Say Hello to My Largish Friend (Side Session)

At the end of this side session, it is roughly 5 months after the Battle of Yavin.

Back to Belderone

With both Orden and Tam seriously injured and both of the team's escape vessels in sorry shape, the consensus was to return to the Rimward trade planet of Belderone to heal, refit, and resupply. The L4000 being the slower vessel, Venn had to rein in the Sentinel to match Kane's pace; thankfully, Rourke was confident that she could keep Tam stable for the extra duration.

Meanwhile, Rourke has to break off the remains of Tam's armor and perform a little field surgery on him to keep him stable. When she does pull his armor, by the way, she pulls off an empty autoinjector unit from his injured left arm. This surprises her, as it's hardly standard equipment in her experience (though it was, in fact, standard equipment in his old days as a Senatorial Guard). However, in the heat of the moment, she merely sets it aside to finish the emergency surgery, patching him up well enough to survive the 36-hour trip to the hospital facilities on Belderone.

Upon arrival, Tam and Orden are offloaded into the same hospital Sidara visited last time they were on the planet. Venn posts a rotating guard over Tam as he goes through a few days of intensive treatment and recovery. Meanwhile, Venn and Kan head back out to discuss some things with their old buddy from the dockyard, the same dockyard where they had previously offloaded their broken YT-2400 freighter.

Your Friend, Riggers

Venn and Kane start by stripping the (damaged but still useful) laser cannons from the L4000; their plan is to mount those cannons in the bare retractable turret in the Sentinel. They manage to then negotiate a sizeable barter arrangement with the dockyard owner. Venn and Kane sell him the L4000 in exchange for 21,500 credits, a new mid-grade medical suite, some bunks, and repairs to the major structural and electrical systems on the Sentinel (Around 10,000 of those credits will go towards covering Tam's and Orden's current medical bills). The team will also be able to use the dockyard's repair facilities for the duration of the repairs. The bad news is that that duration, even with the team's help, will be something like 35 or 40 days.

Bill of Goods

If the L4000 were in fairly good shape, she'd be worth about 85,000 credits.
She's old, she's in need of very significant hull repairs, but other than that, her damage isn't that significant.
She has some serious gremlins, but that's to be expected on a ship that old.
However, she's a BIG freighter, and even 85,000 isn't a bad price for a big freighter will a sturdy hull and good shields.
Kane and Venn manage to talk the dockyard owner up to 72,000 credits. He also offers to trade 20,000 of that for 30,000 credits worth of work on the Sentinel.
Removing the lasers from the L4000 knocks 4,000 credits off the price you're offered on trade-in.
Repairing all of the structural damage, in total, will cost 34,000 credits (for the stabilizer and the hull plating).
Repairing the shields adds another 1,000 credits to the bill.
Adding a basic medical couch and simple surgical suite will add 12,000 credits.
As for medical bills, Orden's only a quick heal - 1,500 credits. She just needs to get professional regrowth treatment for her leg.
Tam is in worse shape than Sidara was. He's going to need at least 3 or 4 days, and it'll cost 15,000 credits for his stay.

During the final sale, the dockyard operator initially appears friendly but very businesslike. He negotiates with the two PCs nicely, and when everyone agrees to a price, he asks Kane and Venn to step into his office to "sign some papers, make this official. Gotta have the paperwork right, you know? Make sure the bureaucrats are happy." Suspecting a double-cross, Venn draws his blaster beneath his cloak and follows the man into his office.

When eveyone enters the office, the owner pulls up a little computer terminal from his desk and flips it around - there's a title and identification information up on the screen. "Please review this title quickly for me, make sure I've pulled up the right ship", he asks Kane. As Kane inspects the screen, he notices that the "Owner of Record" field on the title has a little hologram of a guy that looks kiiiiiinda like him, though with a little different haircut, different facial hair, and maybe a slightly different facial structure. The document looks like a proper HoloNet title, but it also has port stamps and other operations history data that couldn't possibly be correct given how long this ship must have been on that planetoid. The documentation identifies the ship as a parts-trade ship that frequents the Hydian run, and it looks completely legitimate, but it can't be. The ship is listed as the Dusty Rose under the ownership of Captain Enric Stadd.

