Month: June 2020

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Tabletop Squadron Transcript, Season 1 Episode 46:
Fashion Forward

Transcript by Tyler (Twitter: @Tyler_MoonSage)

## Intro

NICK: Hi everyone, and welcome to Tabletop Squadron, a Star Wars: Edge of the Empire actual play podcast. I’m Nick, your game master. Every other Thursday our story follows a thief, a bounty hunter, and a slicer as they explore the galaxy helping a mysterious benefactor and each other.

Not much to say this week except that I really want to take a second to thank our guest star, Mel D’Amato, for being on our podcast. Playing with Mel was a freaking blast, and I know you’re all going to enjoy their character as much as we did.

Podcast music this week is High Technologic Beat Explosion by Loyalty Freak Music.

Let’s get into the episode.

##

NICK: Hello! Welcome to our GenCon episode of Tabletop Squadron. I’m your hosting game master, Nick. Everybody, let’s go around the table, and I usually say something funny and cool here, but we’ve been talking and making fart noises for the last ten minutes so I didn’t really think of anything. Everybody, let’s go around the table and everybody say who you are and who you are playing today, starting off with Laura.

LAURA: Hello. I am Laura, and I play Xianna’fan, a Twi’lek smuggler.

NICK: Great. Next up we’ve got Hudson.

HUDSON: Hi, I’m Hudson, and I’m playing Tink, a Gigoran slicer.

NICK: Awesome. Up next we’ve got Cameron.

CAMERON: Hello! I am Cameron, and I’m playing Karma Nailo, a Nautolan bounty hunter.

NICK: And up next we’ve got our secret super awesome special guest today…

MEL: Secret, secret.

NICK: …Mel!

MEL: Hey! I’m Mel. I am here playing Illith Utena Hatake, a Chiss smuggler.

[oohing]

NICK: And now everyone’s going to frantically wonder when that’s going to happen. At some point in the episode, everybody. It’s gonna be fine. [laughs] Mel, do you have any plugs or anything that you would like to give us?

MEL: If you like what you hear and you wanna talk at me or have any questions about me or my character or things that I do, you can find me working on the One Shot podcast network and harass—and bother me on Twitter at @melerella.

NICK: Great. I gotta follow you. I already follow you, it’s fine.

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK: Awesome! Let’s do the Destiny Roll~! That’s important.

CAMERON: I got two light side.

LAURA: Two light side.

HUDSON: One dark side.

MEL: One dark side.

NICK: Awesome. That gives us something to play with.

CAMERON: So that’s four light side, two dark side.

NICK: Very good. That gives us some options here. Now we’re gonna jump into it. So, we open on the lovely beach resort on Thrinaka. You’re back.

LAURA: We’re back!

CAMERON: Hey, look at that!

NICK: We are not staying on the beach resort. We are leaving again.

LAURA: Damn!

HUDSON: What?!

CAMERON: I think it’s time for another vacation.

NICK: No, stop.

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK: We see the croissant shaped ship of the Tallahassee Quagmire land briefly. It is scored with blaster marks and smoking and has sparks shooting out of it, and the exit ramp drops with a loud clang, which is very weird. When you entered the ship it lowered very slowly, but this time it just drops and leaves a dent in the parking lot gravel. We see the four members of the squad running down the ramp as though shoved by someone, and the ramp slams up and the ship pulls up and flies away immediately, and we come to the crew standing on this windswept parking lot with beaches and dunes and gorgeous water in the background, and you are very near your own ship, the Afternoon Delight, which is a lot larger than the ship you just got off of. What do you do?

CAMERON: Since we’re not allowed to have a vacation, I guess we walk to the Afternoon Delight.

HUDSON (as Tink): Well that went okay.

CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah! I’m so glad that went so well.

LAURA (as Xianna): Did it?

CAMERON (as Karma): Yes! Probably.

LAURA (as Xianna): Huh.

HUDSON (as Tink): We’ve had worse.

CAMERON (as Karma): That’s right, it could have been worse.

LAURA (as Xianna): I could have lost more toes.

CAMERON (as Karma): It’s very true.

NICK: We get a swipe to the crew stepping onto the Afternoon Delight. It smells like a house after a vacation, like it’s hot and you can smell the thing’s baked, and you see a large, orange loth-rat scamper out of a discarded pile of bantha cakes.

LAURA (as Xianna): [gasps] Creamsicle!

NICK: It looks up at you and twitches its little nose and then dives into a hole in the wall. The ship is still here, it starts to turn on as you get in, you get the track lights, and you can see that there is a bright, flashing light coming from the holo-theater that you have in your ship, and you probably wanna go towards that, question mark?

HUDSON (as Tink): I think we got a voicemail.

CAMERON: [laughing] We got a voice-holo?

HUDSON (as Tink): We got a voice-holo.

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay. let’s go turn it on.

NICK: You walk into the holo-theater. It’s round. There’s big, comfy chairs and there’s a big, red, flashing light on the panel. Who hits the button?

HUDSON: Oh, I do.

NICK: Tink hits the button?

LAURA: I mean, Xianna’s already have asleep in one of the chairs.

CAMERON: We let Tink deal with all of the technology.

HUDSON: Yeah, I’m techy guy.

NICK: You hit the button and it’s not a voice-holo. You see Sentinel, your Jedi employer, pops up in three dimensions in front of you, slightly larger than real life – because it’s more dramatic – and he just jumps straight into it.

NICK (as Sentinel): Finally! I haven’t been able to contact you in quite a while. We’ve already made contact with Neato. He’s in the route back to Beta Squad. Good work.

CAMERON (as Karma): Uh, thanks?

LAURA (as Xianna): Thank you~!

NICK (as Sentinel): That was the last member of Beta Squad, so we’re pretty much ready to go launch this operation, but the problem is I don’t know when it’s going to start. It’s probably going to be a few weeks and I’m going to need you to remain on call. Now, this would be the part where I say that your free time up until that point is your own, you don’t even need to stay together if you don’t want to, I just need you to be able to assemble quickly, feel free to take my ship anywhere. Here’s the thing. I was going to say that, but I need you to do something for me.

LAURA (as Xianna): [whining] Ugh, what?

CAMERON (as Karma): Why did you say that you didn’t need to say that, then? You could have just not said it, and just…

HUDSON (as Tink): That was a huge build up to disappointment.

CAMERON (as Karma): I feel like we talked about you sharing a lot and how we really needed that, but I feel like that was unnecessary sharing.

LAURA (as Xianna): That was too much sharing. Too much.

NICK (as Sentinel): Well, I’m working on giving you the full background. I wanted you to know that my plan was to keep you on retainer until this very important mission comes to fruition. Ooh, mission fruition, that’s fun.

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay Sentinel, we don’t have time. Come on.

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK (as Sentinel): The problem is there is a very specific Jedi artifact that I need you to fetch for me.

LAURA (as Xianna): Is it a weird mask?

NICK (as Sentinel): No, it’s not a weird mask.

LAURA (as Xianna): Oh.

NICK (as Sentinel): Why would it be a weird mask?

LAURA (as Xianna): Because I have one.

NICK (as Sentinel): You have a—Why do you assume it’s a Jedi weird mask?

LAURA (as Xianna): I don’t know. It looks weird. It is in my room somewhere. I also have a kyber crystal if you want that one. Wait, no, I think I sold that. Never mind.

HUDSON (as Tink): Is that the Halloween mask you have with the zipper on the mouth?

LAURA (as Xianna): No, that is a different one.

CAMERON: [snickers, laughs]

HUDSON (as Tink): Oh, okay.

LAURA (as Xianna): Did you find that room again? I’m sorry.

HUDSON (as Tink): I did.

NICK: So, Sentinel is, again, in the very familiar posture at this point of someone just trying to keep up and also trying not to absorb too much of the conversation going on in front of him.

CAMERON: Disappointed grandfather.

NICK: Yeah. He’s rubbing at his forehead.

NICK (as Sentinel): There’s a very specific Jedi artifact, a very famous set of robes. A fashion consortium recently recovered them from a site. It’s a priceless and powerful item. The robe is called the Heartbreaker. It was said to unite the Jedi order in times of strife.

LAURA (as Xianna): Wait. Clothing?

NICK (as Sentinel): Yes.

CAMERON (as Karma): Like a bathrobe?

NICK (as Sentinel): No, like traditional Jedi robes, like what I’m wearing right now.

LAURA (as Xianna): But why would the robes unite…

NICK (as Sentinel): It was like a symbol of leadership.

CAMERON (as Karma): Why is a set of Jedi robes called the Heartbreaker?

LAURA (as Xianna): Is it like robes you wear during some sort of like, you know, orgy? Because, you know, it unites?

NICK (as Sentinel): Why do you go straight to orgy with that?

CAMERON (as Karma): Because it’s Xianna.

LAURA (as Xianna): Look, I feel like at this point you know me well enough that of course that’s where I’m going to go.

NICK (as Sentinel): I’m from an order of mostly celibate magic monks. Why would you assume that we’re—

LAURA (as Xianna): Mm! Mostly?

NICK (as Sentinel): Okay fair.

LAURA (as Xianna): Mostly.

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK (as Sentinel): Okay, okay-okay, listen. I need you to go to where this consortium is having the auction and I need you to get these robes. I would go myself, but I’m very, very wanted and everyone thinks I’m dead, so I need you to go instead.

LAURA: Xianna raises her hand.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okie, okie. Do you want us to buy the robes, or do you want us to steal the robes? Or do you not care?

NICK (as Sentinel): Long term, I don’t care. Now the thing is, I need you for this mission that we have spent months putting together, so I would rather you not take any undue risks.

NICK: He looks off to the side of the hologram.

NICK (as Sentinel): CP, do the thing.

NICK: Your data pads beep, and if you look at them you see that there’s 100,000 Credits sitting in a shell account that you have access to.

NICK (as Sentinel): Those funds should be sufficient to outbid anyone. I’m not playing around with this.

LAURA (as Xianna): Ooh! Ooh!

LAURA: Xianna’s raising her hand.

LAURA (as Xianna): Question!

NICK (as Sentinel): Yes, Xianna?

LAURA (as Xianna): Can any of us access that money at the moment?

NICK (as Sentinel): It’s a shell account. It really can only transfer in one direction, and it pretty much can just go for the bidding. I have it set up. You don’t have a great track record with the money that I’ve given you in the past.

LAURA (as Xianna): I mean… fair point.

NICK (as Sentinel): So, this is so you can see your budget, and don’t even mess around necessarily with trying to save money or anything like that. This money will auto-withdraw back out of the account afterwards, so the goal is to win not to win for cheap or anything like that. Obviously, if they are a symbol of unity in times of need, I can’t think of a single greater time than when the Jedi Order has been destroyed. This could be a great way to recruit more people to our cause.

LAURA (as Xianna): With bathrobes?

NICK (as Sentinel): What? I’m wearing—They look like this, I think.

LAURA (as Xianna): Yes, and that looks like a bathrobe.

NICK (as Sentinel): Well, that’s not very polite. This is my traditional—Anyway. You can call it whatever you want. I need you to get these for me.

NICK: You can see he’s getting kind of flustered and he re-centers himself.

NICK (as Sentinel): The fashion consortium is doing a fashion show for their Long, Long Ago line, and for some reason they’re doing it on this mining outpost above the gas giant of Bespin. I don’t know why they picked that—

LAURA (as Xianna): Ooh! I know that place.

NICK (as Sentinel): Oh do you?

LAURA (as Xianna): Somewhat. I know I was there at some point.

NICK (as Sentinel): Well that’s good, maybe you have friends there. That’s usually what happens.

LAURA (as Xianna): Ehh…

NICK (as Sentinel): They’re saying that this robe is part of their fashion line, and I’m not sure how exactly that works out, but I need the original. If you can go there, watch the fashion show if you want, win the auction, bring me the robe, I’ll give you my coordinates after you’ve confirmed that you have it, that’s it. It is imperative that you secure the Heartbreaker robe.

HUDSON (as Tink): Simply put, we’re picking up your expensive laundry.

NICK (as Sentinel): Sure.

LAURA (as Xianna): It is not his laundry, it is someone else’s laundry that he now wants.

CAMERON (as Karma): Picture a personal shopper in a really high-end department store.

HUDSON (as Tink): Ooh, and we’re the shoppers.

CAMERON (as Karma): We are the shoppers.

HUDSON (as Tink): I can get into that mind frame.

CAMERON (as Karma): Mm-hmm.

HUDSON (as Tink): I can be a fancy, rich shopper person just going around. Can we get more than the robes if we don’t spend all the money?

LAURA (as Xianna): You also have your own money. You could also steal them.

HUDSON (as Tink): No, from the shell account.

CAMERON (as Karma): Did you have any other outfits in mind?

HUDSON (as Tink): I could use something. I could use a new belt. It’s the only thing I have right now.

NICK (as Sentinel): Listen. I don’t know when the robe is going up for auction. I need the robe.

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay, so we need to go now? And we should stop talking to you.

NICK (as Sentinel): Yes, but I want to make sure you don’t try to spend the shell funds.

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay bye!

CAMERON: Karma walks out of the room and starts the ship.

LAURA: And Xianna slams down the button.

NICK: Okay, and we get an image of a bunch of feet walking by the pile of bantha cake wrappers and then the ship starting to take off and then an orange loth-rat rolling ungracefully across the floor as the ship accelerates very quickly towards space, and we get another cut to the cloud city of Bespin. I think it’s a very similar opening scene to when that happens in… Is that Empire?

LAURA: Empire.

NICK: Yeah, in Empire Strikes The Return Of.

CAMERON: [laughs] What?!

NICK: I know a lot about Star Wars.

CAMERON: For those of you who don’t know Star Wars…

NICK: It’s Empire Strikes The Return Of.

CAMERON: …that’s what you call it if you just don’t stop during the movies and just watch them back to back.

NICK: The Afternoon Delight comes in on the sunset drenched clouds and one of those stupid cloud cars with the double cockpits buzzes the ship and tells you where to land. We get the ship coming down to land on this, it looks like the top from Inception but it’s rusty brown. Hopefully if you’re listening to the podcast you know what the cloud city of Bespin looks like, but if you don’t that’s okay. If you know what the cloud city of Bespin is like from the games, there’s also giant methane eating whales floating around, but that’s a whole different conversation.

CAMERON: I would like to see a whale out the cockpit window, please.

NICK: You see a whale with kind of a tentacle mouth thing floating around in the clouds.

CAMERON: Yay.

NICK: It is clearly eating methane gas and turning it into valuable Force-sensitive gems. Star Wars is wild. So, you land the ship on a wide open air landing pad that has no railing, and you descend down the landing ramp, and a little holo-projector flickers on. You see a man with dark brown skin and a glorious mustache wearing trousers and a very open silk shirt and a very long cape.

NICK (as Man): Welcome to Cloud City. You’re an angel. Surely you belong here among the stars.

NICK: Then as you get closer to it, it says:

NICK (as Man): Welcome to Cloud City. You’re an angel. Surely you belong here among the clouds.

NICK: That’s just on loop. You are able to walk further into the cloud city of Bespin.

CAMERON: It’s like the Welcome to Duloc song.

[laughter]

NICK: It’s just Lando doing Lando things.

CAMERON: (Boop-bwoop).

NICK: Yeah.

HUDSON (as Tink): Did y’all hear that? I’m an angel among the clouds.

LAURA (as Xianna): You are.

CAMERON (as Karma): Mm-hmm.

HUDSON (as Tink): Aw.

LAURA (as Xianna): Yes.

CAMERON (as Karma): That is a very true statement, Tink.

[techno performance music starts]

NICK: We get a swipe cut to a fashion show deep within the city of Bespin. It’s up towards the top, so there are skylights along the top where you can see the clouds and the sunlight filtering through, but as that goes down it gets very dark and there’s lots of under-lighting in cool 90s neon colors, strobing lights flashing on it. Picture a fashion show. There’s a black obsidian looking catwalk that models are walking up and down. There’s a large crowd of fashion forward people. You see some Kaminoans wearing cat suits and you see some Devaronians wearing zoot suits with big hats that their horns stick through. You also notice very quickly as you walk in that standing in a group, probably the richest, most popular looking people, there is a Chiss that laughs uproariously and draws everyone’s attention in and you can’t help but notice. Mel, what does your Chiss look like?

MEL: Oh, my Chiss. Let’s see. My Chiss, Illith, is pretty tall. I’m gonna say almost six feet. They are they/them, they’re very androgynous, but they do have longer hair. They are a sky blue skinned, murderously red eyed—

[laughter]

LAURA: Ooh.

MEL: Because apparently that’s how they all look, and they are wearing tight black pants, functional yet fashionable boots, also black, because black just contrasts blue skin so well, but a more fashionable shirt. I think it is a jacket with gold accoutrement on it, just something that makes them fit in a little bit. They look high fashion, but they fit in and are functional enough to move around the crowd.

NICK: How are they wearing their longish hair? Is it pulled back, is it loose?

MEL: It is currently curled and loose.

NICK & CAMERON: [sounds of approval]

MEL: Big, loose curls draped around them.

NICK: Any necklaces, jewelry, sunglasses, anything like that?

MEL: Oh, definitely sunglasses. Yeah-yeah-yeah.

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK: Okay.

MEL: Put some Crowley sunglasses on them.

NICK: Nice.

[laughter]

LAURA: Nice!

MEL: Good Omens!

NICK: The round glasses with the wrap-around guards.

MEL: Yeah-yeah-yeah, so you can’t see the spooky eyes.

NICK: Is there the slightest red glow out of the sides?

MEL: Just a tiny bit, yeah, just the tiniest.

NICK: Just if you know what to look for.

CAMERON: Just enough to be super cool.

MEL: Yeah, but they have an astounding number of rings on right now, like gold rings.

NICK: [laughing] Great. That’s fantastic.

CAMERON: How tall are their boots?

MEL: I think they have more than one pair of boots. This one is going to be like 3, 4 inches, stiletto murder boots.

