The Talisker Campaign

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In The Beginning

Posted by lostearthmother, Aug 25 2006, 01:51 PM

Well, they say you should never start your campaign with a Reaver attack. But it is, on occasion, hilarious.

I started mine in a with a bar room brawl (to test the unarmed combat rules). After most of the 'bad guys' were knocked out the patrons were again interrupted by a Tong attack (allowing a try out of gun combat). During all this the skyplex environment was getting increasingly unstable, and as the last guy went down an alarm sounded and the blast doors locked. The place was under Reaver attack. The Player Characters, who had not met before, now had to work together to get out the back way through unknown territory all the while keeping at least one closed door between themselves and the Reaver Horde. They managed to improvise a few nasty traps and rescue a bottle of aged whiskey on the way.

They were eventually trapped in Mr Niska's abandoned office, but discovered his escape hatch under the rug. This led to a docking bay where all vehicles had departed except one derelict Firefly. They took the Firefly but discovered after launch that it had no fuel. Which fortunately left them tumbling dead in orbit with Reavers going after the live ships around them.

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Great fun, and it separated the PCs from all their assets except the ones they carried into the bar with them.

On A Wing And A Prayer

Posted by lostearthmother, Aug 25 2006, 01:50 PM

And after a hiatus due to Christmas, we finally got to play the second episode...

The survivors managed to get the ship down onto the planet below with only a bent power coupling to repair. They landed at a ranch belonging to "an old friend" of the doctor's whom he'd known in med school. He went out to greet her with great affection, and unfortunately botched the recollection of her name, using her best friend's name instead. She decked him. He didn't defend, figuring he deserved it. His crew and her watching ranch hands were vastly entertained, so the two withdrew indoors to renew their friendship.

After half an hour or so of waiting the rest of the crew borrowed a grav mule and headed into town to buy supplies and replace the power coupling. The pilot and engineer were reduced to rummaging in the scrapshop yard for "craptech" parts, while The Money and the ladies went for supplies. Both groups were distressed to learn that they had been listed as "deceased" in the Skyplex attack, and their Credit frozen. Neither group could buy anything significant with their pooled cash dollars. Re-activating their citizen ID card required fingerprinting at a Class C or better security station (in a major city).

They retired to the Blue Sun Cortex Cafe for a rethink, and decided to hack into the cortex to pre-register their stolen Firefly and re-activate their ID cards. Many plastic dinosaur Plot Points were thrown at these dice rolls. They managed to succeed with everything except re-activating the cards of the two Coreworld citizens (the Money and his Bodyguard); both have reasons to be paranoid. Their re-activation merely requires a DNA scan at a Class B or better facility, but both are considering the advantages of staying dead.

By this time a hostile crowd was gathering in Main St, and the players were getting jumpy. It turned out that the rumours they'd heard in town of embezzled trust funds were aimed at the local priest, who was just about to be lynched by the sheriff and his deputies (without the benefit of a trial). The crew had already noticed that the church was the only building not displaying a Niska Crow election poster. They decided to head back to the ship, rescuing the priest on the way out, purely to annoy Mr Niska as much as possible. They stole the sheriff's grav vehicle to assist their attack. In best cinematic style, they shot the hanging rope apart and rammed the gallows, pulling the priest onto the grav vehicle with them. One fat deputy managed to jump in as well, figuring the tiny asian lass no match for his brawn. How wrong he was. Two rounds later the bodyguard dumped him over the side, having delayed merely to grab his gunbelt as her souvenir.

Back at the ranch, the doctor finally remembered to raise the question of possible cargo. His friend allowed that there was a spare 100 head of livestock "up in the canyons", an embarrassing reminder of her early years when she was new to ranching. Only it wasn't so much a herd as a flock. The doctor bought the entire flock at a very good rate, sight unseen. The reunited crew headed off into the canyons to retrieve the flock, sadly without a single dice of Animal Handling between them. Fortunately llamas are exceedingly docile and well-behaved creatures. They didn't balk until actually at the cargo ramp. Here the engineer had the bright idea of luring them up with the rattle of feeding buckets. At the same time the doctor on the other side of the llamas fired his shotgun to scare them into moving on. The engineer only managed to get to partial cover from the stampede.

The Firefly is now in the black again, with just enough residual fuel to get them to the adjacent planet. And the llamas are humming...

The town of Ironwood:

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the stolen vehicle accelerates down Main St...

