ACT 0: Prospective Starfinders
Session 1: So You Want to Join the Starfinders [May 20th, 2021]
In the sprawling offices of the Lorespire Complex on Absalom Station, four prospective Starfinders sit in wait.
There is Drozen, the android former bodyguard, who wears a mysterious technological mask over his face. He has long black hair and wears a large black trenchcoat.
Next is Shiiga, a rare venomthought vesk and practiced mystic, studying the powers of the mind in the Temple of Damoritosh. She has a long narrow snout under bright yellow-green eyes. Her scales are yellow, orange and red-pink with black stripes down her backside. She wears a simple decorative shirt that drapes over her front like a banner, oxblood red, dark brown with gold trimming.
The third candidate is Vashon, an android mechanic and roboticist. He has a bright blue mohawk that complements his pale bluish skin. Electronic tattoos run along his face and neck. He stands tall with a perfect posture.
The last candidate is Zaeolalan, or Zaeo, a charismatic lashunta who is a braggadocios, over-confident race pilot. He has a handsome appearance and is dressed quite stylish.
The four candidates are each called, one at a time, to the office of Venture-Captain Arvin’s office. Arvin asks each of them why they want to became a Starfinder and join the Society. As they each answer, we see a flashback for each of them.
Drozen: Farewell Mikayla
Drozen looks down at the tattoo on his arm, a thorny vine of roses running along his right arm. He looks solemnly at it for a moment. He then pulls the handle. It opens the air-lock seal of the small explorer ship, and he leaps out into the silent vacuum of space. He sails through the black void, stars twinkling in the vast space behind him, his breathless body immune to the ravages of the vacuum. He flies about 100 meters, reaching his destination, the side of the cargo freighter docked at the small space port. He crawls along the ship’s exterior, slinking to the back end of the ship and entering in the open cargo hold before the flying lifter returns. He takes one more look upon the patched-up explorer he leaped away from and looks down at his rose tattoo once more. He then disappears into the darkness with the many cargo crates.
Shiiga: The Mission
Shiiga closes the last clasp on her bag as she made her final preparations to leave. Two vesks approach her, it is Fossi and Venth, her mentors. Shiiga bows slightly in respect to her elders. Fossi leads Shiiga into a room at the back of the temple. The three massive, red burning doshko energy blades burn upon the high wall, the symbol of Damoritosh the Conquerer. Shiiga enters into the back room where the heavily adorned High Priest sits. She nods to Shiiga towards a seat across the wide, imposing stone desk.
“Are you prepared for your mission, disciple?” Shigga nods.
The high priest presses a few buttons and a holographic image appears, floating over the desk. A three-dimensional star composed of black crystal that glows with an inner power.
The high priest looks pointedly at Shiiga, “Send any information you can find on this artifact. We believe the Starfinder Society is the likely place to find this forgotten lore. Infiltrate their ranks and make Damoritosh proud of your duty and service to the Veskarium.”
An android shouts at the front of a large gathering, crammed into one of the larger rooms in the Downsides of Absalom Station. “The time is now, my friends! There are sentient beings being held prisoner, working as slaves, against their will! Out there in the void, in the worlds of near space and the vast, new colonies are escaping the basic tenets of the Absalom Pact, forgoing the very rights of our brethren, the rights of androids to be free beings with sovereignty over their choice of work and life.” Cheers erupt as the android finishes speaking.
Vashon takes a flyer from one of the attendees, it reads, “Emancipation! Free the androids in the worlds beyond the protection of the Pact.”
An older human man steps behind Vashon, “Still planning on joining the Starfinders?” Vashon smiles and nods. “You know Mendra and I will miss you dearly. But perhaps you’ll find yourself out there, find out who you were before we found you in that junkpile.”
Zaeo: Hard Times
Zaeo shakes his head solemnly as he watches his racing ship, the Blinding Zephyr, fly off away from Absalom Stations docking bays. A small rat-like Ysoki pats the back of the tall Lashunta’s leg. “There, there, Zaeo. I’m sure you’ll see her again someday.” Chapos smiles with a wide row of teeth. Zaeo is silent as he watches his most favored possession disappear behind the Armada.
“Frankly, it serves you right. You had no place trying to fix those races. You’re lucky Grogbar doesn’t break all the bones in your body. So, what’s next for you, Zaeo? You’re flat broke, about to lose your apartment, and you ain’t good at much besides drinking, gambling, and piloting.”
Before Zaeo can protest, the talkative Ysoki jumps up and down excitedly. “How about this, friend?” He scurries over to a faded poster on the wall. It reads, Join the Starfinder Society and explore the galaxy. Looking for skilled pilots to join our ranks. Apply at Lorespire Complex and change your life today!
“Might not be a bad idea, Zaeo. Unless you want to take a shuttle back to Castrovel and go back to shoveling shit for the rest of you life.”
Back in the present, as Arvin is talking with Zaeo, seemingly unsure about the racing pilot, he sends Zaeo to wait outside while he takes an important call. Zaeo overhears that something is amiss. Arvin then summons the four candidates and tells them there is an emergency. He tells them it is time for them to prove if they are worthy of being Starfinders. He tells them that a Starfinder ship, the Unbounded Wayfarer has gone missing in the Vast. However, the Starfinder Insignia pins of the missing crew has been recently acquired by a pawnbroker named Julzakama in the Downside neighborhood of Absalom Station.
