Q22

August 4th 2117
The first session

August 4th 2117
The crew of the SPACESHIP (spaceship LLC) accept a request to diagnose and repair a Mormon owned automated asteroid mine. Most likely a computer hardware fault.

August 6th 2117
Mining facility’s entry door is found to be damaged from some sort of external impact and must be cut off. George Noble, Richard Renaud, and Stesh “Manny” Manners cut open the door and investigate the interior of the miner. The miner’s main computer is found to be missing as is most of the electronics in the area. SNOT, operated by Captain Ronald Donahue finds a small circular hole cut out from the inside of the miner containing a dead body. The compartments with the dead body have been sealed off from the rest of the mining facility. The boarding party is recalled to analyze the damaged door and report a possible murder on the facility.

Authorities from Zarahemla thank the crew for the report and ask them to investigate the black box and secondary computer for potential logs or footage of the murder and sabotage. A second boarding of the station reveals the victim was stabbed through the heart from behind through his air tank and that the black box and secondary computer are both missing. Mormon officials alert the crew that they have been in contact with federal officials who ask that the crime scene not be further tampered with. The crew transmit their footage and data to the proper authorities after making hard backups and then set a course for the nearest colony where coffee is not illegal.

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Space News??

August 7 2117
Sumo and crew dock at the space colony Detrick’s large drydock facility to undergo scheduled maintenance and replenishing of supplies and fuel. While on the station some of the crew are invited to a meeting with the federal police who thank them for their cooperation and update them on the murder case, saying they are on the trail of a criminal gang and that the murder was a deal gone wrong between two gangs. A reporter attempted to contact Captain Ron after the meeting but the good captain did not have any time for reporter nonsense.

August 8th 2117
While the Sumo is docked a thief who managed to infiltrate the high security dock sneaked aboard and downloaded the ships logs related to their time at the Mormon’s asteroid mine. The thief did not make a clean get away though, as they were shot while escaping although still managed to evade security while injured. The crew of the Sumo managed to use this shameful security breach to get a heavy discount on their repairs in exchange for singing away the rights to make the incident public or leave a poor review of the station.

Thinking the reporter might have been involved in the data theft, the crew decide to contact him but they quickly get the impression he had nothing to do with it, specially since he is based out of Kansas City and seemed to be a legitimate “citizen journalist” named Franklin Garza. Franklin informed the crew that on the same say the incident on the Mormon’s mine happened, 2 other mining colonies in the area suffered disasters with one being melted by its own mirrors due to a computer malfunction and the other being boarded and all its computers being wiped or physically removed.

August 9th 2117
The Sumo leaves Detrick colony and head to the Damlex company’s food production and research station to start on a long term contract to do a large amount of backlogged upkeep for the family owned station. The work goes by smoothly and the ship’s crew enjoys a constant supply of free luxury food items after befriending the station’s crew.

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IGM Materials

The crew of the Sumo accept an emergency contract at an IGM Materials facility that suffered a large explosion that knocked out its reactor and much of the processing facilities. Upon arriving the crew met with Christy Deaton, the station’s manager, who quickly brings them to a team meeting to plan the work. The station crew are to work on the interior, while the Sumo and it’s crew to work on the exterior. There is limited time before the new reactor is set to arrive and the station must be ready for its installation so both teams get to work right away. The Sumo finishes its job creating a huge opening in the side of the station and goes on to repairing a damaged solar array. Deaton and the Sumo crew notice ongoing power fluctuations and it is decided that a small number of people are to investigate the source and cut the damaged area off from the station’s very limited power supply.

When the small group of Sumo crew members, lead by Captain Ron him self, arrived at the source of the power use they find it is being caused by a fabrication workshop being in full operation. The workshop seems to be building odd robotic components unlike any the crew are familiar with. After hitting the emergency stop button for the workshop a heavily modified version of one of the station’s presumed destroyed drones entered the workshop and attempted to restore power after surveying the situation. Manny unloaded his pistol on the drone after it came too close and the crew was able to safely leave the area after restoring communications and control to the section. With security sensors restored, Deaton warned the crew there were many modified drones in the area and to evacuate to their ship as soon as possible.

With large areas of the station being under the control of the modified drones with unknown intentions, manager Deaton ordered a full evacuation of the station and for the Sumo to increase its distance. After both crews are safe and away from the station and the authorities contacted, both ships are told to head to a small US government station for screening and questioning. While in transit the reporter Franklin Garza contacts them letting them know the military has dispatched 3 ships to the station they just left. The crew decline to share all their information on recent events with Garza, at least until they are cleared by the authorities and their corporate client to do so.

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The Gang Gets Chased By a Missile

The crew of the Sumo get offered a very well paying job from Alpha (space Google) to service their telescope and science station orbiting the dark side of the moon. The whole thing feels like a publicity stunt to use the crew’s recent fame in the news to promote their philanthropy. On the way there the crew work on various home-made weapons and tools to help deal with any hostile drones they might encounter in the future.

