- The Outline
- New Arrivals
- Housing and Necessities
- Other Locations
- Command Staff
A sketch of the largest parts of the station
The general plan of Senburu-Trati'salan (Noble Ship reposing in Peace/Leadership), AKA The JunkStation is like an abacus. Two superdense objects from the universe of Quarlm-112 provide gravity on either side of the station. All other permanent fixtures of the station are strung on superthick carbon nanotube ropes between the two objects, like beads on an abacus. The closer one gets to each object, the higher the gravity becomes. The closer one gets to the equidistance between them, the less gravity becomes until one reaches the center, where there is no gravity. Travel past the center and gravity slowly starts to reverse, going in the other direction. Get it?
The general state of repair of ships and objects on Senburu-Trati'salan is terrible. Everything is beat up to some degree or another. Most suspended starships are completely nonfunctional. Those that are (barely) functional have many nonstandard, scavenged parts.
Accidents are frequent, so watch out.
- Most of Enterprise's saucer (contains holodeck, holodeck is fritzy, may not officially be used for masturbation, often booked a day in advance, frequent sight of sensitivity training, military maneuvers) [Star Trek, 2/3 G]
- BSL labs habitats sections 2 through 5 [Metroid, pre-X infestation, 1 G)
- Spacing Guild Navigator's tank and station. This is the most important part of the station, providing the ability to 'jump' away from danger at faster than light speeds. Thus it is sorrounded by protective chaff, which is both armor and camoflauge. Due to the difficulty of getting inside, few visit this place.
- battle room [ender's game, no gravity]
- Ansible station, capable of receiving and transmitting text only. The Station Counsel sends Ansible probes to succesfully contacted, unconquered universes, allowing instanteneous communication. [The Hainish Cycle, 1.5 G]
- Half of Serenity, used as a lounge. There is a large projector showing a 2d version of normally 3d Fay'lia broadcasts round the clock. Typical programs include Comedies (of manners), Dramas (also of manners), dramadies (you know what kind) and newscasts. If the Resistance is mentioned at all in the newscasts, it is not favorably. There are also a couple of functional ancient arcade machines wired for unlimited play, including such 'classics' as ET, Catfight, Daikatana and Superman.[Wheddonverse, 0.5 G]
- Space capsule, filled with gym equipment and used for truly hardcore workouts [DBZ, 3 G]
- Yucca Mountain markers in a large capsule. Only when you dig, it's actually filled with delicious candy. [real life, 1.5 G]
- Classic raygun gothic rocketships, hollowed out and used as bunks [every scifi novel published from the 40s to the new wave, varying G]
- Parts of the Nostromo, used as corridor and utility segments [Alien, varying G]
- The bridge section of the Event Horizon [Event Horizon, 4 G]
- The engines and thrusters of the Norad II, part of the station's emergency-use-only crude Newtonian propulsion [StarCraft, varying G]
- A classic car showroom, armored but not vacuum-seamed, with the cars strapped to the floor; rather handy for sources of land transportation [real life, 0.5 G
Objects/starships/whatever stored and functional:
- A wing each of Death Gliders [Stargate] and assorted Ugly starfighters [Star Wars], used for debris-interdiction, close defense, and space-to-ground transport duty; both are kludgy and poorly maintained enough that even a conflict with modern atmospheric fighters would be of questionable odds
- The XGP15A-II, its systems crudely brute-forced to operate without needed vital components as a repair boat [Outlaw Star]
- A single functional Queadlunn-Rau that nobody can use because nobody's big enough; likely to be stripped for spare parts soon [Macross]
- A handful of functional (overused, undermaintained) T-280 space construction vehicles [StarCraft]
- A few EVA Pods, used for basic repairs and quick transport between station segments [2001: A Space Odyssey]
This isn't even nearly everything that's on the station—just an outline. Have an idea? Tell us here!
New arrivals are taken to the holodeck on the Enterprise's saucer, where the history of the station and the war they're fighting is outlined to them in detail, as well as all the aspects of daily life onboard. They are then issued their emergency backpacks. These are sleek little affairs that fit over the shoulders. Inside is a plasticine material, a small tank of compressed oxygen and a distress beacon. When the wearer activates a switch under their armpit, the plasticine material inflates into a bubble around them and the distress beacon is automatically activated. Inside the bubble, there is enough oxygen for about two hours of normal use. The distress beacon may also be activated independently.
