Saturday, 14 January 2017

Rogue Trading for Fun and Profit, Episode 8: Taken in Broad Starlight

Rogue Trader: A quest for profit in the grim darkness of the 41st millenium. But dying in mediocrity and misery is for poor people and losers, and a Rogue Trader's retinue is anything but.

Rogue Trading for Fun and Profit is bought to you by:

Lord-Captain van Hohenheim - Rogue Trader. Hero. The last of his line. That's like a unicorn!
Magos Abigail von Thannhausen - A magos who possibly takes too much pleasure in the craft of Servitors. Accompanied by her servo-skull.
Archaius Wash - A gunnery sergeant with an irritatingly low-quality accent and a poor-grade artificial voicebox.
Sebastian LaMarck - A seneschal with a silver tongue.
Winter York - Astropath Transcendant. Monstrous willpower. Your glorious narrator and remembrancer.

"Emperor damnit," I shout, throwing my hat at the ground. It floats gently down.
Sebastian: "We've got a prisoner to interrogate"
Me: "Interrogate? Alright, let's have at it, then."
Wash: "Maybe we could try interrogating them without trashing their brain first?"
Me: "If the God-Emperor had intended me to pass through the rest of the buffet before getting dessert, he wouldn't have given me freakish psychic powers. Just throwing that out there."
We return to the boardroom. Vex is sitting on a chair and fixing himself.
We inquire if he's okay. "No debilitating damage."
Sebastian: "Do you know who they belong to?"
Vex doesn't recognize them, but one of them might yield answers. Vex wants first go at interrogating, if we'd be so kind. We've no problems.
More tech priests show up; Vex Technalinguas at the priests and puts them to work unfucking the station and taking the prisoner to the room.
We've got ten minutes to prepare. Sebastian gets his tools.
Magos Vex returns, different. He's now got mechandendrites and a very scary mask. He's put the business trousers on and he's gonna get down to business.
Sebastian feels emasculated.
The prisoner's strapped to a table.
Wash would like to have a word with the prisoner first. Vex gives him 2  minutes.
Wash tries to sweat some answers out of the prisoner, but he's sucking lemons.
Vex arrives, flanked by Abigail and Seb.
"Do you know who I am?" *silence
"Do you know why you're here?" *silence
"Do you know what I'm going to do to you?" *nada
Abigail gives him a medical check at Vex's behest. I presume Vex needs to know exactly how far he can go.
The prisoner's got an augmetic arm, and a high concentration of cerebral implants.
Vex reaches inside his robes and pulls out a very small robot spider. I'm personally impressed, he didn't even fumble.
It's a Dragonspider. It enters the body, and will one-by-one shred every nerve ending linked to an augmetic. 
The prisoner doesn't have anything to say about this. Seems like he can't.
Vex continues anyway, on the theory that pain will break the engram he's got.
The prisoner screams, and finally stops. That's the first nerve.
Sebastian asks some questions. He's from Lathe Het. He works a forge. Halfway through his pained answers, his brain lights up and he stops answering.
Round two. Another bundle. He was here for Van Hohenheim. Who he works for...
Lockjaw. No answer.
"Bring in the psyker."
It's my turn. I try the subtle approach.
Low power's no good. FULL POWER.
Gaius, he is Terrified and has 4 insanity point. Poor physical health, and declining.
He's confused. He's very afraid of Vex, and almost as afraid of Tannhausen. Corruption 0.
Deeper. I see flashes of his last 12 hours. He's been dragged off by tech adepts. He's been hit in the face with a swordhilt. He's been shot at and fired at by Vex. Explosion. Rushing in. Hypoing Van Hohenheim.  Shuttle ride. Polluted skies. Flashes of red. Static.
I go deeper. Flashes of a Forge, a Manufactorium. Augmetic limbs on racks. Drinking with working buddies. A familiar sense of obedience. I hear the name Van Hohenheim spoken by a vox-synth voice. I see another torture style room filled with tech adepts. A face full of tubes and lenses.
I press even harder, and there's breaking glass. Suddenly this guy's life rolls out before me - he's spent his life making parts for Skittari.  He's called to a special assignment. A tech priest Gaius had never seen before takes him to the shiny room, and we blur back to the present day.
I'm not quick enough getting out, and I  feel him die.
I catch his home forge number. 7464H-Z29.
I disucss my findings with Vex, and send him an image of the tech priest.
Vex's eyes go red and he gets mad. I assume it's someone who's fucked with Vex on occasions in the past.
It's Sekris. South pole, Lake Het. Skitarri plant. Troublemaker.  Part of the Rustwatchers.
Nobody can roll against him because it would cause an *incident*  because he controls production for the entire lathes.
It would be an awful shame if an ore shipment to the plant was boarded and contained people  not kindly disposed to Sekris.
We touch down and exit the lander with no problems.
We walk up to the front doors of the tower. Two skittari are blocking the way.
Sebastian and Tannhausen  bluff our way in.
We take the elevator up to the top, but an alarm is sounded.
We are stopped on floor 93.
There's 244 floors. No point climbing the stairs.
Seb and I take up positions at the edge of the elevator to try and secure the floor; we need some time while Tannhausen hacks the elevator.
Seb spots one armsman and engages him with words.
He name-drops Vex. We shouldn't have. He's going to call it in and therefore must now die.
I take a shot at a guy, but my grenade launcher jams.
Combat breaks out on the other side of the lift area.
I unjam my launcher and try again with middling damage.
Wash takes out the armsman, and stabs him, but not before a servitor shows up.
I try the grenade again with no damage.
The elevator is hacked; we're ready to go.
The armsman gets up close, fails to grapple.
I drop a grenade and run; it's a smoke grenade, and it fills the entire room with smoke.
Wash sprints in, tripping over us, and Abigail punches it.

We rise up to the 233rd floor, headed for our beloved Captain.

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