The kids asked Lyra to start asking how they could convince the enemies to let them borrow their intention craft, but that would take a long time, so they decided to study the records they had of all the different worlds and travel to the world of 'talking machines' to try to get answers faster, because she'd mentioned that a person she kind of knew there associated with the Order of the Shattered Blade on that world had once had a much, much better version of the Alethiometer.
Lyra officially gave them permission to open a portal if they did it near the front lines, since that area was overrun with specters anyway -- they were going to have to figure out how to kill them en-masse somehow, so one more probably wouldn't hurt.
So that's what they did. They popped out over a suburb somewhere in the middle of modern England, circa 2007 AD. After they started zipping around at 300 mph, air traffic control noticed that they weren't just an unlicensed hot air balloon, and sent some jets to buzz them, while they randomly scanned the radio frequencies (the intention craft had a radio) trying to figure out how to get to the 'frequency' they'd been told to turn to, and telling random HAM radio operators that they really really needed to get in touch with Martha or Jim.
Eventually they landed in a mall parking lot (Eric wanted somewhere with enough space to land and a lot of people around), and demanded to talk to authorities of the church. Someone in the crowd had a mobile device with net access, and started doing web searches related to the things they were saying, and suddenly pushed himself to the front of the crowd. "Um... my phone says that I'm supposed to give it to you guys." He'd triggered a search engine trap and his phone was pwnzored.
So, anyway, they got guided to the island of Svalbard, where the US military expedition to study the 'anomoly' was set up. Members of the Order of the Shattered Blade, Earth chapter, were there, although not the specific people they'd wanted to talk to, who were back with the 'dark matter projector', which had just recently started working after years of failure -- like it'd been waiting until it had something important to say?
Apparently, it had already told them that if they got a nuke and used the equipment in the intention craft, they could close their world's 'anomoly' before the angels destroyed everything -- but Eric was pretty sure that that would destroy the intention craft, and he asked them to wait until they could at least try to get the fleet of intention craft together that they'd need to take out all the rifts without blowing up anything.
They did agree to open a portal to their own world next to Lord Asriel's machine, so that they could pull it through and use it to close this other rift. Apparently, there *were* two people in the world who had daemons, and could sacrifice themselves to use it that way -- Jim and Martha, Lyra's old friends.
Eric: "The other side is swarming with specters..."
OOTSB minion: "Oh, this side is too -- they were created with the anomoly. Our wizard here put up wards around the camp -- he knows that sort of magic from the whole mess that had our chapter created on this world. So we should be okay at least for a little while.
But, most importantly, they got the answer they'd been looking for -- the way to convince the enemies that they needed to work together was to release their prisoners, in particular the pixie who'd been with them the whole time and overheard them discovering all about the problem and solving it for their own world. That would convince everyone but the leader.
Eric: "So... what? We just kill the leader?"
Martha (via IM): "You'll have to deal with him somehow."
Eric: "Would killing him work?"
Martha: "The dark matter says it'd throw them into chaos, unless you arranged otherwise."
Eric: "Does he want to kill me in particular?"
Martha: "Hmm, it says he wants to kill everyone from your world because he hates you in particular, actually."
Then they headed home, through the portal they were opening for the Order up by the anomoly.
last session | next session
We're probably not playing next week, because several people are going to be missing.