Day 1. Evening.
I had to watch that great lard that calls himself an abbot stuff his face again at dinner. The man has no sense of restraint, and endangers his own health by overeating, his flabby exterior slows down his every action, making him clumsy. I have seen wonders of technology that rival the workings of the gods, but it appears to me that all it does is for a man is make him soft. If he doesn’t have to rely on his own strength of arms, he becomes weak. Yet it is that same technology that allows their society, as corrupt and incomprehensible as it is to me, to survive and remain militarily strong even when the people themselves are slugs.
The leadership crew of the Kasserkratchis as reliant on the technology as the fat abbot, allowing it to pollute their bodies and minds to the point where they rely on it. The so called ‘Space Marines" never take their power armor off, as if it is their skin rather than what their mothers gave them.
But I digress before even beginning. The first day upon arrival at this auction event, I discovered that Aratus left a gift for me before his disappearance: the axe of the previous champion of Xurunt. This is a strange weapon. When I hold it in my hands, I seem to be able to almost hear something. It is as if my grip on the hilt magnifies my hearing. The sound could be coming from anywhere, though it seems most likely that it is from within the walls around me. Possibly this auction facility has some mechanisms in the walls. These are the rational interpretations of the phenomenon. I know that instead the explanation is that the weapon is the home of a spirit. I know not if this spirit is benevolent or malicious, but I do believe that it is powerful. In swinging the axe, I feel the power of the weapon, and know that it is strong and keen. It has and shall continue in my hands to fell many a foe.
The command staff of the Kasserkratch that was with me on the planet were Aleph, Azryael, Ichabod and Moric. Erik Thane was at the dinner, but disappeared shortly after. The others either chose to stay on Strum or the ship. When a demon forces them into an agreement, they should not leave honoring it up to others, as they are doing so with me. I am not surprised that the demon chose to force such a pact, as they had already dealt with it at some point before I joined them. No one should ever truck with demons, as they are the worst form of spirit, delighting it destruction for on reason other than the pain that it causes mortal men. It is difficult to avoid showing my contempt for those I work with, as it would surely make my revenge more difficult without their support. Lesser of two evils, as they say.
Aleph and Ichabod worked together on some sort of strategy which they claimed was to help ensure our success and to avoid Moric sabotaging it. Moric spent the night hunting down different people, though he never make it clear to me as to why. Azryael spent his time either helping Aleph and Ichabod or questioning facility staff as to protocol and procedures for the next days events. There was also an odd man there by the name of Marshal Matthias Kaiser. He was charged with investigating a murder that happened at the party after dinner. I was not there, so do not know what happened. However, apparently Kaiser believed that Octavia was a suspect, so he assaulted her rooms. She booby-trapped her own door, and killed one of Kaiser’s guards with an inferno pistol. I do not know if Kaiser was more fool or more coward, but he left Octavia alone after that.
Day 2. Morning.
I read the bones this day, which portended dark and dangerous events ahead. This has certainly proven true. After meaningless pleasantries that are so prevalent in decadent society, we were finally allowed to view the items to be auctioned. None of the items were what I believe the demon wanted us to find. However, there are a few that might lead us to the legacy of the renowned rogue trader. The most promising such items were the Gilded Widow, a painting, and a compass. My companions were interested in various other items in the auction, seeming to forget that the reason for us being here was clearly not to go shopping for trinkets and baubles.
After more hours wasted on pleasantries, and the removal of weapons from all the guests, the auction finally began. My companions succeeded in winning the painting while some human psycher acquired the compass. We may have to convince him to allow us to use the compass temporarily if it proves necessary to finding the legacy. In preparation of the final item, which I had the suspicion would quickly rise in price beyond our limited means, I approached an heiress who clearly had significant wealth, asking her to assist us in the purchase of the automaton, the Gilded Widow. She accepted, on condition that she be given passage on our vessel, and be allowed use of it. I agreed, though I doubted that she would find our ship to her liking.
When the Gilded Widow came up for bid, the auctioneer declared that there would be a demonstration of what it does. A man inserted the heart into the automaton that was the Gilded Widow and it came to life. I am not aware of the ways that cards are used to foretell the future, and when a soulless clockwork device is the one performing the rituals, I doubt the validity of any such soothsaying. However, the automaton was a curious device, far removed from the clockwork dragons of my home-world.
After several meaningless questions, the automaton made a demand for the blood of Haarlock’s scion and seemed to take mental control of all the mechanical devices in the room, combat and observational robots. Greel, the head mourner killed the auctioneer, setting off violence. The mourners and robots attacked the guests and PDF. Since Greel was leading the attack, it seemed that he must have a personal reason for wanting to kill the people that were benefiting from the looting of Haarlock’s tomb. I thus believed that he might be a descendant of Haarlock, and therefore the scion. I wrested his weapon from his hands and chased after him. After killing many of his followers, and having run from one end of the complex to the other, I finally ended Greel with his own weapon. Spitting on the corpse, I filled a container with a sample of some of his blood to take back to the Gilded Widow.
It was obvious from the chatter on the headset that my companions were scattered throughout the complex pursuing various different theories about who the scion to be. Aleph wanted me to confront the inquisitor because he was being suspicious. I ignored this and headed back to the auction room. Unfortunately Greel’s blood did not satisfy the Widow, nor did my own or the fat abbot’s.
The inquisitor, who had apparently attacked Moric and Azyael, returned to the auction chamber at that point. He claimed to not know who the scion was, so I left with the destination of the morgue, and finally retrieving my weapons from where they were hidden. Aleph had informed me that the camera in the morgue had gone black very soon after all of these events had begun.
When the havoc had begun, the Gilded Widow had given a time limit of 13 hours to receive the blood. Around 6 hours of this time has since elapsed, leaving 7 hours to accomplish this task before the Gods alone know will come to pass.