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The Multiverse

Setting

The Glendathu star system. It's home to a race of humans known as the Oberon, situated on the planet Klendath. The system is filled with orbiting rocks, and is rather dangerous to navigate without advanced shields or a ship that can take some damage. There's a large space station here, and some ships frequent it, travelling around the solar system. They aren't a galactic power yet, but they're working on it.
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Glendathu

The Glendathu star system.

Minimap

Glendathu is a part of RA-619.

1 Places in Glendathu:

2 Characters Here

C.U. Strycker [12] A Colonial Union ship named after the war hero Strycker.
Grayson Mantz [4] War veteran, Now a bounty hunter/assassin

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Vehicles

The Mithril Voyager


Arrendal Mithras exits "The Mithril Voyager".
Sovereignty here has been granted to Joseph_Bennett!

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Character Portrait: Grayson Mantz Character Portrait: Arrendal Mithras
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/help

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Character Portrait: Grayson Mantz Character Portrait: Arrendal Mithras
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Arrendal Mithras broadcast a wide-band radio signal from his ship.

This is Mithril Voyager to unknown entity, state your intentions.
came his voice, reaching for a response from the energy signal that had just shown up on his scanners.

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Character Portrait: Grayson Mantz Character Portrait: Arrendal Mithras
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I've come to look for work

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Character Portrait: Grayson Mantz Character Portrait: Arrendal Mithras
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Arrendal Mithras shrugged off the risk of welcoming a stranger aboard his ship, understanding the plight of commerce for many a first-time traveler on the hyperspace lanes.

Ah, well then. Come on aboard, I can take you to a nearby trade hub. There's plenty of work there.
he offered.

Arrendal Mithras boards "The Mithril Voyager".

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces
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Somewhere in space


Motes of fire sprawled from the glittering band of the horizon as sunlight illuminated the slow, ancient rotation of a planet below. Even in the cold, silent darkness of space the heat pierced, sinuous glowing rivers of lava breaking along the surface as the dawn creeped across the world like a great incerating titan. All of space seemed to be aflame, that distant marble of fusion at the center of the system now spilling a pyre into reality.

Dreams had become a fleeting thought for the Captain, the dark blankness of space greeting him every time he opened his eyes in the bunk was even less comforting. The small, chiming noise in his ear was the only thing that inferred to him there was even a body held in the confines of the hab-cot.

STANDING ISSUE FROM HIGH COMMODORE - ATTACHMENT TO M-FLEET GROUP 7020/99B ALAFEST DIRECTORY ORDER: DIVERSION NEAR STAR LANE, SYSTEM GLENDATHU


It wasn’t the disorientation, or even the initial spasm of pain from the nerves refiring from cycle-sleep that affected Corporal Matson the most. It was vomiting the neutral paste that followed every extended stasis. Fortunately, he was the first one stepping out of his pod and wasn’t already stepping into a puddle of it himself.

The doors to the other pods began to decompress, and water vapor hissed in the air as Matson bent forward with a hack until the saline, goopy mixture was making its way up his esophagus. It hadn’t been that long since this had happened prior though, the Corporal realized as he wiped his mouth with the palm of his hand.

The pod chamber was bathed in red light, meaning that the droneship was still on high-automation. Practically every part of the ship was in vacuum, save for the immediate life support systems (known as ILSS) of the hab-pods and the bridge, located some twenty meters above through the sealed bulkhead.

In the blackness of the cosmos, a droneship had burned on a slow transit from Imperial space, before it had changed course almost on a whim. Orienting itself for an FTL jump, once chilled spindles along the sleek vessel charged with energy as it aligned itself with a distant star deep within the cosmic background, as if aiming an arrow for a distant shot.

That distant star was a motey red giant against the stellar tapestry painted before it. More particularly, distant telescoping and telemetry revealed lingering hulker-tonners around a star known as Glendathu. As the droneship prepared to slip-jump, needle-comm allowed the Captain to step onto the automated decks of the drone ships that had discovered a haphazard planet, and the signals of civilization ringing like a telephone from the system around it.



The MT-223 was an old ship, compared to the merchant fleet of the Local Region. As one of the first vessels to shuttle Apparatus forces planetside during the Terran Conflict, and then later invade Imperial space herself, MT-223 should have felt downright old.

Yet as the 223 and her droneship escort, DN-7199 Mable were on the outskirts of a system known only on star charts as Glendathu, the ship was vibrant like the day it had first touched vacuum. With no one to tell it no, the AI had booted the comms equipment it was expressly told to keep cold so that Imperial privateers wouldn’t target and loot it.

