Widget has been reviewing so much security footage that he hasn’t had time to get in trouble. Which is good, as we have enough already. I found three remote detonators for three cargo containers in the warehouse. I had to leave Ash to diffuse them alone, as we realized a lot of footage was on a loop. The warehouse was basically offline for sixteen hours! And then I went to turn to Lexx, and he wasn’t there. He’d gone back to our quarters by himself. I just knew that wasn’t good.
We raced there (leaving a surprised Ash at the warehouse) in time to see a very fast Lexx running away from a not quite but almost choked to death Lexx. Knowing we couldn’t catch up (we tried), we had Widget pull up live feeds and saw the doppelganger run into the kitchen. Within seconds, the creature was gone. We only knew how from the open drain in the floor, and footage of a black ooze entering the drain at the time the Lexx impersonator would have been there. I guess we should cover that with some sort of anti-doppelganger cover….
And even more things are happening! Widget, along with anyone else watching chunks of security camera footage from the night before, saw that Tabaei Vari, the head of the planetside station, was seen messing with something on the docks the night before, and eventually had disappeared in a warehouse near the location of the shuttle explosion. We split the crew up, so Ash and Sresaka could keep investigating what we’d found prior, as Lexx, Widget, and I called Derrik Mason up at the station above that we had a problem. Tabaei was at the dinner with us at the time he was seen at the docks. We got permission and a security detail to let us into his Tabaei’s private quarters while Derrik kept him busy elsewhere. No dead victims, nothing. So, if he had a doppelganger, it hadn’t taken over. Probably. It seems more likely that the real Tabaei was at the dinner and not skulking around.
We need to make a timeline and figure out if the Ash doppelganger is definitely a separate creature, or if it is actively switching what it looks like depending on what it wants us to be seeing. Or not seeing. Argh! I’m an engineer, not a detective!
So much is happening! We got the vesk to the medical bay and then ran to see what the explosion was. The azlanti shuttle had exploded, killing the pilot and leaving debris everywhere. Widget offers to watch all the security video. It is hard to tell what happened to the shuttle (boric acid, perhaps?). We cannot find the raxilite diplomats, but Widget finds footage of them getting on their own shuttle with Ash. Ash has literally been in sight of one of us at all times. We contact our ship, only to find that the fake Ash forced Brock to go into diagnostic mode and so the bots did not see what all the fake Ash did, but they can see that Ash’s favorite rifle was taken. Furthermore, station security has discovered gaps in their video footage for the past day.
I spend a lot of time trying to get information from the skittermanders who are in charge of the landing pad. They all seem like hard workers, but have trouble understanding what I am asking, so I leave them taking turns making chalk outlines around each other.
Meanwhile, we discover that the poisoned food was served by the head chef himself. We go to kitchen to see how this happened, only to discover the body of the chef in the walk-in freezer.
The night went well enough, but we could not rouse the Brenneri this morning. They looked sick and felt feverish. Sresaka and Ash rushed them off to the downport infirmary, while Lexx, Widget, and I stood in as ambassadors for the day.
We were to go vist the seli kelp beds. I checked over our diving suits and off we went! One of the vesk diplomats started to have trouble breathing and began to panic, so we returned to the submersible we’d taken down to the ocean floor and made a hasty return to the downport. He was rushed off for medical aid. I examined his suit and determined that boric acid had eaten through his oxygen hose inside the suit. And then I couldn’t help but compare it to the incident on our ship where I had to repair some wiring that had the same boric acid damage on our most recent trip. We also learned that whatever posioned the Brenerri was something we all injested, but tailored to only make Brenerri sick.
Before we could discuss a plan of action, we heard (and felt) a massive explosion….
We have safely arrived on the floating Vakpod Downport (all two and a half square miles of it!) with our Brenneri, and have introduced them to some of the other ambassadors. I don’t think I like the Azlanti. Widget has fascinated some of the Seli present. So, now he’s in turns wooing at them and hiding in my fancy dress overalls. I believe some of them think he’s the Absalom representative.
So far, the mission is awkward.