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mike wightman September 25th, 2018 03:34 PM

Lieutenant Windhoek history
 
1 Attachment(s)
Ahh, Lieutenant Windhook. What great adventure potential completely wasted.

The first MT campaign could have had PCs involved in spiriting him away to safety - instead we got a five year fast forward to 1121.

Just imagine if the first adventure had not been that contrived, ludicrous, awful 'nail' mission, but rather had been a free trader crew approached by a patron to take on a working passenger...

I'm tempted to write it.


[NOTE by RJE: draft Casual Encounter attached]

Whipsnade September 25th, 2018 05:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 593342)
Ahh, Lieutenant Windhook. What great adventure potential completely wasted.


They really dropped the ball on that one.

Windhook is an important part of the "Point of Divergence" for my slapdash, never tested, never played, "Wounded Colossus" ATU. Windhook encounters Strephon's squadron returning from Long Bow II and, after being vetted, Jonathan Crocker links his mind with the Emperor's.

The rest, as they say, is history.

robject September 26th, 2018 04:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 593342)
Ahh, Lieutenant Windhook. What great adventure potential completely wasted.

Start with an idea. Check.
Sketch out an outline. To do.

Call it a short adventure in four one-hour-long acts.

Act I.
1. A free trader crew is approached by a patron to take on a working passenger (Windhook).
2. First stop, the crew is attacked by thugs.
3. Second stop, the crew is also coincidentally attacked by more capable thugs.
4. Crew is now suspicious when they narrowly escape a rather nasty attack.

Act II.
1. Crew start asking questions. Windhook reveals his true identity and his destination port, but not why.
2. Windhook provides location of a ship that will temporarily shake off the pursuing agents (two by two, hands of blue).
3. Race to empty space where the relief ship is located.
4. Minor scuffle ensues.

Act III.
1. Ship is directed to a seemingly worthless location.
2. Players and Windhook intersect with Strephon's squadron (surprise!) returning from Longbow II.
3.
4.

Act IV.
1-3. Simply fantastic revelations, boarding actions, and close shaves.
4. Conclusion.

Whipsnade September 26th, 2018 05:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by robject (Post 593384)
Start with an idea. Check.
Sketch out an outline. To do.


So, what do we know about the adventure's human mcguffin? Not much, which, oddly enough, makes things easier.
  • - Windhook(1) is a naval lieutenant.
  • - He worked in naval intelligence before his latest protocol assignment.
  • - He's described as young.

What did he see and do? More details this time, but still vague enough to make it easier.
  • - He was waiting outside for the Twin Princes to stop arguing.
  • - He knew Imprey, the officer tasked with killing the princes.
  • - When the Assassination occurs and Lucan acts, he realizes he's a dead man.
  • - Lucan shoots at him and he runs to the Palace Admin Office.
  • - There he is given orders to deliver to the Aircraft Ops Center and a marine escort.
  • - This is when he seizes the opportunity handed him.
  • - He reaches the Aircraft Ops Center and deliberately fails to pass the order from Admin to seal the Palace.
  • - He and three other naval officers fly to the Naval Command Center under the Palace.
  • - He forges orders which allow him to board an Imperiallines Type-TJ jump6 cruiser "bound for the Imperial border".
  • - He changes ships four times in a few weeks.
  • - He's using "every trick" he learned in INI.
  • - His account of what happened is entered into a computer information agency on Inarli/Corridor. Inarli is in the rimward portion of Corridor, those few subsectors separated from the rest of the sector by the Great Rift. It's near several known mid-Rift reference points and also ~30 parsecs from Usdiki.

So, where was he heading? Inarli could be a red herring. The "Imperial border" exists in more directions than just spinward. He's not a noble or a child of one, but he's obviously "connected" as everyday schmoes don't get assigned to the Palace as protocol aides. Running home is out, it's the first place they'll look. Hiding in the Navy is out too, it's just as fractured as the Imperium and different factions will finger him. While he's running from Emperor Lucan initially, he's either a weapon or a threat in the eyes of every faction.

What can he do? What is he trying to do? Come up with some answers to that and you'll know how the patron is helping him and what sort of trouble the players can get into.

1 - Or Windhoek as it's spelled both ways multiple times on the same page of the Rebellion Sourcebook.

robject September 26th, 2018 06:30 PM

Quote:

When the Assassination occurs and Lucan acts, he realizes he's a dead man.

So, where was he heading? Inarli could be a red herring.

he's obviously "connected" as everyday schmoes don't get assigned to the Palace as protocol aides.

Running home is out [...] Hiding in the Navy is out too

There's the core motivation. Run.

Let's assume Inarli IS a red herring.

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What can he do? What is he trying to do?
Sounds like a Mission: Impossible setup.

First, what can he do? He can carry information to someone (Norris? (Why??)), (The real Strephon?), but that information seems limited to: Lucan did it.

What he might have to do, is clear his name. Lucan will name him a fugitive and want him killed asap. And if it's impossible to get free of that, then he'll have to get clear of Lucan... which might involve fleeing to the Solomani Confederation, or some other neighboring human state. And even then, spies will be everywhere...

Whipsnade September 26th, 2018 07:29 PM

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Originally Posted by robject (Post 593389)
There's the core motivation. Run.


Agreed. To me, the "three officers" angle suggests he isn't the only one with that motivation. There are going to be many different people with many different reasons wanting to get off Capital as soon as possible. Even Dulinor is running, not that I'm suggesting Windhoek is somehow linked to Dulinor.

Having so many people bugging out should help Windhoek at first. Too many leads to track down and all that.

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Let's assume Inarli IS a red herring.
Agreed. It's not some double, triple, quadruple blind. That is, Windhoek doesn't personally release his story there thinking that "they" will think that he'd never do it where he actually is. Instead, Windhoek has it released there knowing they'll have to check Inarli just to be sure. It's a diversion.

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Sounds like a Mission: Impossible setup.
I was thinking more along the lines of The Fugitive. Not the Harrison Ford movie, but the David Janssen TV series. Windhoek just keeps moving along, working here and there, because he can't risk staying in one place too long. The players meet him during an "episode", help him either knowingly or unknowingly, and then face the consequences of their actions.

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First, what can he do?
With regards to Lucan, stay alive. With regards to everyone else, stay free.

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He can carry information to someone (Norris? (Why??)), (The real Strephon?), but that information seems limited to: Lucan did it.
He's on the run to stay alive, to stay free, and not to share what he knows. Once a non-Lucan faction get their hands on him and conduct their probe - remember Dulinor's "tomb tappers"? - he's just becomes a human propaganda tool. They'll keep him under lock and key only allowing him out for war bond rallies. On the plus side, he'll be protected from Lucan's killers. On the minus side, Lucan's killers will finally know where he is.

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What he might have to do, is clear his name.
Doesn't matter. There's no One Armed Man to catch or Lieutenant Gerard to convince. Besides, everyone who isn't Lucan or working for Lucan already believes him.

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Lucan will name him a fugitive and want him killed asap. And if it's impossible to get free of that, then he'll have to get clear of Lucan...
Getting clear of Lucan will be more than just getting clear of Lucan's territory. Getting clear of everyone who will want him for their own purposes is another question. The big factions aren't the only players in all this. There are going to be dozens of groups who will want him so they can use or trade him like the Brotherhood of Varian. Remember that sidebar in one of the GT books? The one with the heads of all the various Imperial intel agencies playing "poker" with information?

