scratching himself, he rechecks that he put the charges and the detonators on different sides of his body, because you could never be too careful.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

"Doubt it," he says to Ronnie. "Omaha was my first combat. Didn't start training until '43." He takes a long drink of his canteen, and then adds, "Spent four weeks in France. Stopped some shrapnel, nothing bad, but while the medics had me they took the chance to pull me because this outfit needed combat experienced engineers. Here I am." With that, he placidly starts counting rations in his pack for the third time. "Personally, I hope we don't find a good goddamn thing, there isn't actually some Nazi secret bunker or redoubt here, and we can all get back of burying every fascist six feet in the ground." By his standards, it was an emotional outburst. Not much of one, though.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

"Who knows," he says to Ronnie after a pause. "You would think they could dig themselves in in a less remote place. I think it is damnably rude." After a few seconds, he nods to one of the Russians. "Not me. I have my submachinegun. It doesn't much do anything beyond a few dozen yards. But then, I should not be fighting much unless things have gone wrong."

When their leader begins speaking, Tim turns his eyes to the British sergeant, keeping his face blank as he talks. Well, he understood the Brits pride. If this was some jaunt into some damned hellhole in, say, central America he would be good and goddamned if anyone but an American were in command, and if the Brits considered this part of the ocean their personal playground- well, Tim didn't see much here worth arguing about it. "When we land," he says quietly, "if things get chaotic, all the advice I can give you is to know your job and do your job. If you are a civilian, your job is to stay alive. The medic's job is to make sure people stay alive. My job is to clear any obstacles and fix anything that breaks. The leader's job is to, uh, lead. If that job is taken care of, worry about everything else you can do." After that little speech, he begins cleaning his weapon in the darkness with long familiarity, waiting for the launch.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

Amiably enough, he keeps quiet on the way around the path. Passing judgment on tactical options was not his Job, and he would be goddamned if he told an infantryman how to fight and a scout how to scout. Instead, he just moves along keeping an eye out and moving with as much care as seemed prudent- which was a lot, the engineer near the back of the first group. On seeing how corroded the hatch was, the engineer was halfway through figuring how many of his precious charges were going to be needed to blow open their ingress when the bulky sailor- was he a sailor? Tim forgot- just wrenched the blasted thing open with his muscles. Giving him a nod and not wasting breath, he moves in and peers into the darkness before a light goes on. Cozy. Bringing his submachinegun up, he murmurs, "Close the hatch behind us. Patrols may check." Another long pause. "Could set a booby trap."

Mukaikubo fucked around with this message at Sep 29, 2016 around 23:16

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

He was, frankly, happy enough to not be needed. He'd been able to see that both of those blast doors would take a chunk of his explosives to open- he could blast both down and give them an entrance, but he'd be pretty light on his charges after that if they found something else that was a priority target. Leaving and finding other alternatives made sense to Tim. While the other American explores on his own, he nods to the Russian. "Sir, I'll help," he says quietly. No sense just standing around letting the grass grow under his feet, and it should be simple enough and something that needed doing.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

A little cold water spray never hurt anyone, and all he needed to do was wade out up to knee height, maybe a few inches deeper. Weren't gonna get hypothermia just from that, and so it was easy to lasso the academics' boat before it left their island and drag it a few yards higher onto the glassy beach. "Sir," he says after considering, "We are not leaving this island until the storm dies down, whether or not our mission finishes before then. I am sure that HQ knows the weather, but I think it'd be a good time to check in once sergeant Thomas comes back up the shaft. Let's get into the dry and I'll double-check that the radio's still working."

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

Seeing the Russian's face as he works the radio, Tim steps in. "Sir, allow me-" before getting out his toolkit and shielding the set from the elements with his body as he levers open the set and begins poking around. After a minute or so, he closes things back up. "The radio is working. Storm may be ruining reception." He offers, stowing his tools in the repair kit with meticulous care.

20:00 Mukaikubo !wild d8
20:00 AchtungBot rolled a (1d8) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 5 9 ) Results: 9

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

After rescuing the boat, he'd returned to the vent intake not minding the weather just yet and feeling like Harry needed to have someone with him. When Yulia delivers the news he nods. "I think that is my cue. We need to keep a few soldiers up here, at least. I'll go down, if you don't object, sergeant?" He looks at their mustachioed leader, gathering his tools and making ready to go join the other American.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

After a somewhat harrowing descent, he wrinkles his nose but otherwise doesn't comment about the smell. He'd smelled worse. Instead, and in lieu of a greeting, he goes over to the tools and begins inspecting them while letting his ears characterize the ambient conditions. Finally, he whispers, "Generators are active and have fuel. Too many things are pulling power. Or some of the generators went down but nobody powered down equipment. It's like brownouts," he finishes, grabbing the cutting gear. Might be able to use that. He also liberates a few of the more mobile tools that look useful but had unaccountably not made it into the standard toolkit. After that break, "Have you found where the generators are? If I get power up, I can get the air intakes and blast doors working," still whispering.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

