Red Talon: Wanted Dead Or Alive

Session 14

Hutt Casino on Nar Shaddaa where the Boonta’s Eve festivities are held

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Mine on Gavos
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Session 13
Conning Jabba to Settle a Debt

Prologue

About 6 months ago, Karsten andJ-8 interfered with the theft of a 200 year old blood oath dagger (with Emil Mola‘s blood on it) by a cyber samurai from Crev Bombassa’s private collection on the top floor of the Grand Erwithat Hotel on Pembric II and returned the dagger to Bombassa.

Shortly thereafter Baron Aalto Endel introduced himself to the PCs and informed Karsten and J-8 that by interfering with the theft of the dagger they had incurred a debt to Emil Mola. Since then, Karsten and J-8 have been given a series of tasks, one at a time, that they must complete in order to repay their debt. These have been the recovery of the blood oath dagger, obtaining a live Ysalamir from the planet Myrkr, and stealing the “experimental bacta tank” from Arkanian Microtechnologies’ headquarters on Vohai.

Thad Bane, Tal Lee (a.k.a. Tal Seario), Vaesha Tarn, M4-RK and Andra have helped Karsten and J-8 to accomplish these tasks.

About two months ago, they delivered the experimental bacta tank to a Macander Heavy Ores facility on the planet Tallaan in the Tapani free worlds region. When they delivered it, they were informed that they only had one task left to complete, a relatively simple transport job, that wouldn’t be ready for a few months. Something Andra had questioned Baron Endel about incredulously, and received a “yes” as confirmation.

As they were about to depart Tallaan, a Czerka hit squad gunning for Tal Seario blew up their ship, The Red Talon while in a docking bay leased to Macander Heavy Ores. To escape Tallaan, Tal used his father’s nearly unlimited funds credits stick to buy The Redshift Raven, a highly modified CEC consular class light cruiser for 5 million credits. The narrow escape convinced Tal that he needed to deal with his Czerka related problems.

In the last two months, Tal has been elected CEO of Czerka, dealt with the kill bounty, gotten married to Arica Wertko (now Arica Wertko Seario), chosen to remain on Nar Shaddaa to pursue this new life, and gifted The Redshift Raven to Thad Bane who has been his friend since childhood when Thad and his father rescued Tal from the wreckage of the starship crash that had killed Tal’s parents.

What had convinced assassins across the galaxy that the risk associated with attempting to a kill Tal Seario far outweighed the reward was 5 different holovids of a failed assassination attempt by an elite hit squad lead by Boba Fett. Thanks partially to assistance from Thad’s uncle, Cad Bane, an old friend of Karsten named Rina Ka, every member of the elite hit squad except Boba Fett were killed in the attempt. The 5 holovids also captured Thad Bane executing what likely is the fastest quickdraw ever recorded (two triumphs and 3 success) to out draw (and kill) famed Mandalorian gunslinger Myria Vondin (who rolled 1 triumph and 5 successes on the quick draw initiative check). In the past two weeks, these recordings have been re-broadcasted over the holonet by an unknown multitude on news shows across the galaxy, and Thad Bane has become an overnight holonet celebrity and is now quite possibly has the most widely recognized face of any being in the galaxy.

Now when Thad walks into seedy cantina’s some beings “discretely” get up and walk out the back door. Other petty criminals with an arrest warrant out on them for say failure to pay parking tickets or child support and alimony walk up to Thad show him holos of the minimal bounties on themselves in order to get holorecordings of themselves being apprehended by THE Thad Bane. It was fun at first but now that the novelty has worn off is starting to be a bit tedious.

To keep such occurrences from interfering with more important matters. Andra has booked a few public appearance events for Thad where the police are on hand and petty criminals can turn themselves in to get holo-recordings of Thad Bane putting binders on them and turning them into the police to collect the minimal bounties. More than a few normally upstanding citizens have shown of to such events heavily intoxicated so that they could also be issued tickets for public intoxication by police and then be arrested by Thad Bane.

In response Andra started arranging the very overpriced sale of top shelf liquor (provided by Grondo of course) at a cash bar at these events to facilitate interested parties getting the ticket for public intoxication. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the alcohol is donated to local law enforcement to help pay for the large number of police speeder vans and posh “drunk tanks” where these wealthy individuals sleep off their intoxication.

Since Andra has been handling such public relations for Thad on Nar Shaddaa, Ousan Draykon sent her holonet mail inquiring as to whether Thad Bane would consider having him auction off the Kamperdine jacket, and holster Thad wore and the Raider Arms Model-1 “nova viper” blaseter pistol Thad used to outdraw and kill Myria Vondin the next time they were on Coruscant for a 50-50 split, he would start the bidding would start at 50,000 credits.

The session begins In a private room in Grondo’s palace on Nal Hutta, Karsten, J-8, Thad Bane, Vaesha, M4-RK, Andra, Grondo, and Grondo’s muscle (his bodyguard “Bernard” who you’ve seen before and and the Gank Han Vane) are present. No translator droid is present, but the PCs see the room being swept for bugs. The technicians leave and Andra and M4-RK resweeps for bugs. Grondo talks in basic (first time the PCs heard him do this) to avoid the need of a translator droid.

Grondo hands an object to Andra and says:
use this device provided by the Ziggurat to establish a secure comm channel,

and Andra plugs the space flash drive into the comm station.
Baron Alto Endel appears as a hologram on one side of the table:

Hello all, the last task needed to fufill Karsten’s and J-8’s obligation to Mr. Mola is ready for you to undertake. Although it is a fairly simple transport job, it does require some subtlety, and if things go sideways it could become very dangerous very fast. For this reason, Grondo has made arrangements for additional muscle to help make sure things go according to plan.

Baron Endel pauses, Grondo nods, and Bernard and Han Vane step forward.
Endel continues:

Please come to “Ziggy’s” (he says “Ziggy’s” with a pause, smile, and inflection) residence on Coruscant to pick up the cargo, the coordinates are in the encryption device enabling this secure communication and can only be accessed by Vaesha Tarn and Andra acting in concert. Once here, you will receive further instructions in person. Good day

The comm terminates.
Andra:
As a cover for our visit to Coruscant, and with Thad Bane’s permission, I’ve arranged an auction of Thad’s nova-viper, holster, and Kamperdine armored tailored jacket that he used when he outdrew the gunslinger Myria Vondin during the assassination attempt against Tal led by Boba Fett. Actually Ousan Draykon had initially contacted me inquiring about the possibility of allowing him to auction it off once Thad Bane became quite possibly the most recognizable sentient in the galaxy. He’s developed quite a fan base. You encountered Ousan during your first job for his immenseness Grondo, he is the owner of the Auction house where Grondo’s datachip was to be auctioned off and it was his nephew Baku that was about to rape Vaesha when J-8 blew his brains out. Ziggy disguised their appearance in the security and other holovids taken that day, but Vaesha and J-8 should not venture into the auction house to avoid being potentially recognized by organics. The auction has already been publicized and a private and shielded landing pad has been arranged; the Mola Cartel, with electronic countermeasure assistance from Ziggy, will be providing security for the Redshift Raven while it is docked.

A replacement jacket and holster have been specially commissioned for Thad, and we will obtain it at Suriban Hai’s shop after the auction. Like last time, we will use the secret turbolift in Hai’s shop to exit by alternate means while doppelgangers of you exit the front door with new gear. At that point we will use this device provided by Ziggy to determine our route to Ziggy’s residence.

The flight to Coruscant is uneventful, and the Raven is immediately cleared approach to the landing pad, flying past an Imperial Star Destroyer on the way down. The Raven touches down on a landing pad that extends horizontally from a sky scraper/tower. The pad retracts horizontally into the tower and the hanger is shielded. The PCs are greeted by Mola’s guards led by the cyber samurai that Karsten and J-8 tangled with on Pembric II.

Mola’s agent says
I will personally ensure that no one accesses your ship until you return.

Several of the saber rakes the PCs saw in Endel’s office on Aleron are also present.

The PCs take a turbolift down to the base of the tower, to two waiting speeders.

Han Vane, Karsten, Thad, Andra, and Bernie take one of the speeders to the auction house. Vaesha, M4-RK, and J-8 take the second speeder to
Suriban Hai’s shop.

Glossed over the auction but say that Thad Bane stands on stage does a blinding fast quick draw as part of the sales pitch, uses his “Biggest fan” talent to set the winning bid at the auction, but substituting a quick draw (cool skill) check for the charm check. The quick draw initiative check gets 2 boost dice (because Thad is famous), and an upgrade from quickdraw talent (instead of a charm charm) vs. 3 purple dice. The number of uncancelled successes add 10K each, number of uncancelled advantages as 5K each, triumphs add an extra 10K in addition to counting as successes, base is 25K, uncancelled failures deduct 5K uncancelled threat deduct 2K. Thad’s half of the winning bid was 65K.

Thad gets 65K credits transferred to his credit stick, gets a holovid taken of him handing the items to the auction winner and signing a certificate of authenticity. Puts on catch vest temporarily. Leaves.

The PCs meet up at Suriban Hai’s shop. Thad gets his new jacket and custom holster.

GM: Anyone else want to buy something? Andra picks up 5 stimpacks.

Secret turbolift ride down (lower this time), the PCs get out via a different door to a private hanger with a speeder that two of Mola’s agents are guarding.

Andra: The Mola Cartel paid for the recent extension of the turbolift shaft and the construction of this alternate exit.

Sweep for bugs, none. Inside the limo-speeder is a mini bar (which Karsten takes a bottle of alchohol from and drinks) and a device that Andra plugs the space flash drive into. The handle of the flash drive take thumb scans from both Vaesha and Andra, then the air speeder autopilots a route goes down a deep hole to a lower level. The speeder stops in a shielded docking bay, the PCs disembark and take a turbolift to a private train/subway, take that to another turbolift, up up up, to the top of Coruscant. They emerge inside a force shield dome, outside a very pleasant and chic residence. There is a manicured yard/garden and a big house on top of whatever this skyscraper is.

The front door opens and a droid says:
Come in please, you have been expected.

Baron Endel walks down a staircase and says:
Greetings, let me take you to Mr. Ziggy and we will brief you on this mission.

The PCs walk up one level to a floor that looks like it belongs in the latest and greatest hospital credits can buy. There are multiple rooms, and Endel leads the PCs to a corner room where there’s a very sickly, somewhat emaciated male in the hospital bed with a cybernetic brain implant (one of those head things that Lobot wears). The emaciated man in the hospital bed blinks and then a mechanical voice comes from a speaker.

Ziggy:
Hello Vaesha, I am happy I got to see you in person again, I feared I might die before now.

And the emaciated man in the hospital bed blinks again. The PCs recognize the mechanical voice as the one Ziggy has used to communicate with them over their comlinks before. Vaesha wants to ascertain that this emaciated man is in fact Ziggy so she goes over to him and whispers something in his ear, a secret they shared from when they were both children boosting speeders on Coruscant, but as a questions with a yes (blink once) or no (blink twice) answer, Ziggy blinks the correct answer.

Ziggy explains that he has a degenerative wasting genetic disorder, which affects his muscles and other organs but not his brain or nervous system. He tells them that he is dying.

J-8 asks:
no offense but why don’t you have your brain transplanted into a superior droid body.

Ziggy answers:
Funny you should mention that, I need your help in getting to a facility that can transplant my brain into another body, a clone of someone else. Emil Mola is in a similar predicament.

Baron Endel explains that:
Mr. Mola is indeed on Tatooine and Jabba did feed Mola, or at least his body, to the Sarlacc but before that happened Mr. Mola bribed the B’omarr Monks still living in Jabba’s palace into removing his brain from his body and hiding it among the brain jars of the B’omarr monks. You see Jabba’s palace was originally a B’omarr monastery and since they did not resist his takeover, Jabba allowed the B’omarr monks to stay. Their order has the peculiar practice of removing their monks brains from their bodies once they achieve enlightenment, so that they can meditate for centuries or even millennia. For the last two hundred or so years, my employer has been directing the Mola Cartel over the holonet from inside Jabba’s palace on Tatooine. Since any human alive 200 years ago would have long since died of old age, Jabba should now be certain that Mr. Mola is either dead and at least that his body is unrecoverable from the Sarlacc even if someone was inclined to mount a rescue operation. Thus Mola has decided that it is now relatively safe for him to make his return to the galaxy.

To maximize the chances of a successful transplant operation, Mr. Mola needed a clone of his original body, in the prime of its life. It was for this reason that Mola had you retrieve the two-hundred-year-old blood oath dagger with his DNA on it, the experimental bacta tank, which was actually a cloning cylinder, and the ysalamir. Mr. Ziggy uncovered a report by imperial scientists that a rapidly grown clone’s nervous system is destabilized by the force and that the ysalamir’s ability to generate an anti-force bubble should suppress this undesirable effect.

The clones that Mr. Mola’s and Mr. Ziggy’s brains will be transplanted into are in the next room, they have not yet been frozen in carbonite so that M4-RK can inspect them to determine that they are in fact mindless clones, to alleviate any qualms you might have about possibly participating in body snatching.

Next room over are two bodies in hospital beds, one human with an apparent age of about 20 galactic standard years, and a blue skinned male Twi’lek that… looks just like Ka’rin Bel.

Ziggy announces over speakers in his synthesized voice:
yes that is a clone of Ka’rin Bel. The original Ka’rin is one more room over, he suffered a tragic fall while attempting to flee from Mola’s agents. The fall left him brain dead and his body ruined. I had originally planned to have his brain transplanted into to the body of a female twi’lek, E’ves Zupo, who was forced to become a sex slave and eventually ended up brain dead because of Ka’rin; I figured that Ka’rin having to live out the life he ruined would have been poetic justice. But him becoming a vegetable just like E’ves will have to do; it’s not my first choice but it is sufficiently ironic anyway. Would you care to see the holovid of Ka’rin’s apprehension by Mola’s agents?

Vaesha says that she’d like to see it.

The holovid taken by a head cam worn by one of Mola’s agents show them chasing Ka’rin into a building and up stairs to the roof of a building, the PC’s recognize from the scenery that this happened on Nar Shaddaa. Mola’s agents corner Ka’rin on the roof and being desperate he tries to jump to a nearby building but doesn’t make it. Instead he falls down the alley, impacting on and bouncing off fire escapes etc, going “splat” at the bottom. The holovid recording shows Mola’s agents going back down the stairs to recover what’s left of Ka’rin, he’s still alive barely, and they place him in a cryo freeze bag to keep him alive until they can get him back to a medical facility.

M4-RK scans the clones and the original Ka’rin and E’ves and which show no brain waves indicative of higher brain functions. Then the clones of Mola and Ka’rin are frozen in carbonite.

Ziggy continues
In case you’re wondering why I chose to have my brain transplanted into a clone of Ka’rin, one reason is that any clone of my own body would also have the genetic disorder that’s killing me now. And… well… since Vaesha obviously finds Ka’rin physically attractive and I’m hoping that maybe we can have a life together after this is over and if Vaesha found me attractive and biologically compatible that might improve my chances.

Every PC (including the droids) look down out their feet awkwardly not wanting to have to deal with/respond to that statement.

While the clones are being frozen in carbonite (by an Ugnaught technician) Endel explains that
The carbon-freezing is part of the plan to sneak Mr. Mola’s and Mr. Ziggy’s new bodies into Jabba’s palace, Andra would you care to explain the rest.

Andra:
Officially, you will be delivering a gift from his immenseness Grondo to Jabba, 50 lowlifes that Jabba put bounties on frozen in carbonite. It was the Mola Cartel that actually captured and froze them in carbonite. It also served as an adequate test to ensure that the carbon-freezing process was safe. The clones of Mr. Mola and Ka’rin Bel, along with Mr. Ziggy will be snuck into Jabba’s palace frozen in carbonite, hidden among the bounties. Jabba is likely to inspect the bounties and then throw a party which we will partake in. And you like a party so we will all be attending. While this is happening, the transplant surgeries will occur in a part of the palace still under the control of the B’omarr Monks. And then Bernard will sneak Mola and Ziggy out of the palace and back aboard the Redshift Raven. As a backup, in case you leave before the surgeries are complete, Bernard will transport Mola and Ziggy to Mos Eisley in a speeder provided by the B’omarr Monks.

I’m sure that you are all aware that Jabba is the most powerful Hutt alive, so his immenseness Grondo is taking a great risk by participating in this deception, but he has decided that the reward of a continued favorable relationship with the Mola Cartel is worth the risk. However, subtlety is still required. I, Thad, Vaesha, Karsten, J-8, M4-RK, and Han Vane will present the gift to Jabba while Bernard, Grondo’s personal bodyguard will protect Mola and Ziggy during their surgery. Let me do the talking, and if Jabba asks you if you were the ones who captured these bounties, tell him “no” and that you are merely serving as an honor guard for the delivery of Grondo’s tribute to the great and mighty Jabba.

Endel:
Upon the successful exfiltration of Mr. Mola to Grondo’s palace on Nal Hutta, Karsten’s and J-8’s debt to Mr. Mola will be fulfilled and Mr. Mola will provide Thad, Vaesha, M4-RK, and J-8 with a marker that can be traded in for a favor from the Mola Cartel at some point in the future. We also hope that you will all consider free-lancing for the Mola Cartel in the future. Any questions?

Ziggy:
Vaesha, my dear friend, even if we never become more than friends, I need your help now. This transplant is my last chance at escaping my genetic death sentence. By the time another clone is grown, I will not be strong enough to survive the carbon freezing process. Please help me live, save my life, and I will always be grateful to you, and to your friends as well.

Karsten, I realize you don’t particularly care for me, but I have saved your life on more than one occasion, not least by convincing Mr. Mola to allow you to work off your debt to him instead of just having you killed. I can also offer you payment for your services now. I’ve taken the liberty to having a custom ion shielded strength enhancing cybernetic arm crafted by one of the galaxy’s leading cyber docs as a replacement for your current cybernetic arm, it was designed and built to your physical and genetic specifications. I figured that it would be something that you would be interested in.

Ziggy gets frozen in carbonite. Airspeeder transport the 3 carbonite slabs and directly from Ziggy’s residence to a different landing pad/bay in the same tower as the Redshift Raven, shielded, door closes, there are 50 more carbonite slabs in the landing bay. PC’s have a chance to inspect them. Everything is as described.

Load up the Redshift raven, Karsten, J-8, and M4-RK supervise the loading to make sure nothing else is snuck onboard the Raven. Then they fly to Diyu, a world in Hutt space.

Hutt Space photo HuttSpace_zpswxm49znx.jpg

The Raven lands inside a large warehouse/carbon-freezing-facility controlled by Grondo. They refuel the Raven and wait enough time to have loaded up the Raven. As the crew that “loaded” the Raven disembark, and head back into the factory, another group of 4 worker’s/muscle show up to help with the unloading once they get to Tatooine. The additional muscle is inspected, they are carrying weapons but that was expected.

The Raven’s fly to Tatooine, land out in front of Jabba’s palace.

Andra walks down the ramp of the Redshift Raven and to the front gate, the little droid eye on a pole pops out and asks her business in Hutteese.

Andra replies:
I come bearing a gift, a tribute, from my master his immenseness Grondo Anjiliac to the illustrious Jabba Desilijic Tiure.

Andra steps back sideways and sweeps out her arm to the carbon frozen bounties being unloaded from the Redshift Raven by Benard and the 4 or so workers/muscle that boarded the Raven on Diyu.

Andra:
These carbonite slabs contain [derogatory hutteese word] that the mighty Jabba have placed bounties on for their crimes against him. My master Grondo offers these [same derogatory hutteese word] to the mighty Jabba as a sign of his respect for Jabba in the hope of friendship and mutual cooperation in future endeavors with the mighty Jabba.

By this time the Thad Bane, Karsten Eshan, J-8, M4-RK, Vaesha, and Han Van
The droid initially says to leave the [same derogatory hutteese word] and go away without bothering Jabba but after 23 carbonite slabs (with no sign of stopping anytime soon) have been unloaded the gates (as opposed to just the normal sized door in the gates) open, Bib Fortuna comes out with 6 Gamorrean guards and 3 Weequay in tow. Fortuna walks over to and amidst the growing “clump” of carbonite slabs comparing them against a list of names/faces on his data pad, and points out 3 of the slabs to the Weequay, and then motions inside. Jabba’s Weequay bring those 3 inside and then turns to face Andra and the crew of the Redshift Raven. It is clear that he recognizes Andra and Thad Bane, and notices that the “clump” of carbonite slabs continues to grow.

