The Team prepares to leave Sirocco after finishing their project. However, as we go through flight check, the energy outputs seem to vanish. Power is being generated but it's not going anywhere.
We go outside to investigate and discover two man-sized scorpion-like creatures tearing into the drill drive. We attempt to drive them off but they attack. We kill them but discover they have already dissolved the magnetic coils of the drive. There's only one option: finding the back end of the research ship and cannibalizing parts for our ship. Savannah calculates the trajectory of re-entry and where the other half of the ship likely has landed, about a day's march away.
Leaving the NPC crew behind, the group heads out, taking a skiff with them to transport the equipment back. After about half a day, we get caught in a sandstorm that deposits some odd gunk on the ground. Despite Liberty forgetting how to handle it (failed a Survival Roll), our equipment allows us to weather the storm. After it dies down, a mass of worms emerge from the ground to feed on the newly deposited substance. They are harmless but the bird-like bugs that come to eat them aren't. We fight off a group of them and continue on.
Closer to our destination, we discover a large group of columns covered in a yeast like substance. Going around would take too long (We only have so much usable air left so we go through them. We discover the ship is in the middle of a field of mushrooms of varying sizes. After regretting not purchasing a telescoping pole, we head into the field where we kick up a column of spores. These are harmless if irritating to clean off our equipment. As we approach the ship, several of the larger mushrooms come alive and attack us. We defeat them.
A group of men wielding bows emerge and greet us, identifying themselves as the men of Shirwood. Their leader is Lord Shir, and they've taken up residence inside the ship. They were part of the ruling elite of a local oxygen mining colony before their 'king' was captured. They were set to pay a ransom in oxygen crystals when a villain named Guy stole it and took over. They are willing to let us take parts from the ship if we assist them in righting this wrong.
We discuss options, including creating a primitive electrolysis system to generate oxygen out of a slurry of the yeast but dismiss it as too time intensive. We join them on a raid of the transport of the crystals. With our superior weapons, we disable the land-schooners' wheels and the Shirwood men get their crystals. Savannah spent the time working out an advanced spec on our idea. She presents it to their tech, Merlyn, who is non-plussed.
They drive us back to our ship. We effect repairs and take off. On our way out of the system, we are interdicted by a small pirate ship. We attempt to fight it off but its powerful weapon disables our ship. They sync up and cut a hole in the hull. Pirates pour in but our heavy weapons cut them to pieces, though we take some wounds.
The ship disengages suddenly and Savannah and Liberty are sucked out into space while our psychic holds on. The two are able to use their momentum to get to the other airlock and engage the pirate captain, Calos. A vicious hand-to-hand fight ensues but despite nearly taking our opponent out, Liberty succumbs to damage and lays dying.
Savannah makes a surprising offer. If the Pirate Captain agrees to leave Liberty with the other ship, she'll go with him. Since the pirate is now alone, he agrees. We effect repairs and head back to Gateway, intent on rescuing Savannah ASAP.
We arrive back at Gateway and arrange to meet our client. During the meeting we are arrested on an array of charges (ED: Can you break those down again?).related to our eviction job. We explain and get bailed out by Guttman. We ask him to find our client. He tsks us and says he wouldn't deal with that kind of scum. But he agrees.
Meanwhile, our Psychic gets a visit from her sibling, Japser, with some news. First, their father is dead, murdered by a pirate. Also the brother was now a sister, but that was a relatively minor development. She had been training for the last year to find and kill this pirate. In a bit of synchronicity, Calos is that pirate and he's here in Gateway.
We head to the bar he's located at and Liberty sneaks up behind him. He announces that there's a 500 credit (provided by Savannah's credit stick) at the bar for anyone who doesn't interfere. When he confronts Calos, Jasper steps in doing a "Inigo Montoya, you killed my father, prepare to die" bit. Liberty steps aside, as familial revenge trumps a personal grudge. Jasper kills the pirate after he tells us where Savannah is. We rescue her and seize the ship, The Dead Ringer.
Archie proposes renaming it Savannah's Folly. I counter with Savannah's Reward; after all, she earned it the hard way. We agree that she owns 50% of the ship and the rest of the group will split the other half.
Before we can pursue the money owed us by our Client, Guttman says he has a job for us:
The daughter of an old friend is fleeing the Burning Mirror compact. She is a widow of a Count and is presently being pursued by another noble. Our interest is that she has a trove of data on the items we need to find the Vault. She is presently on an ancient superliner headed for Gateway. He hasn't seen her in years so we get a picture off of news feeds.
The plan is to get to Chifeng, board the liner and keep an eye on her. We use our new ship to get there. We berth it, pay 2k for an paint and overhaul and to hold it till we get back. Guttman has provided us with first class tickets. All weapons and armor are to be stowed in a security locker.
The first evening, there is a formal dinner allowing us to show off our holographic clothes. We are seated with a Rigellian scientist and explorer. We're a table over from the Countess. We observe that there is a man eyeing her and we make note of it.
A man starts hitting on the Countess and knocks out a person trying to intervene. Liberty knocks him out, endearing him to the Countess. This allows us to stay close and keep an eye on her.
We learn that the man at the dinner is named Felipe and he's part of a special military unit, the Eagle Warrior Society, specializing in abduction for sacrifice. So he's our primary suspect.
The next stop is Vyborg, a Matriarchal planet. We go down with the Countess. The trip is uneventful until our transport shuttle was sabotaged on the way back up to the space station. Savannah fixes it and we continue on our way but it adds a wrinkle; we assumed that the Countess was at risk for capture. Who gains if she dies?