Interstellar Exports Game 1


Left to right: Capitan James Hornby (Elijah), Caesar (Jeff), and Travis 'Dry' Williams (Dave)
Game Master: Andrew
Game Edition: Traveller (Mongoose Publishing)
Players: Jeff, Dave, Elijah
Ages: 1Dy, 30Yrs, 40Yrs

Quote of the evening:
"Rule 1: Don't be creepy. Rule 2: A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction...."

Introduction

Interstellar Exports is JADE's first Traveller campaign. After a solid 18 months of every edition of Dungeons & Dragons available, JADE was ready to move on to a less fantasy oriented game.

Time for some Sci-fi! And Mongoose Publishing's 2008 reprint of Traveller, would suit us perfectly.

Our game takes place in the year 4000, a century after the collapse of Interstellar Union. The IU was a dream much like Star Trek's United Federation of Planets, however unlike the mighty Federation, the IU was swallowed up bureaucracy, and fell under it's own inefficiency.

Space, the final frontier. These are the voyages...
In the months following the IU's downfall, the six most powerful races in the Galaxy (Humans, Droyne, Aslans, Canines, Hivers and Zhodani) formed a Provisional Government called the Galactic Council. Despite its provisional status, the Galactic Council has been in power for a century, loosely holding together the remains of the shattered IU.

Over the past hundred years, tensions have been brewing among the members of the Galactic Council, and rumour has it that war between the six races is immanent.

The Galaxy is on the verge of a major upheaval, brought about by things well beyond the control of our small party.

Scene 1 Party on the Shuttlepod.

Dry (Dave) was a human down on his luck. After an unsuccessful eight years as an explorer, and a courier, Dry had decided to join the Navy.

For another four years, things were going well. He was considered a skilled pilot, and an up and coming officer, until the incident.

A month ago, he and four others were preforming a training flight, when Dry's pilot error caused the vessel to crash. Everyone but Dry was killed in the accident. Dry dishonourably discharged, and spent the last month in his quarters, considering what had happened.

Dry indeed could not handle the truth.
The G.S.S. Crazy Horse dropped Dry off at the nearest Orion Class Station (Interstellar Truck stops created by the IU) and he never looked back.

So rugged.
Orion Class Stations rarely bring larger vessels in to the docking array, preferring to hold them around the stations gravity field, while shuttles bring in the crews and passengers.

The shuttle Dry was on made only one other stop, picking up a crew from a heavy freighter returning form a long haul. Needless to say, the restless and rowdy crew were in a mood to party.

Thanks human Bender.
As soon as the shuttle left the freighter, the drinking began. A large worm like alien, called a Noidulan (whose name was unpronounceable to humans so everyone called him Bob) began passing out beers every which way with his six tentacles.

Bob offered Dry a beer, who was more than happy to accept given his depressing circumstance, and quickly Dry became one of the group.

During the 20 minute flight Dry had some interesting conversations with a Droyne from the Labourer Cast, a Canine who had just visited earth and loved classical music, and a Human named Lisa Bennet from Jupiter's Io Colony.

Lisa Bennet had been all over the Sub-Sector, and told him a ton of different things, ranging from Secret Army Bases in system 0305, to Strange Aliens signals and a missing scout vessel in 0207.

Despite Lisa's useful information, Dry's best friend was Bob. Bob was always there with another story, another joke, and of course another beer.

Dry drank his fill with Bob and the freighter crew, but he never did learn where all the beer was coming from. And frankly, he didn't care to ask.

Scene 2 An Incident in Customs.

The Shuttle docked at Orion station and Dry and the freighter crew proceeded through Customs. Dry had to give up his gauss rifle while on the station, but other then having to turn it over to station security to be-materialized and digitally stored, it passed through without incident.


Dry was followed by Bob, and Bob's passing through was not so easy. There was some confusion over his Noidulan passport, causing him to get separated from Dry and the Others, as they proceeded down the corridor towards the station.

