The War of Terror [FT - Closed]

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The Ctan
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

The War of Terror [FT - Closed]

Postby The Ctan » Wed Apr 17, 2019 5:42 pm

The Weapons Vault was a small chamber in the ship, compared to what one might have expected. Here lay the technology that many cultures would sacrifice much to possess. Within the crypt-vaults of the Arnstoan Rhien, the interior of the vessel was a labyrinth of narrow corridors with architraves that divided them, most of the interior spaces were machine spaces, without atmosphere that made them habitable to organic beings, nor gravitational fields, but this area had been flooded with the breath of life in preparation for their arrival.

The only way to approach the Weapons Vault was down a narrow corridor, other dimensional pathways were funnelled, such that in some ways it did not even exist, and thousands of safeguards and barriers existed. The Triarch Praetorians ignored them all, passing through the archways, their weapons held before them as though they were torches to light the way of the procession. In principle it was a

Rememberancer Torvald Stalin Erummas ita Maynarkh approached with them, while they approached the entrance.

Aldaconcia Elisina Windthorn ita Sekemtar walked beside her, flanked by the guards of the senate, rare living warriors of the Great Civilization, their owl-like helms giving a whimsical expression to their deeply adorned armour, her regal carriage accentuating the formal robes she wore, she wore a headdress of her own people, living flowers, blue, green, pink and purple, vivid in colour and held alive on the stem, the whole affair could be re-planted, while the silver truss underneath that made up the structure beneath it would be cleaned and returned to its box when all was done.

She made the sign of opening with one hand, the ritual gesture that opened most doors, in doing so a barrage of identification checks, ranging from the biometric to the auric and she felt her neuralware aglow in the momentarily sickening barrage of imperative inquiries.

The doors slid aside, molecular spaces altering, to reveal the Hall of Armaments beyond. The space was ceremonial, a wide pillared hall that surrounded several plinths strange devices. The necrons bore an ark to set upon an altar.

A projection, in necrontyr form, appeared, male with silvery hair and eyes, robes of copper that shrouded his form. “Welcome Lady Senator, Keeper,” he said.

“Greetings,” Torvald said, and sketched a formal bow, as did Elisina. The Rememberancer stood aside.

“I come bearing the command of the senate,” she said, “they bid you to prepare a weapon from the forbidden chambers and bid you employ it.”

“I hear the command of the Council of Civilization, what orders do they bestow?”

Elisina bowed her head with studied grace in acknowledgment and gratitude. “We bid you destroy the world of Faunis as the Nemesor Khaneth ita Mephrit and the Strategic Council of the Enydmion Mission bid, once all inhabitants have been borne away to the Habitations of our Great Civilization.”

“It shall be done, I petition the Triarch Council to release to me the arms required.”

It was perhaps ironic that the Great Civilization did not approve of its protectorates having even fission devices, when every one of its cruisers had an armaments bay not unlike this. There were a variety of ferocious devices present, from cyclonic warheads to displacement engines which used an open-throated black hole to link a region in space to a distant black hole, potentially devouring whole systems, and on some ships even more exotic weapons such as stasis halos.

There were precautions in place that prevented as an article of policy the use of such weapons ever being the decision of any single mind; in law any group of citizens with a minimum size of three, in the absence of a quorate representative body within the fringe of communication, the practical range-time limit of communications (normally the senate, in true crises the three person Triarch Council), could agree to employ the weapon, in practice though, to complete the unlock process required an authorisation counter-code from the senate archives and one held by the shipmind possessing it, along with a third that was held by the triarch council. Such an access restriction was different to most states, who allowed unilateral control of weapons of mass destruction. In principle such a limitation could impact the ability of the Great Civilization to retaliate in a total aggression scenario.