Bib Fortuna to Andra:
My master Jabba accepts the tribute from Grondo Anjiliac. You and the bounty hunters may now enter my master’s palace for an audience with him. For now, your workers will remain outside.

They pass Boba Fett on their way to Jabba’s thrown room (he passes by without giving them a second look), Jabba greets them with a hearty laugh, speaking in Hutteese he instructs Andra to thank her master Grondo for his generous tribute.

“med techy minions” come in, scan the 3 carbonite slabs brought in by the weequay, they show the results to Jabba on a datapad, he instructs them to thaw these three out, they thunk to the floor shiver, curl into a fetal position, one asks
where am I, why can’t I see?

Jabba bellows a laugh in return. The med techy minions med scan the thawed out lowlifes, and tell the one who asked that he can’t see because he has hibernation sickness, and show the results to Jabba.

Jabba bellows in huttese:
excellent

Thawed out guy:
I know that laugh, Jabba, Jabba? I’ve got your money, at least I had your money, I was just on my way to pay you back when these guys jumped me and…

Jabba (in hutteese):
Silence, I will deal with you later. Now I want to speak with these honored guests.

Turning to look at Thad Bane he says in Hutteese:
Duros, I have seen holovids of you outdrawing Myria Vondin. I am curious are they accurate or were they trick photography/digitally enhanced.

Thad:?
They’re real, not trick photography, I really am that fast

Jabba:
Show me! fetch Alexandro

Andra to Thad:
Alexandro is a semi-famous blaster slinger that Jabba sometimes employs as a bounty hunter, he’s fast, you’re faster, keep your cool and you’ve got this

Thad:
I know who he is.

Alexandro walks in, Hispanic with a hat and camo poncho, he slide’s the poncho out of the way and unclips the strap on his holster, he’s trying to look cool but you can see that he’s nervous.

Thad:
Alexandro, you seem kind of nervous, and I haven’t been paid to kill you, if it would help you focus, we could do this with our blasters set to stun. Your call.

Alexandro gladly accepts Thad’s offer and adds thanks, he’s not even trying to show false bravado at this point.

Thad barely wins the quick draw cool check (thanks to his player post-facto flipping a destiny point to get to roll an extra green die). Alexandro goes down stumbling.

Jabba instructs
best 2 out of 3

After the effect of the stun has worn off on Alexandro, they go again. This time Thad gets one triumph on the roll, Thads’ quick draw takes place across about 5 or frames in the holovid recording. Alexandro goes down again.

Jabba bellows:
Again, best 3 out of 5

Again there’s a delay while Alexandro recovers from the previous stunning. This time Thad rolls 2 triumphs, in the holo recording in one frame Thad’s hand is by his hip and in the next it’s pointed forward holding the blaster pistol with a stun pulse leaving the barrel. Alexandro’s hand never even touched his pistol before he got stunned again, into unconsciousness this time..

Jabba reviewing the holovids, cheers
Excelent, that is what I was hoping to see, I am satisfied in your skills duros. Now we celebrate.

During celebration, the rest of the lowlifes frozen in carbonite are brought in. Bernie sneaks, Ziggie, and the clones of Emil Mola and Ka’rin Bel into the B’omarr monks and their surgeries begin. Part of the celebration is Jabba tormenting the 3 lowlifes thawed out of the carbonite, taunting them and having his Gamorrean guards kick them every so often. Eventually one of the lowlifes gives a defiant retort and Jabba presses the trap door button which drops the lowlife into the Giant Sand Grab pit (this is before Jabba acquired the Rancor).

The Gamorrean guard Ke’Vin who had been kicking the lowlife at Jabba’s instruction, Han Vane and Karsten Eshan also fell through the trap door into the pit. The four of them faced off against the Giant Sand Crab and 5 of its offspring. Karsten shot it while using the blind (because of hibernation sickness) lowlife as a human shield. Then it attacked the human shield trying to get at Karsten (it bit off the lowlifes legs from above the knees). Han Vane cut off the crab’s two forearm pincers and then slid under it and gutted it with his first attack (narration of a triumph and a >150 crit on Han Vane’s first attack roll of the campaign).

Ke’Vin killed one of the creatures young, and Karsten killed another, while the remaining three tried to drag their mother away from the bipedal intruders in their den. Andra put the bleeding out lowlife out of his misery with a head shot.

Jabba held Ke’Vin, Han Vane, and Karsten (and by extension the rest of the PCs) responsible for replacing his dead Giant Sand Crab with a young Krayt dragon.

Karsten asked Andra if Grondo might happen to have a young Krayt dragon stashed away somewhere that they could give to Jabba, she says no.

So the PCs get ready to go out to hunt down and capture a young Krayt dragon. The PCs each packed a condensing canteen to take with them.

By this time, Emil Mola’s and Ziggy’s brain transplant operations had succeeded and Bernie had snuck them back aboard the Redshift Raven. The extra muscle Grondo had sent along stayed with the ship, and so did Vaesha to watch over Mola and Ziggy as they recovered from their surgery. Vaesha also stayed with the ship so that she could provide an emergency evac for the rest of the PCs in case they needed it.

The PCs took one of Jabba’s sand skiffs out to Beggar’s Canyon, towing an appropriately sized repuslorlift supported trailer cage begin them.

When they were in Beggar’s Canyon looking for a Krayt dragon, a sandstorm enveloped him. Andra had scanner goggles to protect her eyes and a breath mask. Karsten like most of the rest of the PCs had scanner goggles but no breath mask. They parked the sand skiff by the mouth of a cave and took shelter in it. With the help of the scanner googles they were able to see inside the rather dark cave. They saw the remains of some biped, judging from the short tattered robe, they guessed it was a Jawa.

Karsten cut strips off the Jawa’s robe to fashion makeshift masks to protect them from the sand storm in case they needed to venture back outside the cave before it had passed. A few of the PCs gagged at the stench on the cloth but it would still be preferable to choking to death on sand. Bernie said his he smelled 2 different species of rodent of the cloth handed to him. He guessed that one was the Jawa and the other scent was that of womp rats. They noticed bones scattered about the cave that looked like they had been gnawed on, and tunnels, crevices in the walls. This was the entrance to a den of womp rats.

They heard some scurrying from the tunnels and decided to set up a defensive position in a corner of the gave. No sooner had they done so than they were attacked by twelve rats, each between 2 and 3 meters. (Cue the obligatory The Princess Bride “Rodents Of Unusual Size, I don’t believe in them” quote).

J-8 pulled out his 2 plasma grenades and threw one at a clump of womp rats in short range, one died, the two next to it were severely injured. He offered the second grenade to anyone who wanted it. Thad grabbed the other grenade, ran out to get into short range of another clump of 3 womp rats, threw the grenade at them, severely all 3 of them, one more than the other two, then (spent 2 strain to gain an extra maneuver and) ran back to the rest of the PCs.

Then the womp rats charged the PCs defensive position, Thad, Han Vane, Ke’Vin, Karsten, and Bernie who were organic (and thus smelled like a tasty treat) and in the front row all got attacked by womp rats, one each except Bernie who got attacked by 3. The womp rats ignored M4-RK, who was also in the front row, because being a droid M4-RK did not smell like food. J-8 and Andra, who were behind the front line didn’t get attacked for that reason.

The womp rat that attacked Karsten, knocked him to the ground and pinning him. Not having the room to swing his vibro katana or shoot it with his blaster rifle, Karsten instead grab his vibro knife and opened the giant rats belly, spilling its guts (on him) and killing it. Karsten used his brawn to roll the corpse off of him.

A wounded (by the grenade) womp rat pounced on Thad Bane, knocking him over and biting him. Andra shot that womp rat with her blaster, killing it. However, Thad being pinned beneath it, did have a combination of strength and leverage sufficient to roll the dead womp rat off him. Han Vane fended off the womp rat that attacked him and killed it with his vibro katana. Another womp rat bit Ke’vin, who responded by splitting it’s skull with a well placed swing of his vibro ax. Bernie fended off two of the three womp rats that attacked him but the third got through, he responded by decapitating it with his own vibro ax and the spray of blood covered the face of one of the other womp rats that had attacked him temporarily blinding it. M4-RK struck a nerve in the neck of the other womp rat that had attacked Bernie with a two fingered strike.

Bernie then took a swing at the temporarily blinded womp rat and killed it. Han Van killed the last womp rat that M4-RK had pressure pointed. The hero’s dusted themselves off, and Thad Bane still trapped beneath a dead womp rat called out “Guys, a little help here please.” Karsten and Han Vane rolled the womp rat corpse off of Thad, who said “thanks” in response.

The party had a few minutes reprieve, during which Ke’Vin started scouting the narrow side tunnels that the womp rats had crawled out of. Then they heard a loud howl from out in the sand storm. M4-RK identified the howl as belonging to a Krayt dragon in a hunt out in the sand storm. J-8 hoped that the creature could be captured to fufill their debt to Jabba, so peered out into the sand storm. One successful easy (one purple difficulty die) xenology check with 5 boost die later, and J-8 determined that the Krayt dragon on the hunt was far far too large to be a juvenile.

Bernie had a concussion grenade, and the idea to feed it to the Krayt, Andra suggested having Bernie intimidate Ke’Vin to being a suicide snack bomber. Karsten pulled out a remote detonator (that he had on him thanks to a white to black destiny point flip), and M4-RK rigged the detonator to the concussion grenade, just in time for Karsten to shove it into the dead body of a womp rat and run back into the crevice/side tunnel in the back wall of the cave being pursued by the giant canyon Krayt dragon. It used it claws to chip away, dig at the back wall of the cave, but the PCs were able to retreat further back into the side tunnels faster than the Krayt could dig out the rock. So the Krayt dragon gave up and started chowing down on the convenient pile of dead womp rats.

Karsten had some experience with giant reptiles, so using the “talk the talk” talent, he substituted the streetwise skill for knowledge xenology, and was therefore able to remove two of the 5 setback dice (the Krayt dragon’s internal defense score was 5) using the streetsmarts talent in order to choose the optimal time to detonate the concussion grenade when the dead womp rat it was in was being swallowed by the Krayt. despite the 3 ranks of adversary, and 3 remaining set back dice, Karsten rolled enough successes, advantage, and triumph to get 2 points of damage after the Krayt’s soak was applied, activate the concussive quality to stagger it for 2 rounds, and a use the triumph for the concussion grenade cause the Krayt to projectile vomit up a Krayt dragon pearl which he caught in his mechanical hand.

M4-RK spend the next several rounds pressure pointing the unconscious Krayt to inflict 51 strain (strain threshold of 50) while using triumph to keep the creature unconscious longer, two despair were used to have the unconscious Krayt reflexively strike out, destroying M4-RK’s ion blaster and cyber scanner limb sensor. One the Krayt’s strain threshold was exceeded, 3 triumph was left over which were used to cause the Krayt to puke out 2 more Krayt dragon pearls, and have the “mamma Krayt” be in heat, and Bernie able to follow the blood trail back to it’s nest by scent. Before leaving, they did what they could to immobilize the mama Krayt with syntherope attached to boulders. It wouldn’t keep it trapped for ever but it would slow the creature down. M4-RK picked up, the dead jawa’s ion blaster as a replacement for the one destroyed by the mama Krayt.

Back at the mama Krayt’s nest they found a juvenile Krayt dragon which they captured by stunning it into submission. They delivered it to Jabba to fulfill their obligation to him. The PC’s purchased Ke’Vin’s contract from Jabba. Ke’Vin was happy to go with the PCs because he knew that Jabba was still displeased with him for being stupid enough to fall into the giant sand crab pit and participating in it’s killing. Thad Bane to Ke’Vin “Welcome aboard my ship, the Redshift Raven.” Ke’Vin was assigned a room at the back of the ship (near the rear turbolift) on the lowest deck (in an effort to isolate the expected stench). Ke’Vin was happy to have his own room, things were looking up for him.

The trip to Nal Hutta was uneventful. Emil Mola was delivered safely, fulfilling Karsten’s and J-8’s obligation to him. The 2 Krayt dragon pearls that Andra knew about were sold with the proceeds being split 50-50 (half for Grondo, the remaining half, i.e. 15,000 credits, being split equally among the PCs). Vaesha flew off into the sunset with Ziggy aboard Ziggy’s J-type star skiff which was waiting for them at Grondo’s palace.

Epilogue: Han Van mentioned that his father (who was possibly the best crafter of vibro weapons in Hutt space) would be interested in acquiring Karsten’s damage but still functional trophy lightfoil, and Karsten traded it to Han Vane’s father in exchange for Han Vane’s Father’s personal vibro katana. And Karsten sold the Krayt Dragon Pearl that he had caught and hidden to Han Vane’s father with the 15K credits split three ways between him, J-8 and Han Vane. Thad Bane who was aware of the alliances being formed on his ship, and being still flush with credits from the sale of his holster, nova-viper, and Kamperdine armored tailored jacket, tried to acquire Ke’Vin’s loyalty, by outfitting him with quality gear, including a heavy blaster rifle with a vibro bayonet, reinforced clothing (that supplied extra soak, ranged and melee defense, and a built in comlink among other things), stimpacks etc.

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Session 12
Homecoming Part II

Brief Summary

On Nar Shaddaa, the rest of the PCs have to protect Tal Lee (a.k.a. Tal Seario) from assassination attempts while he makes public appearances leading up to the Czerka board meeting to vote on whether Tal should be the next CEO of Czerka.

Andra leaves the Redshift Raven to visit her contacts to obtain current intel. Vaesha Tarn stays onboard the Redshift Raven to guard the memory wiped HRD Arica who, because of the memory wipe, believes itself to be a human female with amnesisa.

In a Czerka armored/shielded speeder van piloted by J-8, escorted by Wertka-Wertko faction Czerka muscle in two speeders with turret weapons, Tal, Thad, Karsten, and M4-RK head to a news station for a reporter to interview Tal. While en route, all three vehicles are hit by missiles (basically rocket propelled grenades) fired from swoop bikes piloted by Dark Star Hellions gang members. The escort speeders are destroyed and the shielded armored speeder van crashes several stories down onto a street level before punching a whole into and getting stuck in a building. The PCs are unhurt but the speeder van is severely damaged and the its shields are down. The PCs exit their wrecked vehicle and take cover between it and the wall of the building the speeder van is lodged in. The four Dark Star Hellions gang members on swoop bikes speed back and forth taking pot shots with their blasters while 6 more approach on foot.

Initiative is rolled and the 1 NPC get to go first, followed by 1 PC, another NPC, 4 more PCs, and then the rest of the NPCs. Two of the 6 gang members on foot are close to the speeder van and are holding stun grenades in addition to blasters. In the first NPC slot one of those 2 gang members lobs his stun grenade over the van with enough advantage on the attack roll to activate blast. The 3 organic PCs present, Tal, Thad and Karsten take 10 stun damage minus their soak. The other outcome of this attack is that the PCs guess that the reason the Dark Star Hellions lobbed stun grenades rather than ion grenades is that they don’t want to risk killing Thad Bane and therefore call the wrath of his infamous uncle Cad Bane down on themselves.

So in the first PC initiative slot, Thad steps out from behind the van, spends 2 strain to gain a maneuver to use true aim, and fires with his blaster pistol; he rolls well enough to kill one of them outright with 9 advantage which he uses to crit 3 more times… long and short of it Thad puts blaster bolts between the eyes of 4 minions who have not yet acted this turn (including the one who was close to the van with an unused stun grenade), killing them.

The next NPC up, a gang member on foot, shoots Thad with his blaster set to stun. Thad is now very low on strain.

Tal goes next, shooting at a Dark Star Hellion on a swoop bike with his blaster carbine and rolls a triumph which is used to cause the dead gang member to crash into a street lamp which falls on top of and kills another gang member on a swoop as he’s driving by.

J-8 goes next, rolling a triumph plus enough advantage to crit, the droid steps out into the middle of the street shoots the last 2 approaching gang members on swoop bikes in the head and uses the triumph to cause the last two undamaged swoops to slowly coast to a stop next to him.

M4-RK goes next and doctors up Thad who was very low on strain.

Karsten goes next comes runs out from behind the speeder van to slice and dice the gang member who initially threw the stun grenade over the van. Karsten succeeds at killing the gang member outright but succeeded with despair. The despair results in the dying gang member dropping an armed thermal detonator. Karsten yells Get down!, and spends 2 strain to take cover behind the speeder van. Thad and M4-RK were already next to the van in a position that shielded them from the thermal detonator.

The thermal detonator explodes vaporizing about half of the speeder van and throwing the rest of it up against Tal, Thad, Karsten and M4-RK. They each take 2 wounds (damage) that is not reduced by soak and are trapped against the wall underneath the wreckage of the speeder van. J-8 is mostly out range of the thermal detonator but gets knocked over by the shock wave and takes 2 wounds not reduced by soak from shrapnel.

Top of the initiative order. The last surviving Dark Star Hellion swoop gang member present decides that discretion is the better part of valor and runs away. Karsten (with his 5 Brawn) assisted (boost dice) by the rest of the PCs trapped under the wreckage of the speeder van tries to lift it but fails.

M4-RK decides to cut a hole through the wreckage of the speeder van for them to crawl out of using a plasma cutter/blow torch from his tool kit. The dice pool would have had 2 red dice and 1 purple in it as negative dice… the red dice being present to represent the danger of cutting the fuel line/cell with the plasma cutter but uses his cyber scanner limb to help him determine where the volatile components are so one of the red dice is down graded into a purple. However although successful on the check with advantage left over, M4-RK rolled a despair. The despair is used to cause the fuel cell to detonate after it is pushed forward, out and two the side so that the wreckage is once again shoved hard into Tal, Thad, Karsten, and M4-RK and they each take another 2 wounds not reduced by soak. This time J-8 was far enough away keeping a look out for new assailants that he takes no new wound damage.

M4-RK, Thad, Tal and Karsten crawl out of the wreckage through the hole that M4-RK previously cut. Perception checks are rolled and 3 hovercam droids recording them. In order to get to the news station: Tal pilots one of the two remaining intact swoop bikes with Karsten sitting behind him; Thad pilots the other remaining intact swoop bike with M4-RK sitting behind him; and J-8 uses his jet pack to fly there.

They arrive at the news station without further incident, the reporter looks at Tal’s disheveled, dirty, bruised state and asks What happened to you?

As Tal enters the studio he replies I just survived an assassination attempt.

Karsten cracks wise with the comment I hope they have a good make up department, he’s gonna need it.

M4-RK doctors up Thad and Karsten and mechanics up J-8 and M4-RK itself. Thad comlinks to Kevelv Wertko and tells him about the attack and to send a new shielded armored speeder van and combat airspeeder escort. The get there by the time Tal is done with the interview. The PCs ride back to the Redshift Raven in the speeder van, while ‘redshirt’ NPCs pilot the two swoop bikes and the combat airspeeder escorts who are told by Karsten This time keep your shields up until you actually need to fire your turret blasters, the last guys didn’t do that and now their dead. They get back to the Redshift Raven without further incident. They park the two swoop bikes in the ship’s cargo hold.

Tal uses his father’s “unlimited funds” credit stick and his Czerka connections to legally purchase a “50 cal” heavy repeating blaster to attach to the speeder carried aboard the Redshift Raven. He also bought and had a bacta tank in the Raven’s medical bay, and bought enough bacta to fill 1 and a half bacta tanks (the additional half a tank’s worth is kept stocked aboard the ship to refill the bacta tank as needed) .

Later Andra and Kevelv Wertko returned to the ship. Andra had an unusually serious (even for her) expression on her face. She informed the rest of the PC’s flatly
Viz Lorso has considerably increased the kill bounty on Tal Seario

J-8 looked at Karsten then back to Andra and asked: how much is it?

Andra replied: enough that you should be worried that you won’t be able to stop the quality and quantity of bounty hunters trying to collect it, and enough to worry that you all might end up dead as collateral damage. For example it’s high enough that it might attract top tier bounty hunters such as Boba Fett.

