The Long Night Ends (A Traveller T20 Game) (Inactive)

Game Master mdt

Four hundred and fifty plus years is a long time for a colony to be isolated. A lot of funny things happen to people when they are isolated from the rest of humanity for that long. What will become of these people?

SHIPS : Martha McTavish | Hera's Folly | Kerrus Refinium 2383 | Resplendent Commerce Delta Star Class Exploration Vessel

DECKPLANS : Martha McTavish | Hera's Folly

VEHICLES : Fulcan APC

Crew : Crew Roster
-----------------------------

MAPS :

Current Combat : NONE
Star Map : Explored Space
Explored Space Data : Data


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Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

Montinegro:
Holt smiles at Montinegro and says ”Well, then you’ll get the chance to make him real happy, because I also happen to be independently… well, financially stable, thanks to a terrorist attack and a few months mending most of my bones. Anyway, meet you at the bar in, say, an hour?”

- - - - -

Holt sits at the bar, a beer in front of her, as she jots in a notebook. Noticing Montinegro, she waves her over, dropping the notebook in her bag.


HP 14 / 0 Armor 0 (4)
role:
Special Operator
Character sheet

Hig is at the engineering station on the bridge. F3 star on the other side, but far enough away we should not be in danger if we jump through


Male
Latest Message:
Just to let you all know, I was travelling heavily 10/27 to 10/29, I'll be catching up on 10/30
Human GM

Vathan:

Montoya steps into your office while the navy is figuring out whether to jump to the new system or not. "Sir, with the addition of the Resplendent, I was thinking, there's enough space in one of those cargo holds to set up a decent firing range and obstacle course, and I bet we could free up a hold with some moving around of cargo. The armor on the ship will shrug off anything short of anti-vehicle fire, and even that would require a really lucky shot." The older man says, rubbing his scar on his face.

Hig:

Hig's ear-bud crackles. "Ltn. Colson here. Jump drive primed and ready to go, reading 98%." Colson's baritone buzzes in Hig's ear. Colson is assistant engineer. "Lifesupport nominal, 75% capacity, full green. Fusion reactor's green."

Holt:

Montinegro, still in her fatigues, enters the bar. There's a general nod, and several people wave at her. The starburst on her fatigues identifies her as one of the exploration fleet, which everyone recognizes. She takes a seat at the bar next to Holt, and nods at the bartender. "Groundsnake Bourbon, neat, double. On her tab." Groundsnake is not the most expensive of bourbons, but it is popular. She drops her pack on the stool next to her.


Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

Montinegro:
Holt nods at the bartender and adds "Make it two." before turning to Montinegro and says ”Well, you certainly seem popular.”

The drinks are placed in front of them, and Holt holds hers towards her companion, deciding to join the glibness with a quick toast and a smirk "To the boots on the ground and the brains in the sky."

She looks at the drink after the toast and gives a soft ”Not bad. Smoother than I expected.” Swapping to her beer while it is still cold, Holt asks ”So, any big plans for your shore leave?”


HP 14 / 0 Armor 0 (4)
role:
Special Operator
Character sheet

Captain calls out Hig The board is green, we are good to go with the jump


Male
Latest Message:
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Human GM

Holt:

"It's the flash." She touches the patch. "Anyone with a flash is popular. The guys are really enjoying it. Be a right little bumper crop of babies in 9 months, if their tales of conquest are even half true." She laughs. "Nah, got no family, lost my brother in the last little dustup with those isolationist scum. Parents in the solar storm, they were on Central Air 1407 when it lost it's flight systems." She shrugs. "Got some clan obviously, but nobody closer than a second cousin. So I'll probably uphold the old marine tradition of getting drunk and laid as much as possible." She laughs. "No, seriously, it's a Marine tradition, looked it up in the archives. Was trying to figure out what to do yesterday."


Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

Montinegro:
Holt laughs and blushes, unused to such frankness.

Huh, I guess I’m too used to stuffy professionals. Back when I first left home talk like this wouldn’t have phased me at all...

After taking a sip of her drink, she responds ”Sounds like a tradition that I need to try some time. Nothing like that in the written Navy traditions… well, there is that one about condoms being highly suggested in zero-g… to help keep the oxygen scrubbers clean.” She chuckles and takes another sip.