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...towards the lynch mob:

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Back at the ranch; the terrifying llama flock awaits:

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Last One Out

Posted by lostearthmother, Aug 25 2006, 01:50 PM

Episode 3 played out at the weekend. This was meant to develop the background of two of the crew (one PC and one NPC). It turned out quite a lot darker than previous episodes.

We opened with a prologue; a flashback to 10 years earlier with a young pilot in a desperate dogfight during the Independence War. The pilot was reliving a familiar dream. I could have played this out using the RPG rules, or one of the computer games, but instead we used the Starfighter variant of the old "Ace of Aces" books. (Anyone else remember them?) This time, when the pilot was shot up, instead of exploding into vaccum, the side of the simulator opened up to reveal his Flight Instructor, and a rival young pilot.

At this point we broke for "credits"; going around the table re-introducing the characters. I really need a theme tune to play during this part.

The episode resumed with a minor drama in the cargo hold as one of the llamas gave birth. They discovered that their rescued priest is very handy with practical problems, and that their whore is a real softy with cute, furry animals. Then came the landing on Planet Ita. Since they were running on fuel vapour the pilot had to "glide it in". This was, after the addition of several dinosaur plot points, just about successful although the engineer really didn't enjoy being woken up to the sound of screeching metal.

Once safely docked in Port Isis the reputable types attempted to negotiate Customs. This was run by several seedy thugs from Sacretis Security, a cut-price law enforcement franchise working the Rim. Attempting bribery, or indeed parting with money for any reason, proved to be really difficult for this crew. When they finally were allowed out into the cityside, it was a huge disappointment. Once famous for its aerospace industry, the city had decayed when the massive factory closed down, law enforcement had broken down, and many people were relocating to rural farmsteads ahead of the Sacretis pull-out due at the end of the month. The pilot (and designated Captain) cast around for some familiar landmarks and found his old Flight Instructor clearing out his offices. Some drinks later, the pilot got an invitation to the retirement party and permission to search the old hanger for spare parts before it was auctioned off.

Meanwhile most of the rest of the crew had a poke around the slums, discovering one good eatery and a cargo brokerage. They sold off the llamas via the cortex (with the assistance of their versatile priest), explored options for outward cargo, and booked a table at the noisy Italian restaurant for dinner. At this point I cut to an "Elsewhere" shot, and described what happened to their Janitor, who had gone off alone. She was the victim of a nasty mugging, but managed to turn the knife on the attacker and stow his body in some trash. The players were not sure what to make of this information which they knew but their characters don't. I'm not either but I'm interested to see how it plays out.

During the afternoon the injured engineer managed to repair their Firefly, with some help from the janitor who wouldn't leave the spaceport again.The pilot dug out his old uniform (minus insignia) and the rest of them dressed up for a proper meal out. The Pastafarian restaurant proved to be an excellent choice and the Money (an epicure of note) determined to rescue Mama Maria and her vast brood from their slum. The priest thoroughly agreed. It was, however, left to the Doctor to actually remember to pay for their meal.

Across the road in the community hall, the Flight Instructor's retirement party was in full swing. Since this gathering attracted every ex-Independent pilot in the nearby system it would have given apoplexy to any Alliance commander who knew about it. Fortunately they were all busy at nearby Ezra. It should have attracted the concern of Sacretis Security, but they failed to show up during increasingly wild celebrations which culminated in the old Flight Standard being paraded down Main Street to a rousing chorus of the Independents Anthem (all very, very illegal). The pilot was eventually poured into his bed and awoke late the next day.

The next morning it was decided to head back into the border worlds. Partly to accommodate Mama Maria, but mostly because the Money and his Bodyguard had had enough of being poor and wanted to re-register their citizen ID. With the Bianca clan filling the hold as steerage class passengers, they also managed to add three first class passengers to the passenger cabins: the glamorous Mrs Durran Haymer; plus Mr Smith and Mr Jones, the gay proctologists. Refuelling was complete and they were set to go.

The pilot staggered out, determined to pay his old Flight Instructor for the spare parts. He wasn't at home. He wasn't at the auction. He wasn't anywhere. The news was full of a daring raid on the old factory the previous night, which had secured the entire Sacretis payroll for the quarter. The pilot returned to the flat, along with some help. They broke in and found an empty flat, a scap of woven badge, and an overnight bag with souvenirs from the party. When they looked out the window, they also discovered to body of the Flight Instructor, who had fallen into the factory yard.They took a closer look, but failed to find any more clues.

