Part 21 - Yakusant.   Posted by The Force.Group: 0
The Force
 GM, 911 posts
 These aren't the dice
 rolls you're looking for.
Thu 18 Jan 2018
at 22:08
Part 21 - Yakusant
The Dancing Bantha drops out of hyperspace much closer to a star than usual.  That star is a bloated, blue-white orb.

Reldan Jalt curses under his breath, checking and rechecking the ship's radiation shielding and hull temperature sensors.  "That should do the trick I think.  I don't see our friend surviving a fall into that,"

A light blinks into life and an alarm whistles, causing the pilot to give the panel a solid thump with the heel of his hand.  Both light and alarm drop back into inactivity, and Jalt gives a satisfied grunt.  "That fixed it."

"We'll need to get closer, and we'll have to drop the box real quick.  Can't afford to spend too much time down there."

A display screen shows the layout of the system.  "We're here.  There are two gas giants here and here.  This one is the larger one, and Yakusant itself orbits it.  There's a cluster of asteroids way out here.  And that's about it.  Nothing of value to anybody.  Used to be a mining operation on Yakusant, but it's played out."
Rhijans Thanus
 player, 1192 posts
 Just let me do my job and
 nobody else gets hurt.
Fri 19 Jan 2018
at 08:14
Part 21 - Yakusant
Rhijans nodded in apparent satisfaction.  "Should do the job.  Now...how do we send the thing on its way?"  He could think of some rather drastic options...the kind of stuff one would try if there were no other viable choices available.  Before he started suggesting any of them, he wanted to see if there were more viable choices available.
Shard
 player, 1268 posts
 Most days, I'm tired.
 ...or drunk.
Mon 22 Jan 2018
at 16:30
Part 21 - Yakusant
Shard stares out at the appalling sight.  Stars have always filled her with the same feeling: a sense of insignificance bordering upon terror.  On the one hand, it's a good thing that sentient life has a reminder of Something Bigger™.  On the other, it makes her reptile mind gibber.

"We could vent it out the airlock, if we're close enough that it won't assume a stable orbit," she notes.  "It's not a sure thing, but I'm guessing this ship doesn't have a tractor beam."

Her eyes narrow. "If we get some distance and come in hard, we could vent it out in the direction of the star, giving it delta-v directly at the target.  Any thoughts on that?"
Haarmon Dak
 player, 700 posts
 Are you talking to me?
Mon 22 Jan 2018
at 19:07
Part 21 - Yakusant
"Can't we just... put it in a missile? Kind of?"

Haarmon didn't know much about galactic space ordnance.
Rhijans Thanus
 player, 1193 posts
 Just let me do my job and
 nobody else gets hurt.
Mon 22 Jan 2018
at 20:03
Part 21 - Yakusant
Rhijans gave Haarmon a mildly amused glance.  He turned to look at Jalt, asking, "Did you install any kind of rocket/missile/torpedo system?  I'm pretty sure these freighters don't come with anything like that standard...those generally have pretty limited defensive utility, and arming ships with strong offensive capability usually takes them out of the civilian market and makes them military-grade."

He shot a glance at Shard and added, "Oh, there are ways we can accelerate it toward the star.  Some are just safer and more effective than others.  But I'm pretty sure we can manage something at least marginally more effective than merely venting an airlock."  He'd actually suggested an option for that...but he was pretty sure nobody had actually taken it very seriously.  And, considering the relative scales involved, it didn't surprise him.
The Force
 GM, 912 posts
 These aren't the dice
 rolls you're looking for.
Mon 22 Jan 2018
at 21:24
Part 21 - Yakusant
"No launchers, just lasers." Jalt replies, "So any kind of missile or torpedo is out."

"Artoo has thrusters.  He can fly.  And I'm sure if we asked him nicely he wouldn't mind getting closer to the star with the box in t... Ow!" Behind him the astromech droid retracts its electrical welder arm and whistles angrily.

"It was a joke!"

The pilot stares at the ceiling for a moment, then, "I can bring us to a halt relative to the star, and turn the Bantha so that the airlock points directly at the star.  Then somebody can just throw the box straight out at the star.  Only don't ask me to do it, I was never any good at throwing, and I'd probably miss."

"The other problem with that plan is that, from a safe distance, it'd take a long time for the box to reach the star.  And that means either hanging about to watch, or just trusting that nobody else picks it up in that time."
Rhijans Thanus
 player, 1194 posts
 Just let me do my job and
 nobody else gets hurt.
Tue 23 Jan 2018
at 04:34
Part 21 - Yakusant
Rhijans shrugged.  "That was actually about what I expected.  Good news is, it's a really big target and you don't have to be particularly accurate. "  He nodded, as much to himself as to anyone, and said, "I'll do it.  Be a good idea to safety-tether me to the airlock...the magnetic boots should be fine...but getting as close to the star as possible means a pretty narrow margin if something goes wrong."

