RES PUBLICA | FT | IC | Semi-Open

A staging-point for declarations of war and other major diplomatic events. [In character]
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Forest State
Posts: 4419
Founded: Aug 23, 2016
Capitalist Paradise

RES PUBLICA | FT | IC | Semi-Open

Postby Forest State » Thu Feb 11, 2021 8:00 pm


A quaint section of space is about to be set on fire - the Federal Republics of Khaliyya, on the surface level, is the picture of ideal living in the future. The larger nation, sprouting out of the Sabya system having expanded from there, is split into three republics representing their own cultures and holding the autonomy to make their own decisions in many areas beyond the rule of the federal government. Its bustling cities and spaceports enjoy wealth from mining the local resources, and the federal military has grown in strength over the years to fend off threats ranging from pirates and corsairs to a historical terror of the Khaliyyan people, the more primitive xeno race located nearby known as the Djahn. However, despite the spreading prosperity of the democratic system, trouble is brewing behind the scenes and the nation itself is set to be shaken to its core...

The year is 3346 according to the Sabyan Calendar, and the Federal Republics are presented with a crossroads - the big tent but vaguely conservative Solidarity & Progress Party is the largest across the three republics, and looks to maintain the status quo without making drastic moves in any direction. Its candidate, Masur Soltani, appears to be the front runner in the year's elections for Commissioner, the head of state position of the Federal Republics. On the other hand, the nationalist Khaliyyan League aligns far more with the right wing of the SPP and has progressed to the final stages of the Commissioner election with its own candidate Timian Matheo, a fiery speaker who promises to deliver larger gains on the economic front through the plundering of the Djahn and the retaking of what were once contested territories lost to a brutal attacker... Now that Khaliyya is the more advanced between the two civilizations, the subject of the Djahn and what should be done to deal with them has become more of a controversial subject across the various parties.

Soltani and the SPP appear to win the election by a safe margin, but trouble begins to brew when it only takes a week for rumors to start circulating through the party headquarters; rumors that everything isn't as it seems and that the result may have been the outcome of a sophisticated attack which has never been seen before. This is confirmed when agents working for Nadra Konda, the leader of the neoliberal faction of the SPP, break into the party headquarters in the middle of the night and retrieve a copy of an advanced computer virus from the building's servers. The news soon hits the streets, and suddenly, the Federal Republics are faced with one of the biggest scandals in their history.

The scandal will not just pit party against party, but perhaps even republic against republic - the nation, after all, is made of three parts with differing outlooks. The original republic, Sabya, is a revanchist phantom of the past that is now rising again and aiming to assert a strong Sabyan identity once again while dominating its xeno enemy nearby and raising the status of its formerly monarchistic aristocrat class. Oshen, which holds the western flank of the Federal Republic, is a borderline stratocracy which actively courts the federal military and holds a pragmatist outlook on decision making, while the southern Cantian Republic has some of Khaliyya's best examples of glimmering skylines and metropolises that have grown rich off business.

In the distance of the Delta Quadrant, the watchful eye of Khaliyya's historical neighbor, the capitalist and democratic Einotaiyan Star Union - the land of the eternal sun - watches the situation with interest and potentially even with opportunism. Relations between the countries have reached a stable position by now, but in the event of a power vacuum or a regime change in Khaliyya, things could change. All of these interests intersect - but sometimes clash, too. And with the matter of the Djahn added on top of everything else, 3347 and beyond are set to be some of the most turbulent years of the Republics...

This is a semi-closed RP involving the events following the most recent election in the Federal Republics of Khaliyya. The core effort here is divided among multiple players. I myself am playing the Sabyan Republic, Durmatagno is playing the Oshenian Republic, and Lunas Legion is playing the Cantian Republic. The focus, however, is more on character actions and how they impact the nation rather than making national decisions from the top down like a strategy focused RP. In the future, there will also likely be human-xenos conflict and a possible international response to that.

Those who are interested in jumping into this in some way, either trying to influence the internal situation or intervene in the future xenos conflict when the plot moves towards that, can get in touch on Discord and figure out their involvement. However, for the sake of consistency, nations that are exceptionally higher tier won't be considered. That's not to say that any strong nation wouldn't be allowed, but Khaliyya is a relatively grounded nation that doesn't go too far beyond standard sci fi tech and it wouldn't be much of an actual matchup to deal with a nation that's throwing around entire multiverses and such.

Also, keeping with the tone of the thread is important. If the main point of your nation's activities in the galaxy is to jump into conflicts and police other nations for committing wrong actions such as attacking xenos, you should consider your reasoning for wanting to join the thread. Characters are king in this story and we welcome character narratives that oppose our nation - but not giant intervention actions that are barely supported by story and are more for the sake of PvP or the meta belief that the galaxy needs to be policed. Think of following politicians dealing with the situation from their office, journalists that might be covering it in the field, the captain of a vessel that's been dispatched to battle, individual soldiers or the officers handing them orders, and things like that rather than just showing your top generals ordering an invasion.

Last edited by Forest State on Wed Apr 28, 2021 2:22 am, edited 4 times in total.
don't tread on me

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Forest State
Posts: 4419
Founded: Aug 23, 2016
Capitalist Paradise

Postby Forest State » Thu Feb 11, 2021 8:01 pm

December 17th, 3346
Hafiyah, Asakar, Sharqa System, Federal Republics of Khaliyya
Collab between Forest State and Lunas Legion

It was easy for someone to feel lonely within the grand city of Hafiyah. Hafiyah was of course the capital of the garden world Asakar, which itself was the designated capital of the Federal Republics of Khaliyya. All of the planets that were spread out across the stars in the Khaliyyan section of space, all of the power concentrated within this one country and its three republics, they all led back to this place. The one where the important decisions came from and where the grand spectacle that was the political scene of this nation was based. It truly was a spectacle, broadcast across the nation and watched with anticipation by the populace, not only because the decisions made in this capital affected them but also because it was a grand show in and of itself.

And yet, when it was a regular day and things were quiet, without the frantic proceedings that happened around the capital district when there was actually something going on, some important vote or something else along those lines, this place could feel… Distinctly lonely. The rainy weather right now didn’t help with that, nor did the fact that the city largely lacked the neon lights and bright billboards that marked so many of the other metropolitan landscapes within the Federal Republics of Khaliyya.

In this case, the taste of the designers favored glass and green spaces - a departure from some capitals around the galaxy which might have preferred more traditional styles with marble columns or some kind of unique indigenous style of structure. Hafiyah, on the other hand, screamed modernism with its rows of square glass buildings, neatly organized bursts of green which could be found in the form of green belts near the roads and plazas in between buildings, and its more controlled building codes compared to the other metropolitan areas of its size.

The capital.
This place was big, of course. It had to be. Housing the main wings of the government was a massive undertaking for a nation like this, and for everyone that worked within the government or one of its affiliated agencies, there were many people living in this city to keep their amenities running. People serving food to these elites and lower level middle managers and office workers, people operating the transit system to make the commute to work easier, and at least a large army of people enlisted to clean all of the glass and keep it in pristine shape… Or perhaps to watch the robots that could do a task like that fully automated.

The city was a well oiled machine, a change from the more chaotic and uncontrolled cities found elsewhere throughout the territories of the republics. And that well oiled machine was what Ilyas Cerci was overlooking right now, from the large seamless glass window that made up one wall of his office near the Singularity & Progress Party headquarters. The Assemblyman was a long way from home right now, considering he represented a constituency that was at the edge of the Sabyan Republic - the Third District, Kursa, part of the Valinur System. But there was a good reason to be here right now, even if there was no important vote or something similar demanding the attention of everyone in the Federal Assembly. At least, not publicly yet.

In the plaza behind the building where the office was located, Ilyas was able to observe staffers rushing back and forth and working on some task that remained unknown, definitely more active than they would normally be on a day like this… Yes, the place wasn’t as dead as it seemed right now. The news about what was happening, and why the area around the party headquarters was so frantic, just hadn’t reached everyone yet. When the news did hit, Ilyas expected Hafiyah to become the place to be for members of the party all over the republics, who would have to descend upon their home base to sort the issue out.

Some of them had more inklings about what had happened than others.

But from the whispers, it seemed the situation could have its benefits for someone that was an up and coming Assemblyman from one of the most commercially important districts in the Sabyan Republic. If, of course, Ilyas could navigate the situation without finding himself as one of the ones taking the fall. And that was a real possibility for all of them. No one was under the impression that everyone in this party was best friends. When there was a scandal, a shake up… There was never a shortage of rivals ready to throw someone under the bus and advance their own position with it. The goal was to be the one doing the ‘throwing under the bus,’ not the one being thrown under it.

Things were often easier said than done, however. Stepping away from the window, Ilyas turned his attention back to the large monitor hanging from the wall, currently turned to the Khaliyyan National News channel that was speaking about the biggest event this month: the election of Solidarity & Progress candidate Masur Soltani in the Commissioner election last week.

“Welcome back to KNN where we’re continuing to cover the impact of the recent election and the nation’s decision to select Masur Soltani as the newest Commissioner… We’re about to have an expert insider from the campaign trail come on the air and tell us an informed take on whether or not Timian Matheo still has a chance to run and win in the future despite his defeat in the 3346 elections-”

Ilyas turned off the monitor, pressing another couple of buttons on a tablet before the screen came back to life but this time, instead of showing the news channel, it was displaying the pending sign for a video call. The dots jumped across the screen for a moment, and two, and continued doing this for a few more until the screen finally changed once again and was displaying a feed from the inside of a vehicle. It seemed the recipient of the call had answered while on the way somewhere. This person was one of the more reliable ones when it came to sources that were good at acquiring information the lowdown way, on the streets - though in this case, it was very much white collar business they were dealing with.

An infobroker was what Richa Char was, and a good one at that. The kind of person that didn’t just deal in information but also knew what to do with it and who to call to handle the problems that the information would inevitably create. Not the type to go shooting and solving the problem herself, but the one that held a book of numbers of people who could do such work for the best price. She herself had a decently high fee for this, of course, but for someone that was making plenty of profit already through politics… Well, it was worth it to spend some of it on professional connections.

This was one of the times where it paid off.

“Have you found anything new?” Ilyas asked, as the monitor displayed his agent driving through the Hafiyan streets at the moment, her car a civilian but still up-armored model that had a rather plain interior but was nonetheless able to do everything it needed to do when it came to the exterior and the internals. Could still get out of trouble and take a bit of a beating. The person behind the wheel, on the other hand, was far from plain. She stood out by the streak of blue in her hair, and the dark clothes she wore that contrasted with the typically more polished looks that could be found around this city of politicians and staffers. People like her in their leather outfits and industrial looking vehicles were the outlier, those that were skilled in handling business of a different kind.

“From the sources I’ve talked to, there’s definitely something happening with the results. I don’t know exactly what, though - I don’t get the feeling that the people I talked to know the deal, either,” Richa said, continuing to drive while she spoke via the earpiece she happened to be wearing. “Talked to someone around one of the main radio stations, also a few people around the party. Your party, actually. They ain’t got a fuckin’ clue what’s at the source of it but they know one thing or another is up…”

“The atmosphere here isn’t normal,” Ilyas pointed out, glancing back in the direction of the window. “I’m in my office, right now. You know that there’s a window overlooking a plaza, between some of the surrounding buildings. This isn’t a day where anything is happening, but that plaza is busy, staffers running around and working on something among themselves… I swear something’s up with them and the rest of us just haven’t gotten the news.”

“The results aren’t right. At least, that’s the feeling I’m getting. Matheo and the Khaliyyan League got screwed - the party infighting within Solidarity should have cost the election for Soltani, but we all see the result that they’re putting up all over the news. But from the feeling I’m getting, something is going to come out and everything’s going to be thrown into question,” Richa continued. “I give it a couple of days or so before this spreads further.”

“And how big of a scandal are we looking at? Something that’s going to make us have to go through the whole thing all over again? Or something that Soltani might be able to survive politically?”

“Thing is, I can’t say yet. Because I don’t know how it all went down. The method will probably have an impact. There’s a difference between bending the rules and smashing through them with a sledgehammer. Don’t know which one Soltani might be guilty of yet… Hell, might not be him. SP is a big party. There’s a lot of names that could’ve tried to throw things a certain way.”

“Can you try and find out?” Ilyas asked, starting to step away from the monitor. If something was going down, it would be best to start gathering information himself and not just rely on his source on the streets for news. “If you can. If not… I’ll probably find out with the rest of us. Like I said, vibe’s different around here right now.”

“I’ll see what I can. No guarantees. This is going to be one of the hottest pieces of info, makes it harder to get people to talk before the news hits the street for real…”

“I’ll leave you to that, then.”

With that, Ilyas cut the call and turned to walk out of the office and into the bowels of the large office complex, a mental list already forming of people that were worth talking to about this growing crisis. Some of them were on the list because they would know something about it, maybe. Others… Because they could help with actually navigating it. For someone that was an up and comer and wasn’t tied to any particular faction in the party yet, there was a good chance to come out gaining something from this, whatever it actually was. But that couldn’t be done alone, and inevitably, others would have the same idea.

It was best to start working on advancing from this now, and getting the jump on anyone that jumped on the bandwagon late rather than vice versa.

Nyma Correia’s hands moved across her keyboard with well practiced ease before she finally tapped the enter button, sending the last of the long list of messages cancelling her appointments back on her homeworld of Liossa. It wasn’t something she wanted to do, these were, after all, powerful movers and shakers that she was asking to reschedule post-election meetings with, but she hadn’t gotten to being the representative for her home of Korolion City without developing an instinct for keeping an ear to the ground.

And right now, that ground was trembling. Whatever offense she might cause would be more than made up for by not providing out of date information to her financial backers on the political situation, which would just make her look incompetent.

Nyma Correia
No, right now, she needed to be here. Something was happening, but she had no idea what. It wasn’t the usual post-victory euphoria, which, honestly, should have been filling the S&P Party’s headquarters, doubly so given the polls had been pointing against them in addition to the coverage of a supposedly divided party presenting the odds as being against them.

It felt like the calm before a storm, Nyma reflected as she relaxed in her chair, a TV sitting on the wall muted but with subtitles. She didn’t want the audio disturbing her, but she needed to keep an eye on the news. There wasn’t any telling if the media would get a sense for what was happening before someone like her. Even as an Assemblywoman for the party, there was no telling how in the loop she’d be kept given all the factionalism.

She’d find that the frantic energy of the party headquarters and the surrounding offices would eventually reach her, however, as she received a knock on the door without someone having scheduled an appointment first… Possibly someone that wasn’t worth bothering with, but well, around here, there was never any telling. Could be someone like that, but on the other hand, there was a good chance it was someone important who was delivering some news or talking about something relevant behind the scenes or something like that.

“Come in.” Nyma called out, sitting up in her chair and shutting down her messages. She wasn’t sure what to expect, she didn’t have anything scheduled for today since she’d been supposed to be travelling back to Liossa, but events had dictated otherwise. She’d just have to see who was on the other side of the door, and if it wasn’t worth her time, well, it wasn’t like she was doing much bar waiting anyways.

The door soon opened to reveal none other than Nadra Konda, Assemblywoman from her own party who represented the tenth district of Amarata, part of the Khalawar system. She was, more notably, considered to be the leader of the neoliberal faction of the party and one of the chief opponents of the one who had recently won in the Commissioner election. It had, of course, drawn her criticism and ire from both pundits and the party whip for splitting support… But that was inevitable in a big tent party like this one.

“Hope you have a minute,” Nadra said as she walked into the office and shut the door behind her, walking forward to sit down across from Nyma. “Important shit is going down right now, obviously.”