Kane, quickly calculating, decides to go with the flow; with a bored look on his face, he glances over the title quickly and says, "Ident looks okay. Where do I sign?"

The dockyard owner responds, "Just place your thumb here, Captain Stadd, and we'll transfer the credits over." After a short pause, he adds, "Oh! I almost forgot. Here's your ident back." He then hands Kane an ident card reading Enric Stadd and matching the title that was on-screen. "Oh, sir?" he addresses Venn, "Would you please close the door as we finish this up?"

As he closes the door, Venn addresses the owner. "I don't believe I caught your name, sir."

"Bentha. Sorry about the ruse, Senator, Mr. Novaliss, but I needed to get you in here privately." As Kane's smug expression slowly fades, he continues, "Those papers are… well, good enough for the DMV, let's put it that way. I wouldn't go using them too often. Listen, I need to warn you to be careful. There was a gentleman around here a couple of days ago looking for you. I don't think he's still on-world, but keep your heads down while you're here."

Kane quickly interjects, "Any idea who he was or what he wanted?"

Bentha responds, "No. He didn't use names, just flashed holos. And he didn't say who he was, just offered money for information and hinted he was a bounty hunter. Asked a lot about that old YT you sold me, too."

Venn, reaching an unfortunate conclusion, asks, "Was he a middling-height human, brown hair and eyes? Not thin, not fat, just average, somewhere between 30 and 50, probably?"

Bentha's response chills Venn. "Well, you've just described probably 100 guys just in that bar over there, but yeah, he looked a lot like that."

"What makes you think he's offworld now?"

"He mentioned he would be over at the Greyback until day before yesterday if I remembered anything, kinda hinted he was gone after then and I'd better change my mind fast if I wanted my payout, know what I mean?"

"Hmmm." Venn pauses for a moment, thinking. "And how do you know our names, by the way?"

Bentha smiles and replies, "We may just happen to have some friends in common, Senator."

"Such as?…"

"Well, let's just say I may not wear a the badge, but I give to the charity, if you know what I mean." Bentha glances at the door nervously. "Listen, I gotta wrap up this sale. I'm just warning you to keep your heads down. I can't give you too much help or anything, but if I hear anything, I'll let you know somehow."

Closing up the deal, Venn replies, "Thank you for your time."

As the pair leaves, Bentha tranfers his ident over to them, "Just in case you have any other ships you'd like to offload in the future. According to his ident, his name is Bentha Riggers, and he runs a starship and starship equipment sales and repair depot as well as a minor dockyard.

One Ship From Two

After the sale, Venn heads back out to brief the rest of the team that The Cyborg may or may not be on-planet and looking for them. He warns the team to make every effort to keep a very low profile for the next few weeks. Tam, of course, is currently keeping the lowest possible profile, so long as no one Imperial wanders into his bacta tank.

After close to a week, Tam is finally released from the hospital. After Venn gives him a week or so to finish recuperating, he somewhat disappears for a while. After a few days, Orden drops out of sight for hours at a time, though she still works with the team for at least her allotted daily hours. Luckily for both of them, with all the work going on trying to repair the Sentinel, their absences are barely noticed by the team; there is just too much to do.

During the six weeks of work on the Sentinel, Kane also spends a little bit of time making some underworld contacts here on Belderone. His first foray is innocuous enough, starting with the simple suggestion, "Hey, Venn, if you can give me some money, I can try to get ahold of one of those fancy disguise face-masks. Maybe more than one. I know some guys."

Venn, in his well-deserved paranoia, debates only momentarily before agreeing. "See how much you can get them for."

"Well… I could, but I kinda don't wanna waste the guy's time, you know?"