By design it was possible to calculate these for the shipmind itself, but doing so would take years even routing all available capabilities to the task. Of course, all of them could synthesise these weapons with time, and some took less time to make new than to break out of the armament vault. Physically dismantling the vault would engage failsafes and so there was little incentive to attempt to break into the vault. Lawfully the shipmind would require the assent of at least two of its embarked passengers or two other citizens from elsewhere before completing such a task; of course because of the lawful nature of shipminds it was behaviourally more likely that it would in the unlikely event it was the only survivor, find and mentor two more citizens in the time taken to circumvent the failsafe than to attempt to operate it alone.

The precautions were required for the responsible use of weapons.

The formalities of having delegates visit in person and formally relay their authorizations by data arks were not necessarily required, but were one of many public displays of formality and ritual that helped cement the ideas of law and duty.

“In the name of the Triarch Council,” Judicator Sauphar, the leader of the Praetorians, said as he lifted his Rod of Covenant over the Data Ark, slotting it into place like a talisman in a port alongside it, unlocking its contents with data-shunts from his own mind, allowing it to integrate with the systems in the weapons chamber, “I assent.”

“In the name of the Senate,” Senator Windthorn said, pressing her own staff into place alongside it and feeling her neuralware hum again, “I assent.”

The calculations made by the systems within the weapons vault were, even with the correct authority imprints and ciphers, slow. They took seconds, whole seconds, these systems could be readied for use in tactical situations, unlocked generally and the weapons vault made available for use as simply a magazine of ammunition, but that was not the instruction they had input. A single weapon was made available.

The adjoining chambers, meters of living metal reinforced with phase-fields and amaranth, adamantium and ceramite, neutron-weave and other structures, some of the hardest parts of the ship to destroy, were impervious to phase systems, teleporters, magecraft and more. A honeycomb of external lines marked the walls hexagonally, and one of them altered colour. Even with this alteration, only the phase shield was altered; in a general release scenario, where the Arnstoan Rhien was simply let off the leash and told to wreak havoc, the systems would instead be attuned to allow the ship’s internal teleporters to reach any of the weapons, but normally this was not possible.

Phase-gravitics drew one of the weapons from its housing, hovering across the air, and Torvald watched. His role here was to record, and his impressions, from the overall emotions, to his sight of the situation would be made available as a record; it would allow others to stand where he was in posterity, to learn, or even for their own ghoulish enjoyment. But Torvald’s own emotions recorded quiet respect, trepidation, and a little awe.

The devices held aboard ranged in size, pebble sized condensed antimatter warheads that could shatter moons, to displacement engines the size of humanoid torsos, dessicators, urns of black nanofluid and even data-units that could change the ship’s weapons in ways not seen since the War in Heaven. Phials of viral compounds for a hundred species, some tailored, others general Some had never been employed in anger, such as the Aristophage, to target the ruling sect of one particular culture or the weapons of Ullgo’thalun, others had many living victims, altered forms of Quickbronze and Kharax and other recent atrocities were available – for the Great Civilization did not care if its weapons were original or not - while others had not been heard of in the lives of most of the galaxy’s cultures. The walls were lined with apocalypses waiting to happen.

The item chosen was not the least dangerous item, not by any means, though it was not the most terrible of those available. A cylinder of metal with sine-script warnings on its surface. Within, its payload was several nanometers wide, and its mass a fraction of a kilogram, even despite its superlative density, it only needed to exist in small quantity.

The Medusen Limit for Strangelets required a certain limit before a negatively charged strangelet could be formed. Except in the unusual conditions of collisions of certain neutron stars, this mass limited prevented natural agglomerations of negatively quark charged strangelets forming. Much as with the critical mass of fission weapons, this was a minimum mass before the substance could be weaponized.

On a human scale such a critical mass was insignificant, sub-microscopic, literally. Its attendant structures were visible, energy-dense holding systems and an exile shunt that could displace it and distribute it across a volume of half a dozen light years, causing it to break down harmlessly, should the unit’s internal power fail. Only by first disengaging this redundant safety system and then phasing the device into ordinary spacetime could it be operated, and extracting the core from the non-baryonic matter sheath it was held in. Though it was dense, it was still easily handleable, and the weapon itself, including its housing, was smaller than the carbonated drinks can so common across the worlds.