Smiling, she continues ”Well, you’re welcome to come back to my hometown where it’s fairly quiet, has some nice fresh air, and the drinks are good and cheap, mostly homemade stuff.. Got a spare room in my cabin. I can’t really speak to the quality of the lays though.”


Male
Latest Message:
Just to let you all know, I was travelling heavily 10/27 to 10/29, I'll be catching up on 10/30
Human GM

Holt:

Montinegro chuckles over the condom comment, and then gives Holt an appraising look. "Ma'am, I won't say you're not my type... you are. But, there is that whole chain of command thing. So, if you're inviting me out to just spend some time and see your home town, and we go out and get drunk and chase tail, then I'm good with that. If you're inviting me for some private time, I have to reluctantly decline. Not that I wouldn't if you weren't in my chain of command, but given you are, I can't. Per BuPers, I'm still assigned to the McTavish, and I wouldn't give up a berth on her for anyone, no matter how good the lay." She responds evenly, with a bit of a smile on the last sentence.


Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

Montinegro:
Holt just stares for a moment.

Wait… what?

Suddenly she starts sputtering, her face beet red. ”Wait, you think I… that wasn’t what I me-... oh jeez.” She takes a moment to catch her breath and take a long sip of her drink.

When she finally does seem able to respond she talks quickly, seemingly without taking a breath. ”Sorry, I was not inviting you back for… um… private time. I was offering the cabin to you, hence the spare bedroom comment. I intended to stay at with my parents and I just thought that maybe you could use some time out somewhere different, and it seems a shame for the cabin to not get use, and it would give you somewhere nice and romantic to… um… follow through with tradition. I hadn’t even intended to go out looking for… er… tail myself, much less inviting you for that…”

She stops, taking a breath and giving a long sigh, before looking up and quizzically asking ”So I’m really your type?”


Male
Latest Message:
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Human GM

Holt:

Montinegro laughs, the sound bouncing around in the bar. "Oh, my. Sorry Ma'am. Wouldn't be the first time a superior officer made a pass at me. Sorry for taking it the wrong way." She downs her bourbon and waves the bartender over for another. "You did ask me out for drinks and then talk about cabins and spare rooms." She grins at the blushing Holt. "Gotta admit, it's a natural mistake."

Another sip of bourbon, and then she shrugs. "Well, you are. At least with females. You're not my type when it comes to males. I prefer tall blonde and muscular on that side of things." She grins. "Tall dark and muscular works as well." She continues to grin, apparently enjoying Holt's blushing. "Yes ma'am, I'd love to take you up on the offer of the loan of the cabin in that case. Sorry about the confusion."


Map | Captain | Stamina 28/28 | Lifeblood 12/12 | AC 16/12/14 | Ref +3 Fort +2 Will +7 | Init +2 |

With a brown paper bag in her clutches, the Captain grins. A yellow star is a step in the right direction! With a solemn voice she calls out - "Make it so, Chief Engineer Hig!"


HP 14 / 0 Armor 0 (4)
role:
Special Operator
Character sheet

Attention Ship, Attention ship....Jump stations, Jump stations calls out Hig on the intercom, and then ....

lurch, twist, pop and we jump!


Male
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Human GM

The ship flickers, and then Ceres's stomach does a flip and rotation and tries to go on a separate vacation.

Then the distant dim red star is replaced with a similarly distant, but much bright yellow white star.

My remembrance is, when nothing is detected for 8 hours, the SOP is to do a full system scan from the McTavish after moving away from the warp point for an hour or so.

Warp Point Type: 1d10 ⇒ 10

The warp point is a Delta type, meaning it's closed on this end.

Moving away from the point for a few hours, and then scanning the system, the central computer begins to spit out data after 15 minutes of scanning.

