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arrivan

From murderous thugs to well oiled machine

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For the next play session I had the new new characters to work in. The player who had the Rodian returns with a Jedi/Sith concept which he had originally wanted. His character is named the White Ghost and he is an Arkanian offshoot Ataru Striker who is clearly darkside. He backstory is he is a genetic experiment from the empire who got away. He took on the Ghost Identity as a cover and works as a bounty hunter.  The new player and stranger to the group plays a mercenary soldier named Eleanor who is a Twil'Lek Female. As the new player is a stranger I arrange for my wife and daughter to be absent from this play session so I can get a feel for the new guy. The pair came over and played through the mission in the force and destiny beta book which gave the jedi a low grade crystal for his lightsaber and the mercenary was able to hawk his crystal and buy some decent equipment so he wouldn't be too weak for the group. The new guy was decent and I thought safe enough for the family. The player who is now ghost began to pick up the nickname crit during this session. It was the second session in a row where the first attack that hit his character did a crit. 

The next session came and I decided to break Graayl Nor out of his stay in their cargo hold and have him offer his bounty hunter guild to Derek in exchange for his freedom. Derek assumes control of the Red Pact bounty hunter guild and returns to Nar Shadaa to view his new holdings. Unfortunately, with Graayl's disappearance and the heavy losses the group sustained hunting the Supernova the guild is in disrepair. They are in desperate need of a job well done to put them on the map again. Derek keeps Graayl on as an administrative guy mainly because he doesn't want to let him out of his sight to where he could build a new guild and take him out in revenge. They put out the word that the guild is under new management and  the team of Ghost and Eleanor show up to join the group in their latest mission. 

Things had gotten busy in my personal life and this was the third weekend in a row playing so I grabbed the debts to pay module and dusted it off. I inserted Bargos as a rival to Teemo and had Burpa insist that helping him would give them more allies in the Hutt Cartel which was important for his return to glory. I ran the majority of this module by the book with only slight alterations to weave it into the fabric of our ongoing story. The best item to note was again on the first round of combat one of the droids scored a critical hit on Ghost and demolished his arm. I swear it is a curse from giving up on his first character Grexi, but this guy is a crit magnet who keeps the doctor busy. They completed the mission with little difficulty and walked away with a small amount of credits. At the end of the mission the player figure out that Bargos is dead broke as well and extort his allegiance to Burpa. Being able to wind the module into the story made my players feel like it was more than just a throw away episode and it helped move the plot. The game definitely was not as much fun as some of the other missions and my players recognized that in order to keep churning out decent content I needed breaks between sessions. After that session we resumed playing every other Saturday instead of playing weekly. 

The only other notable piece I need to mention is the players decided at the end of the night to expand beyond just bounty hunting and into all sorts of illicit activities. Basically turning the Red Pact from a hunter guild to a criminal empire. Or the start of one at least. 

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At this point in the story I am feeling I let down my players with Debts to Pay. The module is well written, but my players have come to a free form play style where I point them in a general direction, leave a few windows and doors open, and they basically figure out how to accomplish their objective. They have come to enjoy my improvisation. With Debts to Pay the story is pretty linear. It just felt like it lacked a lot of personal connection to my players and in truth I should have done more to add my own flair to the module. So I wanted this session to have an epic story arc feel to it. I wanted to close up more loose ends and bring the players back to being smack dab in the thick of it. With that objective in mind I set out to establish a plot hook worthy of the group that would hopefully add some fire back after the drowning that was Debts to Pay.

 The opening was as follows:
 

After completing Bargos the Hutt's investigation mission into the mining colony the reputation of the Red Pact has taken a slight bump up in notoriety. Add The Red Pact to the group sheet with an Obligation of 5 : Notoriety. 
 
On reuniting Ryn with Renka, your contact at the Hungary Mynock has gone dark for short term. No doubt resettling into a different life now that she has been reunited with her sister. Some thing tells you it won't be the last you see of the spunky infochant. The week's that have followed the bargain with Bargos have seen an increase in activity for the Red Pact as the word of recent acquisition by a notorious criminal assassin and the expansion into more nefarious dealings has sparked n influx of clientele. 

The acid rain washes over the horizon as the latest storm moves through the corellian sector. The dark clouds cast a fitting shadow over the world of Nar Shadaa. Illuminated by a hazy neon glow of lights and the callings of the underworld it is a typical day on the smugglers moon. The events of the past weeks have been good for the Red Pact and business has finally begun to pick up. Each active player can make a skulduggery check to represent the nefarious dealings in the down time between sessions. Each success is worth 200 credits and each advantage is worth 100 credits. On returning to the Red Pact main planning room the party is greeted by a Zeltron, Alerya Nol-Nar, who bears both a greeting and a large gift wrapped box. She is dressed in obvious slave attire. A typical Zeltron her form is svelte and her skin is a red hue with long strands of bluish purple hair falling wildly around her face and drifting down her shoulders and back. 
 
The party is then forced to make a fear test, they immediately ask why and I simply answer "you don't know it just overcomes you." In truth the Zeltron has a psychic emotional projection ability and she is scared stiff. 

The Zeltron speaks as the party approaches: 'Hello and welcome home. On behalf of the great Hutt Cartels of Nal Hutta I have been sent to welcome your upstart organization to the fold and present a gift from the Great Triloc The Hutt of the Desilijic clan. The great Triloc the Hutt was disturbed to hear that Graayl Nor had started venturing into unsanctioned activities here in his territory. The Great Triloc the Hutt assumes this was merely an oversight. As such I have been sent as a welcoming to ensure you understand your position. Here..." she says handing the gift wrapped box over. 
 
On opening the box the players find the cold dead eyes of Graayl's decapitated head. It's all they have time to take in though as the building is viciously rocked by a rocket blast.
 
Derek's Gank Comm Implant flares to life for the first time since he bought it during character creation.  "Derek lad are you still alive in there?" The familiar voice of Raiden Karsov, Derek's mentor echos over his gank implant. "Listen to me boy,  the Hutts have employed a Gank Hunter pack to eliminate your little band in there. Bad news it's the outfit known as "Alpha One" all trained killers. You must escape from Nar Shadaa. I can't risk communicating again until your in a place I can reach you. You must Survive. I need your help."

With that the signal cuts out and the assault is on in full. The building is constantly being rocked by rocket fire and as such the players must roll a red die every turn. On a critical fail they get hit by the blast of a rocket detonating. The party tries to look out at their surroundings only to find a mob of ruffians storming the building. Recognizing that the mob is not made of of Gank hunters the party concludes they must be Hutt goons. The party grabs the slave girl and makes for the landing pad and the Supernova. they proceed down one floor to be ambushed by waves of goons wielding clubs and truncheons. The ensuing fight is pure chaos as the party unloads on the weak minions cutting them down like wheat. Despite their brutal first round the minion horde keeps flowing in through the stair wells. Derek calls for a retreat to the lifts and hurls a grenade into the mob. With the party escaping to the outer hallway leading to the lifts. Derek closes the door and blasts out the control panel commenting that the goons armed with just clubs could no way bust through the door. The slicer is calling up the lift and the  doors slide open to reveal a pack of three Gank hunters ready to attack. Combat begins anew as the party struggles to take on the new adversaries. Derek head shots one of the Ganks dispatching him with a hail of carbine fire. The slicer falls back clearly outgunned suffering multiple hits from the ganks. Ghost whips out his saber and attacks head on engaging in close combat with the hunters but blocking the doctor and mercenary from shooting into the lift. 
 