After a long search, they finally find what he's been looking for, and his reaction to the charnel house in the power station is thinned lips and an unhappy grunt. "There. You see there-" he points. "Explosion went off. Grenade would have done it." He walks a little closer, but fastidiously doesn't get so close as to step in anything. While he feels the unpleasant lurch in his stomach, he's seen just as bad a few times- a line soldier saw some unhealthy things, and while this was really bad, there were many really bad things in the world. "Someone blew up a grenade while they were mostly curled around it. Quick way to commit suicide. Something went wrong here. Mutiny?" He guesses, but soon Tim loses interest and heads over to the machinery. After a few minutes inspection, he adds, "I can fix some of this. Not all. Would get lights and doors and ventilation going again. Should I, or should we try to clear more of the facility in case there are stragglers?"

23:47 Mukaikubo !wild d6+2
23:47 AchtungBot rolled a (1d6+2) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 6 3 ) Results: 6
(to determine size/type of Boom)

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

He regards the others for a few uncomfortable seconds. "If they did not take their ship, where did they go?" He asks. That would be their problem very soon. But not yet. Looking back at the parts of the machinery that are not destroyed, he considers his options for a minute before taking out some of his tools with the air of a samurai about to go to battle. "Ma'am, you're translating. If I ask about what a gauge reads or something, tell me, and if I call out a term in English, try to find something like it on the panel. Sir- you were a tanker, yes? You can help me. And talk with Yulia if she is uncertain. Sergeant, if you do not know about heavy machinery, keep watch and be sure nobody else is behind us with another grenade." That qualifies as the longest speech he's given for a while- maybe months- and afterwards he goes in and starts working while softly humming to himself.

Rolls were a net of a 6 to repair and bring stuff online.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

Before the medic can leave, Tim says diffidently, "Room's well armored, ma'am. You get hit by a ricochet and it's one of us grunts trying to stop the bleeding." On a long look around the command center, he finds himself concurring with the Russian. This was deliberate. Which meant- "Deliberate leaving and enough intact machinery to tempt. Touch nothing until I check for traps," the engineer curtly instructs before beginning to move around the room, using his trained eye to examine all the places where he'd put little surprises for anyone on his tail. In truth, when there had been someone in the vents, Tim only felt a vague relief- there was something living here other than a ghost. He'd been starting to wonder about that. He figured the shotgun blast was a little excessive, but hell, couldn't blame the woman. Something about this place was odd to the point of setting Tim's teeth on edge, but if you shied at every scary thing you'd never get anything done. Once finished with traps, he starts following his more explicity orders and begins surveying both the equipment left intact here and in the radio room as well as make a quick mental list of what he could and couldn't repair.

07:34 Mukaikubo !wild d6+2
07:34 AchtungBot rolled a (1d6+2) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 4 5 ) Results: 5
07:34 Mukaikubo checking for booby traps
07:35 Mukaikubo !wild d8
07:35 AchtungBot rolled a (1d8) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 1 4 ) Results: 4
07:35 Mukaikubo knowledge-engineering to have a look around and see what can be fixed and what the devil it is

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Ted Willis

Ted sets the twenty-odd pound shell aside after pulling its teeth. "No problem, sir. It would have killed me too if it went off." He quickly finishes checking the room, not immediately satisfied that there could only be one trap there- when it turns out to be the case, he says, "Only the one. Nazis rig everything they can with explosives. Seen it a dozen times. This was a rush job," he says philosophically. "If they also failed to cover their tracks, sir, this was probably a very abrupt and unplanned evac. I would recommend letting me check anything interesting before the civilians or soldiers try to use it, though."

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

With an internal sigh, Tim wordlessly hefts his submachine gun and gives the other american a slight nod. poo poo. So there were still some Germans in here. Figured as much. Hopefully it was the one that was too rushed to put a good booby trap down. Not like he could contribute much to the book stuff, and if nothing needed fixing or demolitions he may as well use some of the other things he'd learned in Basic.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

While accompanying the others, he's steadily more irritated at what's going on. This was, to Ted's mind, simple Nazi perversity at work. Nazis, it was well known, were assholes. This entire base was probably just Nazis doing rear end in a top hat things and having things go wrong, as they usually did. Creepy fake dead people, and odd noises- he was still pretty sure that there was some perfectly healthy German down in the bowels of this place masterminding everything. By the time Ted is there with the others and the... thing comes out, Ted's reaction would surprise most of the others.

He cocks his head and stares at it silently for about five seconds, until the door starts to open.

It was horrific, granted. Multiple corpses still moving and fused together. All nightmare stuff, to be sure, but Ted had pretty well burned out entire sections of his ability to feel revolted by the world after D-Day and having to blow up a beach obstacle to let the tanks through while there was still a mortally wounded American behind them. And all the dead, in various states of agony. That'd been a real bad morning. This, some group of Nazis living after death or whatever and flailing? The Nazis probably loving deserved this. Bringing his SMG up, Ted opens up and puts multiple bullets into the thing coming at him, only to see it not be staggered in the least by being hit. After that, he decides it's best to back away quickly. At a run, really.