Within a few minute Bob's issue was cleared up and he dashed down the hall after his friends. He almost almost caught up with Dry before the alarms sounded.

Ear splitting sirens blared and a jaded voice droned over the comm.

"Everyone place your hands over your head and lie on the floor. Do not get up until instructed. If you do not comply you will be arrested. Violent resistance will be met with deadly force."

Dry complied, and lay on the floor with his hands over his head. But Bob did not go down.

"Lie down Bob!" Dry pleaded with the Noidulan. But Bob didn't listen.

Four Security guards appeared from behind panels and demanded the Noidulan drop to the floor. Though they were pointing their weapons at him, Bob seemed unphased. In a flash, he relaxed his body, and six gauss pistols appeared, one in each tentacle.

Don't do it Bob!
Bob was fast, but the security guards were faster. Before the Noidulan could pull the triggers, station security blew him away.

Bob was reduced to a fine mist. A fine beer smelling mist...

The voice droned over the comm again.

"You may stand and return to your business. Have a nice day."

Dry caught up with his friends, and they were just as stunned as he was. Fizzbop, the Droyne Dry had been drinking with, speculated that perhaps Bob was some sort of smuggler.

One thing was for certain however. They could all go for another drink. And this time Dry would be sure to ask where it came from.

Scene 3 Screeve's Bar. It's a Small Galaxy.

The station lift took Dry and the freighter crew up to the second level, where the bright neon lights of Screeve's Bar invited them in.

Just like that.
The Bartender, a shifty looking Aslan, nodded to the group as they entered and Dry approached the bar. He asked what sort of beer they had on tap, carefully crafting his question to include that he was not interested in any beverages excreted from biological organisms.


The Aslan laughed, saying that he did indeed have many human beers on tap and in bottle. Dry asked for his favourite, a Molson Dry. Luckily the Aslan had a case.
Slogan as of year  3200: Damn that shit's dry!
Drinking his beer, Dry surveyed the bar and saw a colourful array of characters. There were Hivers playing a game in the corner, an Aslan Captain surrounded by four beautiful human women, a pair of Canines plotting something in the back, and a smattering of humans ranging in sobriety.

One voice however, caught Dry's attention. Not two stools over from him sat a very drunken human who was raving to an equally drunken Droyne, about how Gary Oak had stolen his fuel and everything on his ship, leaving him stranded for two years, floating in space.

As it turned out, Dry had encountered Gary Oak. He had been (in part) kicked out of the courier service for stealing a package destined for him.

The package contained a thumb drive encased in a crystalline composite. He had never been able to open it, but perhaps a man who hated Gary Oak that much would be willing to help him find out. Besides, he had nothing better to do.

Dry tapped the loud man on the shoulder and explained how he two hated Gary Oak, and showed him the thing he had stolen.!

The drunk introduced himself as James Hornby (Elijah) and jumped at the opportunity to get back at Gary Oak. But first, they would need to have just a couple more beers.

Suave.
James Hornby Told him how he had been a Courier, turned Merchant, turned pirate, and how it was during his last career, he had come to find himself stranded in space.

As a pirate, James had often done jobs for and used Gary Oak as a fence. However he was double Crossed.

Gary Oak had James and three other pirates Kevin, Natasha, and Telar go to a remote system, to steal bio-samples from a secret lab. It was a trap.

You said it Admiral.
Kevin Natasha and Telar double crossed James, knocking him unconscious and stealing his ships computer, fuel, and just about any other item of value.

Stripped of fuel, his ship drifted through space for almost two years. The Life support was maintained by an emergency solar system, and he had used all of his emergency rations. Thankfully before he starved, a Galactic Council Navy Ship picked him up and towed him to the Orion XII station.

That was a month ago, and needless to say James was suffering from some PTSD. He had found his solace in a bottle, and was in a downward spiral. With the chance to get back at Gary Oak in sight, James perked up.

