The Hadrian Wall

Session 8 - A hold full of eels

A caper about rifles and fishes in Pirate's bay

Context

The UNNC Hadrian is producing Influenza A(V) vaccines for a mass vaccination campaign in the city-state of Upshal, Ensulur system. The Imperials have long abandoned the mainworld’s highport and rebuilt around a distant gas giant. Ensulur is thus left to the mercy of the pirate government of the day. To get to Upshal, the Hadrian had to engage a Kamerian drone fighter and place themselves under the protection of the 507th Imperial Marines. Unfortunately, the Kamerians are controlling the orbital space and the highport where 500kCr of freight must be delivered. Sixty displacement tons of it is made of live eels.
Session 7 – Influenza in a dome

Location

IMG_0200.JPGEnsulur’s highport is a metaphor for Ensulur’s troubled geopolitics. We asked the Tarot deck to tell us more. An upside down sun indicates that Ensulur suffers from a chronic energy crisis and the Empire indeed has turned its back on the lawless world. The highport functions at minimal power, air quality is poor, water rare. There are regular brownouts and in absence of law enforcement, a “lord of the flies” environment prevails.

Story

Location: UNNC Hadrian’s research lab, Low-Orbit’s mainworld, Ensulur system
Terran timestamp: March 24-31, 2170 AD
Dr. Inuuq spent the best of the crisis supporting the field hospital from orbit. In his spare time, he and his assistant, Stravra Shilku, devised a plan to map the genes from the gaian lifeforms. Once identified, the genes could be cloned and edited into the genome of terran cells. Unfortunately, the attempt failed as there appears that the gaian connection between lifeforms are epigenetic rather than hard coded. Inuuq observed that Stavra, now cut off from the gaiasphere, started to show signs of depression and melancholy.

Location: UNNC Hadrian’s bridge, Low-Orbit’s mainworld, Ensulur system
Terran timestamp: March 31, 2170 AD
Kamerian orbital control demanded 10KCr for access to the commercial berth of the Highport. The people on the bridge rolled their eyes. Tatiana turned to VIlani Liaison Evoll and pleaded him to lobby the 507th Imperial Marines to help. The Marines, in debt to the Hadrian, agreed to act as the ship’s scary bigger brother in the schoolyard.
The Hadrian performed a transfer to intercept the high port. The Hadrian and the Imperial dropship exchange lead laser sweeps with the Kamerian navy. The ship approached the starport. Lt. Cmdr. Vulnicura played a head game with them, and got the upper hand as the Hadrian entered a cargo transfer bay.
Environment scanners did not give the all-clear for a hatch opening. The air quality and temperature was unsafe. The crew on the bridge, in disbelief, saw the stevedores busy around the ship despite the warnings. Vulnicura called a safety override, and the cargo bay hatch opened.

Location: Ensurlur’s Highport, Low-Orbit’s mainworld, Ensulur system
Terran timestamp: March 31, 2170 AD
The smell of VOCs filled the cargo bay as Clavain started to coordinate with the stevedores. There was 60dT of live eels in tanks, 90 dT of fragile packaged cargo, 100 dT of perishable food products and 90 dT of bulk liquid atmosphere (containerized). The atmosphere got priority and a mobile pumping station was brought onboard.
Chief Agent Xiao Chen deployed are three person crew to get the lay of the land. She had a contact with the Upshal government, but the contact information lead to a recently vacated apartment. The agents noted the complete absence of law enforcement, and assessed that the Kamerians had little to no control on the inner workings in the starport. Control on board was a matter of carrying a powerful sidearm.
Clavain, getting the report from Xiao, decided to sling his 4mm Gauss rifle over the shoulder and started scouring the pubs. His target: someone with pocket deep enough to purchase 500KCr worth of Gauss semi-automatics. He went for the shadiest looking guy who looked wealthy enough to buy the lot. He engaged a man with a neck tattoo. The negotiations went nowhere ( a loss of 60KCr ). Clavain walked to the other end of the pub and ordered a couple of beers.

Location: Loading dock, Ensulur’s highport, Ensulur system
Terran timestamp: April 1, 2170 AD
The stevedores worked for the last 6 hours without a pause. Sgt. Bergmann dismissed the others to catch their breath and have a quiet meal inside. He soon got bored of the drone of grav lifts taking tanks ful lof eels out of the ship. He spotted, later on, a pair of men scoping out the place. One of them seemed to be carrying a weapon. He reported to Vulnicura on the bridge, but then got surprised by incoming fire. His hand exploded as he dropped to the ground. Writhing back inside the ship, one of the assailant slipped in just as the hatch closed.
The pair engaged in a struggle amidst the gore. By the time that Bergman had taken over the rifle, a group of Naval officers entered the scene with Dazzler pistols in hands. Dr. Mgii shortly followed and rushed Bergman to the ER.
Lt. Cmdr. Vulnicura had the intruder dragged the invader to Dr. Inuuq’s lab. Inuuq, having never vowed anything to Hippocrat, enthusiastically made the man uncomfortable with a slew of epi-injections as Vulnicura played bad cop. They got out of him that he was working for Herberto Shlata, but then passed out from truth serum overuse.

