Adventures on the Edge of the Imperium

The Lockbox (Part 4 of 4)
Epilogue

Kai Wyn is speechless with rage as he watches Bucky smash the sacred Kai-Laek relic and the just walk away as if he had done nothing. His followers want vengeance here and now and prepare to attack, but Kai Wyn recovers his composure and tells them to wait, here is too public the attack will be a futile gesture even though they outnumber the group many times over. So, he sends four man off to discover and follow the buyer, clearly he is the one behind the theft and they will deal with him first. Bucky and his friends can wait for now, when they think they are safe will be the time to strike, no matter where they go Kai Wyn promises they will have their revenge.

Later that day, back at the hotel the group are pleased to find that Wilhelm has returned. He is pleased that Oliver got a good price for the cargo and the new cargo is being loaded overnight, so they should be able to get off Treece in the morning. When he hears about all that has gone on in his absence, he is a little shocked but hopes that the group are OK, though next time to maybe try to research things a bit better before ending up in tough spots. Bucky sullenly heads off to the computer and tries to look up the Kai-Laek, sure enough there is a picture of an urn that looks just like the one they had, the article goes on to state that the Kai-Laek take extreme measures against anyone not of their religion who even looks upon a sacred relic. Bucky realises that they might not have heard the last from Kai Wyn.

The next morning the Aurora lifts off and Wilhelm says that they will be heading deep into the Rhylanor subsector to do his audit, he says that hopefully Bucky will be able to find some more clues to decypher the puzzle of Twilight’s Peak as well as earning a bit of money with Oliver buying and selling some cargoes along the way.

The first stop is at Kinorb, while Wilhelm conducts his survey the group are free to wander around the starport for a week. Bucky finds no information on the Gyro Cadiz convoy, but Oliver finds a vendor who has some coynes similar to the one they found in the Pyramid on Yorbund, though the merchant says these are of Aslan origin and made of gold. Oliver buys the six the merchant has available but later discovers that they are just made of aluminium which has then been painted gold. The next stop is Fulacin, the world is run by an Imperial Megacorporation and there is no information available on the convoy.

After Fulacin the scout heads to Jae Tellona, Belizo, Bevey, Cipatwe before finally ending up at Vanejen. Bucky has so far discovered nothing that could help him in his quest, but as Wilhelm points out Vanejen is where the convoy started from so there could be more information here. It has taken them 14 weeks to get here since leaving Treece and the group look ragged, especially Wilhelm. So Wilhelm tells the group that they are going to have some rest here for a bit, he has paid the berthing fees for three weeks which will give them all ample time to recharge their batteries. Oliver quickly does the accounts from their trading and announces that so far they have made a profit of about Cr 72,000, after taking off his broker fees of Cr 12,000, so they can all enjoy themselves for a while.

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The Lockbox (Part 3 of 4)
Session #1c

Day 4

The night in the cells has not been good for Oliver, the bad food and lack of sleep has left Oliver feeling exhausted and eager to get out of this place. Meanwhile, back in the hotel the others awake feeling refreshed and full after a hearty breakfast. No-one feels it is strange that Oliver has not returned yet, maybe it is taking longer to find the gun dealer than he planned.

In the early afternoon Bucky decides to get out of the room for a bit, and heads out to get a caffeine based beverage from a local vendor while Tommy and Vann spend sometime studying the urn. To confuse any watchers Bucky takes the empty briefcase with him. Two of Kai Wyns ‘associates’ follow Bucky at a distance whilst two others remain in the hotel.

Whilst Bucky is enjoying his drink the two watchers discuss what to do, Kai Wyn has told them to just observe but, here is a chance to get the case and the urn back. So, the two watchers manage to flank Bucky and proceed to attack him, they would prefer to leave him unconscious but they will kill if they have to. What they don’t realise though is that under his coat Bucky is wearing his cloth body armour, which easily turns their first dagger thrusts. As Bucky draws his own dagger he feels a dagger cutting deep into his side, Bucky instantly slashes at the attacker and is rewarded by feeling his blade cut deep into the chest of the man, who staggers backwards giving Bucky an escape route. Bucky grabs the briefcase and runs for his life, heading back to the hotel. Meanwhile, his attackers are drawing attention from the other customers so decide not to pursue Bucky but to run in the opposite direction.

