Rogue Trader - The Koronus Expanse

The Triumphant Return
What Once Was

Vulgrim was the first to come around on the bridge of The Stalwart Venturer. After assessing the situation he went directly to Felix to protect him. Whilst the rest of the crew and mutineers were unconscious he shackled the leader of the mutineers and began to dispatch the rest of the hostiles.

Mordechai was the next to awaken. He was quickly able to determine that the Veil had indeed dissipated violently. Mordechai quickly formed a psychic link with Venhoa in order to check on both his status and that of the eggs.

Eventually everyone on the bridge awakened.

Felix is found to be alive, although badly injured from his time in the hands of the mutineers. He is taken to his chambers for rest and is out of commission for two weeks as Heneil provided him around the clock care.

In the mean time Callidon took over command of the Venturer at the wishes of Felix. He immediately ordered Vulgrim to take care of bringing the ship back under control and to take the remaining mutineers to the Venturer’s brig.

After subjugating the mutineer’s leader Octavius asked Callidon what he intended to do with the mutineers. Octavius impressed upon Callidon the need for the proper “procedures” to be taken in order to save the souls of the mutineers. After a brief but tense dispute Callidon relented and handled over the possession of the mutineers to Octavius for questioning and absolution.

During this altercation Mordechai, seeing through the warp, witnesses the overrunning of the Mant sanctuaries by the corrupted Mant and the death of the Mant race.

During the first few days after the Veil’s collapse Kuurahn and Lanni bonded whilst attempting to fix damage throughout the Venturer. Octavius and Kuurahn were also invited to Callidon’s tower. Callidon offered both of them permanent positions on the ship as crew members. Kuurahn and Octavious both eagerly accepted, one for the almost unlimited money and resources, the other for the people he would be able to reach.

As Kuurahn leaves the tower (and is ambushed by Lanni) Callidon asked Octavius to stay behind offering Octavius some alcohol, which he accepted.

Callidon divulged to Octavius his worries about his increasing corruption and asked for his advice on its removal. Octavius was not able to give Callidon any promises except that he would help guide Callidon towards its removal if possible. Such a task is not easy or short to accomplish he warned Callidon however.

As a last bit of housekeeping before setting off to the Kirtin Research Facility, Callidon ordered the Mant eggs to be taken into the trophy room on the Venturer. Through some subterfuge the crew managed to secret away the eggs without attracting too much attention from the crew. The crew all know that something was moved into the trophy room, but they don’t know what, except that it came from the Mant world.

As the team begin to move out towards Kirtin they are able to survey the changes to the Charnel Stars. The destruction of the Veil has carved a clear pathway through the otherwise impenetrable walls of the Charnel Stars’ warp storms, giving unprecedented access to the systems beyond. Knowing this the team leaves the system, with much the Venturer’s crew wishing never to return.

Unfortunately the trials of the Venturer’s crew were not over. Upon arriving in Kirtin the facility is found to have no power and does not respond to their communications. Callidon sent an away team down to the facility in the hopes of contacting Lanni’s father Bo’en.

Upon Lanni’s inspection of the outside of the facility it is discovered that the conduits to the power generator were cut. Cautiously, the team opened the bulkhead doors. A series of desiccated corpses that were against the door fell out in front of the team.

Vulgrim forcibly prevented Lanni from running into the facility until he finished inspecting the corpses. He easily deduces that they are researchers from the facility and that their state of decay in an oxygen-free environment would take many years…

After reporting back to Callidon that most of the researchers seem to be dead Kuurahn scans the facility thoroughly, picking up no signals of any kind. Considering the situation Callidon sends Mordechai and additional troops to support the away team.

Vulgrim however, isn’t worried about whether anything is alive in the facility, but how long they have been away from it in time.

The away team makes it to the central research area of the facility. They find there more dead researchers… and the body of Bo’en. As Lanni collapsed by her father, Kuurahn searched the re-activated computer systems for logs and audio files.

The logs confirm Vulgrim’s suspicions, the Venturer was logged as missing 5 years prior to the facility being cut off and the researchers killed. However the team have no idea how long it has been since the facility was taken still.

Kuurahn then played an audio file taken on the day of Bo’en death. Bo’en is heard to be making a log to the computer. Since Lanni and the Venturer’s disappearance Bo’en has seemingly been turning all of the facility’s capabilities to penetrating the Veil in the hopes of finding Lanni. Bo’en is cut off however by the invasion of the facility by a military group lead by an unnamed leader. After the leader of the group threatens to shut down the facility Bo’en is murdered after refusing to leave the facility.

The leader of the facility then proceeded to leave the researchers inside the facility and then cut the power, allowing the researchers to suffocate and the facility to die.

As the group leaves the facility Kuurahn downloads all the log and data he can from the facility’s computer and Lanni, eventuallly, leaves, taking Bo’en’s chainsword with her and letting the power to the facility go out again.

After returning to the Venturer the crew set up a planet searching program within the ship’s sensory arrays in order to passively search for a planet that fits the Mant’s criteria for life. The crew also attempted to contact the Hand of the Emperor in order to regroup with the ship and ascertain the amount of time that had passed since entering the Veil.