Solar Type : F3 - 7,185 Kelvin
Orbital Slot 4 : Asteroid Belt (Thin)
Orbital Slot 14 : Gas Giant (Supergiant)
Orbital Slot 20 : Gas Giant (Supergiant)
Potential Warp Points : 7

NOTICE! NOTICE! LIFE FORMS DETECTED! LIFE FORMS DETECTED!
Biomass Detection : 100 million tonnes...
Biomass Detection : 200 million tonnes...
Biomass Detection : 400 million tonnes...
Biomass Detection : 50 billion tonnes...
Biomass Detection : 250 billion tonnes...
Biomass Detection : 580 billion tonnes...
Biomass Detection : 1.5 trillion tonnes...
Biomass Detection : 2.8 trillion tonnes...
Biomass Detection : 8.9 trillion tonnes...
Biomass Detection : 28.7 trillion tonnes...
Biomass Detection : 43.8 trillion tonnes...
Biomass Detection : ERROR ERROR ERROR

The first gas giant, on the opposite side of the sun from the McTavish flashes and flares a lurid red in the displays. Biomass detection rapidly went up until the sensors went into failure mode.

For reference, biomass of Earth circa 2000 was 560 billion tonnes, not counting microbial life


Map | Captain | Stamina 28/28 | Lifeblood 12/12 | AC 16/12/14 | Ref +3 Fort +2 Will +7 | Init +2 |

Fort: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (5) + 2 = 7 Fun note: 33/100 now : )

Ceres quickly graces her bag with the meagre scraps of her lunch. Seeing no intermediate threat, she leaves the bridge in charge of her second-in-command and retires to her quarters for an hour or two.

Closed means that it can't be detected, right? Or are we SOL


Male
Latest Message:
Just to let you all know, I was travelling heavily 10/27 to 10/29, I'll be catching up on 10/30
Human GM

Closed means you have to know where it is to open it, it won't show up on sensors.


Map | Captain | Stamina 28/28 | Lifeblood 12/12 | AC 16/12/14 | Ref +3 Fort +2 Will +7 | Init +2 |

nice =)


Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

Montinegro:
Holt gives a nervous laugh. ”Yeah, I can see how you would have thought that I was… uh… asking you out. And don’t feel bad, I really should have phrased all that more thoughtfully. How the situation must have seemed just didn’t even occur to me.”

Glad to have shifted at least slightly away from her faux pas, she responds ”Huh. I’ve never been the apple of another woman’s eye before. Or at least, not that I’ve known.” Her stare goes a little out of focus as she continues. ”Yeah, muscular is good. It doesn’t have to be overly sized, but very fit and tone...”

She snaps out of it as Montinegro mentions taking her up on her offer, adding ”Very good. I’ve got a couple of some paperwork first, but I’ll send a note along letting you know when and where my plane will be.”

Finishing off the last of her bourbon, Holt waves the bartender over for another. ”And I’m off duty, so you can drop the ‘Ma’am’ stuff. Honestly, I never really cared for the authority of being an officer anyway, and if it wasn’t against protocol, I’d be letting all of you just call me Ophelia.”

- - - - -

Holt, sitting in the Captain’s chair, widens her eyes at the lifesigns readings. She brings up the logs for the sensors, trying to see if there was any chance that this was just a malfunction.

Take 10 on T/Sensors to check specifics of the readings: 10 + 9 + 2 = 21

If the signs are true...:

Holt looks over the command deck and says ”Ok, I want a message sent out to the other vessels and crew, that major life signs have been detected on that Gas Giant. I want everyone watching their passive sensors and doing their best to stay in blind spots relative to that planet.”

What kind of life form lives on a gas giant? And in such large numbers?

She sat in the chair, waiting for the message to be sent, while she contemplated what would be the best course of action…

Ok, time for the OOC discussion. Active scans, scouting run, probe, or run away?


Map | Captain | Stamina 28/28 | Lifeblood 12/12 | AC 16/12/14 | Ref +3 Fort +2 Will +7 | Init +2 |

I'm thinking something like massive amounts of bacteria/low level life swimming around in that gas-ball. Probably not too smart - but I don't know.

The Warp-point is closed, so perhaps we can hide the ships there and send a probe. Have the probe beam back data omnidirectional so they can't use that to pinpoint us. With some more info, we can make a more informed decision.

And we should probably check all EM spectrum or something for signs of broadcast.

