Down on the planet, Gunnar has an immediate encounter with mercenary troops from the 11th Hussars of the Kelredan Light Horse, which precipitates a riot in the working class section of the colony. Gunnar then meets up with Arno Bingle, once a minor functionary, now a cell leader in the nascent rebel underground. He promises aid to Gunnar, including workers to assemble the Skien Mechs in the outlands of the planet.
Colony security continues to be lax and Gunnar simply walks out of the colony and returns to orbit in his captured pirate frigate.
Meanwhile, rest of the crew has decided that all they need to do to take Narvik back from this mercenary backed usurper governor is deploy their mechs. The Kelredan Light Horse have no capability to effectiove fight mechs. The PCs need to find a safe place to hole up while they deploy their mechs.
They approach the colony from the far side of the planet, flying low to avoid detection, aiming for a secluded spot not too far from the colony itself. Their impromtu survey is interrupted when the pirate frigate is attacked by a plasma weapon of unexpected power, which disables and downs the ship. Some slick piloting by Gunnar avoids disaster, but the ship will never fly again. The rest of the group lands near by to pick up Gunnar and Kath, and encounters a group of primitive humans, who worship at the “Temple of Asking”.
This Temple turns out to be some sort of technology that seems to create anything (within some limits, it seems) by converting energy to mass. The approach of the PCs to the Temple “Altar” triggers a hostile response from whatever party controls the converter, and the team is assaulted by three powerful simacrulums. Kath shows off some marksmanship, and the three Artificial Persons are disabled.
One, though actually missing a head, stumbles back to an opening in the base of a hill. Kath and Gunnar follow while Kari and Astrid work to administer to Stieg’s wounds, suffered in the altercation. The opening in the hill is protected by the torso of another AP, sporting a plasma weapon that misfires and ruins the AP instead of blowing off Gunnar’s head. In the opening, Kath and Gunnar find an entrance to what looks like a crashed spacecraft – an old one.
Joined by the others, the group explores the inside of the buried ship, and discover that it is pre-Imperial in origin, though definitely from Earth. The ship is also still being run by an AI, which is what downed the pirate frigate. After some tense logical manuevering with the AI, Gunnar (with kibutzing from the rest of the group) convinces the AI that they are not a threat, and it agrees to delay destroying them until after further evaluation. They also figure out that the primitives they met are descendants of the original ship’s crew, and may have been living here for over one thousand years.