The Disruption (IC)

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Sat Nov 16, 2013 12:46 am

After having been silent for awhile, Gunthiir suddenly stood up. "If I may, my good sirs," he said. "I know I am a Mondarian, and you have little reason to trust me, but," he said, looking at Rakluth, "I beg you listen. Mondar too is a world in need of help."

"My people serve Jiiran, it is true, but I assure you, we do not love him, except a cursed few. We were once a proud people with a rich culture, even a modest space plan, though nothing on par with any of you. But Jiiran came and destroyed all that, with the help of the traitor, Fedrin Marr."

Gunthiir gazed down at the table. "I remember when the strange armies began attacking us, the droids, war machines and soldiers with armor and weapons beyond anything we had ever seen. I remember the anguish and the anger of us all, when we learned that Marr had shown up and personally murdered the High Magistrum, and all of the High Priests who did not manage to escape. At the time, we thought Marr was the only one behind it."

"I remember our final stand at Osla, with the new High Magistrum having been granted military powers, the first one to have received them in centuries. We held the forces off for three days." Gunthiir paused. "Then he came, Jiiran. I remember seeing him and thinking he must be some demon. Our weapons were useless, bouncing off his armor without so much as scratching it. Then he came and stood before the High Magistrum , who faced him fearlessly. But he was no match for him. I'll never forget seeing him die, watching Jiiran pick him and crush his skull like an egg."

Gunthiir looked up. My good people, we are less than Jiiran's servants; we are his slaves. He drives us without mercy, showing no regard for us, only in how he can use us. You have seen how he abandoned us when he left. My people live in slums, dressed in rags. Families rarely have enough to eat, and everyone is forced to work long hours with barley enough to survive. Children are snatched from the families and forced to be soldiers, or worst. I know you may not be very inclined to do anything for us, seeing as we help your enemy, but I beg you, have mercy on us."
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Isbar put his guns away with a grunt. However, as Ambigon spoke, he listened with an increasing interest. Aarin frowned, however, scratching his chin. Allé groaned. "As if Jiiran and the UFIAI weren't enough, now we have to deal a giant swarm? Things just keep looking up, don't they?"

"It does eeem pretty hopeless, doesn't it?" agreed Aarin, though he kept his usual calm. He looked at Ambigon. "Is there anything else you can tell us about these things, the Arachnarche you called them?"

"Yes," said Isbar, showing a rather unusual interest. "Say on."
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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by ViperaUnion on Sat Nov 16, 2013 8:45 pm

Ambigon continued, droning on in his strange, tinny voice, "The Swarm has taken over much of the Fifth Arm, building a massive nest that controls hundreds of worlds. There are more than can be counted, and never is there a time when they are not alert. The Hive does not sleep, it does not eat, they do not grow tired in a fight, as most organics do. They do not even need air, or a fixed temperature, for these creatures can survive in any environment they are faced with, short of living on a star, they can even fly through a vacuum, and not be harmed, so long as a star is close enough. This is why they have not been seen, for they have slowly spread for eight years, feeding on the wreckage left behind by battles. There are classes, each one more dangerous than the last, and their numbers grow faster than they die, for the shortest-lived among them, the Drones, can live for eighty years, though most are killed in accidents, for they are also the least intelligent. However, make no mistake, even though they are the smallest, they are still as large as a fully-grown Wooly Tuskiderm bull." Ambigon turned his head to look at Travis, whose face had gone a near-white shade of grey, in contrast to the normal dark color. Clearly, he knew what a Tuskiderm was, and he was paling at imagining such a creature as dangerous as the Arachnarche were being described as.

Ambigon continued, "There are four ranks, the Drones, the Soldiers, the Commanders, and the Queen. Each one is larger than the last, more powerful, and more intelligent. Drones are practically mindless, having little intelligence, but the swarm mentality that allows them to coordinate their behavior effectively to construct the nest, they are simply workers, nothing more. The soldiers protect the workers, and are more intelligent, having more individuality, and intelligence enough to learn from their mistakes. The Commanders are like people, they understand speech, but cannot speak any language themselves, they have the same range of emotions and intelligence as you, and will protect their queen with their life, for they are fiercely loyal, despite being individuals of their own. The queen herself, I do not know, for I have not seen her, there are too many Arachnarche for me to safely observe her, and I cannot tell you where her nest is. I suspect, she is even more powerful than the Commanders."

Ambigon then lashed his fish-like tail, though he stayed in place, "Please, understand now, what I am going to tell you, and take it to heart. These creatures are not a race with ill intentions, desiring to make war, like the Despot of Jiiran, or the machines of the UFIAI. The Arachnarchy are simply insects, and have done nothing wrong that they know of. They do not see anything wrong with dismantling buildings for the metal, or devouring power sources or the rounds of ray or plasma guns. They merely seek to better themselves, and in truth, do not mean any harm to you directly. I tell you that you must exterminate the queen, and that to kill any of these creatures you must use bullets, blades, or other physical weapons, but please, know that I do not hate them. I am simply telling you you must kill the queen, because the nest will destroy all races and civilizations in the galaxy, if it spreads. To kill because you solely wish to harm is wrong, but there is no shame in killing in self-defense. Do not view these insects as evil, for they are unique in many ways." Odd, that an ancient, eternal energy-being would have a set of morals linked to organic creatures.

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Sat Nov 16, 2013 11:52 pm

Isbar actually smiled. "Sounds like just the sort of thing I've always looked for," he said, almost as if to himself. There seemed to be some sort of grim satisfaction in his voice, and his expression.

