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  1. - Top - End - #61
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    Above the planet Aestafar

    After the scans are finished, the defense fleet's admiral decides to take action and investigate the distress signal. Two shuttles full of the flagship's marine complement (Spacetroopers: Stormtroopers in zero-g armor with life support systems) are sent across to the apparent derelict with orders to aid the survivors of the ship's apparent distress. As they are on their way over, the Fourth Fleet arrives from hyperspace on the other side of the ship and is quickly apprised of the situation.

    "Target the ship, sir?"
    "Why bother? It's obviously no threat. It might be a victim of some hostile force, although looking at it, it's probably falling apart of it's own accord. Stay alert for any more hyperspace arrivals."

    (Call it 250 Stormtroopers, so it's an even company. They'll look for a docking access, or if that's not available, will leave the shuttle and blast their way in in some place where it won't depressurize the whole ship.)
    Last edited by Nerd-o-rama; 2008-01-16 at 12:58 AM.
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  2. - Top - End - #62
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    Around the Tau homeworld, T'au, a veritable armada sits in orbit and above. Tau ships flitter about like fish in a sea, Tarellian ships dart around, like groupers around the smaller Tau ships, and the Vespid ships are as manta rays. And in the middle of all this action, are several large warships, like massive rocks or mountains amid the smaller ships, and truly they appeared to be built of granite and rock, as though chiseled from asteroids. All these ships seem centered around one place on the world of T'au, a large dome, visible from space, with a massive rounded spire jutting from it, kilometers high into the sky, and it flattens and rounds at the top, this is the place of the Great Council. Around the Council sit and stand the varied leaders among the Tau Empire. The Supreme Commanders of the 4 castes, the Great Abyss of the water caste, the Endless Sky of the air caste, the Deep Core of the earth caste, and the Grand Flame of the fire caste. As well standing around the table are two kroot shapers, and the Grand Shaper, leader of the Kroot, a Vespid Queen sits with her honor guard of two senior stingwings, a grizzled humanoid appearing as a sort of reptilian canine hybrid, with scars crisscrossing his face and chest, standing about 2 and half meters tall, with 4 strong warriors, only standing about 2 meters tall, make up the Tarellian delegation. 6 squat, semi-humanoid, aliens sit at the table, clearly they are looked up to by all the other races, even the Tau, even though technically they bended knee to them, clearly here sat the Demiurg. At the entrance stood two Tau Battlesuits, and around the large circular room there were soldiers assembled from all the various races, Elite Fire Warriors with two Battlesuits, Tarellian Dog Soldiers and Wolf Warriors, Elite Vespid Stingwings and Soldiers, Kroot shapers, trackers and warriors, with a couple of Kroot hounds at the heal of a houndmaster. All this was prepared for the arrival of the Emperor of Mankind.
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  3. - Top - End - #63
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    Steamers
    Onboard the Indomitable
    Captain Whiting looked out over the expanses of the void at the fleet which met his little flotilla, directing what appeared to be a score of turrets at his ship.

    What a bizarre construction - Don't they know that putting the guns along the broadside would let them easily hold over three times the number of guns?
    he thought, while the radio officer ran up.

    "Captain, they're trying to establish contact over the radio!"

    "Wish to talk, do they? Very well." responded Whiting, blowing his whistle. "Show them our broadsides, and hold fire unless they shoot first. Get the gyros ready to launch." he muttered to his First Mate, who began shouting and heaving the ships around while Whiting walked down to the Radio Room.

    "This is Captain Bentley Whiting, of the Indomitable." he said, simply, waiting for the Brusch-whatevers' next move. The Aethergate must have homed in on the electrical signals of these... ships.

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    Above the planet Aestafar

    With little effort a docking port was located and the shuttles docked without incident or mishap. Despite misgivings nothing approached out of hyperspace to launch an assault and the Spacetroopers were able to board the derelict vessel. The inside of which was decidedly more up to date then the outside or at least looked it. All of the hallways were easily wide enough for a line of four Spacetroopers to stand shoulder to shoulder and signifigantly taller as well. Finding themselves in a T shaped passageway, the occupants of the vessel quickly made themselves known.

    The metal floor rumbled with the approach of the large centauroid creatures, one from each of the different directions. Reptilian in appearance, the creatures each carried a long barreled gun at their human 'waist' part but kept their hands well away from them. Not that it looked as if they'd need them. Their human-like arms were powerfully muscled and corded, rippling with even the slightest of movement. Perhaps most curiously of all, they lacked any sort of oral organs though they were quick to prove they didn't need them.

    We have traveled a great distance to reach safety...have we arrived?

    Perhaps they responded to the distress signal..

    Impossible, we but activated only a few..

    Silence!...We mean no harm...but have we come to a safe place?

    The bewildering conversation was entirely telepathic, something most people encounter normally, but was all the more confusing since none of the creatures made any indication when one of them was talking. All three of the distinct voices were heard at once.

