Game Posts Thread 2.   Posted by JR.Group: 0
JR
 GM, 839 posts
Mon 13 Apr 2020
at 14:44
Work, Work - and More Work
180-1402

The next week goes by in a blur of sixteen-hour workdays as Wanderer's crew labors to prepare for their upcoming departure. They place two missiles in orbit as sensor platforms and mines, and set up a communications system in the village.

The ship is relocated next to a large barn, which is repurposed as housing for the fabricators. Joxe and Gareth run heavy power cables to the units, so the ship can be quickly cleared for flight if needed.

Brent, Joxe, and a bevy of young volunteers from the village work to completely clean and inventory everything aboard Wanderer. The air raft is also cleaned and inspected between its frequent flights, and Joxe even pulls the remaining missiles and checks each of them. The shipboard laser's test firing draws a large crowd, as Brent cooks a large tree on a mountainside forty-four kilometers from the village.

Gareth works to bring the mining operation back online. He is able to repair some of the more robust machines, and cobble together enough equipment to extract raw ore and crush it into a manageable form. He estimates that he can produce a ton of raw ore per day, once the system is running smoothly.

Everyone donates time toward training new ship crew candidates chosen from the young people in the village, along with the ongoing training in medical, education, and fabrication. Joxe fabricates datapads and displays to equip the stations, and she liberates on of the stateroom holo displays to drive the primary training station's displays.

Elsewhere in the village, the leaders direct efforts to bring machinery and vehicles back to help the village with their production needs. They meet with Brent to discuss future plans. While they are apprehensive about Wanderer's impending departure, they agree with the broader strategy of returning to the Egg System with lanthanum, so that they can regain jump travel.

Brent and the other Eggers are instrumental in establishing this policy decision. Together and individually, they speak with the villagers about their home, answering questions about the people, the government, and their culture. As one gruff older lady put it, "we don't want to invite more trouble that we have now." There are still some holdouts within the populace, but most people are eager to reach out beyond their familiar world.

OOG: Okay, I'll take a breath here, and let Brent interject his thoughts :-)
Matt
 player, 754 posts
 Brent
Tue 14 Apr 2020
at 00:10
Work, Work - and More Work
OOC: Wow!  That is a busy week.  :)

Brent threw himself into the efforts to start the bootstrapping process for the people of the village.  He worked shuttling people and things around, using his technical skills to support what Joxe and Gareth were accomplishing as well as endless discussions with the elders and every other walk of life on the planet.  He also pushed to contact other settlements to both spread the benefits of the reintroduced technology and medicine as well as adding more manpower to get things done.

"We'll need to bring as much raw ore back to Egg with us as we can.  Can we get enough lanthanum out of a ton of raw ore to equip a small ship?" He frowned.  "Things will be delicate in contacting Egg.  They will be suspicious of us to say the least."
JR
 GM, 841 posts
Tue 14 Apr 2020
at 02:19
Jump Flash!
180-1402 1525 Local time

"... and, once we're done with the port fuel processor, that will be it for the maintenance," Joxe says as she finishes her report to Brent. They are sitting in the port cargo door, enjoying the afternoon breeze blowing through the cargo bay. Their equipment and supplies have been respotted to maximize the free space, especially now that the aux tanks have occupied the forward part of the hold.

Before Brent can reply, the priority alert tone warbles on every comm unit and from the ship's internal comm. "Distress call received," the ship's computer intones. At the same moment, one of the students rushes past the barn and runs up to the ramp. The young man is panting with exertion. "We've detected a jump flash! Another ship is here!"
Matt
 player, 756 posts
 Brent
Tue 21 Apr 2020
at 02:10
Re: Jump Flash!
Brent smiles as he shares a squeeze bottle of water with Joxe.  "It's looking good.  I hate to have the ship broken down and apart but we can get the maintenance done and provide power and assistance to the rebuilding all at the same time."  Whatever else he had to say was cut off as the message came across.  Brent stiffened for a moment and turned to the young man.  "Go run to Gareth and have him shut down all powered equipment.  Get things camouflaged and move the women and children away from the village.  We don't know what kind of trouble may be on the way.  Also have him prepare the mines for action."