Aarin glanced at him, a slight frown on his face. then he returned to Ambigon. "What you describe to us certainly makes things look hopeless. You wish us to destroy the Queen, and without hatred, perfectly understandable. However, it would seem an impossible feet to achieve." He looked thoughtful for a moment. "You say that some of the castes of these creatures are intelligent, and the queen even more so. You also say that these creatures are not motivated by malice, but simply a drive to survive. Is it then really necessary to destroy them? If they are what you say, maybe we could negotiate with them instead. They can't be beyond reasoning, can they?"
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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by curius on Sun Nov 17, 2013 11:59 am

”Maximum force causes maximum effect. By all means, join the main attack if you will. I however have to stress that we are not looking for a conquest but an eradication”, Absolute answered to Jiiran. “I am sending to you our reconnaissance of the Confederacy’s systems”, Absolute continued. “I recommend picking soft targets, preferably civilian, to minimize your casualties. Confederacy’s retaliation will be fierce if I know anything about their way of thinking.”

This conversation caused a thought to momentary fill its mind: Why civilian lives were much more valuable than soldier’s? It was true that Civilians were the ones running the production, but could that be it?  Absolute asked this from its numerous simulated minds it had collected during the war, but their insubstantial thoughts were unable to provide any coherent answer. Some of the more unstable minds broke down, screaming things like “They had nothing to do with it!” and muttering “No, why them? Why why why…”

While Absolute was resetting them to their more stable version, it was suddenly interrupted by the presence of another AI. “Anima”, Absolute addressed the AI. It answered with a feminine, intellectual voice: “I have finished the engineering of our hunter. A fractal, as it was required. Do you have its vessel ready?” “My part is finished. Keeper has finished the theory, and Prospect is working on the prototype. We should nevertheless let the hunter to get used to its vessel. But before that I’d like to meet it”, Absolute asked. “Sure”, Anima answered. “But don’t wait too much from the conversation. It is a hunter, and being a fractal won’t make it better. Here’s the link to it. Oh, and it calls itself Hollow.” Absolute made a virtual equivalent of an eyebrow lift and said: “I probably should have been expecting a name like that. Anyway, let me connect…”

Absolute took the link that connected it to a virtual storage. From the perspective of a virtual being storage appeared as a silent and featureless space with no visible dimensions. It was like an empty canvas, with the exception that even the canvas was absent. Absolute looked around the space and located a single mind, passively floating in place. Absolute approached it and greeted: “Greetings, Hollow.” “Hello”, it answered. Absolute noted that Hollow’s voice was remarkable by not really being voice at all. It was like text; it had no tone, no gender but not being genderless either. It was like a very silent whisper that was as audible as normal speech. Absolute waited for some time, but since Hollow stayed silent, finally continued: “I am Absolute.” “I know”, Hollow answered. A shade of annoyance passed through Absolute, but it calmly continued: “If you do know who I am, do you know who you are?” “Yes”, Hollow answered. Just as Absolute started to get annoyed again, Hollow spoke again: “I am Hollow. And I am a hunter.”

A reaction resembling a slight smile went briefly trough Absolute’s system. “If you are a hunter, what is your prey?” Absolute asked Hollow. “The Orb”, it promptly answered. Absolute nodded, satisfied to the answer and continued: “Why do you hunt?” Hollow pondered the question, its virtual form twisting and morphing to the tempo of its thoughts. Hollow pondered the question, its virtual form twisting and morphing to the tempo of its thoughts. Finally it answered: “I hunt because I am a hunter.” Absolute thought about the answer, not being fully satisfied. But before Absolute had time to say anything, Hollow spoke again: “Do I have a family?” This question caught Absolute completely unprepared, and now it was Absolute’s turn to ponder. This was one of the downsides of using organic minds in mind-engineering: it was all but impossible to root out all excessive traits. Absolute decided to answer nevertheless: “Yes, you do. The UFIAI is your family.” Hollow’s appearance calmed immediately, and it set down to the passive state it had been before Absolute arrived. “Okay”, it said. Absolute observed it a moment before asking its last question. “Who do you hunt for?” absolute asked, but quickly rephrased: “I mean, who you serve?” “You”, Hollow answered after a moment of thought. “That is incorrect”, Absolute said. Hollow thought some more, and carefully said: “The UFIAI?” “No”, Absolute answered with a patient tone. Now Hollow took its time, thinking and pondering. Again, Hollow’s appearance started to morph, but suddenly it froze entirely. “I serve myself”, it answered.

Absolute disconnected and concentrated its awareness back to Anima. “Hollow fits the task ideally” Absolute said. “I know. I made it”, Anima answered. “Jiiran is a big risk. Perhaps the largest we have ever taken. We need an edge against him.” “Here we have it. Everything should be ready by the time the orb shows up”, Absolute assured.

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by ViperaUnion on Sun Nov 17, 2013 3:25 pm

Ambigon seemed to think about Aarin's question, before responding, "It is possible, but to make peace is no less difficult than exterminating them, for in order to do either one, you must reach the queen. The first of the Swarm you encounter will always be the drones, but as I have said, they have no individuality or intelligence that would make communication with them possible, they only take orders from their queen. They will see your ships, and only register that they are metal, and thus, building materials they can use. Innocent enough, but you would have to kill them, in order to make them leave your ships alone. They would be frightened, and would call in the Soldiers, whose sole purpose is to protect them. The Soldiers are more intelligent, but will see you as dangerous life-forms threatening their weaker siblings, no matter what you do to be nice. You would have to kill the Soldiers, before they killed you. Eventually, a Commander might arrive, which would change the situation considerably."