When Bucky gets back to the hotel he lets Tommy and Vann know what has happened before sorting his wounds out with the small first aid kit in the room and some strong painkillers. Later that evening Oliver finally returns having been released with a fine and a strong warning from the police.

Kai Wyn is not a happy man, the stupid and rash actions by his men mean that there is no longer a chance that the group will hand over the relic and his plans to involve the authorities is ruined as the attack on Bucky has cost him the moral high ground in the case.

Day 5

Finally the day of Gamegas arrival comes and the group departs to meet his starship at the starport. Despite feeling quite sore Bucky insists he is fit enough to come along. The trip to the starport is uneventful, though the group do spot Kai Wyn and several of his followers tailing them at a safe distance, though once they are in the starport they quickly lose sight of their stalkers in the crowds.

The flight from Kkirka lands on time and after a little wait the group manage to locate Urkinu Gamega and convince him that they are there instead of Shawn Grey, who they say has been killed. Gamega is shocked to learn about the death of Grey, but he is still a businessman and as long as the group have the item that Grey recovered then he is willing to conclude the deal. He takes the group to a quiet area of the starport and offers them the same deal that he had with Grey, he gives them Cr 5000 for the contents of the case. When he opens the case and sees the contents he gives a cry and staggers backwards before declaring that the urn is a Kai-Laek urn and that the group have signed their death warrants. Gamega then flees from the group and tells them to keep well away from him, inhis haste he has left the urn and the Cr 5000 with the group.

Not really expecting that reaction the group are left a little stunned, but Bucky is the first to recover and he picks up the urn and smashes it on the ground, scattering the contents before striding away.

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The Lockbox (Part 2 of 4)
Session #1b

Day 2

The next morning the group begin to look through the papers in Grey’s box. The first thing Oliver checks are the bank statements and is disappointed to find there is only a couple of hundred credits in Greys account, though there is evidence of Gamega paying Grey Cr 5000 several times in the past. The other papers detail several jobs that Grey had done for Gamega and the items he had subsequently sold to him, the last job seemed to be on the obscure planet of Otrai.

After studying the papers the group decide that they need to find out what Grey has stored in the lockbox. They head down to the starport and find the lockbox, inside they find an attache case. With Oliver, Tommy and Vann keeping watch Bucky opens the case carefully. The case is heavily padded but sat in the middle of it is an ornate, inscribed urn, after showing it to the others he replaces it and closes the case. Not wanting to risk leaving the case in the lockbox they decide to return to the hotel with it, following them at a discrete distance are four shadowy figures.

A couple of hours later there is a knock at their hotel room door, Tommy cautiously looks through the peephole and sees a well dressed man smiling back at him. While Tommy is engaged in a conversation through the closed door, Bucky draws his dagger and stands to one side of the door, Oliver calls reception and demands that security comes to the room quickly while Vann stands around looking menacing. As the conversation through the door continues, Oliver decides that security is taking far too long to get there, so he opens the window and jumps out. Fortunately, they are on the ground floor of the hotel, so the fall is not too great. He immediately begins to run to reception, to berate the staff for allowing people to come to their room without announcing them first!

Meanwhile, back at the door Tommy decides to open the door to the man and his three companions. When they are in the room, the well dressed man introduces himself as Kai Wyn and says that he would like his property back. He says that he knows that the group have the contents of the lockbox and that the late Mr Grey stole the item from him on Otrai. Tommy remains non-committal on the subject of the urn, not wanting to give anything away or to give Kai Wyn any excuse to do anything drastic. Bucky stands in the corner of the room thinking how best to stab the newcomers, while Vann waits on the other side of the room waiting to see what develops. The situation continues for another five minutes until a couple of hotel security guards arrive at the room. As soon as the guards enter the room Bucky starts shouting about how Kai Wyn and his companions are threatening and harassing the group, though the only weapon visible is the one in Bucky’s hand. Kai Wyn smiles and allows himself and his group to be escorted from the room, though he does turn and say that he hopes the group will consider his offer and do the right thing.

