Rules and Information
Create Player Doc
Skills - Alphabetical
Skills - Costs
Skills - By PSA
Champions of the Empire
Star Frontiersman Magazine
Crash on Volturnus - Turn 1.9 - Subterfuge
JIM JITSU: I wouldn't want them coming back and confronting us on their terms. What if a small party of 2-3 of us traveling light and moving fast. make an obvious trail due south. Maybe even dragging a piece of wreckage as if it was a sled loaded with equipment for a few kilometers. That party can then ditch the supposed sled and make due East for 5 kilometers before turning North. Meanwhile the rest of us head Northeast. S'lch is the fastest among us so he's part of the diversion party and he can use his drone to help us link up with the rest of you who will be moving slowing and covering your tracks. We might even use chronocoms transmitting code words and flash lights to facilitate the link up."
S'LCH: "Fast I can do. Obvious I can do. Using Vod doable. Carrying wreckage or heavy items while doing so not so much. And being covert in joining back up also less so. I'd need help with those."
JIM JITSU: Jim, "We can pick a light weight piece of wreckage from the vehicle, tie rope to it and drag it. Its my cocka-mammy plan so I'll go with you. Anyone have experience with tracking and such that can help instruct us to conceal tracks? Once we've reached an area where we think we're close we say a code word on the com 'key' and the other party can respond with 'open' meaning they are flashing a flash light to attract the drone's attention or 'locked' meaning they feel its unsafe to reveal their position. We could also use a preset time like an hour after sunset the drone will be up and the larger party can flash a flashlight south for 5 minutes."
GM: Note that covering/hiding your tracks is extremely easy since the ground is frozen rock. You have to go out of your way to leave tracks. Dragging a laden piece of metal will leave tracks that, while not visible from the air, will be visible if the pirates come back, set down, and investigate the site.
ENSIGN FURY: "I will volunteer to go with Jim and S'lch dragging a makeshift travois."
Working in the intense cold, with a wind that is picking up, the group pulls out a piece of the destroyed vehicle and piles enough stuff on it to give it enough weight to leave tracks on the frozen stone. They tie a couple of ropes to it to make a harness. Then Jim, S'lch and George take up the harness and begin dragging it off to the south. The rest of the group heads off to the northeast.
The group heading south drags the sled for a few kilometers and then ditches it. The story that the group hopes will be told is that the sled was abandoned because it was unwieldy and the group continued south. In reality, Jim, S'lch and George then head due east being careful not to leave tracks - something that is not difficult in this frozen landscape. All three are feeling very cold but not dangerously so in their survival suits with additional blankets for more protection from the intense cold. Ciara had even created additional layers for the soles of the feet to prevent heat from leaking through the icy contact with the ground. These occasionally have to be retied when they come loose.
Meanwhile, the rest of the group headed northeast. The travel over the icy, broken land for a short time and see a ridgeline up ahead. The ridge is only a dozen meters or so in height but is the first one they have seen. They head towards it cautiously picking out a few likely places to ascend. The most accessible is a break in the ridge that has tumbled into a rockslide. If they still had the vehicle, it likely could have made it up but would have required a lot of pushing.
Suddenly a moving figure becomes visible atop the ridge about a hundred meters to the right of the slide. Another follows and then another. Wishing for a pair of magngoggles or a telescope, the group strains their eyes trying to see details. Unless the approaching figures are blind, it is certain that they have seen the group.
"They don't look humanoid to me," says Alzarix. Carter nods in agreement but the rest are still unsure.
The group continues cautiously forward, trying to see them better. Meanwhile, two more figures have appeared on the ridge following the first three. The lead figure has reached the slide and is starting down. It is then that the group realizes that the figures are actually smaller figures mounted on some sort of riding beast. As they get closer, the group can see that they are alien in every way. No one in the group has ever heard of anything like them. In physical appearance, they look like hairy purple octopi mounted on small (4m tall) dinosaurs that are covered in thick, matted fur instead of scale. The purple octopi creatures are wearing various decoration on their bodies. They also wear coats made from the hides of some sort of leathery beast. For the most part, these coats are not closed or otherwise pulled tight, which allows the characters to see the octopoid bodies.
All five of the strange creatures eventually ride down the rock slide and approach the group. Jim, S'lch and George have not yet rejoined and aren't expected until after nightfall. It is only starting to get dark as the sun, unseen these many days behind dense clouds, sets in the west.
The five approach and then split to circle their group. All are armed with thick, functional spears held loosely in two of their "arms". Two other arms are idle while the remaining four act more as legs that hold the creatures onto their mounts. The creatures say nothing and no gestures of either friendship or enmity are forthcoming. Perhaps they are waiting for the group to initiate conversation?
GM: Of the people there, only Gorman has Xenology, which is probably of limited use right now. The most appropriate skills are Xenolinguistics and Communication (either the skill or the subskill under Psychology). Ensign Fury has both but is off with S'lch and Jim laying the false trail to the south.
ALZARIX: Looking around at the aliens encircling us. He puts his hands in the air palms facing towards them. “Well I guess we can either go with them if that’s what they want or freeze.”