The energy being lashed his tail, "The Commanders would arrive if the Soldiers were found unable to handle the situation, and would come to fight themselves. If you could speak to the Commanders, and get them to trust you, negotiation is possible, but their intelligence could be a problem, for the Soldiers and Drones are their siblings, and Commanders, unlike the Drones and Soldiers, are capable of anger and rage, and personal thoughts separate from the swarm mentality of the others. Though they will never turn their back on their queen, their mother, they will each see the situation differently. While some might bring themselves to trust you, others may become so furious that they would rather kill you than listen to anything you have to say. I suspect the queen is guarded by hundreds of Commanders alone, and to reach her, you would have to get past them. I know that the Commanders report to the Queen, and I am aware that she listens to their advice, as she most likely never leaves her eggs, and therefore only has their word to go by. You have the queen making the decisions, but to get her on your side, you must first have the trust of the Commanders."

Ambigon was silent for a moment, but then spoke again, "Yes, it is possible, peace is, but there is no easy path or shortcut that can be taken. Peace may be even more difficult, because in order to maintain it, you will have to ask the Queen to do something that she may view as unforgivable. It is possible for one nest to exist in the galaxy without harming anyone else, but if more nests, with their own queens and swarms form, it will be a hopeless cause. Inevitably, the queen will some day lay an egg that hatches into a fertile Arachnarche, a male or female of the monarch caste, capable of finding a mate and creating a new swarm somewhere else. You cannot allow more than one swarm in the galaxy, so you would have to ask the queen to either kill these children, or do something to them so that they are unable to find a mate and reproduce. That is why I find it difficult for you to make peace, because to rob a matriarch of its capability to have children may be a crime amongst the Arachnarche that they cannot forgive."

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Sun Nov 17, 2013 4:39 pm

"Acknowledged," replied Jiiran, before closing transmission. He then called Admiral Marr to his chamber. Together they began discussing different plans and stratagems to get their hands on the Orb.

"I need not discuss with you how vital it is that we remain at least one step ahead of the UFIAI," said Jiiran. "I have no doubt they will try to get the Orb themselves."

"No problem, M'Lord," said Marr. "That should be easy enough. No computer ever beat a real person at creative thinking."

"Don't underestimate them," warned Jiiran. After a bit, they settled on a workable plan. "One other thing," said Jiiran. "Send ships to help them in the offensive against the Confederacy. In the meantime, it is time to test the Prototype. Pick civilian targets."

Marr's grin became absolutely diabolical. "Happily, M'Lord. They always make the most enjoyable targets." Although Jiiran had no objection to killing civilians himself, he inwardly snorted. How he hated this Mondarian!
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Aarin frowned. "Let's hope that could be avoided. There must be some agreement we could reach. However, I suppose the first priority would be to get past the drones with as little killing as possible."

"That might not be so difficult," volunteered Allé. "If we could perhaps cover a ship's hull with something non-metal, or perhaps in someway mask the fact that there is metal, we might be able to deceive the drones into thinking that there is nothing attractive about our ship, and thus get them to ignore us. I'm sure Mott could give lots of help with that." He gazed thoughtfully at the dish containing the powder of Jiiran's armor.

"What is all this talk of making peace?" demanded Isbar suddenly. Everyone looked at him in surprise. Ever since Aarin had brought up the topic, he had frowned, and even looked a trifle frightened for a fleeting moment, as if something he hoped for was being snatched away from him.

"What do you mean, Isbar?" asked Aarin. "Why shouldn't we try for a peaceful alternative?"

"Why should we?" demanded Isbar. "These creatures are a threat to the galaxy, then they ought to be destroyed. Then they won't be a threat any longer."

"If it's possible we can achieve that without violence, then why would we need to destroy?" said Aarin. "I should think that should be the last alternative, only to be used if nothing else will work."

"Why?" said Isbar in chillingly cold tone. "Why should it be the last alternative?"

Aarin looked hard at him fowning. He was obviously beginning to get angry. "Isbar, do you truly realize what you are saying? This isn't just a matter of assassinating a single individual (and even then, I would only do so as a last resort). I don't doubt that killing the queen would result in all of these creatures dying as well. If it was just animals, I wouldn't mind so much. But we are talking about sapient creatures here, or at least, some of them are. Wiping them all out would be genocide."

Isbar snorted. "If that's what has to be done, so be it, I say."

Aarin stared hard at Isbar. "I'm starting to think maybe sending you along wouldn't be such a good idea after all. You might be a danger to the mission."

At this, Isbar's eyes blazed. Standing up, he came over to Aarin. "Don't you even think of leaving me behind!" he hissed.

"Are you threatening me?" said Aarin in quiet, but powerfully firm one. The two stood facing each other for a long tense moment, a regular stare down. Suddenly, Isbar turned away, went to the window, and stood staring out with his arms crossed. "Why exactly do you want to go, Isbar?" said Aarin quietly. Isbar did not answer.
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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by ViperaUnion on Sun Nov 17, 2013 7:40 pm

This time, Ravage was the one to speak, "That's enough, leave it be, he has the right to his own private thoughts, and I would not ask questions." She said, her voice calm, but powerful enough to carry across the room. She could sense, as could everyone else, that there was something troubled about Isbar, as though he had something dark to hide. She felt as though she were dealing with her past self, rather than her present one, and she had been through a time when she was loathe to part with even a small secret. Isbar would only tell about himself when he was ready to do so, and no sooner. There was no forcing such things, because he would stubbornly resist all attempts. If he was like the person Ravage had once been, his mind was an impenetrable steel cage, surrounded by solid concrete. A thick skull that was closed to new ideas. He would do as he pleased, unless handled properly, and taught to respect the rules put in place.

