This session was run on October 12, 2023.
They were still stuck on the empty space station circling Tantelos where the Ine Givar had left them. M’han and Hal managed to get the station’s radio working and, after being routed through planetary traffic control, were connected with Sassafras, the dolphin captain of the 800-ton mercenary cruiser, The Basilisk. He agreed to pick them up and take them to Nilii.
The Basilisk docked with the station, and they were met at the airlock by Num, the uplifted chimpanzee XO of the ship. He told them they were welcome to the living and common areas but needed to not move about the fighting areas of the ship. He also required them to surrender their weapons. They quickly realized that the entire crew was made up of uplifted dolphins, chimpanzees and other Terran animals.
When The Basilisk arrived in the Nilii system, it immediately engaged in combat with another ship. Sassafras claimed they were under attack over the intercom and ordered the passengers to remain in their quarters. After a few minutes of intense maneuvering and weapons fire, they heard the metallic clang of hatch-to-hatch contact followed by running boots on the deck. Then things went silent.
After an hour, Num arrived in their quarters, wearing scarred battle armor, and asked if any of them had medical skills. Aryanna volunteered that she was a doctor and they escorted her to the medical bay. There, she saw three wounded men in Tukera Lines jumpsuits. Num informed her that pirates had posed as a Tukera Lines transport and attacked The Basilisk when it emerged from jump. They had crippled the ship, boarded it and taken the crew prisoners. Aryanna noticed that the Tukera uniforms seemed legitimate and well-tailored to the crew. She kept her suspicions about who the real pirates were to herself.
Sassafras informed them that he planned to make a low pass over Nilii and drop them and the Tukera Lines crew off using air/rafts. The travellers decided not to protest. They landed at the main city and were immediately arrested and charged with piracy.
In the morning, they were brought before Baron Samini Shihi, the imperial noble in charge of the system. They explained that they were not pirates, and neither were the Tukera Lines crew. The crewman backed up Aryanna’s claim that she had treated them after The Basilisk attacked them. The baron decided that their story seemed legitimate and released them. He helped the book passage aboard the Pantaloon for to Lerun through Viedma.
They arrived on Viedma and Zarf decided to make a report to the Navy base during their short layover. He explained that they had been transporting the kids they rescued from the Zhodani ship, along with their Zhodani prisoners, when they had been stranded after dropping out of jumpspace. He described the Ine Givar crew and explained that, while they had been let go, the terrorists still had the kids and the Zhodani. He decided to leave out the pyramid they suspected was an Ancients artifact.
The Pantaloon jumped for Lerun.
They arrived in Lerun and learned, via a Travellers’ News Service update, that a man claiming to be Emperor Strephon was on Usdiki. The man claimed that Archduke Dulinor had actually assassinated a double and he asked that the violence cease. The Pantaloon did a quick turnaround and jumped for Ikhareshu.
When they came out of jump in Ikhareshu, TNS informed them that both Dulinor and Lucan were denying that the man claiming to be Strephon was the legitimate emperor. Both still claimed that they were the real emperor. There was also a travel advisory warning that interference on the G-band coming from a gas giant was creating a navigational hazard in the Icestar system. M’han, remembering that the journal they got from Trow Backett indicated that G-band interference was often linked to Ancients sites, told the others they should bring the pyramid there.
They jumped for Last Exit.
They arrived on Last Exit and took possession of the Prismatic Ray from the overhaul facility.