Thoughts? (Assuming it is not an error : ) )


Male
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Human GM

Sensors went into error mode, but Holt doesn't see any reason they should have other than 'OMGWTF' from the AI. The scan was an active scan, but it was a system wide active scan. The Resplendent is still in the other system waiting for a probe to tell it to jump

Holt:

Montinegro laughs. "Well, around outsiders, we're supposed to use Ma'am or last names. So I can call you Ophelia if we run into other humans." She grins, and then chuckles. "You can call me Jen if the situation arises, ma'am."


Male
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Human GM

It will take about a month for a probe to arrive at the gas giant from here. It would take about a week for the McTavish to get there. You could, of course, split the difference and get closer before launching the probe.


Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

I assumed that the sensors were calibrated to ignore bacteria. I’m assuming some kind of ‘gas’ jelly-fish or something seemingly ‘aquatic’ that can live at the stratification of the different gas densities.

Montinegro:

Holt glances around quite conspicuously. ”Well, it’s good to meet you Jen.”

The red in her face is starting to become quite obvious, and it definitely isn’t just embarrassment. ”So, if you don’t mind my asking, why did you join up? What made you want to sign up with the McTavish?”


Male
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Human GM

You'll have to go investigate if you want answers.

Holt:

Montinegro tugs at an earlobe, then shrugs. "Military brat, dad was a Ranger, Mom was a Ranger, big brother was a Ranger, Grandpa was a Ranger, other Grandpa was a Ranger, Grandma was a Ranger, other Grandma was a Navy Puke." She grins. "Black sheep of the family, of course. So it's kind of genetic. I was special forces in the army, so they offered me a position in the Marines when they reformed them. As to why be on the McTavish, well hell, where else you gonna see the galaxy? Besides which, if I'd stayed on the planet, I'd have had to murder a bunch of people. F*@$ing isolationists... Think they all ought to be skinned alive and put out in a Neotermite mound."


Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

Well, of course. : )

Montingero:

Holt nods. ”I can understand that. My family were all miners, teachers, and homemakers. The mines were drying up and it turns out I had a knack for machinery. My mentor was a retired Navy puke. The way he talked about being up in the space station… it just filled me full of some kind of childish idealism. I joined the Navy just on the chance that I could see it. I never imagined that I’d end up making the first space walk to our re-enlightenment about the universe...”

She takes another long sip of her drink. ”I’m not normally a violent person. But yeah, f$*&# those isolationists. Too many good people, too many kids that never got their chance, have died from them. Each and every one of them deserves a good, swift kick in the d*(%.”


HP 14 / 0 Armor 0 (4)
role:
Special Operator
Character sheet

Hig rubs his chin as he looks at the data on his screen.

Well, gas giants are big. They can be 100 to 400 times larger (in mass) than a typical class M planet, right?

So if they have a "normal" biomass population density, that is still a lot of real estate for things to live. Especially if they live in a 3 dimensional fashion of a gas giant atmosphere, as opposed to most things on a class M which are relatively 2 dimensional (living on the dirt).

He studies some more, carefully noting where the warp point is in case he nees to head back here.

Going EM silent is a good thing. Should be a standard practice when we go through a warp point. EM silent and passive sensors. The same with drive flares. They can be detected a long way off. After we study a bit, then decide if we want to stick our head up with active sensors or drive flares

Hig will scan the sensor data, looking for any EM signatures, and trying to determine what they might represent (i.e., early tech radio, ladar signature from later tech, etc).


Montoya:

"That's an excellent idea, Gunny. Do you think that there would be enough room to block lines of sight, in order to create an obstacle course for fire teams? Besides individual skills and PT (Physical Training), it would be great if we could practice team skills: communication, cover, over-watch, synchronized movement... Especially, if we have mixed service teams. What do you think?"

"Oh, and another thing." Vathan pulls out Montinegro's decoration box and set it on the desk. "What's the best way to use this to boost morale? Should we give this to her in the office and celebrate at the bar? Or make some occasion to use the spit and polish? What do you think?"


Map | Captain | Stamina 28/28 | Lifeblood 12/12 | AC 16/12/14 | Ref +3 Fort +2 Will +7 | Init +2 |

Hearing curious chatter from the bride, Ceres decides to return. She still doesn't feel super yet and brings a cup of soothing tea with her.

