There are several key locations in the history of the Standing-Point Project, not least being the Heavenfield itself, and all that it contains.
The following pages are descriptions of some of those places, from the industrial halls of the Maunsworth Accelerator Array, to the brooding, ever-changing landscapes of the Great Ruins.
All of them played their role in the history of the Heavenfield, and are a reminder of those dark and turbulent days, that brought to world to the very brink of destruction.
The following papers were recovered from the Maunsworth Research Facility prior to demolition, and have now been released under the Freedom of Information Act. This wealth of formerly Classified and Top Secret documents has been painstakingly compiled into a single volume which, I hope will provide a fascinating insight into the ill-fated experiments of the Standing-Point Project.
Information has been gathered on British, American and also so-called ‘Exile’ technologies, with technical specifications on hardware, both scientific and military, as well as existing dossiers on the people and places involved in the project.
Some documents were too damaged in the recovery to be used here, and have been recreated for the purposes of clarity. Other assets have been reproduced as-is in an attempt to convey the chaos and atmosphere of those dark days.
I must express my sincerest thanks to all those who have helped me piece together the many disparate elements of this intriguing puzzle. I hope that, as it has been for myself, the act of remembering may exorcise some of those demons that we carried with us out of the Heavenfield.
Deputy-Head of Standing-Point Field Studies
Maunsworth Research Facility (Retired)
“And I looked, and, behold, a whirlwind came out of the north, a great cloud, and
a fire infolding itself, and a brightness was about it, and out of the midst thereof
as the colour of amber, out of the midst of the fire...”
“And when they went, I heard the noise of their wings, like the noise of great waters, as the voice of the Almighty, the voice of speech, as the noise of an host...”
EZEKIAL Chapter 1
The Standing-Point Field, or ‘Heavenfield’ as it has been dubbed, has cost countless lives in conflicts that have led the world to the very brink of war, and yet understanding of its reality, not to mention its very existence is still hotly contested by scientific communities across the globe.
The discovery of the Heavenfield can be accredited to late 20th century Soviet scientists, researching into Extreme Upper-Order Particle Transmissions. The world they discovered has proven both beautiful and unpredictable, governed by shifting rules, and populated by haunted memories.
As documented by Dr. Henschel, Head of Soviet research, during their first journeys into the Field they encountered an entity they dubbed an ‘Angel’. This creature warned them of the dangers humans faced, and that ultimately their presence would lead to a ‘Final War’.
Henschel and his followers determined they would dedicate themselves to the protection of the Field, and set about this task with messianic zeal. They faked their deaths and the destruction of their Array, and moved to an unknown location, but not before using the Field to appropriate the huge fortune necessary to fund their work.
Somehow, they managed to build a secret Accelerator Array, and set about recruiting trusted followers, ever-increasing their strength, until they had completed a Fortress within the Field itself.
With the advent of British research into Standing-Point years later, the ‘Exiles’ as they now called themselves, set to work on a series of elaborate plans to sabotage the Project. They succeeded in disabling the Hayden Hill Facility, but with the entry of the Americans into the conflict, the Exiles’ plans went awry.
The growing religious fanaticism amongst the Exiles led to internal conflicts, and ultimately the destruction of the Fortress and the majority of their forces.
An innocuous circle of stones marked the Maunsworth Entry-Point, the space where the Array Chamber opens out to the Heavenfield. During the struggles against the Exiles and the Americans, this area became the focal point of hostilities.
When the Exile Fortress was destroyed, the survivors marched on Maunsworth in a last-ditch effort to end the British Project. However, the entity Sheol and her army had followed them, intent on forcing a way through to the everyday world. The British, Americans and Exiles were forced into an uneasy alliance, defending the Entry-Point in what would later be known as the Battle of Maunsworth Field.
When Grace Palmer finally returned to the Heavenfield, her team discovered three ‘sentinels’ around the perimeter of the Entry-Point.
A large outcrop of rock near the Maunsworth Entry-Point. Believed to have been named by Grace Palmer as a joke.