Windhoek is a poker chip.

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... which might involve fleeing to the Solomani Confederation, or some other neighboring human state.
The Sollies are out. As I explained above, Windhoek is a propaganda coup for them.

As for other human states, Windhoek's "worth" is inversely proportional to their distance from the Imperium. The Darrians might hand him over to Norris as a goodwill gesture. The Swordies might hold onto him because Norris wants him and for anti-Imperial propaganda purposes. The League of Suns, however, might not care who he is at all.

Can he reach the Far Frontiers Sector?

robject September 26th, 2018 07:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Whipsnade (Post 593392)
Can he reach the Far Frontiers Sector?

That thought had crossed my mind. It would be treacherous, running through Foreven. Which might be an interesting enigma in a pretty decent adventure.

Crossing Foreven requires a fleet of armed escorts: e.g. a squadron of Broadswords, per Adventure 7. There is something dangerous in Foreven. There be dragons.

robject September 27th, 2018 01:10 AM

Assuming Windhoek's only options are to disappear or get away, and he chooses the latter, via the League of Suns in Far Frontiers (or further), then his route ultimately is through Vland or the Rift, perhaps through Corridor, through Deneb or the Trojan Reaches, through the Marches and Foreven.

He alternately is chased by and shakes off Lucan agents, Norris agents, Solomani agents, Dulinor agents, you-name-it.

Is there anyone he can trust? Craig? Strephon? Maybe not, other than friends and connections who have no political ambitions... so he pulls strings where possible, and spends all his influence to get away.

Whipsnade September 27th, 2018 10:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by robject (Post 593393)
That thought had crossed my mind. It would be treacherous, running through Foreven. Which might be an interesting enigma in a pretty decent adventure.


Foreven is dangerous for all the usual geopolitical reasons. It's "Central Asia" or the "Balkans" because the two superpowers bordering it prefer it to remain "Central Asia" or the "Balkans". Independent systems and even independent nations in independent systems in Foreven act like Rhine river barons on steroids.

The technology has changed, the people haven't. Remember?

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Crossing Foreven requires a fleet of armed escorts: e.g. a squadron of Broadswords, per Adventure 7. There is something dangerous in Foreven. There be dragons.
New Frontier Trading Partners is operating merc business in a region of space where everyone hires mercs and, while a Broadsword is a good battle taxi, it's a poor warship.

The Imperium has a consulate in the League of Suns and the Keiths' Far Frontiers work certainly suggests that visitors from the Imperium aren't a rarity. Crossing Foreven may be just a matter of staying on a 57th Century version of the 16th Century's "Spanish Road".

Leave that "road" and start poking around in the rest of Foreven could certainly uncover some "dragons".

Quote:

Assuming Windhoek's only options are to disappear or get away, and he chooses the latter, via the League of Suns in Far Frontiers (or further), then his route ultimately is through Vland or the Rift, perhaps through Corridor, through Deneb or the Trojan Reaches, through the Marches and Foreven.
Vland-Corridor-Deneb is a possibility. Whether he can pass through them will depend on how fast he reaches those regions. Vland declares independence after Corridor begins to collapse and Corridor start to collapse after Lucan's redeployment orders are obeyed. Can Windhoek pass through before those events? I'd say no for two reasons.

First, he leaves Capital in a jump6 Type-TJ and shifts between four ships in several weeks. It doesn't necessarily follow he'll stay aboard them, however, because the Imperiallines network is the same network which will be disseminating Lucan's order to arrest or kill Windhoek. I'd think Windhoek would use Imperiallines until a point where news of the Assassination has arrived before the ship he's on does. That would mean he's now behind the news "wavefront" and it's time to start relying on stealth instead of speed.

Second, if Windhoek uses TJs exclusively to scoot through Vland, Corridor, and "points west" that lessens the chances the players can interact with him.

Regarding his route to the Marches and beyond, I agree with you that Inarli is out as a destination as Windhoek wouldn't go within a dozen parsecs of his planned diversion. I still can't help looking at the various reference points in the Great Rift. (The number of points is a bit of a retcon but their existence is not. We knew about the ones linking the Islands with the Imperium and could guess at others. Only the numbers and locations are new.)

Let's say Windhoek is using forged orders to travel deadhead aboard TJs towards Vland from Capital He reaches some system, finds himself behind the Assassination's "news wavefront", and learns about the fleet redeployment orders. It's now time to drop speed for stealth because he can no longer outrun a kill/arrest order. Furthermore, because he worked in INI before becoming a protocol aide, he can guess what the results of those redeployment orders could be; maybe not complete collapse but enough disorder to make his flight harder if not impossible.

He now rules out his original Vland-Corridor route and diverts toward the trailing edge of the Great Rift with an idea of linking up with someone or some group wanting to use reference points in the Rift to reach Deneb or the Trojan Reach. Windhoek isn't the only person who will be trying to escape the Imperial Core. There are bound to be groups in Corridor and Gushemege looking for ways to flee across the Rift. Windhoek can "buy" his way in to a group with his skills and knowledge.

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He alternately is chased by and shakes off Lucan agents, Norris agents, Solomani agents, Dulinor agents, you-name-it.
Agreed. There are going to be agents working for all sorts of parties who will want to grab him just on principle alone. They don't even need to know who is and what he knows, the fact that he's a fugitive would be enough to pique their interest.

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Is there anyone he can trust? Craig? Strephon? Maybe not, other than friends and connections who have no political ambitions... so he pulls strings where possible, and spends all his influence to get away.
There's no one he can truly trust. It's just not Lucan, Dulinor, and the other Big Boys who will want him. There are too many organizations and people at all levels in the "game" and he's a poker chip which they might be able to use.

He's going to gravitate towards people at the players' level because it's less likely that they'll know who is his or have the ability to use what he knows.

robject September 28th, 2018 12:43 AM

Rubber meets the road time:

Quote:

Let's say Windhoek is using forged orders to travel deadhead aboard TJs towards Vland from Capital. He reaches some system, finds himself behind the Assassination's "news wavefront", and learns about the fleet redeployment orders.
The TJ is X days/hours ahead of the "breaking" news wave. Solve for X.

Is 24 hours too far ahead? Won't the news be sent out pretty dang fast? So that means his TJ could be overtaken in short order... a one day layover is enough... It's likely that the order to "detain" Windhoek is given very quickly indeed, but the likelihood that another TJ is ready to go is low I think. I'll call it one day, but I'm not sure.

The jump route will be SIMILAR TO Lectorsen, Uurgin, Gish, Irli Un, Maelgard, Ribunu, Luukon, and further into Vland.

The breaking news wave WILL catch up before 7 jumps are completed, and he then leaves the TJ Network and goes stealth, heading towards the Rift. So I think he leaves the network when he's near or just over the Vland border. 6 or 7 weeks. On the other hand, he could be in the soup after only the first jump.