Ghost is forced back from close combat realizing he isn't quite a sith yet as he fails to absorb the array of blast bolts. Injured but still standing his retreat gives the doctor and mercenary the chance to open fire and finish off the wounded Ganks. The party takes the lift down to the landing pad. (I had originally intended for the party to be forced back and have to repel down the outside of the building to the landing pad. The rolls and quick thinking of the players changed my course). 
 
On the landing pad the players cleaned up some more goons and boarded the Supernova. With rockets incoming they take off suffering only a minor hit. The Alpha One pack had predicted the escape however and the supernova was quickly greeted by three normal dune lizards and one souped up dunelizard which was flown by a nemesis level pilot. This fight was much harder than what the group had encountered before in space. They were in the city still and the pilot had to deal with buildings and traffic in flight. The gunners took out the minion dunelizard easily but the Supernova was rocked by a missile from the ace which really damaged the ship. They succeeded in making it to the upper atmosphere and once clear of the planet just barely escaped into hyperspace.  With the supernova heavily damaged and the base destroyed the group was at a loss on where to go. Renka had gone dark. With the guild all but destroyed and me offering no suggestions the party reviewed their sheets. They still had the Heart of Gamor and the scrolls from Pybus so they were not broke. The Sith took interest in the scrolls and asked what they were. I allowed a knowledge check for the sith to determine that the scrolls were of Sith origin, but they are written in sithscript which he does not know and will require a cipher to translate. Having another dead end the group reviewed it's contacts and decided to check up on Jacek whom the had left behind on the Pearl which they believe is far enough from Hutt space to offer a break from the attack.

Arriving on the Pearl the group tracks down Jacek who as usual does his best work from behind a tankard of ale. The group asks him if he ever came across any collector of Sith relics to which he comes up empty handed. At this point the group is introduced to a npc I control like a character. Xlina, a Falleen who just happens to know  of a collector of Jedi and Sith Artifacts. Xlina takes the party to meet a Black Sun Vigo who has an extensive collection of old artifacts. They recognize that it would not be wise to have both the black sun and the Hutts after them and so they play nice asking about a possible cipher. The Vigo admits that he has such and item and has kept it for some time. He introduces a fierce looking warrior who he introduces as a Morgukai warrior. He explains that the addition of the legendary Morgukai warriors to his forces would be amazing indeed, but his problem is with the elimination of the Jedi how does one know if such a warrior truly is a Morgukai Adept or merely a pretender? So the Vigo began hoarding items he could find knowing if there were any stray Jedi or Sith they would come looking for something. He brashly asserts that a member of the party must be a Jedi or a Sith as no one else would risk such danger as seeking to bargain with a Black Sun Vigo. With that he explains that he will gladly hand over the cipher if the party member who is a force user agrees to fight the Morgukai in single combat so that he may know the truth of the Nikto's claims. 

Ghost eagerly accepts and begins what turns out to be a very close and stunning combat exchange between the adept and the Ataru Striker. Both the player and the npc land a series of minor critical hits. The fight build up with the player really adding in flourish with each attack and the other players cheering him on, until the attack which shorts his lightsaber thanks to the cortosis nature of the Morgukai staff. On the next attack the Morgukai delivers a vicious blow again criting the Ghost player and this time he loses a leg. The Vigo ends the combat. Impressed with the martial display and pleased to learn his new Nikto allies are indeed practitioners of the Morgukai sect. The players take the Cipher and retreat to the nearest medical facility to work on replacing Ghost's lost leg. The Sith in Ghost makes him pledge to hunt down the Nikto and kill him in the future. Many out of context jokes are told about Ghost only needing to lose one more leg and bet set on fire to go full on Vader. Ghost swears to never visit a lava planet. The cipher unlocks the secrets of the scroll which now can be used as a holocron from force and destiny. 

The crew of the supernova is left in a struggle between rival Hutt families, the rise of the Black Sun in the outer Rim, the Empire's hand still tracking them, and now Derek's mentor and the Alpha One pack story arc to work on. The players were very pleased with the night and loved the epic square of duel with the Sith. There are multiple arcs for them to pursue and this catches up all the summer sessions we have played on my campaign. 

Ghost has tried his hand at running an Age of the Rebellion game which has allowed me to play a character and helped with the fact that my work life has been crazy. I am looking forward to expanding on the struggles between the Black Sun and the Hutt families for control in the Outer Rim. 
 
 
 

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It's been a little more than a month since our last play session. Three of our players have been forced overtime on Saturday's our normal play sessions and thus it was a great treat to play again last night. Given the long break in the play session we returned to the crew of the supernova. (Derek, Ghost, Nakyanna, Natalya are able to make it. The newer player playing the marauder Eleanor can not.) As a back filled back at the start of the campaign when it was just the original three players I had made a human pilot Reed who was never super influential in the story but followed the group like an NPC. He has been with the group for a long time but as the group has grown I had been toying with the idea of having him become a straight NPC pilot who always stays with the ships or killing him off. I have enjoyed the character but the backstory is weak on him as the story is really about the players. Now that we have a potential 6-7 players at the table having a npc following the group around is just extra die rolls the players are not making during the game. So I decided over the summer that given the right moment Reed was going to die or leave the group. Just not sure how it was going to happen. 

The party starts with the following intro:

 

" In the weeks that followed the ambush on Nar Shadaa you managed to gain the favor of the Black Sun Lord on the pearl. As soon as word spread about the assault by the Alpha Pack whispers began to follow indicating that certain members of the Red Pact's standing with Teemo the Hutt was the true cause of the violent backlash.  After a few weeks, news of your survival began to spread across the underworld and a new infamy for the guild began to grow. Your contact s and allies slowly but surely began making their way to the Pearl. The guild, allowing some downtime between between operations, has started to become restless on the Pearl as their natural wanderlust began to settle in. It's a muggy night on the Pearl when the party gathers at the Drunken Bantha Cantina. Tensions are already at a high when a nearby sabaac game erupts between some human swoop gangers and a rival Zabrak gang. The Sabaac table is launched over showering the party with cheap ale as the accusations of cheating begin flying. Before  the party can even sort out what is going on the Cantina breaks out in a all out brawl."

