Agamemnon makes her way to the edge of the system, followed at a safe distance by a Clan destroyer. The members of the team who need medical attention are treated on the way. After jumping to Quantraine and meeting with Alabama, then again with the jump to Milligan’s World, the crew undertakes a number of tasks.
- Becker discovers an incredible amount of activity and funds expended against the ship’s accounts by Jameson and Sims. After having Mitch and Captain Eaton investigate, they discover an intricate web of purchases and trading activity – the result of which has put a number of assets under control of the Agamemnon – including two Overlord-class dropships, two full battalions of Battlemechs and their mechwarriors, a full crew compliment for both both warships, and time reserved at New Samarkand’s graving dock to repair the midships damage from Agamemnon’s misjump. All in all, hundreds of millions of credits have changed hands through Sims’ dealings in certain bits of the ship’s losttech, and cleverly dealing in unique salvage finds throughout the Combine.
- Between Becker and Mitch, Lev’s belongings are sorted. A number of romantic missives are found, with no addressee, and Lev’s Upon Death instructions in his contract are that his remains and ceremonial sword be returned to Admiral Ling of the Draconis Combine.
- Rance managed to fabricate an armored vest much like the trenchcoat Lev Arris used.
- Mitch performs an exhaustive analysis of the Clan gunboat and derives specifications for several components.
- A detailed analysis of the mass driver is performed – but offers up no surprises except it appears there may be limited ammunition supplies of the large, planet-killing slugs.
- Data Analysis produces two options for supply caches. The first is a forward base from the Amaris rebellion on Zalaf that was never completed before the Cameron betrayal. The second is a deep-space cache known only to the 9th Fleet near Tabayama.
The jump to Zlatousi brings Agamemnon face-to-face with a border picket from the Draconis Combine composed of dozens of dropships, several squadrons of fighters, an antiquated destroyer and hundreds of automated defense turrets. Their CO, a Major Hugh, trades some information with Agamemnon, and bids them make all haste to New Samarkand to meet with Admiral Ling. Clan troops have been skirmishing all across the Combine’s borders – the Ghost Bears in addition to several additional clans – Wolf, Jade Falcon, and Smoke Jaguar.
The Agamemnon jumps to the deep space cache location, and finds the fifty cargo containers of the cache intact, but a small vessel is adrift nearby. The vessel is a small fast-attack craft, named after a battlefield (Normandy) like a dropship, designed seemingly without the intent of gravity support for the crew, but capable of atmospheric flight. The crew begins loading the containers, but sends drones to investigate one that had been tampered with in addition to the Normandy. The warship shows no signs of life or emissions. A corpse in a spacesuit is tethered to the nearby cargo container. After investigating the container in detail, it appears to have not been tampered with, and the only indication of the fate of the man outside a lifted helmet seal.
Janks assembles a boarding party and takes a Cheyenne over to the Normandy and boards her just behind the bridge. The ship appears to be completely unpowered, with life support not operating and degrading (but not completely gone). The majority of the ship’s control surfaces are blank slates, with very few physical controls. No functionality could be restored from the bridge, so the team moves aft.
The session ends with Geers spotting a trail of frozen blood drops, trailing into the darkness.
The jump to Quantraine went without problems. Our tail stopped following us a few hours before the jump, it seems. It certainly did not follow us here.
Another memorial. Not just for Lev Arris, but for those of Black’s people who had chosen to return to him. And for mr. Black. Annoying, yes. Arrogant, yes. But he played fair, as far as I could see. Oh, I am sure he had his reasons, and what I learned about him before I met him did not exactly paint a pretty picture, but still.
So, I will do what I can to take them down. Not because he asked me to, though it did make things somewhat more personal, but because of what they have done. They killed millions this time. And millions more will die before this war is over, but the simple fact that they do not mind killing civilians is sufficient.
I have checked Lev Arris’ contract to see what he wanted done with his personal belongings. He wants his remains and his sword returned to a admiral Ling in the Draconis Combine. Hopefully, there are not too many admiral Lings in the Draconis Combine, and with a little bit of luck, it will not take us far from our planned route.
The jump to Milligan’s World went without a hitch. We have made several jumps without problems, but I still feel nervous every time. Another week to wait. I suppose it is time to do some paperwork.