I'd say that path to Deneb (at Javan) or Corridor (at Strand/Antiquity) would be his preference (they're quicker); if things get nasty he diverts further down and crosses to the Trojan Reach (at Bastion or Cerebin). From Javan it's a crooked road through Deneb, perhaps to Mora but really anywhere. Strand or Antiquity funnels him towards Rhylanor, without compulsion. Bastion could get him near Lunion or Mora. But really all three routes can send him anywhere in the Marches, or indeed anywhere behind the claw for an encounter with the players.

Whipsnade September 28th, 2018 07:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by robject (Post 593455)
Rubber meets the road time...


Indeed.

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The breaking news wave WILL catch up before 7 jumps are completed, and he then leaves the TJ Network and goes stealth, heading towards the Rift. So I think he leaves the network when he's near or just over the Vland border. 6 or 7 weeks. On the other hand, he could be in the soup after only the first jump.
Agreed to both. I think an important point is that Windhoek won't be commandeering a TJ. He forges orders to board a TJ already scheduled to depart for some destination. He's not taking control of one and directing it towards a destination of his choosing. If he were choosing destinations, he could stay ahead of the "wavefront" longer because his escape path would be "straighter". Instead, he's using his forgeries to select the next best destination from among the few available at each stop.

IMHO, his claim that he changes ships 4 times in several weeks supports the idea he's traveling deadhead and choosing between whatever previously scheduled TJs can get him further from Capital. Taking command of a TJ and ordering it on a voyage of several consecutive six parsec jumps would draw the attention of both the ship's crew and the officials of the systems he passes through. Such orders could also be "beyond" his ability to quickly forge.

He's not Jonathan Bland living in a wafer, armed with codes controlling all Imperial computer system and backed by the full force of an Imperial Edict. ;)

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I'd say that path...
Agreed. All good, logical, and plausible choices.

I wasn't looking at specific routes as much as I was looking at what Windhoek's "plot" or "plan" might be or, more accurately, what his "plots" and "plans" might be. He's going to plan on A, but he's also going to have B, C, D, etc. ready. "One goal, Many paths" and all that. His INI training would have taught him that and the statement uploaded on Inarli suggests as much.

The way I usually write adventures is to figure out the protagonist's/antagonist's "plot" so I can then look for places where the players can "intersect" with it. I break the "plot" into "elements" and "events" which I then lay out in a crude Gannt chart to maintain their spacial and temporal positions relative to each other. Each of those entries is then a possible point of interaction. Windhoek's "plot" breaks down into two sections: Speed and Stealth.

Speed
  • Decides to run for the "border". (Presumed to be spinward)
  • Decides on "course" through Vland-Corridor-"West".
  • Forges deadhead orders.
  • Leaves Capital on first available TJ.
  • Switches between TJs because he's "deadhead".
  • Selects next TJ based on it's destination so "course" to "border" isn't "perfect".
  • News wavefront catches up with him.
  • Drops speed for stealth.

Stealth
  • "Border" is still the goal.
  • "Course" to "border" is still Vland-Corridor-"Wast'.
  • Travel along "course" slower, uses various means, has static periods.
  • Possible Fork - Corridor "falls".
  • Possible Fork - Vland independence.
  • Potential decision - Drop Vland-Corridor route for trans-Rift.
  • Potential new "plan" - Cross the Rift.

That should get some of my muddled thinking across. I'm looking at where, when, why, what, and how. Where is Windhoek? When is he there? Why is he there? What is he doing? How could the players interact with him? Encountering Windhoek on 132-1116 aboard that first TJ leaving Capital is going to be a very different proposition than encountering a low profile Windhoek in 1117 skulking around the rimward end of Vland looking for passage through Corriodor or a disguised Windhoek in Gushemege trying to join up with a group planning on crossing the Rift.

robject September 28th, 2018 10:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Whipsnade (Post 593469)
I think an important point is that Windhoek won't be commandeering a TJ. He forges orders to board a TJ already scheduled to depart for some destination. He's not taking control of one and directing it towards a destination of his choosing. [...]

...his claim that he changes ships 4 times in several weeks supports the idea he's traveling deadhead and choosing between whatever previously scheduled TJs can get him further from Capital. [...]

He's not Jonathan Bland living in a wafer, ....

Agreed, and worth making the point re his mode of travel.


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I wasn't looking at specific routes as much as I was looking at what Windhoek's "plots" and "plans" might be. He's going to plan on A, but he's also going to have B, C, D, etc. ready. "One goal, Many paths" and all that.
Agreed (and partway through the exercise I realized that the actual route taken is not the point).

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The way I usually write adventures is to figure out the protagonist's/antagonist's "plot" so I can then look for places where the players can "intersect" with it. I break the "plot" into "elements" and "events" which I then lay out in a crude Gannt chart [...]
That's exactly how this will work.

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Speed (points)

Stealth (points)
Tables ready for reference!

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Encountering Windhoek on 132-1116 aboard that first TJ leaving Capital is going to be a very different proposition than encountering a low profile Windhoek in 1117 skulking around the rimward end of Vland looking for passage through Corriodor or a disguised Windhoek in Gushemege trying to join up with a group planning on crossing the Rift.
Absolutely. If Windhoek's movement is his own kind of probability wavefront, then I can map out likely positions of that wave over time, and noting a reasonable error calculation to make it easy for the referee to "fudge with understanding".

Whipsnade September 28th, 2018 11:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by robject (Post 593474)
If Windhoek's movement is his own kind of probability wavefront...


Exactly. That's why his statement is uploaded on Inarli. It creates another "wavefront" those chasing him must take into account. It increases the noise.

Every time "Windhoek's Testimony" appears and reappears in a system's news feed, social media, or other network, the people chasing Windhoek must make an effort to trace where is came from. Did Windhoek share it in person? Did someone just "copypasta" from another system's network? Did the person who upload it get it directly from Windhoek or through intermediaries? What does the original document look like? What are the most common versions? When did they change and who changed them?

They're trying to track the ripples Windhoek make as he moves in "pond". It's hard because about the same Windhoek started making ripples, he took care to toss in a handful of pebbles. Adding the mess, people keep tossing new pebbles in at random too.

Windhoek is going to be very interested in adding ripples, in adding noise, because I realized last night that he's not going to ride TJs for as long as I initially thought.

I was putzing around with Travellermap last night, looking at the "wavefront" map in Rebellion Sourcebook, and doing some thinking. (Travellermap and RS are great, me thinking not so much.) Windhoek's "goal" in the Imperial border which we've decided means "Go West". His fastest route that goal is Vland-Corridor-Deneb-"West". That fastest route might not be a possible route and Windhoek could know that before he starts.

If he can stay aboard TJs he can reach Vland in 10 jumps. The trouble begins when we remember Windhoek can't physically transfer between TJs as fast as an electronic message can be sent by radio or laser between the same. RS has news of the Assassination reaching Vland by jump6 courier 70 days after the event. That's ten ~7 day jumps with time to transfer the messages between couriers electronically.

Windhoek can't beat that. More importantly, Windhoek knows he can't beat that.

To me, that means Windhoek is going to leave the Imperiallines' TJ network sooner than later. He's going to use the TJs to sprint away from Capital, ideally towards Vland, hopefully to coreward and/or spinward, but really in any direction which is immediately available. He's going to leave the TJ network sooner than later because he knows he's going to be behind the "wavefront" sooner than later.

