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Jace paused as Vropda offered him some sort of 'modifications,' probably of cybernetic or biological nature. Whether or not she was being honest, he decided that he'd rather not roll the dice of trust just yet. Considering that all of these Scroungers were covered from head to... whatever appendages they had in robotic suits, 'modification' could mean the same as 'conversion.'

"Thanks, but no thanks. I'd rather take them on as I am." He said as he placed his eyes in front of the infrared detectors. He could only hope that he wasn't about to succumb to some sort of mind control, but he wasn't exactly in any position to say no to Vropda.

@Hekazu [Gordian Nought]
Jace tensed once more as Vropda walked closer, but soon went back to his calm demeanor. No reason in making them think he was lying. He took a deep breath before speaking again, as if it pained him to even recall the name of his captors.

"Rakja Fleet. Not exactly the biggest, from what I could tell, but they don't have their own planet of slaves for no reason. Mostly humans, but a few other species were thrown in as well, but I couldn't tell you the names." He responded simply.

@Gordian Nought @Hekazu
Jace examined the hologram, checking over each planet carefully. Thankfully, the one in mind came into view quickly. He pointed to a small, beige desert planet with two orbiting moons.

"This one, General. I couldn't tell you the name, but it's the only one with any sort of biosphere. Nothing you can't handle, I'm sure, but the big question will be the Slavers." He moved back from the hologram, communicating as much with the motions of his hands as with his voice.

"They're decently armed, but they're still criminals. With luck, they'll turn and run at the first sign of any ship with better guns than them. However, if they don't.." He paused for a moment, tapping his chin with his finger.

"Their two biggest ships were frigates. Fast, small, but they didn't have decent shielding, as I recall. Other than that, a handful of fighters and drone ships they mainly used to keep an eye on the planet itself. We managed to figure out that at any given moment, most of those smaller ships are patrolling the planet, while the others safeguard the frigates when they go to acquire more slaves. You're probably best off hitting them while they're off gathering slaves, then you could take out the small parts of their fleet no problem, then you'll have the element of surprise when they return."

Jace had begun to muse strategies, probably a bit more than was acceptable. These Scroungers didn't exactly seem kind, so if he was to get out of this without imprisonment, or some form of mind control, it was probably best to make sure that he seemed to be of the most use with his mind intact.

@Hekazu @Gordian Nought
Jace tensed as the new Scrounger entered. He was almost instantly on guard, but soon relaxed as it came apparent that she simply had more questions for him. It was to be expected, really. These people seemed very pragmatic and logical. With luck, that'd make it all the easier to reason with them.

"Pleasure to meet you, Captain. To answer your question; metal ore, gemstones, untapped aquifers, anything they thought was valuable. They had so many people and ships you'd think they'd just buy colonization rights and mine the stuff themselves, but that just goes to show the critical thinking skill of slavers. But I digress." He dismisses the thought with a wave of his hand.

"The planet itself had fair amounts of metals that could be sold. Considering the UPF keeps a pretty strong grip on its resource-rich planets, maybe I shouldn't be surprised that pirates set up a slave operation there." He concluded.

@Hekazu @Gordian Nought
Jace sat quietly, examining the room briefly before making eye contact with the general. It was clear that he had best tell him the truth. At least the only way he was going from here was further from the Federation.

"I was a rancher on one of the Federation's border worlds. My town was taken by slavers to a mining planet. I led a revolution against them, stole an escape craft, and got away in whatever direction I happened to be pointing, which apparently was your territory. I have no idea if anyone else escaped, or what happened to the slavers. Not like the UPF's going to do anything about them anyway. A ranching colony is expendable, I'm sure." He sat, relaying his story once more.

"As for right now, all I really want is to get as far from UPF space as possible. As much as I hate them for abandoning us in our time of need, one man can't really do much against something spanning most of the known galaxy." He shrugged. It was true, there wasn't much he wouldn't do if it meant he could get even with the Federation, but there wasn't much that anyone, at least any human, could accomplish alone that would mean much.

@Hekazu @Gordian Nought
It took Jace some time to even understand when or if it was his turn, but soon enough he got the hang of the game, even if he couldn't join in on the conversation (or insults) the others were sharing. He understood the game well enough, but decided to do a few poor moves. If these were to be his fellow passengers for the ride, and they were all armed and stronger than him, he'd rather not leave them in a sour mood.

He played the game until the others tired of it, or until somebody started a winning streak.

Jace Rosson

Admittedly, Jace was somewhat startled when he was awoken by this... being. Nevertheless, he quietly and amiably followed its directions, making his way toward the boarding ship. He was surprised, being sent to this 'Universal Nova' place that the creature mentioned. He was not yet familiar with the Ragnarov fleet, but this place seemed important. The being mentioned that many were excited to go home to it, so it was probably a capital of some sort. What reason would they have to take him there? Did they just trust him? Were they going to try and convert him?

He quietly boarded the vessel, examining the other occupants, if there were any.

Jace nodded in thanks as he was led into the cell. It wasn't exactly five-stars, but at least it was better than laying down on a 'soft' pile of sand and shielding your eyes from the sun with a shirt. He took a tentative sip of what water was provided, but decided to wait on the food. He examined the cot for a moment, having not seen a proper bed in quite some time. He felt the sheets, and the mattress, as stiff as it was, offered him a place to truly rest as he waited for a response.

He laid down, his back popping in some places from stiffness. He rested his hands under his head, staring at the ceiling as he found himself deep in thought.

He was pretty lucky that he hadn't found himself with too close of an ally of the UPF, or they might've reported him as a 'potential terrorist,' as much as a single life-form would matter to a nation that could destroy entire systems at will. He was also lucky that he didn't end up dead or food. He hadn't met many aliens in his life, but he had always heard very.. distasteful things about the insect-like ones.

Soon enough, he decided to sleep on his next move. He shifted slightly, double checking that his pick hadn't been confiscated before shutting his eyes.

Jace nodded as he was questioned. It was probably best to just give these people what they wanted for the time being. He began to speak as he walked, doing his best to keep up with the Scroungers.

"To make a long story short, I was kept as a slave on some desert planet. I was trapped there for eleven years before I was finally able to start a rebellion. We fought hard, but of the few who escaped, I don't know if anyone but me survived. I commandeered the escape pod from slavers, and I just set a course for anywhere away from that place. I guess I ran out of fuel in your territory." He explained, motioning with his hands as they spoke.

"For what it's worth, I was once a rancher on some border world for the UFP. But if I'm being frank, I don't want anything to do with them anymore."

Jace Rosson

Jace breathed a sigh of relief as the message played and the escape ship was tugged toward safety. Sure, this Ragnarov Fleet didn't exactly sound friendly, but it wasn't as if his hopes were high to begin with. His hand quickly tapped against the folded Plasma Pickaxe currently resting in a slot of a utility belt before he prepared to exit the vessel.

As he looked around as he was ferried in, he noticed the distinct lack of other humans on board. He didn't care much; if the message sent to him meant anything, there was at least one who spoke his language on board. He looked around the parts of the ship he could see, waiting to be successfully docked before attempting to exit the escape craft, his hands held in a defensive posture, raised just above his head to show he wasn't holding a weapon.

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