“I was supposed to be going back to my district today, so I’ve got as much time as you’re willing to give.” Nyma said, shifting in her chair. “I think everyone knows something’s happening but no one’s quite sure what, so if you’ve got a better idea I’m more than enthusiastic to hear it.”

“I guess I can get right to the point - I want to know why you aren’t on the winning team yet. And by the winning team, I’m not talking about the one that Soltani is leading. I’m sure you’ve heard the murmurs around here, that something is amiss and that we might find ourselves embroiled in a scandal soon enough. I’m sure you’re aware, but have you asked yourself which side you’re going to end up on once we’re in that spot? As one of the more promising up and comers in the Assembly, you don’t want to find yourself on the wrong end of it,” Nadra spoke confidently, pulling out a chair and sitting down, leaning back in a rather relaxed way and gesturing casually. As if she wasn’t speaking of the kind of things that could end a political career if someone had bad luck.

“It wasn’t exactly clear which way the winds were blowing, and I wasn’t about to risk boarding a ship sailing into a typhoon, so I was keeping my options open. Honestly, I was hoping that an election defeat for Soltani would make the choice an awful lot clearer.” Nyma said, tapping her fingers on the arm of her chair. “If there’s a scandal, well. As you’ve said I really don’t want to end up on the wrong side of it, and would I be correct in making the assumption that based on what you know, you’d be the right end of things?”

“I have information on what happened, only thing left is proving it to the public, and that will happen in due time,” Nadra said cryptically, clasping her hands together as a slight smile crossed her face. “And I’m coming to you now about this, before everything gets shaken up. Because once that happens, it might not be so easy to talk as friends when there’s… A dramatic, let’s say, restructuring happening. I’m going to have to put my people first. And I have big things planned. But well, there’s always room for someone that’s talented and coming from a big district and that looks like a future Commissioner candidate. If, of course, you get on board at the right time.”

Nyma paused for a moment, thinking. There wasn’t any reason to lie about something like this, not to her specifically and most certainly not now. It sounded like positioning for a leadership challenge at the very least, not a splitting but a change nonetheless.

“And I suppose now would very much be that ‘right time’, given the rumblings around here?” Nyma said. “There’s something going on, after all, and my instincts say neutrality isn’t going to be an option for much longer.”

“I wouldn’t say you’re neutral right now. I would say that you’re on the side of the establishment by default,” Nadra shrugged slightly, leaning forward. “You know, I’m sure you think that all of this is just realpolitiks and that I’m just being pragmatic as possible and trying to secure the help of the promising assembly members to complete my goals. And on some level, you would be right. But speaking person to person, I really think this is one of your last chances to get on board the side that’s better for you, and all of its members. One that isn’t so dated. I know your background, actually, and I know how hard it is to come up traditionally if you don’t have all of the… Connections of someone more aristocratic or tied to the world of business. I’m sure you’ve had to… Do less than desirable things to get here.”

“Getting dirty is never pleasant.” Nyma agreed, nodding. “But sometimes one has to, well, make sacrifices. It’s not like the old guard’s ever actually done anything to help me or done anything other than, well, not help at best, actively interfere at worst. What would it take, purely hypothetically of course, to take a ‘last call’ of sorts to get on board with your side?”

Nadra chuckled for a moment before opening her mouth, softening her tone… She wanted to come off like she was making a friendly offer, after all, not acting like a hard nosed negotiator. “Look… I’m just saying I have the power to make sure that you win your campaigns and stay in your position without you having to get under a table to secure funding. I know what it’s like for a lot of the assembly members like you - the establishment isn’t going to help you, you’re not starting off with a family fortune to fund yourself with… And I hate to see it. My movement, it’s not outdated like that. But if you want me to help you…”

She let her voice trail off, stretching briefly before she shifted in her seat and looked Nyma in the eye. “I’m going to need you to hold the line and not give up on it no matter what it looks like out there. I’m not going to act like there isn’t opposition and I’m not going to pretend we have everything in the bag, either… We have what should be damning information, but the party leadership, of course, is against us and you’ll come in conflict with the party whip. I need you to look that conflict in the face and hold the fucking line like a loyal soldier.”

“And how long do you think we’ll need to stand our ground?” Nyma asked. “It’s something I can do, of course, but I’d rather know in advance if I’m going to have to give the party whip the middle finger, if you pardon my language ma’am, for two years or so.”

“You can just call me Nadra… And as for a timeline, I can’t be certain. The hope is to get things done quickly and decisively when the scandal comes out about Soltani. To make everyone see the need for the party to move on and cut losses before the scandal brings down all of us and blackens our party name. However, reality is often more complex,” Nadra pointed out. “Are you… Looking for other incentives before making a decision?”

“If you’re offering other incentives, ma’am, I’ll quite happily take them.” Nyma said. “As things stand, however, I believe you’ve made a compelling enough offer in light of the current state of things in the rest of the party. We almost lost this time, and if things don’t change… I fear next time we will lose.”

“One could argue that we lost this time, if we’re going by what actually happened and not what’s being passed off as the truth. But the truth will come to the surface soon enough,” said Nadra, pausing before reaching into her bag and taking something out. “Since I mentioned funding,” she added, placing down a dark object on the table - an electronic card it seemed, the kind that was used in making payments. “Consider this an example of what I can do. I’m well connected, after all. I can raise far more than you can independently, without making you lower yourself to get the funding. This is untraceable - get yourself something nice while you contemplate my offer.”

“Thank you.” Nyma said, picking the card up off the table and holding it between her fingers. “And I’ll contemplate it, although I’m sure my backers will be disappointed once I’m no longer as beholden to them. Once I have my answer, would you rather I let you know in person or will just a message do?”

“You’re always welcome to come to my district…” Nadra said, standing up and brushing her clothes off as she looked down at Nyma. “And it would be a good chance for PR, too. Either way, I’m sure you know the importance of making a decision soon. It’s not long before the scandal I speak of is set to go public.”

“I’ll make sure you know my decision by then, then.” Nyma said, nodding gratefully. “It shouldn’t take longer than a day or two to decide at most, given time is of the essence with this.”

“I’ll be going, then,” Nadra said, offering a wave and turning around to head towards the door, her movements holding a certain air of confidence around them. “I wish you luck with whatever you go with… And I hope we don’t have to end up on opposite sides.”

With that, she moved to leave the office, opening the door and stepping out to leave Nyma alone with her thoughts and the decision in front of her.

A few minutes passed in silence as Nyma thought over the offer as she leaned back in her chair, the only sound the occasional echo of frantic footsteps from the hallway.

Letting out a breath, she stood, pausing to briefly adjust her clothes before shutting her computer down and stepping out of her office. Sometimes she just needed to stretch her legs, since sitting down in a chair for too long would give anyone cramps, and it was a chance to see if the mood of the place had changed or not.

As she moved into the hallway, though, she would run into someone else that seemed to be headed her way - another member of the party, this time not someone that was higher up and leading a faction but rather someone that was closer to her level, one of the other ones that would have to take a side in this whole scandal that was going to come to the surface soon enough. “I was actually coming for you right now,” Ilyas Cerci said, stopping in his tracks after spotting her. “I saw that Nadra Konda just left your office…”

“She did.” Nyma said, nodding as she stopped, placing her hands on her hips. “You been approached by anyone quite yet, since I get the feeling that battle lines are being drawn up as we speak.”

“I’ve been gathering information on my own about the coming situation,” Ilyas said, before gesturing down the hallway. “If we’re going to talk, we should do it somewhere other than a main hallway. The food court, perhaps. But, as I was saying, I only recently came back here… And I’ve heard the word on the street about something being off. I have to warn you, though - you’re only being visited because she needs fall guys for her coup that’s inevitably going to happen.”

“Believe me, I know that.” Nyma said, turning down a corridor. “But I think there’s more off right now than a simple leadership challenge. She wouldn’t try for one now of all times unless she was certain she was going to win, this soon after a Commissioner election, and one that we won despite all the signs pointing against it?”

“Just because she’s in a position to win doesn’t mean everyone on her side is going to come out of this clean. Like I said, she’s looking for others to take the fall when this ends up being a messy affair. Her side does something that steps outside of the rules and it’s your political career that gets thrown out instead of hers - even if it’s something she ordered,” Ilyas pointed out, following after Nyma. “On the other hand, sticking to the party line exactly is a risky position, too… Because like I said, there still might be a change even if everyone on the ‘winning’ side doesn’t come out in a better position than they started in…”

“Matter of which side’s least likely to throw us under the metaphorical, and possibly literal, bus then.” Nyma said as they entered into a stairwell, heading down towards the food court. She’d been going to get a coffee after all, she thought better afterwards, or so she’d always thought. “Or, to put it the other way, which side’s got the best potential to launch us forwards.”

“Fact of the matter is either of them can - they’re both well funded enough. And they both have their supporters. But that’s not going to matter if you end up jettisoned from the party or disgraced over some role in a scandal for something that you might or might not have actually been responsible for,” Ilyas replied. “The safest route, if you ask me? Banding together in the middle, with some of the others that they might try to sway, and not relying on either side.”

“And if we stay in the middle, we might just get crushed between them.” Nyma pointed out. “How many are there of us in the middle, and how many of them would you actually rely on to try and form some third group? Because that just sounds like a way to alienate both sides and get crushed between them.”

“It’s not convenient for them to crush their rising stars without good reason. They have other parties to deal with. The Khaliyyan League should have beaten them in this election. The left is still out there and just because they’ve been shut out of making the decisions these days doesn’t mean they’re dormant or not a threat,” Ilyas said. “The SPP doesn’t want to dump its promising members and especially send them running to rival parties. We have leverage if enough of us stay in the middle for it to be a problem for the establishment - either side of it - to throw us out.”

“The party might not, but the party’s made up of people who will and won’t be around by the time we’re rivals to them.” Nyma pointed out. “It’s short-termist, but if it comes down to long term good of the party versus short term retaining power, I’ll bet on the latter every time. I don’t know if neutrality and playing it safe is even an option anymore, Ilyas. If someone emerges properly victorious and we stayed neutral, we’re going to be in the political wilderness.”

“The Khaliyyan League is already the more popular party right now, how is pushing out their rising stars going to help them in the short term at all?” Ilyas scoffed as they entered the food court. “Winning a power struggle isn’t going to help either side if they can’t win the next elections anyway. But if you want to be Konda’s puppet… Well, don’t complain when she’s just as cutthroat as everyone else in Hafiyah and you get burned.”

“I’d say it doesn’t matter if you can’t win the election if you lose the power struggle so you don’t even get a chance to run.” Nyma pointed out. “Depends how long and how vicious this power struggle becomes which, well, no one knows. It’ll be better for the party if it’s quick and decisive for one side, and we end up on the winning one.”

“I hope you’re right, for your sake,” Ilyas said. “I’m not going to be someone’s fall guy, personally. Worst comes to worst, I can go elsewhere - can’t do that if your career goes down in flames in the middle of all this and no one else wants you at that point. I’m not selling myself short… And you might be doing that to yourself.”

“I might.” Nyma admitted. “But sometimes, you have to take a few risks. If you’re going to do what you’re going to do, I just hope you don’t get crushed underfoot in the struggle and the party survives what’s to come.”

“I know that I won’t. Think about it, at least. Because once this all gets to the public, it’s going to accelerate faster than you can imagine,” Ilyas said, before giving a wave and starting to walk off - it didn’t seem like Nyma was going to go for the idea, but well, there were others to approach, and it wasn’t worth abandoning because one person decided against this path. After all, neither side in this was exactly thinking of their best interests.

Nyma waved back, continuing down into the food court. She still wanted that coffee, after all.
don't tread on me

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Lunas Legion
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Founded: Jan 21, 2013
Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Lunas Legion » Fri Feb 12, 2021 7:03 pm

December 19th, 3346
Hafiyah, Asakar, Sharqa System, Federal Republics of Khaliyya
Collab between Forest State and Lunas Legion

It was a tense day in Hafiyah that Commissioner Soltani was expected to address the nation in one of the first times since the results had confirmed him the winner - at least, that was what the narrative was on paper. Throughout Hafiyah, word was spreading relatively quickly that not everything was as it seemed and that there were the whisperings of a scandal making their way through the glass coated hallways of the many offices here. It was possible that the purpose of this speech was to address some of that. It was also possible that this speech would come with some kind of call to action - a pre-emptive move in advance of the offensive ones that would likely come in the following days from other sides.

At the Hafiyah Credit Union Arena, where the speech was set to take place, there were many names in attendance who would possibly be impacted by the outcome if this was more than a simple address to the country and was in reality the start of something much more influential and perhaps even more dangerous. That was to say, the start of a spiral of events that would be hard to slow down if they continued on the course that they were likely headed now. Civil war? It seemed unlikely but it would be on the back of everyone’s minds thanks to the rumors that the very election may be false.

As Ilyas Cerci moved through the crowd that was gathering on the floor of the massive arena and settled into one of the spots within the area marked off for the SPP party members, it didn’t take long for someone to appear besides him with some words for before Soltani showed up and the speech began. Someone that Ilyas hadn’t yet spoken to about the current business, but… Was a major player in all of this nonetheless and had been expected to speak to him at some point about it.

“Cerci,” greeted Nadra Konda, showing up out of the corner of the Assemblyman’s eye and getting his attention through simply the sound of her voice. Wasn’t hard to recognize. She spent plenty of time on TV broadcasts, after all. “I’ve been meaning to get in contact with you. This seems like as good a time as any.”

“Well, I’ve been busy over the past couple days,” the Assemblyman replied. Not exactly a lie, either. Even if it had made it more convenient to avoid getting in touch with those who had their own agenda in mind. Granted, that was also everyone around here, Ilyas included. They all had an agenda, but some of them were more self centered than others.

“We’re probably going into some crazy times, I’m sure you already know,” stated Konda. “Depending on what the Commissioner-Elect says, that might go into overdrive. It’s smart to think right now about who your friends are, you know.”

“I’m aware. I’m also aware you were able to strike a deal with Assemblywoman Correia - and some other talented people. You’re happy right now with the friends that you have on your side, aren’t you?” Ilyas raised an eyebrow, turning to face Konda.

“That doesn’t mean there’s not room for more talented people on board. Because once things start speeding up… There’s not going to be more time to get on the train,” Konda said. “Expect it to leave the station by then, and I’d hate to see more of the talented up and comers in the Assembly stuck on the side of the establishment.”

It hadn’t taken long to get to the recruiting pitch. Not that Ilyas expected it to take long. They weren’t from the same faction, after all. There wasn’t much other reason for Nadra to be talking with him about this kind of thing, unless she wanted to recruit him also. And Ilyas was well aware there would be interest from both sides in someone in his position, in one of the strongest commercial districts in the republics.

“Ambitious. Putting your side down as the winning one already, that is,” said Ilyas. “I don’t think it’s that clear cut.”

“It’s not, really. But we all know that there’s rumors flying around and that the latest speech may just be to address those. It’s really starting to look like the Commissioner-Elect can see the writing on the wall, and a lot of the more forward thinking members of the party aren’t going to come out in a blind defense of our candidate if wrongdoing is revealed…”

“You’re persuasive. But no,” Ilyas replied smoothly. “I wouldn’t say I have much interest in joining the forward thinking part of the party. I’m not sure you’re going to win as easily as you think you are - and I’d rather stick to my guns. Sabyan identity and all of that, it’s part of it. But you would call that dated, probably.”

