With an impending station core breach in 20 minutes, the protagonists set towards ensuring their escape from the space station. With time being a factor, they elected to explore the hangar below rather than attempt to head back up the turbolift shaft. Comming Tiali in the escape pod, Bando gave her the order to abandon the freighter and make for the Marauder Corvette.
Hexx lowered himself down into the hangar below to investigate the ship that they saw deep in the hangar while the rest of the team prepared the wounded to be lowered. He quickly realized that their was a large amount of particles obscuring his helmet’s sensors, limiting his ability to explore the spacious hangar. After nearly getting lost in the hangar, he decided to focus his efforts on the ship. A brief examination showed that the ship was missing the boarding hatch – the ship was open to space – and the ship was not powered.
As Hexx commed the team to head down while he explored the ship, 5 cadets lowered themselves to the hangar. 4 were able to make the descent flawlessly, but one lost control and fell part of the way, hitting – and slightly damaging – the ship on his way down and fracturing his leg. The 4 cadets were then dispatched to secure and explore the hangar.
Meanwhile, Jinx and Bando created a harness to lower the injured below. With B1-Ex and Cadet Pentag’s assistance, they lowered the 2 injured cadets and Jinx down to the hangar before heading down themselves. However, Bando was not as successful.
As Bando attempted to lower himself on the rope, he lost control of the rope almost immediately and fell over 50 feet. He roughly impacted the ship’s cockpit viewport, ruining the cockpits structural integrity and gravely wounding himself.
As time began to run out, Lt Casilda announced her discovery of an airlock in the hangar bay. Roughly opening it, they discovered an escape pod attached – that vented all atmosphere upon it’s opening. Loading everyone in the escape pod, they jettisoned from the space station and tried to put distance between themselves and the station.
As Cadet Pentag informed them that the other escape pod from the freighter just….vanished…Hexx had to pilot a very sluggish escape pod against an oncoming debris field. Although they were struck multiple times, the escape pod was able to make it to the rendezvous with the Marauder Corvette. Quickly tractored into the hangar bay, the corvette leapt to hyperspace as more debris was beginning to spread throughout the area.
As they were in hyperspace from the station to Kuat, the protagonists settled in wearily. Hexx spent his days despondent over the loss of his ship and the grave injuries the team suffered and the destruction of 1 skipray and the blind hyperspace jump of another, while Jinx bonded with the Marauder’s crew and got a tattoo to commemorate the battle with the survivors. Bando was placed in carbonite until they could get him to a medical facility, and 2 of the cadets succumbed to their injuries. The crew of the freighter’s escape pod was presumed KIA, and treated accordingly. After meeting with the Captain – who informed them that they would have to provide payment for the mission in another fashion, as they had to cannibalize the sublight engine for spare parts – the listened to the roll call for the fallen crew members and had a drink in their honor.
Upon arriving in Kuat, Harden Farr accompanied Bando’s carbonite-frozen body and the medics as they left for treatment, and Jinx and Hexx got small rooms afforded to them by Tamren. As they departed, Tamren informed them that they needed to get a ship soon, as they had to leave Kuat when her business was concluded.
As the days went on, Jinx healed and Hexx explored Kuat, having little luck or desire to find a new ship. They were eventually summoned by Harden to her quarters to pick up Bando. As they arrived, they were greeted by an not unexpected but still surprising sight: Bando as a Droid!
Harden explained that Bando’s physical body was too heavily damaged to fix, and she had a few of her contacts assist in turning Bando into a cyborg utilizing some alien expertise and an old Magnadroid they just happened to fortuitously had lying around. As Bando introduced himself to the team – in a protocol droid voice, to their amusement – Harden bid them farewell. She did drop mention that Bando owed a considerable debt to the Empyrean Way Trading Company for their services that he would need to repay, but she would be able to lend the protagonists further funds to purchase a ship if they so desired. After a vague statement of consideration from Hexx, they left Harden’s suite and explored the station.
With Bando adjusting to his new form’s limitations – finding his cognitive and fine manipulation skills diminished but with increased combat skills – they made a brunch meeting with Tamren the following morning. With Hexx recovering from an ill-advised request for Bando to do a one legged hop ending in a swift kick to his head, Jinx and Bando explored the station. They eventually tracked down B1-Ex and Cadet Pentag in an underground fight area, where Kuati nobles were wagering on death fights between creatures…including alien slaves. They did not stay long, leaving the fight after seeing a Trandoshan scalp a still-breathing Wookie and Jinx almost vomiting.
The next morning, Jinx and Hexx met with Tamren as Bando was instructed to wait outside with the rest of the droids. Tamren informed them that in no uncertain terms they needed to leave the station within the next 18 hours – if they were unable to find a ship, she would need to obtain one at her discretion that they would then owe the Pentastar Alignment for the cost of the ship. She did mention that if they were able to find a ship in the meanwhile, she could secure them a loan to cover it with various strings attached and disclosed up front. Jinx weighed her offer with that of Harden’s the previous night, informing Tamren of the competing offer and requesting a few hours to see what he could find before committing.
As Jinx and Bando left to find a new droid vocabulator, Hexx tracked down a Mon Cal black market contact for ships who could provide him some ships. As he provided Hexx with the ships and cost, Hexx paled at the cost – the cheapest ship that could hold more than 10 people and be relatively fast would cost a minimum of 3.5 million credits. After failing to get in touch with Commenor – and discovering the planet was blockaded by the Rebels – he informed Tamren that he would like to work with her on finding a ship and securing the loan. Upon hearing that he chose her offer over Harden, Tamren sent Hexx the details she had on a few ships.
Out of the 3 ships she provided, Hexx deliberated on which to pursue. He quickly eliminated one option – an aging Lucrehulk transport – as too slow, too crew intensive, and too costly, he asked Tamren for tours of the remaining 2 ships: an Arquiten-class cruiser for sale by a Kuati Noble, and a Crusader-class Corvette for sale by one of the auxiliary shipyards surrounding Kuat.
With the rest of the protagonists in tow, they explored the 2 ships, noticing the Arquiten’s similiarities with the Venator-class star destroyer and the Crusader’s more Mandalorian utilitarian approach. With the specs for both ship in hand and the rather high price tags – 8 million for the Crusader and 7.75 million for the Arquiten – they were left with an hour to decide by Tamren as they were 3 hours away from the departure deadline.