Session 0: The Crew of the Fall of Icarus
On the massive space city of Nerio, over 60,000 people live and dwell on a floating city that orbits the toxic planet of Grundum, in the red glow of the supergiant star, Proxima. Here, the Order of the Forgotten Heralds, or just The Heralds, hold sway. They are one of the powerful founding clans, that led humanity from the Milky Way galaxy to the safety of the Forge centuries ago. The Heralds are known as a powerful authoritarian force, with many fleets of deadly ships and extensive industrial worlds throughout this part of the Forge. They keep the peace and otherwise allow society to flourish as they wage war with the other factions of the Forge for dominance of all space.
The city of Nerio, a collection of massive ships and modified space domiciles all collected together into a massive city floating above a toxic planet, stands poised to be the seed of a great adventure.
Outside this city, we meet five adventurers and ironsworn. They are bounty hunters about to head out on their first, mostly lucrative bounty for the Heralds.
First is Xander the Fixer, who barely survived a calamity in his past. His home world was destroyed by something now forgotten and he grew up as an orphan in the city of Nerio. This allowed him to make a lot of friends on the streets. Now he has connections throughout the criminal underground of Nerio. He even manages to stay on good terms with the Heralds, which is how he was able to both, get one of the very coveted Bounty Hunter Licenses, and to get knowledge of their current bounty. He knows everyone else and was able to convince the new crew to pour their life savings into repairing an old research ship and begin their career as bounty hunters.
His best skills are his charisma and persuasion, and he is rather loyal to his friends. Unfortunately, he also has an enemy named Vuldar Wolfe, better known as the ‘Badger’. Badger is a rival thief and fence who believes Xander owes him a large sum of money from a job they did together a few years ago.
Kite was the second to join the crew. He had worked with Xander on a few arrangements in his past, after he had gotten out of prison many years ago. Kite was a pilot, a damn good pilot. He once served in the Heralds police force throughout the nearby sectors. He was betrayed by his partner and soon found himself behind bars with a bullet wound from his former partner. Five years in the slammer, and he was quite bitter and antisocial. He took various odd jobs from mercenaries, and eventually met Xander through these contacts. In a night fueled by drugs and drunken debauchery, Kite was in a shooting contest with another mercenary and he won. His prize? A broken down former research vessel that he’d soon name the Fall of Icarus. A fitting warning to never reach too high for your dreams.
Kite is an excellent pilot and knows how to fight. His shooting skills are quite excellent as well. However, he comes with a lot of baggage. His time in the police force has left him with emotional scars that will never heal and he has grown quite delusional and cautious about illusionary dangers. He is rather greedy, always looking to satisfy his desire for wealth, but also to feed his growing drug habit.
Evelyn ‘Eve’ Price
Eve was next to join the crew. She came from a long line of healers in the famed Healer’s Guild of the Forge. However, her family thought her skills left something to be desired. Her patients had a habit of dying in her care and she earned a reputation as ‘the butcher’. She left her life with the Healer’s Guild and came to the city of Nerio, working an underground private practice, repairing mercenaries and criminals. This is where she met Xander, who was always sending desperate and injured criminals to her. She kept her moniker, the Butcher, for some time, despite the fact her healing skills improved to the point of excellence. But the moniker had more to do with her second occupation, as an interrogator. Mercenaries would bring knowledgeable targets to Eve and she would help ‘extract’ that information, using her knowledge of anatomy and pain centers. However, word on the street was growing and she knew the Heralds wouldn’t tolerate her work for long. When Xander offered her a position on his bounty hunter crew, she jumped at the opportunity.
Eve is a masterful doctor and healer. But stay on her good side, as she is quite good at interrogations, intimidations, and general persuasiveness. She is also quite supportive of her allies. Her worse traits are her curiosity, which often gets her into trouble. She also has a strong sense of ethics and a code of honor that limits her option for some otherwise criminal behavior.
The next member of the crew is somewhat of a mystery, other than that Xander knows them well. Her name is Sola and she has been working the streets of Nerio for much of her life, taking odd jobs (mostly criminal). As a kid, Sola was orphaned in the war and barely managed to escape her home world as a stowaway on a cruiser bound for Nerio. IT was on the streets of Nerio, she met the fellow orphan, Xander. Since then, the two have crossed paths many times over the years working the criminal underground of the city. Sola has always been a lone wolf, but now she must confront her new life, working with a team.
During the night of celebration before setting out on their first big contract, Sola had unfortunately ate some unripe Beverian Spoon Spheres and became quite ill. She spent the next week recovering in their bunk on the ship, unable to participate in the events.
The last member of the crew was someone Kite knew through his mercenary contacts. Riker was a former soldier fighting in the Heralds’ wars with rival factions. He grew weary of warfare and retired, trying to avoid conflict in his life. However, he had trouble finding work and was forced to take mercenary contracts for quite some time. More recently, he has been tinkering with starships and vehicles, able to gain passable skills as a mechanic. When Kite told him about the opportunity, he reluctantly agreed to join the crew, but as a mechanic, not a soldier.
Much like Kite, Riker is an experienced combatant with acceptable mechanical skills. He is used to the harshness of war and has an iron will towards fears and horrors. His solitary life, however, has left him to be quite mean and stubborn. He doesn’t like to admit to his mistakes, justifying them with half-truths and rationalizations. Riker habitually smokes cigars and is rarely seen without one.
Session 1: A Lucrative Bounty
[Feb 9th, 2023]
After a few minor bounty hunter missions, Xander had finally secured a very lucrative contract for the Heralds. They were tasked with finding a woman named Echo Jen, a former scientist of the Heralds who had defected and fled towards the desert planet of Torem.
The crew of the Fall of Icarus head out of Nerio. Kite sets up the course and takes the ship along the known drift passage towards Torem. He ignites the E-drive and sends them bouncing through hyperspace. It’s an easy course, and after a few days and a few stops, they arrive in space outside the planet of Torem. The only known settlement in the system is Paragon, a small desert town of fanatics who live under the ruins of ancient precursor monuments.
