Rising Titans – Chapter 46

9 Years, 6 Months, 14 Days After Eridani Landing


Diana blinked in surprise as the jungle was suddenly lit up by a fantastic reddish glow, glancing behind her towards the city Diana watched as another blast of energy, identical in color to the flash fell from the sky. Unable to see from her vantage point in the trees she watched as the attacks continued to fall.

“Jesus,” she breathed, realizing what was going on.

Someone was bombarding the city, or what was left of it from orbit.

The airspace illuminated by the now steady stream of slow moving shots Diana could see hundreds of ships in the air, carefully avoiding all of the energy based projectiles. None of them looked like the ships that had been at the public space port. They weren’t run down and patched. They were newer looking sleeker ships.

As another shot flashed through the air Diana spotted one of the patch job craft, a familiar sight at the space port. She tracked it for a moment before a lance of energy, this time from the surface of the planet quickly hit it. The ship limped through the air for a moment smoking before another energy blast landed on it’s hull and the craft plummeted from the air.

Diana watched it go, for once not really decrying the stupidity of having an aircraft with absolutely no aerodynamic profile.

The sounds rolled through next, and Diana winced as the booming sound of the energy blasts was accompanied by the sound of buildings and structures being torn and blasted apart. The last city which had survived nuclear holocaust, and enemy occupation in a constant state of disrepair for nearly 300 years was crumbling.

The sounds continued and Diana slowly turned away from the carnage. Her night vision now ruined, she was hoping her pursuers were similarly deafened by the sound of the city crumbling. Not to mention the psychological effects, that city was one of the last ruminants of their civilization if she was correct in her assumptions and Sek had all but confirmed.

Sliding down from the lower branches of the tree as the air shook again Diana carefully looked around trying to spot any of the aliens. To her far right, and about 70 yards away was the woman that Sek had been talking to. She was staring horrified at the city, her ears visibly twitching in the darkness with each explosion.

Keeping her face straight unwilling to celebrate before the task was complete Diana slowly snuck forwards, hoping that with both her attention and ears focused in the opposite direction the woman wouldn’t notice.

Keeping the knife up in her hand Diana approached. Her eyes flicked between the ground and her target, being careful to step only on the rocks and moss, avoiding sticks and leaves.

The woman’s ears twitched back in her direction and she gasped, Diana throwing aside all pretense sprinted forwards.

The woman raised her weapon and a hand shot to the small communication device on her shoulder, she fired and Diana quickly sidestepped behind a tree, paying attention to see the tree vaporize where it had been hit.

Not the Empire’s energy weapons, and not Humanities much deadlier kinetic based weapons. Something else entirely.

“Come out, surrender!” shouted the woman over the roar of the crumbling city.

“What’s going on?” asked Diana as she moved through the underbrush and the woman tried to zero in on her. Apparently their night vision was horrible enough that even with the flashing lights and brief spats of weapons fire she was blind. Deafened by the sounds Diana now felt she held the advantage.

“The Empire is destroying our city! You were caught, you escaped! This is your fault!”

“to be fair you’re the one who shot me. My class B’s didn’t know what else to do.”

“Still your fault, working with those idiots.”

Diana didn’t respond, instead stooping down low to the ground she pried a small stone loose from the dirt and weighing it in her hand for a moment drew her arm back and hurled it at the woman. She grunted in pain as it hit her throat and gasping for air momentarily let her guard down.

Rushing forwards Diana stabbed at the woman’s chest. She dodged to the side bringing her gun to bare. Diana deflecting the barrel to the side lashed out with her free hand at the woman’s face, she twisted and Diana already committed to the attack struck the woman’s armored shoulder.

Ignoring the pain in her hand Diana back stepped and slapped the woman’s weapon completely away.

“Fine!” growled the woman, whipping out a knife of her own the woman slashed outwards forcing Diana to take another step back.

“I’m going to kill you!” she hissed, her ears flat voice menacing. She faded from view slightly her features growing indistinct as she utilized her camouflage abilities. Not that it was much help considering the knife and her clothes were still visible.

“Try.” Replied Diana as she raised her own weapon.

-30 Minutes

The Canada

“Play it again Arik.”

The screen went blank for a moment, before resolving into the same message they had received only five minutes ago.

A human woman standing on the bridge of an ancient looking alien ship, around her were aliens that had large cat like ears on the sides of their heads. The woman looked calm and collected, and she was wearing an older style padded Martian combat suit. It had patches in places and the helmet looked worn, deep scratches on it. The inlet for air was modified but their was no doubt of the suits origins.

“My name is Edie Miller. I was the commander of the Phobos gun and held that post for nearly eight years after the Ark jumped out of the Sol system. I watched from orbit as the Empire systematically destroyed what was left of Mars as I and my crew worked to repair the Phobos gun. We unfortunately failed, only completing repairs when they left orbit and abandoned Sol. Several years later other aliens visited, and they saved us from starving to death on that rock. The Vakurian’s are an ally Humanity has had for nearly three hundred years, a fact neither of our species was aware of until only a few years ago.”

Edie paused, and glanced at one other woman on the bridge. At the look the aliens’ ears went up and down quickly betraying a mood of apprehension. Edie continued, “They have proven time and time again they are an ally to Humanity, and I command this ship. My loyalty is first to my crew only a few of whom are the survivors from the Phobos gun complex I was in command of. However, if you need help we’re more than happy to play the role of Calvary. The Vakurian people have just as much reason to hate the Empire and they have been without a planet to call home for far longer. We need you to light up a tachyon beacon for us one half the difference of the Martian Earth time difference. Do that and we can jump right in next to you to help kick theses bastards in the teeth!”

“That’s twenty minutes, and we got this five minutes ago,” said Arik.

“Are you going to do it?” asked Anil.

Stagg looked over at her, “I don’t see a reason not to.”

“What if they’re being coerced to say this?” asked Pankin.

“It’s not like this is going to get worse. This is why we sent out our call for help. To be honest I was hoping another Human ship would pick up on it, but this will work. They only want the tachyon beacon to get here in time to help, even if we don’t light one they’ll make it here in a day or so.”

“Are you sure they won’t make this worse?” asked Pankin.

Anil slowly shook her head, a small shiver going through her. “This is the only way, the Humans can’t beat the Empire, we can’t, and it sounds like these new aliens can’t. The only way we might is together.”

Stagg and everyone else on the ship looked over at the woman, who shifted uncomfortably under the scrutiny.

“Either die alone or die together. I’ve heard that one in human history before as well.”

“And that one worked how often?” asked Pankin a small smiled on his face now.

“More often then it should have,” Stagg closed her eyes, “Arik light the tachyon beacon up for thirty seconds at the requested time. How often has it worked for you?”

“More than it should have as well. Let’s hope this is another one of those times?”

“Let’s hope.”

“I have the tachyon engines configured,” reported Arik.

“Good, Derrick we’re going to be getting some alien help it seems. I need a data packet and the specifications to send to them. Looks like they’re using the same tech as the Empire. Any way we can make them immune to the ACE field?”

“What? No! That’s the whole point of the thing! It’s a field not directional! Best advice I would give is stay away from it and pour on fire from afar, move in closer if the field gets disabled. We’re built to run without the shields.”

The line was silent for a moment, “Are the new aliens green?”

A muffled electrical discharge could be heard through the communication channel and Derrick swore.

“I will ensure the packet is ready. We seem to be suffering noncritical static discharges in the engineering bay.” Said Arik her voice cool.

“Why would he ask if they’re green? Does that matter to humans?” asked Anil.

