Author Topic: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"  (Read 4936 times)

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Offline Josasa

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #15 on: January 24, 2010, 12:04:54 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector (3,2), Slorv System, Slorvian IV, Construct A-1's Observatory Deck

Construct A-1 over Slorvian IV had been built specifically for observational purposes, both stellar and planetary. A massive portion of the station had been set aside for the giant viewing window that was literally the size of some Slorvian space vessels. The giant plexiglass screen had been specially constructed for this station, and it was one of a kind. It had been engineered so that it was nearly as strong as the surrounding walls with multiple layers of the material to provide protection. But there was no warping of the light that passed through this window, allowing anyone inside to get a clear view of the surrounding space. And within that picture of reference was the largest Slorvian vessel yet made, their flagship Mighty One.

It was truly magnificent. Years of design had been put into it, making it as strong and durable as possible. It was classified as a battleship, sporting the two largest Slorvian mass drivers. They were located on the starboard and portside of the ship, and could rotate nearly 360 degrees on their pivots. Several missile pods were located at various locations along the outer hull of the ship as secondary weapons and a variety of energy based weapons provided a nice blanket against any smaller strike craft or guided ordinance that could be thrown at the Mighty One.

But anymore the Mighty One was viewed more as a carrier. The robotic fighting drones had become more adept at deep space fighting, and because of these results, the docking bays of the flagship had been expanded as much as possible to allow for more of the drones to be taken on. It was the greatest vessel the Slorvian's had constructed and they were risking it with an experimental FTL drive.

Yuntar sat amongst the High Council in the observatory room, staring out at the massive ship as it prepared to launch off towards Slorvian VII. There was a live video feed with the captain on the numerous video screens that were located throughout the observatory deck. No one was talking, and the atmosphere was quite tense. Everyone was focused on the ship.

"Engaging the faster-than-light drive now," the captain said as he stood with his pincers grasped in front of him. There was a noticeable dimming of the lights onboard the Mighty One as a majority of the nonessential systems were shut down to push energy towards the engine. "Engine fully charged," the captain said, as he stood perfectly still. "Launching."

And with that the Mighty One disappeared, leaving behind only the depths of space.

Offline Raz

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #16 on: January 24, 2010, 03:53:42 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector(2,2), Tapnam System, Ahm, Vantry Alpha

Ganghe felt his hands grab some metal, and before he knew it, he had smashed through a window into the building next to the one that had collapsed, still running to try to clear the cloud of rubble that was following him through the building. He turned a corner, and quickly swung his rifle around, pointing it at a wall leading to what he figured would lead to the outside, and fired. He jumped towards the explosion, making his way through the hole, and falling a story before hitting the ground and landing into a roll to cushion his fall.

As he stood up, some pains annoying him, he looked around to see the Loyalists having taken over the base, though much of it was now crushed by the building that had fallen over, leaving only the transport VTOL still working. He ran to it, noticing that the other snipers weren't far behind him, and quickly found the Sergeant who motioned him onto the transport. Moments later, the snipers joined them, and the transport's hatch shut, whisking them into the air towards an exit out of Vantry Alpha.

Alpha Quadrant, Sector (2,2), Tapnam System, Ahm

While Ganghe's journey would take him a few hours, the first wave of Robotics began hitting the fronts of the Loyalists. Astonished soldiers broke from their entrenchments as the Robotics made their way consistently forward, trumping the Loyalists still fighting in the cities. Newly-appointed Loyalist Generals considered how to fight the robotic menaces, pushing the issue to the forefront of all their strategies. It was a difficult thing to do; to figure out how to beat a lightning-quick inorganic with sluggish organic reflexes.

Offline Josasa

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #17 on: January 27, 2010, 04:04:17 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector (3,2), Slorv System

Admiral Thuton stood at the bridge of Mighty One, taking in all the information that was streaming to him through his various aides. They were joyous that they had entered the faster-than-light jump, but some were still weary that they may not make it out. But we've made it, and that's a helluva testament, Thuton thought to himself with a smile. Ahead of him was a giant view screen that displayed the countdown until exit. Because the jump was only within the Slorvian system, they were only expected to be in the jump for a few minutes. And of those few minutes, only one was left.

Thuton counted down along with the timer in his head, possibly measuring off the last few moments of his life. He knew it was highly unlikely, but the thought still popped up all the same. "Get ready everyone," Thuton told his crew as the 10 second warning flashed. He watched the timer with great intensity, especially as the last three seconds ticked off the clock. A strange feeling, very similar to the one they had experienced at the very beginning, ran through the crew as the ship returned to normal space. Everyone looked around at each other in a moment of silence before the bridge erupted into jubilation. The noise was so loud that the AI almost couldn't get the attention of Admiral Thuton, alerting him that there was a message coming in. Thuton did his best to silence the bridge, but that was a hard thing to do. He called up the message on the view screen anyway, and there stood a Slorvian.