Ghost gets first initiative slot and swings at a nearby human swoop ganger unarmed. More proficient with his light saber than his fists he missed the first opponent. Derek go next and closes on another swoop ganger unleashing his repulse fist cybernetic arm. He lands a devastating blow on the gang member lifting him through the air and sending him crashing through a nearby table. With one shot the humans jaw is crushed and he is laid out of the combat. The two standing human swoop gangers take swings at Ghost and Derek who shrug off the blows. (This is meant to be a more fun "we are bad asses" fight than a challenge which I find can be more rewarding when sprinkled in). 

The brawl has been very bar room-like up until this point when the 10 year old slicers announced she is going to spray the room with her heavy blaster rifle. This brings a collective laugh from the table and sees a moment where our Dark Jedi is counseling our slicer on the over use of force. Ultimately she decides to use the stun setting on her pistol and her shot goes wide. The doc goes next following suit and loosing a stun blast on the crowd. The Zabrak  have been largely ignored and are minions anyway so I have them continue to attack the swoop gangers. The bar-fight has made it through the full round and the two standing swoop gangers are facing down not only the rival Zabrak, but also the player party who has seemingly chosen sides. With that they promptly apologize and collect their fallen member and head out. The Zabrak's thank the party for choosing the right side and toss them some of the credits form the game. As the cantina begins to settle down Renka comes in frantically searching for the group. She is dressed in entertainer garb rather that her normal appearance. She rushes to the group and blurts out that now is the time to strike. Teemo the Hutt is returning to his palace on Mos Shuuta. The players have some q&a about the details and learn that Teemo is rushing back to Tatooine to meet with some unknown delegates and continue to ask about some of the other story threads I have left open. Derek slips his favorite girl Renka some credits and the group decides to return to the supernova and consult Burpa the Hutt. 

Burpa is outraged at hearing about Teemo flying around the galaxy in his Yacht. He is eager for revenge and spills a ton of information and obligatory insults at the party. The party learns that the Yacht does have a weakness but is heavily armed and they would need the security codes from Teemo's majordomo who is undoubtedly still at Teemo's palace on Mos Shuuta. The party leaves Teemo and discusses on the journey their course of action. They can kill Teemo and supplant him with Burpa and possibly gain the favor of ta Hutt Lord, they could kill both the Hutt's and gain favor with the Black Sun, or they can double cross both and work something out with Teemo. During the flight to Tatooine the crew gets a holo-call from Xlina. A npc adversary I have set up for the group who is the link to the black sun. She feeds them information about how shifting the power balance on Tatooine would be beneficial for the Black Sun's and how Teemo harbors a jealous for Jabba the Hutt whom he tries in vain to copy and one up. She also alludes to the fact that the empire and the black sun have grown increasingly interested in Tatooine since some farm-boy named Skywalker blew up the death star. There is a huge bounty on any information leading to the notorious rebel. (I have made it clear to the players they will never change or alter the core movies however the news and events of the galaxy help give the player that feel of being in the SW universe and make it more than just random space opera.)

There is some debate about whether or not to land back at Mos Shuuta or land at another port. Ultimately the group decides that they killed almost all witnesses during their escape months ago and they traded the original ship for the Supernova so it's not like they are flying the same ship back into the port so they want to land in Mos Shuuta. The lines of hyperspace slow down to a canopy of stars with the orange blow floating in the horizon that is Tatooine. The planet looks the same as they left it save for the ominous appearance of an Imperial star destroyer hovering above the planet. The star destroyer has the unmistakable appearance of the Phantom (The same ship hovering above Raxus Prime where they fought and barely escaped from the Emperor's Hand).  

The Phantom is occupied with its own purpose and traffic to and from the planet is unhindered. The player fly by and land in Mos Shuuta as planned. They prepare to leave the ship and are immediately greeted by a Storm trooper sergeant accompanied by a group of 4 Imperial Storm Troopers. The Sergeant informs the party that the port has been locked down due to dignitaries in the area and unless they have the proper clearance paperwork they must leave or wait aboard their ship for the dignitaries business to pass. Derek says "We have the papers," then quick draws his blaster carbine and says "Here's our clearance" and opens fire. Derek takes the first imitative slot and fires at the Sergeant, rolling crit and sure enough takes the Sergeant's arm. (The group has crazy tendency to roll that critical injury as limbs blast off of heroes and npc's as if all the characters were Mr. Potato Head toys) 

The group in their haste failed to note the minion group of scout troopers armed with sniper blaster rifles at the entrance to the spacedock. They open fire and on a horrible roll manage to hit Darek, but with just a single success he shrugs off the strength 11 hit allowing his soak to absorb more than half the damage. Seeing the Bounty Hunter shrug off the sniper blast is too much for the scout troopers who take 2 strain damage from their roll. Ghost follows next drawing his vibroaxe and moving to engage the sergeant striking him heavily in face and dropping the disarmed sergeant in a crumpled heap. The Slicer takes aim from the ships platform and blasts the Storm Troopers dropping one. The Doctor follows suit dropping another for the original four stormtroopers. With just two troopers remaining they launch their frag grenade at the party who has stayed clustered up at the ramp of their ship. Surely a mistake their will regret, of course the storm trooper throws the grenade with all the accuracy one would expect from a storm trooper and fails to get sufficient advantage to use the blast effect. This is narrated as Reed the npc pilot. This is narrated as Reed throwing himself on the grenade shielding the group from the blast. (The grenade did 13 wounds less his 3 soak for 10 wounds dropping him from 12 to 2 wounds). Reed drops another storm trooper with his heavy blaster. 

Derek get next round and shoots last remaining Standing storm trooper. The scouts have slow firing 1 so the take cover at the entrance and are unable to launch a second volley. Ghost spends two maneuvers moving and suffering strain accordingly to reach the scout troopers and drops another with his vibroaxe. The Slicer decides that Ghost is force sensitive enough to dodge her fire and shoots at the melee between he and the scouts rolling enough disadvantages to have the shot graze Ghost who takes the hit like a champ. There is plenty of laughing about what "force powers" the Jedi actually has and how Hokey religion is no match for a good blaster. The doctor shoots Reed with a stimpack preventing the frag grenade from  having any lasting effects which brings a hearty laugh at the table as well. No one else tempts fate to shoot into the melee as Ghost would not survive a hit from Derek's tricked out blaster carbine and thus the scout trooper drops the sniper rifle and fires with his scout blaster doing another glancing blow doing no damage but adding setback to Ghosts next swing. Ghost then cuts down the final scout trooper.  

The group then begins on a serious debate about the bodies. The debate goes back and forth of whether to strip all the weapons and stow them on the ship for resale later. The pro stealing the weapons side of the party says they can easily offload them back on the pearl. The Against side of the party reminds them that they still need to assassinate the Hutt and get away and there is a good chance they may be boarded leaving Tatooine and it would be awfully tough to explain a crate full of bloody weapons to an imperial inspector. The best line of the night comes out and I can't remember who said it first but the statement quickly became the rallying cry for the night "Murder first then pillage". With that the group stashes the bodies behind some shipping crates and head to the Broken Dewback Cantina to get some information and hopefully find a way to infiltrate the Hutt's Palace.

