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Shex

A Somber Reunion

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(OOC:  With respect to Paramount Pictures.  Also, for reference, http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/VillainForgotToLevelGrind. This post relies on the Broes' internal Lore and as such might possibly conflict with UMS...  Notions...  Of the Universe.)

 

Space, the Implacable Void.

 

These are the voyages of the starship Endeavor.  Its five year mission:  to explore strange, uncharted worlds.  To discover more of the fruits of evolution and the challenges to be overcome.  To boldly go where none of us have gone before!

 

BPS Endeavor, Kraken-Class Battlecruiser.  Flagship:  Task Force 889

 

It would have been a fool's errand had Command chosen to put all its efforts in the PW-1 verse in a single star system near the outer rim of this alternate Milky Way Galaxy.

 

Universes are vast, and rich, and full of wonder.  To commit so much to a single, tiny portion of it would be a fool's errand!

 

At the very least, it would be completely unjustifiable in the eyes of a typical Bro taxpayer.

 

As such, Brotherhood Command considered the possibility of convergent evolution.  Certain races were known to be friendly, and wandered the stars much like the Humans, Mukitans, Yehat and other Brotherhood races in their infancy.  Could those races who became extinct in Bro hands (usually by assaults from almighty beings like the Shadows and hideous abominations like the Shivans) still thrive in another Universe?  If Humanity evolved in PW-1...  Perhaps others evolved here as well.

 

With that in mind, the starship Endeavor led a Task Force of 250 ships.  It was a fairly large contingent, but Command had decided that such a sizable force could be valuable.  If Arcadia somehow needed a last-ditch effort to flee, this task force could likely provide assistance...

 

Possibly...

 

At any rate, the Task Force entered the Universe through a rift in space time.  Such rifts were not particularly uncommon:  though the Orz had made use of such anomalies the fact remained that Inter-Universal Gates could only be constructed under such circumstances.  And as such a Gate was slowly constructed here.  If the Naxids conquered the Orbis star, surviving ships could flee here, and the Brotherhood would still access this universe.

 

The Task Force left that fledgling Gate, and set a course for a particular nebulae...

 

The Purple Void...

 

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

 

Unlike many strange landmarks in the void of space, the Purple Void was a particularly gigantic, purple Nebula.  The main feature of this nebula, however, was the fact that various races who were critical to the Brotherhood's infancy evolved on worlds in or near the Nebula.  The Mukitans, for example, had their homeworld in the Star System known as Belushi.  The second planet from that star was of particular importance.  This world, known to them as Mukita Prime, was the cradle of their species.

 

Like most other fortunate sapients, they typically never had to leave that cradle.

 

When the Universe of FB-1 Collapsed, the Mukitans among others fled.  Those among the Broes stayed with the Broes, but the rest evacuated the system before the interuniversal rifts were impenetrable.  As such, they arrived in NS-1 and found that other Mukitans had evolved there as well.  Mukita Prime stayed as Mukita Prime, and even the Shadows could not completely exterminate the slugs.  These Slug-People remained proud, and as their civilization recovered from two horrifying disasters (the influx of refugees from FB-1 and the Shadow Assault on their homeworld), Mukita Prime finally joined the Brotherhood as a member world, becoming one of the few Homeworlds to become one with the greater whole.

 

And yet, as they approached a purple nebula that suspiciously resembled the Purple Void, the Mukitan Crewmen of this task force prayed that, perhaps, Mukitan Prime existed once again.  There was certainly precedent:  FB-1 and NS-1's Mukita Primes were strikingly similar, but PW-1 was a completely different 'verse entirely.  Could it be possible?  Surely the creator was not selfish enough to only allow humans the chance to evolve here and thrive?

 

But the Mukitans had more wishes than just Mukita Prime.  As the Mukitans developed space travel, they received aid from an important neighbor.  As a fellow Founding Race of the Brotherhood, this neighbor was critical for the development of the Brotherhood of Planets as well.

 

These sapients called themselves the Zorg.

 

The Zorg had visited humanity in the past.  Like their Arilou *cousins*, the Zorg wished to learn more about a species that curiously developed the means to travel to their moon, yet failed to establish extraterrestrial colonies outside of their homeworld.  These former (and perhaps current, but they'd never admit it) apes were most fascinating:  they had such a long history of killing each other even when some of them discovered the ideal of Oneness.  Granted, some of those who embraced Oneness had this base and terrifying notion of slaughtering those who were not One with them, but surely they could find enlightened Humans who understood the true meaning of Oneness!