Arvin sends the candidates to talk with Julzakama to get the insignias and to learn who sold the insignias to the pawnbroker. Zaeo leads the other three through the neighborhood, since he lives in Downsides nearby. They eventually find the pawnbroker shop and talk with the proprietor.
The gruff Vesk seems aloof and uninterested. He hands over the seven insignias of the missing ship, but wants more money for the information about the seller. Shiiga threatens and convinces him to divulge anyway. He explains that a ghoulish Eoxian sold him the insignias and then went looking for a place to acquire “clean skeletons”. He says he pointed her towards the Vat Garden, as the gardeners there sometimes will bury dead bodies of the poor to use as compost.
The candidates head over to the Vat Garden, a foliage filled vat created as a garden by some local Ysoki. They find the area unusually quiet and empty. Vaeo heads down into the plant-filled pit and is immediately attacked by some human mercenaries. A fight breaks out and the candidates find themselves defending against two mercenaries and a ghoul. Shiiga explodes one of the mercenaries heads with her powerful mental powers as the others fire their laser pistols. Eventually the mercenaries are defeated and the candidates corner the ghoul, Exemara.
Exemara explains that her crew aboard the Eoxian ship, the Endless Threnody, found the wreckage of the Starfinder vessel on some unknown planet in the Vast. They looted the ship, finding the crew all dead. However, as they left orbit, they were attacked by a pirate vessel. They managed to make it in the Drift, but were stranded there. Exemara was sent on a small shuttle to Absalom Station to sell the found goods and bring back the supplies needed to repair the Drift engine. She gives the candidates her datapad that has the Endless Threnody‘s coordinates in the Drift.
The candidates call Arvin over their comms and explain the situation. He has them meet him at Docking Bay 34 where they find he has a ship ready to launch, the Loreseeker. He asks them to join him into the Drift to find the Eoxian vessel, as it will have the coordinates of the unknown planet where the Unbound Wayfarer lies. He explains there is vital intelligence on that ship’s computers.
The candidates each take a position on the bridge, Zaeo as the pilot, Vashon as the engineer, Drozen as a gunner, and Shiiga as a magic officer, while Arvin captains the vessel. They spend the next sixteen days travelling through the swirling, silent colors of the Drift, with surprisingly little conversation as everyone struggles to socialize.
Session 2: The Endless Threnody [Jun 3rd, 2021]
After the long trip, only Vashon and Zaeo get to know each other a little bit. Drozen and Shiiga seem more mysterious and speak less. Sixteen long days go by as the Loreseeker travels unhindered through the swirling colors of the Drift. The ship reaches the coordinates indicated by Exemara’s datapad, however, there is no sign of the damaged Eoxian vessel. Vashon searches with the ship’s sensors and eventually finds a lock on the ship some distance away. They set a course and travel for about three hours before they reach the coordinates of the transponder signal.
As the Loreseeker arrives, the Endless Threnody‘s transponder goes dark and the Starfinder candidates begin scanning and seeking out the vessel. The Eoxian freighter then appears blasting its laser cannons. Arvin commands his crew to take their posts and he has Zaeo begin evasive maneuvers. Drozen prepares the ship’s hefty coilgun. Shiiga reaches out with her mystic powers to scan the enemy vessel as Vashon does likewise using this ship’s scanners. They learn that the Endless Threnody is somewhat damaged with no functioning shields.
Zaeo positions the ship for a few shots as he zips past the slower ship. Shiiga then uses her mystic powers to enhance the coilgun’s range as they take the ship at a far distance. The candidates use the advantage of their superior maneuverability and long-range weapons to continuous blast the Endless Threnody‘s hull. The Loreseeker takes a few shots on the forward shields and minor hull damage, but Vashon is able to transfer enough auxiliary power to restore the shields and keep them relatively unharmed. He also is able to patch up the engine systems. The Endless Threnody seems unable to keep up with Drozen and Zaeo’s assault. Soon, the Eoxian ship is a smoldering chunk of bone and steel, floating without working thrusters in the swirling vastness of the Drift.
Arvin has Zaeo dock the Loreseeker on the aft of the enemy ship and asks the candidates to board the vessel. He tasks them with finding the coordinates of the Unbounded Wayfarer in the ship’s database. The candidates hesitantly board the undead vessel, finding necrotic energy leaking throughout. Vashon tries to shut down the leaks, but is locked out of the system and attacked by a security measure. The candidates continue on down the corridors, where they are attacked by the literal skeleton crew of the ship.
Drozen charges forward firing his weapon, then pulling out his baton. The others fire their laser pistols down the corridor at the charging skeletons. The necrotic energy continues to sap the candidates strength as it seems to strengthen the skeletal crew. The candidates take out two of the skeletons before Vashon charges forward and overheats his laser pistol with magical power. The pistol explodes in a flaming burst the takes out the rest of the skeletons. The candidates then find a nearby panel and Vashon is able to disable the necrotic leaks.