    There is no time for decorum..we have sick and hungry on board. Can we land? There is much we Zoats could do in return for your aid..
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  5. - Top - End - #65
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    The Spacetrooper captain looks the strange aliens over once. Then twice. His mask obviously shows no emotion, but if the aliens' telepathy extends to empathy, they'll probably pick up mild disappointment and irritation. "I'm going to need to radio the admiral," he says, in the dispassionate voice of a military officer who doesn't really care about your problems.

    One brief subspace radio conversation later, made somewhat longer by the involvement of the Fourth Fleet admiral as well:

    "We can take you and any other survivors aboard the Star Destroyer Candescence. You'll need to be quarantined before you're allowed on the planet. Is that acceptable?"
    Last edited by Nerd-o-rama; 2008-01-16 at 01:35 AM.
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  6. - Top - End - #66
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    It'll have to do, we've run out of fuel.

    Did it actually just talk?

    Think what else it uses a mouth for.

    You mean...?

    Yes, they actually EAT with that orifice.

    Despite the apparent conversation, the movements were uniform and looked practiced. The Zoats pulled the weapons from their holsters and dropped them to the deck, kicking them over with pad-like feet. Stepping forward with those same thunderous steps that almost seemed to make the floor vibrate, the three stood to one side as more and more of the centauriod creatures turned the corner of the hallway at an unheard signal and began to approach the Spacetroopers. If the trooper had to guess, something he most likely wasn't paid to do, there seemed to be few females or young among the group. It mostly just consisted of males and the old and each of the males had the same bulky muscular appearance as the first one.
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  7. - Top - End - #67
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    "We may have some trouble fitting onto the shuttles. Battalions 3-5 will stay aboard the ship and wait for the shuttles."

    With that, the Stormtroopers herd - their New Order indoctrination and rather coarse sense of humor force every last one of them to mentally use that word - the Zoats onto the waiting boarding shuttles, which are soon on their way to the Fourth Fleet's flagship.

    Arriving in the hangar bay, the Zoats are assisted off the shuttle by the spacetroopers, and their leader is greeted by a thin man in an olive uniform and cap, wearing an admiral's insignia, flanked by a pair of black-uniformed navy troopers.

    "Admiral Issen," he introduces himself. "You seem to have had a bit of trouble with your vessel."

    Needless and haughty observation out of the way, he continues, "The Galactic Empire is willing to offer you sancuary; we'll just need to discuss a few things and run some pathogen tests first. If your leader will follow me, the rest of you will be escorted to our somewhat limited passenger quarters. Now..." and he leads whomever identifies himself as the leader off.

    "So, where do you hail from?"
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  8. - Top - End - #68
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    With a passivity that is most calming, the Zoats allow themselves to be herded unto the shuttle and then once more out of the shuttle to meet with the admiral. When he asked to speak with a leader, confusion was apparent on their faces and they twisted to look at each other as if conversing telepathically once more.

    Eventually the largest of the Zoats broke off from the group to follow after the admiral, towering over the human and still wearing his weapons. Unlike the previous weapon this had a small flame at the muzzle on both of them, hinting it was some sort of flamethrower (which it was are), and a bizarre metal gauntlet encasing the other hand.

    Your terms are acceptable Admiral, but please try to expedite the process. It has been many a time since we've been able to set food on land and we do so enjoy land. Circumstances have forced us to become nomads, I no longer remember where we originally came from in the first place. Not that it matters, it no longer can support life after what happened to it.

    The remaining aliens who still remained as a group seemed antsy as the 'leader' was broken off and spoken too alone though it wasn't a long shot to guess he was speaking to the others and not just Issen. That didn't keep them from being antsy and shuffling back and forth on their feet while those who hadn't given up their weapons dropped their hands to them every now and then.
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  9. - Top - End - #69
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    "Unity and concordance are admirable goals," Marai repeated, expressing what agreement she honestly could. They were, but the more the Primarch spoke, the more she felt that theirs was indeed an expansionist empire. Not a cruel one, although it was too soon to really tell without knowing more about their worlds, but aggression, even with the eventual betterment of all involved as the stated goal, was not something she would approve of. Nor would the kiith councils approve of such, she felt certain. Too much of their history pointed to the tragedies such aggression could engender.

    But she wasn't here to make snap judgments. That, she thought with a hint of whimsy, was what the Daiamid Council was for. "Primarch Dorn, while I welcome any chance to learn more of your people, I understand that you may not have the time to instruct us personally. If that is so, will you permit us to move further into your solar system?" If that was not so, she would happily speak directly with the Primarch. To her, there was not much that was more important than trying to understand the thoughts and beliefs of others, but a military official (for despite her rank, Marai Takeyn still did not think of herself as really being part of the military) saw things differently, and had other duties to perform.

    -------------------------------------------

    The Second Exploratory Fleet completed its jump into the nebula and deployed. The pair of cruisers immediately moved to flank the immense mothership and its two accompanying carriers, while the smaller destroyers spread out to form a box formation. The array of frigates begin moving only a few seconds later, giving the slower ships a chance to position themselves before assuming escort formations. Flights of interceptors, corvettes, and scouts launch from the mothership's docking bays; the carriers hold their forces in reserve.