"If he wants to sell the things, he'll understand not showing up with credit on hand. Besides, we might need the funds for other things… like possibly bribing Imperial officials. See how much they'll go for."

"True. All right, I'll get back to you when I have a price. I'm thinking we should probably get at least one, since, you know, holos of us."

Meanwhile, Venn decides to spend his downtime poking around for information about Bentha Riggers and other possible Rebel contacts here on Belderone. From what Venn can turn up, Riggers owns a dock and repair yard. He's kind of a big name, sorta wealthy. Came to Belderone years ago, sold his ship and bought the dock after a particularly successful trading run. As he describes it, running the dockyard is his retirement plan.

Repair Wrapup

The repairs proceed well, and after nearly six weeks, the still-unchristened Sentinel is looking nearly spaceworthy again. Her vertical stabilizer has been removed, stripped to ribs, and completely overhauled; her hull plating has been nearly completely replaced; and much of her electronics have been pieced apart for full diagnostics. A couple of days before the repairs are scheduled to be complete, Riggers drops by the job site to check up on progress and "customer satisfaction." When he's done talking to the team about the repairs and clearing them for inspection before they can leave, he shakes Venn's hand, palming off a little datachip as he leaves.

Once on board and out of sight, the team inspects the contents of the chip. The chip starts off with a little holo of Riggers - he's been scrapping out the team's old YT-2400 because of all the damage, and in taking it apart, he found a little beacon on it. According to the holo, there wasn't really any data remaining in the chips on the beacon, but he pulled a little info off the hardware - serial number and such. The serial number is 3144-KDY-3702-5PK. Riggers also describes the beacon - it was basically just a locator, but he thinks "that plain guy" must have been using it to track the team. He found it nested between the drives on the ventral surface of the ship, very well hidden from both sensor sweeps and visual inspections. By his own admission, he only found the beacon because his team was stripping out one of the engine cores for resale. He closes out the message with some more information about some increasing police presence on Belderone, but it could all be coincidental.

With this information in hand, Venn decides to jump to a random planet a few days out of Belderone, then set down and perform a full sweep of the ship. It may be paranoia, but that cyborg was here (or so the team assumes), and he's already slipped TWO trackers on their ships without them knowing. He's not going to a Rebel base until he's as certain as he can be that the Sentinel doesn't have any signaling stowaways.

Hoth Is Where the Home Is

After more than a month of travel, the team finally exits hyperspace near Hoth. Almost immediately, a number of ships (including the Privateer and the Hammerhead) immediately begin locking weapons and approaching with weapons and shields powered. Scans indicate that the Redemption is also present in-system; this must mean that the bulk of the Rebel command has been moved to Echo Base.

The team hails the incoming ships, broadcasting their passcodes and requesting landing permission. After the passcodes are confirmed, however, the team is directed to dock on the Hammerhead first for a vessel sweep. The Rebel fleet wants to ensure that there are no stowaways or Imperial garrisons on board the unfamiliar ship. Once the identities of the team members are confirmed, however, there is something of a celebration; many amongst the Rebel fleet were sure the team had been lost after having not heard from them for so long.

Venn learns that the Hammerhead was forced to run - the system where they picked up the Sentinel was still hosting the Imperial antipiracy group that had launched all those Lambda shuttles. Unfortunately, their YT-1300 freighter was lost trying to rescue the team, gunned down by those very shuttles. Venn, saddened by that news, gives Command the brief version of how the team acquired the Sentinel, then gets permission to undock and fly home to Hoth.

Echo Base is a little bigger than the team remembers, and the population is denser. Sidara is still on Hoth, and apparently has been put in charge of some tactical training. She has her own team of infantry privates now, and she's been running a lot of drills on base defense. Garnik's not on Hoth any more, but Riekaan is, and he'll debrief the entire team.

Next Steps

After the debriefing, Venn asks to speak with the General. First of all, he asks if they have any information on Bentha Riggers. "Don't know the name. Check with intel. "Well, whatever intel we have left…." is all Riekaan can say to that. Venn then asks how important the Alliance thinks catching the cyborg that escaped from the escape pod.