“Cultural joke. I’ll explain later.”

Anil nodded and turned to her small console, “Sir we’re getting more help it would seem.”

“The Humans don’t know who these aliens are?” asked King Henswick.

“No. There are other humans on the alien ship though, and the aliens said this alliance goes back nearly three hundred years. I’m not sure what the conversion rate is.”

“About 385 years if the conversion metrics we have are correct.” Said Bitus consulting with someone else in the room with him, “How could they not know about an alliance that old? If the data is right they had only just landed on their neighboring planet by that point!”

“I have no idea. At this point the humans seem just as surprised and confused. I can tell you they’re not acting.”

“Why do I feel like I’m going to pine for the days when I was negotiating a peace treaty between two nations. Our human friends seem to only invite trouble.”

King Henswick looked at him a small smile on his face, “If we survive this I don’t think you’re going to have much negotiating to do.”

President Renil looked over at her counterpart and then at the human screen which was displaying the tactical situation. “I don’t think it will be that simple, but if we survive this? I think we can work something out.”

Bitus took a breath, “Well I’m glad we got that resolved right before Armageddon.”

The Valiant

“No signal, no signal.”

Edie was about to snap at Ranlin, her own nerves near the edge when the Vakurian’s ears went straight up.


“Jump!” shouted Edie.

The Valiant shuddered, and the light around the ship was compressed. Hopping onto the path the faster than light particles had carved through space-time the two alien ships dove towards the alien planet and the single human ship stationed far above it.

Klyn smiled and settling into his chair pulled his console in front of him ready to redirect and manage the systems on the ship which would undoubtedly fail. The status reports and other data would also be displayed, letting him parse the important data down.

“Ready?” asked Edie.


“Neither am I.”

“Well, in any case it’s been an honor.”

Edie briefly put her hand on her XO’s and smiled, “It has been.”

“Ten seconds! Can I say that right at this moment I’m kind of wishing I hadn’t found that shuttle?”‘ grumbled Ranlin.

“No your wishing you weren’t crazy enough to actually follow a human captain,” said Edie.

“That’s implied. That’s always implied Welas.”

Before Edie could reprimand her the ship shook and dropped out of FTL, within a quarter second the image of the Human ship appeared on the main holographic display.

“We’re transferring data to you, can you fight without your main shields?” asked the other captain without preamble or even a hello.

Edie stood catching up to what the woman has said, “No, we need shields. Our tech is 300 year old Empire standard. These ships were commandeered.”

“Move away, we’ve got a method of disabling all shields within a give area. If you need them move away and attack from further away. We’re going to be making a mess.”

“How far should we move?” asked Klyn speaking without his translator.

The other Human Captain’s eyes snapped to him but she quickly answered, “At least 5,000 kilometers.”

“Plotting the course, we’re going to move to catch them in a crossfire if we can. See if you can keep their attention now, our shields emitters are 300 years old.”

“Roger, nice of you to drop in by the way I’m Captain Stagg” said the other woman.

Edie smiled, “Nice to know humanity has been busy since the Evac. We never knew if you guys made it or were vaporized.”

“We got to live on an icy moon, a little better than Mars but not by much. We made this ship and a Fort along with a small colony. We’re the first ship to leave the system.”

“explains the rumors we’ve been hearing.”

A projection of a human woman looking like she was only just out of her teens and composed of an incredibly complex wireframe model appeared in the corner of the transmission quickly growing in size.

“I have not seen any rumors in regards to our interactions. I have been monitoring all channels!”

Edie glanced at the other captain,

“She’s an AI, kind of.”

“AI? That’s legal?”

Stagg put her hand up waving it side to side.

“You have access to the pirated network?” asked Edie.

“No, their has been no indication of other data broadcasting methods besides those inside the Imperial Tachyon relays.”

“Yes, because people are going to send messages through those. We’ll give you the protocols later, but for as much as the officials are ignoring you the little stunt over Jikse caused most of the criminal elements to start paying attention to you. Especially now that the entire system has gone dark.”

For a moment Stagg looked nonplussed, before glancing at the AI.

“We did set Diana loose on a planet. Not intentionally, but still.”

Stagg muttered something under her breath, “It’ll be all that stuff her mother crammed into her.”

“You left someone on the planet?” asked Edie trying to catch up.

“Janus’s daughter.”

“Janus, as in that Janus? She had a daughter?!”

“Yes, and yes.”

“Well if she’s anything like her mother that explains a lot of it. Still, the last time a planet went dark was over 400 years ago.”


“Do you have plan for attacking the armada in front of us?” asked Klyn cutting in.

Stagg glanced back at him and nodded, “We can survive a few energy based attacks with the shield emitters we managed to scrounge together from a wrecked fighter. We’ll use those until they’re drawn in closer then kick the Accelerated Circumferencing Electromagnet, ACE device on. We’ve built up the armor to sustain a few hits, but we’re relying on surprise more than anything.”

“That’s it?” asked Klyn after a moment.

“Well that and fire the nuclear warheads the species we’re protecting lent to us along with our own arsenal, along with as many kinetic rounds we can sink downrange before melting the main guns. Without their shields Empire ships are fragile against kinetics, right?”

Klyn slowly turned to his captain, “That’s the plan. Sit here and keep firing?”

Edie smiled, “Sounds like one of my plans. She’s right though, can you imagine how much damage we’ll inflict if we don’t have to punch through their shields?”

Klyn slowly nodded, “A lot. Still, there are fifty ships out there, not counting those fighters!”

“So seventeen ships for each of us, not counting the fighters. Even our shields can maintain against those for an hour or so. That should be more than enough time to see who’s going to win.”

Klyn’s ears slowly went down as Edie spoke. Closing his eyes for another moment the man took in a deep breath and his ears went straight back up.

“Well we’re not leaving now.”

“No we’re not,” said Edie, “are we planning on firing the first shot?”

“We are to keep attention on us, are your weapons effective at the range for you to retain shielding?”

“Normally no, but if you really do take their shields out? Hell yes. We’ll throw in some of the experimental stuff too while we’re at it.”

“Will it explode?”


“Don’t use anything that emits intense EM waves. The interference pattern the ACE creates are unstable. We’re thinking we can maintain it for ten minutes in an extended capacity before they might be able to get partial shielding back. In which case we’d have to be a lot closer to them for it to be effective.”

“Roger that.”

“Arik link up and keep our little fleet synced as much as possible, Edie tell the captain of the other ship to let her in will you?”

“I’m already in. They do not have very well constructed cyber defenses. However, I might be able to leverage their computational power as an extension of my cyberwarfare protocols,” said Arik. _ _

“Badly constructed defenses?” said Ranlin affronted.

“Later, let her in.”

Ranlin glanced back and quickly nodded. The lights on several of the computer monitors flickered and the image of the AI appeared on the one in front of Ranlin.

“Whoa, you weren’t kidding about 300 years of history!”

“Not now Arik!” shouted Stagg through the connection.

“Yes Ma’am!”

The image blinked away. Edie watched her go a small smile flickering across her face.

“She’s young keep her on task.” Growled Stagg.

“I’ll do that.”

The two women stared through the connection and then around at their respective crews.

“I owe you a drink after all of this.”

“Got any beer? The Vakurian’s have hard liquor down, not so much the milder stuff.”

“We still have those seeds in storage. Food productions still tight enough on Bellona that it can’t be justified yet. I’m hoping the Seninon, the people on the planet below have something.”

“Here’s hoping we have the opportunity to find out.”

-5 Minutes

The Singer

“[Meral] I’m telling you that it’s a bad idea! As low opinion as you have of class C’s you don’t think they learn? The missile will never reach the surface!”