Senator Windthorn held out her hand and caught it, feeling the weight of the payload and the housing unit. She looked to Torvald, and considered for a moment if she wanted to say something, then realized she had waited long enough that she simply had to say something. “I hope we only need to use one,” she said. She held it out, to the spacious gravitic cradle that sat at the centre of the room, releasing it. It floated away, and took a stationary position in inertial fields in the centre of the weapons chamber. The vault itself secured itself once more, and the shipmind’s avatar looked at the device. Some of the devices required arming by the myriad of machineries in the ceiling, but this one did not, its payload was fail-active. The final commands to disable its protective systems would simply need to be given, and its payload would do the rest.

“The Sepulchre above will provide the best view,” he said.

Torvald watched the senator as she took her staff from its place. She used the other hand, he noticed, and she wiped her free hand, the one that had touched the weapon, against her thigh.

__ __ __

The Great Civilization’s war against the Empire had occupied much of its time recently. It was an intervention; because of course it was. There was little threat to them there, but the people the Empire was oppressing (hardest) were particularly useful to the Great Civilization, and unlike others it could not be said to be wholly charitable, for the leaders in exile of the Elphegort, the victims of this aggression, had agreed to become a protectorate, which certainly provided an additional motivation. Like a cudbear defending its cubs, the C’tani did not take well to the deaths of their subjects.

The course of the war thus far had been subtle, as wars went. It had been a series of intrusion raids to liberate imprisoned populations and disable the ability of the Empire to organize its oppression regimes, focusing on killing sites and more.

They had started with disappearances; they had no reason to make it obvious, for the psycho-historical analyses suggested that threats and diplomacy of softer kinds would not end the killings as quickly as direct force, and for the most part, killing was not acknowledged by the government.

If a forced labour site was turned into a smoking crater, it was rarely reported as an attack.

There were times they were less kind; the C’tani, had many sects and tribal affiliations, and there had been several approaches, reflecting the ideologies involved. Usually, the Great Civilization’s intercessions involved their gentler militant clades.

But there was a key difference here. The softer clades, whose approaches were more idealized and altruistic, had many chances to earn the glory of intercessions, and counted coup on many enemies. The Thurasid clade particularly, having been closest to the heart of the galaxy and most involved in its affairs.

The Dynastic Houses had their own ways of war, some were fabled for their kindness, the Thurasids among them, others, their heroism, such as the god-slayers of the Suhbekhar, and the valiant defenders and castellans of the Atun, the wise stewards of Oruscar and the chaos-hunting Nihilakh. Like any stereotype these were not true reflections of reality, but they were not untrue either, and of those other houses whose reputations were darker, less was said, but the remained much as they ever had been, insular, aggressive and conservative in their morals and outlook.

The Unitarian Empire was not attacking unaligned peoples, but a people whose leaders had sworn to be vassals of the Great Civilization. That made a significant difference, in the internal politics of the Great Civilization. Though some necrons scorned all mortal enemies as beneath their notice, many others wanted to display their militant zeal, and this was a rare occasion when the more insular necrons wanted to intervene, and it was all that the conciliation service and the Triarch Praetorians could do to keep them from retaliatory genocide while easing tensions by letting them take the lead.

Of course, these blood-soaked campaigners would likely have turned open war into a ruthless campaign where all were put to the sword if given free reign, but to them, a campaign of terror was the next best thing and that at least they were allowed to wage.

More than one death-factory had been found with the guards flayed skins draped on fences, or raised into mechanical undeath, a parody of life, to turn on their former countrymen. Where the necrontyr had walked, their methodologies harkened back to the harvests of old, and they used arcane technology to purge all record of their passing. Other sites, the majority, were attacked, and left intact, attackers emerging and leaving the guards and commanders in the thrall of mind shackle scarabs, obscene machines that nested in the cerebral cavity and kept the victim imprisoned in their own body, these were the preferred strategy where possible, allowing massacre efforts to continue, while serving as evacuation hubs, and gathering intelligence at the same time.