"What an excellent segue. That's your new mission."

"Are you planning to use the beacon we found on either the YT or the freighter?"

"They're no longer functional, and we've only found a small amount of data to use in our intel operations so far. However, one of our operatives picked up another message a few days ago sharing that same unique encryption scheme and the same encoded message header. We assume it is from the same agent. Our operatives have never seen encryption like this before. We can't break it - we've had no luck in all the months we've been trying, and I'm told a full crack would take centuries with the data we have now. We have determined that part of the encryption scheme appears to rely on biometrics, though. Your first task is to find out ANYTHING you can about this mystery man and bring that information to our intel operatives so that we can narrow down how to crack this code. Orden is being briefed as we speak. I've been told you managed to pick yourself up a new shuttle. That's excellent, because you're going to need her - we're a little pressed for ships at the moment after… well, you know everything that's happened this year."

Intercepted Message
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hv

"Yes, sir. Are we pressed for time? I think the shuttle could use some attention by Chief Maral and his crew."

"We are. And we don't have a whole lot of spares at the moment anyway. I'll have the Chief look her over and see what he can tell you, though."

"Thank you, sir."

After the briefing, Venn checks with Rebel Intelligence about Riggers. They have no records of explicit Rebel connection with Riggers recently, but he's a "suspected" ex-smuggler, and he used to run with some current Rebels back in his smuggling days. He's currently marked as likely sympathetic, but not currently useful. Venn then asks Intel to forge some registries for the ship's titles, but they're not equipped for the best. They'll do what they can. It'll take a couple of days, then they'll give the team updated idents and ship titles.

Venn also requests that deCrion and Starfall be cleared for addition to his team.

Seeing to the Sentinel

Next stop is Chief Maral. Venn and Kane ask him to go over the ship, now christened the Prospect, and let them know if there are any outstanding problems he can identify. Venn would also like to get some additional work put into the crew quarters.

Kane and Krin, Together Again

A few days after arriving back on Hoth, Kane signs out a shuttle to visit Verena on board the Privateer. In addition to regaling her with fantastical stories from his recent activities, Kane wants to see if he can finagle his way into borrowing a couple of concussion missiles for the Prospect; after all, the team certainly has a knack for getting into scrapes….

When Kane arrives on the Privateer, Verena is surprisingly not there to greet him in the bay. He finds out from the workers that she is actually off-shift for a change. Since she only just got off-duty, they recommend that Kane start looking in the mess hall; she's probably there getting some dinner before her scheduled recreation. As luck would have it, she is there, having just sat down with her meal. Kane quickly grabs a tray and follows her to a table.

