A Minor Offense

Provocative graffiti suggests all is not well on The Maid of Orléans. Dissent simmers. Will you aid the clampdown?

Level: 12
Start: Lieutenant Max Marchand, Ruins, The Maid of Orléans


Wandering the Ruins, you chance upon a stout, uniformed man standing alone at the intersection of three dimly lit tunnels. Cursing impatiently to himself, he seems to be trying - and failing - to operate a 3D crime-scene imager. You watch as he repeatedly scans some sort of stain on the intersection floor, completely oblivious to your presence.

Max snorts: Naughty, naughty, someone's gonna get caughty!

The idea of catching whoever this "someone" is seems to delight the man. He chuckles gleefully to himself as he continues to examine the area.

  • He seems slightly demented. Ignore him and continue on your way.
  • Approach him.


You take one last look at the plump Lieutenant and wonder what sort of incident could have animated him so, before deciding it wiser to leave your curiosity unsatisfied this time. Something about the man's edgy scuttling suggests a volatility that you'd prefer not to tangle with right now. Quietly, without alerting him to your presence, you turn and continue down another of the many walkways that criss-cross The Blocks.

You have failed the "A Minor Offense" mission. You can retake this mission and try again.


Your approach startles the man from his musings, and he turns to regard you with somewhat narrowed eyes. His features bear no hint of a smile. You squint to read the word stitched above the Gaule crest on his shirt.

Me: Greetings, er- Lieutenant… Marchand.

The silence lasts barely a unit, but it's enough to introduce a note of awkwardness to the mood. You eyes dart to the walkway floor at the Lieutenant's feet, on which a messy piece of graffiti proclaims "Better dead than red! GAULE OUT NOW!" Noticing your gaze, the Lieutenant responds with a gruff snort, before stepping toward you.

The Lieutenant says: Aren't you a curious cat, eh? Or maybe… an insolent cat! Tell me, is this graffiti your doing?

Lieutenant Marchand's tone is sharp and unpleasant. He stares into your eyes, fidgeting with the hand-restrainers clipped to his belt as he awaits your response.

You have accepted the "A Minor Offense" mission.

  • Tell him you had nothing to do with the graffiti.

(Social check)

You clear your throat and calmly explain that you had nothing to do with the graffiti, smoothly summarizing your recent whereabouts and giving a number of alibis. Lieutenant Marchand seems keen to make a public example of someone for this, but - thankfully - your words are sufficient to convince him it shouldn't be you.

Lt. Marchand says: OK chatterbox, enough, you convinced me… I didn't really suspect you anyway. You don't really strike me as a "writer." Can I help you somehow, or you just here to gawp while I work?

Lieutenant Marchand scowls as he awaits your response. He's evidently not a man who would score highly on "people-skills."

  • Ask about "writers."
  • Ask about the graffiti.


Me: Whoever wrote that graffiti doesn't seem too happy with Gaule rule…

You trail off, trying to nudge Lt. Marchand into opening up on what could be a sensitive topic.

He replies: Young ones are like that sometimes. Ungrateful. They don't appreciate stability… A switch back to Consortium rule, that's what they want. Life is always better on some other station, eh?

The lieutenant shrugs as if underlining a universal wisdom, then somewhat undermines the point by pausing to pick something from his teeth.

  • Ask about "writers."
  • Ask about Consortium rule.


Me: What's a "writer"?

Marchand snorts, as if your question amuses him in some way.

He says: Ha! A rebranded vandal, that's what! People with no respect for authority, forcing their scribbles on us all. We seem to have more and more of it about these days… And much of it is taking a more, er- political… dimension.

The lieutenant shakes his head and, for the first time, his features betray genuine concern.

  • Ask about Consortium rule.

Me: This used to be a Consortium station?

Lt. Marchand says: Yes; once. Pre-Catastrophe. Used to be called the Amethyst. A typical Consortium name, don't you think? But most folk here are proud Gaule, apart from a few young ones having an "identity crisis"… I blame the parents.

As the lieutenant talks, you look down again at the graffiti. The location is prominent enough to be seen but, being in the Ruins, is beyond the coverage of functional surveillance cameras.

