P R A Y   F O R   T H E   P R E Y
A ROLE PLAYING CAMPAIGN

PILOT EPISODE:  “…IN HEAVEN”

“We came as orphans…we depart as family.”

--Wainslaw Orona appears on a garbled television broadcast…

 “I-I've lost track of time since the Bio-National attack.  I’ve barricaded myself in  my office to give me time to  prepare this final report.  Evidently the alien queen is able to  communicate in some subconscious fashion.  With  other species, in human beings, these  disseminations manifest themselves in the form of pattern nightmares.   The dreams were a  lure.  At first we thought we’d be able to contain the spore.  Infestation seemed limited to a   narrow geographical range.  And yet for every cluster we found, there were ten more just  like it.  The aliens’ subconscious bait transcended class and political boundaries.  We found  hives everywhere.  With each new discovery, our hope of destroying the creatures before they entered the civilian population faded.  However we still considered containment an  option.  In studying the Bio-National files we learned their queen had gestated a number of  weeks to prior maturation.  Using their experiment as a baseline, I assumed we still had time  before any new queens would become viable.
I was wrong.”

2122 AD, The commercial towing vehicle "Nostromo" sets down on LV-426 to respond to a SOS.  All contact lost 48 hours later.
2155 AD, Colony set up on LV-426.  Planet christened “Acheron”
2179 AD, “Nostromo” escape shuttle “Narcissus” discovered by salvage vessel.  One survivor,  Ellen  Ripley.
        Contact with Acheron lost three months later.  Ripley and a squad of Colonial  Marines investigate Acheron.
        Transport:  USS Sulaco.
        One week after touchdown,  Acheron’s Atmosphere Processor goes critical Sulaco sets course for Earth with three survivors.
        They never arrive…
2182 AD, Now…

Deep space…

    A jet-black Snakefighter with some external modifications blacked out windows, and no markings flies by, heading towards a small spacestation.

    The craft arrives without a murmur from the station.  The Snakefighter hard docks on a side port.

    Inside, engineers work oblivious.  The lights go dark.  The airlock door POPS off its hinges.  Civilians fall and duck for cover.  A dozen Soldiers with black body armor and night vision helmets storm in.  Flash-suppressed Light rifles take down everyone in their way.  They move quickly, in formation from the airlock, down the corridor.

    A local guard pulls around the corner.  He’s taken down before he can fire.

    The men in black approach a biohazard door and a massive Plexiglas partition.  Notice the two rear men carry a big lockable crate.

    One soldier drops in front of glass and fires a grenade.  The grenade impacts on the glass, but instead of shattering, it sprouts legs and sticks.  A drill penetrates the glass, and tear gas vents into the lab.  A few seconds later, the grenade blows, shattering.

    The men in black enter with ease, taking out several scientists coughing and wheezing.

    The two rear men with the box approach a stasis fridge.  One shoots off the lock, the other opens.  The  other men scan the room, securing the area.  The two soldiers load something into the crate.  The  group runs out, down the corridor, into the airlock, and back into their ship.

    The Snakefighter blows away from the station.  Air and bodies fly from the blown door.  The dropship races away at speeds beyond factory specs.

    Inside, one soldier opens the crate.  Inside sits a leathery, egg-shaped object.  A metal camp secured over its lips.

    The ship speeds away…finally rendezvousing with…a huge Weyland-Yutani Trader, jet black,  windows darkened, without any visible markings…

This was an good beginning in my eyes...it worked well, choreographed to the opening music to the new Planet of the Apes.
Three years previously…

    "Maller and Crowe."  Crowe is called by his older cousin from the Sulaco.  They greet and talk, expressing approval for decisions in life.  She tells Adam that she’s just been assigned a bullshit operation on a rim colony.  But she’ll be back in a few months.

    Similar scene with Dana Hudson and her younger brother

    Dana is asked to see Colonel Edgington in his office.  There, Edgington informs Dana that she is being assigned to the USS Sulaco on a needed recon mission to the W.Y. world of Acheron.  Personally,  he doesn’t believe the BS story around why they are going…but will let Dana decide her team’s  level of risk.  Edgington introduces Dana to W.Y.’s rep, Carter Burke.  Burke can’t explain much but says that a briefing disk is available on a need to know basis and will be supplied shortly.   Edgington reaffirms his distaste that even he doesn’t have that disk.

    Carter and Dana leave together.  Carter reveals nothing but is very polite and courteous.