Turning to Joxe he frowned. "Get us flight worthy, I'm headed to the bridge to find out what this signal is all about." Giving Joxe a quick kiss Brent sprinted to the bridge calling out as he ran.  "Bring up the system charts and display what we know of the Jump Flash.  Also display the distress call.  Short ranged comms and low power, call the rest of the crew to the ship."
JR
 GM, 842 posts
Tue 21 Apr 2020
at 04:32
Re: Jump Flash!
A flurry of acknowledgements flow back to Brent through the ship's comm as he rushes to the bridge. He arrives and sits down in the center station, noting that it's configuring to battle mode. By the time he settles in, Joxe is at her engineering station. The powerplant is online, and she closes the cargo doors as Malcolm and Melina rush inside.

Gareth is across town, as are Naimh and Veronica. It will take them at least ten minutes to arrive.

According to the display, which is enhanced by the passive sensor data from one of the two orbiting mines, the jump flash came in on a least-time course from Sittahr, right on the hundred-diameter limit. The missile is using a low-power laser to transmit data, but it will be below the horizon in ten minutes, and the trailing missile won't be in sensor view for another twenty minutes. The missile is tracking the ship inbound using the broadcasting transponder, and the trajectory quickly resolves to a low orbit, presumably preparatory to a surface landing on Execute.

The initial transmission was an automated, nonspecific distress call sent by the ship's transponder. It repeats itself a half-dozen times, and then it stops.

Meanwhile, Malcolm and Melina enter the bridge and take the outside seats. The engineering repeater shows that the ship is buttoned up and ready for flight.

"Gareth, Naimh, and Veronica are still across the village," Malcolm says. "They're still five minutes from the ship."

Then, over the radio emergency frequency:

"Hello? Can anyone hear me?" It sounds like a young girl, speaking Galanglic with an odd accent.

OOG: Think of a pronounced Scottish accent...
Matt
 player, 757 posts
 Brent
Sat 25 Apr 2020
at 01:07
Re: Jump Flash!
Brent stands, waving hands through the holographic controls to bring up data as he pulls on his vacc suit.  He'll leave the helmet off but as the sensor data flows through the displays it's worth the time to play it a bit safe.  He activates the warning lights on the exterior of the ship as well as a siren to keep the locals away from the drives should they suddenly boost.

When Brent looks over the data he relaxes just a bit.  The fact that the ship was broadcasting on a transponder that was not obviously military likely meant that the intruder was less likely to be blatantly hostile.  Of course false distress calls were an obvious and well used ruse.  "Computer, analyze the transponder data and whatever it can tell us about the ship's status and origin."

He nods to Malcolm and Melinia as they enter the bridge.  "Strap in, this doesn't immediately seem threatening but it could be anything."

OOG: Pausing the response... I'll finish after the answer... can we rebroadcast through the mines while communicating with them via tight beam laser that can't be traced easily?  I'm thinking we can talk to the inbound without giving away our position.
JR
 GM, 843 posts
Sat 25 Apr 2020
at 13:25
Re: Jump Flash!
OOG: Yes, you can relay through the mines.

"Okay," Malcolm says after a moment, "this transponder is, well, different. According to it, the ship carries an envoy of the House of Sol, from Exeter. It won't give any further details, since it says we aren't cleared for that data." He enters another query in his display. "The computer says this is the real thing; our stored Imperial protocols are coming back as verified."

"Can anyone hear me? We need help."
Matt
 player, 758 posts
 Brent
Mon 27 Apr 2020
at 03:57
Re: Jump Flash!
Bent worked a bit of magic through their sensors and punched out a tight beam message to the mine and then broadband to the incoming ship.  As he worked he brought the thrusters up to idle.

"This is XXXXX control.  State the nature of your emergency.  We are preparing rescue craft."

OOC: Where the heck are we??? :)
JR
 GM, 844 posts
Mon 27 Apr 2020
at 16:33
Re: Jump Flash!
OOG: Right here: https://travellermap.com/?p=23.826!-69.54!7.75

"We don't know how to steer this boat," the voice replies. "We just want to go back home, and it's saying that we need fuel to do it. Please, can you help us, Ceannaire?"

According to the transponder that's still broadcasting, the ship is on a trajectory for low orbit entry, putting it in position for a descent and landing at the old starport. There are no active emissions other than the radio and the transponder.

"The computer is insisting that this ship is a House of Sol... Oh, wait. That's House Adair, Archduke of Sol." Malcolm lets out a low whistle. "These people are, or were, the top of the heap around here. I don't know who's running that ship now, but they were some powerful people."

"That girl doesn't sound rich or powerful," Melina says quietly. "She sounds scared to death."

"Gareth, Naimh, and Veronica are aboard," Joxe advises over the comm. "They're suiting up for combat."

"Have Gareth relieve me," Malcolm says. "He's qualified up here, and I'm not."

