Vol. 120: The EMC
At a glance: The second group to split off from the Multiverse Warriors at the end of The Panic are the EMC (Elysium Military Corps.) After the massacre of close to 80% of the ECC at the Battle of the Sewers it was decided that that could never happen again. This was the answer to that problem.
In-Depth: Out of the 3 groups who split off from the Multiverse Warriors near the end of the Panic and at the beginning of the 3rd Crush, the EMC was formed in the most... convoluted way.
From the first days of the opening of Elysium 12 the ECC (Elysium Civilian Corp) had been an integral part of the operations there. Not just at Elysium 12 but also at Unity and Pussiance, Elysium 12's "mini-moons" which were large bases themselves. They all require constant maintenance and thus the ECC was born.
But they had never had a combat component to their training. Maybe some simple hand to hand combat but nothing serious. And why would they? The Animus and the Grinders provided all the protection Elysium 12 and her 2 mini-moons could ask for.
Or so they thought.
The Battle of the Sewers placed the protective forces of Elysium 12 in a situation they had not been in since the very first Elysium, an attack from within. An extraordinary one to be sure but nonetheless they were not prepared. When the Animus and Grinders descended into the Sewers to face the terrible threats below they left the ECC in charge of the surface. No one expected such savage battle to take place there. But it did. And the ECC paid the price. To be honest so did the adventurers who went below. 85% of the adventurers who went below never came back alive. This included droves of Animus and Grinders. But the crux of it is these warriors chose this life. They knew the dangers they were facing. The ECC did not. It was in their name: Civilian. They were not trained adventurers. But despite this the ECC stood bravely. Fought bravely. And died bravely.
In the aftermath everyone knew there would have to be changes. None more so than the Animus and Grinders. They felt directly responsible for the slaughter of the ECC. They could not allow this to happen again.
So they turned to the Multiverse Warriors. The Grinders themselves are trained from a very young age by the MWs. And the Animus, like most people, greatly respected them. They were one of the oldest forces for truth and justice in the multiverse. Certainly their advice would be sound.
After the bloody Battle of the Sewers there were plenty of MWs around. They, as well as many other races and forces, swarmed to aid Elysium 12 during this time. After the initial cleanup was done the Grinders and Animus approached the MWs with their dilemma. What came from their meetings would begin a new chapter for the ECC.
It was decided that the Animus and Grinders themselves would not be the ones to train them. They felt responsible for the slaughter that occurred and felt there would be a lack of trust if they did so. And to be honest the MWs were stretched thin themselves. The Panic required the MWs to be on duty more so than ever in their past. The fight was constant. But there was a solution.
The ECC had long been a place for misfits. Almost anyone could be accepted. It was good work if you didn’t mind work. Room and Board were provided. Training was provided. You worked in perhaps the most exciting place in the multiverse. As long as you did not cause trouble you could live your life in the background of the greatest show anywhere. What wasn’t to love?
But this was going to change. It had to change, the multiverse was unfortunately becoming more dangerous, not less. And there was no longer a safe place for people in the background of the greatest show in the multiverse.
So, this is what was decided: First the Animus and Grinders would change the structure of the ECC. They had formed it, now they would rebuild it. Now joining the ECC would be a 7-year commitment. The first two years would be a sort of bootcamp lite. New recruits wanting to join the ECC would be shown the ropes. They would learn the ins and outs of Elysium 12, Unity and Puissance. But this would also be supplemented with physical training and preparation for what is to come.
At year 2 recruits who have excelled will be offered the chance to go to a new school. Run by the Multiverse warriors. Here their training would switch from lite to full flavored. They will receive advanced combat training in various weapons and disciplines. Not everyone will make it. About 50% or more drop out. But if after 5 years they are still around and have passed all their courses they will no longer be ECC, they will be EMC. And they will have a job the rest of their lives defending Elysium 12.
For those that don't make the cut out of ECC after their first 2 years they can try again every year after to gain acceptance to the EMC school. Some don't really want to join the EMC. They are happy to ride out their 7 years as ECC, enjoying that background life. But that life now has an end. If after 7 years you have not joined the EMC you will have to leave. You are given a sizable severance package, and the skills they learned during this time will make them highly employable. Just not here at the Elysium 12 but anywhere. And it’s no real loss. There are always recruits waiting in the wings eager to join.
But this doesn't just provide a place for the ECC. It gives a new home for the MW to send their wayward students. It is known that the training to become a MW is beyond brutal. MOST never make the cut. But since its beginnings the MWs have had to turn away very good warriors. Great warriors who just can’t make the cut as MWs. These warriors will now be given a chance to join the EMC. The students who couldn’t quite make it into the MWs are given the opportunity to fight for the EMC instead. They usually join the EMC as officers depending on how far along in their MW training they were. These few also become liaisons to the MWs for the EMC. Taking on more diplomatic roles and roles as leaders and even trainers in the EMC.