Kevelv Wertko added: When Andra informed me of this development I took the liberty of contacting additional muscle to help protect Tal. However some of the more capable shall we say scum have a history with you and before they accept the contract want your assurances that you will not seek to kill or apprehend them for the duration of the protection detail. Can you all agree to that?

The PCs all agree and then Kevelv Wertko added: Good, because they’re already here, I believe you already know Miss Rina Ka

Rina walks in and interupts Wertko saying: Hello Karsten, you’re looking good.

Kevelv Wertko continues: and Cad Bane. I’ll leave you all to get reacquainted.

Cad Bane: Hello Thad, it’s good to see you again.

Thad to Cad: Why are you here uncle?

Cad: Because you’d die if I wasn’t. I even agreed to take only half my usual rate so that Wertko could afford me.

Thad: Why did you kill my father.

Cad: I’m sorry about that Thad, I didn’t want to kill him but he didn’t give me another choice. The damn self-righteous fool tried to take me in and I wasn’t about to go down without a fight. I’ve stayed away all these years because I believed that you would also try to take me down and force me to kill you too.

Thad nods and says: That’s about what I thought.

cut scene….

Tal needs to give a speech in a plaza to the public. the take armored shielded speeder vans there. They have time to set up ahead of time, Cad Bane is in over watch with his crazy tricked out sniper rifle. Vaesha Tarn is aboard the The Redshift Raven which is prepped and waiting for launch back at the space port, ready to fly in and provide heavy air support and a quick evac. Tal in on stage behind the podium which is protected by a force field, M4-RK is just off stage waiting to administer emergency medical care, the rest of the PCs plus Rina Ka are outside the force field to the left and right of the stage. Someone sets off some “bomb” that are “more flash than bang” and the resulting panic/stampede (fleeing public) is the intended distraction, which is unsuccessful. Cad Bane spots the sniperNej Renda who is targeting Thad Bane, Cad pulls the trigger first and the powerful blaster bolt replaces Nej Renda’s head with a fine red mist.

Boba Fett (NPC) goes next, flies into close range (just up to the force field) with his jet pack and fires through it with his massively tricked out blaster carbine and succeeds in damaging Tal severely enough that he’s down to 5 wounds. Rina Ka wastes no time and runs up to Boba (passes the fear check triggered by Boba’s 3 ranks in fearsome) and makes a successful two weapon attack with enough advantage to trigger the second hit but does minimal damage to Boba (who has uber armor that ignores breach and pierce).

Myria Vondin flies in on her jetpack and she and Thadius (Thad) Bane take their turns at the same time… a quick draw show down in the midst of the chaos… she rolls a triumph and 5 success, moving so quickly that her hands are a blur (across the 5 or so frames in the recordings of the 5 hovercam droids that were recording the speech and subsequent assassination attempt) as she draws both of her tricked out pistols (improved quickdraw) however she’s still not fast enough because Thad rolls 2 count them TWO triumphs and 3 successes (and rolls 1 triumph with a buttload of net success and advantage on his subsequent attack).

Thad’s draw is so fast that it’s technically not recorded in any of the count them 5 hovercam droids that were recording the speech and now assassination attempt. What is instead recorded in all five holovid feeds from different angles is that in one frame, Thad’s novaviper is in its holster and his hands are by his hips, in the next frame his hand with the blaster pistol in it is fully extended toward Myria with a muzzle flash and the blaster bolt already out of the barrel. In the third frame the blaster bolt is about three fourths of the way to Myria. In the 4th frame the bolt has struck the slightly exposed from the from jet pack underneath her right arm and it’s begun to detonate. By the 5th frame, the shock wave from Myria’s jet pack has reached her forearms which were just extended into firing position and then combination of her thrusting her arms forward in the quickdraw and the shockwave propel her pistols out of her hand towards Thad Bane, dozens of frames later both of her pistols land at Thad’s feet and starting about a half second after that her body parts begin to rain down in the plaza. About 4 seconds after that, the giant rifle revolver style grenade launcher Myria was carrying on across her chest on a sling, thunks down on the ground in front of Andra.

Meanwhile the duelist droid D15 who was already in bound on its jet pack lands in a roll and comes with two outward arm sweeps with the snap-hiss of 2 red lightfoils (extremely low quality lightsabers that were statted as tricked out vibrorapiers) extending. Rina Ka smiles and says, “Come get some.” It attacks twice (two weapon fighting), both land, but with a despair ruled as Rina cutting off its left arm which continued forward still holding the light foil to strike her.

Myria’s brother Mar Vondin, who is enraged at Thad for killing his sister just seconds ago flies in and takes two swings at Thad with his electro staff, both miss (fluffed as Thad hopping back over the first and ducking the second).

Karsten Eshan comes running in and takes a swing at Mar Vondin and misses but generates something like 9 advantage to pass boost dice to the next PC, Andra.

Meanwhile some 15 to 20 mercs (minons) who (all have holocams on their rifles to film proof of kill should they be so lucky and) were waiting for a good opportunity to assassinate Tal see the Boba Fett led attack as the perfect distraction have charged in and Andra picks up the recently deceased Myria Vondin’s grenade launcher, and (thanks to the boost dice provided by Karsten) fires a shot into the midst of the mercs with enough advantage to activate blast and kills 6 minions.

Tal uses his turn to (A) take cover, and (B) call Vaesha Tarn aboard the The Redshift Raven for an evac and air support. M4-RK uses his maneuver to rush over to Tal, his action to medic him up to heal something like 6 wounds, and spends 2 strain to stimpack Tal to heal another 5 wounds.

J-8 takes a potshot at Boba Fett with his Dragoon cavalry blaster (in pistol mode) and hits dealing damage that would be significant if not for Boba’s uber armor with high soak that ignores “breach” and “pierce”, Boba takes something like 5 wounds and is now down to something like 26 wounds left.

the remaining minion mercs take potshots at Tal but thanks to the butt load of black dice from the shield protecting the stage and using the podium as cover… none of them hit.

second round of combat. Cad Bane uses his jump jet boots to fly down near Boba Fett and shoots him twice (dual wielding) which after soak is applied takes Boba down to something like 12 wounds left, but rolls a despair (Boba had 3 ranks of the adversary talent).

Boba decides that discretion is the better part of valor and flies away dropping a thermal detonator as he goes.

Cad Bane spends a destiny point to activate his improved time to go talent and pulls his nephew out of the blast radius. Rina Ka spends a destiny point to activate her improved time to go talent and pulls Karsten Eshan out of the blast radius.

The thermal detonator goes off, hitting Andra, J-8, D15, and Mar Vondin, taking down the shield protecting the stage, and killing all the minion mercs. Andra is severely messed up and goes down, the rest that were hit got knocked down and took significant damage. J-8 is taking several black dice for his targetting sensors getting messed up but manages to shoot D15 with enough advantage to activate a crit which detonates D15’s jetpack destroying the duelist droid and knocking over the podium.. Mar Vondin ignites his jet flies up to make Tal’s cover not an issue and puts a blaster bolt in Tal’s chest (which doesn’t kill him). and Thad Bane shoots Mar Vondin with either triumph and/or a lot of advantage and activates a crit detonating his jet pack, and between the explosion, plummeting from the sky with a sudden abrupt stop when he hits the ground, kills Mar Vondin.

Karsten Eshan jumps up onto stage, walks over to Tal Seario (a.k.a. Tal Lee), roughly grabs him, hauls him to his feet, points at the hovercams that have recorded the whole combat and says wave at the cameras to prove your still alive. Tal waves both hands with middle fingers extended to defiantly flip off the assassins who tried to kill him, and any who might think about trying to kill him in the coming days. And after seeing the devastation wrought on the elite assassins who just tried to kill Tal, every hit man/woman/droid who had been considering taking a potshot at Tal Seario, suddenly decided that the risk to reward ratio was far too high. There were no further assassination attempts against Tal before the Czerka board meeting.

The The Redshift Raven arrived on scene minutes later and let down a rope latter for the PCs to climb up. Karsten and J-8 had already looted the bodies of their Vanguished foes. Thad kept Myria Vondin’s L33T blaster pistols. Karsten took her and her brother’s busted mandalorian helmets as trophy’s along with the severely damaged but still functioning lightfoil clutched in the severed hand of D15. Also collected was Mar Vondin‘s Dragoon cavalry blaster, and all of Nej Renda’s gear, which apart from being messy (from Nej’s exploding head) was in perfect condition.

The unconscious but stabilized by M4-RK’s medical ministrations Andra was hauled up in harness and then spent the next day in the bacta tank onboard the Redshift Raven. Karsten mounted the 2 severely damaged Mandalorian T-visor helmets on the wall of his stateroom as trophies.

Cad Bane was extremely proud of his nephew for how well Thad had handled himself in his quick draw showdown with Myria Vondin and told Thad as much, “just don\’t go getting the idea that your fast enough to take me down.”

They had one more public appearance before the Czerka board meeting, which went off without a hitch.

The day of the board meeting Andra said she had an errand to take care off and that she would see them in the board meeting. The board meeting was held in a large room, which can best be described as a being a lot like a senate hall of a state government, or a little like a small stadium but with desks on shallow stepped incline instead of bleachers or folding seats.

Before the meeting, Tal engaged in the obligatory hand shaking with board members/large shareholders. He had an unexpected conversation with none other than Prince Xizor who was accompanied by his human* (actually a HRD but this is not known by the PCs) female associate Guri.

Xizor: I know we’ve been on opposing sides in some business transactions in the past, but past indiscretions are really not that important and I am hoping for more cooperative mutually beneficial dealings moving forward.

Tal being more than a little nervous about meeting the being he knows to be the head of Black Sun, and just stated he personally knew that Tal had been his adversary in the past does a pretty good job of keeping his composure and after a brief hesitation, makes a quick recovery and says: Thank you very much Mr. Xizor, I hope that I can count on your support during today’s vote for the next Czerka CEO?

Xizor smiles and says: yes you can.

Tal: Thank you for your support, I’d stay and chat but I need to mingle and shake hands

Xizor: by all means

A little bit later, after the pre-meeting politicing had finished and the debate had begun, with members both physically present and those virtually present via hologram speaking out, a young junior executive Sincade Carald aligned with the Lorso faction who is standing behind his father Santari Carald who is seated at the central large oval table, looks down pulls something out of his pocket, likely a smart comlink, stares at it for a few seconds, smiles, whisper excuse me in his father’s ear and quietly walks out one of the doors to the board room.

A few minutes later, Sincade Carald re-enters the board room and Andra slips in after him to stand against the wall. As SIncade strides boldy to the central conference table smiling smugly, the room starts to murmur, the rest of the PCs glance questioning at Andra but she keeps her gaze fixed on Sincade. When he reaches the table, Sincade has a brief crisis of confidence and glances back at Andra who nods.

The Sincade declares loudly:

Ladies and gentlebeings of the board, new information has come to light, which has bearing on this vote. Recently Tal Seario, also known as Tal Lee, went back to his adoptive family’s home planet of Galtea in the Kathol sector to deliver a large amount of blood money credits… a gift that by the way wasn’t declared for the purpose of taxation… to Tal’s adoptive sister who still lives on the Lee homestead in the town of Dere. Tal and his associates also smuggled in a large quantities of black market blasters which they sold for a profit, how?… they created demand by starting an insurrection and placed the legitimate authorities under house arrest while they organized a sham election to put Tal’s brother in law in office in order to legalize that illegal sale of blasters. Then they used their rag tag “army” of inexperienced yet angry farmers to prevent an elite and fairly large unit of professional soldiers from succeeding at their attempt to restore peace and put the legitimate authorities back in power by disarming the angry mob that Tal Seario and his compatriots sold weapons to in the first place.

A slow clap begins to rise from the gallery around the central table, which builds into a standing ovation. At first Sincade Carald smiles proudly thinking that he has succeeded in preventing Tal Seario from being elected CEO of Czerka and that the applause is for him. Then his father snarls at him You fool!

And with a panicked look at Andra, Sincade realized that she tricked him into demonstrating that Tal Seario has the cunning, business acumen, and cut throat do anything for a profit as long as it doesn’t come back to bite you legally mentality needed to successfully helm the “allegedly corrupt” Czerka corporation as a CEO. Moreover, Tal had demonstrated to the board of directors that he had the ability and connections to manipulate his adversaries into making the case for why Tal should be the next Czerka.

The vote wasn’t unanimous, but an overwhelming majority of members on the board of directors, even many who decided then and there to “jump ship” and abandon the “sinking” Lorso faction, voted Tal Seario into office as the new Czerka CEO.

It was at that point that Kevelv Wertko started to doubt that Tal Seario would be a puppet CEO that he could use to control Czerka, and began to also question if Tal had manipulated the Wertka-Wertko faction into helping Tal become CEO rather than the other way around.

Kevelv Wertko reasoned, But at least Tal is romantically involved with my daughter, and if they marry, that would cement the Werko family’s position of power in the new Seario regime, because that is what it was a Seario regime not a Wertko regime… not quite the victory I was hoping for but it will do… now I just need to arrange and plan their wedding. That shouldn’t be too difficult…

Grondo the Hutt, who had been chosen by the Hutt Ruling Council to be the representative of Hutt financial interests at the Czerka board meeting was very pleased. This was shaping up to be a very good year:

  • he had recovered the data chip which could have compromised his clan’s business dealings, showing that he had the ability to clean up messes even when that meant out maneuvering Black Sun, (He did still need to track down the parties ultimately responsible and visit a suitable punishment upon them though);
  • through his association with the human crime lord, Emil Mola, and his consigliere Baron Aalto Endel, he had acquired a monopoly over the black market on the planet Aleron for his clan and acquired Mola as an ally; now he just had to ensure that Karsten Eshan and J-8 didn’t kill Mola when he’d be most vulnerable, he’d need to send some additional muscle on the rescue mission to Tatooine… hmmm the Gank assassin, Han Vane, should be able to handle Karsten should things turn confrontational; Han Vane was also just the kind of scum that Karsten should get along with once any initial hostilities were resolved, both were bipedal cyborg thugs who fancied themselves as master swords-beings and had a penchant for vibro katanas. Han Vane’s father also crafted some of the finest vibroblades in Hutt space, and his mother was a significantly better than average cybertech. That was plenty of incentive for Karsten to want to play nice. And the Gank was looking for a new “murder/pack” to help him avenge his old one. His favorite team of agents would also be down a man now that Tal Seario was CEO of Czerka… yes this should work out well long term;
  • and now he was largely responsible for getting Tal Seario elected CEO of Czerka, had it not been for his fixer Andra the vote could have gone either way. He and Tal had been allies before, this should only cement that. Tal Seario would owe him, actually this should square them because he had owed Tal a favor for his role in the recovering the data chip, but the human probably wouldn’t see it that way, no matter. Of course he would now have to treat Tal as if he were an equal; lesser species tended to have overly inflated opinions of self-worth when they compared themselves to Hutts, but it would probably less than a hundred years before Tal died, Grondo could keep up the facade for at least that long. Besides it wouldn’t even be acting, Hutts held respect for beings in positions of power and influence regardless of species for their position at least. Now he would need to enlist the aid of Kevelv Wertko in arranging a marriage between his daughter Arica and Tal; the humans needed to get busy copulating to produce offspring who would succeed Tal as CEO when he died, humans had such short life spans and were pretty fragile on top of that. No sense in wasting today when tomorrow wasn’t guaranteed. Grondo needed to ensure a line of succession for Czerka that would have a favorable relationship with him. Kevelv Wertko would have a similar agenda and mindset about this matter, he should work with the human to accomplish this common goal. But the long and short of it was the Hutt Ruling council had selected Grondo to be their representative to Czerka because of his relationship with Tal. Grondo getting Tal voted in as CEO should secure that position of prestige and power for… at least as long as Tal or his descendants occupied the top spot, as long as the falleen Xizor didn’t mess things up for him.

About a few days later, Tal Seario called Viz Lorso Nedac Wertka, Kevelv and Arica Wertko, Santari Carald, and numerous other Czerka executives in for a meeting. It was Tal’s intention of dealing with the threat due to the droid secret society replacing executives with replica droids. My comparing Arica Wertka to the replica droid of her M4-RK, had devised a method of detecting replica droids, namely that the cloned skill that covered them was much younger than the beings that the droids replaced. J-8 and Andra, Karsten Eshan and Rina Ka were also present. Cad and Thad Bane were outside one of the doors to the board room making sure that they wouldn’t be interrupted.

Tal and Arica recounted their capture and replacement by replica droids, which Andra added was revealed when a sniper assassinated the replica droid Tal. The remains of the Tal replica droid were demonstrated as proof. Tal stated that they had developed a sensor to detect replica droids based on the age of their skin. The scanner was used on Tal and Arica, which said they were not replicants and then M4-RK shot them with his ion pistol to prove that the test was accurate and that the weapon was non-lethal to organics.

Each of the members of the board were scanned, the sensor said that a significant minority mostly belonging or formerly belonging to the Lorso faction, and each time when M4-RK shot them with the ion pistol, the replica droids shut down. A group of replica droids impersonators, before they were scanned decided to take action to prevent the revelation of the secret droid society to the outside world, one of them pulled out a thermal detonator which it armed and threatened to blow them all up if they tried to leave while 3 others guarded the doors with blaster pistol. The PC’s intervened disabling the droid in the center of the room with the thermal detonator using an ion pistol, but Viz Lorso caught the detonator and resumed the stand off. He had done a mental calculation accounting for the corporate political tendency of heirs which said if everyone in the room died, the Lorso faction had a decent chance or regaining control of Czerka, because Tal’s 10% share would revert to his second cousin twice removed, and another replica droid of him could be manufactured. However, Viz Lorso didn’t quite have the guts to commit suicide when there might possibly be another option.

The replica droids at the doors now allied with Lorso said that their compatriots were attempting to set of an explosion several floors up which would kill everyone in the room, and were trying to devise and negotiate a way for Lorso to escape in return for better treatment of droids Czerka.

M4-RK used his built in hands free comlink to alert Thad and Cad Bane to the threat inside the board room, and went to deal with the droids several floors up. Thad and Cad fought side by side to stop the droids.

Kevelv Wertko figured out Viz Lorso’s reasoning, namely Tal’s second cousing twice removed would inherit Tal’s stock. However, Kevelv could use this situation to his advantage. To remove Viz Lorso’s incentive for blowing them all up, he proposed that Tal and Arica get married on the spot on the far side of the conference room from Viz Lorso. And the mayor of this particular district of Nar Shaddaa was on hand and could perform the ceremony, and officiate a will, which could be filed electronically from the computer. Since if Tal were to die after the ceremony and will, Tal’s stock would then be inherited by Arica’s younger sister, and since Tal’s second cousin twice removed wouldn’t inherit the stock that would remove the incentive for Viz Lorso to blow them all up. But they’d have to make sure that Viz Lorso didn’t find out until it was already done.

So Tal and Arica got married, Tal wrote a will, these got filed elctronically, and then this was revealed to Viz Lorso, who disarmed the thermal detonator and the PC’s in the room took out the rest of the hrd’s in the room (which memory wiped themselves once Viz Lorso disarmed the detonator and Thad and Cad succeeded in defeating the more conventional droids trying to set off the bomb several floors up.

Kevelv Wertko paid Rina Ka and Cad Bane their agreed upon fees using Czerka funds. Being married to a woman he loved and the CEO of Czerka, Tal decided to stay on Nar Shaddaa. Tal gave the Redshift Raven to his long time friend Thad Bane and paid him 10K additional credits. He paid Vaesha, Karsten, J-8, M4-RK, and Andra 20K credits each for the protection they provided him leading up to and following his election as CEO.

Following the “surprise” election of Tal Seario as CEO of Czerka, several galactic news networks started covering the transition post facto, including replays of the public speaking event turned failed assassination attempt. One broad caster commented on the lighting fast draw of Thad Bane and it rocketed Thad Bane into an overnight holonet star making him a household name across the galaxy, thanks to in part 5 separate repulsorlift holocam droids which recorded him burning Myria.

