The Dominion

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by Richard “Shadow Shack” Rose

Campaign background

Set 45 years ago in Federation Year:111.

Magnate General Yan-Soon Shea-Dow, alleged half clan brother to Streel's Hilo Headow (who claims no relation) overtakes Histran in the Scree Fron system and establishes a sovereign governing presence via a blockade of warships staffed with well trained militant crews. A civilian confederation of independent freight haulers working in tandem with neighboring Hakosoar militia craft manage to retake the world. Yan-Soon escapes, only to threaten Clarion three years later. What proves to be a quick defeat led by the Clarion Royal Marines ends up being a feint, Yan-Soon's forces quickly take the outpost world of Laco the following year and establishes the Sovereign Domain Authority, a militant dictatorship that announces no allegiance to the UPF.

The trade routes to Truane's Star, Zebulon, and the Rim are now effectively blocked off, however Streel manages some sort of back door escort service for civilian craft wishing to trade with these worlds as well as capitalizing on their own trade with the rest of the Frontier. The Shea_Dow/Headow relation becomes a huge conspiracy theory at this point, but nothing can be done as UPF forces are driven back to Prenglar with each illegal attempt at retaking Dixon's Star, as teh UPF is forbidden to interfere with local government matters so the skirmishes are small. SDA officially secedes from the Council of Worlds and UPF ships are given the green light for daring raids. These meet with similar results: defeat.

By FY:72 the UPF begins to receive delivery of their first dreadnaught vessels under the FY:64 passage of Operation: Dreadnaught, a bill permitting larger than battleship class warships. Feeling an upper hand against SDA craft, they attack laco once more only to discover that Yan-Soon has already commissioned his own fleet of dreadnaught carriers and cruisers. The SDA war machine is now at full force, sweeping through the Frontier leaving a wake of destruction. The UPF declares war against the Sovereign Domain Authority in FY:75.

The next three years find the yazirian systems (Araks, Athor, Gruna Garu, & Scree Fron) overtaken by SDA forces, with garrisons, warships, and commanding staffs left behind to keep the peace. Two years later the UPF loses more ground via the vrusk systems 9K'aken-Kar, Kizk-Kar, & K'tsa Kar) as well as Madderly's Star. By FY:81 Prenglar falls, and Cassidine surrenders shortly afterwards. With ten systems under SDA control, including the two Capitol & Task Force locales, the UPF quickly falls apart and the Council of Worlds is dissolved.

The following thirty years brings about another Sathar War against SDA forces, who establish a strong military presence and not only defeats the worms but traces them back to possible homeworld systems. Pirate factions are quickly eliminated as well, falling with efficiency to the dominating SDA forces. By FY:90 SDA forces are dispatched to a Sathar outpost world in their own homeworlds, the worms plea for a peace treaty yet manage to mount scores of warships to drive SDA back. Invading the Sathar homeworlds ends up being a stalemate; SDA puts it on the back burner for the time being.

Year Event
64 Operation: Dreadnaught legislature passed.
72 First Dreadnaught’s are received.
75 UPF declares war against the Sovereign Domain Authority
81 Prenglar falls. Cassidine surrenders shortly afterwards.
90 SDA target Sathar outpost but are driven back by the worms. Over the next year the SDA stalemates with the Sathar homewolds.
91 – 96 Malco surfaces on Volturnus.
97 SDA establishes a new garrison on Volturnus to watch MalCo.
110 SDA maps the Rim side of the Xagyg Dust Nebula from Capella to Klaeok.
111 Current year of the Grand Celebration.

MalCo Enterprises resurfaces on Volturnus via legitimate business operations both on the surface and in the orbital station. SDA does not recognize them as a threat, but is aware of their history and MalCo is under close surveillance. Rumors of former UPF Loyalists begin to surface. By FY:97 SDA establishes a new garrison on Volturnus to watch MalCo. By the turn of the century SDA begins mapping the Rim side of the Xagyg Dust Nebula, completing said map from Capella to Klaeok by FY:110. Eventually the Volturnus Garrison is removed during that same year with hopes that MalCo will become more relaxed and tip their hand at suspected smuggling operations that have plagued the Frontier in recent years.