Still, it was not enough, for the Elphe were killed for an industrial purpose and one that was noticeable; they produced a material called numina in their deaths, and while it could be synthesised by other means, there was a notable difference. More than one inspector had been shot in the face by a camp commander, and his follow-up arrived to find a deserted execution site; ready to be re-used (and re-infested).

Still, it was impossible for the enemy not to know they were at war with someone; other attacks were made, thousands of them, to obfuscate the reasons for the intercession. Industrial sites were sabotaged or raided or simply left abandoned, and more than a few grisly murders showed up in urban hubs.

There was another goal to their subversions, one that made a web of implication and intrigue, a network of motives that had been divined by one who had once been known as the Deceiver, and whose influence was strong. The Unitarian Stellar Empire had a policy of punishing families of those it suspected (convicted in their terms) of crimes, and a large portion of the attacks, those that were not intended simply to obfuscate their true intentions, were intended to ensure that senior authorities, ranging from the Imperial Court to provincial officials, would lash out reflexively at those who were most likely to be loyal, or who would be embittered; when kin-bonds determined influence, and kin-bonds likewise were used to punish, they made a social web that could rapidly disaffect many influential people.

These things were accomplished by the ways of the Novokh, Maynarkh and the Drazakh and the others who had engaged in this war. The slow terror of the unknown.

Today, it was the turn of the Mephrit, the Suhbekhar might be noble God-Slayers, and the Nihilakh hunters of the Primordial Annihilator’s corrupted minions, but the Mephrit had a soubriquet too. Every child of the Great Civilization, or at least those who liked to play at the games of the War in Heaven and memorize facts about tanks and death machines, could say what the Mephrit were famous for. They were the Star-Breakers.

Another tribal clade of the necrontyr, turned into an inclusive institution but one that still maintained its traditions. Mass destruction. With as much as could be achieved by the application of the nameless fear alone, for in rescuing many intended victims of genocide one did not end it, but simply encouraged it to become a simmering low level of oppression, and while for some that might be enough, the goal was more than to just make organized, industrial killing difficult, it was to liberate the home systems of the Elphegort, and to bring the Unintarians to heel likewise, and that was something that meant the stratagem had to advance.

And like most of the fabled war-plans of the Mephrit, it began with a star system dying.

__ __ __

It was not the only thing to happen, and Auraneth, who used no dynastic surname, was far from his fellows. There were other necrons that were rarely seen, and he was one such, his kind lurked in pocket dimensions; in his case, dispatched to the court of the Governor of Endymion, Aneile Anstroven. He had been identified as an architect of the genocide, and the Great Civilization had a gift for him.

Auraneth was a Necron assassin, her sleek form moved through dimensions, tethered to the conventional world only remotely, she had been sent with the sleek form of a probe the size of a pebble, a small enough meteorite that it could pass past hundreds of star ships on guard, her form was larger, but it was enclosed within a tesseract built within the insertion unit.

Only once she had stalked forth, a lean thing that moved without visible impression, a shadow, a wraith, a charm-wrapped monster, a thing that hurt to look upon and was forgettable the moment it passed, enchanted by the folk of far D’halbrisir and Vinyandor, she was as far beyond the necrons that had awoken from the Great Sleep as any of her kindred.

But she still carried the same weapon, as she passed through walls and walked in the between-spaces. A synaptic disintegrator. Wound around it, in Seroi Tradition, were black ribbons, that bore prayers of formal exculpation, and a listing of the crimes of her target. It was rare to see her order in these days, but the leaders of the Great Civilization wanted a message sent.

The Synaptic Disintegrator was a sophisticated weapon - indeed the necrons eschewed the simple most of the time - a weapon that projected high energy particles into the neural tissues of the target to achieve selective destruction of neural tissue. It could kill, instantly and painlessly, but could do something crueller.