    Dana meets Ripley.  The next morning alongside Burke and Lt. Gormon, then Ellen reveals that she’s praying the colony is okay…if not…then this will not be a simple mission…Ellen tries to say  more but Carter cuts her off saying that Dana is off the mission…apparently WY wanted someone  with a cleaner background…and lineage.  Ellen slips a piece of paper into Dana’s pocket when  Carter doesn’t look...

 <handwritten>
“One of them killed six people in 36 hours.  10 marines won’t be enough…”
    Joseph meets his Father…who expresses disappointment.  He was hoping Joseph would give this up.  Their talk degenerates from there.

    Joseph, Adam, and Dana meet.  They all sit and drink by in a bar with a plexi showing the Sulaco.  Dana  finds the note…They all watch the Sulaco leave…

    Dunes as far as the eye can see.  Some high as mountains.

Planet Sunvale, dead world…
NOTE Hudson and Maller...
Mission:  CMC intercepted communication from raiders.  They discovered a recent crashed vessel.  Raiders are trying to secure.  Three dropships will go in low, remove the Raiders and secure the crash site.  Raiders expected to be heavily armed.  Dana in command.
    Two obvious mercenaries in cobbled armor and tapped up carbine weapons walk patrol away from their  parked buggy.  They reach the crest of a dune and stretch.  One shakes dust from his gun.

    Two shots in the back; they both fall.

    The sands part way…two sniper scopes reveal.  A hand raises into the air.  A fingers twirls around.

    Three CMC dropships ROAR over the dunes, down between the crests.  They kick up the dust, screaming over the sand.  They fly in perfection formation.  They approach their target.

OPPONENTS:
 30 soldiers in equivalent M3 combat armor and M42A Light Rifles.
    PD: 12 <Head: 5>         SHOOT:  7
    HITS:  16                      DODGE:  6
    DC:  6                           ROF:  10
    2 Combat Buggies (2 crew each)
    DRIVE:  7                  BODY:  SPD -- 1K (50 SDP)
                                      ARMOR -- .5 (25SDP)
    SHOOT:  8                DC:  11 (.7K)
    2 Heavy weapon men, each with RPGs
    PD:  12 (Head: 5)      SHOOT:  7
    HITS:  16                  DODGE:  5
    DC:  3k                     ROF:  ½

    After the enemy is dispatched, survivors will exist.  They explain the vessel is over the crest and no one has approached it.

    Joseph and Dana climb the dune.  They reach the crest and discover the spacecraft, in several pieces.   They identify it… A huge Weyland-Yutani Trader, jet black, windows tinted, no visible  markings…

The marines share a look…fade to…

NOTE to Crowe...

Mission Briefing:  COMPARTMENTALIZED.  Need to know.  Force Recon team will infiltrate Weyland Yutani HQ on WY.  Enter through powerducts underground at dusk.  Infiltrate Colony Manifest Division (low security), 170th floor.  Approach via freight lift.  Break into the Colony Commerce division and retrieve hard disk “E1101-LV-426”  Escape via stairs through roof.  Each marine equipped with Para gliders on backpacks <parachute skill>.  Avoid unnecessary fatalities. Take any additional materials as needed.
    A Towering city… One major skyscraper, hexagon-shaped, 200 floors
Weyland-Yutani Headquarters, Weyland-Yutani
    Inside…black metal walls.  Ground floor.  A guard passes by the main desk.  The jet-black glass obelisk contains concealed monitors and touch-sensitive keyboards that only make themselves  known upon activation.  A guard mans that station.  They acknowledge each with a nod…

 NOTE to Crowe...

You’re under the desk…
    The three other Recon personal are around the corner.  This group must get to the 170th floor.  Two guards there.  They can rise via the lift or use grappling.  They find the huge Octagon room behind a bulletproof glass door with a security lock.  Any major noise will alert guard but they will take a while.

    The group successfully steals the hard disk (about the size of a modern removable hard disk, just much  larger in capacity.

    They reach the roof.  Guards arrive, but not in time, Force Recon jumps and paraglide to safety.