Lt. Marchand says: This isn't just graffiti; it's a challenge. Some residents clearly need reminding that the Maid's political allegiance is not open for debate. The sooner we catch and make an example of the culprit, the better…

Lt. Marchand walks back to the offending graffiti, seemingly trying to reenact the culprit's likely steps through the space.

  • Leave Lt. Marchand to his work. Walk away from this matter.
  • "What will you do to the culprit?"
  • Offer to help Lt. Marchand catch the graffiti culprit.

What will you do:

Me: Lt. Marchand smirks at your query.

He says: Nothing less than high-energy laser decapitation awaits! Ha ha! Only joking; we're not barbarians… The culprit will, very publicly, make amends for their crime. Whether or not force is involved will er-, be up to them.

He laughs again and points to your face, clearly still amused by your reaction to the mention of decapitation.

  • Offer to help Lt. Marchand catch the graffiti culprit.
  • Leave Lt. Marchand to his work. Walk away from this matter.


You offer to help the lieutenant with the search for the graffiti culprit. He's momentarily unsure, but quickly warms to the idea.

He says: That could work. Anyone with er- Consortium sympathies is gonna talk more to you than me, what with you being a blue… No offense. You could talk to the locals. There's been a lot of this lately, someone out there knows something…

He pauses for a second, then grins broadly.

Lt. Marchand says: I can see the credit signs in your eyes already. OK; 500. That's my offer, if you bring me the cheeky tunnel-rat responsible for this insolence.

  • Leave Lt. Marchand to his work. Walk away from this matter.
  • Negotiate. Demand 1000 credits to find the graffiti culprit.
  • Accept Lt. Marchand's offer.

(Social check)

You make a compelling case for the chances of success being greater if Marchand agrees to a higher reward. It seems to touch a nerve.

He says: OK, OK, fine. 1000 credits, IF you catch the no-good traitor behind this. Deal?

  • Accept Lt. Marchand's offer.
  • Leave Lt. Marchand to his work. Walk away from this matter.


You offer a hand to Lt. Marchand and he shakes it firmly.

Lt. Marchand says: Deal! These little Consy-loving punks don't realize who they're messing with! No offense… Good luck <name>. Report to Security when you have a suspect.

Marchand gives you an encouraging (if somewhat heavy-handed) slap on the back, then returns to the messy scrawl on the floor which so utterly infuriates him.

Search The Maid of Orléans for clues about the anti-Gaule graffiti.

Next area: Market, The Maid of Orléans


Next area: Bar, The Maid of Orléans


  • Search the Market for clues about the anti-Gaule graffiti.

Most vendors are tight-lipped when you ask about The Maid's political allegiance, seemingly agreeing with Marchand's view that the the topic is not open to debate. Some confess to having seen the graffiti, but all profess to know nothing of its provenance. Throughout your inquiries, you're keenly aware of station Security's watchful eyes.

  • Try to persuade the vendors to talk more freely.
  • Leave the Market. Continue your queries elsewhere.

(Social check)

Despite the proximity of Gaule soldiers in the market, you persuade one vendor talk more openly.

He says: I don't want trouble, but Gaule rule here is er- too strict for some tastes. Look here; these flyers appear every few days…

He rummages in a waste container before handing you a small polypropylene flyer. It's titled "Amethyst or Orléans: A timely topic." Underneath, a few bullet points list the case against Gaule rule, mostly centered on the lack of personal liberties.

The trader says: I dunno who's making them. Could even be Gaule Security. To sniff out radicals, y'know? But, bottom line is, there's discontent here, especially the younger ones… Heck, half the population coulda been behind that graffiti.

With that he turns to serve a customer. You curse quietly for not tripling Marchand's fee for what is becoming a tricky task.

Continue to search The Maid of Orléans for clues about the anti-Gaule graffiti.


  • Ask around in the Bar for information about the anti-Gaule graffiti.

You wander from table to table, trying to ingratiate yourself to strangers enjoying a rowdy "Cancan" performance. You smile warmly and make just the right amount of eye contact, but it yields little. Perhaps mindful of the off-duty Gaule soldiers present in the Bar, most citizens seem reluctant to entertain your queries.

  • Leave the Bar. Continue your queries elsewhere.
  • Buy a round of drinks for 100 credits to loosen tongues.