This helps us because it gives us more opportunities more earlier for the players' to "intersect" with Windhoek.

robject September 28th, 2018 03:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Whipsnade (Post 593477)
If he can stay aboard TJs he can reach Vland in 10 jumps. The trouble begins when we remember Windhoek can't physically transfer between TJs as fast as an electronic message can be sent by radio or laser between the same. RS has news of the Assassination reaching Vland by jump6 courier 70 days after the event. That's ten ~7 day jumps with time to transfer the messages between couriers electronically.

Windhoek can't beat that. More importantly, Windhoek knows he can't beat that.

To me, that means Windhoek is going to leave the Imperiallines' TJ network sooner than later. He's going to use the TJs to sprint away from Capital, ideally towards Vland, hopefully to coreward and/or spinward, but really in any direction which is immediately available. He's going to leave the TJ network sooner than later because he knows he's going to be behind the "wavefront" sooner than later.

This helps us because it gives us more opportunities more earlier for the players' to "intersect" with Windhoek.

THANK YOU for finding the D+70 reference. That does indeed reduce Windhoek's time aboard TJ to one, maybe two jumps. And then things get hard. Logan's Run... 3 Days of the Condor... taken to an extreme.

So right - an outbound TJ will be convenient, but he'll know he has to plan to go to ground even as soon as the first destination is reached.

Whipsnade September 28th, 2018 04:07 PM

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Originally Posted by robject (Post 593485)
THANK YOU for finding the D+70 reference.


Sorry. I should have mentioned that map earlier.

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That does indeed reduce Windhoek's time aboard TJ to one, maybe two jumps.
Agreed. He leaves Capital aboard a TJ and later claims he shifted between "four ships" within a "few weeks". Not four TJs, mind you, but four ships. He's off the Imperiallines' network and thus off the Imperium's radar within a jump or two. I'd suggest he jumped once aboard a TJ and then went to ground.

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And then things get hard. Logan's Run... 3 Days of the Condor... taken to an extreme.
Most certainly. My initial ideas about "Speed" then "Stealth" were wrong. It's Sprint then Stealth. He jumps "openly" as soon and as far away from Capital as he can manage, most likely only once, and then goes "off grid".

His goal is still the same and his preferred route is still the same. He's just going to be traveling along that route towards that goal much more slowly.

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So right - an outbound TJ will be convenient, but he'll know he has to plan to go to ground even as soon as the first destination is reached.
Agreed. I think I've sussed out his initial destination too; Fornol/Core.

Think about it. What messages are going to be sent out first, to whom, and the where? In what command center did Windhoek forge his orders? In what service does Windhoek serve? Where does Windhoek want to go?

The officials on Capital will be in shock but there's one thing they're going to do automatically: Tell the Navy what has happened. Along with many other couriers, some of those TJs are going to be jumping from Capital to naval bases. Looking at the jump6 rosette around Capital shows fourteen naval bases. Looking in the direction Windhoek wants to go drops that number to three; Depot, Knabbib, and Fornol.

The Depot is 6 parsecs off, but it's population is 400K and it's a depot with all the security that entails. Knabbib is has 80 million people in which hide and look for transportation, but it's only 3 parsecs away. Fornol is 5 parsecs away and has 7 billion people.

Fornol is further away and has a larger "ocean" for our lone "fish" to swim in. After Fornol just where Windhoek goes will depend on just what sort of transportation he can "promote". He'll prefer to travel towards Vland. He'll settle for just getting further away from Capital. By the time he reaches the Vland Sector, however, events may "closed" his preferred Vland-Corridor-Deneb-"West" route. That's when he'll start looking at Plans B, C, D, etc.

robject September 29th, 2018 10:20 AM

This is good stuff, Whip. I'm going to collate these notes into a document and post it.

McPerth September 29th, 2018 10:25 AM

Just one question in all this:

no one has even considered the possibility Windhoek was i nfact a second assassin and Lucan version to be true :CoW:?

In this scenario, Lucan would not initially be the villain he is depicted as, but someone that did not endure well the responsibilities of the power that fell on him, becoming more paranoid as time goes on and he finds himself surrounded of enemies...

mike wightman September 29th, 2018 11:17 AM

Not in this thread - but in a previous thread I did raise this very point:

http://www.travellerrpg.com/CotI/Dis...5&postcount=21

Quote:

Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 589785)
Has anyone ever toyed with the idea that Lucan wasn't a mustache twirling pantomime villain, but was a legitimate heir and eventually won the rebellion?

By this I meant that his version was true and therefore by extension Windhook is a second assassin and is probably fleeing back to Dulinor's safe space.

There is one element to Windhooks story I find contrived.

Door opens - assassin enters - guard kills assassin - announcement that Strephon has been assassinated - Lucan immediately improvises the plan to calmly kill everyone in the room - Windhook escapes while Lucan is murdering the others. Can anyone else see a flaw in this version of events?

McPerth September 29th, 2018 12:08 PM

Previous posts were moved from the thread Another Strephon at one poster request

Quote:

Originally Posted by robject (Post 593486)
Can a portion of this thread be split off and moved (e.g. to Lone Star)? I feel this content needs a proper place.


Kilgs September 29th, 2018 12:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 593342)
Ahh, Lieutenant Windhook. What great adventure potential completely wasted.

The first MT campaign could have had PCs involved in spiriting him away to safety - instead we got a five year fast forward to 1121.

Just imagine if the first adventure had not been that contrived, ludicrous, awful 'nail' mission, but rather had been a free trader crew approached by a patron to take on a working passenger...

I'm tempted to write it.

I thought the same when I discovered MT a few years back... My thought was a sympathetic Noble and his yacht crew fleeing Capital for the Marches or a Free Trader doing the same...

Kilgs September 29th, 2018 12:34 PM

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Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 593517)
There is one element to Windhooks story I find contrived.

Door opens - assassin enters - guard kills assassin - announcement that Strephon has been assassinated - Lucan immediately improvises the plan to calmly kill everyone in the room - Windhook escapes while Lucan is murdering the others. Can anyone else see a flaw in this version of events?

It's a stretch but not insurmountable. From Strephon's diary we know that Lucan was always the pale half of the brothers. Maybe he nursed resentment and concocted fanciful ideas for years which never were acted on since he was a coward/loved his brother/insert any reason.

Then, all of a sudden, the opportunity falls in his lap... he might move really fast with his lizard brain and then realize he needs to come up with a plan quickly. It's a poor plan and allows Windhoek to escape but keeps folks running around just enough to get Dulinor off Capital and get him on the Throne.

================
On a sidenote, why not BE Windhoek in the adventure? That's a campaign worth investing time in... Windhoek and his friends trying to escape/bring the truth to others. Maybe change the course of the Rebellion itself.

Windhoek manages to convince a Marine sergeant who promises to escort him to safety to tell his story but things go pear-shaped and they need to hop on a (free trader/Scout) to escape. Now we have agents, marines and ship crew as PC's.
-Where does he run to? A sympathetic Noble?
-Is the reason the Moot is convened before dismantling? The noble calls for the Moot... Lucan discovers the noble has Windhoek to give testimony. Loyalist Marines attack noble's estate, seat-of-the-pants escape from estate/system.
-Where to next?
-Eventually he'll hear of Margaret's faction and try to reach it as she represents the "stock" Imperium...