 

Yes, the Zorg were an extremely collectivist people.  To them, the idea of all of Zorg-kind standing together was paramount:  how could any individual Zorg claim to be more important than his fellows?  The species needed as many personnel as possible to thrive!  This cohesion helped the Zorg develop their civilization, but put them at odds with their genetic relatives the Arilou and Vree.  Even though all three races had mastered forms of teleportation and proved capable of great technological feats, the Zorg's "self-assurance" as the Arilou put it restrained their growth.  Despite existing for hundreds of millions of years, Zorg technology had virtually stagnated.  The Vree were few in number, and as such their civilization has never been as powerful as it could be.  The Arilou, on the other hand, left their *cousins* and became one of the great powers of the Multiverse.

 

Vree and Arilou did not stand as one, but both civilizations continued to play an important role around their respective home stars.  The Zorg, on the other hand, believed themselves content.  And as such remained complacent until the Mukitans found them.

 

Zorg and Mukitan were forced to stand as one.  Not through conquest or violence, but through necessity.  Another race had evolved within the Purple Void.  They were known as Urluquai, and their first action upon meeting the Broes was to attack and destroy a Seedship.  Tens of thousands of potential colonists died as those purple ships unveiled their cloaks and fell upon them.  Any and all attempts to communicate were met with cryptic promises of friendship and love.  "Embrace us, and you will find peace."

 

In FB-1 the Urluquai attacked the Zorg and Mukitan homeworlds simultaneously.  Over time, they also managed to defeat and enslave the Garthans, a race fond of war and destruction.  The Urluquai were defeated, but they remained a threat long before FB-1's collapse.

 

They were the Brotherhood's first true enemy, and they too called this sector home.  Zorg and Mukitan stood together to beat them off, and their meeting with Humans led to those faithful pledges forging that which would become The Brotherhood of Planets.

 

Yet even after such a great victory, even after they formed this collective dream of Universal Brotherhood, it was not meant to be.  The Zorg within the Brotherhood found the reforged Second Brotherhood to be far too martial for their liking, and as they departed back to NS-1's version of Zorg Prime (for that world also managed to evolve and exist within NS' universe even though the Urluquai remained silent), the Shadows deemed them unworthy of existence.  A species that would gleefully stagnate itself was surely incapable of adapting; ignorant of the brutal ways of the Universe.  Those who were unwilling to change...  Would surely be the first to die...

 

From the Shadow's perspective, they merely expedited the inevitable.

 

Shadow Battlecrabs burned Zorg Prime, and unlike the Mukitans whose missiles and will to survive endured the pain of Shadow slicers, the Zorg calmly accepted their fate.

 

They died, and ruins were all that remained.

 

But perhaps the Zorg survived here!

 

The Endeavor hurled towards the Nebula at full speed.  Surely, they would find their friends!

 

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

 

BPS Endeavor, Bridge

 

As the Purple Void appeared closer and closer, visible even in the chaotic, red, viscous madness that was Hyperspace, the Commodore in command of the Task Force received a strange report.

 

"Sir!"  The Science Officer yelled.  "We're detecting several anomalies all around us.  They're closing in fast."

 

"Elaborate."

"They're...  Sensor ghosts of some kind, sir.  And they're moving in rapidly."

 

"Commodore!"  The Captain of the Endeavor stammered as he pointed at the holographic projection of the mysterious 'ghosts.'  "These movement patterns, they're very consistent with the first training simulations at the Academy."

 

"It can't be...  Is it them?!  Take us out of Hyperspace, now!  Inform the fleet:  we are entering Truespace immediately!"

 

Red Portals emerged in truespace, also known as Realspace to the other various interstellar explorers of the universe.  From these portals, the entirety of Task Force 889 emerged.

 

But the ghosts approached ever closer.

 

"Sir, I'm detecting gravitic distortions within and near those anomalies, sir.  They're dramatically increasing their speed."

 

"Urluquai."  The Commodore grit his teeth.  "I should have known.  This Universe would not be so welcoming.  Raise shields!  The other gravitic signals we're receiving must be Deep Hunter class Destroyers.  The Pacifiers escorting them have weaker cloaking devices because the Urluquai Collective sees them as little better than mass-produced cannon fodder, but the Deep Hunters are their trump cards.  Unfortunately for them, we're more than aware of their Graviton Implosion Drives, and we are far less vulnerable prey.  I've forgotten:  what's the typical range of their Quark Projectors?"

"Very short-range, sir.  Command believed that was the Urluquai's main weakness.  The fact that they haven't decloaked just yet means that they're still equipped with them."

 

"Arm plasma and antimatter torpedoes.  Set for Proximity Explosion.  Let's show them what we're capable of now!"

 

Sure enough, as the ghosts approached, the entire task force released thousands of torpedoes.  They flew in enormous clouds towards the various sensor ghosts, and the hapless Urluquai crashed right into them.

 

"Multiple enemy vessels.   decloaking.  Sensors indicate that they're hastily trying to redirect power to shields."

 

"Are our Disruptors ready?  Open fire!"