 GUARDS:  VP70 Pistol only and light Kevlar.
     PD:  10  <Head: 0>         SHOOT:  8
    HITS:  16                         STUN:  10
    DODGE:  7                      DC:  3               ROF:  2

Crowe's player had a good imagination for planning this strike.  I improvised more challenges and this quick introduction doubled in length.  One addition was a Sentry Gun that would not fire unless the right bar-coded access card was passed by its tracking laser.  Crowe slowly approached the gun head-on, trying not to set off the sensor (which won't fire on anything moving slower than two inches per second).  He never thought of grabbing a card off on of the guards he incapacitated.
Fade to…
GATEWAY STATION
    Colonel Edgington’s Office, empty.  Dana and Joseph sit on chairs, waiting.  The door opens and Adam  enters.  They meet, talk.

    Colonel Edgington enters.  He tells them to sit.  He sits behind the desk, then stands and orbits around the front.  He explains…

“Three years ago the USS Sulaco dispatched to the Weyland-Yutani colony world  Acheron.  We all know what happened next…actually, that’s the whole point.  We have no  idea what happened next.  You all read the reports.  There was no compartmentalized  information within the CMC.  The Sulaco relayed from Acheron that the colony was nuked and the survivors returned…only to have the cryo-tubes ejected over a prison planet.   Weyland Yutani informed us all died on impact.  An no one saw the Sulaco again.  This is not good enough.  The fact that the Sulaco was reprogrammed to relay its data to Network and not CMC headquarters was cause enough to complain…but—“
    A hidden door in the side opens and Admiral Frost enters.  He waves them down addresses them…
"Sixty years ago the deep space salvage vessel, Shepherd, recovered an escape shuttle  from a corporate tug.  Less than a month later, all contact was lost with the Acheron colony.   The survivor from this shuttle, one Ellen Ripley assisted the Sulaco Marine crew…her  report on disc was kept need to know.  Not even I read it.  That file is under tight lock within  Welyand Yutani.  The mission proceeded.  Ten marines died.  There will be a reckoning.   I don’t care if it’s corporation or not.  Our first break was last month when Captain Hudson discovered a Trader vessel.  On orders, the vessel was sealed and no one save the people in this room and the interdiction team knows it exists.  I heard rumors in the wind not long after the Sulaco case was closed by the ICC, that several corporations created black-ops divisions to handle their dirty secrets.  Now even though Weyland Yutani makes the Trader,  doesn’t mean they operate it.  However, I feel the time has come to proceed.  Six months ago,  the USCM assisted in a defecting board member from Weyland Yutani to Hyperdyne.  Upon some unofficial interrogation, he revealed a location on an important file pertaining to the  Sulaco.  The Ripley disc is hiding, but we discovered that they didn’t lock down every file.   With a location and a file name, Lieutenant Crowe and his team infiltrated Weyland Yutani  HQ.  They locked down everything, except the Colony log…
    The Admiral motions the Edginton.  He presses a few buttons and screen lowers.  The face of the Acheron Base Coordinator Appears:
        “We received a transmission from Network, a C. Burke.  He’s asking for us to check out some coordinates well beyond our survey range.  I’m asking Robert Jordan and his  family to check it out.  They are the closest ones.  Not sure what the company is thinking…”
        “Apparently, the Jordons have discovered something, but Robert is quite tight  lipped about it.  He wants to make sure since he’s doing the survey, we wants claiming  rights to anything he finds there.  I didn’t see why not.  One thing is odd though about the  coordinates he listed, but I am sure its nothing.”
        “We apparently have some form of biological contamination.  We believe it to be  under control.  The senior Jordan awoke not to long ago.  He seemed in good spirits.  We  contacted a small merchant transport vessel…more like smugglers.  But they have some  much-needed biological stasis tubes.  Perhaps we can barter a trade.  This new life form is  quite unique and could probably be quite valuable.”
        “They cut the main line between the colony complex and the transmitter.  We have  no way of contacting network.  We’re barricading ourselves in the complex.  Hope rescue  comes quickly.  If not…then this the last words anyone will ever hear from Hadley’s Hope.   Since you have to be here to get this log, you don’t need us to tell you what happened…and if  I were you, I’ld leave now…”
    The Admiral states that he consulted with Colonial Defense Secretary Clifton and the CMC civilian advisor, a Dr. Wainslaw Orona.  Besides him, the people here are all that know this meeting is even taking place.  And that’s how it’s going to say.  If someone were to come across their  presence, the group will only be exposed as the RDPEP (RAPID DEPLOYMENT  PARASITE ELIMINATION PLATOON).  A typical bug hunter squad.  Now there was another due to arrive…

    Then a knock at the door.  Captain Somerville enters.  He stands at attention immediately.  The Admiral  eases him and introduces him to the group.  Now this group in the room is the command structure  of the USS Deterrent, a Conestoga class vessel.  It will have a crew of 20:  3 Flight Crew, 4 Force  Recon Personnel, 2 Aerospace, 1  APC Drivers, 2 Heavy Weapon Personnel and 4 Infantry, and  these guys.

