The players, fresh form a prolonged training session, were ordered to head to Luna to board The Long Runner as passengers heading towards the outer system. The only details available were that a trusted contact had indicated that something strange may be going on in terms or transport and activities during the long journeys.
There were eight other passengers traveling with them. These were:
Upon departure, the players were summoned by ship’s captain [[Dunstan Ross | Dunstan Ross] where he revealed the following reasons for the player’s to be there.
- Ship’s manifest has been tampered with. It is against company rules to make copies, but he runs and verifies them with and MD5 check. Occasionally the MD5 sums don’t match, and this is when strange things have been happening.
- On these trips, his memories are being edited. He doesn’t have proof, but certain details seem off or missing. For example and explanation of the mass of claw marks found by maintenance bots in one of the cargo sections. These later disappeared with no reports of repairs.
- Additionally a repair order turned up for repairs that had never needed to be made. Specifically damage to the hull and one engine. Dunstan has no recollection of it, but the order turned up in his inbox. Inspection by maintenance bots did show newer materials present at the location of repairs.
Dunstan’s awakened the players six weeks into the journey so they could take live inventory and compare ship’s manifest with actual cargo. Players control of maintenance bots to assist them in cataloging.
The players did find discrepancies and troubles mounted quickly.
- Discovered unaccounted for shipping container labeled “Hydraulic Parts”. Upon opening, they faced Benson who offered them the chance to surrender and a mysterious black box. When the players declined he dispersed into the ship, summoning external assistance and shutting down/corrupting ship’s systems.
- Monty eventually managed to pierce the shifting nano smart armor of the box with some creative thinking and determine that the box was a portable ego VR cluster. Upon further investigation, it was determined to be a cluster for high-level government egos though lost to the TITAN attacks a decade earlier.
- While checking out empty non-humanoid hibernation chambers to store the ego cluster in, Noh discovered on of the chambers locked and unresponsive to commands. Using maintenance bots to cut through the door, Noh was met by two armed synthmorphs who first demanded information and then attacked. After a short firefight, the synthmorphs were “killed” and Noh discovered that they were guarding two portable stasis chambers.
- Using a bio-weave glove (biometric ID) Noh was able to activate the chambers marked EH1 and EH2. Once opened a pair of ex-humans stepped out, asked a few questions, and promptly disappeared into the ship with a combination of super-human speed and camouflage.
- All players fell back to the command deck. Sam and Monty were able to work together to determine that the captain’s ego was seriously damaged and communicate with Benson while Noh worked to track the ex-humans and wake up Four Shadows for assistance.
- At this point the marketeer ship docked with The Long Runner while Monty attempted to separate the ships using the freshly reclaimed controls.
- Noh and Four Shadows met outside the the command deck with the intention of fighting the ex-humans together. It was discovered that the ex-humans were not inclined to kill and only wanted a ship so they could go elsewhere. Noh made the suggestion of the marketeer’s ship and the two left peacefully.
- Within minutes after boarding the marketeer party were shocked when their ship suddenly disembarked without them. Monty “negotiated” with the airlock door and those Marketeers (Boarding Party) who remained after atmospheric evacuation were content to stay in the cargo hold until the Long Runner reached it’s next destination.
- Upon reaching their next destination, the marketeers were taken into custody by Firewall to determine where they had gotten the ego VR cluster. All passengers disembarked except poor Lincoln Kader, who was found to be an exsurgent spore pod and had to be incinerated.
- Because of the importance of the ego VR cluster, the players were instructed to prepare for a trip to the surface of Earth.