It was pointed out that Myria was already well known as a lighting fast quick draw in criminal circles, and it was repeatedly commented that most in the know would have ranked her as much faster than Thad Bane, and her performance did not disapoint (she rolled 1 triumph and 5 successes for her cool check) and she drew so quickly that her arms were blurred across the 5 frames.

However, Thad;s quick draw was nothing short of legendary (2 triumphs and 3 successes). In one frame, his nova viper pistol was in his holster, in the next it was pointed at Myria with a muzzle flash and a blaster bolt already leaving the barrel, in the third frame the blaster bolt is shown 3 quarters of the way to Myria, in the 4th it has struck the edge of her jet pack underneath her arms in the 5th frame her jet pack has begun to detonate, and in the 6th frame her two custom blaster pistols are flying towards Thad being propelled by a combination of the speed with which Myria drew and the expanding shock wave from her exploding jet pack.

If only one holocam droid had covered this, people might have dismissed it as trick photography or by saying the the holovid had been digitally altered. The fact that 5 separate holocam droids recorded the same thing from 5 different angles and they were being broadcast as part of the news story about the assassination attempt of the long lost, presumed dead Tal Seario who was now returning to take control of Czerka, quashed all doubt about the validity of the recordings.

Sentients across the galaxy took notice that “Cad Bane” and “Thad Bane” were fighting along side each other, that they were both duros and more than that, that there was a strong familial resemblance. Among those unknowledgeable about the galactic criminal underworld, speculation spread that Thad Bane was the notorious Cad Bane’s son. Nerds in the know, got to gloat in smug superiorty when their claims that Thad Bane was Cad’s Nephew and Cad Bane had killed Thad’s father, Cad’s brother some 20 to 25 years ago were eventually validated.

A holovid surfaced of Thad’s father out drawing Cad Bane but missing and Cad shooting his brother dead. This sparked a holonet flame war about whether although Thad’s side of the family seemed to be slightly faster, they might not be able to shoot straight and maybe Thad was just lucky that he hit Myria’s jet pack, after all that was an almost impossible shot to hit especially at that speed. Other’s, particularly Mandalorian fanboys, claimed that Thad deliberately targeted Myria’s jet pack because he knew that because of her mandalorian armor that was the only way Thad could kill Myria before she killed him. They also pointed out, that Thad used the same jet pack detonation approach to kill her brother Mar Vondin.

Another hotly debated topic was whether Cad or Thad was the faster draw, Thad’s recent performance was far and above Cad’s in the 20 some odd year old video of the show down bewteen Cad and Thad’s father, heck it was quite possibly the fastest quick draw ever recorded in the galaxy, but other rare recordings of Cad Bane’s recent quick draws showed him to be considerably faster than he was 20 years ago, and maybe Thad’s performance was a fluke.

Yet another was whether that was really Boba Fett that the Bane boys had soundly thrashed or whether it was a lesser imposter like Jodo Kast.

As this new story was repeated across the galaxy, new shows with more in-depth coverage listed the names of the other bounty hunters seemingly working for Thad and/or Cad Bane, Karsten Eshan and the droid J-8 who were reportedly quite formidable, were ineffective against the likes of allegedly Boba Fett and his crew (all of which except the armored and masked being alleged to be Boba Fett died in the encounter).

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Session 11
Homecoming, Part 1

Last time:
Baron Alto Endel, who is

  1. a newly minted noble of the House Cadriaan in the Tapani Sector i.e. he purchased nobility,
  2. the ranking executive of Macander Heavy Ores on the planet Aleron
    in the Tapani freeworlds region “next door” to the House Cadriaan section of the Tapani Sector
  3. the consigliere of Emil Mola
    star wars version of Keyser Soze from “The Usual Suspects”, a mythical crime lord, which according to the “myth”/legend Jabba fed to the Sarlacc on Tatooine roughly 200 years ago, despite which the Mola Cartel has continued to thrive while apparently still under the direction of Emil Mola. How is this possible? Well Jabba likes to taunt his victims by saying of the Sarlacc In his belly you will find a new definition of pain and suffering as you are slowly digested over the next 1000 years. and Baron Endel has stated that Mola is still on Tatooine and that he has only communicated with his employer electronically over the holonet.

(these three things are not independent)

gave the party the next task they needed to complete to work off Karsten Eshan’s and J-8’s debt to Emil Mola which they had incurred by interfering which one of Mola’s/Endel’s agents stealing a 200 year old blood oath dagger which supposedly has Mola’s blood on it. This task was to steal an experimental bacta tank™ from Arkanian Microtechnologies
a company known for its role in the development of medical supplies and technology but secretly specializes in the research and development of genetic engineering techniques, ranging from direct manipulation of genomes to mutation via overexposure to massive amounts of radiation
headquarters on the planet Vohai. The PCs were successful at stealing the experimental bacta tank™ , thanks to in part the assistance of slicer extraordinaire “Ziggy,”
the childhood friend of Vaesha Tarn
who revealed that he was working with Mola to help him complete his objectives in return for the Mola Cartel’s assistance in dealing with Ka’rin Bel
Vaesha’s ex who used their supposedly private holovids turned “revenge porn” to make her a holonet celebrity
because Ka’rin Bel is currently under the protection of Zordo the Hutt
a rival clanmate of Grondo the Hutt, Andra’s employer and frequent patron of the party
and therefore off limits to the party but the Mola Cartel has no such restriction. Ziggy also revealed that he was the one who convinced Mola to allow Karsten and J-8 to work off their debt to Mola rather than Mola just having his agents kill them.

This session with the party in hyperspace on their way to Tallaan
a planet in Tapani sector’s Freeworlds Territory at the confluence of the Giju Passage, the Procopian Shipping Lane, and the Shapani Bypass. Tallaan is best known for its starship production; several prominent spaceship manufacturing firms (including the Tapani Starship Cooperative) operate out of Tallaan. Tallaan’s government consists of the Trade Commission. The Ministry of Orbital Commerce is widely considered the most powerful administration on Tallaan due to it overseeing the orbital stations, shipyards, and the millions of financial transactions associated with them each day, such as the massive portion of Tallaan’s dockyards leased by the Thyferran government to inspect transported bacta, which by law could not be done in Thyferran space.
to deliver the stolen experimental bacta tank™ to one of Baron Alto Endel’s agents (in particular the agent whose mission to steal the blood oath dagger Karsten and J-8 interferred with).

38 hours (along fairly major hyperspace routes: Five Veils Route to the Llanic Spice Run to the Corellian Run to the Shipwrights’ Trace to the Shapani Bypass to Tallan) after departing Vohai, the Red Talon emerges from hyperspace in the Tallan system. The traffic, holding pattern times, were exceptionally long, even for a planet with shipyards as impressive as Tallaan’s. The crew of the Red Talon saw all sorts of ships in orbit (note that most of them were NOT in dry dock), from massive luxury star liners, to small cap ships: frigates, light cruisers, and corvettes, even a Tapani class carrier, to commercial bulk haulers, medium and light transports, some fairly exotic snub fighters,…

Vashea commented: hey that’s a SubPro nova sword space superiority fighter, a great piece of machinery but not many of them were made… oooh and that one over there is a Nubian design collective J-type star skiff I don’t even what to think about how much one of them costs….. and that’s a Baudo class star yatch, it’s fast, beautiful, and expensive but it’s basically a paper starship a few good hits will send one to the repair bay or scrap yard… ooh and that one’s a CEC HWK-1000 very fast, even more so than a Baudo, and agile and rare only a few hundred prototypes were made because the Imps objected to a stock freighter whose performance rivals that of state of the art fighters, they were initially sold without weapons but adding them is pretty easy and it can certainly take a pounding I wonder what’s they’re doing here, maybe there’s some type of star ship show going on here or something.

Andra: you are correct Vaesha, it’s the annual Tapani/Shipwright’s Trace Starship Show, technically it could be held anywhere along Shipwright’s trace but for the last 12 galactic standard years, it’s been held at Tallaan.

  • One part collector’s show for the enthusiasts on the ground,
  • one part sales event/marketing gimmick for companies ranging from CEC, to Ghtroc Industries, to Sorosub, to Loronar, and on and on,
  • and one part military air show, they have a red team vs. blue team mock furball dogfight, and races. I figured you get a kick out of this, but it was Baron Endel who chose the delivery location. It might have something to do with the fact that Thyferra rents a huge portion of the dry docks above Tallaan for the purpose of inspecting bacta.

The comm crackles: attention Red Talon, you have been cleared to land at coordinates 001965 dash 23754.

Andra: that’s on < the Southern continent of the Eastern hemisphere >, we have but we have business on < the northern continent of the western hemisphere > in the city of < insert city name >.

Comm: look lady, so does everyone else who’s coming to see the collector’s portion the starship show but you’re not going to be able to get a docking bay there for at least a week when the ships you want to see have already left so just be thankful that you’re getting any docking bay on the surface and take one of the many public airspeeders to see the show.

Andra: Actually the associate who we are meeting to conduct our business unrelated to the collector’s show has reserved docking bay 404 for us.

Comm: ok let’s see here, nice try lady, I checked and it’s coming up being leased long term to Macander Heavy Ores and as unavailable without special authorization

Andra: try authorization code delta 3 charlie echo 7 6 foxtrot bravo 2 niner

Comm: fine but if this comes up bogus you’re waiting in orbit for another day just for wasting my time, and … it says… oh shit… um… yeah… um… sorry about that ma’am…um… Red Talon you are now cleared to land in < insert name of city > docking bay 404. From all of us here at the Ministry of Orbital Commerce we hope you enjoy your stay on Tallaan. I know you said you’re not here for the starship show but it really is quite wonderful, I hope you have the chance to enjoy it, and you can get really good Herglic cuisine in < insert city name >, the best in the Tapani free worlds actually, please don’t get me fired, I need this job, I’m sorry I didn’t believe you but there are just so many people trying to scam their way into a docking bay that close to the collector’s show, you would…

Andra cuts the comm channel before the guy on the other end can finish saying
comm: … have made 17th attempt that I personally had to deal with in the last 3 and a half hours since I’ve come on my shift.

As Vaesha guides the Talon down to < insert city name > past many fairly exotic and expensive ships waiting in a holding pattern above Tallaan, the PCs get the distinct impression that many of their pilots and or spoiled rich passengers might be giving them the finger or other appendage appropriate to their anatomy and culture as a symbol of their frustration and envy, wondering why someone in a ship as mundane as a Loronar E-9 explorer would be given preference over someone as obviously well connected as they are.

After landing in docking bay 404, the PCs were greeted at the Red Talon’s landing ramp by 4 technicians and a now familiar figure wearing a cloak to conceal his armor, the cyber samurai that Karsten twice lost a dual to nods and tips his head to Karsten. Karsten, can almost feel the cyber samurai smirking at him underneath his mask and gets the impression that Mola’s agent is thinking about saying something to the effect of:

you know our second dual can be kind of considered a draw since you managed to accidentally cut the blood oath dagger off my belt when you were aiming for my junk, just before you passed out in the puddle of water back on Pembric II, but then again that time you had J-8 backing your play and you both went down. Now you’re doing a dangerous job for free that I was getting paid for. Good thing you have good friends to help you pull it off.

Instead he just say’s,

If you’ll permit them to board the Red Talon, these technicians will take the bacta tank off your hands. Also Baron Endel would like to speak with all of you in his local office tomorrow at noon, don’t be late. Until then, he and Mr. Mola would like to express their appreciation for the delivery of this device

he hands the PCs key cards to an apparently ritzy hotel named the “Grand Tapani” and adds

These are good for one week. My employers hope that you will enjoy the local festivities, but do try to stay out of trouble since Baron Endel is a respectable business man and the behavior of his guests are a reflection on him. When you are ready to leave Tallaan, this code cylinder will get you back into this docking bay. Your ship will be fully fueled.

He hands the code cylinder to Thad Bane.

PC’s have fun for a day (PC directed), Herglic cuisine for lunch (sushi), a patron accidentally bumps into a waiter and he spills a glass of water on Vaesha’s shirt. Other patron’s notice, Vaesha starts getting stares from some of the males. When they leave the restaurant Thad gets the feeling like he’s being watched, turns around and notices a couple of guys in stylish clothes from the restaurant bumble a tail using a smart phone style comlink to holo record Vaesha presumably, they react poorly to being spotted, the leader stopped suddenly to look at the wares of a street vendor and his friends bump into him, real amateur hour stuff, these guys had started staring at Vaesha after the waiter spilled the water on her.

The party approaches the 4 guys who just stand there and smile. With Karsten looming behind her, Andra says to the apparent leader:
We’re going to buy that smart comlink from you.

He replies:
You couldn’t afford it
and then says to Vaesha
After I saw you in the Herglic restaurant earlier today, I did a holonet search on Vaesha Tarn and found out that you’re supposedly a pretty awesome pilot. You know I personally own a Bauda class star yacht, very fast and agile, the accommodations are also pretty luxurious. How would you like a private all night tour of it?

Vaesha turns him down cold, critiquing the Baudo as a “paper starship”

Not being easily dissuaded, he replied
Well what type of starship would you like a private all night tour of because considering that we are practically at the collectors portion of the Tapani/Shipwright’s trace starship show right now, I’m pretty sure I could own whatever type of ship does tickle your fancy by tonight or maybe tomorrow night at the latest. We could take it out for a test flight together, turn off the gravity…

Vaesha answers with
We would like a tour of a Nubian J-type star skiff.

He smiles roguishly and says
Ok, that’s going to take me a little bit of time to arrange, shall I pick you up tomorrow night at 8?

Vaesha agrees and adds
But we’re going to need your smart comlink.

He hands it over willingly saying
Sure, it will give me a way to call you.

The four spoiled rich “bro’s” leave. Karsten shakes his head and says to Vaesha
You should really stop and think about what all your bad choices have in common

Then Karsten walks away before she can respond. Andra asks Vaesha what she wants to do, she says she wants to go to the stadium and watch the big holo projection of the “red vs. blue” furball dogfight. M4-RK opts out, deciding to slice/investigate the rich boy’s smart comlink, but the rest of the party accompanies Vaesha while M4-RK returns to the hotel.

M4-RK finds a bit of porn holovids on his comlink. Also downloads all of his contact info, and discovers who his obscenely rich parents are, the “galactic ivy league” university that he and his friends attend, the digital evidence suggests that they are who they claimed to be, spoiled rich coreworlder “Bro’s” that are accustomed to getting what and who they want. M4-RK uses the space flash drive that Ziggy gave Vaesha to upload the Vaesha-Ka’rin holovid (to appear to give the guy what he wanted) and set Ziggy’s virus to delete it a day after Vaesha was scheduled to return the comlink to the “Bro”.

The organic members of the party have nemodian burgers for dinner and browse through the collectors portion of the starship show. Vaesha is in her glory. Then do a little bit of shopping: Vaesha buys formal eveningwear “stun gloves”, Karsten picks up a few frag grenades, and return to the Grand Tapani Hotel.

Karsten and Tal go down to the Hotel’s night club. Vaesha’s a bit tired and decides to turn in. She takes a shower and when she emerges she notices that a grape fruit sized repuslorlift camera drone has been recording her in the nude from outside the panoramic transparisteel windo of her hotel room. She flips it off (gives it the tentacle) then ignores it as she goes about her business of getting ready for bed.

The next morning the crew of The Red Talon have a late breakfast at the hotel restaurant and then proceed to the Tallaan office building for Macander Heavy Ores. Baron Alto Endel is not there, instead he has teleconferenced into his local office, he says:
Karsten Eshan’s and J-8’s debt to Mr. Mola is nearly repaid, there is just one last task that you need to complete. It’s a fairly simple transport to and from job with some risk of violence, but the other pieces of the mission won’t be ready for at least a few months, and we also need time to fulfill our end of the deal with our mutual friend the Ziggurat. Mr. Mola has been quite pleased with your performance so far, if you succeed in the final task, Andra, Thad, Tal, Vaesha and M4-RK will be able to call in one favor from Mr. Mola. Miss Andra, I took the liberty of asking but unfortunately your employer Grondo values your employment with him too much to allow us to settle your debt to him on your behalf, and the cooperation of his clan in helping the Mola Cartel keep Black Sun off of Aleron is worth too much to Mr. Mola for me to insist. Perhaps in time Grondo will come to owe Mr. Mola a favor which would allow us to settle your debt to your employer. I will contact you again when other pieces are in place for this last mission. Mr. Mola and I hope that you enjoy the rest of the Tapani/Shipwright’s Trace starship show and that you all will consider voluntary contract work for the Mola Cartel in the future.

Andra asks a clarifying question:
This is just a transport job, but the rest of the mission won’t be ready for a few months?

Endel replies:
yes

After the meeting, the party decides to walk to the collector’s show, Tal needs to stop in at a refresher, and while they’re waiting for him, Thad gets the feeling that he’s being watched. He turns around to look but doesn’t see anything or anyone out of the ordinary (failure with triumph, triumph spent so that Tal was in the refresher). He mentions this to the rest of the party.

Later at the collector’s show in a plaza surrounding a large fountain with a statue of a Starfighter in the center and a holographic display above it, with numerous vender carts and a huge crowd present, Thad again gets the feeling he’s being watched, and scans the crowd. This time he notices about 30 faces (based on species, gender, height, build, clothing) in the crowd that he saw earlier none of them seem particularly intent on observing him, he also sees a grape fruit sized repuslorlift holorecording drone. He mentions this to the party. Karsten makes an offhand comment. And Andra gives him a shove saying
And what are you going to do about it?

Karsten flips a nearby vendor a credit chip, grabs a plastic starship model from his cart and smashes it over Andra’s head. Andra bum rushes Karsten and he pick’s her up over his head as they both fall/crash backward into the vender’s cart, knocking it over. While Andra and Karsten cause a rucus, the rest of the party scans the crowd to see who’s watching them. But the whole crowd has stopped to stare at the commotion, revealing no useful information. As security approaches, Andra gives Karsten a kiss on the lips and says loudly
Do that again and next time I’m not buying you dinner.

Andra paid the vendor for what they broke in his cart and they exited the show hastily. As they departed, the remote drone that has been following them, crashed into a sign (M4-RK used his “Bad-Motivator” talent to short out the thing’s collision avoidance system). It fell to the ground next to M4-RK which picked it up, tucked it under its arm, and walked off with it. J-8 and Tal accompanied M4-RK back to the hotel, while Karsten, Thad, Andra and Vaesha bought a few more things. Vaesha got a sweatshirt hoodie with the starship show’s logo, and Karsten picked up a few stun grenades. Then they return to the hotel.

M4-RK slices the holorecoding drone, discovers that the drone crashed because it had suddenly stopped receiving instructions from the remote pilot and the collision avoidance circuitry had failed. He also reviews the holovid recordings in its memory, notices that it had filmed Vaesha in her hotel room the night before, and had been following them since they had left the hotel, this morning.

Scanning the day’s recordings M4-RK notices one of 5 faces were present at all times throughout the day, a rotating tail, without the “bro’s” drone’s holo-recording it would have been all but impossible to validate Thad’s instinct that they were being watched, this was definitely NOT amateur hour.

Meanwhile, Vaesha had gotten dressed and gone down stairs to wait for “the bro” who had promised her a tour of a Nubian J-type star skiff. But he didn’t show. Vaesha was very relieved that she didn’t have to endure his company, but also more than a little disappointed that she wouldn’t get to see the ship. Back upstairs Vaesha told the rest of the team that the “bro” didn’t show. That was more than a little odd and together with M4-RK’s revelation that the drone had stopped receiving instructions from the remote controller suggested that the bro had at least been taken if not killed by whoever had been tailing them. This sparked a debate about whether the team should leave immediately or wait until morning. The decision was to wait until morning in a pair of adjoining rooms while sleeping in shifts with those awake guarding the rooms’ doors.

Karsten, being his usual opportunistic (as opposed to optimistic) self, noted that: Look on the bright side, since all the bro’s are dead, there is no one alive that knows that he didn’t give Vaesha the J-type star skiff he just bought in exchange for a night of passion

M4-RK replied: But he didn’t give it to Vaesha.

Karsten: Nobody outside this room knows that, and the appropriate paperwork can be forged.

