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Last Updated    October 12 2017
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The Final Truth Of
       The Quasar Viper

And Now a note from History

     The storyline arc the crew just completed relied on the history of the Fer d'Lance-class Destroyer INS Quasar Viper.  Canon fans of Traveller will be familiar with the "official story" of the Imperial Warrant used by Duke Norris in the Fifth Frontier War.  In that history, Duke Norris had served in Imperial Naval Intelligence before ascending to his title at the death of his older brother.  During that time, he'd become certain war with the Zhodani Consulate was imminent.  Because of that, he petitioned The Emperor for additional Imperial forces, even while trying to work with commanders within the sector.  But Grand Admiral Frederick Santanocheev was convinced of his own data, even as the war began with disaster after disaster.  This Admiral was also the Baron of the Fornice System and a protégé to the Grand Duchess Delphine, Great-Aunt of the Emperor himself.

The officially released histories say Emperor Strephon agreed with Duke Norris, and dispatched an Imperial Warrant to Duke Norris in 1105, two years before war broke out.  After that, the destroyer carrying the Warrant from the Capitol system was lost, with all hands and the document.  Rumors of Norris having died or been ill ended when Norris appeared with the Warrant and a tale of recovery.  After the war, it was officially released that Duke Norris had pretended to be desperately ill in the besieged Regina system.  But, his people had managed to determine where the destroyer had been lost, and they slipped out of the Zhodani siege.  History contends that he and his people traveled to the interdicted Algine system(Regina/Spinward Marches).  There, they found the wreck on-world and recovered the Warrant.  Norris then returned to use the Warrant and dismiss Admiral Santanocheev.  He then took control of what was a failing Imperial defense and turned the situation around, to gain the first victory won by the Imperium in five frontier wars.

Those who have read the Digest Group Publication data released in MegaTraveller will recognize the name "Quasar Viper" from a significantly different story.  Per DGP, this was actually the true story!

As in the officially released version, Duke Norris had become convinced that war with the Zhodani was unavoidable.  As he responded, researching the military history of conflicts with the Zhodani, he realized the flaws in the Imperial plans for the defense of the sector.  This led to conflict with Sector Admiral Santanocheev, which led Duke Norris not only to petition the Emperor, but to look for other ways to respond to the coming crisis.  And this led to the discovery of the story of the INS Quasar Viper.

          The Third Frontier War and the Warrant.
          In 979, after 350 years of uneasy peace between the Imperium and
          Zhodani Consulate, war once more broke out in the Spinward Marches
          sector as Zhodani battle fleets struck Imperial targets in the Jewell and
          Querion Subsectors.  As the war ground on, and Imperial forces were
          beaten back, The Emperor created an Imperial Warrant, and dispatched
          a fleet to deliver it to the then-current Duke of Regina.  This action was
          based on the historic reliance on key figures in regions during conflict.
          In the Marches, key figures had risen from both the Rhylanor (Olav I
          and Arbellatra Alkhalikoi) and Regina (Baron Caranda) systems.

          The document failed to arrive on schedule.  The "Warrant Fleet" moved
          from Core Sector en route to Regina with one assignment.  Protect the
          Fer d'Lance-class Destroyer "INS Quasar Viper", which carried the
          Warrant, until it could be delivered to the current Duke of Regina, where
          ever he was engaging the enemy.  The fleet departed in 984, which
          would eventually be two years before the war ended in an armistice
          that adjusted Imperial borders to surrender territory and create a
          DMZ of independent systems where Imperial law had once ruled.

          In the following years, decades and century, many investigations of
          the Warrant Fleet were carried, but none were successful until Duke
          Norris, the current Duke of Regina, claimed to have found it at a crucial
          point in the Fifth Frontier War.  What had been learned is that the fleet
          made its way from the Core Sector through the Vland, Corridor and
          Deneb sectors towards the Spinward Marches.  And with their destination
          almost in sensor range, in the spinward edge of the Deneb sector,
          the INS Quasar Viper…disappeared!

