We found our artifact, much to our what do we do, considering we've succeeded?

We successfully escaped the city in our sub, found the sunken vault, and got the hoop *and* Morson's Ball.  Now what to do with the hoop...will we turn it back in to NRD, dump it in the ocean, find a black hole, or what?

November 20, 2016

Bob starts swimming out and tells us to waterproof him a battery (done).  Lucas starts looking…Engineering to inspect the power systems.  Nothing looks corroded but he can’t get at a lot of stuff.  Fuel tanks are full and seem to be ok. The one scary thing is that the boat has a central computer.  Firing the fusion plant could be done with its backup computer, however. 

Next – propulsion.  Looks ok but the fancy mechanical bits are also inaccessible.  This sub has a lot of maneuverability, if the jets outside are corrosion-free. 

Outside, we start looking around for ways to empty the bay.  Sellie is distracted by a historical artifact; Jina finds the main offices with harbor control and a bank of controls for the docking bays.  They are computerized.  Osler finds the emergency manual-ish controls for each bay.  You would need power.  The pumps that handle the water are half a floor down. 

The doors and pumps are clearly on main city power.  No obvious way to get backup power.  There is a manual way to open and shut the bay doors, and it may be possible to bypass the pump controls and swing valves.  You could possibly use battery power to pump a single bay once you’d get the piping isolated – but this will require going to the engineering level to figure this out.  Osler and Sellie head down…Jina continues to look for a generator. 

The engineering level is a nightmare of massive pipes and enormous valves.  Sellie starts making a rudimentary print for Lucas.  T: Mechanical = 17. 

Bob is dragging the battery around and is sick of manual airlock pumps.  Lucas figures the golf cart battery is just about big enough to start the fusion power.  He wires up the battery, runs a self-test, and the backup computer starts.  Bob checks and finds it infected; he installs the Anti-Virus and hopes for the best.  It may hold it off. 

The status lights all look mostly acceptable.  Lucas ponders for one last moment and starts the engine.  It fires up and stands at 5% power.  There is a minor vibration in the ship.  Cooling water is only at 80%. 

They work on bypassing the main computer, hoping to be able to drive it in manual.  Systems available:

Interior lights


Life support



They think about running the airlock, and first off close the compartment doors.  Eventually the airlock computer powers up and the lights come on.  The lock starts to diagnose itself and asks for seal maintenance.  Bob test cycles it….the pump for emptying the chamber sounds awful but does work.  Bob is super jealous.  It is mad that life support isn’t working. 

They start looking at the propulsion system and figure out the ballast controls.  Bob says the engines want more power.  He hand-cranks the windows open, then turns on the lights…one bank of lights fails. 

Powering up more, they have neutral buoyancy and are tied down.  Does buoyancy control work?  Yes! 

Lucas goes out through the automated airlock (yay!) and un-tethers the ship.  No problem. 

They power up the engines and prepare to move the ship around.  Bob starts moving towards the doors…and there appear to be no doors.  Estimated depth on the gauges is 300’.  Since he can’t see to the front, he moves towards the side wall.  Then he moves towards what he thinks is the door…it appears to be open to the sea, at least here.  Not sure about the other side.  Looks like he’s to the outside. 

There are no obvious manual operators for the doors to the sea…they are just way too big. 

Can we find some water-tight containers to put our stuff on the sub? 

They maneuver back to the dock and will rejoin us.

Jina looks around…nothing on the cargo level, but there is a room on the half-level full of automotive-car-sized big ass batteries and what looks like two sealed fusion generators called, “Trickle charge”. 

The sealed generators are the one-shot type (no user-serviceable parts inside).  Panels are stone dead.  The batteries appear to be mostly drained but not destroyed. Might be possible if we hooked up fusion forklifts into generators or a submarine.  Plenty of wire around here too.

We can get our crap in the submarine, then maybe find the hoop and other loots.

We look for sub maintenance parts, underwater transport containers, and a headlight. 

Containers – we find a bunch of them.  What are we moving?

Well, most of the loots on the cart will fit in the containers.  The 3-d molecular Printor will fit through the doors, but might not be waterproof and would need to be in a container. 

Painting is in a sealed case but should get double-bagged. 

We will abandon the printer.  We toss the artillery shells. 

