GM'd by Ewan Quibell
Characters: Slade and Lakir
NPC: Eneri Jliimmi and Steve Inglesant
Location: Nasashurishid, a restaurant on the Gishinridu Highport
1125.7.6 Standard Imperial time: 08:25, Standard Vland time: 08:23, Local time: 06:45
Walking into Nasashurishid, the guys get shown to a table and are given menus. Most standard fair is available, although a little on the pricey side.
There are perhaps ten or so spacers in the restaurant, some on their own, and one or two pairs.
A waiter, vilani male mid-twenties, comes and asks for their order, "What can I get you gentlemen?"
Slade asks for something that approximates meat and eggs with toast, and coffee.
"We have no fresh meet at the moment sir. Only protein supplement with the usual flavors. We have fresh eggs, how would you like them?"
Lakir orders, "Coffee and fries, if the oils hot."
The waiter takes their orders with a nod and leaves them in peace for a moment while he fetches the coffees. The waiter soon returns with two pots of coffee and a small pot of milk that looks real. He places saucers in front of each of them and one pot on the table. He fills each coffee cup from the pot he's holding before placing the cup on the saucer in front of them. While this isn't the fully formal vilani style serving it's better than they've seen in a while and certainly not what they would have expected from a spacer bar.
"Your food will be ready in a moment gentlemen."
Lakir, continues to look and listen around the room. As the aroma of the coffee fills his nose he eavesdrops in on two Subbies and their conversation.
"Did you hear anything as to why the Navy went through our manifest and cargo with a fine toothed comb?" One asks as he put a fork full of protein supplement into his mouth and chews loudly.
Slade notices Lakir listening and does likewise.
"Yeer ... Hiaani said that they were being thorough to try and stop the smuggling of stolen goods. Seems the number of pirates in Imperial space is on the rise and they're trying to shift the goods into the Ziru Sirkaa." He pauses for thought for a moment before asking, "Did you ever find out why Hiaani is so far from Darrian? No? ... Oh well."
"Oh that reminds me, Hiaani said he had a bit of a chuckle this morning speaking to a couple of Navy lads who'd just finished for the day. You think we had it bad coming in? Seems like some Garu class got the jump on old misery guts Drilimmi while she was running some training exercises. 'Precipitated out of Jump only a few thousand klicks from their position.
"Drilimmi is picket of four ships ... see ... and her sensor op is half asleep ... misses the trader completely. It's minutes before it's picked up. They even missed the jump flash! ... Scott's sensor op sees an unknown bogie burning for Gishinridu and calls for a standard scatter at which point the Garu goes to active sensors and lights up the squadron like they were sitting ducks! ... Hiaani reckons the Garu must have got weapons lock almost instantly, on all four ships in the squadron, and with a couple of decent gunners could have picked their shots ... Have you ever heard of when two Fer-de-lance's and two Lurushaar Kilaalum's were taken out by a single Garu??!!" He laughs, "Makes Drilimmi look truly stupid and she's absolutely fucking livid!!"
The other Subbie at this point has stopped eating due to his laughter. The other restaurant patrons are listening and the Subbie telling the story continues a little louder for his new audience, "No, No, Steve. Mate, it gets better. Drilimmi pulls them over for an inspection, and as Hiaani tells it, fine toothed comb doesn't do it justice. She looks for absolutely anything ... and doesn't find a thing! Winds her up something terrible this does!!"
The other Subbie is in stitches at this point and the other clients of the restaurant are all listening to the story along with yourselves.
"And .... Mate And .... they're only delivering cargo for the Navy Factor!!"
At which point most of the restaurant's patrons are laughing and the other subbie is holding his stomak in his efforts to control his laughter.
"But ... But ... and I'm not making this up, it's just as Hiaani told me ... the crowning glory is that she's under 'extend every fucking courtesy' so the squadron has to give them an escort into the high port!!!"
At which point the restaurant is full of laughter, and there is some banging on the tables and clanking of cutlery in an approving kind of a way.
Lakir quietly says to Slade, "Don't say jack about that gig the Capn's got us looking for."
Lakir says to the subbie, "I'm glad we could provide a bit of breakfast amusement. She did seem to be a bit pissed at the time."
The Subbie looks Lakir in the eye for a moment and then smiles, "Really? You're the guys from that Garu class then, hay? Well you've made my day, and probably most of the station's as well. Don't get me wrong, Drilimmi is good at her job, but she can ... just be, well... just a little officious, shall we say?"
Nods go round the place.
He offers his hand, "What Ship?"
Taking his hand, Lakir says "Miishakaal, outbound for some RVE action."
The Subbie looks at you a little strangely "RVE? ... Oh you mean the Restored Ziru Sirkaa!" he chuckles a little. "I can understand why, what with pirate activity on the increase this side of the border. Not that it's likely to be this side of the border for long. Gishinridu's a client state at the moment and is likely to be accepted as a full member any time real soon."
The waiter comes with your food and as he gets to your table the Subbie says, "Eneri, put it on my tab," and to the guys, "Worth every credit just thinking about the look on Drilimmi's face!" he laughs again. "You're welcome to join us if you fancy a chat." The Subbie indicates the chairs on his table.
Lakir smiles, "Why thank you, we'd enjoy the company."
"Good, good. Grab a seat" he indicates the chairs, and nods at the waiter to put the food on their table. Talking about himself he says, "Eneri Jliimmi, XO of the Evening Elizabeth, and this is our Chief Engineer, Steve Inglesant."