"Welcome to Slorvian VII, Mighty One!"

Offline Raz

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #18 on: January 27, 2010, 10:00:33 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector (2,2), Tapnam System, Ahm, The Besieged Vantry Capitol on Vantry Alpha

1st Lieutenant Regan held his helmet, his ears ringing as his senses tried to make sense of what was going on around him. His eyesight seemed to fail him, showing him multiple images. He felt as if he was missing his middle right arm, nothing but a stub left, but he felt no pain. As his brain started ordering the signals from his eyes, he witnessed a scene of unparalleled horror; gallons of blood, a mix of 'Gra, Jergoan, and Milute, along with body parts and broken armor. However, most of the parts were unidentifiable as any particular race, nothing more than a blob of gorey meat or shredded organ.

Then, he was moving, being dragged along the ground by a medic. Regan casually recognized that there was almost a symphony of gunfire, explosions, and the sound of VTOLs and Armor engaging each other. As he was dragged across the Capitol Lawn, he also noticed that the air was almost like a light show, lit up with tracers by the thousands, possibly hundreds of thousands. The swirling torrent of bullets and hyper-sonic rounds combined with smoke made it possible to see the very air being sliced apart repeatedly, moving in the wake of one bullet, only to be forced into another's wake. Indeed, the air seemed more like a semi-transparent liquid than a gas.

His brain suddenly realizing the danger of the situation, and his mission, he instinctively grabbed a fallen ally's rifle as the medic pulled him, looking through the sights and beginning to fire at the heat signatures through all the smoke and literal, blazing fires, while ignoring the fact that the ally's hand was still attached to the rifle's end. A retaliatory round found its mark, ripping through one of his arm's muscles, finally setting off some pain receptors. As the arm fell limp, pain shooting through it like lightning, Regan finally passed out from shock.

He awoke at some point later, maybe a few minutes, maybe a few hours, but the medic that had dragged him injected him with something, causing his eyes to widen as he was forcibly awakened, the medic seeming to call out from a huge distance, "Hey Lieutenant... have a good nap? Well, too bad, we need everyone we can get, even the injured... Look, we've gone through everyone else in this place, you're the highest ranking officer that hasn't been turned to mush, so you're the CO now." Regan considered his surroundings; the Council Chamber. Around him lay the dead and heavily injured, "Why... why didn't you just let me die in peace? Instead of shooting me up with that damn 'Resurrection' crap. The situation is FUBAR, for Ahm's sake..."

Despite his complaining, Regan stood up with help from the medic, and began to hobble along, an arm over the medic for stability, "So where's a rifle and a clip?" The medic shook his head, "Sorry, sir, we need you to be in command within this Chamber. A few brave bastards managed to bring back the Major's map of the Capitol and his plans for defending it. They had to comb through his remains to find the stuff, so, needless to say, it's a bit bloody and hard to read." Regan snorted, looking at how blood-drenched everything and everyone was, "Well, Corporal, I think we're all a 'bit bloody', as you put it. Sit me over in the ol' Alpha Councilor's chair, and I'll see what I can do..."

Offline Josasa

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #19 on: January 31, 2010, 07:55:52 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector (3,2), Slorv System, In Orbit over Slorvian IV

Admiral Thuton stood at the bridge of his ship orbiting the homeworld of the Slorv race. It had only taken several minutes to move back to Slorvian IV, and that was only because the FTL drive had needed time to cool down. But as soon as they had reentered orbit over the Slorvian capital, they had connected to the news stations to see large celebrations occurring all over the world. There were televised broadcasts showing Slorv of all kind rejoicing at the monumental event. They knew the complications and the implications that the Slorv were embarking upon with this technological advancement, but they were prepared to expand out into the universe. They had stayed within their system long enough.

Offline Raz

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #20 on: February 01, 2010, 07:25:56 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector (2,2), Tapnam System, The Besieged Vantry Capitol on Vantry Alpha

Regan breathed deeply, listing down the Loyalist numbers. Unfortunately, it was just a matter of time until the Rebels broke through and slaughtered all of them. However, Regan and all the others were the ones left who were courageous enough to fight;most had some sort of injury, and yet none had given in. Ammo supplies were running thin, fast, and there were no anti-vehicle weapons stored in the Capitol itself. At this point, the Rebels were just shelling the Capitol building, trying to break its bunker-like walls made of feet of reinforced concrete. After all, the Capitol was built to withstand an assault by Milute or Jergo, even a Civil War between the 'Gra. Of course, that was a long time ago, and weapons had been heavily improved.

Another shell rocked the Capitol, shaking even the Council Chamber, forcing Regan to steel himself against the shaking and feel more pain from his missing or disfigured limbs. Deep down, he knew the only thing keeping him going was that Res-shot. He called into his radio, "Remaining bodies?" Immediately, his temporary second-in-command(the last one was killed minutes ago), reported, "Seventy-two, sir!" Regan pounded a fist into the Alpha Councilor's podium, cursing to himself, "Alright, everyone retreat from the perimeter. Booby trap the halls with the anti-vehicular ammo that we can't use, do whatever you can to slow their progress, and make sure you get as deep into the Capitol as possible. You all know the guerrilla tactics, funneling them from one direction, ambushes, etc. Get to it!"