“The party name is Solidarity and Progress. Holding onto the past forever isn’t going to help anyone… And definitely not the party establishment right now. I think less people would like a war with the Djahn for reclamation and revenge than you think. Just… Consider it, please,” Konda said, turning her attention to the stage ahead of them which was almost done getting set up, the background workers moving out of the way after finishing with getting all the cables hooked up and the sound system working.

“I agree with progress - but we might not see eye to eye on where that progress should go,” shrugged Ilyas. “And I don’t plan on jumping hard into either side of all this, if we’re being honest. I told this to someone else earlier, but I’m not trying to be anyone’s fall guy. Neither side can afford to crush the valuable members in the middle. I’d rather stay there.”

“Fair enough…” Konda said, folding her arms as she watched the stage. “A better position than putting all your faith into the falling establishment.”

With that, there were murmurs around them from the crowd of other party members as the Commissioner-Elect began making his way to the stage, waving to the assembled crowd in the stands and taking a path from the other side of the arena - of course, most of the people in the stands were from this general area around the capital, and actively worked with the political scene and the parties in some way. The general public would be getting this speech through broadcast, and there were hundreds of cameras in total capturing the event for channels around the nation. It would be broadcast live, and would potentially have an instant effect on the discourse around the country depending on what was said.

Eventually, Soltani reached the stage and stopped, looking up from behind the podium at the crowd that was assembled in front of him on the arena floor as well as in the stands around him. There was a brief silence, where nothing happened except for the sound of the audience talking over themselves and speculating about what might be coming next. And then, the Commissioner-Elect finally spoke.

“My fellow countrymen… I address you today not to celebrate victory in the recent election, but to warn about a great problem at hand. About a pending attack from multiple sides both internal and external, against the spirit of the Federal Republic,” Soltani began, getting to the point immediately and not wasting time beating around the bush with preamble before addressing the purpose of the speech. “This attack by bad actors risks to tear the Republics apart - and I feel it’s necessary to address it ahead of time.”

“In the coming days, there will be an attempt to wrestle away power. But let it be known that this attempt is not the work of well meaning people seeking the truth, but of an organized group looking to dominate the political scene for their own gain and ensure that they can seize power even without the will of the people electing them. These are people that saw their chances eliminated earlier in the election. The people of this nation did not choose them. And yet, they will present themselves as the voice of the people trying to enact a true democratic decision,” Soltani continued, not giving details but giving a description that those in the know would recognize - and that the general public would recognize, whether or not they agreed with him, soon enough.

“The group making this attack simply looks to seize power for themselves and their own unpopular agenda which flies in the face of the vote of the common person - all through convincing each and every one of you that they are righteous and that everyone who opposes them must be removed for leading the country down the wrong path. They’ll talk about protecting the democratic tradition of our nation, about ensuring the voice of the people is heard… But they’ll say one thing out one side of their mouth and do something else entirely. When those people make these claims, look at the record of what they support. Policies that they would never be able to pass without a massive shakeup of the political system, that benefit no one…”

Soltani paused, letting the televised audience take in the words. “No one except the ones that directly stand to benefit from it, I suppose - policies such as xenos integration. Hundreds of years prior, the race known as the Djahn threatened the existence of this nation itself. They led to its foundation due to the need for mutual defense against them, and their raids once penetrated deep into human territory and left both ship and planet burning in their wake. Our home system of Sabya was threatened greatly, with fears that it too could fall to this threat… The founders of this nation correctly swore to never be a friend of the Djahn, but that’s exactly what some in this very Assembly would like to do for their own gain.”

“Whether for their agenda about a more united galaxy and their belief that the current way of doing things is outdated and must be changed, or because of their desire for cheap labor and the ability to drive down the value and net cost of you, the Khaliyyan citizen, those who would like to turn against this policy do not have the best interests of the nation in mind… And they should be opposed on all fronts. Within government, in streets, and in the media. When this clash of politics begins, I urge everyone that can see the writing on the wall behind their claims to participate and not allow them to get away with passing a decision like this against the will of the Khaliyyan people… Even if they do succeed in wrestling away power from the people, do not allow them to rule over you.”

The speech was, of course, more intense than anyone had expected. Especially from a candidate that was relatively mild policy wise, all things considered… But with the current situation and the murmurings of a scandal, it seemed necessary for Soltani to appeal to the nation on a different level to survive these events politically. Even if the lines sounded more like they were coming from his recent opponent in the election, Timian Matheo, who was an avowed nationalist.

“Block them in the streets… Give them no peace when it comes to these policies and do not allow them to distract you with unnecessary news stories and debates about other things. Refuse to do your jobs within the government, and shut down the shipping lanes between systems by going on strike and by blocking the spaceports. Let it be known that if there is a hostile takeover of this country by conspiring internal forces and the external enemies that they support, there will be a war on their hands and that the Khaliyyan people will not simply accept this lying down. Our nation was born in blood, tempered with the blood of the Djahn, and it seems that every so often, it must be renewed with the blood of those that would act against our own people and culture.”

With that, Soltani turned and started off the stage, to the sound of mostly stunned silence from his own party and murmurs from the arena in general, not quite cheers but more anxious noises as everyone tried to figure out just what was happening at the moment and what this conflict was about. And what the need for blood was about, for sure. Much of the Republics would indeed not even know what was happening at the moment, but the speech at least primed them for things that would potentially come later… No, not potentially, almost definitely at this point.

After a call out like that, it was near impossible for there not to be a conflict for real.

It was safe to say that as Masur Soltani made the ride back from the arena to the party headquarters and arrived through the glass doors of the clean looking modern building, his own party wanted to know just what was going on and the purpose of the most recent speech. “I’ve been trying to catch up with you!” exclaimed one of his primary publicists - which was something of an accomplishment as a title, because there were a lot of them - as he moved through the lobby and continued into one of the hallways leading to the more secure rooms on higher floors.

“This new speech that you’ve given has the nation going crazy - the opposition is saying that you’re spreading dangerous escalation and that it comes off like we’ve just elected a dictator that’s trying to purge the competition… Asking for their blood and all that and not even explaining how they’re trying to take over the nation. And a lot of your own party isn’t reacting that badly but they are confused because this doesn’t follow the party line. You know, big tent, and such. This might as well have been straight out of the Khaliyyan League’s playbook and you probably have higher ratings with them right now than you do with your own party… And of course, those in the party that are with the neoliberal faction feel like speeches like this are going to tear the party apart and that-”

“It takes different moves when your back is against the wall,” Soltani replied simply, stepping into an elevator while flanked by his large group of staff and pressing a button to head up several levels towards one of the conference rooms. “Their talk about being afraid of tearing the party apart is for show. It’s their actions in the coming days and their attempt at power that will force my hand into making speeches like this and leaning to the nationalist side.”

“But don’t you think it’s not responsible coming out and saying things like this especially without context and putting the nation on edge like this? There was already enough tension and now it’s spread to the general public and most of them don’t even know the context for what’s happening…”

“They’ll have a better idea of what’s really happening once it does make itself more apparent,” Soltani stated firmly. “I don’t want the other side being the one to write the narrative first, damn it - especially because I already know how they operate and what they do. I don’t want to give some speech like this… But at least it’ll get the common people ready to look at the writing on the wall instead of just taking them for their word when they say that actually they’re the ones representing the common man and that our side is the elitist one.”

The elevator opened, and Soltani continued as the group moved out and headed towards the offices. “They’re going to go on the offensive anyway, all the confusion will go away and the people will know why we went on the offensive first in due time, probably just in a couple days at the pace things are going right now…”

They entered a conference room, and someone immediately turned to greet the incoming group and deliver more news. “I have something to report, was waiting for you to get here actually,” one of the staffers said, setting down some papers on the middle of the conference table. “Something that we’ve been dealing with for a lot of the day that’s stepped up in the past hour or so. The computer servers here and for the party network in general have been suffering from a big DDOS attack that seems to be sourced from one of the Djahn syndicates… It’s disrupted communication and is keeping some of our web pages down among other things.”

“This day gets better and better,” Soltani said, the sarcasm clear. “Have the tech people taken a look at it?”

“They have. But the in house people are having some trouble dealing with it because of the scale of the attack. It very much seems like it’s a coordinated attack using both assets from beyond our own borders and botnets within them to maximize the effect,” the staffer explained quickly. “While you were gone, a team was already called out to come deal with this and see if they can do better than the in house one… But this team will take some time to get here, coming from outside of Hafiyah.”

“If the situation is under control, we can continue monitoring it and wait for the team to show up and fix it. There’s more important things to worry about,” Soltani stated.

“Something else… Someone was on the line looking to get in touch with you earlier. Timian Matheo from the KL, actually. Seems like despite being rivals in the election, there’s some things that party wants to talk about after your latest speech - they’re more positive on it than you might expect.”

Soltani rose an eyebrow at that, before nodding. “I’ll make a call back, then. I have the feeling we do align far more than we stand apart on this issue,” he said, pausing. “And if things are going to get as bad as predicted, we could use all the help we can get with this.”

It was not significantly later that the hovercraft arrived at the pad next to the party building, touching down as those inside recognized the plain white utility design as being the kind of vehicle that was often driven by the ones they were looking for - that was to say, the ones that were going to resolve the electronic attack that was currently keeping the party websites down and otherwise slowing communication and making other things more complicated for those working within the office. As the vehicle touched down, however, those in the back would be making an entirely different kind of preparation as a gun rack lowered from the roof of the vehicle and the pair within it went for weapons that were easily concealable within the bags they were carrying with them, nominally ones that were supposed to be full of equipment for the job.

Not technically a lie, as both of them placed submachine guns inside with the rest of this equipment, and then zipped the bags up once again… They were supposed to be designed to help avoid detection with these things, though they wouldn’t know just how reliable that was until they were on the inside. They weren’t the kind of people that were typically deployed on a quiet and sensitive mission like this one, after all, but trying times called for trying different things. It felt a little out of place, the uniforms that both of them were wearing that indicated they were from a technology company rather than, well, the kind of firm that they actually worked for in reality.

“We’re here,” Fazel Rahai spoke as the doors of the hovercraft opened up, a walkway ahead of them that would take them to the building that they had just landed outside of. “One of us is going to have to do some talking at least… And not fuck this up. But fortunately, they’re expecting people like us to show up.”

He took a step towards the doorway, pulling the strap of his bag over the shoulder of his blue uniform. “But let’s not slip up and lose that edge.”

“Just as long as none of them question too much.” Arkadzia said, pulling the strap of her own bag up and over her shoulder, letting it hang between her elbow and her hip. “I’m not a techie, don’t know if I can technobabble my way out if we have to.”

“You know they’re expecting us to actually do something about what’s going on, right? It’s not going to look right if we show up quickly and then turn around and leave without doing anything about the problem,” Fazel said, walking towards the building and looking straight ahead, not giving an indication they didn’t belong here. “Fine - I was given instructions on how to handle that. But it will take longer, solo.”

“I can improvise if I have to.” Arkadzia shrugged, no nervousness visible as she walked alongside Fazel. “No one but their in house people will know shit about it, if in doubt just say it’s more complicated than expected but that we have it under control.”

“We’re talking scandal of the century - you don't think every part of it is going to be looked into? Everything has to hold up…” said Fazel as they reached the doorway, opening it up and heading into the lobby from the side. “We don’t have that much chance if you don’t realize that much.”

Arkadzia didn’t say anything, instead giving a small nod of acknowledgement as she followed Fazel into the lobby. Couldn’t say anything now, it might be noticed and, well, they couldn’t afford to ruin this before they’d even gotten inside. This wasn’t how she’d have done it if left to her own devices, but, well, needs must sometimes.

They’d stop as they reached the front desk, where their arrival had already been noticed by the receptionist standing behind it. “I assume you’re the ones here to fix the server problem that’s been bothering everyone all day,” she said, prompting a nod from Fazel. “The network rooms are downstairs below the ground, so if you’ll come with me this way…”

She stepped out from behind the desk and led them towards the back of the lobby, where they passed through another doorway and stepped into a hallway and then into an elevator that was nearby. The receptionist pushed the button to head down, and the indicator above them changed as the levels began descending. “So… Is it true that there’s actually an alien cyberattack happening while everything else is going down, too?”

“Cyberattack, sure. We wouldn’t be here to fix it if there wasn’t one, but... Aliens? Not sure.” Arkadzia said, shrugging. “Not saying there isn’t, but it could be aliens, it could be someone who wanted to do it because they could, a mix or basically anyone with the skills. Hard to determine these things for sure.”

“The word was that the attack was coming from the Djahn syndicates,” pointed out the receptionist, as they got closer to the floor they were looking for. “Perhaps because they’re planning something while the nation is wrapped up in all this… Drama.”

The elevator doors opened, and they were now away from the clean glass lobby and in a far more cold looking area, a hallway in front of them that was less lit and was made with a more industrial look to it, function over form having been prioritized for the levels right here. The receptionist started forwards, leading both of the agents behind her towards a doorway at the end of this hallway which would lead into the actual server room, or one of them anyway, where there were rows of server racks set up and operating right now…

“You should be able to check out what you need to check out, down here,” the receptionist finally said. “In the smaller offshoot room over there, you can plug into the network directly and see if that helps fix the problem.”

“Thanks.” Arkadzia said, moving to head into the smaller offshoot room. Not that she knew exactly what she was doing, but she simply needed to act like she did, waving the receptionist away casually as she did so.

“You aren’t going to be much help in finding the files we’re looking for, are you?” Fazel asked as they stepped into the room, lowering his bag and setting it on the desk there before taking out the laptop and zipping it back up again, loading it up and taking a look around the rest of the room - they were alone right now, at least, which helped with their objective. They didn’t need attention from the others while they worked on this.

“I’ll do my best, but I doubt it’s going to be as simple as putting in the search function.” Arkadzia said, setting her bag down and pulling her own laptop out, flipping it open before zipping her bag shut again. “Equally not like they want to keep what we’re looking for somewhere where just anyone can get at it, unless they’re hiding it in plain sight or something.”

“We have something of a profile of the kind of program that would have been used, and the search itself should be automatic thanks to this program…” Fazel said, clicking on one of the few icons that loaded on the desktop. “But if it doesn’t turn up first try, we might have to adjust the search parameters. You should handle that. I do have to work on resolving the actual server problem.”

“Kay.” Arkadzia said, her hands briefly moving across the keyboard as she brought up the program that had been loaded up onto her laptop beforehand, simply letting it run. “Guess we just wait and see what we find and hope we don’t trigger anything in the meantime.”

“The one advantage we have with stopping this attack… Is that we’ve been given a hint of what the attack profiles are like,” Fazel spoke, typing at his own computer on a different program and working on inputting the information, being the more technologically skilled of the two. “It’s just a matter of picking them out and rerouting and dropping the traffic before it can put too much strain on the servers and take them down. The in house team probably wasn’t able to do this because of the complex attack patterns…”

Their time alone would be interrupted, however, as someone else stepped into the room - something that complicated things. Another one of the members of the tech staff, it seemed, who was probably curious about the problem at hand. “Oh, you guys are finally here,” that staff member spoke, approaching from the doorway. “You figuring things out more than we could?”

“Getting there, we hope, but we’ve only just got here so we’re still setting up.” Arkadzia said, leaning over her laptop. “You mind giving us a run-through of exactly why you couldn’t handle this in house? They were a bit vague when they called up, said what the issue was but didn’t say why you guys couldn’t handle it... Figured it might help us a bit to know.”

“Well, it’s coming from a number of different sources and it’s hard to pick it out from actual traffic, every time we think we have one direction covered it starts coming from another one and it’s moving faster than we can identify and pick out, using proxies and such too…” the worker explained, stepping closer - they’d have to keep him talking, rather than looking at the computers. “But you know, it’s not surprising it’s out of our league. Usually the extent of our work is resetting passwords when someone forgets one.”