Shortly after arriving at the science station and beginning work, a small drone emerged from the station and started heading towards the Sumo. Acting fast, Captain Ron was able to get one of the ships new home-made “drone interceptors” launched in time while ordering everyone back to the ship. The interceptor was able to latch onto the incoming drone, but its magnetic weapon did not work. While the two drones grappled, Manny changed course and joined in the fight to help disable the enemy drone. Manny was able to tackle the drone and fire his weapon into its main thruster, disabling it. After the drone was successfully disabled, George and Steve came out with a mobile workshop and dissected the drone and made sure it was totally neutralized. The drone was then strapped to the outside of the ship for transport to the authorities. While trying to contact their employers or the authorities it became apparent the whole dark side of the moon was experiencing communications failure.

When the ship began to move away from the area, a missile was launched from somewhere on the moon and was rapidly gaining on the Sumo. Out from the moon’s shadow, the crew were able to contact the authorities and ask for assistance, but no military vessels were close enough to intercept before the missile would catch up. The crew frantically attempted to construct counter-measures by crudely turning their anti-drone interceptors into missile interceptors, but they were told the missile’s countermeasures were far too advanced to be destroyed that way. Eventually the US military authorities worked out a possible solution: sling shot around the moon towards L4 where a European Federation ship would be close enough to attempt to destroy the missile in time. While the two governments quickly coordinated the Sumo tried their countermeasures which failed as predicted. The Federation quickly agreed to render aid and the Sumo used most of its remaining fuel for a full burn to head towards L4. The missile was successfully destroyed by the Federation vessel and a tug was dispatched to assist the now helpless Sumo and bring it in for docking at the nearest colony.

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Heugnes

The crew of the Sumo are taken into protective custody by the Federation officials on the colony of Heugnes while their ship is inspected. The crew is lodged at a lovely country hotel with snacks and an open bar. During their one night stay the crew socialized and kept up on the news relating to Alpha CEO Steven Hughes’ reported suicide, the disappearance or arrest of the heads of other major corporations, and a large disruption of the internet. After a night of binging on conspiracy theories and socialized alcohol the crew is released with a full tank of gas. Even after recent events it’s business as usual for Sumo LLC as the ship accepts an urgent mission to re-activate a mobile miner’s guidance and engine systems for a return trip home before it misses its window.

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"It's Happening"

The Sumo arrived at the wayward mobile miner they were hired to resuscitate only to find it still perfectly active, just not listening to orders from its owners. A large amount of mineral pods had built up in its storage area, but otherwise seemed to be operating normally. Upon boarding the station and digging into the computer system it was discovered that the miner was extracting a slightly different mix of minerals than previously ordered, and had been doing so for a few days. While poking around the station, an order was received from an unknown source to send the stock of mineral pods to a large orbital factory thought disabled days ago with all crew lost. The crew of the Sumo quickly shut the whole station down, but by then all the pods had been given their orders and were acting autonomous from the station.

After conferring with the station owners it was decided to bring individual systems back online after its communication systems were physically disabled to prevent it from receiving illegal orders. The station successfully retracted its equipment and detached from its asteroid to begin its trip back to its owners for repairs and investigation.

While escorting the mobile miner home the crew speak with the reporter, Garza, to discuss recent events. He informs them that the military had sent a ship to investigate the abandoned factory, the destination of the mineral pods. It was also discovered that many other presumed disabled mining stations were sending resources to various presumed disabled factories, which were in fact quite active.

As the hours went by the crew of the Sumo, and the world, were glued to the news. The world was shocked when swarms of missiles erupted from the factories under unknown control, and heading towards most major military installations. One by one, military ships and stations were destroyed by the swarms over the course of the next days. Several large missiles headed to earth and deployed a swarm of small drones destroying all satellites in orbit and presumably destroy any new ones launched. Despite seemingly only having days to have produced these missiles, they were enough to destroy nearly every military asset of every nation in space due to their exceptionally advanced design. With humanity’s military presence in space destroyed, the sphere could easily be conquered by what ever force or group planned this attack. Humanity awaits this force to show its self, for the cause of these attacks to enact the next phase of its plan.

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Space Hulk

With the world’s military infrastructure destroyed the Sumo decides to do their duty and assist any way they can. The nearest distress signal is identified and the ship snaps into rescue mode, collecting two off-course life boats full of grateful crew. The Navy personnel are dropped off at a nearby civilian shipyard at the colony “Escambia”. The military agrees to hire the Sumo on as private contractors and provide a basic point defense weapon system. The Sumo is given instructions to survey and collect wreckage from an enemy factory complex. 2 large intact space containers were boarded and found to contain valuable industrial and weapons cargo. A large intact chunk of the factory was next to be investigated, but when the ship came close a small swarm of drones hidden in the wreckage moved to intercept. The Sumo’s new weapons were able to destroy the drones before they could reach the ship. SNOT was sent into the hulk to survey the area and quickly found a large manufacturing area filled with both conventional and unknown manufacturing equipment. An armed boarding party was sent over to investigate the equipment and retrieve any drives or data. A huge crab-like robot was encountered by the boarding party forcing them to flee after their pistols proved ineffective against it’s bulky frame. After outrunning the space-crab the Sumo’s weapons were able to destroy it once the crew were safely out of the way.

