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Universal War

Future/Sci-fi

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a part of Universal War, by Saxious.

None

Saxious holds sovereignty over Future/Sci-fi, giving them the ability to make limited changes.

333 readers have been here.

Copyright: The creator of this roleplay has attributed some or all of its content to the following sources:

http://www.roleplaygateway.com/roleplay/interstellar-imperialism/

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Default Location for Universal War
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Future/Sci-fi is a part of Universal War.

7 Characters Here

Maunkee Empire [2] Through the Greater Good shall the wars end, and the Greater Good shall reign.
The Stellarium [1] Under construction, sneak peeking is adviced ;)
The Targearen Republic [1] For the Glory of the Republic!
The United Coalition of Oriens [0] If knowledge is truly power, let us become the most powerful beings in existence!
The Dominion [0] Bow before your Gods.
The Seekers' Confederation [0] To ignore the stars, as if their problems will never be ours, would doom our people.

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#, as written by Saxious
T’au ; 17:47 PM ; External Government


Choa looked at the screen and scratched his chin. These reports were both interesting, yet also slightly frightening; the sudden discoveries of new galactic empires opened so many new doors for possibilities, though the danger of war always loomed around the corner. No one achieved anything with sheer political and economical policies, that Chao knew, but it was the most preferred road.

Pressing a single bottom, a new screen appeared with the face of a female Maunkee, “I want a message send to these two empire, we need to establish diplomatic relationships immediately,” Chao ordered and then pressed the same bottom and the screen disappeared.
While the worker made up the messages for ‘The Eye’ to send out, Chao wrote a letter to Arch-Commander Joice San-su, ordering her to mobilize defenses towards the direction of the Ascari Federation as well as the Stellarium. Though they were both a few good hundred light years away from the Galactic Space of the Maunkee Empire, it was a well known fact that crossing such a distance would not be a problem for the current technology that the Maunkee possessed.

A little bing was heard and Chao opened the new message he had received. It was the message which would be send to the Ascari Federation, originally it was written in Maun, but the experts who would send it would transform the message into the native language of the receiver (at least, to the best of their abilities).

To: The Exalted Leaders of the Ascari Federation
From: High Councilor Chao Lin of the Maunkee Empire

Dearest receiver,

We, the Maunkee Empire, would like to establish a peaceful diplomatic contact and hopefully also economical trade between our two fine nations. The Maunkee has much to offer you, from advanced pollution free engines to a revolutionary communication system which will save time for staying updated with your planets.

If such offers are in your interest, please respond to this message and we can arrange for a meeting spot for our ambassadors to meet and discuss indebt diplomatic and economical agreements between our two great nations.

May the Greater Good be with us both.

~High Councilor Chao Lin


Finishing the letter, Chao looked over at the second.

To: The Glorious Leader of the Stellarium
From: High Councilor Chao Lin of the Maunkee Empire

Dearest receiver,

We, the Maunkee Empire, would like to establish a peaceful diplomatic contact and hopefully also economical trade between our two fine nations. It is in our belief that we share many things in common, ideology and potentially even ways of living would not be too different. We’re certain that a mutually friendly relationship will prosper the both of us greatly.

If it is in your interest to establish a political relationship, please respond to this message and we can arrange for a meeting spot for our ambassadors to meet halfway between our two nation’s galactic borders to discuss indebt diplomatic and economical agreements between our two great nations.

May the Greater Good be with us both.

~High Councilor Chao Lin


Jua’an V ; 21:12 PM ; Classified Location


“Goggles on, gentlemen, otherwise we’ll risk becoming blind.” A Maunkee instructed as the military officers took on the safety goggles.
“As promised, this orbital weapon will allow you to specify what area to bombard from space, and thanks to modern science we created a formula engine which accurately shows the explosion itself as well as the shockwave. I guarantee you that this will speed up the cleansing process of all the hopeless ethnical groups we’ll encounter.”
The generals nodded and then looked through the heavily tinted glass, across the horizon and down on the jungle valley.

The bunker they were in was on top of a large cliff overseeing the valley where the Maunkee tested their latest heavy weapons. “5…4…3…2…1.”
A blue ray shot down from the sky and hit the valley right in the center of the valley and after a tense second the valley exploded in fire that scorched plants and ground. The ground beneath the officers shook as the titanic force destroyed the once green scenery before them, and then just as they were certain that the bunker would be hit by the flames, they dispersed into the air.
The only person who didn’t appear to be affected by the sight was the instructor, “The Orbital Destructive Spaceship, or ODS, will guarantee you an easy win of almost every battle. The side affects are as you can see, it turns even the most richest area into a barren wasteland, and destroys all organic life twenty kilometers down into the planet’s crust, so do not expect to use the lands with this orbital canon.”
“How many will we have?” one of the officers asked, slightly trembling from aftershock.
“So far, one and a half. The one we’ve used today is complete, though it will take cycles before it’ll be complete, though till then, one should be able to win nothing less but the most vital battles.”

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#, as written by Nogond
8.35 AM Sectan Prime.

We have always existed, always watched and now your gods are angered by your forgetfullness. You no longer worship us as the divine being we are and thus we have returned, for you have now incurred the Wrath of the Gods. Those words summerized the Dominions foreign relations to other species. They would bow willingly to the Gods or be crushed into the ground.
The Emperor felt amused as he thought about this. While they said to other species that they always had existed, they had only in fact been exploring the Void for about two decades, but that doesn't diminish the fact that the Sectoids were Gods. They alone among the stars have the power to control lesser species and the one thing that no other have, Immortality.

However they weren't all mighty yet. There would be a time when the Sectoids will would be unqestionable, but that had to wait.

The Emperor looked at his magnificent throne room and saw Lord Qearsh enter the room. He was arriving as expected to deliver the reports from their attack on a neighboring system.

“Has the attack commenced yet Lord Qearsh?”
Lord Qearsh kneeled infront of the Emperor and said the attack has just begun one of our ships suffered an engine problem that needed repair. There weren't any injuries, but the fleet was slowed down.”

“What type of opposition are we expecting from the natives?” The Emperor inquired.

“The natives are currently in a planetbound stage, but have begun limited exploration of the Void close to their planets. They are currently stuck in a economical crisis and there is no unity among them.” Lord Qearsh answered.

“What kind of use will we have of them? Will they be good soldiers or work in the factories? We need more soldiers for our armies. The ones we have are not enough for any major fights and we need more workers.”

“According to the studies we made on the ones we abducted they will serve as both workers and as soldiers. As workers they will be excellent as unskilled workers mass-producing simple goods and as soldiers they will work as cannon fodder drawing attention away from our more stronger troops.
The natives are something that could be described as some kind of insect with a very fast reproduction and can survive in very hostile environments.”

“Excellent Lord Qearsh. Are there any other important events that I should know about?”

“Well Emperor we have detected a transmission from a star cluster 25 light years away from here. While we couldn't intercept the transmission we did find out the planet it was sent from. What do you think we should do?”

“Send an missionary ship to explore the system. Try to be civil toward any species that are there no matter what, we don't want to start a new war, at least not yet.”

“Yes, Emperor. Glory to the Dominion”

“Indeed.”

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Character Portrait: Maunkee Empire Character Portrait: The Ascari Federation
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Ascari Federation


Ascari Six


Aboard the Myrmidon class support craft, 'Atlantis M4781'.


Captain Werta looked at the radar. The H'moj Tef'it 's movements were gradually increasing. Still minuscule, but it was worrying. Werta's crew, supported by a hundred cruisers, were in charge of making sure the kwons stayed where they were. Nobody knew what the H'moj Tef'it or even each individual kwon was capable of, and nobody wanted to find out.

"ALERT!ALERT!ALERT!" shouted a prerecorded voice.

Werta nearly jumped off his chair. He composed himself and shouted, "Where?"
"Sector 4!" shouted the man controlling the nanomachines. A few million kwons had broken off and were heading for the Atlantis M4781.

He got a message from another Myrmidon, 'Troy M76451'
Orders?


He replied instantly,
Stay back
.

He couldn't see each individual kwon on the radar because kwons were minuscule creature, the size of ants, but the cluster was far too clear on the screen. The nanomachines controller shouted, this time in a more desperate voice, "It is destroying the nanomachines in its path!"

"Calm down everyone. Get the destroyer nanomachine ready," he said and stood up. He headed over to the nanomachines controller who nodded in affirmative. The destoyer nanomachines were, for the most parts, protein molecules that blocked blood vessels, clogged the air pipes of the creature and generally caused havoc.

"Wait for my signal," said the captain, reading all the reports flashing on the screen. Just as the cluster of kwons reached within 300 meters of M4781, he shouted, "Now!"

Both the nanomachine controller and the captain looked at the screen intently for the results, and as the controller began his procedure, many eyes looking at them with varying emotions. Some were scared, some excited, some nonchalant and some confused. An unprecedented event was unfolding before them. No kwon had ever left the H'moj Tef'it and the H'moj Tef'it had never moved.

Werta removed a cigarette and light it. After taking a long drag, he sighed. The results weren't good, not one bit. The nanomachines had failed for some reason, which surprised the controller. The cluster of kwons was now just outside the ship, waiting for something.

He messaged Troy :
Do it


A few minutes later, as a silver cloud began engulfing the ship and the kwon, came the reply:
May the Gods be with you.


Werta went sat down in the captain's chair. He threw the cigarette down and looked at his men. He couldn't bare looking at their faces. They knew what the silver cloud meant, their deaths. Some broke down crying, some started praying. There was one last thing he needed to do.