(Spirit Check)
17:31 Mukaikubo !wild d6-2
17:31 AchtungBot rolled a (1d6-2) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 5 12 ) Results: 12

(Backing away at speed while unloading a full clip into this bugger at RoF 3)
17:33 Mukaikubo !sw d8-2
17:33 AchtungBot rolled a (1d8-2) for Mukaikubo and got ( 2 ) Total: 0
17:33 Mukaikubo !sw d8-2
17:33 AchtungBot rolled a (1d8-2) for Mukaikubo and got ( 7 ) Total: 5
17:33 Mukaikubo !sw d8-2
17:33 AchtungBot rolled a (1d8-2) for Mukaikubo and got ( 3 ) Total: 1
17:33 Mukaikubo !sw d6
17:33 AchtungBot rolled a (1d6) for Mukaikubo and got ( 8 ) Total: 8
17:33 Mukaikubo One hit and one hit with raise, yah?
17:33 Gaist Wild die gets the -2 too, but is still a hit otherwise
17:33 Gaist So wild die jumps in for one of the shots, two shots hit
17:33 Mukaikubo !sw 2d6+1
17:33 AchtungBot rolled a (2d6+1) for Mukaikubo and got ( 2 3 ) Total: 6
17:33 Mukaikubo !sw 2d6+1
17:33 AchtungBot rolled a (2d6+1) for Mukaikubo and got ( 1 4 ) Total: 6

No effect on the target. Moving at speed into the hall.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

Without a word, Tim safes his SMG and nods to the officer. "Let's go, sir, then." He says with startling, if admirable, diffidence about the nightmare trying to hammer its way through the door to destroy them all. He lopes after Irakliy, keeping an eye out for Ambushes.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

The sight of the other monster dead on the ground inspires Tim to... take a small swig of water from his canteen. Hell of a thing. "Nazis," Ted says philosophically, outwardly unbothered by the nightmare around them. "What won't they try to keep themselves from bein' crushed? But yeah, I and others opened up on the other one with our SMGs, it just got angry. Kinda wish I'd brought a bazooka, but maybe the Nazis have some panzerfausts in the armory." He brightens at that, lapsing back into silence and sticking around near the middle of the group looking around calmly while they prepare to leave.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

There's a bounty of heavy armament in the armory. Still, the engineer holds back. Wasn't right for the man with high explosives to be carrying a flame thrower, that just asked for havoc. A better rifle would have been nice, but he was technically not supposed to be fighting in infantry combat, and some of these others were. And he just wasn't fast enough. Watching as the things with higher power than his submachinegun get snatched, Ted nods. Yep. Well, at least it meant he'd have a good reason to stay well behind the fighting line.

Guess I'm taking a grenade.

Mukaikubo fucked around with this message at Oct 8, 2016 around 12:57

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

It always amused Ted, in a vaguely distant kind of way, how invariably Murphy's Law controlled military operations. Anything that could go wrong did, and if there was a hole in your obsessive pre-mission planning and preparation, the universe would find that hole and shoot you through it. It was rather a surprise that the Nazis had made undead fused abominations, sure, but that there was a surprise wasn't a surprise. Only the specifics. Ted's keeping his head quite a bit more readily than some of the others. Couldn't blame anyone for freaking out. Maybe they'd had a good war. For a few seconds, he considers rolling a grenade under the door, but Harry's got the same idea as he did. Went wrong. Of course it did. That's why Ted was standing well out of the frag radius when it blew up. Had to expect the universe to gently caress you over. Still, it argued against him trying the same thing twice, if just so his teammates didn't freak out. His Sten wasn't particularly useful, but it was too close-quarters for high explosives and he didn't have anything better. Taking it out, he aims at the gap, letting the monster get a little bit more exposed and shoe him some areas he could probably call vulnerable before he added to the general clamor. All of this the dour engineer did without any comment.

Aiming

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

Again he shoots. doesn't do much. Maybe aiming did a bit more than just spraying bullets in, Ted didn't know. Others were wounded. He wasn't. He'd just gone along quietly about his business in a professoinal manner in the background. Maybe he hadn't done anything too heroic, but he also hadn't really missed any of the shots he'd taken and he didn't seem to be too badly affected by whatever was going on. "They were Nazis," he offers. "And they are still trying to kill us. The other questions, they don't matter." Safing his submachinegun, he takes another drink from his canteen, eying the vents with some irritation. Hell. Just when they were getting a handle on things. He doesn't quite know if he wants to put the fire out or let the motherfucker burn. He could be persuaded either way, really.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

After a blank look from Ted, he adds, "If the fire gets to it, I sure as hell can't save it." Despite that dour warning, he indeed begins going towards the power room.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

On entering the power station, he simply looks at the equipment for a silent two minutes, eyes roving over the mass of machinery and mentally cataloguing both the damage he could see and the likely damage that he couldn't. After finishing, "I believe I remember the German on the dials. Doctor, if you could, go back to the workshop and get me the tools that-" pausing, he describes the things he thinks he'll need. He starts working even before the good doctor returns, since there were some things that didn't need any special extra hardware for him to fix. "The German tried to sabotage this," he says, getting things exactly wrong but with little likelihood of ever knowing it. "They still have wits. Not much, or he could have done a better job." That is is sole comment as he works, until after a while he stands up and starts walking unhurriedly to the door. Once getting there, he says, "At least two hours. Maybe twice that. To do more would take a full teardown and rebuild, and I am not sure that would help. It's stable. Might last to midday at least." Ted keeps walking, intending to go report their new timeline and see what progress was being made with firefighting since that could easily invalidate his work here.