This is the Merchant Fleeter MT-223 to receiving signals in the Glendathu system. Greetings and peace from the Garden, this is a transiting vessel of the Interstellar Merchant Fleet, on voyage to home yards of the Interstellar Nations.


The AIs that ran these ships were old - some back in the Garden would say, 'even older than the metal and steel we imprisoned them in'. Perhaps something that advanced felt lonely, or adventurous. What followed from the broadcast was commonly known as the Voyager message: images, sounds and simple data transmitted between contacting civilizations. From the VR deck of the 223, Captain Jack Cooper stood before a glimmering display of the system as the powerful sensors of the autoship began to wash across the system.

He never missed the views from a ship, although the classical music that played through the bridge? Well, he wouldn't make a mention of an AI using such brevity in his report: still, it seemed a bit tacky.

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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The Colonial Union ship Strycker.

The first mate of the ship is drinking tomato juice out of a bag when the sensors light up. He glances up in awe as practically every light on the console he's monitoring turns in an assortment of blue, green, and red. And there was a lot of red. He lets go of his bag of tomato juice, the plastic floating away from him as his jaw drops.

"Holy Fucking Shi-" erupts out of his mouth, and he throws himself towards the doorway in the zero gravity. A guy in the comms room is doing the same thing, and they begin firing questions at each other as they float, holding on to the bars next to the doorway.
"Where is it coming from? How did it get here? And good God, why are they speaking our language? Are these those other guys?"
The message sounded very different from the way of speaking they were used to, but it was pretty much the same base language.

This is the Merchant Fleeter MT-223 to receiving signals in the Glendathu system. Greetings and peace from the Garden, this is a transiting vessel of the Interstellar Merchant Fleet, on voyage to home yards of the Interstellar Nations. This message is quickly played over the intercom on the ship, and it wakes up quite a few of the crew members. The captain, a man by the name of Lewis, quickly hurls himself down the hallway towards the comms room. "Well, don't just stand there, send a damn message!"

So this is their hasty response, in a language accented but heavily similar to the Gardenites speech, addressed by the second mate.

"Uh, howdy from the patrol vessel CU Strycker, designation PT-299. We welcome you to Glendathu. Would you mind sharing your intentions? We have had... um, difficulties with other groups that we've met in space, and we want to make sure that-

Quickly the order is sent from a higher power to shut that guy up, and all of a sudden the voice addressing the ship changes, this time the voice of the governor of the Colonial Union himself, Maxus Sywell.

Welcome to Glendathu, you who call yourself the Garden. Feel free to anchor yourself anywhere in this area, and we will have a more formal means of communication soon. I'm very sorry, we don't do this much, more or less at all, and we're quite lacking in experience in this front. May I speak to your Admiral, or whatever officer you have on board?

I'm sure that at this moment, practically every member of the Colonial Defense Forces and all in space are quite nervous for a reply.

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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Welcome aboard, Captain JACK COOPER!


Even as the lights bent and refracted across the droneship’s VR deck, Jack hardly even responded to the automaton as he entered the bridge. It appears I have made contact with inhabitants of this system! Shall I contact the Supreme Assembly and inform them of a human rediscovery?

“Belay that, MT - who the fuck unchained you to contact a remote planet?” The soft, tinkling chimes and buzz of the VR deck was replaced by the lone Gardenite’s quick tone. Boots clunked on the pink metal of the deck as the Ranger stepped up to the commander’s chair. As the inhabitants of the system transmitted their response, it was looped back to Cooper, who narrowed his eyes as telemetry fixed a tiny, rocky body in space. With a shift of his hand, the VR deck opened the vessel's comms as the radiowaves snapped to attention again.

“This is Captain Jack Cooper of the Interstellar Ranger Corps, remote-pilot of the transport vessels on voyage to stars beyond. This is an automated ship, carrying materiel and resources bound for the Interstellar Nations, and is only armed for defense and exploration: in the interest of mankind's unity and harmony amongst the stars I welcome you in peace - what do you call yourselves?”

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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The response comes back after a minute or two.

"We call ourselves the Oberon. Our main governing body is the Colonial Union, formerly the UCF. We have been active in space for 32 years. We have only been aware of other life in this galaxy for the better part of two months now, and we've lost contact with those ships, so I apologize if our response to your arrival here seems hasty or aggressive. We're just on high alert since then. Some Asken- No, wait, Ashen something. I don't know how they say it, but are you associated with that group? We seem to be on... well, bad terms with them. They took the crew of the Discovery 7 and we launched a couple titanium rods at them... I don't know why I'm telling you this, but if that sounds familiar, then maybe you've heard of us. So, welcome to star system Glendathu, home of our planet, Klendath.