    It was all a precautionary measure, but for Commander Brand Gabel, of the vassal kiith of Soban, there was no such thing as being too cautious. All necessary orders had been issued in the first few instants after they exited hyperspace, but his preliminary scans showed him nothing more than the mineral-rich asteroids and comets they had arrived for.

    There were no stars or planets nearby for light-years, not anymore, but there had once been something approximating a planet here, as the uniform nature of the debris ring gave evidence to. The astrophysicists had estimated, given the spread of the field, that it had been well over a million years since the planetoid had been whole; perhaps with a closer vantage point with which to analyze the average size of the debris and look at the composition, they could give a better estimate of how large the planetoid had been (at least the size of a moon, they knew), how long ago it had existed, and what catastrophic impact had shattered it.

    Academically, that was all very fascinating, but it was not part of Brand Gabel's job. Most important to him, the debris contained large quantities of useable ores and metals, and the fragments made it easier to mine than a solid moon would have been. Mineral deposits such as this were not infrequently found in nebulae, and that was why he'd been told to take the Second Fleet here.

    Not glamorous work, but somebody needed to do it. Gabel was not a man who'd been overly taken with the glamour of military service. If he had to do mining detail, and that mining benefitted the new colonies, he'd do it.

    But as the active sensor pings from the scouts returned information, Gabel saw that this might not be as routine as he had thought. The object... or objects, rather... were of an unknown type, which was unsurprising given they had yet to encounter intelligent life in this galaxy. What was surprising was the nature of the readings—whatever the objects were, they matched no conventional design he had ever heard of.

    And if they weren't simply derelicts or some natural phenomenon of the nebula, they would have detected the Hiigarans—if not the hyperspace signature of their arrival, then the active sensor pings. Nebulae were a popular hiding place for pirates and other shady sorts, and this place was a trove for anybody in need of metals.

    Commander Gabel waited five seconds, which would be enough time that enemy responses would be evident if they'd detected the Hiigaran arrival, and gave the order to repeat the active scan, directing it towards the anomalies rather than in a simple outward pattern as before, and waited.
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    (Algophans)

    Yes, that is a good idea. I'll send one of these ships here with me to examine your system if that is all right with you. I am also interested in hearing about this other race you have encountered. My people have not recently met any others until now. Perhaps we could have a joint meeting between all of us.
    Last edited by nothingclever; 2008-01-16 at 03:11 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nothingclever View Post
    (Algophans)

    Yes, that is a good idea. I'll send one of these ships here with me to examine your system if that is all right with you. I am also interested in hearing about this other race you have encountered. My people have not have not recently met any others until now. Perhaps we could have a joint meeting between all of us.
    [B]Plainids

    The ship then continued to the planet of the Plainids. "Please, come in." Sutherland wondered if he would get a good response. So far the run-ins with the Replicators was pleasant. Another strange alien race was in store for S.U.N. Beings of energy and light, the Plainids would be the fifth alien race that Commander Sutherland would meet. It did boggle the mind that SUN was finally traversing the stars. Futuristic technology,without the ability to travel through space, not to mention five species on one planet with no succesful genocide, yet for some reason he still found it strange for other sentients to exist.
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    (S.U.N.)
    After picking up the call on their sensors fifty plainid defenders and a single elite ship flew towards the incoming vessel stopping far enough away to leave reasonable distance between the two forces. They then assembled in a spread out frontal formation and the commander's ship moved forward.


    We received your transmission. You are now in plainid space. I am commander Zurk and according to our regulations I ask that you please explain your purpose for being here.
    Last edited by nothingclever; 2008-01-16 at 03:32 PM.

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    We received your transmission. You are now in plainid space. I am commander Zurk and according to our regulations I ask that you please explain your purpose for being here.
    "We come to be friends. The SUN has come to you in order that we mutually exchange borders, and perhaps trade. SUN welcomes the chance to have as many friends in space as we can get. We wish that you would help us to find peace throughout the Galaxy, please welcome us in an open negotiation."
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    Captain, they are turning to bring about their gun batteries

    Reported a youthful lieutenant, looking up at the Admiral from his console. He looked a little fearful. Despite the Steamers on average 1km ships, 1/10th the size of a dreadnought, they carried almost three times the amount of gun batteries, and indeed the broadside armaments were quite formidable. What they didn't know was that the turreted arrangement of the Bruschanian guns not only gave them guns far superior in bore, but the added capacity of all-around fire, something broadside armaments lacked.

    Match their movements, then increase in speed by two hundred knots and turn six points to larboard. That will cross their T and put us into an advantageous position for enfilade,

    Jellicoe ordered, cool and calm as always.

