I started working on this today but as I am not used to writing for a hard science (or really any science) setting I could use some help in flushing out this station I thought of. Any help would greatly be appreciated. So far all I’ve written is a general description, a few NPCs, and a couple of adventure seeds.
“By God’s grace may we find liberation.”
The motto of Amelia’s Gaze
Amelia’s Gaze, named after the founders daughter, is one of a handful of neoconservative habs that try to find a median between two vastly different ideologies. While it staunchly believes humanity should not forsake its roots and become something inhuman it also teaches not to ignore the advantages of technology. Death is a personal choice, though far more respected, and the few who choose a path of faux immortality sometimes feel isolated unless a public consensus agrees the individual needed to survive for the good of the group. Following this train of belief AGIs and Uplifts are given full rights as something akin to “hate the sin, not the sinner.” While they feel playing God and giving sentience to other beings was a step too far they do not treat the outcomes of these ventures as monsters, instead they try to teach them “human” values as well whatever brand of theocracy is popular in the neighborhood the Mercurial resides in. The problem with this is that both sides are constantly trying to coerce the citizens of Amelia’s Gaze to their side. This has created a micro memetic war as each neighborhood (or cluster) has its own local community leaders who help shape the public perception of their followers and need to be won over before anyone else. Each cluster is self-contained and can survive on its own but is connected to the rest of the station by way of the Hub, a localized section that is connected to all others. The leaders of each individual sector see too the daily needs of their citizens but when something involves two or more clusters a meeting is held at the Hub with two representatives from each zone. Amelia’s Gaze is, unsurprisingly, conservative in most of its laws while liberal enough that few people would truly call it oppressive in the true sense of the word. This is thanks to sections of the United States constitution being used in the first draft of the habitats charter as some of the founding members were former citizens. It has functioned as a trade location between the Junta and the rest of transhumanity thanks to its mostly neutral stance though this has not stopped it from being a prime location for the underground railroad that helps free Uplifts and AGIs from slavery. A relatively quiet location in many ways it has the charm of a small town, with talking animals of course.
AN-135 (Andrew) is deputy sheriff of the Sante Maria cluster but is also the head admin of the Amelia’s Gaze mesh since he was formerly an enslaved AGI specializing in network security. Arriving with a group of Junta refugees a few years ago he quickly made friends with a local deputy who convinced him to stay and would eventually become his boss. He is an avid supporter not just of Mercurial rights but also of the Underground Railroad which brought him to his new home. His connections go deep in the group and there are some rumors that his connections come from a much larger source because of what he is able to get access to. He regularly appears in public besides the Sherriff Gavin Fervel, a former Direct Action operative, in a quadruped (but also capable of bipedal movement) synthetic morph that resembles a large canine. It is outfitted for combat but nothing that may be considered overkill for an officer of the law.
Azhar Junapeed is an influential Imam (Islamic priest) on Gaze and one of the few Uplift religious leaders. An uplifted Sea Otter, Azhar is famous even among outsiders for both his diplomatic and debating skills. Once a student of the equally known Imam Waleed Musani, whose assassination was never solved, Azhar had been travelling for some time on a personal journey. Azhar had lost the man in his heart he called father and was searching for a new path in his life. Soon he heard stories of Amelia’s Gaze and decided this would be the place to start his new life. In his short time on Gaze Azhar has made a name for himself as a fair, judicious, Mercurial of the people. But even with a love filled community there is a part of Azhar who wishes to see those who brought death to his mentor and father brought to justice.
Calypso Halian is an ex repossessions officer or how she would put it a white collar repo woman. Her life revolved around the hunt as she went from a police detective then to an ego hunter and finally a repo man for the rich and famous. In an economy where credits are a secondary currency sometimes people get things based on false rep. Whether through a good hack or some other means the person is able to temporarily and falsely boost their reputation and gain access to something they shouldn’t. This is usually done through false identities which quickly disappear but sometimes not quickly enough. Calypso made a bundle hunting down rep forgers (or posers as some called them) and getting back what they falsely acquired. Eventually she got tired of the job and decided to retire on Amelia’s Gaze as it was out of the way, pretty friendly even with the occasional weird look, and usually didn’t see too much action. Her contacts are still active and the old (in soul) woman isn’t as rusty as one may think.
Amara Owusu is a sociopolitical expert studying what she thinks may be one of the growing focal points between the Jovians and the rest of transhuman space. A scientist at heart but currently teacher by trade Amara is writing a vast paper on the citizens and how the political pulling from both sides affect them as she also tries to educate at the high school located at the Stations hub. She brings with her a wealth of knowledge and one of the few connections to normal networks. Few people know Amara’s real last name is Azikiwe and her family owns a fair amount of stock in multiple hypercorps. She told no one where she was going to avoid any political implications of her staying at such a sight but that may be impossible to avoid.