    Edginton has the cleared applicants…he’ll let the command crew choose the staff.  The wreck on Sunvale  is sealed and would be an obvious first choice… The Admiral then stands…

        “I’ll leave the details to you then.  The less I know, the less I need to deny.  Captain Hudson,  Captain Somerville—you’ll receive updates through the Deterrent’s master computer,  “Nam.”  Talk to  Colonel Edgington and him only.  If anyone else identifies them as a  message boy, they are lying,  If the Colonel is incapacitated or unavailable, then you will  hear from me…I leave the rest to you.  See you all in a year…
       “…One more thing…people…we’re Marines…we don’t dig ditches…we don’t hand out  food.  We shoot people twice in the chest and once in the head.  If you ever feel unsure how  to proceed…remember that…”
    The Admiral leaves…

    Edgington pauses…

        “He’s usually not so chipper…He picked you people specifically.  I am sure for  personal…some for professional.  We know very little…get some answers.”
    Edgington hands out files.  These are the applicants that are cleared for the operation.  The Deterrent  flight crew is under control of Somerville and he command’s the ship that takes the crew only.   The Deterrent should leave port within the week.

    Applicants can be interviewed but told nothing of the mission…until they arrive on board ship.

    They crew have 48 hours to prepare.  When they decide to leave…

    Everyone walks across the docking tube.  They see the Deterrent bathed in darkness.  No tracking or  flood lights.  They can hardly make it out.  They see the USCMC markings and even the name  being removed by technicians.

    They enter the craft, brightly lit.  The PCs are greats by the Flight crew and Somerville.  Somerville  personally takes the command crew on a tour of the ship…Refer to the map…

    Unknown to them…they already left port without telling anyone.  If asked, Somerville will reveal then.   They have no destination but the wreck would be a good idea.

    Some incidental Character stuff with the assigned crew, conflicts and such.

    They will go into hypersleep in 24 hours.

    Someone informs the commanding staff that a crate arrived for him or her.

    It is labeled “open immediately”…In it is Jones the cat…

    Three weeks later, they arrive in orbit around Sunvale.  A long sequence of the ship and the crew awakening.  Everyone must roll constitution against an 8 difficulty or suffer 1d6 hours of nausea.

    After some PC interaction, breakfast, and a check of the ship, Somerville will ask the command crew to  the briefing.

“You guys Force Recon.  You know I tried out for Force Recon, then they found out  my parents were married.”
    There, he will lay down a map indicating the landing site.  His crew will stay on board of course.
    Extend the drop sequence with some role playing and some cinematic…

    The single dropship zips over the dunes.  The ship passes over marine containment outpost.  They have  words spelt out in the sand… “Got Milk?”

    The wreck has been battered by the elements.  There are some cracks in the hull when the ship broke up on landing but there are also airlocks that could be torched or manually cranked open.

    Role-play different avenues of entrance…

Encounters…
     1:  A marine picks up movement… they track and someone gets scarred shitless of a rat.  Other marines find similar encounters.
     2:  Someone falls through the floor of a deck that suffered acid damage.
     3:  Someone picks up movement in an air duct…upon pursuing, it ends up being another rat.
     4:  Someone encounters a massive hole caused by a torpedo hit…this ship was shot down.
     5:  The medical bay is completely in shambles…destroyed and gutted by fire.  A Marine unknowingly stumbles on a body with the chest open…what the hell happened here?
    6:  All air locks are intact but a modified dropslot has been built but the dropship is missing.  Its big enough to fit a Snakefighter
    7:  This ship has been retrofitted with tones of weapons.  It has the same firepower as a Conestoga.

    The log is missing and all paper maps have been burned.  The computer system contains no data.   Obviously an intentional act.  The slot where the log is has been wired so the computer will think  there is supposed to be one.  Finding where this ship was will be more difficult than that.