Meanwhile, he considered how much time they had left. If they were lucky, the multiple kill corridors would keep them alive until the ammo ran out. At that point, it would be hand-to-hand combat with their combat knifes and training, stealing weapons from the enemy, and so on. As he thought, he wrote down a final report meant to reach the Military, whenever they took back the Capitol. In it, he constantly mentioned the valor both of his subordinates and his once-living superiors in the face of unimaginably one-sided odds, among many other commendations, but he felt no sadness as he wrote. Instead, he felt invigorated; it was an honorable, warrior's death against an enemy who was guaranteed to win, the stuff of legends that the old Drill Sergeants constantly yelled into his face about. A modern-day Fran's Charge, only they were on the defensive and probably going to die. He quietly said into the radio, "I know I don't have to give the order, I know you'll all do it yourselves, but remember; never surrender to the Rebel dogs. If you feel like committing suicide, either start firing maniacally into the enemy as you charge them, or for extra points, charge them with only a combat knife, giving your ammo to the guy next to you. Better yet, give him your ammo and strap a few improvised bombs to yourself. That ought to shake them up." The radio gave the sound of a few men laughing a little, possibly considering the option. Regan quietly thought to himself, "It just might come to that..."

Within ten minutes, the traps were set, and the Loyalists were waiting deep inside the Capitol, waiting for the Rebels to come charging in and blow themselves up. A few were in the Council Chamber, slightly more injured than the rest. Their eyes betrayed signs of having a Res-shot, the same quick, ADD-like movement of their eyes as they scanned their environment. The stuff could almost be considered meth, just more powerful with quite a few antibiotics and blood clotting elements mixed in to help with bleeding. A Res-shot could be risky; your blood could literally clot within the arteries if you weren't injured badly enough or the dosage was incorrect. The medics had to be very precise about how much they gave you, especially when it came to non-'Gra. But they weren't meant to save you, that job was for supposed to be for the field doctors. No, the Res-shot supposedly kept you going long enough to crawl or limp back to a field hospital. Only problem was that all the doctors were KIA or MIA, so everyone who'd received a Res-shot(just about all the Loyalists left alive) knew that if the Rebels didn't get them, they'd die of their own wounds eventually. It was pretty much a no-win situation. Regan sighed, finishing the report, and stowing it underneath some cluttered Council papers. Hopefully, it'd survive their deaths and the Rebels' search for information.

As he sat back in the Alpha Councilor's seat, he quietly contemplated the dead General over in the corner. He decided he check the guy out; maybe he had family or something, photos Regan could hide for later discovery. Instead, Regan found a huge amount of explosives rigged to a detonator...

Offline Raz

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #21 on: February 05, 2010, 09:13:04 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector (2,2), Tapnam System, The Besieged Vantry Capitol on Vantry Alpha

Regan sat in the pool of blood next to the General's body; it didn't matter, he was already covered in blood anyway. He slowly took off the explosives, examining them, and called in an explosives expert across the radio. A few minutes later, as more explosions began to erupt as the Rebels tried to pry their way in, the expert came in an saw the explosives held in Regan's bloody hand, and immediately got to work, "Well... very high grade... very advanced. Extremely advanced. Sir, I don't think is a conventional explosive..." Regan narrowed his eyes, "Then what the hell is it; nuclear, biological?" The expert examined the explosives more, stating, "I think they're something like miniature nukes. But nuclear research was lost a long time ago, banished, sir... But I'm pretty sure it's nuclear, and high-grade too. I think this thing would piss off Ahm if we could tell it about the bombs..."

Regan scratched one of his eyelids, and dismissed the Specialist, considering his options. If there were some way to contact Ahm, Ahm being something Regan was very uncertain about, perhaps the Geo-Organism could obliterate the dirty Rebels, and save the Loyalists a whole lot of trouble. On the other hand, if Ahm discovered the device's existence, it might just melt all of the Vantry and be done with the whole lot, Rebel and Loyalist alike, since it warned all of the Vantry about the weapons. Of course, there was the problem of actually getting the device to be seen by Ahm...

Regan then suddenly remember that the Capitol had recently been installed with Ragtan Network Nodes, what the Ragta used to communicate near-instantly with every other Ragta connected to the network, or so the Ragta said. Perhaps this could let Regan at least tell other Ragta about the nukes... No, it was a Ragtan network, not one built for 'Gra. Then again, what the hell, Regan and everyone else in the Capitol was going to die anyway, why not try it, thought Regan.

