Launch Day.

Imperial Cutter "Temeraire"
Waypoint 1, Pallaeni.
177 light years from Sol.

It’s been a spectacular (and a little scary) start to the Distant Worlds II expedition, with a great group meet, a massive record-breaking FTL jump, and a scary system failure.

Hijinks at Brooks Point, Pallaeni.

We arrived just outside Brooks Point quite early, and watched the usual shenanigans going on – stacking Anacondas, launching SRVs onto the backs of other ships, but I was busy prepping the ship and making sure we are ready for the trip to come. We left early for orbit, boosting clear of the party below and making the DW1 beacon in good time.

The DW 3302 Visitor Beacon – so many ships!

Arriving at the beacon we found the area inundated with sightseers and opportunists looking to make a quick buck from lightly armored and weakly defended explorers. There were ships everywhere! There was even fights breaking out over the best positions to watch from and between the would-be pirates and security forces. The Temeraire’s Nav computer and scanners were struggling to cope with the influx of data.

The time came for the jump. In an effort to avoid other non-jump traffic I had moved away and got separated from the main group, but it was too late to rejoin them. With scant seconds left and with my nav computer showing signs of overload I spooled up the drive and jumped.

Moving into position away from the crowd.

Thousands of ships, engaging FTL simultaneously, accelerating away into the black. A majestic sight, but we’d not considered the consequences. I saw other ships launch into FTL before my turn and the familiar swirl of witchspace filled the view… but then things started going badly wrong.

I’m not entirely sure what happened next. I remember hearing calls from commanders over the open frequencies sounding shocked… then the Temeraire’s nav computer overloaded and died.

The ship seemed to surge forward and shake violently as the drive started making noises that i’d never heard it make before!

I blacked out.

I came to, minutes later, disoriented, floating against my restraints – I had no idea where I was. It took me several minutes to get my bearings and restart the ship’s systems. Nothing seemed damaged, but the nav computer and the sensors needed to have their data caches flushed – they were reporting nonsense.

When the sensors finally came back up, I was about 5,000 light-seconds away from the system’s primary, and totally alone. I was receiving increasing amounts of comms chatter – seems I wasn’t the only one affected.

We should have realised – FTL pushes huge amounts of energy into the local space-time domain, and it normally diffuses safely in seconds leaving a wake behind… but the energy from 10,000 Frame Shift drives engaging simultaneously, dumped into space-time in one moment?

Rumour has it that the “shock wave” caused by the mass jump was felt clear across the bubble. The theoretical physicists and drive techs will have a field day with this information!

I intend to set down for the night to rest and run a level 3 diagnostic on the nav computer and frame shift drive. I’m concerned that the FSD and nav systems might be damaged and I may need to put back to a starport for repairs.

I think that’s enough adventure for one day.