The admiral leaned forwards in his chair, staring at [Vann].

“You have been given an order, I don’t care if you’re the Emperor! When you are in the chain of command you are expected to follow orders!”

“So we’re just going to ignore the fact that two more ships appeared out of nowhere? Why the hell are our own ships on their side?”

“Those are not our ships; they were stolen by some vermin nearly 300 years ago when we claimed their world. A failing of one of your ancestors allowed them to be taken.”

[Vann] blinked putting that information together with the briefing [Syn] had given him about the surviving class C species, “I am aware of that Admiral, the stolen ships are documented. However up until this point we have not seen those ships, we have seen no contact between C1764 and other space fairing class C species! The fact they are here now should be something for you to be more worried about!”

“It is not an unknown, they have been known to work together,” growled [Meral].

[Vann] blinked, “This have something to do with those training accidents in the 4th fleet, and why you’ve taken the C1764 system as another Hygonix?”

“Captain you have ten seconds to fire before I hold you as insubordinate.”

[Vann] huffed and stood, “Load the missile and move,” said [Vann] as he strode towards the man at the weapons console.

“Yes sir,”

“What are you doing?” asked [Syn] stepping forwards with him.

“I’ll not be accused of cowardice by a fool. This will never make it to the surface.”

Waiting patiently for the weapon system to load [Vann] stared up at the Admiral.

Neither said anything more both of them waiting.

The weapon ready [Vann] glanced down at it and for a moment considered it. He was sure the class C’s would stop it, but even so. [Charles] had changed when he came to terms with his actions. Even if the lives of the class C’s were nothing more than worthless, genetic aberrations, they were worth something. Killing them in droves, without any chance to fight.

Shaking his head to stop that particular train of thoughts [Vann] fired the second of the officially sanctioned Hygonix missiles.

The small port in the front of the ancient ship opened, and moving out of it’s bay the missile first expelled by a simple mechanical pusher blasted away as the hydrogen plasma reaction system took over. Accelerating more quickly than what any of the inertial reaction systems could compensate the weapon streaked away.

After several moments the flare from it’s engines went cold and died. The weapon now costing on inertia it fell towards the planet.

Turning away from the weapons console and the main display [Vann] stumbled as the ship shook, “The missile has been destroyed and the C1764 vessel has fired on us,” said [Sam] her voice impassive.

“Well that was to be expected to be honest,” said [Vann] as he sat.

“The weapons have only 20% more power than what they had [ten years] ago. They had forty ships or so during that last assault, as well as their space station. Now they are going to try and hold a planet with only a single ship? As brash as C1764 might be they have never been so tactically foolish, except.”

[Sam] trailed off.

“Except?” prompted [Vann]

“When they are drawing something into a trap. It’s the same trap that [Charles] fell for, they acted weaker then they were used a child as bait, and then when we were confident that they destroyed the ground beneath us.”

“Well it does look like we’re going to be doing this the old fashioned way. All ships form up and move in I’m tired of this already,” said [Meral] through the fleet wide comm.

“We’re having engine trouble aren’t we? That last shot managed to overload a shield capacitor or two on this old ship right [Sam]?”

She glanced at him and then to [Syn] sitting beside him, and [Reece] at the entrance to the bridge.

“I think so yes,” she said slowly.

[Reece] stepped forwards, “[Vann],”

“I’m not leading my crew and ship directly into a trap. If you want to report my cowardice to [Marcus] go ahead. I can’t help it if we’re having engine trouble.”

The bodyguard was silent for a moment.

“You know about that?”

“How could I not? I’m not a child any more and you are in charge of my safety, I have no doubt that was at the forefront of thoughts. You are going to have to decide if reporting to [Marcus] be more dangerous now instead of actually doing your job. I am not my Father, I have no intention of sitting back and commanding the Empire from a comfortable throne. I am going to emulate my other ancestors, and command from the forefront.”

[Vann] locked his gaze on the man, “If you can’t protect me while I do that, leave.”

[Reece] slowly stepped back,”I suppose we are having engine trouble.”

“Sir!” the man at the weapons control console took a step forwards.

[Vann] snapped to look at him as the rest of the bridge crew did as well.


“Multiple contacts in orbit have changed trajectory, they’re moving towards the fleet!”

“Brace! All power to forward shields. This is part of whatever plan C1764 has, and [Meral] is walking right into it.”

The Canada



“Open Fire!”

Stagg glanced at her fellow Captains, the male Vakurian, Jun was his name looked almost predatory as he gave the order. The catlike ear on the one side of his head pressed back and his teeth bared.

“Direct fire towards sensor clusters, let’s try and blind them. Let the Canada fire at the arteries for now, that should keep the attention on them and force the fleet to move into the briar patch.” Said Edie.

“Dodging attacks, what about the planet below?” asked Pankin.

“The atmosphere will mitigate some of the energy, quite a bit of it in fact. But shots will still hit.” Said Stagg her eyes still locked forwards not looking at the man.

Pankin winced and slowly nodded, “I hate playing numbers.”

“It’s necessary or you’ll lose all of your numbers.”

“I know that!”

Further argument was cut off as the Canada swung to the side, avoiding several bolts of energy that had been fired from the enemy fleet.

“We will not be able to dodge attacks when they enter the range of the briar patch, our mass is too great and despite the relatively slow attack speed of the Empire weapons technology we are a massive vessel,” said Arik.

“Arik we never solved the heat dispersion problem, if you’ve got to balance things take into account that running the engines and thrusters in combat mode might produce more heat then we absorb!” shouted Derrick from engineering.

“I have taken that into account.”

“The fighters are accelerating away from the main fleet!” shouted the alien captain, Jun.

“Standard strategy, we can pick off some of them and endure their close range attacks better, let’s move to intercept!” said Edie.

“Better? You want to go up against fighters!? We’ll be torn to pieces!” shouted Jun.

“You following me or not? Once the shields on all of the ships are down they’ll re-access!”

“Damn it!”

Stagg watched as the two massive alien craft, one under the command of a human moved into intercept the fighters as they broke away from the enemy fleet, being careful to keep themselves behind the fighters in relation to the armada.

The Canada shook, and the lights temporarily flickered,

“Arik god damn it!” spat Derrick.

“It was either roll into that shot or a larger one from the dreadnaught! Shields down to 30%”

“That was the right move, how long until they are in the briar patch?”

“Thirty seconds.”

“Keep firing, Derrick get ready to fire off one of gifts!”

“Ask Arik! She’s playing classic evil AI controlling all those nukes!”

The warheads from the two warring nations below, which had been brought up along with the ACE extension devices flared to life. With only small thrusters meant to direct them one on a trajectory for impact the warheads would normally be ineffective orbital weapons. Already dragged up to near geosynchronous orbit where the Canada was defending though, the small chemical thrusters were powerful enough to direct them.

“Arik if you would?”


Ten of the nearly one hundred warheads activated, armed themselves, and under the direction of Arik accelerated towards the approaching fleet. They would not break through the shields of the Empire’s ships, Humanity had utilized far deadlier and refined weapons when defending their home world to no avail. What had once been the deadliest weapons on Earth were now little more than smokescreens.

The hope was that under continued nuclear barrages the Empire sensors would be unable to detect the ACE extension devices or even the ACE field itself, further luring them into the trap.

“Detonating!” cried out Arik with glee.

The battlefield high in orbit briefly went white, and in that single flash the fate of Humanity was determined.

