This session was run on April 6, 2023
The Prismatic Ray arrived at the Last Exit (A100776-F 1019 Kushga/Diaspora) system, after an easy jump from Twinsong, an hour and a half from the high port. Last Exit itself is an airless rock primarily used for mining, subatomic particle research, and as housing for the many workers at the Tukera Lines shipyard/depot in system. While Last Exit would normally not be a candidate for shipyard/depot activity, since it is not on a main, Tukera Lines specializes in long haul ships making the requirement for a Jump-2 capable craft a benefit rather than a drawback. Even before the Rebellion started, Diaspora had a more frontier feel to it than the other core imperial sectors, with the recent conflict, the background chance of piracy has increased dramatically. The Jump-2 requirement helps insulate them from the scrappier raiders and the potential wrath of a megacorp deters the more sophisticated corsairs. The 25 million inhabitants of the system primarily live in the domed cities on the surface.
Last Exit has not been shielded from the other effects of the Rebellion though. Fluctuating prices and plummeting demand have wreaked havoc on the local economy. Last Exit’s government balkanized following a painful miner strike last year, leaving each of the ten domed cities to govern themselves. The situation in the cities has degraded since then with mass unemployment and what may be the beginning of factional violence that is poorly understood by those in charge.
The characters’ first stop was at the orbital shipyards to see to the Ray’s required maintenance. The IISS would cover the scheduled maintenance, but not the turret upgrades they wanted. The pulse laser on the turret was destroyed when it misfired during their encounter with the Jugisaal’s Razer. Since it was a double turret, they decided to accept the replacement pulse laser that IISS would provide and add a beam laser. In order to fund the upgrade, they took out a 1M credit loan (payable at 4,167 credits a month). They were informed that the work would take 1 week and that the next open slot on the line was in four weeks (046-1118). They decided to travel down to Holvax, Last Exit’s largest city and former capital, to look for work while they waited.
Once they were on the surface, Zarf located The Last Scan, a scout bar, and decided it was the best place to start their employment search. The bartender told him that there was a lot of people looking for short-term bodyguard/escort work due to the increase in violence, ransom kidnappings, and robberies. Zarf posted an advertisement offering those services on the local job page. Arenui spent most of the day acting as a broker-for-higher on the sale of some fish and made 2,000 credits. In the late afternoon, Zarf got a call from a man named Trow Backett in response to his ad.
They met Trow in a local food court and he explained that he was meeting with an antiques collector to sell a statue that his grandfather left him. He needed to be escorted from his hotel to the collector’s house that evening. He agreed to pay them 10,000 credits for the job and an additional 2,000 credits to store a case with some of his valuables aboard the Prismatic Ray until after the meeting.
With a few hours to burn before the job, they purchased some shotguns (the only permitted firearms in the city) and Mhan bought a baby carriage to disguise the box containing the statue. Arenui scouted the route and discovered that the trip would have to be done on foot (the domed cities are built around foot traffic with vehicles used only for large cargo transfers) and that they would have to pass through several bad neighborhoods on the way. He managed to find a freight elevator that would serve as a shortcut. He returned to the group and they geared up to leave.
As they passed through an alley to get to the elevator, they were stopped by a group of five gang members who ordered them to surrender all their valuables. Zarf tried to talk his way passed the thugs, but was not successful. A brief gunfight resulted in which one enemy fled and the rest were left seriously wounded and unconscious. They looted two illegal pistols and a strange radio and retreated to the freight elevator before the police could arrive. Aryanna patched up the wounded in the elevator.