Which brings us up to date, FY:111 --- The Grand Celebration, commemorating 30 years of the SDA treaty is planned for the entire year. Gala social functions, parades, and celebrations are planned on every planet under SDA control and even some in the Rim. However, former UPF loyalists have risen in strength and numbers. The first publicized rebellion against the SDA is carried out by Princess Leotia Valentine XXII as she smuggles valuable SDA data obtained by the Clarion Liberation Party and manages to make it all the way to Zebulon before being discovered. She is captured, but her Zebulon contact is never found. SDA speculates that this contact may hail from a Rim system.

Cast of Characters

Captain Jason Henry "Hank" Siegar (mH), former engineer for PGC/Trans Travel co-owned Rayax Transport Shipwrights and ex-SDA fighter pilot, co-owns the merchant scout SS Corona Phoenix, a ship with a rich history including assaults against SDA in Histran under the original owners.

Tarbikal (mV), former agro-world ranch hand turned pilot/astrogator, co-owns the Phoenix with Siegar.

Terc and Cret Krenn (mY & fY respectively), former SDA militia soldiers, yazirian clan brother and sister duo hired on as gunners by Siegar and Tarbikal

Naralos (mD), chief technical and engineering officer for the Corona Phoenix. Rich history serving under numerous SDA and civilian spacecraft.

Rastefir "Rastie" Stath of Clangeddin Clan (mI), Rim citizen who migrated to the Frontier in search of a more rewarding lifestyle, hired on as a jack of all trades by the Phoenix crew.

Valicia Mastis (fH), ex-pirate and fighter jockey, currently assigned to escort the Corona Phoenix with her privately owned I-76 Enforcer heavy fighter "SS Sentinel". Wears an eye patch over her sealed left eye socket, an injury acquired during her piracy days.

Katrina Siamilla (fL), feline-like humanoid hailing from beyond the Frontier, astro-gunner assigned to the Sentinel.

SS Corona Phoenix, merchant scout --- class:3 armed trade vessel under license by MalCo Enterprises. Includes four MR-2 series maintenance robots

SS Sentinel, fighter --- class:2 interstellar heavy assault fighter under license by MalCo Enterprises. TR- 3 "Tart" MR-3 series maintenance robot included in aft maintenance bay

Campaign Log 01

The entire group (save for Naralos, who is running late) has met at "Britmoll's Tavern: IX" located in Port Lavakos, Volturnus (Zebulon). MalCo has offices on the commercial decks of Zebulon Station as well as the surface, including one here in Port Lavakos. Port Lavakos was once home to Mercenary Starbase, a military organization funded by Pan Galactic and operating under Spacefleet & Star Law charter as a patrolling presence to assist both of the former interstellar organizations. Once SDA disbanded them (MS and Strike Force NOVA were the final factions attempting to preserve the UPF during SDA's decade of destruction), MalCo swooped in to establish a legitimate business stronghold.

Britmoll's Tavern - IX is the latest expansion of a pub chain owned by Kilian Britmoll, a huge lumbering hulk of a human. Headquartered in Triad, Britmoll's Taverns expanded to the capital of every major world in the Frontier and this is his first tavern in a lesser populated world, as such he is personally seeing to the grand opening. Britmoll sports a rather oversized bionic left arm, and has been known to dispatch his enemies by hoisting a sonic devastator with it (sans tripod mount!). Alas, Killian isn't the young buck he once was (he's 89 years old now, and officially retired from such work), but loves to spin yarns of glory days with his customers.

BT-9 just opened in recent months and your group has enjoyed Britmoll's hospitality. It has become a haven for adventurers and MalCo operatives alike, along with various other sorts of riff raff including hovercycle gangs, ex-cons, former pirates, and even the occassional ex-UPF or former StarLaw types. Assisting him as manager, learning the ropes of his business, is a comely but aging female yazirian named Jeticia Nye, who simply prefers to be called Jeti. She has a history with Volturnus, assisting the second exploration mission that eventually liberated its natives from a Sathar invasion long ago. Most of her Volturnus comrades from back in the day have established businesses in Port Lavakos or Zebulon Station, so between her and the owner information can be had. For a price. And neither enjoys hosting violence of any manner within the confines of their respectable establishment.

