After clearing the break room of pirates, Jack and Kade hurry down the corridor while Thundarr , Gordo , and Alpha . Thundarr and the pirate Captain engage in a battle of will, which Thundarr loses as he stammers through his opening speech. The rest of the group moves into position. The pirate captain rallies his men and shoots a hostage to show his resolve. This just pisses everyone off as we fly into action. Gordo spins his drone into action as the hammer of Kade, Alpha, and Thundar slams into the Pirate Captain. When their Captain falls under the combined attack his men waver until Jack steps out and pushes them over the edge. Most of them surrender or are quickly killed.
Jack speaks with the gypsies and eventually Jabril makes himself known. He describes the landing zone well enough on Melus that Gordo can easily stop it with just a single pass over the planet. They were interested in a hidden tower they found nestled up against a granite. We take the pirate captain with us to sell for the bounty and enter the drift for Melus. We find an open area near the butte and set the Chimera down. A short scouting of the area finds their camp. Although it shows the effects of the weather it appears in good order. Heavy tracks go to and from tower and little place else.
We reach the base of the tower, Gordo recalls reading about these towers. These are testing towers called the Diamond Towers. The higher your go up in the more difficult the tests. Those few who reach the top are said to reach a level of spiritual purity open to the secrets of the entire universe.
We go inside the tower and although the first floor of the tower is huge there is little of interest. There are several doors that we cannot get through. Gordo lets his computer chunk away at the code to brute force to key. After 6 hours it finally has the combination. We advance to the second level. This level is a maze of small corridors. Gordo’s drone is moving about fifteen feet in front of Kade, who is thirty feet in front the rest of the group. The drone lets out a squeal as four spider-like robots descend from the ceiling. They begin to throw reinforced nylon strands over Kade. Attacking with fire proves to be dangerous when Thundarr explodes with photonic energy causing the webs to burst into flames. Kade struggles out of the burning webs, but is injured.
After destroying the rest of the spiders we continue our search of the second floor. We find traces of destroyed nylon webbing, but no signs of the Starfinder Society. It is getting late and we are tired so we return to rest in the ship for a night cycle.
The next morning the door to the second floor has shut, but the key code is still the same. To avoid the mistakes yesterday our plan is to go up as far as we can and then work our way down. We hope the researchers would have followed the same path. As we pass the other levels we can see many of them have been destroyed, while others have robots monitoring their hallways. A few of them notice us, but none of them leave their level to pursue us. Kada manages to get the escalator moving which speeds up our progress.
At the top of the escalator the room is several stories tall, but most smaller in distance. The vaulted ceilings were once heavily decorated, but have faded over the centuries. Along one of the walls is more recent graffiti depicting two humanoid figures with rays from a clouded sky striking their heads. Alpha finds a secret entrance. There remains several floors above us, but the door does not appear to have been opened recently.
Beyond the secret entrance is some booth-like device with buttons along the sides. Gordo suspects it is a teleportation device and sends his drone into beyond to explore. The drone faintly contacts that it arrives safely, but cannot determine where it is exactly. Since the drone is unable to trigger its route home, Kade is the next to go through the portal. He sends the drone back from the other side with a message that he is in some type of control room. There are recordings of what has happened in the tower; although the records beyond when the researchers arrived are too damaged.
The other teleportation settings take us to what was at one time very opulant living quarters and a conference room. There is plenty of stuff still behind that could be carried out that we will get to later. We do find evidence that the researchers on on floor seventeen. We get to the floor and make our way through the corridors. There are spider-drones moving on the floor, but they do not attack or hinder us. As we get closer to where the researchers are being held the groups of spider-drones become more numerous. We come upon a group of six that attack us immediately.
The spider-drones swarm over Thundarr and Gordo’s drone while everyone else fires from down the hallway. They manage to hold the line allowing everyone else to rain laser fire into the drones.
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