Kite lands the ship near the town of Paragon. Riker stays behind to check on the ship, as the atmospheric entry was rather bumpy. XXX is still feeling ill and stays in their bunk. Xander, Eve, and Kite head into the town to ask about this Echo Jen. They see a crude town composed mostly of corrigated steel and aluminum panels, including a long “street” with these panels making a roof over twenty feet above to block the hot sun. The bounty hunters head to a nearby bar, called the Spooky Skies Bar. Inside, they ask the bartender about Echo Jen, a 5’0″ blond woman. But he doesn’t seem to know anything about their quarry.
They separate and listen around to the on-goings of the bar’s many patrons. Eve overhears one of the patrons, a wiry drunk in the corner, talking about how he dropped of a woman into the middle of the desert for good pay. Eve and Xander approach this man, named Marvin, and ask about the woman. The description seems to match Echo Jen. He says that she paid him well to drive her out into the desert at a broken monument, a few hours away from Paragon. Eve and Xander pay Marvin to do the same for them, planning on leaving first thing in the morning.
That night, they return to the Fall of Icarus to rest, and leave the next morning with Riker joining them. XXX, who is feeling a little better, stays behind to watch the ship. The four bounty hunters then climb aboard Marvin’s desert speeder, a crude 4×4 made for traversing the sand dunes. He also brings a few casks of extra water for them.
On the way out into the desert, they encounter a small encampment of a few people. They seem desperate and poor and beg for provisions. Eve, Xander, and Marvin agree to give them a cask of water, while Kite and Riker are quite suspicious of the lot. They head out and as they near the broken monument in the distance, a sandstorm overtakes them. The speeder wrecks into a sand dune and Riker is thrown from it and injured. They are able to takes some tarps and create a makeshift shelter under the speeder’s tall wheels. Eve is able to relocate Riker’s injured shoulder. The five of them are forced to then wait for nearly 5 hours as the sandstorm rages outside.
When the storm ends, they see that the monument was only a few hundred feet away. Xander, Eve, Kite, and Riker decide to head to the monument as Marvin tries to fix the speeder and get the sand out of all the engine parts. When they reach the monument, they see a vast column of rock, 100 feet on each side, rising many stories up into the sky, but then broken and smoothed on the top.
The crew searches around the base of the monument and eventually come across a narrow doorway. Inside is a narrow set of steps, covered with sand, leading down into the depths of the planet. Xander clicks on his flashlight and leads the way into the darkness. Down the stairs, the crew realize they are in a precursor vault of some kind. The walls are made of strange metal panels, curved into organic-like shapes, with power conduits running along the walls, flickering with faint energy and light.
The crew passes through a massive vault-like door that is cracked open and head into a long corridor covered with ancient precursor writing. The curved script is unintelligible to anyone. They then turn right and head down another corridor, where they see a black, reflective substance dripping off the wall. They turn and see clusters of small egg-like organic balls on the ceiling. These suddenly hiss and explode, filling the chamber with some toxic organic gas. The crew pulls back and thankfully no one is adversely affected by the gas.
The crew heads the other direction and turn a corner, finding a larger room. There is a tent and a small cooking station set up. They enter looking around for more signs of life, when a petite blonde-haired woman springs from the shadows and puts a gun to Riker’s head. She admits she is Echo Jen, and she knows that they are bounty hunters looking for her.
Xander is able to get her to talk and she explains that she was a scientist specializing in a new type of energy technology, working for the Heralds. She says they were working on a new devastating weapon and she didn’t want them to finish it, fearing what that might mean for the Forge and the balance of power in the region. She negotiates a deal with the crew, to take her to the Fated Collective, a rival faction, so she can sell the information to them and equal the playing field. She promises them a cut of the deal.
With Riker and Kite complaining the whole time, Xander and Eve reluctantly agree to the deal. They decide that they’d leave Riker here as Echo insisted, and they’d head back with Marvin. They’d then grab their ship and pick her and Riker up later. Echo agrees and locks Riker up with handcuffs. The crew heads back to Marvin. Marvin has the speeder ready and they head back to Paragon. When they arrive, they say farewell to Marvin, even though Kite wanted to kill him since he knows “too much”.
Eve then grabs them and points, down the street they see five Herald soldiers pushing through the crowds, seemingly asking around for Echo Jen…
Session 2: Things Got Complicated
[Feb 23rd, 2023]
Eve, Kite, and Xander stare at the Herald soldiers pushing towards them. But then they see Sola, having recovered from her food poisoning. The four of the quickly rush into the nearby bar as Xander tries to update Sola on the situation. They see Marvin in the corner with his buddies, drinking the day away. They move over to Marvin trying to make small talk, worried that Marvin might spill the beans on their trip to the monument.
A Herald soldier then enters the bar holding an image of Echo Jen on his tablet computer. He asks at the bartender and then comes towards the bounty hunters, who clearly look like they are not from Paragon. Marvin mutters how much he hates the Heralds and this eases Xander’s mind concerning Marvin’s knowledge. They tell the Herald soldier that they don’t know Echo and Marvin confirms that he hasn’t seen her. The solider the leaves. The bounty hunters thank Marvin and head out towards the Fall of Icarus, expertly sneaking their way through the crowds.
When they reach the ship, there is no sign of any Herald soldiers near their ship, which is docked nearby. Kite takes off and they fly out to the monument in the desert, where Kite barely manages to land the vessel. Kite stays with the ship as Xander and the others rush in to find Riker and Echo. They find her where they left her, deep in the Precursor vault. She releases Riker and agrees to come with them.
Meanwhile, a Herald ship lands near the Fall of Icarus and Kite begins to scream over the comms about their approach, but the walls of the Precursor vault seem to block all communication. Xander leads the way out of the complex, and as he steps into the desert, he sees four Herald soldiers charging towards him and Kite screaming over the comms.
