Campaign of the Month: January 2011
Honour Among Thieves
The Sundeen Seven
The Sundeen Seven was a gang of thieves led by Phil Sundeen. Its membership fluctuated from time to time, but the core of the gang included Mister Basimba, Teague Bowers, Brade Sorgen, and Dave Flynn.
Despite its reputation, the Sundeen Seven was not a particularly successful criminal enterprise. They had three encounters with the crew of Shenmue, all of which ended badly for the gang.
Three months prior to the events of Hull Down, Jonah Rothsay began a short-lived affiliation with the gang. Technically the gang was the “Sundeen Five,” as two of their members had been killed by Federal Marshals during a botched train job on Aberdeen.
Jonah had heard of the gang’s reputation for being a collection of hard cases, but it quickly became clear that Sundeen was a psychopath who would sooner kill someone than let them get the better of him in a deal. A commercial freighter pilot arranged to give up his cargo to the gang in exchange for a part of the cut on the sly – Sundeen shot him to make it look like a hijacking as per the deal, but shot him a little too well; instead of a graze he gave the poor sucker a fatal chest wound.
A disgraced aristocrat needed to sell off his cattle to raise some funds to clear his name; Sundeen figured it was cheaper to just kill him and take the herd.
The final straw, however, was when the gang got turned on to the score of a lifetime – the fabled Treasure of Captain Mott. It was Teague Bowers’ idea, but everyone knew the story – how Captain Kevin Mott, dashing privateer in the employ of the Independent Faction, raided Alliance shipping from Jiangyin to Bernadette, and whose trial in absentia for piracy during the war was the most-downloaded broadwave in the history of the Verse. It was rumoured that Mott stashed three Core Worlds’ worth of treasure in a secret hideaway – the location as mysterious as Mott’s eventual fate at the hands of the Alliance. Treasure hunters from one end of the Verse to the other tried their hand at going after the trail before it got too cold, but nobody seemed to get anywhere.
Nobody, that is, except for Michael Drury. Drury was a scout from way back, working for terraformers, prospectors, the Corone Mining Corporation, you name it. Bowers had heard that Drury had retired from the scouting game and had begun to indulge his hobby as one of the Verse’s leading experts on all things Captain Mott. Bowers was a bit of a treasure hunter himself, and had a theory that Mott would have used a series of very low frequency, low power signals to mark his treasure troves. Posing as a treasure hunter with a group of wealthy backers, Bowers befriended Drury and convinced the retired scout to partner up with him.
It worked like a charm. Bowers’ theory, the gang’s funding, and Drury’s expertise combined and after a few months of very expensive searching, Drury believed he had made a breakthrough. Drury had a theory of his own: that Mott would have stashed his treasure on an asteroid out on the Rim, away from prying eyes. Scanning VLF frequencies and cross-referencing them with the trajectories of all known non-planetary objects in the sector, Drury had isolated what be believed to be the location of Mott’s treasure – a collection of precious metals, artifacts from Earth-That-Was, and the plunder of a hundred cargo freighters.
Even the hard-case Sundeen was grudgingly impressed with the work that Bowers and Drury had done. But Drury made a fatal mistake. He argued for a double share for both himself and Bowers in recognition of their efforts. He also planned to publicize his findings almost immediately.
Sundeen would have none of it. He shot Drury down in front of the rest of the gang and would have killed Bowers too if the man hadn’t given up his share on the spot. Drury went out the airlock, but not before Jonah quietly pocketed his memory stick, which contained the location of Mott’s treasure.
The gang docked at Fueling Station A-21 to fuel up in advance of their run for the treasure, and Sundeen tore apart Drury’s quarters looking for the data stick. He soon realized that Jonah had been the last one to handle Drury’s body before it went out into the Black, but not quickly enough: Jonah was out of the docking bay and into the general population of the station as soon as the docking couplers had fastened.
Jonah had to think fast; he traveled to the station’s bowels and hid his gear as best he could. Then he had no other choice but to turn to his natural enemy – the Law – for protection. Jonah found out where the worst illegal activities on the station took place, went there, and called the cops. He was picked up in an Alliance dragnet about two steps ahead of Sundeen’s murderous fists.
