Q22

Mars 2, 2

After docking with the Mars 2 station a crew began exploring and assessing key areas of the station’s hub. All major systems seemed normal and as they should be, but the main computer was in pieces and many components fried. The main docking hanger was also found to have suffered damage to one of its cranes, and in both the hanger and main computer traces of an exotic tungsten alloy were found. Local door access logs showed activity 8 years ago while the station was abandoned 15 years ago. The dates on the most recent logs matched up with an extreme long range manned science mission to the outer asteroid belts, a mission that only reported docking with the Mars 1 station, a mission that was funded and directed by the Alpha corporation.

With the hub of the station assessed and the environmental system “warming up” the main ring of the station was the next target for exploration while another crew began work repairing the main computer. Arriving in the ring the crew was surprised to find a functioning atmosphere and life support system, apparently left on contrary to the station’s official mothballing plan. Worried about squatters or anyone potentially living in the ring the crew explored cautiously while calling out. They soon found the remains of a space suit with the name “Waterbridge” on it surrounded by trees that had strange black divots cut or rotted out. Samples were gathered of both the trees and the black remains inside the suit. Further exploration of the ring was stopped when the crew found what looked like hollow carapace of some humanoid creature. On the way back, alarms in the ring went off signalling a loss of pressure. The leak was found to be a service hatch leading to the hub. Worried unknown lifeforms had entered the hub, Captain Ron ordered all crew to stop work and head quickly back to the ship.

While nearly at the airlock, the exploration crew spotted a creature resembling the carapace they saw earlier. The creature was sneaking and peeking through the door into the cargo bay that the Sumo was docked at. The creature quickly spotted the crew and dashed away down a hallway. When the crew approached the door, 2 of the creatures leaped from hidden positions around the corner and attacked, wounding Manny in their initial rush. After a wrestling match and gun fire, the crew managed to fight their way to the airlock and into the Sumo, although they remembered none of the events after the initial struggle. Manny received medical care and was isolated from the crew as some sort of black clumps were found in his wound. While leaving the station something (most likely one of the creatures) managed to climb outside the station and onto the Sumo and puncture a fuel tank, but the tank was quickly patched and no further sign of the saboteur was found. The clumps in Manny’s wound turned out to be seemingly harmless and Manny was returned to duty after his quarantine and extensive testing.

When the Altair finally arrived, the soldiers on board searched the hub and found no trace of the creatures. With the hub secured the crew of the Sumo were able to get back to work on the main computer. The Altair’s troops then found and killed two creatures in the ring, the creatures had signs of bullet wounds in their shells that identified them as the two the crew of the Sumo had fought with earlier. The main computer was finally repaired enough to get security sensors operational, but despite the sensors and the soldiers searches, a third creature was never found. The bodies of the two dead creatures as well as the shell, Dr Waterbridge’s suit, and samples from the trees were taken to a biolab in the hub for study while Captain’s Ron and Mangrum discussed their orders to fortify the station and get its fuel processor up and running.

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Baro

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