The night was uneventful. In the morning the team grabbed a quick breakfast and then headed directly toward the Macander Heavy Ores private docking bay. So that they would be able to take off immediately upon boarding the Red Talon, Vaesha used her Beckon call to remotely activate the Talon’s pre-launch sequence. As soon as she had depressed the button, they heard a BOOM from same direction as the docking bay.

Thad’s comlink buzzed immediately. When he answerd it, he recognized his uncle Cad’s voice:
Run Thad, Czerka agents were on the Red Talon and apparently botched an attempt to set a bomb. Sorry but you just lost the Talon. I was planning to ambush and interrogate them when they left your ship, but it wouldn’t have been safe for you to return to the Talon anyway. I’ll thin out the Czerka hit squad that is almost certainly on their way to you now, but you need to find another way off planet fast. Click

The PCs ran towards the collector’s/enthusiasts portion of the star ship show because they knew that a lot of starships there would be on display and possibly for sale and it was close. The Czerka hit squads found them before they got there and opened fire. The PCs were briefly pinned down behind cover, before a sniper, likely Cad Bane, took out several of them via head shots, giving them an opening. The PCs ran, and the Czerka hit squads followed, engaging them in a running blaster fight, but every 3 to 20 seconds, another czerka agent would fall to sniper fire.

The party managed to lose their tail before entering the starship collector’s show,. M4-RK used his data pad to wirelesslly download the exhibit map and locate a J-type star skiff, slicing into the online records he discovered that the bro who had invited Vaesha on a private tour and test flight had only rented the J-type star skiff for the night rather than bought it, and that the rental period had ended. He informed the rest of the party of this, to which Tal replied:
Then we’ll just have to buy a ship, and hope that this works
as he waved the (nearly) unlimited funds credit stick that he got from his father’s, Tel Seario’s, safety deposit box from the gangster bank on Pembric II.

They ran through the show looking for an appropriate ship while trying stay ahead of the czerka hit squad that had surely followed them in, until Vaesha stopped suddenly in front of a highly modified consular class light cruiser named “”/characters/the-redshift-raven" class=“wiki-content-link”>The Redshift Raven" and squealed

This one, this one, this one, this one

M4-RK observed it for about 3 seconds before saying: I concur.

Tal walked up to this ships owner, who was sitting in a folding chair next to the ship’s boarding ramp and asked him: How much do you want for your ship?

The man, looked them over dubiously, and retorted: You couldn’t afford it?

Tal answered: Try me

The man chuckled: ok then, 5 million credits.

Tal answered: Sold and handed the man his father’s credit stick.

The man blinked and asked incredulously, You’re actually serious?

Tal replied: Yes, now run the stick

The man sad: ok and ran the credit stick through the transaction register located next to his exhibit location.

When the transaction cleared, he said: Damn, I wouldn’t have believed it, I thought that Norton put you up to this and I was being punked. When do you want to take position of the Raven?

Tal: we’re leaving Tallaan just as soon as the pre-launch sequence completes.
And then yelped in pain as his left arm was pierced by a round from a slug thrower rifle

Before Tal’s blood had time to splatter on the ship, Thad Bane had drawn his nova-viper and sent a blaster bolt on a collision course with the forehead of the Czerka agent holding the rifle about 60 meters away.

The czerka agent’s head exploded in a fine red mist as the former owner of the Redshift Raven blinked in suprise and then numbly said
Ok but I need a lift back to Corellia.

Tal: fine, but get on board now

Once on board, Vaesha and Andra rushed to the bridge with the Redshift Raven’s former owner in tow; J-8 manned the starboard twin light turbolaser turret; Karsten manned the port twin turbolaser turret; Thad manned the dorsal quad medium laser cannons; and M4-RK administered emergency medical care to Tal’s left arm, before Tal powered up the ventral quad laster turret and M4-RK headed to the engineering bay at the aft of the main deck. Being a highly automated ship, the Raven’s pre-launch sequence completed in about 40 seconds; the ship lifted off and rocketed skyward. To keep from scorching the paint job, vaesha angled the port and starboard to double front. Andra handled complaints from space traffic control by stalling and then abruptly hanging up.

M4-RK familiarized himself with the ship’s upgrades, noting that in additon to a ship wide advanced targeting array, each of the Raven’s weapons systems had a gunner droid brain, which could either fire autonomously or assist the crew. He informed his teammates of this. M4-RK also noted that the Raven had a decoy buoy… that could prove useful.

As the sky changed from blue to black, Vaesha angled the Raven for a comparatively empty portion of space and noticed that a marauder class corvette bearing Czerka corporrate markings moved to block their path, and spewed a dozen z-95 headhunters that scrambled to intercept the Redshift Raven.

In engineering, M4-RK used the Raven’s computers to direct the comm array to broad cast a wash of static that jammed communications to and from the marauder corvette, and then made preparations to deploy the decoy buoy. Given the large initial distance between the Maurader and the Raven, the was about a tense minute of waiting before they would be in weapons range of both the headhunters (which were racing towards them), and the Marauder Corvette. Andra used the time and some inspiring words to calm and focus the team. Then Thad and Tal unleashed a autofire hail of laser fire, Tal went with the straight forward approach of obliterating one enemy fighter. Either through luck or finesse, Thad took out one of the ion drives on a z-95 which sent it careening into its wingman, destroying both craft. The remaining 9 headhunters each launched a concussion missile at the Raven, 6 hit, but the shields and hull held, albeit with some damage.

J-8 had used his minute of wait time to compute a good firing solution and both blasts from the twin turbolasers he commend hit the marauder’s bridge; their potency was diminished somewhat by the vessel’s forward shields, but the damage reduced them to 50% effectiveness. Karsten had also spent the minute aiming, and thanks to the reduction in the Marauder’s forward shields both of his shots also hit. Meanwhile the Raven had deployed the decoy buoy and M4-RK had remotely sliced the Marauder’s fire control computer do that the enemy vessel’s weapon would target the buoy rather than the Raven. And since M4-RK had already jammed communications to and from the Marauder, the headhunters weren’t able to inform their mothership that it was firing at the wrong target.

Then the Raven, blew past both the head hunters and the marauder, and since it was considerably faster than both it was almost immediately out of range of the headhunters, and due to the slow recharge rate of turbolasers the marauder wasn’t able to get any other shots off in time to stop them. With the assistance of the astrogation droid brain, Andra had already computed hyperspace jump coordinates. So as soon as Raven cleared both Tallaan’s gravity well and the veritable cloud of ships in orbit, it jumped out of system.

Meanwhile…

see the info listed under Arica Wertko and HRD Arica for a brief summary the rest of what happened in this session (keeping up with the logs has proven to be problematic)

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GM Trick: Player Generated/Planned Heist Adventures

This really isn’t an adventure log entry, it’s more of me sharing a GMing trick that I discovered by accident in Session 1 (kidnapping Ommar Zionz) of this campaign, but I didn’t fully realize it’s potential until Session 9
(the whole industrial espionage/insider trading mission against Gowix computers).

So now I’m letting other GMs, prospective GMs (including my players should they be so inclined) in on the trick. I’m also writing this down to formalize/analyze what works well.

What is it?... it’s a technique for crafting/planning an adventure and running a game session that greatly reduces the GM’s workload and increases player enjoyment. In a nut shell you let the players design most of the adventure.

When is it applicable? It works great for heist and kidnapping style missions in game systems that are at least semi narrative. I’m not sure how well it would work in a rules heavy combat sim game system like d20, but it works great in FFG’s star wars RPG, and I expect that it’d work great in my homebrew RPG system 3D. I’m also not sure how well it would work for other adventure types.

So how does it work? What does the GM have to do to pull it off?
What you as the GM need to do in advance is provide your PCs with

  • an objective or a few objectives, e.g. something they need to steal or plant, or someone they need to kidnap, and
  • some broad strokes major obstacles that make completing the objective or objectives difficult,
    heck defeating an broadstrokes/major obstacle that’s needed to complete the primary objective, can be a “minor” objective mission (and I used that in Session 10), but in this case accomplishing the minor objectives should make accomplishing the primary objective pretty straight forward (as simple as a snatch and grab/combat encounter).

Then you let your PCs figure out a way to complete their objectives, and YOU as the GM go with any ideas they suggest that seam plausible/interesting. Generally their ideas/suggestions will be in the form of questions, “Can we do <fill>?” or “Is there a <fill>?”, and if it seems in any way plausible, you say “yes” and provide a little more detail, and maybe insert some minor obstacles.

Now that isn’t anything new, I imagine most GMs have done this naturally just interacting with their players during a planned out session, when your players “go off the rails” and you have to react to them. What may be new is the idea off encouraging and relying on them “going off the rails.” Your job as the GM becomes

  • pointing them in the direction of the objective(s), and
  • planning out a series objectives that accomplishes a story arc in your campaign.
    Now whatever twisted/convoluted path the PCs take to accomplish the objectives that you set before them is fine and dandy, but you only want to give them the objectives for the current session/adventure.

Pretty soon (after a few sessions of this play style) your players will be anticipating and planning around minor obstacles, making your job as a GM even easier, you basically just have to figure out how difficult each dice roll should be.

But this doesn’t mean that there is zero prep work for you as the GM to do. Each player planned “heist” style session should have

  1. an intro where a NPC informs your PCs the primary objective for the current session
  2. a “simple” act/mission/scene that you plan out “in detail”, for example your PCs need to do X to get the intel that they need later (in Session 10 this was the Vohai unirail encounter/scene/incident where my players needed to obtain schematics and a code cylinder for Arkanian Microtechnologies’ headquarters), or they need to find person Y who will just give them their primary objective (in Session 9 this was finding Talon Karrde) but before person Y gives them the solution to their primary objective they first have to do something for him or her. Now the primary purposes of the simple act are to get your players into the right gaming mindset, basically to get them warmed up and engaged in the game, and to get their characters started down the path towards completing the sessions primary objective.
  3. one players planned act with one or two (maybe even three) player planned scenes (where a scene is a minor objective)

Now although you’ve got the simple act (gaming mindset inducing act) planned out “in detail”, if your players “go off the rails” that’s a good thing, it means they’ve achieved the proper gaming mindset and you can run it like a scene/minor objective in the player planned act.

If your gaming group takes a break for a meal in the middle of a session (e.g. pizza or Chinese food) , doing it after the simple act and before the player planned act is a good thing, because your players will probably be spitballing/OOC planning how they are going to accomplish the primary objectives during the meal, so it shouldn’t break the immersion.

more to come

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Session 10
Debts to Pay: Part 2

“Temporary” session notes style summary, awaiting replacement by story form log written by a player
session 10 hyperspace routes photo Hyperspace Routes Session10_zpsmavti2xk.png
Thad Bane, Tal Lee, Vaesha Tarn, M4-RK, Karsten Eshan, and J-8 leave Myrkr with the ysalamir (on a nutrient frame), that they obtained from Talon Karrde. They deliver the ysalamir to Baron Aalto Endel at the Macander Heavy Ores local headquarters on Aleron. (hyperspace route is dotted green line in galaxy map above, Fondor is the only world in the Tapani Sector shown on the Galaxy map above, Aleron is in the Tapani sector)

When arrive there, they find Andra waiting in Endel’s office. Endel gives them the next task they need to complete to work off Karsten’s and J-8’s debt to Emil Mola. The assignment is to obtain an experimental bacta tank from Arkanian Microtechnologies headquarters on the planet Vohai. Baron Endel explains to the The Red Talon‘s crew that he does not believe that they would be able to acquire the bacta tank without Andra’s assistance so took the liberty of contacting her on their behalf so that she could get approval from her employer, Grondo the Hutt, and start planning for the mission.

Andra comments, that Grondo had given her his approval to assist with this mission and even provided an expense account, and depending on the amount charged to the expense account it may or may not count as one of the favors that he owes the PCs

OOC: Grondo owes the PCs favors for 1:recovering the data chip with his clan’s business dealing on it, and 2:obtaining a monopoly on all illicit trade on the planet Aleron for him. Grondo is being so generous (with Andra’s time and his resources because he wants to keep Baron Endel happy, because he is instrumental in Grondo’s monopoly on Aleron, and he wants to keep the Crew of the Red Talon, alive and happy… they are his best agents, and also keeps Cad Bane, i.e. Thad’s Uncle, from competing on any bounties that Grondo places)

She elaborates that “Arkanian Microtechnologies is a powerful manufacturing corporation known for its role in the development of medical supplies and technology. Their headquarters is on the planet Vohai, but the company also has a branch near Novania, a city located on Arkania. Publicly, it’s a major supplier of health products and technological equipment in the galaxy. However, in reality the firm primarily specializes in the research and development of genetic engineering techniques, ranging from direct manipulation of genomes to mutation via overexposure to massive amounts of radiation.”

The PCs (including Andra, depart Endel’s office, make their way to the Red Talon, take off from Aleron, and plot a hyperspace route to Vohai (dotted red line in galaxy map above). While enroute Andra explains the preparations she’s already made.

Andra says she’s reached out to a contact, a Bothan spynet agent named Rashk Ursi’ag who, via his contacts, can get us schematics and a level 3 (therefore also opens security levels 1 and 2 doors) code cylinder for the Arkanian Micro facilities that we need to infiltrate.

Karsten commented that “Surely this isn’t a free gift, what does he want in exchange, information, credits, or a favor?”

Andra replies: “Information and Grondo has signed off on the trade.”

J-8 asks: "Have you met with him before, in person? Is he trustworthy?

Andra answers: “A few times, in person, but there’s something off about him, even for a bothan spynet agent. I don’t trust him, but he has what we need and I have what he wants.”

Karsten asks: “Who gets to set the meeting place, us or him? Because if we get to set it, we can choose a place to our advantage.”

Andra: We’ve already agreed to meet on the Vohai Unirail, it’s a luxury cruise style repulsorlift train system, with reasonable good security.

Karsten comments: “The plus side is it’s public, and it’ll be hard for him to bring a large armed force. On the downside, if things go south, it’ll be hard to evac from the train. Maybe Vaesha should stay with the Red Talon to exfil us if we need it.”

Andra responds: I’d like to have as many bodies on the unirail as possible, and I can arrange for someone to pick us up if things go sideways.

J-8: “If we’re expecting him to double cross us why are we meeting him?”

Andra: “I’m not expecting a double cross, but that doesn’t mean I trust him, he is a bothan spynet agent after all, and even then, there is something off about him, can put my finger on what though. But the point is, we should take precautions just in case, so let’s work out a plan.”

Issues: Vohai Unirail weapon restrictions: Stun pistols and pocket knives are ok, all other weapons are restricted, there are weapon scanners, and <space> screening agents at security check points.

J-8: the mechanical scanners can be sliced, and organic guards can be bribed if need be.

Andra: weapons can also be designed or modified to reduce the weapons signature that scanners look for, it’s costs credits, but if needed we can charge that to the expense account that Grondo provided. Also the ticket price is 6500 credits per organic, and the fee to bring a droid assistant on board is 1000 credits.

Plan: Karsten buys a stealth vibroblade with his own credits. Andra pays for her, Thad’s, Vaesha’s, Tal’s, Karsten’s, and J-8’s blaster pistols to be modded to reduce their weapons signatures. She also buys a heavy stun pistol for Karsten, because it would look suspicious if they DIDN’T bring any weapons on board the unirail.
To increase the odds of success, M4-RK tries to slice the Vohai unirail computers remotely, to get the scanners to disregard the weapons they were carrying. Difficulty (to slice the Vohai Unirail computers) appeared to be and would normally be 1 red, 2 purple, 2 black dice, but in this case was 5 red, 1 purple, and 4 black dice. Roll failed with triumph and despair, couldn’t hack the system but discovered that the reason was that someone else already had hacked it, and locked it down to prevent further tampering but, M4-RK was able to find out the the hack meant that the scanners would not detect weapons that the PCs smuggled on board.

so that only left circumventing the organic <space> security screeners…

PLAN: use Vaesha’s “fame” as a holonet porn star to distract the security screeners while the rest of the party who weren’t “with” Vaesha but “happened to be” boarding about the same time could more easily smuggle weapons in. Basically Vaesha would wear a “white t-shirt” without braw, and have a water bottle that she would have to finish because they wouldn’t let it through the check point (e.g. borrowing from the no over 3 oz bottles of liquid restrictions for real world air travel) and then while she was drinking it, spill the liquid all over her chest so that the security screeners would gawk at her breasts through her now semi-transparent white t-shirt.

Vaesha makes her charm check so the rest of the PCs only face an easy (1 purple die) difficulty on their checks to smuggle weapons past the screeners, which they all make, and they board the unirail with their “servant droids” (i.e. M4-RK and J-8) carrying their luggage.

The party had booked a suite jointly rather than individual staterooms, and deposited their luggage in it.
VohaiUnirail photo VohaiUnirail_zpsdvsdujof.png

set up of unirail was 2 passenger cars, then one other car (casino/restaurant/etc.), actually used WOTC Dawn of Defiance campaign Gem of Alderaan maps. Meet was in the dinning car, at off meal hours so very few people would be in it

WOTC DawnOfDefiance GemOfAlderaan Map 3 photo GemOfAlderaanDiningCar_zps8tehgpqy.png
comment: car was intentionally rotated 180 degrees because the front of train is opposite the direction of the arrows

Tal would enter the car first mose on over to the bar, order a drink and keep an I on everyone who watched while Vaesha entered the car next, one human male got up, intercepted Vaesha and starting flirting with/hitting on her, everyone else in the car watched… Tal reported that everyone in the car was potentially an agent. Then Andra walked in with Thad behind her as protection and sat down in the chair across the table from the bothan Rashk Ursi’ag. Thad continued to stand behind her and off to the side as visible muscle

OOC: Thad Bane is instantly recognizable by reputation to significant galactic underworld players as “the duros gunslinger nephew of Cad Bane who wears a Kamperdine armored tailored jacket, don’t mess with him cause he’s a lighting fast draw and even if you did manage to kill him his uncle Cad Bane would hunt you down and kill you”

Meanwhile: M4-RK (with the data chip with the info that Grondo the hutt had on black sun’s dealing in hutt space, particular those involving Durga the Hutt, inside him a locked box, inside a secret compartment in M4-RK), J-8, and Karsten wait in the next car over.

Andra: Hello Rashk, I brought Thad Bane as my muscle, who did you bring?
Rashk waves to 2 Rodians at tables in the corner, and they come over and stand behind him.
Andra: did you bring what I asked for?
Rashk: Yes, < showing off a box with a thumb scanner > did you bring what I asked for?
Andra: Yes, let’s see your’s first.
Rashk: No, either you go first, or we go at the same time, your choice which.
Andra comms over to M4-RK, bring in the package

M4-RK walks into the dinning car, over to Andra, opens up the small secret compartment in his chest and hands Andra her box with a thumb scanner. they open their own boxes then trade them, and check the data on the chips, both are satisfied that the data is legit.

Rashk nods and says: There is one other matter I wish to discuss. As you know I specialize in information on Black Sun

just then a whole bunch of armed Rodians storm in from the car to the front of the dining car and seize control of the dinning car.

… well they caught me, and gave me a choice… either I become a double agent working for them or they’d kill me… I accepted their job offer. Now Black Sun has told me to make you the same job offer

Andra says “no thanks I already have a job”

Rashk says, “That’s too bad, I’ll miss doing business with you.” Rashk takes back the code cylinder and data chip with schematics for Arkanian Mircrotechnologies’ headquarters and the black sun muscle forces all the PCs on their knees. (other occupants of the car were previously forced to lay face down on the floor).

Meanwhile, Karsten and J-8 decide that discretion is the better part of valor and decide to regroup/plan next step in the unirail’s caboose, but the door between cars locks in front of them, and the familiar synthesized voice that Ziggy uses, projects from Karsten’s comlink. Ziggy says “I’ll walk you through this, go to the door of the dining car that Vaesha and the others are in but do not go in yet, I’ll slam on the unirail’s brakes knocking everyone to the floor, then you go in with the advantage and free our friends.”

Kartsen: no dice, Ziggy there are too many of them goodbye

Ziggy: wait, there go to the third stateroom on the left side of the corridor, no the other left,

the lock clicks opens and Karsten enters

Ziggy: now get the briefcase from under the bed the combo is < XXXXXXXX >

Inside Karsten finds 4 stun grenades, he takes 2 for himself and hand the other two to J-8

Ziggy: I’ve summoned unirail security officers to the dinning car, their approaching from the front of the train, wait for them to enter which will distract the Black Sun muscle, THEN I’ll slam on the brakes knocking everyone to the floor, then you go in use the stun grenades to take out as many of them as possible, and deal with the rest in a more conventional fashion.