However, no answer is received from the Hand. Callidon makes the call to not tell the crew that time has moved on at least 5 years since they were last at Kirtin. Instead he focuses on calming the crew, in which he is successful.

The Venturer began to set off for Ritammeron in order to restock both the ship and the crew. During the trip Octavious looked after the crew bringing them reassurance after their terrible ordeal and Kuurahn began to get used to the ship.

Vulgrim offered to train Lanni in swordsmanship in order to weld her father’s chainsword. Both Vulgrim and Lanni showed themselves to be equal matches, Lanni’s surprisingly honed raw talent matched well with the experience and training of Vulgrim. Throughout the journey Lanni has been training with both practice and the chainsword without breaks.

Mordechai spent the journey painting only being faintly aware that he is painting images of the Veil and that the Mant and their way of thinking is manifest in strange, almost xenos artwork.

On one dark night on the ship Callidon goes to Octavius in the Venturer’s cells where he has set up an office of his own. Octavius uses the 6 remaining mutineers to teach Callidon some of the finer points of being a missionary. Whilst the prisoners don’t last long, they are at least instructive to Callidon.

Octavius then allows Callidon to take the lead with the leader of the muntineers. The session takes hours. At length, the leader gives in. However Callidon intentionally makes his death truly gruesome, for which he is admonished by Octavius.

At last the team arrive in Ritammeron. They are greeted by a planet surrounded by heavily armed military grade ships in orbit around the planet. The ships turn towards the Venturer as soon as it exits the warp.

Perhaps Ritammeron is not as safe as it has been once before.

The Veil Falls
Behind the Veil

After the team dispatched the Veil Bringer in the depths of the Veil facility the team set about their task of turning off the Veil.

Whilst Callidon and Octavius guarded the elevator to the surface, Vulgrim and Venhoa constructed a make-shift bridge using the leg of the dead Veil Bringer. Shifting the leg over the warp plasma channels that had eaten through the floor, the rest of the team managed to finally reach the Veil’s core.

The core, like a giant altar, warp storm conduit and control panel combined, was researched ponderously by Kuurahn for a number of hours until he was able to identify their options to shut it down. Kuurahn and the team decide to trigger the destruction of the Veil’s core and power source with the help of a remote timing device.

Whilst Callidon predicted the time the team would require to make it back to the Stalwart Venturer to be about 3 hours, Kuurahn secretly set the timer instead to 4 hours. Or at least attempted to…

Meanwhile Mordechai used his psychic powers to make contact with the surface team with the gun-cutter. After ensuring that the surface was safe the team left the Veil’s underground facility, joined with the gun-cutter team and proceeded to fly straight towards The Stalwart Venturer.

On route to the Venturer the team repeatedly attempted to hail the ship or Felix. Their attempts were unsuccessful by both technological and psychic means. The team began to fear the worst for the crew of the Venturer and Felix.

In addition, the ship’s Gellar field had been seemingly disabled. With the field disabled the corruption and madness of the Veil would be having a greater effect on the crew, and there would be no protection on the ship should the Veil fall.

Mordechai was, however, able to contact a loyal officer on the Venturer with a psychic link. Major Steve Harker was able to report the situation on the Venturer to the team. In the days since their last contact with the team the crew of the Venturer had continued to degrade in loyalty and sanity, leading to a mutiny on the ship.

Across the Venturer a number of disorganised groups, running amok on the ship, killing and maiming at random and attacking people on sight. Another group, seemingly more rational, though just as desperate, had attacked the bridge itself and taken control of the ship.

Major Harker was unable to confirm the situation of Felix but was able to direct the team to his group’s location on the ship for relief.

The team piloted their crafts into the waiting vehicle bay of the Venturer. Once inside the ordinance of the gun-cutter made short work of the few mutineers still present in the bay.

Leaving the Mant, eggs and away team behind to protect and fully secure the vehicle bay the team made for the elevators. Their path to the bridge was blocked and disabled taking them through the voidsmen quarters instead. Since they were in the vicinity the team attempted to rescue Major Harker’s group, dispatching individual foes along the way.

The team attempted to talk down the mutineers in the bridge of the ship through the internal communications but were unable to make contact.

As the team closed in on Major Harker’s position they found them under siege by a larger group of half-crazed crew members. The attackers seemed to be blindly attacking anyone in sight and harvesting the fallen for weapons to defend themselves with, including grenades.

As the first of the attackers charged at them the team easily and quickly dispatched the crew member, exploding the grenades on their body, fortunately away from themselves.

These suicidal crew members attempted to rush the team but were all slain without the team taking damage. The last of these attacks put the team in danger, but Callidon and Vulgrim were able to pacify the attacker before more explosions could ring out.

After saving Major Harker he and his group joined the team as an escort to the bridge, swiftly weaving their way through the battleground-like corridors of the Venturer.