"On my way," Gareth replies.
Matt
 player, 759 posts
 Brent
Fri 1 May 2020
at 03:04
Re: Jump Flash!
"Stand by, we'll boost to rendezvous with you.  Is your life support stable?  Ask the computer if you have enough fuel to land. Lastly how did you find yourself on the ship and is there anyone else aboard with you?"  Brent turned back to the others. "Let's boost and rescue this person.  I think it's legit but we'll be cautious.  It's another jump capable ship at the very least.  Everyone strap in and suit up."  He did a set of quick calculations and set the ship into a minimum time solution to intercept the ship prior to hitting orbit.
JR
 GM, 845 posts
Fri 1 May 2020
at 20:42
Re: Jump Flash!
At Wanderer's normal acceleration, you will be able to match vectors at a point 390,000km from planetary orbit. You will intercept at 1810 ship's time, or two hours and seventeen minutes from now. At that point, the bogey will be fifty-two minutes from orbit, traveling at 26.8 km/s, assuming that it maintains a steady 1g deceleration burn the whole time.

Gareth settles into the left seat, replacing Malcolm, who immediately goes aft to suit up. He carefully lifts Wanderer into the air, and then boosts away, riding the countergrav hard to gain altitude so they can quickly go to maximum boost.

Over the comm:

"Uh, okay. It's just my cousin and I. We found this ship in a barn, I guess it was? We just wanted to fly a little bit, but it said that we had to go here. The ship says we have enough fuel and, um, life support? What's that, air? Oh, yes, right. Air. We are okay. Plenty of air, it says."
Matt
 player, 761 posts
 Brent
Sun 3 May 2020
at 02:26
Re: Jump Flash!
Brent plotted the course and set the ship in motion.  "We've got about 130 minutes to intercept.  Everyone stay ready and watch the sensors for any other signals or signs of hostility."  He turned back to the comms and again opened a circuitous communication. "We're on our way and will intercept in about two hours and fifteen minutes.  What planet did you come from originally?  Is your cousin onboard as well?  Lastly can you communicate with the computer and tell it to enter orbit..." Brent consulted his own navigational instruments.  "Standard orbit L432D1.  That will allow us to match courses easily."
JR
 GM, 848 posts
Sun 3 May 2020
at 04:35
Re: Jump Flash!
Now that Wanderer is in orbit, Brent can maintain communications using the two mines all the way to intercept.

"There's nothing out there except that one active transponder," Gareth says.

"The missiles are powered up and ready, as is the laser," Joxe reports from Engineering.

"I don't know about you all, but I'm hungry," Naimh says. "I'll fix a late lunch if anyone wants it."

Over the laser link:

"The old people called our home Sittahr. Uh, the computer says it's on that profile, whatever that means. Yes, my cousin is here with me. It's just the two of us. There are only two beds, anyway. Are you going to hurt us?" The girl's voice sounds frightened.

"Can I talk to her?" Melanie asks. "I think we're about the same age, from her voice."

"They could be faking it," Gareth warns.

Melanie shakes her head. "Maybe so, but the faker would have to be really good."
Matt
 player, 763 posts
 Brent
Sat 16 May 2020
at 00:48
Re: Jump Flash!
Brent acknowledges the responses from the crew.  He smiles over to Niamh. "Lunch would be good.  Set two extra places as we may have guests from our friends over there."

He listens to the response.  "Good, we should intercept in roughly two hours." Brent shook his head.  "No, we're not going to hurt you at all.  We want to rescue you and get you to a safe place and then try to bring you back home."

Turning to Melanie he nods.  "Go ahead, see if you can calm her down and see exactly what happened."
JR
 GM, 850 posts
Sat 16 May 2020
at 01:53
Re: Jump Flash!
180-1402 1800 Local time

As everyone eats lunch and reports back to their stations, Melanie keeps up a conversation with the inbound ship. In summary, the ship has two teenage girls aboard. They were exploring an old Imperial building, and they found this ship in a hangar or storage area.

There were two robots there, but only one still worked. The door in the belly opened when one of the girls touched a square next to the door. They climbed in, and the ship took off on its own and came here. When they questioned the computer, it told them it was following it's instructions, but refused to say more.

The girls are named Eleni and Radshir, with Radshir doing most of the talking. They are from a large family whose main business is wine making. Their ship reaches turnover right on schedule and starts decelerating for orbit insertion, and Wanderer executes it's own turnover maneuver to match velocities with them.