3 unirail security enter see that they are vastly out numbered and put their hands up, Karsten complains that only 3 security officers showed up,

Ziggy responds: more are approaching from the front of the train, it’s not my fault that these three didn’t wait for more backup before entering.

Ziggy slams on the brakes, everyone in the car is knocked to the ground, Karsten and J-8 get a free round, J-8 gets a triumph which he uses to knock out the 2 rodians he hit with the first grenade, Karsten misses but spends 3 advantage to activate blast for less stun damage, they don’t go down yet, roll for initiative, 2 PC slots up first, M4-RK goes to “vulcan neck pinch” (pressure point talent) Rashk Ursi’iag. He hits with low damage (and a despair), and Rashk takes less strain damage because he has 4 ranks of the resolve talent.

Andra is about to go next to take back the code cylinder and schematics but I (the GM) spend a darkside destiny point to have Rashk act out of turn and go first, he bolts for the door and runs in the direction of the front of the train.

So Karsten goes next and uses a stun grenade to take out the 2 rodians he had partially stunned before, … blah blah blah Karsten uses intimidating to scare a rodian with a vibroblade imposing 2 black setback die on him for the rest of the encounter, I check my watch and we’re quite a bit behind schedule, we are at risk of not getting through the adventure this session, so I as the GM say: “how about we fast forward through the rest of this encounter for the sake of time” agreement on the part of the players, Andra is chasing Rashk while the others are mopping up the black sun muscle. Ziggy has been delaying Rashk by locking doors in front of him but Rashk had 2 small explosives that he used to blow the locks. But Rashk has run out of explosives and Andra catches up to him in a passenger car

Andra: Give me the code cylinder and schematics Rashk, slowly

Rashk complies but then starts laughing and points out the transparisteel viewports at two combat air speeders that are targeting Andra, just as they are about to open fire, Ziggy slams on the brakes again so the heavy repeating blaster fire misses Andra and reduces Rashk from the chest up to a red paste, the lower part of his body slumps to the floor.

Andra ducks as the combat airspeeders pivot to try to track her and blow the top off of that passenger car.
WOTC DawnOfDefiance GemOfAlderaan Map 4 photo GemOfAlderaanWreckedCar_zpsbrkctmzz.png

The other PCs get catch up to that car, one of them out of character says “Tell me we don’t have to fight those things”

Just then they hear a sonic boom as the Red Talon remotely piloted by Ziggy show up and blasts the 2 combat airspeeders into oblivion with the lower quad guns.

OOC: Karsten’s Player: “When did Vaesha give Ziggy access to the Talon’s controls?”
OOC: J-8’s Player: “Actually, I don’t think she had to, Ziggy can hack almost anything.”
OOC: GM (me): “remember how a while back you flipped to destiny points to get a beckon call so Vaesha can remotely pilot the ship, he hacked that, and the reason he could fire the lower guns remotely because previous snuck one of his grasshopper like microdrones on to the ship, hide, and had it deactivate itself, he used the hacked remote control to send a signal from the ships interior comms to reactivate the micro drone which he sent down to the lower guns and tap into it’s fire control system.”
OOC: players: ok that makes sense

GM’s note to someone reading this log entry: because we were running short on time and skipped ahead to the wrecked car scene we didn’t use any of the other Dawn of Defiance Gem of Alderaan maps that I am about to show here
WOTC DawnOfDefiance GemOfAlderaan Map 2 photo GemOfAlderaanCasinoCar_zpsa2nwhm3k.png
WOTC DawnOfDefiance GemOfAlderaan Map 1 photo GemOfAlderaanDanceCar_zpsopug6dbv.png
WOTC DawnOfDefiance GemOfAlderaan Map 5 photo GemOfAlderaanControlCarInside_zpsukdqcqtm.png
WOTC DawnOfDefiance GemOfAlderaan Map 6 photo GemOfAlderaanControlCarOutside_zpsyq74dj59.png

The talon pulls up next to the wrecked car, extends it’s landing ramp and the PCs board the Talon, Andra takes Rashk’s body with them.

Ziggy: “Sorry I wasn’t more help with this fight, I was kind of busy slicing the Vohai planetary sensor grid so that the Red Talon wouldn’t show up in sensor logs.”

Then ziggy reveals that he has been working for Mr. Mola, a quid pro quo, the PCs may not be able to deal with Ka’rin Bel (who is under the protection of Zordo the Hutt) but the Mola Cartel has no such restriction. Ziggy is helping Mola with his objectives in exchange for the Mola Cartel handling Ka’rin Bel for him, and he plans to help them steal the experimental bacta tank from Arkanian Microtechnologies headquarters, however he hasn’t been able to hack their security system or get schematics because…

OOC: Karsten’s player: because they’re not stupid

GM (me): because they are use a closed system to monitor and control security functions, and he hasn’t been able to sneak his microdrones in because it’s an airtight facility. So he needs the PCs help in sneaking one of his microdrones into Arkanian Microtechnologies security control center. Ziggy says he’s also the one who convinced Mola to let the PCs work off their debt rather than just kill them

Karsten: angrily/sarcastically thanks a lot Ziggy

Andra: Karsten, Ziggy is a huge asset whose helping us, so either let it go or suck it up so you don’t jeopardize the asset.

OOC: PCs begin planning how to sneak in a microdrone.

That night the Vohai Unirail incident is reported on the local (i.e. planetary) news. The report went something like this

“Earlier today, gang violence erupted on the famed Vohai Unirail, which until today was considered a very safe, secure, and luxurious way to travel.

One of the criminal factions involved is reportedly the notorious black sun crime syndicate. A confidential informant claims that Black Sun muscle kidnapped the wife and children of a <space> employee and then used them to blackmail him to help them smuggle weapons past the security checkpoint and onto the unirail. Vohai security forces have neither officially confirmed nor denied Black Sun’s involvement in the incident.

The other faction has not yet been identified. Earlier today there were reports that a blue female Twi’lek holonet porn star named Vaesha Tarn, was on board the Vohai Unirail and may have somehow been involved in the violence. However, forensic evidence has since revealed that the Twi’lek in question actually had tan skin and had used makeup to alter her appearance. Apparently, the twi’lek impersonating the porn star used her persona to distract <space> security screeners so that they could smuggle weapons onboard. It is unknown how they defeated the weapons scanners but it is theorized that they used weapons designed or modified to disguise or alter their signatures.

Amazingly the only sentients who died in the incident were gang members. However, 2 Unirail security force personal are undergoing bacta treatment for their injuries although they are expected to make a full recovery. Property damage was more substantial, several droids were destroyed and one passenger car was severely damaged by heavy repeating blasters mounted on combat airspeeders that fired on the unirail. Genetic evidence found in the wrecked unirail car reveals that the tan skinned twi’lek posing as the holonet porn star was killed by that barrage of blaster bolts. The surviving members of the other gang were apparently evacuated aboard the combat airspeeders and the top of that Unirail car was blown off with heavy repeating blasters in order to create an egress location.

In other news…"

Phase 1: plant Ziggy’s microdrone in security control room of Arkanian Microtechnologies’ headquarters,
Phase 2: then figure out how

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Session 9
Debt To Pay Part 1

Five things were clear. First Karsten Eshan and J-8 had tangled with an agent of the mythical “Emil Mola” after that agent had acquired an over 200 year old blood oath dagger that supposedly had Mola’s blood on it. Second they had caused that agent to lose the dagger, and returned it to Crev Bombaasa. Third, “Mola” held them personally responsible for interfering with his plans. Fourth, they were still alive/functional only because they didn’t know the thief was “Mola’s” agent. And Fifth, “Mola” was generously giving them the opportunity to work off the debt they had incurred.

But then again, Baron Aalto Endel could be using the Mola myth to scare them into doing his dirty work. Had it not been for the roughly two dozen saber rakes in Endel’s office and the monopoly on illicit activities on Aleron that Endel was giving Grondo the Hutt, Karsten and J-8 would have been tempted to whack Endel then an there.

Instead they had been given the first of several tasks that they must complete be free of their obligation to “Emil Mola,” or whoever was acting in his name. The first task was to go back to Pembric II and get the blood oath dagger with Mr. Mola’s blood from Crev Bombaasa. Fortunately, Mr. Bombaasa owed them a favor for rescuing his concierge, Monsieur Gustave, so completing this first task should be fairly easy.

Karsten and Tal Lee were still hurting from being caught in the outer edge of of thermal detonator blasts. It was close to miraculous that they were still alive but they wouldn’t fully recover from their injuries without each taking a day long soak in a bacta tank. Andra was willing to use the expense account that Grondo the Hutt had provided to pay for the medical treatment, but the party was suspicious that Endel might have the bacta doped with a virus or poison that only he had the cure/antidote for and didn’t want to risk being in perpetual servitude, working for the next dose needed to prolong their life. So they decided to pay for their own treatment on Corellia, where they needed to go to get the top shelf Corellian alcohol that Bombaasa had contracted them to provide. They didn’t want to go see Bombaasa empty handed.

After a fairly quick 12 hour trip along major hyperspace routes they arrived at Corellia. The bacta treatments were expensive, 1000 credits apiece for Tal and Karsten, but they emerged feeling like new men. They then set about the business of acquiring the fine Corellian spirits that they needed to bring to Bombaasa. Tal negotiated the cost of the scheduled shipment down from 4000 credits to 3000 credits, which J-8 paid for, Karsten elected to pay for a second shipment’s worth, which Tal was again able to negotiate the price down to 3000.

With 3 jumps along major hyperspace lanes (the Corellian Run to Denon, the Hydian Way to Eriadu, and the Rimma Trade Route to Kal’Shebbol) the Red Talon reached Kal’Shebbol 40 hours after departing Corellia. From there they blind jumped into the Marcol Void in 6 hours; it took another hour to reach Galtea but Tal and Thad Bane opted not to visit their home town of Dere on Galtea because they figured that Czerka would have people lookingfor Tal and they did not want to endanger his adopted family there. Due to the poorly mapped hyperspace route, It took them another 36 hours to reach Pembric II. The docking fee in at the Erwithat spaceport was 200 credits.

The crew of the Red Talon, brought the two shipments of top shelf Corellian Alcohol to the Grand Erwithat Hotel. Karsten had advocated selling the alcohol to Crev Bombaasa before asking him for the dagger to show that they were following through on their end of the agreement with him, and the rest of the party had agreed with his logic.

The Karsten told Crev that:There is another matter that we need your help with. We have acquired a debt to a third party who has tasked us with acquiring an item in your possession.
Crev: Are yous talking about the blood oath dagger that the thief attempted to steal from me?
Karsten: That is correct, I don’t know why he didn’t just have his agent ask you for it the first time.
Crev: So why does Grondo the Hutt want an over 200 year old blood oath dagger?
Karsten: Grondo isn’t the party who wants this dagger.
Crev: So who is?
Karsten: Emil Mola
Crev Bombaasa turned a shade lighter and muttered: I don’t believe in the boogeyman… but the greatest trick the devil ever played was convincing the galaxy that he didn’t exist.
Then Crev said: Come with me.
And they walked to the turbolift, he swiped his code cylinder and entered his key code. Then the turbolift took them to the top floor of the Grand Erwithat Hotel, the top two floors of which were Crev Bombaasa’s personal residence, and he led them through his library to the side room that housed his collection of blood oath daggers, went to one of the walls full of daggers and picked up one off its stand, and handed it to Karsten. It was the dagger with “Emil Mola’s” blood on it.
And Crev Bombaasa said: “You may take this with my blessing.”

Having acquired the blood oath dagger by calling in the favor they had earned by rescuing Monsieur Gustave, the returned to the docking bay that housed the Red Talon. After paying 500 credits for an exit visa, they lifted off Pembric II. Due to the poorly mapped hyperspace routes throughout the Kathol Sector and the lack of an rapid exit trick analogous to jumping into the Marcol Void, it took them 7 days to reach Kal’Shebbol. From there they reach Aleron in 32 hours by taking the Rimma Trade Route all the way to the Tapani sector.

They delivered the blood oath dagger to Baron Aalto Endel who gave them their next assignment,
Endel: I trust you had no difficulty acquiring the dagger, for your next task you need to obtain one living ysalamir. Ysalamiri are furry, lizard-like tree-dwellers native to the planet Myrkr.
M4-RK accessed the ysalamiri species file in its medical data banks, identified a complication and asked the Baron for a solution.
M4-RK: Excuse me Mr. Endel, but how are we supposed to remove a ysalamir from its tree without killing it?
Endel: That is an astute question, one that I don’t know the answer to. However, Mr. Mola believes that you will be able to find a solution. I suspect that you may need to enlist the help of a Myrkr local. Good day gentlemen and lady.

The crew of The Red Talon departed Endel’s office, went back to their ship, and discussed their options.
Karsten: Maybe we could dig up and transplant a tree with ysalamir in it.
M4-RK: I believe that will prove quite difficult as well. Olbio trees seldom survived being transported off-planet or transplanted in any way.
Tal Lee suggested a pragmatic course of action,
Tal: Why don’t we ask Andra if she has a contact on Myrkr who could help us?
M4-RK: Is Miss Andra still on Aleron?
Tal: I don’t know, but we could try to comm her and find out?

So Karsten took out his commlink, pinged Andra’s number and she answer the call. Evidently she was still on the planet.
Andra: Hello Karsten, what can I do for you?
Karsten: Endel’s given us the next task that we need to complete to square our debt to Mola. We need to go to Myrkr and bring back a ysalamir. The problem is that it’s difficult to remove one from its tree without killing it. We’re hoping that you know someone on Myrkr who could help up.

Andra: You should reach out to Talon Karrde. Karrde is one of the major players in the underworld; most folks just don’t know it, and that’s not an accident. He’s picked up a rep as one of the few infochants that a sentient with credits can actually trust—more than average, that is. Respectable is a word you rarely hear on the fringe, but Karrde’s one of the few barves it gets applied to on a regular basis.

Karsten: How do we find Karrde once we get to Myrkr?
Andra: Look for him and he’ll find you.
Karsten: Thanks.
Andra: No problem.
And with that, they terminated the communique.

After a few preparations were made, the Red Talon lifted off, Vaesha Tarn piloted the ship out of the smoggy atmosphere and once free of Aleron’s gravity well plotted a course to Chardaan via Shipwright’s Trace. Several hour’s later, they emerged from hyperspace in the Chardaan system. They plotted a course to Corsin via the Hydian Way and made the jump to lightspeed.

Twenty two hours after departing Aleron, the exited hyperspace in the Corsin system. Vaesha glanced out the transparisteel viewport at the blue orb and commented to Thad,
Vaesha: Corsin is a beautiful planet, I won a swoop race there once,
and began to plot a jump to Myrkr. Corsin was relatively close to Myrkr in a galactic sense, but Myrkr wasn’t on a well traveled hyperspace route, so the calculation took a little longer. When it was complete, she engaged the hyperdrive for the last leg of the trip.

Twelve hours later, they reached the Myrkr system. Many worlds are blue due to large oceans. Myrkr was mostly green due to being heavily forested. They orbited the planet once, scanning it as they went. The hoped to find a promising spot to land. Having substantially better than average sensors is one of the advantages of flying a scout ship such as an E-9 explorer, but today it wasn’t helping them. The high metal content of Myrkr’s flora confused most sensor equipment, and the Red Talon’s sensors were not immune to the effect.

It was difficult to get clear readings of the surface with anything but optical sensors, but the sensors quite easily found a satellite in a geo-synchronous orbit. It was transmitting to, and receiving transmissions from, one point on the surface of the planet which optical sensors revealed to be a city. For good measure, M4-RK sliced into the sat’s comm feed to find what information it could. No transmissions currently in progress or in the satellite’s memory banks indicated where they might find Talon Karrde.

But it learned that the satellite served multiple purposes, for example, navigation, weather monitoring, and relaying comm signals as needed. When pinged on standard channels, the satellite broadcasted landing coordinates at the only major population center on Myrkr, Hyllyard City.

Vaesha piloted the Red Talon down to the surface, touching down on a ferrocrete tarmac. The spaceport, such as it was, didn’t have much in the way of facilities. There was a single repair hanger, with an office out in front, where they paid a nominal docking fee and for fuel to top off the Red Talon’s reserves.

There were a few cantina’s in town. The Red Talon’s speeder made the exploration fairly quick. A few discrete questions and a few credits at their first stop, got them the location of the cantina habited by sentients with a proclivity for engaging in dubiously legal activities. They arrived at Neb’s cantina, which was owned and operated by a Sullustan named En Neb. It wasn’t much to look at from the outside.

Inside Neb’s cantina was cool and dimly lit, a welcome relieve from the humid air and intense sunlight. Conversations grew momentarily quiet as they stepped inside. Evidently the denizens of the cantina, had concluded that they weren’t undercover constabulary because the buzz of hushed discussions resumed.

The split up talking to different patrons… one creepy drunk guy hits on Vaesha

One of them asked the barkeep about how to get in touch with Talon Karrdre, who nervously glanced at a human male sitting at a table near the wall… after a few minutes talking with this man, Aves (the chief aide and communications officer for the smuggler Talon Karrde, who had served under Karrde since the early days of his organization) he agrees to take them to his boss, I’ll meet you at your ship, the Red Talon, in a few hours.

Aves, Chin and a few other employees of Karrdre, give the PCs rides (on the back of the speeder bikes) to Karrde base of operations where they can spend the night safely. They’re wearing scanner goggles, but still go fairly slow (for speeder bikes). Talon Karrdre says that Chin knows how safely remove live ysalamiri from olbio trees, they ask him to show them how but instead says he’ll have Chin do it for them but first they have to do something for him.

Karrde believes that Gowix computers’ headquarters is going to be moved off of Corellia and to some other planet within the next year, he wants to know which planet that is. They are to go to Corellia break into a Gowix facility and get that info out of their computers without being caught. He also wants to know their product line for the next year and major sales from the last 2 years and those contracted for the next year.

PCs wing an infil mission, scout out the facility… it has underground sewer tunnels but the gates are alarmed… no entry there. First phase of plan was to get Vaesha on the inside, they find the temp agency that they contract out to, locate a blue female twi’lek temp who is on vacation, substitute Vaesha’s photo for hers, reprogram the temp agencies employee assignment software so that the blue twi’lek female secretary that Vaesha is posing as will be given the assignment at Gowix computers, they give the blue twi’lek secretary a pay raise (so she’d be disinclined to ask questions). Find the Gowix Computer’s regular secretary’s home address, send her flowers with a small arosal device that puffs/sprays space flu when she sniffs flowers. Secretary calls in sick, Vaesha goes in sits through training gets an IT guy to explain the multiple networks systems to her. Also observed in first survey was that the back door was being renovated, they steal a hover van from the construction company’s repair pool (they got it sent to the repair pool via M4-RK’s slicing magic), steal uniforms from the dry cleaner, Tal goes in to talk is way into getting the uniforms, Karsten is there to provide a diversion, steals a load of laundry (happens to be ladies underwear), provides enough advantage => boost dice that Tal’s check barely succeeds and they get the uniforms. M4-RK works slicer magic again, and reprioritise their work so that construction company employees will be off site the next day. They use Vaesha’s Gowix badge (issued on her first day of training) to make other contractor badges for Karsten, J-8, and Thad… next day J-8 nearly blows it’s deception check but Karsten and Thad help out with quick thinking explanations… they smuggle Tal and M4-RK in in bins., when it comes to repairing things Thad and Karsten are tweedle dee and tweedle dum but J-8 can get the door built/upgraded, Karsten and Thad make the deception realistic by being the 2 construction workers taking smoke/caf breaks while the third one does all the work. M4-RK disables the security alarm in the fire escape stairwell, successful but with despair, M4-RK and Tal go up to the top floor, listen at the door, pick the lock, Tal and M4-RK sneak in, go to the server room where they discover 2 IT personal (1 male, 1 female… the male was the one who was hitting on Vaesha earlier), Tal bluffs them saying that they aren’t supposed to be in there, and just this once they’ll give them a break, but if he ever finds them doing this in here again he’d have them written up and fired (them being in there was the result of the despair that M4-RK rolled) , bluff is successful, IT staff leaves, M4-RK gets the files from the servers, they get out back down the fire escape stairwell, M4-RK rearms the stairway alarm, M4-RK and Tal get back out in the bins that Thad, Karsten, and J-8 take out at the end of the day. Vaesha has a confrontation with her boss who was hitting on her, about wanting to keep things professions, his advances were unwanted, and she hoped she wouldn’t need to file sexual harassment charges against him (this would be so that the boss wouldn’t request the real blue female secretary from the temp agency and learn about the infiltration when the sentient who showed up wasn’t the one he remembered). They return the hover van to the repair pool (after cleaning it, removing prints/dna), burn the uniforms.

and they leave the planet. Go back to Karrdre on Mykrr, give him the data chip, he gives them 1 yasalamiri in a nutrient frame. they head back to Aleron in the Tapani Sector

session over.