SDA Fleet on maneuvers - Artwork by GJD

The group is once again enjoying some much needed downtime after running a series of cargoes under MalCo charter, including smuggling some small arms into the Rim and a recent delivery of SIX (Synthetic Ixiol) and Methadose shipments that will hopefully undermine SDA forces around the Frontier. MalCo didn't care much for the UPF, but SDA is even worse. If SDA troops & operatives can get themselves hooked on narcotics, then open season can't be too far behind!

The Phoenix and Sentinel crews are indulging in some of the tastier plates and beverages offered at BT-9, along with the usual disagreements between the highly spirited ex-pirate Valicia and everyone else. Jason and Tarbikal head to the bar for refills, and soon afterwards Naralos arrives in the thick of the bickering to receive a fresh dose of what the rest have been digesting. Embarrassed by it all, Jason finally shouts out from the bar for everyone to take it down a notch. This, of course, has attracted the watchful eye of man-mountain Killian Britmoll behind the bar. Jason gets down to business by fraternizing with the yazirian barkeep who happens to know a former acquaintance of Siegar and follows by attempting to hustle something from the bionic barkeep, stating that he captains a small, fast, and armed light freight hauler and has an allied heavy fighter escort as well.

A hearty grin crosses the wrinkled face of Kilian Britmoll. He bursts out with laughter, and then gets his game face on. "Back in the day I might have double dipped on this one. But seeing as you an' my subordinate here have a mutual friend, and you saved me the effort of discharging my favorite toy on your own subordinates...for the mere cost of a pint of 10 year old Minotaurian Scotch I just might have what you're looking for." Jason responds with "I swear, that's half my job --- just keeping them in line when we're in port. As for that bottle of scotch, you've got a deal." Jason counts out 100 cr and lays it on the bar, "It never hurts to have a fine drink around to calm the nerves and relax. Or to celebrate with after a successful run," he adds with a grin. Killian smiles and pops the seal off a dust covered plasticontainer of Minotaurian Scotch.

He pours you a pint (or technically, a half-liter) and helps himself to a shot of it as well. He swigs the shot down. Placing the mug down on the bar in front of you, he raises his organic arm and activates his chronocom. You hear some indistinct clicking and Britmoll answers "Yeah, I got someone here that might suit your needs. A light freighter captain who runs with a heavy fighter escort. Looks like his crew is here with him. C'mon down, I'll introduce the two of ya." Some more muffled sounds and the call is finished.

The bar man grins and says "A potential customer will be here soon. I'll send him your way when he gets here." He then lumbers off to the opposite end of the bar to assist a dralasite that just arrived. Naralos seems to recognize this particular dral as a MalCo Liason , and waddles over to commence some conversation by offering a drink to his kin. The two begin bellowing away in the dralasite language, and after a few exchanges Naralos bids him farewell and returns to the group. By now Jason and Tarbikal have also settled down at the group's table. Naralos reports that the "big boy" (Malthar) was quite impressed with their last run, and that the liason will check to see if there's any loads available for departure.

Half an hour later a vrusk enters and greets the bionic barkeeper, who in turn points his mechanical finger at the group assembled at the center table. The limb drops down below the bar and you hear a few items crash to the floor, Britmoll curses out loud and disappears into the back room. The vrusk is older in appearance, grizzled and a bit slower than the younger ones you've seen. Tarbikal estimates him to be around 70-80 years of age. He is wearing some loose casual attire, but through the folds you see a well worn military skeinsuit underneath. His demeanor is the same as any other vrusk though; all business, and he gets right down to that point.

"Greetings, ladies and gentlemen, " he says in Pan Galactic, nodding with respect to the female human, female yazirian, and cat-like humanoid. "I'm told you have a ship that may suit my needs. I'm looking for some discreet passage deep into the Rim, Klaeok to be precise." (To be continued..)