"Holt, report. What is all this ruckus about?"


Male
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Human GM

Vathan:

The man rubs his scar again, and nods. "I reckon we could do that, maybe not at first, but if we use the empty crates to make obstacles, we could. Wouldn't do to use full crates. And mixed teams is what I was thinkin' of. After what happened on Mylthani, might help if people was more comfortable working as mixed teams. Plus the vacuum suckers need to learn what they're weapons are for. I read the first mate fired single rounds only, never burst fire. Says to me she ain't comfortable with her weapon."

Looking at the medal, he chuckles. "I'd wait until she f!+*s up at something minor, and call the ship together, make her think she's getting a public dressing down over nothing, and then give her the medal. I'd stick her with the pin though, as 'punishment' for the f@~$ up. That ought to improve morale quite a bit, watching her squirm."


Male
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Just to let you all know, I was travelling heavily 10/27 to 10/29, I'll be catching up on 10/30
Human GM

Hig runs through the sensor data, but finds nothing unusual from the gas giant. Nothing that looks remotely artificial.


HP 14 / 0 Armor 0 (4)
role:
Special Operator
Character sheet

Nothing in the EM bands that looks artificial Captain. And the second gas giant has no EM spectrum beyond normal atmospherics and no life signs, so that would be a good spot to refuel as needed.

I recommend we maneuver closer to the gas giant with life signs and get closer before we launch a probe. Time lag would also be significant at this range


Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

Holt is responding to Hig when the Captain arrives. "Thanks for the report Hig. I'll pass the information on to the captain."

She turns off the comms and stands from the Captains chair. Waving to the glowing red image of the Gas Giant, she says "Sorry Ma'am. Bio scans show and abundance of life on this planet. As far as I know, it is more biomass than we've ever encountered. Ever."


Map | Captain | Stamina 28/28 | Lifeblood 12/12 | AC 16/12/14 | Ref +3 Fort +2 Will +7 | Init +2 |

"So life, but no technology? Any thoughts ... And so much! It made the scanners fail?"

The Captain looks alot better when she hears the news then when she entered the room. She stands right behind the Captains chair, gesturing for Holt to remain seated. With a grimace she explains -

"That was one of the worst jumps in a long while - I don't feel that well yet. Do we have any plan?" She could probably use that boost. I should have dealt with the incident better...


Montoya:

Although Vathan was senior marine, he only had one tour in the corps. In the army and out as a bodyguard had diluted any of his hardcore non-com behavior. But Montinegro was hardcore, so she would expect the treatment being able to carry on the tradition. "Good. Sounds like a plan. Keep an eye out for an appropriate opportunity. Anything else, Gunny?"


Male
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Human GM

Vathan:

"No sir, not at the moment. Other than general dislike of sissy clothes and armor. But I understand why." He plucks at the civilian coveralls he's wearing. "If you catch me standing at attention, smack me. Hard to get out of old habits." He grimaces, the expression halfway between a smile and and growl. Older army people tend to call Civilian's Sissy, a play on Civvy.


Male
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Human GM

Going to assume you are doing the standard dispatch probes to look for the potential warp points, launching them as McTavish makes it's way to the gas giant to speed them up. Didn't see any objections to that plan in Discussion when Ceres broached it.

The sudden increase in probes makes things a lot easier, and two are launched immediately to hunt down potential warp points. Two stay on warp point duty, and one is sent back through to the cargo ship.

Then the McTavish spends a week traversing the system, spewing out probes here and there as they make their way to the gas giant. One is also sent to the asteroid field, and begins sending back sensor data.

The asteroid field is pretty standard, high carbon content. Likely nothing worth mining.

The gas giants each have a half dozen or so moons, some the size of Mintakia. But none have atmospheres.

The probe does a few orbits as the McTavish stands off, but the probe is not equipped with life sensors. All it detects is gas, and lots of it. The gas giant has a high carbon count in it's atmosphere though.

You have two options, drop the probe into the atmosphere, which will lose it permanently, but it can send back readings for an hour or so while it falls, or take the McTavish into the atmosphere for refuel and detailed scans.

