Aboard the Venture-Class Explorer ‘Magellan’:
“Captain, the system sweep is complete. I think you’ll like what we’ve found.” “Let’s see it then, main screen.” The bridge crew turned and looked - hopefully their hard survey work had paid off.
“The star is a class IV blue sub-giant with 8 planets in stable orbits. There is a single asteroid belt…” The screen zoomed to show a scattered asteroid belt with a slight nebula around it. “…here that was likely caused by the collision of two planets approximately 9 million years ago. It’s the first ‘object’ from the sun, at a distance of 4 to 6 million kilometers. Spectrographs indicate sodium, phosphorus, copper, zinc, tungsten, and boron compose most of the major asteroids. An odd mix – I’m sure planetology will love it.”
The screen zooms to a gas giant. The planet is a lovely cobalt blue with a thin ring that sparkles in the reflected light.
“The first planet is this gas giant at a distance of 11 million kilometers. With a radius of 26,000 kilometers it is barely a giant though. It has one observed satellite, a single rocky body shaped like Nixon’s head.” The screen shows this body – the resemblance is uncanny. “Primary components are hydrogen, carbon, oxygen, sulfur, and nitrogen. A rocky core is suspected, but unconfirmed.”
A blue-pink world then appears on the main screen. 3 moons are indicated.
“This one caught our eye – high oxygen content in the hydrosphere, but we also found high amounts of fluorine as well. It’s very pretty, but would require a lot of terraforming. Primary atmosphere is hydrogen, nitrogen, and neon. Given the presence of large amounts of silver, nickel, and potassium the planet’s eventual terraforming is likely. Orbital radius is 34 million kilometers, and planetary radius is 500 kilometers. Gravity is .1 Earth normal so the suggested use is as a fleet base. Next up…”
The screen shows a noxious looking green world with solid cloud cover. 1 moon is indicated.
“A noxious atmosphere special - chlorine, fluorine, and helium with nitrogen, iodine, and bromine in suspension make this a wonderful vacation spot. Beryllium, iridium, and cobalt make up the core. It would make a good mining world if the atmosphere could be shaped up a bit. It’s at 65 million kilometers, and has a radius of 25,000 kilometers.”
A new world appears on the screen – blue with hints of green. Rocky terrain is visible through the atmosphere. 9 moons are indicated.
“This is the one we like. Atmosphere is primarily oxygen, neon, and hydrogen. What little hydrosphere there is has a high chlorine count, as well as hydrogen and carbon. Cleaning the chlorine out would be the only challenge – tailored plant species could remove the chlorine and combine oxygen and hydrogen to produce water. The oxygen level in the atmosphere is so high losing 80% of it would not be a bad thing. We would want to introduce an animal species as well – convert the oxygen to CO2. It would have to be chlorine tolerant of course.
The surface looks to contain carbon, gold, and titanium en masse. Mining operations and the subsequent conversion of oxygen to CO2 will help as well. This will take time – but since the atmosphere is sizable we can let the animal and plant population run wild and do the work as quickly as possible. We feel this planet could become a new earth in 10-20 years, though we could colonize immediately with domes. It really does look that good Captain. Orbital distance is 395 million kilometers – not that bad when you consider a sub-giant star. Radius is nearly perfect at 7,400 kilometers – slightly larger than Terra.
Another large advantage is the number of stable moons – shipyards would be easily established on most of the larger moons, and fleet bases and defense outposts could be be built on the others.”
The screen then shows another blue world, this time with constant cloud cover. 7 moons are indicated.
“A small world – 2,600 kilometer radius with a 686 million kilometer orbital radius. Atmosphere is hydrogen. There is a lot of sulfur and mercury in suspension, and the core is iridium and calcium. Considering the massive amounts of iridium mining might be profitable considering the platinum family ores that are likely there, but dangerous work too.”
Another world barely appears on the screen. It is black, almost menacing with stripes of blue and red running through it. It has a red ring, and 1 moon indicated.
“A gas giant obviously – carbon, bromine, and hydrogen. Likely rocky core, but again no proof yet. It is 1200 million kilometers from the star, and 22,000 km in radius. Beyond that we have another rocky planet.”
The screen shows another blue world. There is significant cloud cover, but the surface is visible. 11 moons are indicated.