Steve still smiling from the story rises and offers both his hand.
Grasping his hand, Lakir introduces himself, "Lakir, cargo schlep," then gestures to Slade, "and Mr. Trask, Chief Engineer. Any pointers you may have for ops in the RZS would be appreciated, though I must admit, I'm somewhat confused about this transponder issue we hear about..."
"We're registered out of the Ziru Sirkaa. So what would you like to know?" Steve Inglesant says as he's shaking their hands.
Lakir continues, "Our Capn's concerns primarily revolve around the transponder requirement for ops in RZS space, especially the down time associated with the admin and install times. Then, there is the requirement for reinstalling our Imperial transponder. If we resume ops this side of the border. Don't suppose you know anybody who might be able to help with some info?"
Steve looks at Eneri, "Eneri is more versed with the admin side of things, but we haven't had any trouble with operations this side of the border, and haven't needed to reinstall our old Imperial transponder. Eneri what say you?"
Eneri pipes up, "If you want to trade in the Ziru Sirkaa you'll have to register your ship, and as you said, that means you need to change the transponder. If you don't register, you will be asked to leave Ziru Sirkaa space, and if you don't the Navy don't play nice if you get my meaning. They'll do a background check on your ship, standard stuff really, takes around a month to do.
"You can probably get it done here come to think of it as they are about to join. Check with Hiaani, even thought he's a Darrian he's one of the most efficient sophonts I know. You may find he'll be able to speed up the background check, but don't bank on it. He'll also know about operating over the border, although come to think of it I haven't heard of any trouble with Ziru Sirkaa ships trading in Imperial Space. I think they aren't too bothered to wonder if it's a Ziru Sirkaa transponder or an Imperial one. When we traded cross border a few months ago we had no trouble at all.
"You'll have to register your cargo if you are carrying it inbound, if you haven't done so already, but just talk to the Starport Authority guys here, it won't take more than 30 minutes."
Lakir is pleased, "Excellent, so it's not as bad as we feared. Where would I be able to find this Hiaani individual? Also, as we are new here, who's the most reliable ship mender in port?"
"Hiaani?" Asks Eneri. "Hiaani Jighar Killic, his full name, is one of the assistant port masters here, best one of the lot if you ask me.
"And as for fixing ships, all the yards are good. Sasidraad's the independent, there's also the Starport Authority yard and the Navy. You'll probably need a good reason to get any work done at the Navy yard, but as for the other two, if you want your transponder done then it will have to be the Starport Authority, otherwise you'll get a more personal service from Sasidraad's. What would you say about the work Steve?"
Steve answers to Slade, "Nothing in it really, the quality is just as good either way. If you're going to be passing through here often I'd say go with Sasidraad's. They'll get to know your ship after a while and then treat her how you would yourself. If you want it a little quicker and less personal then use the Starport Guys. As I said nothing in it really."
The four men eat their food and make small talk for a while, before the waiter comes back and clears their plates.
Eneri and Steve stand and offer their hands, "Been good meeting you," says Eneri.
"See you around," adds Steve.
After shaking Lakir's and Slade's hands they leave the restaurant.
Lakir says to Slade, "Lets head over to Sasidraad's, check out the gig for a transponder swap. I'll pass the info on Hiaani Jighar Killic back to the Cap'n, see what she wants to do."
Slade disagrees, "If I heard the guy right, he said the transponder work has to be done by the Starport Authority."
"Yah, you're right. Lets check out their waiting list. Maybe the Cap'n'll have to work on o'll Hiaani a bit, just to get that 'extend all courtesy" extended a wee tad farther."
Slade borrows Lakir's PDA and checks out Sasidraad's. Their info page shows the standard stuff, how well they do their job, what they can do for you, and how efficient they do it etc. They don't have a schedule posted, but they are showing that there are slips available for maintenance work. Their is a comm contact listed off the main starport authority one.
Lakir looks over to see what Slade has for info, "You want to call them Slade, or should we head on over for some face to face? Chances are you'll have better luck with the techno angles. If it doesn't pan out, we'll check in with the Cap'n. Price list and timings for the install, we'll keep it simple."
Slade isn't so sure, "Well I'll tell the Captain. We gotta make the appointment anyway. We need the transponder. If we get a little extra it's just icing on the cake. I'm gonna head back, okay? We can call them from there. At least we know people have heard of us, that might be worth something. Thanks for your help, Lakir. You coming back with me, or you got other shit to do?"
"No problem man. Yeah, I think I've had my fill of the place for this morning."
Going up to pay the bill, they find that the waiter who served them meets them half way.
"I hope you enjoyed your meal," he says, "Your breakfast companions have more than covered the bill."
He presents Slade with a bottle of Vilani wine of modest quality and continues, "With the compliments of the house, and we hope we can be of service to you again."
Stunned and speechless, they both manage a "Thanks" before leaving.
The waiter opens the door for them as they leave.
As they enter the docking arm, Slade receives a call from Gvarokh. Gvarokh tells Slade that there's been a problem in engineering with the fuel purification plant. Something about a broken compressor pump, fuel scrubbers, and clogged filters.
Slade tries to contain his anger, "Shit! We'll be right there Gvarokh."
The two men start running back to the ship.
Next: Vincent Oversees a Fuel Purification Plant Malfunction