The silence after Zimzod killed the Councilor was prolonged by shock. While they were glad the man was gone, Zimzod was surprised at the odd reactions from some of the crew as they slowly recovered enough to decide their next steps. He knew Mikah wanted the Stepozhevaci gone most of all, but had not counted on her desire to kill the Councilor herself! She quietly planned on getting even with Zimzod for taking that chance from her. Brian was more concerned the suddenly homicidal Zimzod was his roommate! Still, that left them with the question of what to do next? They all agreed they couldn't take the ship where they were supposed to, using the Stepozhevaci nav-tape. At the very least, they had only one nav-tape for both the Dawnstar Horizon and Quasar Viper. While they could break the tape and try to duplicate the nav-data, there was no guarantee both ships would arrive at the same place together, or that they would be paid rather than killed.
And there was enough damage to the Viper the destroyer might just misjump again and be lost.  Or worse, show up in a very visible location to ignite an all out civil war in the Marches.  So that left them out in deep space without a clue what to do.  As they talked, everyone agreed the best possible answer would be to deliver the destroyer to the people serving Duke Norris, as they already had a good relationship with him.  The problem was how?  Brian was still unsure how likely it was that they could get the ship to jump, and moaned about Zimzod having wasted "all" the nuclear missiles.  They agreed they could have set warheads and totally destroyed the Quasar Viper if they had not fired all the missiles.  But that opportunity was gone.  So they were left with the question of how to get the ship to Regina without it even being scanned.  A simple security scan of the destroyer, even with its transponder disabled, would give most systems enough information to identify the ship.
Ryddoth, Emkir and Aiden had lots of experience during the Fifth Frontier War skirting systems and sneaking past Zhodani forces.  As they were set the task of plotting a course through the minefield of settled worlds and naval patrols, Sir Brian and the others had to get the Quasar Viper jump capable and figure how much fuel they had between the two vessels.  The Dawnstar Horizon had left Porozlo with much of their own internal space cluttered with collapsible fuel tanks.  That allowed them to over-fuel the ship, so they knew they could get back to Porozlo if they didn't locate the hulk, or were not able to recover it.  A survey of everything they could find aboard the Viper told them they had enough fuel, if shared from the Viper to the Horizon, to get them to the Gileden System (Rhylanor) one parsec away.  The path they hoped to use would take them through the Gileden, Pirema, K'kirka, Rech and Dinomn systems to get to Regina.
This would take them from the Rhylanor Subsector through the Lanth Subsector and force them to sneak by one Imperial Scout Base!  The crew also searched for the Warrant, believed to be aboard as Zimzod had kept his discovery secret.  While they didn't find the document, they did find a literal treasure trove of the late crew's personal effects.  As the trove grew, they were astounded...until they reviewed the crew roster.  Each member of the ship's crew seemed related to some High Noble family of the day, and were likely selected as much for loyalty as skill because they were reputed to have carried the Warrant itself.
The treasures included:          New Roman Church Cross(3" Spinward Blue Topaz)          14 inch polished Lanthanum necklace w/diamond cut to a Fer d'Lance(20 cts)          30 ct Sky Blue Topaz GravBike figure on a ribbon          4 inch Stellar Mist Topaz "light dome"( pin pricked with holes so lights shining              through show a star pattern on a blue field)          15 ct Sky Blue Topaz cut into the shape of a single winged Aircraft          10 ct Deep Red Garnet cut into the shape of a swimming Water creature          4 inch tall "Angelic figure "seemingly cut from a single rich "pale Aquamarine" stone          3 inch wide 1/2 inch thick Blue Amethyst Heart          Silver "dangle" ear rings with Gold Imperial Starbursts dangling          Gold ring with a Light blue Sapphire stone surrounded by diamond chips          Sylea braided bracelet with strands of White and yellow gold and platinum strands          Intricately "woven" Lanthanum bracelet          A set of plain gold bangles          Gold /Silver jeweled(many small gems) compact case          Silver inlayed gold Tort(Likely from the Sword Worlds)          2 ct diamond set in gold engagement ring          Platinum ring w/onyx and silver quartz stones fitted and a pattern cut into the face          White gold computer/wrist watch(LED display encased in a 