Adults are not required to wear their emergency backpacks but really you'd have to be kind of dumb not to.
A number of hollowed out, classic scifi style rocket ships serve as quarters, although technically you can bed down wherever you want as long as you're not in anyone's way. Those accustomed to sleeping more wild places can camp out in the BSL habitats.
Standard issue food is organic matter run through an alchemical array, converted into a strange and broad array of different foodstuffs by a bolted-on assembly of arcanomachinery. This is based on the dreams of the station residents, and so what results can be anything from normal food to slimy eels on a stick or fried grass-flavored ice cream.
The backup food supply alternates between canned or boxed food and bricks of...stuff, which, while adequately nutritious and certainly edible, is bland and crumbly. The cooking staff is in a never ending battle to make dishes which are tasty, but as often as not it tastes like spiced, fried or boiled bricks.
Those seeking after tastier fare can go hunting in the BSL labs habitats, although they may encounter resistance from intergalactic hippies (annoying) and the creatures themselves (dangerous).
Lavatory facilities are scattered throughout the various structures, and are usually pretty awful. Whoever manages to set up a plush, marbled bathroom will turn a tidy profit in the station's informal barter economy. There are also a number of (rather sexist) piss holes that someone set up in the walls of most of the structures, the urine exiting directly into space, there freezing and adding to the station's protective coating of debris.
Generally new arrivals have the clothes they were wearing when they were taken, although sometimes in the case of those taken through the dimensional plucking machines, they arrive naked. If so, the new arrival will be given a set of functional clothes. These clothes may be of any style, fit, material, and may have holes or sleeves designed for nonhuman limbs. There is no guarantee this clothing is at all comfortable.
The difficulties of cross-universe hardware compatibility have lead to some truly terrifying kludges to get the many different systems of the station to work together properly. In some places adapter is layered on adapter on adapter, all connected to cables or tubing tucked through internal hallways; in others, just out sight, waits poorly-maintained connections that would give any reasonable engineer conniption fits; and in even more cases than the first two, things are put together in such a horrible mess that if it weren't for the number of people the station sustains, anyone reasonable would rather tear down the entire thing and start over.
That said, there's certainly some quality of genius to all of it: the station's engineers, with a minimum of time for proper preparation and maintenance, have managed feats of jury-rigging and looking-at-things-at-an-odd-angle solutions that would make a knowledgeable hacker (in the classic sense) have to change his pants. By now, though, it's all such a strange mix of interdependent components that there's only a handful of people at best left on the station who even have a clear grasp of the entire system, and so most people simply build outwards on top of what's already there instead of replacing anything, for fear of cutting the wrong wire or pushing the wrong button and accidentally overloading or destroying some vital system. For the most part, though, things do work as expected... even if sometimes certain airlocks fail to function properly on alternate Tuesdays, or some doors refuse to open between 11:23 and 11:59 A.M., or for some long-forgotten reason anyone who falls asleep in some small parts of the station is woken up by prerecorded rooster crowing after less than an hour. Mostly, these strange quirks have been noted and posted attached to—or directly written on—walls of the appropriate sections. Mostly.
The computer systems are even worse, with only the barest connections possible between most of them for the fear of the viruses, spam-mail neural nets, hyper-trojans, and general nasty infolife of thousands of advanced worlds congealing into system-devouring superentities. One particularly terrifying example of this syndrome is a connection between two of the central life support systems of the station. To prevent the observed glitches in each from affecting the other, one very well-protected part of the station has a sealed airtight room: within that room is a speaker connected to one of the systems (with a text-to-speech mechanism), and a microphone connected to the other (with a speech-to-text mechanism). This kind of thing is why most of the station's terminals are text-only; most of the ones that aren't, like those used for recreational purposes, contacting the outside world, and so on, are specially-isolated units, and the most efficient way to transfer large files between parts of the stations is by sneakernet (eg. carrying them there on a flash drive or hard disk).