The Sumo returned to Escambia after a successful first mission for the military.

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Dirt Farming

After turning down a pointlessly dangerous mission to investigate a suspicious factory, the Sumo instead takes on the task of assisting the famous government “Dirt Farm” which suffered total failure after the initial “Alpha virus” attacks. After a few days of work it became apparent that the station could sadly not be brought back online before the various industrial soil grinders and digesters would be ruined. The crews of the Sumo and Dirt Farm worked round the clock for a week to clean out the machinery and were able to successfully prepare the station for an extended period of inactivity until it can receive a new reactor.

Tensions continued to grow around L5 after the destruction of almost all the world’s military ships and facilities. With various corporate security forces appearing at a suspiciously fast pace since the disaster and a brewing independence sentiment, the US government was becoming worried there could be open conflict if they were not able to fill the power vacuum quickly. To help fill this vacuum the military began buying suitable civilian craft and outfitting them with what ever weapons they could. Even the Sumo was given a pair of anti-ship missile launchers. Matters came to a head when an alliance of major space corporations announced they did not recognize the US military’s authority to commandeer their civilian shipyards and demanded the government to officially write up and pass a bill. The move was clearly little more than a delay tactic, as days later when the bill was successfully passed 3 of the 4 remaining major shipyards at L5 along with many colonies declared them selves independent of the US government.

With approximately evenly matched forces but a 3 to 1 production disadvantage the US government sent what little fleet they had to threaten one of the “Free Colonies” shipyards. At the last moment before open civil war a treaty was reached between the government and the new Free Colonies nation. The colonies were to transfer ownership of 2 of their 3 shipyards back to the government, but were otherwise free to go. Conflict was avoided and the US was able to easily secure its future military superiority in space. Many US citizens aboard the now independent colonies decided to return to US territory, while a small trickle of Americans decided to renounce their citizenship and immigrate to the new nation.

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Banana Stand

The Sumo is sent out to investigate an obsolete factory code named “Banana” as part of a group of 3 ships. With the military running security, the crew was free to begin assessing the station for re-use. Most all systems except for basic life support were down due to a lack of power. The life support system seemed to have been slightly altered to provide a different atmospheric mixture as well as non-standard heat and humidity, but was never able to carry out it’s new parameters but after being brought back online the system refused to shut down, forcing Richard to cut power manually.

The factory’s cargo handling system came to life after the life support was shut down, resulting in the USS Reading’s marines opening fire on various cargo robots until they finally figured out to shut power down to the area. The marines did at least notice that the station seemed to be collecting certain specific containers. With the cargo area’s power cut, the crew of the Sumo met up in the cargo area with the marines to inspect the containers. The first containers contained various high-end manufacturing robots and automated fabrication equipment, another contained a massive mainframe, and the last was full of organic substances of some sort. The cargo was loaded onto the USS Reading which headed back to base to urgently investigate the cargo.

The cargo inspection was then interrupted by one of the station’s manufacturing areas showing signs of use. The area’s power was quickly cut, but it was clear the equipment there was manufacturing small drones of some sort. The Marines split into teams to hunt down the drones while the crew of the Sumo either joined in or attempted to patch into the station’s security system to help track the drones down. A drone was soon spotted in the main reactor attempting to bring it online. SNOT was dispatched to quickly respond and was able to disable the enemy robot but soon found it self being attacked by 2 others. Captain Ron was able to pilot SNOT and evade the enemy drones long enough for the marines to reach the area and destroy the attacking drones.

With the whole operation being a bit of a disorganized mess but relatively safely handled, the government decided the station would make a good proving grounds for future methods of clearing and salvaging or repairing infected facilities. The Sumo was put in charge of developing these new methods as they purge and repair the station. Upon the USS Reading’s return, a larger staff and more supplies will be dropped off to assist the Sumo’s crew.
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Mars Fishing

The crew of The Sumo were informed that long range telescopes monitoring the asteroid belt had begun to notice activity there, and with more resources pointing towards the belt it was confirmed that there was unknown mining and industrial activity taking place. The government and military decided the abandoned Mars 2 station in orbit of Mars should be re-activated as a military facility and act as a forward base for any potential missions into the belt, and the Sumo was the perfect ship and crew for the job. The Sumo was given a couple months vacation while waiting for the next Mars window, which most of the crew took back home on Earth. At the end of the vacation most of the crew along with reporter Frank Garza met up in Florida for a fishing trip in Captain Ron’s home waters. After their vacation, the crew returned to the Sumo to begin their mission to Mars. The Sumo, along with a newly built military vessel “USS Altair” following a month behind, were sent to Mars along with a large amount of supplies in order to get the Mars 2 station back in operation. The trip, just over 3 months, was uneventful, and the Sumo successfully entered Mars orbit and docked with the station. It will be 23 months until the next return window.

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