This section was very open.  Maller had the smart move to investigate the crew quarters, looking for diaries and other personal artifiacts that may hold a clue to where this ship originated.  Crowe checked for cameras on board the ship.  Not thinking whether it would or not, I improvised a scene of Crowe examing the various close circuit videos.  One showing the crew fighting off some dark figure that runs across the roof.  Another showed the dark Snakefighter from the intro escaping the vessel...
    Maller searches and finds a diary…
03/03/82
Something is odd, Captain is being very secretive about our mission.  Usually, I’m allowed more clearance than this.

Been assigned to the a new ship.  Totally retrofitted.  Biolabs, weapon systems, the works.  Not sure how long this will be.  Kissed the family goodbye.  Be back in a year.  Not sure this is a good idea…

…saw the bonus check…I’m definitely going…

03/23/82

Things could be worse.  The room is larger than expected and I share it with this Patrick guy.  I’m definitely not cut out for corporate life.  Maybe I’ll be a marine when this tour is done.  Everything is done hush hush and secret.  Never know where I am or where we will be going…

04/01/82

Decided I don’t like Patrick.  Still don’t know where he is from or anything about his family.  I heard he was married but I couldn’t tell you where.

Went down to the com booth to see if I can send a message to my wife.  The room has been removed.  I’m stuck like this through the whole tour.  No one is allowed above B deck, this includes the medical bay.  What happens if I get hurt?

04/03/82

About to go into deep sleep.  Not told the destination but heard the journey is like two months.  Flying…who knows where…  Like sleep though…no dreams but strangely refreshing fore me.  Normally I would be in a good mood…normally.

06/22/82

Where the hell are we?  I awoke to repair duty.  The ship was in a fight in the interim.  I think we won.  Someone must have mistaken the Trader for a legit cargo ship.  Big surprise for them.  Poor suckers.

Plans are afoot for a raid.  Time to get down to business.  Got a glance out a window…recognized one of the stars…Only Pulsar this side of the rim.  Odd…that would not have taken two months.  Must have really zig-zagged the trip…avoiding patrol maybe…or were we tracking someone?

06/25/82

The operation must have cost the bigwigs way more that I though.  Never noticed how modified that dropship was till now.  If I didn’t know better, I would say we were going up against an army…or a bunch of really pissed off colonists with access to nukes.

That’s it…whole journey for that.  It’s got to be more than that.  Little tiny freighter…never even had a chance.  Must be more than that.  I didn’t even get a shot off.  Secured survivors.  Manifest says 10…we only found 9.  Cargo bay empty…a medical smuggler.  Makes sense considering where we are.  Took survivors for interrogation.  Patrick is brutal…a psycho…

06/26/82

Over my head here…prisoners executed.  Target vessel neutralized.  I knew it was going to be more than that.  They plotted a new course based on information from the smuggler.  I took a peek before Patrick shut me out…something about that nuked colony from a few years back?

New mission objective.  No idea now…but looks like we are not going back.

07/15/82

Shorter sleep.  We are gunning big time now.  Full assault gear.  I’m not going to get out of this alive, I know it.

Spotted our destination…are they out of their goddam mind?

    If the characters can find another way, they are welcome to try.  Investigating the ship’s hull will discover radiation scaring which may point to the Pulsar AEM2120, which is close to Pandora.

    All this evidence should lead to the conclusion that this Trader found and attacked the smugglers who assisted the Acheron colony.  They destroyed it, but could one survivor be alive?  Going to Pandora and investigating the smuggling ring there could be a solution.

    The dropship has some weird residue on it…

    This part confused the players a bit and hours of gaming passed as the PCs assumed an alien was on board the vessel.  In truth, without revealing it to the PCs, the alien hopped a ride on the dropship from the crashed Trader, severly wounded, it healed in the landing gear until the dropship returned, then escaped and cocooned itself outside the hull so it could heal further.  There was a great role playing moment when Hudon refused to tell Somerville about that they found and ordered his flight crew to Pandora.  Somerville refused and snapped Hudson, as they are equel rank and Hudson's secrecy will not work on board his vessel.  The biggest shock of this adventure so far (which took up onle session so far) was the suprising comradery with Crowe and his four Force Recon personnel. They were chosen before the game began and they were assumed to be together for some time.  Unlike the other NPCs, the Force Recon squad became real personalities and were often the first chosen to go on missions.  Few other NPCs were that well developed save for Norton Dekker, who became the victim of verbal abuse by the group who insisted on singing circus tunes whenever he was around.
    It is a three-week trip there.

