Saturday, November 22, 2014

Classic Traveller - Murder, blood, and bodies

Everyone's favourite mercenary company are acting as guards on the King Richard, a massive space-liner. Last session two grisley murders took place and the rough burly mercs had to do the investigating.

With the young man who discovered his lover dead being led away, the players  had to decide what to do about the body. With the previous body still floating outside the airlock, spacing it was not an option. In the end they decided to suck the air out of the stateroom and leave it sealed up. There was a lot of discussion about how they could do a search without alarming the passengers.

The ship's First Lieutenant told them an anecdote about mass panic on starships and how he'd been on a ship that had fallen into that trap. There had been unreasonable panic, fires, rampage, death, and by the end of jump the ship was almost a write-off, a thing that he would not risk again for any reason.

A panicked call came over the com' reporting a bout of violence on the pool-deck. They dispatched their nearest team to the pool with orders to be as non lethal as possible, before running down there themselves. When they popped onto the pool deck they found themselves amongst a pack of running passengers. They were wailing about the monster that was attacking people.

At the pool itself, they didn't find a monster, they did find one of their Vargr mercs pinning down one of the liners hostesses, and he even had his teeth buried in her leg. In the pool a man was weakly trying to swim as his blood leaked into the water.

The PCs quickly dragged the bleeding man from the water and pulled the merc off the hostess. It seems the report of a monster was a reference to the Vargr. They called for the doctor and set about working out what had happened. It seemed that the hostess had suddenly attacked the man in the pool with a ...spoon. Stabbing him repeatedly and trying to open him up.

The doctor wasn't answering but a nurse could be reached, and rushed to the scene. The nurse worked on the injured man but wouldn't go near the hostess until the Vargr that was licking his bloodied lips backed away. Once the "monster" was out of the way the nurse found the hostess almost catatonic with wide open pupils. Pharmacological! The head steward was called to clean up the bloody pool. He couldn't believe the mess, and straight after he'd finished cleaning the first victims room too!

Where the heck was the doctor?

They knocked on the doctor's door but got no answer, they called down the Lt to use his pass key (which they then took from him for their own use). Inside they found the doctor drunk and out to the world. The Lt was not pleased. The PCs noted that there were a lot of chemical bottles around the place and sheets of paper with chemical formula scrawled across them, many were struck out. The PC with medical training took a glance over these and realised they were hallucinogenic concoxtions. A search of the room discovered a notebook under the bunk. In this they discovered a list of names and dates. The Lt realised it was a list of crew members, ten of them.

The PCs called a meeting of the named crew in the pool and met them there with a small contingent of the merc company. The nurse give them the once over as the PCs started an interrogation. They found that the doctor without authorisation or permission had given all of them shots, claiming that they needed to have them for the trip to Oretroos, to protect them against Oretroos' bugs. A few of the crew also had blank spots in their memories that appeared to match up with the murders.

After a brief discussion about what to do with these people, they asked for volunteers to go into cold storage and suggested that it would be better for everyone, as "who-knew what the chemicals might do"?!  Some volunteered but the idea was not popular, the danger and risk of cold storage put a lot of people off, but in the end the rest were forced into it under duress. This way of putting people on ice proved popular with the PCs. The young man who had seen the body of his lover, was also placed into storage.

When a man came up to the PCs reporting his child missing the PCs feared the worst. They tried to get some information out of the man but he proved more than a little uptight. The man was afraid for his child, and the rumours of "monsters" that had been going round had put him just over the edge. He took off running down the corridor screaming. Trying to keep the lid on things one PC played-up the situation gayly dancing in the man's wake and made it all appear to be an impromptu act of some sort. Alas when the man started barging into staterooms screaming and searching for his son it could not be allowed to continue. He was tackled to the ground and placed under arrest.

They dragged him back to his room and finding an item of the boys clothing asked one of the Vargr if his nose would help in tracking the child. The Vargr was unsure if he was being insulted but in the end agreed to help. After visiting the theater deck where the child was last seen the heroic and skillful Vargr led them to a locked storeroom inside which they found the mutilated body of the missing child. Some mental calculation seemed to suggest that this boy may have been the victim of the one of those already in storage, so all that was left was to get rid of the body. They called the head steward to clean the place up and slipped the boy's remains into what was becoming the "death room", the stateroom of the second victim.

Things went pretty smoothly after that, it was only a short while until they emerged from jump. They found themselves in the middle of nowhere, but this was not because of a mis-jump. A fuel tender was waiting there and a transfer of fuel to the liner commenced. While this was taking place the body that was waiting quietly outside the shuttle airlock (the first victim) was retrieved and thrown into the "death room".

A second jump took place. Tensions were high. The passengers were unnerved by the "missing" people, both passengers and crew. By the roomers of the "monsters", the fight in the pool of course added to it. And these very rich people did not like being so upset, they had paid for the excursion of a life time, not a fear filled ride into hell.

Only one incident of note took place during the second jump. The PCs were called to a fight in the theater. Two men had come to blows. The families had been rivals/enemies for some time. One family had a teenage daughter, the other a teenage son, there had been a relationship that the parent could not countenance.  During the show the men had become aware that the other was also on board and a nudged elbow had turned into a fight.

The PCs arrived and broke the fight up, but decided to make a little money on the side. They encouraged the men to schedule a bout of fisticuffs the next morning. Of course a "book" was started and drinks served, in the forward theater, all without the officers of the ship being aware. The audience of unshaved gentlemen turned up, and the bout played out. When one man hit the canvas (alright, metal floor) the PCs had added another 1100Cr to their pocketbooks.

The arrival at Oretroos went off without a hitch. A shuttle was launched and a survey carried out. they were scouting for a few things. Locations where the passengers could be shuttled down for a swim on the beach, mountain climbing, jungle treks etc. Most importantly they were checking out the autocthones and the location of the Imperial research base. The aim being to avoid the Imperials, and allow passengers to visit the others. Radio signals were picked up from the Imperials and the base's position located.

There ended the session.

However, as I like to tease the next session to the players I made this audio recording of another radio intercept picked up a day or two later...

Radio Intercept

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