A distress signal from an old acquaintance puts Telemachus in a dangerous situation.
12 July, 2210
Just over three weeks have elapsed since the destruction of the Federation Deepspace Research Facility and Telemachus has spent the majority of that time at Starbase 12, with the command crew answering to the Admiralty about their recent actions. Commander Ford, especially, has been dealing with intense questioning on his role with the near disaster that was the asari First Contact.
With the majority of the command staff off-ship, Lieutenant Maggie Laredo has command duties as the crew completes final warp trials and shakedowns following the latest service refit. Normally, this sort of duty is considered a cakewalk, as Telemachus is only thirty minutes away from Starbase 12 at maximum warp, but the universe has a perverse sense of humor as the communications officer intercepts a distress signal from the ECS Venture, commanded by Captain Cambridge who urgently requests aid once more. She is under attack by Nausicaan raiders and is in dire need of assistance. LT Laredo barely hesitates before issuing orders that will carry Telemachus into battle, despite their dearth of senior officers. As CAPT Cambridge is barely an hour away at maximum warp, Laredo decides that returning to the Starbase to pick up the command crew is an potentially lethal waste of time.
Broadcasting a ‘stand down’ order to the Nausicaan pirates, Telamachus enters the relatively empty star system to discover four pirate corsairs arrayed in an unexpected formation. Without pausing to give the situation the proper examination it deserves, LT Laredo snaps orders that results in Telemachus barreling straight down the throat of the Nausicaan formation.
Lethal phase cannon blasts and disruptor beams are exchanged, with Telemachus rocking under the onslaught but weathering the engagement far better than the lighter armed and armored pirates. In under a minute, all four Nausicaan ships have been destroyed, two of which thanks to expert shots that ignited the vessels’ volatile fuel supplies, while the Starfleet vessel suffers only minor damage. Despite this fact, the actual cooperation of the four Nausicaan ships is troubling – never before has Ensign Roland seen or even heard of such a thing. Had the Nausicaan ships been better equipped and better armed, the fight they might have presented could have been dangerous.
A Klingon Bird of Prey
More troubling though, is the brief presence of a mystery ship lurking in the system’s Oort Cloud. Only after this vessel has jumped to warp does Ensign Dalis realize that not only was this ship a Klingon bird-of-prey, something not seen in this region of space for over fifty years, but it evidently was transmitting instructions to the four Nausicaans! The crew are left to wonder whether the Klingon’s presence is a harbinger of some future conflict…
Fifteen minutes after the engagement is over and Telemachus has extracted Venture from the minefield placed around the transport, the USS São Gabriel arrives in-system. A Bonaventure-class starship, this vessel serves as the Starbase-12 Commander’s flagship and carries both the command crew of Telemachus and Admiral Stiles himself. He gives the junior officers of Telemachus a foul look when they are debriefed but otherwise pretends to not recognize them as the former cadets responsible for the humiliation and expulsion of his son from Starfleet Academy.
- I was only mostly satisfied with this adventure as it involved the GURPS Spaceships rules and I was not (and still am not) as clear with them as I could be. There was too much number crunching that wasted too much time. Round 1, which took “20 seconds” of game time, took forever, whereas Round 2 flashed by and resulted in four bad guy ships getting blown up. Moral of the story? A) I need to prepare better, B) having multiple ships with multiple weapon emplacements equals a nightmare of bookkeeping, and C) I can do better. Dammit.
- Once again, I find myself frustrated at my inability to really involve Dr. Berzinev in the adventure. Yeah, I know Trek doctors generally aren’t on the bridge – or at least, they shouldn’t be – when the shooting is happening, and the player seems okay with it, but as the GM, I keep finding it frustrating that more than half the session can go by without him having anything to do. Must do better.