Back at the ship,they discovered they had to leave in a hurry to avoid the Alliance vessel which had been called in to investigate. After they broke atmo the pilot received a Wave from the Securitas sergeant who requested the return of "an un-named female" to assist their investigation of murder and robbery. The photo was of the janitor. The crew didn't acknowledge the Wave, but the pilot did notice the torn insignia on the sergeant's scruffy uniform.

The episode ended with one very angry and frustrated Captain...

Port Isis:
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Port Isis side view:

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Browncoat Re-union:

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Uh oh:

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Awful Crowded

Posted by lostearthmother, Aug 25 2006, 01:49 PM

Prologue: a flashback to the Engineer's student days. He's one of a group of youths bemoaning their poverty as usual over a beer or three. This time one of his friends pulls out a crumpled leaflet gotten from the local teaching hospital. It wants healthy young volunteers to trial a new drug for combatting leukaemia and other auto-immune diseases. The pay is very generous. Next morning the students head over to the hospital where they're given a legal disclaimer form to sign, and a brief examination. They're then separated to different rooms to be injected with the drug and monitored. The Engineer notes mirrored glass along one wall of his room. A few hours later he's aware of screaming and increasing levels of commotion outside his room, and the sound of serious amounts of medical equipment being rushed in. He slips outside in time to see four of his friends, horribly swollen and contorted, being shipped out to an ICU facility under the supervision of two gentlemen wearing blue gloves. It is many months before he and the other placebo recipients see their friends again, and the others are never quite the same afterwards.

Episode 4 begins with the firefly Talisker moving through the black, about a week away from Persephone. In the bridge the Captain is still brooding over the murder of his old friend. Elsewhere the crew are gathering for their evening meal of protein paste, but are being tormented by the aroma of lasagne wafting up from steerage where Mama Maria Bianca is cooking for her brood of 19 youngsters. Unanimously, they decide to throw themselves on her mercy. Joining them at dinner in the cargo hold is one of their first class passengers, Mrs Durran Haymer, a stunning blonde who brings along a fine bottle of Chablis. She greets the Money warmly, reminisces about Bellerophon during the war, and apologises for not having his favourite Chateauneuf aboard. By which he gathers that they have met before. Now while he does remember a munitions delivery to Bellerophon, he doesn't remember a stunning blonde and other events that she mentions. So either one of them is lying, or he has a clone.

Later that evening the Doctor pulls up the Cortex entry for Durran Haymer, and shares it with the crew. "Good guy", the Engineer mutters. As the Cortex is active, a number of Waves arrive for the crew: several cryptic ones for the Captain, and letters from home for the Engineer and the Doctor.

Next mainday starts with the first of many alarms as one of the children attempts to override the airlock safety controls. Despite the best efforts of the Priest, the Bodyguard and the Whore to keep all the kids busy with improving activities, several other alarms sound off during the day. Some are just parts of the derelict ship failing, others are the result of persistent exploration by the youngsters. In this way the crew discovers that the shuttles are ship-locked because they could decompress at any moment. The alarms also draw the Captain out of his brooding long enough to stomp downstairs and bellow at the offending children. This makes him easily the scariest person aboard in their eyes, far more than the two other first class passengers, Mr Smith and Mr Jones, who have emerged to lurk around the catwalks. The engineer notes with some alarm their blue hands. The Priest notes with mild curiosity their interest in one of the Bianca children, 12-year old Francesca.

Finally the ship quietens into Alterday, with most of the crew asleep and the Whore generously sharing her cabin with the displaced (and very handsome) Doctor.

The third Mainday cycle starts well enough. The Money receives a wave from his old editor. Turns out the Money was a minor celebrity food critic back on Osiris. Anyways, Marie Wiley has noticed his review of the Pastafarian posted onto the Cortex, and was vastly amused to find the Money "looking incredibly lively for a dead guy." She suggests renewing his comcasts, and the Money cheerfully agrees to consider it once he's dealt with his inconvenient 'Dead' status at Persephone.

But then one of the kids goes down with measles, and another, and another.... The Doctor digs out his remaining shots of Ivoprovalyn immune-booster for the adults, but there's not nearly enough for the children as well. He scrambles to organise cooling baths and rehydrating drinks for the kids. Most of the adults muck in to help, including the glamourous Mrs Haymer, but not the aloof Mr Smith and Mr Jones. Mrs Haymer sticks close to the handsome Doctor, much to the irritation of the Whore. Eventually Mama Bianca notices that one of the children is missing entirely: Francesca.