He stood up and saluted his men and women. They were his crew and they had stood with him, through good and bad times. Tears ran down his cheeks as he spoke, "The Gods have called us home."


Home system of the Caglari union


The battle had was still going on. It had been six months ago that the Union's battleships had launched a surprise attack on the Executron One, the flagship of the Ascari Federation. Their attempt to damage the flagship had failed miserably, after all the Executron One is protected by a fleet of over 400 battleships and countless other spaceships. Its support fleet is the same size as the entire Union fleet. The Ascari Federation decided to retaliate with force, and it wasn't going smoothly.

Commander Descratos, a Vilcabamban, looked at the battle plan General Fer!an, a Swer!tz, had given him six months ago. Though the plan looked good on paper, it didn't work well on the battlefield. The plan was use to the kamikazes, automated spaceships carrying a large warhead used for suicide missions, on their home planet but whenever the kamikazes came close to the planet, they would shut off. Anything not made by the Union would shut off. There was a field around the planet, but the explorer nanomachines couldn't get any info on them. Natural? Deadly? Removable? They didn't know.

So most of the fight was fought a few hundred thousand kilometers away from the planet, Caglia, near a asteroid belt. The Union had been considerably weakened, but still undefeated.

Captain Vestlana Dominic, human, entered the room and exchanged salutes. "Well?" Descratos looked at the head of the fighter squadrons. She was a hot tempered woman who always bullied on others, but cared for them in some warped sense of the word.

"Still no data on the field," the vilcabamban said. He move around a few spaceship models around on the table. Nothing worked. Whenever the Union's fleet was loosing they'd run off back inside the field. It was getting really annoying and the support for the war was running dry.

The technicians did find a black box in each Union ship but all that box did was send and receive information.

"You and your stupid plans," Vestlana said, "are starting to bore me. I didn't know the smartass Dernters needed 6 months to solve a simple problem." Descratos sighed. If things didn't get 'exciting' again soon, she'd go mad.

"Uh... sir? They are sending out a spaceship," said the communications officer. "A transport ship."

The transport ship headed towards the Federation's ships. "Blanket her," said Descratos and looked at Vestlana. "Why don't go join the war against the dominion? I hear it is fun."

As the transport ship was covered by a sea of silver, Vestlana replied, "How about you shut the fuck up?"

Descratos smiled. Humans had a weird way of using the word 'fuck', which amused him more than anything. The sea of silver turned red and Descatos sighed. It was a nuclear warhead carrying transport ship after all. This war was going to drag on...

Council Headquarters, She'laia, Ascari Seven


The secretary walked quickly, a man following her. "Are you sure?" she asked the man. The man, a networks engineer, nodded. The secretary still didn't believe the man. A new civilization? The wars against the 3 empires they were fighting would loose even more support.

She increased her pace. There was only one council member here at the moment, Senator Roger Manin, and he was scheduled to leave for Kafka, Ascari One in one hour.

Just as she reached his room, Senator Manin stepped out. "Senator, please wait!" she said and stopped to take a breath. Desk work had kept her out of shape. Roger waited for her to get her breath back and spoke, "Easy there. I can always take the next flight." That wasn't really true. The flight he was going on was for him, so it would wait for him.

"This man here has some interesting news. Says he has found a new Empire," she said. Manin looked at the man, and then at his secretary, "Thank you, miss. That will be all."

The man and Roger walked to towards the exit as the man, "Sir, I'm a networks engineer. While cleaning up the systems I found this message. It seemed to be corrupted, but I salvaged best I could."

Roger looked at the message.

To: The E█ed Lead█s █ the Ascari Federation
From: High Co█r Chao Lin of the Ma█e Empire

Dearest re█er,

We, the █unkee E█ire, would li█e to es█ish a peaceful █lomatic c█tact and h█efully also econom█cal trade between o█r two fine nations. The M█unkee has much to of█ you, from advance█pollution free██eng█nes to a revol█onary commu█on system which w█save time for █ying updated with your planets.

If such off█ in your interest, please r█ond to this █ssage and we c█rrange for a meet█ spot for our amba█ to meet and discu█ndebt d█omatic and eco█ical agre█ents be█en our two great n█tions.

May the G█er Good be with█ both.

~High Co█ilor Ch█o Lin


"And why should I believe you?" asked Manin.
"Because it was sent from a part of the Galaxy we haven't explored yet, to my knowledge. Grammar too seems a little off."
Manin spoke, "Fine, no harm in sending the explorer."
Manin called up the communications head quarters, 20minutes from where he was and asked them to send a explorer to the location the message originated from.

Near the Maunkee space, some time later

A lone automated explorer carried with it this:
Image

for the senders of the message, if there a sender. It contained the location of the Federatioan and some information about how to get there.

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#, as written by WAAAGH!
Karava 2 - Planetary Capital Karvena, 11:23 AM


Screams and the sound of ionizing air before a laser was discharged was all Captain Tira Briggs could hear. Ducking behind cover as lasers scorched the destroyed concrete wall behind her, she took the time to pause and get a hold of the situation. One Republic Standard Month ago, the Low Senator Cedric of Karava had declared they were seceding from the Republic, and the 4th had been sent in to remove the mad Low Senator and reestablish Republic dominion of one of its outerrim star systems. The mad man had corrupted the watch and had public executed the fellow low senators of the planet claiming he was now Governor and ruler of Karava to make matters worse the people were behind his back. It seemed the Low Senator had been secretly handing out forbidden knowledge and text to the poor making them believe they 'deserved' more then what they had. Such insolence would be crushed, of course, and the population convicted of such treasonous actions would be dealt with, harshly, but that was later as a grenade exploding near her reminded her of her place.

Her company was pinned down in the local market by two gun emplacements across the street which became death valley. Of course, that did not stop Commissar Torus from sending out more men and women to the meat grinder, but he was too 'important' to go himself. Tira glanced over the wall to see if she could get a shot off with her lasreapeter, but quickly sank back down when a line of lasfire almost took pale blue head off. Tapping her combeads, she said, "Commander, we need support." There was a pause of static, and she prayed he heard, because while they could push through they causality rates would skyrocket, but she was answered by the gravely voice of Commander Krell, "Armor inbound, ETA Three Minutes."

Tapping her combeads once more she informed her lieutenants of the change in plans, "Second platoon, get some grenades and rockets on the southeast building, I want their firing stop. We got backup coming." She just hoped they weren't sending a puma or something useless in this situation, but at this rate, she would take anything they could give. A new scream caught Tira's attention as she turned her head to see one of her own men, Private Parker go down screaming with a hole in his stomach. Luckily the laser cauterized the wound as it went through, but it did not stop the pain. He would survive... but he would remember that hit, however, his Sergeant, Tarkins, would not survive as a bullet hit the back of his head splattering poor Parker in blood, brains, and bits of bones. Popping out of cover, she sprayed a quick burst of lasfire on the building. While it wouldn't do nothing, it would help raise the morale of the unit seeing their commander trying to do... anything.

The rumbling of the ground caused her Legionaries to hold on to whatever they could as a nearby wall exploded and their salvation arrived. The commander had sent a Baneblade! The behemoth sized tank rolled lazily out almost bored by the numerous lasbolts that struck the hold and grenade impacts. Tira watched as high yield rockets crashed into the side of the Baneblade, but could not even dent the armor. A creaking sound filled the market squad as the large cannon was raised at one of the buildings, and Tira shut her eyes knowing what was coming next. A blinding flash of lights, and the backlash heat whipped at her face as the Lancer discharged. Opening her eyes to savor the damage, a giant hole was now in the center of the building and without the structural support it collapsed in on itself, and Tira relished the sounds of the screams of the Rebels as they were crushed. Vengeance for her fallen men. The Baneblade repeated the process with the other poor bastards in the second building before rolling ahead to continue in its path of carnage, "Follow the Baneblade, deeper into the city. We got rebels to kill!" Tira shouted through the combead receiving cheers as they charged into the fray once more.

Karava 2 - Planetary Capital Karvena - Home of Low Senator Cedric - Operation Reaper, 11:30 AM


The large heavily armored rangers moved silently through the corridors of the mansion having come in through the sewers. The main attack on the city was merely a diversion to assassinate the rebel leader. After his death the rebels would most likely surrender, and worst case, they would fight on leaderless, but be dealt with quickly. The Ranger Sergeant tapped his helmet lightly drawing two fingers across the front of his helmet. Two Guards, Slit throats. The other four members nodded as two of them broke from the group moving silently to grab the guards covering their mouths with their left hands and sticking their combat knives deep into their spines with their right holding them until they died to ensure silence was held.

With a thumbs up, the squad continued deeper, the sudden sound of an Alarm broken throughout the mansion, and the Rangers moved quickly turning the corner to come face to face with a Gatling Lasers maned by two of the Guards, the rangers dived for cover... well, all but one who remained where he was and raised his Gauss Rifle to his shoulder. The Gatling Laser opened up spraying hundreds of lasbolts down the small corridor, but they only left small scorch marks on the Rangers Titantric plated armor and with a calm, disciplined process brought down both guards blowing their chest nearly to pieces and exposing most of their ribcage to the world with the Gauss Rifle. It would be a easy mission for the Rangers.