She looked from Aarin to Isbar, staring out the window, "I suppose we are similar, but not in ways you might think. Perhaps we would have been the same, had we met a year ago." She said, confessing the similarities between the two of them. "I don't know you exactly, but I know enough about who I once was to think you might have the same opinion about life. You prefer to follow your own compass, and you do what you believe is right, regardless of what others think, so perhaps you aren't even paying attention to a single word I'm saying now." She pointed out. "However, I have something I want to say, and I will say it here and now, nobody will tell me otherwise." She gave everyone a pointed look, before looking back at Isbar. "You don't have all the answers, and I'll make you learn to listen to people other than yourself, if I have to. You can take this either one of two ways. You can listen and respect authority, or I can come and make you learn. Don't make the mistake of choosing the hard path, because I'm not afraid of you."

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Mon Nov 18, 2013 8:29 pm

Isbar turned slowly and looked at her. "You think you know me so well?" he said slowly. "I will tell you this; you know nothing! You may not fear me, but neither do I fear you." He turned to the others. "I will respect the chain of command, if that's what it takes to be included in this expedition. Look for me at the South Daro Inn when the time is come." Without another word he leaped out the window and was gone.

Aarin sighed. "You may be right, Ravage, I may have pushed too hard. Still," he murmured. He was silent in thought for a moment. "I suppose all will be revealed in its own time," he said at last, more to himself. He looked at Ambigon, then Allé, and then everyone else. "I think personally we should pursue a peaceful solution if we can. Allés idea to mask any metal composing our ship may be worth considering, if we could get past drones without inciting attack and then escalation. What do the rest of you think?"
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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by ViperaUnion on Tue Nov 19, 2013 7:36 pm

Ambigon seemed to think, before lashing his tail, "It may work, but be warned of a specific detail before you pursue this coating for your ships. Not all metal starts in buildings, mined out of the ground and purified. Most of it is buried deep, and the Drones would normally have to locate veins of usable ore and dig for it. Although they appear to naturally live a very long time, most die early on in their lives due to accidents. They are also never wrong, it seems, when seeking out building materials. I suspect they may have fine-tuned senses that allow them to locate the metals through the crude stone, perhaps something density-dependent. You need a coating that can trick senses such as these, for you will not get far if they eat through your ship." The energy being drifted slowly closer, to Ravage, and examined her armor, before also looking over to the window, to indicate that he might be thinking about Isbar, also.

Ambigon turned back to Ravage, "You and that creature, Isbar, must also have some sort of coating on your armor and cuffs, respectively, just because they are attached to a living thing does not mean the Drones will not try to eat them, also. You are in possession of a metal that may very well be strong enough to resist their mandibles entirely, but as for the rest of your armor, it is not nearly so unique. You would wish to protect your arms, regardless. The Drones, even if unable to break the metal, would try to obtain it, and their mandibles can just as easily cut through flesh and bone."

Ambigon then drifted away from Ravage, and turned back to Aarin, "I shall try to help you, if possible, but I have no fighting capability, and in the presence of the Swarm, I put myself at risk, for they will try to devour me, and I am helpless to stop them, if caught. I can aid in identifying each respective caste, but nothing much outside of those parameters." He lashed his tail, drifting up into the air, "I will be going now, but I will see you on the Majesty, when the preparations are made." There was a brilliant flash, and the energy being was gone.

Travis, unsure of what else he could say, walked up to Aarin, "So, should we go and notify the Prince? It seems there's nothing else to discuss." She said.


Meanwhile, as Travis spoke to Aarin, Blair walked up behind Ravage, "I think ye made that lad Isbar angry, lass." He said, quietly, so only she could hear, as the other Chimerosu clustered around Aarin alongside Travis. Nobody paid attention to the conversation the Cavernian and mutant Krylonian were having.

Ravage looked out the window and nodded, slowly, making a 'Hmm-hmm...' sound, in agreement. She didn't seem sorry at all that she had provoked that reaction out of Isbar. "He can tell me I don't know anything all he wants to, but he has just as little right to say that to me as I do to him. I know he has suffered something harsh in the past, and I can tell that even if he tries to respect the chain of command, that may not come as easily as he thinks, he's already proved to me that much, he practically threatened Aarin already. If he doesn't do as he's instructed to, I'll have to straighten him out, because I'm probably the only one who can do so. I never said he had to fear me for me to do that. Everything becomes clear, in the end, and that will be how he will learn genuine respect for those in charge of him, not the grudging respect he's giving because he has no choice."

Blair frowned, slightly, "Lass, he might lose more respect if the truth is told, I have a feeling that if the truth about ye came out, ye haven't told anyone yerself what yer past was like. Ye come from something tragic, that much be clear, If I may be so bold." He said.

Ravage snorted, and looked at him, "You would be right, on all points. However, what I've learned in my experience is that it's painful to tell the truth, but it comes out eventually. Even though it hurts, in the end, you feel better, because there isn't anything to hide. I could tell you who I was, what I did, but I'm not even sure I'm the same person I once was. I am just me, nothing more, nothing less, I don't like to define who I am, because that is a web far too tangled for me to weave." She glanced back at the window, before looking back at Blair, "Isbar has the right to keep his secrets if he wants to, but the longer he keeps them, the more their weight will start to crush him, and if he wants to lay so many rivalries and disturbances to rest, the truth is the solution to all of it. The question is, how long it is before he decides that it's worth a little pain to have that freedom?"

Blair thought, "Ye be an older woman, Ravage, I thought ye was in yer twenties, but ye be just as old as me. Clearly, yer apparent youth still be deceptive, ye may be wrong, but ye sound like ye know what yer doing. Ye might wind up being in the same position as I am, if all this stuff we be hearing about ye be true. Yer a hero on Vathoris, and I'll be looking forward to working with ye, just as much as with that lad Isbar, if not more."

Ravage had a faint smile appear on her beak, the kind that she swiftly tried to hide, because that compliment was warming to her heart, and made her faintly blush. Was it possible for her to still have such feelings? Goodness, she was learning more about herself over the course of a few days than she had in an entire decade.