“Sounds boring as hell, if I’m honest.” Arkadzia said, turning to look over her shoulder. “But that seems like a brute force attack really. Type of thing someone could run from, well, basically anywhere. You got any broad strokes on what you’ve got covered so far in terms of addresses blocked? Ranges, mostly.”

“There’s the obvious ones coming from Djahn space, but there’s also other ones coming from different areas around the republics, and like I said, it changes often so it’s hard to get an idea of what we’re supposed to be looking for here…” said the worker, pausing. “This is all boring, though. You seem more interesting - you’re more built than I’d expect from someone in tech support.”

“I like to work out.” Arkadzia shrugged. “Hoped to go into sport when I was younger, kept the habit even if I got talked into doing tech stuff instead by someone, said there was more money to be made here than trying to struggle onto the pro scene, probably fruitlessly.”

“I think it’s too easy to let people talk you into giving up your dreams or whatever these days - I mean, you still look like you could play, and tech is boring compared to something like that,” the younger worker said - it seemed Arkadzia had someone enamored with her at least, which was a plus in one regard because it meant there wasn’t attention being put on the computers, but on the other hand it did make it harder to work…

“I could probably, but not, like, professionally.” Arkadzia snorted. “Got shown how many people actually get to go professional compared to how many people there are. Better to keep dreams as dreams than try for them only to have them crushed, I like to think that if I’d been good enough they’d have said I was good enough. But anyways, you guys got a cafe here or something? No idea how long we’re gonna be here for so if we’re gonna be here all night figured might as well get a heads up on where that’s at.”

“There is somewhere around here, yeah - it’s a big place, a lot of hallways and such, but I could show you,” the worker said. “Mainly set up for the more famous people around here, the politicians, but the staff use the place too.”

“Might as well.” Arkadzia shrugged. “Only gonna be a few minutes, yeah? You want me to grab you anything?” Arkadzia asked, looking to Fazel.

“I’m fine for now, I’ll keep working since I’m making progress,” Fazel said, continuing to type and input the directions to the program while the other two in the room talked - and they were indeed close to being done here, although there was still the chance the staff from around here would want them to stay in the event that they had to fix a… Sudden change in the situation, like there had been earlier in the day.

“Call me if shit hits the fan down here unexpectedly, like if they completely change tactics or whatever.” Arkadzia said, waving as she turned to leave, pushing her laptop down so the lid was almost shut.

“Alright… Let’s hope nothing goes too unexpectedly,” said Fazel, glancing at the progress with finding the files they were looking for - not there yet, but the attack was already being mitigated, which helped. Wouldn’t look good if they couldn’t figure that much out, considering it was the reason they had been called here, even if the clock was ticking on their true assignment with the goal being to deliver the files as soon as possible…

The files that would, of course, kick off this political scandal for real.
Last edited by William Slim Wed Dec 14 1970 10:35 pm, edited 35 times in total.

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Forest State
Posts: 4419
Founded: Aug 23, 2016
Capitalist Paradise

Postby Forest State » Wed Feb 17, 2021 7:55 am

December 20th, 3346
Rahaj Palace, Kaira, Sabya System, Federal Republics of Khaliyya

The nation of Khaliyya had not, in fact, always been ruled democratically - it had first risen into the stars under the banner of the Kingdom of Sabya, branching out across multiple monarchist houses as different systems outside of the nation’s originator were settled. The early concept of Khaliyya had come from a confederation of these monarchies united against the threat of the Djahn, who themselves had found far more success against humanity back in those days and had breached up to and within the Sabya system and its eden world of Kaira. Those who became the biggest power players in the monarchy were often the ones that could do the most to protect from these raids and the destruction they brought across the young nation.

Over the years, the monarchy had constitutionally transitioned to a democracy to meet the demands of the people… However, it was safe to say that those at the top never would have willingly stepped aside and relinquished their official power if it wasn’t for having alternative means to continue the same lifestyle and even wield similar power from behind the scenes. While Khaliyya was a democracy today, that didn’t mean there wasn’t still a strong presence of that Sabyan aristocracy, and to a lesser extent, a Cantian one for that matter, which played a big role in both politics and the external policies of the nation…

The current situation in the capital was of course concerning to this aristocracy which still remained behind the scenes and had much to gain or lose from the outcome, especially on the Sabyan side of things. After all, it was the Sabyan aristocracy that was pushing for a stronger national identity and revenge against the Djahn - and it seemed like Sabyan politicians had been leading the charge, except now… The opposition might have a chance to throw a wrench into all of that. Traitors, they considered the more internationalist side of the spectrum, but existing outside of the regular political system, there was little the aristocracy could do directly about the ‘problem.’

The very subject was even being discussed and debated as it was still ongoing, within the expansive halls of the palace of House Rahaj, on Kaira - the palace was more like a city in and of itself, with lanes for vehicles and an entire economy of its own, many middle class people living around the area to serve the wealthier ones who either lived there or had business to do there frequently, and an even larger amount of servants and synthetic human slaves operating under both the nobility and that middle class. The size and the glamor of this place was one of the reasons it had been chosen for these talks which involved multiple houses, and all measures that were on the table. Even the ones that it wouldn’t be beneficial to tell the public about ahead of time.

“The fact of the matter is… The hostile posturing by some branches of the federal government, and the rumors from behind the scenes pointing at a scandal, are an attempt at a takeover. A takeover against a government that is favorable to all of our wishes. Despite differences between houses, after all, everyone here can agree on some things. One of them being that more external cooperation and blind integration into an international system is a threat to our way of life.”

The one speaking was Emin Rahaj, one of the members of the house who was more notable than others for his accomplishments in the past years. As the so-called Blade of Kaira, the noble had picked up a reputation for martial skill based on actions taken in the border region with the Kaira Planetary Guard, which itself was more a full sized military compared to some of the smaller settled planets and their sleepy forces of reservists. The guard on Kaira, on the other hand, found itself deployed to actually handle threats - inside and outside of the country.

Joining the federal military would have been more lucrative for someone like Emin, especially with the talent he had shown, but his career seemed limited by the fact that he had been born into a family like this that was tied so heavily to the Sabyan Republic - even if he had joined the federal military and became an officer, the rules of neutrality surrounding the military would have gotten in the way of doing anything about the current crisis.

Still, the aristocracy had ways of getting things done outside of the official system - and if there was anyone that was going to lead them into action, it would be Emin, who perhaps looked like the most archetypal of them. The genetic modification that many members of the nobility and the upper classes in general made use of was visible in his face, which would be recognized by all in the room. The hard jaw and black hair with an exotic pair of blue eyes, and the pale skin that many in the house were known for - the eyes in particular had an intricate design to them, the irises being interlaced with both black and blue rather than purely dark.

This, of course, was done partly because it was possible. It was a demonstration of the advancement the country had made since the earliest days when the current and futuristic technologies available were still new. Over time, the look of the nobility in general had evolved to include things like this that existed partly to remind everyone that they had the capability, that they were far beyond the days when their reach had been limited to Kaira and the surrounding space.

There were slight other features that Emin had, too, but they weren’t as noticeable as the primary ones. For one, it was possible to spot somewhat sharper teeth if one were to look closely while he was speaking, which in a way reflected on the aggressive nature of the princeling.

“Those looking on the surface level may consider this a problem of democracy… And indeed, if these allegations are true, and there’s something wrong with the votes, our candidate Matheo will have suffered from it,” Emin continued, the attention of the room still on him as he stood and addressed them. “However, in the grand scheme of things, this event will be used by those that have… Less noble intentions than just preserving the democratic process in Khaliyya. These intentions include the notion of an open galaxy, as pushd by Solidarity & Progress Party opposition member Nadra Konda, who is said to have the intent of forcing a leadership change within the party using this scandal.”

Emin paused to allow the others to take in the statement. “The fact of the matter is that Konda’s desire for a leadership change existed with or without a scandal. The scandal is simply an excuse to pursue it. Furthermore, the initiatives pushed by Konda and her allies are beyond those of just the simply business minded Cantians or the corporate-leaning National Alliance Party. Konda believes in a very specific vision of the future where our nation not only maintains stronger ties with the outside world but is integrated fully, at the cost of being subject to the decisions of this… International community. That integration would even go as far as to include our historic enemy, the Djahn.”

“This is of course the enemy of our own goal - the expansion and preservation of the Sabyan society. And, whether they believe it or not, such things would harm the other two republics, Oshen and Cantia, and impact them equally. We can only expect these measures to grow more extreme should the Konda faction of the SPP pull off a successful takeover of the country. First, the stances on the Djahn are softened and integration with the international community is increased. Eventually, we move on to things such as synth rights and the forced acceptance of outside… Standards.”

“As such, I believe we should consider Konda and those who align themselves with her to be hostile actors regardless of their stated goals of protecting democracy - even if they help that goal, nominally, in the short term, they intend to tread upon the will of the nation in the long term through this attempt to take over the largest party in the republics without gaining a consensus. The results from elections around the nation show that our people - and even the people of the other republics - do not prefer their style of policy. But, if this scandal is a success on the part of this faction, they will control policy for the largest party in spite of that. And depending on how far things go from the usual procedure, they may seize executive power, too.”

Emin’s father, the well respected Aras Rahaj who happened to be one of the ones at the long table, spoke up as the military dress clad noble stepped to the side after making his point.

“Thank you, Emin,” Aras said, looking across the table at the others as they processed what was being said. There was a brief silence, the main sound coming from the artificial waterfall that ran down one of the walls besides them, the room all in all designed to look rather natural for a conference room with rock walls and natural lighting which imitated the sun.

“As all of you can see, we haven’t called you here for no reason. Despite the competition between the various houses of our scene, there is a solid reason to work together as of now. That reason is preventing the current attack on our establishment and on the voice of the people. I also didn’t gather everyone here without a plan in mind, but rather one to utilize planetary guard assets to step in where the federal military would not, due to its neutral role. There will soon be a precedent for military forces being deployed into this crisis, after all - the most recent piece of news from the capital is that marine forces from Oshen are already being deployed to Asakar on the orders of the Commissioner to secure Hafiyah in the coming chaos.”

“Whether those forces can be trusted is an open question,” said one of the others at the table, the head of House Sakara of Valinur, Mansuk Sakara. “That will likely be answered by whether or not their loyalty is to the nation or the letter of the law and the procedures.”

“I doubt the boots on the ground will have much opinion. At least, much opinion that means something in the grand scheme,” Emin said from his spot standing offset from the table. “The mentality of their commanders will matter more. We also don’t know, of course, how much the republic they’re from will have an impact. The federal military is neutral on paper, but in practice… We’re in unprecedented territory.”

“The deployment of the Kaira Planetary Guard is in the plans,” said Aras, “With luck, our own forces will be able to put down this coup attempt and take over the handling of this scandal ourselves - whether or not it results in the Commissioner-Elect stepping down, the result will be better on our end than allowing it to go forwards. Emin will be in charge of the overall operation of the guard and making sure they achieve their objective, while my daughter Jale will handle the political side of our actions and accompany the Guard on their trip for the sake of… Negotiation and the required diplomacy.”

Another member of this family with the familiar blue eyes and dark hair stood up, nodding and looking proud at getting the chance - Jale was younger than Emin but older than their other siblings, and was dressed in formal attire herself just like her brother, although instead of military dress hers was a green dress with an intricate golden collar and complex edges done in the same color, a look that was simple enough but still reflected her status. It also fit her curves tightly, her looks having been engineered just as the others to make her noticeable in a crowd with wide hips and pale skin that seemed to almost reflect the light off it with the way it appeared to glow a tiny bit.

“This little crisis will be over before the year’s end and we’ll be celebrating New Year’s on a better note,” she said, confident of her own ability as she took a look around the table. “I doubt many of them have the courage to keep going when they end up with the Planetary Guard forces marching on them.”

“An animal with its back against the wall is more dangerous,” Emin stated, pausing. “And we have no idea yet how our federal counterparts will respond when they show up to deal with this from their end. I’ll be commanding this mission carefully. With that being said…”

He paused, allowing everyone at the table to focus their attention on him as he walked back to the head of it.

“Getting this crisis done before the new year is indeed a good idea. Let’s aim for that, shall we?” Emin finished, before gesturing to the others. “Now, if anyone else intends to leverage their own Planetary Guard or private forces to aid in this effort, now is the time to speak up… After all, I believe this is one of the clearest examples that our class is stronger together.”
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Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Lunas Legion » Wed Feb 17, 2021 6:41 pm

December 20th, 3346
Hafiyah, Sharqa System, Capital Region, Federal Republics of Khaliyya
Collab between Forest State and Lunas Legion

For now, the political scandal that was about to rock the capital and the nation in general had been contained to talk from within the political sphere and rumors that were only attributed to anonymous sources - not the most reliable, and commonly dismissed by the populace as fringe theories that were unlikely to be true. It had not yet shaken up the nation, or even reached that nation beyond the political circles in the capital who were privy to all kinds of things that didn’t reach the public in general, but that was about to change soon enough… Because according to Assemblywoman Nadra Konda, who had sent out an alert to those loyal to her own faction of the dominant party, she had been successful in acquiring the hard ‘evidence’ of the wrongdoing and it was set to hit the news on this very day.

Still, it was with a nervous pit in her stomach that Nyma made her way up through the building, her confidence in this move that had made her back it earlier having faded somewhat, but she’d chosen her side, and there was no simple way to ‘un-choose’ it now.

However unpleasant it might be.

They were meeting now, their little faction of conspirators, but whether this plot worked, well, Nyma didn’t know. Her feet carried her forwards anyways, bringing her to the office that they were supposed to be meeting in and she quietly stepped inside.

She’d have to worry about other things later - not all of her sponsors back home were happy about her choosing a different funding source… Well, most of them weren’t happy about that, and some of them were also unhappy about her choosing to lean in this direction when it came to politics, towards a controversial and polarizing politician who placed herself against many of the things that were commonly accepted values within the nation. There was also the growing trend of hostility against their faction from the establishment, the speech from the Commissioner-Elect having highlighted that undercurrent.

For now, though, the main thing at hand was seeing how the news story was panning out now that it was just now breaking. Because the reaction from the public would have a big impact on if their little revolution against the establishment had any chance of working, or if they would all go down as being traitors to the party and forced out of it for their attempt. If they could get the people on their side, get them to believe they had been cheated out of their voice being listened to, they would have far better chances in all of this as people stood up on their own against the government that they were trying to overtake.

Of course, it was easier said than done to motivate people to put themselves on the line to fight for something like that. And all of them knew that if the people weren’t willing to fight for it, nothing would likely happen… This establishment that they were fighting against, it was a rather entrenched thing, as the speech had shown. It wasn’t just going to fold as easily as they had perhaps thought before, when presented with evidence that something had gone wrong in this transition of power.

“Nyma, welcome,” Nadra said as Nyma walked into the conference room, giving a wave to her as the others looked away from the screen on the wall to get a look at her coming in… Others that she didn’t know too well yet, but were largely like her, a more modern and younger group of politicians that had some different ideas from the ones they were trying to replace. Like her, they had found a home banding together rather than trying to go get everything on their own. “I take it you’re doing well today - we all should be, given the news.”

“As well as I can be.” Nyma nodded, moving into the room to get a view of the screen on the wall. “Nervous, but, well, we don’t know exactly how this will go down, so I don’t think I can be faulted for nerves over a bit of uncertainty.”