    Pandora is like Acheron in many ways, but larger and taller.  Its dark all the time and it rains a lot.  Lots of ships come and go…no idea how many are legit.  From a distance, tower lights are all that can  be seen.  The PCs best not go in fully armed.  Crowe modified the Force Recon dropship so it hardly resembled a dropship at all.  He did such a good job, modifications didn't shake off when the vessel entered the atmosphere and helped the aeroform since the dropship's wings couldn't deploy in this form.

    The landing pad is very rough and cobbled together.  It also an external dock.

    There are a couple local watering holes.  The PCs may investigate one of them.  One suggestion done only in passing by Edlund was to check out the few brothels in the city.  Crowe, Maller, Terry, and Emil decided to check them out while Captain Hudson with Tara, Richard, and Lynn decide to check out a local Casino.  Hudsonn is mistaken for a prosititue several times but does come across one man who knows about the smuggler vessel but is tight lipped until a proper bribe can be offered.  Crowe, Maller, and Emil...don't seem to try too hard...well they do...just not to get information.  Crowe is the most imaginative.  Terry, being...well...Terry, refuses and stays in the lounge...talking with the receptionist.  Eventually after minutes=the PCs endurance runs out, the PCs do try to interrogate their companions, with little success.  At the Casino, Edlund and Tara have a good time at the gamlbing tables and actually start winning.  But the arrival the Captain cuts it short.

    Maller, Emil, and Crowe finally return downstairs with little information gained except for the imagination and stanima of the brothel girls on Pandora.  They greet Terry, who proceeds to tell them everything they need to know...turns out the receptionist knew everything...

I'm going to hell for this.  What hopefully was planned to be a short information retreival mission ended up being "Debbie does Pandora".  I had no idea the PCs would take this idea literally and run with it or that Crowe would start getting girls for his men.  There was much role playing beween the PCs in the brothel.  Crowe REALLY got into it (as seen the great quotes area).  The players fell off chairs laughing so hard during this scene even though few dice were rolled.  I remember Crowe singing his own porn music as he smacked the butt of his girl repeatedly...and Emil knocking on Crowes door during this, a little nervous about what to do.  Apparently Emil had the false impression that they were supposed to actually do something productive for the mission.  I couldn't resist but have this little joke about Terry come back up, making this hour of role playing in the brothels somewhat useless.  Crowe still insists going there was productive since the receptionist did give them the information they needed.  But the whole "slap and tickle" escapade could have been avoided.  This was two hours by the way...
    A smuggler ship, the Morpheus, was destroyed a few months ago and nobody saw it on the news…most thought it was a business deal gone bad.  All other lost smugglers had been accounted for through the law enforcement channels.

    Hudson's Casino contact revealed after a bribe that a farm outside of the colony smuggled out some FITR out below ICC regulations.  He leaks that the Morpheus used to run for the farm all the time, with the headman there, John Foss.

    Foss is aggressive, pulling a weapon but he is obviously untrained and can easily be overtaken.  He admits to shipping a few things out but won’t admit to anything illegal.  He heard of the Morpheus and its Engineer, Thomas Burns, who, under advice of Foss, his good friend, left the very wanted Morpheus.

    Rumors across the colony pointed that some group was after them.  Burns left and joined another ship, an SV-90, the Supertrain.  It runs highly popular contraband…tobacco.  Pandora’s atmosphere is apparently great for it.  Foss says he doesn’t sell the stuff but knows the Supertrain runs the route between Thedus, Chitin, and Pioneer.

    An added scene here has the crew looking over the Deterrent, searching for the lifeform they think hitched on board.  The Dropship is returned to factory specs.

    The Deterrent eventually finds the Supertrain while is is being attacked by a Federal Patrol ship.  The SV-90 disables the Patrol craft but is later disabled by the Deterrent in a small fight.  The SV-90 has a full listed compliment and crew.  They are armed with shotguns and Kevlar but opon a very impressive show of force by Maller and his men, they don't put up a fight...actually...they don't fight at all.  Men with Smartguns and Pulse Rifles against shotguns.

    Foss will be found and captured.  He was in the mess making soup...

    He explains that he left because of the warning and that they went to Acheron to sell the colony staff some specimen tubes they could get from the WY Pandora medical facility.  In return, the  Morpheus got access to what the colony was working on.  Foss didn’t see it himself but the Captain said it would make them all rich.