So he limped along towards what he recalled as the nearest Node, hearing the explosions grow in intensity as he passed the other soldiers, their backs to the wall, waiting for the enemy to come through the halls. They seemed abnormally calm, some recited Ahmist prayers, others merely stared at the ground or their rifles or their bleeding wounds. Most looked in the thin air as if they could see their dead comrades, their relatives which would lose them as the Rebels came through the doors. None of this was truly disheartening to Regan; he was already about as depressed as any Loyalist in the building was. He finally found the Node, hidden behind something of a blast door, that opened as he approached and closed after he entered. Inside, it seems almost eerie, too calm. The room was perfectly sound-proof, almost a world unto itself, unattached to the world from which Regan had just emerged.

There was no blood on the ground, save the blood beginning to gush from Regan's wounds as the clotting agent in the Res-shot began to wear off. The ground itself was an odd blue, the same crystalline glow of Ragtan tunnels or Ahm's 'flesh' as the Ragta called it, and at the center of the room was the Node itself, a tangle of tentacles that would connect with a Ragtan tentacle. Regan approached it slowly, beginning to feel the effects of his blood loss, clouding his judgment and his mind. His 'sanity' somewhat broken, he figured he'd reach into the Node and see what happened... the tentacles were oddly attracted to his arm, but they were more attracted to the mangled limbs of what used to have arms attached to them, so he moved aside, letting them suddenly attach themselves to the revealed nerves.

He was suddenly perfectly fine, all of his limbs in place, but he was strangely unclothed. As he wondered why this was, a Ragta spoke behind him, "You have no clothes for clothing is not of the body. That which is not of the body is not of a the mind. That which is not of the mind is not included in the Network. You come seeking answers, Regan. We can answer many of them, including the ones buried deep within your subconscious."

Regan was stunned. A Ragta speaking... in 'Gra. Not even just in 'Gra, the Ragta wasn't speaking in the usual riddles that their speech entails. He mentally pointed one of his arms at the creature, "You... speak? How? You're a Ragta..."

The creature shifted Regan's perception, changing itself to appear as another 'Gra, "Perception is reality, Regan. Your eyes sometimes lie to your brain. It is unfortunate that even the Ragta are subject to this... even I myself occasionally am subject to such limitations. As to one of those subconscious questions, you would indeed call me 'Ahm', though this is more of a complex of the Ragta and my 'flesh' as they call it. I hear your thoughts, though you do not hear mine... It is interesting. I did not realize the Ragta were innovative enough to make connections with those not containing my 'flesh'." The 'Gra-Ragta-Ahm creature moved around Regan, inspecting him, "For some reason, your mind dismisses my thoughts as nonsense, it rationalizes them away. This very moment, you believe you have lost your mind... Perhaps you have, you've lost a lot of blood, a lot of oxygen." The 'Gra smiled, joking with Regan.

Regan shook his head, "You're right... I am losing it. How much time is passing while we're here?" The 'Gra shrugged, "I have no perception of time. I remember myself perfectly, even back to my infantile days beneath the surface of the uninhabitable planet 'Ahm'. Time becomes difficult to comprehend, when you are forever remembering everything. Yes, there is a 'Now' for me, but there are also multitudes of theoretical futures. But considering your question, I would think that time is passing for you about as fast as electrical signals can be sent from your brain to my 'brain,' while my own formulates how to respond properly. So it's not quite anything to be worried about, unless you drop dead on me suddenly, which is a possibility considering your near-death state..."

Regan motioned into the air, thinking he was still grasping the explosives, as the 'Gra continued, "Right... the issue of the explosives. I am having difficulty deciding whether or not to destroy the Vantry, excluding the Ragta... Your mind tells me of this 'Civil War' between 'Rebels' and 'Loyalists,' but I see only the foolish conflict of a foolish people. I could easily wipe you all out, and start over again, cultivate new intelligent life with the assistance of the Ragta. It would take a while longer, but perhaps I was wrong in thinking a multitude of intelligences would ferment peace and understanding." The 'Gra sighed, and began to sit down, a chair materializing suddenly in the emptiness of the place Regan was in, "Everything points to me being wrong... I gave all of you a second chance, and then you go and pull this stunt? In your own words, Regan, 'What the hell?' is very close to my current thought pattern."

Regan sighed, "If you are Ahm... or some strange Collective of Ahm and the Ragta, then you must have some mercy left in you, no? The Rebels fight for their cause, we fight to maintain the old order." The 'Gra shifted Regan's perception again, becoming a single, massive crystal in front of Regan, "That is just it. You call it the old order. I call it the great imbalance. Both sides are at fault; the Rebels for their materialism, the Loyalists for using such underhanded tactics as they have been. 'Your side' is not pure and right, Regan. Neither side is... And once more my memory reminds me of the last time I warned the Vantry. I sent down a pyramid inscribed with all your languages... yet many still doubted and ridiculed it. A pyramid, which their own materialism and eyes could look upon and read the inscriptions, and see my warning. The Vantry consistently look upon my gifts and seek to manipulate them. When I sent down my warning, I did not mean dig beneath the ground to access minerals... I meant stop digging at all. There is a reason my own flesh comprises your cities. I provide your food, your light, your shelter, and how do you repay me? With your soldiers firing at each other, making me feel the immense pain of thousands of bullets, shells, explosions, all damaging my own flesh. It is enough to irritate even the most calm and patient organism, one which I might remind you, cultivated this world for billions of years, cultivated its life, and continues to protect it against the savage 'Tapnam' star, as you call it."