-1 Minute

The Russia


“I told you we didn’t have the system ready, believe me I’d like to be fighting but I would much rather not be blown up! So shut up!”

The line was silent for a moment. Megan sighed, “sir.”

“Get it done.”

Growling in frustration Megan turned back to the system, and looking at the readouts again showing the status of the magnetic containment and shaping fields cross checked them with the values that had been used on the Longboat IV and the Yamato. During combat the ship hadn’t been able to transmit engineering data in regards to the antimatter system.

Considering it had been an illegal installation and coupled with the fact that she and Ben had been there to look over the data they hadn’t felt the need to transmit the information out. Now that was biting her, as she only had data from three – four jumps if the Ark counted, although that was hopefully not a standard to set most to.

“Engineer Megan, can I assist?” asked Yern repeating his question.

“No, move!” snapped Megan.

The rest of the human technicians and engineers were working on the other side of the compartment readying the ship for combat, and avoiding her. She knew they were doing it but at the moment did not care.

Yern drifted away and Megan not sparing him a glance checked her values again.

“We’re good, I’d rather I execute the jump down here so we can try and conserve antimatter. This won’t be efficient.”

“Will we be able to perform combat jumps like the Yamato did?”

“Yes, they’ll be inefficient again, but ignore that. We’ll expend enough antimatter for two or three jumps for every one right now.”

“Can’t be helped. Execute the jump when ready.”


Megan turned back to the controls and making sure she had a firm grip on the handrails, and that her feet were in the straps continued to adjust the jump values.

“All hands prepare for antimatter jump into a combat environment, all hands prepare for antimatter jump with repeated combat maneuvers!” said James his voice calm as he issued the orders and crew settled into their combat posts. For the past two hours they had been ready, shields were charged, weapons were ready, the ACE was ready, point defense guns were armed, the main battery was being charged to maximum capacity, heat dispersion systems were online. The Human’s and Tanuin on the ship all had the same resolute expression, something that translated across the species boundary.

The Empire was not going to win this time, if only because of sheer force of will.

Megan tapped her own Link, “All hands twenty seconds.”

Adjusting the mix value’s for the last time and locking them in place Megan nodded one to herself.

“Ten seconds.”

Megan closed her eyes for a moment, this would be the first time jumping without him.

“Five seconds. Four, three, two, one!”

Megan activated the drive.

Antimatter and strange matter mixed in the heart of the reaction chamber, and exploded outwards. In any other situation the burst of energy would have been more than enough to rend the ship into pieces. Contained and focused by the calculations Lincoln had improved, the reaction was ejected into space in front of the ship and rent space in two.

Locked to the local gravitational gradient of the local space the rupture formed, and consumed the Russia.

Once again Megan felt the odd sensation as the universe’s rules broke down, recording devices and cameras could never capture the moment. According to every instrument the traveling time was instantaneous, but it wasn’t at the same time.

“You’re going to want to check the coolant systems, I’m betting you’re going to need to vent coolant almost immediately.”

Megan’s skin crawled, and slowly turning her head she looked at him.

Blurry and indistinct, like every other artifact of vision inside the anomaly Ben was standing next to her.


The man flashed her a smile, and Megan blinked, it wasn’t Ben, or at least not what he had been when he died. The man in front of her was in a Yamato engineering suit, and looked ten years younger. The scar from the exploding power junction two years ago gone from his cheek, the vibrant hopeful energy was alive in his eyes.

“Didn’t think you would get rid of me did you?

The Russia fell back into normal space.

“Nuclear detonations to port! Three ships broadcasting friendly IFF’s to starboard!” shouted Tom through the intercom on the ship.

Megan blinked looking at the spot where he had been, it was empty now and like trying to remember a dream the images were quickly fading.

“Yern did you see that?”

Megan turned to the alien, “Yern?”

The Tanuin shaking itself let out a disgruntled squeak, “That was more disorienting then I thought it would be.”

“Did you see him?” repeated Megan.

“What? I only heard the songs, so many songs. Like the universe was speaking to me, but I could not understand it. A frustrating sensation to say the least.”

Megan opened her mouth to ask him again, when the Russia shook and she was nearly thrown away from her console in engineering.

“Enemy contacts to Port, the nuclear blasts had them masked. Communications have still not cleared.”

Megan grimaced looking down at the readouts, “Whatever just hit us punched through the first layer of armor into the matrix, not good!” shouted Megan.

“understood, Tom get me comms, Megan are we up for a pile driver?”

Megan glanced back at the spot that Ben had been occupying a moment before, “We are sir!”

“Helm line us up on the biggest sucker, Megan helm is taking control of the drive, keep it running and prepare to bring up the ACE!”

“We’re ready!”

Megan glanced at the tactical readout and did a double take, “That’s a big ship!”

“Will the attack not work?”

Megan smiled, “Oh, it’ll work. Let me tweak it a little though, leave them a surprise. I need a nuke.”

“I should really ask, move!”

The Russia violently twisted to the side and Megan grunted in pain as she slammed into the console in front of her. The hum of the reaction engines and chemical propellant systems briefly filled engineering as every system was pushed to it’s limit.

“Megan keep us flying. Tom for fucks sake fire!”

Megan felt the unmistakable resonation of the ship as the magnetic coils launched the small tungsten mass, tuned to the sounds of normal operation Megan could hear them already charging to fire again. The battle had started.

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CopRit Empire, Halfil Sol 14 Of Race 4 Year 4958 Frostal Secondary, New Baltimore Sitting down in the chair across from the Principal’s desk I nervously swallowed and tried to calm my heart. The Principal could probably hear it, and smell my perspiration. Which was only making me more nervous. “Thoomaas,” squeaked the principal from

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Sweetness – Love and Kiing (NSFW)

CopRit Empire, Halfil Sol 14 Of Race 4 Year 4958 Frostal Secondary, New Baltimore Sitting down in the chair across from the Principal’s desk I nervously swallowed and tried to calm my heart. The Principal could probably hear it, and smell my perspiration. Which was only making me more nervous. “Thoomaas,” squeaked the principal from

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More by Weerdo5255

Sweetness – Implications

CopRit Empire, Halfil Sol 25 Of Race 4 Year 4958 Monty Publishing House, New Baltimore Slowly gathering myself I stepped into the hologram chamber, the projection flickered and the simulation automatically paused as I stepped in. I quickly looked around to get my bearings, I appeared to be on a starship bridge enduring greatly exaggerated

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Sweetness – Chapter 4 (NSFW)

CopRit Empire, Halfil Sol 78 Of Race 3 Year 4958 Suburbs, New Baltimore I looked back up at the shopkeeper, the small Human was trying to appear unconcerned. Not that I could really blame ‘him’- glancing over at the human I checked the chest. It was a male, the chest did not protrude and there

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Sweetness – Chapter 3 (NSFW)

CopRit Empire Sol 77 Of Race 7 Year 4957 PackRat IV, 5 Months out from Halfil I slammed into to deck plating. Coughing, I rolled over onto my side and vomited on the floor, trying to get over the fact that everything was spinning around me. “You know, Humans have perhaps one of the most

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Sweetness – Chapter 2 (NSFW)

CopRit Empire, Halfil Sol 78 of Race 3 Year 4958 Athletic Complex, New Baltimore I jumped to the side, dodging the attack. I felt the breeze as the weapon passed my abdomen; it missed me by only a few millimeters. Twirling to the side, I brought my foot up. Reacting with amazing speed, my opponent

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Sweetness – Chapter 1 (NSFW)