During the Battle of Maunsworth Field it was used as a forward defensive position to break the momentum of the Demon forces. As the hordes swept around the outcrop, Palmer’s Point became a rallying point for the besieged American and Exile forces.
Forced together into an uneasy alliance, the British, American and Exiles fought together against the Demon army. The Entity Sheol and her forces marched down the broad valley towards the Entry-Point (E.P), trapping the allies against the high cliffs. Speers, in his new form, headed the Demon horde.
Gargantuan creatures of every nightmarish form were herded into battle by Sheol’s
lieutenants, malevolent, horrifying devils. Vastly outnumbered, the allied soldiers
fought in desperate defence, and would have been overwhelmed had it not been for
a force of Angels coming to their aid.
Even then, this may not have been sufficient to turn the tide, but Thomas Sullivan, in defeating Sheol, broke the will of the Demon army which fled, purposeless back into the wastes.
“We were dug in well, in good firing positions. All we had to do was wait.
That was the worst part - not knowing what was coming. But we could hear them approaching. For hours, their cries and the shaking of the ground just grew louder and louder. One guy along the line from me had enough and just flipped.
He couldn’t take any more. Just dropped his gun and stood up out of the trench. Before anybody could get to him he just lifted off his helmet - real matter-of-fact. I’ll never forget the way he turned to me - that look on his face – horror, but also something close to rapture.
I don’t know what would’ve happened to him, but they cut him down just as the darkness started to form around him. Three Exile troopers, without a second thought - bang - they’d shot him.
They do that you know - there’s nothing worse for them than dying in the Field’s atmosphere. They say it’s worse than death. That’s their motto – save one shot for yourself.
So they just shot the poor bastard.
Well, before any of us could respond, the army was in sight, and that made us forget everything else pretty quick. Nothing could prepare you for a sight like that. None of us Americans had a clue what to expect. We were fresh out of Fort Caulder - though none of us were rookies - we knew how to handle ourselves - but this - this was like opening up the gates of Hell itself.
We killed a few of their kind that day, and that’s enough for me. When the nightmares get too much for me and I’m staring at the empty walls - I know that I killed a few - they can be stopped. I guess I cling onto that.”
Transcript from Anonymous U.S. Serviceman at the Battle of Maunsworth Field.
A strange collection of buildings not far from the Maunsworth Entry-Point, different architectures melded disconcertingly into one another.
The British research team discovered the area on their second phase of expeditions into the Field, but were attacked by an Exile group before they could explore it fully. It was in this curious collection of buildings that Thomas Sullivan and Grace Palmer first encountered the Angel. The entity is believed to inhabit a tunnel system beneath the ruins, but subsequent searches by U.S. Troops failed to find its location.
After the Battle of Maunsworth Field, the ruins were overrun by demons. Most were dispersed upon the Americans return, when they set up a base of operations nearby [see Fieldbase Alpha- 9]. But one creature, LV-8 (referred to as ‘Old Nick’) could not be dislodged, and continued to feed upon the seemingly endless supply of ghosts in the area.
It has been postulated that the ruins themselves are a collection of psychological events imprinted onto the Field, each dwelling harbouring some traumatic memory, but there is no evidence to support this theory.
During Operation Underworld the U.S task force set up a series of defensive and observation posts, the largest of which was Field-Base Alpha-9. It is located on the edge of the ruined village and served as a forward-operating base for patrols into the Valley and the wreck of the Divinity.
Overrun during the operations to reclaim the Divinity, Field-Base Alpha-9 is now a ruin, and a place best avoided; home to many memories of the dead from the battle.
The garrison at FB-A9 comprised of around twenty soldiers with three Fieldships, a Field-Walker and two lightly-armed CrABs. A pressurised Habitation and Control Centre allowed troops to remove their protective gear, and a watchtower gave them a view over the ruins and the valley. The entire base is built from sections airlifted in and quickly assembled to provide an effective Base of Operations.
When Dr. Henschel and his group dedicated their lives to protecting the Heavenfield, they quickly realised that their only hope of success would be to use the Field itself to their advantage.