Alejandro Hokaela is the founder and current lead counsel member of Amelia’s Gaze. His own exodus from Jovian space and why he left is up to speculation but he is respected as kind leader who is not afraid to take command. Recently however Alee, as those close call him, has become more reserved and seems to be making plans late into the night. What these plans are for is anyone’s guess but something has left him looking to the stars like a watchmen waiting for the first sign of invasion.
As a former security AGI Andrew had access to some compromising Jovian data. He is afraid the Junta may be on to his current location and asks the PCs to help lead the hunters on a wild goose chase. If the players are on the other side they won’t just be facing a skilled infosec expert but also the community that considers him one of their own.
The PCs need to get into the Junta covertly and are pointed towards a sentinel named Andrew. They have not been informed that he is an AGI and it is up to the GM whether or not that is revealed right away. With his connections Andrew can easily slip them in just as he slips people out but before they go looks like there may have been a spy aboard that last bunch of escapees. If he isn’t caught their tunnel in might collapse.
Azhar may finally have found a trail leading to the men that murdered his teacher. The PCs are hired in one way or another to use these bread crumbs and get a bigger picture of the situation. But some people want this case to stay buried and as they search the PCs may find themselves mixed into a conspiracy far greater than one would expect a holy man to be linked too.
Azhar has decided to go on a speaking tour and the PCs are acting as body guards. Things are going easily enough until an attempt on his life is foiled and now they’re afraid it may happen again. However Azhar is both brave and stubborn and will not allow these terrorists to keep him from speaking. Not only must he be protected but to keep Azhar safe the PCs will most likely have to go on the offensive against whoever orchestrated the attack.
The Jovian Junta has repeatedly tried to help support Amelia’s Gaze as a show of good faith by offering supplies and security but the citizens know better. They would probably try to use the habitat as some sort of forward station against the rest of space. Recently a signal caught by Andrew has some of the council members worried. There may be an agent of some type on board and their afraid it is from the Junta. The PCs are already on the station, perhaps coming back from another mission, and are called upon to help sort things out. Whether or not they are being paid depends on who hired them and for which side.
Calypso has a son she hasn’t seen in years and finally decides to form a better relationship with him. She pays for him to come in on a supply vessel, aren’t any body banks to ego cast too, and awaits him expectantly. Problem is an enemy from her past has received wind of this and is setting up to do some damage. If the PCs find themselves caught up in the situation and intercept the threat they may find a new ally.
Calypso has been marked for possible sentinel material but they want a better view of her in action. The PCs are sent to hire her for one last retrieval with an offer she could never refuse. They are to also back her up on said mission. Whether this is just a test or perhaps a real Firewall mission is to be seen.
Amelia’s Gaze is in lockdown and the PCs are sent in to figure out why. The last message Firewall received was from one of its sentinels (Andrew and or Calypso) saying that something was spreading through the habitat. Each cluster is locked off from the rest but the PCs are told they may be able to find answers in the Hub which is where the sentinel said to start. They could find the sentinel[s] defending what survivors they could gather along with local security, the signs of a desperate last stand, or maybe just a single witness to the horrors that took place.
Amara knows she needs to go home eventually but after news of recent political maneuvering reaches her she’s not so sure anymore. Factions within her family are looking to use her as a tool to gain more control over familial corporate assets and she could use some help. One way or another the PCs are dragged into what amounts to a political dogfight and it seems like each faction is hiring expert mercenaries in every field. From infosec experts and premier memeticists to Ultimates with grudges this is looking to be a long family reunion.
Someone found out Amara is staying on Amelia’s Gaze and they think it could be used to their advantage. A corporate princess working with bionuts? This could be political gold if the right person handles it. Too bad the right people are handling it for the opposite side as Amara (or her parents) bring in the PCs to find the leak and fix it one way or another.
There are two growing factions in Amelia’s Gaze. A more techno progressive movement and their polar opposite, a
group that calls for even more conservatism and less rights for the Mercurial’s on board. Of course this does not sit right with most people but it seems like the rivals are causing way too much chaos for such small movements. In fact some believe that a more powerful force is trying to stir up trouble in Gaze for some nefarious purpose. Looks like the PCs have their work cut out for them as they try quell the unrest while unraveling the mystery or work for their shadowy benefactor and spread a bit of social upheaval.
Comments? Ways to improve? SciFi isn’t my thing yet but I wanted to get into something new.