The ship pulls into Zlatan’s Luster to refuel, rearm, and crew up. It’s been a hellish three months, first trapped in the warp, attack by a demon, attack by dark mechanicus, and finally almost eaten alive on a plague planet filled with zombies controlled by a greater daemon. Its enough to make someone turn to drink.
So, Octavius goes for a drink, that’s right, the crazy demon slaying Astropath goes for a drink. He thinks he can find a job, mostly he finds booze. He asks the sheltered Astropaths that he just got to replace the poor fellows who kind of mentally exploded, both literally and metaphysical, for cool places on the station.
So armed with shut in knowledge Octavius goes for drink, but he understands he is important, and important people don’t drive. No that’s plebe work. He requests a driver. He gets Veremund, the Petty officer sort of reassigned to help Command Staff when they set out several months ago. Well everyone seemed to forgot about him, so he has been doing whatever he wants on the ship which mostly has been taking levels in badass because of all the crazy shit that has been happening.
So Octavius goes to a snazzy bar to drink and a quiet evening with other Psykers. Meanwhile outside the snazzy bar Veremund has kicked the shit out of the Valet for daring to suggest he move the ship’s car. The Valet calls the Arbiters about the beating. They show up demanding papers and start telling Veremund to move the Car, because they are the law. Veremund kicks the shit out of them as a rebuttal. A group of riot squad shows up, Veremund demonstrates his point to them as well. Octavius finishes up inside comes out to the scene, saying nothing, they leave to go on further drinking adventures before the Arbiters can call for backup.
Normally this would have been it, but the ship’s marines, not the Astrates, were given shore leave only hours before, which leads Octavius to realize he could score free drinks since he is like the coolest person on the ship. So he has Veremund take him to the dive bar where the marines are drinking for fun and drinks. Well, while Octavius is retelling the story of how much of a badass he is, Veremund is outside with the car.
Now this seedy backwater of a port in the middle of the space lanes is a good criminal spot, lots of space, lots of ships coming and going, no one really does anything to mess shit up. However, that’s come to an end. See the signal the ship picked up that brought them to the Demon Zombie plague world was an Inquisitional Coded broadcast. While the crew never learned what it was, it was still important. It was a distress code and a dead man trigger that the world was compromised. So an Inquisitional Task force, namely a crusader fleet, assembled and is on their way to liberate the world. Good news, they don’t have to. Bad news, they don’t know that. The inquisition however is using a Crime Syndicate to take over the back channel methods of transportation and information spreading, in a way to keep everyone one on the down load and control the responses of world along the way to the planet.
This Syndicate’s local boss is a man named Merriweather. Now Merriweather thinks he is a badass because he’s the biggest dog in town, spoilers he isn’t. With the Inquisitional backing Merriweather can do no wrong, using this notion for inspiration he goes on the offensive and takes out the other gangs, either absorbing them or destroying them. A few months of brutal gang fighting and it’s clear that Merriweather is on top.
Merriweather goes out for a stroll this particular night. He wants to be seen as the biggest and baddest, so he goes out to peacock his way around town. People avoid him because he is kind of big deal. They get out of his way, except Veremund.
Merriweather and his goons cruise up, first because the car is snazzy, and it’s weird. Like foreign car from another planet weird, it is. They ask about he car, Veremund is a petty officer on a ship that literally went to hell, he does not care about these guys and ignore them. Merriweather gets upset. He touches the car. Veremund cares about the car and smacks Merriweather’s hand off car, and goes to wipe off the hand print. Merriweather’s goons are not going to stand for this disrespect. They get loud. The marines come out, because someone is shouting in a now mostly quiet street because everyone has gone quite after Vermeund hit Merriweather. Octavius comes out, drink in hand, wondering why he has to buy the next round, because that’s plebe work and Octavius is not a plebe. The marines shout at the goons. The goons shout at the marines, and Veremund. Veremund wipes the hand print off the car’s finish. Merriweather backs off, he can sense what’s going to happen. Octavius runs out of drink, the straw making a pitiful noise and the ice rattles. A Goon go to touch the car. Veremund breaks that idiot’s hand. That idiot screams. The goons go for their guns. The Marines go for the goons. The next few minutes are a literally curbed stomped as a bunch of drunk, pissed off combat vets that have been needing a good blow off event have a blow off event. The goons provided wonderful volunteers.
Anyway after the fight, a bunch of Crime boys are dead for picking a fight with a group that basically seen the bad side of the warp’s anus for the last few months. Everyone still alive fucks off. Our party of marines, the helper and the psyker go back to the ship after the fight because it soured the mood. Merriweather runs to the hills in the confusion.