They set about building an Accelerator Array at an unknown location (thought to be somewhere in Eastern Europe), using the Field to appropriate the necessary funds, resources and even people. It is not known on what scale the Array was built, but it is thought to be fairly modest. However, over a long period of time the Exiles built an impressive Fortress within the Field itself on the site of their Entry-Point.
Eventually, this monolithic structure housed aircraft hangars, vehicle stores, production plants, and enough habitation facilities to supply a small army. An extensive tunnel system led deep underground.
During the attempts to derail the British Standing-Point Project, internal feuds amongst the Exiles, and the eventual spiral into madness of Dr. Henschel, led to the destruction of the Fortress by an attacking horde of Demons.
It is unknown as to whether any of the Fortress remains standing, or whether the Exile Array is still operational. Most reports suggest that Dr. Henschel, whilst under the influence of the Demon Sheol, destroyed the Array and allowed the demon horde into the Fortress, thus precipitating its complete destruction.
The area around the Exile Fortress is a vast, sprawling ruins, home to ghosts, Cold-Ones, and other unknown terrors.
The Fortress' location was chosen for its proximity to the Ghostfields, a place told to the first founders of the Exile cause by an Angel Entity. But upon the edge of this site were also the Great Ruins, which proved to be an endless cause for difficulties.
It is unknown as to whether the Ruins were born out of a concentration of ghosts in the area, or visa-versa, but the area was filled with entities, and became a place of fear for many Exiles.
Night-time patrols were particularly dangerous, and many new recruits were told chilling stories of terrors that lurked in the shadows.
“I walked with no purpose, as if in a dream, and the corridors were strangely empty
and silent. Somehow I found myself up at the airlock to the observation deck, the
highest point upon the Fortress.
I lowered the protective shutters, and gazed out through the windows at that alien landscape. Although it was the dark of night, the plains still seemed to glow, and I could make out shapes within the Great Ruins, stretching off into the darkness. I made out dim lights flitting about the plains like ghostly fireflies, and once more I was overcome by the eerie beauty of that land.
But then I made out the dark hill in the distance, and perhaps it was some trick of the light, but I thought I could discern an endless trail of smoke drifting up from the ruins of the schoolhouse and into those dark skies.”
The Diary of Otto Kandinsky.
There has been much speculation as to the nature of the Dead City, which seemed to appear from nowhere, but related somehow to Thomas Sullivan's desire to return from the Heavenfield.
What is known is that the vast city appeared to be a projection of both the Hayden Hill and Maunsworth Arrays, forming a link between the everyday world and the Field. Somehow the catalyst for the creation of the city appeared to have been the gathering together of thousands upon thousands of dead souls, somehow drawn by Sullivan under the influence of the mysterious Mouth of God entity.
The nature of these entities is as yet unknown, and some argue that the use of such superstitious terminologies can be somewhat misleading.
A manifestation of the combined Maunsworth and Hayden Hill Arrays in the Heavenfield. It is believed that Thomas Sullivan’s consciousness somehow created the city as a bridge back into everyday reality.
Laid siege by American forces in the Battle of the Dead City. Built by a host of Angels on an ice-plain with a foundation of thousands of dead souls, the City is a place of corrosion and decay. Strange, alien architectures of harsh lines intertwine with organic, sculptural forms.
“The figure beside him turned his face to appraise the scene beyond the ridge. Thomas,
his mind in complete panic, followed his gaze, and almost cried out, overwhelmed.
He was once again overlooking the vast ice-plain, but now it was blackened with ash and scattered rocks.
And in its centre stood a city.
The metal walls glinted dully in the setting sun, the rust staining them red. Jagged towers thrust up from behind the walls like rotten stumps, rising higher and higher into the red sky, to be lost in a vast dust cloud that circled high above them. Thomas felt as though he were losing his mind. The city was completely alien to his eye, and made him sick to his stomach. It looked ugly and obscene, neglected and deserted, yet at the same time Thomas felt as if he were being scrutinised from somewhere behind the black windows...”
The Diary of Otto Kandinsky.