I'm Maxus Sywell, appointed Governor of the colonies here on Klendath. Do you have any questions, inquiries, demands, or remarks? I'll do my best to answer any."

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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I believe there is an extensive amount of circumstances pertaining to these people’s travel into space.


While MT’s calm voice chimed through the VR deck, the Captain brought a hand to the bridge of his nose while the response filtered into the bridge. “Sounds like it, more Imperial radicals - spool up the data tether, MT.” Jack began quietly, then returning to the holographic comms array that floated before him.

”The terrorists that call themselves Aschen are being hunted down by my compatriots in the Interstellar Nations as of this broadcast, Governor: these ships are supply tenders freighting resources from Aschen space, to repair and redevelop planets affected by Imperial terrorism. In the interest of good impressions, I can inform the Exogarden to compel the safe return of your people, and property from Imperial radicals.”

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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The response is a bit quicker this time.

"The Garden you say you are from must be very powerful indeed, if they are capable of labelling opponents of such threat to us as mere terrorists. Your help is appreciated, although I feel it rude to ask such things when we've only just met. Is there anything we can offer you? In face of such kindness, what can we offer to assist you? I don't feel as if we should... dump all of our issues and grievances upon you immediately. May I offer you to come to meet myself and some of my compatriots in a more personal manner? Unless, of course, you wish to stay on your ship. We can discuss these manners there, and how we can assist each other. I hope we can further understand how we can both benefit from this occasion."

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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The Captain felt as his he was floating in the empty vacuum itself, the radiowaves sinewing into his mind’s eye as the ship loomed in the inky darkness. “There are … complex events that are going on: to put it simply, Governor.” Cooper began, flickering lights splashing across the hull of the MT-223 as it passed through a bath of sunlight.

… must be very powerful


The words settled in the back of the Captain’s mind for a moment, the radio squawking back to life as the AI rechambered a comms-core back into the sub-light array. “Powerful is … one word. I believe things will be easier to explain once you see for yourself. You can inform your forces that they have full permission to secure this vessel for your arrival. The vessel's automaton is MT-223. She will facilitate docking and comms.”

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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As this message is heard, the several ships tentatively moves toward the much larger freighter. One of them, the CU Glen Miller approaches, carrying the Governor himself. It docks with the MT-223, and out emerges a group of three. The Governor, Maxus Sywell, and two tan-clad escorts. They enter into the dock, and patiently wait to continue.

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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The docking holds of the Batur-class planet hauler were located along the keel of the vessel, enormous, kilometer long bay doors shifting to reveal a glowing plasma window in the belly of the ship. On approach, the hulking liner broadcast a constant stream of telemetry and guidance to docking, while smaller drones that orbited around the vessel came skittering back to the large launch hatches that dotted the hull of the hauler.

While the bay doors shuttled open, the plasma window leaked inky particle into the darkness of space. As the Oberon ships transited into the deep bowels of the vessel they were greeted with something strange: passing through the thin membrane of the plasma window, the ships tasted water. Metric tons of it. As the ships raised up through the plasma window, they passed through a great artificial lake, nearly a hundred meters deep, before rising into the docking dome of the vessel. As if simply slipping through an atmosphere, a sprawling artificial habitat greeted the ships as they reached docking booms.

Docking arms were arranged along the waterfront of the small sea, beside port and warehouse facilities that were obviously built to tend to starships. It may have been quite an initial shock to find breathable air, and even a sprawling habitat that was filled with green and concrete of a colonized planet. As the Oberon chose to disembark, one of the first things they might have noticed clanking along the walkways of the umbilical's to their vessels was a rickety automaton whose limbs creaked and clanked. It simply extended a three-fingered hand in a universal greeting

"Welcome to Havenport - the purpose built habitat module onboard this Batur-class Hauler! Please, enjoy yourself at the facilities! Unless you're a criminal ... then please die!"


Watching the vessels docking into the hab module from the VR deck, Captain Cooper stepped back from the air screen. “Alright MT, let’s get out the red carpet … you ever ran an ET Contact before?”

Once, Captain, during the Tasko Conflict.

Captain Cooper adjusted his crew jacket, stepping towards a transit pod mounted into the wall. “Uuuuh … didn’t they end up glassing Tasko?” He began, stepping into the pod as he drew the security harness down over him.

Supreme Command overrode orders, a circumstance I don’t intend to let happen again.

