[D&D] Mass Effect: Chapter 16 – We are not pirates

As much as I love complex plots, with twists and turns there are also times where I prefer something simple, straightforward and without any fuss. This was one of those sessions.

On a random note: every time I think there isn’t much to write about these sessions and I will have an easy time I soon realize my mistake. That was the case with the last post where there were a lot more plot development than I remembered.

Then there are cases like this post where I don’t feel like cutting a lot of details because I feel like they give a good idea of what kind of shenanigans our group gets to in this game.

This is why these posts always end up becoming some monstrous walls of text. Oh, well, I still like the idea of a having a recording of our insanity. XD

The Session

With the Plankton firmly anchored below the Hades Initiative’s ship, Labor decided to scan it for hatches. That didn’t bring any result so Labor decided to go outside our ship and look by himself. He still couldn’t find anything.

At this point, Labor just gave up on trying to go for subtlety and borrowed a laser cutter from Seraph to open a hole on the enemy’s ship.

We also extended the Plankton’s shield around their ship, so they wouldn’t notice there was a section suddenly losing a lot of oxygen.

Before going in Sidona decided to give a try to the injection for those fatigue spells caused by her biotics. She felt a burn on the arm, where the injection was applied, but besides that nothing else.

On a side note: a couple sessions ago (?) our GM suggested that we take one of the NPC crew members with us for missions. We decided to follow his suggestion and for this mission we took Tiberus with us. As Labor’s player put it, this is practically Tiberus’ “loyalty mission”.

Anyway, the hole on the ship led us to the its cargo hold. Fortunately there were no guards or cameras there. There were only some large crates whose content was unknown to us.

First thing Labor tried to do was to hack a terminal. He succeeded then looked for the ship’s manifesto. Just in case they have a bunch of husks in their crates…. like certain people we fought before.

Fortunately there were no husks in the crates this time. Instead they had valuable cargo proving once again that a life of crime pays better than working for the military. But we decided to do one better, we asked Chanka and Bygone to start moving those crates to our ship. Rightfully seizing illegal items FTW!

Labor also made a copy of the ship’s layout just so we could know where to go.

On the north side of the cargo hold there were two doors. One door led to an armory while the other door led to a central area that connected to other rooms in the ship, including the armory, and had stairs going up.

We decided to start with the armory to try to prevent them from getting their weapons. Since Kronk is our best party member at sneaking we asked him to go in first.

Inside, in the center of the room, there was a soldier, sitting with his back to the door, checking a duffel bag. Kronk snuck behind the man then knocked him out.

What Kronk didn’t notice, until it was too late, is that there was a camera pointed right at the door he just passed through… There was no immediate alarm though so the krogan dragged the unconscious man to the cargo hold, just in case.

Meanwhile, Sidona went up to a balcony on the side of the cargo hold. There was a door with a porthole in there, connecting to an adjacent room. She took a peek through the porthole and saw a couple guards, hanging out then they pulled what looked like a communicator. They stood up and went in the direction of the stairs.

Realizing what was going on, Sidona immediately went back down to inform the others that we should expect some company soon.

Kronk immediately went back to the armory, started to look around and found some remote detonation mines. He then placed those mines by the door where we were expecting the guards to come from. As soon as the door opened, Kronk went invisible and rushed to the other door, pressing the button to activate the mines. A small explosion later there were two dead enemies by the door.

That finally triggered the ship’s red alert. Doors around the ship started closing and locking on their own. The only strange thing is that there were no sound of anyone running our way.

The armory doors still remained unlocked though so our party rushed to the engineering room to try to take control of it. Labor started to hack the door but we could see from the porthole another engineer inside trying to counter-hack it. There were also two guards inside ready to shoot if the door opened.

It took a bit of work but Labor managed to hack the door. As it opened the guards tried to shoot, but we were able to kill one of them first and disable the other. The engineer just surrendered.

We immediately tied up the engineer and the unconscious guard.

Image of the galaxy map
You know what you must do. DRINK!

Labor then used the computer in the engineering room to open all the doors as well as disable all their internal security systems. There was no access to the security cameras from there but he made sure to cut power to them just in case.

After that we did a sweep of the rest of the first floor and the second floor, SWAT style. We didn’t really find any more opposition but we took a couple more scientists as prisoners.

At this point we decided to take all of the prisoners to our brig just to keep them out of the way. Going back to the hangar bay, the engineer started shouting stuff like “No, leave me alone!”, “Help! I am being oppressed!” and so on. This annoyed Lorik who decided to put a duct tape over the engineer’s mouth.

Labor chastised Lorik for that, saying we shouldn’t silence them, that was immoral, that ws what pirates do, etc. Lorik tried to argue that it was just a temporary measurement, that they could scream all they wanted in the brig. But Labor counter-argued that by saying that was a slippery slope towards piracy.

Tiberus tried to offer a middle-ground option by suggesting to just knock them out. Both Lorik and Labor agreed that was even worse. In the end Lorik conceded and ripped off the duct tape off the engineer’s mouth. We then handed them over to Chanka Vox and Bygone to put them in the brig.

With that taken care of, we went to their ship’s bridge, to hopefully finish this mission. When we got there, we could see Jessica in front of a computer, explaining to someone on the other side of the screen, that it wasn’t her who blew up the auction building and she was trying to deal with some intruders.

From the comms we could hear a voice that sounded krogan-like. We inferred it was someone from Alpha Protocol. They were very angry and making threats towards Jessica.

