The Dark Times

Project Cloud

Three Weeks after the Valkyrie 5 Crew moved into the Abandoned Chemical Factory referred to as “the Base TM”, the party had done a lot to set up there new home. M3D-1 had used his funds to purchase a new Chemistry workstation to begin creation of medical supplies for the group. Lotus sought answers regarding the strange mask she had acquired, and the unusual compulsion it created within her. Meanwhile Kanto kitted out the base with new furnishings and got to know there new hire, Aryana Maverick. Kanto also sold the Imperial Shuttle they had acquired from Aryana to Reom, who had promptly removed the tracker and Identifier devices attached to the shuttle.

Word had begun to spread around about Lotus and her bounty work. so much so that her reputation for dealing with the Empire had grown among the underprivileged. The Black Lotus was always watching for signs of the empire on Nar Shaddaa the whispers would say.
M3D-1 was the first to be approached by a sympathiser of the Black Lotus, a man named Abel Carson, looking to higher the black lotus for a job. M3D-1 took the mans details and after returning to inform the others of the request, Kanto contacted Abel on the “Black Lotus’” behalf. Carson told them of the job he wanted them to do, kidnapping the daughter of an Imperial Director of Operations, one Elayne Gestahl. Carson promised to provide them with all the wealth he could muster, as well as maps and routes through the engineering section of the Cloud Facility on Meridun and a code cylinder to get through the doors. Elayne was Warden of the Cloud Facilities engineering corp and had only a handful of Stormtroopers at her command, so by all appearances it looked like the job would be straightforward.

After picking up Abel’s information, Kanto explained to Aryana about the job. She was apprehensive at first, but after learning the job would get them money and as she had more or less signed on to work for them, Aryana came up with a way to at least get in the front door.

Upon arriving at Meridun, Aryana tried to inform the Cloud Facility of there arrival and to negotiate a landing, but when there was no response or activity from the facility, the group were a little suspicious of why they were sent here. Suspicions were further raised when they attempted to gain entry via one of the Maintenance tunnels, which unexpectedly opened of its own free will. Aryana waited with the Valkyrie 5 while the rest of the party entered the facility, wherein they found all manner of sinister and creepy goings on. they wandered the tunnels, coming across horrible scenes of gruesome murders and strange sounds that tormented them. They reached the wardens office and learned Elayne was in fact a Rebel Sympathiser, and shortly after came face to face with the reason for all the strange events and the Facilities lockdown status, A force spirit hell bent on slaughtering the people in the facility. The party managed to thwart her before she got them, but that still meant they had to find Elayne, and not everyone was sure that they could truly kill a ghost.

The Group chased some life signals with there handscanners, hoping the tunnels would lead them to Elayne, what they did lead them to was a cult that worshipped “The Lady”, and were torturing those who did not hear her words. A Firefight ensued and the Cultists were defeated, and the survivors rescued. The party found a code cylinder on the body of the cult leader, a former Scientist, that would help them get into the upper levels of the facility, and after learning from one of the surviving Stormtroopers that Elayne retreated to the upper levels, the group returned to the turbo lifts.

The Facility above was in the process of being overturned as Troopers loyal to the cult scoured the facility for survivors who did not worship the spirit. after resting in an office and a few near misses with patrols the party headed for Gestahls office, after learning from security logs that someone matching Elaynes description had been sighted there. Breaking into the Directors Office, they located Elayne and learned that they were trapped until the spirit had murdered both her and Lotus, who had slight similarities to the people that defeated her long ago. Elayne explained that the events transpiring now are being caused by a forest strong in the dark side of the force, contained in the dome connected to the facility. Inside, the party found a self contained eco system, stormy weather and pylons that prevented the lightening striking people in the dome. after fighting there way through more cultists, Lotus had a vision of the Sith Lord haunting the forest, offering her promises of power. however after learning Lotus was not the champion she wanted representing her, demanded she leave or be killed.
Despite her warnings, Lotus and the others pressed on into the forest, coming up to a group of stormtroopers encircling the path up ahead, along with Director Gestahl. Elayne tried to appeal to him to stand down, but after a brief discussion he opened fire at the demand of the force ghost. A firefight ensued, elayne chasing her father further into the forest as the others dealt with the stormtrooper cultists.