As the probe orbits, another one in the system sends out a priority message that it located a Warp point.


HP 14 / 0 Armor 0 (4)
role:
Special Operator
Character sheet

Can Hig recalibrate the life sensors on the ship so they don't hit an upper limit and lock up? If so, I recommend doing that and re-scanning from near or high orbit.


Male
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Human GM

The problem seems to be the ship's memory runs out trying to keep track of the lifeforms. So it's a hardware issue, not a software issue. He could, however, try to rig up something to limit it to just detecting the number of lifeforms in a secific area, then move areas one scan at a time and compile all the individual results into an amalgam. Not as accurate, but the computer might be able to thandle it.


HP 14 / 0 Armor 0 (4)
role:
Special Operator
Character sheet

Hig will work on limiting the scope of the scan then.

In fact, it might be better just to scan an area of say 1,000 km by 1,000 km by 1,000 km or similar. Might give a better idea of the density of the life signs so we can postulate where or what they are.

He sits at his station, tapping away on a keyboard, one ear listening to the Captain and First Officer as they work through the options on the gas giants and the system.


Map | Captain | Stamina 28/28 | Lifeblood 12/12 | AC 16/12/14 | Ref +3 Fort +2 Will +7 | Init +2 |

I'd say we sacrifice a probe. We have plenty and we dont wanna catch something weird just yet =)


Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

Holt wouldn't jump to sacrificing equipment, but she'd be willing to accept it. I saw we make the decision after we get some info from the region-by-region scan.

Though yeah, we're probably going to have to drop a probe in it.


Male
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Human GM

Hig sits down to do some sensor sweeps, and then blinks and realizes he was never trained on them. Going to Holt, the two take his idea and flesh it out.

Doing a very high level scan over half the planet, and then doing detailed scans in areas of low and high concentration, allow Holt & Hig to work up some numbers.

Holt T/Sensors: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (1) + 9 = 10
Holt T/Computer: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (12) + 9 = 21

Together they manage to get some numbers. The sensor readings are iffy, the planet's atmosphere has enough carbon in it to make sensors inaccurate. But, the extrapolation program Holt feels is fairly solid, even if it is prone to GIGO issues.

Holt & Hig estimate the biomass at between 285 trillion and 578 trillion tonnes.

The planet itself is approximately 1.28 Jupiterian masses. So there's a lot of space there for biomass.


Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

Ok everyone, sacrifice a probe?


Map | Captain | Stamina 28/28 | Lifeblood 12/12 | AC 16/12/14 | Ref +3 Fort +2 Will +7 | Init +2 |

Better sacrifice the probe then risk the ship

Ceres will be spending alot of time looking over Holt's and Hig's shoulders during the planning of this operation, but saying very little. She realized a bit too late that Holt took the loss of the marine hard - harder then she should - and Ceres wouldn't want her second-in-command growing to doubt her abilities. Now, there wasn't likely to be any ice planets with hostile lifeforms coming up anytime soon - if at all - so any 'pre-emptive rehabilitation' would involve whatever came their way. Like this curious planet. Standing behind them with a teacup in hand, she watched as Holt and Hig prepared the probe.

"How is the work coming along?"
_____________________________________________________

The probe was not the only preparation she had planned. While it would certainly give them a rough picture of the strange world they wound, they would most certainly have to fly closer themselves to get anything of real value. Besides, I didn't choose this path just to miss out on anything this strange! Now, the last time they encountered native life that wished them unwell they had been woefully under-prepared. So this time she rather see that they were ready for anything. Anything. Seeking out her Security Officer Vathan, she called him to a short meeting.

The Captains room/office was a organized mess, with far too much stuff crammed into the small space. In preparation for this short breif, she had shoved most of the stuff away under the bed but the chaos was still evident. As Vathan arrived, she was watching some old sci-fi film where a giant flying shark where eating spaceships.

"Silly thing - isn't it?" she gestured towards the screen just as the protagonist of 'Space Sharks III' took a large bite of a comically disproportioned spacecraft. With a thoughtful look at the film she gave Vathan a moment to get a good look before turning it off. "But what do I know? I didn't expect psychic six-limbed aliens either. We have some preliminary sensor data of the planet and more will come in once we get that probe up and away. I want you to check up on the weaponry and make sure everything will work as expected. And that all the blast-doors are in working condition. A leak feels more likely then a space shark attack really and I don't want to be breathing exotic life-forms... What are your thoughts on this new planet all things considered?"