During Shakedown Crews, Jonah thought he had seen the last of the Sundeen Seven until he was able to return to Fueling Station A-21 with the crew of Shenmue. He had promised them a cut of Captain Mott’s treasure in return for passage from Three Hills. He went into the depths of the station to retrieve his belongings – and most importantly the coordinates for Mott’s hidden fortune – only to discover that the Sundeen Seven had been waiting for him.
A brief firefight ensued, resulting in Sundeen’s death thanks to a poisoned flechette in the throat, and Mister Basimba’s incapacitation at the hands of Jonah Rothsay.
The crew set a course for the location of Mott’s treasure, which lay deep inside an asteroid field. Shenmue carefully threaded its way into the field until Jonah isolated the low frequency ping of Mott’s hidden cache. Jonah and Worth donned space suits and walked out onto the surface of one of the larger asteroids and found a concealed crate, but as they struggled in zero gravity to get their find aboard, the Sundeen Seven showed up in their ship, Haruna. Apparently Mister Basimba had placed a tracer bug on Jonah during their earlier altercation, which had led the gang right to them.
Another shootout ensued, this time in the cold blackness of space, and Worth got a round in the chest for his trouble. He and Jonah had to literally jump to safety as YJ, piloting Shenmue, performed a barnswallow maneuver. Then it was a breakneck chase through the asteroid field, which resulted in Haruna taking a rather damaging hit from an errant piece of space rock, and falling too far behind to continue the pursuit.
The two crews would not meet again until Shootout at Eavesdown, when the Sundeen Seven had tracked them to Persephone. It was revealed that Phil Sundeen had somehow survived YJ’s neurotoxin-laced flechette, although he was now forced to walk with a cane and speak through an electrolarnyx. The Sundeen Seven also had a new member, Phil’s nephew, known as The Kid..
The gunfight went about as well as could be expected for the Sundeen Seven. Jonah shot Mister Basimba in the face, knocking him out of the fight, as Wild Sky quickly turned the tables on Phil Sundeen and got a gun to his head. For his part, Jonah Rothsay was seriously injured.
Wild Sky forced the Kid, Brade Sorgen, and Teague Bowers to surrender, and then shocked everyone by coldly executing both Phil Sundeen and the unconscious Mister Basimba. Worth Evans shot the Kid when he made a play for his twin pistols, and put two rounds into a fleeing Brade Sorgen. Teague Bowers was the last member of the Sundeen Seven left standing, and he fled the scene after Jonah declined to put him down. Wild Sky would have none of it, and chased Bowers into the maze of shipping containers that formed the borders of the Eavesdown Docks.
Beating a hasty retreat from Persephone, the crew took the bodies of Sundeen, Basimba, the Kid, and Sorgen with them to ensure that their activities couldn’t be traced. Worth discovered, to his consternation, that both the Kid and Brade Sorgen were still alive, and the Doc immediately began work on the grievously wounded Sorgen.
Once the two surviving gunmen were stabilized, the crew dropped them off on Persephone’s moon, Renao.
Worth and Jonah dumped the bodies of Sundeen and Basimba into space in the meantime, then set about attempting to discover how the chase between Bowers and Wild Sky had ended. They returned to Persephone to find a worrisome bloodstain, but no sign of Wild Sky.
The crew found out that a man matching Bowers’ description had been seen hustling a woman into a silver dune buggy. Tracking the Sundeen Seven’s ship, Haruna, they found out that it had fled Persephone. Jonah figured there was only one place the gang would go after a job went south – a hideout called The Resort.
When they landed at the Resort on Branson’s Mark, the crew came under fire from some ambushers, later revealed to be the Chi’ang Shih. After a pitched battle, the Chi’ang Shih fled the island hideout, and the crew went inside to find a pile of dead bodies, including The Kid and Brade Sorgen, along with another man they had never seen before, and most surprisingly, Wild Sky.
The crew flew to Branson’s Mark’s polar regions to effect repairs on Shenmue and made friends with some of the locals who informed them of a crashed ship a few miles away. Checking it out, they discovered that the wreck was in fact the Sundeen Seven’s ship Haruna. Inside they found the remains of Flynn, the pilot. Teague Bowers was nowhere to be seen.
The remaining active member of the Sundeen Seven is Teague Bowers. His whereabouts are unknown.