This is our Tales From on FTL: Faster Than Light, continuing the story of Captain Ryan and the Kestral, after the mission is continued with the the exploits of Captain Kadreal. Follow the series here.

I stop by a shop, and decide to sell the Halberd Beam and buy a Small Bomb. The charge rate is much faster, and since these bombs can teleport aboard enemy ships, we can use them to quickly knock out any problematic systems—such as shields that our lasers can’t get through.

We move to the next beacon and find a pirate ship chasing a civilian ship. The civilians activate their distress beacon and I decide to help. The pirate ship is a Federation Scout, its crew either killed or gone rogue.

We take some damage to our hull during the fight, but the reward makes it worthwhile. The pirate ship gave us a fair amount of scrap, and after contacting the civilian ship, they also gave us some fuel and scrap as a way of saying thanks. This brings us to 137 scrap, just 13 from what’s needed for a Shield Generator.

Although… now I’m wondering whether I should use this scrap to upgrade our ship. The shields will need a lot of energy to be of much use, and we could use that same energy on our cloaking device and our engines. I change my mind about the shields, and decide to make this ship nearly impossible for an enemy to hit.

I upgrade our Piloting controls to full power, giving us a very good chance to evade attacks. I also upgrade our Doors, making them so that enemies can’t just go waltzing through our ship without some trouble. I use the rest to power up the engine.

As we move on, the captain of a Slug Interceptor hails us and offers “laborers” for sale. A slaver. I decide to attack the ship. We quickly set fire to their shields and their weapons go down. The comm system fizzes to life, “We surrender! Take one of our slaves as tribute; if you destroy us they’ll all die anyway!”

They make a fair point. Then again, if we destroy them, they can’t continue this terrible trade. But I don’t want innocent blood on my hands. I accept their offer.

They beam over a Zoltan by the name of Arries. They’re an interesting race, the Zoltan. They emit an energy field that can power a ship’s systems. While they’re terrible for combat, they make great additions to any crew.

I decide to finish up the quest given to us by the merchant in the last sector. We arrive at the last known location of the cargo ship and begin to scan for it. We find what looks like a cloud of debris with a badly damaged ship floating within. Its crew come over the comm system, “I can’t believe that cheap bastard sent someone after us! I thought we would freeze to death. If you help us complete the delivery, we’ll share the reward and join your crew.”

Sounds like a fair bargain. We could use more hands. They upload the delivery destination, and one of them beams aboard to join us. The newest member of our crew is human by the name of Adnan. I send him to join Geryk in the engine room, since in both combat and repairs, two pairs of hands are always better than one.

The delivery point isn’t far from here. They were literally attacked one stop away. We arrive at the station to drop off the cargo. “Ignoring the fact that this is days late, we really appreciate that you delivered our materials,” says one of the attendants. “We realize how dangerous this sector is these days. Take this as payment.” They give us 26 scrap and a Hull Repair drone. Not bad. If we ever get a Drone Control system, this could pull us out of some tight spots.

We stop by a store on our next jump. With only 33 scrap we can’t afford much, but I have our hull fully repaired for just 18 scrap. I spend the rest on fuel, since although we’re not in dire need, it’s best to get it while we can.

Although the Rebel fleet is gaining fast, I decide to make two more stops before jumping to the next sector. The first is a Rock-owned shop that refuses to serve us. The next is a Rock-controlled pirate ship that wants to kill us. I prepare our weapons.

They set fire to our cloaking systems, which quickly go down. We take three shots to the hull. But we bring down both their weapons and their shields before any significant damage can be done, and before long victory is ours. The supplies of fuel and scrap we collect from the wreckage make this battle well worth the risk.

With the Rebel fleet just one jump behind us, I decide it’s time we head to the next sector.

To be continued…

About The Author

Joshua Philipp is the founder and editor of TechZwn.com. He's also an award-winning journalist at Epoch Times.

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