[Kalgachia] Radio Ga Ga

It came from Fort Ermingander. Mondo things will happen. Be afraid.

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[Kalgachia] Radio Ga Ga

Post by Kalgachi Envoy » Tue May 29, 2018 4:04 am

Day 1

0648 hrs

An electronic intelligence sniffer complex of the Kalgachi Defence Force (KDF), dug into the northeast slope of the Splatterhorn on manoeuvres, suddenly picks up a signal from the northeast which matches the electronic fingerprint of an Aedes phased array air defence radar in unencrypted search mode. Having fallen out of use a generation previously with the collapse of the Minarborian armed forces, the detection of such a system going live causes much befuddlement and consternation within the complex, resulting in the dispatch of a mounted messenger to battalion command to clarify whether the signal is part of the exercise.

0803 hrs

The messenger returns with the reply from battalion - namely that this is not en exercise but a highly unusual development, the exercise is suspended and the sniffer complex is ordered to remain in place and devote its entire attention to monitoring the signal and reporting any further developments.

0918 hrs

The Kalgachi General Staff, having little else to occupy them at that particular moment, convene in the depths of KDF Command Rhizome FLORID to discuss the situation. The usual hypothesis of a Shirerithian psychological or false flag operation is quickly ruled out, due to that empire's focus on a stunted civil war in Elwynn and a traditional preference for more memetically-virulent forms of psyop such as Obedience Cat.

0937 hrs

A second KDF sniffer complex in the adjoining Lieutenancy of Abrek is mobilised to acquire the mystery signal and work with the first complex to biangulate its source. An observation aircraft of Kalgachia's Directorate of the Tumultuous Wastes (DTW) is placed on standby at its base in southwest Lithead.

1212 hrs

Having reached an appropriate patch of high ground and activated its equipment, the sniffer complex in Abrek obtains a directional fix on the mystery signal which is referenced with the one from the Splatterhorn to roughly establish its source - Fort Ermingander, an old Minarborian frontier outpost just shy of the Shirerithian border which is in the lowest priority sector for Kalgachi near-abroad reconnaissance. The most recent photographic sweep and emissions profile of the area is a year old, indicating the presence of nothing more than the usual rabbles of armed vagabonds which prevail in Benacia's ungoverned territories.

1232 hrs

The DTW's observation aircraft is sortied to Fort Ermingander for an optical and full-spectrum emissions sweep.

1341 hrs

The mystery signal suddenly switches to a narrow-beam tracking mode and 'wartime' frequency hop, locking directly on to the approaching aircraft while it is still some distance from overflying Fort Ermingander. The aircraft conducts an evasive manoeuvre and retreats back toward Kalgachi airspace at a lower altitude.

1343 hrs

Kalgachia's ballistic missile complexes are placed on full alert status and fed guidance data for Fort Ermingander's coordinates to retaliate for any attack on the observation aircraft.

1405 hrs

Fort Ermingander's tracking beam disengages from the observation aircraft, now back over Kalgachia, which holds its location but ascends to high altitude to bring Fort Ermingander back within its visual horizon.

1439 hrs

The aircraft fails to focus its cameras on Fort Ermingander due to meteorological conditions. After reporting an electronic signature consistent with that reported by ground units, the plane is recalled to base.


Day 2

0800 hrs

Having finely analysed the mystery signal overnight, the KDF School of Air Defence, Electronic Warfare and Military Intelligence submits its findings to the Kalgachi General Staff in a morning briefing - the most salient of which is that the signal's upper sideband is modulated with a radioteletype signal of non-standard, unusually-fast baud rate which repeats a single message, broken by a silent period in the five minutes preceding the top of each hour:

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SALUTATIONS FROM MONDO I WOULD LIKE TO BE YOUR FRIEND WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE A FRIEND OF MONDO SALUTATIONS FROM MONDO I WOULD LIKE TO BE...
The General Staff's DTW liaison is instructed to petition his Directorate's Field Research Office (FRO) for any information it holds on the individual known as 'Mondo'.

0930 hours

The Executive Committee of the DTW convenes in Oktavyan to discuss the matter. The FRO denies all knowledge of a 'Mondo' among the pre-eminent warlords of ungoverned Benacia and suggests the name may be a pseudonym. Officials reach the conclusion that whoever Mondo may be, a reliable channel of comunication must be established with him for the purposes of deconfliction, a recommendation referred down to the DTW's representative on Kalgachia's ruling Council of Perfecti.

