Chapter 1: Treason

(Yes I did take artistic liberties with some of the weapons and such. I am allowed since it is never detailed in game. Also this is the first rough draft but people are asking for it so here it is.)

Chapter 1: Treason

“Ambassador…” the alien announced in his unique, somewhat out of place accent that spoke of a limited exposure to galactic basic, the language of the trader worlds. “We know.. that our… racesss… have had… isssuesss. In the passsst.” The alien continued, his dialect broken, it seemed his pauses were merely to find the right words. “But today… we sstand on the edge of a new… agreement…” The Vasari stood before his smaller human counterpart, a holographic display floating on the table between them. To their left there was a window, which offered a stunning view of the planet Sthenlos, which the orkulus star base orbited. The holographic display in the centre of the table showed the planet and its gravity well, as well as the locations of the opposing fleets. Although the purpose of the meeting was diplomatic relations, both sides had turned out in force, and each side was itching to fire. The Vasari and the TEC had long had a vile relationship, nothing but violence and war with one another. Only in recent years had the possibilities arisen for diplomacy to take precedence.

“Indeed we are. Let us get right down to business then.” Ambassador Lupin offered, already seated in a chair that was just a little too big for him. His icy yet charismatic gaze trained on the large alien consort who now sat across the table from him. “As you know we at the TEC are mainly traders, only through necessity have we become warriors, and we would like to bring this war to an end, if we may do this here and now. Then let us.” The Vasari consort pulled a small device from the holographic display pad and gently placed it into what the human could only assume was one of his ears. The translator enabled him to better speak and understand Galactic Basic.

“The Vassari people have never truly desired war. However there are many among uss who are stuck in the old ways, before the shadowssss began to push uss out of our own empire. Are you familiar with our hissstory missster Lupin?”

“To a degree yes. I know the Vasari people once ruled a vast empire, bringing many planets under control swiftly with powerful fleets. We at the TEC understand that you are on the run from a mysterious shadow that has been creeping through your empire, taking your worlds from you. It is our understanding that you attacked us because you hoped to subjugate us, potentially use us to try to hold off the shadow while you gathered resources to fund research into what this shadow is and how to fight it.”

“Yesss, thisss is correct.” The large creature hissed, his voice serpentine in nature despite his almost birdlike appearance. “But we…..” The Vasari consort was interrupted by a loud alarm that had begun to chime. On the holographic display one of the blips, a TEC Marza dreadnaught was flashing between red and green. “TRAITORSSS!” The alien screeched. Leaping over the table in a single bound, surprisingly nimble for his large size, He had Lupin by the throat in seconds. “Why is your fleet charging weapons?” Unnoticed on the holographic display, all of the Vasari ships had begun to flash red and blue in response.

“Diverting anti matter to siege weapons” A calm robotic voice cooed through the PA system on board the Marza Dreadnaught Pride of Mjolnir, The flagship of Commodore Ashleigh Johansson’s TEC battle group, which had been tasked to escort the envoy to the Vasari star base over Sthenlos.

“No no no NO!” Ashleigh cried out in a fit of panic. Her blond ponytail bobbing as she spun about in her mobile command chair. ‘SVEN! GET THOSE GUNS OFFLINE NOW!” She screamed. She had to calm down, to prevent the panic from over taking her. She was a trained officer for goodness sake! If she could not keep it together how could she hope for her crew too.

“I cannot Commodore!” Sven came back, his accent thick and easily noticeably Swedish.

“The system has locked me out Ma’am. I cannot even see who charged the guns or authorised their use.”

“Siege weapons 80% charged” The calm female voice chimed in again, clearly an AI of some form. The command board lit up and klaxons rang throughout the ship. Sensors showing that the enemies were charging weapons, Now all of the Fleet was charging up their weapons too. Ashleigh rapidly tried the comms, slamming her fist on the button in frustration as all that blasted at her was the high pitched squeal of a jamming signal. Time seemed almost to slow to a standstill as the siege weapons charged their final percentage. Nothing Sven had done was successful at preventing this moment. Now, in that split second before the weapon fired, Commodore Johansen realised that her ship was about to be responsible for ruining all plans. The part that affected her the most, was the knowledge that the planet below, was filled with innocent Vasari civilians and workers, gathering resources to keep themselves alive. There was no military installation, just poorly defended colonies.

“firing” A primal roar echoed throughout the large ship as the siege guns fired their first salvo, the entire ship shuddering as the 3000 megaton “planet shaker” shells were plunged into the crust of Sthenlos at 40000 mile an hour speeds by the massive siege guns. The dust clouds from the impacts were visible from space, when the shells exploded, massive cracks began to appear in the surface of the planet, the planet shaker rounds were designed to burrow several miles into the crust of a planet and then explode, causing violent earthquakes across the surface of the entire planet, they were deployed to deal with all subsurface infrastructures. The AI voice then chimed in once more, sounding far happier than it should.