On their approach to the bridge Kuurahn was able to determine a number of bio signatures present on the bridge. The team split into two, with Major Harker’s group taking the left entrance, the players to the right as they burst into the room.

As they entered the bridge they were able to see the group of mutineers surrounding the face down form of Felix, surrounded by the corpses of the loyal crew members who had attempted to defend the bridge from their attacks.

After killing one of the mutineers Octavius and Callidon managed to calm down the two groups long enough to attempt to parlay with the mutineers. Callidon bartered with the group’s leader attempting to secure the ship and Felix’s life in return for the safety of the mutineers and their release from the ship when next at port.

Unfortunately the leader of the mutineers caught wind of Callidon’s lies about their freedom and made to shoot Felix.

At that moment the Veil fell sending waves of corrupting warp energy, psychic forces and shudders through the void.

The team has been rendered unconscious under the strain of the Veil’s collapse. Who will awake first? What will become of Felix and the mutineers? Is their imprisonment in the Veil finally over?

The Veil
Behind the Veil

After clearing the skies of the corrupted Many-Lived, the team flew their Aquila Lander and Gun Cutter directly to the ruined Mant city in search of the Veil’s power source. Using the directions provided to them by the Mant they were successful in finding a relatively safe area to land nearby to the coordinates.

After searching for almost four hours Kuurahn finally managed to come across the entrance to the Veil’s facility – a large metal elevator leading deep into the crust of the planet.

Callidon and Vulgrim ordered 10 of the 14 soldiers still with the team to stay behind on the surface, with orders to take off in the ships at the first sign of hostility on the surface and then to defend the area from the ships.

As the rest of the team descended into the belly of the planet they were able to pick out a number of clusters of corrupted Mant secreted throughout the rock and crust. Clearly, without the Mant’s help, the team would have been ambushed by the corrupted Mant many times within the city.

The elevator came to a halt at the bottom of a large shaft, first natural and then worked. The facility, whilst clearly Xenos, was of a functional nature, sheet metal and little decoration. The initial landing area of the elevator was dirty and filled with twisted scrap metal from machinery last used millennia ago.

The elevator room had a large sealed metal door leading north. The only other exit was a gateway to the south which then split into passages to the east and the west. Whilst examining the door Kuurahn was able to discern that it could be opened, but not from this area in the facility.

The team decided to travel east, following the corroded piping containing a strange thick liquid substance that seemed to carry a great amount of warp energy within it.

As the team followed the passage east, they came across similar looking moss to the patches found in the Mant’s sanctuary. However the team realised that the moss was corrupted and no longer safe. Octavius attempted to clear the moss from the floor of the passage, but was unsuccessful due to its low flammability.

Upon opening the door at the end of the passage the team came across another group of corrupted Mant. This time the corrupted Mant seem to have been cursed to become ethereal creatures that could phase in and out of the world around them. Fortunately this did not stop the team from destroying two of the wraith-like creatures and driving off the remaining Mant.

At the very end of the passageway the team found a control panel that was still operable. Kurrahn was able to interface with the panel and access various information about the facility, the output from the Veil and access the security network in order to open the large metal door in the elevator room. Unfortunately this revealed a second door that would need to be breached as well.

Kurrahn stayed behind at the terminal for around 20 minutes to absorb as much of the facility’s information and technology as possible.

The rest of the team left Kurrahn there and then headed through the western passage, noticing the degradation of the facility’s structure as they moved through it. As they came to the end of the tunnel they found another terminal, however the floor of the room was overrun by the same warp energy fluid found throughout the facility.

The team decided to use Callidon’s Servitor and Venhoa to transfer as much thick scrap metal as they could find from the passageway to the room in order to form a bridge over the fluid, taking about an hour and a half to do so. Kuurahn successfully managed to open the second door in the elevator room before the fluid melted and disintegrated the scrap metal covering the floor.

The team headed back into the elevator room and proceeded cautiously into the core of the Veil.

The core was a hemispherical room of massive size. A large mechanical installation, surrounded by a strong aura and warp energy lightning was centred in room. From it a number of wide corroded warp energy pipes and gutters spilled across the room.

Mordechai and Venhoa were then spoken to by the guardian of the Veil, the Veil Bringer. The guardian, seemingly corrupted but still with some degree of thought asked the team to take down the Veil, whilst it was unable to do anything but defend it.

The mighty form of the Veil Bringer shocked Venhoa, Vulgrim and the Crew Military to their core but it was only a moment before the team rallied against the enormous threat. The team assailed the monster with bullets, managing to take down one of its arms as the Servitor drew its attention.

As the beast called forth a number of Mant wraiths to assist it, the Servitor dismembered a number of the Veil Bringer’s legs with its melta. As the creature flinched and wheeled in agony Vulgrim took the opportunity to jump onto the creature and gun it down at point blank range, laying into the carapace of the Veil Bringer.

The Veil Bringer stumbled and crashed to the floor, dead. The wraiths disappeared into the air of the chamber. The way to the Veil’s core is open.