Location: Some shady pub, Ensulur’s highport, Ensulur system
Terran timestamp: April 1, 2170 AD
“Herberto Shlata, you say?”, asked Clavain as he downed his third beer. Out of blind luck, the neck tattoo guy was the man who had ordered the attack on the Hadrian. Clavain scanned the room and identified Shlata’s bodyguard. The bodyguard was unsuspecting and inebriated. Clavain used the occasion to slip to Herberto and shove the end of his Gauss rifle to the back of his head. Herberto thought that Clavain was back to renegociate the arm’s deal, and was then scared for his life. He ordered the bodyguard to drop his pistol. Two vilanis got into a fist fight over the pistol and the situation devolved into a general brawl: like a storm just waiting to break out.
Clavain pulled Herberto outside of the pub, the power wavered and the minimal red LED kicked in. It turned out that the attack on the Hadrian had nothing to do with the rifles.
“How can you effin’ expect me to know that a hospital ship would contain 4 dT of rifles?”, he asked. Clavain forced Herberto to call off the attack, but his call was let unanswered (more of that below).
Clavain, feeling in a position of power, tried to peddle the guns anyhow. Unfortunately, he was out of his league. The local man convinced him that getting rid of the lot was important before the Kamerian seized it, and that 420KCr was as much as he could pay at that moment.

Screenshot_2016-05-29_09.38.03.png

Location: Loading dock, Ensulur’s highport, Ensulur system
Terran timestamp: April 1, 2170 AD
With Bergman at sickbay, Vulnicura decided to take over the security operations. She devised a terrible plan that sounded at first pretty good. However, barging-out-of-the-ship-while-screaming turned out to be a bad idea. The stevedores were long gone, but not Herberto’s men. A flashbang grenade later, all of the naval crew but Ens. Banoo were blinded and deafened. Banoo climbed on one of the eel’s tank and opened fire with her dazzler laser on incoming miscreants. Most scrambled, but one got blinded, ran into a tank, scaring the eels inside. There was a pursuit where Banoo managed to pry the pistol from the thug’s hand. In the end, the man escaped and Banoo returned to the Hadrian with a badly bruised hand (marking the second PC left hand to be hurt under the control of the same player in a single session).

Location: UNNC Hadrian’s Science Lab, Ensulur’s highport, Ensulur system
Terran timestamp: April 1, 2170 AD
While the tech were running a round the clock vaccine production run, Dr. Inuuq and Dr. Mgii conferred on growing a new hand for Sgt. Bergman. The idea wouldn’t pass the board of ethics stage, but Inuuq proposed to grow a chimera of Bergman’s and Gaian stem cells. Bergman would potentially benefit from the Apishlan health benefit while he would play live host to the cells that are otherwise difficult to keep alive. Stavra thought the idea to be great as Bergman would be a new node in the gaian network on board of the ship.
At first signs of success, the ship switched to yellow alert. Down below, the crew was preparing for the rifle deal with Herberto “neck tattoo guy” Shlata. The Hadrian prepared for a quick getaway as they planned to take the money and keep the weapons.
What no one but Tatiana knew, however, was that this situation was the moment that Tatiana couldn’t have engineered better to once and for all get rid of Lt. Cmdr. Vulnicura, and make it look like an accident (Tatiana failed her will check, her obsession kicked in and overrides “reaonable” courses of action).

Stay tuned, kids, for a tactically flavoured season finale.

Aspects that are carried over to the next session

  • The Apishlun samples are still a secret from the Vilanis
  • Stavra Shilku suffers from a mild form of withdrawal/depression.
  • The naval crew is upset about their commander (Vladic’s propaganda).
  • The Imperial Navy has the Hadrian under protection.
  • Imperial Liaison Evoll is upset at Vulnicura, and cosy with Vladic (Vladic’s effort).
  • The Kamerians are upset about the Nightgaunt incident.
  • The cargo still needs to be delivered to the Kamerian-controlled highport.
  • Bergman’s new regrown hand is infused with Apishlan life force.

Characters Cast

  • Chief Agent Xiao Chen: A survivor from the Tibetan plateaux. Tech level 10 is too much for him, but that is not his business.
  • Dr. Theosolfus Inuuq (Cmdr): Terran Head of Science and grandmaster of contingency plans. Keeper of the “Apishlan infection”, as the Vilanis call it.
  • Ambulance Pilot Clavain Malek: Terran contractor, former free-trader and amateur gunslinger. Prefers ambulance outfitted with 10MJ lasers.
  • Dr. Kmee K’tee Mgii (Cmdr): Vegan Chief Medical Officer living in the unnecessarily high strung world of Homo Sapiens.
  • 1Lt. Ameen Sharshud: Fun loving sensor officer, Nusku Vilani, promoted too fast and in debt to his commander’s nemesis.
  • Chief Mission Officer Tatiana Vladic: Diplomat and humanitarian now consumed by the fires of spite. Possibly a good person, but a terrible colleague.
  • Lt. Cmdr. Vulnicura: The iron lady on the Hadrian. Promoted too fast and the target of a ship-wide conspiracy.

Comments

bongotastic bongotastic

I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.