CAMERON: So even taller.

MEL: Mm-hmm, mm-hmm, mm-hmm. They’re tall.

NICK: And functional.

LAURA: Okay, but how high up do the boots go?

MEL: They’re like riding boots.

LAURA: Nice.

MEL: They come up to just below the knee, but then there’s a part that covers the knee.

NICK: Aw damn. Okay, that changes the look a lot. I like that. Okay, so Illith is probably like a fancy glass drink kind of person.

MEL: Oh, most definitely.

NICK: Describe for me what Illith is drinking, Mel.

MEL: Illith is holding a magnificent glass with an exceptionally long stem, and inside of the glass you see gold flecks floating around in a drink that has a very floral smell to it, and it even has edible flowers around the rim of the glass – except for like one point, you have to be able to drink out of it – but there are edible flowers both in and upon the rim of the glass.

NICK: Nice. That one’s very good. I like that. What is it called?

MEL: Felucian Delight.

NICK: Nice. We see Illith with their crowd of hangers-on that you probably assembled when you got here.

MEL: They just flock to me.

NICK: Yeah, you can’t explain—

MEL: Attraction is a hell of a thing.

[music fades]

NICK: Magnetism. So, in the fashion show, as you walk in it was kind of the pre-show. The lights were up, people were walking around with hors d’oeuvres and drinks, and the squad gets a look at the general setup, and the lights start to dim and spotlights go to the catwalk, and the show proper starts. This is the Long, Long Ago line by this fashion consortium, and the first outfit to come out—

The first one is a Human model, and her hair is really close-cropped to her head, and she is walking down the catwalk with the sharp click of very high heels that you can’t quite see, because this model is wearing what looks like Asajj’s Sith robes, so the two X-crossed shoulder pads, but everything’s been exaggerated so the cloth is really wide and goes out farther away from her shoulders, and she also has the Elizabethan super-high collar behind and it’s sparkling in the lights, and where the robes would go into functional pants this is a very wide dress bottom that does kind of the southern bell rock as the model walks. She gets to the end of the runway and poses, and you notice they strike a fencing pose like they’re holding a lightsaber and they turn and they start to walk back.

You get the vibe very quickly that this is a fashion show of older, sometimes Jedi-related fashion or Old Republic fashion that’s been tweaked to be high fashion. I want everyone else to tell me what another outfit would be in this high fashion future show thing.

LAURA: Okay, I have one. There is a very tall model, probably like seven feet or more. They have gray skin and their outfit is a brilliant gold robe that’s tied at the waist, and that’s it.

NICK: Nice.

LAURA: It’s not Snoke. It’s different. [laughter] That’s all I have.

HUDSON: I have one. A model comes out and is walking down the runway, and I can’t tell what their face looks like, what their skin color is, none of that, because they’re wearing the most bright, reflective outfit that blinds everyone in the entire room, and everyone just goes AHH and puts their hand up against their eye to try to see, and then when they get to the end of the runway you can kinda see that they stripped that portion off to reveal the main outfit which is a bunch of lights that are somehow even brighter just attached to their body all over. [laughter] It’s supposed to be some kind of, I don’t know, message involved, but everyone’s just focused on not looking at this thing right now, this outfit, so they pose and they walk back, and then everyone just breathes a sigh of relief as they go back around the corner and they can see again.

NICK: There’s been an announcer this whole time, and there’s obviously the fashion show driving music going, and the announcer says:

NICK (as Announcer): The corona outfit shows that true beauty eclipses all.

NICK: And from the fashion people you hear a lot of ooh, yeah, yeah, and they’re like crying from the light. [laughs]

HUDSON: [laughs]

CAMERON: It’s so beautiful it hurts to look at.

MEL: The next model comes out and they’re a curvy model. This isn’t just another twig that’s on the runway like so many others. This is a curvy, bodacious model who is like I’m fucking here and I’m owning this runway, and they strut. The outfit that they’re wearing is actually literally projected from their skin. They’re wearing strategically placed projectors on their skin, and areas of their skin are just covered in a star scape, so obviously any genitalia and intimate parts are covered by just a cloud of stars.

NICK (as Announcer): There’s no tagline needed for this star scape.

MEL: [giggles]

NICK: The whole crowd falls quiet, it’s just—

MEL: “Wow~” Mesmerizing.

NICK: Oh, it’s good.

CAMERON: The next model comes out, the model is a more petite Human woman who has dark hair and has white face powder on, a red upper lip and then just a red line down the center of her bottom lip. Her hair is really the thing that instantly draws your eye, and it’s done kind of like the rings of Saturn where she has just hair rings above her head. You can’t see how they’re attached, but it all appears to be her hair so magic is happening. The reason that you’re drawn first to her hair and don’t really notice her outfit is because she’s just wearing the standard brown Jedi robe, and she has it closed in front of her, and she kinda stops as she enters the catwalk, pauses for a moment just to get the full hair effect, and then takes the robe off and starts dragging it behind her as she walks.

She’s wearing most of a Jedi robe setup, but none of the actual shirts and pants part, like they always have the weird sash things. All of the sashes are there, so she has two coming over each shoulder, going around their back, she has a wide waist belt sash. It’s more of a sash going into a mini skirt, so everything is covered, but rocking pair of boots, really high heels, and just walks and is dragging the Jedi robe behind her. Gets to the end of the catwalk, poses, leaves the robe there, and because Jedi robes aren’t important, and we know this because they’re meant to be left when you need to drop them dramatically, and then just struts back up the catwalk.

NICK (as Announcer): This slinky Jedi number will bring peace and unity to the galaxy.

NICK: And probably a saucy wink from the model right before she exits the catwalk again, and it continues like that for quite a while. This is a long run, and a couple of the outfits come back out and you get holo-droids going around taking multiple shots. This is this fashion consortium’s big reveal and will probably make or break the company. As this goes you get time to mingle a little bit, you watch the fashion show continue. Do any of y’all work the room or do anything during this time?

LAURA: Xianna’s going around the room chatting up with everyone she can. Is there a bar, or are drinks being served freely on a tray?

NICK: Drinks on a tray situation.

LAURA: Okay, then she’s just taking drinks, she doesn’t then have to try to get people to buy her drinks.

NICK: Nope, and it would have been open bar anyway, but this is top, high scale things.

LAURA: She is also doing some light scouting to see if there’s any jewelry that looks particularly, like, has a dainty clasp on it.

NICK: Do you want to actually try to steal something or are you just scouting right now?

LAURA: Yes.

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK: Alright. Make me a—

LAURA: Skulduggery?

NICK: A hard Skulduggery check, yeah. There is a black die added to this because there are active security in this place. You also do notice, as you’re looking around, you think you can manage it, but this place has really tight security as far as the models go and the runway. You think it’s less to affect somebody trying to necessarily steal something and more keep people away from the models or from ruining shots of the show, but you see that trying to steal anything from this setup would be extremely difficult, but stealing jewelry from somebody is doable.

LAURA: Okay. I’m also getting rid of that black die, because I have Convincing Demeanor! Three successes and two advantages.

NICK: You get two necklaces, a bracelet, and someone’s wallet. It’s probably like 1,500 Credits worth of stuff. 1,400 of it is one of the necklaces. The rest of it is not nearly as nice as it looks, and you’re able to quickly tell, but you keep the other stuff anyway. Why not? It’s pretty.

LAURA: How many credits were in the wallet?

NICK: 100.

LAURA: Okay, that matters for me.

NICK: Okay. Illith, are you watching the fashion show, or meeting and greeting? What is your jam?

MEL: Illith splits their attention between the show and the beings around them. They’re trying to stand out but not too much. Obviously there’s people there they know and are trying to hobnob with, so they’re just kinda chilling, drinking, but also keeping an eye on the stage and a little bit on the crowd to keep an eye on who’s there.

NICK: Mm-hmm. There’s definitely some resentful glares from at least one of the models. When they get to the edge of the runway they pose and they’re all going for the serene look and they see Illith and they (angry grunt), and then there are some other people who start to look angry, look like they’re remembering something, and then kinda just drift off, like, what ever happened with that, you know, it was the experience. Probably a good 40% of the room at this point. The fashion industry is very well connected.

MEL: Very well connected.

[laughter]

LAURA: Xianna definitely spots this person and all their nice jewelry, and is weaving through the crowd like “I’m gonna get there eventually.”

NICK: The fashion show continues. There’s a point where all the lights go out and we get the camera from the blurred close-up of Illith talking to somebody and the focus goes to behind, and we get like The Ring where the lights go out and go back on and Xianna’s closer, and the lights go out and back on and Xianna’s like right behind Illith.

[laughter]

LAURA: You started hearing weird music in the background, like (hums Jaws theme).

MEL: It’s like that cat on the internet.

NICK: It’s exactly that.

MEL: Look away, and it’s closer.

NICK: Just very mischievous-looking facial expression on Xianna. Tink and Karma, are you observing this situation? What are you all doing?

CAMERON: Karma probably has grabbed a drink and is walking around but isn’t interacting with people as much as Xianna, because in settings like this especially she just kinda gives off the security vibe and is mostly flying under the radar being, like, she looks kinda scary, yeah, we’ll just pass over, because oh there’s a cool outfit over there. Not really drawing attention, not really engaging with anybody, because she looks like she should be working.

NICK: A Herglic in a very tight suit, so one of those big whale people, and an earpiece walks up  next to you without making eye contact presses into their ear and then looks side-eye at Karma.

NICK (as Herglic): How are we looking on Sector 3? Lando wants an update on the Selonians.

CAMERON: Have I walked past them? [laughs] Have I seen any Selonians in my time looking around?

NICK: There are some very raucous and drunk otter people in ball gowns that are off to the side and look to be just pushing a couple of Humans between them and giving them a hard time.

CAMERON (as Karma): The Selonians are a hot mess.

NICK (as Herglic): Roger that.

NICK: And he just walks off. [laughs] Tink, what are you up to?

HUDSON: Tink really attached himself to the fact that this is an upscale, high-end event, so he brushed his fur out which he doesn’t always do before getting ready and going into this place. With freshly brushed fur he puts his back a little bit straight, has this walk, what he thinks is a hoity-toity “I’m a rich fancy person” walk, and just has his chin up a little bit and just looks at people with this smirk, like “yeah, I belong here” and just walks among the crowd and goes in and out of people, and people might say hi or something and I’ll be like “quite right,” and then just keep walking.

CAMERON: [laughs]

HUDSON: And just kinda make laps around the room. It gets real awkward after like the fifth passing that people notice.

NICK: There’s a very, very tall male Twi’lek that’s yellow and he has the neck scarf looking lekku wrapped around, and really big sunglasses. He gets into your line of sight as you’re walking by saying quite right, lowers his glasses.

NICK (as Twi’lek): I can tell you belong here.

HUDSON: I just beam, and I just don’t know what to say, so I kinda wait an awkward amount of time to respond.

HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah—

NICK (as Twi’lek): Wha- Ye- Oh, you were gonna talk.

HUDSON (as Tink): [strained] Yeah.

NICK (as Twi’lek): Um, what do you think of the Long, Long Ago line? I think it’s one of their best.

HUDSON (as Tink): Um, wow, it is, um, so it, uh… Yeah. I think it is one of their best as well.

NICK (as Twi’lek): Quite right.

NICK: And he puts his sunglasses back up.

HUDSON: [laughs]

NICK: Illith, could you make me a Perception check please?

MEL: Yeah.

NICK: The difficulty is going to be hard, which is three purples. I’m gonna give you two blue dice, because you’re so socially aware, some of the people you’re talking to have noticed this Twi’lek tessering towards you, and you read that in the social cues.

MEL: [rolls]

CAMERON: Alright, so you have three successes and one threat.

NICK: Oh nice. I guess the threat is that Xianna makes it right up behind Illith, and then Illith, you sense that somebody has targeted you and is in your personal space. How do you respond?

MEL: Yeah, I think the threat is that Xianna manages to get closer than Illith usually lets someone, and as Xianna gets close Illith’s move at the last moment is to sweep further away and in between two people that were coming together to speak to begin with, so they put people between Xianna and them, and then begin an intimate conversation with another guest.

NICK: [chuckles] Okay. You remove from the situation.

MEL: Mm-hmm.

LAURA: Xianna probably bumps into those people.

[laughter]

LAURA (as Xianna): Ooh! Ooh. Oopsies. So sorry. Um, that is my bad. Oopsies. Continue! Heh.

NICK (as Guest): Watch where you’re going. I was trying to talk to Illith. We never get to see them anymore.

LAURA (as Xianna): I don’t really care. Okay bye.

NICK (as Guest): Rude.

NICK: And the obviously model who didn’t get invited to this fashion show to be a model turns back to Illith, and I’m sure you console them on how much better they would have done.

MEL: Oh yeah.

NICK: Yeah.

MEL (as Illith): Oh, you poor dear.

NICK: And they immediately look like they feel better and offer to go get you a drink.

MEL (as Illith): Oh thank you.

NICK: About this point, as people settle in, the lights turn back up almost like the party is over.

NICK (as Announcer): If I could have your attention please. Everybody at the fashion consortium’s event of the year for the Long, Long Ago line, please turn your attention to the catwalk for our Peace de Resistance, the Heartbreaker robe.

[techno performance music starts]

NICK: The lights all go out and a single spotlight comes up. What you see is an almost completely naked Human man, just like an Adonis of a person, eight-pack, hexagonal, close cut buzz cut, classical features, sharp jaw, and he is walking down this catwalk with an imperious impression on his face, and all he is wearing is a little blue and gold thong, and the crowd falls completely silent.

[snickering and giggling]

MEL: Illith moves closer to the stage.

[laughter]

LAURA: Xianna has her scanner goggles on and is like—

MEL: (Zoop!)

LAURA: –like, (zoom!) Heh.

NICK: [laughs] The crowd has fallen completely silent as he pads almost silently down the catwalk, but you can hear his footsteps because he has everyone’s attention. As he gets towards the end of the catwalk you see that there’s a gold woven cord around his neck. He gets to the edge of the catwalk, winks, and then pivots on one foot revealing a shimmering, golden half-cape on his back.

MEL: [laughs]

NICK: Everyone gasps, and the music starts up again as he starts to walk back, flaunting his shiny cape.

NICK (as Announcer): The Heartbreaker cape was made from recovered ancient materials from an ancient Jedi tomb. We’ve remastered it into the feature of our show.

NICK: You just feel yourself drawn to this cape, like you can’t look away from it. This model is the most intriguing person.

CAMERON: When you say half-cape, you’re meaning short enough that we can still see his ass, right?

NICK: Oh, 100%.

MEL: Oh yeah!

CAMERON: Because if we can’t, it’s wrong.

LAURA: I was just about to say that, because if it doesn’t Xianna literally can look away, because there’s a butt.

NICK: Yeah. The cape drapes over the right shoulder blade and comes down to about mid-back on one side. It’s very much a fashion cape, one that marching bands would kind of wear, but shimmering and gold. Yeah, you see a good butt. You see a scientific donk. [laughs]

CAMERON: That’s Bespin’s ass.

[laughter]

NICK: Very good. Yeah, so he strides off stage and then comes back out and does it again with more of the floating press droids around. They wanted to give the crowd an uninterrupted view the first time, and you notice his feet step in the exact same spot like he’s done this walk. This is this model’s moment, this is his outfit, and it’s a good piece of art. It looks good.

CAMERON: He’s a good piece of art.

LAURA: Xianna starts looking around for Karma and Tink.

CAMERON: Karma’s there.

LAURA (as Xianna): Oh! Okay, karma. Are we supposed to get that or something else? Because I feel like Sentinel told us that we needed the original, and that does not look like an original robe…

CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah…

LAURA (as Xianna): …that Sentinel would want, unless he does.

CAMERON (as Karma): See, what I was curious on was is the thong required as well.

LAURA (as Xianna): I mean, I assumed so. It is a part of the outfit.

CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah. It’s the Heartbreaker robe, so…

LAURA (as Xianna): I mean…

CAMERON (as Karma): It looks like a lot of fabric is missing. I hope that’s not a problem.

LAURA (as Xianna): Unless it’s one of those mix and match bikini situations where you can buy the top separately from the bottom and then just pick the ones you want, and you know, although you still tend to buy one of each.

CAMERON (as Karma): The gold on the thong matched the cape perfectly.

LAURA (as Xianna): Oh, so you think it is a full set. Okay.

CAMERON (as Karma): I think it at least has some of the fabric on the thong.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay. We will get both.

LAURA: Xianna’s doing that eyes up, mapping it out in her head thing.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay. We will get both the cape and the thong, but then also see if there is an original in the back to steal and/or buy and get that as well. We’ll just get all of it.

[music fades]

CAMERON (as Karma): Oh yeah. I think we’re just looking for gold at this point. That seems to be the color, so let’s just grab any of it and hope that it’s what he needs.

LAURA (as Xianna): So do we want to just have someone out here bidding and then the rest of us go in the back and, you know, steal?

CAMERON (as Karma): He did say he wanted us to keep a low profile.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay, so we can still steal.

CAMERON (as Karma): So I don’t think Tink should go backstage.

LAURA: [laughs] And Xianna, like—

NICK: Tink has like the second highest Stealth rating out of all of you.

CAMERON: Tink is very stealthy, however he’s a giant, white Gigoran. [laughs]

LAURA: Xianna reaches a hand into one of the hidden pockets and pulls her hand back out and there’s two necklaces and a bracelet and a wallet.

LAURA (as Xianna): I already stole this, you know.

LAURA: And then puts it back.

LAURA (as Xianna): Sneaky!

CAMERON (as Karma): Alright, sure. I’ll be the bidder. I’ll go find Tink.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay, and remember, I am still technically dead, so can’t put me on a wanted poster.

CAMERON (as Karma): Well, I mean, they could, just you’re—

LAURA (as Xianna): No. That’s not how it works, because I am dead. Heh.