He would do this. He could do this. Things were finally starting to go his way.

Scene 4 Zhodian Rumours. Breaking the Crystal.

James' revenge was at hand, only a bit of crystal stood in his way. Luckily the Droyne he was drinking with remembered that he had once heard a tale about Zhodani being able to shatter crystals with their mind powers.

It was just the hint that James and Dry needed! There was only one problem, Zhodani are known for their dislike of humans. Getting them to agree to do anything for the two of them would be difficult.

Smug bastard.
James Drunkenly threw out a few ideas, until Dry asked why don't they just pay them?

James thought that was a brilliant! He had stored his money in a floor safe on his ship, so Gary Oak never found it, and he had quite a nest egg stored! The next problem to solve was finding Zhodani, and James knew just who to ask.

He turned to bartender and called "Screeve!"

The Aslan turned and nodded in acknowledgement.

"Another Noidulan Ale James?"

"Yes!" James Replied. "And also I am in need of some information about some Zhodani. Think you can help?"

"I am as generous as ever." Screeve replied with a gnarled smile.

In his drunken stupor James was a little confused, until the Aslan rubbed his two fingers together, mimicing a human gesture he had seen James make before.

"Ah! The money!" James blurted out, and placed 50 credits on the table. The Aslan swiped it off the counter, and told him that the a group of Zhodani had arrived on the station earlier in the week.

"Must be rich folk." Aslan Said. "They spend most of their time at Blarn's"

James nodded in respect, thanked Screeve, and left the bar with Dry trailing behind him.

"What's Blarn's" Asked Dry, as James took them to the lift and punched the button for the 4th level.

"Blarn's Fine Gleeosian Food." James Replied.

Dry had had Gleeosian food before and absolutely loved it. For James, it turned his stomach.

Gleeosian cuisine is difficult to prepare and thus is often very expensive. The key is in keeping the food semi alive while still sealing in the flavour. The thought made James' stomach lurch.

Gagh is always best when served live.
The matrie'D at Blarns seated the two in the middle of the room. Dry inhaled deeply enjoying the scent of the Glessosian food, while James averted his eyes and quickly headed to the table.

Having not had Gleeosian food in years, Dry wanted to peruse the menu before seeking out the Zhodians, and James agreed that he could go for another beer.

Dry opened the menu excitedly, and his mouth dropped. Appetizers were 500cr main 1000cr or more! Outrageously expensive. Now he knew why Screeve mentioned the Zhodani had to be wealthy.

Not wanting to be disappointed, Dry ordered an appetizer, and a Molson Dry, while James had another Noidulan ale.

The Drinks came quickly, but of course being Gleeosian food, even an appetizer would take some time. Enough time for the two to look around for the Zhodani.

They found the slightly greened skin Zhodani sitting at a table in the back of the room.

Beer in hand, James got up and and stumbled towards the Zhodani to begin transactions. Dry sighed, stood up and followed James, keeping behind him, ready to salvage their situation when the drunken captain made a fool of himself.

It could happen at any moment.
James actually handled himself quite well, and despite the Zhodani's dislike of humans, when Dry offered them 5000cr to dissolve the crystal, the four if them  agreed.

Dry approached the table and placed the object in the centre. The Zhodani pressed the backs of their hands together and the crystal begin to hum, and then crack, and finally dissolve into dust around the thumb drive.

After all these years Dry would finally know what was on that device, and James would have his revenge!

Scene 5 The Mysterious Thumb Drive. Mikey's Robotics.

Returning to their table, Dry's food had arrived. He had ordered the Gleeosian equivalent of bruschetta which appears as a brown slightly pulsating loaf with red "tomatoes" that slowly crawled along the top.

Dry quite enjoyed it, and even James was willing to give it a try, much to his regret. It tasted awful! He couldn't drink his Noidulan Ale fast enough to get the taste, and feel of it out of his mouth.