Gun-cutters are Hard to Fly
Behind the Veil

After the team rested and reformed they tentatively approached the underground lake that they traversed on their way into the sanctuary. Kuurahn was able to smoke out the corrupted Mant guardian by electrifying the water and after a short battle the creature was put down.

Towards the back of the party Venhoa watched the destruction of what had been once a friend. Seeing the distress beneath the Mant guardian’s impassive features, Mordechai consoled Venhoa for a few moments by taking his hand.

Meanwhile Kuurahn and Callidon hatched a plan to guide the servitor through the lake safely. Kuurahn flew his servo-skull above the lake, guiding the mechanical death-machine to the other side.

The team then began the watery crossing themselves. In order to get across the group swam, except for Octavius, who instead was ordered to get up upon Venhoa’s shoulders – regardless for his distaste for the Xenos.

Once clear of the water the team began to hear voices from further down the tunnel. During the time that the team were in the sanctuary the small away team of the Stalwart Venturer had managed to clear away enough of the fallen debris to allow access out of the caves.

Whilst the tunnel was still unstable the team managed to pass unhindered and did not trigger another full cave in of the tunnel.

After reaching the away team they were escorted back to the planet’s surface, but not before warning the crew about the Mant and finding out that, according to the away team that the explorers had been gone seemingly for a whole day, rather than the hours the explorer’s experienced.

There was more shock once the team exited the mountain and rejoined with the gun-cutter and aquila lander. After stowing away the eggs and Mant on the gun-cutter, Callidon tried to contact the Stalwart Venturer. A ragged sounding Felix answered and told the team that they had been in orbit for over a week whilst the team had been on the planet’s surface.

Worse yet, their additional time in the system, coupled with their increased exposure to the Veil whilst in the void, has resulted in a dramatic shift in the crew’s morale, health and sanity. Whilst there hasn’t been a mutiny on board the ship yet, Felix feels like it will only be a matter of time before the crew, driven mad by fear or the Veil, turns on itself.

Callidon then explained that their team knew of a way to get the Venturer out of this mess thanks to a deal struck with the surviving Xenos of the planet. Whilst Felix seemed taken aback by this he admitted that getting them out of the Veil was their primary concern at that point.

As Callidon was beginning to get into more detail about their excursion Kuurahn managed to detect incoming hostiles heading towards their ships, which were beginning to fly up towards the Venturer to dock. Thanks to their early detection of the threat the team were able to scramble a defence as four Corrupted Many-Lived flew straight towards them.

The ensuing battled turned nasty as the Many-Lived attempted to latch onto and destroy the larger gun-cutter, forcing it into a nose dive towards the planet’s surface, the crew unable to pull the craft out of its descent.

Fortunately the aquila lander was able to maneuver behind the gun-cutter, covering its rear from the Mant’s attacks.

Eventually the Mant were blown out of the sky and the gun-cutter regained its lift. The team briefly discussed their original plan to board the Venturer before flying to the ruined Mant city and the main power source of the Veil. The team decided to instead fly directly to the city ruins, eggs in tow, in order to deal with the Veil as quickly as possible, and hope that the crew the Venturer and Felix remain sane enough to leave it.

Bargains, Mind Traps and Eggs
Behind the Veil

The negotiation between the team and Most-Lived continued. As the terms began to be laid out the Most-Lived told the team that they created the Veil in order to protect their race from “The Great Eater”, a force so terrible to the Mant that it is difficult for them to describe, even to Mordechai. What little they were able to show Mordechai was a vision of a planet overrun by shadows, shadows with eyes. From the shadows came Mant bodies seemingly puppeteered by the shadow and creatures made of nothing but shadow come to life.

The terms of the Mant bargain were explained thus:

  1. The team will provide safe transportation for a set of Mant eggs from their Sanctuary to the Stalwart Venturer.
  2. The team will provide protection for the eggs from both their crew and external threats until a suitable, uninhabited planet is found for the eggs.
  3. The team will transport the eggs safely onto the planet’s surface and ensure that the eggs hatch unmolested.
  4. The team will then depart the planet and only return at the behest of the new Mant civilization.
  5. The team are required to protect the Mant and their new homeworld from attackers until the Mant can defend themselves.
  6. A representative of the team is required to take on a mind trap in order to keep the team to their word.

In return the team gain the following information:

  • Any desired information on the current Mant and their homeworld.
  • Directions to and the way to dispell the Veil
  • Access to the Mant’s sanctuary and resources on this planet as needed.
  • Upon completion of their task, access to the new Mant as potential allies and trading partners for technology and other goods with an instant good reputation with them as their saviour.
  • Removal of the mind trap once deemed appropriate by the new Mant

After the team accepted these terms Mordechai offered to undergo the mind trap. Once completed the Most-Lived explained that the Mant created not only the Veil but also the entire system that the Veil surrounds. The planets in the system are placed such that they work together in order to keep the Veil stable. The planet that the crew are current on is the main power source and centre of the Veil system.

However, over the millennia, the mechanisms or alignment of the planets shifted imperceptibly and caused the corrupting influence of the warp to exit the Veil itself and slowly flood the system beneath it.