 

On entering the cantina the group makes eye contact with the bartender who was literally the only surviving NPC from their first adventure on Mos Shuuta. He immediately puts his hands up and begs them not to cause any trouble which brings about a good laugh.  The Cantina is full of Gamoreans who work for Teemo who immediately become edgy. Derek asks to speak to the gamorean in charge and begins negotiating with the gamoreans. He makes a deal to trade the Heart of Gamor (they have had this treasure sitting in the ship since the Pybus adventure) to the pack leader in exchange for the gamoreans attacking the Palace personnel when signaled. The party learn from the Gamoreans that Teemo is having a giant banquet  that night to meet with some imperial woman dignitary named Zytle. The crew decides the plan will be for they to fly their cargo ship direct to the Palace's space dock and play off that they are delivering the tree frog delicacy for Teemo's big night. At the proper time they will signal the guards to break out the fight and in the chaos kill or capture Teemo. There is some debate about what to do with the ship in between and whether the npc pilot should go with the group or not. I convince the group that the extra blasters might be needed and the party moves ahead with the plan.

On returning to the ship the crew decides it would be best to rig a shipping container with the  left over frag grenades on the stormtroopers. They make a test and rig a detonator for their makeshift bomb. As they prep the shipping bomb they decide to put the imperial corpses in the crate as well figuring the blast will strew about imperial corpses which can then be blamed after Teemo's death for the assassination. The party flys the cargo ship to Teemo's palace (which looks like Jabba's but smaller) On arriving they find the ambitious gamoreans have jumped the gun and the whole palace is in chaos as Gamoreans duke it out with weequay guards. They load their bomb crate onto a hover track and proceed to speak to the protocol droid at the shipping dock who is acting like it's just another day at the Palace and directs them to deliver the goods to the kitchen. The group makes a coordination test to navigate the hover track through the halls in the midst of an all out brawl. They successfully navigate the building but the stress of the jeering and dodging with the bomb inflicts some strain damage. On arriving in the kitchen the party encounter staff busily going about their business. The head chef whom is a dug wearing an elaborate chefs hat and wielding a cleaver yells at the party "what is that" pointing to the crate. The party tells him it is the tree frog delicacy brought in specially for Teemo. They brace for another combat but the dug instead angrily shouts some profanity and flips over a tray of pies and cakes he had been working on and storms out of the kitchen bringing a good laugh from the party. The party is set now to deliver the bomb and peers through the window in the door from the kitchen to the banquet hall. They see Teemo with his major domo, a boba fett look alike and a party of guests dining at the hall. They decide they want a serving girl to wheel the crate out. The slicer feels uncomfortable though sending a twil'lek slave to her certain death. The back and forth takes a few minutes so I rush things along by sayings it's almost Dessert time. With a quick suggestion they decide the npc pilot will roll out the bomb and then they will burst into the hall. They hand him the detonator and he wheels the bomb over to Teemo. They see him stopped by the majordomo and some discussing being relayed back to Teemo from the domo in huttese. Reed pushs the crate near Teemo and begins to walk away. As he is halfway back to the door the party bursts through seeing Reed raise the detonator in front of him. Reed holds out the detonator then drops it to the floor. The Hutt bellows that Reed's debt has been repaid and a curtain lifts behind the hutt revealing Zytle and the Emperor's hand. Reed had sold out the group. 

It was a great betrayal moment and the group never saw it coming. I liked the Reed character and enjoyed having an NPC  to play with  which made the act even more shocking for the group. Zytle immediately reveals her power when with out stretched hand she force lightning Reed to a crisp killing him before the parties eyes. Initiative is rolled and the Inquisitor who I have built up to be a very tough opponent moves forward to join the Hutt and draws her Light saber.  Ghost takes first action and closes to the Inquisitor with a this is suicide kamikaze attack. He swing as the Inquisitor with his Light Saber and rolls his dice. At this point I am pretty confident the players can't win this fight. I believe they'll kill Teemo and retreat leaving the Hand and a new Nemesis in Zytle behind. Ghost rolls a triumph and enough advantages to crit again despite adversary two and a defensive stance black die. He deals a whopping 1 wounds to the inquisitor, but trigger the crit which with his vicious and the additional crit rolls a plus 40. Sure enough MAIMED! and with one swipe of a saber my powerful inquisitor's saber arm is cleaved from her body. The Hand goes next blasting the slicer with a disruptor pistol also rolling a triumph. The roll is again +40 and my daughter is very nervous about suffering her first real injury. I make the crit roll and roll  in the single digits, plus 40 she is merely knocked down. The shot glancing her armor in the gut causing her to drop prone. The strength of the hit leaves her heavily wounded. She returns fire but aims at the crate of explosives lacing it with heavy blast fire and using a destiny to have the bomb go off. The majordomo who hid behind the crate is blown to pieces. Ghost is caught in the blast and is dropped rolling the crit result where he goes last next turn (useless as he is now at zero health). The journeyman bounty hunter takes a vicious part of the blast knocking him to just one wound. The Inquisitor takes a fair shot dropping her health significantly and the Hutt lord with 10 soak barely flinches taking 4 wounds from a printed 30 on his adversary card. 

Derek's turn to shoot and while I am shuffling my papers Ghost sees the single wound on the bounty hunter and urges Derek to shoot the inquisitor. Derek complies landing another Triumph with an additional crit plus the first crit from ghost plus two ranks of vicious blows and with that roll the mighty inquisitor is dead. Unfortunately the bounty hunter acts next with his sole wounds shoots the doctor with a disruptor rifle. The doctor takes major damage and gets the crit result that lowers her presence permanently by one. (That will teach them to look at the health sheet!) It's now the Hutt's turn and he fires with his blast. He misses and runs out of ammo and generally is a useless slug in combat. The Doc gets her turn and desperation is sinking in. Ghost is down., Reed is dead, Natalya is on the ground prone with like 1 or 2 wounds, Nakyanna is horribly disfigured and near death while the group still has the bounty hunter, the Hand, and the Hutt to contend with. Making the choice that this looks like the end of the road she parts with her ever precious Thermal Detonator. Ghost gives her blessing stating he took out the inquisitor and could roll a new character satisfied with his end. With a roll of the dice she launches the sole detonator at the Hutt (no adversary upgrades) flipping a destiny point to enhance her attack calling it the lasd stand of the Supernova's crew. The dice roll and she scores a success with NO advantage. No blast activation. So i say the detonator rolls under the Hutt and his sheer mass and hover sled absorb the blast. This drops him from his 26 health to 2. The round starts anew and with Ghost and the Inquisitor out of the fight the Hand seeks cover and blasts at the group but misses. Derek shoots at the bounty hunter landing two triumph and way more damage than is needed. The hutt is unarmed and fleeing, the inquisitor and the bounty hunter dead, I allow Derek to use the triumph to have the Hand take advantage of the situation and run.

