2 – First Expedition

3rd February 3301 – 00:31

Hauling cargo and selling the old data could only get me so far. A bit of luck and some rare goods allowed me to leave the Frog System in a new ship a couple of weeks ago, for the Pand System, on the fringe of inhabited space – the starting line of my first expedition.
This Cobra MkIII is a fine piece of machinery, and even if it might not be in the best condition or outfitted with the best equipment, it got me here today, on the first stage of my first journey, just a few light years away from the R CRA Nebula.

map PAND to R CRA Nebula WEB

This Nebula caught my eye as there is only one single star within it, BRSO 14. Unlike most Nebulae that I know of, it is only visible from a few light years away. It felt worth investigating…

Screenshot_0000 WEB

3rd February 3301 – 14:18

Simply stunning.

Not one, but two Class B stars after all. Nothing else I could spot, probably due to the limited capability of my scanner. It feels so peaceful here.

BRSO 14 A&B WEB

 

My first thought was that all this place was missing was an Earth-Like World so I could have settled in this heaven, but once again, all that humanity brings is chaos and suffering wherever it reaches. Has Hengist Duval died yet? Has war finally sparked between the Federation and the Empire? I do not know, and as much as I miss the comfort of gravity and the presence of my friends, I do not want to find out just yet.
So I guess I’ll head a little further out for now, the Corona Austrina Dark Region isn’t too far, and I spotted a dying star that happens to be on the way there.

Beta Coronae Austrinae WEB

4th February 3301 – 20:50

I have to admit I felt intimidated closing in this giant black dust cloud, only to realize that after visiting a few Star Systems, I was already moving away from it. I did although find some serious candidates for life supporting planets, a shame my equipment won’t allow me to go down on the surface in order to bring samples back home.

Earth like WEB

Water life WEB

It feels that I am traveling in the right direction, just the right distance away from the Galactic Bulge. So I’m going to carry on, I can faintly see my next stop toward the Veil Sector. It is quite a leap, but hopefully I will make some interesting discoveries along the way that I am sure Universal Cartographic will pay good money for.

to Veil Nebula WEB

7th February 3301 – 19:02

COL 359 Sector,
I have officially left the Dark Region of Coronae Austrinae. It might only be a hundred light years behind me but something weird makes it feel like a million.
I haven’t seen a soul in quite a while now. Although it was never going to be as loaded with traffic as around Dalton Gateway, this journey so far was always met with the odd Adder or Asp. I even submitted to a Federal Security Vessel routine check, right outside the R CRA Nebula.
Not carrying any weapon or shield generator never failed to leave me uneasy at the occasional interdiction, but I have to say, this feeling of loneliness is something else.
I have to admit I felt like turning back until I saw the contour of the Veil West Nebula in the distance.
Deep breath, Taylor. I still have plenty of supply to see me there and back.

9th February 3301 – 15:37

It seems this journey has come to an end. I’m running around in circles as my Frame Shift Drive capability is starting to show its limits. The Veil West Nebula, once proving extremely difficult to spot with the naked eye, is now appearing everywhere I look, taunting me, as a reminder of my own failure. Not only have I come to realize I am never going to reach my destination, at least with this equipment, I couldn’t even make any significant discovery to justify those last few days of going back and forth, looking for a viable route to the Veil Sector.
So I turned my ship back, toward the Pand System, and the first signal that my scanner picked up after the first jump back to the civilized world was this Earth Like Planet…

COL359 E-like World WEB

I will do my best to see in it a sign of destiny and keep my focus to get back to Pand in one piece.

10th February 3301 – 15:43

Contact! And the first interdiction attempt in a long time now. I must be getting closer as I’m beginning to see more and more ships.
I fiddled with my Communication System and picked up a faint music broadcast. Radio Sidewinder it seems. A newsflash confirmed that humanity was exactly as I left it, granted I wasn’t gone for too long.
Never since I’ve made the decision to turn back have I felt the urge to dock and feel the ground as much as today. This comforting music will help me reaching my destination while keeping me from restlessness.

13th February 3301 – 19:46

COL 285 Sector, the home stretch of my mission to reach populated space turned out to be a real hornet’s nest. Not only it is a field of brown and red dwarves that I cannot refuel at, it is infested with pirate ships too. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve been interdicted. Even though I managed to escape most of them, the last time saw my canopy’s integrity compromised and a sudden change of plan… rush to Pand.
In a panic, I deviated from my original route in order to refuel one last time. Praying for no contact to show up on my sensors.

cracked refuel WEB

I couldn’t afford to loiter any longer scanning for planets and stars. Once my fuel tanks were full enough to see me to the Pand System, I punched the Frame Shift Drive on full throttle, considering any contacts as a potential death. My heart was pounding all along the way and I could not tell if I was getting any closer until…

Pand Station WEB

I have never been so grateful to be alive. I will leave the Cobra in the hangar for some necessary repairs and will be on my way to the first bar to get drunk.
Universal Cartographic can wait another day.

 

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