|You wake up trapped in a room -- no! Wait! Don't go away, this isn't like the others! Honest.|
CEAL Institute is an adventure by Yubi Shines. A young woman has been imprisoned for three months and it's way past time to blow this popsicle stand. But how did she get here? What is this facility for? What is the nature of the Stribog Event?
Plot Summary Edit
Sarah is sealed in a windowless cell, constantly monitored by security cameras. After some meandering around, she discovers a gritty black substance in the garbage chute. She cleans up the substance with toilet paper, and on a whim uses the damp paper on a camera. It shorts out, kills the lights in the cell, and deactivates the electronic lock on the door.
She leaves the cell to find many other similar rooms, each locked and with computer readouts on the doors. Her own room is labelled 5-S-204. She then investigates the only open door, Dr. Firminger's office, and discovers a cryptic message from "Haslock" and what looks to be a file about her (unfortunately encrypted).
Picking up a set of keys and a keycard, she goes to investigate the room next to hers, 203. It contains what looked to be a sentient typewriter. It tells Sarah that the facility is a "dragon's hoard" and gives her some advice. However, it soon reveals itself to be less than trustworthy.
Sarah flees down the hall and through a door, triggering... something.
The narrative switches to the Eleutherian Zetetic, who is on a journey through the Backstage. It is a world-between-worlds kind of place, "where stories go to die."
EZ finds the dead body of Weiss, fallen from a cliff after her anchoring rope snapped. The corpse wears a similar translator that Sarah has, and after taking it, EZ is able to understand a voice from a transceiver device (also belonging to the corpse). It gracefully accepts EZ's unwillingness to work with it and displays preternatural knowledge about our current protagonist.
- Sarah - The hero of the story. As a result of her extended isolation, Sarah's memory is hazy. It is likely that further damage was done to her psyche. She is short, rather frail from lack of exercise, and recently had a bit of an anxiety attack. Things are not looking great.
- Dr. Will Firminger - The supervisor of 5-S. May have been suffering from chronic pain. Has not appeared in person.
- Ruse? - Full/true name unknown. Firminger left a note on the 5-S-204 file indicating that it was "his responsibility." He knows something about the thing in Hingley's lab. Has not appeared in person.
- Haslock? - Full/true name unknown. Contacted Firminger and instructed him to go to Hingley's lab. Has not appeared in person.
- EZ - True name, if any, unknown. Introduced in The Valley as the second playable character. Is under obligation to an unknown party to complete a quest. Might be suffering from memory problems like Sarah, but that could also be a symptom of spending time in Backstage.