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Session 8
June 7

On Pembric II

Crev Bombassa and Tal go to a bank, Crev’s hand scan gets them in a back door, they are escorted by a security guard droid into the safety deposit box vault… Crev points at one box and says it’s that one, inside they find a loaded SUPERIOR Light Repeating Blaster (“Imperial Repeating Pistol”) with gene lock, 7 damage, 1 free advantage, crit 3, medium range, enc 2, hp 1, auto fire, stun setting, with 3 superior reloads (each has to run out twice before it runs out), a recharger for the superior reloads, a credit stick, some jewels, a holo recording for Tal that ends in his parents singing happy birthday to him when he was 5 years old, a harmonica, an encrypted data stick, a data pad with thumb scanner, and a code cylinder with Czerka markings on it. Bombassa takes the jewels, Tal gets the rest.

Bombassa guesses “So your father was Tell Seario? Good luck to you kid, your secret is safe with me, but if I were you I’d avoid using that credit stick and code cylinder. They probably both work but I’d be worried that their use would be digitally tracked.

SCREEN WIPE: 7 day trip to Kal’Shebbol, uneventful delivery of the Bobble Head dolls, you pass go and collect 500 credits. Then you head back to Nar Shaddaa When you enter the system you receive an incoming communique from Andra saying that Grondo the Hutt has a Job for you.

Meet at the same cantina on Nar Shaddaa as in first session,.

 photo Sculley-ChalmunsCantina-Full_zps972afccd.jpg

Andra gives “monologue” (written by Andra’s player) about what she learned about what Czerka suspects about Tal Lee being Tal Seario and there being 2 factions within Czerka. Congratulates Thad on taking down Kynxa Ezex.

Then she gives a mission briefing:

Baron Aalto Endel, a newly minted noble of House Cadriaan in the Tapani Sector has contacted Grondo with a request for assistance and a business proposal. To provide some context, house Cadriaan has been selling hereditary membership to certain wealthy commoners to build up its economy and military. Aalto Endel is an executive in Macander Heavy Ores which is a member of the mining guild. Now he’s also a noble. He has extensive business interests throughout the Tapani Freeworlds Region, and on Aleron in particular, which, in interstellar terms, is next door to Cadriaan Province. He has a problem with a competitor fomenting unrest among some of his disgruntled employees on Aleron which he asked Grondo to help solve.

 photo Tapani Sector map Cropped_zpspkhgkvth.jpg

Actually Baron Endel asked Grondo to send you specifically. He heard of your recent exploits through a business associate and was impressed. In particular, that Thad’s reputation as Cad Bane’s nephew dissuades interference from many significant players and that you as a group appear to be able to summarily handle anyone that isn’t dissuaded by reputation alone.

The job is to intercept a shipment of weapons, which includes among other things, thermal detonators that insurgents are planning to use to disrupt mining operations on Aleron. You are to strongly discourage both the buyers and the sellers from arranging future shipments, and he wants the weapons off world so that they can’t be used in terrorist attacks on Aleron.

You get to keep the weapons and whatever else you can take from the parties at the meet, which Grondo might be interested in buying. Grondo gets an exclusive market for whatever goods and services that don’t interfere with mining operations, in particular habits that keeps his workers happy and financially motivated to work hard to afford them are actually desired. Using Macander Heavy Ores’ influence, Endel will arrange for Grondo’s agents to avoid prosecution and law enforcement officers will target other such dealers who compete against him. In return for a monopoly on the illicit market on Aleron, Grondo is expected to prevent arms trafficking on the planet.

This is a new market for Grondo’s clan and gaining exclusivity for it would significantly elevate his status in their eyes. The problem with Aleron being a new market is that I don’t have good intel on all the players there yet.

I looked into Endel as well as I could given the time constraints, and he actually is the ranking executive for Macander Heavy Ores on Aleron and he did just buy nobility in house Cadriaan. So that much is true. I found out that he got his start with Macander in the three Ellas, which are a trio of nearby Tapani freeworlds: Sorella, Dorella, and Pernella. The three Ellas are mining worlds with a liberal government looser about crime and smuggling than most Tapani worlds. His official record is clean, practically spotless but you don’t get to be important in the three Ellas without having a favorable relationship with the local mafia. So the odds are he has done and is comfortable doing business with organized crime. Nominally, there’s a civil government in charge, but as the ranking Macander executive on Aleron, Endel actual is the most influential man on the planet.

This next bit is conjecture about Endel’s motives, but it makes perfect sense that he reached out to a Hutt with the connections that Grondo has through his clan. The local mafia from the three Ellas aren’t unified or strong enough to stand up to the Besadii Hutts who have been expanding their operations on Fondor, and it’s only a matter of time until they spread to the other Tapani freeworlds. In case you didn’t know, Durga Besadii Tai, self-styled as His Great Obesity, is the current head of the Besadii Kajidic; he’s also a Vigo for Black Sun. So by making this deal with Grondo now, Endel keeps Black Sun, who he wouldn’t have any control or influence over, off the planet. And since Grondo will owe Endel for elevating his status in the eyes of his clan, Endel via Grondo will get to decide which illicit goods would be allowed on Aleron, basically he gets to ban weapons and anything else that would disrupt mining operations. And as long as Aleron is profitable for Macander, Endel will remain the ranking executive on the planet. So it’s good for him and good for us. It makes sense, but like I said that’s just conjecture.

I don’t like running a job without better intel, but Grondo has decreed that I do it and I can’t refuse him. If you take the job, Grondo will be well pleased with you, and you could ask him for a lot at a later date. If you refuse or you fail it would displease him greatly… Grondo wouldn’t have you killed because he owes you a favor for recovering the data chip, but that would be your favor. This is that important to Grondo. So are you in or out?

The crew of the Red Talon accepts the job. After dropping out of hyperspace in the Aleron system, the land on the planet and get underground (and out of the planet’s toxic smog). As part of the mission briefing they were given then name, holo, and other information about one of the militants, Rebar Rato. There was minor discussion among the party about whether Rebar was someone important or just someone stupid/inept enough to attract the attention of those in power. M4-RK sliced Rebar’s comlink to locate him and downloaded a list of recent contacts from it. Rebar was currently at work in the mines and the party decided to wait until his shift ended and approach him at a cantina, etc. After Rebar’s shift ended he did actually go to a cantina , whose layout is depicted in the following map.
 photo 2-JediCartographer-MP1-TarisLowerCity-Full_zps5bf6bcde.jpg

Karsten Eshan, J-8, and Thad Bane waited outside the other exit (right side of the map) so as not to draw as much attention in the cantina and to prevent Rebar from running if it came to that. Andra,Vaesha Tarn, Tal Lee, and M4-RK entered the cantina, and approached Rebar. Vaesha Tarn (assisted on the roll by Andra) said that (name of acquaintance from the list of contacts M4-RK got from Rebar’s comlink) said that Rebar might be interested in buying some accessories (they didn’t want to mention a weapons deal openly in a crowded cantina). The ruse works and they gain his trust, Rebar says he could put them in touch with who they needed to talk to but he’d have to check with the boss first. But although successful Vaesha Tarn also rolled a despair on the check, which resulted in Vaesha Tarn‘s top getting ripped open by a drunk patron which exposed her bare breasts to everyone in the bar, hoots, whistles, cat calls, and exclamations
I know I’ve seen her somewhere before left Vaesha Tarn running to the women’s refresher accompanied by Andra).

Two ladies of the night (space prostitutes) followed Vaesha Tarn and Andra) into the women’s refresher and begin to flirt with them. They offer to introduce Vaesha Tarn and Andra to their pimp which they decline, but do get the name of a clothing shop and ask about Rebar and learn that he is a semi-regular client of theirs and is into spice (space drugs). They get the space prostitutes client list and cross reference it against the list of Rebar’s contacts obtained by M4-RK and identify 3 overlaps, all of whom are into spice. One of them, Rosh Denive, was in the cantina at the bar nearby Rebar, and he deals in spice.

Armed with this new information (about them being spice dealers in addition to terrorists) they meet up with M4-RK outside and discuss strategy. M4-RK uses his “stim application” talent (game mechanic) and med kit to mix up a batch of a new “designer spice” on the fly, and they go back in pretending to be spice dealers (thinking that maybe Rebar had misunderstood their earlier comment about “accessories” as a reference to spice). They give Rosh a free sample and he loves the stuff and flying high agrees to take the PCs to his spice dealing boss, Bib Kelrune. Not being clear headed (due to the stim pack based spice that M4-RK whipped up) Rosh takes the PCs to Bib’s day job, he’s a supervisor in the mines.
 photo kesselcg50_zpsrf8tztrw.jpg

When they get to the mines, Rosh is rebounding/crashing from the spice wearing off (an effect of the stim pack application talent) and isn’t clear headed, and they give him another hit and he’s instantly alert. Four mutant mynocks (who could breathe the atmosphere because they were mynocks) flew out of the cave and Rosh being stimmed up drew his blaster lightning fast and shot two of them dead, Tal Lee shot the other two. Bib Kelrune was impressed by the performance of the (stim) spice agrees to meet with them later at the abandoned warehouse/factory that he runs his illicit activities out of, and that if Rosh wasn’t high right now he would have known to take the PCs there rather than to his day job.

The PCs leave, M4-RK whips up more of the stim spice for the meet in case they need a bigger sample And then later they go to the warehouse/factory (shown in the following map)
 photo NovaCOREkeleriumprocessingplant_zpsbbdaa66c.png

A Black Sun rodian that the party had encountered in the abandoned factory (same map) in the slag works of coruscant in session 2 shows up to sell spice to Bib Kelrune. He recognizes Andra and Karsten Eshan, he takes Bib Kelrune aside who essentially agrees to get out of the way and evacuate his people from the factory/warehouse for the coming combat.

Yada yada (more detail to come in a revision), long story short, the PCs are dramatically outmanned, but they’re the heroes/antiheroes of the story so they outclass their opponents and are doing a bit better than I as the GM was expecting so I as the GM decided to break out the big guns/bombs I had reserved for just such an eventuality.

After having already taken blaster fire and being stimmed by Andra as a precaution Karsten Eshan gets exploded by a thermal detonator which sends him flying and puts him well over his wound threshold, being the kindly GM that I am, Karsten Eshan landed in the control room next to Thad and Tal, and Tal stimmed Karsten Eshan 3 more times (incidental, maneuver, and action) to heal enough wounds to get him conscious again. Another thermal detonator lands in the control room but doesn’t get enough advantage to trigger blast so only Tal takes the hit, and Karsten returns the favor of stimming Tal enough to get him conscious, Vaesha shoots at the lead black sun Rodian and misses but rolls a triumph which she uses to cause the Rodian to drop his satchel of thermal detonaters and pistol. M4-RK takes a maneuver to move, takes 2 strain to take another maneuver to get next to the rodian and uses his action to vulcan neck pinch him (pressure point talent), and spends a destiny point to activate the anatomy lessons talent which does the exact amount of strain damage (12) that it took render the rodian unconscious in one hit. J-8 shot the last Black Sun goon.

Andra brings Bib Kelrune back into the warehouse comments that his black sun business partners detonated thermo nuclear devices in his warehouse, wakes up the rodian and drops in in a vat of acid. Then tells Bib Kelrune that from now on he and his men only get their weapons and spice from Grondo the Hutt. Weapons?? what weapons??? this was a spice deal.

WTF!!! Baron Aatol Endel said this was a weapons deal… we were set up. So after the party all gets surgery from/repaired by M4-RK (Karsten Eshan and Tal Lee are the only ones who aren’t fully healed, they require a soak in a bacta tank to fully recover) the PCs go to see Baron Endel at the top floor of his skyscraper office building (see the following map) and ask him WTF man???

 photo AaltoEndelTopFloorWhiteBack_zps6x3xdyue.png

Employees are waiting on the landing pad to escort them in. He was having a meeting with some young aristocrats with lightsabers on their belts (WTF man are they Sith? Jedi? Cosplayers? no they’re saber rakes). Endel dismisses his friends to talk to the PCs. Andra “Grondo doesn’t appreciate when someone wastes his resources” (indicating that Karsten Eshan and Tal Lee got badly injured by thermal detonators).

paraphrasing
Endel: “My apologies miss Andra to you and Grondo for this inconvenience, but I was merely following the orders of my employer.”
Andra: “Who is your employer?”
Endel: “I work for Emil Mola” (space Keyser Soze)
Andra: “Bullshit, I don’t believe in the Boogeyman”
Endel: “I assure you miss Andra, Mr. Mola is very real.”
Andra: “Then I’d like to meet him.”
Endel: “I’m afraid my employer is not here.”
Andra: “Where is he?”
Endel: “Mr. Mola is on Tatooine, I only communicate with him electronically via the holonet”
(silence PC’s thinking holy shat, he really did get eaten by the sarlaac which kept him alive for the last two hundred years, or is this just another lie/setup?)
Endel: I am sorry for the deception miss Andra, and I will certainly honor my agreement with your employer, Grondo gets a monopoly on all illicit dealing on Aleron, but I needed to arrange a face to face meeting with the crew of the red Talon. You see two of them have unknowingly stolen from Mr. Mola, the fact that they did not know they were stealing from Mr. Mola is the reason that they are still alive and will be given the opportunity to work off their debt. (the “Street samurai”/space ninja that Karsten lost a duel to in session 6 and Karsten and J-8 lost to in session 7 but took the blood oath dagger from walks into the room and tips his head at J-8 and Karsten indicating that they are the guilty parties). You will be given a series of tasks, one at a time. Once you complete them all, you will be free of your obligation to Mr. Mola. The first task is to obtain the blood oath dagger that you took from my associate and returned to Mr. Bombassa.
PCs: How are we supposed to get that?
Endel: I believe that you have a very favorable relationship with Mr. Bombassa and that if you asked him for it nicely, he would probably just give it to you.
PCs: Why did you need to see all of us and not just J-8 and Karsten
Endel: because they are not capable of completing the tasks by themselves and I presumed that the rest of the Red Talon’s crew would want to help their friends. Miss Andra of course has no obligation to Mr. Mola and is not required to assist them.

Why didn’t the PCs just kill Mr. Endel on the spot, because there were many many saber rakes present on the top floor (every lightsaber wielding mini with a cape that I owned was on the map) plus conventional guards with blasters. This was not a fight that they could win (and I let them know that).

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Session 7: The Grand Erwithat Hotel
Spaceballs 2: The Search for More Money

J-8 and Karsten apparently had a bit of an adventure before we left Galtea. They never told, but it looks like they “came across” some very heavy, dense substance. I presumed that they took it from one of the mine administrators, since substances that dense generally required industrial refining from the raw ore. Miners would be unlikely to have control of the finished product, and the other colonists even less likely. I was later to find out more about it, but at the time I could only tell that Karsten was carrying a heavier load than usual. He was rigged up to make it look natural, but a doctor like me could see it. Tal would be able to tell too, when he prepared the Red Talon for take-off. I privately took Karsten aside, insisting only that he inform me if it were explosive, toxic, or otherwise dangerous — which he said it was not.

ST-3V3 could also tell. It had already made up its mind that it wanted no part of a party that provoked violent revolution for profit, but adding likely thievery to the criminal mix didn’t help. (Should I be concerned that I wasn’t concerned anymore? Karsten had certainly reasoned to himself that he could tax the rich for the service of restoring a just peace.) ST-3V3 elected to stay behind to serve as the town’s doctor. I hoped it wouldn’t have to keep peace as well. The two of us agreed to exchange logs and attempt to diagnose each other’s errors, beside the error (from its perspective) that led me to stay with these arms-smuggling ne’er-do-wells. (The real reason: I find myself growing more fond of them each day. Perhaps more importantly, I was useful to them, and no one ever found it bothersome that I had metal innards.)

Droids don’t remember everything they perceive — there’s not enough storage for that — so I would have to interpret. This leaves room for erroneous interpretation. However, droids can make this compression (what some organics call “high-level reasoning”) explicit through symbols. [This log is the human-reasonable version of that.] I am grateful for this, which droids have had for all recorded history. Even if ST-3V3 thought I was broken, it could at least see what led to my decisions.

I recorded the above on our way to Pembrick II [“Space Detroit”]. Our party had sold all the arms, but retained the recreational pharmaceuticals of various but generally questionable legality, to sell at our next destination. It was clear immediately upon docking that Pembrick II was also a place of various but generally questionable legality: orderly, but the kind of order that organized crime brings. While the docking fee was 200 credits and the exit fee 500 credits, the dock staff who greeted us looked like they would take a bribe. We remembered this for later.

The recreational pharmaceuticals we had brought included some flavored ethanol — valuable for its taste and origin, not for the flammable fraction. J-8 and Karsten had already found a beautiful old hotel, the Grand Erwithat, and begun trade negotiations. They had more success than anticipated: a grand old gangster, Mr. Bombasa, made arrangements for continued flavored ethanol shipments, and set us up to stay at the hotel.

J-8 and Karsten went off on their own to dispose of the other recreational pharmaceuticals. I later learned of some of their adventures with their new friend, which included catching a purse-snatcher, buying pastries, and a fight with a familiar enemy of Karsten’s. The two of them endured quite a beating, but returned with an ornamental dagger in a sheath. Upon their return, the hotel concierge, Monsieur Gustave, identified the dagger as two to three hundred years old, of a type that his employer collects. Its value depends greatly on whose blood is on it. Monsieur Gustave went off to investigate further, after inviting us to dinner with the boss (timeliness is essential!).

Our keycards led us to the 19th and 20th floors, near Mr. Bombasa’s quarters. The hotel staff had laid out formal attire for the organic members of the party, and automatic buffing machines for us droids. It was pleasing to find myself shiny again! Guards accompanied us to the boss’ quarters for dinner. J-8 and Karsten recognized both the pastries and Mrs. Pennyweather (the victim of the purse-snatching, a delightful little old lady) from their previous adventures. Dinner conversation uncovered that Mr. Bombasa had been the victim of a break-in, by someone with a memetic suit, who made off with a “trinket.”

After dinner, Tal finished the negotiations for continuing the flavored ethanol shipments, and Mr. Bombasa showed us around his quarters — with real books, and many daggers on display, like the one J-8 and Karsten had recovered earlier. He explained that dons used to seal deals with these daggers 500 years ago, and he collects them to honor that time of “respect.” One spot on the display wall was conspicuously empty; that stolen dagger had the blood of “a poor bastard Jabba fed to the Sarlacc 200 years ago.” It turns out that J-8 and Karsten recovered that dagger, which they returned to its rightful owner through Monsieur Gustave.

More discussion revealed that there had been “software glitches in [Mr. Bombasa’s] security system.” I could actually be useful there, and offered my services to investigate further. Careful study led me to find a computer virus. I had never seen it before, and was able to quarantine it, but it could escape at any time. I advised Mr. Bombasa to solicit expert help.

The next day, J-8, Karsten, and I go off to have J-8’s restraining bolt removed. This, I think, was one of the few topics on which ST-3V3 and I would agree. J-8 might be a war crime waiting to happen, but better that it happen by its own free will, rather than on the command of its “owners.” I tagged along as its personal mechanic, but also had a secondary plan to spend my recent earnings on some upgrades for myself. After a long journey involving blindfolds, we arrived in a tech shop with some serious computer hardware, led by two (near-)twin brothers, the Keiffler brothers. They were able to remove J-8’s restraining bolt for 5000 credits — along with a 1/4 kg explosive device. J-8 kept it (safely disarmed) as a souvenir.

