Gate of the Ancestors

Note: this article is a work in progress.
Calika, day 34 - Leaving the village in a rush, we fled into the dry hills of Calika. Everything there is covered with thorny brushwood carrying small yellow berries. In the next clearing, we stitched our blouse, cleaned it a bit and hang it up to dry. But a horde of apes had nothing better to do than stealing it and jumping from tree to tree with it and making lots of clamours.
We ran after them and almost got the blouse back, when we suddenly tripped over a loopy root and rolled down the hillside, only to end up waist-deep in a puddle of mud. Strangely the apes were keeping distance. Then we discovered this strange object: a large black arc sticking out from the dirt.  
  • G. Smallbottom, Running In Circles
  • In the hills of Calika, you can find one of the many strange structures from Alana's past. The arc made of a black, cold and very smooth material has a diameter of 12 feet, with 5 feet of it still sticking out of the mud. At three points of the visible part, the arc has almost foot-wide sleeves around the outer edge, with a square, flat surface at front and back. Hundreds of small nozzles arranged in five rows cover the inside of the large ring.  
    When Geertruud sent the pages describing the gate, Margo informed her colleagues at the Gnome Workshop about the discovery, showing them the detailed drawing of the visible part of the gate. The gnomes did some research and then built and packed up the required equipment and sailed over to Calika. They named their team GEF: Gnomish Expeditionary Force. Sadly due to some misunderstanding at Charakur harbour customs, their whole baggage was moved into the customs storehouse and the gnomes put under arrest.

    Design

    Each of the six sleeves of the gate can be opened by touching front and back and then push it to the backside. Almost the whole square part will move out and give access to a small compartment that can take a power cell. When all six compartments are filled with loaded power cells, an inch wide green line will start glowing all around the gate. When the gate is receiving, the line will glow blue, if the gate is deactivated or does not have enough power, the line will glow red.

    Entries

    In its working state, the gate is connected to a huge network of exits everywhere. You can travel to a different location under the following conditions:  
    • The gate must be active and powered up.
    • You need to have a special token for the target location and activate it when entering the gate, or have someone enter the gate with one before you to set the route to the destination.
    • The destination gate must be active.
      If a token crosses through the gate, its destination is set until a token with a new destination enters.

    Plot Hooks

    Quest series: It's just a jump to the left...


    • Gnomedy of Errors - Get the gnomes and their equipment out. Precursor for the other quests, as only the gnomes know where to find the gate. This can be done by bribery or break-in into the jail and then getting the bot out of the armoury, followed by escaping on camels, mules or goats.
    • ...and I'll take the low road - On the way, the gnomes will use all kind of equipment to measure things, compare and examine, but that's just gnomes playing explorers and looking important. In fact, they just follow their compass (but that doesn't look cool). There might be an assassination attempt, but that would only happen because someone mixed up things and followed the wrong group.
    • Diggin' it - Sunken into the mud the gate will not be usable, it must get dug out and placed upright. Involves building a winch, pulling ropes and getting dirty in the mud. The bot alone cannot do it, it just sinks into the mud each time, so getting it here was completely useless.
    • No Power - The gate contains six corner stomes (aka batteries in their slots): three are completely destroyed, three of them need a recharge. To activate the gate, all six stones must be present and fully functional. Replacements for the three broken ones can be found in ancient underground facilities elsewhere in Alana, the three empty ones need to be recharged either in one of those facilities (where more preparations might be required) or via a recharger built by the gnomes that will require silly parts to work, and the impact of lightning (think of the gnomes building a giant apparatus with a long cable up to a hill top so it gets struck by lightning).
    • IDK - To be able to use the gate, one needs to find information about how those gates work. There has been a description in the master chamber of another underground facility. But it has been robbed and sold several times, so a chase with detective work will be going on.
    • Pay The Ferryman - Find one or more tokens for target destinations. Those have been found by tribe members and are used as jewellery. They will only be given in exchange for jobs done.

    RUINED STRUCTURE
    The Banishment
    Founding Date
    1600 AB
    Type
    Portal
    Parent Location

    Gnomish Expeditionary Force


    Comments

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    16 Dec, 2020 16:26

    This article is so pretty, Tillerz! I feel sorry for the poor gnomes who got arrested - I'm glad that one of the plot hooks is to get them out! <3   This gate is really intriguing. I'm curious who made it. :D

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