CopRit Empire, Halfil Sol 78 Of Race 3 Year 4958 Divsion 3 Police Station, New Baltimore “What?” The officer frowned and pushed the circular data tablet across the table to me. On it was an image of the woman I had met at the bar last night. She had green skin, of a shade that

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Shades of White and Orange

Sneaking forwards Kalif slowly tilted his ears to either side and waited in the darkness. Not sensing anything he slowly crept forwards towards the statue, and the artifacts in its base. Slithering as silently as possible Kalif focused his eyes on the objects, as if afraid they might disappear at any time. Reaching the statue

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Mother Earth

Mother Earth. She’s a bitch. A hard ass bitch who tortured every form of life that she brought forth onto her surface. Every life form on her surface had to fight, feed and fuck. After that she didn’t care about what happened, only that they had improved on themselves perhaps a little bit. Life on

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Nyx fired off another shot from her rifle and the Prod nearly 800 meters down the street jerked and ducked into an ally. She frowned and sharpened her gaze on the point where the purple mass had disappeared, looking for the telltale red fragments on the pavement. “More of ’em?” asked Iyo, he was whispering

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Adam, Artemis, Atlas, & Icarus Part 2

The data streams slammed into me. With practiced ease, I pushed them aside and forced myself to view the data from afar. To not see it as billions of lines of code, but rather as the small white room that any other human would see. Floating in the center of that white room was Artemis,

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Adam, Artemis, Atlas, & Icarus Part 1

0 days Adam “You’re insane.” “Your point is what?” She rolled her eyes and tightened the straps holding me to the chair. “The point is that someone who can’t move shouldn’t really be this snippy.” She gestured at the plethora of medical equipment around us. “I’m sure I can do some interesting things with all

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Waters of Babylon – Tikkun Olam Part 1

For it is He who delivers you from the snare of the trapper and of the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his pinions, and under His wings you may seek refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and a bulwark. —Psalm 93: 3-4 Date Point: 14Y 3M AV Office of Rabbi Uwriy Walden New

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Causal Results – Chapter 6: Squeaking By

Bellona 9 Years, 7 Months, 28 Days After Eridani Landing “We can do it!” Bemusement. Tinner cocked his head from his potion on the foot of her bunk. “We failed during the simulation, and that was with the entire class. How will the two of us complete the simulation alone?” Mary rolled her two eyes

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Waters of Babylon – Tzedakah Part 4

Date Point: 14Y 2M 1W 5D AV The Thing, Folctha, Cimbrean Sister Naydra It was with some trepidation that Naydra attended a Meeting of Mothers. By all accounts, this was a continuation of a previous Meeting, which wasn’t so unusual—such Meetings were rare and never called for simple reasons that could be easily resolved. What

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Good Training – Survival Part 10

Date point: 14y 9m 2w 1d AV Trail hiking, Lakebeds National Park, west of Foltcha, Cimbrean Hayley Tisdale Julian had been quite firm that he wouldn’t do a sweat lodge or anything like that. She understood, there was some controversy about cultural appropriation and all that nonsense, and Julian seemed like he’d rather not be

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Waters of Babylon – Tzedakah Part 3

Date Point: 14Y 1M 3W AV HMS Sharman, Folctha, Cimbrean Toran and Tybal “Shhh…” “You shhh…. I’m already ssssh’ing.” The two cubs, having crept past the outer fence surrounding the base, slinked in behind a short hedge and remained motionless. It was late enough that the nightly rain had, overall, stopped, but early enough that

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Causal Results – Chapter 5

Ruck, Willinkree Year 3042 Day 35 “No! Let go of me!” shouted [Sil] as she struggled to break the brute’s hold. The class C stared dumbly back at her, glaring at him [Sil] pulled at her bonds and sat down on the ground unable to make them even budge in the large alien’s hands. On

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Waters of Babylon – Tzedakah Part 2

Date Point: 14Y 1M AV The Thing, Folctha, Cimbrean A Meeting of Mothers was much like a Conclave of Champions, and it was only coincidence that both terms alliterated nicely in English. Neither was terribly common, and both were typically invoked by their various constituencies to deal with an issue bigger than any one constituent

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Waters of Babylon – Tzedakah Part 1

For He will instruct His angels in your behalf, to guard you in all your ways. They will carry you in their hands, lest you hurt your foot on a rock. You will tread upon the lion and the viper; you will trample upon the young lion and the serpent —Psalm 91 Date Point: 14Y

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Good Training – Survival Part 9

Date point: 14y 9m 1d AV Planet Akyawentuo, The Ten’Gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Meeting of Given-Men Yan Given-Man “When will Jooyun return and take the Rite of Manhood?” Yan mopped some of the sweat from his crest and loosened up his crushing grip on his challengers. “Soon,” he said confidently. “Soon.” Fall was almost

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Causal Results – Chapter 4

Species C543 System 4 Years 2 months 23 days Before C1764 FTL Jump “Ma’am.” [Sil] tried to turn away from the noise and tried to remain in the blissful realm of unconsciousness. “Ma’am!” [Sil] forced her eyes open and let out a low groan of pain. [Fred] was next to her on the ground, her

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Good Training – Survival Part 8

Date point: 14y 9m 1d AV Total Combat Fitness, southwest Folctha, Cimbrean Mid-morning Dr. Marc Tisdale Marc was, at heart, a gentle man. He had love for most everyone he met and refused to hold anger for anyone or anything unless they had truly, irrevocably earned it. That said, he was still a man and

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Causal Results – Chapter 3

Species C543 System 4 Years 2 months 27 days Before C1764 FTL Jump [Sil] looked at the controls for the pod and slowly shook her head, “This is not good.” [Fred] only able to operate because of the minimal effort needed to move around in zero-g drifted forwards, “I would agree, but what is the

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 56: Dataquake Part 5

Date Point: 16y3m1w Memorial Concourse, Old Commune of the Clan of Females, City of Wi Kao, Planet Gao Mother Shoua There were days when Shoua missed the old commune, at the other end of the city. The new commune was larger, more modern and much more secure of course but… …But the old one had

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 56: Dataquake Part 4

Date Point: 16y3m1w Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Ramsey Buehler Ramsey didn’t think he’d ever get used to being one of the cool kids at school. Actually, just going to school was kinda weird after all the home schooling he and Tristan had had back on Earth, but whenever he and his brother had got

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Henosis – Chapter 4

“Hey, that’s my suit!” A naked Gaoian fell on the Hunter from the tree above, landing on the sextupedal predator’s back. The impact was enough to stagger the creature, and Keegi was nearly thrown off. The claws of one paw extended, sinking into the Hunter’s glossy flesh as he held on as hard as he

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 56: Dataquake Part 3

Date Point: 16y3m6d HMS Sharman (HMNB Folctha), Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Technical Sergeant Adam “Warhorse” Arés “Firth, I gotta ask ‘ya something.” Per Colonel Powell’s standing orders, they had the rest of the day off for individual training time after a mission. Adam always took maximum advantage, but some of the other operators might use

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Causal Results – Chapter 2

First Landing Earth, Florida, Launch pad 39A April 12, 2033 “Ignition Sequence start, five, four, three, two, one, lift off!” The crowds several miles away from the historic launch pad watched as the craft slowly began to move up into the atmosphere. Almost an homage to the craft that had taken Humans to the moon

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Good Training – Survival Part 7

Date point: 14y 8m 2w 2d AV The Dog House, Folctha, Cimbrean Late afternoon Julian Etsicitty Agony. If Adam had a singular talent that stood out, it would have to be his supernatural ability to give his training victims some very dramatic results by inflicting insane amounts of pain. Julian both dreaded and eagerly anticipated