Regardless, I like it.

Whipsnade September 29th, 2018 12:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by robject (Post 593515)
This is good stuff, Whip. I'm going to collate these notes into a document and post it.


Glad I was able to help. I hope you get some use out of it.

I figure Windhoek has at least a day or two before the "capture/kill" order goes out.

That first few days are going to be a horror show. Dulinor has left, but no one knows if he's running back to Dlan or just left to rendezvous with a nearby battlefleet. Lucan has been spirited away to an undisclosed location by S-3 and the other protective organizations which failed. The Ilelish Guard still needs to be needs to be dug out of the Palace. The Imperial ministries, offices, and organizations are acting on reflex according contingency plans. The Moot has most likely dispersed due to safety concerns for it's members. (Note to the Usual Suspects, dispersed and not dissolved.)

It's going to be a few days before any search on Capital for Windhoek begins or any orders are sent out. After all, Lucan's first words as emperor as S-3 hustles him into an APC isn't going to be "There's this guy named Windhoek we need to find..."

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Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 593517)
There is one element to Windhooks story I find contrived.


I find the entire Assassination and Rebellion contrived.

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Can anyone else see a flaw in this version of events?
Plenty. Given Lucan's previous and especially later behavior, however, I don't find it out of character.

My belief suspenders snapped when I was told that the plot which had subverted an entire Domain and whose tentacles reached into the Palace itself sent one man armed with the pistol to kill two men know to be guards by a third man armed with a submachinegun. Casting Windhoek in the role of the second assassin fails the sniff test when we remember that Windhoek himself is unarmed. That meant would mean the plotters sent two men with one gun to kill two men guarded by a third man armed with a submachinegun.

Replacing one wholly implausible story with another wholly implausible story isn't an improvement. ;)

Regardless of how poorly planned the supposed plot to kill the Princes was, Lucan's version of events is full of more holes than Windhoek's. Imprey, the sap tapped to kill the Princes, burst into the room and trips on a loose rug. As he falls, his pistol goes off and the bullet just happens to kill the guard. Windhoek then tries strangling Lucan and Lucan knocks Windhoek out.

A trained INI officer with the element of surprise is knocked by a royal wastrel whose chief form of exercise is throwing temper tantrums. Sure. Pull the other one, it has bells on it.

Not only does Lucan knock Windhoek out, he does so fast enough to then hide under a bed and avoid being shot by Imprey. While Imprey stalks Varian and Elia, Lucan crawls out, grabs the submachinegun, "sprays" Imprey killing him, and then runs out of the room without checking on Varian or Elia.

Which version wants you to swallow more codswallop?

In the end, the metagame reason is the controlling one. For the desired Endless Rebellion, Lucan's "appeal" needs to be "crippled" in some manner and "crippled" from the first.

mike wightman September 29th, 2018 01:20 PM

I don't think either story is the 'truth' of the matter.
Lucan's story is full of holes, Windhook's story castes Lucan as an evil genius psychopath, who is capable of instantly improvising a way to take the throne while full of adrenalin from an attempted assassination and is likewise implausible.

I can either conclude the author of this little plot wasn't a very good author or that we are supposed to notice the holes and fill the gaps. But then the entire plotline was dropped in favour of starting in 1121 with the first five years of warfare already a done deal, so I guess it is a moot point :)

By the way, there is no variant spelling of Windhook in my version of Rebellion Sourcebook - do you know where it comes from?

Whipsnade September 29th, 2018 02:35 PM

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Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 593523)
I don't think either story is the 'truth' of the matter.


It definitely is a 57th Century version of Rashomon.

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Lucan's story is full of holes, Windhook's story castes Lucan as an evil genius psychopath...
When you read his story - his entire story - you come to a realization that Windhook's story does not do that.

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... who is capable of instantly improvising a way to take the throne while full of adrenalin from an attempted assassination and is likewise implausible.
That's where everyone gets it wrong. Lucan doesn't twirl his mustache, flair his cape, make sure his black stovepipe hat is in place, point a finger in the air, declaim "AHA! Now is my chance to ascend to the Throne!", and start shooting.

Lucan didn't kill Varian in order to become emperor. Lucan killed Varian in order to kill Varian. At the instant he began pulling the trigger, Lucan wasn't even thinking of the Throne. He was thinking about removing witnesses and killing his hated older brother.

What were the twins doing while Windhoek and Imprey waited in the corridor? They were screaming at each other, just as they always did. What were they screaming about? Varian had "stolen" another one of Lucan's girlfriends, just as he always did. That girlfriend was right there in the room with them, just like so many times before.

Lucan killed Varian because of Elia, because of the few seconds made him the younger brother, and because of a lifetime of sleights both real and imagined. Only seconds after screaming at each other, Dulinor going postal in the Throne live on TV, a dead assassin, and a loose pistol gave Lucan the opportunity he'd dreamed of his entire life: Killing Varian.

Since childhood, Lucan had run through dozens of daydreams in varying levels of detail in which his older brother died, was killed, or was removed in some way. Here and now, in their shared apartment, was one of those daydreams served up on a platter.

Lucan killed Varian to kill Varian and not to clear his path to the Throne.

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I can either conclude the author of this little plot wasn't a very good author or that we are supposed to notice the holes and fill the gaps.
It was probably a little of both.

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But then the entire plotline was dropped in favour of starting in 1121 with the first five years of warfare already a done deal, so I guess it is a moot point :)
They dropped a lot of promising stuff.

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By the way, there is no variant spelling of Windhook in my version of Rebellion Sourcebook - do you know where it comes from?
It's spelled both ways in my copy and within sentences of each other. I chose "Windhoek" because it's less common and because, as wargame designers and autodidact historians, GDW would have known that Windhoek is the capital of Namibia.

robject September 29th, 2018 10:49 PM

I've attached a Casual Encounter draft document in the initial post of this thread (sorry Mike, you're first so your post gets the summary doc).


Still gotta iron out the details and make the text usable.

Suggestions welcome. I didn't propagate the widening time error window, so the dates will probably need adjusting.


Windhoek's Run could be viewed as three separate legs:

1. Escape. From 132-1116 to 139-1116, ending in Fornol.

2. Rift Run. He reaches the Rift sometime in the second half of 1117, and takes seven jumps to cross it, to somewhere near Tonnurad (Trojan Reach 0417). Arrival in the Trojan Reach in the first half of 1118.

3. Spinward Run. The Spinward Marches are reached sometime in mid-1118, crosses the border to Foreven in late 1118, and arrives in Far Frontiers after mid-1119.

mike wightman September 30th, 2018 05:10 AM

Lol. no probs Rob :)

Can we do a quick fact check on Windhook vs Windhoek? I have two copies of Rebellion sourcebook and neither has the typo, and the electronic version from FFE doesn't have it either.

If it is a typo in a print run that Mr. Whipsnade has then the spelling should probably be standardised to Windhook - although I have to admit to liking the variant spelling as insetting appropriate :) (if it came to a vote I would be in favour of Windoek).