Those not working on the medical emergency organise a thorough ship-wide search. This reveals a surprising number of smuggling nooks, but no missing child. As Alterday starts the Money has the brilliant idea of searching crew quarters, and gets as far as the penultimate cabin where the Whore persuades him to stay for an all-night game, allegedly of poker. Luckily the Doctor is also detained after hours by Mrs Haymer, who is keen to share more Chablis and a game of backgammon. Much to his surprise, the Doctor's seduction skill is entirely eclipsed by hers. It is left to the Priest, returning after a long wearying day, to discover Francesca hiding under his bed in the last cabin. He patiently coaxes her out and eventually persuades her to talk a bit about her fears. She's terrified of the blue hands, for no reason at all that he can discern. He manages to get her back to the cargo hold before Mainday cycle, helped by the fact that the crew is carefully not noticing who is where tonight.

After breakfast, the Captain is surprised by yet another alarm as the ship enters what it thinks is a magminefield, deployed by the IAV Dortmunder during the war. He determines that this navdata is obsolete, but sets watch anyway. He is thus not entirely surprised to receive a distress call an hour later. The signal seems to be from the Lucky Strike, an Anchor Class frontier transport travelling from Persephone to St Albans. The signal is mostly static, with only a few unclear snatches of voice here and there.

The Talisker closes and docks hold-to-hold with the Lucky Strike. In full EVA suits the Bodyguard, Doctor and Priest enter, leaving the Janitor close by the Strike's airlock. The cargo hold is spookily still, with just a red light strobing overhead. They explore, and are some way from the airlock when the ambush hits. They get to cover and return fire on what seems to be a rabble of miners. The Bodyguard is hit and desperately patches up herself and her EVA suit with some duct tape. The Priest proves very handy with a pistol and surprisingly even the Doctor hefts a shotgun from his medbag. Even so, they are unable to slow the rush of rabble towards the airlocks. Things are looking very bad for the Talisker so the Engineer decides to leap down from the catwalks and detach the connecting tube between the two ships. His comm call of "3 - 2 - 1 - Detach" was, perhaps, an afterthought. The Captain is busy facing the blue hands off his bridge at this time.

The decompression is a bit of a surprise to his crew mates aboard the Strike, but at least they have EVA suits on, unlike the rabble. The Bodyguard and Priest manage to hold on, and the Janitor is 'caught' by the Captain in a heroic Barnswallow manoeuvre, leaving just the Doctor to net back in from the slowly expanding cloud of corpses. A move by the Bodyguard to loot the corpses is firmly suppressed by all within commlink

Once the Lucky Strike's hold is repressurised, the EVA team continue their exploration. They open the four other cargo holds and find them full of non-combatant settlers, a few still alive but most many days dead. One gasp of the foul air and an earful of 'Jui sheng xi tong. Warning; life support failure.' is enough to close up their suits again. They find an internal commlink to plug into, establishing contact with the last remaining crew barricaded inside the bridge. Captain Tanya Ford is very grateful to them, and gives them a tale of woe and mutiny by the miners. Still, she won't let too many stay aboard to help. The Doctor is allowed to stay, and also the Engineer to help fix the sabotaged engines. Much to everyone's surprise the playboy Doctor transforms before their eyes; he strips out of his EVA suit and sets off to help the dead and dying with grim determination.

The engineer partially fixes the engines, and devises a cunning plan to use the Talisker for an impulse boost to push both ships into Persephone orbit a day earlier. This works perfectly until the turnaround decceleration burn. Bang, their craptech power coupling blows up. Engineers from both ships scramble to replace it before they cannon into Persephone's crowded traffic. They succeed, just, and drop into safe orbit for the emergency tugs to take over. As the Talisker heads dirtside the crew are surprised to learn that that the Money has already sold their story to the Cortex news editors. Their ship, and especially the Doctor and the Engineer, are now local heroes. Interviewers and cameras await their arrival at Eavesdown Docks.