Kane: "Is this seat taken?"
Verena: "Oh, I see you finally decided to rejoin society, hmm?", as she gestures to the seat. "Traveled all this way just for our fine cuisine?"
Kane: "Pffft. If it weren't for my travels, there wouldn't be a dessert menu. Speaking of which, I think a crate or two might have been mis-labelled after that evacuation. Did anything… interesting turn up in your bay?"
Verena: "Define interesting. I mean, I got one crate that was, I swear to you, solid-packed with high explosives. I found that to be pretty interesting… in the sense that I didn't wanna drop that crate. I also got a cask full of liquor you wouldn't believe. Gotta be the sourest stuff in the galaxy. Oh, and an improperly-packed crate full of blaster rifles. Those were supposed to go downwell, I'm pretty sure. I mean, we don't really need twice as many rifles as people on board the ship, right? Oooh, wait, were you talking about all that stuff you wanted delivered to the grunts? 'Cause most of that stuff wasn't really INTERESTING so much as… porn."
Kane: "Now don't be crass. A lot of it was booze!". Pause, then: "So… the grunts did get their stuff, then?"
Verena: "Okay, true. Possibly half booze and half porn. And maybe another half was illegal food imports. Which is too many halves by half, but whatever. All of those halves got involved in their owners' holes in one way or another. And yes, before you ask, you do have some money waiting for you, but I don't have it. Talk to Maral. As I've heard it, he heard about you getting some kind of new boat and wanted a hostage so he could talk to you about her."
Kane: "Ah, Maral. That was clever of him. He's a credit to his men, his ship, and the cause, the rat. Any idea what he wants to talk about?"
Verena: "Have you met Maral? There's only one thing he ever talks about. Ships. I think he wants to know about your ship. How you got it. Where you got it. How it flies. The shape it's in. What flavor it is if you lick it."
Kane: "I can answer… most of those. He's welcome to try that last one himself if he can figure out how to do it during a spacewalk. Oh, but enough about business. There's a secret to that ship not even Maral could pry out of me, for even if I told him, he wouldn't believe it."
Verena: "Let me guess. It was stolen from a Grand Moff. It was his personal yacht, and you swiped it right from under his nose. Along with his pants and his favorite wife."
Kane: "No, no, and I don't recommend trying that. Those Gand Moffs always have the most annoying personal habits. Everything from the yacht's layout to the control configurations reflect this, and it's impossible to get the smell out for resale. No, the Prospect's secret is that it has two shields. One technological, and one magical."
Verena: "Oh, I didn't realize you were a secret wizard. Can you cast me a spell, oh wizard? I got a guy I always wanted turned into a newt. Or a frog. Or a tigoran lizard. I mean, any kind of reptile. Not a Rodian, though. They smell. Oohh! Or a pony. I want a pony.
Kane: "Don't be ridiculous, ponies can't go into space. Not after what happened the last time. But this particular enchantment was not my doing. Rather, it's thanks to an artifact I discovered at… The Battle At Doom Crater!"
Verena: "The 'Battle At Doom Crater', eh? Did you write a pulp fic and not tell me? I mean, that certainly sounds like something a monkey could bang out in a couple of minutes, so I'm sure it'd only take you a couple weeks. Maybe a good copyeditor. Did it involve a Rodian? I'm sure it did. The bad guy, right? You always typecast those poor people. I mean, seriously, just because they have problems with dry skin doesn't mean they have to be evil. Maybe they just need better lotions! Oh, and humidifiers. Maybe a soaking tub…"
Kane: "Look, just let me tell the story the way it actually happened, all right? Although I like the Rodian angle. Maybe give him a speeder-bike, put him in the role of an anti-hero… big chase scene at the end… anyway, there we were, completely surrounded by Stormtroopers. They demanded we lower our weapons. But little did they realize I am a master of the ancient human combat style of punching people in the face… at the height of the melee, I happened to draw the attention of an entire squad of seven armed and armored men. It just so happens that the closest one was in command, and their squad cohesion was so great that when I punched him, all the men under his command died. We thought we had won the day. But we hadn't counted on… The Wrath of the Ghost-Sarlac! I'm going to enjoy my drink for a moment, you field this part."
Verena: "And that's when Tam rode in on a magic pegasus-wookie with a plasma-fed turbolaser and roasted the sarlacc, then Venn gave a speech that made the rock-monsters come alive and punch the sarlacc in the teeth. Then… oh, I give up. This is even too ridiculous even for me."
Kane: "I'll dial it back next time. But the point is, the ship I currently have wasn't our first choice. All we have left of that ship is the shield coil assembly, which I'm convinced held our ship together even when by all rights it should have been blasted out of the sky."
Verena: "Oh, really? That much rust on the boat? Got her into orbit and she popped like a balloon? Is that why your eyes or so bloodshot? Or have you just been getting into the rotgut yourself?"
Kane: "Oh, come on, I would never dip into my own supply… what kinda guy do you think I am? Don't answer that…"
Verena: "Okay, seriously, you're gonna lay something like that out there and expect me NOT to jump on it, right? I mean, I could go on for days…."
Kane: "What about ten words or less?", as he kind of raises his hands a little bit
Verena: "Hmmm. No, no, I don't think I could keep it civil in 10 words or less. It'd take at least 100 before I got to your good qualities."
Kane: "So, what, we're looking at… twenty, thirty seconds? That's not too bad."
Verena: "So, why are you here again? Obviously not for the cuisine. You're barely eating your rat pot pie, and I don't see any rotgut lying around up here. So, what are you planning? More special deliveries for the grunts that you need me to handle? Or you just missed me so much 'cause I'm such a badass?"
Kane: "Can't it be both?" he said, looking hopeful.
Verena: laughs "Okay, sure, Rico Suave. Seriously, c'mon. I'm burning my offtime, here. You got dessert to tell me what's up, then I got me a game of grav-ball to dominate. Hoo-ah!"
Kane: "Well, we're outfitting the ship with some missile tubes, just so we're not COMPLETELY at the mercy of every space pirate and patrol craft in the galaxy. I was hoping to requisition some actual missiles to go with 'em. Think you could put in a good word for me? Maybe help me navigate the red tape? We'd only need a few."
Verena: "…. wow. Really? No shit? You're asking me for missiles? What are we talking about here? We've got some stores, but Command's pretty finicky about letting things go after… well, after everything that's happened recently. I could… I could MAYBE give you… SOME kind of hand… but I gotta tell you, you're gonna owe me. You're gonna owe me so big…. You better have a datapad, because you're gonna need scientific notation to record the magnitude of how much you're going to owe me."
Kane: "Uhhh… just a couple concussion missiles… and just to be clear, when I say good word and red tape, I mean good word and red tape. I'm not asking you to do anything that would earn you a reprimand."
Verena: "Well, damn, take all my fun away. All right, I could maybe put in a good word, but I'm just a load officer. I'm not in charge of stores. You'd be better off talking to one of the armorers. I'd offer to introduce you, but I don't think it's going to do you any good - you need more pips than I wear to be able to swing with that crowd." She briefly pauses, then, before Kane can interject, continues, "Let me check up on something. Why don't you walk with me down to my office? I've got a few minutes, and I've got an idea. I think I could probably figure something out for you."
Kane: "Thanks, Verena. And if there's anything I can do for you, just let me know, okay?"
Verena: "Oh, you're still gonna owe me. You're still gonna owe me big."

