... with a smile on your face.
posted by: Wen Calloway
After delivering The art piece to Fanty and Mingo, We headed to the battle of Sturges to attempt to claim the fabled brown coat treasure. Nick computed a course and things went well. On the way, we looked up what we could about the battle, the ship we were looking for, and who else might be in the hunt for the payload. Arriving at our destination was pretty rocky- the debris field was thick and the Last Resort took a knock or two on the way in. After locating the derelict ship and docking, I had Yo Yo power down the non-critical system to minimize our sensor profile. Yo Yo and Joshua headed out to open the exterior and interior doors into the ghost ship. Yo Yo restored minimal power to the ship, but it was too damaged to bring completely on line. Targeting systems did come up, however. Joshua wasn’t able to find anything worth knowing from the damaged computer. Lo and I followed the engineering team in, and we set about locating the prize. Searching went faster than expected, it turns out I have a sharp eyed crew.
Speaking of which, Nick and the shepherd stayed aboard the last resort to keep an eye on the black. Sure enough, they spotted a Unified Reclamation ship at extreme range that was heading straight toward us. Nick let us know that we had company, and we started marching double time to get the treasure off of the derelict ship. Just as we were starting to board, the reclaimers spotted us and were apparently getting their magnetic grappler ready to roll. I sent the rest of the crew back to Last Resort and set about targeting the reclaimer with the missile system on the ghost ship. I didn’t want to fire on strangers, but their intentions were pretty clear and I couldn’t let my crew come to harm. I fired all the functional missiles in a desperate salvo, and their ship took one hell of a beating. It spun and lurched off randomly. Joshua blocked their outgoing waves while I hastily returned to Last Resort. Nick plotted a course out, and did a great job of getting us through the debris.
Sadly, the haul was protein bars wrapped in gold foil. Still a decent prize, but not the strike we were hoping for. We plotted a course to sell it, and got into some money troubles over the fuel costs (and poor book keeping on my part). We made safe runs for a couple of weeks to settle our debts and then went to look for another adventure with a higher profit margin.
One was not to be had, but we did find a fellow that wanted us to deliver his horses to Three Hills, a minor moon in the rim. The deal was for us to purchase the horses, and then sell them at Three Hills according to a contract on arrival. We also picked up 2 passengers, a shifty looking fellow that paid extra to be left alone, and a fine looking filly looking to ply her trade at the rim. We loaded the ship and headed off.
I made sure that both of our passengers were closely watched. Yo Yo and Joshua put some extra security precautions up. Nick took the job a little too seriously and saw much more of the girl than he prolly needed to. The fellow was an odd duck, but kept quiet. The horses took sick with equine virus, but the shepherd did one hell of a job getting them through it. They started to recover slowly.
2 weeks out were spotted by a bored Alliance warship and boarded for routine inspection. Their commander had a stick up his ass, but I think he was just doing his job. Our suspicious passenger made a bee-line for the bridge and tried to convince us to attempt a get-away. He didn’t pay nearly enough for that, and we didn’t really stand a chance of escaping anyway. He tried to take the girl hostage to force the issue, and got 2 salvos of gunfire for his trouble from Lo and I. He kept at it, though, until Yo Yo re-arranged his organs in the most brutal bitch slap I’ve ever seen. The Alliance boarded us, checked our papers and hauled off the dumb ass passenger. After that, the trip wasn’t eventful until we made land fall at Three Hills.
It was a struggling rim world with a tiny town and a vacant landing field. Some of the crew did business in the small nearby town while we waited for the buyer to show up. The buyer was bad news early on, showing up 4 armed hands and acting suspiciously. After I informed him that the horses were recovering from equine virus, he lost his mind. He wouldn’t pay, but still wanted the horses. I told him I purchased the horses as a commodity, so they were mine, not his. If he didn’t want to pay, I would find somewhere else to sell them. Then he demanded all of us be remanded to a local magistrate to settle the dispute, but I wasn’t about to risk the crew’s liberty on that god forsaken rim-ward rock. He lives there, we don’t. He has connections with the locals that we can’t compete with.
I decided they weren’t getting the horses, and wouldn’t have a chance of getting us locked up or taking my ship. I had Yo Yo grab the horse thief and then the gunfire started. I took a hit- gunshots hurt like hell. Lo dropped several of the field hands. The local law appeared in the 15 seconds the exchange took and ran towards faster than imaginable. We pulled back into the ship and lifted off. bullets plinking away at the hull. We set the son of a bitch back down on Three Hills 80 miles away from town, then sent a wave to the locals telling them where to find him.
Now were back in the black, trying to figure out where to sell the horses. They’ll fully recover given time. I’m starting to hate the rim. The core is a pain in the ass, but at least folks will do business. Everything out here is a thinly veiled screw job. I’m not gonna let the crew come to a bad end among these yokels.