Mustered Out on Mertactor


Arrival at Collace

It’s 3.00am when the alarm sounds to say that the Grisst Falcon has safely emerged from hyperspace. O’Neill is on the bridge and so William is able to stay in bed, although Jie is needed to plot a course to the highport.

By 9.00am, everyone is awake and watching their approach to Collace on the viewscreen patched through to the holovid in the common room with a mixture of relief for the party members and excitement for the stevedores.

William takes over the controls to guide the ship into one of the bays at the highport and the ship safely docks.

“Fack customs for now,” Max says. “I need a good bleedin’ breakfast right bleedin’ now.”

The others are also pretty desperate to get off the ship as soon as possible as well and follow Max as he dashes through customs. Apart from scanning the party member’s papers as they dash through customs, the relaxed officials aren’t particularly bothered.

So the party members plus O’Neill and the stevedores head for the closest restaurant where Max orders a ‘Full Collacian’ breakfast for everyone. Boy, does it taste good after the protein paste. Once everyone has had seconds, they start to relax a little.

O’Neill uses his handcomp to check his mail. There is a message from Ana Pyriem waiting for him together with an authorization to withdraw funds from the Grisst Enterprises account to pay the party for their efforts and to reimburse them for expenses. For the next half hour, the others watch on bored as Max goes through all of the expenses with Max and they finally arrive at a figure that they are both happy with. O’Neill keys over the funds to Max who then divides the cash among the party members.

“We’re solvent again, guys an’ gals,” Max says. “We need to unload that aluminum though before we’re really rich.”

Once Max has settled the check, Arvor, Taeva and Grim head to their regular hotel on Collace (their regular one where they’re footing the bill anyway) while the others return to the ship, Jie shepherding the stevedores back. All of the stevedores wander through the streets of the massive highport as if in a dream, having never encountered anything like this before.

Once back at the ship, Max starts to take care of the customs formalities while Will and Jie go to the low-berths to awaken the injured. Fortunately, they all make it, but they are still in a pretty bad shape after the combat, their status having not changed during their week on ice William calls an ambulance for them. O’Neill agrees that Grisst will pay their expenses.

Jie then takes the others to a bank where she withdraws the remainder of the salary that they were all promised which she hands out to each of them. She then wishes them all the best and leaves them to their new lives on Collace.

Once Taeva, Arvor and Grim have checked into the hotel, Grim makes a call to the Captain of the Fair Rosamund. He is relieved to find that the ship arrived four days earlier and the crew (and the party’s baggage) are still in port. Grim arranges for the baggage to be delivered later in the afternoon and agrees to meet up with the crew for a beer that evening.

The party members all meet up in the hotel bar at 18.00. Max looks disappointed.

“Seems like there’s a glut of aluminum on the market at the moment so I could only get 85% of normal ’olesale on it,” he says sadly. “I s’pose we could have waited a week to see if the market improves but, to be honest, I’m sick of the bloody stuff and just wanted to get shot of it. Been nothing but trouble that stuff. At least we got our money back on it and just about enough to cover the 10 tons of nobble leather we had to leave.”

He divides the proceeds equally. On top of the the chunk they got early from O’Neill, everyone is feeling pretty rich right now.

Once Max has finished dividing the cash, Arvor addresses everyone in hushed tones.

“The Baroness, who is my former boss from the Agency, wishes to meet with all of us to debrief us on the Pavabid mission at 10.00am tomorrow. Se goes to great lengths to hide her connections with the Agency and so the utmost discretion is required.”

“And everyone needs to dress in the Sunday best,” he adds, fixing his eyes on Jie and her dress which the average streetwalker would pass up for something a little more modest.

All are curious as to what the Baroness has to say (albeit a little reluctantly in Taeva’s case) and so everyone downs their drinks and then take an air/cab up to one of the upper levels of the highport where the more exclusive malls are located. The shop assistants are a little snooty as they see the motley assortment of characters traipsing through their elegant stores, but they get more enthusiastic once they realize that the scruffy people in front of them have plenty of cash to spend.