The candidates head over to the bridge of the ship, the massive blood-red eye on the front casting a red glow to the pallid interior. Vashon and Drozen check the ship’s computers and are able to hack into the system, bypass the security measures, and access the ship’s main records. They find the coordinates to the missing Starfinder vessel, the Unbounded Wayfarer. They also learn that the Eoxian vessel was attacked by a pirate ship called the Lawblight.
The candidates return to the Loreseeker and share the news with Arvin. He congratulates them and says that they will make excellent Starfinders. He has Zaeo take the vessel to the new coordinates and they shift out of the Drift back into normal space. They find a desert planet surrounded by asteroids. A quick scan of the planet reveals it to be Ulmarid. A planet that has been noted for dangerous atmospheric effects and ferocious storms of poisonous crystals. Additionally, the asteroids around the planet make it somewhat dangerous to approach.
Arvin gives the word, and Zaeo begins to pilot the Loreseeker through the asteroids towards the planet’s surface.
Session 3: Pincers and Pirates [Jun 17th, 2021]
The Loreseeker heads through the asteroid field towards the surface of Ulmarid. Zaeo expertly guides the ship past the rocky debris and the ship heads into the planet’s atmosphere. Vashon uses the sensors to learn that the planet sometimes has violent weather, particularly rainstorms of poisonous crystals. Arvin notes that there does not appear to be a safe landing site among the sandy dunes of the planet near the wreckage of the Unbounded Wayfarer. He has Zaeo land the ship a short walk away. After landing, Arvin asks the prospective Starfinders to suit up and head to the wreckage of the ship and receive the data.
Zaeo leads the group with his pistol at the ready, with Drozen behind him with his baton, followed by Vashon and Shiiga who both have their guns at hand. They travel for about 15 minutes before one of those dangerous storms sets upon them. Shiiga spots a rocky outcropping that can protect them and she darts towards it. The others follow, but are still pelted with the poisonous crystals. Drozen manages to dodge them, but Zaeo and Vashon are hit and the chemicals greatly weaken their muscles. The storm passes quickly and Shiiga determines that the poison will only last for an hour or so.
The prospective Starfinders continue towards the wreckage. When the rusty bulk is in sight, they feel the ground tremble and a large insectile beast rises from the sandy dunes. The monster tunnels beneath the sand and appears next to Zaeo, clawing at him. The lashunta takes a nasty wound from the monsters mandibles. Shiiga heads towards a rocky bluff and Vashon follows her. Drozen brandishes his baton and begins to smack the creature in key points as Zaeo desperately fires his laser pistol. Shiiga then spots a weapon remnant of the Unbounded Wayfarer and points it out to Vashon. Vashon runs towards the energy cannon and gets it operation. He then fires a massive blast into the insectile creature and it explodes into a cloud of grisly slime.
With the monster defeated, the heroes head into the broken ship and rest for a moment. They then head to the bridge of the vessel, where there are desiccated bodies of the former crew. Vashon is able to get some emergency power to a bridge console and he and Drozen are able to extract the Starfinder’s data log. They see a few planets that the explorers had previously visited. The heroes then head back to the Loreseeker.
Arvin is quite impressed and he takes the memory stick. He has Zaeo take them back to orbit. However, as Zaeo is taking the Loreseeker around the astroids, a massive pirate vessel appears from behind one of the rocks. It appears to be the Lawblight, the same ship that struck the Unbounded Wayfarer and the Endless Threnody.
The heroes get to their stations and prepare for combat. Arvin begins calling out order and encouraging words, that mostly fall of dead ears. Zaeo makes some expert manuevers, trying to keep the enemy ship away at first. Shiiga uses her powers to scry on the enemy ship, which combined with Vashon’s sensor readings, they realize that they could be in for a serious fight. The Lawblight fires a series of large missiles at the Loreseeker, which blasts the shields and causes damage to the sensor systems and power core. Vashon is able to repair the power core and keeps rerouting power to the shields. Drozen makes a few well-placed shots, but things begin to seem dire.
Zaeo then moves to a new tactic, maneuvering the ship closer and circling around the slower enemy ship. This allows Arvin and Drozen to fire multiple shots upon the vessel. Shiiga uses her mysticism to aid Zaeo’s piloting as Vashon begins to amplify the damaged sensors to get a target lock on the enemy’s power core. Drozen then fires two devastating shots into the Lawblight power core, nearly disabling it. A couple more well-placed shots and Drozen hits the power core again, causing the Lawblight to explode into a cloud of debris.
The heroes celebrate their victory of the next four days as they return to Absalom Station through the Drift. Arvin promises to arrange for them to have a welcoming at the station and proceed with making them full members of the Starfinders. When they reach the orbit of Absalom Station, Arvin receives a call. He then tells the others that he has to drop them off on an Armada freighter where a shuttle, the Okimoro, will pick them up and take them to the station. He says that a dwarf named Duravor Kreel will meet them at docking bay 94 and help them get set up at the Lorespire Complex and initiate their paperwork for membership.
Arvin takes off back into the Drift with the Loreseeker and the heroes sit upon their crude shuttle, watching the news report on the viewscreens…