“Another good reason to consider colonizing this system is this world. It’s pretty far out – 4700 million kilometers, but an artificial star could help turn it into a paradise. A large paradise – 12,000 kilometer radius. Atmosphere is co2, helium, and oxygen. Hydrosphere contains hydrogen, nitrogen, and more co2. The core is aluminum and magnesium. This could become a major commercial shipbuilding center with a little work. Tailored plants and animals to increase the amount of water and you have a near perfect planet. High gravity though – twice Earth normal. We could easily solve that problem locally though.”
A final world appears on the screen. It has a brown-blue appearance and 7 indicated moons.
“A gas sub-giant for the last one – it is quite near the previous plant in stellar terms. Another 100 million kilometers out. But it is also small – 30,000 kilometer radius. Hydrogen, fluorine, chlorine, nitrogen, and iodine make it a horrible place to take the kids. That’s the end of the tour Captain. I would advise we don’t broadcast this one.”
The Captain settled in his chair for a moment. It was good – he could see the possibilities now. “Absolutely right – let’s turn this rig around and head for home. No sense letting anyone in on our find. Helm – I would assume you know the way.”
Minutes later the ship disappeared into hyperspace.
Edit: Planet Names + Moons + Colony's
Planet 1: Odin - Gas Giant - 1 Moon
Planet 2: Eldar Craftworld
Tor Yvresse (Possible)
Planet 3: Shiva - Rocky Planet (Mining Colony) - 1 Moon
Planet 4: Ares - Rocky Planet (Main Colony) - 9 Moons
Sunset, Tor Yvresse, Mangala
Planet 5: Chih-Yu - Rocky Planet (Mining Colony) - 7 Moons
Planet 6: Menhit - Gas Giant - 1 Moon
Planet 7: Anuke - Rocky Planet (Secondary Colony) - 11 Moons
Planet 8: Hachiman - Gas Giant - 7 Moons
A lone ship dropped out of hyperspace near Mars. Nothing unusual about that - hundreds of ships came and went every day.
4 Days Later...
Two Admirals and Five Captains were sitting in President Villanova's office. They were early - the President hadn't arrived yet. Admiral Filbeck was there, along with newly promoted Admiral Edge. He suspected his crew's discovery was why they were there, but best to not mention something the President himself had deemed classified.
Villanova finally opened the door and took a seat at his desk. "Sorry - I had a meeting with a senator. I didn't want to leave early. Questions would have to be answered, and I want to keep this as small as possible for now. First - Admiral Edge and his crew have discovered a system they deemed habitable, and based on advice, I agree."
This announcement caused a small murmer. "You are all here as you will be the forward team. Admiral Edge will be in charge of course, hence the promotion, but the rest of you will be vital to the success of the project."
Villanova handed datapads to each of the officers. "Here is the data on the system. It is not to leave these pads. Your assignments are on there, as well as when you wil leave. You'll leave seperately, meeting at the coordinates listed, then leave for the system together. You'll be meeting a ship from Tor Yvresse - recognition codes are on there as well. Speaking of those - once you are in system if a ship shows up without those codes you are on a pirate hunting mission. If a ship from a hostile nation shows up you can scrap it if you feel it will raise suspicion to let it on it's way.
The system is quite far out - your ships will be equipped with hyperdrive sleds, though you should leave via your normal method to avoid suspicion."
The meeting continued as details were laid out far into the evening.
Over the next week 6 ships left Mars at random times - one of the brand new FireBlossom-II's, 2 Cohort-III's, 2 Ventures, and a Templar Class. Nothing suspicios at all.
OOC: There is about a .000000001 chance that anyone would show up in the system. This is mostly to setup groundwork for future RP's.
While the area was a vast sea of stars, very little light illuminated the six ships gathered together. They were flying in a rough formation, weapons powered and shields up, waiting for the last ship to arrive.
Then it was there - a long silver dagger in the darkness. Recognition codes screamed between the ships and the newcomer, then all was silent for a moment. Another single sharp burst of traffic, then the ships began turning, pointing deeper into the galaxy. There was a surge, a gathering of power, then all were gone.
A week later...
The 7 ships streamed out of hyperspace above their target. Sensor arrays began to probe everywhere in the local system, searching for any distrurbance since the last ship had visited. Satisfied that the system was untouched and unoccupied the largest ship slowly turned and fired torpedos toward each planet in turn. They were sensor bouys - though for now they would only relay their traffic to the ships present in the system.
The ships split up - the warships heading for the secondary planets to do complete survey missions while the two explorers, the repair ship, and the Eldar cruiser took up orbit around the primary world. They repeated their earlier scans, refining the level of chlorine present in the hydrosphere as well as the other elements present. Exploring parties were beamed to the surface to make careful checks for existing life forms while the genetists aboard the ships completed the tailored plants and animals and prepared as many as possible for wide seeding.