06:40 Mukaikubo !wild d8
06:40 AchtungBot rolled a (1d8) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 14 4 ) Results: 14

We got four hours.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

The books he doesn't care about, though he listens to the civilians going various degrees of excited with polite bemusement. Well, if the higher ups wanted this stuff, that was fine. Probably it'd be good for the eggheads to figure out how those Nazi things were made. Might make better weapons against 'em, though the flamethrower and rifles probably'd do. When they approach the sub, though, Ted follows along mostly behind people looking at things, drawing his own conclusions. "Not using the shells as bullets," Ted says flatly. "Rewire the fuses, shells make a bomb-" he pauses, waiting to see if the light of recognition bloomed in anyone's eyes for a few seconds too long before finishing, "-like the Nazi trap I disarmed." With a shrug, he lets others go in ahead for now, not inclined to take point. Mama Willis raised a soldier who did his job, not one who had fits of suicidal recklessness.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

This time, even the dour engineer's a bit taken aback. Somehow, the mound of corpses was just so bizarre it almost didn't faze him at all, but someone this... relatively... human still moving around and trying to kill the Russian froze him in his tracks.

For... oh, four seconds.

Then, quickly figuring the situation, he snaps his submachinegun up and tries to get a bearing on the Nazi's head, but others pull poor Dmitriy away before he can take the risky shot.

aim

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

The engineer's attention is quickly grabbed by the box on the wall. Stepping past Dmitriy and over the dead Nazi, he's beside it in seconds, studying it carefully, checking connections to the rest of the ship, and whistling. "Sergeant, sir," he says, "This is a navigation system. It isn't standard. They tried to break it enough to make it look unremarkable. I think it's how they get to where they go past here," he says simply. "I need a few hours to get it out. Power should hold out that long. Permission to begin cutting it free?" That seemed to cover all the bases, really, though he's already fumbling for tools.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

After a bit of thought, he'd decided that while time might run short with power, they had no end of people with guns to sweep the submarine. Still, instructions were instructions. Just meant Ted would have to rush a bit more when he was allowed to do his job. Once that comes (blessedly fast, since the submarine wasn't very big), the first thing he does is goes to fetch the cutting torches. He'd decided, while going around the submarine, that it was just too risky to try to precisely sever the box from the wall. It'd be a lot more straightforward and less likely to damage whatever secret Nazi wonder technology was in there if he cut out a small chunk of the wall that the box happened to be mounted on. And so, for the next few hours, Ted very carefully and precisely used cutting torches and patience to work a square foot or so of the control room's wall free. Once he'd gotten that separated, it was a lot easier to see power connections and other connections to the submarine's systems, and separate those at a designed junction instead of hacking at it willy-nilly. It looked a little odd for the engineer to be carrying a chunk of slightly warped and damaged metal with a box on it and some wires carefully coiled on top, but the engineer knew he'd found something worth finding and that the others with the fleet would probably be able to figure out (if not how it worked) how to use it. Probably a second way into wherever the next Nazi base was. Maybe it was a prototype U-boat system for more than just this, and figuring it out would let Allied planes and ships finish pasting hell out of the remnants of the Kriegsmarine. Never could tell. Between that, not losing his head, helping save the second boat, getting the base's systems up and running twice and also saving everyone from an explosive booby trap, Ted was pretty satisfied with how he'd performed this mission. Hadn't even gotten scratched. Some missions were just blessed.

Keeping mostly to himself on the way back, he doesn't succumb to the usual tendency of an engineer with a new gadget to tinker with it. He doesn't even try to open it to see what's inside. Doing that outside the proper facilities could damage something delicate. Might even be a small thermite charge inside to melt stuff- though he hadn't found one, having more experts to back him up and spread the blame wasn't at all a bad idea. After a successful mission, the last thing you wanted was to drop the ball when you were about to score.