Auraneth had been bidden not toward efficiency, not this time, at least not to her target. She had instead been instructed to employ it more cruelly, to leave her target aware; but crippled, incontinent and unable to communicate and in spasmodic, recurrent pain that rivalled the most severe terminal diseases. The damage would be so severe that any practical means of healing it would require years of work, and that, the necrons did not believe the Unitarians were capable of.

She brought the weapon up fully phasing into real space for the instant required to fire. Even in the moment and she fired, she knew she would succeed. None of her order had ever missed such a shot.

Governor Anstroven might not understand the message. But others would.

Five other targets involved in the exploitation of conquered peoples were crippled in the same way, at the same second.
"If any should be slaves, it should be first those who desire it for themselves, and secondly those who desire it for others. When I hear anyone arguing for slavery I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally." ~ Abraham Lincoln
"The Necrons were amongst the first beings to come into existance, and have sworn that they will rule over the living." - Still surprisingly accurate!
"Be you anywhere from Progress Level 5 or 6 and barely space-competent, all the way up to the current record of PL-20 for beings like the C’Tan..." Lord General Superior Rai’a Sirisi, Xenohumanity
"Many races and faiths have considered themselves to be a threat to the Necrons, but their worlds and their cultures are now little more than interesting archaeology."

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The Unitarian Space Empire
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Founded: Apr 05, 2012
New York Times Democracy

Postby The Unitarian Space Empire » Thu Apr 18, 2019 4:16 pm

The following post was co-written with the Great Civilization of The Ctan

A few months earlier

The Endymion system’s star was a bright point far ahead, and the ship could easily be seen as a comet, cold and dark and eminently dead, like its name. The Dead Air decelerated from hyperspeed into an inert tumble, flipping end over end and moving without any change in its motion as though it was completely inert and destroyed. Its engines were baffled, directional, tachyonic emitters; the C’tani did not exclusively use gravitational drives for their systems, though all their ships had gravitational capacity.

It was present only as a scout, and its sensors drank in information from across the solar system with its twin stars as it shed micro-drones, sub-craft and long nets of hydrogen-melded sensors. The function of the vessel was easily served, and there were few things in the universe that could detect a C’tani scout craft.

However, there were more than scout vessels to hand.

Deep in the Dead Air’s insides, dozens of metallic beings were shunted through higher dimensional space, displaced to the distant planetary surfaces in groups five strong, their destinations were isolated areas, where the first analysis suggested that enemy ground forces were not common, and they were accompanied by a number of large, aggressive looking scarab bugs with triangular carapaces.

The C’tani leaders had not finished negotiating with the Selenari, but the military, which Asirnoth had departed to join, was already beginning its task.

The first and easiest planet to access was one that appeared to have an appreciable atmosphere which was thin, but breathable without assistance and it didn’t appear to be toxic to anyone in the party, nor did it have any sign of large scale damage. The area was moist, but not as moist as earth’s hydrophere due to the thinning atmosphere over time, ever lost into space. As the necrons seemed to appear in one of the smaller towns at the edge of the metropolis, they could see signs of recent instituion of martial law. Men in uniforms along with various non-sapient robots seemed to be ordering citizens to return to their homes for the announcement by ‘The Emperor’, and there were many elphe who had reluctantly entered their homes to avoid the strange squads of men that seemed to be policing them from the moment they emerged from their dwellings.

Out in the public areas there were many signs which seemed to have various innocuous messages that had a strange undertone to them “Reject Diversity, we are all living creatures.” on the street corner. “All people are one, so mistreat none.” was along on a billboard. “Deviant thoughts are for traitors.” along various buildings as the necrons passed from the suburbs into the greater metropolitan area. “Cosmopolitan Societies aren’t the best society, but they’re better than Division.” was on a passing gravity propelled bus, as it carried numerous passengers which all appeared in low spirits or terrified as the necrons passed.