Once the Mant realised that they were becoming corrupted they fled into the Sanctuaries on the planet that prevented the corruption of the warp from touching the remnants of their race. That prevention however was not permanent and the corruption is travelling further and further into the Sanctuaries with each passing decade.

There is only one safe way to dispel the Veil, at its main power source. The main power source lies towards the centre of the planet and its entrance is within the ruined city of the Mant. The team must go and find this entrance, travel to the power source and shut it down. They will require great knowledge of the Mant and technology in order to stop the power source.

Once the Veil is dispelled the barriers over the Sanctuaries will also dissipate, leading to the likely extermination of the Mant as the Corrupted are drawn to their strong psychic presences like moths to a flame. That is why the Mant require eggs (which have only limited psychic signals) to be taken to the Stalwart Venturer first.

After receiving this information from the Many-Lived the team, and the Mant, began to make preparations to leave the Sanctuary the way the team entered – braving the swarming corrupted Mant again.

As the team left the main chamber the Many-Lived broadcasted the plan to all the Mant in the Sanctuary and advised the team that both the Veil and warp storms of any kind can have strange affects on the flow of time.

Finally the team set off through the tunnels of the outer sanctuary again, this time with a train of egg containers and three Mant warriors to support them.

The team opted to go out of the Sanctuary the way they entered. Whilst the size of the egg containers made it difficult to move fast down the corridors the team and Venhoa eventually made it through the winding passages.

However during this passage the corrupted swarms came in to attack them again. Two of the Mant Warriors used themselves as a distraction to bide time for the team to get through. Even with this distraction the team had to face many of the little insects ambushing them from the ceiling and walls. Fortunately the insects were ineffective and were easily dispatched or fought back.

However in the final moments of their trek through the passages one single insect managed to leap onto the face of Octavius – the team’s most critically damaged member. In a cold and calculated motion Callidon shot the insect off of Octavius face without harming him.

At the same time Vulgrim unleashed a torrent of bullets against the swarm of insects following the team, killing them all.

With the eggs undamaged, and the insects currently gone, the team has briefly stopped at the exit to the outer sanctuary, catching their breath before facing their traversal of the underground lake and, hopefully, passage back to the surface of the planet.

Venhoa and The Mant
Behind the Veil

After escaping the swarms of small, vicious insects the team began to take stock of their surrounding and patch themselves up.

The room they found themselves in was well lit and completely covered in the moss growing throughout the tunnels of the underground facility.

As the team settled they attempted to communicate to the large insectoid creature that had helped them carry Octavius to safety. However due to the mental and physical differences between humans and this Xenos race, communication proved too difficult.

After offering the team some of the moss from the wall as food, the insect warrior and Mordechai agreed to perform a psychic rite to allow them to communicate. Mordechai and the warrior opened their minds to each other and exchanged information about each other’s races and experiences.

Meanwhile the rest of the team explored the small area and found another large metal door blocking their path. Whilst unable to pass the team did conclude that there was some degree of open space behind the door.

Once Mordechai and the insect warrior completed the rite they were finally able to communicate with each other successfully. The Xenos warrior introduced himself as Venhoa, a member of The Mant.

Venhoa proceeded to ask the team about the outside of the facility and whether they had come across others like himself. In turn the team asked Venhoa briefly about himself but pressed more about what force or voice had brought the team into the warp storm. Venhoa, however, was not forthcoming with answers saying that it was not his place to talk about it.

Eventually Venhoa led the team deeper into the mountain, past the large metal door. Beyond the door the tunnel lead deeper and deeper down into the mountain and eventually let out into a large underground cavern. Built up from the cavern’s bottom and down from its ceiling stood a large city structure.

As the team came closer it became clear that the city, or Sanctuary, was inhabited. Once the team reached an inner courtyard to the Sanctuary, Venhoa called forth its inhabitants. Hundreds of Mant of all types came to the courtyard, standing there, unnaturally still and silent.

Venhoa instructed a Mant that he would like to bring the team to the Most-Lived of the Sanctuary and whilst he and the team waited to be summoned Venhoa explained more about the Mant. Throughout these exchanges Venhoa was displaying clearly human behaviour and mannerisms.

Eventually the team was brought up and up through the city to the highest areas near the ceiling of the cavern. There, in a small but ornate chamber, the team met with the Many-Lived, communicating to the team directly through Venhoa’s mind. At times the presence of the Many-Lived had strange effects on the mind and behaviour of Mordechai. However he managed to keep his composure.

The Many-Lived seemed powerful and wise, if somewhat unconcerned with the team’s presences in the sanctuary. They acknowledged that the team had managed to reach their sanctuary and offered them leave to remain indefinitely to escape the corruption outside.

However they did ask the team about their means of arriving on the planet and their passage through what they termed “The Veil”. When the team was not forthcoming the Many-Lived turned to dismiss them from the chamber.