Xander approaches the soldiers as Riker, Eve, Sola, and Echo return to the vault and find a defensive position. Xander tries to slow them down, but gets caught in a conversation with the Herald lieutenant as the other three soldier head into the vault. The soldiers charge into the vault. Sola and Riker nod to each other as they open fire on the vulnerable solders. The soldiers try to call out and end the attack, but the bounty hunters continue to fire. Eve provides morale support as Riker and Sola take out the soldiers. Sola takes a minor hit in the firefight.
Meanwhile, up in the blowing sands, Xander manages to tackle the Herald lieutenant and choke hold him until he passes out. Echo is able to remove Xander’s identification scan from the lieutenant’s tablet. Everyone then rushes to the ship and Kite takes off into orbit around the desert planet, Torem. Eve sees to Sola’s wound and succeeds in treating it.
The group has a private discussion, away from Echo, about what to do next. Do they turn in Echo to the Heralds for the bounty they came here for? Or do they follow Echo on her crazy, but possibly lucrative mission to find the Fated Collective? They decide to help Echo, knowing they have little to lose, as the Heralds likely have no knowledge that they are involved.
They then meet with Echo who tells them she hid away a valuable data module, containing the energy weapons research. She hid it on an unknown jungle planet somewhere off the Passage between Nerio and Torem. Kite sets a course for the half-way point to Nerio.
After a few days, they reach the anchorage Echo diverted from and set an unknown course into the general direction of the unknown planet. After the first jump through the Drift, tehy arrive at a dying red star, and they each have haunting dreams that night. Eve dreams of killing someone in cold blood. Sola dreams of annihilating a planet with an energy weapon. Xander dreams of watching people starve and die over time on a desert planet.
They take off on the next jump through the Drift. Hours later, they come out of hyperspace into the middle of a battle btween two ships. One is a modest-sized fuel transport, and the other is a mineral extractor. Both ships are hovering over a rocky planet and they are armed to the teeth. A blaze of railgun bullets and torpedoes light up the darkness of space as Kite does his best to get the Fall of Icarus out of the fire.
The ship takes a few hits, but Xander manages to get the mineral extractor on the comms and convince them that they are not involved in this fight. The mineral extractor stops firing at the Fall of Icarus, but the others ship seems to double-down on them, assuming they are reinforcements. This break in firing allows the mineral extractor to jump into hyperspace, leaving the Fall of Icarus to take the continuing barrage of heavy fire from the fuel transport vessel.
Session 3: Desperation on Altair
[Mar 9th, 2023]
Bullets cascade upon the Fall of Icarus as the heavily-armed fuel-transport vessel continue to fire. Kite begins to take desperate maneuvers, dodging and spinning the ship to avoid fire as he takes the ship through the broken chunks of asteroids around the rocky planet. He is able to make more evasive maneuvers that leaves the bulky transport vessel behind. The Fall of Icarus is now safe from enemy fire.
The crew catches their breath and look around for a place to park and repair before the E-drive recharges. However, they are forced to make repairs in empty space. Riker works on the external repairs while the others do their best to help with the interior. The crew spends some time to chat with Echo Jen and begin to form a connection with the distraught scientist. Sola and Echo begin to develop a particular rapport.
After some hasty repairs, the ship’s E-drive has recharged and Kite takes them on their next hyper-space jump through the Drift. After hours of Drift travel, the E-drive powers down and they find themselves at the next anchorage. It is an icy planet far from an orange star. A transponder beacon identifies a colony called Altair. The crew agree the ship should be properly repaired before continuing onward. Kite takes the ship in and Xander chats with the Altairian diplomat, a man named William O’Neil. Xander convinces them of their good intentions and O’Neil offers repair services when they arrive. They find a massive colony ship crash landed on a 45 degree angle against an icy hillside. It seems at least a century has passed and the people have rebuilt the ship to serve their purposes.
Riker stays to help with repairs and Echo Jen hides, since it is unknown what Altair’s involvement is with the Heralds. Xander, Eve, Sola, and Kite head inside the station and see numerous people hustling about. William takes them to a conference room to talk. He desperate asks for their aid, as their fusion generator is failing and they need new parts that fit their antique and custom set-up. They had sent a courier ship, called the Static Mercy to Nerio weeks ago, but they never returned. William is desperate and hasn’t told the people of Altair yet, since it might spell their doom.
The Ironsworn say they must speak with their crew first and talk with Riker and Echo. Sola is able to convince Echo to wait it out here at Altair, since she’d be safe from the Heralds, as the crew heads to Nerio to find the needed generator parts. The crew return to William and they swear an iron vow to complete this task and save his people. William ensures their ship is repaired and restocked and the Fall of Icarus heads out, leaving Echo Jen behind.
Thanks to Altair’s navigational data, they make a quick route to Nerio in a few days. Upon reaching the city, they spread out to gather information about this antique components. Eve and Kite head to the regular markets, but Kite ditches Eve and heads to his regular drug-dealer to restock on his supply. Eve gets too curious and spend the day shopping, buying lovely pink “I Heart Nerio” T-shirts for the crew.
Meanwhile, Sola and Xander meet with Feenix, a fence that Xander has worked with in the past to get rare parts. Unfortunately, Feenix is unable to source the parts they need, but knows for a fact that the manufacturing plant at Crux is guaranteed to have them. Crux is in a nearby sector, the Crimson Vigil, and is a week or so away via known passages.
The crew reconvene at the ship and decide to pursue the parts in Crux. They take off and take the easy passage towards Crux, deeper into Herald space. After a little over a week, they arrive in Crux. It is on a desert planet where the air is filled with smog and pollution. Numerous manufacturing buildings sprawl across the desert, connected by long corridors of metal and glass. The Fall of Icarus lands and the crew set out, leaving Riker to guard the ship.
They decide to head to the tech markets, but on the way, Xander, Eve, and Kite notice that two Herald soldiers are talking and one is showing the Fall of Icarus on a tablet to the other, there is a warning about wanted for a murder investigation. Seeing this, they contact Riker to warn him, but there isn’t much he can do, since he can’t fly the ship. Sola leads them back to the ship, finding a quicker route to get there before the soldiers.