They're separated pretty rapidly. Standard procedure, make sure everyone says the same thing, get rid of any pressure to say something inaccurate. Ted wouldn't have anyway, but what the hell, you never went far wrong by following the Book and this was by the Book. In a calm tone, Ted narrated all the events of the mission with dry, precise terms. The interrogators (sorry, 'mission debriefing intelligence specialists') were openly incredulous a few times at what he was saying, implying he'd been hallucinating. Fine. They would think that until they compared notes with the others! Ted just looked at them in the eye for an unsettling ten or so seconds, and then repeated his description of the Nazis they'd killed. Ted didn't figure he or the team had anyone to be ashamed of. As expected, the navigation system got taken from him almost immediately, and Ted doubted he'd hear much of the specifics of what it actually was and maybe not even hear if it'd even mattered. He was just a grunt without need to know of these kinds of things. Ted understood, he'd do things the same way. At the end, not believing some of the things he'd said or maybe just a bit unsettled by the engineer's calmness when talking about eldritch nightmares, he's debriefed by a second pair of people who are a bit more aggressive and confrontational... but Ted just repeats himself with very little emotion showing. He'd also been critical of the mission as a whole in a very mild way, suggesting that bringing the civilians in with the soldiers was a mistake due to forcing them to split their guns to keep noncombatants alive- a purely military op to secure the base, followed by civilians afterwards, would have been better. Still, he's not critical of any single person, because you never snitched out people you'd fought beside. By the same token, he didn't go out of his way to praise anyone, just drily talking about what had actually happened and figuring that'd be enough. It was for officers to do all that stuff. Officers usually got most of the medals, too. Just how it worked. Eventually, they let him go.

Ted promptly takes a short hot shower aboardship, eats a small meal, and then goes to sleep without talking to anyone else. As far as he was concerned, this was just another good day's work. So the Nazis were trying to do more technological things, and had found something else? That was just fine. Send a platoon of those dead-ish Nazis to flail at a platoon of Shermans. Ted'd bet on the Shermans. Just one more spasm from a dying country, and all he really felt was a vague resentment that the Nazis were doing things like this to make people like Ted keep working longer than they should. Should just lay down and die, they should, and not get back up after they did.


07:55 AFKaikubo !wild d8
07:55 AchtungBot rolled a (1d8) with wild die for AFKaikubo and got ( 4 3 ) Results: 4
Nazi submarine navigational gadget salvaged. Ted accumulated no dementia and as such needs not roll.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

There was a Russian word that Ted would use a lot if he only knew it. Nichevo. Literally, it meant something like nothing, or unimportant, but there was a shading of meaning that wasn't easy to translate directly into English. The closest you could get was "It can't be helped", or "There's nothing to be done about it", with strong emotional overtunes of futility. The harvest was bad? Nichevo. Another purge? Nichevo. Ten feet of snow fell overnight? Nichevo. All you could do was all you could do, and let the whims of fate and chance do what they'd do. Nichevo. In that, Ted was more Russian in his outlook than most Americans, though neither he nor, honestly, most Russians would ever recognize or understand it.

After waking up from twelve hours sleep, and having missed most of the 'decompression' festivities, Ted found himself repeating his story to a psychiatrist who'd become a little worried by his debriefing. They didn't pull him out of the line for combat fatigue, so Ted figured he'd passed or they'd decided to use him until he broke. Which was it? Nichevo. Not much later, he got notified by some American officer he'd never met that he was getting a medal. Bronze Star. Great! Wasn't any more money in his pocket, wasn't a quicker trip home, wasn't gonna get officers to salute him instead of vice versa. If Ted valued it at all, it was for the abstract thought that his teammates had neither ignored nor lied about what he'd done on the island. That was about all the time he had for medals, though. Usually you only got the good ones when you were dead or well-connected, and that's how the world was. Nichevo.

Going about his duties as backup for the base's engineering crew, Ted adapts to noncombat, base life without any apparent difficulty letting one duty shift pass into a sleeping shift and again, the routine of war familiar and vaguely comforting. He knows it won't last. The United States had not ferried him here to have him comfortable in a base when he had expertise that could be exploited for combat engineering duties. There were plenty of mechanics who barely knew how to shoot a gun or lob a grenade that the ones that could do all that and also blow a bridge to hell were in demand. That tended to mean Ted and people like him got ground down by fighting and had to be replaced a lot more than people who were, notionally, less valuable to the war effort- nichevo. His suspicions were confirmed on being told that yes, the map and the navigation system pointed to a Nazi base in Antarctica, and that they were going to go help tear it down. Ted just nods once. He'd figured. The Nazis were so scared of dying they were coming up with ways they could keep fighting after being killed- there wasn't any way they were going to do anything but find as many redoubts as they could, prolong the inevitable and peevishly make the world bleed as much as possible to end them.

By the time Ted trundles on a plane (he'd done so a few times before, but never thought much of it as a pleasant mode of transportation) all bundled up and squared away with some gear, the American engineer's a little interested in what's to happen. But only a little. The mystery of a locked briefcase, a carrier he hadn't heard of... these things were all quite curious even for someone with little curiosity. Still, the academics (and of course, despite his polite objection, they were still lashed to noncombatants in a probable combat zone. Nichevo-) pore over the papers, seemingly fascinated. Ted watches them for signs of shock or horror. Figured they were going to be playing amateur briefers, and also figured that he'd have to look at a few himself to see if they had anything militarily relevant that a civilian might miss. Never could tell. That apart, he leans back against the plane as the buzzing drone makes it hard to hear much of anything and shuts his eyes. Not to nap, but just... to wait.