Sub supplies – air is bad, no fresh water, no food.  We do have the fusion still. 

We find replenishables for the sub – space coffee, seals, filters, scrubbers, etc.  Life support should be able to run itself.  Fuel and water purification will need a computer.  We do grab a few sets of spare consumables. 

Talking about our escape – leave here, surface to get air, then find the Hoop.  Not sure if we come back into this bay, come into a different bay, chill on the sub, or hang on the surface.

How many starships around – we found 3…and only checked out one.  We think there are three groups – hunters of us, scrappers, and someone else

SS Nu Gua – we spoke to their sym

SS Spirit of Sianoro – did not contact or see

SS Light of Vongi – did not contact

Also found wreckage with a lot of radiation.

Dinner time!

T bacon order:

Scott:  Slap-yo-mama chicken sandwich (or a burnt ends big daddy)

Dan: half rack of ribs with side of tater salad

Aaron:  chicken fajitas

Scott owes Aaron $6 and Dan $4. 

We will depart and find the thing.  We will need to be quick about this because the locating beacon will send a signal to everyone, not just us. 

The sub will be pretty full with 5 trunks and 5 of us.  It takes 4 hours for us to get our crap in.  We leave the printor and the cart behind, hidden somewhere. 

We load up and pull the rope in behind us.  We do dispose of the former captain overboard. 

Jina watches out the window while Bob pilots us.  Sellie and Lucas are in Engineering.  Osler is sitting in the bathroom where the dead guy was.

We follow the wall to the outside until we find the outside, then head out at very slow pace.  We spend an hour at a snail’s pace to get clear of the city.  Spot:  15 and 24.  A few minutes outside the ship the water goes from murky to reasonably clear.  We see some cables dangling from below that we are easily able to avoid.  15 minutes or so later, we still see no lights from above. 

15 minutes more – visibility has cleared considerably.  We’re at 100-150’ visibility, and we’re maintaining plane.  It’s a bit lighter overhead. 

15 more minutes…we don’t see anything but it is noticeably lighter above.  It’s daytime, although going at night doesn’t matter anyway because everyone has high-tech goggles. 

We surface – gentle swells and a light rain.  It’s either dusk or dawn. 

We start cycling the air.  It would be much easier with the main computer.  This takes about 3 hours. 

Lucas and his help clean out the life support – much better.  The diagnostic computer complains but starts to clean and concentrate the air.  During these three hours, the sun rises, not sets. 

We are half a mile from the ship.  Lots and lots of landing pads.  Any near the waterline?  Not many…although we see some surface ships sitting on the docks. 

Is there anyplace convenient for us to dock?  Well, after the three hours do we need to cycle the air anymore? 

We rest for about 9 hours.  Ship has extra oxygen and has cleaned its atmosphere.  It’s slightly lemon-scented in here.  We also refill our canned air.  It’s nice to not have our masks on. 

After 9 hours of rest, the sun is down – daylight is about 6 hours. 

Lucas and someone else put the fuel purifier back to rights.  They had to go outside to unplug a filter and change the lightbulb.  The manipulator arms look like they’d work, if the computer was powered up. 

How far down do we need to go here.  Well, the city is really tall and isn’t touching the bottom. 

We send the signal and in a few seconds we get a response…and we start to follow the signal back.  As we move, the signal slowly strengthens.  We are heading north with the city to our east. 

After an hour or so we are making good progress.  Probably an hour or two more.  Angling down is starting to matter.  At 150 meters down, we have to turn on the lights.  200 meters down no problem.  250, no problem.  We all hear the hull creaking a little bit but figure it must be normal. 

300 meters down, and up ahead we see a chain.  The links are wider than our ship.  Looks like an anchor cable.  Bob dodges it. 

350 meters…at 375 meters, we can see the bottom.  The depth meter is up to TEST DEPTH.  We can see the module flashing in the distance, and we estimate it’s at 425 meters.  We approach closer…one airlock on the long side, one on the short side. 

Bob practices getting down to the silt and stirring it up with the motors.  After a few minutes, the whole area is covered in crap.  Using PRIS will help some. 

Bob goes in circles to dig out in front of the vault.  Lucas cranks up the reactor output, and Bob will be able to dig more. 

