Location: Torinsk 0108, (A-0007AE-D), Xenough sub sector, Avalar Consulate
Required Equipment: None
Required Skills: Starship Skills – Pilot, Eng, Nav, Gunner, Medic
The players are contacted by Chev Grinnel, a retired, 70-year-old Scout. It is clear that he is in poor health – he is thin, and his features are gaunt. He is discretely looking for ship crew members for a “business project”. He is a pilot himself, but he will accept another pilot, along with Navigators, Medics, Gunners, and Engineers for this project. “The Project”, as he calls it, will take about 6 weeks to complete, after which he will pay each person Cr 5,000 for their involvement. No more than 6 persons can be hired due to financial and transportation constraints of “The Project” – Chev freely admits he is gambling his entire life’s savings on this venture. He will withhold any further details concerning “The Project” until the players agree to join him.
While he is quite ill, Chev appears to have considerable financial resources available to him. Chev provides Vacc Suits for the group, and offers up to Cr 2000 each up front for any special equipment desired, with the understanding that it will be deducted from their payment.
Chev is the owner of the independent 100-Ton Scout Ship Lorelei. The Scout ship has been extensively modified with additional equipment permitting it to serve as a salvage and recovery ship. The ship is quite old, severely battle-scarred, and in need of a good cleaning. Two large, lateral bulges port and starboard are visible on the upper half of the ship. Any Naval or Scout character would recognize the adverse effect of these modifications on the handling of the ship. It is perhaps 10% over specification in tonnage.
Seven cramped staterooms have been fitted aboard the ship to accommodate Chev and the crew. Chev has a Security Team of several Scouts to ensure a hijack attempt on the part of the players will fail. The security detail appears in spit and polish Scout Service uniforms, and their equipment and weapons are good quality.
As the ship owner, Chev will take one stateroom as a single, leaving the other six for dual occupancy. The number of Scouts will be at least 6. This would leave up to 6 spots for the players. If there are fewer than 6 players, additional Security Scouts will be hired so that the ship runs at full capacity. For purposes of this mission, all of the Security Scouts can Pilot, but none of them are Engineers.
The modifications retain the Jump-2 capability of the ship, but sacrifice much of the advanced Avionics of a typical Scout ship. Ship’s weaponry in the turret has been replaced with a laser cutter / welder, effectively a Beam Laser-1. The Engineering shop has upgraded equipment and capacity for repair work. Unfortunately, the ship’s Maneuver Drive rating is reduced to 1. Agility is effectively 0. An Air/Raft is fitted for utility work.
When pressed, Chev will describe “The Project” as a salvage operation in the Foreven Sector. He has located a lost Navy Ship which he intends to bring back online and claim as salvage. The players will help get the reactors online, and perform any needed repairs, then Chev will claim the ship as salvage. He had visited the ship alone 4 weeks ago, and estimated the extent of the work, which prompted his hiring the players.
1. All is as presented. The Navy Ship is a battle-scarred 400 Ton Gazelle Class. The 5 ton barbettes hold Particle Accelerators. The other turrets hold beam lasers. The Drop Tanks are present, but empty. The ship can be returned to operational status in a number of weeks equal to 6 minus the combined Engineering skill of all in the crew. The 20-ton Gig is missing, presumably when the crew abandoned ship. Chev has taken numerous precautions to foil any attempt for the players to take the ship. Roll a 2D6 every day. On a result of 10+, a Pirate vessel is encountered.
2. All is as presented. The “Navy” Ship is actually a 400 Ton Donosev Scout vessel. It is unarmed. The ship can be returned to operational status in a number of weeks equal to 6 minus the combined Engineering skill of all in the crew. Chev has taken numerous precautions to foil any attempt for the players to take the ship. Roll a 2D6 every day. On a result of 10+, a Pirate vessel is encountered.
3. The ship Chev had scouted earlier cannot be found at the coordinates he recorded. In fact, it has been recovered by another salvage operation. The players are unaware of this, and will keep searching. Roll a 2D6 every day. On a result of 10+, a Pirate vessel is encountered. On a 2 or 3, a Naval vessel arrives in the area, and tells the group the ship they are looking for was recently salvaged. Even though the salvage mission was not completed, Chev will pay each player a bonus of Cr 1000, and will offer them a job for the remainder of the 6 weeks. Roll 1D6 and ignore a result of “3” for how this phase of the encounter will be played.
4. The ship Chev had scouted earlier cannot be found at the coordinates he recorded. The group can search the system, and will find the ship on an 8+ each day that the search is continued. Roll a 2D6 every day. On a result of 10+, a Pirate vessel is encountered. Otherwise, this is identical to #2 above.
5. The ship is a 600 ton liner, pressed into service as a troop transport. The ship can be returned to operational status in a number of weeks equal to 5 minus the combined Engineering skill of all in the crew. There are numerous valuables on board the liner, some of which might escape the scrutiny of Chev should the players attempt to steal them. Should the group attempt to scrounge the ship, they will each find valuables worth 2D6 times Cr 1000 each week. On a roll of 9+ this goes unnoticed by Chev. If the group spends more than 2 weeks scrounging while getting the ship working, apply a DRM of -1 per week beyond the second week for Chev to detect their efforts. Chev has taken numerous precautions to foil any attempt for the players to take the ship. Roll a 2D6 every day. On a result of 9+, a Pirate vessel is encountered.
6. All is as presented in #1 above, except that Chev and his security detail of “Scouts” are in fact Pirates. They have no intention of paying the characters once the Gazelle Ship has been reactivated. The players will be killed once they have outlived their usefulness. The pirates’ preparations have been focused on the Gazelle, however, and not so much on the Lorelei. It might be possible for the players to take the Lorelei and either escape (possibly) or fight the pirates and take possession of the Gazelle (slight chance of success). If they made any contingencies on board either ship, perhaps they will have a fighting chance.
The players will probably consider taking the salvaged ship themselves. Chev’s precautions include:
- limiting oxygen refills for Vacc suits, and controlling oxygen in various ship areas.
- The vacc suits that Chev loans the group actually have a shaped charge warhead built into the spine of the suit, remote-controlled by Chev. Roll 2D for 9+ to detect this, with a + DRM equal to Vacc Suit skill. If it comes down to it, he will inform the players of this fact, and then blow one suit up if they fail to comply. The HEAP round will puncture the suit and sever the person’s spine immediately.
- loading anti-hijacking programs as soon as the computer is up and running.
- Chev’s work lights and portable power generators also have video / audio recorders and transmitters built-in. This permits him to monitor the players as they work on salvaging the ship.
- securing player weapons in the armory on Lorelei
- The usual sequence for reviving a ship is something like engineering control, power, maneuver, jump drives, bridge, weapons, gravity, atmosphere, and finally, other ship systems. This can also help thwart a hijacking by limiting what the ship can do in stages.
- The 6 Security Scouts allows 2 to be on duty at any time for a 8 hour shift. They will sleep for 8 hours, then have free time for 8 hours, and then go back on duty. They are always armed, and seem very loyal to Chev. If they are befriended, it can be learned that they are very well paid. Maybe a few thousand well placed Credits can make them look the other way…