Buying BRAVE and increasing Notice (to d6) and knowledge demolitions (to d8). Sheet updated in recruit thread.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

All throughout the breathless reading of various files, Ted continues relaxing up against the wall of the buzzing cargo plane. He doesn't react outwardly to any of the revelations as they're being discussed, seemingly unperturbed by the revelation of how deep the pile of poo poo they've landed in is. So all of this was because people couldn't keep their noses out of some... little green men and their frozen city in the middle of the most useless part of the world. That seemed about right. While Nazis were assholes, so were most people. It was just that the Nazis went above and beyond. And now they had to clean up the mess. Everything else was kind of secondary, except the bit where the little green men apparently were armored against small caliber fire. Well, his carbine hadn't been much use on the island, why expect it to be worth anything in Antarctica? ...maybe he should requisition one of those bazookas. High caliber weapons or explosives were going to be in high demand, and he'd never trained with heavy machine guns while he had trained with explosives. So at least that was clear. Settled and content to have A Plan, Ted relaxed the rest of the way into the carrier.

While he'd heard rumors about this kind of ship- no matter how secretive, whispers always got around- he hadn't known how big it was. It was pretty bluntly clear that nobody'd be needing this to put paid to the Germans in Europe or the Japanese anywhere, so Ted figured the brass saw this Antarctic campaign as the last chance to get some value from their investment in a whacking huge aircraft carrier. Probably overkill, Ted figured, but it'd be good press while the navy and army were fighting like cats in a sack for money after the war. Yet another thing that didn't count as His Problem. As they debark from the plane, Ted doesn't need anyone to tell him to keep his trap shut about classified info. In fact, with just one look around, he stays quiet and self-contained. May as well treasure the peace while it lasted.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

He'd kept silent through the briefing, figuring it wasn't his place as a mere sergeant to mouth off to his superiors about the mistakes he thought they were making. Not quite fitting. The others seem happy enough to talk all about their experiences, and he saw nothing to add; nor did he have any screamingly original thoughts about the mad 'intelligence' they'd been handed. Their own briefing was little better, though he absorbed what details he could of the coastal fortifications with a jaded, experienced eye and nodded a little when prodded about bringing more explosives. Still not a patch on the Atlantic Wall, but up there he was part of the biggest military operation in history. It evened out.

As everything goes to hell, he says quietly, "Wait." After a pause, he adds, "We should bring the briefcase somewhere safe and not into danger. This ship has a trained damage control staff. It's their job to fix the ship. Our job is to take care of the intel."

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

"Yes, ma'am," he says politely to Yulia, "But sailing ships were wood."

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

Sabotage was an ugly, ugly word, and Ted wasn't much enthused about being outspoken either for or against the possibility. He knew drat well that sometimes complex machinery acted like it had a mind of its own, and would turn in your hand and try to bite you. For a prototype ship to nearly blow itself to pieces wasn't out of his realm of belief. Still, it was mighty chancy timing, and if the others felt like they had evidence of a saboteur Ted wasn't going to call them wrong. Neither, though, would he stick his neck out to help them, even if he does take the opportunity to draw a pistol from the armory just to feel a little less naked on board the notionally allied-controlled ship. He wouldn't be much use in interrogating people or doing any of the high-forehead work. What Ted could do instead of lay in his bunk all day loading up on magazines and pulp novels was get down into the bowels of the ship and repair things. Maybe he wasn't so much at fixing the ship, but an invasion like this meant they were carrying a literal and figurative ton of other vehicles even aside from planes. Those, he could work with.

Heading to the pharmacist's mate, Ted drew himself a little supply of go-pills; usually those were for bomber pilots on long hauls, but the three stripes on his shoulder and the fresh bronze star combined with Ted's winning personality got him some of the little white pills that he knew from Normandy would keep you going as long as you needed to go. He could do a lot more work on the DUKWs and even some amphib tanks if he burned the candle at both ends and slept a few hours a night at most. Hell, he'd have time before landing to catch up, but for now, the work came first. Heading down into the vehicle bay where he expected to live for at least a few days, he started methodically going through vehicles one after another, wrenching on a transmission here, withdrawing and cleaning a carburetor to his own exacting standards there. As enlisted men without any apparent jobs passed him, he shanghaied some into working shifts under his supervision. The more vehicles he knew were going to work coming off the boat, the more armor and firepower was gonna hit the beaches with them, and the more likely Ted Willis was going to survive the first few hours of the landing.

Purchasing Jury Rig because it was already next on my list, I think. Taking a few days to generally fix up and repair all the vehicles aboardship that he can find, especially the amphibious ones to be sure as much material gets ashore in the first place as possible.

21:46 Mukaikubo !wild d8+2 Repair
21:46 AchtungBot rolled a (1d8+2) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 9 6 ) Results: 9

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Ted Willis

It's not too terribly long after the brig battle that Ted shows up on deck- his work clothes decidedly stained and his face with a few persistent grease stains as evidence of what he'd been doing while the others were fighting a nightmarish Nazi abomination. Taking in the faces of the others, he lights up a cigarette and keeps the smoke in his lungs for a few minutes.