Dry laughed and finished the last bite, also draining the rest of his Miller Dry.

The two paid for their meal and left Blarn's. James mentioned that there were some terminals they could access on the third floor, figuring they could take a look at what was on the key, and so he could get a bite to eat at the replimats.

Each of the Orion XII stations was built with temporary and permanent lodging, as well as complimentary food stations called replimats.

Replimats use particle synthesis to create edible biological material. Most people wouldn't exactly call it food, but James who had been renting room C-12 on the station for a month now had grown quite used to it.

Dry sat with James as he ate his goop, and then the two went over to one of the terminals and plugged in the thumb drive. The drive contained a complicated series of files, that were constantly changing. The most recently added folder was Orion XII.

James tried to give the strange program the command to run, but was met with a prompt for a password. After trying all the usual clich├ęd passwords, and being denied each time. They figured it was time to find a professional.

whaaaaaaaaaaa?

James recommended that they check the bazaar on this level. If they couldn't find something there then it wouldn't be any where.

The bazaar occupied a full quarter of Orion XII's station 3rd floor. The idea was to make this an open area for performances, some shops, etc. but over the years it has become crowded with semi permanent shops mingled amongst the tents, carts, baskets and rugs of a hundred other shop owners.

Dry quickly found Mikey's Robotics in the back corner, and suggested he would at least know where to point them.

‘The drug Bazaar, Constantinople’ watercolour by JF Lewis
Mikey was the embodiment of a stereotypical computer geek. He was over-weight, had a greasy pony tail, a receding hair line, glasses and scraggly beard.


Worst Character ever.
For 1500cr. Mikey was willing the crack the password. James tried to haggle but Mikey pointed out that this wasn't exactly legal. James then nudged Dry, telling him that it was his turn to pay. Dry shrugged and paid Mikey.

With a quick tap of his keyboard he wiped away the password and took a look at the files. His eyes went wide, it was the most sophisticated robotic computer system he had ever seen.

He explained this to Dry and James, but also told them that he didn't have a computer powerful enough to run something like this at its maximum capacity. powerful. All he had was one Technology Level (TL) 12 computer, and the three robots he could put it into that weren't exactly up to this program's calibre.

The three robots Mikey had available were a 130,000cr. Service Robot Charlie, a 100,000cr. Smelter 7d TL9, and a 20,000cr. modified Survey Drone Type-1 with an on board computer refit.

Dry considered trying to convince James to spring with him for the Service Robot Charlie, but in the end, they purchased the modified survey drone. James paid Mikey, who told them to return in an hour.

James thought this was perfect as he could use a drink, and head towards a nearby Hiver bar while Dry went looking through the bazaar with the thought of maybe buying a dog.

Scene 6 Birth of a Robot. There are Some Bugs to Work Out.

Dry never found a dog, but encountered an inordinate amount of shop keepers selling birds. He thought about purchasing one, but thought better of it and returned to the Hiver bar where he had last seen James.

James was three beers deep and had his arm wrapped around one of the Hivers. He was telling it about how he had beens tranded for space in two years, and spared no detail.

Whether the the hiver was enjoying itself, Neither James nor Dry knew. Hivers had no verbal language, instead communicated a written language, along with gestures and contact.

That is a Hiver.
Dry pulled James away from the squirming Hiver, and told him that the hour had passed. James agreed, and ordered 1 more beer.

After finishing his fourth Noidulan Ale at the Hiver Bar, he paid the bartender, and stumbled after Dry towards Mikey's Robotics.

Mikey's can be a creepy place with the lights turned off.
Mikey had their new robot ready with the software installed. He told them that The program had erased itself from the key after it was done, and that who ever created it only ever wanted it in one place.

Both Dry and James thought that was a little strange. But James was too excited with his most recent purchase to worry, and quickly turned it on.

The little robot powered up, and scanned its surroundings.

The first thing it uttered was "I am Truth."