CAMERON (as Karma): They can still put your picture on a wanted poster, they just don’t necessarily know your name is Xianna. They can still say hey, that purple Twi’lek did this thing, we need her. That’s how wanted posters work. They don’t need to know your real identity.

LAURA (as Xianna): [huffs]

CAMERON (as Karma): You’re still probably wanted in some areas even though you are actually supposedly dead. A lot of people still don’t know that, because it probably wasn’t linked to your actual criminal account.

LAURA (as Xianna): I don’t think that’s how it works. I’m gonna go find Tink. Heh.

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay. I’m pretty sure that’s how it works.

NICK: There’s a model looking guy with a very open silk shirt and he’s walking by holding two martini glasses in one hand.

NICK (as Guy): Man, that’s an intense conversation.

NICK: And just walks away from the two of you like he overheard.

HUDSON: Tink was walking around and just bumps into Illith.

HUDSON (as Tink): Oh! Sorry.

MEL (as Illith): Oh, that’s quite alright. Are you alright?

HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah, yeah, just a little jostled I should say. Did you see that situation on stage a little earlier?

MEL (as Illith): Oh yes, I saw it very well.

HUDSON: Yeah, that guy’s ripped.

CAMERON: [laughs]

MEL (as Illith): You could say that.

HUDSON (as Tink): I did.

[laughter]

MEL (as Illith): Well done. Well said.

HUDSON (as Tink): Thank you~ So, what are you doing around here?

MEL (as Illith): Oh? Just like you, I assume. I’m here to see the fashion show and appreciate some art.

HUDSON (as Tink): Ah. Yeah, same here.

MEL (as Illith): You look like you belong here.

HUDSON (as Tink): You know, you’re the second person who’s told me that and I’m just getting all these warm fuzzies. Thank you.

MEL (as Illith): Oh, you’re quite welcome.

NICK: [smiling] There’s just a glow coming off of Tink at this point, just a happy guy. The lights don’t snap on as much as they did before the finale of the fashion show, but an announcement comes on as the lights start to dim up.

NICK (as Announcer): We’ll be starting the auction for the originals of the fashion show in the next 20 minutes. Please grab whatever drinks and funds that you need and step into the next room.

NICK: People start to funnel into the ballroom.

LAURA: Do we still have our coms in?

NICK: Yeah.

CAMERON: Yeah.

LAURA: Xianna gets on the com.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay. Reverse the earlier plan. We are going to steal the thong {ze song}.

CAMERON (as Karma): Sorry, the what?

LAURA (as Xianna): The thong!

CAMERON (as Karma): The music? No, no…

LAURA (as Xianna): Don’t make me say the butt floss.

[laughter]

CAMERON (as Karma): Oh, the thong~!

NICK: And that’s where we’re gonna end the episode.

NICK & HUDSON: Ba-naaa~!

CAMERON: [giggles]

## Outro

CAMERON: Thanks for listening to Tabletop Squadron. If you’ve enjoyed our show please consider logging onto iTunes and giving us a five-star review. Five-star reviews will help new listeners find the show and will make the squad do barrel rolls in our X-wings when we read them. If you’re so inclined, you can also help support the show through our Patreon which can be found in the show notes, on our website, and basically anywhere we post things. We have all sorts of Patreon levels including some of my favorites: Bantha Buddy, Tarkin’s Underwear Drawer, and Build-A-Beru which all have fabulous rewards and super great names.

Illith Utena Hatake is played by Mel D’Amato. You can find them on Twitter at @melerella.

Xianna’fan is played by Laura Penrod. She can be found on Twitter at @Cheerio_Buffet.

Tink is played by Hudson Jameson. He can be found on Twitter at @hudsonjameson.

Karma Nailo is played by me, Cameron Robertson. You can find me on Twitter at @midnightmusic13.

Our game master is Nick Robertson, and you can find him on Twitter at @alias58.

Our intro song is Space Jam by Pablo Ribot.

Additional music by James Gunter.

Follow the podcast on Twitter and Instagram at @Tabletop_Squad, and join our Discord and share all of your food and cute pet photos with us. We also sometimes talk about Star Wars. You can find the link to join our Discord on our website and in our pinned tweet. See you next time.

Word document download: Episode 45 From Hootenanny to Afterparty

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Tabletop Squadron Transcript, Season 1 Episode 45:
From Hootenanny to Afterparty

Transcript by Tyler (Twitter: @Tyler_MoonSage)

## Intro

NICK: Hi everyone, and welcome to Tabletop Squadron, a Star Wars: Edge of the Empire actual play podcast. I’m Nick, your game master. Every other Thursday our story follows a thief, a bounty hunter, and a slicer as they explore the galaxy helping a mysterious benefactor and each other.

Not a lot of announcements this week, space friends, but I do want to take a second to let you know that we have a metric ton of bonus content hitting the Patreon feed over the next couple of months. Some of it may wander to the main feed at some point, but if you want to see what’s been going on in the background of the plot or see some of your favorite side characters make new appearances I would strongly recommend you check out Tarkin’s Underwear Drawer available only to our $5 and up patrons.

Podcast music this week is Pink Fish Signs (Take Two) by GeeNerve, Drive Fast by Three Chain Links, and The String by 2L8.

So now, let’s get into the episode.

##

NICK: Hello! Welcome to Tabletop Squadron, Episode 45. It’s a pleasant day, more towards evening really. I should really think of things to say for this part. I’ve really run out of conversation topics. What’s your favorite pet? I like iguanas. Alright… We’re gonna go around the table and everybody say who you are and who you’re playing today, starting with Hudson.

HUDSON: Hi, I’m Hudson, and I’m playing Tink, a Gigoran slicer.

NICK: Wonderful. Up next we have Laura.

LAURA: Hello. I am Laura, and I play Xianna’fan, a Twi’lek smuggler.

NICK: And last but not least we have Cameron.

CAMERON: Hello. I am Cameron, and I play Karma, a Nailo—[laughs]

NICK: [laughs]

LAURA: A nylon bounty hunter!

CAMERON: Oh no! No, a Nailo, she is a Nailo, that’s true, but that’s her last name. [grinning] I play Karma Nailo, a Nautolan bounty hunter. I tried to just say my first name and it messed it up. [exasperated, giggling] I can’t do it!

NICK: It’s gonna be okay, Cameron. You’re okay.

CAMERON: [giggling] No~!

NICK: It’s gonna be fine. Okay, so before we get into the recap let’s do the Destiny Roll~

HUDSON: Hai-yah!

CAMERON: Two light side.

HUDSON: Two light side.

LAURA: Two dark side.

HUDSON: Boo~

NICK: Yay.

LAURA: No~ Not my fault.

HUDSON: You rolled it.

LAURA: It’s the dice’s fault.

NICK: You have to just make some new ones, I guess. So, when we last played you were in a very large armed conflict against the Empire launching a big assault on the shield facility on the planet Fygo in the city of Sart. You were able to destroy four out of the five artillery emplacements and also slow the final one down pretty good, and it got stuck. You were able to basically stop the Imperial assault from the beach. Tink was ambushed by a whole bunch of stormtroopers. Xianna went and rescued him.

CAMERON: Grenade sandwich.

NICK: Grenade sandwich did happen, you’re right. Specialist Kevin was struck down in the line of duty.

HUDSON: Rest in peace.

NICK: Yep, and then Karma split up from the group to go try to protect the shield facility, had a major Rambo moment shooting up the whole place and keeping the assault from getting too over the top, and everybody met up on an embankment and that’s where the episode ended. Am I missing anything?

CAMERON: I do have a crit on me right now. I am Compromised, so I have an extra difficulty until the end of the encounter, on all of my checks.

NICK: Ooh, that’s gonna be…

CAMERON: Yep, so I have an extra purple die here to remind myself.

NICK: Okay, that’s good. So, we’re gonna go ahead and get started. We open on the entire resistance force that the crew of the Afternoon Delight has assembled. We see everyone: Tink, Xianna, Karma, HK, Neato, Specialist Talon, and Smith and Weathers, all in smoky silhouettes on a mound of city rubble. The air is hazy and full of the sounds of blaster fire. A rumble shakes your feet as a single distant artillery cannon fires destroying a building. There is a hoard of stormtroopers in front of you working to fight their way into the shield facility. They have two operating cannons that are firing into the front of the building and you can see the structure starting to crumble. Occasionally return fire comes from the militia, but you can’t tell how many there are or what their situation is.

Where we’re gonna resolve this, because this is going to be the big, climactic, sort of Lord of the Rings running down the hill sort of fight thing, I want everybody to say what the thing they are contributing to trying to break this charge is. You will get a roll, and then we will put together how the scene goes based on how everybody does at their individual actions. So when you think of how you want to try to impact this being vastly outnumbered by superior firepower situation, speak up.

HUDSON: We’re on top of the hill?

NICK: Yeah, there’s a barricade built out of rubble and stuff and you all are standing on that looking out over the parade ground where you were originally except this time it’s full of alive and dead stormtroopers and cannons, and most of them aren’t paying attention to you, they’re trying to get into the shield facility. The militia is currently losing, they probably need some help, because if they get into the shield facility they’re gonna turn off the shield and then you will be exploded from space.

LAURA: Do they have any transport vehicles, ATSTs or anything like that?

NICK: They have those two kind of shielded cannon contraptions that they dropped, but they don’t have any of the big walkers or anything like that, {because they don’t wanna drop pod}—

LAURA: How—

CAMERON: But there were like 20 drop pods, right?

NICK: Yeah.

CAMERON (as Karma): Tink, can you rig up the rockets on a drop pod to launch into the stormtroopers?

HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah, I think I could do something like that, but that doesn’t exactly get us in, yet.

CAMERON (as Karma): No, we’re trying to clear the way though.

HUDSON (as Tink): Ohh.

CAMERON (as Karma): A drop pod rocket. [laughs]

HUDSON (as Tink): Oh! How about this? Alright. Multiple ideas going on at the same time, here we go!

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay?

HUDSON (as Tink): We got the rockets launching. They’re gonna be like “ahh, rockets!” and then try to run away a little bit, but some of them will run forward and try to get us so that they run away from the rockets toward us, so if we have enough shovels we dig under, or we find a sewer system.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay. Shovel idea out, I do not want to do manual labor. Sewer system, maybe, I don’t know if this place has a sewer or not.

HUDSON (as Tink): I mean, when you gotta go it has to go somewhere.

LAURA (as Xianna): Yes, but not necessarily in an underground sewer.

HUDSON (as Tink): Above ground sewers sound gross.

CAMERON (as Karma): Well, Sart has been under attack for like three months too, so I don’t know how well the infrastructure is holding up.

HUDSON (as Tink): That’s true.

CAMERON (as Karma): Also, we have this hill that we could duck behind and use as cover, which seems like a quicker solution to the digging or the excavating of the sewage system.

HUDSON: [laughs]

CAMERON (as Karma): But I like the creativity that’s happening here.

HUDSON (as Tink): Thank you. I’m owed gold stars already, I feel like I just earned more.

NICK: As you’re talking, you see that the smaller cannon platforms fire and a big chunk of the wall of the shield facility collapses in, and you can see a couple of militia members scrambling further back into the base as stormtroopers start to push forward in a final charge.

CAMERON: I would like to whip my rocket launcher off of my shoulder and shoot the cannon.

NICK: Okay.

CAMERON: That’s my big firepower.

NICK: [chuckles] So, you’re all talking strategy and long-term things and this happens, and you’re like “I’m gonna slow this down.”

CAMERON: What is the difficulty?

NICK: It’s gonna be hard. You’re at long range right now.

CAMERON: What if I run forward?

NICK: I mean, you could interrupt your conversation, sprint down the hill, and get to medium range before shooting. Yeah.

CAMERON: [laughing] Because it is at increased difficulty, so I’d rather not make a daunting check.

NICK: Yeah, So, in the middle of y’all’s conversation that happens and Karma looks forward and says “one second,” and runs off down the hill carrying a rocket launcher and takes a shot.

CAMERON: I’m guessing since it just shot I don’t get my blue die for the fact that it’s not engaged with me.

NICK: Nope, sorry.

CAMERON: Well…

HUDSON: [laughs]

CAMERON: I am gonna aim my rocket launcher, though.

NICK: Yeah, you can aim.

CAMERON: [rolls]

NICK: That’s a lot of successes.

CAMERON: That’s six successes, but three threats.

[laughter]

NICK: YAY! You had collected two rockets, right?

CAMERON: Yes.

NICK: I think this rocket looked a little different, like it had more stabilization fins on the back, it looked a little bigger. It slots into the rocket launcher just fine. So you drop down to one knee and you fire and this has a lot more kick than it previously did. With that many successes there’s not even a need to calculate damage. There’s a mini mushroom cloud as this thing explodes. Stormtroopers scatter everywhere. You’ve taken down this cannon, but also the kickback knocks you onto your back and you fall prone [dramatic bass noise] in the middle of this field, and a bunch of stormtroopers look at you as they see where the source of this explosion is from. I think they assumed they had killed you before. The fact that you just ran back down this hill again… So, there’s probably about 25 stormtroopers that turn around and start to move towards you and fire at you.

CAMERON: I forget. If people are shooting at me, is it better to be on the ground because I’m harder to hit?

NICK: Yeah, they get a black die.

CAMERON: Okay. I don’t get up, then.

NICK: Okay. You just stay down?

CAMERON: [laughing] I’m just like, sitting there, like whoops!

NICK: You roll behind a rock or something. Okay! That was step one, one of the cannons has been destroyed by a rocket launcher.

CAMERON: Was it the cannon by the 30 or the cannon by the 10?

NICK: We’ll say it’s by the 30, because a majority of them turned around and are now shooting at you.

CAMERON: Okay.

LAURA: Okay, so how difficult would it be to kind of go off to the side and loop around everything and then come back behind one of the shielded cannons, and say, sneak into it? Up inside the cannon, or just whoever is shooting it, I don’t know.

NICK: Hmm… That’s a good question. One thing in your advantage is you’re already behind the cannons, because they’re pointed at the shield facility. That would be good. There’s only one left, you could loop around. What I would say is with a successful stealth roll you would be able to get close to it. It’s like an open air thing. Imagine a really beefy motorcycle with a cannon strapped to the front of it. It’s like a car with no frame, basically, like the bottom part with the moving transmission with the cannon on the front and with a bunch of shielding on the front. it’s been stripped down. It’s like if you took a tank and were like “this needs to be light enough to enter from orbit and not explode.”

CAMERON: I’m picturing like a jeep.

LAURA: Okay, yeah. I at first was thinking of a different type of shielded cannon that’s in Star Wars stuff. I know what you mean now.

NICK: Yeah. You would be able to get close to it. There are 10 stormtroopers around it, so I doubt you would be able to get into the driving position from it, but if you wanted to you could probably get to there.

LAURA: Okay, then I want to go to there.

NICK: Okay. Make me a Stealth roll.

HUDSON: It’s just Xianna going?

NICK: Unless you want to go with her.

HUDSON: I have an idea to save karma.

NICK: Okay. We’ll do Xianna, because I think as Karma ran down the hill Xianna took that moment and was like “I wanna go play with this” and ran off that direction. As all the PCs scatter to the winds all the NPCs look at each other and are like (confused noise) and do a shrug, and then start shooting.

CAMERON (as HK): Suppressing fire.

NICK: [laughs] Yeah.

LAURA: One, what difficulty, and then two, Xianna does pull out a bag of impact and takes some on her way.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay, I’m going to go. Bye Tink.

NICK: Sneaking through a battlefield with special forces being very aware in the middle of a firefight I think is a daunting task, but if you succeed you will be right up next to the cannon in the middle of all these people, or wherever you wanna be in that situation.

LAURA: Daunting is four, right?

NICK: Yeah.

LAURA: Okay!

NICK: But I’m not going to flip a dark side point.

LAURA: Debating whether  or not I want to flip one to get an extra green.

NICK: It might be a good idea, because if you get caught in this it’s gonna be real bad.

LAURA: I’m gonna do it!

HUDSON: That’s a good idea.

NICK: That’s a lot of dice.

LAURA: Impact.

CAMERON: Yes.

NICK: [laughs]

LAURA: Okay, so I have a triumph with a success, four more successes, and an advantage.

NICK: Wow! Okay. I’m just gonna give you narrative control to kind of do whatever you want with that, because you also have a triumph, tons of successes… I think that you are able to loop around to kind of the edge of the battlefield, and there’s a lot of smoke and haze in this area, and you just do the anime style vanish into the smoke and reappear in other places, and you are a ghost. What are you trying to achieve with your stealthiness here?

[funky, smooth action music starts]

LAURA: Xianna sneaks into some sort of coverage, maybe a large rock or boulder, and does the very classic thing of picking up a smaller rock and throwing it so everyone looks in that direction, and while the stormtroopers have now gathered into a smaller area, say maybe they’re all engaged with each other spatial-wise if we were to assign it some sort of range, and are looking where the sound was near the cannon, Xianna throws two detonators at them.

NICK: Oh. Okay. That would be a ranged attack, light. We’ll give you, I don’t know, probably two blue dice for your amazing Stealth roll. You can use your triumph to just automatically activate the Blast if you want.

LAURA: Sure.

NICK: What is the damage on a thermal detonator? Do we know?

[music fades]

LAURA: Um…

NICK: Because we were using it narratively before.

LAURA: Ooh, I have frag grenades.

NICK: A thermal detonator does a lot more than a frag grenade does.

LAURA: Thermal detonator, Ranged: Light, Damage 20…

NICK: [bursts into laughter]

LAURA: …Crit 2, Range short, Blast 15, Breech 1, Vicious 4, Limited Ammo 1.

NICK: Holy cow, and you wanna throw two?

LAURA: I’m throwing… Ooh, actually, I didn’t realize it did 20 damage, 15 Blast, and Breech, and Vicious.

NICK: Yeah.