I'm thinking just making sure our gunnery works (under the conditions of the planet) on the off-chance that there is anything large and hungry inside/on that gas giant. Never hurts to check. And it gives Vathan an excuse to mess around with the large weaponry for a while if he wants. :)

I'm thinking the above should probably be some sort of gunnery check or just use Vathans marine/security training, but if you want a hand feel free to grab someone. Ceres could probably do some things if needed


Ceres:

Vathan watches the B movie with a wry grin on his face. His two movies had bigger budgets and better special effects. To reply to her order, Vathan answers perfunctorily, "Aye, aye, captain. All ship's guns had been refitted and recerted before departure, so I'll double check their operation, maintenance, and personal training to use them. I'll enjoy taking my own turn to waste some ammo and update my own training schedule. Real life is so much better than simulation. I'll have a report to you within the week." He finishes with another mischievous grin.

"On that subject, we're going to reorganize the cargo to empty one of the holds. We plan to install a firing line and an obstacle course using containers to block line of sight. The bulkhead will contain all small arms fire. Considering our adventure on the alien planet, the crew could use an opportunity to practice their marksmanship and place in a fire team, especially mixed teams of security and specialists. It would better prepare us for away missions, and heaven forbid, if our ship is boarded. Don't expect everyone to become marines, but we can practice communication and team tactics. We could let it be volunteer to start for as morale and team building. However, if we don't get enough non-marine participation, we might try a different track. What do you think?"


HP 14 / 0 Armor 0 (4)
role:
Special Operator
Character sheet

Hig readies a probe for the atmosphere and waits for the order to launch.

He is pretty convinced that nothing alive in the atmosphere could come out and get them, but there could be something pretty big in there if the Captain chooses to take the ship in.


Male
Latest Message:
Just to let you all know, I was travelling heavily 10/27 to 10/29, I'll be catching up on 10/30
Human GM

Given the captain said she felt she needed to launch, and nobody objected, that's 3 out of 4 tacitly approving, so launching

Hig readies a probe, and the ship gives a slight noise as the below decks airlock opens, the reduced atmosphere sending the probe flinging off toward the planet below.

Hig takes remote control of the probe to get it through the upper atmosphere. As the probe falls into the thickening atmosphere, the bright whitish sun provides a spectacular view of the clouds. The giant planet is a dirty white and blue for the most part, almost calm and Terran in appearance.

Then the probe comes out of a cloud and the first of the native life comes into view. giant gasbag type aliens, the probe reads them as 30 to 50 meters across, with long trailing ganglia nearly four times their width. Winging in past them are flat triangular sailed lifeforms with thin membrane wings that are semi-transparent.

And then Ceres' 'space shark' movie seems a lot less far fetched as two leviathan creatures rise up out of the darker clouds and into the sunlight, like two whales breaching, each with a flock of smaller arrow shaped creatures flying in intricate patterns around them, sometimes landing on them, much like shuttles landing on a carrier. The leviathans register as over 400 meters long each.

Then the probe drops into the clouds, and the sunlight goes out. For a long while, the probe is buffeted by heavy winds, and the video feed begins to cut in and out as the probe takes damage from the howling 400 mph winds.

Finally it falls into a relatively clear patch of air, and more pictures come through. A different species of lifeform, this one with four 'wings' and a bulbous body to keep it airborn zooms past the camera aggressively, as if chasing something out of it's territory. Then the camera spins crazily and damage alarms sound on the probe as something hit it and spun it. Each of those creatures was twice the size of the probe, and one must have hit it. The camera flickers, and sends back a still image of yet another jellyfish like creature pushing itself away from the probe.

Finally the probe manages to route around the damage, and the video comes back, although the last bit has to be enhanced. The probe passes the 10 mile mark into the atmosphere, and the last of the light from the sun illuminates hundreds of more jelly fish like creatures. The probe falls in freefall, no longer under control, and passes near one of the creatures. Very near indeed. And then a few seconds later there is a blinding flash and the probe stops responding, almost certainly hit by one of the massive lightning bolts spotted earlier in this layer. Several million volts of electricity frying the probe's interior.