Meanwhile Master Petty Office Konrad goes out for a night of fun as well. He sees the fight start and ignores that tall glass of Nope, but he wanders down the street. He too is looking to find a good information source for jobs. He wanders into an odd bar down the street and while pretending to just be getting information learns about the Syndicate however he is soon involved in the group he was dropping his ease on. So there is Konrad drinking, telling stories about the ship, drinking, talking about this and that, and drinking. Soon he has drank too much, and spoke too much and he is told to leave as it is morning and the bar really does need to turn out. Well Konrad shouts his opinion at the bar man and leaves wandering down the street.
Since the fight from what is now last night Merriweather gets some of his boys and goes back to the first bar. Well everyone has pissed off in the morning so Merriweather is mostly shaking down a poor bar owner for someone else’s social faux pas. Merriweather is a cruel, stupid man but he knows his position is only as strong as it is perceived.
Enter mostly drunk Konrad in the same style uniform as Veremund from last night. Merriweather stares, the goons stare, while Konrad looks around in confusion of a man who forgot where he parked because he doesn’t have a car. Merriweather tells the goons to grab that man, Konrad, for questioning. Konrad pulls his bolt pistol out, and shoots one of the goons. As that goon’s head explodes sending bits and pieces into the air and on everyone nearby. The goons pull their guns and return fire. Konrad is soon pin down by automatic fire in an alley with dwindling ammo.
He gets on the vox and demands/requests aid. A nearby Marine sleeping it off on the bar helps. Climbing up onto a nearby roof the marine throws a Molotov at the goons. Merriweather serves being set on fire but several of his men, and the car they came in do not.
While this plays out we cut to several hours earlier. Where Cassias Thule is visited by an old friend who pays off an older debt and tells Thule to get off the station. Thule use to belong to the Syndicate on a footfall station years ago, things went bad and Thule is lucky to be alive. Merriweather however feels it makes him look weak. Again see the poor fella whose bar is now on fire. So The Patriot’s Glory, who is taking one everyone with a simple question, can you read, join well it’s in the bag and a good idea to get off the station where the most powerful organization wants you dead for very stupid personal reasons.
Thule quickly gets himself hire and presents himself as a man to help with security on the ship. Thud is happy to have an ace in the hole following everything, makes arrangements. Thule is now the master of whispers and it pretending to be the Vox master so he can monitor all communication on the ship.
Well several hours later everyone is one this ship when a Massager from the Syndicate shows up to talk to the head man. The captain is resting, so he’s out. The XO is mostly dead, so he isn’t going to work that leaves Konrad. As he goes down, Thule who is known as Holt on ship and to Konrad, tells Konrad not to trust these guys as they are lying cheats and are armed. Konrad thinking it’s a setup orders more Marines down to the gang plank. Konrad arrives moments later and tells the marines to be ready. The Marines already put onto high alert by the order of more bodies nod in understanding at this new order. Konrad goes out to talk with the messenger.
The messenger opens his mouth, shows his hands are empty and then a sharpshooter puts a bolter shell into his skull. The Marines swarm out of the ship firing their weapons. Before the massager bodyguards get a chance to react, they are gunned down by stubber rounds, las shots and bolter shells. One of the cars tries to make a break for it. The Marines shoot the driver. Tear open the doors and pull out two screaming women. One of them too loud and too much in shock of the rapid turn of event takes a rifle butt to her nose which breaks it and knocks the poor woman out. The Marine shoot everyone not a prisoner again to be sure. The two prisoners are dragged out of the station into the ship as the marines set demo charges and blow the cars before retreating back into the ship. Under the cover fire suppression systems and fire alarms no one notices the security cameras watching all of this silently.
Dragged into a now unused shower the two women are looked after briefly while Konrad does his best interrogation and intimidation attempt on two brutalized and scared women. Octavius, using his psychic powers to mind probes the one that didn’t get assaulted to find out who she is. Her name is Maggie, she is the daughter of the boss of the whole crime syndicate, who is on his way with Inquisition Crusader Fleet. Why Merriweather has been the queen of the ball he knows he has an army to get his back never mind the Judge or the other organizations. The Syndicate has pack up everything and now every criminal under its umbrella is going to fight as soldiers in a holy war to buy indulgences for the organization’s members. The massager that the marines vaporized? He was Donnie, the boss’s son. The woman the marines assaulted, his wife, and the Boss’s beloved Daughter-in-Law. Donnie was coming to talk peacefully about coexisting and hopefully sort out the disrespect the organization clearly showed to the Merritt Family’s crew. There is a moment of silence for peaceful respect being shot like Franz Ferdinand on parade.