Crew quarters of the Talisker:

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First Class passengers:

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Steerage Class, as the first measles case arrives in the Infirmary:

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The Captain investigates another alarm:

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Episode 5: Well Done

Posted by lostearthmother, Aug 25 2006, 01:49 PM

Episode 5: Well Done

A short episode which started with a flashback to the Bodyguard’s final training run in an unnamed branch of the Alliance Military forces during the War. Major Tafar Zubari orders her and her teammates to haul a large crate across the wilderness and deliver it to the IAV Magellan. Now in theory it’s a graduation exercise but she’s on Athens, which has changed hands a few times during the war, so there might be Browncoats about. She makes the delivery somewhat late, having avoided ambush and the worst of her teammates bickering along the way. A lieutenant with appropriate ID waits with a shuttle and takes delivery of the crate, ordering her immediate return to Zubari. She reports back as ordered, giving a verbal debrief to the good Major. The social whirl of graduation and celebration at last begins….

The heroes of the hour, the crew of the plucky Talisker, head down the gravity well of Persephone for a landing at Eavesdown Docks. Despite needing to make only an averagely difficult landing, the Pilot manages to prang a few cargo containers on the way in, seriously alarming the waiting paparazzi and demolishing the new shock absorbers on set-down. The Portmaster’s campaign to install automated grappling landers unexpectedly receives a topical boost. The disgruntled Engineer levers open the bent cargo bay door and greets the awaiting customs officer: Lt Atherton Wing. Close behind him is an elderly gent, Sir Benedict Flyte the comptroller of Persephone News Services, who is keen to negotiate an exclusive contract with the crew.
The customs officer picks his way carefully around the decrepit firefly, merely raising his eyebrows at the state of paperwork for Mama Bianca’s horde. He becomes outright helpful with arrangements to discreetly disembark Mr Smith and Mr Jones, and would be even more keen to help Mrs Haymer were she not intent on staying aboard until the Doctor returns. Reluctantly he returns his attention to the problem of the two technically dead crew, and summons a grav limo to get them to the Federal Security Building uptown. Throughout his inspection, Magda manages to stay out of sight. The Engineer, intent on locating yet more spares, heads out and bulls his way through the paparazzi by simply setting off an electromagnetic pulse to fry their comms equipment.
The limo arrives so the Money, his Bodyguard and Lt Wing head off to see the Feds. This provides a welcome distraction as Messers Smith & Jones quietly depart. Nearing their destination the limo is unexpectedly diverted by highway repairs and ends up in a tangle of traffic in the back streets of the city. Just as the Bodyguard is getting worried she detects the pungent smell of evaporating fuel, and pulls the others to the floor as the tanker blocking the road ahead explodes. Amid the screams, carnage and confusion, the three sprint for the cover of a nearby alleyway. The Bodyguard takes a sniper bullet in the mesh which knocks her down, whereupon she rolls and returns fire, albeit very wildly. The other two gentlemen get to cover and contemplate their options; garbage, sewers or slums. By unspoken agreement they choose to preserve their expensively tailored suits and instead pound on the nearest door until its resident is summoned to let them in. The Bodyguard joins them and there they wait until the emergency services bring the situation under control.
Meanwhile, back at Eavesdown Docks, the Pilot heads off for a pre-arranged rendezous with an old Browncoat chum who goes by the name of Mudguard. He weaves through the maze of cargo containers until he reaches the stairs down to the Sextant, an old pilots’ bar hidden inside a sort of cave of containers. In the dim recesses Mudguard is indeed waiting with his back to the Cortex screen. Over a beer or three the Pilot explains to him the true sequence of events at Ita, and asks for the help of the old pilots’ network in finding this Sacretis Security sergeant that murdered Doug Masters. Mudguard agrees, and then unexpectedly turns the conversation to where Doug’s possessions ended up. Apparently somewhere is a string of co-ordinates which “the Major” needs. The Pilot agrees to search his sole souvenir of Doug’s retirement party. Further discussion stops as a couple of journalists stumble in; “Hey, that there’s Talisker’s Captain!” exclaims one over the flash of his colleague’s Cortex camera. Declining a brawl, the Pilot storms out muttering “No comment. No comment. No comment…” as he goes.
The remaining crew have a far more pleasant time; they are taken shopping by the ever-accommodating Sir Benedict on the understanding that they will appear on his hit Radomir & Judita! chat show tomorrow morning, and attend the War Widows and Orphans’ Charity Ball the following night. The Whore chooses a wedding cake of a dress, with more cream flounces than you can count. The men manage a sort of Rhett Butler look with frock coats and brocade waistcoats. They add in a tailored white lab coat for the quarantined Doctor, plus a slinky green dress with high leg slits for the Bodyguard, and the expedition is judged a success. The Priest even remembers to view some potential restaurant sites for the Bianca clan. Only Magda remains overlooked.
Finally, as the day draws to a close, the Money, Bodyguard and Lt Wing are escorted the remaining blocks to the Federal Security Building. There the two crew are led away for a thorough body scanning and DNA sample. Afterwards they wait, and wait, and wait. Finally their renewed Citizen ID cards (incorporating the re-activated bank Credits) are handed out. The Money is also given a pre-recorded message from his father requiring a DNA sample of the cat, and is served a class action writ for damages as the remaining owner of the Byzantine Queen destroyed by reavers at the start of the campaign.