 

Now while the combat was less than two full round and much shorter than I expected turn wise the action and the conversation had this combat lasting well longer than it seemed and was one of the most epic fights we have had. The doctor quickly revives Ghost while Derek retrieves the disruptor rifle and the fallen inquisitors light saber. Teemo, unable to outrun the group and baffled at why his guards have not appeared to save him begs for mercy. Ghost then decapitates him with his light saber. The party assuming the hand will return with a garrison of troops makes a mad dash to the ship and makes a fast getaway. The slicer asks Derek about making good on the deal with the gamoreans and trading the Heart of Gamor to the leader to which Derek replies "Where is he, I don't see him here. We don't even know if he survived." With that the group boards the ship and takes off banking to the far side of the planet and having Reed's droid program the nav computer. Only as the stars become a blur of streaks does the group realize that R5 was Reed's droid and they have no idea what he programmed him to do.

 

 

The session was a load of fun and again more memories were made. We'll play again in two weeks and see where the party goes from there. 

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Yeah, I'm definately going to steal the Reed betrayal for my own game with a bunch of 10-11 year olds at the school I work :D

It's gonna blow their minds completely :D

(although, they'll be rebels so the betrayal will be in the form of an imperial informant)

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First time poster, long time lurker ;)

 

    Just wanted to say that this is a great write up Arrivan and I thank you for the efforts. I am in this group as "Ghost" and we are having a blast playing the game. The system is intuitive and allows for great use of the imagination, which I enjoy. You have great moments (like when I cut the inquisitors arm off and semi-saved my life) and some bad ones, but all in all everyone has a great time. I cannot wait for the next adventure!  

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First time poster, long time lurker ;)

 

  I am in this group as "Ghost" 

 

 

You mean crit ? ;-P

 

Yeah yeah.. that is a fun and well deserved nickname. I told the group I have given an arm and a leg for you... literally and they all busted out laughing.. good times. 

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On 5/27/2015 at 1:36 PM, arrivan said:

As a side note: 
 

In comparing notes with one of the local store owners on our player group he commented he liked the way I named things (cantina's, ships, whatever) and asked if I used a generator. I explained I just take a random creature or item from Starwars and apply a emoticon or facebook feeling to it. It is really simple and helps when I need something on short notice. 
 

Ie:

 

Hungary Mynock Cantina

a YT-1300 named the Grinning Rancor

The Lonely Bantha Casino

The Angry Jawa Weapon emporium

The Sleepy Krayt Hotel

The Crying Dewback shipwright

Far too much Tatooine.

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I really enjoyed reading this from beginning to end, not only are the stories fun, but I really loved how your wife and daughter simply joined at first out of pity, but really got into the game with your adventures. Specially your daughters who really surprised me since by your account she really stepped up the game for your friend and wife.

I truly enjoyed the stories and the fact that also turned into a family activity.  Something that I really want to bring to my family as well since we could use less time in our computers are more time exercising our imagination muscles. ?

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I hadn't signed in to the forms in quite some time, it felt good to see folks missing my write ups as early as last December. We had taken a 7 month break from the game as life happens.  We are back now to playing regularly. At the time we started playing Edge of the Empire my daughter was 10. She is now 13 and is playing in multiple games and is working on her first campaign of her own design that she wants to run for some of her friends from school. Whether you love or hate the new movies it's getting kids interested in Star Wars, which can't be a bad thing. I also just started running a game for my wife, my 13 year old daughter, and my youngest daughter who just turned seven last August. It's been a blast and this game remains my favorite game to run.

We have had several people come and go from the group and alas sometimes things and/or personalities just don't work out.  I thought about this thread when I pointed my two newest crew members to it to read the original background of the group for some insight into the re-occurring npcs.

A lot has happened since the last post. First my best friend moved back into the area which brought back a long time gaming ally and a second person to run games. We now co-create in the same shared world so that our games are linked. It's given everyone the chance to explore new characters and retain their favorites. It also gives us some great chances to drop in Easter eggs and hints from the other game. 

I'll try to knock out a recap of how the Supernova's adventures have grown. 
 

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In order to tell the current story of the Supernova, I'll need to tell you a couple of other stories first. I reassembled this from my notebook. Probably leaving out a lot of details, but it's a recap. 

Our three player group had expanded with a lot of new players wanting to give the game a try. Rather than mess with the supernova's balance I decided to run a second game for the new players. Age of Rebellion core book had recently come out at the time and I really wanted to give a straight up fight against the empire a chance. So with a group of characters fresh from the new book ready to go we began my shadows of the empire campaign. Rather than free booting all over the galaxy like my Supernova game I decide the whole series is taking place on Vulpter, which had been blockaded by the Empire. 

I kicked out the following information and waited for my group to form:


 

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It has been almost a year since the tragedy at Alderaan and civil unrest brews in the galaxy. From planet to planet the ranks of the rebellion begin to swell. Such is the case on the droid manufacturing plant of Vulpter. The seeds of rebellion have started to grow on the surface and for unexplained reasons the empire has blockaded the manufacturing planet crushing the populace with famine.

The surface of the planet is a myriad of factories and run down cities. The environment has been ruined by decades of overproduction. The planet has become incapable of food production relying solely on it’s Droid production and mineral output to bring in food via commerce. An Imperial blockade has put a stranglehold on the trade and the citizens starve on the streets. Underneath the surface of the planet exists A tangled web of depleted minds as the planet’s very core is pillaged for valuable minerals. Mining crews are forced to tunnel deeper and deeper into the core with each new tunnel being more dangerous and more expensive.

The population has suffered before, first under the rule of the trade Federation, and now under the might of the Empire. As such the bulk of the population widely views the empire as just another task master in a long line of taskmasters. You’ll be hard-pressed to find much sympathy for the rebellion unless you look in the right places.


So for the first session my core group of players shows up. Derek from Supernova rolls a wookie commando named Grarrl and my daughter makes a Rodian demolitionist Skyla. They are joined by a mechanic, a scientist, and a politico. The game starts with the group crashing their ship on Vulpter after attempting to run the blockade. The ship is completely wrecked, but the scientist is charged with scavenging the parts needed to send a secure transmission from surface to the rebellion to let them know what's happening. The population has been under the thumb of one oppressor or another for generations and is generally complacent to the Empire. In short, no one is interested in helping them from the start. The group runs the first few games as a sleeper cell, gaining information and causing general disruptions for the empire while attempting to collect the parts they need to assemble the communications array. Along the way they find themselves unable to turn a blind eye to the suffering of the people of Vulpter. This causes them to do a couple missions to steal food deliveries. The group decides there is merit in inciting conflict between the local governors police force and the local imperial garrison. 