I felt rather cynical when I checked if mr. Black’s payment went through before the entire city was destroyed. But we need those resources, if we are to have a fighting chance against the Clans.
The payment went through, but a lot of money seems to have vanished. Jameson and Sims have spent an incredible amount of money, and I have asked captain Eaton and lieutenant Casey to look at it.
And now I feel kind of bad about that. I was wondering if they were stealing from us or something. It was something, all right. It seems they decided to really prove their worth; when we get to New Samarkand, we will have two dropships, two batallions of Battlemechs and mechwarriors, and time at the graving dock to have the damage to Agamemnon repaired.
The sad thing is, it seems they wanted to surprise me when we got there. They had hoped I wouldn’t find out until we got to New Samarkand.
On a totally different note: There has been no traffic at all through this jump point so far, neither through Quantraine. There could be a couple of different reasons for that, but I would have expected at least a couple of ships to pass through. There is a very real possibility that someone is preventing or restricting jumps through these systems. I just hope it is not the Clans. Though I suspect that had the Clans hit the other systems, there would have been refugee ships arriving from whatever system might have been hit. So hopefully, it is the Draconis Combine, whose system we will soon jump into, is preparing for a fight against the Clans.
There are a couple of caches that we might find and use. Hopefully, they will be useful; one was never really finished, so I am not sure if we will find much there. If it is even intact. But the second one is in deep space, and it would take a bit more than bad luck for someone to find that cache by accident.
There is a chance that the Clans know about it, though. The location was known by the 9th Fleet, and unless they all decided to stay behind when the rest left, the Clans have had access to that information.
As we arrived in Zlatousi, we at least found ships. Plenty of ships. The Draconis Combine was out in force, waiting for, well, someone. And, it seems, they were expecting us. Their CO, major Hugh, told us to head to New Samarkand to meet with, of all people, admiral Ling. A lot of things will, hopefully, be decided at New Samarkand. I just hope the Clans do not decide to join the party…
We have exchanged a bit of information with the Draconis Combine. We gave them some information, including some on old tech. There is no reason to keep this information secret; most of it is medical, and I have an ugly feeling we all will need everything we can dig up of medical knowledge, technology and equipment.
It seems there have been some skirmishes between the Clans and the Draconis Combine. There are several clans, the Ghost Bears that we have already encountered, Jade Falcon, Wolf, and Smoke Jaguar. I wonder if the clans are different enough that it can be exploited; maybe used against them somehow. If we could find a way to turn them on each other, it would, hopefully, save a lot of lives.
The cache was still there, it seems. The crates seemed mostly intact. The only exception was one crate of heavy ammunition that someone in a suit had tried to open, unsuccessfully, it seems. Still, I am not going to risk the ship on assumptions, so we will do this slowly and carefully.
Because the Clans _did_ know about this cache. We found a ship here, drifting. No lifesigns that we could see. And the marking was a wolf’s head. Wild guess: The ship belongs to the clan Wolf.
I have never seen a ship like it. Something happened to it, that is obvious. There is no visible damage. It might be a trap, though that is not likely. It does not look as if it is capable of jumping, it appears to be too small for that. So most likely, someone dropped them off and left them here. Which of course means that they could return at any time to pick them up again.
But that does not make much sense either. If they wanted the cache, it would have taken them mere hours to pick up the crates here. No need to leave anyone behind. Also, I am not sure that she, the Normandy, could hold the crates. It will be a tight fit for us, so how would she have the space?
A team is on its way over to check it out. The container that was attempted opened was still intact. The man inside the suit was dead; it appears someone broke the helmet seal on his suit. And again, it makes little sense.
Either someone else did it, but that someone else is not anywhere close. Of course, if they were two people in suits, and they were, say fighting, the other one could easily have been thrown away from the crate. And once you start drifting here, in deep space, you are truly lost.
Or he did it himself, for some reason. Maybe he had lost his mind. Or perhaps the alternative was worse than suicide.
Maybe they caught some disease that took out the ship, but so fast that they did not have time to send a message to their friends? Not very likely.
I do not much care for mysteries like this. Too easy to lose someone, through lack of information.