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Sunset Sea Islands

Antargic Adventures at Simon Station

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-03 LT 044012 MT

Quintidi XXV Nivôse CCXXVI

Station Alpha, Terre Liberté, Antargis


Initiative Scientifique Trans-Continentale : Station Alpha

Nom : Vongirard
Prénom : Marlène
Sexe : Female
Âge : 27
Nationalité : Lysian
Profession : Chef Pâtissière
Specialité : Soufflé Grand Marnier

This was it, a long way across seas and oceans to land there, effectively after having broken up with her boyfriend after a 6 years old relationship, this may happen, a life mistake, from which she was hoping to learn from. She since a few months of the breakup, decided to take a sabbatical year, for now, she has been traveling in Kualoa, Miiros, Orioni, Futanarien and @Sunset Sea Islands , fortunately for her she had enough resources accumulated with her previous years for allowing those expenses, after all, she was the youngest ever named “Premier Pâtissier de Fleur de Lys”, a title lusted by many. She had stopped practicing her art and passion for a few months now, and she doesn’t know how, but the Lysian administration still called her services, as effectively you’re obligated as a Lysian citizen to serve a month each 5 years in the Army, with a 1 year service along classes between 19 and 20, something pushing teenagers to go in the fields they wished and to learn more about active life. 1 month, that’s how long she was supposed to serve, and knowing her historic, the Lysians, naturally aware that international cooperation means a sick stomach, had thought of her in order to lead the most important part in a meal, even more, when it’s -5° outside. Marlène may have declined, after all, she had still 3 years more to do her 1-month service, but being in the optic of travelling and discovering new parts of the World, she couldn’t resist but to accept.

Lysians absolutely wished their liaisons to be on site, making a few engineers personnel being stationed in a rather very light airport, from where the supplies would arrive, and where our dear Marlène would land with all the cooking personnel. A woman in the cuisine, this was stereotypical some may think, but in reality -at least in Fleur de Lys- the cuisines were mainly a man-dominated sector, making Marlène the only woman in her group while when coming to Lysians scientists it was a bit the other way around. Those expenses were great for the Lysian Government, even if all of this was part of an international cooperation program, the ISTC, and Lysians couldn’t just consider having their scientists starving in Antargis, the reason of such deployment by Marlène. The first thing we may naturally observe was when she got out of the plane, how cold it naturally was, she had no training in such conditions, as her job would be mainly to remain inside for a month, she may imagine already the wonderful plates she would accomplish, knowing that the Lysians were very careful on budget, but with one little exception, and this one was the cuisine, those had no imposed budget on the contrary of all the other services, making the greatest Chefs enjoy of their military service to, at the expense of the state, test the plate of tomorrow. 5, that’s how many they shall be in the cuisine, a Chef de Cuisine and his Second, Chef de Partie, Boulanger and Pâtissier, this was it, and eventually one of the Member of the Lysian team agreed to play the Chef Sommelier role during the restorations times. Lysians had many things in their bags, as effectively Lysian rules fully authorised the consumption of alcohol, something which wasn’t spread in all entities, at least they knew they may try to convert some Sunset Sea Islandians to such behaviour in order to confort themselves from the unsual cold climate standing right outside the doors of the base.

Marlène would enjoy the variety of the people there, coming from 4 different nations, and was rather amused by how the Lysians handled the situation when coming to Simon Station, calling it with a heavy accent Station Alpha, the same when coming to King Tomasso Land being translated as Terre Liberté which Lysians had strict orders to use as only legitimate wording, at least in Lysian but even when speaking English, this was part of Fleur de Lys bad history with Monarchies. In all the activity, she was, with a couple of others, carry the supplies for the cuisines to the base. “One positive point, we won’t need a fridge” ironised one of the crew members. “Citoyen Vongirard ?” Asked a man as he would stop Marlène going back to the plane in order to carry few boxes back, “Yeah?” She wondered as she would look at the man had called her, “Capitaine” she would express as she would discover his rank, “We will in a couple days launch an expedition in order to carry data more deep in the continent, was wondering if you were interested to be part of it?” Asked the man, “Affirmative” re-affirmed Marlène, “Have you been trained to extreme cold conditions terrains?” Questioned the man, “Naturally” she lied, “Good, will come to you later with more pieces of information citizen. Have fun to socialise” he stated, showing with his arm the multiples people moving all around, with @Magnaeus being as always very ordered and thorough in their installations, while @Prymont were the one moving all around with ease, considering this foolish climate to be normal and like home.