Maunsworth House was an 18th century stately home, requisitioned by the British Military during the Second World War, and used as a Communications Research Centre. Decades after the war, the base was still in use as a classified military establishment, however, a need to restructure and modernise led to the moth-balling of the House, and an entirely new Research Facility was built a short distance away, which still carried the name Maunsworth as a reminder of the Project's history.
Maunsworth House can trace its history back hundreds of years, where it had been the family home to minor aristocracy. In the mid-18th century, inspired by his Grand Tour to Italy, a new owner, Lord Oxton, rebuilt Maunsworth House to reflect his love of the Baroque palaces and churches of Rome. Many of the existing buildings were demolished to make way for the house as it stands today.
By the early 20th century Maunsworth House and grounds had fallen into a state of disrepair, and at the time of its requisition in 1940 its sole occupant was the ageing Lady Oxton and her staff.
Having no surviving heirs after the war, and with the death of Lady Oxton during the House’s sole air-raid attack, the property and grounds (including extensive moorland) were kept as property of the Ministry of Defence right up until the present day.
In its heyday of the early 20th century, Maunsworth House had an extensive and lavish ornamental gardens, which included a hidden, walled-garden section, ornamental lake with an arched bridge, and an area of managed woodland. There were several structures built including a pagoda and the Folly (a tower in the heart of the estate's woodland).
With the demise of Lady Oxton and the House’s military procurement, the gardens quickly reverted to the wilderness, their statues and stone structures now overgrown and half-hidden as nature reclaimed them for her own.
At the onset of World War II, a brilliant young physicist named Hugo Escher was tasked with creating a group of scientists to assess the threats of new weapon technologies, and to conduct research of their own.
'Escher's Eccentrics' as this group quickly became known were actively encouraged to give complete free-reign to their imaginations - to dream of any idea, no-matter how seemingly-infeasible, which may go some way towards helping the war-effort.
In 1941, after a near-miss during a German air-raid, Escher became increasingly concerned over the group's current premises in an old disused flour mill in East London. Work was progressing on the energy-weapons project, and after a clandestine operation to sabotage the Wernberg Plasma Physics Laboratory (an operation led by Escher himself, for which he was decorated for bravery), information gathered there convinced the War Office to continue with the project, and the go-ahead was given to Escher’s Eccentrics to construct a Plasma Physics Research Centre of their own, and a working particle accelerator.
To this end, the War Office (upon Escher’s advice) requisitioned a property - a run-down Stately Home and grounds in the north of England, named Maunsworth House. The Eccentrics took possession of the House in the spring of ‘42, and Lady Oxton, the former owner, moved into the lodge house, where she remained on good terms with her ‘dear boys’ until she tragically lost her life in the House’s only air raid of the war.
"...We used to sit out on the roof of Maunsworth House on hot summer nights - you
could see right out over the lake and the valley.
I remember one night there was a real clear sky with the moon out. We could hear a German bomber in the darkness, circling about trying to find us. He went back and forth, we couldn't see him, just hear the drone of his engines.
All of a sudden the whole sky lit up like daylight, with a terrible noise of thunder - deafening it was. [name omitted] had been gazing up to the sky and fell flat on his back, and nearly went off the roof.
At first we thought the bomber had found us and was dropping his bombs, but then we realised it was our own anti-aircraft guns - seemed like hundreds of them opening up all around the grounds of the House. We never even knew they were there - they must have been in the woodland or that well camouflaged.
But anyway, after a deafening minute or so the guns stopped, as quickly as they had begun. And when the thunder had rolled away there was just a deathly silence. There was no more to be heard of that German bomber I can tell you..."
Transcript from Arthur Parkes, stationed at
Maunsworth House as a radio operator 1942-43.
In an attempt to keep up with the escalation of events prior to the Battle of Maunsworth Field, the British Military reopened the stately home site, and the tunnel system that lay beneath. A Production Plant was set up in the sub-levels, manufacturing environment suits and weapons for the ever-increasing numbers of troops sent into the Field.