She would find herself eyed up by some of the others within the room - because, of course, competition didn’t just go away within the same faction. Some would perhaps get the idea that she was Konda’s new lapdog from the rumors that spread about the alliance between the two of them, and those from less desirable districts than hers would likely be jealous that they themselves weren’t able to get such a position next to their leader. That was why it was hard to tell the exact feeling behind all of the looks that she was getting. That was to say, which of them were simply examining and which of them were jealous.

“I would have thought that you weren’t going to show up from the way you arrived late,” remarked one of the ones at the table - Madalina Costescu, one of the other Cantian assemblywomen, who had been with this faction for longer and yet seemingly found herself with less attention from the leader herself than the newcomer. It was of course, not surprising, that she chose this as a chance to initiate a purity test of sorts, one that Nyma was set up to fail.

“Better late than never.” Nyma said, tapping her fingers on her thigh as she waited. “Besides, the news isn’t actually broken yet.”

“You’re wrong about that,” Madalina said, gesturing to the TV screen on one side of the room where a feed of the news was playing - and indeed, KNN was going over the scandal. Talking about it in detail with the new evidence that had been provided…

“Commissioner-Elect Soltani may have seen TENS OF MILLIONS of opponent votes thrown out in a closely contested race using not only the typical tactics of corruption but a highly advanced electronic warfare program likely developed with inside help to target the central computer system used to manage these massive elections across worlds and systems… If this news is true, and it looks like it is based on the evidence that KNN has received from well respected sources, then we should expect an unprecedented political crisis and possibly see Soltani surrender power before officially taking office at the beginning of next year-” one of the anchors was saying, confirming that the news had indeed reached the public already.

Looking back at Nyma, Madalina would have a somewhat smug look of righteousness on her face as she had been vindicated. “And if you really cared, you would have shown up earlier to listen to what our leader had to say about this whole situation… If you think you’re just going to come into our little group and ride the benefits without putting in the work, you can think again. Now, why don’t you apologize by making your way to the cafe and picking up coffee for the rest of us?”

“If you insist, I don’t want to exactly miss out on the rest of this, but I guess I’ll just have to be quick.” Nyma sighed, getting up. It was a petty move and she knew it, but if she said no she’d just look like a rude brat.

The others would have their eyes on her like a hawk, of course, especially given the confrontation between her and Madalina which it seemed like Madalina had won simply through the applying of pressure when Nyma least expected it, perhaps not expecting such a thing to come from what she could consider as her own side. However, Konda herself would speak up as she stood, drawing the attention of the room with her own words.

“I suggest not allowing yourself to get worked over like this in the future if you want to go places, Assemblywoman Correia,” Konda stated simply, resting back in her seat with folded arms. “I believe it won’t end with one incident.”

“I don’t intend to put myself in positions where I’m left with two unfavourable options in the future, Assemblywoman Konda.” Nyma said as she made her way back over to the door. “It’s a simple apology for being late.”

“My protege wouldn’t walk out the room without holding ground and firing back,” Konda stated, not referring to anyone that was actually in the room but rather her expectation - or at least, her expectation of Nyma was to maintain the position that the others in the room seemed to accuse her of having, that was to say, a favorable one at the right hand of the faction leader. It seemed she was applying pressure on Nyma herself as she examined her with her eyes while she went for the door, ignoring the others for now and simply focusing in on Nyma’s reaction and what she was going to do.

Nyma paused for a moment, stopping. “Actually, does anyone here even want coffee? It seems rather presumptive on Assemblywoman Costescu to simply say that you all want coffee, doesn’t it? I’m going to get myself a cup of tea, and if anyone wants something they can feel free to speak for themselves.”

Madalina had to pause as she shifted slightly in her own seat and listened to Nyma’s reply, perhaps surprise that she had replied at all and that she had failed to simply get the jump on her and force her to comply without saying anything else - well, Nadra herself had messed up that possibility, but with that being said, she didn’t consider her little attack dead in the water just because Nyma had shifted the terms.

“I’m sure that most of us here are thirsty right now,” she said in a matter of fact, cut and dry tone, gesturing to the rest of the others in the room. “Right, everyone?”

Some of them, of course, had an incentive to back her up considering their own lower positions compared to Nyma and the fact that they too had spent longer in this faction only to not get as much attention as the one that Konda seemingly considered her protege in a way. And, because of that, a significant amount of the room raised their hands simply because they were choosing to back Madalina up on this rather than not saying anything and causing her to look bad for her previous statement.

“So the rest of you are perfectly fine to let Assemblywoman Costescu speak for you in that you want coffee, then?” Nyma said, raising an eyebrow. “Of course, since I’m already getting myself tea I’d be happy to pick something up, but I only have so many hands to carry cups with so say quickly, otherwise I’m sure Assemblywoman Costescu will be happy to get something for you later given she’s shown such concern for your wellbeing.”

“With all due respect, Assemblywoman Correia, don’t go around making sarcastic remarks about my dedication to this movement - I’ve been here since the beginning and I’ve put in far more work than you have, including showing up early in the morning here to work behind the scenes on our strategy for the coming days. And I still will be here when you aren’t,” Madalina said, furrowing her brow as she stood up from her seat. “You can sit back down. Since you want to mock my dedication, I may as well show you that it’s for real and make the trip myself.”

“If you absolutely insist on going.” Nyma shrugged. “I’d been meaning to grab a cup of tea on the way up but had decided against it, so I was going to go anyways, but since you’re being so gracious…”

“Correia, please shut the hell up,” Madalina snapped, losing her cool from the second sarcastic response - or at least one that she saw as sarcastic, as she found the whole setup that she had tried to use to her advantage turned against her, causing her to ball up her fists at her side as she clenched her teeth to avoid snapping further. She sat back down, her fingers angrily tapping at the table in front of her. “And sit down, since you’re clearly too special to take your licks just like everyone else…”

“If you say so.” Nyma said, moving to sit down. She’d actually been genuine on the tea, at least, she only hadn’t grabbed one since she’d been running late.
Last edited by William Slim Wed Dec 14 1970 10:35 pm, edited 35 times in total.

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Capitalist Paradise

Postby Forest State » Sat Feb 20, 2021 1:54 am

December 25th, 3346
Hafiyah, Sharqa System, Capital Region, Federal Republics of Khaliyya

The situation in the capital had grown more dire in the near week since the political scandal became public news - the speech from Masur Soltani had primed the populace to be ready for trouble, and once the scandal itself broke and became news, the battle lines were drawn and most already found themselves on a predefined side based on who they preferred. The main conflict, of course, was between the establishment and the rebels who looked to upset things and use this to push for their own new order.

One would imagine that in a scandal based on an election, like this one, it would be the side that had been cheated in the results that would act as the opposition. But thanks to the way things fell this time, that just wasn’t the case in this crisis. The Khaliyyan League, who had finished as the runners up and allegedly should have won, had largely made a strategic deal to side with Soltani and his part of the Solidarity & Progress Party - if only to contain their opposition, which was far more hostile to the Khaliyyan League’s ideals, from taking over the largest party in the nation.

The one standing on the other side from this unorthodox alliance was none other than Nadra Konda, who was leading the push for Commissioner-Elect Soltani to resign and for the election to be redone from the beginning. This shakeup, she believed, would be the most beneficial to her own faction and was what they were all hoping on… But they would have to make it happen first, and the party establishment showed no signs of just stepping down when this interference had been revealed. After all, that would mean both a shift in the political scene and possibly the end of their careers individually too.

In the background of her condo, where she often stayed when she was on Hafiyah, the TV was blaring a news story about the latest turns in the scandal…

“Commissioner-Elect Masur Soltani has once again come out and denied the accusations leveled by members of his own party as well as opposition parties that the result of the Commissioner election was determined by hacking and the miscounting of votes on an industrial scale. He was joined this time by his opponent in the race, populist candidate Timian Matheo, who backed Soltani’s claims up and says that his loss in the election was indeed not due to an ‘impossible’ hack… Assemblywoman Nadra Konda, on the other hand, has pointed to a computer program allegedly obtained from SPP party offices and also to the testimony of over a dozen employees who worked with the electoral systems and believe that they spotted discrepancies…”

Picking up the remote from the glass coffee table, she turned the volume down as a tone sounded near the door and alerted her that someone was here. She didn’t have to do anything to open up the door - it interfaced with her implants, and she was able to issue the command to unlock and open the electronic door without looking up, as she took a seat next to that table and crossed her legs.

The one stepping inside her apartment was another member of the Assembly, Ulises Alonso. Like some of the others, one of the main reasons Alonso was in this position in the first place was because Nadra had helped him in his efforts to secure election in his own district. He was one of the ones that owed a great deal to her help, and therefore, was perhaps the easiest one in the faction to persuade into helping with something risky. Besides, the man was the type that would instinctively bend backwards to help a woman that was sending the right signals. It wasn’t hard for someone as calculating as Konda to get the better of him.

“Welcome,” she said as he entered, shutting the door behind him and taking a look around the luxurious condo. “Feel free to come over and have a seat.”

Nodding, Ulises would do just that and made his way over to the center of the room, sitting down on the chair that was across from Nadra’s. “The place is nice,” he stated, making small talk. “Everything around here is, really. It’s a shame it all has to be so tense.”

“No victory comes without challenges,” Nadra said with a slight smile on her face. “And this is far from the best property that I have. It’s just a little place to stay when dealing with capital bullshit, y’know…”

“I’d like to get into, well, the whole real estate thing eventually,” Ulises spoke. “But I’d probably do better to make sure my political career is going well first. Don’t want to rack up debts and end up out of office, even if the salary is big.”

“Have some confidence in yourself, Ulises,” Nadra said with a chuckle. “You’re going to need it for what I called you here for, anyway.”

“And what would that be?”

“I’m sure you’re aware of the scandal resulting in protests and such around the capital district. Probably passed through it heading from your office to come here, even,” Nadra started, folding her arms. “The city is going to have a lot of chaos in the coming days, I think. Protests, counter protests, all that… But you know, I can see the writing on the wall with what’s going to happen. The marines are being dispatched to deal with the unrest, the Kaira Planetary Guard is also mobilizing and on its way here. The establishment, they want to crush it, you see. Crush this reaction of the people to their own corruption. I know that what I’m saying is risky - but I want to set up some… Firmer resistance.”

“Firmer resistance in what way?” Ulises asked, raising an eyebrow. “We’re talking about the federal military and one of the best armed planetary guards coming here, what are a bunch of protesters going to do?”

“If we’re going to protect ourselves from simply ending up purged by the would-be dictator that’s running this country, we’re going to have to encourage resistance among the population… I’d like to arm a segment of these protesters starting with the Organization for a Democratic Khaliyya - the student movement that I had a hand in forming that’s mobilizing right now and getting as many people here in Hafiyah as they can to put pressure on the Soltani government,” Nadra continued, speaking confidently despite the dangerous subject matter. “If they face an armed conflict, even if a sporadic, guerilla one… It will be harder for them to just crack down on all opposition unilaterally.”

“This is the kind of thing that gets someone targeted in a crackdown…” pointed out Ulises. “What if we end up linked in this? Then we’re going to end up with them coming directly for us instead of just the people on the street.”

“They’re already coming for us,” countered Nadra. “And you’re blind if you can’t see it. I have plans on moving out as soon as the marines show up here, because I don’t intend to stick around and let them come up with some false reason to pursue my arrest. You would be smart to do the same thing. However, just fleeing the scene isn’t going to be enough in the long run. Unless there’s pushback, they won’t fold… They’ll just follow us.”

“And you’re asking me to get involved with this.”

Nadra nodded smoothly, shifting her voice to try to take advantage of Ulises’ temperament. “I really need your help with this, please…” she asked nicely, cocking her head to the side. “I asked you specifically because you have a track record of competence that some of the others don’t. And, I also know that I can trust you not to just turn on me as soon as the pressure is turned up. You’ll come through for me, right?”

There was a pause, and Ulises scratched his head in hesitation, before coming to a conclusion that was close to what Nadra expected. “Yeah, I’ll… Come up with something. I’m not an arms trader or anything but I’ll figure out who to call to make this happen. You’ll have to give me a little.”

“That’s fine, as long as you can come through before things really heat up,” Nadra said. “The ODK is counting on you, after all - with no way of defending themselves from an illegitimate government, these student protesters are at the mercy of people who would have no qualms of crushing them underfoot.”

“Then I suppose we can’t let that happen,” said Ulises, slightly nervous but believing that this was really something that needed to be done, and that the risks would be worth it. “They won’t be crushed on our watch.”

“I’ll be very thankful if you can pull this off in the next few days,” she added, putting a little flair in her words to get her point across and motivate Ulises to action. “Now, why don’t you get working on that right now since we all know how time sensitive this is…”

“Um, yeah, right,” Ulises replied in response, standing up and nodding before he started for the door. “And thanks for putting your trust in me enough to give me something like this to handle.”

When he left, Nadra let out a deep breath and let her shoulders down. That had went well, but she had still been slightly tense during the meeting - she was dealing with risky business here, after all. She also found herself in something of a bad mood. She’d had to use herself to entice a dirty man into accepting a deal, after all - and a weak specimen of a man at that, one that didn’t have the backbone to stand up for himself when some lady he fancied was giving a dangerous order.

Well, she couldn’t complain too much about it. She had relied on the dynamic to make the plan work, after all, and it seemed to be a success. She had someone working on arming her student group without getting her hands dirty with this herself and leaving a trail.

Still, that didn’t mean she had to like the method.

Resting back in her seat, she picked her phone up and looked through the list of apps. There were fortunately enough ways to relax and blow off steam around here, in a city with plenty of stressed out politicians as well as a middle class that was always hustling to make it big. And there were enough people around here that were more to her liking, a tap away as she opened an app that immediately presented her with a selection of beautiful, likely genetically enhanced, models… At least, they looked like models. Probably, they were just ordinary members of the civilian class who happened to have enhanced, near superhuman looks and were looking to capitalize off it and find their own way in this city.

Either way, she was rich enough to make a few taps and call a couple of them to her condo right now that she was done with handling business, and she had enough time before she would have to move on with the next stage of her plan - getting out of the immediate area in favor of somewhere they had a lower chance of getting summarily arrested.

These kinds of fights were the kind that one needed allies to win - and later that day as Nadra Konda was on her way to the spaceport, where she would soon be departing the planet for safer ground, she was acutely aware of that fact. Allies were limited around here for her faction which was very much standing opposite of the orthodoxy within this country, but that wasn’t to say that there weren’t allies lying outside of their own borders… Potential allies at least who could provide legitimacy and other support to someone like her, a rebel. She had dreams of an open galaxy, after all. That was more attractive to outsiders than it was to her own country, generally.

The Mercantile Republic of Predena was one such nation that potentially aligned with her goals. It was going through financial crisis and has lost innumerable amounts of money in recent months due to trade competition with the Compact, which also made it a potential ally that might be desperate enough to go in big on this conflict for the sake of generating a useful partnership. After all, Khaliyya itself was no small market - but right now, its economic rules limited the influence of the outside and it was far from the ideal trading partner for a nation like Predena which relied on the free market.

However, it also appeared that the republic was in a precarious position after the Nora Station Incident, which potentially put Konda’s plans in danger even if she did intend to be the woman that made the link between Khaliyya and Predena. She intended to be the woman that brought in the change to open up the nation more to the outside world, and that would bring in external allies such as Predena who could benefit from it - or at least, if the aftereffects of this incident weren’t bad enough to send Predena recoiling from international affairs entirely to focus on their own situation.

But in her situation, she couldn't afford to not try things like this. Even knowing about the incident after hearing about it from the international section of the news, and the subsequent Compact posturing for war. Still… A battle hadn’t happened yet and she wasn’t sure how intense the response was going to be. There was still a chance the situation wouldn’t be bad enough to take this nation which could help her out of the fight entirely.