When they arrive they try to take off, but the docking crew at Crux tell them they cannot and the Herald soldiers are approaching them. The soldiers come on board and search the ship for Echo Jen, but since she is not present they then question the crew. Thankfully, there is no evidence linking them to the murder of the Herald soldiers on Torem/Paragon, but they were definitely spotted there. And it seems the Heralds tortured and questioned Marvin to get information about Echo. Through sheer charm and persuasiveness, Eve and Xander are able to convince the soldiers that they were not involved. The soldiers reluctantly leave and downgrade their wanted status.
The crew quickly return to the markets of Crux and are able to find all the parts they need. They load up the ship and take off on the long journey back to Altair. After almost two weeks, they return to Altair, which seems like its struggling to maintain heating. William thanks them profusely for their work and pays them all the credits they have. William then announces the troubles to the colony and what the crew of the Fall of Icarus did for them. A bond is formed with the community and the crew are celebrated heroes on the colony.
Session 4: The Anomaly
[Mar 23rd, 2023]
The heroes leave the joy of Altair to continue their journey to find Echo Jen’s hidden data module. They fire up the E-drive and blast into the Drift. When they arrive at the next anchorage, they find a beautiful blue orb, an ocean planet. However, a warning beacon is transmitting a garbled message. Echo is able to decode it and the message warns about the high toxicity of the planet and the fragile life upon. The Heralds have seemingly set the beacon to help travelers avoid the perils.
After a few hours of watching the blue planet, the bounty hunters blast off to the next anchorage. They come out of the Drift hours later with naught but a white dwarf star in the distance. They also see a giant ring-shaped cruise ship in orbit. The ironsworn recognize the ship as a Heralds ship for the rich and powerful to see the wonders of space in the highest levels of luxury.
However, the ship is broadcasting a distress signal. The signal itself is distorted and sped up to a very high frequency. Echo is able to decode it and the ship seems to be asking for help. They decide to investigate the ship and see if they can help. However, as they approach the cruise ship they seem to enter a distortion field and the Fall of Icarus is nearly torn apart.
When the Fall of Icarus pops out through the other end of the distortion in spacetime, they see that the cruise ship is now in poorer shape and many of the lights are actually off. They realize they are in some sort of distortion field. They head to the cruise ship, called the Ouroboros and dock the Fall of Icarus nearby. Everyone, except Sola, don their spacesuits and head to board the ship.
Xander is able to fire a grappling hook to the ship and they all slide over. They cannot get the maintenance doors to open and are forced to tread along the side of the cruise ship to an alternate hatch that easily opens with the push of a button. After they enter the vessel they find that this room has power and the airlock engages, filling the chamber with breathable air. Although, only Riker and Kite take their helmets off. They are in a large cargo hold.
They head into another chamber after Echo is able to open the security door. They find a large docking bay for small exploration shuttles. However, as soon as they enter, they see three Herald soldiers that immediately fire upon them. They dive for cover as bullets richoets throughout the room. Kite, Xander, and Riker head in, taking cover and returning fire with their pistols. Eve and Echo, however, take the side route and head towards one of the shuttlecraft.
The Herald soldiers are relentless and unload bullets towards Kite and Xander, who each take a minor hit. Riuker is able to take out of the soldiers with a lucky shot. One of the soldiers then charges in with his knife as his buddy provides backup and follows. It is then that Eve and Echo are able to activate the shuttle and ignite the thrusters right into the two soldiers. They are vaporized in an instant. The emergency air system activates and the shuttle is forced offline.
Eve treats Xander and Kite and the three men grab the available military rifles to continue the exploration…
Session 5: Trapped with Monsters
[Apr 6th, 2023]
The adventurers take their new rifles and press forward, going deeper into the Ouroboros, searching for answers to the ship’s plight and distress signal. They come into a curving hallway, covered with signs and posters warning of biological contaminants and biohazards. They then see a large containment chamber with a viewing window embedded in the reinforced door. Inside the chamber is a ferocious beast. It seems to be a pyroclastic lizard of some kind, emanating heat and fury. It begins to slam the door, trying to break out to get at the adventurers.
They push to exit to the east, but as the eastern airlock opens, another door opens to the north. Four Herald soldiers charge out and begin firing upon the bounty hunters. They pull back firing as they flee down the corridor. One of the Herald soldiers throws a grenade that Kite manages to bat away, but it lands at Riker’s feet. It explodes and the shrapnel slices through him.
The others manage to escape back into the shuttle bay as Riker can only shuffle along the corridor with blood running down his arms and legs. Eve shouts at the Herald soldiers to explain that they are here for the distress beacon, but they only demand surrender. Riker can tell that they intend to kill them. He closes the airlock as the Herald soldiers close in on them, leaving his friends to free in the shuttle bay.
The other bounty hunters take positions in the shuttle bay as Eve and Echo rush to the shuttle and climb on board. Kite opens the airlock and pulls Riker into the chamber with him as he closes it again. Kite, Riker, and Xander take cover as the Herald soldiers take positions on the other side of the open airlock and fire. It is then that the beast escapes and charges into the hall. One of the soldiers flees only to be gunned down by Kite. Echo manages to activate the shuttle and begin air-locking procedures, which closes and locks the door. Kite and Riker put on their helmets, and the three men charge towards the shuttle. The Herald soldiers are presumably slain by the beast behind the door.
The adventurers are able to open the bay door and fly the Herald shuttle into the Fall of Icarus’s cargo bay. They decide to get the hell out of this place. Kite fires up the ship and they attempt to leave the Ouroboros behind. However, their proximity sensors start going off. They eventually realize they are trapped in a space-time bubble that seems to be emanating from the Ouroboros. They have to go back.
