As Adric, Jace and his seven followers near Gnomen, they are startled by a bell ringing frantically in the town and a people scrambling on the top of the walls. Jace notices that they seem to be waving them towards town. The gates are slowly starting to close but the group can’t see danger in their surroundings.
Not having a better solution, knowing they are in a dangerous local and trusting the warning, they haul ass towards the gate. Half a minute later the scene unfolds quickly to all. They first notice a group of Kesh, or what surely must be Kesh based on descriptions, barreling towards an intercept point in front of the gate. Right after that a young girl pops out from behind a ridge between both groups. She throws something down in front of her and jumps on it. The group is mesmerized, running blindly forward, while watching the girl as she gets charged with a static red energy and then come hurtling through the air. She bridges the 400 foot gap between them in seconds and lands with a thundering crash 10 feet away. Her landing slightly craters the hard rock round with a resounding crash and dust thrown in all directions.
The group stops, dumbfounded by the display for half a second, then starts up again, the pace renewed. Bex easily keeps stride and tries to explain to Adric and Jace, whom are in the lead of the band, that they creatures are very deadly, will be after blood and their best bet is to run as fast as they can. Since it was their plan anyway, they continue on.
It soon becomes clear they aren’t going to make it to the wall, the creatures are too fast. Jace starts to peel off, trying to get a better angle on the Kesh and prepares to subvert gravity to his will, trusting range to be his best protection. Adric take the lead and pours empathy into his actions, trying to dissuade the Kesh from attacking. When it becomes clear his message isn’t being heard he commands his men to form up, pulls out his neural net launcher and readies himself for the combat. Bex, knife in hand, triggers the device on her chest, which injects into her spine, linking with her nervous system and forms a translucent yellow glow around her body that reflects the light in various ways as she moves.
The group sets themselves up for the incoming assault but all of the Kesh seem to be singling in on Bex, and run right past Adric at the lead. Bex is ready though, and gets the jump on everyone. She sprints forward to the nearest Kesh, feints to the right and rushes by on the left, slashing into the mid-section of the creature as she passes. In her next step she launches in the air, trying to use the Kesh behind as a springboard to flank the pack. Another Kesh tries to turn as Bex moves and readjust to intercept, but has too much momentum and misses as Bex flies through the air. Right before Bex would land on the Kesh, Adric fires his net at the creature and wraps it up, which crumples it immediately. Bex adroitly adjusts her weight and lands in stride on the far side of the group.
As the largest beast growls and yips commands to the others, Jace arms his grenade and throws it right at the face of the Kesh closest to him, continuing to float higher into the air. The Kesh sees it coming and adjusts quickly to evade the bomb. It explodes in a tightly contained burst, making some nice pyrotechnics and lots of noise, but not much else. The Kesh then takes two bounds toward Jace and launches itself up in the air towards him. Clearing an amazing distance, it swipes out and catches the bottom of Jace’s boot with its finger tips. It’s enough to knock Jace off balance and spin him sideways, but otherwise leaves him unscathed.
The group of followers converges on the netted Kesh at Adric’s command and thrust their weapons through the net, trying to quickly finish the helpless creature. In response to this the largest Kesh roars and growls commands, turning the pack towards the defense of their fallen brother. In short order the Kesh bulrush the attackers, smashing heads in, ripping arms off, and generally causing a bad day for those involved. In the distraction Bex is able to open another gash in the side of one of the Kesh, but she quickly sees that the group is outmatched and won’t last much longer. Jace focuses and fires a blast of energy at the eye of the leader, trying to cause a mortal wound and swing the battle back in their favor. Unfortunately his blast is too focused and his target too fast.
Watching the battle turn, Adric calls for a retreat and makes for the walls of Gnomen as fast as he can carry himself. Bex maneuvers through the Kesh in an attempt to get their attention as she too runs towards a different section of the wall. Seeing an opportunity, and feeling safe so high in the air, Jace launches an empowered blast of energy at the helpless Kesh, trying to finish it. His plans succeeds on all fronts. He kills the Kesh, which sends the rest of the group into a frenzy and takes all their attention from the events on the ground. This gives the survivors precious time to escape, make it to the wall and get pulled to safety from ropes dropped from the top of the wall.