The protection of Elysium 12 is something most take great pride in. The Elysium has been a... THE symbol for unity in the multiverse for countless lifetimes. Since its first iteration it has been the capitol for all universes. Becoming part of the EMC, to fight alongside Animus, Grinders, and MWs as equals, it is an honor few take lightly. For many it is a dream come true. To live forever as main characters in the greatest on-going story anywhere. No longer wallflowers drifting along in the background, but warriors in the foreground, protecting this enduring symbol of peace. Whether a recruit stepping up from the ECC or a warrior from the MWs looking for their place, the EMC would become a force of justice and peace sworn to the protection of the Elysium and its occupants for the rest of time.
Powers & Abilities: Almost all EMC are human. There is a scant peppering of other races but in the end it is mostly humans. As such there are not many who join with any innate powers. They will occasionally get a mild psionic or someone with a small amount of magical power or ability. But these are rare. But what these humans have that many humans lack is passion. Most people join the ECC with hopes of becoming a member of the EMC. They want to be that hero protecting the Elysium and its mini-moons from threats both inside and out. And this passion will take them far.
The EMC gain most of their abilities by being onboard or in defense of Elysium 12 and its mini-moons. EMC have +2 attacks/actions per round while inside of or within visual range Elysium 12, Unity, or Puissance. If fighting in an E-Fighter (Elysium 12's fleet of space fighter ships) they also gain these 2 attacks or actions. All skill checks are similarly +2.
The EMC also know the ins and outs of Elysium 12 and its moons like no one else. They know the shortest route from 1 point to another and can generally be anywhere they want in 1/3 the time it would take even a seasoned senator to find their way.
The Multiverse Warrior training they receive makes them weapons experts. Generally, EMC will specialize in 4 weapon types, 2 melee, and 2 ranged, and will gain massive bonuses while using them in combat. They also are experts at combat aboard E-Fighters. All EMC must pass piloting and fighter training in these vessels. But this is not their only way to fight in the space that surrounds Elysium 12. The EMC also have power armor they use to fight in space! ESA (Elysium Space Armor) is used only by the EMC. It is repaired and maintained exclusively by them. Not even the Animus or Grinders use this armor.
ESA is highly mobile and resistant to damage. It has wrist cannons that can fire rapidly but cause only minimal damage, and a large shoulder mounted cannon that can fire once a minute. The shoulder cannon uses an AI for targeting and is VERY accurate and does A LOT of damage. EMC using ESA can cripple enemy ships in only a few blasts by pinpointing key systems on their ships and destroying or disabling them. Attacks with the shoulder cannon are +3 and can be a called shot at no negative! This is because Elysium 12 and her moon help with the targeting.
EMC also gain bonuses when fighting alongside other EMC. 3 or more EMC working together gain another additional attack/action per round and can communicate with gestures. The EMC have a sort of secret language they have developed over the years, and it is constantly growing and evolving. It is sort of like sign language but more subtle using body language and facial expression as well as gestures, to convey huge amounts of information quickly. They call this language Smiggledot, which seems to have some secret meaning only they know about. EMC keeps this language very secret, refusing to share it even with the Animus, Grinders, and MWs. It has proven bafflingly effective on the battlefield surprising even those that are training the EMC with its ability to convey complex orders and situational information quickly. When pressed this language can be used verbally but with lesser effect. The words sound like absolute nonsense but if an EMC is trapped or bound they may say these words to convey information to their fellow EMC nearby. Finally, Smiggledot can be written and left as symbols for EMC to see and translate later. There are secret places all over Elysium 12 and its moons where the EMC store what are basically post-it notes with Smiggledot symbols on them. These symbols look like scribbles speckled with dots. But to the EMC it can convey the situation around them, comrade and enemy movements, and much more.
As the 3rd Crush begins the emergence of the EMC will prove to be a great boon not only to Elysium 12 but the Multiverse as a whole. Eventually the EMC will take over all protective services at Elysium 12 freeing up the Animus and the Grinders to pursue other quests and fill other needs. But it will lead to some problems. The Animus have called the orbit outside of Elysium 12 and her moons home for many many generations. But their numbers have increased dramatically since then. It was probably time for them to choose a new home. But that is a tale for telling later...
About the Illustrations: Here we have a wizard looking through their wares, a lil sketch of Bastion from the 5! And one of the initial designs for the 5’s ship, the Slipgate!
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