    Aye sir

    Responded the helmsman, turning the ship's wheel appropriately from his station in front of the captain's post. The flotilla of Bruschanian dreadnoughts and cruisers, their gun turrets tracking the movements of the Steamships, moved as one wall of battle, the biggest ships in the center and the cruisers deployed as a screen, and they followed the movements and commands of Jellicoe's flagship, the Nelson class HMS Hood. After perhaps five tense minutes, the flotilla was in position to cross the T with a devastating salvo of naval gunfire. It was then, with the Steamers staring down the barrel of 25-foot naval coilguns mounted on 10km battleships, that Jellicoe responded to the Steamer hail.

    "Greetings Captain Whitley. I have been sent here by the board of Admiralty for Bruschania. May I ask your intentions in our space? And why are you manuevring to broadside us?

    ---------------------------

    The moon of Jutland is around 5,500km in diametre, with its own breathable atmosphere. The terrain is mostly temperate forests and meadows. The Urheimans have encircled the moon with a ring of orbital fortresses. These are gargantauns of 50km in diametre, each mounted with batteries of turbolasers and 280 inch coilguns. There are five such fortresses, each in geosynchrous orbit around the moon's equator. There will also be around 18 dreadnoughts of 10-12km sizes, and perhaps 23 4km heavy cruisers. We have no intel on their ground forces. But before we make our assault, we will be joined by another squadron of Bruschanian ships.

    King William said, pointing out the defenses of the Jutland moon on a large holographic map in the battle simulation room of the Royal Sovereign. The holographic map was projected from a table in the center of the room, with a green orb representing the planet, red dots for Bruschanian and Imperium ships and grey dots for the Urheiman ships. Pressing a few buttons on the control pad, William demonstrated for Sanguinus what typical Isieles system tactics were. Walls of battle exchaning turret salvos whilst attempting a manuevre that would let them rake the enemy ships with enfilade fire from stern to bow or vice versa. Preferable hitting across the stern, as it could cripple the engines of an enemy ship and render the dreadnought useless in battle. He also demonstrated the tactics of putting the most valuable ships in the center, with defensive screens of cruisers and fighters around them.

    Your battleships would be best placed with our cruisers in the position of command in the center of the wall of battle. There your broadside weapon batteries, as well as gun turrets, could be brought to bear from the safety of the wall. You seem to have prow-mounted weapons, but sending out your ships to use them would expose you to salvos from the entirety of the enemy wall of battle. What do you think your best use would best, Lord Sanguinus?

    -----------

    I would most agree with that, Captain Fourre. But we need neutral ground, so no one will suspect treachery. I suggest we send down shuttles to that small planet there. If we meet in a clearing, no one can suspect foul play. What say you?

    As Jackie Fisher said this, he nodded to his second-in-command to stand down the gunnery crews and dismiss the crew from action stations. All over the ship, men returned gratefully to their quarters and the comfortable bunks within. Only the marines remained at attention, mostly by habit and suspicion of new races rather than by any order.
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    Dorn looked troubled for a moment at Marai's request. He consulted briefly with the other Primarchs in attendance before responding to her request. There was something about her manner, however... she was defensive, wary still. He thought that perhaps she did not completely trust him... and her words seemed to indicate that she was at least more amicably disposed towards Xenos species than he was particularly comfortable with...

    I'm afraid I cannot allow anyone deeper into the Sol system without the Emperor's express consent. However, I would be honored if you and some of your officers would like to meet with Myself and the other Primarchs in attendance. We have numerous scribes and scholars with the expedition fleet as well, there to commemmorate the event, so you will have more than just the opinions and views of an Astartes which are, admittedly, somewhat skewed by our purpose and the nature of our existence.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    After formalities regarding docking procedures and proper clearances had been received, the Emperor's personal vessel, escorted by a flight of ships, descended towards the Tau homeworld. On the way down, he pondered what his position should be. He thought long, sending out telepathic tendrils, trying to get a feel for this race... strange creatures. Their souls barely registered in the warp. No psychic potential to speak of... yes, very odd indeed. They were a sentient species, but almost completely lacked the usual psychic presence. That could explain their species' lack of warp drives...

    His musings ceased as the shuttle made planetfall. Marching out onto the alien soil, the double row of Adeptus Custodes marching on either side of him as he entered the translucent dome. Once more he relaxed some of the holds on his psychic aura, so that a soft, golden glow surrounded him, projecting a palpable aura of awe and majesty. He stood in the exact center of the room, his bodyguards standing in stoic, defensive positions, towering above the Tau warriors, their weapons gleaming as if new-forged under the alien sun.

    I am the Immortal Emperor of Mankind. I have come to treat with you on behalf of the Imperium of Man. I say here and now that it is my goal to expand the territory of my species, and to reunite my people who have been scattered throughout the galaxy by the winds of fate. For what purpose have you requested My presence here today?

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Sanguinius nodded at the tactical screen, a slight smile on his face. This was what he was born and bred for.

