The Right Hand Of Darkness

Episode XIII: Into the Abyss

A mysterious world with a deadly secret...

Previously: After rescuing Sage Wyvene from the clutches of the corrupted Ewoks she had informed the group of her search for clues on the mysterious Imperial research vessel being used to finalize the super soldier experiments. Using her Farseeing ability, Sage was able to overhear a conversation between an Imperial officer named Vonan Trask, an Arkanian working for the Arkanian Biotechnology Corporation, and an Ebruchi wearing the symbol of the Flaming Fist pirate flotilla. During the meeting a planet, Medrosa V, was mentioned as being a pickup point for some equipment or supplies heading to the research vessel. After doing some digging through their various contacts, the group managed to uncover several details about the planet, as well as a possible Hyperspace navigation route. They now make their way to uncover the truth about the mysterious planet, not knowing what dangers they will face once they arrive.

Currently: After gathering all of their equipment and double-checking their calculations, the group boards the Talon and makes the jump to hyperspace. They keep themselves occupied during their uneventful weeklong trip through the Tangle, but the night before they arrive those members of the crew with a sensitivity to the Force receive a strange vision containing a series of images. A large gas giant, swirling with sickly green clouds; a cylindrical facility, suspended in the center of a large crater by a trio of massive, reinforced cables; a white laboratory room, the walls lined with bubbling fluid-filled tanks; a view of unfamiliar stars through the bridge of a freighter, an Imperial ship of unknown design drops out of hyperspace; a large Imperial hangar with a beat up freighter, the group is quickly running towards it when a muscle-bound figure tears through the floor in front of them with a red-bladed lightsaber and blocks their escape. Wary of the dreams but determined to see their mission through, the group continues on their journey.

Upon dropping out of hyperspace the crew quickly confirms that they are on the outskirts of the system they were looking for, Medrosa (AKA Trona). Although they attempt to move towards the fifth planet as stealthily as possible they are unable to avoid detection by the Security Station orbiting the planet. Their fast thinking, however, convinces the personnel that they are simply lost and in need of repairs. This gains them an escort down to the planet and a facility built onto one of the unique features of the world, gargantuan floating clumps of vegetation held aloft by a series of gas-filled bladders. They each recognize the planet and facility from their dreams as they are led to a hangar bay and greeted by the facility administrator, Arrus Drakarian. The scoundrel, Sev Assani, and the Mandalorian, Korvash, both stow away into one of the hidden compartments to avoid detection by the facility security personnel that check over the ship. Sweet talking Arrus into thinking they are a passenger ship contracted by Numinov (under the alias Koth Ab’Lon) the group manages to gain some time under the guise of making “repairs” to their ship.

While Alena and Numinov distract the guards with judicious use of illusions and mind tricks, Sev makes his way out through a side hatch of the ship and into the halls around the hangar bay. Swiftly searching the area he is able to find an unattended information terminal and, with Alena walking him through the process, he is able to gain access to the facilities data files. The group quickly tags several folders and begins transferring them to a datapad but Sev must take cover as one of the station’s computer techs strolls by with a cart of IT equipment. The transfer finishes just as the tech arrives and Sev manages to avoid detection and return to the ship with the data.

Gathering in the dining area, the crew goes over the information taken which includes shipping manifests of medical supplies and two project folders that caught their eye. Scanning the manifests reveals a pattern of shipments that are entered and quickly cancelled, all coming from an area of hangars that the system has marked as damaged and quarantined. After checking a map of the facility and seeing the distance to the hangars the group decides to send Sev and Korvash to stealthily breach the area and procure the Nav coordinates for the rendezvous with the mysterious Imperial Research Vessel they have been pursuing.

Examining the other two secret project folders the group finds that the first one, labeled “Project Umbral Hand” contains information on the super soldier program being refined at this facility. A series of lab reports and videos show the administration of the Serum, crafted from samples of the malevolent entity M’nggal, and the rapid transformation of the victims into muscle bound monstrosities. The project appears to be overseen by a Dr. Saren Tan, a middle-aged Arkanian whose eyes have been replaced by cybernetic prostheses. According to his reports, the facility is very nearly ready to begin full scale production with the capability to ship out fifty of the soldiers per day and plans to begin creation of multiple sister facilities with even more capacity.

The second folder caught Alena’s eye because the name appeared to have been corrupted but without the usual fragmentation of the files. Looking through the folder the group finds an archeological report by a team from the University of Sanbra, on Coruscant. The report details the careful excavation of an arch of unknown origins and massive size. Through the report the team uncovers more and more of the arch and reveal intricate and serpentine designs woven through a series of runes carved into the side of the arch. The last several files reveal that the team found an attached control pedestal at the bottom of the arch, along with their plans to attach a power supply to the pedestal and activate the device. Searching through the files, it appears that this is the last report sent by the team before they dissapear.

While the rest of the crew once again distracts the guards, Sev and Korvash slip off into the facility towards the quarantined hangar bays. They manage to avoid a maintenance team as they make their way through the halls but are discovered by a small recon droid. Before the droid could raise the alarm, Korvash put his fledgling Force training to good use, draining the droid’s power supply and deactivating it. Grabbing the powerless but valuable droid for later, the two avoided any other encounters until they got to the door leading to the quarantined hangar block and found that it was guarded by two more of the recon drones. Coming up with a quick plan they managed to power down one of the droids but had to blast the other as it raised the alarm. Swiftly making their way into the darkened hangar the two snuck across to the door leading to the next hangar over and found their target. Sev was overjoyed to see that the pirates were flying none other than the Sage Legatus, his stolen freighter. An Ebruchi appeared to be overseeing the loading into the ship of several large crates with biohazard markings on them. Timing it to avoid the maintenance team, Korvash used more of his abilities to phase through the wall and drain the datapad the pirate was using, causing him to swiftly move into the ship to find a replacement power pack. This allowed the two to sneak aboard unnoticed and take cover in one of the many smuggler’s cargo hatches Sev had installed. Unaware of his passengers, the Ebruchi finished the loading and headed off planet, quickly making the jump to hyperspace. The pair sneak out and surprise the Ebruchi pirate who surrenders as soon as he Sev ignites his loghtsabers.

Meanwhile, back on the Talon, a new security team replaces the forces outside of the ship. This team seems more heavily armed and their commander demands another sweep of the group’s ship and questions them about their knowledge of any stowaways. He also shows the crew a picture taken by the recon droid of Korvash and Sev a few moments before it was destroyed to see if they recognize the two. After convincing the security commander of their ignorance the crew is told that the station is on lockdown until the two intruders are caught. The commander departs the ship and shortly after the crew receives an invitation from the Arrus to join him for a dinner, since they will be on board the facility anyways.

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