“Loading Incendiary shells.” A muffled ‘thunk’ ran through the ship 4 times.

“Firing” Once again the entire ship shuddered, the primal roar from the siege guns firing easily audible over the klaxon alarms. Ashleigh could only watch as the incendiary shells slammed into the planets crust. These shells were even more deadly than the planet shakers. Upon the shells impact, a fountain of fire jetting up into the atmosphere could be seen, the fire was then observed swiftly spreading across the entire planet, from pole to pole. These rounds set the planets’ atmosphere alight, burning away all surface and aerial based infrastructures. Nothing could survive on a planet after the siege guns fired their combination of rounds into it.

“Ma’am the enemy weapons are charged. They’re opening up” Sven’s voice pulled her from her stunned daze, Snapping her back to reality. “The rogue AI has disappeared ma’am, no trace of it, I have full systems control again and the comms are back up.”

“Broadcast a message Sven. This ship was infiltrated by a rogue AI; make sure everyone knows we did not fire willingly. Now divert anti matter to the shields and order a full retreat. Lupin is likely already dead and we are not going to be able to handle the Vasari fleet.”

Ashleigh let out a small sigh. Someone had infiltrated her ship, she had no idea whom, but she was going to find out.

“All ships this is the flagship Pride of Mjolnir! Stand down and move to retreat from the system immediately. This is not a fight we can handle. I say again. All ships retreat immediately. The weapons discharge was beyond our control, a rogue AI had infiltrated our systems and Jammed our comms. We will explain all when we are in transit.” The large flagship turned slowly on its axis, kicking its engines into high gear as it attempted to escape the gravity well, the computers were already running the telemetry required for phase jumps. To either side of her the ships were rotating in place, turning to retreat as ordered. It was then that the bridge flashed bright orange, As the fleet had been turning to run the Vasari had been closing the small distance, already their strike craft were engaging the retreating fleet, the orange flash was a flak frigate exploding, they were targeting the dangerous ships first, and on account of the stand down order, many of the ships had cooled down weapons. Ashleigh then pressed the button for comms and broadcast her own message to the fleet.

“Do not return fire. I say again do not return fire, we do not need to show the Vasari more hostilities, we’ve already made a big enough mess.” Unnoticed by all parties involved, a small black shuttle took off from the Pride of Mjolnir and disappeared, moving to hide in the dark side of the planet where it would remain undetected until it was safe to move.

Inside of the orkulus, Lupin was being held to the window, he had watched with horror as the planet had been torched right before him, millions of innocent Vasari civilians snuffed in an instant.

“I didn’t have anything to do with that, I swear I had no idea it was going to happen!” He tried to stammer, but his argument seemed half hearted, he was of course being honest. Still the Vasari held him to the window. He was forced to watch as his own escort, the friendly battle group, turned tail and ran.  He grimaced when he saw the opening barrage of phase missiles tear into the nearest Kol battleship as it was turning. The missiles phased right through the ships shields and exploded along the broadside, tearing massive holes in the side. It was clear even from this distance that the ship was venting air, a large cloud of white mist could be seen ejecting from the holes. It was then that it’s engines went dark, No longer giving off power. The second barrage struck about 30 seconds after the first, and the entire ship, which had begun listing in space, exploded in a violent ball of fire and light. As the frigates turned to accelerate they were torn into by the relentless waves of strike fighters and bombers, nothing was going to save them at this rate and the entire fleet would be torn apart before they could retreat. Lupin meanwhile still feared for his life. The imposing Vasari stood behind him, glaring at him.

“As I am a politician, not a murderer. I will allow you a chance to explain yoursssself and the actionsss of your race.” The alien was clearly angry, if not a little distraught at the loss of his planet, the murder of so many civilians, However he was a politician through and through. He merely stared down upon Lupin, waiting for the explanation.

“Do you have a Comms array?” Lupin questioned “Surely the fleet would have said something about why they did it.” He then hesitantly added.

“Yesss. We heard the broadcasssst from your flagship. Would you like to hear it?”

“No it’s fine. Just tell me. Do you believe what they said?”

“Not at all…” The alien hissed in Lupins ear. It was then that the door slid open and Two armed Vasari  guards marched in carrying cyclic rifles in their hands and aiming them at directly at Lupin.

“He did not try to hurt you Ssssir?” one of the guards questioned the Vasari ambassador.

“No, although his shipsss bombed our planet. I have reason to believe he has no relation to the events that took place. Lock him in a cell for now, we will quessstion him later.” Lupin was looking between the conversing aliens, he knew very little of the Vasari language and they were speaking rather fast. The guards then picked him up and marched him down the halls to the cellblock and threw him into an empty cell. It was at that moment that the remaining TEC ships limped out of the gravity well and disappeared into phase space.

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About Kodasa Sinclair

not much to say... I write all kinds, just because. Contemplating some game ideas.
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