As M3D-1 tended to the injuries Lotus had taken, Kanto hurried off down the path to find Elayne and her Father. He came across them in the midst of a heated exchange, her father defeated before her. As it was revealed her father was responsible for her mother’s death, Kanto persuaded Elayne to be the better person and stopped her killing her father. The moment of relief was shattered however when the Force Spirit returned, more powerful than ever and struck Kanto with her lightening. The others had caught up by this point, Lotus noticing the odd pedestal that held an unusual mask. she recalled it wasn’t in her previous vision and without hesitation ignited her lightsaber into it, causing the horrific mask to burn.

The Spirit shrieked in agony as the Mask was destroyed, and suddenly the surrounding Storm dissipated. The Lockdown was lifted and suddenly the comlinks of the party burst into life as Aryana tried to contact them. With the spirits influence gone, it wouldn’t be long before the Imperial forces rallied and began to search the facility for the remaining influences. The party with Elayne hurried to the Valkyrie 5, which Aryana had blasted her way into the dome to land in the corrupted forest. With the four of them safely aboard, they returned to Nar Shaddaa, Where Elayne thanked them for there efforts and they went there separate ways…

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Breaking Blue

Two months after the events of the Sa Nalaor, the party have spent their credits on several upgrades and new equipment to use. Lotus found a mysterious mask being sold by a seller on the streets of Nar Shaddaa, and Kanto bought a stylish new outfit which he took for a test run in the Corellian Sector’s bars and cantinas.

While in the Nova Swirl, Kanto was approached by Shira, Reom’s sister, and creator of much of Isotech’s technology. She hired him and his group to deal with some drug dealers on Nar Shaddaa that Shira learned her water filters had been sold to. Isotech has moral standards for its black markets, and dealing with drug barons was not one they embraced. Kanto agreed to help out, particularly after learning they would be compensated for their help, and after almost getting into a bar fight with one of the patrons boyfriends, Kanto went to tell the others of the job.

The group considered their options, the only name they had to go on was Ric Doranna, so they looked into potential bounties for the dealer, as well as asking at the free clinic where M3D-1 worked during the day. After tending to a sufferer of a booster blue comedown, the drug linked with the Isotech buyer, they learned that tracking a drug dealer was problematic. After the addict mentioned the Hutts might be involved, Kanto recalled Bargos’ own clan dealt in drugs on the sly.
The party regrouped at Bargos’ palace, Kanto managing to get in to see Bargos, while the others waited patiently, or as patiently as M3D-1 could be when left to his own devices.
Kanto returned to find M3D-1 being berated by one of Bargos’ Gamorreans, which Kanto managed to smooth over.
Kanto mentioned he had a lead but took it upon himself to investigate while the others carried on with their own business, which turned out to be helping an old lady with some issues regarding her ill daughter and grandson.
While M3D-1 and Lotus dealt with these humanitarian concerns, Kanto located the Weequay Agravon, who Kanto was told had dealings with the new booster blue supplier on Nar Shaddaa. The Weequay was goaded into revealing Ric Doranna’s whereabouts, which Kanto was unsure of, at first.

Thinking he had a lead, Kanto called the others to meet him in the red light district, and together the three of them looked for the club known as Somewear. Finding the club, they soon identified Ric and, while they observed them, Agravon arrived and gave Kanto away after explaining to Ric what had happened to his supply. Things looked like they would get pretty heated with Ric and his gang, but Lotus provoked his fears and Kanto threatened him with a grenade, bringing him to see a more diplomatic approach might be preferable.
Ric divulged that in fact he worked for Magran Kesk, a small time producer of booster blue who kept his business out of the hands of both the law, and the Hutts. The party let the gang leave without incident, Kanto suggesting Ric look up Bargos if he was interested in climbing the chain further.

With the instructions on how to find Kesk’s holdings, the party headed for the industrial levels to track his business down. On the way they were ambushed by a Gank bounty hunter, and his crew, that nearly took them all out. Their overconfidence was unfounded however, as Kanto rolled a grenade at those coming to capture him and gave the rest of the group enough of a distraction to kill the bounty hunter and see off his gang.

After recovering from their ordeal, the party raided Kesk’s factory, locking the majority of his gang away in their own rooms with some clever actions from Kanto, leaving Kesk only a couple of men to back him up.
Surprisingly, not only did locking up Kesk’s men draw his attention, but the attention of an Imperial pilot staying in his factory after a drop off. Drawing out her fear, Lotus sent the pilot into a fit of panic while Kanto got a few lucky shots on Kesk, nearly killing the Klatooinian.