This completely freaked Dry out who quickly shut it off. Dry wanted to deal with this in private, and asked Mikey if they could borrow a cart. Mikey agreed and the two pulled it back to James' quarters.

Being a bit drunk, it took James three tires to find the right quarters, but finally he found room c-12 on the 2nd level. The room James' had rented was small, and full of empty beer cans and liquor bottles. The smell was awful.

James cleared away a space in the middle of his room, and turned the robot back on.

The robot scanned the room, and then said "I am perfection. I am the perfect being."

Completely freaked out, Dry turned it off again. James told him to hold on, and let the robot figure things out. Maybe they needed to talk to it. James leaned in and turned it no again.

"Hello." He said to the robot.

"Hello." The robot responded

"I am James, and this is Dry, and we need need something to call you."

The robot was happy to let Dry and James decide, who eventually settled on Caesar (Jeff).

And so the group gained an R2-D2 like thing.
With the a name chosen, James began to lay down the ground rules. and this is where our quote of the evening comes from.

While explaining to Caesar how he was supposed to act, he opened with a simple phrse.

"Rule 1: Don't be creepy. Rule 2: A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction...."

The group burst into laughter. Oh Asimov.

Returning to the game, Caesar ignored what James said and started explaining that it wished the galaxy was perfect just like it, and that it would stop at nothing to achieve that goal... And then Dry turned him off.

Clearly they would need to program the rules into their new friend.

*As an aside, Jeff mentioned during a break that his strange comments came from his character's advanced robotic intelligence coming to an emotional awareness. His way of figuring things out, and its first attempts to express emotion.*

There are still many human emotions I do not fully comprehend - anger, hatred, revenge. But I am not mystified by the desire to be loved - or the need for friendship. These are things I do understand.
Dry told James that they would need to go back to Mikey's and get the rules programmed into Caesar. He was just too weird.

James agreed, and but was feeling really excited inside. For the First time in 25 months he was doing something with his life. He had Dry and a Robot. Now he needed to get off this station.

Scene 7 Making Asimov Proud, Sort of. The S.S. Exodus Needs Fuel.

As Dry and James pulled Caesar on the dolly back towards Mikey's, James asked Dry to remind him to ask Mikey about a ship's computer. He said they would need it for their voyage.

Dry was a little confused, having forgotten in the drunken haze of the day that James owned a ship, but was more confused at the mention of a voyage.

James of course had not told Dry his interior monologue about getting his life back together and getting a crew to pilot his scout ship. He thought with Dry's help he could pick up his life and start again as a free merchant. A little embarrassed, James asked him to come along with him and pilot his ship.

Having little else to do, Dry agreed, and they continued on to Mikey's. They would sort out the business side later.

Ain't nobody got time for that.
Mikey sold James a computer that would work on his scout ship. It was a modular component, and he would have no trouble installing it.

Dry then asked Mikey to program Asimov's three laws of Robotics in Caesar. the programmer tried five times to add the line of code, but it simply wouldn't compile. The line was deleted each time. Mikey figured it was Caesar's adaptive program.

Dry then had the brilliant idea of seeing if Mikey could add the rules if they only applied to James and Himself. Mikey figured Caesar might be comfortable with that and started coded.

Caesars' adaptive software tried to remove the lines of code, but his... heart wasn't in it. The lines were accepted and became part of Caesars' programming.

With the new safety nets in place James turned Caesar back on. Caesar greeted them calmly, and didn't seem to do anything to creepy. Satisfied, James and Dry let Caesar move around under his own steam.

And after 7 scenes we finally have the complete party.
With his new ship's computer in hand, James knew the next thing his ship, the S.S. Exodus, needed was fuel. Unfortunately due to the bureaucratic rules of the Orion Stations (A left over form the days of the IU), you had to use a specific frequency to contact a fuel ship. And of course no fuel meant no power, which meant no sub-space comms. But, there was one person he could count on to lend a hand.