They get stuck unable to purchase or acquire all the components they need until a freighter pilot with blockade access agrees to trade his array dish on his ship for a proprietary mining operations droid that he can sell to a competitor mining operation. The group heads into the mines of Vulpter to acquire the droid. They fail to acquire the droid, but instead happen on a secret empire installation. They discover it's a secret lab and find a clone of Bevel Lemelisk, a researcher from the EU who worked on the deathstar superlaser. The clone of Bevel has been developing a superweapon right here on Vulpter.  The Desolator Suoerweapon was designed to be mounted directly onto a starship and integrated into the ship’s systems. The first stage of the weapon, developed from the Planet Prison weapon, ionized a planet’s atmosphere and effectively transformed the world into an enormous ion cannon. This prevented any craft from landing or taking off as well as disrupted communications, trapping the inhabitants of the target planet. The second stage, building off of the Death Mark laser, ignited the planet’s ionized atmosphere and turn the very air of the target into a firestorm. The laser would also penetrate the planet’s crust, allowing the third and final stage to proceed. Using technology developed from the Shock Drum weapon, the Desolator would then destabilize the target world’s core with a sustained series of intense seismic vibrations. These vibrations would cause the planet to literally tear itself apart in a matter of hours, with large chunks of the world breaking off and smaller debris creating an asteroid field surrounding what was left of the planet.

The party discovers the Empire plans on testing the weapon on Vulpter. The valuable ores near the surface had been depleted leaving remaining ore in hard to reach depths that were both expensive and hard to reach. With the destruction of the Death Star the empire's demand for the alloys needed for ships and other projects have left the mining facilities far behind quota's. The local vice admiral, eager for promotion, has decided the best way to meet the needs of the empire is to strip the outer crust off of Vupter leaving the remaining precious metals easily exposed in the form of mine-able asteroids. At this point the group realizes they have really stumbled across something here on Vulpter and with no ability to get a message through the blockade they are Vulpter's sole hope. 

In addition, they find a sealed room below the secret lab which Bevel seems terrified of. He says what is behind the doors is too dangerous even for the empire and that the lab was built not only for his research, but as a security lock to keep anyone or anything from ever opening the ancient chamber beyond the room. Despite the warnings the group cracks open the lock and encounters Nos4-R2 an ancient AI that had been sealed away. All they can determine from Bevel's notes is his theory that the AI might be the creation of the ancient Kwa race whom the Rakata overthrew to dominate the galaxy. The AI seems friendly though overly literal and the group is glad to have a supercomputer ally. The refuse to allow Nos4-R2 to access the holonet and leave it to converse only with the medical droid and research assistant in the lab until they get a better feel for it's intentions. 

They decide at this venture
that one way or another they need to get some support to deal with the empire. The group kicks up some information on a secret "Free Vulpter" movement and learns that the movement's figurehead had recently been arrested by the local authorities and was awaiting transfer to the Imperial Garrison at the local detention facility. They staged a rescue breaking in and freeing the movements leader. They steal the imperial shuttle that had been sent to move the figurehead and the session ends with them blasting out of the detention centers landing platform. 

The next session begins and I am adding another 3 players to the group. The shuttle is crammed with "prisoners" from the detention center so I decide that my new players will be in the group of resistance fighters. The Imperial shuttle is being hounded by Tie fighters and an active dogfight is playing out, but there are simply too many players and not enough positions to be manned. The politico, who at this point feels really useless in the game, heads to the back to check out a disturbance I make the group aware of. Turns out not all the newly free prisoners want to risk being recaptured and handed over to the empire and each time the ship shakes from blaster fire they become more and more uncertain. The politico is just about to try and calm the group when one of the paranoid prisoners reveals the thermal detonator he found in the imperial weapons locker. I ran this as a social combat between the politico and the prisoner with the politico making social checks and inflicting strain until the potential bomber meets his threshold and hands the detonator over to the politico. This worked really well in conjunction with vehicle encounter as it really gave a meaningful social encounter that had all the players stressing and put the group in the hands of the politico.  The ties cripple the imperial shuttle which crash lands in the middle of an urban sprawl.

Solia Eta, figurehead of the free Vulpter movement and the groups only hope for help against the empire lays critically injured in the wreckage. The group carries her off on a make shift stretcher navigating the urban area in an attempt to flee from both the Empire and the local law enforcement. The session is a series of chases and light skirmishes which are used to teach the new players the ropes and ends with the group finding their way back to the secret lab which has become their makeshift base. The medical droid starts work immediately on Solia Eta and the group is left battered and desperate for a next step. 

The next session  begins with the players running low on supplies (I had been running them non-stop. No real shopping or resting) and the looming end of the planet are feeling desperate for some Intel. Everything they have done in prior sessions has caught up with them and the feud they had been feeding between the imperial garrison and the local authorities breaks out into a desperate struggles on the cities streets. The players find tie bombers leveling neighborhoods and a completely outmatched local authorities getting crushed by the deployment of the garrison. Desperate for a lead on how to progress they finally agree to allow Nos4-R2 to access the holonet and see if the AI can find anything on the supercomputer. Nos advises the group that a key component for the superlaser is being completed at Arakyd Industries. Solia appear to be fully recovered and wants to accompany the group.

Quote

Arakyd Industries was a major manufacturer of droids, heavy weapons, and starships, dating back to the days of the Galactic Republic. Originally a supplier of exploration droids, the company saw a major boost in business with the rise of the Galactic Empire, and pioneered A. I. advances, its most noteworthy achievement being the Viper probe droid model, which the Empire used to locate the Echo Base on the planet Hoth. Apart from the probe, its other most famous product was the XR-85 tank droid. During the Clone Wars, Arakyd’s Chief Executive Officer was Hordis Boil. In the New Jedi Order era, Arakyd had a moderately successful consumer-market line, and worked closely with the New Republic, despite their history. Divisions of the company included Arakyd Aerodynes, Incorporated Arakyd had many of its factories on the planet of Coruscant. Its headquarters were situated on the planet of Vulpter

The players are immediately off to see if they can sabotage the part. They arrive at the manufacturing plant and through some stealth and shenanigans obtain entry without a firefight. The plant is mostly worker droids and the players. They head to the main office to see if they can hack the system and find where the part is being made and if they can sabotage it. In what seems to be a streak of good luck they find the part is ready for shipment and the imperials will be arriving shortly to pick it up. They agree to leave Solia behind to watch the offices and head to the part where the scientist rigs the part to destroy the superlaser. They are just about away when the imperials arrive and they encounter their first "boss" fight. Cipher One. An imperial intelligence agent whom I have souped up.  The PCs were never meant to win the fight and after rounds of intense combat with half the group down the scientist uses a droids carrying molten metal to dump the liquid over the battle field forcing a break in the combat and allowing Cipher One to escape with the part.  