Upmarket clothes shopping on Collace is far from being a chore as holoprojectors display different outfits at the push of a button, without all that tiresome business of having to go into changing rooms, putting on and taking off one set of clothes after another. Immediately that a decision has been made, the robotailor in the back starts work and, in under half an hour, the made-to-measure clothes are ready. As a result, everyone is back at the hotel by 9.00pm, dropping their new purchases off in their rooms.

They then head off in the opposite direction – heading down the starport’s core to the lower areas which provide a more rough and ready entertainment. Here they find the crew of the Fair Rosamund waiting for them in the Silver Helm, as arranged by Grim.

Max gets the first round in as a thank you for their deploying the crybaby, as promised. The crew are keen to learn how the party members got on while they were there and are delighted to hear of the party’s success and how they tore up the starport as they have no love at all of Avastan. The crew buy more drinks and toast the party members good health.

The party members and the Fair Rosamund crew down drinks as fast as the bargirl can bring them over, as the party members feel like celebrating after living on protein paste and distilled water for so long.

As everyone gets more drunk and relaxed, the crew of the Fair Rosamund open up a little. They reveal that their ship is not standard A2 – it’s ex-Imperial Naval Reserve, pensioned off after the Fourth Frontier War with hidden turrets and a J-3 drive. With the reduced interior space, the crew do a fair bit of business smuggling contraband (which is what they were doing in a dump like Avastan) and take on some of the riskier routes which most Traders are unwilling to take. Max listens intently about their commercial activities for future reference, while the others swap tales of their dangerous exploits.

They carry on drinking together until 2.00am until Arvor reminds them of the meeting in the morning and so they shouldn’t get too wasted. Somewhat reluctantly, they bid their new friends farewell and head back to the hotel.


Please let me know if anyone has any intentions now that you’re back on Collace (and have money again).

I will work out the money after the aluminum is sold, but even without that, each of you must have at least 50k if you want to go on a spending spree.


Arvor sends a message to everyone (Max, Taeva, Will, Grimm and Jie) that the Baroness (his Imperial spymaster) wishes to meet and debrief the party re: Pavabid tommorow at 10:00 am. Of course discretion (and sunday best clothes) will be required.

Are we all in?


Jie asks Taeva for ‘sunday best clothes’ shopping advice. Jie suspects a nice polish on her combat boots and black duct tape over the holes in her flac jacket will not suffice for court with the Baroness. Jie does not shop from the hotels internet, she wants to stretch her legs after the cooped up time in the Falcon.


With regards to money.

Firstly William gets his 15k loan back, Arvor gets his 9k back (and Max his 15,190).

All six party members get 81k.

The petty cash fund is Cr.11,910 which should last you a fair while even if you go crazy now.

Anyone who doesn’t have some formal clothes should deduct a minimum of Cr.500 from personal funds and add them to your character sheets.


Ah, crap. I just pressed the wrong button editing my charcater – I think I just gave ownership of Arvor to Nick! Please return him!

Anyhow, just did the cash thing, and added HUDs to my weapons.


OK, he’s all yours again now.

The buttons are very badly arranged on this site – I’m forever having to stop and think which one I am pressing.


If you have the money buy tailored stuff. I wouldn’t bother trying to outdress the Baroness being a no doubt Vilani Noble she probably regards us all pieces of shit anyway. Just get some practical stuff thats well made – I can show you where.

It’s her wants to see us so I’m tempted to wear beach clogs and torn stockings myself. Who cares what she wants?


missed out an ‘as’ with my usual competancy


Grim’s up for seeing the Baroness! First thing he’s gonna do is buy a diplovest, to augment his cloth. He was knocked out exactly yesterday and the extra point of armor wouldve kept him up and fighting, lol! Second thing he’s gonna do is add a HUD to his body pistol for a few hundred credits! Tailored suit being ordered as we speak. Hey Nick, can I pay double so as to have the bestest, nicest looking suit? Not that Grim is vain or anything…


It really depends what impression you want to give:

-Smart and businesslike: a outfit will run you maybe Cr 250 or Cr 1000 for really good quality
-If you want to just appear ‘military businesslike’, then I’d just suggest getting two or outfits tailored in Gel Cloth (DR 7 at TL 12)-that’s what I wear. I would also suggest buying some spare material and an armory kit with the right tools, adhesives etc to repair it, as TL 12 worlds aare few and far between. A standard outfit will cost you CR 2500, an Armory Kit Cr 1000. As you seem to like your desert wear I’d get a few mix n match sets made in neutral brown and buff tones-that seems to suit you anyway. If you go for this option I’d also just spend Cr 1-2000 on ordinary outfits, for night clubbing or whatever.

