Traveller Calendar 2013
Relic Hunt by Mirco Adam
Arba (Lunion, Spinward Marches K)
The Imperial Navy Type T patrol cruiser Cunningham enters the Arba system on a routine patrol in the Sword Worlds border region.
The jump side effects scattered away and finally revealed the usual nothingness of the 100 diameter surface (HDS) region. The gas giant was still a good hour away to the low starboard side of the sleek ship.
Captain Royters spoke quietly into the wireless headset he preferred over the more common com dots his crew used for shipboard communications:
“Mr Jenkins, please plot a course to a safe skimming orbit and set course as soon as possible.” He stood silently for a moment as if he spotted something unusual against the disk of the blue planet. Then he turned to the door. “I’ll be in my day room, for a while. Your ship, Mr Jenkins.”
“Sir!” He managed acknowledging, then turned back to the screen. He wasn’t much into protocol, just like Royters didn’t in such situations. Unlike the others on the bridge he was aware of the captain’s short hesitation and acted upon it immediately. A passive sweep of the belt was his first action next to plotting the refueling course.
“Lara! Get us everything on that belt you can manage without a ping.” He looked to the front port side station. “If anyone or thing is lurking there, I don’t want to announce our presence.”
“Yessir”, she the dark haired woman answered while starting to sort out her Gear. Only minutes later – during the continuing approach towards Hagars Belt – energy signatures showed up where none should be.
The mining base once located at that position had been lost due to a fatal accident a decade ago. According to archived naval reports an officially assigned salvage company had long since dismantled what had been left of the station…
Yet the remains apparently remained…
The battered station hulk was showing on the readouts.
“Sam!” Lara Tollivan spoke quietly, “There is some activity near the derelict base. Looks like about 2 Kilotons. Probably one of those Imperiallines Freighters you see just about everywhere… She’s powered down though.”
“Gimme the bearing. I am quite curious what their business should be.” Lara swooped across her display to virtually propel the displayed data past the edge of her holoscreen towards Sam Jenkins’ own console, where the data arrived as if there wasn’t any gap between both displays.
“Okay. Let’s close on in on them and see what they are up to. With any luck interferences from the gas giants magnetic field covered our arrival.“ He paused shortly,“How long’s the ride?”
“Just short of an hour.” Lara answered. “Shall we wake the watch?”
“No, don’t think we need any troops. Just keep behind those boulders so we have some cover and approach far enough to scan visual evidence.”
The Patrol Cruiser heaved low under the plane of the Asteroid ring and approached the derelict station and the large Frontier Transport drifting close to the bases battered hulk …
Notes on the image above:
I made everything in Blender 2.63, even some compositing, the asteroids were made after completing Andrew Price’s Asteroid Field Tutorial [link]
Ships Textures were made with Gimp 2.8 and InkScape.
The exceptions – not created by me – are:
– the Derelict Mining Base by SolCommand [link]
– the gas giant texture is from Enderion [link] here on DeviantArt
– and I used one of FrostBo’s [link] Ressources for the background image, which can also be found here on DeviantArt: [link]
Variations made in 2014
Relic Hunt in an IceBelt
Relic Hunt in a Basalt Rock Belt
The two major Asteroids in the foreground have been scaled down and duplicated (rotated and further scaled) in the newer images.