In their fury, the Kesh mobilize and launch the smallest of them up towards Jace. Jace sees their intent too late and can’t climb out of the reach of the flying Kesh, who wraps him in a death grip, and the two plummet back to earth. The superior strength of the Kesh allows it to position Jace as a landing pad and it’s all Jace can do to use his ability to manipulate gravity in order to not have the impact be a fatal one. The blow knocks the wind out of Jace and his vision fades as the impact nearly takes him into unconsciousness. Seeing the plight of his companion turn dire, Adric rouses the defenders on the wall out their stupor and into action. They begin to rain down arrows and other projectiles, trying to scare off the other Kesh. A man in a large numenera crafted projectile turret begins unloading the automatic weapon towards the group. His aim is terrible, but Adric guides his movements and is able to center in on Kesh smothering Jace, hoping the thickness of the Kesh body and armor will be enough shield for the man below. The shells tear into the Kesh and one perfectly aimed shell pierces deeply through the center of the Keshe’s body. Jace feels the impact of the shell and a guttural noise from the creature as the life is snuffed out of it. In the confusion Jace summons the rest of his strength to try and crawl out from under the beast. He succeeds and then prepares to use his powers in ways he had never attempted before. Tapping into the mental focus needed to control gravity, he tries change the gravity not to lighten it’s affect on himself, but to increase it, and then change the point of gravities strongest pull towards the heavens. He succeeds in doing this, which sends himself flying through the air, upwards amazingly quickly, but also uncontrollably. As he passes the 300 foot mark and continues to climb those on the side of the wall can hear the reactionary wail coming from Jace as he tries to gain control.
At this point the Kesh have successfully unnetted their fallen kin and are starting to gather the bodies. The leader Kesh casually dodges the incoming projectiles as it scans the city walls, looking for something. Bex tries to tap into the crystal embedded in her hand, to try and see if she find any vision out among the Kesh, to try and learn more. As she taps into the crystal the lead Kesh immediately turns to look at Bex’s position. It’s eyes lock with her for a few moments, then the Kesh growls out some commands and the group runs off into the wastes. Adric watched the whole scene unfold and saw the look that passed between the Kesh and Bex. With the immediate retreat after that look, he surmises that Bex must have some control, connection or power over the creatures. He makes a mental note to learn more about the girl and find a way to convince her to join him on his expedition. The towns folk cheer as the Kesh retreat and things slowly return to normal.
It takes about 20 minutes for Jace to regain control of his movement and slowly work his way down to land in the center of town. He takes a few moments to compose himself, then finds the nearest bar. He tries to pawn the dead travelers gear that remains outside off on the bar keep in exchange for drinks, which is quickly turned down. After a couple drinks, Jace finds out where Bex’s family lives, which is his sole contact in the town. After meeting with them and asking to stay with them for a while (to which they agree), he heads straight to the room offered him and sleeps the rest of the afternoon off.
Meanwhile, after a brief confrontation with Adric, Bex’s parents in a frantantic state come to make sure she is alright and bring her home. Adric spends the better part of the day making arrangements to stay in town and handle the affairs of the dead followers in his care. He notices Bex tailing his movements, clearly their interest in each other is mutual.
With all current matters settled, Adric heads down to the bar in the local in he is staying at. There he finds Jace in strong form, drinking, talking to the locals, telling stories and generally building positive relations. Adric grabs a table with the sole companion left to him and notices Bex near by. He uses the opportunity to tell his story to Bex, through a loud dialog with his companion. Not long after that the companion turns in for the night and Bex approaches Adric awkwardly to discuss the the crystals, the Kesh and an expedition into the wastes. Through this dialog Adric learns of the contacts he’ll need to talk to in town and also that Bex can make the introductions.
The next day the group goes to work. They meet up with Riana Raynor, the head of Raynor family and person in charge of the defense and expeditions in town. Through some dialogs they learn that a small group is best for a deep venturing and adaptable team. They learn that the three best in town are a lady names Crys (known for her scouting and mastery of the subtle arts), Adem (a beast of a warrior that is a little crazy and never returns with the companions he set out with, always alone) and Jeck Raynor ( son of Riana and a balanced warrior, scout and survivor). They group has a hard time deciding on whom to go with and in the end, with Bex’s prompting, settles on Jeck. They pick up one more to accompany them on their travels, a man named Matris (a dead shot with a bow and a solid scout).
The caveat to taking Jeck was that they needed to wait a full month before the journey. Jeck was recently back from an expedition and there were things to get in order and injuries to heal. Over the course of the month, Jace takes the opportunity to scout the surrounding land, looking to the best routes and where trouble might pop up. He has one close call that keeps him from staying out in the wastes alone after his first few days and makes one discovery of a small piece of clear Kaori crystal, worth about 50 shins.
Having gotten resupplied from Riana, the group heads into the wastes on 65th day of the year 1702. The five head out with a lizard creature to carry their gear, which Adric befriends and quickly earns the unfailing devotion of. He starts to teach the lizard tricks and even names him.
On the third night, the group passes out of Jace’s mapped range. They are woken in the night by a quick call from Jace, whom is on watch. A throng of bandits was intent on sneaking up on them , but did so poorly. They put up a poor excuse for a fight, even for bandits, and were quickly dispatched. Adric questions the last one alive and finds out there is a bandit basecamp to the east, quite a ways to the east. They let the bandit go, knowing he’ll likely bleed out from the stab wound Bex put in his stomach. As the bandit limps away, Bex runs up from behind, jumps onto his back and slits his throat. Everyone is left to wonder the motivation as they decide to get an early start on the day’s travels.