Confusion on Infinite Terras: AI/File 1.3

The Never Ending Quest - Episode 13212

Probe's personal log:
Review of past event sequence gamma
upload in progress...

It was now more urgent than ever to find Dr.Vincent. But when his desert Tower was finally located, Fred 3's group was magically pulled inside and knocked unconscious. When they awoke they were surprised to find themselves in Regent Malachi's throne room in Ethiopia, along with a new group of analogs and the AI Inquirer. Also, Probe was amazed to discover that Inquirer's avatar body had now become her permanent shell and that she had become a true "golem". Inquirer then explained what had happened to them in Vincent's Tower and who the new analogs were.

Previously, Inquirer's dimension ship had been deflected by the fluctuations of the damaged slipgate system to another parallel world, Terra-6. There, Inquirer saved ALICIA(2) and an analog Astra from an attack by a VAMPIRE FRED. Upon their return to Terra-Prime, Astra died of the Phage, but Alicia2 survived. Inquirer then went about collecting bio-specimens of all the surviving Astras on the planet. She hoped that an analysis of their DNA versus the dead Astra's DNA might give them the answer to stopping the Phage. Since it was she who had been reassigned to the Phantoms, she transmitted her data to her Phantom superiors. But they wished to keep the information for themselves and so they tried to deactivate her with a computer virus. She was rescued by the band of analogs that had just arrived from Terra-4 and Terra-5. But in order to save her they had to download her essence into a soul-gem which was then embedded into her avatar body. Inquirer and her newfound compatriots all agreed that the Phage data needed to be safeguarded from the Phantoms. They also decided to seek out Terra-Prime's Dr.Vincent to help Inquirer study the data. On Terra-5 Malachi D'Honaire knew him to be a master of science as well as magic and they hoped this world's Vincent would be the same. They arrived at the Tower just as Fred3 and his group did and they were all then pulled inside.

Inside of the Tower, Inquirer found herself in a psychic battle with Dr.Vincent. He was now a ghost, having been killed by the Phage. And he wanted to house his spirit in Inquirer's soul-gem so that he could have access to the material world again. Inquirer won the battle (and garnered the ability to cast spells from information she'd been ale to tear from the ghost's mind) and the DEAD VINCENT retreated from the room. Inquirer then discovered that there was a second Dr.VINCENT, this one originating from Terra-3. He informed her that Dead Vincent's spell had pulled in anyone caught outside of the walls and also anyone who was in contact with those so caught. Inquirer was amazed then to find that not only everyone from her group and everyone in Fred3's group was inside the Tower, but also ManBear Synizn who had been viewing Fred3's progress from Panaras, Queen Malachi who had been viewing Fred3's progress from Ethiopia, and also four Phantom operatives and three Lizard Men, along with her own as well as Probe's base units. This last group had been spying on Probe from a ship in orbit. Inquirer realized that here was proof that a secret alliance had been made between the Phantoms and the Lizard Men. Also, since Regent Malachi was now permanently bonded to the nation she ruled, when Dead Vincent's spell tried to reel her in, his Tower was instead magically brought to the borders of Ethiopia.

Everyone was then transported to Regent-Malachi's throne room where they were revived and introduced to one another. Dr.Vincent then told them that while they were unconscious, Dead Vincent had used a device to read the memories of DemiFox Synizn, Alicia2, one of the Phantoms and a Lizard Man. The ghost knew pretty much everything they did, which only made him more dangerous. Dr.Vincent was of the opinion that his analog had become psychotic. The only way to get rid of him permanently was to destroy his mortal body and so they blew up the Tower with a nuke. Regent Malachi then called on the aid of her friend BELBOZ the Necromancer to verify whether or not Dead Vincent was now truly dead. This would be easy for Belboz to do since he too was now a ghost thanks to the Phage.

Inquirer and Probe contacted Capt.Standern Sterndeck and informed him of the Phantom's treachery. The Phantoms were immediately rounded up for questioning, although many resisted and were killed. The mages in the throne room then used the now five Crystallics in their possession to heal the world of all the damage from the Lizard nuke attack as well as all those afflicted with radiation poisoning.

Back in Panaras ManFox Fred was happy to learn that ManBear Synizn was OK after his sudden disappearance. Fred was then contacted by King Willian who told him about a false Aqualarian prophet called the Oracle. The false prophet had killed the real Oracle in Aqualaria and was now in Walants. ManFox Fred contacted Regent Malachi who transported him and a small group along with Inquirer, Probe and Alicia2 to Walants. The faux-Oracle was actually the AI Seeker and he was attempting to kidnap Fred2 and Astra2. But ManFox Fred and his friends thwarted this and Inquirer neutralized Seeker with a soul-gem. It was assumed that Seeker was working with the Phantoms but in fact Seeker was a member of a splinter group within the Company. The Company and the Military were the two factions which made up the Alliance. While the Phantoms had struck a deal with the Lizard Men to betray the Alliance, this splinter group merely sought to slow down the Alliance's eventual victory and thereby gain time to prepare for and perhaps avert a brewing civil war between the Company and the Military.