Day 3

The following morning the hotel receptionist contacts the group and says that a gentleman wishes to speak to Bucky. When Bucky accepts the call he finds himself looking into the smiling face of Kai Wyn, who apologises for the incident the previous day and says that he made a mistake in just turning up at their room. So, he suggests that just he and Bucky meet face to face in the lobby of the hotel.

The meeting with Kai Wyn is an awkward one, to say the least. Kai Wyn insists that Bucky, and the group, should do the right thing and return the urn to himself, the rightful owner, while Bucky tells Kai Wyn to prove that he is the owner. During the conversation Bucky confirms to Kai Wyn that the group have physically seen the urn and examined it. Even though he hides it well, this news saddens Kai Wyn as he knows things can only end one way now. Realizing that with Bucky in such a belligerent mood that further discussions are going to be fruitless, so Kai Wyn expresses his sorrow that they cannot come to terms but he does leave a communicator code in case the group change their minds about his offer.

When Bucky gets back to the room his version of the meeting is rather different to what actually happened. He says how Kai Wyn was hostile and threatening towards the group and refused to pay the group for the urn. This version of the meeting disturbs Oliver deeply, so he heads off to find some underworld contacts who might be able to sell him some guns for the group, despite knowing they are illegal on Treece. Unfortunately, he ends up making contact with an undercover police officer and is promptly arrested and put in gaol.

That night Kai Wyn is contemplating what to do next. He could take direct action against the group, after all they have seen the urn (by Buckys admission) and the penalty for that is death. But, killing the group would be messy, especially so soon after the death of Mr Grey. An alternative would be to approach the authorities and enlist their help. Proving that he is the rightful owner of the urn is simple enough, and getting it off the group will be simple especially if he shows the connection to the late Mr Grey, after all they had his locker key, they broke into his apartment after his death and many people saw them in the bar together. It would be so easy to link them to his murder. Finally, he decides to be fair and to give the group two more days to do the right thing, after that he will let the authorities know of the situation.

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The Lockbox (Part 1 of 4)
Session #1a

Day 1

A couple of days after Wilhelm has left to do his audit and after Oliver has sold the cargo and arranged for a new cargo to be available when Wilhelm gets back, the adventurers are enjoying an evening of ‘entertainment’ in a bar near the starport. Late into the evening the group notice a pale, agitated man enter the bar, dressed in a standard ship-suit the man moves through the bar and seems to be looking for someone. Finally he spots the group and heads straight for their table, the stranger seems to recognize Oliver, though Oliver cannot place where he has seen the man from, and seems relieved that there is someone he knows in the bar. The guy quickly pulls out a key, held on a chain around his neck, and places it on the table.

With several nervous glances the guy says that the key is for a lockbox in the starport, box number 9764-A2, and that inside the box is a package that needs to be delivered to a man called Urkinu Gamega, who should be arriving shortly. He would stay and finish the job himself, but he has been called away on urgent business and has to leave in the morning, so as he trusts Oliver, could they keep the key safe and deliver the package to Gamega when he arrives at the starport. He gets out Cr 500 and drops it on the table and says that they can get another Cr 500 from Gamega when they deliver the package. He seems very reluctant to tell the group anything about the package, other than it is not dangerous and it is only going to be of interest to Gamega, who collects things like that. The guy then seems to get more agitated and finally he gets up and quickly makes his way to the back of the bar, Vann tries to follow him but soon loses him in the crowded bar. The group are left with a key, Cr 500 and an unexpected job to complete. Enquiries with the bar staff about either the man or Gamega draw a blank, with no-one knowing who they are, so with nothing else to do the adventurers settle down to enjoy spending the Cr 500 they have just come into.

Later that night, as the group are leaving the bar, they hear muffled cries for help and the sounds of a fight coming from a nearby alley. Bucky, Tommy and Vann decide to go investigate the fight while Oliver thinks that he might have left something in the bar and ducks back inside. Reaching the alley Bucky and the others are confronted by a body near the entrance in a pool of blood. Turning the body over Bucky discovers it is the guy that gave them the key, he has been stabbed several times and is close to death. Tommy and Vann get the impression that there are several figures hiding in the shadows, but a search reveals nothing. Meanwhile, Bucky attempts to staunch the wounds of their patron, who suddenly raises his head and whispers to Bucky, “Don’t….Look”, with his last breath. A search of the dead man turns up very little, just an ID card and a business card with the name of Urkinu Gamega, on the back of it is a date and flight number. Close to the body and half in shadow Vann finds a strangely curved dagger, stained with blood, carefully he picks it up and tucks it away in his jacket. Leaving the body where it is the group head back to the bar to rejoin Oliver. When Oliver sees the ID card he remembers the name, Shawn Grey, as an engineer on the ship that Oliver worked on, though Grey was only on the ship for a couple of jumps before moving to a different ship. The address on the ID card turns out to be not too far away from the bar, while the flight number corresponds to a regular star liner due to arrive from Kkirka in four days time.