“Step lively! All aboard and we move to the next stop, come along now!” One of the strange humans said with a wave of his hand. “Don’t be late! Timeliness is a universal value!” of course unstated was that cultures had different perceptions of timely, but the Empire ruled by its own standards. There were signs that the local guards were being watched by their counterparts, the Imperial Guard, which seemed to keep an almost obsessive eye upon every movement. The other strange thing that was noticeable was that men and women and children seemed to share the same kind of dress code. There were no exceptions for any of them, all businessmen seemed to wear dark three piece suits and ties, women wore long draping skirts and even jewelery appeared to be controlled and limited to earrings and a necklace. The rest was left muted with not even the slightest garish outfit.

One of the officers crossed his arms as he responded into his radio, and nodded his head, “A deviant this early in the morning? Geez these people are implacable.” He muttered as the necrons could hear various obscenities being shouted down the street. The person who yelled out the obscenities was beaten, his wings abused and bent in an odd direction that was clearly painful. “Let me handle this one this time. I’ll take care of it if someone can take my shift.”

“ Aye, do what you need to do Heman, I’ve got you covered.” One of the other officers said, his arm drenched in a clear pus-like blood that had a slight tinge of pink to it.

The necron scouts were equipped with strange technology that seemed frankly magical, euclidean disruption shrouds, a kind of technology that was not just optical camouflage but put them slightly out of alignment with reality; they were shadows in the corner of the eye, and about as easy to actually hit as a shadow; there were few straight lines that could actually hit the necrons; staring at them too long could induce nausea and headaches, and was generally painful, this made it easy enough for them to move about unnoticed, and they moved close to the beating, observing for a time.

“For your deviance, you shall be sent to the Ammin camp for re education. We can take you there, or you can be taken there by the Guardsmen. Make your choice, because neither of us will have mercy on any form of insubordination, and your deviance is mild enough and easy to correct. Instruction for a few months should do it.”

“A few MONTHS?! I’ve committed no crime at all! I had a coworker spill red wine on my jacket, so I am not wearing it and will change when I get home. It was a simple accident, and I didn’t do it on purpose. Can there be any room for simple accidents or mistakes?” The Elphe man asked.

“Mistakes… we do not allow mistakes to continue, so thank the Emperor for his mercy and make your choice.” The Imperial Guards said as the Elphe man was pulled up from the ground by his collar and he groaned.

“I will go with the Guards of Roran, please let me go with them.”

“Very well, we’ve got our eye on you, deviant.” The Imperial guards said as they returned to their patrol. They seemed to be sweeping the streets and were stalking ordinary people as they passed by, and directed their pace, shouting for some of them to speed up and others to slow. For them to quiet their step, or for them to not drag their feet as they walked along. Others directed their flight which appeared to be limited to various areas that were marked off.

In all likelihood this would be the only arrest those guards would make tonight, therefore the necrons were confident that the best way to go about their mission here would be to pick up the Elphe man on his way to the camp; there might be collective punishment if he vanished, however, so there would need to be an eye kept out on the area after; depositing sensor-dust, they moved on, following the unfortunate.

To that end, they waited as well, watching to see what notes were taken, how efficiently everything was scanned - removing people from a system was much easier if the keepers of that system were complacent about recording; if not, they would do their best to intercept the updated records and prevent any record of the man’s incarceration.

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The Ctan
Posts: 2731
Founded: Antiquity
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby The Ctan » Mon Apr 22, 2019 8:08 am

The Engagement off Retonil was swift. Typical of the engagements beginning the second phase of the Unitarian-Civilization conflict. The Unitarians had long existed within the Centaurus Supercluster, a location that was so far from human core territories, let alone Necrontyr ones, that it was suggestive that they had been part of the Panhumanic Dispersion.

Humans were found in many places, from the Skyriver Galaxy, to the ancestors of the Alteran people, across the universe, that they had no practical right to be, that the Great Civilization believed there had been numerous accidental dispersals through the use of unsafe interstellar drives, particularly Empyrean based travel throughout the ages.

The Empire was old, and its culture believed to hail from the ancient Mysidian-Palomecian civilization thanks to lexical roots and ethnic makeup, but further from that there was little known of how they had come to be present.