The self driving taxi arrived at the spaceport, and she climbed out while pulling her phone from her bag and calling another one of her trusted associates, Madalina Costescu - not that she believed Madalina was the most competent one in her section of the party, but she had loyalty and she could be relied on to get to things as soon as Nadra assigned them, perhaps trying to prove her worth.

And of course, Madalina picked up quickly when she made the call. “Is there something you need?” Madalina asked immediately. “I thought you were heading to the spaceport.”

“I am, I’m headed in right now,” Nadra said as she walked into the imposing structure. “But there’s something that I just remembered, actually. Something that I need help with. Remember how we went over Predena during an earlier strategy meeting? I think that, despite this incident, this is the right time to reach out and make contact to formalize an offer - opening the markets in the event that we win this little scuffle, in exchange for the recognition of our side and lobbying on our behalf with the international community.”

“I um, see,” said Madalina. “That doesn’t sound like they’ll be able to do much given, well, the recent incident. And the looming war.”

“I don’t know if they will or if they won’t, but we can’t just not say anything,” Nadra said, her voice confident even when she was speaking of uncertain things. “This is trying something. Whether or not it works out. Go for it, eh? Find who you have to contact in the government of Predena and tell them that you’re making the offer on behalf of the real and legitimate faction in Khaliyya. That we’re not quite like the other, regressive one that controls the government right now - or like the Compact that’s giving them so much trouble.”

“Alright, I’ll get on that,” Madalina said, letting her voice trail off. “Do you need anything else?”

“No, that will be it. I’m on my way to the Valoris system right now, so I’ll be off,” Nadra said, pausing. “I’m hoping that the Cantians will be more receptive to my message than my fellow Sabyans, but I doubt we’ll be able to run away from trouble forever. You’ll join me there soon enough, of course, and the rest of the party. But allow me to take the first step and establish myself there first.”

“Good luck with that, then…” Madalina said from the other end of the line before Nadra ended the call, walking into the throngs of people navigating the spaceport and preparing to leave the capital as a civilian, avoiding the possible trouble that would come from relying on government transportation that was controlled by, well, a hostile government to herself and her own faction.

If something happened that affected the rest of her clique badly, she of course would have already escaped it herself owing to her impending exit right now… She couldn’t feel bad about it.

Someone had to stay around as their leader.
Last edited by Forest State on Sat Feb 20, 2021 1:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Forest State
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Founded: Aug 23, 2016
Capitalist Paradise

Postby Forest State » Thu Mar 04, 2021 8:26 am

December 29th, 3346
FRN Golden Wind
Sharqa System, Capital Region, Federal Republics of Khaliyya

A Fataha class battleship was an impressive thing… One of the most powerful ships produced by the Sabyan Republic, the Fataha class was one of the ones that would be on the frontline should Khaliyya end up in a conflict with the Djahn soon enough, as many predicted. Right now, however, it was not the xeno menace that had resulted in the Fataha class battleship FRN Golden Wind departing and heading on the move. That was because of the internal strife in the capital, which was only beginning to intensify in recent days as both protest and counter-protest around the subject of the central government came up.

It was a battle of the old versus the new, of a side that was trying to take power and one that was trying to preserve it. And, it seemed like this battle was going to have big consequences around the Federal Republics as a whole as unrest started in Asakar and was even beginning to spread to other worlds where protests popped up naturally on their own, followed by responses both from the authorities and from others who believed that the establishment was in the right and that these protests were nothing more than an attempt to wrestle power away in a coup.

Essentially, things had already hit the phase of action taking place in the streets. What would happen from here would be impacted largely by the political system and by the military and their views on the situation. Deescalation, however, was quickly becoming more of a distant memory.

Another peculiar thing about this battleship, aside from its deployment because of unrest rather than an actual war, was the fact that it was in fact part of the Kaira Planetary Guard rather than the federal military… Which meant it was directly under the command of the Sabyan aristocracy that was racing the federal structure to send the first response force. One would imagine the guard to traditionally be under the federal military, but with the guard being directly in the hands of the planet itself and therefore the aristocracy, it had far more freedom to operate.

And that was why, as the Kairan fleet arrived in the Sharqa system, the chances of some kind of face off between either side seemed more likely by the day. The federals had more procedures and the like to go through when it came to these kinds of things. The aristocrats, on the other hand, wanted this movement that they considered a rebellion to be gone… As soon as possible. Purged at the expense of pain right now to allow the nation to move forward along their more orthodox path in the future.

Aras Rahaj, the princeling who found himself at the command of this force and therefore this vessel, was silent in a moment of reflection on the bridge, as the sensor displays ahead of him displayed a sharp and clear picture of Asakar as they continued to approach it at a slow but steady pace, and the sensor displays on the side walls of the room allowed for a view of the other vessels that were arriving with this flotilla. It wasn’t the largest force they could have sent but it was effective enough for the purposes. Dangerously effective, even, considering how much firepower even this flotilla could dish out towards targets on the ground. It wasn’t like their opposition in this case had access to ships of their own to respond to the threat with.

It was important to take a moment to stop and breathe at times like this, when the decisions of the day would result in great consequences both political or otherwise. This one flotilla, they were probably going to have an impact on how the conflict itself went - and that was a lot of pressure for one person in command, even if that one person was from one of the most powerful aristocratic houses in the Sabyan Republic and had been training to take command in an important situation like this one pretty much… Forever.

All of that training would come to use today.

Aras was interrupted from his reflection, however, when the door slid open at the back of the bridge and someone else of a prestigious rank entered, the soldiers who were standing around the entrance turning and saluting as another member of this noble house strode through and made her way towards the center where Aras was overlooking everything. In this case, it was his own sister, Jale, the one that was handling the political side of this response from House Rahaj and the aristocracy in general.

“An important update,” she said as she took up a place next to Aras, looking ahead to the high quality display of Asakar that he was watching. “I have… Credible word from the ground that this Assemblywoman who looks to lead a coup, this Assemblywoman Nadra Konda… That she’s already left Asakar and that she’ll be setting up in Cantia. Whatever move we make here, it isn’t going to have a chance of getting the one person that kicked this off.”

“This is a larger dispute than one person,” Aras replied, not looking away from the screen ahead as Jale took up a spot next to him. “I doubt our plans would be justified in changing at all because of this.”

“She is one person, but she is at the top of a pyramid of conspirators and rebels. Their sentiments have been brought to the surface by her and their actions have been coordinated by her. Remove her, and you remove a valuable asset for the other side,” Jale said, before shrugging slightly. “I would have preferred to arrest her here, but I came to talk to you about the possibility of… Less direct action. Or rather, saving the direct action for a later time.”

“You sound like you already have an idea in mind.”

“Getting someone close to the upper echelons in Cantia and to Konda,” Jale finished. “Someone that will flip to our side either out of loyalty or coercion. And then, when Konda becomes comfortable in her new place... We take a more direct action using that person and deal with the problem.”

Aras stopped to consider this with folded arms. “Getting rid of Konda would be convenient, but where is this person going to come from? The Cantian Republic isn’t going to be the most friendly place soon. No, not soon, it already isn’t. And within their higher leadership…”

“You don’t need someone that’s a big time leader,” Jale said, confident in herself and her idea. “You just need someone that can get to them. And that’s a lot of people. When we have a name, our options for striking out will become more clear.”

She paused for a moment, both of them silent and the humming of the computers and equipment in the background becoming more apparent. “To take a longer view of the situation, the Cantian Republic will become a problem in its entirety if it continues on its current course and if the Republic aligns itself with this rebel faction of the SPP, which makes this plan of getting someone involved with the higher levels with access to the top leaders within Cantia is even more crucial in the grand scheme of things.”

Jale gave a little chuckle, the kind that was… Sly. “Play our cards right and it might not take as much spilling of blood as you’re thinking to patch this country back together. Deal with the people at the top and the ones at the bottom are more likely to fall in line.”

“You have the authorization to go ahead with this plan of yours provided you think you can make it a success,” Aras said, acknowledging this. “I trust your skill in finding the right people on the inside to deal with the subversion from the Cantian Republic. Though, I won’t be able to hold off myself for a peaceful solution - we don’t have that much time to work with. I’m not sure whether you know yet of the student uprising in Hafiyah and the Organization for a Democratic Khaliyya beginning to occupy sites within the capital.”

“The Organization for a Democratic Khaliyya is another one which has ties to this rebel faction within the government. All the more reason to complete my mission with the utmost speed,” Jale stated, before she turned and started walking off back towards the back of the bridge and the door she had come from in the first place. “Continue your own mission, brother - you handle things in the capital and I’ll handle the situation on our frontier.”

She paused as she stopped at the doorway, the pair of soldiers once again saluting as she was about to go by. “And together… We’ll bring back the days when this family was on top!”
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Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Lunas Legion » Sun Mar 28, 2021 3:49 pm

December 30th, 3346
Hafiyah, Asakar, Sharqa System, Capital Region, Federal Republics of Khaliyya
Collab between Forest State and Lunas Legion

The Organization For A Democratic Khaliyya - the group that claimed it was standing in the way of a power grab by the soon to be leader of the country, and which said it was standing in the way of fascism. That was the narrative that the group portrayed to the public, and one could say that was the narrative that was even true within the organization. But there were, of course, multiple sides to every story. In this case, the other side of the story said that the ODK were not after a democratic society but rather were playing into the hands of a rebel sentiment that wanted to take over the system entirely and use the situation around the elections as a pretense to do so. Or, at the very least, unseat the rightfully elected result because it wasn’t the one that they had been hoping for.

Whichever narrative of this story was true, the fact didn’t change that the ODK had changed the game… Perhaps to the benefit of the dissident movement that had backed them and supplied them under the table with the weapons they were using now in the capital, perhaps not. It still remained to be seen just how that gambit would turn out, but what was clear already was that it was too late to turn around and avoid a fight now for either side. They might have just started out as a protest organization of university students, but over the course of the chaos that had happened over the past weeks, they’d picked up enough experience with the whole thing to actually threaten to throw a wrench into the workings of the capital with their occupations of buildings and their agitation of the local security forces.

Now, it was the Kaira Planetary Guard that had the most direct orders for a confrontation - after all, they weren’t bound by the same laws as the federal military. Didn’t have to seek the same approvals. They were free to crush insurrections as they appeared… And the nobility in Sabya considered the entire resistance of one faction of the Solidarity and Progress Party to be an insurrection.

Especially when things were gearing up into a larger conflict because of that sentiment - the irreconcilable differences between the Sabyan Republic and the Cantian Republic were becoming even more clear, as seen by the protest by a heavily Cantian backed faction against a Sabyan Commissioner-Elect and by the fact that this rebel faction was now largely fleeing to Cantia to avoid the prosecutions that might happen in the capital.

If the Cantian Republic chose to protect them from the possible consequences of this ‘rebellion,’ there was a good chance it would be the tipping point into a full scale civil conflict as messy as that would be.

For now, however, the goals were more simple. Stabilizing the situation on the ground. Retaking areas that were occupied by the ODK. Securing important buildings and ensuring they weren’t interfered with by those rebel forces. All things that the federal military was holding back on at the current moment but that the Kaira Planetary Guard was about to begin with - the E Company of the 8th Assault Brigade was just one such unit that was about to head down.

“Don’t think this one is just going to be easy,” said the leader of the company, Kaja Ashraqat Sharrif, while she was putting her helmet on and standing there with the others in the back of the dropship as it was rattling and descending down from the upper atmosphere towards their landing zone… The vehicle was unmanned, the computer able to do a better job sticking a tough landing than a person would be. In the back, however, all of them were prepared to rush out into the bloodbath that was to come as soon as they touched down, which would likely be soon. “Group might have started out as just students but they were still able to do a number on the local security forces with smuggled weapons and tactical positioning… They definitely have help. Probably from one specific side in all this.”

“Doesn’t mean they’re used to it like we are, but we never get the easy jobs.” Lieutenant Avika Palani said, turning her helmet in her hands as she waited, foot tapping impatiently against the floor of the dropship. “‘Least they won’t have anything heavier than small arms.”

“Just small arms? Might be a mortar or two,” Kaja said, her helmet going over her pale face - she was, like many of the high class from Kaira, genetically modified to have a specific look to herself… Though, the pale skin and the red eyes which were common for her status as minor nobility weren’t quite the most notable feature about herself, that was the sharklike teeth inside of her mouth that also happened to add another threat for anyone that ended up messing with her when she wasn’t wearing the helmet which enclosed her face.

“And they’re in buildings, too,” she added, standing there now in the full dark blue suit of powered armor, the grey undersuit peeking through the few gaps in the coverage. “Might get fire rained down on us as soon as we step out the dropship - fuck, might even have to call on the guns in orbit to do some more work if they missed something big.”

“Shame they can’t just turn the place to slag.” Avika sighed, putting her helmet on carefully. “But even then we’d have to make sure no one was hiding in the sewers or some unlikely bolthole.”

“Optics of having to do something like that to your capital ain’t good,” Kaja said with a slight shrug as she turned herself to the door, her eyes traveling to look at the red light in the corner that indicated it wasn’t time just yet. “Not that this place is the real capital, anyway. Fuck it, it’s just a fuckin’ neutral ground site… No real history. But they say they don’t want the visuals of it on fire, y’know.”

As she spoke, even speaking about leveling the city they were heading into, her face was steeled and calm - she didn’t get nerves, really, not for something like this… A landing, that was. Took more to get her to fold a bit under pressure. Something like this? This was what she’d been training for. And she hadn’t done all this training just to disappoint, either herself or the people around her and back home.

Kaja would look down at her wrist, and the device that was mounted on it, a watch of sorts that also had other features such as managing communications. “If we’re moving on schedule, and everything says we are, we’ll be in the middle of what’s left of the university plaza inside the next two minutes.”

Avika nodded, giving one last look over her own armour, taking her battle rifle in both hands, shutting her eyes and breathing deeply, focusing to calm the faint hint of nerves in her stomach. It wasn’t unexpected, but, well, it wasn’t every day you got an assignment like this relatively from nowhere.

The time would seem to go by quickly enough - two minutes wasn’t a lot of time when something as important as this was being waited on. And, eventually, the first sign that they were on the ground was the thud as the bottom of the dropship absorbed the shock through the landing gear and the feeling transferred up and into those inside, or at least, what was left of it did… Enough to shake them up a little, not enough to send them off their feet, especially given the heavy armor they were wearing.

Seconds later, the light in the corner turned green and there was a mechanical whirring sound as the door in front of them began to descend to turn into a ramp - there were no buildings on the left or the right side of them, or even behind them, as they had all been leveled earlier in the round of orbital strikes that had been brutal and without mercy for the locations that were being occupied by rebel forces…

But there was still one apartment tower off in the distance, beyond this one plaza, that was overlooking the area and had a firing position on them - and there was a good chance there were enemies there, given every building in the plaza in a similar position had already been leveled. It was the first area they would have to investigate… And take down from above in the event that it was indeed occupied by more than a small amount of rebels.

“Move it, E Company!” Kaja shouted, raising her voice for once to get their attention as they quickly rushed out of the dropship. “Landing just now was a big sign to anyone looking to get the jump on us, stay towards the trees by the walkaway and proceed north towards that building1”

Avika said nothing in response, instead running towards the walkway with the rest of her company, occasionally raising her head slightly to look at the building to their north, relatively intact given it was still upright, although how intact the interior was remained to be seen.