At that time the last of the Many-Lived approached the team and spoke to them, introducing itself as the Most-Lived of the Mant. The Most-Lived was more direct with the team and explained, in exchange for information about their spacecraft, that it was the Mant who created the warp storm or Veil in order to hide their race from a threat, tens of thousands of years ago. Over the millennia something within the Veil had caused the corruption of their world and race to occur, forcing them to seal themselves within their sanctuary.

However, with the appearance of the team and Venhoa, and the onset of the corruption further inside the mountain it seems that the Most-Lived is willing to make a deal with the team. They will show the team how to disband the Veil under the condition that the team take some of the Mant with them to another world.

But the details of the bargain are yet to be set. How will the team negotiate with an entire Xenos race? Especially when they are only “One-Lived”…

Bugs, So Many Bugs
Behind the Veil

The team looked around the room. Its walls were worked and covered in green moss. The moss in places seemed to be damaged and scratched, the marks only just visible as the moss had overgrown them.

On the floor of the room were the corpses of two large insectoid creatures. The bodies were large, ancient and dusty.

Seeing that the room was locked from the inside Vulgrim attempted to shoot the door off its hinges. However he was unsuccessful. Instead Callidon’s combat servitor forcibly drove through the door, exploding it into pieces with a great clatter.

The team investigated the surrounding area, briefly examining a species of glowing plant affixed to the walls, coming to another locked door. Vulgrim this time shoved the door open and found himself in a long corridor, branching off to the left and travelling straight down into a dimly lit room.

As he entered the corridor a small insect with malformed features dropped down onto his chest. Through the chittering and crawling of the insect Vulgrim took out his Blue-Bladed Knife and expertly skewered the creature, killing it instantly.

The team progressed down the corridor with Octavius using his flamer to kill the concealed insects on the walls and ceilings. As they reached the end of the corridor the team discovered that the room was filled with eggs, the majority of which were already old and cracked open.

Whilst Octavius attempted to put down more of the little insects he was pounced on by a couple of the insects. After the team dispatched one of the bugs Mordechai made to grab the last remaining insect in his hands and then crush the insect in order to kill it. At this time Kuurahn attempted to stab at the insect in Mordechai’s hands but instead narrowly missed stabbing Mordechai himself. In the end Octavius snatched the insect out of Mordechai’s hands and squeezed it to a pulp.

The team then slowly made their way along the branching pathway and found themselves within a large chamber. The room was covered in moss and glowing plants and at its center was what seemed to be the remains of a pool with an insignia in carved metal placed within it. Unfortunately due to a boulder that had fallen into the pool from the ceiling the insignia was not recognisable.

Whilst the team began to explore the room and adjoining passages further they began to hear more chittering coming from the unexplored areas of the underground cavern. At the same time Mordechai was suddenly struck by the sensation of a psychic signal coming from deeper within the chambers.

Suddenly swarms of hundreds of the small insects started to strike at the doors leading to the main chamber that the team were in. The team formed up on the two entrances into the chamber and fought off the swarms admirably, spraying them with bullets and burning them with fire.

All this time Mordechai was still receiving mental “pings” from the other side of the large door leading from the chamber. Callidon however ordered Mordechai to ignore the messages, thinking that the source of that psychic power might be controlling the insects.

As they burned and died the swarms of insects desperately threw themselves at Octavius in between flamer blasts. As they swarmed Octavius, Vulgrim, without hesitating, pulled out his hellgun and, in a graceful but terrifying display of skill, shot and killed all the insects covering Octavius, without so much as grazing his team member.

With the battle nearing its end and the swarms seemingly under control, Mordechai chose to disobey Callidon’s order and signalled back to the psychic source. Immediately sounds began to come from the other side of the door, the scrapping and movement of heavy objects. As the battle raged on the door opened and Mordechai was pinged to bring the team into the passageway.

Whilst Octavius held down the remaining swarms with fire Vulgrim scouted to the door and beheld a huge red insectoid creature holding a huge spear within its hands. It stood, strong and upright and giant, behind the door of the chamber and looked impassively at Vulgrim before gesturing for the team to enter.

As Vulgrim and Kuurahn’s servo skull started to gingerly investigate the opened pathway, Octavius was suddenly overwhelmed by a last-ditch attack by the on-fire swarm. Heavily damaged from the attack he was covered head to foot in the remnants of the swarm and was himself set on fire. Even after the insects were destroyed the fires continued to burn Octavius and soon afterwards he succumbed to fatigue and collapsed.

At this the strange insectoid Xenos rushed from his position at the door he had opened for the team in order to help rescue Octavius.

The team then had to race to attempt to both save Octavius from being burned alive, and to prevent the flames from penetrating the fuel tank on his back. With a concentrated effort the team managed to remove the insects from Octavius and, with a great feat of strength, Mordechai was able to bodily throw Octavius’ limp form into the waters of the pool, putting out the flames.

As Octavius began to drown the team heard more chittering coming from all around them, becoming louder and louder. The Xenos warrior bodily picked up Octavius from the pool and gestured for the team to flee into the passageway it had come from.