[edit]nice work Rob[edit]

mike wightman September 30th, 2018 05:18 AM

It strikes me that there are a lot of ways a party of PCs could end up interacting with Windhoek:

1- take this data package to worlds as you trade and upload it to the local interwebs
2- mysterious bod seeking passage to next world/working passage to a more distant world
(a free trader engaging in spec trade is best since it is most likely to be jumping randomly).
3- I don't want to type this one but here goes - the PCs intervene in a beating/kidnap attempt

add to list

There is also the interesting follow up of weeks later Intel goons from one side or the other turn up to ask questions.

Ohh - wonder if Windhoek has access to a certain J Bland...

McPerth September 30th, 2018 07:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by robject (Post 593543)
I've attached a Casual Encounter draft document in the initial post of this thread (sorry Mike, you're first so your post gets the summary doc).

(...).

Suggestions welcome. I didn't propagate the widening time error window, so the dates will probably need adjusting.

Just one suggestion, and it's about Windhoeck skills: I'd delete the steward one, and make him more techincally oriented. Not that I rule out he has it, in fact I'd expect him to have it or liaison, having been working in the Imperial Palace, but because he would hid it, not wanting to work face to face with passengers that might recognize him.

In fact, I'd give him some engineering skill (probably he was from IN accademy, where he obtained it, if MT, or from any other source if another game system is used), and playing a shy engineer role, with the goal to have as few contact as he can with the random passengers, out of fear of being recognized.

robject September 30th, 2018 06:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 593565)
Can we do a quick fact check on Windhook vs Windhoek?

Thanks Mike.

My electronic copy of RS is 1988, print run 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9. And it's all Windhook.

I, too, prefer Windhoek, however.


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Originally Posted by McPerth (Post 593573)
Just one suggestion, and it's about Windhoeck skills: I'd delete the steward skill [and would] give him some engineering skill [...] and playing a shy engineer role, with the goal to have as few contact as he can with the random passengers, out of fear of being recognized.

That's a good point; he'd not want to interact at all if possible. On the other hand, is there a perverse rule that says hiding out in the open can work as often as not?


DRAFT updated with Mike's scenario suggestions and skill adjustments per McPerth.

mike wightman September 30th, 2018 08:06 PM

I.m planning on adding more scenario suggestions...

BRJN September 30th, 2018 10:25 PM

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Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 593517)
Door opens - assassin enters - guard kills assassin - announcement that Strephon has been assassinated - Lucan immediately improvises the plan to calmly kill everyone in the room - Windhook escapes while Lucan is murdering the others. Can anyone else see a flaw in this version of events?

Lucan should be shooting all the strange staffers in the room first and yelling for Varian to hit the alarms. Then he realizes something very important and shoots Varian and Ella too.

Lucky for Lucan, the bodyguards were ordered to stop off to get real ammo instead of using swords and karate to perform their job while a specialist got the bullets.

Whipsnade September 30th, 2018 10:38 PM

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Originally Posted by robject (Post 593583)
My electronic copy of RS is 1988, print run 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9. And it's all Windhook.


My copy is 1988 with the same print run and it's Windhoek nine times and Windhook twice.

On page 9, the Windhook/Windhoek story starts half way down in the left hand column. Windhook is used in the bold section header and then in the italicized sentence immediately following which talks about the story was uploaded on Inarli. The very next sentence after that starts with Windhoek. That spelling is used six more times through the rest of the left hand column and into the right hand column until the sentence "Eventually (after maybe 10 minutes), a naval commander grabbed Windhook's shoulder...". The very next sentence uses Windhoek again and it's used once more before the section ends.

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I, too, prefer Windhoek, however.
I went with it because it's used 9 times versus twice. I've no real preference either way. Windhoek is nice but it's not necessary.

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That's a good point; he'd not want to interact at all if possible. On the other hand, is there a perverse rule that says hiding out in the open can work as often as not?
Agreed. He'd act normally, not aloof. More importantly, his INI training would have taught him as much. Acting mysteriously only whets peoples' appetites to solve the mystery.

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DRAFT updated with Mike's scenario suggestions and skill adjustments per McPerth.
Excellent scenario suggestions as usual from Mike. McPerth's suggestion about dropping Steward for Liaison fits his background better too; he was working as a protocol aide before fleeing.

I'd like to add The Brothers of Varian to the mix. They'd make a nice "hidden ally" for both Windhoek and the players. Duke Simalr of Ushra was their public face on Capital before fleeing himself. They're more of a conspiracy than a faction. Their members can be anywhere professing allegiance to any faction while quietly slipping a stick in the spokes. While they initially were concerned with restoring the Imperium's honor by bringing the murderers of Strephon and Varian to justice, they soon (d)evolved into a group bent more on vengeance by sowing chaos. Spreading "Windhoek's Testimony" is something the BoV would be very interested in doing.

RS mentions misdirecting a fleet away from the front and losing information vital to gaining the support of a high population world. The Arrival Vengeance module, a BoV agent is responsible for turning a small naval base in Lucan's territory into a shambles. A destroyer's engineering systems are deliberately sabotaged stranding her crew. Next, the base payroll is "lost" and the destroyer's crew purposely overpaid. Lucan had been using the base to support small ship "Black War" ops but the uproar caused by the payroll shenanigans means the base is essentially shutdown.

In particularly dicey situation, BoV can extend place a hidden finger on the scales hinting that larger forces are at work. It wouldn't be a case of Windhoek calling in a favor. He'll be as surprised as the players when the long delayed zarpe is issued, the previously unavailable part is delivered, the arrest warrant is lost, or the cell door is opened.

Of course, the BoV might want something in return and that something could be carrying a data packet with "Windhoek's Testimony" to their next port-of-call! "Eneri" should very twitchy when he suspects he's on a ship with the data he had planned on creating diversions for him!

Along with skills, Windhoek might also have information to trade. For example, while aboard the first TJ to Fornol, he could have downloaded navigational data regarding several calibration points in the Great Rift. Such data could help him "buy" his way into a group trying to escape across the Rift.

Finally, I'd like to make a small suggestion regarding the text. It needs to be rewritten to remove the more floridly "Whipsnadian" passages. My tongue-in-cheek posts may work well here by coaxing people into replying, they don't work that well in a supplement.

Whipsnade September 30th, 2018 10:42 PM

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Originally Posted by BRJN (Post 593590)
Lucan should be shooting all the strange staffers in the room first and yelling for Varian to hit the alarms. Then he realizes something very important and shoots Varian and Ella too.


Lucan isn't armed until he picks up the dead guard's SMG (his story) or he picks up the dead assassin's pistol (Windhoek's story).

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Lucky for Lucan, the bodyguards were ordered to stop off to get real ammo instead of using swords and karate to perform their job while a specialist got the bullets.
The Ilelish Guard only switched the other guard regiments' ammo with blanks and not all the ammo in the Palace.

BRJN September 30th, 2018 11:15 PM

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Originally Posted by Whipsnade (Post 593592)
The Ilelish Guard only switched the other guard regiments' ammo with blanks and not all the ammo in the Palace.

Nobody knows for sure how much ammo was switched and it will take precious time finding out. Meanwhile the Imperial Heir MUST have bodyguards guarding his / their body. A handful of guards who know karate is better than nothing at all, which is where the situation goes.

Whipsnade September 30th, 2018 11:26 PM

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Originally Posted by BRJN (Post 593595)
Nobody knows for sure how much ammo was switched and it will take precious time finding out.