It would hardly be long that they had continued towards the building before there would be shots fired from the rooftop area, or at least, that was where it seemed like the fire was coming from… They would be able to see a team of a few people if they looked closely at it, which seemed evident of the crew of a mortar, just as Kaja had warned might be present during this battle. “Mortar!” one of the soldiers would shout out, watching the round fly out of the tube and in their direction… But not close enough to actually hit them, considering the long distance of the shot and the inexperience of the ones operating the device. Still, the round would send up shreds of pavement and grass once it actually had made impact with the ground.

“Get fire back on that thing,” Kaja would bark at the soldiers behind her, and the closest one that had an anti-tank weapon would nod and attempt to use that weapon for a different use. The soldier hoisted the ATGM tube onto his shoulder and used the indicators within his helmet visor to aim, switching modes to lock onto the heat signature of the humans rather than that of a vehicle.

“Backblast clear…” the soldier announced, before smoke shortly filled the area with the round fired off in pursuit of the group of mortar wielding targets, the round curving and turning in the air during the long flight before it came back onto the straight line that the soldier had fired it on, slamming into the edge of the building and kicking up a cloud of smoke that obscured whether it had hit the mark or not. “Hit… I think,” the soldier confirmed.

“‘Course it’s a hit, no fuckin’ way they got out of that one from that range…” replied Kaja, looking at the smoke as it cleared. “But they’re probably not the only ones. Anvika, you think we should proceed on this one or wait here and have ‘em take the whole building down?”

“Hm.” Anvika paused, stopping to raise her rifle to peer down the scope at the clearing cloud of smoke. Hanging back would be playing it safe, taking the whole building down from range without having to get in close and clearing it, but this was the capital of Khaliyya, so they probably wanted as few levelled buildings as possible. “As much as I’d like to just turn it to rubble, we should probably clear it properly. Don’t want too many levelled buildings in the capital.”

“Have to clear the damned area either way, so,” Kaja said, nodding and continuing to lead the group in the direction of the apartment building. “Best advice is to fuckin’ spray anyone that runs up towards us, doesn’t matter if they look like students or not… ODK doesn’t have a uniform, you know.”

“Anyone else probably left.” Anvika said, slowly jogging after Kaha in the direction of the apartment building, the dust slowly settling to the ground as she watched for movement among the ruins.
It was, of course, a possibility they might end up with - more up close and personal attacks, once they moved into the apartment building they were targeting. A hard target to clear. But one they would need to get out the way before they could move out of the landing zone area due to its overlooking view of the site.

Anvika approached carefully, rifle raised and watching the building in case anyone left inside felt like taking potshots as their company approached, even if it hadn’t been that long since they’d fired a missile into it so anyone left alive was likely shaken up at best.

The apartment, however, was a big enough place that it was still quite possible there were bands of enemies they hadn’t found yet. There was a good reason why they were clearing it in such numbers and not just sending a smaller detachment to handle that part of things while the rest of the unit hung around or went on to a different task in the area… At the very least, though, there weren’t more shots coming at them from the roof or the windows as they made their approach.

“Going to have to break down into smaller groups to clear a place like this, you’ll be in charge of roughly half the formation, make sure it’s split up further than that further down the chain,” Kaja said calmly, before moving ahead - and glancing off into the distance to where the sight of more dropships descending from the upper atmosphere could be seen. They weren’t alone, of course, and soon enough the scale of the conflict would pick right up as more and more of the Planetary Guard made their landings.

“Roger.” Anvika nodded, turning around to split up her half of the formation into clearing teams. They didn’t know the layout, and given the damage it could’ve taken from simple proximity to the bombardment, they’d need to split up more than usual to make sure they weren’t going to be ambushed.
Last edited by William Slim Wed Dec 14 1970 10:35 pm, edited 35 times in total.

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Capitalist Paradise

Postby Forest State » Wed Apr 21, 2021 2:00 pm

January 6th, 3347
Luminis, Valora, Valoris System, Cantian Republic, Federal Republics of Khaliyya

The Cantian Republic was at the forefront of the internal conflict in Khaliyya - in fact, it could be considered the factor that was kicking off the entire thing in the first place. Sure, there was the matter of the election. The nationalist party that claimed to win but that there was evidence against, stating that something dubious had happened. That the results might not be what they seemed. However, all the election did was boost conflicts that were running deeper through society and were much older.

The kind of conflict that involved ideals. The value on purity of culture that was held by the Sabyan Republic, and, running deeper than that, the Sabyan aristocracy that had formerly ruled all of Khaliyya as monarchs. Those days were past, but the aristocracy wasn’t done entirely, nor were their ideas dead. And the attitude of the Cantians, who had moved further out and settled their own lands to avoid such policies, placing a value on progressing in wealth and living standard above all else.

It was a conflict that was meant to happen.

The side that required one to have ancestry there to become a citizen in their own republic, compared to the one that was willing to create an open and inviting society. The side that had formerly ruled as kings compared to the one that had moved to the south and southeast to avoid being at the heart of their reign. The side that wanted to take up the sword against the xeno collectives that had once terrorized the land compared to the side that was willing to integrate them peacefully and move forward.

The controversy with the elections and the challenge of the legitimacy of center right leader Masur Soltani by the liberal faction of his own party was only representative of the far larger conflict.

That was to say, the conflict between the Sabyan Republic and the Cantian Republic. Two parts of the same nation that had only drifted further from each other rather than closer under the federal system. And now, the country had no choice but to feel the effects of that.

The planet of Valora, the capital of the Cantian Republic, was going to become a battlefield soon unless something was done about the impending conflict between the two republics that were supposed to be of the same country. The Kaira Planetary Guard, after all, a faction controlled by the Sabyan aristocracy, was already taking drastic action to bring the capital back under control… And showing little respect for the federal capital in the process. That, of course, was because it was an entirely illegitimate capital in the minds of many of their soldiers.

The real capital was Kaira itself, at the heart of the Sabya system. That was what they believed based on their pride for their own republic and the old rule of kings that had been based there, before Asakar was made the federal capital as a compromise between the three states that made up Khaliyya. A compromise that was meant to say that one side didn’t have all the power and that the system would be balanced.

It had been balanced indeed… But there’d been an expiration date on it. And now? Luminis, the capital city of Valora, was preparing for war.

At the forefront of it was the one who held the title of Governor of this republic, Leandro Salvatore. It was Salvatore that would have to call for the independence of the republic and convince the lawmakers to sign it into an official status. Salvatore that would have to tell the Planetary Guard commanders across the republic to prepare for the integration of whatever federal forces they could steal away from the main military before the impending conflict. And Salvatore that would have to break things to the people and explain just what was going on and how they would have to… Potentially sacrifice the living standard they valued so much for the sake of having a continued existence that wasn’t under the boot of Sabyan domination.

After all, it was too late to head back to the old ways. This rebellion that had been incited by the Cantian influenced half of the Solidarity & Progress Party had already done too much. And there was just about no chance that it would be forgiven or that they would even have the desire in the first place. From the point of view of the rebels, they were simply protecting their democracy from turning into an autocracy. There was some chance they were right on that, but the world would never know for sure.

The intrigue of the election had been interrupted, after all, by a push towards war from both sides.

The SPP headquarters in Luminis had been turned into a bunker of sorts where just about everyone that wasn’t firmly in favor of independence had been cast out. Because it was no longer a party headquarters, really, but a secessionist headquarters that was being used as a war room. Armed security stood around the front entrance from the Valora Planetary Guard’s most loyal units, and journalists and others who came too close had been turned away.

The architecture of the Cantian Republic.
Right now, however, Leandro Salvatore had no choice but to leave the confines of this war room, which took the form of a twenty story office building situated in the luxurious suburbs of the capital city, and head for the republic’s Assembly. It was no longer possible to hide, and rather, there was a need to make it known to the world that they would pursue their own survival.

There were many questions from the media as Salvatore’s limousine stopped in front of the assembly building and the Governor climbed out, flanked by soldiers from the Planetary Guard who pushed the crowd of reporters away as he and his aides walked into the glass, modernist structure.

“Governor Salvatore, is it true that Federal military equipment located here in the Cantian Republic will be seized?”

“Have there been any peace talks with the Sabyan Republic?”

“Is there going to be a system of rationing put in place due to trade from the other two republics being cut off abruptly?”

“Have you talked to other nations yet about the current situation?”

The Governor ignored them, continuing into the grand lobby of the building and the winding hallways that were behind it. The entire regional assembly, of course, was gathered here at the moment. While there was some risk in this move, the announcement that was to come was of the utmost importance for the future of the republic. The kind of thing that was better to handle in person compared to a distant transmission.

The meeting room of the Cantian Assembly itself was grand, decorated in the baroque style, with the main speaker standing in the center of the circular shaped room while the members of the assembly, and in this case, members of the military and others too, were seated further back in an elevating series of stands. The assembly members were the closest to the speaker, who right now was Salvatore, while those who were here in peripheral roles were located further back.

“My fellow countrymen of the Cantian Republic… It pains me to say this, but the federal system has fallen,” Salvatore said, starting the speech off with quite the bombshell of a statement. “The federal system of this country was created with the intention of preserving the interests and culture of all three of its parts. However, the insistence on the Sabyan dominated part of the Solidarity & Progress Party to crush all opposition and prevent their victory in the national elections from being challenged is a development which cannot be allowed to stand. When students and others came out in protest to their cracking down and refusing to allow a proper investigation into the matter, branding those who asked for one as traitors to the country, this faction responded with force and military forces outside of the federal jurisdiction were used to attack the federal capital, even using orbital bombardment.”

Salvatore paused to let them take in his words. “Due to these crimes, we must assume that the Sabyan Republic and aristocracy intend to go back to the days of uneven rule and respond accordingly. We must act to move for our own independence and attempt to preserve the freedom that is being taken away from us through military force, shady elections, and systematic hostility towards all those who stand up for their rights as citizens of a federal nation. Our culture and way of life is once again in danger of being wiped out by an overlord who does not see the world in the same way, and this time, relying on the federal system isn’t enough to prevent that.”

“In the coming days, I call for the Assembly to make moves to legalize the independence of the republic… For the planetary guards across the republic to seize whatever federal military equipment they can and repurpose it for their own uses. And for the local military establishment to plan the capture of the Rimayah and Najah instatlations, two fortresses which will be used as staging points for the eventual Sabyan invasion of these lands. All of this is hard - it requires a sacrifice temporarily of the quality of life that all of us desire…”

“However, if these measures are not taken, that sacrifice will happen anyway and without our consent. And it may just be permanent. Either we make the move now to dictate our own independence or we allow someone else to dictate the terms of our republic to us. The writing is already on the wall, fighting is already happening within the Sharqa system, and only a fool would believe that a peaceful situation is coming after this. Thank you.”

With that, the speech had seemingly ended and the crowd would burst into a number of different reactions ranging from support to indignation and disbelief that they would try to go out on their own and have support cut off entirely from the other two republics - something that would, at the very least, tank the economy and cause some areas to have shortages of food and supplies if something couldn’t be worked out quickly to prevent that outcome. Whether it was foreign aid or the development rapidly of domestic industries, none of those outcomes were in place yet to keep things from spiraling further than they had already…

There were headaches among some of the other factions that were participating in the conflict, too. Among them were the Sabyan military, or rather, the Sabyan military establishment that had been created hastily by the aristocrats that were making similar plans to the Cantians when it came to the federal military. Like the Cantians, they would have to seize units for themselves due to the policy of mixing soldiers from different republics in the same units. It was impossible to just transfer units wholesale to one republic thanks to this. Instead, they would have to seize equipment and staff the units with their own forces, both from planetary guards and converted from loyal federal military members.

The de facto headquarters of all of this was Khirva Station, which was closer to the area that would soon become the frontlines of combat compared to the planet of Kaira.

And while all of this was being worked on, one more soldier would storm into the conference hall near the center of the massive metal beast of a structure, reporting news that no one wanted to hear this early in the proceedings of planning for a conflict.

“New information has come in from the Cantian Republic! The Cantian dogs are already making the move for independence and seizing federal military units located within their borders!”

This would quickly cause murmurs within the upper part of the command staff that was gathered around a holographic projection of the region, showing what a battle for the crucial fortresses near the border might look like.

War room in Khirva Station.
“Sons of bitches…” muttered Jamal Bettayeb of the Qaraya-III Planetary Guard - located within the Qaraya system, his planet was one of the most notable when it came to having a sizable planetary guard that could be deployed abroad. An effect, he supposed, of being located within the inner sphere radiating outwards from the Sabya system itself.

“Has the seizure of federal equipment already begun?” he would add as a question as the murmurs between the others at the table only continued.

“I believe it has begun now, sir,” the soldier that had just rushed in said - his own uniform indicated he was part of the Kaira Planetary Guard, which was plenty active in all of this. “Sporadic reports have come in about federal sailors from the Sabyan Republic being detained and their weapons being taken from them-”

“Sporadic doesn’t matter, just means we haven’t heard the full truth yet. It’s already happening,” Bettayeb said in an annoyed tone. “That’s for certain. They don’t have an alternative to this plan, after all… It’s life or death for them.”

“Then we can only accelerate our own efforts,” one of the other generals standing around the holographic projection said.

“Shall I begin preparing to move on Installation Rimayah immediately while the third fleet moves to secure Installation Najah?” asked one of the admirals.

“Get working on it,” Bettayeb commanded, pausing for a moment before looking to one of the junior generals that was also standing around, watching the superiors adapt the plan rapidly on the fly for the fact that they had little time to work with. “And Fazil! Begin making contact with foreign allies, because you better believe that the Cantian mutts are already in contact with the Einotaiyan bastards and any other slightly sympathetic state that might do something to help ‘em. Half of ‘em might starve if they can’t work out some kinda deal.”

“I only need to know where to start with that, sir,” said the junior general, Fazil, standing straighter at the attention.

“Start with the ZSB that was already identified as a possible help and work your way outwards from there, we don’t have enough damn friends in this galaxy but we do have a decent amount of states that’d like to see us win… Keeps all of Khaliyya from becoming an ESU puppet regime, regardless of what they think of us,” Bettayeb ordered, before moving to step towards the door of the room.

“I’m going to report the latest news to the aristocrats and see if they have any changes in their own plans because of this. Everyone else, continue figuring out how to speed this process the fuck up. Because all day isn’t something we have to work with here.”
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Capitalist Paradise

Postby Forest State » Mon May 03, 2021 5:29 am

January 12th, 3347
Hafiyah, Asakar, Sharqa System, Capital Region, Federal Republics of Khaliyya

It was still chaos in the capital - and in fact, as the military forces had been deployed to the region, there was only more chaos than before the intervention had started. The Kairan Planetary Guard had worked to crack down on the rebel organizations that were headed most notably by the Organization For A Democratic Khaliyya, but as the rebel forces realized that there would be no quarter for those that had already joined the fight, it quickly turned into a situation where few were willing to surrender and where the Planetary Guard forces would have to clear out every opponent one by one. That was, of course, less than an ideal situation. But it was the one they were stuck with as things deteriorated both in the capital and across the country.

Kaja Sharrif was still one of the ones on the frontlines of this combat, leading her unit from the front as they took a spearhead role in the assault on the remnants of the rebel force… A now dug in remnant that was perhaps more threatening than it had been at first, when it was out in the open. Right now, they were holed up in a location that had been off limits for the same use of force they’d applied in other locales they were pushing the rebels out of: the Assembly building in the capital district, where normally, some of the biggest decisions of the country would be made…

It was safe to say it was no longer being used for that purpose, after members of the Assembly from all parties had left and went their varying ways. The pro-Sabyan politicians to Sabyan territory and the pro-Cantian politicians back to Cantia. The lines were being drawn for the upcoming civil war, if it hadn’t started already. One could argue that it had in many respects, even if the first shots hadn’t been fired between the Sabyan and the Cantian republics.