    Your plan seems quite efficient, Lord William. I would, however, make a few suggestions... If we can bring down the shields on those fortresses, we can teleport strike teams directly inside. Once within, we can cut key segments of their defensive line. Not only will this enable us to break through their defensive screen, we can hammer their remaining ships from both sides, as well as use the guns to take out other fortresses. The Blood Angels and Alpha Legion marines can handle the fighting with easily - I doubt the enemy will be able to resist Astartes in Terminator armor - Meanwhile, Night Haunter and Ferrus Manus can deploy Iron Hands and Night Lords to cut lines of communication and sieze the central control points. Once their guns are in our hands, we can carve a path through their defenses. Once inside, we capture the remaining fortresses. Once that's done, the planet will be easily subjugated. We can even use the guns of their own stations to make pinpoint strikes against heavily armored targets.

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    The Council sitting around the table were highly impressed, though non showed the true measure of their feelings on their faces, practiced leaders and diplomatic all, even the more savage Kroot leader. Staring at the golden visage of the Emperor he seemed to give off a palpable strength, as if an aura of might and grace which hid a practiced lethality, though non knew of the irony behind this thought. Many noticed something things more than others, the Kroot, The Tarellians, and the Fire Caste noted the power and strength he had and were respectful. The Demiurg and Earth Caste noted the expert craftsmanship of his armor and that of his warriors, and the way the artistry and functionality complemented each other so eloquently. The Water Caste noticed his poise and his graceful manner of speech, how he was able to put such power behind his words. The Air caste respected the might of his followers and the Imperium he commanded, seeming a good example of its power and might. The Vespid were the most unusual for they noticed all of these things and more, their six eyes reflecting the Emperor and seeing more than the others. The Great Abyss, being of the Water Caste, rose and spoke first, ending the short silence. Greetings honorable Emperor, we are the Council of the Tau Empire. We sought your presence in order to speak, as leaders, of the future between our two races. Just as you seek to unite all of your kindred, so to do we seek to unite all beings under the stars to illustrate his point he waves his hand in recognition of the assembled delegation We seek the Greater Good of all peoples. We would see our peoples as allies in the times to come, trading and working together to better one another and the galaxy as a whole. With that he sat down. As he stood, one of the squat Demiurg stood, and all the others looked to him with deference. Good Emperor, I am the leader of the Demiurg, an old and long lived race that resides in the stars. We, who have seen many an age pass by and have weathered them all, know better than many that a strong foundation is required in all things. So too is this true amongst peoples, I believe that amongst our two Empire's there must be peace and cooperation, so that, in the future, We might each reach our goals and aspire to great things, for the future I believe that all things must eventually come down to the foundations to which they were built. With this he also sat, and they all waited for the Emperors response.
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    (S.U.N.)

    We will gladly accept an alliance and trade between our peoples. I have recently received a report that another space faring organization called the Algophans has visited our territory and made peaceful contact in the hopes of an alliance as well. It has been asked to detail any other peoples it has discovered and established relations with. I ask that you would do the same. Once we finish exchange of information I would like to ask for a meeting between everyone interested in working together. My leader would be willing to host this meeting on our homeworld Plainid. For now you will be allowed to view a list of our goods and land on our visitor planet Turg if you wish.

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    (Basically I see S.U.N and Algophans have both contacted me and the replicators. I haven't met them yet but the Algophans said they would tell me about them. Since we have the potential for a 4 member alliance I think we should meet together. The Algophans also left a ship here to view our planet Turg and examine goods so all they would need to do is call a representative back to meet us if they aren't still here. Then we'd just need to let the replicators know where we are.)
    Last edited by nothingclever; 2008-01-16 at 09:09 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nothingclever View Post
    (S.U.N.)

    We will gladly accept an alliance and trade between our peoples. I have recently received a report that another space faring organization called the Algophans has visited our territory and made peaceful contact in the hopes of an alliance as well. It has been asked to detail any other peoples it has discovered and established relations with. I ask that you would do the same. Once we finish exchange of information I would like to ask for a meeting between everyone interested in working together. My leader would be willing to host this meeting on our homeworld Plainid. For now you will be allowed to view a list of our goods and land on our visitor planet Turg if you wish.

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    (Basically I see S.U.N and Algophans have both contacted me and the replicators. I haven't met them yet but the Algophans said they would tell me about them. Since we have the potential for a 4 member alliance I think we should meet together. The Algophans also left a ship here to view our planet Turg and examine goods so all they would need to do is call a representative back to meet us if they aren't still here. Then we'd just need to let the replicators know where we are.)

    Commander Sutherland disembarked on the Algophan planet. Waiting for the meeting, the human with some Shama Li DNA was patient. Hopefully he would be able to sit still. Something bothered him about the 'species' he met before. They seemed very strange to the crew aboard The Memory. As if they might be of some nuisance in the future. No explanation as to whether the human looking alien species was made simply to appear as she was or if she was assuming some kind of disguise.