"The alarms were you guys, eh?" He says, blowing out a smoke ring. Silence.

"Well, I was down in the vehicle bay." Another silence.

"Don't think it was sabotage, but there were more than a few vehicles that needed their engine torn down and a few seals and gaskets replaced." More silence.

"Wouldn't call it a nightmare because of circumstances, though. Just the cold weather. Plays merry hell with anything rubber." He stares out at the sea for a while. This was nice. Usually the others didn't value silence the same way he did. Finishing the cigarette, he flicks the butt off the side into the limitless ocean and contemplates the horizon for a few minutes.

"Can't say none of 'em will fail, but probably we'll have some good jeeps and tanks and ducks for the trip in. Can't do enough maintenance to stop a 88 through the engine block, though." He goes back a friendly, companionable silence, eying a few people sidelong.

"Think I'm gonna go try to wheedle a minute's worth of hot water for a shower, scrub the engine grease off," he says finally. "Probably should take a second look at some of the planes' engines, but those are gonna be socked in by weather anyway, looks like." He stays at the railing for a little while, even so. Just in case.

Hi! Sorry, one thing led to another and I didn't want to hop back in in the middle of a combat once I'd gotten back from a few trips, and then the scene kept on going, and I decided to wait for downtime to hop back in. >_> I should be back now!

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Watching the pilot explain, Ted sees something in the Brit's eyes he hasn't seen for a few months. "gently caress." Is his commentary about what he expects is the fabled English understatement lurking behind 'took a lot to bring him down'. "Do what you have to," he instructs just a little gently. Man who had shell shock, worst thing you could do was push them into doing things before they were ready. You made 'em do some light work behind the very front lines until they could handle coming back to the front. Figured this was probably the same, and Ted just hoped that they'd have enough time before hitting the beach.

He's a little more loose with the other American noncom. "Sounded like it. Alarms started going off, but-" He gestures at the ocean. "I figure, we go down in this sea, none of us are likely to get rescued so what's the point of heading topside? May as well keep doing my work down in the cargo holds and if we sink, well." Sgt. Willis shrugs. He doesn't take the drink from the flask, he didn't need it. "May as well keep it on if there's a worry about the ship having took another one in the boiler. Fuckin' Nazis never know when they're beat. Not a lot of surrendering from Germans, just their lackeys from other places. Some folks from of-all-places Romania surrendered to my unit in Normandy. Germans fought to the last man. We obliged. Probably this is gonna be that kinda party. Don't think Hitler wanted any of the little people in a place like this." Letting Ronnie go, he watches the sea for a few more moments before grunting and heading down to the engine room to volunteer a bit more time.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

Ted scratches his head. He could mostly repair radios, but what he knew about their theory of operation could fit on a very small piece of paper. Still- "Something that'd transmit that far would be something we'd put in a plane or ship," he notes. "They take a fair bit of power and a fair bit of size. And I'm pretty sure it'd need line of sight, which means either up in the island or out on deck- or it's portable enough that he can drag it up to a transmitting position and then back down to some other compartment. Or," he adds, "He might be hijacking our own equipment. Would the techs recognize that?"

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

"Yes sir." Ted gives the only acceptable response to the officer's use of his amateur knowledge. "I've been in the vehicle bay a lot the last few days. I can probably tell quickly if anything been taken if they were sloppy about replacing it, if they've been there." With that, he shuts up, and in time draws a firearm and gets ready to lead the others back down to the vehicle bay. He liked it down there. Cold, sure, but it was fairly quiet, and gave him the peace to work on his machines without anyone bothering him. Probably that's why the spy chose it, if he did. Ted abruptly wondered if the spy had just timed his work to miss Ted, or if the spy'd been there and he'd been so absorbed in his machinery that the sergeant hadn't even noticed. That was a prickly sort of thought. Could even be some of the others had been quietly instructed to keep an eye on him. Ted understood. He'd heard once that you can only be betrayed by someone you trusted, and so this was the price of doing business. All he could do was his job and wait for events to clear him, no grudges held.

"Alright. Lot of poo poo down here," he says. "Two people at least with me, I'm going to go check the cars that I didn't fix because they were fine." He pauses. "Spy wouldn't take anything from ones that were broken." Made sense enough to him, and so he started walking down the aisle, keeping a wary eye out.

<Mukaikubo> !wild d6-2
* LawBot rolled a (1d6-2) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 3 5 ) Results: 5

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

Ted had a good appreciation of his limits. His limits included "not being suited towards trying to sneak up on someone." He'd be happy with his suggestion leading to the saboteur, and studying the pykrete lander he quietly hoped they'd put a big hole in all of them so he didn't have to try to ride one chunk of ice to the biggest chunk of ice in the world. But for now, pistol drawn, he stayed outside the lander and kept a weather eye out in case *this* spy also had backup.