Right now, Kaja and the rest of her unit were pinned in the middle of the grand avenue leading up to the Assembly building itself, an avenue that had at one point been used for special events and parades and the like but right now was the hot zone that they found themselves stuck in as part of this conflict.... Not the best place to be in right now, as fire rained down from the building itself from both the rooftop and the windows where ODK members were taking pot shots with whatever weapons they had. Some of them had been looted from armories, others were civilian weapons that were still dangerous enough in the right context.

Sure, they had armor, but it only took getting hit with one round and being unlucky enough for all of that to not mean anything. Having more expensive equipment wasn’t the same as having invincibility, even if the enemies had civilian weaponry, and Kaja was acutely aware of that.

“Where’s that rocket barrage, damn it?” she shouted over her shoulder after she fired down the avenue at a group of ODK members that were attempting to exit the building - as soon as they left, of course, they found themselves pinned by her entire squad which was happy to target them instead of their harder to hit comrades within the building itself. Idiots. They’d probably assumed they wouldn’t be noticed and that they could try a flanking move or some other tactic, but had misjudged and didn’t realize just how much they would stand out. “This place is the false capital, I’m not going to sit here and get shot up just to avoid damaging it!”

“Al-Baz needs to radio the coordinates in!” one of the others shouted, standing behind the burned out wreck of an SUV and leaning only briefly enough to get an idea of the situation beyond before pulling back behind the cover, rifle at the ready still. “Get on that, yeah?”

“You try getting the accurate coordinates under this kind of fire!” another one of the troopers, Al-Baz, screamed. “Give me some covering fire, yeah?”

“Fine! Autorifles, put down as much suppressive fire as you can!” Kaja barked, annoyed with the reluctance of her colleague but going with the request. “The faster you get this done, the faster we’re getting out of here!”

“On it!”

Soon enough, the autoriflemen from the nearby squads were firing heavily towards the windows of the building, discouraging anyone that would get ideas about taking a shot at Al-Baz while he stepped out from behind a chunk of a barricade - mainly blown to pieces by now but still suitable for infantry cover if one crouched down enough - and used a pair of digital binoculars to find the exact coordinates of the Assembly building ahead. “Got it! Radioing it in for the rocket barrage!”

“Get on that…” Kaja popped out from behind her own cover behind a destroyed barricade and fired off some more shots just to keep the enemy on their toes, targeting the roof when she did so this time, before she knelt back down once again as she heard bullets hitting all around her. Fortunately enough for her, they weren’t the best shots considering their amateur status as soldiers. Though, the fact that this battle was still going on showed just what tenacious amateurs could do when they had some cause they believed in.

Even if Kaja herself believed their cause was an utterly foolish one - they believed they were protecting democracy and the federal system, but in reality, they were closer to being bait for the Cantian Republic to keep the Sabyans occupied until they had everything ready for their war of independence that was coming up. Or was it simply a regular war with the Sabyan Republic? It was hard to say, because it still remained to be seen if the federal system that Cantia existed in would even be around anymore by the time the war kicked off.

She was happy to be on the side of the royals, the side that had formerly ruled all of this part of space, if it did come to blows… And as much as she hated it in the moment, she was happy to be here, in a battle that would see them take this false capital that had been forced by the other two republics as a concession. Soon, it would be in their hands, and the Sabyan administration would move the title of capital back to where it belonged, Kaira. Her own planet, whose planetary guard she was fighting with right now.

“ETA on the rocket barrage?”

“Soon enough!”

It was indeed soon enough. Not long after she had opened her mouth to ask the question, she could see the streaks of smoke coming over the horizon and then descending onto the building after passing over her head, a resounding boom ringing through the landscape as the sound of the explosions echoed off the other concrete or stone buildings in the area. It was a low rumbling sound that she could feel in her core, and she was sure that those inside the building felt it more.

“Alright, now push!”

They were over the top of their cover soon, moving further down the avenue as the smoke from the explosions blocked the view from the windows and made sure that the enemy wouldn’t even be able to locate them to keep firing on them.

“You always complain about sprinting in training, but they do it for a reason!” one of the others shouted.

Indeed. Speed was of the essence here, because the slower they moved, the higher the chance the smoke would clear and they would once again have fire raining down on them before they had reached the Assembly building. It was still a ways off in the distance down the avenue after all, though the things they would normally face such as the main gate had been blown away in the combat that already happened before they reached this point.

Soon enough, the fire coming from the building was sporadic and they were reaching the dust cloud themselves as it settled, searching for the best place to breach the massive complex.

“We’ll head in through the expected route and trust our gear advantage will be enough to fend off some enemies on the other side,” Kaja determined. “The front door it is.”

It was a large enough entrance at least that it was unlikely they were walking into a kill zone. The enemy didn’t exactly have the resources to set up with things such as machine guns, although she was sure that would show up eventually if they didn’t do the job and deal a killing blow to the enemy entirely.

“Who ever would have thought we’d get to this building under these circumstances?”

There was a little bit of a time to contemplate as they made their way through the large front entrance of the building, and it was a strange situation for sure… But it was the one they found themselves in, and the best they could do in this case was finish up quickly and end the need for a deployment to this planet they considered the false capital.

Rimayah Station was one of the most important locations of the entire conflict. The station was one of the main two located on the border between Cantia and Sabya, and would be one of the staging points for the invasion of Cantia that the Sabyan Republic was launching in the coming days - unless the Cantians struck first. That was a possibility that everyone on the Sabyan side was distinctly aware of, and during these last twilight days before the invasion was set to begin, both Rimayah and Najah station were on high alert for any signs that an attack could be coming…

But of course, it was impossible to take the element of surprise out of things completely.

They would find that out as the primary bridge of the RImayah Station came to life with chatter as electronic screens lit up and warning lights appeared, capturing the attention of everyone from the lowest workers whose job it was to simply monitor instruments to the high ranking officers who would have to make a call about just what to do in this situation they found themselves in.

“Cantian ships have just warped in! Most likely the largest battlefleet they could spare!”

“Mostly lighter ships but some outdated cruisers and battleships among them!”

“They’re on a course to be within weapons range soon based on the weapons loadouts of those given models!”

For the one that was in the command of the station, Rear Admiral Chambal, there was of course a lot to think about. They did have their own force assembled and they would certainly be able to respond to the fleet that had just warped in as the Cantians seized the initiative and made the first move, but that fleet was preparing for the invasion and wasn’t out and deployed and ready for immediate combat… But they’d have to work on changing that fast unless they wanted it to get attacked in port where its effectiveness was severely limited, and where the Cantians would have a chance to destroy their invasion plans before they got off the ground.

“Get the fleet scrambled before focusing on anything else! We’re not going to let them sit around like sitting ducks in the docks!” Chambal barked to the others within the bridge. “And fire up the defensive line! I want every automated turret and interceptor drone firing on that Cantian fleet as soon as it’s within range!”

“That’s not going to be long, sir! On it!” one of the others within the bridge replied, before pressing a few buttons on a touchscreen to awaken the automated defense system, and to choose the target for it to focus on. This station, after all, was only the command center for a larger web of defenses. It had more tricks up its sleeve than just the guns that were positioned on it overtly.

Then again, the enemy would also be aware of its capabilities. Some of them had possibly even been garrisoned here in the past, when things were… Simpler.

The large station itself began to move into action as all the guns calibrated and defensive measures triggered, the large metal hulk coming to life in preparation for the combat that was to come. At the areas where repossessed federal navy vessels had been docked, these ships were firing up their engines and working on getting out of port as quickly as possible so they could join the fight before it was too late to do so.

All in all, the battle was set to involve what was probably half the ships the Cantians had been able to gather so far at this point in their revolution - they had a hundred or so odd ships of different shapes from the looks of it, though the numbers in their fleet overall would likely swell once they had finished their own task of repossessing what they could from federal forces as well as allocating what planetary guard ships they could… Out of the ones that were combat capable, anyway. Not every planetary guard was equipped for long range combat operations like these.

The side of the defenders, however, was also sizable and the two were almost evenly matched when it came to numbers. The Sabyans needed these large numbers in the area, after all, for their invasion plans rested on gathering up at this point and then making a major incursion along the western border where they would also use Station Najah as a staging ground as well as this one. Additionally, the pre-emptive attack by the Cantians had already been foreseen and there had been plans made to have a force ready to respond if it did come.

But that wasn’t to say they were fully prepared for the moment.

Just about no one could be a hundred percent prepared in an unprecedented situation like this one.
Last edited by Forest State on Mon May 03, 2021 5:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Lunas Legion » Tue May 04, 2021 5:52 pm

January 12th, 3347
Luminis, Valora, Valoris System, Cantian Republic
Collab between Forest State and Lunas Legion

It was clear that Luminis was a city that was headed towards war - war in a matter of days, perhaps, even if the conflict was right now further away at Rimayah Station where the assembled Cantian fleet had traveled to meet the fleet of the Sabyan Republic in a pre-emptive move. It remained to be seen if that attack was going to work, but the fact of the matter was that even in the best case scenario it would buy them time rather than put the war off entirely. This war was coming one way or another, and it could be seen in a number of ways in the city…

Military forces in the streets, anti-orbital emplacements being erected in the outskirts outside of town, and vessels being refitted in orbit to head into combat with the most up to date weapons and systems that they could manage. Outdated military and even some civilian vessels were included in this, and the same thing was happening on the ground where the newly formed Cantian army was looking for whatever ground vehicles it was able to get its hands on, as well as weapons and other supplies outside of what would naturally come from the Planetary Guards under their control.

Even if it would take time for the war to reach Luminis, it was clear that it was coming… And it was hardly even hidden these days, with soldiers all around the office that had been turned into a makeshift headquarters for the independence government, the luxurious appearance of the area gone as it turned into a warzone-to-be where the civilian presence was limited and most were either with the government itself or with the military forces stationed there.

That was why, at this time, many people would have their minds set on the future… What was going to happen in the future, what the fate of the republic would be in the future, and what their own future fate was. That included, even, Nadra Konda - one of the key ones behind starting all of this in the first place. It was known, of course, that all this would have been unlikely to spiral if it wasn’t for her challenge of the government and play for power following the elections.

“I have one question for you, Nyma,” she said, looking to her protege as she sat with her back to the large window and overlooking view of the city, within this office building that had been converted to headquarters. “Where do you see yourself in the future, with all this going on?”

“I have no idea if I’m being a hundred percent honest.” Nyma admitted. “By your side, hopefully. I’m no military expert, far from it, but… Even I can see the situation’s far from good. The pessimist in me says that beside you means likely in a pile of rubble after the planet’s been scoured from orbit after the events on Hafiyah. The optimist… Doesn’t really know.”

“And would you stay beside me even if it meant that?” Nadra raised an eyebrow, resting back in her seat. “There’s no guarantee that something like that won’t happen… Soon. As much as the military forces are trying to turn things around with the attack on Rimayah Station. For all we know, the efforts to set up an interdiction web around the capital could fail. An enemy fleet could be here tomorrow, even.”

“I made this choice out of principle, so… I would, if it came down to it.” Nyma said, nodding and resting her hands in her lap. “I think I made my peace with… All this once the first shots were fired. And whatever fate might await me if things turned… Sour.”

“But if you were able to get out of all this, where do you see yourself ending up?” Nadra continued, curiously. “Staying in politics? Business, perhaps? Or perhaps getting away from… Everything?”

“I don’t know.” Nyma said. “Likely depends where I end up. I don’t think I could just… Step away. Business might suit me, but I imagine most of my contacts would be, well, dead, arrested, or otherwise unable or unwilling. I don’t even know how I’d continue in politics if I was able to get out of… All this. I’d like to, but… I don’t see how it’d be possible.”

“You might have a chance despite all of this,” Nadra said, standing up. “Depending on whether you want to leave what you know behind and start fresh. Elsewhere. Though, I’m sure we won’t be able to leave it behind fully - but there’s a chance, nonetheless, if you make your decision today. Other people that would like to see some of us remain alive. You seem to want to follow me. Would you continue following me there too?”

“I don’t think there’s going to be much left here in a week or two.” Nyma said, looking up at Nadra as she stood up. “I said I’d stay behind if you stayed, so if you’re going somewhere where you can start relatively afresh, I’ll gladly follow you there too.” She was principled, but not stupid.

“You can start moving now, then… We’re leaving soon,” Nadra said simply, stepping away from her space in the office and towards the elevator that would lead towards the ground floor, ignoring the chaos around them as others scrambled to manage the various tasks they had been assigned with this new government. Tasks that were perhaps doomed from the beginning after things had escalated to the point of an impending invasion. Not everyone here had the luck of a foreign faction interested in extracting them. But her and Nyma did, seemingly.

Nyma followed after her at a brisk pace, knowing full well that time would be very much of the essence here. “How soon is ‘soon’, exactly?” Nyma asked, moving to walk beside her. “I’ll need to pack, although if it’s extremely soon, well, better away than packed but stuck here.”

“There’s not time,” Nadra shook her head as they moved into the elevator and waited for it to descend to the ground floor. There was no one else using it at the moment. Everyone too busy focusing on their own tasks. “Bringing you along is a modification to the plan, in fact. But I believe you’ll be valuable in one way or another where we’re going. Or, maybe I just feel that if most of us are stuck with this fate, I should help at least one of you.”

“Then there’s no time and I’ll make do.” Nyma said, looking down at herself as she stood in the elevator. “Better alive with the clothes on my back than likely dead or imprisoned here.” A small part of her wondered what had happened to Ilyas and the moderates, but… She doubted they would have lasted long in the current circumstances. “And your help is appreciated, very much so. I… Don’t know if I’ll ever be able to repay it.”

“That’s something for you to start thinking about,” Nadra replied calmly. “I’m not exactly the kind of person to just hand things out for free, regardless of whatever you might think of me.”

The doors to the elevator opened and they would soon be walking out to the plaza outside of the headquarters, an area that for now was deserted except for the sporadic military forces standing around and keeping watch over the place with rifles. Not that they had much to deal with considering how Luminis itself was turning into a ghost town of sorts at the current moment, with few people in the streets at all. And most of those coming in and out of here were like them, figures within the government.

They would continue walking until they had left that plaza and reached the street just beyond it, where Nadra keyed in on one vehicle in specific and approached it - a nondescript grey flying van that was waiting for them apparently, or at least it seemed that way based on the way Nadra walked up to it and opened up the doors in the back without thinking about it. “Come on, get in. We’ll be headed to the spaceport, and then away from here entirely.”

Nyma nodded, quickly climbing in the back and sitting down. She figured there’d be time to ask questions once they were actually on the move, since it didn’t sound like there was any time to be lost here.

Nadra was into the van after her and the doors were shut, and it would begin moving and rising off the ground only a moment later - as for the people in the front, well, it was unknown exactly who they are but they did have a distinct uniformed appearance about them, both of them wearing black with some kind of foreign patch on their sleeves indicative of a foreign intelligence agency or something along those lines. Neither of them were speaking the same language when they spoke in hushed tones between themselves, and that and their complexion seemed to be the best indication they were likely from the Einotaiyan Star Union… Not too far away, across the quadrant border in Delta.

But of course, a place that would still be a jump from what they were used to. As for what their role would be after they had been extracted by Einotaiyan intelligence… That hadn’t been explained yet, at least to the lesser informed Nyma.
Last edited by William Slim Wed Dec 14 1970 10:35 pm, edited 35 times in total.

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