-If you go this option also get a couple of reflec lined body warmer type or undertype vests faced with matching colour material.


Yes, as I said, Cr.500 is probably the minimum you could get away with spending.

For common expenses like this, I always have in my mind that a credit = a dollar (or a pound in overpriced Britain).

So a Cr.500 set of smart clothes is a $500 set of smart clothes. Acceptable off-the-peg, but you’d be a long way off getting real designer label stuff on that budget.


“Tailored Gel Cloth”? Cool, Grim’s subtracting the creds as we speak. Powder Blue with Crimson and White piping please…


I was using ballpark for ‘ordinary c;oths’.

A good dress cited as Cr 750, a gown Cr 1500. If you really wanted one Grim you could have a gel cloth armored ball gown for only cr 7500


not sure how that would work tho


Cocktail dress, please, Grim is very proud of his calves.


Cocktail dress only Cr 3740 in gel cloth


Arvor will wear his Protec Suit (he got his cut as similar as possible to his NavInt issue – just think MIB), and try to get a decent hair cut tonight.

If everyone else dresses up, folks will just think he is the hired bodyguard!

BTW – with all the guns Arvor has spare, his attache case must either weigh a ton, or be a private pocket wormhole – (accelerator rifle, durandel, snub pistol, gauss pistol, auto-pistol – 3 or 4 in case, 1 or 2 worn).


Max how much should we keep in reserve for an investment buy?


Max shrugs:

“Dunno yet, babe,” he says. “All depends on where we goin’ next, what I can find – lots of factors.”

“You want sumfink, girl – you buy it. You earned it the hard way.”

“I got all the gear I need an’ so I can probably cover if you’re short. I still feel a bit bad that we only got our money back on the last trade.”


Will is a bit intimidated by this whole formal dinner thing. As a physical science academic, he’s used to showing up in cheap restaurants wearing filthy trashed field gear—apparel that even Jie wouldn’t touch. Even for meetings with grant donors he’s never worn anything beyond his favourite checkered sweater vest. He surrepticiously listened in while Taeva gave Grim advice. Arvor, too, seemed to know what he was talking about. “I’d rather face four armed thugs in an engine room while armed only with a 6-shot body pistol,” he thinks to himself.

But, scholars are nothing if not resourceful and willing to face danger, so Will picks up his bank card, grabs his hand comp with the menswear stores already keyed in, and sets off into shopping wilderness. On the way out, passing Grim, he reminds him that one HUD can be keyed to multiple weapons—at least the way William reads the instruction manual, although it was clearly written by an Aslan with dyslexia.

Then, it’s off to the least intimidating of the shops: Mark’s Work Warehouse, which promises to sell more than workboots and leather gloves. There he stands, nervously trying to read the many signs hanging from the ceiling, all orangely blaring the contents of this aisle or that counter. Approached by an 18-year-old acne-challenged young lady, William turns and flees into the mall’s concourse, sweat pouring down his back.

When he recovers his breath, he finds himself standing in front of a wide glass window filled with gorgeous young people wearing the latest fashions. “Hmmm, both Taeva and Jie would look good in that lacy, feathery number,” he thinks. And then mentally slaps himself for being a dirty old man. “Christ, they could be my daughters. Except I hope my daughter wouldn’t be …, oh never mind.”

Then, in the window’s reflection he sees, like a holy grail, a sign for a store on the opposite side of the concourse: Big, Tall, & Old! He dashes across the mall, narrowly missing an elderly gentleman with a walker, and nearly being flattened by an even older matron rally-driving her new-model grav scooter. With mounting excitment he scans the store window: large, frumpy old people clad in ill-fitting suits and, yes, even a sweater vest!