At ten minutes to intercept, Gareth lets out a puff of air. "Should we bring up the active sensors?"

This message was last edited by the GM at 01:53, Sat 16 May.

Matt
 player, 766 posts
 Brent
Wed 20 May 2020
at 01:26
Re: Jump Flash!
Brent considers their options as they approach the ship.  "Go ahead and give it a quick ping Gareth.  Keep it as direction as you can but let's get a good lock on them."  He calls over to the ship.  "Let your computer know we are going active with our sensors for a moment to confirm your course."
JR
 GM, 852 posts
Wed 20 May 2020
at 14:17
Re: Jump Flash!
"Okay," comes the reply.

"Going active," Gareth says. He leans forward a bit as the data changes on the display. "Wow, I'm not getting much back. Maybe they have some sort of stealth coating or shape. With their drives pointed at us, I'd expect a bigger target."
Matt
 player, 767 posts
 Brent
Sat 23 May 2020
at 00:50
Re: Jump Flash!
Brent looks at the sensor data.  "That is very odd.  Can you make out what class of ship this might be either from the active or passive sensors?  Can we pick them up yet on the optics?" He poked around a bit.
JR
 GM, 853 posts
Sat 23 May 2020
at 01:09
Re: Jump Flash!
Gareth shakes his head. "Not yet. Even a large ship would be invisible at this distance. Do we want to train out the laser, just in case?"

Brent estimates that they should get a visual on a ship their own size or larger in about five minutes, at a range of 15,000km.
Matt
 player, 769 posts
 Brent
Sat 23 May 2020
at 01:33
Re: Jump Flash!
Brent considers the options.  "No, I'd rather not do anything that might be perceived as hostile by that ship's computer.  Go ahead and train out on them but I don't want to stay active."
JR
 GM, 855 posts
Sat 23 May 2020
at 04:57
Re: Jump Flash!
Gareth does as he's commanded, and Wanderer continues to close with the inbound ship. After another five minutes, Gareth takes a breath. "Holy crap, what is that?" He puts an image up on Brent's display.

OOG: Look in Dropbox for it.
Matt
 player, 771 posts
 Brent
Mon 25 May 2020
at 04:43
Re: Jump Flash!
Brent leaned forward and shook his head.  "I have no idea what the heck that might be."  He distributed the image through the ship.  "Joxe, do you recognize this?  Gareth run it through the computer for anything like it."
JR
 GM, 857 posts
Mon 25 May 2020
at 15:54
Re: Jump Flash!
"What *is* that," Joxe asks.

Gareth runs the query and grunts in mild surprise. "That, ladies and gents, is a jump runabout. It's high tech, as it's the smallest hull the Imperium made for starships. Says here it's a six-ton displacement hull. There's no other data, though."

"I've seen one of those," Naimh puts in. "Some Imperial dignitary had one at a starport when I was there. You have to be rich to own one, as they can't carry more than two people, supplies and baggage."

"Could it be armed?" Malcolm wonders.

"I don't think they'd have room for a hardpoint, nor the power to run anything that could hurt us," Joxe says. "Brent, the data I have says it can jump two parsecs at a time."

Melina chimes in. "We can't just leave them, right?"
Matt
 player, 772 posts
 Brent
Mon 25 May 2020
at 22:45
Re: Jump Flash!
Brent shook his head.  "Well, I would not have expected anything so small.  I've been doing some reading on Jump drive engineering and theory and I thought the minimum size of a vessel that could manage a Jump field was much larger." He shrugged and smiled.  "Of course I'm reading the basic texts..."

When Gareth and Joxe chimed in Brent leaned forward and looked intensely interested.  "So small, high tech and Jump two?  This would have to be higher than the tech level 12 we are dealing with now, right?"  He nodded to Melina.  "No, we can't leave them even if there wasn't anything of interest in their ship.  We'll rescue them and examine their ship and take them home.  There may be more infrastructure from where this ship came from that would bear salvage."
JR
 GM, 858 posts
Tue 26 May 2020
at 03:55
Re: Jump Flash!
Finally, the two ships match vectors, riding in close formation about a hundred meters apart. Gareth had approached in a spiral pattern to map the ship's hull from all aspects.

"It's a real flying saucer," Veronica says with a laugh.

"And what is that?" Naimh looks over at her.

"It's an old Solamani legend from pre-space times about what vessels from other spacefaring species would be like. There was a library of old literature about it back home. My mother is a historian, and she loves that stuff. They looked like, well, saucers. Just like that runabout, in fact."

OOG: See Dropbox for another pic.