Intelligence Room – Freedom Party HQ – Popov Hub – Caerus System
Geryk Lepinski was alone, hunched over a terminal in the intelligence room when Furieux arrived. His slender fingers danced over the interface with practiced ease and accuracy. The old fashioned keyboard was of the mechanical type and Furieux puzzled over why such a highly trained data adept would use such a relic over the more modern and commonplace holographic input devices. Everything in the room was white, from the technology to the furniture to Lepinski’s attire, a loose fitting kimono style garment that gave him an almost feminine appearance. His bald head tilted from side to side as he worked. Furieux felt a little like he was interfering with the harmony or ‘feng shui’ of his surroundings being clad entirely in black...
Popov Hub Hanger
July 8, 3301
20:48 hrs, UST
The pad lift slid back bringing the ship safely into the dock. Though safely might have been a bit of an over statement as the ship was smoking heavily. The smell of burning electrical systems billowing out from rents in the ship’s hull. The port side pylon was crushed, the C3 Beam Laser that was supposed to have been housed there, was nothing more than the remnants of the gimbal it once sat upon. The main body showed signs of a severe impact with evidence of laser fire along the trailing edges of the ship. The whine of the engine as it spun down sounded more like a dull rattling hiss, than the sophisticated hum of a Gutamaya power plant . The once proud Imperial Courier had been reduced to a barely functioning piece of space garbage.
The Popov Hub klaxons rang as crews rushed out with extinguishing equipm...
“Fuel scooping complete.” declared the Lady Muck as Commander Deuil Furieux swallowed the last remaining liquid from a bottle of Geueze before wiping his mouth with the back of a gloved hand.
The ship was currently suspended in the orbit of Sugrivik, a large class G star from where it was collecting base hydrogen fuel. The journey from Gliese 900.1 to Zeta Tucanae wasn’t a long one, but the combination of the new Imperial Clipper possessing such a small tank along with an overall thirst for gas, it had become necessary to make a stop in the system and replenish the reserves. Gazing out of the viewport, Furieux observed the large, swirling yellow ball of plasma for a few self-reflective moments. Even now, after all the myriad stars he had witnessed up close since he had first taken leave of his home planet, they still fascinated him. Every one was unique...
The INV Hengist Duval lurched into orbit above Gliese A3, a small, barren rock with an even smaller moon. The planet was home to a lucrative mining operation run by the Gliese 900.1 Liberals, the system’s current stewards. Minerals such as bauxite and lepidolite were transported from the surface regularly to Ford Dock, a tiny outpost with limited personnel.
The massive Majestic Class Interdictor boomed and groaned as it exited warpspace, leaving trails of dark matter in its wake that gradually dispersed as it slowed to a halt.
“Destination reached, sir.” announced the Chief Navigation Officer. “All systems online. Detecting a large number of heat signatures nearby, friendly and otherwise.”
Axius Lucretius of Emperor’s Grace allowed himself a small smile. “Looks like we are late to the party...
“Everything is going according to plan, Senator.”
Marquis Axius Lucretius sat alone at a terminal in the communications room aboard the INV Hengist Duval. The huge Majestic class Interdictor was currently based outside Paez Terminal in the Gliese 900.1 system. Lucretius had requested the sole on-duty comms officer to go down to engineering on the pretext of investigating some lost transmission data. The young officer, new among the crew, was only too happy to assist a member of the Imperium who held such high rank and she immediately hurried off on this fools errand, leaving Lucretius to his own devices. He had then quickly set up a connection to Emperor’s Grace’s main HQ on the surface of HR 706 IV.
“Excellent.” came the reply. “We have been following the progress of the mercs that you employed, and we have been pleased with the outcome thus far...