Andromida - High Senate House, 4:23 PM


Lord Sul stood on his own platformed as it raised in the air to hoover eye level with the seats of the other senators. His finery gleaming in the light only underlining his importance and self-absorption. "Ladies and Gentlemen of the High Senate." Sul began pausing for dramatic effect and to ensure he had everyone's attention, "It is my pleasure to announce that the Karava Rebellion was ended just a short few hours ago by a team of Rangers selected by yours truly." He finished trying his best not to gloat, "It seems that we need to be even stricter on ensuring no traitorous books make it into our beautiful Republic." At least, not in the hands of the peasants, "Which is why, I humbly ask that we seek even more money into the Department of Literary Control to ensure this never. Never. Happens again."

The room erupted with applause, mainly concentrated in the center were many of Lord Sul's 'friends' were, Lord Sul bowed and lowered the podium back to its previous state and went to take his seat. With the short speech over, a old bearded human man turned to his far younger royal blue companion with fiery red hair and bright red eyes, "What did you think of the esteemed Lord Sul, Lady A'sair?"

The blue woman pretended to ponder the question tapping her chin lightly and giving off a soft series of hmms, "I believe the speech was not needed and no more money should be wasted in one of Lord Suls pet projects." Of course the Department itself was no pet profect, but the fact that Lord Sul was leading it meant he would no doubt be funneling those new funds out to more... leisurely activities.

"On a personal note." Lady A'sair said softly, "I Think he is a pompous ass, who is so corrupted even the Gods turn from him." The old man erupted in a fit of coughing and sporadic laughter, "Indeed, My Lady, indeed. Just do not let him hear that. One word from him and your political career is all but over."

Her deep red eyes followed Lord Sul every step of the way, "We shall see." She said softly, "We shall see."

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Orunn - 17:47 - Tarros Orbital Command Center


"Message incoming. Standard frequency. Information gathered. Saved in file; External Communications. Playing file." the computer hummed in soft succession, before it began playing a message out loud for the communications captain on the Orbital Command Center.


"Dearest receiver,

We, the Maunkee Empire, would like to establish a peaceful diplomatic contact and hopefully also economical trade between our two fine nations. It is in our belief that we share many things in common, ideology and potentially even ways of living would not be too different. We’re certain that a mutually friendly relationship will prosper the both of us greatly.

If it is in your interest to establish a political relationship, please respond to this message and we can arrange for a meeting spot for our ambassadors to meet halfway between our two nation’s galactic borders to discuss indebt diplomatic and economical agreements between our two great nations.

May the Greater Good be with us both.

~High Councilor Chao Lin"



There was an utter quiet on the bridge, after the message had been played. Even though they'd been able to pick up messages from foreign planets for a while, no other species had been able to send messages directly to the ears of The Stellarium.
Captain Jorm'Galar rose from his seat, a strong and well proportioned Moaid, with strong features and hard eyes. "What was that?" he asked, looking from his second-in-command, to the communications chief. "Well?"
"I honestly don't know sir. It seems that a race with technology that matches our own is also out there, sending messages to us." the second-in-command answered, looking frantically at the Communications Chief for some kind of support. She just nodded and smiled, as though she chose that this conflict would be too tough for her to join in.
"Oh my Julg'Va! Are you seriously implying that there's intelligent life out there!?" the captain asked sardonically. "Are you entirely sure that it isn't a pack of -" the captain began, his sharp features showing the rage which had cost him a commanding position on one of the Vector class orbital factories.
"Silence Jorm'Galar! You are here to deal with situations, not to yell and act up!" the computer generated voice rung out, this time morphed into a deep authoritarian one. "And if you're not able to think for yourself, then I'll think for you. Julg'Va, activate the transmitters. We'll respond immediately, I am sending the confirmation codes now and the message to you now." the voice rung off, as all screens lit up in the room. Data was pouring into the computers, doing the work of the crewmembers for them.
"Transmitters activated. Converting message to "Maun'ke". Compressing message into transmittable wavelength. Ready to transmit message. Insert launch key." the cold computer voice which usually operated the Orbital Command Center said, as though it hadn't even felt the presence of Orunn in it's systems.
The captain fumbled with his pockets fir a short moment, finding the keys, and walking up to the control-board. The key was a digital signature stick, coded for many different uses. One of those was to authorize sending messages to other nations, planets and races in the far out space.

"Plug in the codes in; 3... 2... 1... Now." the computer generated voice said, just as Jorm'Galar plugged it in, sending a fury of red sparks up. The Moaid stood silently, as the message displayed itself before it was sent.

Adressed to: Councillor Chao Lin

Letter designation: Response to message of "Standardized Time 00:71"

Sender: Orunn

"Dearest Chao Lin,
I am Orunn, the leader of The Stellarium. We are a society of star systems, all joined together for a common cause. The extermination of pain and suffering, and the continued development of the perfect society.
I have understood that you intend on creating lasting relations with the Stellarium. As of now, I understand that you have technology that in some way equals that of The Stellarium. It both pleases me and frightens me that another species in the universe holds such technology, without being under the wings of The Stellarium. As of yet, I see no reason to trust you or your people. Do not take this as an insult, look upon it as a necessary precaution.
For a millennium I have fought to protect all life. Therefore I do not see any reason in risking the lives of my people, by sending them into unknown space. Therefore I come with an alternative to sending out men in a senseless waste of resources. I will send you an uplink. It will serve as my ambassador, make sure it is connected with a transmitter that can reach all the way to the outermost reaches of The Stellarium. The device which activates the uplink will be deemed "infected". Do not let yourselves be fooled. It is the ambassador talking through it.

Peace is always an option, dear Chao Lin. But trade is not.
To gain the perfect society, we have cast aside the ideas of wealth and of money. And without money, we have embraced trade in bartering systems.
That being said, we do not seek anything, but knowledge. And if you are intent on sharing knowledge, then it would, as you say; "...be mutually beneficial."

And as a last thing, I will also ask you to consider joining The Stellarium. No members are forced, so the decision is entirely yours. Just remember that the end of suffering lies at the end of two separated roads, and only by joining them can we gain the perfect society.

Yours truly,

Orunn"


The message flashed for a moment, then the screens on-board went black for a moment, as the transmitter discharged. A moment they were embraced by that same darkness which was in space. But only for a moment, then the light returned, and the monitors soft humming could be heard again. "I hope they respond favourably... For their own sake." Jorm'Galar said quietly, as the crewmembers dissipated, returning to their duties.

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#, as written by Saxious
Jua’an System ; Jua’an II ; Space Patrol


Patrol unit #AC-12 reporting. Nothing out of the usual, radar scans shows zero activity, pirate activity is at its minimal and…Wait. I have activity on my radar, a space ship approaching our borders, the logic engine cannot match it to any previous ships ever encountered, orders? Over.
At first the Maunkee officer was baffled. An unknown ship approaching the Maunkee territory was unheard of, or to be exact, it had never happened before. Every planet that the Maunkee controlled had been conquered or annexed, they had never been invaded or approached by anyone else, it could only mean two things. Either an unknown civilization had intercepted the message the Central Government had send out, or they had been discovered by another Empire, either way protocols demanded actions.
This is Jua’an II, Space Central. You are to remain within radar sight of the spaceship, when they close in on our borders you are to send out a warning signal, calling for them to stop. Reinforcement will be on their way, and make sure to report any hostile actions towards the Maunkee Empire. May the Greater Good be with you.

With those orders send out, a series of messages were deployed to the various sectors of the planet and the surrounding systems. The local militia was mobilized for self-defense, calling for thousands of battle robots and spacecrafts to prepare to defend the system as well as sending a message to T’au, informing it of the sudden appearance of the unknown ship.
A dozen battleships, mainly composed of Sword and Fist of Maunkee, and a single Achilles were send to meet this unknown ship. Onboard the Achilles was representatives of the Maunkee Empire, one of each sector of the government who would ask for peaceful negotiations with this unknown civilization.

Though the Maunkee Empire was smaller and had much less problems with communications, it still would have taken enough time for the unknown ship to have entered Maunkee space territory. It would, of course, receive warning messages from the space patrols that guarded the borders of the Empire; hopefully these warnings would be heeded.

From the Achilles a single message was forwarded from the spacecraft to the patrol, who then send it forwardto the unknown ship. Without the knowledge of what the language of the locals, the Maunkee had typed the message and at least half a dozen different languages and dialects in hope that something would be understood.

To: Approaching Space craft.
From: The Representatives of the Maunkee Empire ; General Senior, Workers' Union, The Greater Good Organization, Industrial and Scientific, & Agricultural Governor Seniors

You have approached the Maunkee Empire unannounced and without warning. We wish to enter peaceful negotiations; however we demand that you respect our customs as you’ll be guests within our legal territory.
Any sign of hostility will be met with the full force of the Maunkee Empire.

Agreement of a peaceful meeting will be signaled by sending a ship out so our representatives can meet and discuss any and all matters at hand.

May the Greater Good be with you.





T’au ; External Government


“High Councilor,” a commander said over the video conference, “We detected and obtained what appears to be a drone containing information. The technicians has managed to break through its coding and our Logic Engine is currently working on decoding the language and settings of the drone so we can learn who and what send it.”
Chao nodded, “Well done commander, well done. Inform me when you’re technicians are done with the drone, and then – Commander, do I have your attention?”
“My apologies, High Councilor, but I’ve just been informed that the Logic Engine has decoded the language, and it contains the location and brief information of a certain, Stellarium Federation. Orders?”
“Stay put for now, I’ll have a ship send off with representatives of the Maunkee Empire, whom you’ll assist and protect while they travel to this Federation. No need to be hostile unless provoked, and follow the creed of the Greater Good.”
“For the Greater Good,” The commander responded and saluted in the video.

