No cargo at Harrisburg:
The starship Black Hole Sun is also docked here at Harrisburg. They have seen the news about the rescue and its consequences. When the crew of the Notorious say that the real reason for going here was to get their jump drive repaired, the crew of the Black Hole Sun tells them about a super-genius that once helped them with their jump drive. Our jump drive is better than new, they say. She has also improved the jump drive of two other ships that we know of.
The super-genius is at Lancaster. She is a post-graduate student at Lancaster University. Her name is Jewel Frye.
The crew of the Notorious decides to go back to Lancaster. They can probably sell the jam in their cargo hold there and get their jump drive repaired if the super-genius can be persuaded to do it. First stop is Elizabethtown.
Elizabethtown is usually a dull place where nothing happens. But not this time…
At the starport the crew sees someone they recognize: Amanda Jameson. It sure looked like the pirate from Curry Flames. But she ought to be behind bars: if she somehow escaped, there must be a really good bounty for her.
Amanda get in a taxi and disappears. The crew cannot find another taxi to take up the chase. But they notice that the taxi company is called TZT and that the taxi had the identification plate TKZI 42 and that the local time is 27:42.
The taxi company:
When calling the taxi company and asking for the destination of TKSI 42, the crew is told that the taxi company is not allowed to reveal its customers destinations. (This was the expected result.)
A lucky break:
Outside the starport, they see the taxi TKSI 42 again. It is not occupied and stops when the crews waves for it. The driver will disclose where he drove the blonde woman at 27:42, but that will cost Cr1,000. He also offers to take them there.
The car only takes 3 passengers. If more want to go, a second car is needed. Maybe some “equipment” from the ship is needed to. TKSI-42 offers to wait and call another car. The wait and fare for the two cars will be Cr80. If the crew is happy and would like the taxi’s direct number, they can round-up to Cr100.
Two (or more) crew members are can stay behind to guard the ship. It may be safest when Amanda is around.
After half an hour they arrive at a 2-star hotel just outside the city. In the reception is an old man. He doesn’t know Amanda, but when the crew describes her, he lightens up “the lovely Miss Namada”. She lives in a suite on the fourth floor, room 42. Then he apologises for the broken elevator and advises the crew to take the stairs.
The crew may knock on the door, but will probably want to kick it in. The cost is something they can take care of later, after they have caught Amanda and received the really good bounty for her.
The suite is a two room suite. She is not in the first room, but the door is open to the second room. She is lying in bed with a laptop computer on her legs. She looks terrified. The crew runs in with whatever weapons they brought. Amanda put her laptop on the bed and raises her hands in the air.
It’s a Trap:
The door behind the crew is closes. Amanda twitches and once again looks terrified and has the laptop computer on her legs. It is just a hologram.
The light goes out. Gas can be heard streaming from some hidden containers.
When they wake up their arm hurts from the antidote shot. They are tied to chairs. The real Amanda is there. She says that she is sorry about how they met again, but that she doesn’t want to risk anything.
She asks them to trust her. She could have killed them.
A Win-Win Situation:
Amanda says that they no longer are at the hotel. The two that are released are blindfolded. Amanda tells them that, all equipment and weapons and the account number for the transfer is in deposit box 4242 at the starport. The key to the box is in the Captains pocket. In one hour the transfer to your ships account will be made. In one hour and a half you must transfer half of it to the account number. If you don’t, you will never see your friends again. Now hurry up, the taxi is waiting.
At the starport:
Back at the starport the blindfold is removed. They can see that they once again have used taxi TKZI 42. The Captain and the crew member hurry to the deposit box. They find that the batteries of their communicators are discharged.
They will have to go to Starport Information to borrow a phone. They contact the worried crew left on the ship and tell them what has happened and that they are in a hurry.
Time is running out…
Calling the police:
The smart thing to do would be to discreetly cooperate with the police. But it may be risky for the crew member left as hostage. From what they know Amanda is a thief and hacker but not a murderer. If they don’t cooperate with the police they might instead risk being accused of something that they haven’t done while Amanda manages to run away with her half of the money.
The police can be discreetly contacted via another LFTS ship in the starport.
It will be difficult to convince the police the seriousness of the situation. It will be difficult to find the right person to talk to. It will also be difficult to get the police to realize that they are in a hurry.
Time is running out…
MCr42 is transferred to the Notorious Ship’s Account. The crew still have half an hour to work with.
Amanda’s account is another ship account. The Elizabethtown Trade & Chain Bank (ET&CB) can find out to whom it belongs. It matches no ship in the starport or in orbit. It matches a 100-ton Belter that is believed to have landed in a remote location on the planet.
Time is running out…
The bank says that as long as the Belter remains on the planet or is in orbit, the transfer can be reversed. The police allow the transfer.
The transfer of MCr21 is made. In the same moment, the hostages are automatically released. They discover that they are in an abandoned warehouse at the starport.
The bank retrieves all MCr42. The police get to investigate.
The COACC of Elisabeth town is sent up, but Amanda gets a head start and gets away although without any money.
The Notorious continues to Lancaster where they meet Jewel Frye who will happily repair and improve their jump drive for just MCr1.