Checking in from Neville Horizons, maintenance unit, Kaushpoos system. The time is 17:24. Logging hull damage, cracked canopy, interior module damage, thermal and projectile damage following local criminal engagement.

I got in last night. It’s a beautiful station, for what it’s worth – sort of bronze on the outside. It’s buzzing at present, no doubt thanks to the partnership project between Universal Cartographics and the Explorers Association to build this new outpost in the Pleiades. Privateers have flocked to fulfil orders for construction materials, along with the inevitable pirates. The Association have set aside a pot of money to pay bounties on them so construction can continue unhindered. This kind of stuff is paydirt to Vex, who’s apparently saving up for a new toy.

It’s lucky he’s not in hospital this morning, as it happens. I’d just docked and was heading to the bar when I came across him picking a fight with five heavies – off-duty station security Viper pilots by the looks of them. He never learns. It’s hard to get bounties from the medical wing. They were boasting about bagging one of his kills or something, and he decided to “correct” them. I was just in time to see him stamp his cigar out; a sure sign that he’s about to do something violent. Those guys hate mercenaries at the best of times.

Vex is an early riser when there’s a chance he’ll get to shoot at someone so we got out there this morning. There are substantial palladium mining sites in the planetary rings here – a sure-fire honeypot – so that’s where we headed.


It was all going ok. She’s not a dedicated combat ship but I’ve given the Vortigaunt some pretty sharp claws, for when she needs them; mainly in the form of some chunky chain guns and a couple of fragment cannons. Vex was flying that gaudy palace of his, the Domus Alba, which has three cannons each as long as a canoe on it, so nothing we found gave us much trouble.


I got a bit cocky. Vex had left his cockpit for a moment and I spotted a lone Imperial Clipper with a kill warrant on its head, about two kilometres planetward.

I can handle that, I thought. I boosted over to it and opened fire with twin beam lasers as soon as I was in range. Stupid – the Clipper was nearly facing right at me when my beams started scorching its hull, so within a second or two I was taking fire from all hardpoints.

My shields went down in moments. They’re pretty chunky but they’re all I rely on – the Vortigaunt’s hull is pretty thin, so as soon as that happened I was in trouble. It was when my canopy started cracking from the heat of the lasers that I decided to cut my losses. I retracted hardpoints, diverted all power to engines and pulled up as fast as I could, tearing away as the Clipper peppered my hindquarters.

I think the Vortigaunt would have been smoke had Vex not got there. I was high tailing it by this point, but apparently he ended up ramming the Clipper to finish it off. We got the bounty but most of my share had to go on repairs.

I’ll be here for another hour or two. I might get these guys to look into the software glitch I encountered out by Mintaka while I have the chance.

Souvarine out.



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