"Screeve." James Said Aloud. "Let's ask Screeve where to get fuel."

Again, Dry had not heard any of this interior monologue, and was startled by the sudden out burst.

James' explained that his ship had no fuel and no way of signalling the fuel ships due to the bureaucracy of the station. He thought though that if any one would know where to get fuel, it would be Screeve.

Caesar, who had been silent until now, started to speak.

"Screeve, Aslan, 45 years of age, owner and operator of Screeve's Bar. Second Floor. This way!"

With that Caesar started heading off in the exact opposite direction. Apparently he hadn't had time to gather all the files about the Orion XII station.

Dry called after Caesar and got him to go the right direction, but the antics didn't end there. While on the lift down to the second floor, they were joined by a Galozian. Galozians are sentient blob like creature, that are easily offended.

Curious as ever, Caesar just had to ask it a question.

"You are a large shapeless blob, are you not?" Caesar asked.

With a sigh from both Dry and James, they apologized to the Galozian and headed into Screeve's bar.

'nough said.
Screeve nodded as James Dry and Caesar entered, and asked about their new friend. Before Dry or James could speak, Caesar of course made another fool of himself.

"Hello Screeve." it interrupted "Sensor's are detecting a are large amount illegal substances behind your bar. May I inspect them?"

Screeve laughed it off saying that the robot must be a Joke-Bot and asked what Dry and James wanted. James ordered another Noidulan Ale, while Dry stuck to his Molson Dry.

Caesar of course began to say "I would like to inspect the illeg..." Until he was interrupted by a swift kick from James.

Screeve looked James dead in the eye. "One more like that and I will kick the lot of you out."

James instructed Caesar to stay silent. And the three moved up to the bar.

After Screeve brought Dry and James their beers, James asked Screeve if he knew any where on the station he could get some fuel. Screeve tapped the table, and James slid him 50cr.

"Oh, I couldn't let this go for just 50cr." Screeve said. "This will involve a bit of Shady Business."

James slid him another 50cr. and Screeve told him about two Canines who had hijacked a Fuel ship. They were selling the refined-fuel for 350cr. a ton: substantial discount.

They could be found on the third level by the escape pods in the bazaar.

Scene 8 Shady Business.

Finding the Canines in the bazaar was easy; they were by one of the escape pod areas just as Screeve said.


Shady business.
James calmly approached the pair, and the younger one began to growl. The older Canine silenced his partner and ask what James wanted in a gruff voice.

Not wanting to show fear, James cooly and quietly asked them about acquiring some fuel. The younger Canine, did not like James and told the elder that they should not do business with this human. The Elder snapped at him to be silent, and opened negotiations.

"We can sell you any quantity at 400cr. a ton."

Although a 100cr. less then the usual price for fuel, James was not willing to pay that much.

"I was told 350cr." He said firmly.

The Elder Canine, looked him in the eye with we piercing look, and agreed.

"There is another problem." James continued. "My ship has no fuel at all."

The Elder looked at the Younger and communicated something in a flash of hand signals. He then turned back to James.

"Not a problem, but it will cost you an additional 2000 credits."

James agreed to purchase 34 tons of fuels for 11900cr. plus an additional 2000cr. for the pick up. James paid them up front, and the Elder told him that a tug would pick his ship up from the docking ring at midnight, and take them to the freighter’s location.

Dry and Caesar had been waiting a respectful distance from James as he spoke with the Canines. Only catching a word here or there. When James returned he filled the two in, and hurriedly rushed off to his ship with his companions.

Scene 9 The S.S Exodus

James' Scout ship, the S.S. Exodus had been without fuel for 25 months. Needless to say, James was excited. He could finally get back out into space again, and restart his life.

The trio head down to the first level, to begin the long process of going through customs. Thankfully the shuttle bay they chose was relatively empty and Dry was able to recover his weapon from station security with ease.