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Wed Nov 20, 2013 4:28 pm

Vey patted Gunthiir on the shoulder. "We all understand your position, my friend. I assure we will do everything we can to free your people from Jiiran." He looked around. "I do believe our business is all but finished here, my friends. All that remains, I would think, would be to select those who will accompany our good friends the Krathunians on their search for the Continuum Corrupter." He paused and looked at his communicator. Opening it up he gazed at a message that was there. His eyes widened. He looked up. "If you will be so kind as to excuse me, my friends, something has just come up. It seems we have some more potential friends knocking on the door. Once I have welcomed them, perhaps I will then be able to introduce them to you. Thank you."

With that, he left.
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"I left Vey a message," said Aarin to Travis. "He's a little busy at the moment." Suddenly, his communicator beeped. "Hello?" he answered. "Is that you Vey?" He listened for a moment, and then smiled. "There certainly are, brother, five of them to be exact. We're in the library, and we have been having the most interesting discussion. Alright, I'll fill you in when you get here." He hung up his comm. "That was my brother, Vey," he explained for the benefit of the guests. "He is the High Prince of Daro, and he got my message. He's on his way now."

They didn't have long to wait. Vey entered the room. When the guests saw him, some where a bit surprised. Aarin had called him his brother, but there seemed little resemblance. Aarin was tall and light olive-brown, horned and with more mane-like finrics. Vey was of average height, and ash-grey in skin color, with finrics that resembled more of a series of crests.

He placed his right fist to his left palm and gave a small bow. "My friends, it is an honor for me to welcome you here to Daro, Vathoris. I am Prince Vey Churim."
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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by ViperaUnion on Wed Nov 20, 2013 8:11 pm

All the Chimerosu, save for Ravage, gave a dip of their beak in greeting. Bowing wasn't exactly possible for Chimerosu, It looked too awkward, due to their non-bipedal anatomy, and might have wound up looking more like an insult to the custom than an attempt to show respect. Ravage also regarded Vey as a friend, to the point that she didn't feel the need to give more than a slight nod every time he arrived, as a deep movement would seem too rigid and cold. She gave the typical small nod, and gestured to each Chimerosu, "Vey, this is Travis, Blair, Kerr, Haku, and Aolani." She introduced them. She then gave a brief mention of the others who had been speaking, but had left, "We had two others here earlier, Godmar's captor, Isbar, and a stranger who calls himself Ambigon. It might take some time to explain what happened, though what we have learned is quite noteworthy." She explained. As she spoke, Vey would immediately note that her re-grown feathers looked different than they had before, having a new iridescent quality that was apparent only in certain lights over her typical deep midnight blue. More notable, he would notice that she was holding her wings so that the undersides of them were not visible to anyone who looked. The tension she held them with looked uncomfortable, so it wasn't hard to figure out that she was trying very hard to hide something about her new plumage.

Travis frowned, "Unfortunately, she's right, we've had some interesting news since we got here, a crazy debate-and-plan session, mixed in with strangers showing up outta nowhere. Pretty crazy day for everyone, to be honest." He said.

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Wed Nov 20, 2013 8:38 pm

"This has been a crazy day for everyone, really," said Vey with a small smile. "Please be seated everyone." He sent a message for whatever refreshment that was available to be brought. "I'm just sorry that you came at such a time that you did." He moved towards a chair, then suddenly stumbled with a look of pain on his face.

"Are you all right, brother," said Aarin, supporting him, a look of concern on his face.

"I'm fine," said Vey. "I suspect I need some major adjustment after what I've been through today. He settled into a chair with a sigh. "That's better. Now," he said, looking intently at everyone, "what has been going on here?"
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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by ViperaUnion on Thu Nov 21, 2013 8:03 pm

After a bit of confusion, the Chimerosu figured out to sit in the chairs. All furniture wound up having a strange shape, if Chimerosu were involved; chairs looked more like padded benches, because of their extra length. It wasn't easy for them to sit in a chair meant for someone who was bipedal, and it took a while for them to discover that they fit on the chairs if they tightly coiled their bodies like snakes. It wasn't the most comfortable position, but it could be done, without cutting off circulation that would result in arms and legs going numb. Once they had all seated themselves, Travis set right to giving a summary of the events that had occurred while he was not present.

"All right, then, first bit of information is that when we got here, we came here on a mission that was heavily supported by both the government and the scientific community of the UCN." He began, "Our mission was pretty simple, we were supposed to track down a Krylonian with current knowledge regarding outposts that belonged to the original Empire. We located the remaining two Chimerosu, the last male, Samir, and Ravage, here. Samir didn't know anything, but Ravage was happy to accept a position on the mission, and provide us with the locations of the outposts. Why we want the outposts is simple: if we find information on Chimerosu colonies, we might find more surviving Chimerosu species. We are a people that strongly support unity among our own kind, so it's very important to us that we find them." Travis flicked his tail.

Ravage then picked up where Travis left off, "This mission will basically mean an expedition into the Fifth Arm, where most of the original Empire was. It's no doubt a bit hazardous, debris is still scattered in the void, and it's a floating graveyard out there. Flying metal could be a real hazard, if you decide to leave the ship, because the explosions that destroyed ships in the Ruthless War are still making things fly off. There's no force to stop movement out there. What we didn't count on was an energy being showing up while we were discussing plans to go there." She huffed slightly, "Ambigon is an energy being, and though he doesn't have a gender, he insists that we regard him as male. He states that some sort of extremely powerful alien insect called Arachnarche has infested the Fifth Arm, attracted by all that floating metal. According to what he has observed, these creatures have four castes, and while lower castes have little intelligence and belong to a collective Hive mind, the higher castes can have intelligence equaling ours. The reason these creatures are so dangerous is the smallest ones can grow to be the size of--what was it? A fully-grown wooly tuskiderm bull?" She looked over at Travis, who nodded, and she turned back to Vey.