Map | Captain | Stamina 28/28 | Lifeblood 12/12 | AC 16/12/14 | Ref +3 Fort +2 Will +7 | Init +2 |

Vathan:
"Excellent! One week then. Just get any battery live-fire done before we come close to the planet - we might send the wrong message otherwise." She laughs. "If there is anyone to listen. And if you have trouble finding enough volunteers, we'll work something out. But I think everyone will enjoy the change of pace - and we could always convert some mandatory gym hours..."

Do you wanna set up the fireteam exercise or shall ? Or do you think the discoveries at the planet would overshadow it? Maybe just a notice so far. Hmm : )

Ceres keeps her eyes glued on the video feed, looking like a child if christmas, new years eve fireworks, an eclipse and five other equally exciting things happened to coincide. Her grins goes steadily wider until the leviathans fly-by.

"Holy spirits! DID YOU SEE THAT?" Of course they did. Her jaw drops to the floor and she sits stunned for a few moments. "Amazing! Vathan, you might get to star in 'Spacesharks IV, the docmentary'!"

When the screen (and the probe) dies, she sits perfectly still and stares at it. But no matter how much she wants it to, it doesn't come back to live. Her fingers itching, she must fight hard to resist the urge to order another prope-launch. Finally she sighs and leans back in her chair. While she had wanted more (whom wouldnt?), the drop had been a spectacular success already.

"... Heh."


HP 14 / 0 Armor 0 (4)
role:
Special Operator
Character sheet

Well....not much to say about THAT, I suppose.


MDT, I'm not sure when this conversation happens, so I'll write what Vathan is doing and leave it to MDT to schedule within the game. Good?

Ceres:

Vathan returns a mischievous grin to the captain and replies, "glad we're on the same page. If that is all, I'll get to it then." With protocol observed, Vathan goes to see Montinegro.

Montinegro:
Vathan gives her the duty to double check the gun's operations, maintenance, and personal training. "We will review the status in two days, and schedule my live fire training to be the first." They discuss that he wants to review all of the guns' operational parameters, maintenance records and requirements, and training schedule for crew members.
MDT, can I leave this to you? What are the ship's guns and who in the crew are trained to use them?

Gunny:

Vathan then checks on the progress of the Gunny to create the obstacle course and shares the captain's enthusiasm and suggestion to potentially make it a part of mandatory PT. Vathan also reviews the duties that he just gave to Montinegro, so the Gunny can keep an eye on her.

On the bridge, Vathan smiles at the captain's comment. "Well, Spacesharks IV would need a bigger budget to attract me. I suppose if we dropped another probe down there we might see some flying pigs, too."


Male
Latest Message:
Just to let you all know, I was travelling heavily 10/27 to 10/29, I'll be catching up on 10/30
Human GM

They'll all take place a bit down the road, probably during the down time after the freighter catches up.

A probe is sent to call for the freighter.

While the ship is waiting in the L5 position at the gas giant, probes report finding 2 more warp points, bringing the total to 4. The other 3 probes indicate no warp points found in their positions.

The freighter catches up 3 weeks after the probe dropped into the gas giant's atmosphere.


Female Lieutenant Commander [2 Professional / 1 Academic / 2 Navy*] [Stamina 18/11 | Lifeblood: 11/11 | AC: 15 | T: 12 | FF: 13 | Fort: 0 | Ref: 4 | Will: 10 | Init: +2 | Per: +4 | Comb. Eng.: +11] [Easy Recall: 1/1 | Inspired: 1/1]

Ha! I was right about 'gas' jellyfish!

Holt watches the video feed with a dropped jaw.

An entire ecosystem of creatures living in a gas ocean... What miracles of nature were able to create this? How did these things come to be?

A sense of awe and wonder fills her and she can't look away.

"It is altogether fitting that we who have sailed the deeps of space now return again to the sea. Though we have returned to find a sea so very different than the one we knew... Col. Corazon Santiago"

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