The Cete

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An abandoned megaship named The Cete is in orbit of the planet Col 173 Sector LJ-F c12-0 A 3.

A series of six Ship Log Uplink points can be located along the hull.

Deploy your ships hardpoints and use the onboard Data Link Scanner within 200m of each post to scan them and retrieve the logs of the expedition into the Guardian Ruins led by Professor Melville.

“I’m not just going to sit here while that jumped-up mechanic Ram Tah spoon-feeds us information.”

That’s what Professor Melville said. He wanted to know more about the Guardians – maybe even figure out where they came from. So off we went, with little to go on beyond the professor’s belief that there were more ruins out there.

He claims to have information that will help us find more sites, but he’s keeping it close to his chest. Only he and the piiot know where we’re going. It’s like he’s afraid someone will take credit for his discovery. We’ve been scanning lifeless planetoids for days, eyeballing the ground for locations.

He keeps reciting the same little speech: “Xeno-achaeology has moved on. The days of exploring the outer reaches, only occasionally finding something of value, are behind us. I have found the key.”

But I’m not an archaeologist. Professor Melville is just a means to an end. I signed up for the money.

We received an update today – apparently Ram Tah has found some new sites. Melville scoffed when he heard the news. “Scraps from an amateur,” he said. “We’ ll find the reaI secrets. Trust me.”

Trust. That’s an interesting thing. Why should we trust someone who doesn’t trust us’? Well, maybe he has reason not to: I took a look at his records while he was talking to the piiot. l don’t like being kept in the dark.

Melville thinks there could be hundreds of sites out there. His hypothesis is that the Guardians occupied an area of space similar in size to that currently inhabited by humans, but that for some reason they were forced to migrate. He believes he can find that region of space and the Guardians’ point of origin.

The Guardians could well have had a huge civilisation, with hundreds of sites – maybe thousands – in this part of space. The similarities across different sites are comparable to the way we reuse certain structures. After all, how many Goriolis stations are there in the galaxy?

Melville thinks the Synuefe XR-H D11-102 system represents some kind of end point or ‘last colony’. Beyond that, the sites appear in ciusters, with the number of sites in each cluster getting increasingly larger. We discovered a cluster of sites only a few days ago before finding a location with an entirely unique layout. So far we’ve found three sites in each of the following systems: Synuefe LY-I b42-2, Synuefe NL-N c23-4 and Synuefe TP-F b44-0.

There are basically three different types of site, most of which have a different codex layout. Melville thinks that each type of site fulfilled a different function. He also thinks the Guardians were the dominant species in this region of space. But he’s not content with this discovery. He wants to keep going.

Are we ever going back to turn back?

This isn’t a research vessel anymore – it’s a prison. All means of communicating with the rest of the galaxy have been disabled. Melville has taken control of ship. His obsession has doomed us all.

I’m transmitting these records in the hope that someone finds them and comes to our rescue. But the chances of that are slim.

We’re getting out of here. The ship was designed to leave the lab ship to fly solo carrying out experiments while the drive ship ferried supplies to and from occupied space.

We’re going to trap the Professor in the lab ship, blow the umbilical and return home in the drive ship. The crazy old fool will have enough supplies to last him years. lt’s more than he deserves, trying to trap us all out here.

There is no escape now. Somehow he found out what we were planning and welded the airlock to the drive ship shut. When we confronted him he went crazy, called us mutineers and cowards…

He shot our junior research assistant Marcus to make an example for the rest of us. The kid hadn’t done anything wrong, he just wanted to get home.

The only way off this ship is…

In addition, a final seventh Ship Log Uplink yields the following message:

Warning! Atmospheric processors off line. You now have 15 hours to evacuate the ship before oxygen levels become toxic.

Warning! Atmospheric processors off line. You now have 10 hours to evacuate the ship before oxygen levels become toxic.

Warning! Atmospheric processors off iine. You now have 5 hours to evacuate the ship before oxygen leveis become toxic.

Warning oxygen depleted.

There are multiple Guardian ruins in the same system, along with several Brain Tree sites, and the Bifrost – a crashed Anaconda that was the final point in an aborted Canonn expedition with several data points and some low level engineering materials in the area on planet A 4 c.


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