After making it into the passageway the Xenos deposited Octavius onto the floor, shut the door to the large central chamber and barred the thick metal door with an equally thick metal bar. As the doors were barred the sounds of chittering and banging on the doors began, but the doors held.

As Callidon and Vulgrim set about stabilizing and giving first aid to Octavius the team found themselves locked in a room with a strange Xenos warrior, with a horde of creatures outside waiting for a chance to dispatch them.

Sinking like a Fleshy Stone
Behind the Veil

After patching themselves up the best they could the team flew on towards their mountain destination. Upon arriving at the mysterious mountain that only Mordechai seemed unable to see the group decided to test whether the mountain was real or an illusion. Vulgrim used the gun-cutter’s guns to see whether the ordinance would impact with the mountain’s side, and to practise his writing skills.

The rounds did impact with the mountain but Mordechai was still unable to see it. However as the dust from the mountain side blew away from the rock and floated away from the mountain Mordechai was able to spot it, appearing as if from nowhere. From this the team realized that there was some kind of barrier or shell around the entire mountain that was preventing Mordechai from perceiving it.

Whilst surveying the mountain the group saw a prominent opening in the base of the mountain and landed to investigate it. Callidon and Mordechai stayed behind on the landed ships whilst the away team, made up of Vulgrim, Kuurahn, Octavius and Callidon’s Servitor, descended into the caves. As the team crossed the threshold of the mountain’s barrier Mordechai became unable to perceive them as well.

Shortly after entering the cave it became clear to the away team and the lander team that comm-bead communication had become blocked by the barrier.

The away team continued into the cave system. As they went deeper the cave began to split in multiple directions, lit only by the light of Kuurahn’s Servo Skull. The team came across a deep chasm blocking one their paths. The team decided not to attempt the dangerous vault over the gap and continue down another direction.

The team realized that their chosen path was desperately unstable, perhaps in part due to the new “V” on the side of the mountain. Fortunately the team sustained little injury passing through as the servitor was the only member unlucky enough to cause a localized cave-in. Less fortunate were the crew military sent to dig the servitor out as one of them caused another group of rock to fall, killing him instantly.

Once past the unstable section of the caves the group encountered a underground pool. Unfortunately, due to a misunderstanding of commands, the servitor walked straight through the shallow area of the pool and plummeted straight down to the bottom of the pool. Whilst the team tried to find a way to help the servitor out of the water Kuurahn also slipped in, which was a more troubling problem as Kuurahn could actually drown.

With the servitor’s help the team managed pull Kuurahn out of the water, but it became clear that the servitor itself would take much longer to climb out due to its bulk and weight. The team had also noticed ripples on the otherwise still water coming from a far off area of the pond, whose source had been travelling closer slowly over time.

Instead of waiting for the servitor to climb out Vulgrim commanded it to walk around the walls of the bottom of the pool and find its way to the other side. Unfortunately whilst it travelled to the other side the servitor was waylaid by an unseen obstacle and the team lost contact with it.

After waiting for 10 minutes to see whether it would emerge from the depths the away team turned around and walked back out of the mountain to report the loss of the servitor to Callidon and their investigation into the caves.

Callidon was not best pleased.

Whilst the team explained the situation in the cave to Callidon, Mordechai attempted to traverse the barrier through willpower alone. Unfortunately the strength of wrongness coming from the barrier was too much for Mordechai alone. The desire to turn around and flee from the barrier was even enough for Mordechai to physically overpower Vulgrim as he attempted to force Mordechai through.

However with the dubious charm of Octavius and the more helpful goading of Callidon, Mordechai was successful in his second attempt to travel through the barrier. Upon moving through the barrier Mordechai was finally able to see the mountain as the others were able to. It also became clear to the group that the corruption of the closed area of space was removed or lessened whilst within the barrier protecting the mountain.

The team travelled through the caves together from then on. When the group came to the chasm the away team encountered before Mordechai was able to discern that across the gap there was a weak and strange area of the cave walls. However the team decided to attempt to find Callidon’s servitor before crossing it and so walked into the unstable area of the cave again.

Whilst the servitor was not there to collapse the cave, its master Callidon, was more than capable of doing the same. Thanks to Callidon’s personal force-shield he was unharmed and was quickly rescued from the falling rocks. However the path back to the landers was now blocked and with it the mechanic and military crew that the team had brought with them. The team was on their own.

Pressing onwards the team managed to return to the point where they lost the servitor. Callidon, with the help of Kuurahn, was able to find the servitor further back in the pool, and discern that it was currently being held underwater by something big and hostile.

Callidon then ordered Vulgrim to leave his gear behind and swim gently across the pool to the other side. Vulgrim did so and the Servo Skull accompanied him across the pool. They arrived on the other side untouched and explored the caves beyond. They found in the depths of the cave a large metal door inset into cave walls. Following the cave around further Vulgrim found himself within the unstable section of the caves, discovering another way around the pool. Unfortunately at the same time that Vulgrim passed through the tunnel he caused yet another cave in sealing the newly found path.