Construction crews from the repair ship also set down, though they took shuttles filled with supplies. They began building a dome in an open area - a temporary affair that would provide filtered air for those inside. This would allow the Eldar to begin the first step of their work on the planet.
OOC: Is this public, Sunset?
OOC: Is this public, Sunset?
Abu-Dhabi KhristatataOOC: Is this public, Sunset?
OOC: Nope, in fact it is very, very secret. At this point the only people who know about it are the President, the crews of the ships involved, and Farseer Darvins of Tor Yvresse. Whether I open it up to other nations is still to be decided.
Three months later...
Splotches of green were visible on the surface as the tailored plants raced to absorb the co2 as fast as possible. The animals that would eat the plants had been introduced a week ago, along with a wide spectrum of Earth micro-organisms. The Republic had watched the terraforming of Mars and Venus with interest, and the knowledge gained was coming in handy now. While the Snel might have considered it slow the men and women aboard watched each day with wonder as the patches increased despite the assault by the omnivorious animals.
Landing teams had found no traces of existing life on the planet - as if it had been wiped clean. But humanity had already begun to leave it's mark on the planet. The dome was complete and the web-gate was proceeding. They were quite careful - a range of grav generators around the site and heavily armed security teams ensured the gate would not be abused. Invaders would be crushed under strong gravity fields while being shot. Overkill - not even close.
The fleet in-system had been busy as well. They had seeded most of the worlds with additional sensor bouys, as well as posted them slightly outside the system as early warning arrays.
Six Months Later...
Admiral Edge had been to the planet several times, but he had not been to the fields of green that has rapidly spread over the surface. They were at 10% coverage now, and expected to double in the next year. He walked through the low plants - he heard crunching under his feet and knelt for a closer look. Salt crystals. They were large, like sea salt, and now that he looked he could see them scattered around on the surface.
When he returned to his ship he asked his science officer about them.
"Exactly what we want - the chlorine is concentrated in the roots of the plant as salt, which dies when the concentration reaches a certain level. When rain finally starts falling it will leach the salt into the new water system. We can purify the water of course - the seas will likely be very salty when they form. We might be able to do something about that with tailored fish, but fresh water is unlikely except in limited amounts. It's all better than breathing it, and as far as we can tell the percentage has already dropped from 5.43% to 5.37%."
A year later...
The circles of green had in fact doubled in size. Nearly 20% of the planet was overrun with the stuff. The animals couldn't eat fast enough, though they were running rampant as well. The crews had begun to introduce other animals as the rodent-based creature continued to thrive. Predators - hawks and owls and eagles and snakes. Snakes to keep the birds from over populating. It wasn't perfect of course - a new system like this had problems. The plants were leaving areas stripped of nutrients, mostly in the center of the fields. The water table had risen, and open water could be seen from orbit. Algae was seeded, along with the microorganisms it fed on.
The web-gate had been completed, and shipments from Mars had started to come through. Heavy machinery for building cities was first. Domes were constructed from pre-fabricated pieces, colonists would arrive soon.
Back on Mars letters went out. Slowly, as to not arouse suspicion. The opportunity to live off world. Pictures of the Republic area of Titan were included. Construction workers and engineers were the main targets. When they accepted the vague offer and had prepared they were told the truth, right before they passed through the web-gate. A new world - a chance to make a new life and perhaps a new Earth.
President Villanova sat in his office reading over the reports from the site. Work was progressing, but he wanted the world to be ready. His plan was simple - keep the population on Mars stable at 1.5 billion by moving people off-world. They would prepare the colony, and the population would slowly expand while the Republic stayed stable. Thanks to the web-gates, traffic would be frequent and trade between the two would benefit both. They would have to be careful though - the colony was meant as a refuge in case of a larger war. Somewhere to retreat to along with their allies and the survivors.
3 months later...
Villanova was sitting at his desk. He had finished his workload for the day and he had some time before going home for the evening. A rare occurance. 'Time to inform our allies.' he thought, and composed a short letter.
Friends and Allies,
Since the attack by Sketch on the World Disc and spurred by recent developements in Arda and other places of note the Republic of Sunset has been in search of a refuge. If war on a system wide scale comes, it may well consume all the planets in fire. We need a place to retreat to; to find refuge in and prepare for pursuit.