LAURA: I don’t even remember what Vicious does.

NICK: It increases the Crit.

LAURA: I’m just gonna throw one.

CAMERON: Xianna knows how powerful they are.

NICK: If you threw two I was just gonna increase the difficulty of your attack by one and do the dual wielding rules, which would be very neat, but I think you would know a thermal detonator will kill anyone within the range.

[music resumes]

With all of your Stealth successes, you got them all to cluster not just by throwing a rock but by them seeing you and then you vanishing into the smoke and then running to investigate. You manipulated them quite a bit.

LAURA: Yeah. I did it so that they would all be in one area looking away from where I ended up.

NICK: Which is short range.

LAURA: Yeah.

NICK: Which means you have to throw it and run, because the blast radius is probably that big.

LAURA: Yeah. I mean, that’s half the reason why I needed them to be looking the other direction was so that I could throw it and then just start booking it without having to worry about getting away stealthily, because give me a few extra seconds before, you know, they realize they’re about to explode.

NICK: Yep, okay, it’s short ranged so that’s an easy ranged attack, light, and Blast is already activated because of your triumph from your Stealth, so that’s immediately 15 damage.

LAURA: [smiling] Seven successes and two advantages.

NICK: Wow. Okay. Y’all are not going to find thermal detonators again for a while. [others laugh] I didn’t realize that they took down ships. There were 10 stormtroopers in that general area. I think there are two operating the tank thingy, but the other eight are just vaporized. How many advantages was it?

LAURA: Two.

NICK: Two? Which is a crit. Do you want to also have stopped the cannon’s advance or something like that narratively interesting with your advantages, or are you trying to hijack the cannon?

LAURA: I do like the idea of hijacking the cannon, so I think with everything I was able to draw them far enough away from the actual cannon that when I threw the detonator it didn’t truly damage the cannon. There might be some singe marks on it but no actual damage.

NICK: We’ll have you do like one attack roll to try to hijack the cannon / shoot it where you wanna shoot it, and we’ll give you two blue dice on that for how distracting.

LAURA: Cool!

[music stops]

NICK: You are a one person ambush. We see Xianna do that, just making disastrous work of this military. The skill of this combat was not expecting small nuclear warheads to be involved, but that’s very cool. Then we go to Tink. You said you were trying to help Karma?

HUDSON: Yeah. Just to make sure I’m clear on this, Karma’s at the bottom of the hill and I’m at the top, right?

NICK: She’s at the bottom of the hill and then a ways further forward.

HUDSON: Okay. I’m like:

HUDSON (as Tink): We need to save Karma!

HUDSON: I reach in my utility belt and throw out a frag grenade, and I yell as loud as I can towards Karma…

HUDSON (as Tink): This is for you! Hurt them with this!

HUDSON: …and I do like a hook shot, a Kobe if you will, and throw it towards Karma.

CAMERON: [laughs]

HUDSON: Now does she hear me, or does she think I’m grenading her? Do I need to roll for that?

NICK: I don’t think you need to roll. What do we think is more interesting? I do kinda like the idea of her not hearing you, because she’s far enough away and you’re in the middle of a war.

HUDSON: I just don’t know how far away.

NICK: She’s one range band. You can throw her one.

CAMERON: [laughing] It just- I don’t hear it. I’m distracted because I just fell, I sit up slightly, and I see what Xianna’s doing, and I’m like “oh my gosh…”

NICK: You’re also very heavily under fire right now.

CAMERON: Yeah.

NICK: If the stormtroopers make an attack you might die, is where we’re at.

CAMERON: Yeah, and then a grenade just shows up next to me, and I do the shy away from it and then realize that apparently all of Tink’s grenades have pins in them, so I realize that the pin is still in it and I’m like “oh, hey, I’ve got a grenade” and I pick it up.

NICK: [laughs] Okay, so you have a grenade. You were like behind a rock that’s about the size of your head trying to use that as cover.

CAMERON: Yeah.

NICK: So, what do we want the NPCs to do? I just want them to kind of act as a group.

CAMERON (as HK): Suppressing fire.

NICK: Do they just charge down the hill shooting and try to draw people off?

CAMERON: Yeah. Distract them so that not all of the guns are shooting at me. [laughs]

NICK: You all hear over the coms, you hear HK say:

NICK (as HK): Tactical Evaluation: Primary user under direct threat. Follow me.

NICK: HK just goes sprinting down the hill and starts shooting.

NICK (as HK): Suppressing fire.

NICK (as Neato): Suppressing fire!

NICK: Talon is just yelling and shooting, and Smith and Weathers are shoulder to shoulder running down the hill, so this group of your friends is running towards one of the original blown out cannon and are trying to make that for cover, and they manage to draw a decent amount of the stormtroopers’ fire. Could you roll me a Force die, please?

CAMERON: Two dark side.

NICK: Oh no… Can you roll me – agh, this is so many stormtroopers – four yellows at a hard difficulty, because they’re at long range. Yep…

CAMERON: Do they have a black die for my rock?

NICK: They’re not shooting at you. This is the stormtroopers shooting at the group.

CAMERON: Oh, okay. Oh no~ Oh, okay… One failure, one triumph, three advantages.

NICK: Okay. The group is moving fast enough, and there’s all the smoke, and it’s difficult to see, so none of them get hit, but the stormtroopers rally and start to lay down normal fire. They’re gonna have two blue dice at the next person they shoot at, and… What should their triumph be? I think their triumph is that a stormtrooper throws their own thermal detonator and blows up the rest of that cannon so there is no cover for this group. They’re just standing in the middle of an open field now. That lays out the situation. I don’t think we need to dice roll for the rest of this. I think we’re going to be okay except for the stormtroopers are gonna get a shot at Karma before this is over.

CAMERON: [weakly] I would like to throw my grenade.

NICK: Yeah. We’re just gonna make this into one last dice roll and it’s going to be you all versus all of them and then let’s just describe cinematically how this goes. Does that sound good?

HUDSON: Yeah.

NICK: Because mass combat in this situation isn’t very interesting…

LAURA: Yeah.

NICK: …as shown by suddenly in the rules we’re able to kill 10 elite stormtroopers in one throw, which is very neat, or like you killed 35 with a cannon earlier. There’s a lot going on. One, I need you to roll me another Force die, because let’s find out how the militia is doing.

CAMERON: Hudson or Laura, you roll this one, mine didn’t go well.

NICK: [laughs]

HUDSON: One Force die?

NICK: Yep.

HUDSON: Two light side.

NICK: Hey nice! As this is happening, 15-20 of the militia members – so the numbers are getting close to even at this point – come charging out of the shield facility, because you’re divided the fire enough, and they take up position in the rubble and start to shoot back, so that’s good, that’s going well. I think it’s just down to this last stormtrooper roll. It’s gonna be four yellows versus two purples and they have two blue dice. Yup. Yes, they can have a black die because of your rock.

HUDSON: [snickers]

CAMERON: I would like to flip a light side point to make it harder to hit me. [giggles]

NICK: Sure. Yeah, seems fair.

CAMERON: So I upgrade one of the purples to a red, then?

NICK: Yep.

CAMERON: I’m sure it’ll be fine.

NICK: This roll isn’t just shooting at Karma, this is them fighting back, and we’ll figure out how this goes.

CAMERON: Four successes and a triumph.

NICK: [inhales] Okay. The stormtroopers fall into a defensive position. They’re in a ring shooting in every direction. Four successes and a triumph, so karma, you are going to take 10 damage because you are the one most exposed in this situation.

CAMERON: Oh no…

NICK: Yeah, and a crit.

CAMERON: [laughing] Oh no~

NICK: Because you are the main target. Everybody else kinda did support things. This is combat, this is your focus, but you were also the focus. Let’s roll that crit and see how you do.

CAMERON: 62 plus 10 so a 72.

HUDSON: Hamstrung: Lose free maneuver until end of encounter.

[smooth electronic/techno music starts]

NICK: You get hit. It hurts. You’re pinned down. You’re exhausted. This has been a rough eight hours. [laughs]

CAMERON: It’s been a long, like, past 15 minutes for me.

NICK: Yeah. You’re just moving slow, you’ve got that dramatic action hero limp. Tink, did you charge down the hill at any point? Are you still up on the hill?

HUDSON: Nope, just still up on the hill.

NICK: Okay, well you don’t get shot then. Xianna, you’re behind a cannon, so they don’t shoot you. HK probably takes a hit. How much health does HK have?

HUDSON: 40 or something.

NICK: Oh no, not very much, he got hit earlier.

CAMERON: I did send HK with a droid repair kit, to Tink.

NICK: Yeah, he didn’t use it.

CAMERON: So he has one on him.

NICK: Yeah. He is hit for, we’ll say, 8 damage which puts him at 1 hit point remaining. He gets blasted up, but in doing so none of the NPCs are eviscerated. HK is laying suppressing fire, having a grand old time. You just hear over the com, besides people on this open frequency – and you also can hear the Imperial frequency, so it’s just a lot of noise of people calling out shots and saying where the formations are and where targets are – and over all of that you just hear HK going:

NICK (as HK): [ascending wild laughter]

NICK: [breathes] So, Xianna, at this point how do you remove the operating stormtroopers from this cannon and then what do you do with it?

LAURA: How many stormtroopers are on this cannon?

NICK: Two. You have a fine gunner that is aiming and then a person whose job seems to be to do the big aiming and also the driving.

CAMERON: The gunner is real good looking.

NICK: Like the fi—

CAMERON: They fiiine.

NICK: Okay, great, thanks.

CAMERON: You’re welcome.

NICK: Yeah. Yeah…

CAMERON: We can tell, through the stormtrooper helmet. They are a good looking individual.

LAURA: I’m thinking I would just shoot them at this point.

NICK: Okay. Yeah. You plug both of them in the back. They were very focused on trying to take that one last shot now that the militia has run out into the open. You’re able to jump into this cannon. The aiming is done like the old World War II battleships where you have to crank the wheels to move the cannon around. [laughs] You have one for left and right and one for up and down.

LAURA: [laughs] We’ve figured out interplanetary travel but can’t figure out how to make a cannon without hand cranks.

NICK: You know…

HUDSON: [laughs]

LAURA: Sometimes you just really need to hand crank a cannon, if you know what I mean.

[laughter]

HUDSON: They still sell trucks with the manual windows.

NICK: But also that’s a very Star Wars thing, that the cannons have manual cranks. It was to strip weight for the drop pod thing. There you go. The electric aimers were heavy.

LAURA: Because the hand cranks weigh less?!

CAMERON: [laughing] {There’s no lighter.}

NICK: Sure! Whatever.

CAMERON: I feel- No, I feel like no.

LAURA: I feel like that’s wrong.

NICK: Is that what we’re focused on in this massive set piece?

LAURA & CAMERON: Yes!

NICK: [laughs] I’m not taking it back. It’s got hand cranks. What do you do with your cannon?

LAURA: I wanna shoot some stormtroopers!

NICK: Okay.

LAURA: Go pew-pew. Boom.

NICK: You shoot the stormtroopers right into the middle of the formation. You’re able to fire a couple of times before the cannon just jams up and gets stuck and shuts down, but you pretty much shatter their formation. HK is just blasting at will into this group. Your group of supporters are also shooting. You hear Neato over the coms say:

NICK (as Neato): We’ve got the Imperials on the run now, chums. Let’s turn this hoedown into an afterparty.

NICK: He’s taking down troopers. Karma, I imagine you are also shooting into the group.

CAMERON: Yeah.

NICK: The militia charge out and the stormtroopers surrender. We get down to there’s like four or five left including one with one of those shoulder flappies that show that they’re important, and they drop their weapons and put up their hands.

NICK (as Stormtrooper): We- We surrender. There, uh… fight’s over.

NICK: They put up their hands. Tink, were you just like cheering them on from the hill?

HUDSON: Yeah. I haven’t moved from the hill.

NICK: [laughs]

CAMERON: He’s triumphantly waving his axe around.

HUDSON: Yeah, just waving my axe.

NICK: Cool. The militia runs out of cover, takes the stormtroopers hostage, and you can see General Karthage with a very large bandage on her shoulder, just soot streaked through her face, and you can see most of her hair which was already cut very short singed down to the scalp on one side. She takes a cigar out of a hip pouch and just thrusts it into the fire of some nearby wreckage of the cannon and sticks it in between her teeth and walks towards you all, looking around. She has that stone-faced look of a commander looking at the end of a battlefield which has a lot of militia members on it, probably only about a third of them survived just at a glance. She walks towards Karma while kinda eyeing Xianna to see if Xianna’s gonna get out of the cannon or not and does a gesture towards Tink up on his hill.

HUDSON: I run down the hill.

NICK: Xianna, do you come towards the group or do you stay in your cannon?

LAURA: Xianna had been so concerned with the cannon jamming up that she had been hitting it and cursing it and trying to unjam it, and even kicking it and hurting herself because she kicked it too hard with her foot that’s missing some toes.

NICK: Aw.

LAURA: They’re healed, but they’re still a little sore, so she’s jumping up and down on one foot just letting out a real good stream of curses in Rylothi? Twi’lek? Whichever one it is.

NICK: I believe the language is called Bib Fortuna.

CAMERON: [laughs]

LAURA: In Bib Fortuna-ese. She has not noticed that the stormtroopers have surrendered yet. [laughs]

NICK: [laughs] Okay. Great. General Karthage walks up to Karma as Tink comes puffing down the hill.

CAMERON: Karma slowly gets up off the ground.

NICK: Karthage reaches down a hand and grasps you by the forearm and pulls you to your feet.

CAMERON (as Karma): Thank you.

NICK (as Karthage): Well, it seems like we’ve made it out of this in one piece.

CAMERON: Karma looks down and checks.

CAMERON (as Karma): Eh? Oh yeah.

NICK (as Karthage): Maybe mostly in one piece. I don’t know how to thank you all. Thank you for everything you’ve done. I don’t know what happened, but the artillery stopped. Clearly you broke this massive charge. I don’t think that the Empire is going to be able to make any sort of financial argument for this being worth it at this point.

CAMERON: Karma stretches and then hunches back over and holds her side.

CAMERON (as Karma): I think they probably should have given up a while ago, though, so y’all may wanna try and figure out something to do with that star destroyer.

NICK (as Karthage): Well, at least their ground forces have been decimated. We’ll have some time to regroup. For now, I think at this point we’re going to need to abandon the city. We’ll take to the jungles, maybe head for another city, it’s only a couple hundred clicks away, we’ll probably make it, but we wouldn’t have been able to leave without y’all’s help so thank you.

NICK: Tink, at this point you arrive, and Neato and the rest of the crew arrives.

NICK (as Neato): Well, it looks like we’ve been successful, chums.

NICK: He climbs onto the little rock that Karma was using as cover and plants a foot successfully there, and just looks at Tink, and looks back at everybody else, and looks at Tink.

NICK (as Neato): If only there was some sort of dramatic pose to celebrate our victory.

HUDSON: I breathe really hard and put my hands on my knees.

HUDSON (as Tink): [huffing] Miss Karthage, can, um—

NICK (as Karthage): General.

HUDSON (as Tink): General Karthage, could I get a stim pack? And Hank is not looking good.

NICK: Hank’s—

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK: [smiling] An arm is barely attached by one little strut, and his gun, the barrels are all smoking bright red like they’ve overheated. He puts the gun into the ground and steam rises up from it, and there’s a big gaping char wound in his chest.

NICK (as HK): Assertion: I am damaged.

CAMERON (as Karma): Did you give Tink the repair kit that I sent with you?

NICK: I don’t know how a droid would be able to roll its eyes when it’s just lights, but you really get that impression. There’s the shoulder slump and the head roll and everything.

NICK (as HK): I was a little busy… suppressing fire?

CAMERON (as Karma): That’s a no, then? Do you wanna give it to Tink now?

NICK: HK is kind of behind Tink and off to the side a little and pulls from a back secured strap a mechanics thing and just throws it, and it hits Tink in the back of the head.

HUDSON (as Tink): Ow!

NICK: [laughs]

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay. That was unnecessary. There’s no need for that.

HUDSON (as Tink): [whispering] Sorry!

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK: HK just stares stilly into space. I think at this point you hear from across the now quiet battlefield you hear Xianna say something triumphantly.

LAURA: You hear her like jumping up and down.

LAURA (as Xianna): Fuck yes! I did it!

NICK: [laughs] The cannon goes off and you hear the whistle of a plasma ball go flying by. It’s over your heads by like 10-15 meters, but it’s a little close, and it hits a building on the far side and the building starts to list and collapse. [explosion] Xianna, you look up and realize the battle seems to have been over for a while.

LAURA: Once the building collapses there’s that moment of silence and you just hear very quietly in the distance Xianna being like:

LAURA (as Xianna): Oops…

[laughter]

NICK: It echoes slightly in the silence.

HUDSON: Can Neato jump on my back?

NICK: Neato’s still waiting for someone to triumphantly grab his leg so he can do his pose.

HUDSON: Oh. I grab him and throw him on my back.

HUDSON (as Tink): For Neato’s a jolly good Rodian, for Neato’s a jolly good Rodian.

NICK: You grab Neato and toss him up on your shoulders and start singing.

NICK (as Neato): Whoa. Wait, hey. Hey chum, I, uh, really prefer for my dogs to be on the ground if you understand. I’m up in the air here. I don’t know exactly what you—[stammers] Well… For Neato’s a jolly good Rodian~

LAURA (as Xianna): For Neato’s a jolly good Rodian~

[laughter]

NICK: Yep. So, I think we fade out from that scene. You all debrief with Karthage. Karthage is going to assemble any civilians that are left, all of the militia, and basically just evacuate the city during the quiet from this situation. You all are able to leave the city limits, and we come to you on the edge of the jungle, you’ve gone to the part of the shield that’s the closest and you can see that this large blue-green shield stops about half a meter above the ground, and you know that if you can get outside of it that you can use your stratopacks, which you still have. We haven’t talked about them in a while.