1654 hrs

The Council of Perfecti approves the DTW's suggestion and instructs the KDF to deploy a broadcast complex on the national frontier at northeast Katarsis for the purposes of establishing contact. The KDF, anticipating this order, has already mobilised said complex - an ungainly procession of pack horses laden with antenna segments and drums of guy wire - from its garrison near Katarsis city.


Day 3

1536 hrs

The broadcast complex, having arrived at an optimal transmission site during the morning, comes online and awaits the five-minute silent interval between Mondo's broadcasts.

1557 hrs

In the middle of one such interval, the Kalgachi broadcast complex transmits a reply in the same flatulent radioteletype format as the original:

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THE GARDEN OF KALGACHIA SENDS GREETINGS TO MONDO THE ESTEEMED CUSTODIAN OF FORT ERMINGANDER AND AFFIRMS THAT IT WOULD VERY MUCH LIKE TO BE A FRIEND OF MONDO IN THE SPIRIT OF JOLLITY AND BENACIAN FRATERNITY THE GARDEN OF KALGACHIA SENDS GREETINGS TO MONDO THE ESTEEMED CUSTODIAN OF...
1559 hrs

After several message loops, the transmission is stopped in time to allow Mondo's broadcast to resume on the hour as scheduled.

1700 hrs

Mondo's broadcast fails to resume - the original message has been taken off the air. The Kalgachi signal troops - accompanied by assorted diplomats, intelligenciers and at least one initiated Troglodyte in a camouflaged tent - stare at the flat green line on their spectrum analyser. Aside from the soft hiss of empty static on the speaker and the gurgle of the portable generators outside, the only sound is that of the fat mosquitos which infest the surrounding forest of this time of year, broken by the occasional slap as they are swatted.

Sooner or later, the listeners mutter among themselves, Mondo must return to the airwaves.

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Re: [Kalgachia] Radio Ga Ga

Post by Mondo » Tue May 29, 2018 3:23 pm

Day 4

The airwaves remained stubbornly silent for nearly twenty-four hours. Then, just when the listeners might reasonably be wondering if the mysterious caller would ever respond, a reply came.

And it was deafening.

For unclear reasons, the signal had been massively amplified, pounding the receivers with a relentless burst of energy...the flat green line of the spectrum analyser now registering a ridge of jagged peaks.

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HELLO KALGACHIA THIS IS MONDO STOP HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW QUERY STOP I AM PLANTING A GARDEN TOO STOP DO YOU HAVE COCKLE SHELLS AND PRETTY MAIDS QUERY STOP I WOULD LIKE SOME IF YOU HAVE ANY STOP DO YOU KNOW THE CATMONSTER QUERY STOP I WOULD LIKE TO CONTACT THE CATMONSTER STOP PLEASE WARN ME NEXT TIME YOU SEND A VISITOR STOP ACTIVE TEST ZONE APPROXIMATE RADIUS SIX DECIMAL FOUR EIGHT NAUTICAL MILES FROM LOCATION STOP I CANNOT ENSURE PHYSICAL INTEGRITY OF UNEXPECTED FRIENDS IN TEST ZONE STOP DO COME AGAIN THOUGH WE CAN HAVE A PICNIC IN MY PARK STOP IT IS GOOD TO TALK TO YOU BUT I HAVE TO GO NOW STOP MONDO OUT
And just like that, the silence resumed once more.
Salutations! I'm Mondo...

Who the Hell is Mondo?

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Re: [Kalgachia] Radio Ga Ga

Post by Kalgachi Envoy » Tue May 29, 2018 5:51 pm

1624 hrs

A brief panic ensues as the Kalgachi listeners, their eardrums screaming at the data burst, struggle to rip off their headphones or turn the volume knob down - the panicked fumbling of so many hands nudges the volume louder instead, causing the unit's speakers to blow out. Deafened by the ringing of their own ears in what would otherwise be silence, the listeners' attention turns to the paper being slowly disgorged from the adjoining teletype printer with the text of Mondo's message. An excited commotion follows, both at the message content and transmitter power. One of the older technicians notes that he has not seen amplitude peaks like that since the days when 'Volkssender Tuulersbyur' polluted half the HF spectrum of Benacia with recitations of insipid Froyalanish verse. Mondo's message is referred on to the DTW with a request for new orders.

