When next we see our intrepid adventuring gang, Hat and Xavier wake up to find a trail of blood in their room… Xavier and Hat find that the trail extends out of their room and down the hallway proper. The pair quickly alert up Kufo, Khuil, Rav, Phineas, and Challo. Hat also calls in Security. Challo provides remote support via comms while the others investigate the blood trail. Kufo smells the blood, and is able to tell that it’s a) human, and b) still warm. At this point, the team notices something strange. The end of the trail of blood coming out of Xavier’s room is evaporate. As two security officers show up, the group decides to follow the blood trail before it disappears. The blood trail heads to the cargo hold. As the group approaches the hold, they find a security sidearm and a shoe. The security officers try to call it in, only to encounter a signal issue that prevents them from contacting the security office. While the security officers repeat their attempts, Xavier, Rav, Khuil, and Kufo enter the cargo hold.
The hold smells of blood and sewage, with blood splattered everywhere. As the group enters, they seem to hear a strange sound, almost like footsteps, but made with something…sharp. A guard’s disemboweled body is hanging over the crate the team was investigating earlier in the trip. As the lighting in the room is extremely bad due to damage to the lighting system, Xavier climbs up on a nearby crate to get a vantage point. The body suddenly falls down, and those on the ground take a closer look at it. The legs have huge gash wounds in them, and it is obvious that the guard has been dead for only minutes. Xavier hears movement in the depths of the hold, and warns the group to take care. Khuild and Rav being flanking the crate, establishing a search pattern to catch the creature. Meanwhile, Challo, realizing that he has lost contact with the encounter team, uses all his skills to punch a weak signal through to Hat. It isn’t much to start with, but it’s a beginning to re-establish contact. Hat, thinking quickly, grabs his low-light googles, and manages to catch a glimpse of what appear to be giant green spider legs on the ceiling. Hat calls the things movement as it runs for the air duct. Xavier, Hat, and Rav all take shots at the creature as it enters the air duct, with Rav managing to nail it with a lucky burst. The body collapses just inside the air duct. Suddenly, screams sound from outside the hold.
Xavier, Phineas, Rav, and Hat head outside, while Khuil and Kufo make sure nothing takes the rest of the team in the back. The team runs outside the hold just in time to see a second creature take out the second of the two guards, having already killed the first. The creature then quickly disappears around the corner. The group attempts to carefully work their way around the corner. It’s a good thing they remain calm, as Challo appears around the same corner, having decided to check things out in person! Challo did not encounter the second creature despite coming down the same hallway the creature retreated down, which makes him a very lucky man! Meanwhile, Xavier carefully pulls the alien corpse out of the air duct. The corpse appear to be a bright green ovoid about 2 feet long, with long, extremely sharp legs and a chitinous exterior.
At this point, the team regroups to take stock of the entire situation. After a quick discussion, the group splits to secure the two most vital areas of the ship; the bridge and engineering. Xavier and Phineas head to the bridge, while the rest of the team heads to engineering. As Hat, Kufo, Khuil, and Rav close on engineering, they notice that the engineering door is stuck partially open. Forcing the door open the rest of the way, the team catches a glimpse of one of the creatures at it scuttles off. The engineering section is difficult to navigate, as once again, a low-lighting situation is in play. Some of the engineering displays are still working, however, which will hopefully give Kufo something to work with. While the creature has disappearing into the engineering machinery, Hat is mysteriously able to isolate its location to the jump drive section. Challo bravely attempts to squeeze in after the creature, but suddenly gets stuck in an opening that should have been wide enough to admit him, and has to be pulled clear from the whole. Hat investigates this strange phenomenon with his staff, only to have the staff yanked through the opening, and a few seconds, later, flung back through the opening…in very tiny pieces.
Xavier and Phineas find the night bridge crew still alive. The duo report the current incidents, and suggest that the bridge be locked down for now. Xavier remains on the bridge, while Phineas leaves before the lockdown, and heads back to engineering. Xavier begins hitting the comm channels and cameras to ascertain the overall condition of the ship and her crew.
Back in Enginering, Kufo investigates the consoles to find all systems fine except for anomalies in jump drive. Kufo tries to check out lights and cameras, with limited success on the lights. There appear to be no signs of life on the cameras. Acting on an uncanny hunch, Hat has Challo check to see if there is any kind of signal interference that might explain the abnormal jump drive readingd. Challo does pick up the end of a strange signal, but as he does so, the signal cuts off. Kufo confirms that the malfunctions in the jump drive have stopped. Phineas gets back to engineering, and with the engineering situation handled, the group goes back to cargo hold. They examine the alien corpse, making two discoveries in the process. First of all, the alien body is dissolving on its own. Secondly the body doesn’t appear to show on cameras.
Kufo and Challo further examine the body. The rest of the team, their curiosity unsatisfied by their original adventure into the cargo hold, open crate the crate, only to find an ordinary, if somewhat large power modulator for large, high-end industrial equipment.
The view of the cameras is not encouraging. Most of crew appears to be dead. Challo wakes up Lady Romanov and brings her to the cargo hold to be with the rest of the team. At this point, the group decides that the best thing to do is to hunker down in engineering and the bridge, and try to stay safe until the ship emerges from jump space, at which point they can call for help.
Hat reveals that during his last sleep cycle, he had another repetition of his encounters with the little girl he’s been seeing. While the conversation from the girl did not make much sense, she does say something about “these events happening before.”