A telegram makes its way to each of the players:
Heard about your skill STOP
Could use someone like you STOP
Adventure and riches await STOP
If interested, coordinates enclosed STOP
NZ, LM, Fortune Hunters.
Blake was in Ukraine.
Doc Jeopardy and Charlie King, in France.
Marge and Slade, England.
Using some of their resources and contacts, the players know a few things:
Nathan Zachary and Lucas Miles were some sort of heroes from the war and used their status to amass millions in Wall Street. They both lost their fortunes in the crash unfortunately, and, after this loss and the shattering of the United States into dozens of small nations, they quickly formed a band of pirates joining the present trend of air piracy under name of The Fortune Hunters.
While not very successful at first, a failed raid, and a dead wing man on their first outing, the Fortune Hunters quickly managed to smooth out their band of pirates and make them into a formidable outfit making them one of the top new comers to the new Americas and the world of air piracy.
Rumours persist that there’s always strife between Zachary and Miles. To Zachary this whole thing is just another adventure. He helps out those who need help and steals from those that can afford it.
Miles, on the other hand, misses his Wall Street days. He steals to get rich and is almost brutal about it. Zachary has been forced on more than one occasion to intervene and stop Miles from hurting someone. Zachary is the brains and heart of the operation and Miles is the brawn.
The coordinates lead to a small series of islands off the eastern coast of the fractured United States; Bermuda. Each player makes his way there separately. Following the coordinates further takes them to the southern end of the main island where it curves into a hook shape. Inside the hook, is a series of perhaps a dozen islands. They fly towards the easternmost of these islands. As the players get closer they notice a clearing next to what looks like a prison complex. The clearing seems to be a landing strip. The radio crackles and a voice asks for identification.
Once the players land, they are greeted by a couple of armed individuals who welcome them and ask that they follow them. They are, of course, relieved of any weapons they have and are escorted through what appears to be an officer’s mess hall and into an adjacent room with a large table adorned with food and alcohol.
Two men sit at one end of table. One of them quickly introduces himself as Nathan Zachary and introduces his buddy as Lucas Miles. Miles is a stern man and hardly says a word the whole time. On the other hand, Zachary engages everyone in idle conversation.
Finally when all the players arrive, he apologizes for the armed escort, “A precaution, you understand.”
“Allow me to welcome you to Hinton’s Island. Eat, drink, mingle and once we’re all done join me for a tour.”
Zachary walks with them, the compound is fairly empty. “This used to be a British prison. They held Boer kids and teenagers here. Imprisoned because their parents were Bitterenders; refused to accept British rule.”
“We took over the prison, freed the prisoners and converted it into our base of operations. The British weren’t too happy but they’ve got their hands full with all that’s happening in Europe following the US’s collapse.”
“Many of the prisoners chose to stay with us. They have no families and nowhere to go. Most have no skills to speak of but Nick has been able to use them in engineering. He’s been training them for the past 4 years and I gotta say they make one hell of a ground crew now. Nick’s our resident Scientist and Engineer.” He points to older man working on a plane’s engine. “Nick, come out here and introduce yourself.”
“Oh. My apologiez. I deed not see you zere. Tesla, Nikola Tesla." Tesla recognizes Doc Jeopardy, "Now, if you don’t mind, get out of my lab! Dex, bring me the engine elevator device!”
“Dex here, used to be one of the prisoners, turns out the kid’s a genius!” A young lanky kid, no more than 14, stumbles his way over barely carrying some contraption. He’s wearing goggles that are obviously a size or two too large for him. He wobbles a couple of times as he tries to make his way over to Tesla. Lucky for him, Marge is on hand to lend some help. She easily picks up the engine and places it in front of Tesla.
Unfortunately, it was too little too late for Dex. His goggles slip down his face and he’s unbalanced when Marge took the engine, he tips over head first and falls head over heels over himself. “Well… mostly a genius. Dex, there is a trolley you know,” pointing to a trolley not 10 feet away.
“Bermuda used to be home of the British mint in the 1600s. Many of the coins to first circulate North America were struck here and in order to get them to the American colonies from here, they used ships. Large ships filled with gold. One such ship, the Endeavor, was headed south and the west to Louisiana when it was lost.”