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Henosis – Chapter 3

Virtrew had been relaxing in the starboard docking array. He’d been feeling inspired and creative for the past ten-day… it was too late to alter the structure of the current station, but he had ideas for the next. He was off-shift, so he’d picked up his data tablet, a bowl full of Vzk’tk salad, and

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 56: Dataquake Part 2

Date Point: 16y3m6d η Ithacae, 94.9° 12-GERBER-UNARY G2V III, “Heafield” Technical Sergeant Adam “Warhorse” Arés Every now and then, Adam had a day where every little thing went so well and he found himself firing on all cylinders so perfectly, he could feel right in his big ol’ slab of a chest that exact same

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 56: Dataquake Part 1

Date Point: 16y3m5d AV Hierarchy/Cabal Joint Communications session #1772 ++0010++: Proximal’s continued absence is a source of concern, and investigating has been forced to take a low priority by other operations. His last known activity was in an Irujzen-1-adjacent sub-lucid volume. ++0004++: Irujzen? Why was he all the way out there? That’s a backwater! ++0022++:

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Henosis – Chapter 2

The mess hall on the station was a cavernous space on one of the mid-decks in the core, overlooking the long central shaft. It was a temporary arrangement… once the station was near-complete, a merchant or restaurateur would be enticed into setting up a proper dining area, whereupon the space would be converted in whatever

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 55: Reinvention Part 5

Date Point: 16y3m5d AV Planet Rauwryhr, The Rauwryhr Republic, Perseus Arm Ambassador Sir Patrick Knight Rauwran Great Trees were… They were quite a thing to behold. Each one was as thick around at the base as a cricket ground, and soared up and up and up until their canopy was an invisible dark haze high

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Henosis – Chapter 1

[2yr 1m AV] Trrkitzzkt L’tr’brtrk’tr quietly filed away the video files of the interviews he’d completed, queuing a copy to be sent via the station’s normal data exchange to his personal archive, in addition to the backup copy he kept on his personal data tablet. Both were encrypted with the strongest algorithms the investigator had

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Causal Results – Chapter 1

Dorvakian Home World 4 Years 3 months 8 days Before C1764 FTL Jump Looking across the grounds for several moment’s Silnersalkara tapped the table in front of her. The data controls embedded in the device quickly shut off and the hologram above its surface died. “Kermarcus, I’m aware of the situation. The opposition’s been attempting

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 55: Reinvention Part 4

Date Point: 16y3m AV Planet Akyawentuo, Ten’Gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Yan Given-Man “I like these Core-tie.” “You do? Why the change of heart?” When the ‘del-a-gay-shun’ had returned, there was of course much eagerness to learn the news. Yan was very happy to tell everyone they would be getting vack-seens from the Core-tie as

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Good Training – Survival Part 6

Date point: 14y 8m AV Residence of the Great Father of the Gao, Folctha, Cimbrean Sister Naydra The months on Cimbrean had been…therapeutic. She found herse lf greatly appreciating the Female presence on the Human’s first colony world, and everything it stood for: stability, acceptance. Survival. The Humans had done so much to support the

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 55: Reinvention Part 3

Date Point: 16y3m AV USS Robert A. Heinlein, Akyawentuo Orbit, the Ten’Gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Third Director Tran Some of the other Directors had expressed reservations when Tran had informed them he was taking Nofl along to the meeting with the Ten’Gewek. He’d invested some of their trust and patience by reassuring them that

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 55: Reinvention Part 2

Date Point: 16y2m3w AV Hierarchy/Cabal Joint Communications session #1722 ++0008++: In summary, the infiltration of Sol means the operation was a success, though not an unqualified one. We have four Injunctors on Earth, and a further two in the outer system, but the new Arutech biodrones appear to be an abject failure. The Cimbrean infiltration

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Rising Titans – Chapter 51 (End)

9 Years, 7 Months, 2 Days After Eridani Landing Chront Leaning down and putting her head to the table Stagg yawned. “Try the tea,” repeated Derrick sounding just as exhausted as she felt. The Captain turned to look at the engineer and then at the small pot on the table. “I did. Taste’s like mold.”

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 55: Reinvention Part 1

Date Point: 16y2m3w AV Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Daar, Great Father of the Gao “Hey, this ain’t a bad little house at all!!” Daar followed in behind Gorku, who was carrying a completely exhausted Leemu on his back and had to mind his steps. “Humans know how to build houses arright,” he agreed. “Maybe

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 54: Here Be Dragons Part 6

Date Point: 16y2m2w1d AV Planet Akyawentuo, Ten’Gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Vemik Sky-Thinker One of the Human archaeologists was a metallurgist. Tilly was a strange and delicate name that didn’t suit her at all, Vemik thought. She had a sharp face full of metal piercings, skin full of bright pictures, and a half-shaven crest of

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Good Training – Survival Part 5

Date point: 14y 2m 3w 4d AV SOR barracks, HMS Sharman, Folctha, Cimbrean, The Far Reaches Meanwhile… Brother Faarek (Southpaw) of Clan Whitecrest–SOR “Are you sure you want to do this, Brother?” “Yes,” Thurrsto said with absolute conviction. “She’s the most beautiful Female I’ve ever seen and she’s hurting. I can’t bear doing nothing.” Faarek

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 54: Here Be Dragons Part 5

ESNN Magazine article: “Prisons In Their Head- an interview at Camp Tebbutt” Author and photographer: Ava Magdalena Ríos [Cover image: two men seated on a bench in front of a chain-link fence, with a stunning Alaskan vista behind them. On the left is a scruffy bearded white man with shaggy salt-and-pepper hair, and next to

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Rising Titans – Chapter 50

+15 Minutes The Canada “Can this thing fly?” Shouted Pankin as a rattling howl began to echo through the ship, the crew members on what was now the ceiling tightening their straps as objects that had been floating began to rattle on the floor as the ship dove deeper into the atmosphere of the planet.

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 54: Here Be Dragons Part 4

Date Point: 16y2m2w AV Weaver dropship, Rich Plains contact volume, Kwmbwrw Great Houses TSgt Timothy “Tiny” Walsh All throughout the ordeal of becoming HEAT and finally earning the Mass, the one thing running through Walsh’s head was that one day, he too would serve at their level. Do the mission like none other. Walk through

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 54: Here Be Dragons Part 3

Date Point: 16y2m1w5d AV Camp Tebbutt Biodrone Internment Facility, Yukon-Koyukuk, Alaska, USA, Earth Ava Ríos “You ever rode a helicopter before, Ava?” Ava jumped, and looked away from the window. She’d been enjoying the view. It was her first trip to Alaska, and the thing that struck her as she’d watched the landscape rolling by

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 54: Here Be Dragons Part 2

Date Point: 16y2m1w2d AV Gaoian embassy, Alien Quarter, Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Daar, Great Father of the Gao There was shit to catch up with. Stuff to read, stuff to make decisions on, stuff to be briefed on in case he had to make a decision later… At first Daar did his best to

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Good Training – Survival Part 4

Date point: 14y 2m 1w AV Planet Akyawentuo, The Ten’Gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Singer “So, if we salt the roots in boiling water with some herbs, and use a very tight…what was the word?” [“Jar,”] Julian said encouragingly. “—And then we boil the whole jar with the lid on loose, so the bad spirits

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Rising Titans – Chapter 49

+10 Minutes The Singer [Vann] stood in the center of the bridge the three-dimensional hologram showing the entirety of his fleet as well as the surrounding space. The cubic formation was going to be tested now, up to this point the only gauge of effectiveness was how [Charles] had reacted to it in simulations. He