You scan the room for the most inebriated group; then order another round to their table. The drinks are swiftly gulped down and the grateful trio of drunkards give you an appreciative, if slightly uncoordinated wave. You join them for a brief chat, but it's quickly apparent that while unconcerned about the nearby Gaule soldiers, the merry trio are also unconcerned by conventions of grammar, syntax and pronunciation.

One of them says: Huh? Fragitti? That's a funny word… OH- Gra-feet-tee??! Sounds… *BURP*… fun! No wonder Gaule aren't happy 'bout it- *BURP* Miserable sods! Can't say or do what we want round 'ere- Oh. Hold on. Gettin' the spins, I am. Haha!

The young woman suddenly darts off in the direction of the Bar toilet, leaving you with her two friends. Minimally responsive, they nod in agreement with the sentiment of the anti-Gaule graffiti, but seem to know nothing of its creators. One mumbles softly, half-asleep in his booze-fog.

He sleeptalks: T-Two bottles of… Amethyst please, Ser- Hic! Bottoms up! *SNORE* Will it- rise again?

His unconscious ramblings remind you of an old slogan you've seen elsewhere in the station, burned into the wall cycles ago. You try to remember where you've seen it. Was it the Shipyard? You leave the drunkards to their stupor and continue your search.

You have given 100.00 credits.

Continue to search The Maid of Orléans for clues about the anti-Gaule graffiti. Maybe the Shipyard will prove fruitful?

Next area: Shipyard, The Maid of Orléans

  • Explore the Shipyard for clues about the graffiti suspect.

In the Shipyard, your attention is drawn to the large Gaule banner hanging on the far wall. It seems to be there to conceal the words "The Amethyst will rise again," burned into the metallic wall panel behind. A Gaule soldier stands guard underneath. You ask him about the anti-Gaule message above, but he offers only a stock, well-rehearsed response.

He says: Zeh meaning of zeh banner is self-evident, Ser. Zis is a Gaule station. What's underneath is not my, or your, concern. Au revoir!

Shifting his pulse rifle from left shoulder to right, he straightens his gaze onto some fixed spot in the middle distance. He doesn't seem keen to entertain further queries about anti-Gaule vandalism.

  • Convince the soldier to tell you more about this illicit pro-Consortium slogan.
  • Try to bully the soldier into telling you more.

(Social check)

The soldier's eyes look pained as you probe the topic of anti-Gaule sentiment and why anyone here would yearn for a return to Consortium rule. There's a raw nerve there, and your words eventually manage to poke it.

He whispers: Écoute, if it were up to moi, we'd do things differently- Hearts and minds, not the iron fist approach… Every kid we beat today is gonna make double trouble tomorrow, oui?

The soldier pauses, waiting for you to affirm comprehension with a nod, before continuing.

He says: Graffiti? I don't report it no more… Yesterday; new one in zeh Shipping Bay. But if we crack the whip, tomorrow there is ten more. The snake eats its tail, and there is no end to the problems…

Suddenly noticing a colleague approach, the soldier breaks off the exchange and resumes his wooden posture. Not wanting to make trouble for him, you move away swiftly, contemplating his mention of fresh graffiti in the Shipping Bay.

Go to the Shipping Bay to investigate the fresh graffiti.

Next area: Shipping Bay, The Maid of Orléans

  • Find the new graffiti which the soldier mentioned.

In a quiet corner of the Shipping Bay between two aisles of storage lockers, you encounter a strange sight. A large graffiti, almost identical to the one in the Ruins. The only notable difference is that this one is currently being scrubbed by a scared-looking man, who spins in shock as you approach!

He shouts: Oh SHI-

But he doesn't finish his sentence. Clearly alarmed by your presence, he makes a run for it!

  • Chase him!
  • Let him go. Search the area instead.

(Stamina check)

The man is fast and clearly knows his station well, but you're a adequate match, sprinting and leaping after him through the Shipping Bay's endless storage aisles. He turns as he rounds each corner, pupils widening in panic as finds you close behind. After leaving the Shipping Bay, he heads off into the Residences, with you following closely behind.

Go to the Residences to continue your pursuit of the man.

Next area: Residences, The Maid of Orléans

  • Search Amereaux Residences for the man.

You trot down the Amereaux walkways, scanning the faces of passersby for a match with the man from the Shipping Bay. Just as you start to lose hope you spot him!