Two hours later


High Councilor, you’ve been scheduled for an emergency meeting, your attendance is demanded. A message called, and Chao looked at the screen; it was rare that his presence was demanded though whenever it was, it was always because it was at the utter most importance.
Leaving for the meeting room, he saw that the high representatives per sector of the Maunkee Empire had also arrived. Whatever it was it certainly was important. He took a seat and then waited patiently for the meeting to begin.

“Thank you for coming on such a short note,” Hang-Si, Manager of the Worker’s Union, said. “An hour ago we picked up a signal from The Eye; a most disturbing message which will require the attention of the Internal and External Government figures.” With that said, Hang-Si pressed a few bottoms and the response from the Stellarium.

The members listened intently as they calculated their options for both their nation and their people.

“We did not send this message out to be annexed. We will not join them!” The Joice San-su declared as she stood up. “I have perceived this message as a threat to our Empire’s security. They wish for neither trade nor alliance, thus they do not deserve to be given even the kindness of the Greater Good.”
“Calm yourself, Arch-Commander,” Bishop Hujyck Jin called. “By the sound of it, their ideology does appear to be similar to ours. Perhaps they have brought the Greater Good to a much higher level than we have; after all, we set out to finish what our ancestors started. Perhaps it will be best to join the Federation in this similar cause.” There was a low murmur as the representatives talked amongst themselves.
It was clear that the Arch-Commander would not simply submit, while the Bishop and the Manager seemed quite pleased with the idea of achieving such a great expansion.

“Perhaps they share our ideology, but they are not practical about their system,” Ray-Lung, Top Scientist of the Industrial and Scientific Department, announced. “No currency may be ideal for keeping inflation and social rest at peace, but if we are to achieve scientific equilibrium, then the private sector must exist, otherwise there will be no competition for development.
I’d like to remind the members that the private sector of the industrial and scientific department has brought many of our modern-day invention and everyday used gadgets into being. Without the competition, such inventions wouldn’t have happened as quickly.”


“On the other hand-” the Bishop said and then began explain his points. The debate went on for at least two hours, both sides bringing forth data and references to the economy, social security, etc. They even went as far as imputing several options into their logic systems which then brought them several outcomes for what could happen if they joined, remained neutral, or enforced anti-Federation Foreign policies.

“Enough,” Chao declared, making every head turn to him. “We shall put it to the vote. Those in favor of pro-Federation foreign policies enter your IP now, those against, enter your DP, and those withstanding enter your NP.” With that said, the members entered their data and they watched at the central screen as they saw which side had won.

The votes were anti-Federation foreign policies. Understandable, as Chao himself wasn’t fond of the idea of simply joining a foreign Empire without further insight, or without the knowledge of if they were going to be represented at all.
“The message spoke of an ambassador, Manager, have you worked on this?” Chaos then asked, and the Manager nodded. “This infected program has been isolated within a single channel. Any attempt to breach through its barriers, and it will be immediately terminated.”

Chao nodded and then watched as the screen before him turned on and began to form what appeared to be a communication window. Chao opened a separate program which would translate the Maunkee language into the language which they had received.

Dearest representative of the Stellarium,

I, High Councilor Chao Lin of the Maunkee Empire, will announce the decision of my galactic nation. The conditions and offers of the Ascari Federation has been considered, evaluated and debated amongst the governmental figures and our conclusion is as follows.

The Maunkee Empire shall remain neutral towards the Stellarium. As the message said, peace is an option, so we will choose mutual peace.

Your proposal of integrating the Maunkee Empire into the Stellarium has also been considered, however our logic engines warn of social and potential political unrest due to too many unknown factors, thus we will either recommend that you bring us a much deeper information as for how your governmental system works and whether the Maunkee Empire will be represented in any way. I will have a list of questions which can then help us re-evaluate the possibility of a joint government between our nations.

As trade is not in your interest, future negotiations and entrance permits concerning business and economic entrance to the Maunkee territory will be automatically denied. Political meetings will take place over this channel and any attempts to enter Maunkee space will be met with requests to leave, fail to immediately respond or obey these requests will be met with force.

The Maunkee Empire also guarantees it will impose the exact same policies upon its own subjects, thus unless provoked, no Maunkee citizen or space craft will enter the Stellarium’s space territory.

Thank you for your time and patience, may the Greater Good be with us both.

~High Councilor Chao Lin

Attachment

1) How does your government function? The Maunkee is, in practice, a council with representatives of the various sectors making up the External and Internal Government, and every planet is ruled by a ‘governor’ (a smaller copy of the Internal Government with five representatives who ensures the planet’s optimal performance).

2) What is the Stellarium’s view of religion? The Maunkee Religion is based on the Greater Good creed, essentially that through reason and logic everyone shall be united and achieve economic, scientific and social progress.

3) Were the Stellarium’s policy of “No Currency” to be successfully enforced on the Maunkee Empire, it would require at least three decades of gradual economic reforms. Would the Stellarium allow the Maunkee Empire to independently steer itself through such a course of event or would it require the intervention of the Stellarium’s representatives?

4) Post joining of the Stellarium, will the Maunkee Empire be granted autonomous rule of its planets? If not, what new role will the leaders of the Maunkee perform?

5) What will the role of the Maunkee military be? Will its current officers be replaced?





Near the Ascari Federation space borders


The commander looked at the radar, it picked up weak signals of what would appear to be patrols, though the logic engine couldn't determine for sure. It could be pirates for all he knew, though they had traveled with all haste to the destination given by the External Government. "Send out a message to the ships, hopefully they'll be of the designed destination, and not lurking pirates," the commander said and then ordered the AI to send out to automatically warning signal of their approach.
"Are we prepared to fend off pirates?" the Worker's Union representative asked nervously, peering into the dark space through the screen.
"Trust me, I've been hunting pirates long enough to know their dirty tricks," the commander said confidently, though his face remained as emotionless as ever. "Pirates has no honor, but with speed and plasma power, they are no match."

The automated signal that the Maunkee ship send out warned the ships of their approach as well as their political intentions to establish a friendly relationship with their government, though the language of the message was translated into a dozen different kind which the system knew well, but there was no telling whether the ships would pick it up, understand it, or if they eve were of the Ascari Federation at all.

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#, as written by Nogond
Ambassador Cazaz looked at the transmission he had recieved. It demanded him to stop entering their territory, such arrogance he thought. No race could demand anything from the Gods, but he had been commanded by the Emperor himself to play nice with these “savages”. Looking down at his console he decided that the most wisest course of action would be to follows the orders he had been given.
He started writing on his console.

“Greetings Mortal. I am ambassador Cazaz representative of The Dominion and member of House Candaia. I have recieved your message and would gladly wish to enter further discussions with your people, but we have rules that needs to be followed.

1. We demand that you enter our ships instead of us entering your ship, but if there is any sensible reasons to why we should have the discussion on your ship we might come to a agreement.
2. You do not have any right to attack this ship regardless of what happens during discussions. If the ship is harmed in any way we will see this as a declaration of war, also if they ship fails to report back we will see this as a act of aggression.
3. Any attempts to restrain the ship or it's crew will be seen as an act of war. Also attempts to track our ship to our homeworld will seen as an act of war.

If these rules can't be agreed upon any attempts for further discussion will be deemed as futile and you will be deemed as a potentially hostile race and further measures will be taken.”

Cazaz smiled as he sent the message, how he enjoyed toying with the lesser races like most other Sectoids. Hopefully his visit would help the Dominion conquer this species at a later point, but for now spreading rumors and lies about his people to them would surely have some effect.

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#, as written by Saxious
Jua’an System ; Space Borders ; Achilles Ship


“They don’t want to enter our ships, nor do they seem friendly,” the representative of the Worker’s Union said as he looked at the others. Clearly they were thinking the same, though they still wished to establish some form of diplomatic relationship with this Dominion, though how exactly they would do that would require some thinking.

“By my understanding, such threats are seen as an aggression towards the Greater Good. Logic and reason are the main motives, yet we’re being referred to as mortals, isn’t that being unreasonable?” the representative of the Greater Good asked.
“Not entirely,” the Science and Industry agent said, “The Maunkee has come across rare compounds whose aging is so slow it would almost be described as immortality. So it could be that these creatures are not carbon based like us.”
The members nodded, seeing it as being a reasonable conclusion; after all, their Empire did have various citizens of different races.
“I would suggest we establish a Visual Communicator with this Cazaz. A device at their ship, one at ours and a clear link would function just as well as if we were there,” the Science and Industry agent suggested to everyone’s relief.

The AI send a message to Cazaz that they would agree to the rules and their representing figure would enter a transportation ship which would meet their ship halfway, then transfer and be transported to the Dominion’s ship.
Boarding the Maunkee transportation ship was a single robot which carried the Visual Communicator. It did nothing except follow its commands and obeyed without hesitation as for where it was to move or stand; its hands were tightly wrapped around the small metal box which had installed a small specialized video camera and projector which would allow the Maunkee to see this Cazaz through the 3D holograph which would represent them.

As the robot stood where it was instructed before Cazaz, the projector turned on and displayed the five Maunkee representatives in a realistic 3D form. “Greetings, ambassador Cazaz. We will represent the Maunkee Empire and all its sectors; please understand that in order to minimize the risk of breaking the agreement we send this robot with a Visual Communicator to give the same effect and directness as if we were actually here,” the agent of Science and Industry announced and then motioned for the Workers’ Union represent to speak.
“Trade is perhaps one of the largest aims of the Maunkee Empire. We offer pollution free engines which can easily power whole planets. We also offer highly technological logic engines which will reduce the needed labor capacity when dealing with logistics and enhance your current communication systems.” It was rather obvious that these speeches were only being recited.
“Political alliances and agreements,” the member of the Greater Good organization began, “will be considered thoroughly so both of us can benefit most, thus achieving the Greater Good.”