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 54: Here Be Dragons Part 1

Date Point: 16y2m5d AV Planet Akyawentuo, Ten’Gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Xiù Chang Yan was having to explain himself. It wasn’t that the men who’d come out to hunt the Brown One were disappointed, exactly. None of them had been looking forward to the battle at all. They all knew the stories of how many

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 53: The Wild Hunt Part 6

Date Point: 16y2m4d AV Planet Akyawentuo, the Ten’gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Julian Etsicitty Daar caught up with them about an hour after Xiù called ahead to let them know he was coming. A lot had happened in that hour. Yan had laid out his bibtaws in a kind of scent lure, some distance out

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 53: The Wild Hunt Part 5

Date Point: 16y2m3d AV Gaoian embassy, Alien Quarter, Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Daar, Great Father of the Gao People who didn’t know Daar all that well thought he had a pathological aversion to Civilized pursuits. Not true at all! Daar had always enjoyed history, writing, and the more subtle arts of courtship, and he

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 53: The Wild Hunt Part 4

Date point: 16y2m3d AV Planet Akyawentuo, the Ten’Gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Daniel “Chimp” Hoeff Julian had a habit of singing in the woods. Not loud, exactly, and Hoeff wasn’t even sure he was totally conscious he was doing it, but loud enough to hear. Apparently it kept critters from blundering into them that might

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Rising Titans – Chapter 48

+ 7 Minutes 38 Seconds The Canada “Captain, your message?” asked Arik as her Avatar superimposed itself over the main monitor. “Surrender now, call off the fighters and we’ll let you live. Then we can begin to negotiate for an end to this pointless violence.” “That’s it?” asked Arik after a moment. “Unless anyone else

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Good Training – Survival Part 3

Date point: 14y 1m 2w AV “Clan Young Glory,” western unincorporated territories, Gao Sister Naydra Naydra and her fellow Sisters were slowly dying. The “Clan” that had “liberated” them from the clutches of what they now knew were biodrones had decided their honored guests needed “protection.” Their so-called protection consisted of imprisonment. Their “protection fees”

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 53: The Wild Hunt Part 3

Date point: 16y2m3d AV Planet Akyawentuo, the Ten’Gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Professor Daniel Hurt “What exactly did he say he’s fetching, anyway?” “An M107.” Daniel frowned. Although he’d learned more about firearms in general over the past few years than he’d ever imagined he would, there were times that the people who really “got”

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 53: The Wild Hunt Part 2

Date Point: 16y2m1d AV Chiune Station, Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Allison Buehler Allison hadn’t slept well in a couple of nights. It wasn’t that she begrudged Julian and Xiù going offworld, not at all, but it did disrupt the sense of familiarity that made home, well… Home. If she didn’t have her brothers to

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Rising Titans – Chapter 47

+ 30 Seconds The Canada “The Empire ships are now in range of the ACE field!” reported Arik. Stagg grimaced as the ship shook “Activate,” “New contact!” shouted Arik interrupting. “What?” “IFF is identifying the vessel as the HSB Russia, they just exited a spatial rupture directly between us and the Empire fleet!” “Open communications!”

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 53: The Wild Hunt Part 1

Date Point: 16y2m1d AV personal sanctum, Dataspace. Cynosure/Six Data sophonts did not sleep, and thus did not dream. Nevertheless, Cynosure had a recurring nightmare of sorts. When his attention wandered, he found that it almost inevitably alighted on a handful of disturbing subjects. The details varied, as he worried at different aspects of the problems

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Good Training – Survival Part 2

Date point: 14y 7d AV Planet Akyawentuo, The Ten’Gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Later that day Julian Etsicitty It was approaching mid-day and the day’s morning work had been taken care of. The scouts had come back and reported that the nearby werne had just calved and would need to be left alone for a

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 52: Autoimmune Part 6

Date Point: 16y2m AV Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Daar, Great Father of the Gao “Poor bugger hardly knew which way is up…” Powell grunted, once Wagner was gone. “Who can blame him? His whole crew going violently psychotic on him with no warning, only to be stasis-hopped right into a Corti’s lab being sniffed

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 52: Autoimmune Part 5

Date Point: 16y2m AV Folctha, Cimbrean, The Far Reaches Julian Etsicitty The house was a mess when Julian got back, which was rare. Nobody in their household was naturally untidy—living on Misfit had driven Allison, Xiù and himself into an ingrained habit of orderliness, and the boys had lived in fear of their father’s belt

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 52: Autoimmune Part 4

Date Point: 16y2m AV Hierarchy/Cabal Joint Communications session #1536 ++Asymptote++: I have bad news. It would seem our new drones are detectable. ++0004++: <Dismay> you’re certain? ++Asymptote++: The force I sent to Cimbrean was captured immediately upon arrival. ++0007++: How? ++Asymptote++: Unclear. The Arutech drones don’t report as concisely as conventional biodrones. The connection is…

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 52: Autoimmune Part 3

Date Point: 16y2m AV The Thinghall, Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Gabriel Arés Every civilization needed its icon of executive power. The UK had the black door of Number Ten Downing Street and, somewhere behind it, the Cabinet Room; the USA had the White House, and the Oval Office; Folctha had the Alien Palace. The

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Good Training – Survival Part 1

You may also want to read Pyrophytes in The Deathworlders series. Same story, different angles. Date point: 14y 7d AV Planet Akyawentuo, The Ten’Gewek Protectorate, Near 3Kpc Arm Professor Daniel Hurt “You want me to read it by next week?” Julian mopped the sweat from his face and bounced loosely in place. “What was it

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Rising Titans – Chapter 45

-7 Hours CHRONT THE CANADA “More contacts!” said Arik as she flashed every monitor on the bridge a bright red. Stagg glanced up at the monitor, “How many more?” “I’m counting!” “You’re counting!?” A grainy image of the approaching Empire patrol vessel was quickly displayed, a small box around it. Additional boxes quickly filled the

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 52: Autoimmune Part 2

Date Point: 16y2m AV Alien Quarter, Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Nofl Leemu had become unresponsive. Nofl’s quarantine facility had alerted him after the patient had been anomalously still for twenty minutes, and the reason why became obvious upon a quick inspection of the cell: Leemu was sprawled on his back, staring blissfully up at

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Good Training – April Fool’s

13y 3m 29d AV One-Fang workhouse, Alien Quarter, Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Sergeant Regaari (Dexter) of Clan SOR One of the best things about the humans was that they had a springtime holiday dedicated to mischief. Before them, only the Gao could claim to celebrate such a thing and it was one of the

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 52: Autoimmune Part 1

Date Point: 16y2m AV Alien Quarter, Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Nofl Nofl’s lab was spacious, but inevitably finite. When it contained an alarming number of alarmed Humans, not to mention one particularly sculpted canine and a Gaoian brownie who was doing his best not to loom at everyone… well, there were times when Nofl

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 51: Anticlimax Part 5

Date Point: 16y2m AV Folctha, Cimbrean, the Far Reaches Allison Buehler After a lifetime of helicopter parenting, Tristan and Ramsey seemed addicted to every opportunity they could find to do something their mother would have scooted them away from. And who could blame them? Amanda had never managed to get her head around the idea

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Rising Titans – Chapter 44

9 Years, 6 Months, 28 Days After Eridani Landing Deep Space The Russia shuddered again as the engines slowly powered down and the ship slid out of the red blue haze that was the tachyon FTL corridor. James blinked several times trying to clear the haze from his eyes as the regular black background of