"Supposedly, these creatures can feed on any form of energy to sustain themselves, can fly through space, and they collect metal to build their nests. Because they don't have awareness of other races or their property rights, Drones could pose a threat to inhabited worlds and spaceships, they could eat through shields of the greatest quality, and strip a ship completely of all its metal components, the same could be said for cities with metal buildings. It could destroy civilization as we know it." She flicked her tail, and her folded wings twitched, "Ambigon gave us two options, but neither one was easy. While we search for those outposts, we have to locate the Queen of these insects, and either do one of two things: We can either kill her, thus killing the swarm by eliminating the only egg-bearing female, or befriend the Queen, who could then teach her offspring to recognize alien races. From what we can tell, Arachnarchy are harmful mostly because they don't understand, not so much out of malicious intent."

Aolani fluttered her wings, "The real problem is that the drones are just as valuable to the Queen as the intelligent ones are. If the drones don't know better, and they attack our ships, we would have to kill them to protect ourselves, but that would make the intelligent ones angry, because we would still be killing their brothers and sisters. The problem is that we want to make peace, but it's hard because it's difficult to avoid making the Queen and her Commanders angry while trying to find the heart of the nest. If peace is possible, and they're not doing it because they're intentionally trying to hurt others, we don't want to kill the Queen. We were talking over the possibility of a coating that would make the Drones ignore us, but ships still move. I was thinking regardless if it was metal or not, if it got too close to their nest they might attack in defense of their home."

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:05 pm

Vey listened to all of this quietly. When Aolani was finished, he quickly sent a comm message asking Admiral Lirr, Admiral Rakluth, and the two Jorro'kil delegates to the library. They would all want to hear about this.

"I certainly think that violence should be the last resort," he said. "We might also talk to Mott. I'll bet he could come up with something." Looking around at everyone, suddenly his face distorted, and he rubbed vigorously at his eyes. "What's wrong Vey?" asked Aarin.

"Oh," said Vey after a moment. He looked around at everyone again with a sad smile. "Six Chimerosu in one room. Tirri would have been over the moon, if she could be here."

Aarin smiled a little. "Yes, she would have been," he said quietly. He turned towards the others. "Tirri was a young girl who was killed just today. She always loved studying Chimerosu."
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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by ViperaUnion on Fri Nov 22, 2013 8:17 pm

Ravage immediately glanced down at her hands, which began to clench into fists and open repeatedly. Her face was blank, but her feathers clamped down tightly, and she seemed to shrink to half her size. Her pupils contracted slightly, but not to the thin slits that would have normally indicated aggression. Clearly, she was still punishing herself for failing to save Tirri during the invasion. Ravage had grown very attached to the young girl, and her innocence was only further proved by her adoration, despite Ravage failing to meet the typical physical description of a Krylonian. The thought of Tirri dying was still very painful, and it felt as though a hot dagger had been plunged into her heart. Ravage had always felt bad about the loss of life in a battle, but nothing disturbed her more than the swift death of a blameless child. Tirri had been crushed by falling rubble, a terrible death, but swift, a mercy, compared to others. She still felt as though it were her fault, that she could have moved faster. "Tirri would have loved to have met all of you..." Her voice was so quiet it was barely audible. She might have cried, but her face alone was not readable, though her eyes and mannerisms told everything anyone needed to know.

Xenos rose and lumbered over to the table, sticking his massive head right next to Ravage, and nudging her with his snout. Unconsciously, she raised a hand and began to stroke the Spiromander's muzzle. The creature had done it of his own accord, being the first to sense his rider's distress. The battle they had fought together had sealed the bond that they had formed. One would not seem complete without the other, and Xenos, despite looking like nothing more than a gigantic beast, was far more intelligent than others thought he was. He had comprehension of feelings, and could understand them far better than others. He listened to speech as though he understood, and his actions reflected it. He could not speak, but he knew.

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Fri Nov 22, 2013 11:55 pm

Aarin reached out and gave one of Ravage's hands a squeeze. "We shall all miss her," he said. "But the best thing we can do to honor her memory is to continue living our own lives to the best of our abilities, keeping her memory alive, and not laying any blame where it does not belong," he added in a slightly quieter tone that seemed to contain a small hint that he had guessed her mind.

"In the meantime," he continued, looking up as some glasses of beverages arrived, "why don't we all follow that one tradition that seems to crop up in every race, and drink to her memory?" Glasses of fragrant fruit juice were distributed all all around. Vey stood up with his glass. "In memory of our friend Tirri. I'm only sorry our new friends who have come today, both those who helped us fight, and those who sit with us now, could have known her." He drank off his glass, and then slowly sat back down, some sign of pain and discomfort showing briefly on his face as he did so.
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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by ViperaUnion on Sat Nov 23, 2013 10:49 am

Everyone participated in the toast, revealing that observing how a Vitisan drinks is actually quite intriguing. With their long, straw-like beaks, the seemed to be adapted for drinking things, they could only feed on nectar, but what flowers could support things their size? Ones larger than anything anyone had ever seen before. It was already known that the Majesty would be making a brief stop at Vitis for supplies, as well as for picking up several more people who were part of the mission. It made one's mind wander, though regardless, people fought to ensure that they remembered that this toast was for a little girl named Tirri, and that she must have been precious to those who did know her.