HUDSON: [laughs]

NICK: It’s a big footlocker. I think you probably left them with the militia members when you went to do your big assault and then after it was over you picked them back up. You’ve had to hike outside of the city, but you do have Neato with you. We start the scene with Neato saying:

NICK (as Neato): Well, we didn’t exactly win, but we didn’t lose either. Close enough! Onto the next thing, right chums?

CAMERON (as Karma): Yup.

HUDSON (as Tink): Is Neato joining our team?

CAMERON (as Karma): Tink!

LAURA (as Xianna): No. Neato is joining the other team.

CAMERON (as Karma): Beta Squad!

HUDSON (as Tink): Ohh.

NICK (as HK): Plaintive Statement: You already have a sniper.

CAMERON (as Karma): Very true, HK.

HUDSON (as Tink): That’s true.

CAMERON (as Karma): How are you feeling now that Tink fixed you with that repair kit?

NICK: It’s just like a durasteel plate has been welded onto the front, but everything looks about the same.

LAURA: Just some duct tape.

NICK: Yeah. HK looks down, looks up.

NICK (as HK): I mean, I’ve been worse.

CAMERON (as Karma): That is true. You did have a hole in your chest when we first met.

NICK (as HK): How come I always get shot in the chest? You’d think some other part of me would take damage.

NICK: Sparks shoot out of HK’s shoulder.

CAMERON: Karma points at the arm and then puts her hand down and thinks better of it.

CAMERON (as Karma): I mean, you’re just, you’re very wiry.

NICK (as HK): Ha. Ha. Ha.

CAMERON (as Karma): [nervous forced laugh]

HUDSON (as Tink): Your chest protrudes is what they’re trying to say.

CAMERON (as Karma): Yes, funny pun, but also your chest is the largest piece to shoot for you mechanic-wise, so it kinda makes sense.

HUDSON (as Tink): Yes.

NICK: Neato throws an arm over Karma, avoiding her injuries, and an arm over Tink.

CAMERON: [laughing] Like puts his hand on Tink’s shoulder.

NICK: Yeah.

NICK (as Neato): Well, now that this afterparty is well underway, how are we gonna get out of here exactly, chums?

LAURA (as Xianna): We crawl underneath the shield and then we hit the little buttons on the reverse parachutes.

CAMERON: We put on our backpacks.

HUDSON: I have a question out of character.

NICK: Sure.

HUDSON: How shiny and heavy are the medals we got from General Karthage?

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK: You didn’t get any medals.

LAURA: No medals.

CAMERON: There was a very intense medal ceremony where all of these rebels that we didn’t know showed up.

HUDSON: [laughs]

NICK: But you didn’t get one, you just made an angry noise.

HUDSON: No ceremony where there’s music and I’m walking down an aisle and then I just randomly go (sound resembling Chewbacca in final scene of A New Hope)?

NICK: Yup.

LAURA: You don’t get a medal.

CAMERON: Yep, and Karma and Xianna get medals, and you and HK don’t.

LAURA: Xianna becomes a general.

[laughter]

NICK: Oh no!

CAMERON: You can tell by the stripes on her pants.

LAURA: Or at the very least a captain at first, and then a general.

NICK: Yeah, I forgot about that. That’s a poor organizational decision.

LAURA: [laughs] Yeah, it makes no sense.

NICK: Okay. You all crawl under the shield?

CAMERON & HUDSON: Yes.

NICK: We get a scene of you all slapping these—remember they look like stainless steel briefcases with just a big red button on them, and you strap them on like backpacks. You look like kids on the first day of school putting your shiny, new backpacks on. Neato slides into his and secures the straps.

CAMERON: Karma shifts her rocket launcher and blaster to the front so that she can put the backpack on. Leaves the sword to the back though, that’ll work.

NICK: [laughs] Okay.

NICK (as Neato): So we hit these big red buttons and we go to space, huh?

CAMERON (as Karma): Yep, and then it lights a beacon, and the ship hopefully comes and picks us up, before we run out of oxygen.

NICK: HK says…

NICK (as HK): Assertion: That will not be a problem for me.

NICK: …and hits the button over his shoulder. You see there’s a pulse of blue light and HK is hovering about a meter off the ground, and then you hear a sound like an old ocean-going vessel sail unfurling, and then HK just shoots up into the air super-fast.

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay everybody, press the button, because we all need to be close.

CAMERON: Karma button presses.

HUDSON: I button press.

LAURA: Xianna button presses.

NICK: Neato stands there for a minute as you all shoot up into the atmosphere.

CAMERON (as Karma): Press the button!

NICK (as Neato): Well, sally forth into the great, blue beyond, eh?

CAMERON (as Karma): Press the button!

NICK: And hits his own button, and jumps and flies up. It’s like reverse skydiving, so it’s like the same speed as falling at terminal velocity but you’re going up instead of down. The backpack isn’t pulling you by the straps, it’s like a field around you that’s lifting you up, so it’s  not super uncomfortable, it’s just a really weird feeling to see the ground falling away at this speed, but you don’t really have any control, it’s just happening.

You slow down as you get further and further up. You can see the curve of the planet. You can see the size of the continent that you were on that you remember from when you drop podded in. you come to the extent of what the stratopack can do for you. You’re in a pretty tight cluster, because you rose straight up and the winds were consistent, and you float on the barest edge of the atmosphere. You can feel your lungs starting to burn from lack of oxygen and you can feel the tug of your skin pulling away from you in the low pressure. You’re not dying, but you could make a good run at it if you were given enough time. You all hear your stratopacks beeping gently and you see a star dislodge from the distance and move towards you.

[occasional TIE fighter noises begin]

That’s when you hear the howling of something much closer. A massive green bolt flies through the middle of your group, burning the air around you and scattering you apart on the buoyant field of your stratopacks. A TIE fighter blazes past, almost hitting you with its solar panels, and begins to come around for another run. What do you do?

[noises pause]

CAMERON: I shoot it with my rocket launcher.

[laughter]

LAURA: Okay! But before you do that, how hard would it be to time throwing, say, a detonator at it as it flies by?

NICK: I think that you would be able to. The hardest thing would be putting it in proximity timers. The detonators are really useful. At least in the video games you can throw them to explode on contact or explode on a timer, but the thing that would be hard is getting it into the TIE fighter’s range and  not being within the range itself, as you cannot run away, so it would be probably a hard throw. I would say it would also be a hard rocket shot, and I would let you two do that at the same time as it’s coming back towards you.

[TIE fighter noises continue]

You’re floating in space and Xianna goes for a thermal detonator and Karma pulls her rocket launcher up as the TIE fighter is doing that howling approach towards you. It’s shooting at you, but not very close, because it’s hard to aim a space plane at a person. They’re not designed for that.

[upbeat hopeful music begins]

You can see the star destroyer floating in the distance and it’s shooting turbo lasers into the inky blackness, so it’s engaged with something else right now. You can see in the far distance the Tallahassee Quagmire, that weird croissant-shaped ship, spiraling through the turbo laser fire and heading towards you but it’s gonna be a few minutes. So, make those rolls.

CAMERON: Is the encounter over?

NICK: Yes?

CAMERON: Okay.

NICK: Why?

CAMERON: Because one of my crits was an extra difficulty until the end of the encounter.

NICK: Yeah, I’ll say the encounter is over. You had some brief denouement. Tink, do you want to hit it with an axe?

CAMERON: [laughs]

HUDSON: I’m good!

NICK: Okay.

HUDSON: I could lose my axe.

NICK: Yeah, that would be bad. You have extras, they’re not as nice, though.

CAMERON: My rocket launcher has two successes, one advantage.

LAURA: Five successes and one threat.

NICK: Geez, okay.

HUDSON: [laughing] They both work?

NICK: Yeah, they both hit it, which is good.

LAURA: I’m all jacked up on impact!

NICK: Karma pulls up the rocket launcher and fires before the rocket has had time to lock on and it flies and hits just to the outside of the solar panel, and you know what happens when anyone sneezes on a TIE fighter solar panel, and it starts to spin and scream, mechanically.

[TIE fighter screeches]

CAMERON: [giggles, feigns a scream]

HUDSON: [feigns a scream]

LAURA: Spinning is a neat trick.

[laughter]

NICK: And it tumbles within Xianna’s range of the thermal detonator, because the biggest limitation on the thermal detonator would be the short range, which means it’s like right next to you all.

CAMERON: But luckily the TIE fighter hits it and then continues moving past us and carries the blast away.

NICK: Sure. It was very severely damaged but probably would have stabilized and come back, and Xianna’s able to underhand chuck it and it sticks to the bottom of it, so you hear the [TIE fighter screeching] as the TIE fighter goes spinning away, and then it zooms in and you see the little ball beeping underneath it, and it flashes back and forth between those for a little bit, and then there’s a silent ball of fire as it engulfs the TIE fighter and the TIE fighter is destroyed.

Good work. That was very cool. Normally in Star Wars you hear the explosion, but I think a silent ball of fire is cooler in this situation. You are all left hanging there kind of scattered through the atmosphere. You’re probably within 40 or 50 meters of each other, because you got scattered by the shot. You have a minute in very low oxygen. You can see the Tallahassee Quagmire getting closer.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay, well I am out of detonators.

HUDSON (as Tink): I have grenades, but mostly stun grenades at this point.

LAURA (as Xianna): I don’t think that’s going to help us up here.

HUDSON (as Tink): It could malfunction a ship.

NICK: You’re floating in space, pretty far from each other, having this conversation on your coms, and the Tallahassee Quagmire comes scooping over the atmosphere, you can see it almost skidding over the air resistance as it gets close, and the bottom of it opens up and a large, round magnet starts to thrum, and you all get individually sucked into this small box one at a time. There’s a couple of these small boxes, and you recognize it as the box that you and Tink got stuck in originally when you came in. [chuckles]

LAURA (as Xianna): Oh hey, I recognize that box.

NICK: Karma and HK get pulled into one of these little phone booth situations by their stratopacks, and then Neato gets pulled into one, and then Xianna and Tink get pulled into another one. The ship immediately starts to rattle with absorbed turbo laser fire and TIE fighters that you can hear, and you can hear Tiny’s voice from over the ship PA system.

NICK (as Tiny): Quick, Carn [beep-beep], punch it, punch it!

NICK: And the ship jumps to hyperspace, and not soon after these little boxes open up and you all fall into this stripped down open area that is the main part of the ship. Neato sits up and rubs at his head.

NICK (as Neato): Wow, swanky conveyance you’ve got here.

CAMERON (as Karma): Oof.

HUDSON (as Tink): Ugh.

LAURA (as Xianna): That was unpleasant.

CAMERON (as Karma): [weakly] Hey Tiny.

NICK: Tiny turns around in his seat as he was finishing locking down the ship for a hyperspace jump.

NICK (as Tiny): But you lived. Everybody’s back. Nobody’s completely decompressed.

HUDSON (as Tink): Where’s HK? Where’s HK?!

LAURA (as Xianna): He is right there.

CAMERON (as Karma): [struggling] He’s right on top of me.

HUDSON (as Tink): Oh…

NICK: HK sits up and a couple of sparks shoot out of his head and he rolls off of Karma.

NICK (as HK): Apologies.

CAMERON (as Karma): It’s okay.

NICK: HK does not get up. HK stays sprawled on its back, just on the floor.

NICK (as Tiny): Well, it looks like you were successful. Hi, I’m Tiny.

NICK (as Neato): Salutations, new chum.

NICK: And they shake hands. Neato starts to just stalk around the ship and rub on his shoulders where they’re pretty sore. The stratopacks are all still stuck in those phone booths. You had to undo the straps to get out. Neato is making himself at home.

NICK (as Tiny): Well, so, we’re jumping to a neutral point where we’re going to drop Mr. Neato off. Huge fan, by the way, huge fan.

NICK: Neato just nods graciously.

NICK (as Tiny): And then after that we’ll swing on back to the resort and you can pick up your ship and then you’re off on the next thing. That was the extent of our payment was to pick you back up and drop you off. So, welcome to the Tallahassee Quagmire, fastest bus in the galaxy.

NICK (as Neato): Your ship looks like shit!

[laughter]

NICK: Neato seems unimpressed.

CAMERON (as Karma): Tiny, would you or Carn [beep-beep] happen to have any medical supplies on the ship?

NICK (as Tiny): Uh, I think Carn [beep-beep] has some supplies. He might be able to help. He picked up some weird textbook recently.

CAMERON (as Karma): Oh no.

NICK (as Tiny): Yeah… He really thinks that he’s a doctor now, but I don’t think it’s like an actual book. It seems to focus more on how the doctor feels about how things went than the actual…

CAMERON (as Karma): Is it Becoming Medicine or Becoming Emotion?

NICK: Carn Horn [beep-beep] turns around and just goes:

NICK (as Carn): [deep groaning whine / Wookie noise]

CAMERON (as Karma): Oh, it’s Becoming Emotion, okay.

NICK: [chuckles]

CAMERON (as Karma): Hey Tink.

HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah?

CAMERON (as Karma): Do you have any medical supplies with you?

HUDSON (as Tink): Oh, let me see here. By the way, those books usually come in a set, you must have gotten it used, but it’s still gonna be great for you.

NICK (as Tiny): I think Carn picked up the international edition. You’re not supposed to buy those, but they are cheaper.

HUDSON (as Tink): That usually doesn’t come with the CD and the access code you need.

NICK: [laughs]

CAMERON: [laughs] What?

NICK: Carn [beep-beep] slides a big canvas duffle bag over and you see nice bacta gear and things to patch you up.

LAURA: Xianna also has seven stim packs, but she is already curled up in a corner sleeping. She found a whole stack of pillows and a beanbag and has made what is essentially a nest.

NICK: I think, Xianna, they feel like a stack of pillows and a beanbag but it’s actually like paper trash and wires and things, because this is a super uncomfortable ship.

LAURA: Yeah. [laughs]

NICK: That’s like the one defining feature we have of it, but you are completely conked out. Do you have any medical advice as you help patch up your friends, Tink?

HUDSON (as Tink): Now with stim packs, you gotta fit as many as you can in one hand that you’re planning on using and stab them all at the same time.

CAMERON (as Karma): Please, please, please don’t stim pack me again.

NICK: [laughs]

HUDSON (as Tink): So, I read in my book, Becoming Medicine that—

NICK (as Carn): [deep groaning whine / Wookie noise]

HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah! Yeah, exactly. So if me and someone else who has consumed that knowledge hold hands and get our energies together, so we aligned our energy, our Force auras, and that actually can heal you faster than normal stim packs, or they accelerate the stim packs, or you lose your appetite if you were really hungry. It’s one of those three things.

CAMERON (as Karma): I thought we established that we were not using more stim packs.

HUDSON (as Tink): Why not?

CAMERON (as Karma): I have been stim packed twice today.

HUDSON (as Tink): Oh, there’s not a limit. You’d think there’s a limit—

CAMERON (as Karma): No, there is.

HUDSON (as Tink): I mean, I’ve never seen one.

CAMERON (as Karma): Carn [beep-beep], you have so much bacta in this duffle bag. Please, can I just have some bacta?

NICK: Carn smiles wickedly and pulls a bone saw out of somewhere.

CAMERON (as Karma): No, I’m fine. I just have two crits. [laughs]

NICK: And that’s where we’re gonna end the episode.

ALL: Ba-naaa~!

## Outro

CAMERON: Thanks for listening to Tabletop Squadron. If you’ve enjoyed our show please consider logging into iTunes and giving us a five-star review. Five-star reviews will help new listeners to find the show and will make the squad giggle like school children when we read them. If you’re so inclined, you can also help support the show through our Patreon which can be found in the show notes, on our website, and basically anywhere we post things. We have all sorts of Patreon levels including some of my favorites: Bantha Buddy, Tarkin’s Underwear Drawer, and Build-A-Beru which all have fabulous rewards and super great names.

Xianna’fan is played by Laura Penrod. She can be found on Twitter at @cheerio_buffet.

Tink is played by Hudson Jameson. He can be found on Twitter at @hudsonjameson.

Karma Nailo is played by me, Cameron Robertson. You can find me on Twitter at @midnightmusic13.

Our game master is Nick Robertson, and you can find him on Twitter at @alias58.

Our intro song is Space Jam by Pablo Ribot.

Additional music by James Gunter.

Follow the podcast on Twitter and Instagram at @Tabletop_Squad, and join our Discord and share all of your food and cute pet photos with us. We also sometimes talk about Star Wars. You can find the link to join our Discord on our website and in our pinned tweet. See you next time.

Word document download: Episode 44 A Fishy Situation

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Tabletop Squadron Transcript, Season 1 Episode 44:
A Fishy Situation

Transcript by Tyler (Twitter: @Tyler_MoonSage)

## Intro

NICK: Hi everyone, and welcome to Tabletop Squadron, a Star Wars: Edge of the Empire actual play podcast. I’m Nick, your game master. Every other Thursday our story follows a thief, a bounty hunter, and a slicer as they explore the galaxy helping a mysterious benefactor and each other.

First of all, I’d like to thank CurseOfStu for their kind iTunes review. Your cat is great, you’re great. Thanks for telling others about us. I also want to thank The1BShipes for their very kind review. We are all very happy to hear that you’re enjoying the crew’s shenanigans.

Finally, I want to take a second to thank our newest patron! Jackie Betts, you’ve made a special effort to show appreciation to the show by talking to us, sharing wonderful art, and supporting our Patreon as well. Thank you, so much, from the bottom of all our space hearts for all that you do. Welcome to the ship. I think there may be a loth-rat somewhere onboard, so if you could track that down before it chews through the wires I’d appreciate it.

Podcast music this week is GIGA METAL by Loyalty Freak Music and Lost Sad Lament, Piano and Cello by Solar Flare.

Now, let’s get into the episode.

##

NICK: Hello! Welcome to Tabletop Squadron, Episode 44. I’m your hosting game master, Nick. I like the color of the walls in here. It’s pleasant. It’s like a light avocado.