This time Sola joins them as they climb aboard the stolen shuttle and return to the Ouroboros’s shuttle bay. Armed and ready, they head back through the corridors, finding a trail of blood and body parts. The beast had dragged the soldiers back to its containment chamber to dine on them. The heroes are able to sneak past the beast and make it through the eastern doors. They eventually come across a ruined elevator chamber that is torn and partially caved in; only one such lift is accessible.
The heroes use the lift to head to the second floor of the ship where they find that even the emergency lights are nonfunctional. They break into a maintenence tunnel looking for a way to restore the light. They find an access panel in the cramped corridors, but are soon assaulted by a bunch of rat-like monsters. Kite and Riker try to hold them back as the others provide support.
Session 6: The Infected
[Apr 20th, 2023]
The heroes continue to strike and fire at the lurkers as they come forward biting and scratching. Kite and Riker manage to each take one out and Sola blasts the final one. Echo then checks the console again, but cannot get it to activate at all. It seems there is no power running through this section, making her hacking skills useless.
The heroes push on through the maintenence tunnel until they reach another door. Kite and Riker are able to force the door open, revealing another bloody corridor with many signs of structural issues. They decide to head northward and push open a large blast door. Kite, Riker, and Sola work together to push open the door. Kite accidently pushes it too hard and it slams into the side with a vibrating force. This causes the ceiling to shudder and collapse.
The heroes leap through the opening to get away from the collapsing corridor, but Echo trips. Kite tries to go back for her, but its too late. Rubbing and metallic debris slams into Kite and knocks him towards to the others. Echo disappears in a cloud of dust as she is enveloped in shards of metal.
After the debris clears, Eve is able to patch up Kite and finds he is only bruised up. Echo is presumed dead under the mountain of debris. They chat about what to do next, but know they still need to find the source of the temporal anomaly to get out of here. They continue their search of the Ouroboros. They are in a large viewing chamber and manage to find a datapad that indicates that the crew might have been onboard for at least two weeks. They then try to head down a nearby tunnel, but find shuffling corpses coming towards them as the crew seem to be infected with something.
The adventurers climb on the nearby tables and blast at the infected crew as they enter the room. Eventually many of them are able to clamor inside and begin to swipe wildly at the adventurers. Thankfully, none of the bounty hunters are injured and they manage to shoot and cut down the infected crew members after a few minutes. After the battle, Xander feels a little tightness in his throat, but ignores it for now.
The adventurers push through to explore the crew cabins, where they find little to explain the sickness. One room has a bloodied and eviscerated body. They do find a data-pad journal where a crew member complains about an unexpected quarantine and that the Captain of the ship, Captain James Soto, has told the crew to take orders from someone called Aurora.
The adventurers then explore the recreation and mess hall, finding only destruction, negligence, and all the supplies missing. In the crew bathroom, they find a bloody mess and broken mirrors. One mirror has “My Life for Aurora” scrawled into it.
Session 7: Halls of the Shambling Dead
[Jun 1st, 2023]
The bounty hunters decide to press on and continue exploring the other chambers on the northwest side of the Ouroboros. They find a nearly empty storage chamber, with naught but a few forgotten rolls of toilet paper. In the next chamber they find EVA space suit storage capsules, but only one still has a working suit inside. Eve debates whether that should take it with them, but in the end they decide to leave it due to its weight and bulkiness.
The explorers continue on with Xander successfully cracking open a locked security door into a large atrium. They find more of the infected crew, slogging towards them like zombies. They are able to blast them to pieces without sustaining any injuries. After the battle, Xander thinks he is beginning to feel warm and Eve checks him for signs of disease, however, she fails to notice anything wrong with him.
The bounty hunters continue into the next hallway where there is a row of luxury quarters for the high-end patrons. The first room is empty except for a broken back-massager. The next chamber has caved in with metal debris from the above floor. The third chamber is locked, and they hear a suspicious sound after they bang on the door. They shout but hear no answer and Eve is certain that there are infected in the room.
The explorers continue on, finding another locked chamber. However, before they can make any firm decisions, more infected crew and passengers begin to come around the bend. The explorers try to pull back but Xander is soon overwhelmed by a horde of the monsters. Riker and Sola are able to form a line as Kite stands back and fires his rifle. Eve sends encouraging words to her comrades. However, the nearby doors both burst open and more infected crew climb out. Xander is utterly surrounded and Sola and Riker fight for their lives as Kite continues to blast through them with lucky shots. Eve holds firm trying to keep Xander’s spirits up, even though things begin to look dire…
Session 8: Death in the Empty Halls
[Jun 15th, 2023]
Xander desperately tries to keep the infected crew at bay as the others desperately try to take them out and free their friend. Riker meanwhile finds himself also surrounded as the infected crew claws at him. Kite, Sola, and Eve step back, allowing the light of Eve’s lantern barely fall on Xander. However, soon Xander is ripped apart by the infected crew as his arm is torn out of its socket. Kite and Sola blast a few more infected crew with Eve’s support.
Things get more desperate as screams echo through the halls as Xander is finally overtaken by the infected. Riker feels that he is next and calls out to his comrades to go on without him. The remaining three reluctantly pull back, taking their light with them, seeing the faint glow of Riker’s cigar fade away in the darkness of the hall.
Kite, Sola, and Eve secure the hallway door and catch their breath. Eve treats Sola’s minor injuries and they try to process the onslaught they just witnessed. They are quite solemn and desperate to get out of the spacetime distortion. They push into a nearby maintenance tunnel and find another main hallway. They head north towards the center of the ship, but soon find two Herald soldiers blocking their path.
The soldiers tell them to lower their weapons and the bounty hunters comply. Eve tries to reason with them, however, someone seems to talk to them over their in-ear comm units and they immediately prepare to fire. Eve is able to distract them, which allows Kite and Sola to take them out quickly. With the soldiers dead, the three loot their gear. Eve then tries to listen to their comms, finding it is connected to a brain-imbedded chip.
As Eve is about to put the earbud to her ear, someone comes out of the darkness and tells her to stop. He says he is a scientist and they must hurry to get out of danger. Kite, Sola, and Eve follow the stranger and soon find themselves in a side room on the southeast side of the ship. There is a large stasis tube with a Herald soldier inside.