Bucky is keen to investigate Grey’s apartment straight away though Oliver feels that going in the morning would be better, the debate between them gets a little heated but when Tommy and Vann say that they will go with Bucky, Oliver decides to head back to the hotel by himself leaving the others to go to the apartment. What Oliver doesn’t see however are the two shadowy figures following him back to the hotel.

Bucky and the others easily find the apartment block in a seedy area of the city, though getting past the security door is proving to be a little problematic as no-one seems to be answering. Eventually, Bucky manages to get an answer and he and Vann gain entry to the building, though it does cost them Cr 50 each from a demanding resident. Tommy waits in cover outside to make sure no-one follows them in. The apartment is clean and tidy, well it was until Bucky and Vann begin searching it. It takes them about an hour but they manage to find a hidden wall panel, after carefully removing it they retrieve a box filled with papers. After finding nothing else of interest they decide to head back to the hotel, though they don’t notice the four people following them in the shadows.

In a dark warehouse the leader gathers his sixteen followers around him, he is displeased with them and makes sure that they know it. He says that they should have retrieved the key and dealt with Mr Grey before he could involve others in his schemes. Now he is going to have to find some way to negotiate with these strangers before they discover what is in the lockbox, and if that fails then they will have to be dealt with, but for now they must be kept under close scrutiny.

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The Kinunir of Regina (Part 4 of 4)
Epilogue

Later that night in the bar the group witness an argument between a scout and a navy man about the epic Twilight’s Peak, an argument that swiftly turns from verbal blows to physical ones. After the pair are ejected by the bouncers, Wilhelm asks Bucky if he knows about Twilight’s Peak, Bucky says he only knows vague details about it, Wilhelm smiles and changes the subject of the conversation.

The following day, with the Aurora upgraded and loaded with a cargo of pharmaceuticals the group depart from Regina. The first stop is going to be Yori, where Wilhelm and Oliver will sell the pharmaceuticals and buy a new cargo. During the week in jumpspace Bucky tries his best to get into the book Wilhelm gave him just before they lifted off, it is a copy of Twilight’s Peak, but, like most readers of the epic he soon gives up on the badly written, over-long epic. Deciding to let the ships computer do the hard work for him, Bucky patiently scans in each page and writes a program to produce a summary of the book with all the unnecessary bits taken out. The computer gets to work, and about six hours later is ready to deliver its findings. Bucky is surprised to discover the summary just says;

“We died”.

Feeling that this is a little too summarised, Bucky rewrites the parameters used by the program and sets it running again, in a little over eighteen hours the computer delivers a five page summary of the epic, which is something Bucky feels more comfortable in reading.

After leaving Yori, Wilhelm sets course for Treece in the Lanth subsector as the next port of call. When they arrive Wilhelm announces that he is going to survey the system and do his audit of the world, which is going to take a week, until then the crew can stay groundside and try to sell the cargo, buy some new cargo and maybe Bucky can find out something more about the Twilight’s Peak epic.

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The Kinunir of Regina (Part 3 of 4)
Session #3

Ignoring the guards order, Wilhelm and Tommy duck behind a bulkhead and prepare their rifles, whilst Vann remains hidden also behind the bulkhead. The guards decide to advance towards the two people they have seen, but as they are crossing the debris strewn floor Wilhelm peeks out, levels his laser rifle and shoots one of them. The guards flak jacket proves to be no defence against the laser and the guard falls to the ground dead. Tommy now takes a shot at the other guard, but his flak jacket is a little more resistant to the discarding sabot round from Tommy’s Advanced Combat Rifle, and the guard is just lightly wounded. The sound of the single shot is amplified in the confined area of the ship and echoes all around.

