After several weeks of uneventful service following the successful mission to Angstrom Base to recover the notes on the Stellar Inverter, the crew of the USS Edmund Fitzgerald received a new assignment. They were to re-route to the planet Tolen IV where they would be providing security for a peace conference between two warring sects. The first was the official government of Tolen IV who wished to remain a protectorate of the Federation. The second were separatists who believe that the Tolen people would only be held back by remaining as part of the Federation, and that only through full independence could their people grow to their full potential. The crew’s mission would be two-fold: host a reception aboard the ship, and two days later, ensure that the conference went off without a hitch.

Captain’s Log – Stardate 48326.3This isn’t the first time my ship has hosted a reception for delegates from a planetary government; but this one is a bit more difficult, given the political situation on Tolen IV. The delegates have not been openly hostile with one another; but the stares that we’ve seen between them since they were brought on board could freeze a small star. I have ordered security to have a larger than normal presence in and around the reception to check any trouble before it can start. I’ve met with my senior staff and we’ve gone over what we know about each of the delegates and discussed ways to put our best foot forward in a situation where at least half of the people involved are vocally opposed to Federation involvement with their world.

After arriving several days prior to the scheduled reception, the security team beamed down to Tolen IV where they were met by Avard Chevis, aide to Parak Verens Joffies, the Tolen Head of State. Chevis and the security team took a hovercar to the conference facilities where the team would perform a recon and sweep to prepare and plan their security detail. On the way, Chevis answered questions posed by the team.

The first order of business at the conference center was to scan the building from top to bottom to assess the facility’s current security status. Unfortunately, the signals from the Federation tricorders interfered with the somewhat more primitive Tolen electrical system and inadvertently triggered the building’s security protocols. Loud klaxons sounded, and security shutters slammed down over the doors and windows. Chevis, who had retired to the facility’s business wing to work on his own preparations, was cut off the from Starfleet team and was unable to assist. Preliminary investigation revealed a master security panel, but as it required a key-card and/or a security code to lift the lock-down, the team was unwilling to tamper with the system. Soon after, Tolen security forces arrived on the scene and upon seeing the uniformed Starfleet officers, shut down the security system. Now released, Chevis assured the security forces that this was part of the Federation’s assessment of the facility, and that the response time of the security team was part of the assessment.

Satisfied that their sweep was as comprehensive as possible, the team came up with a plan for their security detail:

  • 8 security officers would be stationed at various key points around the facility, including the roof.
  • Sensor pods would be placed inside the air duct system to detect movement.
  • Surround the interior of the conference room with portable shield generators.

In addition, the team secured a list of staff who would be on-site the day of the conference, and would be scanning the region from the ship to monitor potential Separatist communications. It’s been a few weeks since we were able to convene, real life being what it is.

I had originally planned on writing my own module, but since it was lagging behind I opted to go with another published adventure which more or less follows a lot of what I had planned to do with my own document.

Star Trek Adventures is weird because it’s theoretically designed to give the impression that the players are in an episode of the TV show, except that the TV show has the benefit of B-roll segues that we as viewers understand to mean “time has passed…doesn’t matter how much, but basically nothing worth noting has happened”. Since the show-runners only care about the action-y parts, scripts focus on those kinds of scenes. When playing a roleplaying game, however, it feels kind of weird to simply jump from “executive offers are sitting around the conference table receiving their briefing” to “you’re already in the middle of the next scene, doing what you’re supposed to be doing, as a set-up for the purpose of this scene”.

Anyway, the players asked a lot of good questions of both the Captain and Chevis. As usual, I think I gave out too much info where I shouldn’t have, and not enough where I should have, which is the curse of anyone who has to think quickly in response to unforeseen questions. When they arrived at the facility, Mayloc unsuccessfully rolled for his scans of the place, prompting Clark to lend his Advisor talent to Giaus which allowed him to re-roll a single die. Although Giaus succeeded with a single die success, we opted to re-roll the failure die in the hopes of gaining a point of Momentum. Sadly, he rolled a 20, resulting in the Complication that set off the facility’s security system. I hate Fumbles and Complications; I can never come up with a suitable roadblock related to the task that triggered the issue. Since the team was scanning the place to prep for a security detail, I figured some Complication related to that might be in order, hence the accidental lock-down. Could a tricorder accidentally trip a more primitive security system? In Star Trek, “treknobabble” is all the rationale you need. I had hoped that the players would confront the Tolen security forces and provide the lie that Chevis did — that this was part of the procedure, and the security forces were being graded on their response time — but it would have been just icing on the cake and irrelevant to the overall situation.

I must say that I am exceedingly pleased with the player’s security plans, however. The published module offers three possible security measures — staff placed around the facility, portable shield generators, and sensor pods in key areas — the team decided on all three completely without hints or prodding. I did let them know that this was, of course, Star Trek, so if they can think of something, no matter how outlandish it might sound to our 21st century ears, it’s probably doable in the 24th century. Still, they didn’t bat an eye and went full-steam ahead with the setup, which means things should be all set for next week.

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