Karsten’s cargo came in useful at this point, it appears. I didn’t hear the details, but he left the shop lighter.

Now that J-8 was safe, I could shop a little for myself. I left 10k credits “lighter,” but with a cybernetic brain implant that would improve many of my skills. The shop also had a vending machine that dispensed custom bobbleheads. I made one for each party member (including myself) for a total of 65 credits — utterly worthwhile. My attempt to learn about Mr. Bombasa’s break-in from the slicers there failed miserably, though — I suspect I burned a lot of the good will I had by default as a fellow member of their trade. We left, again blindfolded.

Back in the hotel, we saw the head lobby boy Nadir talking with Mr. Bombasa; he looked antsy. Monsieur Gustave had gone out last night to investigate the dagger, but never returned. Mr. Bombasa made a “request we couldn’t refuse” that we go out to look for him.

We traced his comm link to a pub, but he wasn’t there. We found the link stuck to the bottom of a table with bubblegum. Its recording started partway into a conversation between three people sitting at the table (with others standing around) and Monsieur Gustave, and it was going badly for the latter. They asked him about a “shipment,” and ultimately ended up pointing an “imperial repeating pistol” [rarity 6, generally available on the black market] at him and directing him into a speeder. We could see its license plate on the recording.

100 credits got us a “special room” (thankfully private) in a holonet cafe. I barely managed to track the vehicle whose plate we saw, but got us traced in return. Hearing sirens, we jumped in our own speeder and tracked the car to a warehouse. They saw us arriving and were well prepared. We knifed open the door and saw a warehouse full of goons, with Monsieur Gustave tied up in a chair. After some brutal combat involving flamethrowers, jet packs, Thad’s astounding accuracy with a pistol, and nearly successful suicide attacks, we neutralized the guards and untied Monsieur Gustave.

At that moment, we saw several vibro katana blades, which appeared to float in midair but must have been attached to bodies in memetic suits. Things went badly from there, until Mr. Bombasa’s crew showed up to save us. They took the memetic suits, katanas, and the imperial repeating pistol, much to Karsten’s displeasure.

We learned later that Monsieur Gustave had been trying to connect a warehouse owner with an unsold shipment of bootleg Moff Sarne bobbleheads; the smuggling ring had been found out by the “legitimate” producers of said bobbleheads and shut down, and the warehouse owner was trying to get rid of his remaining inventory . Monsieur Gustave connected use with the warehouse owner who sold us a shipment of bootlegs at 2k, with expected gross of 5k. The dagger that J-8 and Karsten had recovered had on it the blood of a crime lord, which may have been the mythical Emil Mola.

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Session 7
April 19, 2015

Kathol Sector Map photo Kathol_zpsn0fnzjtn.jpg

J-8 and Karsten Eshan extorted payment from Duke Vermetter, and got paid with 2 bars of refined chanlon (each bar weighs 25 kg, about double what a bar of gold weighs, and is slightly smaller than a standard sized par of gold, each bar is worth 10000 credits [to the right buyer, they can probably get 2500 credits per bar at pembric 2 from a fence), and has an encumbrance of 3 for the purpose of being carried by a human sized character, that is a very favorable encumbrance due to their small sized and being stored in a special vest that holds one bar under each arm, normally the enc would be 5 per bar) the wikipedia entry on chanlon is

Chanlon was an incredibly dense and uncommon ore that was the constituent of phobium. It could also be combined with Hfredium to form the alloy known as Havod.

Hfredium was a mineral used in the construction of starships. It was combined with chanlon to make a deep red alloy known as havod. It was mined on Brosi, Nkllon, and Shiffrin, among other planets, as well as the Tava Yagen and Pembric asteroid fields. The price of Hfredium during the Galactic Civil War averaged at 110 credits per kilogram. Hfredium was among the minerals captured from Nomad City in Thrawn’s raid on Nkllon.

M4-RK noticed Karsten carrying the extra weight immediately, Tal Lee noticed the extra weight/mass when it came time to take off (he is the quartermaster after all, and tracking fuel costs, etc.).

The party also earned 30,000 credits (profit) last session by selling blasters to 600 townsfolk/farmers lwith average of 50 credit profit per weapon… split 6 ways (no Andra) is 5,000 credits each.

ST-3V3 got left behind in Dere on Galtea as the town doctor.

Fly to pembric 2… 1 day 8 hours… Need slightly fancy flying to get past the asteroids on landing

from wookieepedia
Gangster’s paradise
Pembric II was originally a barren rock of a planet, scarred by multiple meteorite impacts. It was terraformed with the intention of establishing an agricultural colony, but the process suffered from careless procedures. The resulting planet was habitable, but uncomfortable and unsuited for its intended purpose. A constant drizzle and boggy wetlands prevented mass agriculture, and the construction of the city3 of Erwithat4 and its spaceport was only achieved after a difficult feat of engineering. The planet became home to rough, frontier settlers and criminals. Despite its failure as an agricultural colony, the population made the most of Pembric II’s natural assets, which included scenic beaches and volcanic fields. Due to Pembric II’s isolated location in the Outer Rim Territories, a true tourist industry never flourished. However, canny individuals marketed the planet to certain clientèle who found other tourist destinations to be too legally restrictive for business opportunities. In short, Pembric II became a resort world for gangsters.3
As gangsters set up their operations on the planet, cantinas, museums and entertainment venues were constructed to service them. That in turn attracted more orderly and cultured criminals who soon overshadowed the planet’s original population. Pembric II’s corporate government was fully aware of the situation and turned a blind eye to the smuggling and organized crime being conducted as long as credits continued to flow into the economy. The Pembric Security Legion, the planetary police force, gained a reputation for corruption.3
Party sells top shelf alcohol for 3000 credits profit, each gets 500 credits. The fence is a Monsieur Gustave
 photo monsieur_gustave_zps65qyffw9.jpg

He is a concierge at “The Grand Erwithat Hotel” which caters to gangster tourists which Crev Bombassa has a controlling interest in
 photo CrevBombaasa.jpg_zps2dk0mkkd.png

Crev Bombaasa originally hailed from Corellia. A cultured, well-educated man with a taste for sharp suits and expensive jewelry, he had an insect-like appearance and a genteel, refined manner. Despite this, however, he was known to have a vicious streak, and became a criminal early in his life. He operated predominantly in the Outer Rim, proving himself to be a competent crime lord with no qualms about doing harm to others, though he avoided doing any of the dirty work personally, as he abhorred participating in physical violence.
Crev occupies the top 2 floors of the Grand Erwithat hotel as his personal residence, at this point he is still a relatively minor player on Pembric II. It is essentially “vacation home” for him.

The Grand Erwithat Hotel is next door to the ThrusterBurn tapcafe which Crev Bombassa also owns (it’s the current extent of his holdings)
 photo ThrusterBurn_zpst86lb9up.jpg

The ThrusterBurn tapcafe was located on Pembric II in Erwithat Spaceport’s “Red Zone” district. The atmosphere of the tapcafe was light and airy, and dimly lit booths lined the walls. The middle of the tapcafe was filled with freestanding tables and chairs, and a long bar dominated the wall opposite the main entrance. The tapcafe could seat over two hundred individuals, and a small orchestra and dance floor was set up at the front of the main bar. The bar was made of exotic woods and polished stones set on a raised platform. A casino was located behind the bar area, with sabacc tables, dice games, and Lady Luck. Considered the most popular tapcafe in the spaceport, it was owned by Crev Bombaasa. In 8 ABY, it was managed by Breslin Drake.

The Party met Monsieur Gustave at the Grand Erwithat Hotel, because they were selling the top shelf alcohol to him for the hotel and Thruster Burn Tapcafe. Crev Bombassa, walks in like he owns the place (which he does), looks at the bottles smiles and pours himself a glass of correllian ale (before the deal is conclude) sighs contentedly, says “this is an excellent vintage, I’d like to secure continued shipments over dinner, Gustave make the arrangements and comp them each a room on the 19th floor, even the droids” He stops and stares at Tal for a moment, and asks “Have we met somewhere before? Your face looks very familiar… oh well, we’ll figure it out over dinner. But you I most certainly recognize.” And he kisses Vaesha’s hand and walks away.

Gustave speaks to the staff, quickly makes arrangements for rooms and then hurries off, he’s late for other business across town. He instructs a “Nadir,” a lobby boy, to attend to their other needs. A different lobby boys ogles Vaesha, and Monsieur Gustave lifts his jaw as he walks past, and instructs “You are not to ask Miss Tarn for her autograph or a private performance, you will respect her privacy or you will find yourself another job minus some body parts. Do I make myself clear? Sorry for the disturbance miss Tarn, he’s new and hasn’t yet been properly trained.”

Karsten and J-8 also hurries off for other business.

Across town J-8 and Karsten (or just Karsten) meet up with a fence for the spice that they smuggled on board the Red Talon, they get another 3000 credits.

Join me for a drink good fellows? I know a great little pub not far from here. Small talk. Bar keep, can I get 2 ales, one for me another for my friend here and some oil for the droid. Takes a few sips, a little more small talk, can you watch my drink I need to hit the head. Comes back without the spice.

After they finish their drinks, they walk back to the Grand Erwithat Hotel together, a teenage purse snatcher runs by with purse, Monsieur Gustave say pardon me to Karsten, and trips the thief, the purse goes flying, and Monsieur Gustave soundly thrashes the little punk. From sporting events you grew up watching on the holovid, you recognize his fighting style as K’thri, and he appears quite good at it. When the thief is lying flat on his back in a few inches of water, Monsieur Gustave offer the young man a hand to pull him up off the ground and gives him a kick in the rear and says “on your way you little scamp.”

K’thri was an ancient style of martial arts dating back to the time of the Old Republic. The nature of K’thri was significantly different from that of the Echani style. Instead of using bold, brutal movements, K’thri instead focused on fast movements and fluid strikes, along with excellently balanced footwork to maintain the precision of the form. Since K’thri was primarily used in sporting events by athletes trained in a martial art, it also contained many flashier techniques and movements designed to impress an audience as much as to injure an opponent, thereby occasionally making it inefficient.

Monsieur Gustave then straightens his hair, bow tie, and cufflinks and then picks up the purse, and says “I recognized this purse as belonging to a guest of our hotel, I think I hear her coming now” and an oldish lady comes huffing and wheezing around the corner. I do believe I’ve found your purse Misses Pennyweather. Hopefully nothing is missing, would you like for us to escort you back to the hotel? The four of you walk a little farther, until Monsieur Gustave, stops, sniffs the air, says oh that smells delightful, I’ll just be a minute, hand’s his umbrella to Misses Pennyweather, and follows the scent around the corner to a bakery, where he buys a large stack of pies and pastries.

Karsten and J-8 see a puddle splash as if someone is running through it and water seems to splash and coat an invisible man, a small waterfall off a roof reveals the shape of the cyber samurai that Karsten lost the duel to in Dere (on Galtea), if there was any doubt, he hesitates, looks directly at Karsten starts to draw his katana which becomes visible then resheaths it and continues to run splashing through a puddle/stream on the street.

Karsten and J-8 chase after the samurai/ninja as Monsieur Gustave emerges from the bakery, and says to Misses Pennyweather “Oh well I guess it’s just you and me now.”
Chase scene and duel, cyber ninja/samurai drops/loses a sheathed dagger and runs off without it. Maybe Karsten, also got cut bad and stunned and wakes up in a puddle of water, and reboots J-8 (who was disabled from an ion grenade and ion blaster).

Karsten and J-8 painfully shuffle back to the Grand Erwithat Hotel soaking wet. With the dagger.

Monsieur Gustave is manning the front desk.

My dear fellow, you’re sopping wet, nadir (lobby boy) fetch this man a towel and a robe from the sauna. Mister Eshan would you care to partake of the sauna, it would take care that chill your feeling, our zeltron masseuse, Lenoshi Eitos, is very pretty, and talented, and enthusiastic. [He winks] We stock multiple types of oil, one that would be appropriate for your arm; depending on construction, rusty cybernetics can sometimes be an issue in wet climates such as pembric II.

Karsten and J-8 get patched up. Monsieur Gustave asks what’s that? (pointing at the dagger)

“It’s a blood oath dagger, they used to be quite popular among the criminal elite but we don’t see many of them these days. This one is fairly modern, judging from the style I’d guess it’s between two and three hundred years old. Depending on whose blood is on it could be worth as little as 50 credits or maybe up to 15,000 or more to the right collector. My employer, Mr. Bombassa collects these, I could ask him if he’s interested in purchasing it, but you really should find out whose blood is on it first. The person stealing this could have had a more nefarious purpose than obtaining a relic for someone’s collection. They could be trying to commit familicide by genetically engineering a retrovirus to end a particular bloodline, or maybe they are trying to prevent someone else from using it to create such a virus. Of course, without knowing whose blood was on it, any speculation as to the motive for the theft is just that, speculation. Would you like me to look into this for you?” he takes a holo of the dagger with his smart comlink.

Dinner with Mr. Bombassa is in an hour and twenty three minutes. A word of advice, I strongly suggest that you be punctual. Mr. Bombassa dislikes it when his guests are late for dinner, he considers it quite rude and a sign of disrespect.

Bombassa’s guest rooms are opulent, appropriate formal attire is laid out for each of you. Vaesha’s dress is glimmering silver sequence, form fitting, and shows of quite a bit of cleavage. The droids have automatic buffers/polishers.

Bombassa casually flirts with Vaesha over dinner, it’s polite flirting, but the real purpose of the dinner is to arrange a deal for top shelf Corellian whisky and ale. There are guards with blasters positioned around the top 2 floors, Bombassa apologizes saying that there was a break in earlier today and a small trinket was stolen by a thief wearing a mimetic suit. The guards initially ignored the triggered pressure sensitive floors because they saw over the holo camera that no one was there, they thought it was another software glitch with the security system. He takes them on a tour of his residence… shows them his library (nerf leather bound flimsiplast books), and his collection of blood oath daggers,

Up until about 500 years ago, dons would often seal pacts/deals/alliances with blood oath daggers, this became less and less common, and in the last 150 or so years it’s been virtually unheard of. Those were better days, classier days, more honorable and respectable days. And if a business man such as myself doesn’t have honor and respect, what does he have? These are a part of history, as a show of respect to those who have gone before me, I collect as many of them as I can and give them a place of honor in this room, I have people visit pawn shops on several worlds regularly to rescue these relics from an inglorious end.

Approximately 2.5 of the 4 walls are filled with them, and on one of the full walls, one dagger is missing. Crev Bombassa points to that empty spot and says “that’s the one that was stolen a few hours ago, I don’t know who in particular’s blood was on it, just that it was a wiseguy that Jabba the Hutt fed to the Sarlaac on Tatooine about 200 years ago. Poor bastard, what a way to go, am I right. Anyway, I don’t know why the thief took that one when these (he motions to a center case) are much more valuable. But if I ever I catch that thief, I will teach him the cost of disrespecting my house and my honored guests.

The next day, with the help of “Nadir,” M4-RK , J-8, and Karsten found the Keiffler Brothers, they remove J-8’s restraining bolt for 5000 credits, and sell the chanlon for 5000.

When they get back to the hotel for lunch, Monsieur Gustave still isn’t at the front desk, Nadir (lobby boy) seems a bit ruffled he’s talking with Mr. Bombassa. Mr. Bombassa comes over to talk to you. Mr. Gustave went out last night to look into the blood dagger and never came back. I would take it as a personal favor if you would find Mr. Gustave and return him to me dead or alive, he at least deserves the respect of a decent burial. I would take it as a sign of disrespect if you do not.

He walks over to the front desk and tells them to ping Mr Gustave. Hmmm, that’s odd, his comlink is in a pub, it’s not like him to get drunk and pass out, here’s the address happy hunting.

Go to bar investigate, comlink is stuck to the bottom of the table with chewing gum. Has an audio recording of a conversation about a shipment that did not appear to be going well for Mr. Gustave plus a holo of the underside of the table, the recording was apparently turned on after Monsieur Gustave decided that things looked bad for him. Very shortly, towards the end of the conversation, one of the other guys at the table discretely pulls a Blastech SE-14R Light Repeating Blaster (commonly known as the “imperial repeating pistol,” see page 43 of Dangerous Covenants) and points it at Monsieur Gustave under the table. And the four of them go out the door to a weighting speeder and get in. the “space license plate” is clearly visible in the holo recording, as if that was Monsieur Gustave’s intention of leaving the comlink behind.

Go to a holonet café for anonymous holonet access, M4-RK hacks the traffic holo cams, and tracks the vehicle to a warehouse. Fight 1 ranged rival with Light Repeating Blaster 6 damage, crit 3, medium range, enc 2, hp 3, price 1000, rarity 6, auto fire, stun setting. Autofire, increase difficulty once then spend 2 advantage to score another hit on that target or another (easier to hit) target within range. and 5 ranged rivals with standard blaster pistols

After they take down the imperials, invisible ninja’s (2 black dice for invisibility, 1 black die for armor, adversary 1, major ninja has adversary 3 instead) come into attack the party using vibrosword “katana’s” for rivals melee, brawn+2, crit 2, encum 3, hp 3, price 750, rarity 5, defensive 1, pierce 2, vicious 1. Major ninja has vibrorapier katana… melee, brawn+2, crit 2, encum 2, hp 2, price 1200, rarity 7, defensive 1, pierce 5,

Things are likely to not go well for party, if that is the case, then bombassa’s goons show up and toss some high powered ion grenades that short out the mimetic suits and powered weapon, droids take strain damage (likely go offline), bombassa’s goon’s fill one minor ninja full of holes and the others flee (since their suits and vibro katana’s aren’t working, i.e. lose pierce and vicious). Bombassa’s goons claim the suit and light repeating blasters.
Why were the imperials after Monsieur Gustave?

For a bootleg Moff Sarne bobblehead smuggling ring that got busted last month…. Sarne wants to know what the final market was and the concierge is the fixer trying connect a middle man warehouse owner who still has inventory with a smuggler willing to make one final run of the blasted ugly things. Sarne is a very charismatic leader and has effectively established a personality cult on Kal’Shebbol. The bootleg Sarne bobblehead dolls were cutting into the margins of the official Sarne merchandising.
About the dagger.

Apparently, the blood on the dagger belonged to a minor human crime lord that Jabba the Hutt fed to the Sarlaac on tatooine approximately 204 galactic standard years ago. By some accounts he was the mythical Emil Mola, but that’s unlikely. Even if you take stock in such legends, the Mola cartel is supposedly alive and well and still taking orders from Emil, which would be impossible even if he wasn’t fed to the sarlacc because a human crimelord alive 204 years ago would have long since died of natural causes.
The warehouse owner (where the bobblehead dolls are stored, not the warehouse they found Monsieur Gustave in) is willing to sell them the bobble head dolls for 2000 credits, which he tells them they will be able to sell to a buyer (name and photo and address given) on Kal’Shebbol for 5000 credits. Do they want the job?

Crev Bombassa turns to Tal, and said now I remember, I saw someone that looked enough like you to be your father opening a safety deposit box at a bank 20 years ago while I was guarding a respectable Corellian businessman who was vacationing here on Pembric II. I remember because he looked pretty nervous and it was my first week of my first trip to this planet and my first month on the job so I was a little jumpy. My job was to look for nervous types with itchy trigger fingers. He didn’t take a shot at my boss, and I never did see him again, so I figured that he was running from something.

How would you like to find out what’s in that box? I know the bank and the location of the box. I also space-golf with the bank’s CEO and can arrange a private after hours visit tomorrow night. It’s how I visit my own safety deposit box off the record, no one wants to leave a digital trail these days. We respectable businessmen have to schedule these things so that we don’t run into each other, no one wants a blood feud in a bank that does us favors. If you’re that guy’s son, a sample of your blood should open the box. Are you willing to split whatever’s in the box 50/50? Anyone who has a safety deposit box in this bank has to have money, a lot more than you look like you have, no offense.

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