Let him go:

In a flash he's gone, and you turn to examine the site of the new graffiti in the Shipping Bay storage aisles. Again, those seven words; "Better dead than red! Gaule out now!" in identical spray paint to the one used in the Ruins. Whoever the culprit is, they're consistent in their approach. Either side of you stretch long deserted aisles of storage lockers. In the distance, you occasionally hear the clang of a metal door as somebody accesses one in another part of the facility, but otherwise the scene is quiet.

  • Search the area for clues.

(Intelligence check)

You work methodically to search the area. Examining the graffiti's texture and pigment, it's clear that a spray gun of some sort was used. On a hunch you search the metal waste receptacles and, after persevering through the entire Shipping Bay, eventually find your reward in the last one: two empty spray cartridges, matching the exact color used for the graffiti!

Me: Bingo!

Hurriedly you examine the objects. To your bemusement, both have magnets taped to one side. They also bear the logo of a market vendor: "WELL-MAID WARES: Orléans market." Now you're getting somewhere! This vendor will have met the culprit; you're hot on the trail!

Go to the market to investigate the spray cans further.

Next NPC: Gabor Gryguscz, Market, The Maid of Orléans

  • Ask Gabor about the spray cartridges.

At the rear of the market, you find the "WELL-MAID WARES" stall and its jovial proprietor, Gabor. He's open enough about the fact the spray cartridges were sold by him, but becomes much more coy when you attempt to probe further.

Gabor says: Listen 'ere mon ami, I would love to 'elp you wiv your little detective job, honestly I would. Don't av no sympathy for them wot misuse my fine wares for criminality! But- … Fing is… Gabor's got a family to feed and this 'ere stall is for selling stuff, not chatting with lovely folk such as yourself, dear er- <name>. Lovely name by the way. So gentle-sounding!

Gabor clears his throat and waves a hand as if to hurry himself to the point.

He resumes: So, what I'm saying is, I'm 'appy to sell you whatever information you need, dear amigo. Let's call it 30 creds a pop. Fair's fair after all!

Gabor grins somewhat mischievously, like a wily old pro playing a game he knows well.

<You need at least 30 credits in your wallet to continue, or else you're stuck.>

  • Ask about the magnets taped to the spray cans. Pay 30 credits.
  • Ask to whom he sold the spray cans you found. Pay 30 credits.

Ask about magnets:

Me: Why are there magnets taped to the paint cartridges?

You have given 30.00 credits.

Gabor chuckles as you hand him the discarded spray cans you found.

He replies: What a clever trick dis is! See, these cans come wiv a little metal ball inside, to mix the paint up, ya get me? But it makes a dreadful rattle when ya give it a shake. Attracts all sort of unwanted attention I imagine, especially if you're doing naughty stuff like graffiti… They must use the magnets to stop the ball from rattling, keep a low profile. Clever little blighters!

He seems genuinely amused by the graffiti culprit's ingenuity, shaking his head in disbelief as if he were looking at the most complex piece of engineering he'd ever seen.

  • Ask to whom he sold the spray cans you found. Pay 30 credits.

Me: Who did you sell these spray cartridges to?

You have given 30.00 credits.

Gabor grimaces, as if contemplating a conundrum.

He says: Blimey! Who DIDN'T I sell 'em to? I shift loads of these, dozens of boxes worth every tenspan… That one you're holding there is my most popular color! You'll have to fink of something more precise I'm afraid.

Gabor cocks his head and feigns sympathy for the fact that your investigation costs are mounting.

  • No more credits. Force Gabor to tell you if he sold spray cans AND magnets to anybody.
  • Pay 30 credits. Ask Gabor if he sold spray cans AND magnets to anybody.

Force Gabor to tell you:
(Strength check)

Me: 60 credits is more than enough, "mate." Next one's a freebie, or else I'm gonna start getting cross. Now, did you sell both spray cans AND magnets to anyone? If so, who?

You straighten your back until you're towering over the diminutive colonist.

Gabor says: Ah- good point, Ser. Gabor's always happy to reward a loyal customer, ha- Now that you put it like that, I do remember. Funny how my memory works! A few days ago, this young girl comes in and buys exactly that: spray cans, magnets, even a pair of gloves… I knew she was up to summink! I dunno her name but I recognize her. Dark hair, sorta moody-looking, got two different colors in her eyes, that's what struck me. She lives on station, probably find her if you check the Residences…

Gabor smiles awkwardly, clearly hoping he's done enough to deter you from backing up your threats. You bid him farewell and head off to the Residences in search of your graffiti culprit.