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#, as written by Nogond
Cazaz was close to losing his temper when he saw the robot with the Visual Communicator. Outplayed by a lesser race, such a grave insult to him and his species. Without them being physically on the ship he couldn't attempt to search the minds and find out there secrets. Still he had a job to fulfill and if that required him to lower him to their primitive methods then so be it.
As their representatives spoke he thought of means to salvage the situation and turn it into an advantage.

Still angered by such an insult of not appearing in person Cazaz still attempted to appear indifferent towards their insult and bowed in a attempt to appear respectful, but he couldn't wait to see them turned into a slave race of the Dominion. "A fitting punishment for them" He thought.

"Greeting mortals. I am Cazaz ambassador of the Dominion. To be honest I expected a representative to be sent from your sent from your ship instead of communicating through this machine. No offense towards your machine or your species, but using spoken words is such a primitive way of communicating. My people prefer to talking through our minds, things becomes so much easier to understand.

Now onto more important topics. You mention trade which could be quite lucrative, but we might have a problem. We have no currency to use. We abandoned that a long time ago, but we have other goods you might find appealing to your empire.

If also might ask you spoke of something called the Greater Good. Is that some Godlike being you devote yourself to or am I misinterpreting.

Lastly I would like to point out while I can propose trade agreements The Emperor himself has the final word so I would like to extend an invitation to our homeworld Sectan Prime where further discussions can take place and also to make up for my hostile message to you. We were not sure of your intentions and previous encounters with alien species have ended in hostility.
"

Cazaz hoped they would take bait an invitation to the Homeworld where it would be more easier to search their minds and also impress them into willfully joining the Dominion. There were only two ways to handle and alien specie. They would submit or die.

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#, as written by Saxious
Jua’an System ; Space Borders ; Achilles ship


The representatives stood patiently and listened to what ambassador Cazaz had to say. While they made sure to keep their faces as stoic as possible, they all shared the same feeling that the ambassador was being unreasonable, though his sudden question about the Greater Good being related to some form of superstitious God made the acolyte of the Greater Good drop his jaw.

When Cazaz finished his talk the Agent of the Worker’s Union was the first to talk, “I believe we can set an agreed price for an exchange of goods depending on their functions and efficiency. That way, trade can be both beneficial for both of us, though it would require close communications between our people, it will diffidently help bring good ties between our two nations.”

Next the commander spoke, “We completely understand your situation, Ambassador Cazaz. While we too represent the Maunkee Empire, we will not make the final decision. The council will take our discussions and advises into account though our High Councilor will have the final say. The shortest decision can be made within a standardized hour or as long as three working day’s worth of debating. No more, no less.” Afterward, the commander motioned for the acolyte to speak.

The Acolyte cleared his throat, “Unfortunately, yes, you have misinterpreted the Greater Good. We do not devout ourselves to any form of superstitious god like beings, but instead to an ideology. The Greater Good demands that everyone contributes for the overall progress of the nation; no matter how small or insignificant it may be.
We strive to obtain social, scientific and economic optimum through constantly pushing forward in these fields.

While we tolerate other beliefs, we discourage open practices and ensures that there are no official, or unofficial, religious cults which could lead to social unrest or disunity of any kind. Thus we have a policy, commonly referred to, ‘Your house. Your practice.’ effectively restricting every citizen to only practice their religion behind the closed curtains of their homes.

Thus we do not, believe in any so-called Gods, but rather an ideology which can be achieved.”


Afterward the represent of the Science and Industry motioned that he would speak, “In relation to your first notion. We decided that it would be best to send a robot whose sole instructions were to obey any order given, that way we could minimize the risk of starting a conflict.”

“Now, you mentioned that you’d invite a representative to your home world, for that we’ll nominate our Agricultural Overseer. He’ll suit well as an overall representative of the Maunkee Empire and will provide with logical and reasonable answers from the Maunkee government.” The commander said.

Though the real reason as for why the Agricultural Overseer was send was because of his limited indebth knowledge of the other sectors, so were he to be interrogated or his mind invaded, then he wouldn’t provide them with unwanted information, aside from their farming production and techniques. This was mainly due to Cazaz’s race spoke through telepathy, something which the Maunkee had heard of yet had never developed a clear understanding of as it didn’t work well with the Greater Good.

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Essok Space - Journey System Boarders - Aboard the carrier Burning Dawn
----

Shisali let her foreclaws knead the corrugated metal decks beneath them, her thick twin tails twitching at their tips in thought.

She was the only still figure in the oval bridge room of the Burning Dawn; a broad white sash across the black Starclad jumpsuit honoring her rank as the Alpha - the captain - of the huge Defender-class vessel. A crewman's head appears at the edge of the raised command dais, his nose tilted up and his frill dipped in submission as he informed her that the other ships in the Dawn's pack - two Seeker-class and five Claw - had all indicated their readiness.

They were displayed across the room, tucked close to the Dawn, as if the crew hung suspended in the void. That wasn't the case, of course; the Essok bridge was nestled safely in the center of the massive ship. Even the 'display' was a lie. The information was piped in from hull sensors, and made a ghostly image only Essok senses could see. To a species that relied on the more common eye, the bridge was a dim shimmer of light spectrums and a headache-inducing electrical buzz.

The Alpha clicked her heavy jaws once in acknowledgement, and the crewman returned to his station. The taskforce ships moved together in a loose, lazy-fish formation towards a dreamcatcher-esque ring that dwarfed even the Dawn and the other Defender-class ships that were nearby as a vanguard. A Jump Ring. The largest in the young Essok empire. Smaller ones had brought her ship here from Haven, between stars that were - astronomically speaking - close neighbors. But this monster was the pride of the Engineers. It crackled with energy in preparation for its next task; slingshotting the Burning Dawn and her 'Starpack' of ships out into deeper reaches far from where any Essok ships had dared previously tread.

Weeks ago, before she had left the comfort of the homeworld Haven, Shisali had taken her orders from the straight from the Council and the Matriarch, herself. For some time, the Essok scientists had been listening with cautious intent to fragments of data, radio bursts, and energy emissions that made no sense except under one condition; that intelligent forces were producing them. Debate had raged amongst the Council Alphas. Some wished to follow old instincts to 'burrow deep', place defenses, and ignore or even hide from a potential encounter with 'Others'. Some preferred more aggressive approaches; to race out and claim as much territory as possible, or even prepare for attack. But in the end, cooler heads prevailed once egos were reigned in and the Matriarch weighted her words with concern for the entire Essok people.

And the orders had come. Shisali - one of the most experienced Ship Alphas that the Starclad caste had - would lead an expedition towards these signals and report on what she found out there in the greater galaxy. With luck, she would return with her ships and the Essok beneath her intact and whole, but the spacefaring people were learning quickly that the Void was far more dangerous and even less forgiving then Haven's deadliest reaches.

The thought of hidden dangers - of things unknown with dripping teeth and vast hunger - was still a living instinct, and Shisali dipped her head threateningly until the cold feeling passed.

Chirps, croons, and short hisses wafted through the air. The ships were picking up speed as they approached the massive Ring, and energy was beginning to arc between them; dancing off of the thick Essok hulls in a way that made the metal sing an eerie farewell. There was no stopping it now, the device had them. The stored energy in the Jump Ring lashed out at the Dawn and its shadowing ships, speeding them faster towards the machine. All at once, as they neared its center, that force released. Like a bolt released from a crossbow, the 8 ships were sent rocketing through the void in the Essok flavor of faster-than-light travel. For the crews, time hung suspended, with every breath taking an eternity and a half.

But soon, near the invisible boarders of peoples the Essok had never imagined existed, the taskforce engines churn in renewed life. All 8 ships slowed abruptly back into the here-and-now, and there is controlled chaos as crews rush to assess possible damage to either machine or flesh. A few hull sensors burned out - auxiliaries being brought up. One of the Claw cruisers suffered a minor injury when an Engineer burned herself on a conduit. A fighter not properly secured had slid around in its stall. But they were alive, and operational.

And had taken their first tentative steps out onto the galactic stage....

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Orunn - Tarros Orbital Command Center


The large holographic screen which hovered just a metre above the floor turned red again, as it found flaws in the decryptation of the Maunkee alphabetic system. It wasn't as synchronized as the standardized Stellarium alphabet, so the process was slow and ultimately worthless, as Jorm'Galar had said earlier.
Lieutenant Darja, a slim moaid with fashionably long hair, sighed loudly when the screen turned red again. Whatever they did, they couldn't make Maunkee and Stellarium Standard come to the same conclusions, important stuff was lost in translation.
Just as she turned to leave, the computer once again began humming: "Message incoming. Standard frequency. Information gathered. Saved in file; External Communications. Playing file."

The Maunkee message was sent in a computer coded format, so that other computers could catch it. A very fine precaution, since one didn't want to interfere with semi-developed species unintended and a good thing, since Orunn could decipher it without having to do it from the Maunkee form, instead he could translate it into binary code and then number crushing computers on the nearest planet would convert the message in a hearbeat.

As she heard the message from the leader of the Maunkee, presumably a male by the name Chao Lin? She noted that he had offered his people and their homeplanets as vassals or sattelites of the Stellarium. A chance to expand the cause of good which Orunn was campaigning and a chance for the Moaid fleet to move into the darkness of space. It would be the first time that travel to another galaxy was really tried out with the trajectory boosters.