The engagement began with the deployment of a device or weapon that was imperceptible to humans, a weaponized offshoot of the inertialess drive technology, its activation was akin to a bomb that permeated local spacetime briefly with an observer effect that decoupled quantum entanglement communications. This was an effect that had been used rarely within the Sol System or other key sites due to the number of outside observers that could be affected, and the spatial damage that this caused when used repeatedly. Here, however, there was no issue with this technology, and it destroyed the effectiveness of ansible-based communications.

The attackers’ own communications were briefly disrupted, but these could be restored using hyperwave communications, something the target vessels lacked.

The primary target was the Fortress Ship Carisoma, one of the largest starships in the navy of the United Stellar Empire. By the standards of local space it was huge a mobile fortress with a keel of over three kilometers and more than five thousand crew and four times as many passengers, it was equipped with an arsenal of weapons. It was likely that most aboard thought it was impregnable, and indeed it could have inflicted significant damage, its escorts more so, on its attacker. Its weapons had several esoteric effects, the most significant of which was a quantum cannon, a beam weapon that generated a fission reaction in the target, causing mundane hull materials to explode violently.

If they had been aware that it was under attack.

The necrons were not known for their stealth, but in turth that was more due to the policies they pursued than any inability. Likewise, stealth was not generally possible in space, which made it all the more useful as an asset. The Carisoma however, did not detect the target vessel, which was built for the task, and transferred its emissions to an esoteric alternate dimension and a narrow beam of neutrinos, and moved through space cold in its approach. Subtler even than the scythe class light cruisers that served as the Great Civilization’s military scout-vessels, this was a narrow vessel a fraction the Carisoma’s size and firepower.

The beach-head unit that was transported within the Fortress Ship was scarcely more than a few meters long; the ship itself had more than a billion cubic meters of space within its frame, in towers that rose on its dorsal and plunged on its ventral side, in large engines at its rear; highly automated, its intruder defense, like any vessel, was reliant on internal sensors.

The first wave of intruders used the same technology as the needle-ship that had brought them to remain undetected in the spaces between decks. Its jewel-like eyes gleamed, and it reached out with forelimbs of molecule sifting material from the structure before it. Nothing on a ship was waste material, even one such as this, but the Carisoma would not miss certain parts of its mass.

The needle ship slipped away.

The intruder was mother to a first generation of scarabs, small constructs that could reproduce themselves, and each of those produced more of their own kind, moving out of sight of the crew, converting inertial suppression systems, cargo, wiring for weapons systems, parts of defensive systems, moving through the ship and making more of themselves. The crew would recognize the damage first from the reduction of power usage, more than anything, but by the time that this was done, the Carisoma’s defensive systems were already fatally compromised.

By the time the crew took to bug hunting in a literal sense, rather than being concerned about the same systems failure that had mismanaged their communications having spread to other systems, they were far too late to be combat effective.

More importantly, the parasite craft of the Carisoma had carried the self-replicating plague with them, infected through air and reaction mass umbilicals, data-lines and other systems that connected the ship to its plethora of support craft where docked, ensuring that through lighters and shuttles they were able to infect the majority of the escort fleet in short order.

Only then did the mother-scarab open the portal generator that had come with it, and the short battle to retain control of the Carisoma begin and ended within half an hour; a classic example of refusing to fight with honour, and another disruption without obvious culprit.
Last edited by The Ctan on Mon Apr 22, 2019 8:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
"If any should be slaves, it should be first those who desire it for themselves, and secondly those who desire it for others. When I hear anyone arguing for slavery I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally." ~ Abraham Lincoln
"The Necrons were amongst the first beings to come into existance, and have sworn that they will rule over the living." - Still surprisingly accurate!
"Be you anywhere from Progress Level 5 or 6 and barely space-competent, all the way up to the current record of PL-20 for beings like the C’Tan..." Lord General Superior Rai’a Sirisi, Xenohumanity
"Many races and faiths have considered themselves to be a threat to the Necrons, but their worlds and their cultures are now little more than interesting archaeology."

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