We landed at Port Wander, as per Captain’s orders. Here we are to meet with his father’s Navigator. I find no reason to scour the large marketplace as he does for scarce or ubiquitous weapons, though I may come to regret this later. Instead, I have an inkling. A small project until we reach our further destinations. Could it be possible to construct a chrono that can do more than tell time? A minuscule endeavor, to say the least.
After hearing the Captain’s raised voice more than twice, we head to our meeting point. With the Navigator in tow, we march to the nearest tavern. Already I see that another night of imbibing is going to take place. As much as I try to enjoy the festivities of drink with my Captain, I once again find myself in a losing battle with what is left of my body. I could never take on a drinking challenge before I was imbued with my mechanical parts and I daresay I will never be a contender for Lord Captain Adruesus in the future, either. At some point, I notice Jux has disappeared, but by that point, I’m far too gone to make anything of it. Several drinks later, we head back to the Exarch and make to sleep off our intoxication.
In the wee hours of the next morn, I begin my experiment. And with the foulest of luck, I damage the gears in both of my acquired specimens. Frustrated with myself and slightly crazed, I order a crate of 100 additional chronos to be delivered as soon as possible. I also look into the purchase of a few superficial items and find that none of them are available at a price worth spending.
Later that evening, as the Captain and Jux return from their daily venture, we leave Port Wander, finding ourselves being followed within minutes. A quick call to the other vessel proves to unveil their intentions: to keep an eye on us for the Rogue Trader of the Wandering Hand Clan. Using his sometimes-subdued wit, Jux pulls out a vox that connects to one on their bridge. Needless to say, there was no denying their suspicious activity after that.
We entered the Warp after their ship, just to ensure they wouldn’t be able to follow us. The Navigator newly onboard, we set off with new confidence as he estimates our journey to be one-third of our original plan.
A few days into our travel to Footfall, near the Furibundus star, we happen to notice a couple of ships to our bow and stern. Concerned due to our previous revelation, we investigate. It doesn’t take us long to realize that these are no more than ghost ships — those lost in the Warp. We board the first one and I attempt to bring it back online. Small, black slug-like xenos are completely permeated throughout the entire ship’s circuitry. I begin to shovel them out as quickly as I can, but we get a message from the crew on the main vessel that the stern-side ship is beginning to move toward us. As much as I try, I am forced out of the engine room and the Captain, much to my dismay and horror, orders the ship’s demise.
A sinking feeling encompassing the entirety of my flesh, we make the same move on the second ship. With the death having happened so soon, I am more than relentlessly determined to get this ship working, if only to keep it alive. Luckily, the engine room isn’t clogged like that of the first ship and I get it online quickly. A scan from the Exarch indicates that lifeforms are inhabiting the vessel, however. And with a masterful command and expert timing, the Captain gets both ships out of the Warp in the same time and relative location.
We quickly find out that our new transport has an issue with the plasma drive, no doubt due to those damned xenos. A quick void of the cargo hold and a much-slower, but similar, process with the venting tubes later, we rid ourselves of the bulk of the infestation. Small populations had made their way into some of the inner shell of the ship, however, and with the Captain’s orders the crew collect and burn what xenos flesh still exists, alive or dead. During, and somewhat after, this mass destruction, I make my way to the plasma drive and commence fixing it. I end up using some of the meager spare parts we have aboard the Exarch and hope that nothing critical needs repair between here and Footfall.
I spend the next few days on our second vessel, named the Throes of Luxury, getting to know her and learning what makes her tick. She seems a bit flighty and changes her mind a lot, but I suppose we’ll see what our future holds with her in short time.