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 51: Anticlimax Part 4

Date Point: 16y1m AV Dataspace adjacent to Mrwrki Station Entity The Entity understood the concept of boredom in an academic, abstract way. It could even vaguely summon up Ava’s memories of being bored. But understanding the idea and actually feeling the emotion were two different things. The closest it could get was the sensation of

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 51: Anticlimax Part 3

Date Point: 16y2w AV Air Force One, somewhere over Asia, Earth President Arthur Sartori “…You want to give us a Farthrow generator.” Daar’s image was janky and low-resolution thanks to the vagaries of current wormhole comms, but the audio was a lot clearer now. Technology marched onwards. “It’s loaded up on a train and ready

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Good Training – Pecking Order

13y, 8m AV Operator’s Barracks, HMS Sharman, Folctha, Cimbrean Officer Regaari (Dexter) of Clan Whitecrest “I got an idea, Regaari.” Regaari flicked his ears forward in annoyance. “This again?” “Well, yeah. I gotta win that bet, Cousin!” Regaari duck-nodded wearily. Not long after Daar had received the SACRED STRANGER briefing, he’d sulked off to think

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Good Training – The Champions – Tidying Up

Messier 24 Mission day: 3 Sergeant Daar (Tigger) The third day was always when things settled into routine. Daar didn’t really know why, ‘cuz that was prol’ly some complicated psychology stuff (maybe he should read up?) but he did know how it worked, practically speaking. Daar always pondered morning thoughts like that when he was

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 51: Anticlimax Part 2

Date Point: 16y2w AV Weaver dropship, Gaoian space Sergeant Ian “Hillfoot” Wilde “So in all the excitement, we clean forgot about these things. That’s what you’re telling me.” Champion Meereo made a sound that was half a sigh and half a chitter. “…That’s more-or-less exactly right, yes. We had… well, bigger priorities.” Wilde had to

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Rising Titans – Chapter 43

9 Years, 6 Months, 28 Days After Eridani Landing Bellona “Ready?” asked Alpha from where he sat on top of the Captain’s chair. “I’m good!” said Red from where he sat at the controls for the ship. It hadn’t taken much to convince him to pilot the vessel. James glanced down at his own console

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 51: Anticlimax Part 1

Date Point: 16y AV Yukon–Koyukuk, Alaska, USA, Earth Zane Reid The cold didn’t hurt anymore. At first, it had been like forcing his way through a wall made of knives that cut through his clothes. Zane’s every breath had blinded him as it billowed and steamed in the air, and when he’d experimentally licked his

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 50: Counterattack – Trigger Part 5

Date Point: 16y AV Camp Tebbutt Biodrone Internment Facility, Yukon–Koyukuk, Alaska, USA, Earth Hugh Johnson Snow. Of course, snow in January in Alaska was hardly surprising, and this one threatened to be heavy. At first, Hugh had thought it was probably just an seasonable dusting that’d add a couple of inches to the foot or

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I had made my way through the tournament, but most of my matches had been won by the skin of my teeth, and I had only the advantage of being evolved from a pursuit predator to thank for it. Our great endurance had been the one boon that had kept me going, and I was

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 50: Counterattack – Trigger Part 4

Date Point: 15y 10m 1w AV HMS Violent, Rvzrk System, Domain Space The ground battle churned on for days. That was the problem with Hunters. There was no surrender involved, it was a kill-or-be-killed fight where smashing their will to engage in war simply didn’t achieve enough. Any Hunter left alive would just keep murdering

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Good Training – The Champions – Doom and Gloom Part 4

He awoke to a pleasant smell. “…Eggs?” Hoeff detangled himself from Natalie and the sheets and stumbled towards the kitchen. Daar was busy in front of the comparatively little stove and fridge, humming some terrible Gaoian tune to himself. Seriously, their music was like Chinese opera with extra pain. Some Humans liked it, though…but “atonal”

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Rising Titans – Chapter 42

9 Years, 6 Months, 15 Days After Eridani Landing The [Singer] The explosion hit and [Vann] watched at the lights on the main hologram and different panels flashed a blinding white light, before dying and plunging the entire bridge of the [Singer] into darkness. “What were we supposed to do?” asked someone near the weapons

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Day 1. I’ve made it on board the human trading vessel! They didn’t detect my presence, and I’ve managed to smuggle myself into their engineering bay, and disguised myself within a cluster of cables! My small, serpentine body makes me indistinguishable from a thin, grayish cable, and the Humans won’t notice my existence until it

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 50: Counterattack – Trigger Part 1

Date Point: 15y 10m AV Camp Tebbutt Biodrone Internment Facility, Yukon–Koyukuk, Alaska, USA, Earth Hugh Johnson Camp Tebbutt wasn’t actually a bad place to live, if you didn’t count the fact that it was essentially a prison for innocent victims. Hugh understood why he was there, and why he couldn’t leave… but after eleven years,

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Good Training – The Champions – Doom and Gloom Part 3

Firth Regaari chittered, “It is difficult to imagine you ‘humbled,’ Righteous.” “Heh,” Firth chuckled. “You do know most of my attitude is straight fuckin’ bullshit, right? Adam and John know why.” Regaari looked over at John, who shrugged massively. “He’s a scary dude. Being ridiculous kinda takes the edge off, y’know?” Regaari duck-nodded. He was

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Rising Titans – Chapter 41

9 Years, 6 Months, 13 Days After Eridani Landing Jikse Moving down the hallway Diana paused at the double doors, carefully she moved forwards into it’s threshold and they slid open. A woman in an orange smock looked up from her Comm for a moment, and then going back to look at it did a

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The Good Samaritan

I felt a white-hot pain in my back as I was stabbed. Once, twice and then three times. I fell to the ground clutching my new openings, and for a moment I couldn’t grasp what had just happened. I had walked through an alley as a shortcut back home, and then suddenly someone had grabbed

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 50: Counterattack – Homefront Part 6

Date Point: 15y9m3w AV Mrwrki Station, Erebor System, Unexplored Space Darcy “Does it seem… different to you lately?” “What?” “The Entity. It’s actin’ different, dude, I swear it is.” Darcy sighed and set aside her work as Lewis sat down. She was sitting drinking a Moroccan Mint tea in the station’s rec lounge, with its

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Rising Titans – Chapter 40

9 Years, 6 Months, 13 Days After Eridani Landing Jikse Popping the restraints off of her legs Diana swung herself off of the table, the two class A’s still in their isolation suits were pounding at the door of the room the three of them were in. “It’s out! Open the door!” shouted the man

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Good Training – The Champions – Doom and Gloom Part 2

Master Sergeant Christian (Righteous) Firth The end of the movie came and the ladies were fast asleep and prolly too tired to head home with any comfort. The other bros were asleep, too, and Firth was tangled up with them pretty good. Oh well, both ‘Base and ‘Horse were heavy-ass sleepers and only danger or

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Hell. It’s a completely Human concept. The concept of a realm of eternal torture, to which you are sent depending on the whims of one deity or another, is something only found in Human fiction. And it’s not an isolated occurrence. Almost every human culture since the dawn of humanity itself has had it in

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The Deathworlders – Chapter 50: Counterattack – Homefront Part 4

Date Point: 15y9m2w AV HMS Sharman (HMNB Folctha), Cimbrean, The Far Reaches Senior Master Sergeant Christian (“Righteous”) Firth “Hey, fuckers! Guess what hit the newsstand today!” Adam looked up from his needlework for a second and raised an eyebrow. “Imma guess Coombes’ centerfold spread with Ava?” Firth deflated, somewhat flummoxed that ‘Horse had stolen his

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