Kesk submitted to the authority the group had displayed, shutting his operations down and not wanting to risk the Hutts ire by continuing his business. After persuading the pilot, Aryana Maverick, to work for them, and persuading Lotus that keeping her on would be a better idea than killing her, the group handed the business over to Shira and Isotech.
As a reward, Shira left the chemical factory in their hands, minus the drug ingredients and set up, as well as some credits to fund their new base of operations.

Meanwhile, Kanto had to explain to his boss why he wouldn’t be getting a new business under his wing. Fortunately for Kanto, Bargos’ assumed the reason was his own carelessness, and not any other deal he had previously made. Kanto got away with a stern reprimand, as he had managed to get his boss a few competent people to work for him along the way. But there was only so long Bargos would accept his recklessness…

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Toxic Motherlode
Beyond the Rim part 3

As the Valkyrie 5 arrived on Raxus Prime, with survivors on board, they were hailed by the Imperial shipyard orbiting the junk planet. Kanto managed to delay any sort of request to investigate the ship long enough for them to fly down to Raxus Prime, going so far as to infer they were having serious engine trouble. When it was becoming clear that this was a ruse, the TIE patrols sent to investigate attempted to make it a reality. With a few scrapes and damage to the ship, they managed to destroy much of the patrol, but a wrong turning nearly grounded the Valkyrie 5 permanently. The group used the accidental crash to their advantage, and the remaining TIE left the scene to call in support for the downed ship, while the Valkyrie 5 lurched away to Scrapheap Point.

Isotech’s manager of Scrapheap Point, Norta, was surprised when they arrived with the survivors, and gave them an extra bonus to use around Scrapheap Point while they waited for Reom to arrive. In the midst of their shopping, Norta caught up to them to take them around to a Jawa trade group who had arrived at Scrapheap Point later that afternoon. Despite the interesting creatures’ eagerness to deal, the group were all very aware something was off. Their suspicions were well founded, as one of the Jawa’s pulled a gun on Norta, who was ready for the sudden movement and batted his gun away, and threw a punch, revealing a Sullustan hidden behind a Jawa mask and robe. The party and Isotech were suddenly embroiled in an ambush by the Yiyar clan, and after fighting through Scrapheap Point, and the timely intervention of Reom and his heavy enforcers, who the party had been told were not here, they retook the facility, and rescued the survivors once again.

Reom apologised for his deceptions and rewarded Bargos for the party’s exceptional work, wiping out the debt they owed him, and lessening Kanto’s own burdens. Reom also promised more humanitarian work, as well as avoiding any relations with the Empire, which pleased M3D-1 and Lotus. Their victory was short-lived however, as Imperial patrols sought out Scrapheap Point, as the reports of the fight reached Imperial ears. With the group’s help, Reom revealed the wrecked corvette the Blockade Bandit, was not as wrecked as it had appeared and, with a few major repairs could at least get off the ground.
The group worked tirelessly with Isotech and the survivors, Kanto and Lotus returning to the Valkyrie 5 while M3D-1 maintained the corvette.

After a swift firefight both the Valkyrie 5 and the Blockade Bandit escaped into hyperspace, arriving safely at ISO one the rendezvous point. There the group parted ways, and returned to the galaxy to find further fame and fortune.

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Welcome to the Jungle
Beyond the Rim Part 2

Arriving on Cholganna, the group scanned its surface for the Sa Nalaor. With the data they recovered from the message pod, their scans located the wreckage of a crashed ship and what appeared to be a ruined escape pod. Descending to the planet, the group struggled through the dense foliage, harsh terrain, and vicious creatures to locate the pod, finding a degraded record of its final moments. The pod crew mentioned both Captain Harsol, commander of the Sa Nalaor vessel, and a woman named Cratala, who was unknown to the group, but had something to do with the chancellor, now emperor of the galaxy.

With trajectory coordinates from the pod, the group successfully located the engine section and forward section of the Sa Nalaor, but only after being attacked by arboreal octopi and nexu. The forward section also had its own startling creatures; nexu, cybernetically enhanced to protect the ship. After a thorough search, the ship appeared to still be visited by people, perhaps survivors and, after a groggy sleep on the planet, they planned a second day of searching. But their attempts were halted when IT-3PO sabotaged the Valkyrie 5, keeping the crew on planet to await Harsol’s arrival. Unbeknown to the droid, the Yiyar clan, having already attempted to see off the Valkyrie 5 the day before, found the Sa Nalaor as well, and a tense exchange between the two groups was brought to a stop when Captain Harsol and the survivors made the scene.