    Whatever the Replicators were, they hoped the Algophans would be less ominous.
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    Replicators

    Diving into the atmosphere, the diamond breaks in a series of bone-breaking 20g pulses. Settling to the ground, it distends, dropping another Samantha to the ground. Meanwhile, the 4 ships sent to the human fleet return at high speeds to the main fleet body, avoiding the planetary system by a safe margin.

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    Above Tu'an

    "That sounds agreeable," Fourre replies. "We'll determine meeting coordinates and rendezvous time somewhere out of the way, and send them to all involved parties. Vengeance out." And the communication link is ended.

    "I assume this is a clever plan to destroy them?" asks Krayt.

    Fourre sighs. "Why is everything always a clever plan to destroy them with you Sith? No, we're going down to the planet to conduct diplomacy like civilized beings. You're coming with me so I can keep an eye on you, and Yiru is also coming with me because she'll actually be useful."

    After a HoloNet report back to New Imperial Center detailing initial contact with new spacefarers, Imperial technicians quickly determine an uninhabited and open area of the world below to meet on. Transmitting these coordinates to both the Bruschanian and Tau fleets, an Imperial diplomatic party is quickly assembled and sent down in one of the ships' shuttles: Captain Fourre, Krayt, Yiru (the female Sith apprentice attached to the Venator, arriving in a separate shuttle), Jion Jit, a civilian explorer and anthropologist being pressed into service as a diplomat, and an honor guard of twenty unarmored navy troopers, ten from each ship. The Imperial squadron continues to hang in space in a loose formation as the two shuttles reach the planet's surface. From the shuttles, the Imperial party steps forth, the captain and the two Dark Jedi following the nervous and slightly ratlike Mr. Jit as the troopers march out and stand at attention on either side of the party, blaster pistols holstered.

    ***

    Above Aestafar

    The stormtroopers accompanying the main group hold their rifles at ease, but are clearly only one stupid Zoat away from opening up with a barrage of stun rays.

    "A dreadful story," Issen nods. "We'll be sure to take care of you as quickly as possible; the Empire exists for the benefit of all sentients," he quotes a pamphlet.

    "Tell me, though, what happened to your homeworld? And for that matter, what caused such damage to your vessel?"

    Meanwhile, back aboard the Zoat ship, Spacetrooper Battalions 3-5 are checking thoroughly over the vessel for anything of interest under orders from the System Defense admiral. Each Battalion possessed a scanning crew, which picked over the near-derelict with powerful sensors. They're taking their time before re-boarding the returned shuttles.
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    Kior'la and Grallk, along with a small team of Fire warriors headed toward the planet, the ship just behind Kior'la's sent down a shuttle as well, in it were a Vespid officer and his stingwing strain, along with a small group of Kroot and a another group of Fire Warriors. As the shuttles glided toward the surface they landed not too far away from the site of the Imperial landing, however before landing they sent a message to the single city on the world, the city on the far side of the planet.
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    Steamers
    Captain Whitley looked up as he heard shouting on the decks above, and he dropped the radio to see what was happening. "Moving to keep out of our broadsides, are they?" he muttered, hurrying up to the bridge, where his First Mate was shouting into a microphone.

    "They don't plan on talking. Match their course and open fire!"

    "Aye, Captain."

    The steamships slowly lurched across and matched velocities with the ships trying to keep out of range, air being pumped into the boilers to heat them up further, while gunners took aim at the ships.

    "Fire!"

    A roar of thunder cracked the silence of space (much in the same way that turbolasers manage to make sounds in space) as the cannons erupted in flame, sending hundreds of Aetherium-Coated shells through the void at the strange warships that were trying to bring the full advantages of their turrets to bear.

    A large ramp rose out of the Indomitable, and the unmistakable sounds of the gyrocopters roaring to life filled the thin air (though not the void). The steam-driven fighters took off, one by one, their smaller Aetherium propellers pulling them into the void to defend their ship from these aliens.
    Last edited by pingcode20; 2008-01-17 at 12:12 AM.

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    [OOC: I'm kinda confused about what exactly just happened.]

    Algophans

    Coronene says to the Plainid he's talking with "Well, we've met those humans which I see you've met as well, we've also met a race called the "Replacators" who are pretty similar to us. Earlier we arranged for a meeting with both of them on our home planet that you can come to if you want."


    -----------------
    Back on my planet

    As the ambassadors land. Commander finishes with some last minute orders before going to the meeting. At the meeting a voice resonates out of the planet. "Hello, my name is Commander. Welcome to Algophet. Does any one have any suggestions for our first order of business?"

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    Quote Originally Posted by PlasticSoldier View Post
    As the ambassadors land. Commander finishes with some last minute orders before going to the meeting. At the meeting a voice resonates out of the planet. "Hello, my name is Commander. Welcome to Algophet. Does any one have any suggestions for our first order of business?"
    (Its o.k I misread the posts and sent someone to the Algophans instead of the Plainids.)
    "Well, first of all, I'd like to know exactly what you would expect of an exchane between us? Is there anything you'd like us to do, or any rules you expect us to follow?" Sutherland wondered what this exchange would entail. Of course, the visit with the Plainids would probably be strange as well. Sutherland continued to think about the races he had encountered once again. Things were strained between the races of Yevaun, although it was actually pretty much extremely better than it used to be during the era the races fought eachother.
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    "ALL HANDS, BRACE FOR IMPACT!"

