Mass Effect: IC-342 (Ironsworn: Starforged) Session 5

Move: Set A Course: (Back to the Ulysses)
Roll: 5 (Supply) + 2 (7) vs. 7 & 8 Challenge Dice. (Miss)
Pay The Price: Waste resources (-1 Supply [now 4])

    The instant my feet start moving, I can’t stop. I need to get back to the Ulysses, need to link up with Cerberus command and tell them everything. Rushing out of the room, I cross the bridge at a full run, clip a console with my belt packs and lose a pair of thermal clips to the void as I pass. It’s enough to make me hesitate, reaching, but only for an instant. There’s no time to linger, no time to obsess over lost clips. I’ll pick up more on Anchor Drop, requisition them, something.

    Consoles light up as I rush past. Consoles with strings of data projected in blue light, but none of it is anything like what I saw, none of it terrifying in implication. The gravity gets heavier and heavier as I run, finally reaching something like earth normal as I burst out of the vault and into Beryl’s wet atmosphere.

    “MISO!” I shout to my ship’s overseer the instant the static clears enough for my voice to break through. “Are you reading me?”

    “Affirmative, Commander.”

    “I need a secure line to Director Calderone as soon as you can get me one.”

    “Connecting you now, Commander.”

    There’s a sound, a series of clicks, then a rhythmic pulse, like a heartbeat. In the time it takes me to clear the distance between me and the ship, MISO coordinates the requests and security protocols to get a direct line to Calderone. I’m half out of my environmental suit when the call finally connects.

    “Tell me you’ve found something,” Calderone says. “It’s been a terrible day and I need some good news.”

    “The wildcatters were right,” I tell him, keeping it vague. “Send the science team you have on standby. Bring an escort shuttle with a security detachment. Or two. Or ten. Make it top priority.”

    “What did you find down there, Commander?”

    “I’ll upload my bodycam footage as soon as I’m back on the secure network at Anchor Drop,” I shove my helmet into its alcove, pull in a deep breath. “This is big, Director. It’s too big to risk transmitting anything over the Weave.”

    “I guess I’m going to have to take your word for it,” Joseph says, sounding cautious.

    “You may want to get Farin and the other administrators in on a conference call when I get there too,” I tell him, stowing my armor and hitting the access panel for the inner lock. There’s a gust of air, enough to make me pause, and then I add, “It’s that big. We’re not alone out here, not in the way we think.”

    I can almost hear Calderone swallow over the line. When he speaks again, the words come slow, measured.

    “If it’s as big as what we’ve just seen out here,” he lets the words trail off, and this time, it’s me who pauses, worried.

    “What do you mean?” I ask hastily.

    “I’ll set up the conference. We’ll talk about everything when you get back,” he says. “It’s too big to risk over the Weave.”

    I open my mouth to ask more, ultimately hesitate again. Glancing down the length of the ship to the cockpit, I look out into the murky sky beyond the viewplate, finally decide to let it go.

    “Roger that. Schaefer out. See you in four hours.”

    Move: Set A Course: (Back to Anchor Drop Station)
    Roll: 4 (Supply) + 2 (6) vs. 4 & 4 Challenge Dice. (Strong Hit + Match)
    Arrive safely and prepared. (Cannot gain more momentum.)


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