As the crystal finished speaking, Regan's mind wandered, conflicting itself, trying to rationalize, trying to make sense of everything, trying to convince itself that it and its brethren weren't responsible for angering Ahm or the Collective or the Ragta or whatever the thing in front of it was, and it was failing at the job. The crystal shifted again, becoming a 'Gra once more, placing a hand on Regan's shoulder, "Tell you what... I will give the Vantry one final warning. I once had a messenger in times long past, relative to your lifetime. Perhaps I need another..." Regan looked up at the 'Gra, his mind giving his confirmation, "Very well... I will implant myself among your flesh through the 'Node,' and my flesh shall replace yours which has been lost. It will take some time; your brain will likely die. However, I will re-awaken you, do what those Res-shots claim to do..."

Regan seemed conflicted, asking the 'Gra, "But what lies beyond death...? What if I don't want to leave?" The 'Gra shrugged, "Regan, my messenger, there are some questions that must go unanswered, and then there are those without answers. That is one of those questions without answers, that I do not know. I may be the Creator of the Vantry, but I am no God." The 'Gra smiled as Regan felt his physical body suddenly have crystalline tendrils expanding throughout it, the 'Gra saying, "However, before you die, we have much to discuss..."

Offline Raz

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #22 on: February 09, 2010, 06:54:08 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector (2,2), Tapnam System, Ahm

Ganghe awoke from his light slumber on the Rebel transport VTOL, with the odd sensation that destiny was pulling him towards his fate, whatever it may be. The thought occurred to his that perhaps this was a trap, perhaps the Rebel leader really was hidden in a compound out in the jungle, or perhaps it was all a load of crap, and there was nothing out here in the middle nowhere. Ganghe was pulled out of his thoughts by the feeling of a light punch on his shoulder, accompanied by the words of one of the Loyalist soldiers, "Get up. Sarg says the Inquisition wants to speak to you."

Ganghe groggily got off the temporary bunk, and made his way to the cockpit(not a long distance considering the relative size of the VTOL), and entered it, finding the pilot doing his usual thing, and the Sergeant talking into a radio, "Yeah... Okay. I understand sir." He then noticed that Ganghe was in the cockpit, and handed the radio over to him, "Sir?" Across the line, he heard a voice that seemed as if it were being distorted, "You understand that we don't have the resources to spare on a wild goose chase, yes? The Rebels are moving faster than expected, and with more force than we anticipated. Far more force. To put it simply, we're losing this fight, especially because of their damned combat robots. I personally don't where they got those things, but it doesn't matter. Look, you're on your own unless you can provide visual confirmation of some kind of compound. At that point, we can probably divert a few hawks over there to level the place. If there is anti-air, its your job to kill their leader. He probably won't be expecting a fight, if he really is hiding out there in the jungle. Fight hard, soldier, I know we are." After that, there was only static on the radio. Ganghe supposed the Inquisitors weren't ones to talk more than necessary, as he said to the pilot, "How long until we arrive?" The pilot shrugged, looked at the coordinates given to him by Ganghe, and replied, "Well, sir, I'd say no more than a few minutes at most."

Ganghe and the Sergeant nodded, and began to head out the door, until alarms suddenly began going off in the cockpit. Before the Sergeant could ask what was wrong, the pilot was already talking on the VTOL's intercom system, "Brace for evasive maneuvers! Missiles inbound!" Both Ganghe and the Sergeant instinctively grabbed the nearest holdable, static piece of metal, as the pilot began to pull the transport hard is sudden directions. Silently, Ganghe recalled how this VTOL wasn't made to dodge missiles, just as one hit home, shaking it like an earthquake as it began to quickly lose altitude...

Thankfully, the ever-tough jungle trees of Ahm managed to slow the VTOL down enough to not be entirely crushed by the fall, but the VTOL itself was definitely rendered useless. Ganghe awoke once more to find his skull pulsing with pain, a few dead bodies lying around, but more soldiers beginning to check the wounded. As he looked about the mostly crushed cockpit, he saw a soldier drag out the wounded pilot, and the Sergeant impaled by multiple rods of metal that once reinforced the windshield. It was obvious that he was dead, but hopefully it had been a quick death, as another soldier dragged Ganghe himself out of the wreck.