The House itself was left relatively untouched during the re-fit of the Production Plant, mostly in order to maintain a degree of secrecy about the military's expansion plans, and its dusty halls and rooms remained silent and mournful, a melancholy echo of their faded splendour.
Although not officially a part of the Research Centre, when political tensions were rising over sovereignty of the Heavenfield, the old underground levels beneath Maunsworth House were reopened and refitted as a production plant for suits and weapons.
It was connected to the Research Facility by an electric train tunnel, and in all but name was a part of the Maunsworth site.
Most of the environment suits and energy weapons that were used in the Heavenfield were produced here. By the time events were escalating towards the Battle of Maunsworth Field, demand for suits far outweighed production, and over-simplification of the designs led to many suit failures.
After the signing of the Field Treaty, the Production Plants were mothballed, and quickly fell back into a state of disrepair.
When expansion plans could no longer be contained within the Maunsworth House site, the Project moved into the next valley, leaving the Stately Home to be mothballed, where it fell into a state of disrepair. An enormous excavation of the new site resulted in the Standing-Point Accelerator Array tunnels which stretched for miles deep underground, as well as a complete underground research and habitation centre. The sub-levels contained everything necessary for day-to-day living, including accommodation, cafés, bars and even a library.
All this was joint-funded by the British Military, and Maunsworth Garrison, a well-appointed military base occupied a large portion of the surface site.
The surface of the Maunsworth Research Facility is a sprawling site, part civilian scientific campus, part military base, the two elements in often-uneasy coexistence.
The military site is made up of a barracks quarter with all the amenities, as well as staff buildings, machine shops, parade ground and firing range.
The civilian campus comprises of an information centre, some staff housing (though the majority of housing is below the surface), and the main Research Centre building. This has conference centres, offices and labs, and is the main point of entry into the lower levels that house the majority of the underground facility.
The Maunsworth Research Facility comprises of a surface level of administrative and public buildings (including research labs, a conference centre, Infirmary, Chapel, Laundry and cafe), as well as the surrounding military structures.
Beneath the surface are four sub-levels:
HABITATION - Staff quartes / Canteen / Showers / Shop / Gym / Cinema / Bars / Medical Post / Concourse / Library / Conference room
DEVELOPMENT - Fabrication plant / Engineering / Stores
RESEARCH - Control Room / Offices / Labs / Servers / Data storage / Medical
During the turbulent times of the Final War the Accelerator Arrays became the focal points of attack and defence, these being the only points of entry into the Field.
With the Array at Hayden Hill temporarily out of action, the Maunsworth Facility became one of the most important locations on the globe, under repeated attack from all sides.
Whoever controlled the Arrays controlled the Heavenfield...
The Standing-Point Accelerator Array at Maunsworth Research Facility was one of two British points of entry into the Heavenfield. The vast complex stretched for miles underground, all tunnels converging upon the Array Hall and ultimately the Chamber, the gateway to the Heavenfield itself...
Hayden Hill is the sister-facility to Maunsworth, housing an identical Accelerator Array. It was the location for the first British discovery of the Standing-Point Effect, but a later experiment was sabotaged by the Exiles, and the Facility was put out of action for some time.
During this period, work moved over to the Maunsworth Facility, and research continued, culminating in the first British expedition into the Field.
Hayden Hill, a large site of military and civilian buildings, was built atop an underground complex which stretched for miles in a series of labyrinthine tunnels.
Fort Caulder is the largest of the American Accelerator Arrays. Housed deep underground, beneath a purpose-built military base, it houses the headquarters of the 1st Field Division. This military force, under the leadership of General Oak was constructed in response to the threat from the Exile forces, and had its genesis in the forces originally assembled by Lt. Colonel Speers.
Housing a huge Array Hall capable of transporting vast numbers of troops and vehicles into the Field, Fort Caulder was built using intelligence gathered covertly by Jane Honeymon, from her position as Deputy-Head of Field Research at the Maunsworth Research Facility.
There were many other locations caught up in the history of the Heavenfield, more than can be detailed in this volume.
Deputy-Head of Standing-Point Field Studies
Maunsworth Research Facility (Retired)