The Hades Initiative leader noticing our presence then finished the call, turned around and pulled her gun on us as a form of welcome. Sidona didn’t even want to talk and went straight to the attack.

To summarize the fight, it wasn’t as bad as I feared. Mostly because our GM forgot a few things that Jessica could do at the start of the combat and because we got some really good rolls.

Also, during the fight Tiberus and Jessica traded some trash talk. We probably would have watched it with some popcorn but we were involved in the combat too so we couldn’t do that. XD

In the end, we killed Jessica together with two of her soldiers. Unfortunately the pilot who was trying to stay out of the fight got killed near the last turn or so, due to the side effect of a power that went off. The ship’s helm also got fried at the same time.

If things ended there this would be a resounding success for our party. But just as we were getting ready to loot, we noticed the ship was under attack. At the same time the comms came up, the same krogan voice from earlier, threatening Jessica again.

Sidona quickly looted the light saber1 from Jessica’s body then showed it to him, trying to explain she was dead. The krogan just laughed, thanked us but kept on the attack.

Lorik then decided to “hotwire” the ship’s controls, making it go at maximum speed in the direction of the Alpha Protocol’s ship. Somehow that disabled the ship’s gravity system too so everybody grabbed Labor’s drone to go back faster to the Plankton. Sidona was the exception, she just used her biotics to go back.

Battlemap showing Jessica, two guards and the pilot vs. Sidona, Tiberus, Lorik, Kronk, Labor and his drone.
Not seen here: the amount of damage we took during that fight.

As soon as everybody got out of the ship, Labor vented the cargo hold, making all the containers to go out into space. The geth also turned off his mag boots off so he could go out with the crates then grabbed on his drone to get as far away as possible from there.

Our ship just flew away from there then seconds later we could see the Hades Initiative and the Alpha Protocol ships crashing and blowing up. Once it was safe the Plankton came back to rescue Labor as well as get the rest of the containers.

With this mission completed we decided to go back to HQ to deliver our new prisoners. Just in case we end up getting more in the next two assassination attempts. We also wanted to deliver the relics we got from the Reaper, plus sell all the loot from the Hades Initiative’s ship.

During the travel back, Labor helped to program Seraph’s fighting bot while Kronk did the shadow boxing for it. Sidona and Lorik spent their time training Gary. He was finally starting to learn some basic commands like sit and stay.

At one point Novis checked on Sidona to see how that injection worked out. Sidona told about the burning sensation on her arm and that she felt no fatigue. Novis made some notes, looking really pleased with the results.

Sidona asked if this meant the end of the fatigue problem but Novis answered it was too early to say. They decided then to do some scans to be on the safe side. Novis noticed that her body was accepting the nanites but there were a lot of residues inside as some of the nanites died. They would probably go out with Sidona’s wastes as she used the bathroom.

Novis also noticed that there were only about a 30% success rate of which nanites did their jobs. Sidona asked that if that was the case if they would have to get more of them. Novis replied with a yes, because of their high death rate.

Sidona then asked if nanites from any husks would do. Novis theorized that was correct since the nanites she got were from ancient husks. But Novis hoped that maybe with a fresher husk corpse the percentage of functional nanites could go up.

Next morning, Sidona’s felt a little exhausted. Not as bad as she was before the injections but still pretty tired. She did another exam and found out that all the nanites were gone from her body. So at least for 24 hours the injection seemed to work.

By then we had finally arrived back to HQ. We turned in all the artifacts we got from the dying Reaper, as well as the ancient husks corpses and delivered the prisoners. We also sold all the illegal cargo we apprehended during the mission, earning us quite a bit of cash.

After that our party was summoned to our usual conference room, 133769, where Commander Yulaya was expecting us.

As we took our seats, Yulaya announced they had decoded the message that Stout sent to Alpha Protocol a few sessions ago. Just as we guessed it was pretty much a “Rescue me” message with the coordinates of our HQ.

They were already working on moving HQ to another location but given the complexity of the operation it would take a while to finish. Yulaya would keep us informed about it though. I just hope there is a HQ for us to come back when we are done with our mission.

Yulaya then noticed that we killed Jessica. We then explained our reasons which he agreed with. In fact he was actually glad that we took this course of action.

Lastly, the commander commented about the pirates we met. He thought it could be useful for our organization if we found the source of their tech but at the same time it could be extremely dangerous to use.

Since Lorik didn’t write in his report about the location of the pirate’s base, Yulaya said that they didn’t have the resources to look for it. But if we found anything more we should report it. For now he would secure everything we had so far then file it as top secret information.

And with that the meeting was over. Our group spent the rest of the session doing some shopping for new gear plus some other items.

Next time, more borderline piracy! Well, probably not but we’ll be going after our next target… which I don’t think we discussed who it will be yet. I don’t expect we’ll be able to decimate most of their forces with an improvised nuclear bomb though.

Notable Quotes

Are we planning to blow another ship? Is that what is going on here?

Sidona

Uh… Vulcan neck pinch?

Kronk, Out-of-Character-ish

Two people on the keyboard?!? That must be double the hacking!

A very sarcastic and Out-of-Character, Lorik.

I’d like to tie up the engineer and play a raspberry sound through my speakers.

Labor

These guys don’t have names so I don’t expect them to get out [of our brig].

Lorik, Out-of-Character

I am sorry to keep swapping your priorities, but could you get these guys in the brig before we commit war crimes?

Labor

We are not pirates.

Kronk, Out-of-Character
  1. It probably has another name in this universe for copyright reasons. But for now we’ll go with light saber

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