They were soon seated in a shuttle that took them out of the Orion Station and into the inner docking ring where the Exodus was docked.

Like a white dagger in the night.
The Shuttle pulled along side the Exodus, docking with her airlock, and sealed a tunnel around it. Since the Exodus was without main power, James had to crank the door open by hand, and reseal it the same way before the shuttle left.

Inside was barren, with the ship's decorations and personal touches having been stolen two years ago by James' "comrades." However, that didn't stop Dry and Caesar from exploring the ship.

Caesar quickly found the computer room, and stayed there. He lacked the means to connect himself to the computer system nor did it have any power at the moment, but James had bought a cord from Mikey that would let him connect to computers. There was only one problem: his robot body needed hands, or at least he felt like he was supposed to have hands.

Something like that.
In the mean time he would have to rely on James to plug him into computer systems.

He watched James as he installed the new computer, and then followed him to the bridge.

Mean while Dry checked out the engine room, the bridge, and claimed a state room for himself, leaving his weapon and pack there. Leaving his room, Dry heard James talking to Caesar on the bridge and joined them.

James was sitting in a chair in the middle of the bridge, and gestured for Dry to take the pilot's position.

Asking for just a second, Dry quickly returned to his quarters, to fetch a few personal item: 6 plastic dinosaurs and his Gauss Rifle. He brought them to the bridge and placed them around his workspace as a good luck charm.

Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!
James smiled, and the three of them chatted for another half hour. By then it was only 2200hrs, and James was starting to get thirsty.

In a whirlwind run, He, Dry and James, signalled the station for pick up with the ships lights, boarded the shuttle, made it through customs, bought a case of beer, went back through customs, and took the shuttle back to their ship, all in an hour and half.

Scene 10 The Freighter on top of Beeto I. The Canines.

James brought his two-four to the bridge, and started some heavy drinking with Dry. After a few, they even placed a beer on Caesar, and tried to give him instructions to emulate their behaviour (act drunk) when he detected a beer near him.

Whether Caesar understood the request remains to be seen, but at 0011hrs a tug docked with The Exodus and took it away from the station. For two hours they travelled towards this systems only planet: Beeto I a Class J (Gas Giant) planet.

Over the course of the two hours, several chugging competitions and James' voracious appetite for beer, they finished all 24 of the bottles. As James finished the last drop of his beer, he felt the heavy clunk of another ship docking. The Canines had parked their stolen Freighter in a polar orbit about Beeto I, using the massive planet's gravity field to mask their location from unwanted sensor probes.

A Fuel refinery was in on a more equatorial orbit, so it made for the perfect cover. Ships come in empty, and come out with fuel. Nothing strange there.

Nodding, James left Dry and Caesar on the bridge and went to manually open the airlock. The Canine's were waiting for him on the other side, but the door had blocked his view of a dangerous situation. The younger Canine was holding a snub pistol.

As the airlock opened, the Younger Canine Pointed his gun at James, and the Elder Canine told him to get up against the wall.

James put his hands in the air, and then turned to the face the wall, shifting down slightly so that he was covering part of the door.

The younger one sniffed the air and flashed a series of had signals to the Elder.

"Are you alone?" the Elder asked James.

With a hiccup, James responded very loudly that he was alone. Both Dry and Caesar heard him.

"Don't lie to us Human!" the Elder Canine said, stirking James with the back of his hand.

Though hurt, James used the blow to slide off the door, just as Dry opened it a fired a burst from his Gauss Rifle at the Elder.

It was a bad scene.
Dry was so drunk, that he missed the shot entirely, sending bullets spraying everywhere, but it was at least enough to knock the wolves off guard causing them to regroup at the airlock.

Then, Caesar did the unexpected. He rolled out into the middle of the hallway, and announced at a very loud volume that he was bomb, and would self destruct if the Canine did not drop his weapon.