Outside the scrapyard, Oliver hears the shot as well and sees the three patrolling guards stop and begin to head towards the derelict Kinunir. He radios the others and tells them to expect more company soon, as he says this the sound of an ACR on full automatic echoes across the scrapyard. Oliver sees that one of the guards is on his radio and that lights have now come on in the security office, even more trouble is to come.

Back in the ship, the second guard is down on the floor, dead, and Tommy and Vann are making their way over to the ramps where they came in, to ambush the guards heading their way. On the way, Tommy stops and calmly cuts the throat of one of the guards on the floor, just to make sure he is dead. Tommy and Vann don’t manage to make it to the loading ramps before another two guards appear, but before the guards can get a shot off at them a burst of fire from both Tommy and Vann cuts the two guards down.

Oliver informs them that the fifth guard is now under the ship and will soon be coming up the ramp, he also says that a sixth guard has now left the security office and is heading towards the Kinunir. The fifth guard suddenly appears on the ramp and manages to get a shot off at Vann, the revolver bullet though doesn’t get past his cloth armor. Vann fires another burst at the guard and downs him. Before the final guard can appear, the group decide to get out of the scrapyard, they quickly exit the ship and make their way back to the fence and back to Oliver. To get back to the starport they decide to take a wide detour to get home, which proves to be a good choice as in the distance they see a couple of police ground cars and a Grav APC heading to the scrapyard.

The following day the group catch a news report about intruders at a scrapyard belonging to General Shipyards, in which two security guards were killed and three others seriously wounded. It says that the local police are currently waiting to question the surviving guards when they recover consciousness. Over the next couple of days it comes to light that the police have got no useful information from the wounded guards and are beginning to widen their search by questioning other staff at General Shipyards. This worries Wilhelm as at least half the group have given their names to General Shipyards employees in connection with enquiries concerning the Kinunir, and it was unclear if Tommy and Vann gave their names when they enquired about the scrapyard.

Bucky has been hard at work on his hacking program and finally manages to get through all the firewalls on the General Shipyards server without it crashing. He manages to download the information from the data archive that the group needs to complete the job for their patron. The executive is contacted and arranges to meet the group in a bar in three days time. In the meantime Bucky spends sometime destroying all traces of his hacking activities, including breaking and burning the computer he has been working on. Though, Wilhelm feels such actions are a little over the top. Wilhelm also announces that he is going to go and begin the audit of the Rhylanor subsector next, as he is finished in Regina. As it will be a long trip and expensive on fuel he is going to carry some cargo or passengers to offset the costs of the trip. As the Aurora will only be able to carry a couple of tons of cargo, it is going to have to be fairly high value goods and if they are carrying passengers then the crew are going to have to share quarters. He says that he will need some help with selling the goods on the planets they stop at, so he will need some help from Oliver, though naturally he will pay Oliver a brokerage fee for his help, which pleases Oliver greatly.

The meeting with the Oberlindes Lines executive goes well and the executive is very pleased with the work done by the group and happily pays over the Cr 200,000, which Wilhelm shares out to the group.

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The Kinunir of Regina (Part 2 of 4)
Session #2

The discussions about their next moves are long and detailed, Oliver suggests that the best move would be to hit both the office and the scrapyard at the same time as that will reduce the chances of increased security at either site if one or the other of the break-ins is detected. Wilhelm is impressed by Oliver’s thinking about this plan, but the only drawback is that there are only five of them and splitting the group into two uneven teams could be problematic especially if they are about ten kilometres apart. Ultimately, it is decided that Tommy and Vann will go to the General Shipyard office in the starport to see about the possibility of getting authority to get access to the scrapyard. Meanwhile, Bucky will try to get his hacking program fixed and running properly this time to try and access the General Shipyard data archives, and Wilhelm will go off and kick the daylights out of the contact that gave him false information about the disused slipway.

The trip to the General Shipyard office is unprofitable for Tommy and Vann, the secretary does not think that the company sells it’s scrap but that she will check. After a quick phone call to the main office it is confirmed that General Shipyard does not sell its scrap to third parties. So, the two adventurers return to the group to discuss plans to break into the scrapyard. That night Oliver, Tommy, Vann and Wilhelm leave Bucky puzzling over what went wrong with his program, and head out to the scrapyard in the air/raft.