Konrad only gets like half of this, Maggie is less than pleased and likely thinking that information or her worth is the only thing keeping her alive. Octavius tells Thule, because he mind probe him earlier and learns all his secrets, everything. However neither of them tells Konrad. Likely because Konrad is who everyone is letting be in charge and make decision, regrets are twenty/twenty. Konrad in the meantime goes off to think about all this, and figure out what he can do.
While the Crew was assaulting family members of a VIP Inquisitional Asset. Thurd was getting more soldiers for the ship, namely sanctioned Kroot Sell knives who were contracted to deal with the WAAAGH to the south but got stuck on the station. He reaches a good deal and recruits Cyrax the first Prime, and first amongst equals to the ship. As they are returning because it’s believed that the massager was kidnapped by the crew, the group is stopped by angry Goons, a fight breaks out and everyone leaves with a bloody nose. The Kroot settle into the ship without any other issues.
Well while everyone is trying to figure out what to do about Maggie and Margie. The Judge has figured out what to do.
Since the crew has assaulted Arbiter officers, started a bar fight that killed people, started a gun battle, not once but twice, set fire random buildings, again not once but twice, responding with overkill to pretty much everything including just ringing the doorbell, has aliens aboard their ship and now kidnapping VIP Nobles off the Station. The Judge has a clear understanding of how to approach the ship.
Namely with an army of soldiers. An army of Arbiters with any weapons he can get like tanks. So he does, with a subpoena for the Captain, and demands the captain show up so he can be arrested and charged for the crimes listed above. Konrad is informed of this several times as he comes down to the gangplank to find the army waiting and ready to try and take the ship. In any case the Judge is not taking come back later as an answer.
However, Thule has a cunning plan thanks to the memory mind probe he dresses up as Maggie and gets Octavius to sync his minds up to Maggie’s. For Thule is a Master of Disguise, it is how he made his living on the station. He leaves the ship escorted by one of his Agents to save the ship, unaware a of critical detail he has missed…
Realizing they need an ace in the hole, Octivaious give Konrad and Thule a memory shard of Captain Merritt.
Before Thule gets it, he guesses correctly that the Judge has no idea who the women Thule is copying is supposed to be. So he goes for full bluff. It works but mostly because the Judge doesn’t care who this woman is, he demands the captain.
Well Thule tries to leave, he can’t. Thule reaches out to Octavius, who can’t see anything or any reason that he should not be able to. Thule then can’t tell anyone why he can’t. The Judge is growing more and more upset. Thule then gets a memory of the captain, and is overwhelmed, passing out. Octavius catches Thule.
Octavius is then directed to a car that he didn’t notice before. A strange man who introduces himself as Mister Black, who radiates in the warp almost like a Daemon’s shadow, then give Octavius a choice, get in the car or go back to the ship. Octavius climbs into the car. A women embroiders while Thule sleeps. Octavius learns that Mr. Black and the Women are Inquisitional agents. And that Maggie is one too. Octavius now regrets not reading the mind of the second woman. Octavius can’t reach out to the ship, and is forbidden from doing so by Mr. Black who is a powerful mutant Psyker…
Meanwhile Konrad has managed to stumble down the ship to an empty room. Thule and Konrad live through the memories of Cameron Merritt. Konrad manages to retain himself but is changed by the experience, maybe for the better. Thule is unable to handle the memories. He slowly drifts into becoming Cameron until his mind snaps and he is unable to be either identity.
Thule babbles and becomes violently dissociated. Mr. Black tells him to shut up and settle down, he does so.
Konrad awakens with new thoughts and memories. Sometimes has passed, he makes his way to the bridge to figure out what is going on and what he needs to do. On the way he soon learns his com is dead. He radios the Magus, who he is able to reach. The Magus tells Octavius to chill and wait, right where he is at, he’ll send a team to fix the problem.
Octavius sees the team, it’s a squad of Winters’ Marines. They look pissed, they fire at Konrad. He dives into the secret paths he knows about. He can hear the Marines shouting looking for him. He comes quickly to the idea that Winters, or Kurshid has started a mutiny and clearly insanely dangerous. Konrad figures if he gets off the ship he can rally help to retake the ship. Just has to get off the ship.
He goes for the Cargo bay and one of the fighters down there. He can use that to get to another ship without having to worry about the corrupt station. He moves through the ship, and there he gets almost caught. A fire fight breaks out, a marine is wounded but Konrad makes it to ship unscathed. Climbing into the fighter he quickly boots it up. He then realize he has a chance to escape while enacting justice. He forces open the cargo hull doors blowing himself, cargo and the marines into the void, before flying off. Covered by debris he quickly speeds out to an old friend on a nearby ship.
He quickly makes contact with some new smart know-how and works to get some help. His old friend promises to help and locks Konrad in a guess room on the ship.