After returning, still wet, to the group Vulgrim described the now blocked path around the pool. Callidon, still wishing to rescue his trapped servitor (to save money and face), commanded Vulgrim to again swim out, this time towards the churning waters where the servitor seemed to be in battle with whatever had snatched it.

Vulgrim again swam across the waters safely and discovered another path leading from the far side of the pool up into a tunnel. At the end of that tunnel he discovered a weak area of the rock wall and decided to push against it. With his mighty strength he caved in the wall and found himself in a worked stone room, clearly originally built by intelligent beings.

The walls were partially covered in an alien moss, which on closer inspection showed signs of ancient cut marks, regrown over time. On the floor of the room lay a number of desiccated and seemingly ancient insectoid creatures.

Returning to the far side of the lake Vulgrim watched as the rest of the team made the wet crossing over the pool. Octavius and Kuurahan made it across safely. However both Mordechai and Callidon were swiped at by a large creature from under the water. Once the team was safely on the shore, Kurrahn used his shock staff to electrify the water. The servitor was able to break free of whatever held it and the team could see the ripples on the water move away from the bank.

At length the servitor was able to pull itself out of the water and was reunited with the team. Badly damaged, Callidon ordered Kuurahn to attempt to fix what he could of the servitor and gain as much knowledge about the beast that had held it from its memory circuits. The creature was revealed to be a great serpentine insectoid that had wrapped its body around the servitor and dragged it away. They had remained entangled, fighting each other until the servitor was rescued.

With the team back together they entered into the room that Vulgrim had discovered and began to investigate it. The first thing they noticed was that the door to the room was locked, but from their side…

Survivors in the Sand
Behind the Veil

Whilst flying towards one of the strange “invisible” mountains that the team had spotted surrounding the ruined alien city the team noticed a cone of smoke and flame rising from the desert. The smoke almost directly in the path of the gun-cutter and aquila lander.

As the team approached they recognised source of the smoke and fire from a downed ship, wrecked amongst the rocks and sand. Upon further study two survivors of the crash were found. The team landed and, with a portion of their military force, exited their crafts and met with the survivors.

The survivors were the missionary Octavius Perie and the explorator Kuurahn. As the two groups started to become acquainted with each other they were suddenly attacked from under the sand as large headless insectoids burst up to the surface.

Stone, who was attempting to salvage parts from the downed ship, was pinned and flanked by two of the creatures that almost tore him apart and caused him to vomit continuously in fear. It did not end well for the inside of his gas mask.

After the team fought off their surprise and fear they started to fight their way back towards the lander and gun-cutter, each step bringing with it the possibility of a new attack. However, despite the number of the creatures and their deadly maws the team were able to extract themselves safely from the situation, only losing a few military crew members in the process and decimating the creatures in the process.

In addition, thanks to Kurrahn’s in-built sensors, the team was able to destroy the more deadly insects lying in wait for the team before they even managed to surface.

Back within the relative safety of skies of the alien planet the new and expanded team catches their breath and attempts to recover some of their strength before this seemingly hostile planet puts them in peril again.

The Beckoning
Behind the Veil

After leaving Kirtin for the Venturer Callidon managed to calm Bo’en and explain to him his plans. Bo’en, with no means of following the group, grudgingly accepted the disappearance of Lanni whilst soliciting the team’s protection of his daugther.

The team prepared to jump into the warp in order to travel to the abandoned research outpost nearer to the warp storms.

However on approaching the expected exit point from the warp the ship mysteriously failed to disengage its warp drives and began to increase in speed. The team frantically organized the crew of the Venturer to disengage the warp drive by whatever means necessary. Whilst the engineers worked tirelessly to remove the power couplings to the drives manually Vulgrim and Felix managed to successfully calm and control the rest of the ship’s crew. Mordechai and Callidon tried to discern the nature of the storm as it crept closer and closer and attempted to find alternative safe exit points from the warp. Blur tried, without success to wrest control back from the ship.

At the eleventh hour despite the valiant (and sometimes extra-ordinary) efforts of the team and the crew the ship struck the warp storm head on.

After some quick navigating and steering from Callidon and Felix the Venturer was able to pass safely through the storm, whilst being badly shaken and many of the crew injured or unconscious. The Venturer then left the warp and entered unknown space.

The Venturer had passed miraculously through the storm and discovered that the it had a hollow centre. Within that space were a number of planets the closest of which drew the attention of the team as it was the source of a stronger level of psychic energy than the rest of the surrounding area.

Upon approaching the planet the team discovered it to be an arid, desert and rock filled planet. It’s defining features were a large sprawling ruined city surrounded by strange capsule shaped mountains.

The team noticed that Mordechai was unable to see some of the mountains that were showing up on their scanners whilst flying over the city in their Aquila Lander and Guncutter. The team decided to investigate the mountains.

On their way there they were attacked by a giant insectoid creature that had incredibly strong psychic abilities. The team stayed out of harm’s way however and managed to dispatch the creature with the superior ordinance of their aircraft.

The team is about to continue towards the strange “invisible” mountains.


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