After he was looked over by the medic, it was decided that Ganghe was officially the 'luckiest bastard in the universe'. The most he got from the wreck was a scrape on the head, easily mended with a few bandages. Most of the other soldiers weren't so lucky. Once the medic moved on, the pilot was brought over to Ganghe as he rested against one of the enormous trunks of the jungle trees, who informed him that from what he could tell, they were at most a kilometer from the compound. Unfortunately, the compound consequently knew they were out here, having just shot them down, so time was limited before the leader would escape. It was also unfortunate that the wreck was giving off a lot of identifying smoke, and it might not be long before Rebels came looking for them.

Ganghe told everyone to hunker down and set up an ambush for their attackers, while Ganghe himself would move through the trees toward the compound, using his own skin's ability to mask his presence, and kill the leader personally, before he escaped. Most regarded Ganghe as crazy, but they all respected his decision, themselves generally too injured to continue onward. So he stripped down, glad that the Dar'Gra had maintained their tribal teachings and lineages, and that his father had personally taught him the Way of the Hunt. Only this time, instead of a hapless animal, his prey would be the Rebel leader, who could fire back.

He brought with his only a rifle and a knife, as he made his way through the trees with the immense speed and grace only a Dar'Gra could possibly think to achieve, moving far faster in the air than on the ground, with all its vegetation blocking one's path. Within a few minutes, he had arrived outside the relatively simple compound, which had a single anti-air missile launcher on the top, the obvious source of the missile that struck their transport. Once he was satisfied that there was no one watching for him, he climbed onto its roof, and inspected the launcher, quickly deciding there was nothing he could do to disable it. He was, as the Inquisitor had said, on his own now.

Ganghe circled around on the compound, looking for a weak spot, or some kind of door that wouldn't obviously be locked. He found only one entrance; a single blast door on one side. It was obviously locked, but as he waited for an answer from his mind, an answer came from the Rebels in the form of a search party being sent out to search for Loyalist survivors to kill. Once they were clear of the door, Ganghe quickly ran and slid inside, hiding in the shadows as the blast door closed, locking Ganghe inside. Or perhaps, to be more accurate, locking the leader inside.

He silently went down level after level of floors, finding the compound practically abandoned, save for a skeleton crew of janitors and repairmen. They didn't seem very happy about being in a tiny compound in the middle of the jungle. Finally, on the fifth floor down, he arrived at a single remaining door, the only possible room left that the leader could be in. Finding it locked, he merely knocked, and retreated into the shadows nearby. A soldier answered, and looked around, finding only a knife rending his vocal cords apart, and two pairs of hands suffocating him to death. Once Ganghe was done with the guard, he casually entered, finding Dentreve looking over a number of maps of Ahm, plastic markers everywhere.

Dentreve suddenly looked back, possibly hearing Ganghe's footsteps, but saw only darkness. Apparently still suspicious, he returned to his maps, but silently gripped a pistol in one of his mid-hands. Himself a Dar'Gra, Dentreve understood well his species' ability to hide. As he heard another tiny step, another tiny breath, he tore his own clothes off, his skin immediately camouflaging himself, whispering, "Who comes for me?"

Dentreve had been smart to hide, thought Ganghe, but not smart enough to hide his own pistol. It was silently floating in the air, part of it disappearing where Dentreve's fingers clutched the handle. It was all Ganghe needed to swiftly roll his rifle off his back, and begin unloading towards the floating pistol and its holder... but the pistol dropped suddenly, and he felt the rifle be kicked upwards, as he received a blow to his stomach, knocking him against the wall. Ganghe immediately threw his knife where he heard Dentreve's breath, but the 'Gra was obviously smart enough to never stop moving, as Ganghe himself immediately took off around the room. Very quickly, a Dar'Gra-Dar'Gra brawl ensued, the only sounds of it being the breath of the two warriors and sound of air being sliced as the two traded 'punches' and 'kicks'.(These are both misnomers, as 'Gra have six hands. Essentially a 'kick' can be performed with any hand, defined as being a circular strike. Linear strikes are considered 'punches' in 'Gra terminology.) They said nothing as they fought, practically equals in the Dar'Gra style of combat. It was a bloodless battle, as Dar'Gra have specifically evolved to have incredibly thick 'hides,' in order to prevent bleeding. While their skin can shift color, their blood cannot, and any blood is an obvious marker of where to strike to another Dar'Gra.

As the fight progressed, Ganghe gambled as he used one hand to grab Dentreve's pistol, hiding it behind his body. He then let Dentreve connect a strike, but quickly grabbed Dentreve's arm, and brought the pistol around, unloading the clip from the general direction that the strike came from. Dentreve was fast, but nothing was fast enough to dodge a scatter of bullets at point blank range. Dentreve's blood quickly began to spill from the bullet wounds, marking the position of his torso and a few arms, and the fight soon progressed into a battle of attrition, testing Ganghe's endurance against Dentreve's blood loss. As the minutes wore on, more blood poured out of Dentreve, and his movements soon became sluggish, until finally, Ganghe pinned Dentreve against the table of maps, exhausted.