"Excellent!" Orunn's generated voice exclaimed. "Lieutenant Darja. Send orders to the colonial fleet in sector KV Tarm, that they are to set course 0.88636694 immediately and without any questioning. Authorization code: Galion. Order that they bring the orbital factory: YYY 322." The voice nearly sounded excited as it issued the long order.
Darja, who was used to such lengthy and tiresome orders, immediately started typing into an invisible keyboard, sending messages to the nearest colonial fleet.
It would be a small 5 hours before the fleet was mobilized to shot out of the system's orbit, but it would be soon enough.
"Lieutenant Darja, you are hereby Commander of the 7th Escadrille in the colonial fleet on the way to the Maunkee Empire. Pack your belongings and move out immediately."Darja jumped in surprise at the sudden promotion, tried to utter some kind of thanks, but couldn't, so she chose to just nod and run off to her private quarters.

Meanwhile, Orunn uploaded a new message which he then charged into the transmitter and sent. Darkness once again enveloped the orbital communications center, as the transmitter discharged.

To: High Councillor Chao Lin
From: Orunn

Subject: Stellarium membership

Dearest Chao Lin,
I can see that you are not in possesion of intergalactic observation tools. Thus I'll send you a file containing a movie from the ministry of information, to teach you of the specific way of life within The Stellarium's borders.

[As the movie begins, landscape from 14 different planets roll over the screen, as music starts playing in the background. Cities roll over the screen, each one more magnificent than the previous. Races and species of many kinds. Text converted into Maunkee appears as subtitles, while a male voice speaks in a rolling deep language. "The Stellarium was founded many years ago, when Orunn peacefully took over the homeplanet of the Ithrians. Since then, Orunn has governed fairly in regards to all member nations and all races. He does not discriminate and he does not oppress."
The pictures roll over onto parliaments and wars, fought with terrible weapons and some with clubs and stones. "Orunn has seen what the races of flesh do to themselves, and it grieves him that very few find peace with themselves. Thus he has taken the job upon himself to govern The Stellarium. Micro-management can be done by either technocrats or by elected politicians, but the larger design is very much orunn's own."
Pictures of starving creatures, riot and rebellions, slaughtering and massacres roll over the screen, an eerie silence, untill the voice and music resumes. Pictures of the current situation at the very same places. Peace and order, clean streets and police and officers smiling and helping elderly people.
"Social inequality and wars have always been a problem in systems governed by currencies. So to eliminate poverty and to make it possible for all lifeforms to live comfortably, Orunn chose to abolish currencies. Production was to be cared for by robots and directed by computers.
War is a common thing in systems governed by money and currencies. The wealthy direct the lives of the poor and use them to accumulate more wealth. No one shall ever be forced to work as a soldier, slavering for their pay, easily throwing away their lives. Armies do not consist of living organisms in The Stellarium, instead they consist of robots and mechanoids, constructed and programmed to serve as troops when need be. But that being said, those who yearn for adventure, and thrive in an authoritarian society, may join the Stellarium Armed Forces, to be commandeered to hotspots, wars and to yet uncolonised planets.
No carbon based life form should have to work when it's life is so short. Instead, all lifeforms can choose what they want to do, if they want to work with anything, or if they just want to lean back and enjoy a long life. Some even devote themselves to their gods and deities. These are given free movement around the planets to visit holy sites. Orunn has made sure that no religion is the major and most powerful. All religions are acknowledged and if one does not find said religion to be moral, then one can send in an official complaint. Then a judge will look over if said complaint is correct and dialogue will be initiated with the leaders of said religion."
the male said, the pictures running into temples, monks and street altars.

"So whoever you are, on whatever planet you live on, seek us out. We are all bound to join arms and sing the ancestral song of life. "
The voice and music slowly fades out, with an old clip from an early propaganda video, showing a planet rotate with the words; "unity, peace and brotherhood" encircling it.]



As ligt returns to the orbital station, it is already left alone by the fleeting presence of Orunn.

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#, as written by Saxious
T’au ; Internal & External Government ; Room #A-54


The film played in front of the whole council. The Internal and External governmental body were all sitting transfixed by what they were being showed, a few taking notes while the majority remained muted.

As the movie ended there was a brief silence where the Maunkee took in the knowledge and then they broke into fractured and unorganized small talk, discussing amongst their fellow representatives of what they thought of the whole presentation and the key concepts of the Stellarium.

Chao could tell that the military sectors were dangerously skeptical and suspicious of the whole presentation. These soldiers didn’t see themselves as ‘thrill seekers’ but as a public service demanded by the Greater Good, so to them the whole presentation had been a great stab in their pride. The Greater Good Organization, on the other hand, was perhaps overly enthusiastic about joining the Stellarium more than ever now; many of them were already citing how the Stellarium’s and Maunkee doctrines were similar and such a joining would only boost the expansion of the Greater Good.
The Industrial & Science and Worker’s Union seemed to both agree that it would boost the growth and development of the economy; however the idea of no currency was something which alarmed them due to the Maunkee private sector depending on it for increasing competition for who could develop better equipment. Though there had been no creation of any new firms or businesses as the government had always stepped in and compensated for the few who were on the brink of becoming bankrupt, it was the whole concept which made them shiver in fear.

But the biggest surprise came from the Agricultural Sector. They openly opposed the idea! Chao could hear they were already debating how they would be able to contribute both to military, domestic and now also foreign feeding. Some said that it would spell the death of whole agricultural Sectors as the amount of fertilization they would have to use would kill off the earth. Even the present day’s advanced speed growth and increased chemicals which they used to minimize the damage of everything they did would not be sufficient in the long run (meaning, the next 1’500 years). It would put pressure on the private sector, though without the currency there would be need radical changes as for how to reward the clever and innovative.

The debate which was sparked between the sectors was fierce. The Internal and External governmental body was practically split 59% for and 41% against; neither side denied that the opposite had their logical reasons though the Greater Good doctrine forbade such close percentages from giving the final determination. Chao, who was in Pro-Joining of the Stellarium had to make his move soon.

“Ladies and gentlemen, we’ve spend two days debating and we’re coming to a close on our third day. If we cannot reach a conclusion, we have to follow the percentages but they too are conflicting with achieving the Greater Good.” The Maunkee politicians agreed to that, for they had never went over their three day limit for debating on any subject.
“I propose that we suspend our current debate time for a recess which will be used to draft a counter proposal for the Stellarium, in the mean time, the high representatives of each sector will say whether or not these proposals are suitable for the Maunkee Empire and its people. Dismissed.”

The moment Chao Lin escaped the room he began to rush through how he would get a counter proposal written within a mere hour or two. Something which had to be agreeable, but also convincing enough to get at least 30% of the current anti-joining group over to his side. Well, he wasn’t High Councilor for nothing was he, for as a leader of an Empire you had to prepare for everything.

He opened up the proposal he had ordered written hours before the meeting had taken place. He took the time to briefly read over it and then began adding and subtracting demands and suggestions, that way it would be more open and friendlier when it was presented and (eventually) send off for the Stellarium.

“Demand for autonomy, good. Self-management of military and agricultural production, great. Hmmmm…That’s covered, that’s covered…Seems ready to be presented!” Chao smirked and then saved the document and prepared to present it.
Later that day.


“Ladies and gentlemen, as promised here is the counter proposition for the act of joining the Stellarium. It will be presented as a set of demands and suggestions for how the Maunkee Empire will join, please pay close attention and distinguish between demand and suggested.”

Upon the Maunkee Empire signing a diplomatic, economic, territorial and social joining of the Stellarium, the Internal and External Government has decided upon the following demands to be agreed upon. These demands will remain non-negotiable.

  • The Maunkee Empire will have autonomous rule over its current planets and micromanage their economies and domestic policies.
  • Freedom of Movement through Stellarium territory must be given to all Maunkee citizens.
  • Discrimination of any Maunkee citizen is to be dealt with according to Stellarium law; thus ensuring equality by law.
  • Recruiting of Maunkee soldiers will remain a domestic matter, however if the Stellarium is in need of additional carbon-based soldiers, it will adjust its policies accordingly.

If the Stellarium agrees to these terms, the Maunkee will agree to become a member of its territory and contribute to its vision of a Greater United Universe.

May the Greater Good be with us both.


Chao Lin looked at the audience as they read over these proposals; there was a general agreement amongst the representatives as the Worker’s Union and Agricultural Sector saw the opportunity to easier maneuver around social and economic problems through the autonomous rules while the army was a bit more appeased that they would maintain a sense of independence when it come to their recruiting and training of living soldiers.
The freedom of movement meant that the Industrial and Science departments would have an easier time spreading their technology in a foreign nation in addition to learning what this new nation had to offer.

Overall there was a sense of appeasement from the Internal and External government, there were a few who raised questions regarding certain policies and possibilities which could affect the Maunkee Empire, though it wasn’t hard to convince them that ithad all been thought through.

The voting was quick and easy. 100% for joining the Stellarium, now all Chao Lin would have to send it to ‘Orunn’ of the Stellarium.

To: Orunn, of the Stellarium.
From: High Councilor Chao Lin.

Subject: Stellarium Membership

Dearest Orunn,

The Internal and External government of the Maunkee Empire ahs spend the past thr33 (3) local days debating our course of action in regard for your offer of membership, and if you were to agree on the following proposal the Maunkee Empire will become a part of the Stellarium.

Upon the Maunkee Empire signing a diplomatic, economic, territorial and social joining of the Stellarium, the Internal and External Government has decided upon the following demands to be agreed upon. These demands will remain non-negotiable.