Ron Genero, or Baron, is a former Sergeant in the Herald military. He had been serving on the Ouroboros for several months. However, several weeks ago, the scientists were trying to capture a large beast on an alien planet. A squadron of Herald soldiers were sent to retrieve the beast, armed with tranquiller guns. The beast lurched towards the men and Baron was supposed to put it down, however, he fled instead. The great beast breathed fire upon them felling more than half the squadron. They eventually captured the beast, but Baron was labelled a coward and was arrested for negligence of duty. Since the Ouroboros was far from civilized space, they put Baron in a stasis chamber until they could return him to Herald space for his punishment, which would likely be life in prison or death. His deed has been shared throughout Herald space, marking him forever as a wanted man.
The scientist explains that his name is Jean-Luc and that this soldier is one of the few Herald soldiers he can trust. He releases the soldier and rips out his head-attached circuit. The soldier callsign is “Baron” and he agrees to help. Jean-Luc explains that about two weeks ago, an anomaly caused the ship’s powerful AI computer, Aurora, to go haywire. The neural uplink of the computer is connected to each of the Herald soldiers. They started worshipping her like a god and fighting against the scientists who opposed her.
Aurora cut power to the middle of the ship and for the past two weeks half the passengers, crew, and all the scientists have been hiding in the top floor as the Herald soldiers and the rest of the passengers have taken residence in the bottom floor. They have been fighting with each other since. Jean-Luc came down here to risk his life to find Baron, with the hope that the disgraced soldier could help them fight off the other Herald soldiers, since he was disconnected from the uplink.
The bounty hunters agree to help Baron and Jean-Luc find the missing Dr. Aberney who has the shutdown keycard for Aurora. He also informs them that they found Echo Jen, she is greatly injured, but alive.
Session 9: A Slim Chance for Hope
[Jun 29th, 2023]
Jean-Luc explains the situation on the Ouroboros and how they need to reach the northern elevator corridor if they want to reach the top science deck where they other scientists and passengers are hiding from the Herald soldiers. The motley crew push their way through the corridors, fighting against some of the rat-like lurkers before reaching the maintenance shaft.
At the end of the maintenance shaft, they overhear a large beast prowling the northern corridor. They try to sneak away and they hear the beast slam into the door, but fail to get through. They rush back to the eastern corridor and head west. They find that the rubble blocks access to the north elevators. They decide to try and clear the rubble, even though Jean-Luc warns them about the potential for a vacuum leak. However, they successfully clear a crawlable path and greet the security personnel on the other side.
Jean-Luc escorts them up to the top floor and canteen area where the scientists have been hiding out. There are only a few security guards protecting them from the crazed Herald soldiers. They meet Chief Scientist Kayla Kaan, an honest and straight-forward woman who is eager to hear how they arrived. She informs they had sent the distress beacon two weeks ago and now confirm that time is passing faster inside the bubble than outside in regular spacetime. SHe is also concerned that some infected crew members escaped on shuttles before Aurora created the spacetime bubble. The first infected are likely contagious with an airborne vector, as opposed to the infected on the ship which only transmit the virus via direct contact. Therefore, the H13Beta virus is likely loose in the sector.
She shows them the unconscious Echo Jen, who is covered in injuries and bruises from the collapsed corridor, but she is alive. Jean-Luc escorts them to the canteen where there are blankets and pillows for them to get some much needed rest. The crew sleep for the night as Baron is updated on some of the conditions of the Ouroboros. Echo Jen awakens in the morning and speaks briefly with them.
The crew then meets again with Dr. Kaan who tries to help them formulate a plan to find Dr. Aberney and the missing keycard to shut down Aurora in the bottom level. They can also search for Dr. Sparroll who might have the antigen for the H13Beta virus to prevent its spread in the sector. Once they have the keycard, they’ll need to head down to Aurora’s mainframe on the bottom level to shut her down.
The crew sets out with Baron and Jean-Luc. They head to the north chamber, past a forgotten birthday celebration for Ned. They find the astrophysics lab mostly intact, but offline. They then head west, but here the shuffling of the infected. They head south towards a fountain display, and soon find themselves accosted by a large group of the infected. They take a few of them out quickly, but then find themselves in a firefight in the corridor.
Session 10: Passenger Corridors
[Jul 13th, 2023]
The fight with the infected passengers continues, with Sola take out many with her deadly knife and then her pistol. Baron tries to shoot them point blank, but is forced to use his knife to save ammo. Kite is able to cut one in half with his thin sword. After the infected have fallen, and no one was bitten, they pressed on exploring the fountain room.
They decide to head eastward where they find the old café and bar for the passengers along with a large demonstration space for the scientists to show their works to the wealthy benefactors. Jean-Luc notices that the experimental high-voltage shock weapon is missing, likely taken by the Herald soldiers. However, they do find a prototype shield belt and Jean-Luc sets it up for Baron. They also find another Aurora communicator.
The group then heads to the west into the passenger cabins. In the first cabin they find little of use, and in the second cabin, Eve is nearly punctured by a syringe hidden in the medicine cabinet. On closer inspection, Eve realizes the syringe is labeled “H13Beta Virus”. Thankfully, it did not injects its contents into her arm. The room belonged to Enoch Morris, a young-adult son of a rich and powerful family. It seems he might have been trying to smuggle the virus out before the anomaly ruined his plans.
The next cabin belonged to a famed artist from Nerio, Rose Bohannon. Her likely final and most exquisite painting of a nebulae is upon her canvas. Eve takes it. The next cabin belonged to a fashion mogul that seemed eager to purchase one of Rose’s paintings.