As Dentreve accepted his fate, he said, "Whoever you are... you're a damn good fighter, not to mention an amazing Dar'Gra. Brilliant... hiding the pistol like that... grabbing my own strike. Really... unexpected. I applaud you... You've won, take the trophy of my death, as tradition says you should." Ganghe replied, "May Ahm receive you unto him, Warrior," as he grabbed Dentreve's head and twisted, snapping the Dar'Gra's spine. Unfortunately, in their fighting, Dentreve's blood had ruined the maps on the table, destroying valuable information. At the very least, Ganghe had succeeded in eliminating the Rebel leader, as he inspected the room. There seemed to be a stacks of papers, but nothing to go through immediately, not until the Inquisition arrived to sort through them. He went over the communications array set up for Dentreve, and turned to the confidential Inquisition frequency, saying, "Rebel dead, mission accomplished. Cleanup crew requested at coordinates." Within hours, the Inquisitors arrived, slaughtering the search party, rescuing the wounded soldiers, and telling Ganghe that if this war ended well for the Loyalists, he'd be a 'hero on par with Fran himself'.

Offline Raz

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #23 on: February 10, 2010, 07:03:04 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector(2,2), Tapnam System, Ahm

The elimination of Dentreve was devastating for the Rebellion, as they were mostly still organized into combat 'cells' which all ultimately reported to Dentreve for their overall orders. As such, while they attempted to continue their individual goals, their reinforcements came to a stand-still, as well as new shipments of the devastating Slorvian war machines, which merely piled up in Vantry Beta, awaiting delivery. Individual leaders, attempting to quell the disorder, managed to gain contact with each other, but a highly effective Inquisition disinformation campaign was making many of the Rebels walk into death traps, following the information of 'Rebel leaders' on the other side of the radio. Very quickly, the Rebels devolved into suspicious warriors, trusting only those they could physically touch or see, leaving themselves exposed to the battered but emboldened Loyalists, who began to mount an offensive.

Once more, the tables had turned, but another mind-boggling turn was approaching;

Alpha Quadrant, Sector(2,2), Tapnam System, The Rebel-Conquered Vantry Capitol

Regan's lifeless body suddenly convulsed, electrical signals rippling through his crystalline muscles, his repaired heart restarting itself. His brain soon began to return to life, crystalline connections having replaced those organic ones lost to death. Yet Regan's brain was not entirely untouched; Ahm had added a cluster of crystals to function as a direct FTL transmitter. He suddenly gasped, his lungs aching for air, causing his eyes to fly open, registering a strange fact; he was enclosed in a massive crystal pod of some sort.

As he examined his surroundings, he discovered that he no longer saw mere light, but other waves as well. At first it was high disorienting, seeing so many things such as radio waves, but he soon learned to focus on his sense of light, mostly ignoring his other, newer senses.

As his tactile senses began feeding him information, he felt enormous pain as he stretched his previously unused crystalline 'muscle' and 'skin', a painful process that could be likened to the screech of an unoiled machine. As he did this, he noticed he felt a great deal heavier, but as far as he could tell, the new muscle more than made up for the increased weight.

But something quickly began to feel wrong, as if Ahm had replaced most of his body, if not all of it. As he began to panic, he heard a voice in his head, "Regan, my Messenger, I had to replace most of your body; it was generally too decayed or mutilated to be saved.  Your heart is crystal, as are your lungs, but your blood is still your blood, with a few added ingredients, but it is not pumped anywhere but to and from your brain. Your brain is mostly still you, with some crystalline additives as well, but there will be some slight memory loss, and you will likely be rather clumsy at first. However, do not underestimate the strength of your new muscle, for I believe you will be quite satisfied. To address some of the questions floating around in your mind; your food will be a combination of starlight, soil, and organics; you will eventually die a natural death; and you must still sleep. If you were completely crystalline, sleep would be a thing of the past, but you are not. Always remember Regan, you are my Instrument. Through you, I may speak to the Vantry as a whole, not just the Ragta. Now get moving..."

Taking his que, Regan punched upward with all his new arms, cracking the pod until it finally gave way, the top section colliding with the roof. As it fell, he grabbed it, throwing it against the wall, and then lumbered out of the 'pod', significantly disoriented. Regan could tell that he was not only heavier, he was larger, larger than most 'Gra he had ever seen. His body also gave off a strange, almost electric glow, similar to the natural glow of Ahm's flesh. Yet despite his body being almost entirely crystalline, there were still some tactile sensors that allowed him to feel the ground and air. As he walked towards the blast door, it slid open for him, but a pile of rubble flowed down into it; it seemed his soldiers, in a final act of defiance, had sheltered Regan from the Loyalists. Or perhaps the Rebels decided to just bomb the Capitol and be done with it. Whatever the case, Regan began digging with his new and vastly improved strength, a strange driving force in his mind, urging him onward. Maybe it was Ahm, or maybe it was Regan's subconscious wanting to test his new body.

