With their ship repaired and their hyperspace map empty, the intrepid adventurers take to the Unknown Regions with a hope and prayer. Their first destination turns out to be the Eflira system in the edge of the Spinward Sector, in which a terrestrial planet with a distress beacon eminating from it. They investigate it to discover it to be occupied by a plantoid species that live in cultivated gardens. The Stone Age populace flees at their approach, when the crew receives a distress call of their own. A group of technologically advanced bandits attack the ship. They fend off the crew, taking a prisoner. After interrogating the survivor, they learn a startling truth: this planet is one of the ones the Zanibar attack to capture sacrifices to their deity.
The crew manages to convince the bandits of their good intentions, and learn that these people are Jainira, a species of nomadic humans who originate from a planet that after a catastrophic disaster, can only support population. The fifty plus remnants of the crashed convoy are swayed by Alvor’s offer to leave their planet and send three of their warriors to investigate ERQ-NUO as a site of their new home.
After the Jainira agree to move to ERQ-NUO, the crew of the Spinward Savant encounter a Zanibar gunship and its escort. Hep Raraza hides his ship in a local nebula, and springs an attack once the gunship enters the atmosphere. The Savant makes quick work of the fighters, but the Zanibar gunship quickly resurfaces. Hep pilots circles around the heavily armed beast, but can barely scratch its shields. After taking several big hits, Hep takes the ship into the atmosphere to regenerate the shields and pick up the Jainira. Just as they do, the Zanibar pursue, firing another salvo at them. Several minutes of exchanging fire leaves both vehicles heavily damaged, but the Savant’s peerless gunner Kaleb Hannser cracks the Zanibar ship’s hull.
After scavenging the remains of the ship, they find a few parts and return to ERQ-NUO.
They then began a series of exploratory hyperspace jumps to locations in the Unknown Regions that ERQ-NUO gave them.