As the explorers come to the next chambers, they find the crew bathroom and then the crew quarters. However, the crew quarters are seemingly occupied. Massively hulking mutants climb out of the bunks, as if awoken from a deep sleep. They rip of chunks of the room and charge at the explorers. Baron is nearly beaten to death by the attacks, but thankfully Sola and Kite blast into the mutants with their guns. Even though the mutants wounds seem to heal instantaneously, it does distract them and slow them down. Baron is able to escape with the others and they run back to the fountain chamber. Eve is able to tend to Baron’s bruises.
Session 11: The Armory
[Aug 10th, 2023]
The explorers debate for a bit before deciding to path a new route to the armory. They head to the northern chamber, through the astrophysics lab, then into the aquatics biology lab. They find there is three titanium-glass pods, used for direct observation in the connected aquatics bay. Jean-Luc describes it as a massive tank of water with various aquatic species they collected on their explorations.
Eve notes that one of the pods is damaged and the other is out of power. Only two, maybe three, people could squeeze through a pod. Alternatively, they find a cylindrical tube corridor that runs through the aquatic chamber for minimum observation and to pass through. They decide to take the corridor. Kite is eventually able to get the doors open and they pass through the long tube which has frequent glass windows into the water around them.
They get a faint glimpse of glowing jellyfish and some larger creature in the watery depths. They reach the other side and attempt to open the door, but it is locked and stuck. They are forced to use their strength to pry the door open, but the noise seems to attract the attention of the creatures in the water. The snake-like beasts wrap around the corridor shaft and bend and break at it. Just as the door opens, and the explorers shuffle into the chamber, the corridor breaks and water floods towards them. Only a puddle enters the next chamber as Kite manages to close the door in time.
The next chamber has two pods, both with enough usable battery power. The explorers head into the next chamber where they find the security office and the entrance to the armory. The armory is heavily fortified and they struggle to get the door open. Their efforts attract the attention of the mutants from the passenger cabins, who charge in towards them. The explorers escape into the aquatics lab, where Jean-Luc, Eve, and Sola climb into one of the pods. Baron pilots the other pod, but waits for Kite. Kite decides to disconnect a massive oxygen tank and pushes against the door. He then runs into the pod as the door is breaking open from the mutants.
Kite then throws a grenade to detonate the oxygen tank just as Baron pulls the hatch of the pod and they are ejected into the water chamber. The explosion instantly vaporizes one of the mutants and injures the others, who seem to flee. The explorers immediately return from the aquarium chamber, afraid of being assaulted by the snake-beasts. They climb out of the pods and find that the mutants have fled. They return to the armory and manage to get the door open.
Baron accidently triggers a gas trap as they open it, but he manages to avoid the toxic gas. They enter the armory and find it mostly ravaged. However, they find a forgotten box of frag grenades, a few clips of bullets, and body armor for Eve. Kite finds that the mutants are far from the chamber, so the explorers then shoot their way through the infected to return to the central chamber.
They decide to head down to the middle section and sneak their way to the Herald-occupied areas and return to the bottom section of the vessel. They hope to find Dr. Abernathy and the keycard to deactivate Aurora. They sneak through a maintenance shaft, but Baron finds two Herald soldiers guarding the way. They begin to consider their options…
Session 12: The Two Doctors
[Aug 24th, 2023]
The explorers decide to sneak past the guards. Eve pulls out a mirror from her bag and uses it to view the soldiers as she guides each of them past the corridor opening. This works flawlessly and the group is able to sneak past them and make their way to the western elevator. They head down to the lowest chambers and decide to explore the unknown areas of the ship.
They first head to the northwest corner of the Ouroboros, where they find that a sealed blast door blocks their access towards Aurora’s chamber. They then head to the south end where they find the docking station and control computer for the logistics system, which is offline. They head north through the connecting corridor, but find a stuck door. Kite devices a clever use of a grenade, blasting the door open. They find the corridor continues to another sealed blast door.
However, in the corridor is a cryo-sarcophagus that was holding the body of Dr. Aragole, who was attacked by the beast when Baron’s neglect of duties allowed it to get free. Jean-Luc mentions he was the weapons expert on the ship. The cryo-device has failed and his body rotted. Baron is distraught seeing him dead and has to gather himself. Eve is undeterred by the body and searches it for clues. She finds a small case of 5 special titanium-uranium-virinium bullets, labeled V-10. Kite takes them.
The explorers then resign to returning to the middle level of the Ouroboros, deciding to flesh out the eastern portions. They first head north and pass through the carnage of the digital library chamber into the adjoining conference chamber. Inside, they find the body of Dr. Sparroll under the table. Eve grabs the H13Beta virus antigen from his pocket.
The explorers then head back towards the corridor guarded by the Herald soldiers. They attempt to sneak past again, but Kite is seen. This leads to a quick fight, where the explorers quickly blast the soldiers away with taking a single hit. Kite and Baron take the soldiers bullet clips and drags their bodies to the south chamber. The group then heads eastward towards the canteen and kitchens.
They find the kitchens quiet and empty. However, the canteen contains another pack of the infected. The explorers take them out quickly and search the disheveled room. Baron finds Dr. Aberney sprawned in the corner and takes the clearly labeled, cyan security keycard for Aurora.
With the keycard in hand, the explorers head to the elevator that heads to the Herald-controlled section of the ship. They are ready to face the soldiers and shut down Aurora once and for all.
Session 13: Confronting Aurora
[Sep 7th, 2023]
The explorers head down the elevator shaft into the heart of Herald soldier territory on the third level of the Ouroboros. They find the corridor relatively quiet and Baron checks each of the elevator shafts to see if any can take them to the bottom floor on the other side of the debris. He eventually finds that the eastern elevator will take them down, but the explorers are accosted by Herald soldiers from the north.
A quick firefight takes place, but Kite, Sola, and Baron are able to take them out quickly as Eve provides much needed support. Before more soldiers appear from the bridge of the ship, they rush into the elevator and head down into the bottom floor. They first head north, but find that a series of locked security doors only leads them to a secured blast door.
They then head east into burning corridors with overcharged heat vents. As they push through the corridor, some of the heat vents unleash on them. They all manage to make a narrowing escape into the next chamber. They then find themselves in the main fusion reactor room, but it is guarded by three strange blazedogs, burning creatures from a fiery volcanic planet.