1632 hrs

The other monitoring complexes report that they also received the signal, but it was far fainter despite them being no further away from it.

1709 hrs

The DTW Executive Committee convenes again, armed with a preliminary KDF brief that Mondo's signal was of a very high directional gain, explaining its immense power along a narrow bearing, and that such technology is beyond the capability of the usual Inner Benacian brigand. A response is composed and referred back to the transmitter on the frontier.

1748 hrs

The reply is broadcast:

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GREETINGS MONDO STOP KALGACHIA HERE STOP IT APPEARS YOU HAVE LEARNED HOW TO STOP STOP WE ARE IMPRESSED STOP YOUR ASSERTION OF A TEST ZONE AROUND FORT ERMINGANDER IS ACKNOWLEDGED AND WILL BE RESPECTED STOP IN RESPONSE TO YOUR MANY QUERIES THE GARDEN OF KALGACHIA IS DISPOSED TO DIVULGE THE FOLLOWING BREAK BREAK COCKLES ARE CONSIDERED ILLEGAL CONTRABAND IN KALGACHIA AND ARE THEREFORE UNAVAILABLE STOP OUR PRETTY MAIDS ARE ALL FROYALANISH AND HAVE LONG SINCE SUCCUMBED TO MIDDLE AGE OR DOTAGE ON ACCOUNT OF OUR STERILISATION PROGRAMME STOP HOWEVER WE MAY BE ABLE TO PROCURE SOME SILVER BELLS FROM OUR NOVA ENGLISH COMMERCIAL INTERMEDIARY AT A MODEST MARKUP IF YOU ARE INTERESTED STOP WE WISH YOU EVERY SUCCESS IN THE CULTIVATION OF YOUR GARDEN AND STAND READY TO LEND SUCH ADDITIONAL ASSISTANCE AS WE ARE ABLE IN THIS REGARD STOP A PICNIC DELEGATION WILL BE PRESENT AT THE FRONTIER ADJACENT TO THIS TRANSMITTER FROM TWELVE HUNDRED HOURS TOMORROW STOP FOR THE ASSEMBLY OF AN OPTIMAL HAMPER THE GARDEN OF KALGACHIA WISHES TO KNOW YOUR CULINARY PREFERENCES AND THOSE OF YOUR IMMEDIATE MINIONS IF ANY STOP WE ARE QUITE PARTIAL TO POTTED MEATS AND STRONG DISTILLED SPIRITS IF YOU CAN ACQUIRE ANY STOP THE DELEGATION WILL BE LED BY ONE BITT PERKIAN KNOTTY STOP HE IS A PARTICULARLY JOLLY INDIVIDUAL STOP BREAK BREAK REGARDING THE RECENTLY MANIFESTED ENTITY KNOWN AS OBEDIENCE CAT THE GARDEN OF KALGACHIA IS AWARE OF ITS EXISTENCE BUT IS NOT PERSONALLY ACQUAINTED STOP ALTHOUGH OBEDIENCE CAT IS VERY PRETTY KALGACHIA ADVISES EXTREME CAUTION WHEN CONSORTING WITH THE ARCHONS INCARNATE OF WHICH THE FELINE CONCERNED APPEARS TO BE ONE STOP NONETHELESS OUR INITIATED BRETHREN WOULD BE GREATLY INTERESTED TO LEARN OF YOUR EXPERIENCES WITH OBEDIENCE CAT SHOULD YOU ENCOUNTER IT DIRECTLY STOP THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME AND HAVE A JOLLY DAY STOP KALGACHIA OUT

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Re: [Kalgachia] Radio Ga Ga

Post by Mondo » Thu May 31, 2018 8:28 am

After a much shorter delay, another message is received:

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HELLO KALGACHIA THIS IS MONDO AGAIN STOP I AM LOOKING FORWARD TO MEETING BP KNOTTY AND THE REST OF THE PICNIC PARTY STOP ALWAYS NICE TO HAVE FRIENDS OVER STOP I SUGGEST THE PICNIC PARTY BRINGS AIR TRANSPORT STOP THE ROADS HERE ARE NOT WHAT THEY WERE STOP I DO NOT HAVE DIETARY REQUIREMENTS SO BRING WHATEVER YOU LIKE TO EAT STOP I WILL ORDER IN SOME TREATS TOO STOP EFFORTS TO CONTACT THE CATMONSTER HAVE SO FAR BEEN UNSUCCESSFUL STOP THE CATMONSTER IS VERY PRETTY AND EXCITING THOUGH SO I SHALL TRY AGAIN STOP THE OFFER OF SILVER BELLS WAS VERY NICE OF YOU BUT I HAVE SOME ALREADY STOP PITY ABOUT THE COCKLES THOUGH STOP I WOULD LIKE SAMPLES FROM THE OLD MAIDS SO I CAN GROW MY OWN PRETTY ONES STOP THAT WOULD BE NICE STOP I WILL SWITCH ON A BEACON AT TWELVE HUNDRED HOURS TO GUIDE THE PICNIC PARTY HERE STOP BYE FOR NOW STOP MONDO OUT
Salutations! I'm Mondo...