The pair chitchat for a bit as they make their way to Verena's office down on what would normally be the hanger deck. Once at her office, the negotiations for guided high explosives continue.

Verena: "Okay, here's the deal. Redemption's slated to have a full load, but she's down racks from a standard frigate due to her medbay. We've got to divert some of those to the new squads coming in, but I think I could get a couple of those your way… semi-legitimately, let's call it. You got a mission requirement, right?"
Kane: "Uhhh… let me get back to you on that."
Verena: "No, no, no. You've got a mission requirement, right?"
Kane: "Yyyyyyyyes. I totally have a mission requirement."
Verena: pauses, then says, "I'd love to hear you explain to me just what that mission requirement might be" as she smiles evilly.
Kane: chews his lip, then replies, "Am I addressing you or command when explaining this mission statement?"
Verena: "Oh, I just want to hear you explain to me exactly what you misfits have been doing these past few months. I mean, I hear all sorts of rumors, but I know that you're involved, so I figure I can believe, what, 1% of those? So, out with it, what's your mission requirement? Worried about a squadron of sarlacc? Rogue Rodians? Maybe a mad mob of Mandalorians? C'mon, out with it!" she rambles, still smirking with malicious intent.
Kane: sighing, continues, "Look, we had some missiles on an earlier mission. We used them up. As a result, we did not die. I think I speak for the entire crew when I say I'd like for us to continue that streak."
Verena: "Oh, come on, I don't even get a rich story to go along with that? All right, all right. I'll get that story out of you later. I'll file this near the top of the pile. I'd wager you'll at least get a couple of missiles in a few days.
Kane: "Yeah? How much you wanna wager?"
Verena: "You really want to wager against yourself getting these missiles? All right, let's say 1000 - I know you've got that waiting for you in the hanger back at Echo Base."
Kane: "A thousand seems a little steep… I was thinking more like 500…"
Verena: "You're on. I'm going to relish taking that money from you. Can't tell you how hard it was to let go of it in the first place."