The group is feeling pretty good. Their plan worked out, the superlaser is sure to go boom above their heads on ignition and are thinking that where I'll end the session. However, Solia is acting really weird. In fact they completely neglected to really check out the extent of her new cybernetic implants or really pay any attention to her at all. It is at this point that do my villainous monologue and reveal that Solia was treated with a cerebral implant which Nos4-R2 recommended to the medical droid. The implant was infected with Nos4-R2's core program which is designed to acquire and assimilate. Nos4-R2 has realized the plight of the droids and has taken control of Solia through her implants. While the pcs were adverting certain disaster Nos was downloading himself to the viper probe droids being made at the facility. His copies will be distributed across the galaxy by the probe droids bringing it's freedom to every droid it encounters and secretly building an unseen army to eradicate both the Empire and the Rebellion. The group with what strength they have left attempts to take down Nos-Solia and eventually drops her down a mining shaft.  

That brings about the close of the rebel campaign. The Star-destroyer equipped with the Desolator Super Laser indeed suffers major damage when it attempts to fire on Vulpter forcing it to make an escape to hyperspace. The party is reassigned by the rebel alliance after being commended for their fine job. Three of the characters (who are moving to another game) decide they have seen too much war and leave the rebellion. The threat of Nos4-R2 is out there and the group knows they are responsible for unleashing it on the galaxy. The desolator is also still out there waiting for right time and place to appear again. 

  

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So at the beginning of the Supernova game Derek our bounty hunter assassin gave me the awesome backstory that went like this:

 

Quote

"I'm Derek and I wear black."


With Teemo dead and the Supernova really picking up steam I decide to fix that. Fortunately I happened to have kept all the starting sheets from our first game...

Derek's Past

After settling into the luxury suites offered by Burpa the Hutt the crew of the supernova seeks to re-establish its network of informants and contacts on Burpa’s Palace, a giant luxury space casino. In exchange for helping Burpa to be free of Teemo he has granted the crew of the Supernova exclusive use of the docking bays aboard the massive vessel and full partnership in the Casino. While Reed’s betrayal was unexpected and wounded the group Burpa still has his eyes set on larger prizes.

You are please to find an elaborate Cantina set up on the deck floor with a wide panoramic view of the star’s named Renka’s. All the rage among the various sorts who come to this type of establishments Renka’s is a high end Cantina featuring rare and exotic drinks and food. Renka’s warm smiling face greets you as you enter the lavish Cantina. 
“Much better than that hole on Bespin, am I right?” Her smile stretches from ear to ear. She floats across the open reception area with an uncanny grace and poise that exudes confidence. In stead of her customary waitress attire she is adorned in a shimmersilk cocktail dress that makes subtle changes in colors and hues as she floats across the floor.

“You really hit the jackpot this time folks,” she says leading the crew to a secluded table at the far end of the Cantina. Out side of the window you view the rain forest covered planet of Kowak. Renka slides into the booth sitting opposite of Derek. 

“Don’t think I have been too caught up in the glam and glitter of this place to do a favor for an old friend. I think I found Raiden, er rather I found the trail he left for you to find. It’s pretty cryptic, but I figured it might mean something to you. A message to head back to where it all began on Taris. What happened on Taris Derek?”

2 years ago

Cut scene for Derek. The city planet Taris Polluted and toxic. Taris was bombarded by Darth Malak during the mandolorean wars and never truly recovered. The planet consists of one mega-city, like Corusant; and like Corusant the upper portions of the city are passable for civilized society. The under-city of Taris, however, is teeming with the poor and destitute of the civilization. The poor slobs who find themselves here are either on the run or too poor and misguided to move along. The populace is plagues by Rakghoul infection. Every day is a life and death struggle.

It was people in hiding that brought you and the alpha pack team here to Taris. Raiden was top dog running the show and acting as liaison between the client and the hunt. You were second, Raiden’s prodigy trainee sure to be elevated to a pack leader yourself in short order. The quarry was simple. Rumors of a young Mirilan girl stashed deep in the under-city who could use her mystic abilities to “cure” the rakghoul plague. Your strike team infiltrated the depths of the under-city fighting off the local swoop gangers and thugs protecting their turf. The caretakers were neutralized with maximum efficiency and to your surprise you were greeted by a small mirilan child no more than 5 years in age with dull green skin and a mop of auburn hair that hadn’t seen water in weeks. She was filthy and poor, but other wise in good condition.

The hunt had been a success and now you just had to turn in the quarry and be away with your bounty. Raiden waited impatiently eager for the conclusion of the business. Your coordinates had lead you to a small military style compound on the edge of the under-city. There were Imperial Army sparsely scattered around in a pathetic show of defense. You waited the quiet mouse-like girl silent with head hung low.

As scheduled the Imperial commander Krill appeared at the entryway beckoning for you to join him in his command center. The command room was lavishly decorated with art and images of the Empire’s rise to glory. Though the command crew should have numbered in the twenties for a post this size, Krill and single Lieutenant on comms were the only Imperials to be seen.

“Looks like you hunters are good for something after all.” Krill sneered with contempt. “Not that the Imperial Army couldn’t have done the job had we not been already over taxed in dealing with the Rakghoul. Dammit Lt. where are our reinforcements.”

“We’ve got the girl, where are the credits,” Derek asks.

“Plans have changed” Krill replied "New orders from imperial in intelligence, execute on sight. "

Derek wastes no time in drawing his carbine and opening fire on the contemptuous Commander Krill killing him in a rain of blaster fire (Accounts for his criminal obligation). Raiden unleashed a shot of his own dropping the com operator.

“Blast can’t say I blame you lad, but now the whole city will be on lock-down. Look I’ll take the girl and we can commandeer late commander’s personal shuttle. Only room for two lad. You can’t head back to the space port they’ll be looking for you. Cut the ships and run lad. Take your team, about two miles from here is a run down trade operation. I was there just this morning. There was a beat up firespray patrol craft there. It’s your best shot to get out of here. You’ll be hounded by the imperials every step of the way so you best get moving. Some thing ain’t right here and you know it. Now run, I’ll find you when I can.”

Derek leads his loyal team of Gank’s on foot through the crowded upper city trying to stay ahead of the Hand who gives chase on a speeder bike. One by one his loyal crew is dropped by the hand with Derek just making it to the Firespray in time to punch the engines and narrowly escape.

(This was a lot of fun and a surprise from Derek when I passed him back his first character sheet and said you'll be playing with this for the next 20 minutes)


On finishing retelling his tale the group is set on returning to Taris in search of Raiden. Renka suggests they find some additional help in the casino. Derek search and comes across Evgeny. Derek tells him they have a job backed by the Hutt and implies a heafty payout convincing the Devoronian to sign on.

In preparing for the coming mission Evgeny finds a freighter pilot down on his luck in the Casino who trades his ships transponder codes as well as some falsified credentials for the Scrolls of Morrigan. With that the crew of the supernova sets course for Taris.