Go to the Residences and find the graffiti culprit Gabor described.

Next area: Residences, The Maid of Orléans

  • Search Amereaux Residences for the girl which Gabor described.

You amble down the Amereaux walkways, scanning the faces of passersby for a match with Gabor's description, to no avail. You're so fixated on the description of the girl that you almost miss something blatant right ahead: it's the man from the Shipping Bay!

Me: Hey-!!

His eyes widen in terror at the sight of you and he quickly disappears into a residence behind. But this time there's nowhere else to go. You follow him and tap the door's entry pad, speaking forcefully through the closed door.

Me: Listen, Ser, I'm not going anywhere. You can open up now or wait till I get Security here to pull you out…

After a unit's pause, the door slides open and he beckons you inside.

Next NPC: Adrien Beauciel, Residences, The Maid of Orléans

  • Talk to Adrien.

In the poky quarters you're faced with a shaken-looking man, who appears to be more scared of you than you are of him. He starts to say something but then thinks better of it, waiting anxiously for you to make the first move.

  • Ask what he was doing with the graffiti.
  • Ask who he is.


Me: What's your name? Do you live here?

The man hesitates as if wondering whether lying is an option. Looking around the cramped quarters, he seems to conclude it isn't.

He says: Yes, I'm er- er- I don't know why my voice is coming out funny… Er. I'm Adrien Beauciel. A- p- pleasure to meet you.

Adrien laughs nervously, clearly worried about being suspected of something.

  • "Why didn't you report the graffiti to Security?"
  • "Do you know who is responsible for the graffiti?"
  • Ask what he was doing with the graffiti.

What was he doing:

Me: What's the story here, Ser? I saw you scrubbing that anti-Gaule graffiti in the Shipping Bay.

Adrien's jaw clenches as he contemplates your question.

He says: Er- You said it yourself. Cleaning, that's what I was doing… Such sentiments have no place on The Maid-

He cuts off abruptly, awaiting your reaction.

  • "Why didn't you report the graffiti to Security?"
  • "Do you know who is responsible for the graffiti?"


Me: Why didn't you report the graffiti to Security?

Adrien winces as you ask the question. He wouldn't make a good poker player. He's so flustered, you can't avoid thinking he's probably just an ordinary guy caught up in something rather than a hardened criminal.

Adrien says: Security?! Yeah, good point- Silly me. I'll call them, right away… Thanks, friend. You can go now I guess?

You try to recall if you've ever, in your entire life, met someone as bad at hiding something as Adrien seems to be right now. Probably not.

  • Accuse Adrien of hiding something.
  • "Do you know who is responsible for the graffiti?"

(Social check?)

Me: Cut it, Adrien! You're the worst actor in Barny's Star! What're you hiding? Or should I call Security right now?

Your words seem to hit Adrien hard. He bursts like a dam, the words flowing out as if held back for far too long.

Adrien sobs: P- Please, not Security, please, Ser. You know how strict they are. My poor Valou, she couldn't take it! So young, just a silly mistake, that's all it was… Just let me finish cleaning it please! Nobody ever needs to know. I'll talk to her, I- I'll be firm. No more of this nonsense!

Adrien is now pretty much on his knees, hands clasped together as he begs and pleads on the floor of his quarters.

  • Ask about Valou.

Me: And Valou is your, er-

Adrien says: Daughter! Yes, my one and only… I don't know where she gets these ideas from! Imagine my shock, finding paint-stained gloves and spray cans in her cabin- I'm no fool, I've heard about the graffiti appearing lately… Oh stars-alive! Who knows what they'll do to her- P- Please, Ser, let's keep this between us. Can we make a deal? Will 200 Credits do it?

  • Protect Adrien and Valou for free. Keep their secret and walk away from this.
  • Demand a bigger payment.
  • Reject Adrien's offer.
  • Accept 200 credits to keep Adrien's secret and walk away from this.


You shake your head and point a finger upwards. Adrien seems to understand.