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: Maxus Sywell Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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The two escorts are significantly shaken by their surroundings, while Governor Sywell doesn't say anything, and simply stares around in astonishment.

Was that water? And what's that green stuff? one of the guards asks the other, whispering. He isn't answered, as the large robot walks forward and greets them. Sywell raises his hand in the same three-fingered greeting that the robot offered, and the two guards follow suit. The first guard chuckles as the robot makes the remark about criminals, and then glances down at the patch on his left shoulder that bears the words PENAL UNIT.

The three make to follow the robot, still marveling at their surroundings, simply stunned.

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: Maxus Sywell Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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From the gang decks of the ship hangars, it would have appeared that the Oberon had simply appeared in the midst of a sprawling, prospering planet. Although it would only take one a few moments to notice some eccentricities of the sky to determine that it was a fabricated structure. The trees? Somehow, they were real.

“This habitat module is to support the human crew of this freighter - though due to Merchant Fleet regulations, this vessel is on a skeleton crew. Literally, a skeleton. The last captain died! Don’t worry though, an officer of the Interstellar Rangers has needlecast to greet you - they were fighting in Imperial space!

Now that that’s out of the way though, I should probably introduce myself! I’m HOMER, the vessel’s biosupport and AI custodian onboard the ship!”


From the gangways of the docks, a central structure in the middle of the port seemed to house an entrance and exit into the deeper bowels of the gargantuan vessel. It was here that Cooper was transported as he stepped into the pod on the VR deck, and suddenly found himself standing before two great hangar doors beginning to rattle open. Keying into the comms bead in his ear, Cooper then adjusted one sleeve of his flight jacket before embarking up the stairs to the docking stations.

The three Oberon were brought by their automaton escort to the facade of the port, what appeared to be a simulated structure that would, normally, be busy with civilian foot traffic and the bustling of civilization. At one of the large concourses where throngs of people would be gathering stood only a single man in a dark blue jacket and rugged military pants. “The AIs onboard these ships like to ‘build’ an environment for their inhabitants that errs on the … eccentric,” Cooper began, before his eyes went sideways to a vending machine.

”Do you gentlemen want some water, or a pop - do you guys call soda ‘pop’ still?”

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: Maxus Sywell Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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The three Oberon are relatively confused at this point. It was obvious that this place wasn't entirely real, but it was still utterly alien to them. An escort stares in awe at the trees and water that he hasn't ever seen before, or at least not in such amounts. Sywell continues to stay fixated on the path in front of him, following HOMER.

Once they get to the structure where Cooper resides, Sywell prepares to make a remark, but is taken aback when he's offered 'pop'.
"Um, I suppose water is fine, thank you." The first escort also takes water, but the second, more adventurous, takes the soda.
As the second guard is drinking and subsequently freaking out as to the way it tastes, Sywell asks the question,

"How... How is all of this possible? I've never quite seen anything even close to this, but... Here it is. Is this all fake, or... No, it couldn't be. Not all of it."

He shakes his head, the two guards in the background trading drinks.

"I suppose it suffices to say I'm stunned."

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Character Portrait: Exogarden Forces Character Portrait: Maxus Sywell Character Portrait: C.U. Strycker
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Captain Cooper provided a dismissive shrug at their questions. HOMER seemed a bit more accommodating, his artificial skull nodding, as a concerned smiley face flashed across a blank slate of diodes and emitters that constructed his automaton facade. “A very good question, Governor! After thousands of years of space travel, mankind has reverse-engineered ancient technologies that were once thought to be fanciful study talk - or outright magic, even! - to bring the interstellar civilization of mankind to the very edges of the galaxy!”

With a sweeping gesture, the droid waved a hand out across the catwalk and to the small microcosm of a planet around them. “I think we can spare them the elementary school tour, Homer.” Cooper interjected, his finger fitting into the pull tab of his own can of soda and popping it open.

“Let’s just say the galaxy is a very, very big place gentlemen.This ship, while large, is so complex it really only needs a flesh and blood person like me on it very rarely and only in very, very specific circumstances.” Cooper explained. Snapping a finger at HOMER, who then stepped back while a holographic projection of the galaxy sprouted from his chassis.


The Milky Way, albeit labeled ‘HOME’ in an odd script that seemed to share commonalities with distant familiar languages, was seen spinning. The ancient, eternal dance giving it a calming swirl, while across the galaxy several motes of light smoldered. “I was born, centuries ago to you, on a planet in the Outer Garden called Helestada, here, in a constellation called the Sereneca Sea.” He indicated with a soft flick of his finger, in a tiny script, numbers scrolled up as a line drew the two points together.

73,458 lightyears