Have you actually read the Rebellion Sourcebook?

First, the guard regiments do know how much ammo was switched because they noticed it had been done before the Assassination occurred and had started distributing real ammo in it's place. It's one of several "hiccups" which prevents Dulinor's coup from succeeding.

Second, only the regiments' ammo was "fiddled". Everyone else had the real stuff including the guard in the Princes' quarters.

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Meanwhile the Imperial Heir MUST have bodyguards guarding his / their body.
The Twin Princes do have such a bodyguard and one whose a submachinegun already has real ammo. Imprey, the man tasked with killing the Princes, is himself killed by a 9mm SMG round through the head. That guard, Varian, and Elia are all killed with 7mm pistol rounds.

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A handful of guards who know karate is better than nothing at all, which is where the situation goes.
The Way of the Gun beats the Way of the Hand. In Lucan's version, Imprey's 7mm pistol goes off as he trips killing the guard. In Windhoek's version, the guard kills Imprey first, then Lucan picks up Imprey's gun and kills the guard.

Read the sourcebook.

Kilgs October 1st, 2018 11:42 AM

I haven't gone back and read Windhoek's stuff yet but why are we assuming he runs for Norris? Does it say that?

I still think he runs to cover and then seeks support/protection amongst the Moot for telling his story.

What do we know about him? Do we know where he is from?

Whipsnade October 1st, 2018 12:56 PM

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Originally Posted by Kilgs (Post 593614)
I haven't gone back and read Windhoek's stuff yet but why are we assuming he runs for Norris?

He isn't running to Norris. The text has him heading for the "Imperial border". He's leaving the Imperium because he knows he'll be nothing but a poker chip in Imperial politics for the rest of his life.

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I still think he runs to cover and then seeks support/protection amongst the Moot for telling his story.
What Moot?

After taking power, Lucan declared a state emergency and began issuing his orders. The Moot thought his actions were too swift and voices were raised in opposition. Lucan then arrested those nobles publicly opposed to him and dissolved the Moot for the duration of the emergency. All of this is done in 1116 too.

There no longer is a Moot and most of the loyal opposition among the nobility has been sidetracked into several leaderless groups engaged in nihilistic acts of vengeance as exemplified by The Brothers of Varian.

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What do we know about him? Do we know where he is from?
Almost nothing. We don't know his first name or age, for example. We know he's a naval officer, worked in INI, and is now a protocol aide at the Palace. The latter suggests that he enjoys some fairly substantial patronage. The Imperium is not a meritocracy. You don't earn the type of position he fills at the Palace. Instead, a patron arranges for you to be assigned.

What follows is all my personal speculation.
I do not expect anyone to agree nor do I think anyone would to do so.
This should not be part Rob's supplement.


Two things about Windhoek: His appointment required some heavy patronage and he shows no concerns whatsoever for any family he may leaving behind.

Orphans are an oft abused cliche in RPGs but, IMHO, Windhoek is one. His parents (or parent) are dead and he has no siblings. His parent(s) earned a debt of honor with a powerful noble family. That family arranged for his upbringing, education, and got him into the Navy. When he proved adept in his naval career, they pulled a few strings to get him appointed as a protocol aide at the Palace.

Windhoek needn't worry about the "Dukes of Earl" because they're already powerful enough to protect themselves against most retribution from most sources. What little help he can offer - beyond perhaps a warning? - isn't going to make any difference and staying away actually helps them more.

The "Dukes of Earl" also have plausible deniability with regards to Windhoek. If questioned, they were just fulfilling a debt of honor by helping the son of a dead retainer. They haven't seen him years or heard from him since the events.

Kilgs October 1st, 2018 01:37 PM

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Originally Posted by Whipsnade (Post 593616)
What Moot?

After taking power, Lucan declared a state emergency and began issuing his orders. The Moot thought his actions were too swift and voices were raised in opposition. Lucan then arrested those nobles publicly opposed to him and dissolved the Moot for the duration of the emergency. All of this is done in 1116 too.

That's why I think he took refuge with a noble. While the Moot thing happened fast, they had a reason to oppose/slow down Lucan and I like to think that was Windhoek hiding out on some noble's estate, maybe in negotiations for protection etc to testify, when the Moot is disbanded... then he knows its for real and has to run.

(This also plays into the patronage idea... as I agree, he had to be someone or have the support of someone to get his post. Maybe that same patron hides him out for a bit.)

Closest border is probably Ley/Glimmerdrift through Fornast... yes, my answer to everything is the Gateway Domain ;-) But it does make sense as the closest border where one can find human-dominated polities that are not Solomani.

I'll need to do some research this week.

Whipsnade October 1st, 2018 02:06 PM

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Originally Posted by Kilgs (Post 593619)
That's why I think he took refuge with a noble.


You're overlooking just when Windhoek leaves: 132-1116, the same day the Assassination occurs. He doesn't have time to sound out some noble on Capital and he doesn't have time to get to some noble elsewhere.

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While the Moot thing happened fast, they had a reason to oppose/slow down Lucan...
While the nobility had reason to oppose Lucan, they didn't slow him down one whit.

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... and I like to think that was Windhoek hiding out on some noble's estate, maybe in negotiations for protection etc to testify...
Again, testify in front of what?

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... when the Moot is disbanded... then he knows its for real and has to run.
No. You don't understand. You aren't taking into the timing of the events and the comm lag necessary to disseminate news of those events.

Windhoek starts running on 132 because he knows his life is in danger on 132. Meanwhile, the "divorce" between Lucan and the nobility which can protect him doesn't happen on 132. That rupture happens between 132 and 365.

Because Windhoek can't transfer between couriers as fast as a radioed message, he'll always be "behind" the news "wavefront" of both Assassination and his arrest/kill order. That's why he leaves the Imperillines' network after one jump. If he runs to his patrons, Windhoek will arrive after his arrest warrant and before news of Lucan's dissolution of the Moot. The "Dukes of Earl", being loyal Imperium nobles, will arrest Windhoek on the Emperor's orders because the rupture between the Emperor and the Moot hasn't yet occurred. While the Dukes won't kill Windhoek out of hand and while they'll listen to his story, they will keep him locked up while they report his capture back to Capital. That report won't even need to reach Capital before some of Lucan's trigger men arrive to take custody of the prisoner. Finis Windhoek.

There's a 200+ day gap between the arrest order going out and the nobility starting to question Lucan's orders. If Windhoek is captured during that gap, he's a dead man. If Windhoek is identified after the rupture between Lucan and Moot, he becomes a poker chip in the hands of whoever caught him.

If he wants to live and remain free, he has to run now.

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Closest border is probably Ley/Glimmerdrift through Fornast... yes, my answer to everything is the Gateway Domain ;-) But it does make sense as the closest border where one can find human-dominated polities that are not Solomani.
There human-dominated polities there. They aren't far enough away from the Imperium however.

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I'll need to do some research this week.
Yes you will.

mike wightman October 1st, 2018 02:22 PM

If I were he I would head to the Julian Protectorate after laying a false trail.

Get some saps to take messages, report sightings etc.

BRJN October 1st, 2018 02:30 PM

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Originally Posted by Whipsnade (Post 593598)
Have you actually read the Rebellion Sourcebook?