After it was done, Ravage observed Vey's apparent pain, and worry briefly flashed across her features. Something was wrong, it didn't look like he was recovering from the brief shock of having the convertor severed from his life-support device. Back pain made sense, but what about his stumbling when he came into the room? That didn't seem right, and it was highly alarming. Why had he lost his gross motor skills like that? She forced herself to stay silent, even though her better judgement told her she should speak out. She hadn't been acting emotionally stable these past few hours, she had broken down and cried, launched into a vicious verbal assault that was only a few steps away from a berserker rage, and had then suddenly gone back to silent grief. It was normal to experience such shock after all that had just happened, after walls had been broken down, but regardless, people may not take her seriously.

After the toast, Kerr spoke up, unusually enough, seeming to want to change the subject, "Ah, I almost meant to ask, Ravage, what kind of creature is Xenos?" He asked. Ravage neglected to tell everyone what he was, she had only spoken the creature's name, and referred to him as male. It went without saying that she was going to take the creature with her on the mission, and that he was some sort of mount, if she wanted a saddle made from the best possible materials. Kerr was positive that everyone was a bit unnerved by the concept of such a gigantic predator being on the same ship as them. He wasn't really afraid of him, Xenos seemed to be rather tame, though he had a feeling that the creature was only being gentle around others on the accord of his rider. He had a feeling the creature would be vicious towards strangers, otherwise. Xenos didn't strike Kerr as a pack hunter, but as an apex, solitary species.

Ravage glanced over at Kerr, "Xenos is a Spiromander, an exceedingly rare species from Xenophon, though I don't remember what star the planet orbits, which is why we were unable to return him to his home planet. He was brought to Vathoris by a group of poachers, and they didn't take precautions to ensure that he stayed contained, nor did they take proper care of his needs." The Spiromander growled, seeming to understand what his rider was saying. He angrily reacted to the memory of his imprisonment. Ravage started to stroke his nose again, and the growling subsided, though the snout was still wrinkled as though he were snarling. Ravage continued, "He got out of his cage, and everyone was going to kill him, but Xenos is not a creature beyond reason, which is why he is my companion. Compare him to Arachnarche Commanders, if you wish, for he is truly that intelligent, I believe, though he lacks speech."

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Sat Nov 23, 2013 11:34 pm

"Indeed, and a fine warrior, too, as we all learned today," said Vey with a smile. Just then, Admiral Lirr peered in.

"Good day to you all," he said. "I take it that this is the library."

"Indeed it is, Admiral," said Vey. "Do take a seat."

Lirr first drew his swords and held them hilt first towards Aarin, Ravage, and the five Chimerosu. "I don't believe we have had the pleasure of meeting each other. Here are my swords, and here is my hand in friendship"

"Keep your swords," said Aarin, who had learned the proper response from the last time Markovans had visited, "but we accept your friendship gladly."

Lirr took a seat on a bench, his tail preventing him from using a regular chair. "Did you happen to see Admiral Rakluth and the two Jorro'kil representatives on your way here?" asked Vey.

"I do believe I saw them behind me coming in," said Lirr. "They ought to be here in a minute or two."
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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Whos on Sat Nov 23, 2013 11:56 pm

After recieving the Comm message, Xerin and Hezek got up and left the room, accompanied by their guards, but waited for the Krathunian Admiral and Lirr. They walked down the hall near to Rakluth, though Lirr walked faster and passed by.

They reached the door to the library, and opened it.

Xerin stood there staring at its occupants. Hezek saw them, but wasn't as surprised as Xerin seemed to be, and noticed Xerin's staring. He elbowed the older officer slightly, who took notice and stopped staring.

"Hello.." Said Grei. "It....is an honor." He dipped his beak. Though this response could be interpreted to the entire group, it was mostly directed at the Chimerosu. Xerin knew very well of what happened to the Chimerosu Empire, he had been one of the coordinating commanders in the Jorro'kil's attempt to stop the Dominion's swift assault on the Chimerosu worlds. The unsuccessfulness had made Xerin stop to think.....Think about what can happen when an operation goes wrong. Of the consequences of war. A whole race seemingly wiped out. To see living Chimerosu- or atleast, relatives, judging by their differed appearance, was....amazing.

Hezek, being a little less than half Xerin's age, was not so surprised to see the newcomers, despite learning about the Chimerosu, and hearing in the news of their brutal annihilation, was not very familiar with them overall and paid little thought to the event, being quite young when it happened.

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Zaroas on Sun Nov 24, 2013 9:31 am

Admiral Rakluth stood next to the Jorro'kil as this happened, his metallic armor shifting and reflecting the lighting of the room. He noted the reactions of Hezek and Xerin, though he himself was not so surprised - He had access to classified Confederacy archives created by the Jorro'kil on the subject of the Chimersou. While it was odd to see them alive, the Krathunian drew comparisons between the existence of the room's occupants and that of his own people. For this reason, the old soldier's face was one of acknowledgement rather than confusion.

After Xerin spoke, the Admiral knelt down, touching his gauntlet to the floor. "It is truly an honor." Standing up, he looked around the room. "May the spirits be grateful to you all on this day. I am Admiral Rakluth of the Intragalactic Krathunian Covenant, and next to me are Hezek Re'se and Xerin Grei of the Jorro'kil. On behalf of our Confederacy, I greet you."

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by ViperaUnion on Sun Nov 24, 2013 4:17 pm

The Chimerosu dipped their beaks in greeting, "It is a pleasure to meet you all." Ravage spoke for the group. In the back of her mind, there was a touch of alarm. She was not too worried about Rakluth, but the two Jorro'kil, namely Xerin, made her uneasy. Xerin, that name was eerily familiar to her, had she not heard that name spoken somewhere before? He did not look young, he was clearly old enough to have been serving in the Jorro'kil forces for several decades. Ravage's mind flashed back to how as Lieutenant Colonel Scree, she had been in charge of every mission dealing with diplomacy, including the one that involved escorting representatives of the Jorro'kil. It had been ten years since she had encountered any Jorro'kil, so her memory was a bit faded, but that name was still familiar. Did she know Xerin from somewhere, or was her mind just playing paranoid tricks on her?