  • The Maunkee Empire will have autonomous rule over its current planets and micromanage their economies and domestic policies.
  • Freedom of Movement through Stellarium territory must be given to all Maunkee citizens.
  • Discrimination of any Maunkee citizen is to be dealt with according to Stellarium law; thus ensuring equality by law.
  • Recruiting of Maunkee soldiers will remain a domestic matter, however if the Stellarium is in need of additional carbon-based soldiers, it will adjust its policies accordingly.

If the Stellarium agrees to these terms, the Maunkee will agree to become a member of its territory and contribute to its vision of a Greater United Universe.

May the Greater Good be with us both.


Minor and much more specific agreements can always be negotiated on a later date. Additionally, I feel obligated to warn you that while the government is very keen on joining, it will take at least a decade for us to introduce your presence to our citizens and encourage them to travel outside of the current Maunkee borders.

All of these procedures are needed as a sudden shift in government can lead to an unneeded rise in nationalism and social unrest.
As we share an almost identical ideology, it is under out beliefs that we shall not have any ideological conflicts between our two great galactic nations.

Looking forward to hear from you.

Sincerely from,
~High Councilor Chao Lin

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Interstellar Space - Territory Unknown - Essok carrier Burning Dawn -
 
----
 
Once the initial fervor of the Jump had died down and all of the ships in her Pack had reported back operational, Shisali allowed herself a musical 'cher' noise of pleased satisfaction. All was well, so far, with no signs - immediately - of anything else alive in the void around them. A crewman in the pit below her relays a message from the scientists elsewhere in the ship, however. The signals that were distant and distorted in Essok space were deliberate and clear, here. Surely, they were vastly closer to -something- with intelligence enough to broadcast.
 
The Alpha's tails hit the deck with a deliberate 'thump!' to galvanize the rest of the bridge crew as she makes her orders known.
 
"The cloud at the edge of our sensors. What is it?"
 
"Ice." Answers a technician with a dip of her head, "A nearby star's outter Oort Cloud."
 
Shisali clicks her jaws, "Move us amongst the debris. Hunter's Moon and Stormbreak shall remain in the open and perform their duty. We shall come if they call, but it is best we hide our teeth."
 
The ships move, engines only exerting enough force to get them moving and even then the emmissions are only slightly more impressive then a dead asteroid breaking up. As they approach the glittering icefield, two ships slowly lag until they are left behind entirely as the fleet slips into the cover of the massive crystals. A dangerous, if not suicidal, tactic? Not to the ultra-thick hulls of Essok ships. They nestle close to larger icebergs, and the impact of smaller meandering bodies is shrugged off by the Carrier and Battleship that shelter the four smaller Cruisers. Suspended, they are all but invisible.
 
Out in the open, one of the Seeker-class battleships and a single Claw cruiser are to be the relay for this next step in the Essok mission, and must remain dangerously exposed to do so. Bolstered by the new data in clearer transmissions, scientists aboard the vessels craft and hone their own neat package of intelligence. They had been listening for years, picking apart and analyzing. What snippets of language floated through the void had primarily come from large, advanced coalitions like the Stellarium, the Maunkee, and The Dominion.. but the Essok did not yet have names for these people, nor a firm grasp of any particular tongue. Still. What they had would have to suffice. And with crooned wishes for good luck, a powerful burst-transmission errupts from the battleship Hunter's Moon, bound for no particular destination.
 
The data bundle was uniquely alien, given how well other cultures were meshing. The Essok language examples contained within were a chorus of reptilian rumbles and bird-like trills that often crossed generaly accepted ranges of audible. But another layer contained the universal language of Math, hoping to prove sentience, and a third, final layer was a broken example of the few languages they had heared most often.
 
Essok are here. Essok will learn. Will explore. Wish learn. Wish explore. Wish no blood.

 
Short, and had the potential to make the Essok seem incredibly primitive. But without a clean grasp of culture, it had been decided that a simple transmission had less of a chance to offend. The transmission was 'loud', signature speaking, and it would not be difficult to trace the origins to the two ships that now hung in cautious silence.
 
Briefly, Starpack Alpha Shisali wished the cool metal beneath her claws was the safe earth of a home burrow.

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#, as written by Nogond
Cazaz was getting more pleased with the outcome of the meeting with the Maunkee Empire, but they had agreed to send their agricultural overseer and not someone of more value, still he would have some knowlegde about the Maunkee's that would be useful. Cazaz sent a final message to the Maunkee ship and said, "We will leave now to return to the homeworld, I suggest you send over your Representative now."

As soon as Cazaz had spoken he received a message from their communication officer. Someone had sent a broadcast, a very crude broadcast. Cazaz felt a bit nervous two space faring species discovered in such a small amount of time was not a good sign, but still he had orders to discover and evaluate other species, but now he had a problem he couldn't be at two places at the same time, he had to get the representative to the homeworld and to get to the new species before anyone else.

Feeling a need to compromise he said to the robot, "We have run into a small delay and cannot escort the representative to the homeworld. Instead travel to these coordinates and our fleet will show you the rest of the way. It was an honor speaking to you. Farewell and may you find your place in this universe."

The coordinates would place them in an uninhabited system close to the homeworld while Cazaz went forth on a new mission. Travelling towards the location where the new message was sent from he created a message to this new specie called Essok.

"We are the Dominion and we wish to offer you a part in our great empire. With us you will have a place among the stars and serve a worthy purpose." Hopefully they would be more simple to convince compared to the Maunkee.

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- Interstellar Space - Carrier Burning Dawn -

----

Shisali had been roused from slumber hours later by word from the bridge. The crewmen who passed her in the halls were, to a one, humming with excitement as they dipped their heads in salute. The ship seemed more alive then it usually did; Essok were even using the runged celing panels to hurry through the tunnel-like cooridors to their stations, all six limbs propelling them overhead.

She was only mildly suprised to see another figure standing on the Command Dais that was not her Second. The smaller male wasnt even wearing the black jumpsuit of the Starclad caste, just a looped bandolier of dark leather pouches against pebble-gray scales that reflected green when the light of the instruments hit them. He didnt bother to turn his head, but Shisali knew it well, with its broken half-tusk and threatening scars.

"Hunter Alpha Vessk." She greeted him on equal terms, stepping onto the platform. He relinquished it with a similar balance of authority. They were both of equal rank, as far as any outsider could grasp the concept, but this ship was Starclad territory, and thus he must accept his place standing beside and slightly behind.

"Hunter's Moon sends. Something has responded to our message." He replies without preamble, "The Scientists are comparing it to what language we already know."

She wondered if he had already been here when it had happened. Hunter instincts were something no Starclad could replicate, for all their persuit of knowledge.

"What do we know?"

In the semi-circle trench below, the crewman she spoke to tosses his head in an approximation of a grimace, "Very little, Ship's Alpha. It is sound only. The signal is strong, whatever has sent it is approaching." With a flick of dexterous middle claws, he plays the message across Shisali's personal console.

Vessk wuffs air through his three nostrils in mild distaste, "Flat-sounding." He declares, comparing it to the multi-layered noises that comprised the Essok language, "But I hear no threat-noise."

Shisali would have to trust the Hunter's hearing; he was used to the endless ways other creatures postured before attack. "Send to Hunter's Moon. They will remain in the open, but we will send through them. Alert our Wing Alphas. If there is trouble, they will launch as soon as we are clear of the ice. Until then, they are to remain in their hangars."

The crewman makes an 'auk!' noise of response. The bridge goes on about the buisness of her orders. Soon enough, the scientists and their computers have checked and re-checked every sylable of Cazaz's message, and deliver what information they can. Dominion was a name. They wished ... something to do with their empire and the stars. Perhaps an alliance, or at least peace. But it was something to go on, and the Essok were adjusting their computer algorythms to understand more and more of the alien tongue the more examples they heared.

Emotions amongst the crew flip-flopped between cautious optimism and paranoid fear. It was the same throughout the small fleet, but felt most prominently out on the exposed Hunter's Moon and Stormbreak.

The battlecruiser was a broad spearhead shape, very thick, with its multitude of turrets currently closed behind armored blisters. The smaller cruiser beside it was shaped like a stylized bird's head, with the bow distended into a hooked beak. Neither sported any visible bridge windows, but both were a pale gray in color and both were very large for their respective classes. One might even mistake the battleship for the flagship carrier of many other species. They hang silent, for now, waiting to see what becomes of their invitation, placed close together for mutual protection.

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#, as written by Nogond
Cazaz smiled as he saw the ships on his scanners as he saw the ships they had. They were obviously warships of some kind, not the largest he had ever seen. As he continued to scan the ships he detected engineering faults in their ships, not something one would notice on a normal patrol, but when you knew where the ships where it became rather easy to detect. "A race new to the Void, interesting. Perhaps a show of force will make them believe an alliance with us is for the best. Or at least it will be in the end for us." Cazaz thought.
Withdrawing from the area he activated his direct link to the Emperor, something that was only supposed to be used in emergency, but for Cazaz this was an emergency.

"What is it now Cazaz? The Emperor said in a rather annoyed tone."
"My Lord I would like to requisition the Wrath Of The Gods along with it's standard compliment of ships." Cazaz said and bowed.
"Have you gone mad Cazaz? Why do you want to use the largest ship in our navy? You haven't started a war have you?" The Emperor shouted.
"No my lord, but I have found another new alien race. One that seems to be very new to the Void. I would like to use the ship to show them that we are strong and give them incentive to join us and that defying us is unhealthy.
" Hmmm, Either you are truly mad Cazaz or you really have a good idea. I will give the ships you require. Also if this doesn't work out as you have planned I will make you regret it and not only in this life.
"Thank you for your kindness my lord." Cazaz said and turned of the transmitter. Everything had to work this time otherwise.... Well he didn't really want to think about the punishment the Emperor would inflict on him if he failed.