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The overall climate was getting warmer, finally breaking the ice of this community, issued of 4 different countries, getting in one same base, for one same mission and task.

Vongirard” exclaimed a manly voice, as Marlène was preparing the pastry, from which she got only positive feedback from Monsieur Hopeman. There, she was making wonderful Éclairs, hoping this time to diversify, with the usual chocolate one, but also with a strawberry, vanilla and pistache one, something she used to do when she made her first internship in a boulangerie, this was remembering her good souvenirs. “It is her” Marlène spoke up, as she was still focusing on what she was doing, and certainly not turning around in order to look who was calling her. “I know pâtisseries are important, but reassure me by saying I have more rights then them” said funnily enough the Capitaine which had interrupted her a week earlier in order to have her engage in a little mission, in extreme cold. He was to come back to her with more informations, and this seems to be what he was doing. Marlène would remain silence, not being fully confortable talking with the upper Officer, as she was pursuing her thing. “Would Citoyen Vongirard be ready to depart tomorrow? 3 days” he quietly asked, taking support on the table on which Marlène was preparing her pâtisseries, getting his head more close to hers. “Is everything okay?” asked coldly the Capitaine, “Yes Capitaine Sabardier” she answered, still focusing. “Good to know I may count on you” he added, giving a friendly tap on her right shoulder and walking in order to leave the place, “01:15:00 tomorrow” he commented, giving the timing on which they would leave.

Capitaine Sabardier was on his way to leave the cuisine, before getting stop by the Chef de Cuisine, which would enter it, “So, we’re disturbing Ladies?” started loudly the Chef de Cuisine, “A Lady” rectified Sabardier, “And you enter in my cuisine in this dressing? For who are you taking yourself for?” dryly asked while not really awaiting an answer the Chef, “A Capitaine” Sabardier smiled, “As Capitaine you have no authority in the cuisine. Remember to re-read the Code next time, or you’ll serve as food for the dogs. Get out” finished the Chef, moving aside in order to let Sabardier pass, while giving him a major tap on his back in order to push him out of the cuisines. The Chef didn’t liked anybody out of his team entering the cuisine like this, even if this wasn’t a major cuisine like few he leaded in his career, but he felt like this was important to respect rules, knowing also that this Sabardier entered without the proper clothing and with his arrogances in.

I’m curious to know why you haven’t turned him into boudin” commented the Chef, as he was getting back preparing his meals. “I’ll be leaving tomorrow morning, in a mission with him” she simply commented. “Well, good luck with that. You know at least what meat to give to the dogs if you run out of it” he reacted not really liking the Capitaine Sabardier.



Marlène would had finished her Éclairs for the dinner, and before having to serve it, would move outside, with this tough cold, still remaining around. She would move a bit around the installations, enjoying to look at the professionals, which knew at least do something which was specifically good for the continent they were on. With the winds continually attacking her face, she decided to take off one of her glove, and reach inside her heavy coat a cigarette and a lighter, lightening her cigarette, putting back the lighter, while holding with her mouth the cigarette, and not being a proper Prymonthian, she would put her glove back. She would see passing Dr Neumayer, as she was enjoying her little tour. He would naturally spot her smoking, making her react by asking, “Wish one?”, not knowing if our Doctor smoked.

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"05:41 Uhr, Simon Station, Antargis, -37.6°C

A loud clanking noise woke up Bruno from a dreamless sleep. Slowly he rubbed his eyes. "Clang!" There was that noise again. It was coming from outside the station. Turning his head sideways, he looked at the clock. "Uunnggh... it's too early...," he muttered in a drowsy voice, still half asleep. Reluctantly Bruno rubbed his eyes and threw his comfortable blanket to the side. His orange overall was neatly folded on a chair by the door. Boots standing next to it. Some of the habits he acquired during his mandatory 6 months in the Armee never really left his daily routine.