Once they get there they spend a few hours familiarising themselves with the layout, the patrol routes of the guards and looking for a suitable entry point for the team. It is decided that Wilhelm, Vann and Tommy will be the ones to break in, whilst Oliver provides radio support and cover in case of trouble, which surprises Wilhelm as he is the only one equipped with effectively a silent weapon with a long range capability, his laser rifle. Oliver just has his short ranged, very loud submachinegun. So, the three intruders set out and with some good support from Oliver calling out the guards positions, they manage to make it to the Kinunir unseen.

They enter the ship through one of the cargo loading ramps and what they find is a totally dark ship, the floor covered with litter and debris. Using their Light Intensifier goggles they see that they only structures that seem to be in place are the bulkheads, work must have been discontinued before all the internal fixtures were put in. After studying the aft portion of the deck they decide that there is no pinnace dock here, so the Black Globe Generator fittings must be on a higher deck. As they make their way up a ladder, Wilhelm stops them and draws their attention to the very large cat-like creature which has suddenly appeared behind them. The creature stares at them and emits a low, menacing, growl, very slowly the group resume their climb to the next deck with Wilhelm keeping one eye on the creature to make sure it is not following them. The search on the next deck also proves fruitless, so they carry on climbing to the next deck. This deck looks more promising as it has a dock on it large enough to hold a pinnace, a quick search soon finds the mountings they have been told to look out for. Measurements are quickly taken to pinpoint the precise location, and as a back up Tommy takes some photographs. Just to be on the safe side they check out the other side of the pinnace dock to make sure there are no mountings on that side. Finding none, the group decide to leave.

As they finish descending the ladder and are about to enter the cargo dock, the creature pounces out from behind some debris and attacks. Wilhelm was first down the ladder this time and is greeted by a swipe from the creatures large claws across his chest, wounding him deeply. Wilhelm and Tommy both draw their cutlass and begin to hack away at the creature. Vann tries to get into a position to get a shot at the cat. The fight loud though fairly short, with Wilhelm suffering another wound but managing to finally kill the large creature. The noise of the fight though has attracted a couple of security guards, who suddenly appear in the doorways across the cargo area with their revolvers drawn, pointing them at the intruders whilst yelling for the group to lower their weapons.

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The Kinunir of Regina (Part 1 of 4)
Session #1

Once their patron has gone the discussion begins about how they can complete the job. Bucky, Tommy and Vann straight away begin talking about what they will need to interrogate people, and start making a shopping list beginning with handcuffs. Oliver goes off muttering about seeing what his contacts in the local underworld know, and Wilhelm sits there dumbfounded wondering about what sort of people he has got involved with. When Vann begins to ask where they might be able to get hold of some truth drugs, Wilhelm decides to step in and suggests that maybe they should find out what information is available publicly. As Bucky is the most skilled with computers he decides to go and see what he can find out. Tommy, Vann and Wilhelm decide to go check out some of the other bars in the starport to see if they can find someone who might have some information they could use.

Oliver’s contacts come up dry, but say they will put the word out and get back to him. Bucky has more luck and manages to retrieve ship specifications, a list of all the ships in the Kinunir class and the fate of some of the ships that have been lost. When the others return to the Traveller’s Aid Society hostel, where they are staying, they say that they were unsuccessful in finding out anything. Oliver and Bucky sit down and calculate how much fuel would be carried based on the specifications Bucky found, they come up with a figure that actually exceeds the tonnage of the Kinunir class! Later, when the others are asleep, Wilhelm works out his own figures on the fuel requirements and comes up with a total of 1,080 tons, which would only leave 120 tons for drives, weapons and crew accommodation. Wilhelm decides that the public specifications are certainly inaccurate. The next day Oliver and Bucky decide to go and check out General Shipyards to see what they can find there while Tommy, Vann and Wilhelm head back to the starport again.

