6 to 20 May 3302
So, it seems my fancy-pants illegal Ship Mind AI took a dislike to some of the things I said about him in the ship’s log, and several entries over the last few months have been “accidentally” deleted. Never did trust AIs. In any case, as having him along for the ride makes it somewhat easier to hack trade info, log exploration data, and generally make my life easier so I can put my feet up on the controls and have a coffee with Lavian brandy, we have reached an agreement whereby I will not make personal comments about him in the ship’s log from this point forward. (And since Randomius Factoria knows what would happen if I tried to uninstall him, this seems to be the safest approach).
I won’t bore you with what happened over the past few months since the last legible log entry. Flight control software glitches. Boring trade runs. Boring exploration trips. Flight control software updates. More software glitches. If I didn’t know any better I would think you-know-who really doesn’t like sharing high memory with the ship software.
After spending a fair amount of time working out of Shinrarta for the organization based there that is not the Pilot’s Federation, the one main thing that happened is I finally made enough coin to install a Planetary Landing Suite (which of course you-know-who immediately interfaced with). Combined with an SRV for surface exploration, and a new Python, which I fitted out as an armed trader, I made a substantial sum in a few weeks.
The Python (temporarily named Who Me, Make Money?) allowed me to set aside a good number of credits, but once again that short jump range turned me off, as did the life of a number-crunching merchant, and I went back to TMBILOTS VI, after giving her a nice new all-matte black paint job. Hides all the dents that does, plus combined with no lights and silent running, she makes the perfect small package delivery service, which pays pretty well these days. Particularly if I do it for you-know-which organization at Shinrarta.
But even that, or making illegal and highly dangerous runs from Imperial space freeing Imperial Slaves so they could become corporate drones in the Federation got boring after a while, so I found myself back in Ngurii again, thinking about Soontill and its supposed alien relics. There is something to these, I can feel it in my bones. The history of that system and rumours of the involvement of the Circle of Elite Independent Pilots, or CEIP, there and the destruction of an old Thargoid base on the surface of one of the planets makes it likely. I suspect the CEIP have some sort of connection with that other organization at Shinrarta as well, which makes things very interesting.
So, I decided to make the usual rounds to the main scientific centres of the Bubble, dropping a few off at each to see if I might be able to provoke some more research results. Made a tidy profit doing this of course as well.
On the last Relic sales trip, out to the new station at Maia where Ishmael Palin is supposedly setting up shop on one of the moons, the sight of the Pleiades Nebula, Seven Sisters, Barnard’s Loop and Orion Nebula all gave me the itch to go exploring again. Combined with what that Kahina/Salomé woman seems to be going on about, I figure the best place to explore is the Formidine Rift, to keep an eye on what those Children of Raxxla commanders are up to. Rumour has it they have begun patrols to prevent some sort of alien incursion expected to come out of the Rift area. That will make things interesting for Hudson and Patreus.
So there we go – back out in the Black again, currently about 3,000 LYs out towards the Formidine Rift, poking around NGC 1502 and points further Galactic South where most of these holo images are from. Going to see if I can make my way to Alpha Camelopardalis along the way, a rather isolated and difficult to navigate to runaway star. Never know what one might find in such a place…