The dinner party that the crew was invited to turns out to be a banquet. The twelve rescued scientists are the guests of honor. The crew is also placed at the high table. Other guests are professors and other scientists, most of them within physical and material sciences. The student union arranged this party, and they are also represented.
First everyone is welcomed and there are toasts for the Pennsylvaani Confederation, the scientists and their faculty.
For starters there are some local pâté made from a native animal. With that a quite sour sauce made from local red berries. Waiter robots are used to serve the meals.
Then before the main course there are some boring speeches. The scientists propose a toast for the university and then another toast for the crew. They also give a short thank-you speech for the crew. The toast master discreetly tells the crew that it is customary to reply the toast and that they also may give a speech.
The main course is a very nice beef from a local animal. It is served with vegetables and a wine and pepper sauce.
After the main course, the student choir sings some humorous songs.
The dessert is ice-cream flavored with yellow berries. The surprise is that the ice-cream is shaped and colored like the Starship Notorious.
At the dinner, questions about the graviton weapon will be answered. The general opinion, and the official truth, is that Aloha Round had equipped one ship with the weapon. It is not known if the Rimmies have another weapon; at least they haven’t used a graviton weapon in any other conflict.
The ship wreck at the secret research station at Burnt Bases was that ship. It had been recovered from Gettysburg after the battle. The weapon was broken, and no one has yet understood how it works. But the super heavy elements seemed to stable and focus some parts of the weapon.
If they want to know even more about the battle, then they should visit the historical archive at one of Annville’s moons in the Lebanon system. The Dean of the material sciences, Prof Rodalph Askeland, say that those archives are even better than what we have at the University.
During the dessert one of the robots grabs a knife and tries to stab one of the scientists. The robot says, “Long live the Rimmies, death to the Pennsylvaani”. The attack fails. The knife doesn’t even touch the scientist. There is a bit of confusion. Some seem to think that this is some kind of bad joke. They look at the leader of the student union, but she lifts her shoulders and shakes her head.
The robot is shut down and is taken away. If the crew asks, they may be present when the robot is examined after dinner. (Unless they are too drunk.)
The next day, the crew is asked if they can help. The robot was reprogrammed, but the safety protocol was not overridden. There are clues in the logs files in the robot that can tell when and where it was reprogrammed. Anyone with Computer-2 and some knowledge about robotics can find these clues. Everything points to some exchange students from the Rimmies. If it was them, they may be violent. That is why the crew is needed. Prof. Augustus Lloyd asks that they players don’t use any violence unless it is needed and, in that case, use as little violence as possible.
The crew goes to the dorm where the suspected exchange students live. They knock on their door. The students open and are not violent.
When questioned, they confess. They are crying and think that they will be executed or be sent to a forced labor camp. They say that they had to do this attack to get their student fees paid and for the safety of their families back home. They also say that they knew about the safety protocol and thought it would be better if they looked like gimboids than actually killing someone.
The next day, they learn that the Dean of the physics faculty, Prof. Migeres Alfvén, has decided to send the exchange students home and not tell the authorities about this incident. He says, we must meet hate with love and understanding. It will eventually bear fruit.
Chambersburg -> Carlisle:
Through their new contacts at the University, the crew is offered a cargo of 10 tons of precision tools for 100,000 Cr/ton. The contact says that they can probably sell it with a profit at Carlisle.
Roll for any other cargoes, but with a negative modifier.
At Carlisle they can sell it for 150,000 Cr/ton
Carlisle -> York:
At Carlisle, the crew can buy a cargo of 40 tons (10 vehicles) of farm machinery for 25,000 Cr/ton. Machines like this are needed at York.
They see some damage in the starport. They are told that a black ship recently attacked the port and destroyed cargo in several warehouses. The bounty for that ship and its crew is now very high, MCr. 25.
There are currently no other cargoes available.
At York they can sell the farm machinery for 40,000 Cr/ton
York -> Lancaster:
At York the crew gets an offer to buy 20 tons of fruit for 10,000 Cr/ton. It requires special handling. The cargo hold must be kept at 5 °C.
Roll for any other cargoes, but with a negative modifier.
They meet their friend from the Lancaster Free Traders Society, Captain Harry Moonblaster (and his crew) from the Starship Nomen Luni. They want the crew of the Notorious to join them for a pub crawl in star town. If the crew agrees, they will all have a good time. The night ends in a big bar room brawl after some other spacers that they haven’t seen before calls Nomen Luni a rust bucket. No one gets really hurt and both parties leave before the police arrives.
At Lancaster they can sell the fruit for 15,000 Cr/ton
Lancaster -> Intercourse:
The broker Meles-2 have 80 tons of hardwood that should be shipped to Intercourse. The crew can buy the hardwood for 10,000 Cr/ton. She has been promised 20,000 Cr/ton from the Matriarch at Intercourse. Meles-2 also pays the crew Cr 30,000 for the partial report on the Burnt Bases system. If the crew tried to look closer before being stopped by the Navy, they can get Cr 10,000 extra.
The Stolen Book:
First the hardwood is sold for the agreed price.
Then the crew is met by the Super Matriarch Reverend Mother Bridget Falkirk. She says she trusts the crew since the previous well performed transport mission and the following episode with the pirates that she has heard about. (In episode S1E3 and S1E4.)
“A holy book has been stolen. It’s the original book that Derrick Riddim wrote. We have copies,” she says. “We want the book returned and we will pay you 100,000 Cr if you succeed.” A background check will reveal Derrick Riddim was a deserter from the Pennsylvaani Navy. He wrote the book when he came here, shortly after the space battle of Gettysburg.
Falkirk explains further, offering the players a copy of the book, “Derrick Riddim is the only male hero we have here. He helped a lot and built many houses and fathered many children.“
In the copies of the book, the crew can read about the deserter’s story about the space battle of Gettysburg. The text describes the effects of the graviton weapon and the two enemy ships that used them.
– Two ships, then maybe there is one more ship out there?
Orange Submarine and Love Jumper were the ships that were here when the book was stolen. The crew recognize the ships as the pirate ships that tried to infiltrate the LFTS (in episode S1E5) and that also may have a connection with Amanda Jameson. Looking up these ships in the ship’s computer will reveal that these ships now have a high bounty. MCr 3 and MCr 2 respectively.
Additional complications at Intercourse could be the same woman as in episode S1E3 may still ask to buy one of the male crew members and that a young man (Carsten) wants to defect from Intercourse and the order.