Captain Harsol returned with both the Yiyar clan and the crew of the Valkyrie 5 to the retreat, a place the remaining crewmembers and Cratala were hiding. After a brief discussion and a tour of the retreat, both groups got into heavy negotiations. Kanto, M3D-1 and Lotus learned there was a lot of division in the retreat; several wanted to stay and others wanted to leave, and most were dissatisfied with the leadership Harsol provided. After a heated exchange trying to convince Cratala and Harsol to leave, the Imperial Security Bureau caught up to the Sa Nalaor, having been tipped off by an information broker on the Wheel. Panic gripped the retreat, Harsol’s paranoia nearly getting the better of him and Cratala’s fear of the emperor pushing her to her limits. Kanto and M3D-1 talked them both down, and after rallying them, attended the wall to see what the Imperials wanted.

A lance of scouts on speeder bikes, and probe droids accompanied ISB Agent Ossnan, who was at first amicable to the survivors and offered both them and the Valkyrie 5 crew tempting rewards. None of them trusted his word, however and, despite resorting to threats, the retreat remained stalwart. Knowing he was outgunned, Agent Ossnan called a retreat for the short term, giving the retreat time to evacuate into the jungle, or join up with the group or Yiyar clan, who agreed to a truce with the party in exchange for Harsol’s recovered wealth and a couple of Cratala’s aides.

The group headed for their ships, using some of Cratala’s enhanced cybernetic nexu to get the drop on the Imperial forces and escape in there ships to the relative safety of Raxus Prime.

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The Tale of the Sa Nalaor
Beyond the Rim Part I

After being shunned by Bargos and leaving the group with a further debt to pay, the group were finally given a chance to redeem themselves. Reom, Twi’lek president of Isotech Corporation had a job he wanted Bargos’ assistance with, and the Hutt used this as an Ideal opportunity to call in the group’s debt.

Upon reaching the Isotech holdings on the Wheel space station, they learned their employer was keen to find the treasure of the Sa Nalaor, a munificent class frigate lost during the end of the Clone Wars. Leads up to this point had been few and far between, however Reom had found a hyperspace message pod belonging to the original ship, which shed new light on the hunt for the ship. Reom wanted the group to head for Cholganna, the planet that was the last known location of the separatist vessel, claim the treasure, and rescue any survivors, then bring what they find to Raxis Prime, Isotech’s secret holdings on an Imperial shipyard world.

The party agreed to help Reom, if only to clear their debt to Bargos, and were soon asking around the station for more details on Raxis Prime, Cholganna, and the Sa Nalaor itself. After learning a great deal and getting what gear they thought they could do with, Lotus, Kanto and M3D-1 waited for Reom’s droid, IT-3P0, to arrive, as he would be useful when they reached the Sa Nalaor.

The droid was delayed and, when they went to investigate, caught the droid being kidnapped by members of Isotech’s rival, the Yiyar clan. After a chase through the thoroughfare of the station, the party retook the droid, saw off the Rodians, and fled the station to avoid repercussions from Wheel security about the damage they caused.

With the droid and data in hand, the party then made their way to Cholganna in search of the treasure…

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Debts To Pay

After finally paying off the remains of their debts to Breen the gran and his business, the Valkyrie 5 belonged to them. The party’s victory was short lived, as Kanto’s boss, Bargos the Hutt, summoned him with the prospect of the Zabrak finally being able to close his debts to his employer.

The magnanimous Hutt offered the group a chance to do him a favour in exchange for what, on the surface, was a blue milk run. To collect the first payment of 100,000 credits from his newly acquired holdings, an Oridelve mine on the planet Gavos, extracting oridium.

Seeing a chance to settle his debt, Kanto agreed. M3D-1 and Lotus both saw the benefit of having a Hutt owe them one, and together the group headed for the mine as Bargos’ representatives.

All was not as it seemed at the mine, and the party found themselves searching a deserted mine for the miners and whomever was responsible for their disappearance. After finding the miners, the party learned that they had inadvertently arrived during a droid revolution, and while they managed to quell the uprising, it’s ring leader EV-8D3 escaped on a transport ship into the galaxy.

After saving the mine from destruction by the droids plan to eliminate the storm generators, the party negotiated for Bargos’ first payment. The group were unable to acquire all the money Bargos wanted, and upon returning to the Hutt, found he was displeased with their lack of concern for the damage they (or rather the droids) caused in his mine, as well as the payment amount they returned with.

The party found themselves now owing Bargos, Kanto owing even more to his boss thanks to their efforts, and after being dismissed they now owed more than they had hoped…

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