Bucky and Oliver manage to find a General Shipyards office in the starport and go inside, it is not what they expected though. The only occupant is an attractive woman seated behind a desk typing awat on a computer. Oliver introduces himself but when the woman asks how she can help, he realises that he has no ides what to say and just babbles incoherently. Bucky steps in and tries to pass himself off as a covert naval operative who requires information on a military vessel that had been built by General Shipyards. The stunned secretary says that General does not produce military starships, that all she can do is make appointments for people to go to the shipyard and if he worked for the navy surely they would have the information he was looking for. The logic of these statements throws Bucky into silence, clearly the intelligence of the secretary is superior to Bucky. Oliver gets the ides of actually just making an appointment to see someone at the shipyard, finally faced by someone making sense the secretary makes an appointment for Bucky, Oliver and Wilhelm to see Mr Hansen at the shipyard in five days time. Meanwhile, Tommy and the others manage to find and talk to a retired shipyard worker who had worked on the Kinunir ships produced by General Shipyards. He tells them that from what he remembers the Black Globe Generator was on the drive deck not too far from the pinnace dock. Though, at present, the only Kinunir the group know that is in the Regina subsector is the Gaesh, the prison hulk at Pixie, and that has had all the drives ripped out. The problems with the Gaesh are that getting to Pixie will be time consuming and expensive, and short of getting arrested, breaking into a prison ship will be almost impossible.

Over the next few days the group continue to track down leads and rumours, though the only ones circulating around the starport are in connection with possible Imperial suppression of political opposition. This leads Oliver to think that a civil war is about to break out in the subsector. Bucky decides to make himself useful by trying to hack into the General Shipyards data archive. On the day of the appointment at General Shipyards a car arrives outside the Traveller’s Aid Society to collect them, but only Oliver and Wilhelm decide to go, leaving Bucky to carry on writing his program. The meeting at General Shipyards is short and unproductive, Mr Hansen knows nothing about the building of the Kinunir class and says the previous management team were borderline criminal in their working practices. He then brings the meeting to a close and Oliver and Wilhelm return to the group empty handed. When they get back to their rooms there is a message for Oliver saying that one of his contacts has found a couple of people that might be willing to talk to him, for a price. They are Daniel V Adar and Guy Self, both formerly worked at General Shipyards, Oliver and Tommy decide to pay them a visit in the next couple of days.

The next morning Bucky announces that he has almost finished working on the hack program and should be able to give it a go in the next 24 hours. Wilhelm and Vann decide to give the starport another go for leads while Tommy and Oliver head out to see Mr Self. Tommy slips a pair of handcuffs into his pocket, in case Mr Self proves to be a little unwilling to provide them with the information.

Guy Self was the former Project Manager (Military Division) at General Shipyards, he was a casualty of the board room battle that took place when General pulled out of the military shipbuilding market and narrowly avoided criminal charges for misappropriation of funds. Since then he has only been able to get junior and low paid work, so he greedily snaps up the Cr 500 that Oliver offers him. He tells them that the publicised range of 200 days was pure rubbish and that the Kinunir only had a range of 28 days fuel for the power plant and manoeuvre drives. He also says that the Black Globe Generator was on the port side of the drive section. As they leave Tommy looks a little disappointed that he did not get to use the handcuffs. Maybe next time, he thinks.

Vann and Wilhelm are also having a bit of luck, they have run into a navy veteran who everyone calls ‘Lucky’ Jim. Jim was an engineer on the Allamu, until its last fatal flight, when he had to stay in port because of a fever. Which technically makes him the last survivor of the Kinunir class battle cruiser, Allamu. He puts his luck down to the old maintenance shaft key that he kept from the ship. However, no amount of convincing from Vann will get him to part with it willingly, so Vann decides to try a little drinking contest with him. Things do not go to plan though and Jim soon discovers that instead of whiskey Vann has been giving himself measures of apple juice. So, Jim decides to buy the next few rounds and pretty soon Vann is slumped unconscious at the table. Between Wilhelm and the very drunk Jim they manage to get Vann back to the hostel and into his bed.

The next morning Vann is feeling rather unwell, so decides to spend the day in his room, but Wilhelm shows him a little present, it is the key that Jim had last night. Wilhelm explains that while they were carrying Vann home Wilhelm was able to lift the key out of Jim’s pocket. Tommy and Oliver say they are going to pay a visit to Mr Adar today. Wilhelm says he is going to go and see a contact he made while Vann was having his contest last night. Bucky says he has a couple of final tweaks to make and then he is going to try the program.