They take out the creatures quickly with a grenade, but Kite takes a grievous injury and finds his muscles torn beyond immediate repair. They continue onward, heading north through another burning corridor that was the ship’s thermionic forge, although it is currently offline. They find that two sentry turrets pop up out of the floor and fire at them. They push forward, blasting the turrets and destroying them. They know the next chamber houses Aurora and prepare. Baron takes the virinium bullets and Kite uses the prototype shield belt.
The explorers burst into the next chamber, where they find Aurora, a giant data computer and AI module. She appears to be connected to a tangle of wires connected to the front of the ship. She is surrounded by a tangible shield of electricity and magnetic force. Two sentry turrets guard her as well.
The two turrets shoot at the explorers, but Kite and Baron are able to take them out quickly. It is then that two massive war bots come out of the other chamber, they fire gatling guns and grenades at the explorers.
Through a few well-placed grenades, Kite and Baron are able to take out the war bots, leaving only Aurora. She blasts lightning at the Baron and Kite, but fails to strike at them. They know that bullets will be unable to easily penetrate her shields and that Herald soldiers will be coming soon to stop them. Sola then rushes out and throws one of her grenades. The slow toss gets through the shield and it explodes right upon her central processing unit. The explosion immediately shuts her down and kills all power to the ship.
Jean Luc rushes to the console and uses the keycard to deactivate Aurora before she can reboot or anything. He is able to get the ship back online and Baron confirms that the Herald soldiers are no longer under her control.
The explorers meet with Captain James Soto, who thanks them profusely for their help. He forgives Baron for his previous failures and deeds, but warns Baron that he had already sent out a report to headquarters and the other Herald soldiers will still want him for justice and he cannot stop them searching for him. Baron decides to stay with Kite, Eve, and Sola. They decline to take the antigen virus with them, hoping that the rescue crews (who are on their way) can help mitigate the virus in the sector.
Instead, the explorers take the wounded Echo Jen and take their ship, the Fall of Icarus, away from the Ouroboros and its troubles. They continue their search for the planet where Echo left the data module.
Session 14: The War on Thorn
[Sep 21st, 2023]
The mercenaries travel for five days, from jump to jump through hyperspace. Eve is voted as Captain of the Fall of Icarus with Xander deceased. Over the journey, Echo Jen is able to recover somewhat, and Kite is restored completely. They then arrive outside a large jungle planet called Thorn. After they arrive, they notice that their transponder has picked up a large Herald settlement, called Marrow. It seems to be the headquarters of the very profitable ThornTech company, a biotech company known for genetically engineering plants to produce needed construction materials and narcotics.
They also find that there is a small research station on the other side of the planet. Echo then explains where her secret data module is located, thankfully its far from the Herald city of Marrow. The mercenaries then receive a secret beam-targeted communication channel. It is from a group of labor rebels hiding in the jungle, led by a fierce woman named Alex Dykstra, or Anvil. Once they assure that the mercenaries are not associated with the Heralds, they arrange for a meeting. The meeting site is coincidentally near Echo Jen’s stash location.
The mercenaries decide to take the shuttle, with the transponder off, to the surface and recover the data module, then they will meet up with the rebels. They leave Sola on the Fall of Icarus, letting Echo lead them to the data module. Kite carefully lands the shuttle and they walk through the hot and humid jungles to find the modules hidden location.
They come to a flowing steam and Echo points to a steel crate hidden in the waters. But before they can fish it out, a large reptilian monstrosity charges out of the trees and attacks them. Eve reacts quickly and distracts it with a smoke bomb. Kite and Echo shoot at it, backing away, as Baron sneaks across the rocks and tries to reach the crate. However, he slips on the wet stones and falls into the riverbank.
Kite throws a grenade, blasting the beast in the face and slowing it down. The monstrous beast ignores Baron and charges at Eve and Kite, but stumbling from the grenade blast. Kite then fires a well-aimed show at its fractured head scales, and fells the beast with a bullet to the brain. With the beast defeated, they are able to recover the crate and the data module inside.
The mercenaries are then interrupted by many rebel soldiers with guns. Things are tense, but Eve is able to talk them down and they meet with Alex Dykstra. She pleads them for help. They are trying to assault the ThornTech headquarters, hoping to capture the CEO, Karthik Mahara, a ruthless woman and plutocrat that keeps the laborers of Marrow suffering as she rakes in record profits. She offers them extensive wealth if they should succeed. The mercenaries decide to think on it and return to the Fall of Icarus with the data module.
After much discussion, Echo admits that the plan to bring the energy weapons data to the Fated Collective may not work out. She promised the crew riches, but she cannot guarantee how the Fated will react, as few understand them or have had real contact with them. The crew decides to still trust Echo, but the are disappointed in her baiting them with the promise of riches. However, now they possess a very important data module that could turn the tide of the war between the Order of the Forgotten Heralds and the Fated Collective.
The group decides to aid the rebels, hoping that they will be able to bring the riches they promise. The crew leaves Echo to guard the Fall of Icarus, as they take the shuttle down to meet with Alex at the small rebel camp. They find that there are indeed only about one-hundred rebel fighters and numerous refugee families huddled along in camps near some forgotten lab buildings.
The group meets with Alex and her advisors. Alex tells them that their plan is to wage an all out rebellion in Marrow while the mercenaries sneak into ThornTech headquarters and kill or kidnap the CEO. Alex will then resume control of the production facilities to ensure that the Heralds will not come to eliminate them. The flow of materials are vital to their war efforts, and she expects the Heralds will allow ThornTech to unionize as long as those materials keep flowing to Nerio and the front-lines.
The also learn that General Obadiah Johnston, will likely be preset as well, to help quell the rebellion. General Johnston would likely know of Baron’s deeds and Baron feels uncertain about confronting him. The mercenaries agree to the plan and prepare themselves for the next few days…