    It was some biological they found on Acheron.  He just saw four large crates.  That was all.  They sold one to another Smuggler vessel, which he can’t recall the name.

    Two were sold at a very high price to “Phyrine Four Biospacelab”

 NOTE  to Hudson...

You heard of that station.  It’s in the UPP.
    The, UPP, which the Morpheus dealt with often.  Foss has enough money to retire…he just likes the job.

    They exchanged there.  Foss knows most UPP medical experiments are conducted at the station and their relationship was profitable.

    He doesn’t remember the name of the other smuggler really…except it was a Dolomite…and it was very well off.  He heard they had their own secret base and everything.

    At this point, when the group returns to the ship, they have a chance to discover that they are being  followed.  If anyone checks the radar, they can pick up a radiation surge…like the upswell of  particles that are created in front of big drive engines…like something is sitting behind them they cannot detect.  Unforunetly the PCs don't do this...

    It is the Snakefighter.  Seeing where they will go and what they will do.

    The Phyrine Four lab takes in indirect route, around 3 weeks, but avoiding the UPP maybe be more difficult.  Hudson is skeptical to go in to the UPP, most likely because of past events.  An attempt to contact CMC command is answered in silence.  Hudson finally relents and the Deterrent heads for Phyrine Four.

    The base looks dead, only a few lights are operating.  It seems intact but as they move around the vessel,  they see about 35% of the station is totally wiped out.  However, it looks like they have patched  the holes and the rest of the station in pressurized.

    There was one main docking collar there, on the portside, but it is useless.  There is a UPP Military  Interceptor (same as a dropship) docked on the starboard side collar.  Are there is left is the cargo lift through the bottom of the station.  Its cargo crane that lifts dropships or cargo modules into the main access bay.

    The PCs can discover from outside scan that the sensors on the base are still functioning and that they contain active and side scanning, to detect pretty much anything than closing in regardless of sensor package, ECM and ECCM…this base was made to make sure it was protected.

    As the Deterrent’s dropship approaches, the base comes to life and opens its bay doors.  Clamps grab onto  the dropship and carries it up the almost 400 meter climb up the cargo shaft to the main access.  The massive three-story room carries a huge cargo crane.  There are several crates here.  A bridge goes across the roof to the control room way at the top of the room.

    It is empty and dark.  Motion detectors are very screwy…there may be a minor radiation leak from the main reactor.  The giger counter verifies this…its minor and non-threatening…but the motion  trackers are non-functioning.

    The ten soldiers leave the dropship…

 “Captain.  I’ll reveal myself in ten seconds.  I will be armed.  My men are stationed  and entrenched.  I will not fire.  Lower your weapons.  We can talk…”
    Captain Roland Zagadka SPETZNAZ commander walks from around a crate with a Tradex Assault  trained on Crowe.  He walks clear out…then lowers the weapon.  He then talks through a throat  comm., saying its clear.

    Colonel Doctor Al Fullard enters with three scientists behind him.  He introduces himself and asks why  “Zag” hasn’t arrested these men.

“Colonel Doctor, due respect.  These are Marines.  They’re not the ones from  before.  If they decided to come in force, we would not be having this conversation.”
    The conversation can continue.  Colonel Fullard believes these Marines to be another force from the same  that attacked them three months ago.  Their comm. is offline and the UPP sent Zag’s forces to investigate.  A major team won’t arrive for another two weeks.   Fullard says this facility is UPP territory and regardless of the marine’s reasoning, they are trespassing and will be arrested.

    Many points can branch off from this.  The SPETNAZ force here consists of 15 men, armed and very skilled.  They have arrived to secure the station but are not allowed below deck 15.  The Snakefighter outside that followed them will be here in one hour.

    The PCs may are arrested.  The troops taken to a cell, the PCs to the Briefing Room.

    Fullard was dragged from the base against his strict objections to Barabazon to face the chance that the base was going to be closed down.  Fullard has been keeping the progress reports to himself.  He came back with Spetnaz team to discover it in shambles and the majority of the crew dead.

    The truth is Fullard wanted to defect to a corporation and was willing to trade in his research and their biosample as an act of good faith.  During the breifing and later conversation, the PCs discover that Zag is not happy with his position here.  A mutual respect develops between him and Crowe...two sides of the same coin.

    The Snakefighter is on a return course to get the good doctor.

    Outside, the Deterrent will get struck by a pair of Ion Cannons.  It will shut down and drift.