We feel we have found such a place. A star system, deeper into the spiral arm, and capable of supporting life. More than capable - attached you will find the initial system survey as well as our progress since then.
This is being delievered by courier for a reason, and has been kept secret for excellent reasons. Place this information in a place of great safety, for it is our greatest secret. If you wish to discuss the project for any reason we can arrange a meeting under other pretenses, but this is the only time this information will leave my hand willingly.
President Fidelo Villanova
Responce sent back to Sunset:
Our Noble Ally Sunset,
As you feel that such information is needed to be sent via courier we have also responded in this fashion.
We are most intersted in a place of refuge in time of war. Due to current events in the world is seems that such a war may very well take place soon. We are grateful of Sunset's foresight in finding a solution that will ensure the survival of those who are enlightened enough to receive Sunset's gift. We thank you and request any further information you may discover about this system as most of our resources are currently tied up in Terraforming projects.
((OOC whoops been away the last two days. Lahlahlah))
The Eldar where working in secret, the Seers sent to construct the WebGates where some of the most powerful and the most trusted. The project they worked on for Sunset was one that had been marked as being of the uttermost importance and it was with a sense of purpose therefore that they set to work. The Webgates would not only serve the function they had been built for, but the Council wished them to have an edge, as a gift and so each would be constructed by Master Wraith singers, to be a monument a work of art.
As the voices raised to the heavens the Gate began to take form, twisting pillars, with what appeared to be Vines snaking around them, leaves almost falling, they where so delicatly positioned. Of course it was Wraithbone and not the real thing, but any seeing the Gate would have to look twice to be sure. It was all woven together by the singers, and it's growth would be almost a work of art in and of itself.
A year later...
There was a small celebration that day - 10,000 colonists had arrived. The progress made was significant - the plants and animals had reached a balance point, and the level of chlorine was decreasing at a measured rate. It was down to 4.23 now, still quite high of course. No one went outside without a skin suit but soon. Perhaps within the next 6 years or so.
Their surveys of the other planets complete, the guardian ships had turned to other tasks. Frozen ice comets were found in the system or floating in the rings of the gas giants. Depending on their size one or two ships would tow them back and lower them onto the planet with their tractors. It seemed insignificant, but when it came right down to it every little bit was another million people who would have water to drink.
Grass had been sown earlier in the year. Everything from common crab grass to kentucky blue grass. It was sown in both the green areas, where it struggled, and in new areas where it flourished. Trees as well - every species that they could obtain. Seedlings were placed or seeds scattered as was deemed appropriate.
Tailored fish were introduced into the salt water bodies. Salt was being removed by the water filters the colonists used, but at a far lower rate than it was being introduced. That might change as the population and the demand for water grew.
The planners were already laying down the plans for new cities - outdoor cities as well as domes. They chose places with beautiful vistas, and cooperated with the terraformers to make sure animal populations were not seeded too close to the locations. It was not hard - the world was vast, and they had the whole thing to themselves.
As the Farseer constructed the gate on the new world, he felt something. A link - not to this world but somewhere nearby. Something that called out to him, like a mother to her child. A voice, soft and sweet.
Come to me child, for I am ready to rise anew and walk this world again...
Darvins felt the call and knew in his being that he had to follow it, he felt almost a need, a need to follow the call alone, he followed the voice of the one that named him child. Reaching for the caller seeking it, he was strangely content that was all he knew.
His feet took im almost without his mind telling them where to go, he was traveling by instinct alone. The worers mad little comment on his absence at least little comment to the Colonists of sunset, for they had been chosen for their secrtive natures for this but still it would become obvious he was missing within a short period of time.
((OOC Very strange hmm fascinating.))
((This is why I always bomb new planets before colonising))
The voice stirred his soul once more. He had traveled - as far as he could travel. It was not here but yet it was here. It was both there and here. He looked into the sky, and knew she waited somewhere nearby but somewhere out there.
It was strange that much he knew, where then should he go. Finnally he sat for a moment and simply reached out with his own thoughts, seeking where seeking some sort of clue as to where he had to go next, what he had to do next.
I come, but I know not where, I know what you want of me.
Stars shone brightly behind a blue-pink ball floating serenely in space. It seemed close enough to touch, as though it was sitting right next to him.
Come to me my child, for I desire to cast off my morning rainment and take up the gown of the day once again...
Darvins was lost in thought as to what the vision could mean, it seemed so familar yet, then it became as obvious as the day, he had seen the Ball before.
A blue-pink world then appears on the main screen. 3 moons are indicated.