He didn't consider himself great at throwing things...but he had a better-than-fair natural knack for such things.
Shard
 player, 1269 posts
 Most days, I'm tired.
 ...or drunk.
Tue 23 Jan 2018
at 12:46
Part 21 - Yakusant
Shard purses her lips thoughtfully. "If we're going to do it that way, why not face the star, accelerate toward it, Jalt, and then release the box?  That'll get the box going one heck of a lot faster than we could by throwing it, which will take years to arrive."  She's underestimating the time, given the likely distances.  "This way, you can get up to whatever speed necessary to really get the box moving from a distance, and once we get reasonably close to 'safe distance ends here', we can let the box go and change vectors ourselves."

She sketches that in the air with her hands, clumsily.

"Then the box arrives into the 'unsafe' zone more quickly - lots - we're clear, and we can head out, knowing it'll only be an hour or whatever before it splashes into...that."  Wave of the hand at the view.  "Or incinerate halfway there.  Or whatever.  Am I missing something?  Any reason we can't do it that way?  I'm not a pilot, so..."
Haarmon Dak
 player, 702 posts
 Are you talking to me?
Tue 23 Jan 2018
at 12:56
Part 21 - Yakusant
Haarmon nodded. He had no real notion as to what all this stuff meant, but he was following along. Sort of. "What happens if we drop it out the hatch in hyperspace?"
Rhijans Thanus
 player, 1195 posts
 Just let me do my job and
 nobody else gets hurt.
Tue 23 Jan 2018
at 18:45
Part 21 - Yakusant
Rhijans grimaced.  "Nobody knows for sure...I've never heard of anyone dropping something out of hyperspace and successfully finding it again to assess the results.  Best case scenario, it gets pulled apart and disintegrated.  Worst case scenario, it survives perfectly intact and nobody's sure where it is anymore, which means there's a chance the Empire finds it."  He shook his head.

"We'd be better off if it was in a close stable orbit around the star...it would at least be really difficult to find AND incredibly dangerous to retrieve."  He nodded at Shard and continued, "Throwing it while on a high-speed approach should work...theoretically.  If we go that route, it might be better to actually be out on the hull, rather than in the airlock...but the chances of something damaging the suit become higher.  So does the radiation risk.  Those suits aren't perfect protection...the closer to the star we get, the higher the radiation load.  The longer the exposure, the higher the load.  A ship's hull handles it really well, but vacsuits have their limits..."

He lapsed in thought for a moment, then turned to Jalt.  "Can you accelerate toward the star, yaw the ship sideways so the airlock faces the star and coast so the approach vector doesn't change?  That would give us better velocity to send the thing on its way, and minimize the exposure risk.  Once it's gone, kick in the engines and accelerate into an escape orbit?"  He barely paused before adding, "I know it's risky...if we coast too long, we get caught in the gravity well...then we follow the box, once the engines run out."  This was all at the extreme extent of his understanding of physics and astronomy...he'd never had to learn more about flying towards stars than, "If you get too close, you die."
Reldan Jalt
 NPC, 77 posts
 How much? That depends on
 how fast and how far.
Mon 29 Jan 2018
at 21:55
Part 21 - Yakusant
"That would be almost certain success." Jalt muses.  "We'd have to make sure it wasn't travelling fast enough that it might enter an eccentric stable orbit, or even reach escape velocity, if its course got deflected by tidal shear or solar flares, but I can run some nav calculations, which would be able to tell us that."

"We move in, toss it out the lock at high speed, then accelerate away... "

He slaps Haarmon on the back, "Nice idea kid, but not one I want to trust something this important to.  We could throw it out all right, but we'd have no way of knowing where it would go.  We could dump it, and it could end up anywhere... "

"Void!  The Bith, well, some of them at least, believe that an object in hyperspace is everywhere in the Universe at once."
Shard
 player, 1270 posts
 Most days, I'm tired.
 ...or drunk.
Tue 30 Jan 2018
at 14:41
Part 21 - Yakusant
"Simple is better," Shard muses.  "Most of the time, mind, but not always.  All right, so we have a plan." She chuckles.  "I used to say that simple is always better, but Haarmon has come up with some seriously complicated stuff that saw us through, so...."  She shrugs.  "Let's get to this.  I want that thing gone, and us on our way."

She hates the way it sits there, lurking at the back of her mind.  It's like having a Rimbesman handspider in the room; you can't help but keep staring at it, to make sure it hasn't disappeared when you weren't looking.

"Fire up the engines, Jalt." The older woman throws a lopsided grin toward the colonel. "If that's all right, boss.  Also unless anyone has any objection..."