Outside in the hallway, he saw Walter, the other ingenieur from @Prymont. "Good morning Walter," he said, "Did you also hear that noise coming from outside the station?" Walter confirmed his suspicion: "Yeah and I was actually coming to wake you up. The winter months are too dangerous to go outside alone." Both men walked down the empty corridor towards the lockers next to the airlock where their outdoor gear was stored. Bruno and Walter also grabbed the hightech LED flashlights from @Sunset Sea Islands. "Hey Bruno can you also grab one of those reserve battery packs?" asked Walter, "Because I'm not sure how long we will be out there." Before exiting the station, they left an obligatory record in the logbook. "I'm also sending a special alert to commander Trémarec from @Fleur de Lys," added the much more experienced Walter.

The last of the three airlock doors slid shut behind them. The Antargic wind was howling. Icecold wind was doing everything in its power to blow them sideways. But the safety ropes that kept them anchored were also doing what they were made to do. Bruno and Walter turned on their helmet lights to help guide the way. One foot after another and with great effort they started walking towards the noise.


"I think it's coming from over there," Bruno said over the radio system, pointing to a nearby hill. Both outfits were linked together by a closed communications system. A digital recorder was also saving their conversation in case something went wrong. "Yes I can hear it as well," answered Walter, "Overthere is where we installed the helix wind turbines with..."

"GET DOWN DOWN," shouted Walter suddenly. Bruno reacted instantly and dropped to the ground. Walter who was walking 4 meters in front of him did exactly the same. The flashlights they carried in their hands were both pointing up now. As if in slow motion, Bruno saw how a giant piece of polycarbon material flew straight overhead like a leaf in the wind, right where the men had been walking only one second ago. "F*CK MY LUCKY STARS," exclaimed Walter in a voice that was pitched higher than normal, "That piece of wind turbine would have sliced us in half like a hot knife through butter!"

After the adrenaline subsided, they carefully crawled forward towards the side of the hill. From this better vantage point, the situation immediately became clear. Antargis is a wild continent. No matter how well you prepare, nature is still an order of magnitude stronger. They were looking at the wreckage of what used to be a wind turbine. The extreme antargic winter winds had completely torn it to pieces. Only a small stump was left standing. The resulting wreckage had slammed into two other turbines, stripping off some of their sides. Steel cables dangling in the wind were making a clanking sound against the remaining turbines.

"It looks like the automatic brakes malfunctioned," noticed Bruno in a calm analytical voice, "because these wind speeds are much higher than the turbines are supposed to ensure. It wouldn't surprise me if it turns out those braking fluids are frozen." If that was the case, Walter certainly didn't like it one bit: "Damned. This is bad. The loss of those turbines is going to have a serious impact on our energy production."

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10:00 Uhr, Maximilians-Universität Venège, 2°C

A passion for animals is what all three of them shared.  By them we mean Ludwig, Inga and Bernd, the top three students of the antargic zoology department at the Maximilians-Universität in Venège.  The trio really stood out head and shoulders above the other students.  This much was clear from the very start of the school year.

  • Ludwig came from Richüz and enjoyed a privileged upbringing.  His father worked at the Richüz Insurance Group and got his son into all the best schools.  A golden spoon as soon as he joined kindergarten and then onto the Freie Alternativschule.
  • Inga from Hamberg spent most of her childhood playing outside in the mountains.  This is where she discovered her passion for animals great and small.  For her 8th birthday her grandfather Max gifted her a brandnew pair of binoculars.  She used it to observe the forest animals.  Her schoolbooks were always covered with detailed drawings of birds and owls and eagles. She made friends with everyone and was a darling of her teachers and school staff. Even the rector smiled and turned his head when Inga walked past.
  • Bernd grew up right here in Venège.  The third and youngest son in a regular family he was always shorter than the other kids in his class and felt a need to compensate this by studying really hard.  Bernd was gifted with a natural curiosity and talent.