Mr Adar is a former designer at General Shipyard who got dismissed as he was an incompetent architect. He never worked on any military vessels, but he does hint that he has something that could be useful. Oliver offers him Cr 500, but Daniel dismisses the offer. So, Tommy quickly steps in with an offer of Cr 2,000 which is gleefully accepted. Daniel hands over a piece of paper with a code written on it, the code he says will access any data archive at General Shipyards but, it will only work from a terminal within the General Shipyards office. Once they leave Tommy and Oliver have a heated debate about the level of the bribe and about just who is going to be paying it. Wilhelm searches a couple of bars and finally finds the shipyard worker he was talking to last night. The guy seems to think that the Adda Dubsar, the last Kinunir built by General, was not scrapped or broken up, but is sat ready for outfitting on a disused slipway at the General yard.

Bucky finally runs his program which seems to work, until it gets caught in a loop and crashes. Obviously, it needs a bit more work. Though, when the others return another plan comes to mind, to break into the General Shipyards offices to get the data there and to look for the hulk of the Adda Dubsar. Bucky and Vann instantly begin to work on a list for Oliver’s black market contacts while trying to find an ingenious way to use their disguise kits.

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The Kinunir of Regina
Introduction

Date: 037 – 1105

Whilst out one night celebrating their new found wealth Oliver is approached at the bar by a well dressed gentleman who tries to engage Oliver in conversation. Oliver thinks the guy is a little creepy and so disengages himself from him and goes back to the table the group are sat at and begins to moan about the well dressed weird guy at the bar. A few minutes later the well dressed guy comes over to their table and sits himself down.

He explains he is an executive from Oberlindes Lines and he is looking for a cautious group to perform a discrete job for him. He needs to obtain some data regarding a certain class of military vessel, some of which were produced here on Regina by General Shipyards. The class of ship he is interested in is the Kinunir class battle cruiser. Bucky indicates that he knows of the type of ship but has never served on one, the executive says that serving on one does not matter as the information he needs could be classified more as trade secrets rather than military secrets. Despite repeated attempts he will not divulge why he needs the data or even his name. After a bit of discussion the group decide to accept the job.

The executive says that he has a budget of Cr 200,000 available for the full (and he emphasises the word full) completion of the job, which will be to get accurate data on the capacity of the fuel tanks and to get the exact location of the Black Globe Generator. He says that he can provide pictures of the Black Globe Generator mountings to help them find the location. He also says that to fully complete the job he will need two pieces of evidence for each piece of data to confirm the accuracy of the groups findings. With that being said, he hands a card to Oliver with a communicator code and says to contact him when they have the information. He then thanks them for their time and gets up, leaving the group to finish their drinks and to consider their next move.

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Shadows of Yorbund (Part 3 of 3)
Epilogue

Wilhelm tells the group that their destination is Regina, as he has some business with the Scout Administrator and he also wants to report the pyramids as a possible undiscovered Ancient site, with the hope that the scout service will pay them for finding it.

The route back takes the Aurora through Beck’s World, Feri, Roup, Hefry and finally to Regina. By the end of the five week trip the air in the scout ship is smelling pretty bad, a common problem with the Type S Scout/Courier, so Wilhelm says that he will get the scout station mechanics to rip out the old system and replace it with something better, though to perform the task will probably take about three and four weeks to complete once he has bought the parts needed. After that Wilhelm heads off to his appointment with the Administrator.

Meanwhile, Bucky heads off to the University of Regina, where he meets a biology professor who states that his plant and dropping samples are common enough for Yorbund and nothing special. Upon seeing the gold coin however the professor gets a little excited, he says it is a casting coyn used by the Droyne to determine which caste the Droyne belongs to. The professor says that, sadly in his opinion, that individually the coyn has no real value, but a full set of 36 would be worth something to a collector.

When Wilhelm returns he says that the IISS are interested in the site and that he has registered the claim to it, in the names of the crew, in case the Imperium determines that it is an Ancient site. If they do then the crew will be entitled to a substantial reward, but in the meantime the Scout Service have paid a ‘finders fee’ to the group, which Wilhelm happily divides equally between them.

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