Posted by lostearthmother, Aug 25 2006, 01:49 PM

Episode 6: Shindig

This followed directly on from the previous episode with a morning appearance on the hit Radomir & Judita! chat show for the charismatic Doc and the dour Pilot/Captain. Here they meet again a nervous Tanya Ford of the Lucky Strike and a corporate representative from the Strike’s owner who presents a surprise chit for 3000 Credits. A sly attempt to blame the mutiny on ‘negligence’ was evaded by the Doctor, to Ms Ford’s obvious relief. The Captain just barely waits for the show to finish before depositing the chit to finance urgent ship repairs.

After lunch the crew accompany the Doctor to a private social gathering of his extended family. The Doctor gallantly insists that the Janitor accompanies them, assuring her of darkened windows on their grav limo and tight security at the venue. Sure enough, as the transportation draws up outside the family villa in the countryside, a multitude of security guards scan the crew in and relieve them of weapons. Fortunately everyone stayed very, very respectful and soon joined a fabulous clan celebration up at the house on honour of little Isidora’s first communion. Everyone got to dance, even the Janitor. The Doctor was fussed over by all the womenfolk, congratulated his young cousin, and was finally rewarded by a private chat with his godfather. The old man had a few words of warning about ‘his colleague’ Niska. He noted that Niska was most intent on recovering something that had never belonged to him in the first place, and that the family protection could not extend outside Persephone.

By early evening the crew are chauffered back to the ship. There to discover that the Money’s diamonds are missing. A short search reveals that the Bodyguard’s ammo is also depleted and the Doctor’s stash of dubious drugs has been nicked from Medbay. Relations between the crew and the Bianca clan are about to deteriorate rapidly when the Janitor points out that Mrs Haymer has finally left the ship, along with her luggage. The crew vow all sorts of dire revenge should their paths ever cross with Yo-Saff-Bridge again.

Next morning sees a further shopping expedition, with the Money buying some outrageous ‘historical’ costumes from Earth-That-Was, as well as business suits and hardware for his bodyguard. An intention to contest the writ for damages was also lodged. The rest of the day was taken up with preparations for the Widows and Orphans’ Charity Ball. The crew (all bar the Janitor) look very slick as they arrive at the red carpet for the event is, of course, broadcast across the Cortex. The Money has chosen to wear a red Grenadier Guards uniform, complete with bearskin hat, so the early media interest is in this vertically challenged personality from the Coreworlds. The rest of the crew achieve their ettiquette rolls, thus the buffet and shimmerwine portion of the evening passes fairly uneventfully apart from the Whore choosing to eat several bananas in a highly suggestive manner.

The mood changes when organisers screen archive footage from the rubble of Athens prior to launching this year’s appeal. The Captain makes several sustained bids in the charity auction, careful to drop out before he is in any danger of actually spending money. An orbital trip in the newsworthy Talisker is offered to the auction and goes for a reasonable sum, although they didn’t notice to whom. After the auction the Whore’s pet cria gets loose. The Whore, now surrounded by a pack of impressionable lordlings, is unconcerned so the rest of the crew scramble to round it up before it damages anything expensive. The bodyguard is encouraged to make good her bet with Sir Benedict about doing the splits in her best dress, and is too distracted to notice who else is watching. More shimmerwine is passed around and the Captain is pleased to chat to a mutual acquaintance from the Doctor’s family, who is keen to introduce him to one of the local High Court Judges. It soon becomes apparent that Judge Hawkins has a lucrative shipping contract for them. Meanwhile the Engineer has noticed that the Cortex Cameras are now concentrating on the Whore’s activities and that the shameless woman is about to start on a pole dance on the top table. For reasons not entirely clear to the rest of the crew the Engineer decides to prevent this by rugby tackling her. They deem it wise to withdraw at this point and go home. A tired but satisfied crew wake the rest of the ship up at about 3am to share takeaway pizza.

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