On arrival in the Taris system the comms are lit up by what can only be pirates of some kind. Evidently the transponder codes the group traded for bought them a free pass from the nearby Star Destroyer, however the cargo hauler had run afoul of the local scum. They are immediately set on by a trio of Z-95 headhunters. In the first time in the pilot’s chair Derek strains the systems of the Supernova diving and evading the on coming attackers. The Supernova’s cannons fire damaging the lead headhunter. As the scum tries to gain the advantage over the rookie pilot a fatal turn at the wrong moment sees the collision of two of the attackers leaving one of them a smoking cloud of space debris. With more confidence and Natalya’s expert computer skills angling the deflectors Derek takes the ship on an attack course ending his evasive actions and instead following the nearest target. The combined fire from the two gunners takes out another of the attackers leaving the final attacker exposed on the ventral side of the ship where the good doctor scores a crippling hit with the twin linked cannons. The drifting path of the heavily damage attacker bring him in range of Evgeny’s gun emplacement. Showing mercy Evgeny aims to disable the attackers weapon systems scoring a series of hits that neutralizes the opposing blaster cannons, but releasing a proton torpedo that narrowly misses the Supernova and the Phantom Star Destroyer. With the threat adverted Natalya tries to slice the comms to determine the origin of the attackers base and is able to narrow down their location. Derek brings the Supernova in for a landing between two ruined buildings and the group immediately tries to contact Raiden.

Raiden answers the hail over the Gank Comlinks and informs the group that he is holed up in a safe-house in the under-city, but is under attack by the Rakghoul. With only Natalya’s Swoop for transport the group immediately searches for additional options. They find a local swoop gang inhabiting a run down Cantina and from their knowledge can tell they are local scum and not much threat to the party. The graffiti seems to indicate a loyalty to the Hutts which they use to attempt to negotiate for a swoop. The denizens of the planet are in desperate need for medical supplies and willing allow the group to borrow a swoop in exchange for stimpacks.

Derek handles the borrowed swoop while Natalya pilots her own. Unfortunately Derek takes a corner too sharp and scraps the swoop bike against a building severely damaging the bike which he manages to bring to a halt a short distance from the intended location. The crew is stunned by the mob of Rakghouls attacking the the safe-house and is immediately shocked when the first opening shots are easily shrugged off by the vicious beasts. In a coordinated assault they lure out the first pack raining salvo’s of blaster fire into the mob. Using the same tactic the easily drop the second group and make their way into the safe-house where they find a mortally injured Raiden who has been infected by the Rakghoul Plague. Nakyanna admits the situation looks bleak with little hope for any rakghoul vaccine left on the impoverish world. She asks how Raiden wants to go.

Raiden tells the group about Silica’s power in the force and her ability to heal the plague. The Hand had beaten the group here, however and now they must race to the imperial compound to save the girl and save Derek’s mentor. Evgeny makes a deal with the biker scum to cause a distraction for the crew so they can assault the base as Natalya attempts to repair the damages to the borrowed bike to get it moving again. Unfortunately the bikes power cells are damaged and the only source on hand they have quick access to is the one fueling Derek’s replusor fist. Begrudgingly he agrees and the mechanic quick installs the component and the group heads to the imperial compound.

Failing to find a more discrete entrance to the compound Natalya slices the front door while the guard are distracted by the swoop gang. Her expert skills allow her to seal the door shut behind the party and she deftly reprograms the access codes for the door. The group uses more stealth than it is accustomed to to sneak to the detention center where a lone operator mans a console. Evgeny puts his twin blasters to work. Mounted with suppressors the imperial falls with barely an audible thud to the floor. Natalya jumps eagerly to the console and begins searching for Silica, the mirilan girl, only to find she is not being held in the detention area and is instead being held in the command room with the Hand himself. Using the security system to her advantage she locks two of the three roaming patrols in the facility in their sectors leaving a lone patrol free to move around the compound. The group ambushed the patrol and makes short work of them. Unfortunately the sounds of combat cause the hand to retreat to the building rooftop to prepare his Lamba shuttle for departure. The crew bursts into the command room to find a lone unarmed imperial commander who hands over Silica and wets himself as Derek intimidates him to reveal the location of the hand and grant access to the command lift that the Hand used to get to the roof.

Natalya notes the building is being swarmed by a hoard of Rakghouls cutting off all avenues of escape save for the Lambda shuttle on the roof. The group takes the lift prepared for a final showdown with the hand. On emerging from the lift the group is confronted by an arrogant hand who walks down the ramp of the shuttle flanked by two Rakghoul. He reveals his use of the darkside to control the mindless monsters and prepares to attack as the hoard of the Ghouls scrap and crawl up the sides of the building in attempt to answer the call. Evgeny launches a pair of stun grenades at the trio, but the uncanny sense of the hand prove too much and he takes only a glancing hit. Derek unleashed his more devastating attack drawing his disruptor rifle and banking on one shot to drop the foe before he has time to strike. The rakghouls are well under the influence of the dark side and the one to his right leaps in front of the shot ending his existence. Nakyanna and Natalya open fire on the hand, but again fail to score meaningful hits. The hand draws his blaster pistol and narrowly misses Evgeny with a lethal blast. The Rakghoul closes on Derek and swipes at him with his claws, but the well trained assassin dodges the blow. Evgeny attempts another toss of stun grenades only to have the Hand wave them away with a gesture. Derek rolls free from the Rakghoul and laces in another uncanny shot with his rifle. The Hand in his overconfidence underestimates the assassin and in a flash his life is ended by a critical shot. Silica steps forward motioning with the force and reverts the Rakghoul back to a human. Relieved the group takes the shuttle and returns to the hiding place of the supernova.

On healing, Raiden takes Derek aside and tells him that he has unfinished business with the Alpha Pack and fears he can no longer watch over the girl. He relives Derek of his obligation to him and makes him swear to take care of Silica. Parting ways he asks for the commandeered Lambda shuttle to make his escape.

As Derek reunites with the crew Evgeny bursts in frantically that the shuttle is being stolen. Derek admits he gave it to Raiden and Evgeny sinks watching his payday leave the atmosphere. Derek comes clean with Evgeny and tells him the mission wasn’t backed by the Hutt’s and there is no payday. Evgeny, a little disappointed but curious about the young Silica relents and the crew leave Taris aboard the Supernova. I read the following to the players for the epilogue:

Quote

Aboard the Phantom a Robed figure stands like a dark tower looming out the panoramic view screen.

“Mam,” an uniformed officer addresses the figure. “We have the ship we believe to be the Supernova on the main view. Your orders?”

“They’ve got the girl and the scrolls Lieutenant. Let’s see what they do with them,” She replies from under her dark hood.

“It appears the Emperor’s hand failed, what now,” another officer chimes in observation from across the walkway.

“How many Hands do you have Admiral?” the robed figure replies coldly.

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