Who the Hell is Mondo?

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Re: [Kalgachia] Radio Ga Ga

Post by Kalgachi Envoy » Thu May 31, 2018 6:59 pm

In previous years Bitt Knotty, Kalgachia's Chief Emissary, might have resented being pulled away from the comforts of Shirekeep's diplomatic quarter where he seemed to spend most of his time, for an uncertain meeting at a derelict fort in the ungoverned wilds beyond Katarsis. Moreover he wondered if he had fallen out of favour back in Oktavyan and the Kalgachi state had contrived to send him somewhere he was likely to be ritually slaughtered by the natives - he knew that tactic well enough, having signed off on a number of such orders for his disgraced juniors. His own seniors, unusually, had expressly assured him that this was not the case and that the individual he was assigned to meet, known only as 'Mondo', had displayed every indication of being cut from the same jolly cloth as Knotty himself. Knotty had read the transcripts of the radio messages and certainly identified with their particular tone. In his assessment Mondo was of definite Southern Minarborian heritage - if not Lywall then fairly close by - folk which the Shirerithians, now ruling most of that territory, had termed 'pathologically dainty' in apparent frustration at their obstinate cheerfulness.

The prospect of meeting a fellow Lywaller in a diplomatic context improved the prospect of Knotty's journey to the realm of the tolerable - it was further propelled to the desirable by the febrile atmosphere in Shirekeep in recent days, set on edge by yet another 'situation in Elwynn', which seemed to threaten the imminent harrassment or outright lynching of Knotty's ilk by the passing street thugs of some political faction or other seeking to make a statement. The Kalgachi diplomatic mission in the city had already been stripped down to a skeleton crew and Knotty himself, almost without being conscious of the desire, had welcomed his reassignment away from the place. The notion of the Inner Benacian wilds being safer than the streets of Shirekeep was sufficiently aligned with the sentiments of the Kalgachi elite that it would make a suitably-ingratiating dinner party observation back in Oktavyan City - Knotty had already planned to stretch it out to a fully-cited anecdote if possible.

Returned to Kalgachia, it was this jolly optimism which saw him safely into the tight space behind the pilots' seats of a Whirdlebirb helicopter - accompanied on one side by his principal secretary, one Malice Absitt, and on the other side by a large wicker picnic hamper hastily assembled to some semblance of diplomatic standard by Kalgachia's Directorate of the Tumultuous Wastes, whose protocol cadres had not anticipated the picnic as a state occasion but had nonetheless improvised by adding a full silverware set, silk napkins, glasses of intricately cut crystal, a matching set of artisanal deck chairs with folding tables, tablecloths of fine-woven Nova English linen, a profusion of lace doilies and at least one tea cosy which doubled as an emergency hat in the event that Knotty needed to project his authority. These accessories were carried in other helicopters along with a variety of other officials and Laqi bodyguards - they buzzed into the air behind Knotty's lead helicopter which carried an electronic warfare widget on one of its hardpoints to acquire and home in upon Mondo's beacon signal. Mounted on the hardpoints of another helicopter was an array of fluid drums containing five litres of fresh Froyalanish blood each - an amount implying the full exsanguination of the donors but Mondo's request had betrayed no more concern at the idea than any other architect of the New Benacian Order.

Amid the noise and turbulence of the flight, Knotty re-familiarised himself with his briefing notes on Fort Ermingander. They described an old Minarborian frontier outpost, originally built to remind King Noah's avaricious Vanic horde when to stop and adjust their direction - indeed the very name of the place spoke of an effort to invoke the Froyalaners' own gods against them, an esoteric potshot which independently manifested in other entities of the time and ultimately yielded a result so cataclysmic in scope that populations along most of the Benacian theological spectrum had found difficulty ascribing it to anything other than divine intercession. Since those heady days however, Fort Ermingander had fallen victim to the necrosis of the Minarborian state and Shirerithian imperial overstretch which together conspired to abandon it to the creeping vicissitudes of rust and ruin.