He says: I would give you a million credits if I had them, Ser. Anything to save Valou from those monste-, I mean - the Gaule… But we're poor people, look at this hovel- 200 is all I have, you must believe me!

You saw what Adrien looked like earlier when he was lying, and this definitely feels like the truth now.

  • Accept 200 credits to keep Adrien's secret and walk away from this.
  • Reject Adrien's offer.
  • Protect Adrien and Valou for free. Keep their secret and walk away from this.


You shake your head and a wailing Adrien slumps completely to the floor.

Adrien sobs: It's all my fault! Please, report me if you have to- Poor Valou, she got those ideas from my stupid complaining… It was just a few words over dinner, I was blowing off steam- I don't really hate the Protectorate! P-Please… Just not Valou. She doesn't deserve this!

  • Report your findings to Security.
  • Protect Adrien and Valou for free. Keep their secret and walk away from this.


Me: Talk to Valou, Adrien. Do it before Max Marchand gets a hold of her…

On the floor, Adrien sobs and nods gratefully. You leave his quarters having resolved to keep what you've learned here to yourself. If Marchand can catch Valou on his own, then so be it. But you're not going to have a hand in it. If some angsty kid's scribblings really pose a threat to Gaule rule on The Maid, then there are bigger problems here than Valou Beauciel. Walking back through the residences, you're happy to finally be rid of this matter.

You have completed the "A Minor Offense" mission.


Adrien's bawling is insufficient to deter you from your mission. Political stability is important on the Maid and Marchand's cause is just. Or maybe you just want a payday. Your mind oscillates between the two perspectives as you leave Adrien's quarters and head towards Security.

Go to Security and report your findings.

Next NPC: Aline Lucas, Security, The Maid of Orléans

  • Talk to Aline

In Security, Aline Lucas sits at the reception desk handling various residents' queries. When your turn comes, she looks pleased to see you.

Aline says: Ah, <name>, welcome. Max mentioned you'd stop by. That graffiti thing is getting out of hand, some appeared in the Shipping Bay now too… We need to get a lid on this! What have you got for us?

  • Report Adrien Beauciel as the graffiti suspect.
  • Report Valou Beauciel as the graffiti suspect.

Report Valou Beauciel:

You explain the details of your search to Aline, outlining the various pieces of evidence collected. Aline's eyes glint with vengeful zeal as you talk and become positively ecstatic when you finally reveal the suspect's name: Valou Beauciel.

Aline says: Ha! Sounds like Valou needs to learn a thing or two about the Protectorate! Hold on, I'll call Max.

Aline's eyes glaze over as she calls someone on her CORETECHS, before slipping off to a back room for some privacy. A short while later, she's back, beaming a smile right at you.

She says: Great work, <name>. Max is very happy. He's on his way to make the arrest now. You can meet him at the Ruins for your reward. NEXT!

Aline smiles at you once more and then turns her attention to the queue behind.

Meet Lt. Marchand in the Ruins to collect your reward.

Next area: Ruins, The Maid of Orléans

  • Talk to Lt. Max Marchand.

As you approach the Ruins, you notice others heading in the same direction. Following them, you arrive at the spot where you first met Lt. Marchand. He's there again, only this time beaming with satisfaction. Looking over his shoulder, you realize why. At the graffiti-marked intersection, stands a battered-looking Valou Beauciel. Even in the low light, bruises are evident on her exposed arms. She wears a grubby prisoner's garb which leaves her uncovered and shivering. Slowly, through the tears, she stoops to scrub the graffiti with a worn rag, to the apparent amusement of the small crowd assembled. Some of them pelt her with the loose rocks and metal bolts they find at their feet. Keeping one eye on the spectacle, Max beckons you over.

Max says: These Ruins have become a classroom for the day, <name>. Welcome! Today's lesson is simple: the Protectorate won't tolerate ingratitude on The Maid! No, Ser! Thank you for helping us get that across.

Max gives you a hearty slap on the back, as if unfazed by Valou's evident suffering. He clearly feels like he's won an important battle, but you can't help but fear for The Maid's long term stability. This sort of treatment is hardly likely to turn Valou into a proud Gaule patriot. Lt. Marchand authorizes your payment and you depart, not keen on watching any more of this very public lesson in power and dissent.

You have received 1000.00 credits.

You have completed the "A Minor Offense" mission.

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