The small but constant stresses and movements of different parts of the station, affected by different gravitational levels, rotational stresses, and the tidal effects of the two supermassive objects the station is built around, makes continuous solid connections between all the parts of the station completely infeasible. Instead, transportation between different segments of the station is accomplished by way of inflated segments with layers of flexible radiation and micrometeorite shielding, inside of which are most commonly simple spiral staircases or ladders. None of these are very large or long, intended as a way to connect close-in segments of the station while avoiding stress fractures, not as any primary living space. The material has self-sealing layers in case of a small breach, though in any major incident someone inside would be best very quickly getting to the small airlocks at one end or the other of the connection space.
For quicker or emergency transportation, it's usually best to use one of the crude "elevators" attached to the outside of the station. Each one is just a small space capsule (all from a variety of different worlds and timelines) with most of the interior stripped out, but left space-tight and with an air supply. A system of pulleys and motorized winches moves the capsules "up" and "down" (usually requiring at least one transfer or a somewhat laborious decoupling and recoupling of connections near the station's zero-G "center"), as operated by one of the external-maintenance EVA workers constantly trying to keep different parts of the station in working order; at their start or end points, the capsules have to be manually coupled or decoupled with the appropriate airlocks.
For a situation that has absolute priority, the station's rough command coalition (whatever it happens to be at the time) will usually commandeer one of the station's handful of operational EVA pods or other spaceworthy, passenger-carrying craft.
There are various smaller rooms within the station. Most of these rooms are made from abandoned shipping containers, with any leaks patched by quick-expando-foam. They may also be converted from existing rooms, such as the ones inside the wrecked Enterprise saucer. Some of these rooms include:
- The White Room: A conical shaped room. White, noise canceling carpet is attached to the walls/ceiling. A popular spot for meditation.
- The Library: Roughly square shaped, the station's library is a large room with a largely unsorted array of books, holobooks, 8 tracks, direct to mind upload programs, eldritch tomes, and other pieces of obsolete or schizophrenic technology. Like the rest of the station, the items here are often out of date or in poor condition, and even the best stuff is sometimes simply unviewable due to the correct piece of equipment not being there.
- The Cafeteria: The cafeteria is remarkably similar to a public school cafeteria, right down to the grit. That is because most of it is exactly that, recovered from a world that had suffered some kind of apocalypse. The tables are formaldehyde and the lunch lady rules all with an iron tentacle. In the back is her kitchen, which is constantly busy as she spends hours every day applying her considerable skills to turn the food bricks from "disgustingly bland" to "mediocre" even "good" when she has the right ingredients.
- The Bucket: A seedy-seeming bar that is, in fact, as unseedy as these things get on the dilapidated scrap-pile that is this station, The Bucket carries a variety of drinks from any planet and plane the surly barkeep, Charlie, can get to. His chief brew is brickquer, liquor made, naturally, from the foodbricks, in a process that would make a West Virginia moonshine bootlegger blanch. The more you drink, the more "favors" you owe him, unless you feel like paying him. He sometimes has high end liquor too. Expect to pay out the nose for that, or owe him "big favors". And he will call them in.
There's also a window or two, which would be rather nice if the rest of it didn't seem made more of rust and filth than anything else.
"It's The Bucket! Drink from it, puke in it, doesn't make a difference to us!"
- The Xoan Embassy: A storage container outfitted with copious amounts of pillows, curtains, and salvaged furniture that acts as the temporary embassy of the nation of Xoan. Also the private residence of Sandoval, the ambassador of Xoan. If you are looking for a place to hang out in the most literal sense, Sandy's place will keep your balls warm. While Sandoval is there, a low level heating/aphrodisiac spell is almost always running.
- Cain's Laboratory: A junked piece of what used to be a passenger starship, all that is salvageable has become Cain's toxicology laboratory. It's in pretty bad condition, but he endeavours at least to keep the inside as tidy as the state of disrepair will allow. There is an impressive collection of different chemicals and poisons solidly locked in cabinets (mostly so that children and idiots don't drink them), and an assortment of bartered-for, salvaged, and legitimately bought scientific equipment for the study and synthesis of such substances.
- The ChiCycle: Taking over one of the hallways on the "north" side of the station, this is the station's exchange store. Put an item in, get an item out of equal or lesser value, if you wish. While on paper this system is entirely fair, a hierarchy quickly emerged, with those able to give the most elaborate contributions (for example, those who came to the station already rich) rising in the station's pecking order.
Some truly weird shit can be found here, completely overlooked.