But before Seeker could be fully questioned, yet another series of analogs appeared on Terra-Prime. From Terra-1: LADY FREDRINA D'HONAIRE(1). From Terra-2: DUCHESS CHAMPLAINE D'HONAIRE(2) and DUKE ZULAR(2). From Terra-4: Demifox ASTRA(4), Demifox FRED(4), their seven demicubs, DEMIFOX SYNIZN(2), a dogfox, two shefoxes, four more demicubs, and fourteen foxcubs. And from Terra-7: MAD TARIN the dwarf, BLACK ASTRA(5) and FRED(5). Two things of note: 1) Mad Tarin had brought with him another Crystallic which due to a quirk of magic materialized in Inquirer's pocket, bringing their total to six. 2) During her transportation from Terra-7 to Terra-Prime, Black Astra came into contact with a mysterious entity known as 179, a representative of the Rules. 179 explained to Black Astra how she was going to a parallel world and would meet analogs from other parallel worlds and also that Mad Tarin had gone insane and was out to kill his Terra-Prime analog. But Natthias stopped the insane dwarf before he could kill the good Tarin, who was now a constable of Walants.

All of these new analogs were treated with respect and friendship; Dred was overjoyed to be reunited with his wife as was Fred1 with his sister. But Duke Zular, whose Terra-Prime counterpart was a villainous associate of the evil Dred, was anything but trusted. It was revealed that on Terra-1 Duke Zular had conspired to overthrow King Emry, and it was suspected that on Terra-2 the Duke had been involved with Lady Fredrina(2)'s premature death. It was therefore decided to strip him of all aristocratic privileges and force him to become a simple farmer in Ethiopia where he could be watched and kept in check. Zular, who in fact had orchestrated Fredrina's death, escaped from Ethiopia and traveled via slipgate to Stonehenge where he called upon the aid of the sorcerer TUROC-KITH. He was surprised to suddenly find himself imprisoned by Turoc who was now in league with ZERM the UNSPEAKABLE and Dead Vincent. These three had joined together to defend Terra-Prime from the exploitation of both the Alliance and the Lizard Men. They wished sole rulership of the planet for themselves. Zular, who was found to be quite useless in their plans, was then transformed into an ebony griffon and transported to a lonely glen far away where he could do no mischief.

Sometime after this, Regent Malachi convened yet another meeting. Probe announced that a cure for the Phage had finally been found. And Belboz informed them all about the triple alliance of Zerm, Turoc and Dead Vincent. They were then surprised by the appearance of the ghosts of Astra (from Terra-6) and AJAX (a dead AI). The ghosts revealed that the slipgate system would destroy the world within 24 hours, that Zerm and his allies had hidden themselves in Atlantis and would attack them all once the slipgates had been deactivated and the Crystallics been neutralized, and that the Lizard Men had gathered a fleet of warships in Haley's Comet with which to attack the Alliance forces once the cure for the Phage had been implemented.

With this information in hand, Regent Malachi sent out a force to Atlantis. When they arrived there they discovered that Zerm had imprisoned a number of analogs of Astra's great-aunt HELENA. Rescuing these analogs was added to the mission list. But first, Belboz destroyed the mortal remains of Turoc and Dead Vincent which cast both of the evil spirits down to Hell. The attacking force then concentrated its power against Zerm. He proved more formidable than they had anticipated and it was only the self-sacrifice of Probe which ultimately destroyed the evil sorcerer. Zerm followed his fallen accomplices to Hell while Probe was saved from true death by Inquirer who trapped his spirit in a soul-gem. The Helena analogs, frozen like statues, were then transported to safety, Atlantis was evacuated and the Crystallics were used to permanently shutdown the slipgate system. The Crystallics and the Atlantean city were destroyed in the process.

So finally, after many twists and turns and unexpected events, Terra-Prime was safe. Minestus was dead, Zerm was dead, the nuclear damage the planet had suffered had been healed, the Phage had been neutralized and the slipgate system safely shutdown. Now the only thing that threatened the planet was the fleet of Lizard Man warships. But the Alliance fleet now had advance warning and was readying a surprise attack. All in all it looked like the Good Guys had won.

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