1mm Andalusite              tablet) with silver band[Value: KCr 15]          Silver ring with gold mount holding 5 ct Pink Spinel gem[Value: Cr 800]          Gold cuff links with opal panel inlay and inlayed Ruby slivers forming an Imperial               Starburst(IN)[Value: KCr 2.5]          Gold inlayed white gold medal( apparently from the Church of the Stellar Divinity)              On a Silver chain[Value: Cr 300]          Men's Platinum Sylean Digital wrist watch w/Lanthanum band(Est Val: KCr 2.75)          Men's gold ring with mounted Black Spinel gem(Est Val: Cr 700)          Men's Gold Bracelet with engraved figures(Est Val: Cr 500)          Men's white Gold cuff links w/citrine stones and inlayed onyx Imperial              Starburst(Est Val: KCr 2)          Men's Gold stud ear ring w/.5 carat diamond(Est Val: Cr 600)          Men's FOB Chain w/antique(~860[Empress Tomutova II Era]) pocket watch          Men's Silver and gold cutlass in sliver jewel covered scabbard, Value: KCr 45          Men's Platinum watch with Diamond hour ques on a Elisum(like darker              Tanzanite) face, Value: KCr 75               [ Watch description: White gold case with a thin platter of natural diamond                   (Cutting Method unknown)] as a "face" obscuring the silver copper                   workings and inlayed with an Onyx Imperial Starburst with platinum                   fittings. This gives the effect of "red" moving (as if the blood of The                   Imperium) around the outer edges of the Starburst.                   (Est Val: FOB: Cr 200, Watch: KCr 150)          A pair of Gold Dice(weighted to roll "7" [Value: KCr 1]          A Holocube of Capital[Value: Cr: 500]          An Antique Family copy("Code of Ledriasda") religious text w/lots of scribble,              adherents have a moral obligation to preserve intelligent life          An antique and apparently hand carved Family of figures in a box          A gown covered completely in gemstones          Silver and gold cutlass in jewel sliver covered scabbard          And KCr2 in Imperial Credit Chips dating from 984
Most of the crew found looting the possessions ghoulish, but Emkir, Ms. Vik and Dame Mikah didn't see why the treasures should be discarded simply because they had belonged to now dead people.  Together, they split the cache of personal possessions and left the remainder for Ryddoth to lock in his safe aboard the Horizon.  This included the hard cash in old chits, which any bank would question about.  Where such old currency came from, etc...  There were also ten TL D non-self-sealing naval vacc suits with TL D 12 hr PLSS units, each emblazoned with the ship's name.  Also five Sub machineguns w/1,000 rnds(200 rnds in magazines) and Concussion grenades (2 boxes, total count 40[20 per box]).  All these were added to the Dawnstar Horizon's ship's locker.  Sir Brian also located a vid-chip of "The Dawson's Christian Legend" and the "spacer's folk song" about it in the Viper's entertainment library.  He then searched the Dawnstar Horizon's collection for a more modern version.
Working to repair the ship, Brian needed to repair the integrity of the jump grid where the ship's hull had been penetrated.  He had Zimzod work with Ms. Vik and Scout Ryddoth on the hull, in sections.  This eventually allowed pressurization and safer movement in the wreck as well as in the bridge, which had been open to space too.  Emkir continued learning the ship's controls as teams lead by Sir Brian and Scout Ryddoth worked to repair systems and hull surfaces in order to move the ship.  As they worked, Brian took the chance to turn Mikah and Ms. Vik's help into full classes on basic starship engineering, to reduce the pressure now on him to maintain the systems on both ships.  The jury rig repair work ultimately took them three hard days.
But in the end, they had a vessel they hoped would make the trip and started moving the fuel as needed.  They planned on setting the jump plots to match the drifting position of the Viper and to have her computer automatically load the jump program while they all rode aboard the Dawnstar Horizon.  This would prevent anyone getting stranded or lost should the repairs not hold up.  In each of the coming jumps, they would target the outermost fringes of an orbit containing some kind of non-starport provided fuel.  And they'd hope to miss anti-piracy or system security patrols given the lack of a transponder on the Viper.  When the work and testing were done, the crew decided they could sleep in jump space and organized at their positions.  Then Ryddoth entered the jump plot, dimmed the ship's lights and ran the program as the hull grid flared and they tumbled into jump space.
_________________________________________________________________________ Next: The Jump to the Gileden System