Now, it is docking time.  Sellie watches the docking computer, but the other one says it’s under powered and wants power.  Lucas says it’s ok to give it power. 

Sellie gets us hooked up…Bob seals the cockpit.  We shut off the beacon.  Jina is in the cockpit as well.  Lucas seals up Engineering…and Sellie and Osler enter the airlock. 

S:  We’re in! 

The first of two rooms is filled with cubbyholes, handle and doors.  Everything is secured down.  There are four numbered/lettered cabinents floor to ceiling.  There is a touchscreen in here.  There is another pressure door in here showing air on the other side. 

Sellie starts up the touchscreen…no password.  It has inventory, activity log, etc. 

300-400 items in here.  A lot of it appears to be evidence…things of potential interest – a pair of matching pearl-handle laser pistols (Osler nabs them). 

29A – standard autopistol. 

Long locker 67 – PGMP-13 (65k) and Battledress (71k) to go along with it. 

Masterwork cutlass, 3rd Imperium ceremonial Marines. 

Inventory of the other compartment…Osler goes to look. 

300 kg of plastic explosives that have been sitting for 300 years, with all the explody parts.  Including computerized radio detonators.  Not sure we want that yet…

A case of 12 gauss rifles, new.  Marked for City Security (OSF) – even butt marked Oren Security Forces. 

2 cases of 12 HE grenades. 

2 cases of smoke grenades

2 cases of tear gas grenades

1 case of shotguns and 900 shells, subdual. 

2 cases of autopistols, 12 each.

Tons of restraints (cuffs, zipties, etc.)

Near the end, one compartment (#94) is labeled, “Wimpfheimer” – red-checked for extreme caution.

Sellie opens the door to reveal a flat, wooden box.  There are a lot of OSF security tapes on it (security) and warnings.  Two normal latches. 

Sellie cuts the tape and opens the box to find a dull gray hoop a half-meter across.  He closes the case, secures the latches, and zip ties the case closed. 

Osler figures if we’re going overboard, he stuffs it in an evidence bag as well.

There is another box in the corner that Sellie pulls out.  It’s about the size of a grapefruit…labeled, “Wimpfheimer – Morson’s Ball”

Inside is a silver ball about the size of a golf ball, perfectly smooth. 

S:  Jackpot.  Get me some more zip-ties.

We manhandle the suit onto the submarine and its accompanying PGMP.  We also toss the gauss rifles onto the ship. 

No gauss ammo, no PGMP shells. 

There is also 150k of miscellaneous valuables that we take. 

We take one case of each kind of grenades. 

We also take the 300 kg of plastic explosives

We transfer our stuff, seal up, and disconnect. 

We begin to ascend but head away from the city.  BTW beacon was already shut down. 

What about if we don’t give the hoop to the Vilani?  Well, we lose our boss and would be hunted. 

Lucas would rather be hunted than be responsible for the death of a star.  So would Osler. 

Is it likely that our tails knew what we were looking for and were hired by the Vilani?  They could definitely have followed us. 

If we don’t dump the hoop, we could sell it somewhere else.  We won’t get its full value, but we’ll get something for it. 

FWIW, the Vilani have *not* been prone to using artifacts – culturally, anyway.  Not sure about this particular guy.  Could we find one of dude’s rivals or superiors and rat him out in return for getting out of this jam?

NRD (the Vilani) has 3 items.  When we come back with the hoop, he gives us the throne gem and the wand, and will wipe our warrants. 

We are talking about finding this clown’s superior and

Cochini bribed Philidor Horace Bombast, Ambassador to Mulamer Duchy for a diplomatic package to Nicholas Rory Dilard (esp).  NRD is the guy trying to screw us. 

NRD is being punished at Gapral, but is he connected with anyone?  If he does something appropriate, he may get out of the doghouse with these artifacts.  The NZS is unlikely to be impressed by his threat to blow up a star, but he may have a powerful patron elsewhere in the party.  He clearly wants to use this to get off of Gapral.

Some of us advocate getting in contact with another Vilani officer to screw NRD.  This means we don’t dump the Hoop yet. 

Our plan will be to break back into the city, hole up, and wait for our ride. 

We’re on for next week Sunday.

300 XP for tonight.

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