The Ship’s Memory
In our previous Traveller session, the PCs had reached Point Demnan and discovered that the advance scout team they were due to meet with had run into problems. The last event of the evening was the the apparent last survivor, Alii Silashji, shot herself after claiming that she wasn’t sure whether she was real or one of the alien doppelgangers they had encountered on the planet.
The decisions is whether to nuke the planet from orbit. I had one of the security officers, Niamh McCabe, argue for doing just that. She was a survivor from the mission to Candling Station, and had a poor view of alien things that did bad things to humans.
I’m trying to take opportunities to introduce characters that I can re-use throughout the voyage. There are some which may become important at a later date, so introducing now, and hopefully re-using them a few times so the players get to know a bit about them will make things a bit more meaningful that just “there’s this NPC you haven’t heard of before who does something”.
There was concern amongst the PCs that nuking the natives would kill innocents. Even the native ‘doppelgangers’ (whatever they were) probably didn’t deserve just to get murdered. Instead there was a plan to leave a probe in orbit to broadcast a warning for anyone who turned up.
There was also a need to salvage the two ships for any useful spare parts, then destroy them so others couldn’t make use of the technology. Though its drives had been taken out, leaving a light cruiser floating around with a spinal mount and lots of TL 15 turret weapons and missiles could potentially destabilise the local star systems.
This whole situation had caused some loss of morale aboard the ship. Lots of the crew had been expecting to meet up with the scouting party before venturing forth on the next leg of the journey. A couple of factions emerged aboard the ship. The first were those wanting to nuke the planet from orbit. A difficult task – but dropping a couple of ships on the landing site, followed by liberal use of the particle beam would be seen as a good start. This was mostly led by Lt McCabe.
There was a second, much smaller, faction though being stirred up by Lt Jana Irekia. She was another member of the security team, and was quite outspoken about the fact that though the scouting party had failed, the crew of the Deepnight hadn’t. They were a skilled crew that were capable of avoiding such mishaps and achieving their goal.
The XO tried to ensure that the crew members weren’t getting too cocky, but in the end decided to put Lt Irekia in charge of a “Red Team” to come up with risks and perform threat analysis. Something she was really keen on.
Lord Sivas was asked to come up with a suitable memorial speech for the lost crew, and it was decided to leave behind something in honour of Engineering Team Lead Alii Silashji, with the epithet “She Served Correctly”, mirroring what had been found at the memorial for the Droyne warrior.
During the stripping of anything useful from the Varikuur, one of the EVA specialists reported to Chief Administrator Imelda Thatchet that one of the admin staff he had been working with, had been taking personnel effects off the ship and seemingly keeping them for herself.
This was passed up to security, who after looking into it summoned Imelda and XO Kamarsukhar down to a little used room at the back of the cargo bays. It was full of memorials from the journey so far – including trinkets purchased at starports, eggs taken from a world, a Vargr religious statuette and some holophotos taken from the crew quarters on the Varikuur.
It was decided that this little museum to the ship’s progress which Raix Delvaan had been putting together was actually a good idea. Though Thatchet did give her a couple of weeks ‘waste management’ duty in punishment for not correctly following the security protocols in bringing things aboard, she was made the official curator of the Ship’s Memory, and some effort was made to make the small room more presentable.
Raix is a character introduced much later in the campaign, but I thought it would be fun to introduce her early, so the whole curator of the museum thing is already established by the time it gets used.
The two disabled ships were set onto a course into the local sun, and a probe sent down to the camp below to broadcast a general warning for anyone to clear the area. There was some activity from the crew/doppelgangers, and some left. The others stayed and were obliterated when a small asteroid was dropped on top of them.
Given the way things had been handled, crew morale was actually good by the time that the Deepnight Revelation was ready to leave Demnan. The heroics of Alii Silashji went down in the mission lore as being a high point, rather than being viewed as a disaster. The new museum was also an opportunity to look back on good times, and the Red Team was channelling some of both the negativity and over confidence.
It was also time to give the crew a chance to have some XP – though I completely forgot to mention this, so I’ll need to try to remember to tell the players next session. The general quality of the ship’s crew will go up a level at this point though, just from general experience and having been working together for so long.
It was also an opportunity to clarify what the next part of the mission was – and I remembered to do this. I’d created some handouts in Roll20, including a map which broke down the next three major waypoints, plus a couple of other stop overs.
The next leg of the journey is the Rifts Edge Transit part of the campaign. This is the first of the expansion modules, and includes a visit to a black hole at Radio Source Vilaakasii (Waypoint 1).
Directly after Demnan was a visit to Garva 411, a neutron star. This was a stopover that the space scientists wanted, and though the PCs were a bit hesitant (it could be dangerous), they were won over and it turned out to be reasonable safe.
The scientists got their data, and the Deepnight Revelation made its first step into the unknown of Incognita Citerior sector. The campaign has now literally fallen off the map, since there is no more stellar data on TravellersMap after this. Instead, I’ll be switching to my own generated maps. They don’t look as good, and are harder to use, but they provide enough data for plotting routes and detailing things along the way.
Hopefully we’ll be back to a more regular schedule over the coming weeks. We’ve had a number of people out due to illness and holiday which has meant missing a couple of sessions. We are also planning on moving to Thursday nights, so we’ll see how that goes.