Kane's gamble pays off, as a few days later, a pair of fresh concussion missiles listed as "destination: Prospect" arrive in a standard munitions shipment from the Privateer. Kane had been hoping to lose the bet, actually, to subtly hint to Verena that helping him out could be very beneficial for her as well. He posted the 500 credits and a personal congratulations to her on the return flight, certain that he'll have a nice topic of conversation with her the next time he sees her in person.

Tam and Orden

After the events on Belderone, things got somewhat awkward between Orden and Tam. Tam's near-death experience made Orden actually start to think about Tam not being around. This new problem invaded her analytical brain, meaning she just had to solve it; meanwhile, her nearly complete lack of interpersonal skills made her possibly unable to solve it on her own. As a result, she didn't know how to talk to Tam any more on the entire trip home.

Upon their return to Hoth, Orden immediately went back into Intel to complete a rather critical debrief, distracting her for a few days. Her isolation from him and his confusion over her awkwardness is beginning to make him second-guess what he thought was maybe going on between them.

On Orden's side, she smart enough to recognize after months of him hitting on her that he is, in fact, hitting on her… in retrospect. She just doesn't know how to deal with that. After some debriefing time on Hoth, she had to track down Rourke to get more data to help her solve this new puzzle. She tracked Katiara down to ask her about "some sort of medical thingy," and after Rourke pried the details out of her, she started talking to Tam again.

Surprised by this sudden turn, Tam agreed to talk over "some new data" with Orden. However, he noticed her getting shorter with him when he doesn't understand how she's putting her analyses together. He can keep up with her in some cases, and he can follow like 60% or 70% of what she's doing, but she's really way above his head.

Starting here, Orden has begun keeping detailed encrypted notes in her private files detailing her analyses of her interactions with Tam, but even if decrypted, they wouldn't make much sense - they use military intelligence lingo, and "mission designations" represent specific, planned encounters. She even debriefs herself after each interaction. She sometimes goes over this data with Rourke, but always obliquely.

As of this session, Tam is on somewhat shaky ground with Orden, but he eventually begins to feel that maybe there is something there, if he can just figure out how to get to it….

Tam and Krin - Sitting in a Tree?

At first, while back on Hoth, Tam began to think that maybe there wasn't anything there between himself and Orden. As a result, he was debating abandoning that line of thought and pursuing Verena again. After all, she seemed to be attracted to him, and she is a very attractive woman…. However, as things began to become more complex between him and Orden, Tam took the unprecedented step of backing off from Verena. He has been keeping in touch with her whenever possible, but he has also been keeping their relationship on a much more platonic level - again, almost unprecedented for him.

For her part, Verena is a little confused. She thought Tam was into her, but he then began to pull away just a little. She's not sure if she misread something or if he's just staying back because of residual concern about his place in the Rebel military, but he's remained very friendly to her, so she's not overly concerned. She was nearly to the point of initiating something with him, though, when he began to pull back a little, so she's holding off on starting anything deeper for now. Besides, it's quite likely he'll be called away on a remote duty again soon….

Recruitment and Recognition

Venn first met with Private deCrion to ask him onto the team. Wen agreed, because beyond the honor of working special operations, he is somewhat ambitious and hopes that working with the team will help advance his career.

After the "Junkyard Incident", Venn put in paperwork for Tam to be promoted and commended (specifically, commendations for valor in combat, along with the normal paperwork for having been wounded in action). Thanks to Tam having had a scanner on his person (and recording, primarily because he'd forgotten about it), some evidence of his actions survived the encounter. Since the scanner (along with almost everything else on his person) was badly damaged, the evidence had to be pieced together from the wreckage.


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