At the start of the new school year their teacher professor Louis Eck announced there was an opportunity for someone in the class to serve his or her internship abroad.  Most of the students didn't pay much attention at first.  Ludwig for example thought it would be just another boring job in Lyrie where he had already been more than enough times.  But everyone looked up in attention and some students gasped in surprise when professor Eck revealed the internship was actually at Simon Station on faraway Antargis!

The selection for this internship depended on two factors.  The first factor was the total number of grades after the important exams in December. Ludwig, Inga and Bernd did very well and scored the top three results with 98%.  So it was only natural that they sent in their application.

The second factor was decided by the existing members of the ISTC mission on Antargis.  This really had nothing to do with academic achievement (sorry Bernd) or network of connections (sorry Inga) or financial capabilities (sorry Ludwig).  No, the final decision of who got to live and work on Antargis was completely up to their future coworkers...

Edited by Magnaeus
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Neue Meignitzer Zeitung

Two technicians die at ISTC research station in Antargis

Two ingenieurs employed at the Simon Station in Antargis died on Wednesday while working on a building that houses a generator for a nearby radio transmitter, an ISTC spokesperson said.

The ingenieurs were found unconscious on the floor of the building after a helicopter pilot flying over the area saw what appeared to be smoke coming from the structure and landed to investigate.

One of the technicians was pronounced dead by medical personnel called to the scene. The other was pronounced dead a short time after being flown to a medical clinic, the ISTC said in a statement.

The two workers were performing preventive maintenance on the building’s fire-suppression system before someone found them, the organisation said.

The ISTC said it was not releasing any personal information about the two workers. No further details were immediately provided, and the incident was under investigation, the organisation said.

The NMZ managed to confirm that one victim was originally from Magnaeus, which is a member nation of the ISTC Antargic Program.

The research station, established by the ISTC in 2017, is situated near Antargis' Simon Sound, named for a former naval officer who was part of the expedition that first charted the area in 1841.

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Radio Control Room | 1605hrs
27th April 2020
Simon Station, King Tomasso Land


"Hey Max - we can call people from here, right?" Roland Kolsrud knocked on the door of Max Werfel's office, hanging in the doorway with a tray of mugs. He glanced around the room before him, feeling utterly lost in the mess of wires and screens that Max called home. This was the radio control room, and as Max was the station's current sole radio engineer, he was Roland's best and only hope at communicating with the outside world. The Magnaean radio expert leaned back in his chair, pulling his headphones from his ears as he craned his neck towards his visitor. 

"Well, in a sense. You can radio people from here, sure, but really it's only meant to be for getting in touch with the Initiative, you know? Not personal calls."

"That's great," Roland smiled as he stepped into the room, pushing the door closed with his foot before setting the tray down on a desk amongst a spaghetti mess of wires and cables. "I brought you some tea."

"Err, thanks... I don't drink tea."

"Oh you'll like this, it's a nice Fulgistani blend. My mother gave me a packet when I lef -- shit, I'm sorry," Roland cursed as he dropped the mug, its boiling hot contents spilling across the desk. Max jumped out of his seat to lift the wires and joined in at cursing his clumsy colleague. The biologist dabbed at the tea with a tissue, his efforts only helping to spread the liquid nearer to a large stack of... well, he didn't quite know what it was, some sort of nerdy technology probably, but he knew he wasn't helping much.

"Hah, mother always said I had butter fingers. Oh, that makes me miss butter... and fingers..." The Prymontian's eyes drifted as he daydreamed, remembering the times back on terra firma when he could eat whatever he wanted, and didn't have to ration himself according to what the station director declared as a 'luxury' or not. As if that man knew what he was talking about? Fingers were a necessity, and Roland wouldn't stand for the blasphemy of them being anything else for much longer.

"Fingers?" Max queried, quickly eyeing his visitor's hands to count his digits. Had the poor soul suffered from a bad case of frostbite already?