Will is home. He even spends an extra Cr20 on a nice pocket protector.


In the end Will went fairly high-end, spending Cr1000 (including the pocket protector) on his formal attire. He also picks up a TL12 Expert Medic 2 program for his handcomp that will, according to the MRB add a +1DM to his Medic checks. Total spent: Cr11k. And he looks damn good—a Cr1000 sweater vest is truely a thing of awe and beauty.


He also picks up 50 reloads for his body pistol. Another Cr1k.


Jie has a very sinking feeling in the pit of her stomach. Gel Cloth? Mix n Match tones? Piping? She did not know, did not want to know all these options were out there. She picks up on Taevas disdain for snooty royalty and the sinking feeling gets deeper. What if she messes things up? Collace is a strong contender for the role of subsector capital if the district is absorbed that means the Baroness would be promoted to Duchess and if Jie did any social faux pas it would be remembered for the rest of her life. Her hand reaches down to flip the safety switch of her laser carbine on and off in nervousness when she realizes (for the hundredth time) that it is locked up because of the local law against powered weaponry. She will probably have to give up her body pistol and cutlasses also, the Baroness’s secret service would insist.

Jie gets an idea. She searches for the best tailor the hotel internet can provide and will call them herself to design a gown worthy of the occasion. But first she will write down what she will say just to ensure no mistake is made. She fishes for her pencil and some scrap paper…

The court is in for a Lady of the Knights and I really want to hook her attention. I need clothes to wear for an hour and I will not have a laser carbine. I just did a long jaunt and will street walk to your shops. Thank you for your services. (the rest is Jies measurements and the price she is willing to pay)

Feeling extremely proud Jie calls the tailor shop and a familiar voice answers “Qui?”

“Miguel? Is that you?”

“Si Signora Drill Instructor. Aye has a job at the clothes makers for cheap. Aye load in the back and protect at night like you show us. Blam Blam !!” The phone sounds as if it has been dropped then picked back up “Qui?”

“Ah…can you take a message, Miguel. Then give it to the tailor?”

A pause “Aye can take a massage from you if you like, and aye will give a massage to the old man if you like…I guess.”

“Good.” Jie reads the paper. Miguel says he understands and abruptly hangs up.

At the tailors shop “who was that on the vid-screen Miguel?” asks the old clothes maker.

“Ahh veeery powerful woman. She has guns and toll me to make her a dress for these.” Miguel hands the tailor a scrap piece of paper. The old man reads as the ex-Avastian looks for some massage oils.

“What the…?? ’ The courtesan who is a Lady of the Night is a real hooker. I need clothes to wear for a whore and am a concubine. I just did a long John and a street walker. I will spank you for your services’” Miguel wrote the sizes and cash amount perfectly.

“you better due as she sez…She will yell at you!” Miguel says as he begins to massage the old man.


LOL! @ Will, Grim knows that one HUD can be keyed to multiple weapons. He’s already got all three of his other weapons keyed to it, but, his HUD is the TL 11 version (holo projected, also can be slaved to DD/R) and Avastan, where the Body Pistol was purchased, is TL 10, so he had to wait to buy an appropriate new pickup for the weapon. I could’ve asked Nick if the pickups are interchangeable, but it felt more realistic to assume a TL 11 HUD from Collace would need special higher tech pickups. Having said all that, Grim could’ve just picked up a new TL 9 HUD (the old fashioned kind) on Avastan when he got the body pistol, but he figured his natural charm would lead the bad guys to surrender without a fight (and he was being cheap, lol). Fortunately he had Will with him when it didn’t work out that way!


(p.s. @ Will, agree about the writing in the Mongoose rules!)


The body pistols Max bought were actually TL9 versions. I don’t think they would be backwardly compatible with higher tech.

Everything you bought on Avastan is technically Grisst’s property now as he reimbursed you for all your purchases.

In short, you are better off buying new ones if you want them (Arvor’s licensed merc registration will allow you to buy these even though they are not normally allowed on the planet).


LMAO @ Russ!!!!


Guys she hasn’t invited us to a Ball/ dinner-its a 10 am meeting. Perspective.


Uh-Oh. Jie will really be…er..over dressed then.


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