Marge quickly realize a mistake in what he said. Why would the ship head south if it’s trying to get to Louisiana? Why not just head straight West through the coast of Florida? “That ship is avoiding the triangle isn’t it?”
Zachary smiles, obviously impressed, “Bermuda, in the north, Puerto Rico, to the south, and what used to be Miami Florida, to the south west, are the borders of what sailors and aviators call the Devil’s Triangle. No one goes in there unless they have to. So a ship headed for the southern United States from here would have to go around the Devil’s Triangle before it could start heading back west again.”
“I’m sure you’re all wondering by now, what this whole history lesson is about and why we asked you here. We been here close to 4 years now, researching… searching… looking under every rock. We think we finally found it.”
“We’ve found records that state that the Endeavor was due to set port in the Bahamas to restock before continuing on, it never made it to its destination. Everything points to it sinking somewhere in the Bahamas and we just don’t have enough pilots to cover that much ground.”
“On the western edge of the Bahamas is a small smuggler haven on an island called Bimini. Our Zep, the Minotaur, will be here within the hour to pick us up and take us there.
We’d like you to join the Fortune Hunters and help us get this treasure."
Most of the players are fairly open to joining on this expedition. Sunken treasure… adventure… who could say no? The British guy.. that’s who… but he’s convinced eventually.
“You can’t be air pirates without airplanes and I know just the place to get them. There’s a British base nearby…”
A plan is set, one that relies on stealth, on the element of surprise.
Doc Jeopardy’s understanding of stealth and surprise, as it turns out, is a bit different from everyone else’s. As the group parachutes over the base towards their landing zone, a gust of wind slowly pushes Doc Jeopardy, Blake, and Charlie towards the courtyard of the base, somewhere they don’t want to be. In the nick of time, Doc Jeopardy comes up with an ingenious plan! Shoot holes into his parachute in the perfect spots in order to drift back towards the landing zone… and it works, perfectly. Unfortunately, his plan entailed shooting a gun, at night, over an enemy base, multiple times.
The echoing shots wake all the sleeping guards and puts the base on alert. On top of that, the base has enough time and warning to send an alert to another allied base nearby, which proceeds to scramble fighters.
What was supposed to be a series of scuffles with 4 or 5 guards at a time turned out to be all out warfare between the group and 20 or so guards.
Luckily, Doc Jeopardy was on hand to “help” his friends by crippling most of them with his new invention, a sonic emitter loud enough to cripple Charlie and Zachary.
Not all went horribly for Doc Jeopardy though, for the same sonic emitter that crippled his friends also helped him make new friends! A pair of German Sheppard guard dogs. But how do you get two highly trained guards to do what you want without their command words? you make them into a perfectly balanced jacket in order to carry them away and worry about it later that’s how.
As the players run towards the hangar, the scrambled fighters attack. Everyone makes it in mostly unscathed. The dog jacket seems to be bleeding and after closer inspection, one of the dogs was hit and it’s slowly dying. Never fear Doc Jeopardy is here. With some quick use of his understanding of medicine and Science! he fashions a device that would keep the dog alive until they’re able to get back to their base and give it medical care.
During all this Marge was setting up the explosives she had put together earlier. Better to take care of all the planes in this hangar after all; they wouldn’t want anyone to board them and follow them joining the other 6 enemy aircraft in the sky already. But there just isn’t enough time to set up the explosives one by one. All the explosives are piled up in front of the hangar door and the players take off in their new Hughes P21-J MKII Devastators
Marge clicks the button to detonate the bombs and a giant ball of… nothing happens. Click click. Damnit!
“We’ll need to do this the old fashioned way. Doc, you said any explosion will set these charges off right?”
“Alright, new plan, I’ll take out the ‘back door’ of the hangar, one of you has to fly in through the front, and shoot one of the planes in there close enough to the pile of explosives to set it off and fly out the other side. So which one of you is the best pilot?”
“No I am.”
“Fat chance, it’s me!”
6 British pilots against 5 air pirates… it seems out heroes are outnumbered and outgunned but will that be enough to bring them all crashing down in flaming heaps of scrap metal?
Will our heroes get their act together in time?
Who will be flying into the death trap hangar?
Are there more British reinforcements on the way?