"Chocolate fingers, you know? Surely you have those in Magnaeus, with all the chocolate you have. Perfect with tea!" Roland raised his mug, sipping at the warm, sugary contents and sighing happily as he perched himself atop the desk.

"You wanted to contact someone? From the Initiative? Are you having problems?" Max pressed the matter at hand, shooing Roland from his new seat to recover a laptop that wasn't quite designed to carry the mass of an stocky, clumsy, good-for-nothing biologist.

"No, not from the Initiative. I want to call my mother! I'm bored of writing to her, my hand gets cramp you see? It'd be easier to just talk to her. Oh, and do we have WiFi? I have a picture with some new friends that I want her to see."


"Sure, I'll set up a line for you," Max grumbled as he began fiddling with some cables. He'd already given up on trying to usher Roland away from his little haven and accepted defeat. The man was irritating, but he also almost felt sad for him. The station had been going through a rough patch lately, what with weather balloon launches failing and a bunch of penguins the team were monitoring getting lost - seriously, how could you lose them when you'd fitted trackers? - and perhaps a call home would lift his spirits.

Max rather enjoyed the isolation, on the other hand. He'd never particularly enjoyed the company of others, and often wondered how he'd ended up working as a telecommunications engineer in a cramped, claustrophobic office in the middle of Venege. When the opportunity arose for him to take a career break and go and work on the loneliest continent on Eurth he was the first to hand in his application, and almost fell down the stairs of his apartment on the way to the airport after his acceptance. Being thousands of kilometres away from civilisation was the dream for Max. His introverted nature betrayed his job, which was to connect people and bring them together through radio, but they weren't talking to him, and that kept him happy. Unfortunately, he also had to share the station with morons like Roland, whose academic prosperity belied his common sense, or lack thereof.

"Working on anything interesting?" The scientist asked, cradling his mug as if to absorb its heat. For a man that was born and bred in Antargis' northern hemisphere counterpart, Roland was bloody awful at dealing with the cold. He'd rather spend his days on a warm Variotan beach, enjoying the rays and observing the exotic local biology, which was filled with silicone and attracted to him only for his salary. It was wonderful, but to afford such luxuries, he had to endure Antargis. Sadly, the Variotans were yet to join the TCSI, despite Roland urging his pen pals in the country to lobby for their politicians to discuss the topic in his numerous letters. They probably hadn't replied because of his butchering of the Variotan language, not because he wasn't sending any money. He'd already explained that when he left Prymont.


"I've recently started studying some albatrosses. Wonderful birds, they are. They drop by now and then and I give them some scraps. They love it, they do."

"Aren't you supposed to, like, let them be wild? That sounds like you're on the way to domesticating them."

"No no, they're not stupid, they know it's only a little treat. Did you know their proper diet is made up of fish and krill?"

"Why are birds so far inland anyway? You don't get fish here."

"Penguins come inland. We've been following some of them too! Fascinating little creatures. Quite vicious too. One stole Harald's sandwich and wouldn't give it back!"

"Didn't you lose a bunch of penguins lately?"

"Well yes, but --"

"And that weather balloon thing didn't go well either. Not having much luck here, are you?" Max waved an open palm in the air, gesticulating towards the general Prymontians rather than just Roland - although he doubted the man was having a successful time either.

"No, not really. They're meant to be increasing our funding though, did you hear? Something about proper training and more resources. Maybe that'll turn things around for us."

"Where'd you hear that?" For a telecommunications expert, Max was not privy to this titbit of information. 

"They're meant to be announcing it at one of those conferences soon. Haven't had one in a while have they? Oh and that reminds me, one of my friends in Variota said there was some interest in them joining the treaty. Oh she's lovely, my friend. Stunning blonde hair, deep blue eyes, really big --"

"Here, I've got you a line. It should link up to Prymont and then it's just like a regular call. Don't take too long." Max handed over the headphones and quickly vacated the room, shuddering at the thought of what Roland got up to in his spare time. He wondered if it was his mother he was even calling. He tried to shake the image as he headed to the canteen, hoping to find some booze to numb the pain of his most recent exchange.

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