    Fullard will order the Zag crew to return to their ship, as his scientists and remaining base staff will secure the base.  Zag acknowledges, but talks to the PCs again instead.

    Fullard will blow the docks to the Spetnaz vessel and the Snakefighter will fire and destroy it…with most of the crew on board.  After the PC conversation, Zag will see this.

    Zag will take out the two base guards at the cell and free the PCs.

    He will lead them to their guns.  Fullard is planning on escaping.  Zag has no intention of letting that happen.

    The PCs run across a group of six soldiers all with marine weapons.  (same stats as Force Recon  personnel).  They can be ambushed.  They weren’t even heading towards the marines.  They were heading to the dropship.  They had tracker…as if they were following something tagged.  The tagged item is moving fast and is 35 meters away and running from the dropship bay.  This plot point was skipped at the marine didn't bother checking their victims.

    The group makes it to the Snakefighter bay where ten more guys are waiting entrenched.  They try to flee back into the ship.  Crowe destroys the Snakefighter by firing grenades through the airlock before it closes.  The ship will blow off and explode.  The massive explosion will blow everyone off their feet.  The base is out of orbit…it will enter the atmosphere in one hour..

    There are fifteen black-soldiers left, with Fullard.  They arrive from the lower decks.  They are now going  to escape through the dropship.

    Ten guys stay back to fight the PCs.  However, the alien that stowed away all the way from Sulvade is here now…

    The PCs meet ten guys in the mess hall for a fight.

    During this fight, Lt. Hudson gets cut off.  She is in another portion of the base, an upper level.  There  is one bad guy here running towards the docking control to release the dropship.

    The Alien will come in behind the bad guys, out of sight and kill the remaining guys and escape before the PCS can see it…

    Hudson will be near the high tower and can fire on the remaining ten guys.  The Captain is especially tough.  Fullard fall to his death by falling down the shaft.

    The base is starting to enter the atmosphere.

    The base won’t let go of the clamps.  Hudson has to release it from up here.  The crew can load up.

    Before she does, Crowe sees a black shape behind Hudson…

    Wham…the alien nails her from behind…

    Hudson is mortally wounded.  She is strong enough to throw the switch to release the dropship.  She gets one look  at the alien.

    The Dropship escapes from the bottom of the base, now IN the atmosphere.  They all watch as the base falls into the rocks and explodes.

    Recovery and Aftermath…Zag is rescue as well.  His future will be deciced later...

Of course, the last session was in heavy combat.  With the new version 3.0 rules, it made combat smoother.  Now if only the die rolls helped.  The group suffered from bi-polar syndrome as everyone roll seemed to be a one or a zero.  Every strike was either instant bloody death or a stray shot hitting someone in the foot.  This fell to the dodge rolls as well.  Crowe creamed a bad guy ealry on, hitting ten times, then was struck almost as many times.  He faced death later on, reduced to -2 hit points.  Maller had an impressive manuever when he kicked an grenade back to a bad guy.  This total episode lasted three full sessions.  It ended the life of the Captain Hudson--the player moved away at the last minute.  "Zag", at first thought to be just a guest star, may turn out to be a major character as Crowe seemed upped for the UPP soldier joining the fray--unrealistic in a true marine setting.  I may try to find a way for him to stay...only time will tell...
    The Soldiers in Black
Characteristics:
    INT:  3          WILL:  5         PRE:  4          TECH:  1
    REF:  5          DEX:  5          CON:  5          STR:  5
    BODY:  4         MOVE:  3
    TO HIT:   GUN:  10         Combat Move:  6
                     HTH:  9
    Dodge:  11
Weapon:                      DC     ROF     SHOTS      Remember
M42A3 Light Rifle      3         30             90
VP 70 Pistol                  2         2              11
*L96 Sniper Rifle         3         2             12               +3 to hit
*Assign
HITS:  25
STUN: 20
SP: 13

    Black Soldier Commander
Characteristics:
    INT:  4          WILL:  5         PRE:  4          TECH:  1
    REF:  6          DEX:  5          CON:  5          STR:  5
    BODY:  5         MOVE:  4
TO HIT:   GUN:  12         Combat Move:  8
                  HTH:  12
Dodge:  12
WEAPON                      DC     ROF   SHOTS      Remember
VP 70 Pistol                    2           2         11
M41AE2 Pulse Rifle     4          30     95-300
HITS:  30
STUN: 25
SP: 13