    Jellicoe roared as the cannonballs zoomed through the void. The dozens of projectiles slammed against the Hood's heavy neosteel plated armour. Great dents were smashed into the hull, and the entire ship shook with the impact, but there were no breaches.

    "Raise shields, all gunnery crews fire at will!"

    The Vice-Admiral continued his orders as he climbed back into his chair after being knocked from it by the force of the broadside impact. For a brief moment, the Steamers saw a glittering field of energy surround the ships of Bruschania about 1m from the main hull. Then the shield disappeared and the only indication they had to its existence were the great fields of glittering incandescent sparks that shot out into space each time an Aether-shell smashed into the Bruschanian shields. Then it was time for the dreadnoughts to respond. Their mighty turrets trained on the Steamer warships and, each gun tube firing individually, spat out a salvo of 10,000lbs shells with diametres of over 20 feet. The massive magnetically accelerated projectiles rushed through the space so recently occupied by Steamer shot, before smashing into the hulls of the Steamships, or missing by narrow margins. The thick Steamer armour also held up to the attack, though the ships were shaken and dented by the Bruschanian gunnery. Of the 54 shells shot out by the three main dreadnoughts, approximately 40 hit home on one Steamship or another. Damn fine gunnery, in Jellicoe's humble opinion. Meanwhile, the five cruisers continued to volley their smaller shells, with a mixture of hits and misses.

    "Carrier, launch the Spitfires and deploy in a defensive screen

    Jellicoe ordered over the FLEETCOM link. Almost instantly, all bay doors of the Ark Royal class Protector, where flung open and over 10,000 of the small, agile Aerospace Spitfires zoomed out. The fighters formed a enormous screen between the dreadnoughts and cruisers and the Steamer vessels, ready to intercept any missiles or dogfight with the Gyros.

    "All ships, clear for fleet action. Engaged enemy at 0930 hours"
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    Above Aestafar

    The much out-numbered Zoats gave no such reason to the trained stormtroopers instead just shifting positions amongst themselves with a slight...mental whisper being heard by those closest to the reptilian quadrapeds, a sort of mental overflow from the mass of telepathic conversation going on.

    We were chased away from our home planet by a plague upon the universe. A ravenous scourge that devours all in it's path and leaves nothing but emptiness in it's wake. Our escape wasn't without cost though and many of us were captured for slave labor. We and some others escaped even then and have been fleeing ahead of the Devourer ever since trying to find some place to stop and rest. Our...ship?...It is not damaged General...that is merely the result of rushed and inexperienced craftsmanship.

    Back aboard the Zoat ship, the scanner teams found many things reminiscent of settling equipment. Farming tools, seedlings, and other factory grade machines though all had dust settled unto them. Aside from this two cache of the weapons the Zoat's used were also found, a bizarre mix of melee and ranged weaponry. Most bizarre was the second cache, a fleshy cavity in the ship with...organic looking weapons of odd make and unknown capability...

    ------------------------------------------------------

    The object in question drifted lazily through space, much like a languid swimmer would wallow in the water, not having the chaotic movements of a derelict or damaged vessel. About ten and a half kilometers in length, it was a monster of a vessel but boasted no armaments...visibly anyway. It was also decidedly...organic in appearance and it was easy to mistake it for a corpse then an actual vessel. And it was a vessel too, that much could be easily determined by the scans. Numerous open passages inside of it that could only be chambers and hallways, the multiple life-forms on board that numbered over the thousands.

    Those lifeforms weren't just restricted to inside of it either, millions of tiny life forms formed a protective screen around the hive ship, but those were the only moving life signs. All of the other ones didn't move so much of an iota as the small fleet popped out of hyperspace and sent out a scan. From the looks of it, five concentrated polyps of flesh adorned the hive ship, one at the bow two on the right side, one on the right, and the last on the thorax contained high thermal densities in each that could be weapons.

    Nothing happened after the first ping...even as the second concentrated scan began. Either it wasn't noticed or the life forms on board simply didn't care...
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    Replicants

    "Greetings Commander. I have no preference as to the order of business, but points I believe need to be addressed are : trade, fixed border agreements and official channels of communication. Other topics may have occurred to Captain Sutherland..."

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    (To Algophans)

    Yes, on behalf of my leader would I would like to join in this meeting. I will relay the news to him immediately. Please direct us to where this council will be held.

    The commander follows Coronene to the Algophan planet and lands to find the meeting room following any procedures necessary.

    ( Can we all assume/fastforward to being in the same room?)
    Last edited by nothingclever; 2008-01-18 at 09:18 PM.