Some how, the robot's scheme actually worked. The younger Canine was clearly shaken and confused. Being met with a person with a Gauss rifle and a robot claiming to be a bomb was too much. the Younger dropped the snub pistol on the ground and put his hands in the air.

The Elder growled at him in anger, but the deed was done, and the tables had turned.


Despite being in control of the situation again. James was angry, and his pirate insticnts took over. James got up, grabbed the snub pistol, and blew the Elder Canine's brains out. He then pointed the pistol at the younger one and demanded he take them to the freighters bridge, and instruct them how to start the fuel transfer.

The Younger Canine nodded, and lead James, Dry and Caesar aboard the ship, leaving the Elder Canine's corpse in the hall.

Scene 11 On Board the Freighter. Hacking the System.

The blood and entrails of the freighter's previous crew were smeared everywhere along the corridors of the fuel ship. The bridge was no better, but the younger Canine lead them to a working console, and told them the command to start the refuleing process. James was about to begin, when Caesar cautioned him.

"Given the actions of the Canines before, it is highly unlikely he is telling the truth. Perhaps I should check the system?"

James agreed with Caesar, and connected him to the Freighter with the patch cord.

This reality slipped away from Caesar and was replaced with a surreal setting. He saw a calm grassy field on a warm summers day, with a door sitting on the other side of the field. He was online

It was weird.
He didn't have a distinct body, as much as he had a presence about him. He both occupied space, and had no definable shape. It was truly an unusual experience for the semi-sentient robot.


Caesar took a single "step" in this strange new world and was stopped by a strange glowing orb. It spoke to Caesar, introducing itself as the J-18 Achilles Class Fuel Tanker Operating System, and asked for a password.

Thinking for a minute, Caesar swatted the orb away and started towards the door. Suddenly, the orb he was speaking to rush towards him and stuck itself to his essence. With each step another orb stuck to him, making him heavier and heavier.

He started running towards the door, and was able to open it with a perfect endurance check before the orbs weighed him down too much. He was in the system.

Not five seconds had passed in the real world when Caesar returned from his adventure.

The first words Caesar spoke to James were "Kill the Canine."

Being a little too drunk to disagree, James put the Snub pistol against the Canine's head and executed him.

Caesar went on to explain that he had discovered the command the Canine had given him would have destroyed the ship, and that he had started the automated refuelling process.

While the Exodus was refuelling, Dry and James searched the freighter. Dry found a really gnarly knife which he kept for himself, while James found the Canine's funds: 20,000cr.

Pleased with this, the two returned to the freighter cockpit. For a second they considered keeping the vessel, but decided it was too hot an item, and asked Caesar to activate self-destruct on a 5 minute count down.

It was time to leave.

Scene 12 Kaboom!

The three returned to their ship, only to find its systems still booting! It took two minutes for the engines to come online and another one for Dry to plot a course. in his nervous and still a intoxicated state, he botched the trajectory sending the ship on a course parallel with the explosion.

Seeing what was happening, James pushed Dry out of the way and input the course himself.  It was just in time!

The Freighter exploded seconds later. and the shock wave sped towards the ship. Using his skill and experience, James was able to ride out the explosion until they reached open space.

Surf's up!
James returned to his seat on the bridge.

"Take the helm Dry." He said sitting heavily in his chair. "We will return to Orion XII to collect some supplies. I have a feeling we will be leaving soon."

And that is where we left off for the evening.

Conclusion

We saw some incredible role-play this game, I truly could not have asked for a better first game.

With James out of his slump, Dry having found a new job, and Caesar appreciating his recently acquired body, Interstellar Exports is off to a great start!

The party's ship, the Exodus, was refuelled, and though James' turn around started off more like his last career as a pirate, he was hopeful he could find some honest work.

But he was no fool to truly get the lucrative opportunities, he would need some weapons. But that would be another adventure.

Interstellar Exports Game 1 Interstellar Exports Game 1 Reviewed by Jade GamingNews on 1/17/2015 12:51:00 pm Rating: 5

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