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

After the shot rings out, Ted nods once. Good. If it'd been the spy shooting, there'd have been more than one as the response came. As such, he was already pushing his way through into the lander by the time he's called for, and takes in the scene with a level look. "Good shot," he offers, before quickly and efficiently clearing the gear of any booby traps. "He wasn't expecting to be found, I don't think," Ted says. "Good radio." And that, it seems, just about covers that. With the spies taken care of, perhaps he could finish up some of his repair tasks. Or sack out and read a book. That'd be nice-

-and, of course, everything goes wrong. His jaw tightens when he hears the words "U-Boat"; he'd already speculated about the profoundly poor odds of survival for anyone who went over the side into the ocean this far south, and he didn't exactly trust this ice-ship to withstand the best that Hitler's submariners had to offer. They had escorts, though, so presumably one of them would cover things. When Bell reveals that nobody had even tested Jeremiah against underwater explosions, the engineer just nods placidly. Of course they wouldn't, that would have risked spoiling some bright spark's pet project. Why do messy, inconvenient tests when you can swan about shooting pistol bullets into blocks of dirty ice and proclaim a revolution of shipbuilding?

Watching, he sees the tendrils climb over the top of the deck, and Ted's response is... a little tightness around the eyes, a reach for a cigarette that isn't there, a grimace and a muttered, "Fuckin' Nazis." After another look, he straightens back up, and adds, "They had that thing aboard a torpedo aboard their submarine. Closed space underwater. Evil lunatics, but they had guts." That was about as much of a tribute as Ted was going to give 'em. "Don't bother using small arms. Too big. Ronnie- I can drive a bulldozer tank, and for this I think it's close enough." Putting his head down, he starts to sprint for the vehicle bay. Hopping into the nearest one, he calls out, "Just fixed the treads on this one, shouldn't slip on the ice-" before quickly starting the heavy machinery up with a flatulent roar, swiveling it to point its gun up the ramp to get ready for a quixotic charge.

((<Mukaikubo> !wild d6
* LawBot rolled a (1d6) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 11 3 ) Results: 11
One dementia, no other result. Ted's heading for the tank. When he gets there, a driving check to start it out and get it rollin' towards Tall Dark And Grabby:
<Mukaikubo> !wild d4
* LawBot rolled a (1d4) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 2 4 ) Results: 4 ))

Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

All he can see from inside the tank is a small sliver of space circumscribed by an already-icy window. The din of the engine and the shots rattles through the tank, keeping the imperturbable soldier from being able to really concentrate on his work; a headache was already building, but it wasn't like he had the time to go lie down. Still, one thing comes through loud and clear: while they were irritating the big drat Nazi beast, they weren't killing it, and that an officer wanted him to bring the take closer. Closer? Hell, he could do that. "Proceeding," he tersely says into the radio, hoping it's plugged in right or else there's not going to be a lot of warning before Ted slams on the throttle and the little tank jumps forward, treads spraying a little slush behind them as the sergeant brings the tank closer and closer. Finally, he turns the tank abruptly to one side- he didn't think the front armor was gonna be able to stop much more than the side armor would, and this way he could just hit the throttle and jump forward to get away from any tentacle that came directly from the shoggoth. After a second, he undogs the hatch, too, sticking his head out so that he can see and react to the shoggoth in time- hell, it was cold and even louder, but it might save a fraction of a second. "Fire at will," he sings out- no getting closer from here now.

Driving, bringing the tank in closer- hopefully to a new range bracket- and getting ready to floor it to get away from a retaliatory Hug.

<AFKaikubo> !wild d4
* MadBot rolled a (1d4) with wild die for AFKaikubo and got ( 5 3 ) Results: 5

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Mukaikubo
Mar 14, 2006

"You treat her like a lady... and she'll always bring you home."


Sgt. Willis

And, just like that, the thing was over. In truth, Ted barely knew what he was doing- at times, he was as worried about the edge of the flight deck as he was the squamous nightmare on top of it. If he drove the tank into antarctic waters, odds were he and the crew would be just as dead as if the tank got hit by a tentacle and blown up... though maybe more pleasantly. Still, gritting his teeth, shutting out most of the battle, he makes slow patterns here and there, enough to keep most of the attention of the beast off of him even as the others open fire with all they have. The driver's small vision slit- usually a curse- here is almost a blessing, as it stops him from getting as much of an eyeful of what their enemy is doing out there as the commander was getting (and from the sounds of it, not enjoying one bit). When it's all over, though, Ted climbs out of the tank, apparently unfazed by the nightmares around him. The handshakes, the bearhugs, the congratulations- they're all taken with even more blank, emotionless acceptance than is the norm for Ted... and when he's done with his 'obligations', he just goes back to his book, finds a manual of military hardware, and reads the same page ten or twelve times without making sense of any of it.



I dunno what I want to spend my advance on yet, I just wanted to try to drag myself back into the posting habit.

<Mukaikubo> !wild d6 (spirit to shake dementia)
* MadBot rolled a (1d6) with wild die for Mukaikubo and got ( 4 4 ) Results: 4

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