LAURA: It’s like the palest green.

NICK: Yeah! It’s really mellow. It’s nice.

LAURA: I hate it.

HUDSON: I’d say it pales in comparison to other walls.

CAMERON: Boo.

NICK: That means it—

LAURA: I mean, it does. I hate it.

NICK: Oh. Good!

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK: Yeah, fuck these walls.

LAURA: Because it’s too light of a green! It looks like it’s white that went bad.

HUDSON: I’m not observant, so I thought it was white. If you would have just taken me out of the room and been like what color was that room wall—

NICK: Hudson, look at the door. What color is the door?

HUDSON: White.

NICK: What color is the wall?

HUDSON: Where?

CAMERON: [giggles] In this room.

NICK: Like, next to the door.

HUDSON: Oh, next to the door? Avocado.

NICK: There you go. Nice.

CAMERON: [laughs]

LAURA: That is not the color of an avocado!

NICK: It is if it’s a bad one. I would know. Anyway, already doing great. Yeah, so we’re gonna go around the room. Everybody say who you are and who you are playing today, and your favorite color of avocado, starting with Cameron.

CAMERON: Hello. I am Cameron, and I’m playing Karma Nailo, the Nautolan bounty hunter. I like normal, kind of dark green avocados…?

NICK: Hmm. Okay. Interesting. Up next we have Laura.

LAURA: Hi. I’m Laura, and I play Xianna’fan, a Twi’lek smuggler, and I like that sort of medium bright green.

NICK: Solid. Good choice.

LAURA: Yeah.

NICK: And last but not least, we’ve got Hudson.

HUDSON: Hi, I’m Hudson, and I play Tink, a Gigoran slicer, and my favorite color of avocado is dark green, and I like it—well actually, it kind of scares me when people have the knife after it’s cut in half and they, like, just throw it into the brown thing in the middle, the circle that looks like a—

[laughter]

NICK: The pit?

HUDSON: Yeah, the pit, and they just pull it up. It’s kind of weird.

NICK: Yeah, that’s a thing. Fun kitchen fact for the day: If you put the pit of an avocado in your guacamole it won’t turn brown as fast.

LAURA: That is not a proven scientific fact!

NICK: I am science!

CAMERON: Proven!

LAURA: The best way is to put a thin layer of lime juice for the acidity and then smoosh plastic wrap on top to prevent oxygen from reaching it, because the brown is from oxidation.

CAMERON: Mm-hmm!

NICK: As I started talking I was like this is not gonna go well for me. [laughs]

CAMERON: Or, best solution, just eat your guacamole really fast, and then it won’t go bad.

NICK: That is—

HUDSON: No, no-no-no.

LAURA: So if you cover the entire surface with pits it might reduce browning just because anywhere the pit is sitting on won’t oxidize as fast.

CAMERON: [laughs]

NICK: So, before we get started with the recap, let’s do the Destiny Roll~!

CAMERON: One dark side.

LAURA: One dark side.

HUDSON: One dark side.

CAMERON: Oh no.

NICK: [sinister laugh] Okay! So brief recap from last episode. You all started your assault upon the beach and the artillery pieces. Tink, you hacked the communication network of the star destroyer and kept them from asking for reinforcements as Karma shot a rocket launcher at a bunch of stuff. HK shot a bunch of stormtroopers, got shot, jumped off a building, and just started shooting everywhere because that’s like what he does. Xianna almost drowned, made it to the beach, was not happy about it, and then shot a stormtrooper. And then Tink, you did some hijinks down a hallway, including leapfrog, and hit a bunch of stormtroopers with an axe, and then figured out that there were 15 more stormtroopers and ran away and hid in a room.

The last thing that happened when we left off was Tink was pinned down by enemy fire in a small room and Karma and Xianna were on the beach trying to figure out where to go. You are having to deal with Tink potentially getting shot. A whole bunch of enemy stormtroopers are currently launching assaults upon the shield facility, which if it falls will result in your eminent orbital bombardment and demise. Also, one of your artillery things is moving slower but is still up and moving and also heading towards potentially a firing position upon the shield facility. That’s where we’re going to kick it off.

Xianna, you were last holding two grenades and your blaster pistol. What are we doing, folks?

LAURA: Yep. Gonna go get Tink.

NICK: So, Xianna, you are running towards the technology district. Did you bring Smith and Weathers with you?

LAURA: I mean, they were there. Whether or not they followed me is their own choice.

HUDSON: Weather or… Oh, oh, oh! Whether or not, W-H.

CAMERON: [giggles] Smith and whether or not they came.

HUDSON: Weather or not they came.

NICK: Heh, um…

CAMERON: You’re welcome.

NICK: Okay. Xianna, you are heading towards Tink, presumably as reinforcements. Tink, you are I guess currently fighting back against the stormtroopers that are shooting everywhere.

HUDSON: Oh yeah.

NICK: Okay. And Karma, you had not yet made your decision. Xianna, I think you took HK with you, didn’t you?

CAMERON: Yes…?

LAURA: I think HK was at least gonna follow me.

NICK: Yeah. We’ll say HK took off after you. Karma, you are on the beach, Xianna and HK are heading towards the technology district to rescue Tink. There is a large artillery piece rolling up the beach with no external weapons you can see besides the huge cannon that is firing periodically upon the city. It looks like however this thing operates they haven’t really been able to see outside of their vehicle and what their objective is or they decided to ignore what was going on and try to complete their objective. The shield facility, you can hear from here, just the sounds of combat beginning. What do you do?

CAMERON: I don’t have any explosives on me.

NICK: HK did.

CAMERON: Yup. [defeated chuckle]

NICK: You could probably catch him.

CAMERON: Alright. Yeah. I’m gonna order HK back, grab the explosives from him.

NICK (as HK): Indignant Statement: You didn’t have to order me. You could have asked nicely.

CAMERON (as Karma): Sorry, you were just running.

NICK: HK comes stomping back towards the beach with a satchel.

CAMERON (as Karma): Thank you~ Here, take this droid repair kit and have Tink fix you whenever you meet up with him. I’ll trade you for the explosives.

NICK (as HK): Acknowledged.

NICK: And HK goes traipsing off. His mechanical run on loose sand looks pretty unstable combined with his damage and also just kicks big plumes of sand everywhere. It’s pretty awkward as he makes his way back off the beach, which also puts him behind Xianna by a good probably quarter mile at this point, because he had to turn around.

CAMERON: I put the explosives in my backpack, that I have.

NICK: Sure.

CAMERON: I’ve got a mom backpack.

NICK: Sure.

CAMERON: And I’m gonna go swim towards the artillery.

NICK: Okay, so you are attacking the artillery. Who do we want to see first? I feel like a scene of Tink’s desperate resistance is probably next up on the plate here. Tink, you are pinned down in a room full of smoking, destroyed computers that you destroyed yourself. You have with you Neato, who is leaned up against a wall, trying to peer around the door, but just can’t because of the amount of blaster fire going through. You also have Specialists Talon and Kevin who are ducked behind a ratty couch that is occasionally taking angled blaster fire with their hands on their heads, taking cover. Neato, from his position by the door, says:

NICK (as Neato): Well chum, it looks like we’re gonna become Selonian cheese quick without a little hand here. Any idea on how to get out of this sticky wicket?

HUDSON (as Tink): Uh, uh, uh… Let’s, uh… Oh! I got it. Okay! Let’s take those mainframes and throw them at the door to block them from coming in, because they’re heavy.

NICK (as Neato): So your plan is to hole up here and wait for help?

HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah, pretty much. I mean, do you want to take on 15 stormtroopers?

NICK (as Neato): I’m not particularly interested in getting blasted. I could probably take about 14 of them, 15 is my limit.

HUDSON (as Tink): It only takes one of them to shoot you down, so uh…

NICK (as Neato): It’s a good point. We’re fine with this. Is someone coming to get us? I thought this was a solo mission.

HUDSON (as Tink): I sent out my signal.

NICK (as Neato): Is anyone actually coming to help?

HUDSON (as Tink): You know, sometimes you just gotta believe.

NICK: Karma and Xianna, you have an open com channel, so if you wanted to say something to Tink reassuring you could.

CAMERON (as Karma): You got this, buddy.

CAMERON: And I dive into the water. [laughs]

NICK: Sploosh!

HUDSON (as Tink): Alright. I just heard Karma say something super encouraging and then a sploosh sound.

CAMERON: [laughs]

HUDSON (as Tink): Maybe she’s in the bath? I can’t think of where she would be. Either way, it sounds like they believe in us.

NICK (as Neato): Well that’s good. I’m a fan of Karma, but that doesn’t help with all the stormtroopers outside.

HUDSON (as Tink): Hmm.

NICK: Heh. Let’s leave that scene, and make me an Athletics roll for how quickly you can throw these mainframes to barricade the door. Athletics is a skill that is Brawn-based.

HUDSON: Wouldn’t it be just pure Brawn? Because Athletics…

NICK: Eh, I would say weight lifting is not just how strong you are. Technique also comes into play. Lift with your knees and not with your back.

LAURA: Is it Brawl or Melee to use an improvised weapon?

NICK: That would be melee.

LAURA: So what if he used his Melee skill to throw them as if he was using them as an improvised weapon.

NICK: [deflates]

HUDSON: I don’t even want to do that stretch.

CAMERON: I feel like if he’s throwing them it becomes Ranged: Heavy.

NICK: No, that’s very funny though.

[laughter]

HUDSON: No, I’m okay going with the just Athletics.

NICK: What was interesting to me is you were arguing for pure Brawn which is exactly the same.

HUDSON: Yeah, I’m now connecting that it was. What’s the difficulty?

NICK: Let’s say average.

HUDSON: Yay.

NICK: You could use it as a Melee attack, but you couldn’t barricade the door. You would have to throw it at the stormtroopers.

HUDSON: Yeah. That might be my backup if the barricade doesn’t work.

NICK: Alright. Let’s try a barricade. You can have a… Who would you like to help you?

HUDSON: The spirit of Karma? I would like Kevin help.

NICK: Okay, a black die then, because he’s bad at this.

[pause, laughter]

HUDSON: Alright.

NICK: It was a subtle ploy.

HUDSON: Ha-ha. One failure and one advantage.

NICK: Hmm… The failure, I think that Specialist Kevin is not really very helpful, obviously. You try to each lift up an end and he can’t really do it, so it turns—

HUDSON (as Tink): Put your back into it, Kevin!

NICK (as Kevin): Look, it’s really heavy, and I’m a computer person not a lift things person.

CAMERON: “This is more of a hardware issue, I’m really more of a software guy.”

[laughter]

NICK: That’s a good line. I like that. Yeah, so he’s just in the way. You end up tripping over him. You are able to knock it over, but you’re not able to slide it anywhere, and the stormtroopers move up some firing position-wise and they’re starting to get more accurate, and swaths of the room are now melting under blaster fire. You are not able to walk through the middle of the room. It’s you and Kevin on one side of the room and Neato and Talon on the other side of the room as you hear them saying:

NICK (as Stormtrooper): Move up. They’re not returning fire.

NICK: You can hear the slow clomp of boots. They are moving slowly, because they don’t want to walk into a bad situation. That doesn’t work. Is there something you would like to spend your advantage on?

HUDSON: Can Neato come up with a good idea? Or is that too much?

NICK: Um… That would be more a triumph, I think. If you want Neato to do something helpful we can boost that.

HUDSON: Okay.

NICK: You could probably say for an advantage that as they’re moving up Neato, with his skills, is able to… You see him lean his disrupter rifle around the corner without looking, and he makes eye contact with you with his one galaxy patterned eye—because remember, he has an eyepatch, we haven’t talked about that a lot but he super does.

HUDSON: [laughs]

NICK: He makes eye contact with you and says…

NICK (as Neato): It’s a no-look shot.

NICK: …and he takes a shot, and you hear a stormtrooper go:

NICK (as Stormtrooper): [dorky pain groan]

NICK (as Neato): Score one, bull’s-eye.

NICK: We’re going to cut away. The advantage is they have not entered the room and killed you all, but you were not able to slow them down as much as the server would do.

HUDSON: And now it’s at Neato’s limit, so really Neato could take them all on according to Neato. [laughs]

NICK: Theoretically.

CAMERON: If he just shot one they’re down to 14.

LAURA: He just 360 no-scoped a dude, so…

HUDSON: True.

NICK: That’s one of the 14.

CAMERON: Oh, no, that’s true. It doesn’t reset?

NICK: No.

CAMERON: OH, okay.

NICK: That’s for the scene. [smiling] This is apparently a mechanic now I have introduced.

CAMERON: Well, if you switch away now then that was the scene, so then when you go back to Tink and Neato it would restart and he’d be able to take them all, right?

NICK: No, that’s not how scenes work. [laughter] Xianna, you are currently pelting down the alleyways of this occupied city, you are followed closely by Smith and Weathers, and in the distance if you haven’t turned a corner around a building in a while you can hear the distant clanking of HK running after you. As if from a distance you hear:

NICK (as HK): Assessment: It sure is good I don’t get tired.

NICK: Clank, clank, clank. So, are you trying to get there fast or are you trying to get there stealthily?

LAURA: I think I’m just trying to get there, so I would assume fast.

NICK: Okay. I won’t make you roll an Athletics for how fast you can run ,because I don’t like that, but I will make you roll me a Force die just on if you happen to intercept any patrols or anything.

LAURA: One dark point, dark side point. What do we call them?

CAMERON: Dark side.

NICK: Dark side point.

LAURA: One dark side point!

NICK: Sure. Go ahead and, what is your Coordination?

LAURA: I have Rank 3.

NICK: Okay, and your Agility is 4 or 5?

LAURA: My Agility is still 4. My Cunning is 5.

NICK: Okay. So, if you could roll me, Cameron, a three yellow versus three reds and a purple.

CAMERON: One success, three threats.

NICK: [pauses, laughs]

[laughter]

LAURA: They fall prone!

[dramatic bass noise, stopped abruptly]

NICK: I’m getting there!

LAURA: Ha-ha!

CAMERON: Ha! But they do shoot you.

LAURA: They do shoot at me, but they fall prone!

[dramatic bass noise finishes playing]

HUDSON: On stairs, which means they fall down, the stairs.

NICK: So, you’re able to go a majority of the distance to this technology district very quickly. You have been this way before actually, or most of the way, because this is kind of back the direction when you originally came to meet up with Tink and karma and Neato. It probably only takes you five or six minutes. Smith and Weathers are close behind you. You round this corner and it comes into this large, open courtyard with a dry fountain in the middle, and it’s been scorched. There’s been some fires and there’s some craters in this courtyard, but otherwise it seems very quiet, and a little warning flashes in the back of your head of there’s no cover here, there are a lot of sightlines, but like you said you’re in a hurry, you’re trying to get to Tink, you’re on a mission. So you cut across this courtyard, and the first thing you feel is a feeling of getting just punched in the back of the shoulder by something just really heavy and you’re spun around and dropped to the ground, and you take [wincing] 11 damage.

CAMERON: Shit.

LAURA: Did you include the fact that I have a 1 in Ranged Defense and a 1 in Melee Defense?

NICK: No. Roll me a black die for that, please.

CAMERON: If that’s the case, just three threats.

NICK: God damn it. Okay.

LAURA: Ha-ha!

NICK: That’s so much less dramatic! Oh well. So yeah, I think you still get hit. It’s down to just the defense of your coat keeps you from getting hurt.

LAURA: I roll my shoulder so that it glances off. You know? Did you not see A Knight’s Tale? You roll your shoulder back and it glances!

[laughter]

NICK: It’s not- It’s not-

CAMERON: That’s how that works.

LAURA: You roll it forward and then it glances away.

NICK: My description still stands. You feel like you got punched in the back and you are spun around and dropped to the ground. You have that moment of, you’ve been shot before, it very much feels like that first moment where you get shot where you don’t really feel the burn of the blaster or anything ,it’s just the kinetic force, and you feel at your shoulders and your chest and you realize that you’re not bleeding, and your coat has absorbed the blow of the shot, and you can see in front of you a large carbon scoring where a majority of the shot did not hit you. Your coat has saved your life.

LAURA: Yeah.

NICK: Then you hear:

NICK (as Stormtrooper): [nerdy pained wailing]

[laughter]

NICK: And a scout trooper just like- I think this trooper was on a fire escape and just blended into the shadows of it. The screws that held it to the building crack and it shifts and they lost their balance, and they just fall over, and they fall… [dramatic bass noise] …gosh, like three stories to the ground, so that’s like—

LAURA: Oh! That’s so much damage!

CAMERON: Ooh.

NICK: So they just turn into mist, just (splat). The scout trooper falls prone [dramatic bass noise] out of this fire escape, and then falls three stories to the ground, which by the rules of Star Wars is—Actually, could we look up what the actual fall damage is? Because I think it’s like 5 damage and 5 strain per 5 feet or something like that. It’s really, it’s too much.

CAMERON: Does Soak apply to fall damage?

LAURA: Falling Damage—

CAMERON: The rulebook says 10 damage for falling a short distance.

LAURA: Medium is 30.

CAMERON: Heh. They dead.

NICK: Thirty damage?!

CAMERON: For medium.

NICK: Ugh, that’s so much, and it’s medium range, I said it was. Three stories is like the far end of medium range. So, according to the rules, it’s 30 damage. Yeah. They’re super dead. I’ve made this reference before, but it does that high pitched squeaky click that it makes when they throw the scout troopers on Endor into the tree, and the stormtrooper just goes (splat) and is done. They are done. There is no more scout trooper, and you are able to continue on to the technical institute without any other issues, because you can see it on the far side of this clearing. So, you’re able to continue onward. From there we are going to cut away to… karma.

Karma, you are currently swimming underwater. What do you think it feels like to be breathing water, on a planet that is not your home, that has been… like, the home of war machines for the last while and is scorched by cinders and blown up buildings and stuff?