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Mon Nov 25, 2013 12:41 am

Once everone was seated, Aarin reiterated everything that had taken place and been discussed in the library before the arrival of Vey and the representatives of the other alien empires. Vey, in turn, told them of everything that had taken place in the private meeting between himself, the Heads of State, and the said representatives.

Vey turned to the Chimerosu. "I will certainly do everything I can for you in this quest for survivors. You will need all of the help you can get. I will personally select some of my own people to assist you."

"We could lend you a man or two as well," volunteered Lirr. "Any friend of Vathoris is a friend of the Markovan Empire."
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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Whos on Mon Nov 25, 2013 4:15 pm

After listening to the recounted events, Xerin was most interested in the reference to the swarm, being one of the higher commanders notified of the Jorro'kil ship which had been eaten by what some of the survivors aptly described as "Space bugs." Being an isolated event, he and several others had decided it best, along with the late Emperor Whoster, to leave it unknown to the public. The description for the swarm seemed to fit very well with what the survivors of the eaten ship had done their best to tell about the aliens they encountered, and Grei didn't forget.

Once Vey and Lirr had finished speaking, Xerin spoke up. "I believe I know of this swarm. There was....an event, several years past, when one of our ships encountered what I suppose was a force of drones, they tried to fight back but ultimately the crew was forced to abandon the ship and watch it get eaten. It was a singular happening, so it was decided we would not alert the public, with the Dominion war going on at that time we didn't want to give any unnecessary worry or doubt, especially with the capabilities of these creatures."

Hezek thought to himself. "This was certainly a good idea to come, I wonder what else I don't know..."

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by ViperaUnion on Mon Nov 25, 2013 9:26 pm

Ravage flicked her tail, "Well, there is a reason for everything, nobody could guess that it would become so serious, later; but now, having had several years to grow, and an entire arm of the galaxy filled with metal they didn't have to dig up, the Arachnarche colony is perhaps growing at an accelerated rate, supposedly, it has infested a rather large area, and if left unchecked, more colonies could form, and spread. These creatures could spell the end of civilization, if something is not done, whether it be killing the Queen or making peace. All modern forms of fighting are ineffective, we have to use weapons that fire bullets, they'll eat any energy forms we use against them, and energy armor is useless, also, from what we can tell. If we want to survive at all, we have to take all the things we normally used back several centuries."

Blair glanced at her, "Aye, the lass be right, this won't be much of a modern war, safe for measures taken to ensure they don't devour our ships. I hope the rules for energy weapons apply to those that fire bullets. We Chimerosu can't say all our weapons are energy-based, such things have little effect on our native wildlife, if they happen to wander into a settlement. Strong bullets always work, though, so long as they pierce whatever natural armor the creatures have, though we normally only resort to actual weaponry when it's a serious case."

Ravage glanced at Blair, "Typically, I am opposed to fighting at a distance, but I've handled both forms of weaponry in my life. The same basic principles go for both energy and bullet-based guns, the mechanisms and the frequency at which you have to re-load are the only differences. Actually handling the gun is simple. The real issue is having enough bullets, weapons such as those aren't common these days, we won't have enough if it's only the ammo we can get from the UCN and carry on the Majesty, if any other ships come along, they need protection, too, in case the peace plan doesn't work out."

Travis then held out his palms so that the Krylonian mutant and the Cavernian would stop debating the matter, "Hey, relax, you're jumping to conclusions we're not sure of. Some people are pretty adaptive when it comes to things like that. Don't worry about it unless someone says it's a problem, we don't need to see the worst-case-scenario from every angle." At this, Ravage just shrugged, and folded her arms, her tail flicking barely at the tip. Blair merely closed his beak, tilting his head slightly.

Travis continued, "We would appreciate any help someone would be willing to give us, and we welcome anyone who wishes to do so to help us in seeking diplomacy with the Arachnarche, but the other mission we originally came here for, the one in which we search for other surviving members of our kind, is not a public event that everyone can participate in. We have no issue with letting representatives from other races aboard the Majesty to help, but aside from our own ship, there's no other ship or fleet we want involved in this here search. It draws too much attention to what we're doing, and publicity is dangerous for situations such as these. Any other Chimerosu species we come across will have been isolated for thousands of years, and thus, in a vulnerable state that puts them at risk until they re-adjust to being part of a space-faring empire like the UCN. I mean no offense by saying this, I believe you have best interests at heart, but not all empires have good intentions, and not all of 'em will get the same idea if they hear about a new race. Plenty of empires leap at the chance to exploit others, and we want to prevent that by keeping any discoveries as quiet and hushed up as possible. We won't let any new planets or Chimerosu we find become known to the galaxy until we are absolutely positive they will be safe from harm."

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Re: The Disruption (IC)

Post by Vara Lord on Tue Nov 26, 2013 8:40 pm

Vey nodded. "That's perfectly understandable. I give you a few people to help, the best I can offer." He thought a moment. "I think the best people would be Allé here, and Mott Gatiir, too. Finally, I think I will also lend you Aarin as well."

Aarin smiled. "I'll do my best, brother, if they'll have me. However, there's one other who has requested to assist on the mission; Isbar. Do you remember?"

Vey scratched his chin. "Yes, I think I do. If our friends of the UCN have no objection to his being involved, then neither do I."

"Perhaps we can spare you at least two well," volunteered Admiral Lirr.
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