- Captain Temket was a bloodstained woman who was reluctantly upholding the family name.
- First Officer Devlin was a regulations-oriented espionage junkie first officer.
- Doctor Briffin was a curious professional eager to solve weird space mysteries.
- Lt. Commander 3 of 7 was a recovered Borg science officer, savvy and enthusiastic about meeting sexy space aliens. (The Borg expanded her horizons to what that could mean.)
They crewed the Space Federation Starship Komodo. It was previously found adrift, all crew vanished except for bloodstains. After a tow back to spacedock, it was refitted and recrewed; probably nothing wrong.
The Komodo was also equipped with a transporter relay system; it could use the transporter beam to set up a beacon, and from there send out another beacon, and therefore transport molecular signatures over vaster distances before reconfiguring them.
Three of Seven also brought some Borg tech to enhance integration and data mining of sensors, so they were tremendously more efficient than average arrays.
The Komodo was headed to the Erkelliash Nebula Pulse Cluster, a peculiar dwarf star phenomenon that interferes with ship sensors. They were to use their specialized scanning gear to try and understand why, and adapt that tech for ship cloaking.
On the way out, they were to stop at Starbase 482. They discovered it had been hit by raiders, and they scanned for which way the raiders went. Turns out it was a single ship, with poor shielding and inferior weapons. They determined there were no survivors on the space station, and lay in a pursuit course, with the intent to swoop around and confront the ship from another direction. Over the course of scanning the raider’s trail, they noted it dropped out of warp more than once, as though trying to address a problem.
Then they got a distress signal from the freighter Navi, under attack by a raider. The Komodo dropped out of warp out of the raider sensor range, and used their relay transporters and enhanced scanners to look the raider ship over, then transport out the contents of a junk room near the bridge and drop the First Officer and a boarding party in that room.
Devlin wanted to disable the escape pods first, but found that something beat him to it with a dose of molecular acid. He relayed that information back, and the Komodo scanned the raider ship more carefully, finding that the engine shielding had nearly failed, and there were other signs of damage across the ship. Considering the Navi was unarmed, and the space station had not inflicted the damage, they realized there was something else.
Another more careful scan of the ship detected two odd life forms on the outside of the ship, and some similar but different forms too. The cargo stolen from the starbase was bolted to the hull, so there were plenty of places for the life forms to stay out of sight.
Devlin launched a raid on the bridge, mowing down the raiders and only losing one security ensign (with another injured.) The raiders had gum-like skin, flexible, with redundant organs surfacing as needed. Their arms could split from two to four, and they put up a fight before they went down. (Scans indicated that only a few were left, so a number of them had died somehow.)
Since the Navi was registered under Federation protection, the captain sent a repair crew to work on their ship. Meanwhile Devlin was responsible for disconnecting cargo containers for the Komodo to reel in and salvage. Uneasy, the captain only gave him half an hour to do this; she sensed something about the aliens and decided they were evil.
One was hiding in the exhaust vent, so Devlin boosted output and flash-fried it. The other tried to hide, so they let it think it succeeded. They went out to salvage, and sensors tracked the critter moving around to ambush them. They slew it in phaser cross-fire, witnessing first hand the effect of its acid blood on a cargo pod.
Now free of the threat, they continued the salvage. Doctor Briffin piloted a medical drone across the empty void, and discovered an open container that had come from an archeological expedition by the Probiri on Daluvian IV. Its quarentine seal had not been broken until the raiders got it. Inside, the probe found empty eggs, as well as plinths and other basalt stone structures with odd glyphs on them. An egg opened, and a face hugger tried to get the drone, then fell off and scarpered across the hull. The drone followed it, and stunned it to death.
By now the science officer and captain realized what the doctor was up to. They granted permission to bring the dead thing aboard and dissect it (for science!) and the captain recalled the first officer, towed the ship some distance away, and blew it to bits.
By now they had combed through the footage from the engineering team they left in the wreck of the space station, and confirmed there was only a single raider. The captain’s instinct picked up something else, and she ordered the ship scanned inside and out. The scans did not pick up anything unusual, but blind luck did notice a flicker in the star field. A cloaked ship was nearby.
They maneuvered to see if it followed, and determined it was not interested in the Navi or them. 3 of 7 detected it scanning the debris field, focusing on remains of the acid-blood aliens. They hailed the cloaked ship, and it reluctantly decloaked.
They communicated via images, it beamed them pictures of the darkshells and they beamed images back of what they scanned. They were invited aboard the ship, so the captain and the doctor went.
There the transthink mutation began quickly working to establish verbal communication with the race that self-identified as “the Hunters.” Once they established that everyone was on board with slaying the darkshell aliens, things relaxed. The doctor chatted up the smallest one, who identified as “Angry.” The captains agreed to swap some transporter tech for some cloaking tech. Things almost fell through when the doctor accidentally threatened the hunters by offering to take samples (they interpreted those as trophy collecting) but diplomacy won out, and the first contact ended well.
The game lasted 2:30. I thought I had a 3 hour slot, but it was actually a 4 hour slot, so I shortchanged my poor players by an hour and a half. They were very efficient with this adventure, and I did not bring a backup.