With the Volturnus Survey Expedition I being missing and out of contact for 9 months and the growing colonial unrest the government of Pale allowed the emerging mega corp, Streel, to co-op the Volturnus Survey Expedition II. This allowed the Republic of Pale to save face in their inability to follow up on the missing expedition with funds being diverted to the drafted Peace Keeper Battalions being raised to help control the food riots on Pale and for the possibility of military action on Cygnus Omicron IX.
Streel’s Resource Acquisition Division (RAD)immediately moved to dispatch a Prospecting Exploration and Survey Team (PEST). To staff the team some new hires’ freshly arrived in the system, were informed that their original positions were no longer open but they could take the positions on the Volturnus Survey Expedition 2 or resign from the company. It was strongly inferred that if they resigned that their status would be reported for consideration for the Peace Keeper Battalions. Smelling a railroad they went alongn and attended the Volturnus Mission Briefing.
Both Sprocket and V’Tok checked with contacts they had on Pale to see what was going on. V’Tok met with his cousin who worked for a Vursk trade house specializing in accounting which just happened to be the outside accountants who had been responsible for dotting “i”s and crossing “t”s for Streel corp but had recently but denied full access to RAD’s records only being provided a prepared book to review.
Sprocket met with Lucritia Dolores, a human friend from university who writes for The Star Republic, an independent and conservative periodical with largely electronic distribution. She was absolutely bitter over the virtual control of the government that Streel was exercising and suspected the corporation of having a hand in the present difficulties but had no proof.
Being warned they boarded the Serrena Dawn tramp freighter owned by Farway Freight, a Streel subsidary. On board they met Kahn Sur-Ock, a yazirian monk who had volunteered to be the team medic and another team mate who out of bitterness at being forced onto the team withdrew totally from contact.
All of the team’s equipment: drop buildings, vehicles, robots and etc. was stored in the cargo hold but at the last minute one of the team’s robots was down checked and replaced. The new bot being stored in the small cargo area adjacent to the passenger cabins.
The trip to Zebulon system went uneventful till the ship was close to Volturnus orbit, when it was set upon by Red Devil pirates with zero warning. Kahn, V’Tok, & Sprocket managed to fight off the pirates they encountered on the crew deck and were forced to leave behind the 4th member of their team as she was having a total panic attack and mental break down.
They managed to recover their personal gear and the last minute robot and fight their way to the bridge deck looking to recover their issued weapons from the weapons locker. Unfortunately the pirates had blown the locker and other explosions from down ship coupled with the loss of gravity and loss of atmosphere led them to abandon ship.
A pirate assault shuttle managed to shoot the life boat as Sprocket took it off autopilot and was forced to crash land it. Miraculously only their robot was damaged in the crash but they were forced to run from the craft before the boat blew up…
(Stay tuned for the next installment of the Story so far…)