This is part of an ongoing campaign. You can find the other sessions over on the sidebar. This session was run on October 13, 2022. This session marked the start of there being secret communications between me and the individual players. This means that these recaps no longer cover everything that happened in the session. I will be reporting only the information that all players had access to.
The third session picked up at the start of the third day of the Council of Archdukes. Court convened with Archduke Tranian providing the emperor’s honor guard for the day. He decided to follow Adair’s lead and take a more restrained approach to his guard duties than Ishuggi did. The emperor announced that the council made progress on setting priorities for the budget surplus. He presented his plan to hold an Imperium-wide Olympics in the coming future and credited Archduke Adair with the idea. He also announced that he would be christening The Iolanthe, the new imperial flagship that afternoon.
Following court, Tranian had a private audience with Grand Princess Ciencia where he presented her with the historical Scout Service emblem that he acquired. They spent some time reminiscing about their school years and how hard Dulinor had been on them as their fencing instructor. Tranian raised his concerns about the K’Kree threat on his border and put forward his proposition that encouraging the Aslan to settle the worlds between the Imperium and the K’Kree could form a buffer. Ciencia did not dismiss this plan, but mentioned that it might make more sense to work with the Hivers against K’Kree since the centaurs seemed to have a strange respect for them dating back to their war three thousand years ago. Tranian decided to research this possibility further.
The royal family, the archdukes, and some senior members of the moot assembled at the shipyards in orbit for the christening of The Iolanthe. Strephon began the ceremony by discussing how the ship was assembled out of parts made in every sector of the Imperium, how it represented a new era of automation allowing for faster reactions with only 60% of the crew, and how it was built with teamwork from across the Imperium. Taking the champagne bottle in his hand, he paused and decided to give his old friend Archduke Dulinor the honor of breaking the bottle. Dulinor took the bottle and smashed it against the side of the ship.
At the exact instant that the bottle shattered, the emperor cried out and doubled over with his head in his hands. Tranian reacted immediately by calling the guards to the emperor’s side. Wading through the panicking crowd of nobles, Archduke Bzrk noticed one of the nobles standing perfectly still and staring at Strephone. He called out to the others to draw their attention.
While Ishuggi ran up onto the stage to protect the royal family, Adair moved towards the man Bzrk identified. The archduke drew his ceremonial revolver and opened fire, missing the man and hitting a bystander. By this point, Strephon was bleeding heavily from his nose. Up on the stage, Ishuggi started to drag the emperor away from the apparent psionic attack, calling for others to get the princess. Tranian and his guards were finally able to round the corner and gun down the attacker. They secured the body and split the royal family into different, guarded rooms.
The man who attacked the emperor was carrying an ID bearing the name of Baron Pazi, a Vilani nobleman. While Bzrk was able to determine through scent that the man was most likely from the Imperium and not Zhodani, Adair felt that he looked Solomani instead of Vilani. After questioning the other nobles, they established that none of them had heard of Baron Pazi, nor seen the man before. They determined that the ID was valid at least as far as allowing access to the event.
After running a facial recognition program on the camera footage from the palace, they determined that his face was not on file previously, that he arrived three weeks ago, and that he boarded the ship he arrived on in Meshan (Dingir/Solomani Rim).