After a few minutes of digging, he managed to break through the rubble, emerging into a scene of total destruction. His Loyalist soldiers were scattered about, along with a few Rebels... and some odd metal machines that were broken down. Another side of him wanted to grab the exposed wires, to try to connect with the machine, to see if it held any knowledge, but he fought himself, making his way back towards the outside, bloodying his hands. He pushed his way through the doors of an entrance, emerging to find the broken landscape once known as 'Vantry Alpha'. Apparently the Rebels had deemed it utterly useless, having practically leveled the city in the fighting, leaving behind only a small temporary scout camp near the outskirts of the Capitol building's lawn. Towards this, Regan walked, unsure of the Rebel reaction to his new form.

Offline Raz

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #24 on: February 13, 2010, 08:08:59 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector (2,2), Tapnam System, The Rebel-Conquered Vantry Alpha

Regan finally reached the Rebel camp, appearing behind a few Rebels composed of 'Gra and Jergo, all of them in traditional soldier armor, who were sitting around a table, drinking a few drinks similar to the alcohols that humans drink, generally having a good time. Unfortunately, their fun was about to end.

As Regan walked towards them, one of the more drunk Rebels motioned towards Regan, "W-wha-what is that... thing?" The other turned around, and with their impaired brains, seemed unable to comprehend Regan's existence, one saying, "I-I t-think... we're hallucinating.... but uh... hallu-hallucinations aren't sh-shared..." The 'Gra eyes narrowed, and the Jergo cameras zoomed in, trying to feed them information.

Regan finally stopped by the table of Rebels, who seemed awestruck by his strange and crystalline body. Then, Regan experienced the sensation of a wave passing over him, and he was suddenly not in control of his body, as he spoke, "Rebels... I speak for Ahm, your Creator. You would do well to heed my words; Give up your allegiances to all but Ahm, to me, his Messenger, and you will be far better off." The Rebels seemed to try to form words, but as one Rebel got out of his chair and kneeled before Regan, the other quickly followed suit, Ahm once more controlling his vocal cords, "You will be the first of billions to join me, Vantry. I will personally see to the end of this pointless war..."

And so, Ahm's purpose was revealed to Regan, as they quickly mobilized themselves, packing up the camp onto the simple VTOL that transported the Rebels out to the capitol. Soon, they were moving towards the nearest city, transporting the newest 'faction' in the war.

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Re: [AC] Vantry "Economic Issues"
« Reply #25 on: March 09, 2010, 05:50:07 pm »
Alpha Quadrant, Sector (2,2), Tapnam System, War-Torn Ahm, Months Later

The slow advance of the Rebels was brought to a halt as the Loyalists learned to use long-distance attacks and clever IEDs to eliminate the Rebellion's robotic advantage, resulting in a long-range stalemate of artillery fire where usable, and a near-total inability to move in the claustrophobic cities where there was always another IED just around the corner.

'Neutrals' or Refugees were preyed upon by both the Rebels and the Loyalists, and a Vantry was only neutral so long as he could avoid being given a rifle and a clip by either side. This forced draft soon infuriated the more pacifistic Vantry, who quickly banded together and began resisting the drafts, even resorting to waging an unorganized war against anyone who identified themselves as aligned to any side. The Neutrals were an unorganized force, and varied tremendously in their views, but they soon formed a small yet somewhat formidable third faction in the Vantry Civil War.

But there was a fourth, and it was perhaps the strangest faction of them all. Known by many names, the fourth faction generally called itself the Hands of Ahm. The Hands were almost like a whisper, and it was said a shot had never been fired by a Hand at any other faction except in self-defense. Advocates of a "Re-Awakening" of the Vantry, they literally preached Ahm's Message on street corners. It was rumored that the Hands had good reason to be on "Ahm's Side," as it was said that they were led by a 'Gra referred to only as "Ahm's Messenger," and Ahm's Messenger spoke of retribution upon the arrogant Vantry who chose not to listen to Ahm. The Hands quietly anticipated the day that the Messenger would choose to reveal himself to all of the Vantry.

However, the Hands were often derided as fanatical fools and vagrants with signs by Loyalist and Rebel alike. If there was one thing the two sides saw eye to eye on, it was their opinions of the Hands. But these opinions were only held by those in the highest levels of command in the two groups, and the lower levels of power often found the Hands' message extremely enticing. Secret reports of entire divisions going AWOL only to re-appear bearing the banner of the Hands became almost commonplace, but reports of this nature were held from the lower levels, in order to keep morale high. The fact that the weekly "Casualties" list had a majority of Hands-Converts was unsettling to both sides' leaders. After weeks of being bled of manpower, the high commands of both sides authorized crackdowns on any body of Vantry who even spoke Ahm's name, usually resulting in numerous bodies.

The numbers of AWOL soldiers lowered, but it was to be only temporary, as the day when Regan would speak to the Vantry as a whole soon approached; the day when the Hands anticipated Ahm's Wrath upon the non-believers.