Well this is where Konrad tale ends. His old Friend did indeed help. His old friend went to his Captain, his captain reached out to the Authority.
Konrad forgot a lot can happen in an hour. While Konrad, Thule and Octavius were busy with their problems. Maggie who is not a crime bosses daughter that is instead Margie who was sedadiated. Maggie is in fact a Callidus assassin. Why the ruse was up when the dress that Thule was wearing while good, was not perfect and a glaring mistake but only to the Lady Lilya de Ilda von Phillipa zew Awotwi of Espina. Who picked out her dresses to fuck with Merriweather. Because no one like Merriweather, he’s an asshole.
So Mr Black wanting to fuck with the Crew for fucking with him, Told Maggie to go kill Captain Merritt. She tried. But to be honest, Konrad was the best worst pick of people to go try. However, Dip’I and four twin-link heavy bolters made it clear that neither wanted any trouble, well Dip’I ratted “Konrad” out. Since real Konrad was missing, “Konrad” seemed like the real deal. However there was weirdness about it. The Marine were told to load up with Training rounds, less lethal rubber rounds, they hurt like a bitch and likely won’t kill you. So the Marine go Senior Officer hunting.
When Konrad made his escape, he made it apparent any weirdness was just him being a weirdo, and he was clearly a vile, hateful Mutineer.
While Konrad rested, Winters went to find out what the hell was going on, and found an awake Alert Margie pissed and in pain from a broken nose. She pissed off and wanting off the ship said she’d forget the broken noise if they just let her off the ship right fucking now. Winters having a Mutiny, Judge and a crazy screaming women, decided to fix two of her problems. Margie told the Judge off, she is a crime boss’s daughter so has no respect for the law. Then proceed to tell him how much of an idiot he was that he couldn’t handle on rogue trader crew. The Captain of Konrad’s old ship called the Judge and explain the situation with Konrad from his side. The Judge realizing he has a screaming women, a rogue trader group that looks like its untouchable and has been played like a damn fiddle realizes he can solve all his issue with one arrest. So he goes to the Friend’s ship, and turns off the oxygen in the cabin of Konrad and wait for the man to pass out. Then Arrests him.
Meanwhile unaware of this Octavius is asked for someone to take the blame of all this. Octavius suggest the wounded and unconscious Koolz. Poor bastard can’t catch a break. Well the deal struck. Octavius lets Mr Black take Thule and returns to the ship.
Octavius watches a bound, gagged and hooded Konrad be dragged off, unaware of his identity, and watches as Koolz is taken into Lady Lilya custody.
Winters is confused as hell, Konrad a traitor, Thule missing, the Judge running around demanding to arrest two men who are “resting,” and Koolz is still in the med bay? She just wants off this stupid ride.
Octavius reaches out and finds Maggie sitting in the car as it goes away. Octavius shakes his head, and says fuck it, let’s get out of here.
A few hours later the Patriot’s Glory is clear for casting off and detaches from the dock. And fly out to space. The Battle Barge Remus links up asking what the frill? Everyone shrugs.
The Two ships reach the warp point and jump out. Moments later, a crusader fleet shows up.
Thule’s fate is somewhat ironic. Merriweather who wanted to kill a man for a perceived slight to his organization would set in motion for the seeds of his own death. Thule’s Twitch mask makes him almost a Callidus level assassin, almost. Thule is a little taller and little broader than Merriweather but honestly a trick to the eyes, and a memory graph and mind wipe later who would ever know. Certainly not the man now known as Merriweather, kingpin of Zlatan’s Luster Station, a man who is said to have been killed by the Inquisition once already.
Konrad’s fate is a little quicker. The Inquisition finding its self in possession of a man who is not a man, but something else. Konrad’s brain has already been pulled apart and put back together by Mister Black in the few weeks Konrad rotted in a cell. Finding nothing else to do with the man, Konrad met the Techpriest agent of the Inquisitor who wanted to know who and how. A buzzsaw answered most of those questions.
The Judge was able to find himself in a better situation after his high profile arrest of a traitorous agent. While unable to get off the station he finds it much easier to work with Merriweather’s sudden change of heart about many things. While the two dance the dance of two men that have sworn to see the other in ruin they never actually seem to kill the other knowing it would ruin their fun.
Margie heal just fine, she links up with her father and settles into court life of Governor Phraxis of Pasteurella Prime. She is completely unaware of the shared connection they have.
Konrad’s old Friend turns to drink. Knowing you sided with a traitor is never easier, having everyone thing you were in league with him is worst. Eventually the man risks his life in an insane suicidal action to prove his good name, he does so and it’s only through the Emperor’s mercy that he succeeds.