Yep. And applied thought to what I read. (You may criticize the second part if you find it needful.)

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The Twin Princes do have such a bodyguard and one whose a submachinegun already has real ammo. Imprey, the man tasked with killing the Princes, is himself killed by a 9mm SMG round through the head. That guard, Varian, and Elia are all killed with 7mm pistol rounds.
Another problem with Dulinor's planning, accidentally exposed by Lucan: what if a squad of bodyguards is in / near the Princes' apartments - maybe because The Plan's security was infringed?

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The Way of the Gun beats the Way of the Hand.
Palace Security has no way to know Dulinor is going to send only one assassin after the Princes. But their job is to be paranoid. Why was the ammo tampered with? My paranoia sends a squad/platoon/company trained in both Way of the Hand and Way of the Knife (and Way of the Gun but I don't trust that at the moment) for a careful look-see. I'll apologize to the Princes personally if it really is nothing.

Whipsnade October 1st, 2018 02:34 PM

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Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 593623)
If I were he I would head to the Julian Protectorate after laying a false trail.


That's an option. Would he continue to head for the Protectorate after the invasion of Lishun begins?

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Get some saps to take messages, report sightings etc.
The upload on Inarli, etc.

BRJN October 1st, 2018 02:49 PM

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Originally Posted by Kilgs (Post 593614)
Why are we assuming he (Windhoek) runs for Norris? Does it say that?

Not that I know.

"Wounded Colossus" has Windhoek find Emperor Strephon while HE is travelling undercover. That's a really good trick, and suggests there is more to Windhoek / his position than he ever wants to speak aloud. In Rebellion Sourcebook, Windhoek "posts his story on the Internet" and subsequently disappears from history.

If I were in Windhoek's shoes, I would think about heading for Vargr space first (because it's closest). But I really want to get out to non-Imperial and non-client-state interstellar space. The galaxy is huge and unoccupied to Rimward. Maybe I can pull off Marooned Alone ...

Whipsnade October 1st, 2018 02:50 PM

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Originally Posted by BRJN (Post 593624)
Yep. And applied thought to what I read. (You may criticize the second part if you find it needful.)


Then why are you still focusing on the ammo? Why are you still ignoring the timing? Why don't you realize just who the duty guard regiment is?

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Another problem with Dulinor's planning, accidentally exposed by Lucan: what if a squad of bodyguards is in / near the Princes' apartments - maybe because The Plan's security was infringed?
Where do you think that squad would come from? Maybe the guard regiment currently on duty in the Palace? You know, the Ilelish guard regiment? The regiment whose officers are all part of the plot?

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Palace Security has no way to know Dulinor is going to send only one assassin after the Princes.
You're overlooking the timing. Security has no way to know Dulinor has sent any assassins because the broadcast of Dulinor killing Strephon in the Throne Room is the signal for Imprey to kill the Princes. It isn't that Strephon & Co. get gunned down first and the Princes are killed later. They're supposed to happen at the same time.

Why do you think Imprey suddenly bursts into the Princes' quarters after previously waiting for several with Windhoek outside in the corridor? It's because Dulinor's meeting with Strephon is being broadcast live on view screens throughout the Palace. He cools his heels waiting for the screaming match to stop and only burst in when he knows the Gunfight in the Throne Room is about to occur. Imprey's signal to kill the Princes is Dulinor killing Strephon.

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Why was ammo tampered with?
Once again, only the other guard regiments' ammo was tampered with and not the all ammo being used by everyone else in the Palace. When an accident reveals training rounds have been issued to guard regiments, live ammo starts being issued in it's place.

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My paranoia...
... is presuming knowledge no one has and is presuming actions no one loyal is in position to take.

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... sends a squad/platoon/company...
A squad from the Ilelish Guard regiment? They're the active duty regiment, they're part of the plot, and they're not even suspected yet.

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... for a careful look-see.
That careful look see is going to assigned to the troops who are part of the plot.

Whipsnade October 1st, 2018 02:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BRJN (Post 593626)
"Wounded Colossus" has...


I wrote Wounded Colossus. It's fanon. Don't cite it to support your theories.

Windhoek meeting Strephon is a deus ex machina, nothing more. Go to Travellermap, look at the location of Capital, look at the location of Corridor, and look at the location of Longbow II. I stretched plausibility past the breaking point by having the course Strephon is taking to return to Capital will intersect the course Windhoek is taking to reach Corridor.


Quote:

If I were in Windhoek's shoes, I would think about heading for Vargr space first...
Even after news of the Lishun invasion begins to arrive?

mike wightman October 1st, 2018 03:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Whipsnade (Post 593625)
That's an option. Would he continue to head for the Protectorate after the invasion of Lishun begins?

It may be too late for him to turn back - I'll have to date check.

Besides, if he is travelling by tramp freighter what better way to disappear than in the confusion of a major fleet action - assuming the Impies don't just nuke all civilian traffic...
Quote:

The upload on Inarli, etc.
Yep, a false trail or six eventually culminating in the data release on Inarli, which just happens to be in almost completely the opposite direction to the Protectorate.

Yet more adventure opportunity for PCs being unwitting saps in the false trail(s) :)

Whipsnade October 1st, 2018 03:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 593630)
It may be too late for him to turn back - I'll have to date check.


We figured he'd be thwarted from crossing though Corridor because of the invasion there. Lishun is closer, so he can get to it get there quicker despite having to "sneak" for most of the trip.

I'll also point out that Protectorate member states are the ones invading Lishun. A human Imperial naval officer claiming to be a refugee might not receive a warm welcome.

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Besides, if he is travelling by tramp freighter what better way to disappear in a plasma-hot ball of expanding gas than in the confusion of a major fleet action...
Fixed that for you.

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... - assuming the Impies don't just nuke all civilian traffic...
Or board and seize civilian traffic while detaining all crew and passengers while checking on their identities.

What was it again that Windhoek didn't want to happen to him? ;)

Quote:

Yep, a false trail or six eventually culminating in the data release on Inarli, which just happens to be in almost completely the opposite direction to the Protectorate.

Yet more adventure opportunity for PCs being unwitting saps in the false trail(s) :)
Exactly. The longer he's still in the borders of the Imperium, the more adventure opportunities for the PCs.

mike wightman October 1st, 2018 03:29 PM

Another thought - what if Windhoek is a PC?

robject October 1st, 2018 03:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mike
Another thought - what if Windhoek is a PC?

And those three other officers he met up with could also be PCs. I've thought about that. It's like Marooned (or Across the Bright Face) blown up to galactic extremes. Could be a lot of fun, with the right referee!

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bill
I'd like to add The Brothers of Varian to the mix.

Along with skills, Windhoek might also have information [e/g deep calibration points] to trade.

...remove the more floridly "Whipsnadian" [tone].

Nice. Will add.

Yes, I have to rewrite it. We're at Phase I: gathering data, extrapolating, and deciding on the course.

Phase II matures the text, identifies important people/places/things, and assembles the scenario hooks nicely.

Whipsnade October 1st, 2018 04:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by robject (Post 593636)
We're at Phase I: gathering data, extrapolating, and deciding on the course.


Gotcha. Time to do some thinking while swimming laps.


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