Old Stomping Grounds – Part 2

Previously on Into the Black… The Black Fox and Captain Mitch were discovered while attempting to reunite Fox with items hidden in his past home. When discovered by Magistrate Evans, the new occupant of the estate, Fox cold-cocked him but quickly found himself beneath the Alliance official’s large bodyguard, Phillips…

The situation immediately turned into a brawl. Mitch got a couple of good blows in on the bodyguard while everyone else in the house rushed to the commotion in the master bedroom. Caught up in the moment, Elaine laid a wallop on the valet that had already received a nasty wound by Rook’s sword, killing the valet instantly. A well-intentioned butler tried coming to the aid of his Magistrate, but managed only to hit himself. Fox knocked Phillips off while the Captain continued to pound him to death, literally.

The fighting came to an abrupt end when seeing the dead valet and bodyguard, Rook brandished his sword at the lowly butler and cook and yelled “STOP!” Magistrate Evans and his remaining staff were hogtied and left to be discovered by the guards after the crew of the Hera had left. Having found what they came for, the group then made their way back down the escape tunnel and over the fence to “safety.”

They had hoped for a quick and quiet get away, but that pipe dream quickly vanished when they found a marshal blockade had been set up on the road to the docks. Everyone cooperated with the marshals, disembarking the hovercraft and allowing them to search the vehicle and inspect its occupants. One of the marshals thought he recognized Fox’s through the disguise that had been disturbed in the kerfuffle. With authority, Rook convinced the marshals that Fox was not the man they were looking for, but rather Rook’s Uncle Pete who has “just one of those faces that everyone thinks they recognize.” They were allowed to return to the Hera which they did as quickly as possible without attracting any additional attention.

When they arrived at the Hera, they found Twitch in a tizzy. Alarms blared, screens flashed as she screamed, “They are trying to lock us down!” Elaine and Rook ran to the engine room hoping to find Adrik the engineer, but he was no where to be found. With no time to look for him, they beat the engine into action before the land lock was secured. Twitch gained control of the vessel just in time to have an Alliance Cruiser bearing down on the freighter. There seemed to be no path for escape until the Captain instructed Twitch to pull a “Crazy Ivan”. With the Captain’s help, the skillful pilot performed the dangerous maneuver flawlessly–rendering the Hera in full burn headed out of atmo and the Alliance Cruiser singed and tumbling out of control.

Fox suggested a good place for Hera to disappear into a crowd would be Bernadette, but he requested a slight detour to meet up with a friend of his that bought his sleek clipper at auction. Fox joined the crew of The Cutty Sark with a spark in his eye that seemed like it had been lost years ago.

During the remainder of the trip to Bernadette, Captain gave everyone orders to give the ship, crew, and cargo a complete check-up. Doctor James examined everyone and found the crew in relatively good health, with the worst ailment being in desperate need of shore-leave. He also harvested a bountiful crop from the hydroponic garden and prepared beds for another round. With some prodding of the maintenance robots, Rook discovered that a few engine couplings were nearing failure. The issue was discovered in time for Twitch to make the appropriate adjustments to go easy on the worn parts during the approach and landing on Bernadette. Everyone seemed relieved to have a chance for some R&R, except Twitch who had to be ordered to leave the ship.

Captain arranged a meeting with a fella named Badger who claimed to be able to broker a deal with the medications available for sale. The crew used the time waiting for the meeting to stock up on food, ammo and other supplies. The meeting took place in New Paris which caused Rook to be a bit on edge. Before joining Mitch and Elaine to meet with Badger, Rook disguised himself as an older Asian man and kept a close eye on everyone around him while he was away from the Hera. The deal went smoothly, and the Captain negotiated an excellent price for the goods netting over Ȼ40,000 to be divided among the crew.

Tune in next time to find out if R&R stands for “Rest and Relaxation” or “Restlessness and Resentment”…

Game recap written by melinate


Jedite83 is a professional geek-of-all-trades and founder of Hacker Labs - The Geek and Otaku Blog.