CAMERON: Breathing the water feels like drinking water in Lubbock.

NICK: That’s going to apply to three people.

CAMERON: Yep, but it’s a perfect description for that.

NICK: Those three people are gonna be like heck yeah.

CAMERON: It’s a very bad, weird water taste where it’s just any time you’re traveling and you drink tap water and you’re like this tap water tastes wrong. It’s like that, but more so, because Lubbock.

NICK: So it’s got a metallic tinge to it, and you can feel it kind of coating your… however you breathe.

CAMERON: My lungs.

NICK: Well, I think they’re amphibians, right? So you just breathe through your skin?

CAMERON: Sure.

NICK: Ew… I don’t like that. Anyway.

CAMERON: We don’t have to think about it. It’s fine.

NICK: Yeah, let’s not. It’s fine. There’s gills under your head tentacles or something.

CAMERON: Hiding next to my ears.

NICK: Or they are your ears. Who knows.

CAMERON: [snickers] Okay.

NICK: So you have some explosives. You are swimming to this artillery craft. What are you doing?

CAMERON: I am looking for the holes caused by the last explosion.

NICK: They are myriad and obvious. There are probably three or four big old holes.

CAMERON: And I’m putting the explosives that I have with me, depending on how large the hole in the hull is, reaching it in and sticking it farther inside so that it hopefully does more internal damage to the ship and not just surface hole stuff.

NICK: Okay. I’m gonna need some sort of roll here. My thinkings are they could be Athletics, because swimming up to a moving craft very quickly and placing these things without cutting yourself on jagged craters and things could be difficult, or you could argue that it’s Weapons: Heavy if you have a lot of explosives experience and you’ve done this kind of thing before, I could be persuaded. I feel more Athletics than that.

CAMERON: I feel more Athletics. I feel like with being a bounty hunter often times you’re not using explosives because you need something to turn in for the bounty.

NICK: Yeah, no disintegrations.

CAMERON: yeah. So I’m fine with Athletics.

NICK: make me a hard Athletics roll. Flip me a dark side point though, to upgrade that, because… it’s hard.

CAMERON: Because reasons.

NICK: Mm-hmm! See Hudson? We’re doing it again.

HUDSON: [laughs]

CAMERON: Nicholas… But can I have a blue die, because they haven’t gone yet this encounter? [laughs]

HUDSON: Is that a skillset?

NICK: Is this a Stealth or Coordination roll? Oh no, wait, it’s not an attack roll. You just said you’re checking your Athletics not your ability to place the explosives.

CAMERON: Yeah, okay.

NICK: So I’m gonna say no.

CAMERON: [giggles] Dang.

NICK: I almost always give you that one. This time I am not going to.

CAMERON: I know.

NICK: I do appreciate the optimism, though.

CAMERON: Okay. I had to try.

NICK: Yeah.

CAMERON: [rolls]

NICK: I thought that was a despair. I was super excited.

CAMERON: No. One success, two threats.

NICK: Okay. I think you are able to place the explosives. Do you swim away to a distance and then detonate them?

CAMERON: Yep, I just swim back to shore, and then cool action hero style, as I’m walking out of the water—

NICK: Aw man!

CAMERON: There’s water flying, it goes slo-mo for a second, my head tails flail out and I press the button and it explodes behind me.

NICK: Uh-huh, and we get you walking away from this big explosion.

CAMERON: And I don’t look at it.

NICK: The camera angle changes to you striding up the beach. You pick up the gear that you dropped, because I’m assuming you weren’t swimming around with an empty rocket launcher for instance.

CAMERON: Yeah, I set it down.

NICK: So you’re picking it up and you turn to press your hand to your coms and keep track of where everybody else is, and then behind you we hear the thunderous explosion of another shot coming from the artillery. It is stopped, it can’t reach the shield facility anymore, but it was on the lip of that beach. Your threats are that it didn’t sink, because that’s how you’ve been destroying them so far with these hand explosives. It’s also at a weird angle. This shot goes mostly up and then comes down like two blocks away and explodes, because it’s hanging off, so it’s not gonna really affect much but they’re just destroying as much of the city as they can at this point.

I think you see one of the people in the general Veers helmets with the open front and the big goggles open up a hatch and stick their head up, and they’re at a weird angle because of the way the ship is, and they put binoculars on, and you hear them go “Kriff!” and then close the hatch and they just keep shooting periodically. So that’s that, you have stopped the artillery but it is still around. Where are you headed next?

CAMERON: I am running towards the field generator.

NICK: You are running back to the main generator.

CAMERON: Mm-hmm.

NICK: Cool. We will come back to you in a minute, because more pressingly… Tink, you don’t know for certain that anybody’s coming to help you. you can hear the stormtroopers moving up. They are gearing up to have an assault on the room that you are in. you can kind of hear their radio chatter as they’re preparing for this. What are you doing to take cover or try to hold them back?

HUDSON: So, I’m on the far side of the room and they’re coming to the front door and all of my peeps are around me.

NICK: Yep, although it is kind of hard to walk through the middle of the room, because there’s a lot of laser death in that area.

HUDSON (as Tink): Alright guys, we’re gonna hug the wall, go to the left side, uh, and then I have these grenades.

NICK (as Neato): You’re not planning on using those boom spheres in here, are you chum?

HUDSON (as Tink): I mean, there’s no enemies in here, so what do you think, Neato?

NICK (as Neato): Well, but they’re coming through the door.

HUDSON (as Tink): I’ll throw it before they get in there.

NICK (as Neato): Alright!

NICK: As he says that, I think a squad of three stormtroopers come in, and Cameron could you make me a roll please of a green and two yellow? This is an average difficulty, because they’re right in the door. Give them a black die, because they are just jumping around the corner and shooting at Tink. Let’s roll it up.

CAMERON: [rolls]

NICK: Uh-oh.

HUDSON: [laughs] It’s okay. I have a plan.

NICK: Okay good.

CAMERON: Three successes, two threats.

NICK: Oh, only two threats? What a bummer.

CAMERON: Yeah, one of them cancelled.

NICK: What a bummer. I wanted everyone falling down today. So three successes, that’s 10 damage coming at you. Now I’ll give you an option, the 10 damage can hit you, or it could hit someone else in your group.

HUDSON: I think it needs to hit someone else in my group. [laughter] I’m gonna have it hit—

NICK: Oh, it’s Kevin. Kevin is getting shot.

HUDSON: Kevin. I was about to say Kevin.

CAMERON: Oh no.

NICK: Yeah. Three stormtroopers jump around the corner. You hear one of the stormtroopers say:

NICK (as Stormtrooper): They’re to the left. Fire!

NICK: Specialist Kevin looks up with his little light blaster pistol and goes…

NICK (as Kevin): What?!

NICK: …and just gets unloaded on by these three stormtroopers.

HUDSON: Ha!

NICK: He was the one furthest—That’s messed up, my dude.

HUDSON: Sorry. [laughs]

CAMERON: Whoa!

NICK: He was the one furthest from the wall where the rest of you were, he was on his way to you, and he just gets dropped. Talon says…

NICK (as Talon): No~!

NICK: …and shoots back and starts shooting the stormtroopers, and Neato says…

NICK (as Neato): Take this, bucket heads!

NICK: …and shoots them. So, those three go down very quickly in the doorway making a temporary barricade, and you can hear the radio chatter as the rest of the stormtroopers back up and make a new plan, because that didn’t work. Kevin is leaning up against the wall just, you can see he’s in very, very, very bad shape. He’s been hit multiple times.

HUDSON (as Tink): Kevin, what are you doing on the floor? Put your back into it!

[somber music starts]

NICK (as Kevin): [groans] I… I can’t… It’s getting so dark, Tink. Talon… Talon, where are you?

NICK (as Talon): I’m on the other side of the cover.

NICK (as Kevin): Talon, I just wanna tell you…

NICK: And then he falls unconscious and sprawls on the ground. [music fades out] So, I think at this point, Xianna, you and Smith and Weathers have gotten up to the fourth floor of this building, so you’re in the stairwell and you can hear the stormtroopers moving around up ahead, and it’s pretty obvious where you need to go. Do you call Tink or anything?

LAURA: Yeah, I get in the coms.

LAURA (as Xianna): Tink! Hey, are you hulled up somewhere? And you know, secured?

HUDSON (as Tink): So we’re hulled up somewhere. We’re not secured. That’s not the word I would use.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay. So if say, hypothetically, I was to throw some grenades into this hallway here and blow up some stormtroopers, you’d be okay?

HUDSON (as Tink): How close are they to my room? I don’t really, I can’t really tell. And actually, my room is the computer room that looks like a lot of blaster fire has hit it.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay, I’m sure it’ll be fine.

HUDSON (as Tink): Okayyy.

CAMERON: [giggles]

HUDSON (as Tink): Real quick, before you get off the line, I have some grenades too. You wanna make a grenade sandwich over here?

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay! In 3, 2, 1… Grenades!

LAURA: Heh.

HUDSON: I put the grenade pin in my mouth and pull it out like an action movie.

NICK: Which is super interesting, because most of the grenades in Star Wars have buttons, but we’ll go with it.

LAURA: Yeah.

HUDSON: [laughs]

NICK: Neato’s like, “Where did you find grenades with pins?!”

HUDSON: [laughing] And I throw the grenade. It’s a frag grenade, by the way.

NICK: “Because those are absolutely my jam.”

LAURA: “Those must be thousands of years old!”

NICK: “Or they’re new technology, depends on the arc!”

[laughter]

HUDSON: Okay. I throw this frag grenade at the same time that Xianna throws it.

NICK: Okay. I would really like a Ranged: Light attack from both of you, just to see placement-wise how this goes.

HUDSON: Ha!

NICK: [chuckles] I know. This arc has been asking people to do the skills they’re not good at.

HUDSON: What’s the difficulty?

NICK: Average. You’re just chucking grenades down a hallway. It’s not…

HUDSON: Oh, okay.

LAURA: Can we say we aim?

NICK: [smiling] No. You can’t aim grenades. We had this conversation before.

LAURA: [smiling, defiantly] Why can’t you aim grenades?!

NICK: What? With what?!

LAURA: Staring very intently.

[laughter]

NICK: You line up that red blinking arc that comes up in video games.

LAURA: Yeah.

HUDSON: Earlier, when they were coming through the door, what I wanted to do was if they weren’t there yet and they were coming through the door about to shoot, and I got an action, I was gonna throw the grenade, slide it on the ground so it goes under their legs, and it blows them up so they blow up and go towards us, so then I could get them with my axe if they’re close enough, or they’re dead.

NICK: I’ll say depending on how this goes it’s possible that some people will get blown towards you, because I like that image very much. You can still do it.

HUDSON: It doesn’t have to happen. I was just saying what my plan was had they not arrived with grenades. I like the sandwich grenade.

NICK: Well, and like who knows, this is explosives, we’ll see what happens.

HUDSON: One failure.

NICK: Aw.

LAURA: Two successes, three advantages.

NICK: Okay. Do you want to send your three advantages to activate Blast on all of these?

LAURA: Sure.

NICK: Okay. We’ll say because you threw, what, roughly four grenades total? How many did you throw, just one?

HUDSON: I just threw one.

NICK: So three grenades?

LAURA: Yeah.

NICK: Three grenades in a small hallway with 15 stormtroopers—

CAMERON: Uh, 11 stormtroopers.

NICK: Sorry, 11. Oh yeah, because three more died.

CAMERON: Yep, I’ve been keeping track.

NICK: I’m glad You can count. There’s just a large explosion and you hear (several overlapping wimpy stormtroopers whining and shouting in pain), and a single stormtrooper is chucked bodily by the back, arms and legs pinwheeling, into your office where you’re hulled up, Tink, and hits a wall and starts to get up and reach around for their blaster. What do you do?

HUDSON: I take out my axe, I run over, and the hand they’re reaching out to get their gun, I chop it off.

NICK: Ooh… Okay. They’re super concussed. Okay, you- Are you trying to take them out or are you trying to capture them?

HUDSON: I don’t wanna kill them straight away.

CAMERON: [laughing] “I wanna play with them first.”

HUDSON: I don’t want to play with him either, but like…

NICK: Getting dark.

HUDSON: I wanna make sure he doesn’t—We could use him to get out of here maybe, with credentials or finding the best way or having him call in something.

NICK: Okay. let’s say that you cut off his hand, and he goes (extended shout of pain) and falls unconscious, and if you need a stormtrooper for some reason… As you walk out into the hall you can see that it’s just a mess. You’re harkened back to that time that Val used a fuel air bomb in a small space facility. This is a lot of explosive in a small space with a bunch of people. They’re just in piles kind of smooshed up into the corners. There are no other people standing here. Xianna, you’re able to bring your group in through the hallway and meet up with the rest of this squad.

LAURA (as Xianna): Ello Tink~

HUDSON (as Tink): Hey Xianna.

LAURA (as Xianna): How are you?

HUDSON (as Tink): A little tired.

LAURA (as Xianna): Well, I almost died, so there’s that.

HUDSON (as Tink): Um, I almost died, so there’s also that.

LAURA (as Xianna): No, no, like I was drowning. It’s been a day.

HUDSON (as Tink): No-no-no, like, there was blaster fire in my face. I don’t think that’s anything like what you were dealing with.

LAURA (as Xianna): Well, um…

NICK (as Neato): Not to rain on your space parade, but Specialist Kevin is definitely actually dead, so…

HUDSON (as Tink): Aw man.

LAURA (as Xianna): Wait, is he dead-dead, or like… unconscious dead?

[somber music starts]

NICK: [laughs] You look over and Neato just kinda prods him with a foot and he slouches over, and Talon is just looking out a window trying to keep it together.

NICK (as Neato): Yeah, he seems to have gone cold fish, chums.

LAURA (as Xianna): I just told you I almost drowned today, and you use a fish pun. Rude.

NICK (as Neato): I think that pun was the last one. I’m fin-ished. … Ha-ha.

[music fades]

LAURA: Xianna looks down at her hand holding the blaster, [laughter] and you can see in her eyes that… this day has for some reason hit closer than most of the others have, and she starts to raise it and then kind of walks away and mutters to herself.

LAURA (as Xianna): No… No. Karma would be disappointed. It is not worth the trouble.

NICK (as Neato): Wow Tink, that was closed. I thought she was gonna hit me and then I’d have a sock eye.

CAMERON: [laughs]

LAURA: Xianna turns back into the room, leans in, like pops into the door frame.

LAURA (as Xianna): No! I would have shot you dead!

HUDSON (as Tink): I think she’d do it.

NICK (as Neato): I’ve been shot before.

HUDSON (as Tink): Mmm…

LAURA (as Xianna): Well so have I, and you know what, I think we all have been shot. Whatever. I would have killed you. Shot you right in the face. Goodbye, and good day!

CAMERON: Karma comes over the coms.

CAMERON (as Karma): Everybody stop clowning around and get to the shield facility.

NICK (as Neato): You’re right, karma. I can tell we’re starting to flounder down here.

CAMERON: [giggles]

[somber music resumes]

HUDSON (as Tink): hey Talon, you wanna, um, carry Kevin for a proper… uh, burial?

NICK (as Talon): Uh… I mean, if the rest of this assault is going on we can come back later if we live. I think our priority is to take care of whatever’s next. You can’t really be carrying… [deep breath] dead comrades around in the middle of a battle.

[music fades]

NICK (as Neato): Well, it looks like the squad’s back together. what do we do now?

LAURA (as Xianna): Did we blow everything up?

NICK: Karma, I think you can answer in on this radio conversation. You’re currently running towards the facility.

CAMERON (as Karma): Artillery is blown up. Artillery still has gun power, but artillery can’t move and isn’t hitting anything important, so I’m running to the shield facility as they… There are a lot of stormtroopers over there.

NICK: You can hear in the background, when Karma is coming in, rapid footsteps and breathing. She is hustling.

CAMERON (as Karma): This rocket launcher is heavy.

NICK: [laughs]

NICK (as Neato): So, the artillery is taken care of. Is there an assault on the shield station?

CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah, like 20 drop pods.

NICK (as Neato): Oh. That’s really bad, actually.

CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah, that’s why I’m running there. Run there. I assume y’all are safe, because you’re talking to me.

NICK (as Neato): Are we safe? Well, most of us. Okay. Well chums, what do you think? Should we head towards the shield facility, try to end this little shindig? By the way, we’ve upgraded to shindig. No, we were already a shindig. It was a hootenanny…

LAURA (as Xianna): Are we not in a hoedown?

NICK (as I think you’re right. I think we’re at a hoedown.

LAURA (as Xianna): You know, I feel like we had a whole system set up for the difference between hootenannies, hoedowns, and shindigs, and I think we have forgotten it completely.

CAMERON (as Karma): I thought hoedowns involved barns.

LAURA (as Xianna): It’s kind of like a rectangle square thing where if it is in a barn it is a hoedown, but not all hoedowns happen in barns.

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay.

LAURA (as Xianna): It’s just that if it is a barn it’s definitely a hoedown.

HUDSON (as Tink): I wanna have lunch.

LAURA (as Xianna): Well, we can’t all have everything we want, so let’s just go kill some people I guess.

NICK (as Neato): Alright, off to the hoedown.

NICK: You all—Gosh. You have Smith and Weathers who did nothing, they’re still in the stairwell [laughter] securing your escape route. Neato, Tink, Xianna, and Talon, and you get to the stairwell and you hear clank, clank, clank. As you all get to the door, HK is there and the barrels of his gun are spinning.

NICK (as HK): Directional Query: Point me at the stormtroopers.

LAURA (as Xianna): We are going that way. Follow us.

NICK (as HK): Expletive deleted.

NICK: As you all run down the stairs past him, and you hear a mechanical (heavy sigh), and the droid starts to head down the stairs after you as you run the other direction.

LAURA (as Xianna): If you had just ignored karma you would have been here first and you could have killed some “meat bags” as you call them, but no.

