This session was run on August 24, 2023.
In the morning, they decided to split into three groups for the day. Brauer will try to surveil The Thorn to determine if they have to worry about them interfering with the mission. Carstairs will try to get a job with the repair facility in order to get aboard The Hare’s Revenge. Don, von Borkus, and de Groot will hang out in the Lucky Eagle Alehouse in hopes of getting more information about CAPT Smith. When they exited The Invisible Hand, they learned that a Causeway class small transport named Yurem’s House of Clarifications had docked during the night.
Carstairs presented an application for an open mechanic position and training certificates at the repair facility. The recruiter asked when he could start, and he told her right away as he did not have any prospects at the moment. She told him to come back in the morning for indoc.
Don, von Borkus, and de Groot arrived at the Luck Eagle to see CAPT Smith sitting at a table across from another woman, in civilian clothes, eating breakfast. Smith was a wiry woman, in her mid-40s, with her blond hair in a ponytail. The other woman was about the same age, stout, with dark hair and glasses. They decided to try the same strategy that had worked for them the day before and took the table beside the two women. It took less than two minutes for CAPT Smith to fix her gaze on Don, who was leaning towards her in his chair, and ask if he needed her to speak a little louder.
Don quickly jumped to his feet and apologized. “Ma’am, I meant no offense. I was merely trying to see if you were Captain Smith before I approached. I can now see clearly, from your nametag, that you are. We have some business with you.”
Smith mentioned that randomly approaching naval officers in a restaurant was an odd way of conducting business and Don explained that they were working with Oliver Harris and had some computer parts. He offered her the manifest of their goods. She seemed impressed but told him she would rather wait for Harris’s arrival. She briefly introduced her companion, Dr. Delgado, and asked them to have Harris set up a meeting when he arrived. She dismissed them and returned to her meal.
Meanwhile, Brauer attempted to recon The Thorn from across the docking bay, but one of the crew standing guard by its airlock made him and approached to ask what he was doing. He tried to use the same tactic he had used the day before and claimed to be a retired marine who had served aboard the same class ship. The guard quickly pointed out that the Solomani Navy did not station marines aboard Corsairs and shooed him away. He found a spot at the café across from the Lucky Eagle and noticed one of The Thorn’s crew, poorly disguised in a tropical print shirt, follow CAPT Smith when she left.
Harris arrived around dinner time, and they set up a meeting for Smith to inspect the cargo at 1200 the next day.
Later that night, Yurem’s House of Clarifications undocked and headed for the jump point. Fourty-five minutes later, The Thorn also left and followed it.
At 0900, Carstairs reported for indoc at the repair facility. He spent most of the morning filling out paperwork, getting briefed on preventing sexual harassment, and how to properly wear his personal protective equipment. They broke for lunch at 1200 and gave him a voucher for the company canteen. It was nice, but he noticed that there only seemed to be white color workers eating there.
The rest of the crew decided that they would allow Harris, Smith, and her aides on board, but keep them to the cargo areas where they would not see anything that might tip them off to the true nature of the ship. They would then offer them some refreshments where they could observe the cargo handlers pull samples for their inspection. Don was to spend the morning preparing a sedative to be mixed in with the food.
When Carstairs returned from lunch he sat through a slideshow explaining his health, dental, and vision benefits. This was followed by a session where two company attorneys spent an hour explaining why the employees of the repair facility did not need to form a union.
Harris, Smith, and two aides arrived at The Invisible Hand precisely at 1200 for their inspection. They were escorted into the cargo bay and Smith complimented the command crew on how well kept and clean the ship was. She briefly looked over the cargo before they ushered her to the small table they had set up with refreshments. As they ate, they explained that they could provide much higher quantities than this on their next trip, if she was interested. She indicated that she would be as long as she was happy with the results of the inspection. The cargo handlers began pulling samples from the crates she chose and bringing them over. As she looked down at her pad to read an incoming message, she collapsed. There was a few seconds of confusion, but the others quickly succumbed to the sedative as well. Unfortunately, Don had miscalculated the dosage and even his crewmates, whom he had given an antidote, collapsed. As the only awake person at the table, Don quickly grabbed Smith’s pad to keep it from locking. He could see that there was a message from Dr. Delgado on the screen:
Honey, I know you are angry with me, and I know you are only angry because you are worried. That is why I set this message to send after I have departed on Yurem’s House of Clarifications. You should not worry about the work I am doing. I know you think that the research is dangerous, and possibly illegal, and that you suspect the Order does not actually have the Confederation’s best interests in mind. While I have my own reservations about them, I can assure you that my work on Landell Station is every bit as important to the effort as yours is here. In fact, I think that it could be even more valuable in the long term. I will miss you. Stay safe and we will see each other in a few months.
Carstairs was just settling into a briefing on the limited personal use permitted of company resources when he got a message to return to The Invisible Hand immediately. He stood up and walked for the door, much to the consternation of the three HR reps giving the presentation.
Fourty-five minutes later, The Invisible Hand separated from the high port and made for the jump point at maximum thrust. The Hare’s Revenge broke free and began pursuit half an hour after they left, but it was too late and outmatched in thrust. The Invisible Hand safely jumped away.
The Invisible Hand safely arrived on Xenon and turned its prisoners over to Daibei Intelligence. Admiral Ten gave the crew a week’s liberty.