          It had remained an enduring mystery for over a century, until Duke
          Norris’ people claimed to have solved it.  But the real truth
          is now known, if only to a few.  The last communication from the ship
          was received as the fleet made their jump from the Marnie’s World
          Imperial Naval base to the Fennec system in the Sabine Subsector
          (Deneb).  When the rest of the Warrant Fleet emerged in the
          Fennec system, the Quasar Viper did not.  The Warrant was lost.

The first clear image of the drifting INS Quasar Viper as detected by the ISS Dawnstar Horizon

Thanks to the data collected by the crew of the ISS Dawnstar Horizon, we now know what really happened.  According to the logs found, the INS Quasar Viper had been trapped in a misjump!  When she was located by the crew of the Dawnstar Horizon, she was drifting, powered down without her ship's boat.  There was minor damage to her engines and it seemed a loss due to impact damage to her main power conduits prevented most (bridge or engineering) stations from activating (Ex: grav-plate controls and some environmentals as well as lighting).  All doors were locked and sealed by local processor controls, fed by the dwindling ship's batteries.

The final status of her crew broke down as follows:
1: The Jump dead:  The misjump seemed to have had the side effect of twisting the internal
     physics of the ship resulting in the death, during jump, of most of the crew.  A survey of
     the bodies( found distributed about the ship) showed an agonizing death and accounted
     for all but three crew.

2: "The Resistor":  This body was so labeled because "she" was found burned,
     crumpled and partly fused to the metal handle of an axe.  Close to the body was an
     opened engineering hatch revealing the severed power connection between two jump
     capacitors!  It was obvious to even the casual observer that the dead crew person died
     while using an axe to cut the "still live" capacitor power feed!!  The results of the power
     release, aside from the dead crew, were scorched and burnt panels for 1 to 2 meters up
     and down the corridor including lights out and grav plates dead.  Some small fires
     started on the wall surfaces however those surfaces were too retardant to spread.

     As a result of this action, the ship emerged from misjump in deep space between the
     Porozlo and Gileden systems.

3: Two crew were unaccounted for, if the ship left port with a full complement.  Their
     lack accounted for the missing ship's boat.

Data from the crew of the Dawnstar Horizon provided the following:
     Working to get around Imperial Edicts, the Natoko system was paying for data on
     hulks to recover.  They hoped to build a secret "Shadow Fleet" of warships.  A
     merchant aboard a detached scout spotted the hulk, passively, and thought it a deep
     anti-pirate patrol.  Panicked, he only risked an active scan just before imminent jump.
     That glimpse was enough to show no more than a drifting hulk.  The news reached
     Natoko as word was spread that Imperial ships were scouting all non-populated systems
     in the Marches against the possibility of a Zhodani Sneak attack.

Not made public:
     Before the war, a secret operation uncovered a deep space Sword Worlds base, which
     was engaged and destroyed two parsecs out between both Caladbolg(Sword Worlds)
     and Enos(Sword Worlds).  Still, an attempt to recover the drifting hulk was
     delayed as the Natokans looked for a partner to help in the ship's recovery, while
     further reducing the possibility of Imperial discovery of the action.  They
     soon found the Stepzvechi.

Damage to the ship included:
- The capacitor cut in the jump system capacitor array.
- Micro-meteorite damage to the skin of the ship resulting in the voiding of 4 ship
- A significant penetration of the vessel’s lower bulkheads through a number of
     fuel storage spaces and destruction of the main fore-aft passage.
- Destruction of the main computer data bus cable at a center-vessel junction between the
     main computer and both the Bridge and Engineering.
- The computer went into lock-down before main power loss with evidence(including a
     damaged keyboard) of an attempt to hack the lock down from the console

Deckplans and Damage Map as reported by the crew of the ISS Dawnstar Horizon
     Normal Deckplan configuration:


Detailed Damage map from reports aboard the located vessel:


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