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    "The honor is mine, Primarch. You and any others would be welcome on our ship, if you wish to come aboard. Or, if you give permission, we could go to yours. As the host, I leave the choice to you," she concluded tranquilly. It was important to demonstrate trust from the outset, the reason she allowed the other to set where they would meet; she would be better able to analyze the situation if it took place here, where she could be linked to the mothership's vast computer system, but she was willing to forgo that if it meant a better start to the exchange.

    -----------------------------

    The initial readings were perplexing, and after feeding the data into the computers of the mothership's analysts and scientists, Gabel followed their findings with particular interest.

    "Well," one of them said after a few moments examining the reading, "it's definitely organic in structure. A spacefaring lifeform," he said in wonder. "The heat readings indicate that it's still alive."

    "So do the trajectory readings. The ship does not handle like a derelict." The commander's voice startled some of the scientists. The crew was used to Gabel's disembodied voice, but they hadn't realized he'd been monitoring them so soon after feeding them the data. It meant this was important.

    "It's got a very high metal reading for an organic being." The reasearcher in question put in a note on their likely feeding cycle. Metal-rich asteroids such as these likely played a role in their formation or breeding. Without hyperdrive, an organism wouldn't be able to find many of those unless it had a very long lifespan, and that was likely why they found it here, where there were many such sources of minerals.

    "Largely hollow, too. That's strange. You'd think it would want as much biomass as possible, to conserve heat and avoid losing it to vacuum."

    "The thermal readings show concentrations in these nodes. It might be how it heats itself. And look—all those smaller things around it. Similar metal rations, if that's not just scanner distortion. They might be young of some sort, a parasite, or maybe a symbiote. Commander, can you get a closer scan?"

    "We can try." Gabel uploaded the information from the newest scan, ordering a pair of scout flights to move in a little closer.

    "Hmmm... no, they're still grouped too close around the large object to get a clear reading-"

    "Kharak's skies, look at this! Those passages are vacuum-sealed!" Simultaneously, every analyst pulled up the relevant information.

    "You're right. How could that be possible? Is it a circulatory system of some sort, or respiratory?"

    "Some of the life-form readings from inside seem to be from separate organisms..."

    "Eggs, perhaps? Young? More of those symbiotes, if that's what they are?"

    "Maybe, but they're coming from inside the sealed passages." A scientist looked up; they didn't need to look up to address the commander, of course, but it was a habit. "It's a ship, Commander. A living ship. Biologically engineered. It must be. The odds against something like this evolving naturally are astronomical."

    "Then we investigate it like we would a ship."

    In the depths of space, the pair of scout flights broke away from one another, each circling around to a different side and maintaining a distance of a few hundred kilometers as they proceeded with active scanning, trying to get more detailed information for the mothership.
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    That sounds most agreeable. From what i've seen, your marines are far superior to our own troopers or those of the Urheimans, in close quarters. Boarding the fortresses and capturing those heavy guns for ourselves would be a great aid to our assault on the moon itself.

    William agreed, pressing a button on the control which switched the fortresses' colour from grey to red. He then pressed another button to show the Allied fleet dropping from warp and raking the Urheiman dreadnoughts from stern to bow.

    It is essential that we get into the proper position for flanking fire. If we enfilade them from the front, they will simply be hurt by our gunnery. However, crossing the T across their stern will disable their engines and render them sitting ducks to further salvos. What sort of main weapons do your battleships and cruisers possess, Lord Sanguinus? I need to know so that I can assign suitable positions in the wall of battle for them. You seem to both have gun decks and turrets.

    To accentuate this point, William split the hologram into two seperate, smaller holograms. One showed the position of the Imperium vessels if the gun batteries were their main weapons, putting them into a position where the broadsides of their ships always had to be facing the enemy fleet. The other was the more flexible arrangement where the turrets gave the Imperium ships full 360 degree firepower.

    -----------------------

    On the surface of the planet, Captain Fisher let the ship's company and marines towards the Imperial officers. The ship's company wore their half-dress uniforms, a light blue shirt with navy blue trousers and a peaked cap, whilst the marines had their traditional red tunic and black trousers with red stripe. A las-sabre hung from the belt of each officer of the company, and Martini-Enfield coilguns were shouldered by the smartly striding marines. Slowly, the marines and officers of the Imperial vessel became visible. Their uniforms were different, less ornate and in the more utilitarian colours of white, black and grey. Alongside the confident troopers and captain, there were also a pair of mysterious looking chaps in robes and a rather shifty little fellow that reminded Jackie of some sort of rodent. The ship's company and marines snapped sharply to attention, then were put back at ease by the captain as he came to stand in front of the Imperial officer.

    Pleased to make your acquiantance, Captain Fourre. Now, where are those people who claimed this system as their own? I suspect we have much to speak about.
    Quote Originally Posted by EvilElitest
    Executor - for a Vs. thread, you have laid out the case for this confrontation very intelligently - bravo!
    he is like the demigod of vs. threads
    They can take our lives... but they'll never take our AWESOME!!!

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