The day after the events at Footfall, when hangovers were dealt with and exorbitant bar tabs were paid, the Explorers set under way for the Magoros system and attempted to salvage the Emperor’s Bounty. Scanning Feckward’s ship, the Chains of Dusk, before they left learning that it was carrying far more people than the normal crew complement would indicate. Theorizing that he was either in the mercenary trade for Seldon’s Folly or could be into slaving. Either way they vowed to continue to monitor this scurrilous rogue.
Setting out towards the Magoros system, the Explorers went through the standard Aquairre route of going through Corpse-Fortune, False Hope.Passing through Rain and finally arriving in Magoros. Apart from a brief detour into the False Hope system where they received an astropathic message meant to tempt them into the nebula. Upon realising that this message was a fake, they proceeded to the Magoros system.
Composed of three planets encircled by a giant asteroid belt, the Magoros system has a dead star lurking in its center, with no signs of in-system life. The star blared out radiation that would regularly damage ship’s system. The combined teamwork of Explorator Felicis and Lieutenant Nichols isolated the cycles of the radiation and were able to insulate the systems.
Magoros Secundus was a jungle world buried under a layer of frost. Spotting ruins identified as the long-dead Egarian civilization, the planet was abandoned covered only in its mazes and odd crystal spires. Apart from detecting some damage in one of the ruins, they also noticed that the planet was reacting to the radiation spikes, sending a “beam” of energy towards Magoros Prime. Journeying to the dust-storm planet at the hart of the system, they discovered a similar structure of mazes and towers, but unlike the ice planet, this one had a unique reaction to the power being beamed from the ice world. One of the spires reacted oddly to the energy beamed from the distant world.
Reasoning that if this structure might be receiving power then survivors from the Emperor’s Bounty may have tried to flee there, the Explorers landed to investigate. Threading their way through the maze, they reached the central spire to notice the same indistinct crystal structure that had no working energy or parts. In the center of the crystal tower was a small dais that Rogue Trader Hos stood upon to examine. When the next power surge hit the planet from Magoros Secundus, the tower was transformed into a mixture of an observatory and a planetary record. It beamed thousands of years of knowledge into his head, showing the collapse of the Magoros system from a habitable paradise into the dead system it now was. When he thought about the Bounty, the observatory showed in the Bounty’s entrance into the system, and its subsequent refuge that it took inside of the asteroid belt.
Pinpointing its location, they set course for the Shard Halo on the outskirts of the Magoros system. The Bounty was right where Lord-Captain Hos said it would be, although extensively beaten by the millennia in the asteroid field. Astropath Eckhart seized upon the idea of clearing the field with the lance battery onboard the In Purgatio Lumen. A remarkably successful blast later, and a path was cleared for the ship’s guncutters. The Explorers along with the Death Bastards landed to secure the vessel, although clearly nothing could survive the two millennium since the ship was last active. Despite being heavily damaged by its time in the asteroid belt, life support, the bridge, cargo holds and Enginarium were all operational. Navigator Pazzano also discovered that the Gellar Field was operational, and periodically re-activating. Explorator Felicis and Astropath Eckhart secured the enginarium, while Captain Hos, Navigator Maturinus and Arch-Militant Caine took the bridge.
In the Enginarium, the team discovered Logs of the Emperor’s Bounty, indicating that the ship had been stranded there for some time, and the Captain had ordered the atmosphere vented to grant the crew an honourable death. Further logs also indicated that the captain somehow survived this purge, and had descended into madness. On the bridge, the crew had been suffocated and were strewn around. By the Captain’s Throne was the upright figure of the Captain, along with the body of the ship’s navigator. Approaching the Throne, Navigator Pazzano attempted to investigate that captain, only to discover he was surrounded by some sort of force field. Shooting it with his Hellpistol, the captain swung around and declared that the ship was his, and the bridge sealed itself as the long-dead crew started to wake…