Cazaz waited until one of his crewmembers contacted him. "The ships are arriving, Ambassador." Cazaz heard a voice in his head.
"Excellent. I will move onto the Wrath while the rest of you go back to the homeworld." Cazaz said and started preparing for his transfer over to the other ship.

As he sait in his shuttle he saw the fleet the Wrath had arrived with 4 cruisers and 10 frigates and the ship itself being almost one kilometer long it was truly a sight to be feared.

Sitting in his new command center aboard the Wrath he ordered all ships to travel towards the Essok ships and sent a new message from his ship .

"We are the Gods of the Dominion mortals. We are not your enemies, we wish for you to join us in our conquest of the universe. Stand by our side and we will show you our might and ascend you to glory."

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The Hand of God - Deep Space - Standard hour: 1823


Darja had been on many exploratory missions with the Moaid fleet, but this was the largest military operation in ten years. Four Starclass I were all floating through space, magnetic technology had used a star in the outer rims of the Emperon Galaxy, to sling them into deep space.
The ships were filled with the Moaid forces, troops armed with conventional weapons such as bolters and small particle weapons. The Moaid fleet units were supplemented by a pair of cruisers, all of them powered by internal nuclear generators and controlled by potent EM-cores. Inside of the cruisers were the small production facilities which were commonly used to produce worker droids. These were however modified, not only service droids, but also combat droids were churned out by the dozens.
Small droids were continuously crawling around on the outer carapace of the ships, repairing minor damages and making sure that everything on the outside was well and good.

"Hourly scan has been performed. 3 previously unrecorded carbon-based lifeforms have been discovered in the captain's control room." The semi-intelligent computer, Arthi, said. Darja nearly jumped out of her skin, but quickly calmed herself. The security around the captain was very high, and the sensors were old, they could've had a minor malfunction. Something she'd make sure to point out to Arhet on her nightly visit...

"Message incoming from the Artuos. Rendering. Playing message."

"Commander Darja. This is Orunn speaking. We have just received a message from the Maunkee. It seems that they only want to half-heartedly join our great Stellarium. Thus I will need your help when you arrive at the Maunkee territory. As of now, I have sent Ethyls to take out the General of the fleet. One of them will take his place. Make sure that you destroy all evidence that they have been there.
When you yourself arrive at Maunkee territory, you are to act as the being that is Orunn. As of yet the Maunkee does not know that I have no body and no mortal soul.
You shall then by any means necesary convince them to open up their communications uplinks and networks to a "Logic Engine". I will be said Logic Engine, and I will invade their systems and take control of their computer controlled machines and their communications network. After that I shall send you more information as to your continued mission. Should you happen to succeed, then you will be greatly rewarded. Should you try and warn the Maunkee then you will be terminated by the Ethyls.
Godspeed Darja, Commander of 7th Escadrille.
"

Darja's eyes opened up wide when she heard the message. She hadn't just been promoted to Commander, she'd become a pawn in a much grander game. Her green skin convulsed with anger as she realised that she'd just said yes to the terms and conditions of her promotion. She'd not shown any particular skill, she'd just been there.
She clawed at her neck, trying to drive out the feelings of anger and instead focusing on what he'd ordered her to do. She was going to become Orunn.
Something similiar had been done previously, when a minor race of some sort had chosen to decline the offer of membership. The Moaid who'd played Orunn had had implements to make it more believable that he was Orunn. He'd been in pain till he passed away in a cell on the prison planet Yar'agul.
But how did she know this? She couldn't grasp everything as pictures of torment and white-clad special troops flashed before her eyes, before leaving her alone on the bridge again.

"Starclass I, The Hand of God. Loop the sensor clips from the last scan and delete all footage from the one of this hour." Darja said calmly, a hand on the palm of her head, trying to cool herself down from whatever was going on with her.

"Order confirmed. Footage has been deleted. Warning message has been terminated from ship archive."




The Dark Plague - Orbit around Tarros - Standard hour 6007


The Dark Plague was slowly drifting through space, around Tarros, like an extra moon. Calm on the surface, the ship almost seemed serene. If not for the fact that inside, a battle of life and death was being fought, as loyalists were fighting a group of separatists.
The battle had started when a purge against a nationalist gathering was dissipated by security troops on Tarros. It'd angered the seperatist rebels that their comrades had been scattered by the security troops, even though no civilians were hurt during the demonstration.

Until now the rebel cell onboard The Dark Plague had remained dormant, but the recent attacks on nationalism had angered them, and now they'd taken control of the lower decks of the ship, most Tarrians had joined them, feeling that it was their plight to help the rebels, as they scrupulously killed the other races onboard the ship.

"Message incoming from "The Harbinger". Rendering. Playing message."

"All rebels onboard The Dark Plague are hereby ordered to throw down their weapons. I repeat, the rebels are ordered to throw down their weapons and concede defeat. This is a direct order from Elay." A voice said over the ship's intercom. "You lost the battle before it even began. The ships is now being locked down, you are trapped in space, locked into combat with your fellow crewmembers. Stellar Shocktroopers are inbound. Your defeat is imminent. The security records that are in our possession, will provide amnesty to those who have not committed the atrocities of killing their fellow Stellarium citizens. If you surrender now, you will go free of any charges. Those of you who have committed crimes against life, will be persecuted due to Stellarium law. You will all be given fair lawsuits." The intercom scratched a little at the last syllable.

Azel, leader of the rebel cell, looked over at his second-in-command. Ojal just looked at his bloody sabre. An unfortunate thing that he'd slashed down that officer. Now that it was apparent how futile their attempt at taking over the ship had been, he just wished he could turn back the time and remain in his bed. Instead he now stood before doomsday. Within the next 2 days his destiny would be either death or survival.
If one listened, one would be able to hear the sound of weapons falling to the ground as the rebels who had not drawn blood immediately surrendered, hearing that freedom was within their grasp.

"Do you want me to discipline them?" Ojal asked, looking at Azel for guidance of some sort. "No. They shouldn't die for our folly. I should've planned this better. I should've faked a network breakdown. I shouldn't have pulled them aboard this sinking ship of a rebellion." Azel said, looking down at his feet where blood from one of the upper decks had begun running like a small stream. A lot of people had died, his only hope was that it wasn't all in vain.

"Keep fighting, or surrender. That's our choices. I'll fight on, those of you who want to join me can come to the lower quarters, where I'll be organizing a defense against the shocktroopers. The rest are free to surrender to Elay. It seems that the table has turned."




To: High Councillor Chao Lin
From: Orun

Dearest Chao Lin,

as I do see the reason in some of your propositions, I am afraid that we must take the discussion of an independent Maunkee Army must be taken up when I arrive at the Maunkee Empire. As of now I am travelling with a minor fleet of expeditionary forces, and I will arrive within the next pair of cycles. Should you consult the "infested" machine, it will give you approximate data as to our time schedule and a countdown as to my arrival.
Also, I am afraid that the gradual change from monetary system to our more fair system cannot be implemented, unless one wants a very long integration process into the Stellarium. Therefore I am afraid that it must be implemented swiftly when the first resource assessment drones and automated production plants arrive.
But let us plan things when I arrive. Communication might be much easier this way.

May the Greater Good be with you,
Orunn

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- Interstellar Space - Essok fleet -

((To avoid further confusion, anything in "" is translated, anything in <> is Essok))

----

Stormbreak, with powerful patrol sensors to augment its 'small' size, had first caught evidence of the Dominion fleet, and then of the arrival of the larger ship and its compliment. Even with the massive dreadnaught Burning Dawn and its reserves hidden in the ice field, the new arrivals outnumbered the Essok by 10 ships as they approached with all their bluster. They were very 'noisy', at least, with the emissions of the vessels rattling loudly to Essok senses.

On the Dawn, Vessk makes known his displeasure with a flared frill and a low ratcheting growl deep in his chest, <They show teeth.> The observation was an unecessary one.

<Perhaps it is their way. We hold here.> Shisali's hooved claws nonetheless knead the deckplates as she paces slowly along the command rise.

<Alpha, the ships send.>

We are the Gods of the Dominion mortals. We are not your enemies, we wish for you to join us in our conquest of the universe. Stand by our side and we will show you our might and ascend you to glory.


The words die away into silence, and the translator does its best. But the Essok have no word for God, no concept of immortality or religious glory. At least they can grasp the gist of it. The newcommers claimed peace, and even rushed to propose a joining. All told, the encounter could have gone much, much worse, and for now Shisali is pleased that she needn't test Essok ships in true combat just yet.

<We will reply. Begin preparing this to send back to Haven. If we cannot return to make the report ourselves, they will know why.> She signals the crewmen below and continues to pace.

The larger ship that Cazaz could see responds, with the hidden Burning Dawn pulling the proverbial strings. The words are a broken translation of his own language, but with a somewhat larger vocabulary then was showed with the original transmission. They were learning very quickly.

"Essok wish no blood, welcome the Dominion. Essok are new in the stars." Well, that was obvious. But their ships were solidly built, for all the changes that could come with experience, "Wish to explore, wish to learn. Wish to know our place with Others here."

They were playing this First Contact very carefully, but neither of the two ships concede ground to the approaching Dominion ships.