NICK (as HK): Secondary direction overridden by primary user.

LAURA (as Xianna): I mean, that sounds like your fault, but anyways. I’m sure there will be stormtroopers for you to kill where we are going next.

NICK (as HK): Adjusting direction following percentage for secondary user.

NICK: So, you all are just running straight for the shield facility? You’re the reinforcements?

LAURA: Yeah.

HUDSON: We are the only reinforcements that I’m aware of.

CAMERON: Are we gonna sandwich them though?

NICK: Yeah, 20 drop pods and eight of you.

CAMERON: We got this!

NICK: Okay, so that happens, you all shut off the coms. Karma, you arrive at a scene of, just, it’s a disaster. It’s not going well. These stormtroopers have gotten through all of the barricades. You’re able to climb over the barricades. There are the bodies of both stormtroopers and militia people strewn everywhere. You have a scene like the rubble of the buildings that got hit by the artillery before you were able to destroy it, and some of the resistance militia smooshed in amongst the rubble. You’re reminded of the militia officer from when you first got here that Neato had said that he was with, just gives you a quick flashback to that.

CAMERON: [dramatically] I wonder what was on his holo-recorder.

NICK: [smiling] It doesn’t matter, because it got smooshed. So, you’re able to walk up one of the last barricades, it’s actually the one that you originally entered the parade grounds in, and you can see in front of you three large groups of stormtroopers. They have, they’re not tanks, but it’s like if you took a tank and stripped all the armor off the top and sides and just left the tracks and the big, scary cannon and the heavy repeating blaster on the front, so they’re like these open air vehicles with mobile cover on the front that are slowly advancing towards the shield facility. A majority of the militia troops have fallen back into the large dome that is the shield facility except for some troops who are hulled up in little bunkers made out of sandbags out front. as you run up you see one of these bunkers of sandbags get exploded by one of the cannons, because cannon beats sandbags most of the time. What do you do? This is probably 80-90 stormtroopers with three large pieces of military hardware all moving in three separate groups towards a facility that if they take will open you to orbital bombardment, and you are by yourself. And yes, this is a difficult decision and situation. It’s almost like you had to choose what your priorities were.

CAMERON: Mm-hmm. Weird.

NICK: And that this is what happened to the smallest priority, but also Tink is alive, so you know.

HUDSON: I get on the coms and talk to karma.

HUDSON (as Tink): I believe in you, Karma. If you go in you will survive.

CAMERON (as Karma): Aw, thanks buddy.

NICK: I really like the idea of Karma standing on this barricade, no one’s noticed her yet, there’s flame and smoke and a stormtrooper sprawled over the barricade right next to her, Karma with her hand to her earbud saying “Aw, thanks buddy,” holding her big thermo-sensitive assault rifle.

CAMERON: So, there’s the shield facility, there’s some bunkers in front of it, you said there’s like 90 stormtroopers…

NICK: Yeah.

CAMERON: What is the positioning of the cannon-mobiles in relation to the stormtrooper squads?

NICK: They’re broken into three large groups being led by these three cannons, basically like 30 to a group, and they’re just like spaced equidistant moving their ways up. They’re not moving very quickly, but they’re basically cover that the troopers can hide behind. And they’re sprawled out further back behind it, the cover mostly is protecting the ones that are operating it, but it does make it so they’re able to defend themselves better as they cross this open ground, almost completely negating the advantage of a large, open ground.

CAMERON: I was trying to figure out a way for me to pick off some of them without drawing all of their attention to me while I wait for my friends.

NICK: The other thing that I’ll add to this image as well is that the circle of stormtroopers has moved past the armory tent, so you could potentially make it to the armory tent without being noticed.

CAMERON: Can I sneak to the armory tent then to get something that shoots more than one at a time?

NICK: Yes, you can try and do that. Yeah. Ooh, can we Rambo it? Can we find you a mini gun?

CAMERON: I’m down for a mini gun.

NICK: Okay. Well, you gotta make it to the tent first.

CAMERON: I know, but I’m—

NICK: This is going to be very embarrassing for you to just die in this cinematic thing.

CAMERON: It is. It’s gonna be very sad.

NICK: This is going to be a hard difficulty check, because you are crossing open ground with 80 potential people to see you who are all being very alert, because combat.

CAMERON: But they are all facing the other way.

NICK: Which is why it’s not daunting.

CAMERON: [laughs] Okay. What’s my Stealth? Hmm, that’s a thing. Note to self: Up my Stealth later. I do get two blue dice for my Stalker talents.

NICK: Mm-hmm.

CAMERON: Okay… Four successes, two advantages.

NICK: Yeah, they don’t see you at all. Do you want to spend your advantages that the weapons tent hasn’t been looted in any way and has even some gear that you didn’t notice the first time you were in there?

CAMERON: Yup. Some stuff got returned since we were last here.

NICK: Yeah, in the 30 minutes that it’s been, because you haven’t been gone that long.

HUDSON: [laughs]

CAMERON: Sure. Just so much has happened.

NICK: With stuff being returned, you could get another rocket or two.

CAMERON: If they have any other rockets I’m grabbing them.

NICK: Okay. We’ll say that there are two rockets. You’re  not sure where they came from. You notice there is some stuff missing, like a lot of the rifles and things have been taken, and it’s like there were two rockets under a pile of rifles that you didn’t see before, so you’re able to grab those. Is there anything else you want?

CAMERON: I would like a turret mini gun.

NICK: Like a heavy repeating blaster I think is what they’re called.

CAMERON: Yeah, like one of the ones with the shield in front of it for setting up a turret for defense.

NICK: Yeah, there’s one in there. Moving it by yourself is gonna be pretty dang hard.

CAMERON: It’s okay, I’m strong!

NICK: Okay, so what is your plan?

CAMERON: My plan is, I setup so they’re all in front of me and I’m kind of behind them, angled in a way that my shield is mostly protecting me, and I get on my coms.

[action rock music starts]

CAMERON (as Karma): Hey everybody, I’m here. If y’all could hurry up that would be super fantastic.

CAMERON: And then I’m gonna take a page out of HK’s book and just start laying down suppressing fire back and forth just so that they can shoot back at me and hit the shield, but they can’t really approach. Just trying to mow down as many stormtroopers as possible.

NICK: Make me a heavy weapons roll.

CAMERON: I get a blue die because they haven’t gone yet this encounter.

NICK: [laughs] That’s true.

CAMERON: What’s the difficulty?

NICK: This one’s gonna be hard, because it’s you versus 90 people, and you should know, like, you’re not gonna win this. You can hope to slow them down.

CAMERON: Oh yeah. I’m just- I’m providing a distraction [laughs] so hopefully some of the people who are still alive inside can do something. I’m not gonna aim though, because I’m not aiming at a specific person, I’m just shooting in general. Is that fair?

NICK: Yeah, I think that’s fair.

CAMERON: Seems like a reason not to use the blue die. I got two successes and two advantages.

NICK: So I think this plays out like you said. Not all of the assault force turns around, but a decent amount of them do. They seem very well-coordinated, and you can see that there are several stormtrooper officers mixed in. Very quickly you take some of them out and you’re able to strafe back and forth, and the cannons do stop advancing, and very quickly there’s some hand signs exchanged and you can hear on the stormtrooper com that you still have orders being exchanged, and roughly a third of the troops turn around and start firing back. You can feel your large repeating blaster heating up and taking damage. You know you’re gonna have to bail out of this pretty soon, because you’re getting shot by like roughly 30 people. This is not designed to do that. It’s supposed to take errant shots while you do stuff. But you’re able to slow them down for probably a solid couple of minutes with that and your setup time. The gun does start to disintegrate around you.

Now, I will make you a deal. You can do sizable damage to this group but the gun is going to explode on you, or once they start to concentrate fire you can bail and run for cover but you’re not going to have damaged the group much.

CAMERON: I’m sticking it out.

NICK: You’re sticking it out. Cool. So, you’re shooting into this group and blaster fire is hitting it. What actually happens, the gun doesn’t explode, the shielding starts to melt and boil away – kind of like when Han Solo is let out of the carbonite and it peels back and it’s all weird and metal and slurpy, it’s a weird noise.

CAMERON: And wet.

NICK: And wet for some reason.

HUDSON: Moist.

NICK & CAMERON: [sounds of disgust]

NICK: But that starts to peel back and you’re able to strafe back and forth a couple more times, and a couple of shots make it through the cover and hit you. You’re going to take a shot from a large group of stormtroopers. That is going to be four yellows versus your defense. It’s gonna be average difficulty. Do you have any Ranged Defense?

CAMERON: No.

NICK: Okay…

CAMERON: I’ll flip a light side to make it harder for them.

NICK: That’s fair.

CAMERON: Can I use my advantages to give them a black die?

NICK: Sure. Yeah, you can give them a black die.

CAMERON: Okay.

NICK: Roll it.

CAMERON: [giggles nervously] Oh shit… Well, that’s interesting. Three successes, a threat, a triumph, and a despair!

NICK: So they have a despair…

CAMERON: Uh-huh. [laughs]

NICK: Wow. That’s actually very good for you. That’s interesting that the most accessible part of this is that they screw up. So… [laughs]

CAMERON: That was a really good use of my own light side point. [laughs]

NICK: Yeah. So, three successes, you’re going to take 15 damage, which is a lot.

CAMERON: Meh.

NICK: How much health do you have left?

CAMERON: I mean, I have 4 health left.

NICK: Oh yeah, you’re fine.

CAMERON: I’m fine though.

NICK: You’re like coughing blood from the corner of your mouth.

CAMERON: It’s totally fine.

NICK: So, roll the crit that they did on you.

CAMERON: An 86.

NICK: Which is what?

CAMERON: Which is… Compromised: +1 difficulty until the end of the encounter, so an extra purple die, for everything.

NICK: Okay. So you’ve been shot, your gun has been turned to slag, you are getting pinned down. The despair is that in the hubbub of all of the shooting and things, while you were getting hit and you fall back, your gun overloads and shoots three very, very powerful charges into the middle cannon and it explodes.

CAMERON: Huzzah.

NICK: So, you have taken one of these large cannons down.

CAMERON: [silly] How many, approximately, stormtroopers would you say are now deceased?

NICK: Like 15-ish, for the explosion, and then like… since you stayed in it, probably you took down like 20 besides that, so you did, as advertised, a sizable chunk. They were not expecting for a large emplacement to open up at their unprotected flank. But, you are hit, you fall backwards off of the embankment that you had setup, the stormtroopers are pretty close to the shield facility, because it took you a while to drag this big, heavy gun there quietly and not be seen, so you are laying, your feet are up on this embankment, you’re kind of upside down, blood is trickling out of your mouth, you have a massive set of scorch marks across the chest of your armor, and you see – kind of upside down, we see from karma’s view, just the assorted feet of the rest of the squad and their assorted NPCs walking up to you upside down.

CAMERON (as Karma): Oh hey, y’all.

[music stops abruptly]

HUDSON (as Tink): Hey.

LAURA (as Xianna): Ello.

NICK: [smiling] You all, as you went up, saw Karma with this big explosion, the sound of shattering metal, and then saw Karma get tossed backwards off of this embankment.

HUDSON (as Tink): Karma, stand still, I know how to do this best. Close your eyes.

CAMERON (as Karma): I’m… I’m laying down.

HUDSON (as Tink): Oh. Close your eyes.

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay.

HUDSON: I hold her down by her neck and get two stim packs at once in one hand and just stab them into her.

[laughter]

LAURA (as Xianna): Oh, I don’t—Okay. I mean…

HUDSON (as Tink): No-no-no, if you do it like this, then it flows through the blood differently.

CAMERON (as Karma): Ow!

CAMERON: [laughs]

LAURA (as Xianna): If you say so.

NICK (as HK): Assertion: Boss Man is “becoming medicine.”

HUDSON (as Tink): Ah, yes.

NICK (as HK): Boss Man, did I say that as instructed?

HUDSON (as Tink): Yes, thank you, thank you. Did you read the for-ward?

NICK (as HK): I did not read your textbook. You just told me to say “becoming medicine.”

LAURA (as Xianna): The “for-ward?”

HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah, the thing that’s in the front of the book, the for-ward.

LAURA (as Xianna): The forward.

HUDSON (as Tink): The for-ward.

LAURA (as Xianna): The forward.

CAMERON (as Karma): No, when you’re talking about medical texts it’s for-ward, because hospital wards.

HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah.

LAURA (as Xianna): Nooo~!

[laughter]

CAMERON: And Karma rolls her head to look at Hank.

CAMERON (as Karma): [dazed] I think I’m winning on the stormtrooper count. I’d have to math, but I’m pretty sure.

NICK (as HK): Debate: There were no witnesses for your body count. Doesn’t count.

CAMERON (as Karma): But I’ve got bodies.

NICK: [laughs]

CAMERON: Karma starts to get up as the stim packs kick in.

NICK: Yeah. You can see- It’s not a great move. There’s definitely instructions all over these stim packs that are like “use individually.” The burn marks do lose a lot of the angry, red swelling, but they also are discolored and the skin is not in a good place. Karma is up and moving because mechanically that heals freaking 9 wounds, because it’s 5 and then 4, but you’re probably gonna have a really wicked come-down off of this once we’re done.

CAMERON (as Karma): [dazed] I’m fine. Let’s get going.

NICK: So, you are all standing in a group.

NICK (as Neato): So, how goes it on the home front?

CAMERON (as Karma): I killed one of their cannons. I think, uh… approximately 35 stormtroopers.

NICK (as Neato): Thirty-five?!

CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah.

NICK (as Neato): That’s the Emperor’s dozen.

LAURA (as Xianna): Excuse me?!

CAMERON (as Karma): What?

NICK (as Neato): An Emperor’s dozen, 35 stormtroopers.

LAURA (as Xianna): That makes no sense.

NICK (as Neato): You make no sense.

NICK: Neato belly crawls up this embankment and looks over.

NICK (as Neato): Oh wow, there’s still, uh, quite a smorgasbord of stormtroopers out there.

CAMERON (as Karma): Oh yeah, I was just entertaining myself while I waited for y’all.

NICK (as Neato): That’s some kind of entertainment.

LAURA (as Xianna): Karma, I do not know if killing people is entertainment, and I feel like if I am the one saying moral ethics at the moment… something’s wrong with that, right?

LAURA: Turns to Tink.

LAURA (as Xianna): That’s wrong, right? Heh.

HUDSON (as Tink): Wrong, right. Left, right. Up, down. You know.

LAURA (as Xianna): You were not listening, were you?

HUDSON (as Tink): Ehh.

NICK (as Neato): Morality is in the eye of the sarlacc.

CAMERON (as Karma): What?!

LAURA (as Xianna): I don’t think sarlaccs have eyes.

NICK (as Neato): Exactly!

CAMERON (as Karma): [laughing] What?! I can’t handle this.

[laughter]

LAURA (as Xianna): Ohh. Are you a nihilist? I understand. Heh.

HUDSON (as Tink): Nihilist? Okay, so morals are subjunction to each person.

CAMERON (as Karma): Guys, guys, guys—

NICK: Jesus.

[laughter]

LAURA (as Xianna): Why am I the philosopher in this group?! What?!

CAMERON (as Karma): We can have this conversation later on our ship, in the hot tub, after we’ve rescued all these people, but for the moment there’s still a smorgasbord – as Neato said – of stormtroopers that are in the way and holding down these poor people who live on this planet and we need to help them, and I’ve had a rough day. Actually, it was like a rough past five minutes, but we should go.

LAURA (as Xianna): Okay, a smorgasbord, so… 74.

HUDSON (as Tink): No-no-no, a smorgasbord is like upper 70s. It’s more of a cornucopia. I’d say below 70.

LAURA (as Xianna): No, no, a smorgasbord is 74 exactly. A cornucopia is just like around 60, 70, 80.

CAMERON (as Karma): Okay, then it’s not quite a smorgasbord then, because I think it’s 55 and two cannons.

NICK (as Neato): It’s more of a buffet, really.

LAURA (as Xianna): That’s not—That’s a buffet.

HUDSON (as Tink): That is a buffet.

CAMERON (as Karma): Anyhow. HK, look what I found for you, all of these stormtroopers.

NICK: We see everybody coming up the embankment at once. You do have a pretty sizable group. We’ve got Xianna, HK, Tink, Karma, Specialist Talon, Neato, Smith and Weathers, so there’s eight people. We have all of you coming up and doing the dramatic superhero silhouette thing along this, and we see over your shoulders to all of the stormtroopers down below, and everybody poses with their weapons ready to go, and HK says:

NICK (as HK): Emotional Statement: If I had eyes I would be crying right now.

NICK: And that’s the end of the episode!

ALL: Ba-naaa~!

## Outro

CAMERON: Thanks for listening to Tabletop Squadron. If you’ve enjoyed our show please consider logging into iTunes and giving us a five-star review. Five-star reviews will help new listeners to find the show and will make the squad giggle like school children when we read them. If you’re so inclined, you can also help support the show through our Patreon which can be found in the show notes, on our website, and basically anywhere we post things. We have all sorts of Patreon levels including some of my favorites: Bantha Buddy, Tarkin’s Underwear Drawer, and Build-A-Beru which all have fabulous rewards and super great names.

Xianna’fan is played by Laura Penrod. She can be found on Twitter at @cheerio_buffet.

Tink is played by Hudson Jameson. He can be found on Twitter at @hudsonjameson.

Karma Nailo is played by me, Cameron Robertson. You can find me on Twitter at @midnightmusic13.

Our game master is Nick Robertson, and you can find him on Twitter at @alias58.

Our intro song is Space Jam by Pablo Ribot.

Additional music by James Gunter.

Follow the podcast on Twitter and Instagram at @Tabletop_Squad, and join our Discord and share all of your food and cute pet photos with us. We also sometimes talk about Star Wars. You can find the link to join our Discord on our website and in our pinned tweet. See you next time.

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