Senburu-Trati'salan started life as a squat in the uncharted wastes of the hub. In the days where the Empire had not yet consolidated its hold on the multiverse, it was a destination point for both desperate refugees and slumming alien bohemians, a place of both terrible poverty and amazing parties. It wasn't named anything at the time, because if you had to ask what it was called, man, you shouldn't even have been there.
Nevertheless it was one among thousands of such junkyards and hundreds of such squats. It wasn't until the first great War of Expansion, when the Fay'lian used the so-called 'Quiet Nebula Incident' as pretext to bring great swathes of the multiverse under their control, that the squat became radicalized. Dissident students began fleeing there, the disaffected youth of the conquered dimensions. Secret meeting houses were set up, illegal protests planned there. The ubiquity of such squats in the multiverse protected them from Imperial attention...for a while, anyway.
The Second (some call it the 1.5th) Expansion soon followed, and the Fay'lian crushed the Ekumen's forays into peaceful organization. The Imperials were sweeping the forgotten sectors of space, looking for the 'Protean Berserkers' they'd encountered in the Quiet Nebula.
Tension was high. All too slow, counsels were formed and a slow, clumsy democracy began to take shape. There were a million ideas about what to do and none of them gained momentum.
Help arrived just in time in the form of a Guild Navigator, whose craft teleported in next to the station. The Guild had, inexplicably, sided with the rebels. The Navigator's only condition was that his tank and pod be left alone, a restricted area.
Naturally this sparked massive debate and consternation. Restrictions on information sounded too much like the empire they were fleeing to the station's Bohemian inhabitants.
Weeks of debate were undercut by the sudden arrival of an Imperial scout fleet. The navigator cut the talk short by folding space, taking them out of range at faster than light speed.
It was voted on and passed immediately that the station would wander the HubVerse, spreading dissent and contacting as many universe as possible before the Fay'lian got to them. This was a time of heroism looked at in an almost legendary light by the station's current inhabitants. The names of that time are still revered by modern dissidents: Quengual, the Zentraedi deserter who gave the station its name, Hadrasherlish the Vodyanoi entertainer, Cretzen of the Plated Tongue, Jack's Little Choirboys...
Attrition took its toll though, and the station's legendary status was starting to become a burden rather than a blessing. Many of the strong personalities that held the crew together were killed, captured by the Fay'lian or wandered away to other projects, as itinerant revolutionaries are wont to do.
Senburu-Trati'salan lay fallow for several decades. With the Second Expansion having wound down, the sense of urgency motivating them was gone. Worse they were starting to encounter worlds that liked being imperial subjects, enjoyed the technological upgrades and other advantages of membership in a teaming multidimensional empire. The loyalist universe of 24Ho-t'iep was a particularly bad adventure, leaving many dead.
But as the tide of multiversal opinion swayed again towards the rebellion, a new generation of dissidents made their way towards the wrecked station and began rebuilding. There they met the stubborn ones who'd stayed behind and kept the station barely functioning. And they met Kelred the Navigator again...
Several new missions were attempted, and the 'awake' dimensions welcomed them as heroes. A counsel system, modeled on the one used during the station's old days was hammered out.
At this point is where your character comes in. The station is under the general command of a bunch of bright eyed idealists and stubborn old hippies...and you.
As befits its ramshackle nature, the station has a less than coherent command staff. It's currently all NPCs, but that could change with time.
- Acting Temporary Commander with Immediately Recallable Authority Given Provisional Trust (station commander): Enitan, Griot of Novaport (NPC).
- Director of Temporary Violent Activities While in an Emergency State (military commander): Vercybertrix (NPC).
- Recallable Director of Engineering Projects (chief engineer): Zamfuter The Eldritch (NPC).
- Recallable Director of Magical Affairs (chief magician): Mikael Sczynskir (NPC).
- Sentient Responsible for Effective Communication Between and Coordination Of Magical and Engineering Projects (engineering and magic coordinator): Takeshi Yamashiro (NPC).
- Coordinator of Nutrition with Special Emphasis Given to Nonstandard Dietary Needs (chief chef): Glr'Brrrnglorp (NPC).
- Recallable Curator of Crew Feeling (director of morale): Throgdan, Magnar of the Black Plains (NPC).
- Recallable Head of Spreading the Truth of our Glorious Cause (director of propaganda): Efraim Claugh Tinstype (NPC).