So the accepted wisdom had been, anyway - the sudden emergence of the individual known as Mondo, having secured and preserved at least some of the fort's stocks of Minarborian military hardware, now forced a sudden revision of the facts. Whence had he come? What were his motives? And perhaps most importantly, why show his face now? Knotty mused that not too long ago, the first whiff of Mondo's existence would have gotten him and his fort 'Walt-Koched' by a blizzard of Shirerithian paratroopers. Had he patiently awaited the downfall of Liv Dravot and the distraction of Shireroth by her rebellion in Elwynn? Had it been a coincidence? Had some divine hand engineered that conincidence to the blissful ignorance of all worldly parties? There were too many questions, and only Mondo could answer them.

The helicopters hovered short of Mondo's 'test zone' and scouted around for a landing site, but even from that distance it became apparent that Fort Ermingander was far from the ruin it was assumed to be. The glacis and killing zones at its edge were verdant with finely-mown grass. The barrels of artillery pieces could be seen jutting out of the fort's embrasures and the sun reflected off the occasional pane of intact window glass. The impression given by high-altitude reconnaissance photos, Knotty noted aloud to Ms. Absitt, was misleading to say the least.

Upon landing the delegation completed their journey on foot, the Laqi escorts lugging the picnic hampers and drums full of blood behind them. Everyone was pleased to complete the substantial walk to the fort which, despite its semi-tidied appearance, betrayed no sign of actual human activity. A lowered drawbridge across a dry moat led to a pair of great riveted iron doors, weathered by rust and flaking paint but no less formidable in their strength. The whole place had an eerie silence about it.

"I suppose you'd better do the honours," said Ms. Absitt, nodding at Knotty and the door in succession.

"Well a tap of the knuckles isn't going to be heard through that," said Knotty, looking around. "I need a stick. You! You there!" he motioned to one of the Laqis. "Be a gent and find me a stick, will you?"

In the ensuing two minutes the Laqi duly retreated back over the drawbridge and scuttled into a nearby copse of trees. He returned with a short, thick stick which was barely narrow enough to clasp in his hands. He handed it to Knotty, who hoisted it aloft and brought it down upon the doors with a dull, lingering BONG.

"Should I do it again?" he asked Ms. Absitt.

"You know what my dear mother always said?" she replied. "One knock is accidental. Two is terse. Three is sublime and four is aggressive. So... two more should do nicely."

"Jolly good," said Knotty, beating upon the iron doors twice more before letting the stick fall to the ground, whence it rolled away and fell into the moat. From one of the hampers he took a bottle of Dietse Wijn while Absitt rustled up a posy of flowers, and together they awaited an answer.
Mothbert D. Twiddle
Chief Emissary of the Garden of Kalgachia to the Tumultuous Wastes
( Krasniy )

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Re: [Kalgachia] Radio Ga Ga

Post by Mondo » Thu May 31, 2018 8:45 pm

A closer inspection of Fort Ermingander only served to heighten the air of mystery. While the massive doors appeared to date back to the original construction of the fort, other features seemed decidedly more recent...and bizarre. Much of the central portion of the wall was swathed in plastic sheeting hung from a copious web of scaffolding, but here and there the cladding yielded a hint of the architectural treats beyond. Large ornamental windows, more appropriate for a palace than a stronghold, were being set into an elaborate facade; the overall effect being created suggested a stately home had unceremoniously rear-ended the fortress.

There was no-one working today though.

After the third knock, the huge doors swung back, revealing a cavernous entrance tunnel stretching for some tens of metres, before opening out again into light.

Just inside, a tall, spindly figure, clad in what appeared to be a butler's uniform, waited solemnly.

"Good day, Gentlemen and welcome to Fort Ermingander," intoned the butler in a precise voice, simultaneously delivering a flawless bow complete with clicked heels. "I am Spooner, butler to his lordship. You are ninety-two seconds early. I am to convey you to the Picnic Pavilion where his lordship awaits."

He indicated the brightly-painted hover-carriage waiting behind that presumably would serve as their transport.
Salutations! I'm Mondo...

Who the Hell is Mondo?

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