Session 2: Down the Hatch Report
The session opens with Nemora already in the cockpit of the wrecked heavy airlifter. Followed shortly by Seh-k'r and eventually Kole. Reeling from the potential value of the find, they proceeded to explore. Finding flight logs and cargo manifests on the navigator's station, Seh-k'r begins to study them shortly before Nemora reports that there are wierd bugs. The importance doesn't ring true with anyone right away. Gamma remains stationed outside fixated on his purpose of retaining control of a rope tied to Nemora. The escape hatch and ladder being too difficult to navigate for Aponia, she also remains outside in the sun. On exploration Nemora and Seh-k'r find a luggage area with sacks and duffels. While attempting to remove a few of them they trigger a swarm of the flying creatures who promtly attack and attempt to feed on them. Nemora calls for Gamma who remains steadfast that his job was to hold the rope while Seh-k'r is pincushioned. Scrambling over each other to get away from the swarm, Nemora locks herself in what turns out to be the latrine while Gamma forces his way through the hatch and blocks Seh-k'r from escaping. In his attempt he becomes entangled with the nonplussed Gamma who ignores the bugs in his search for Nemora. Following his precious rope he reads the sign on the door and fails to understand the biological needs for waste elimination while Nemora disrobes to use her clothing to plug every hole and gap she can find to keep the swarm out. The swarm attacks Gamma only to find out he wasn't food and he retaliates, angering the bugs. Kole steps in as the buzzing intensifies and loosens the rope without angering Gamma so Seh-k'r can disentangle himself. They begin to realize the bugs are Basquitoes and might be carriers of disease. Pierced and itchy they are victorious over the voracious beasts. They drag out the spoils and look through the bags finding various military clothes and trinkets that once belonged to the missing crew. Aponia patches them up and explains to Seh-k'r he's probably just contracted gritfever. Kole and a stimmied Seh-k'r head back into the darkness after a short rest to continue exploring and lower the stairs leading to a lower level. In the gloom below they find pallets and pallets of goods intended for transfer to a base along with a battered and unresponsive, batteries long dead, mark V rover. Beyond the rover are more pallets, torn and damaged, belonging to an air-drop mentioned in the manifest, the aft hatch still open and flooded with sand. They disturb small sand crabs which is the clue that at least one adult is nearby. Not having the firepower to deal with it, they curtailed the exploration to Seh-k'r cat-climbing the wall and taking another stair to a rear crew compartment. Moving between dozens of rows of musty seats are shambling humanoids in various states of decay. Seh-k'r quickly withdraws and while trying not to panic, slips and makes a bunch of noise. Breathless he and Kole watch as large black eyes raise on stalks from the sand below Seh-k'r and disappear after a few moments. The session closes with them returning to the rover to report their findings, of larger crew doors below, of holocaust era military goods, and what dangers lurked nearby. Together they began to plan how to get the entire party into the lower area by excavating the sand. A plot began to emerge to try and keep the find secret, and craft a cover story of some legitimacy. Meanwhile the time was ticking before the loan on their own Rover would run out.