 

Many purple and various dark green ships began to emerge in the void, the torpedoes crashing into them and causing many bright explosions across the Endeavor's field of vision.  The entire Task Force followed up their initial barrage with massive batteries of positronic beams, hurling out into the void of space and raking against what was left of the Urluquai fleet's defenses.  So many ships crumpled apart before the onslaught, and more and more contacts were winking out.

 

"Commodore!  We're still detecting a number of sensor ghosts...  They're coming right for us.  They-"

 

As various positronic beams lashed out at the enemy charge, they proved too late.  Nine Urluquai ships, with cloaking devices still active, rammed into a Brotherhood Blossom Class Heavy Corvette.  The ship's shields flickered as it tried to absorb enemy ships hurling at it at hundreds of times the speed of light, but this gesture proved insufficient to protect it.

 

The Brotherhood vessel tumbled in the void of space, before breaking apart in a devastating explosion.

 

"The enemy has rammed the Miami.  Sir...  Her antimatter containment was breached.  Few fighters and escape pods made it."

 

"Damn them!"

 

"Sir!"

 

The Endeavor's own shields began to flicker as three more cloaked ships rammed them.  But despite their act of defiance, these three vessels crumpled apart, unable to fully pierce the various layers of particle energy engulfing the Battlecruiser.  The short flashes of dark green revealed their class.

 

"Deep Hunters.  I should have known.  The Urluquai would keep a few of them in reserve and throw them at us if all else failed."

 

"Sir...  The rest of the Task Force report few casualties overall.  It seems the enemy made a last-ditch effort to ram our Corvette and what they deduced was our Command Ship.  The battle is ov-"

"No.  You should be well aware of the Urluquai's doctrine.  There must have been survivors, and they would withdraw.  They know that we can detect their weaker cloakers with ease, and with that knowledge they must have ordered a few surviving Deep Hunters to return to their homeworld.  They will be back, gentlemen, but they will not win.  Maintain our course for Zorg Prime.  I have a bad feeling about this."

 

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

 

Zorg High Council, Brin III:  Zorg Prime

 

A collection of intelligent life stood in a semi-circle around the Matriarch.

 

These were dire times...  The finest Zorg Battlefleet had engaged an Urluquai raiding fleet.  There were massive casualties.  Mukitan and Garthan Reinforcements arrived, but even with their assistance most of the Zorg Ships were heavily damaged or even disabled.  Less than a dozen ships left the field of battle with little to no damage;  most of their fleet proved insufficient for this daunting task.

 

"Friends, Countrymen, lend me your auditory organs.  This is our darkest hour.  With the loss of the Kun-Zi we have only three functioning Heavy Cruisers left, and only one of which is unharmed and ready for another attack.  It is a deep shame to force Zorg Youth to throw their lives in this cycle of violence, but we are left with no choice."

 

One of the yellow slug people rose.  "As the representative of the Mukitan Conglomerate, I shall reassure our commitment to this alliance.  The Zorg have provided us with vast material support in the past  It would be shameful of us to abandon you now.  Our fleets have fared better against the Urluquai, but their cloaking devices continue to be a key threat.  We can detect faint sensor ghosts thanks to Zorg improvements, but they are not enough to counter a serious charge on the Urluquai's part."

 

"The Garthans are indebted to no one!"  The Garthan Ambassador Growled.  "...  And in other times my leaders would scoff at such...  Ineptitude.  But these are unpleasant times.  We know that not a few Zorg have faced extreme discomfort upon activating mass teleportation fields, and the sacrifice of those Zorg advisors meant the difference between victory and defeat against those abominable jelly vermin.  We Garthans have been humiliated by those hideous jellyfish for far too long.  With the support of the Mukitan Empire we will prevail.  Unlike the Urluquai, we Garthans have Honor, and as such we will uphold our commitment to our alliance with both the Mukitans and Zorg."

 

"We three are the only races that stand against the coming Darkness.  These Urluquai will not relent until they enslave our people or until each of our worlds are barren and devoid of life.  We-"

"We Four-"  The Mukitan representative grinned.

 

"Four?"

 

"Indeed.  Our patrols have come in contact with a race calling itself the Scathyrans.  They are aquatic creatures, much like the fish of our worlds.  Their ships have interiors that resemble those found in Captured Urluquai vessels.  They have pledged their support to our alliance, provided we help keep them alive.  With their insights, perhaps we've found the key to defeating the Urluquai once and for all!"

 

"That is heartening news!  What of their capabilities?"

 

The Garthan ambassador took one look at the schematics of a Scathyran Frigate, and scoffed.  "This is their best ship?  It will not be very helpful against hordes of Deep Hunters."
 

"Indeed."  The Mukitan sighed.  "But we should not reject their support."

 

"So it goes, then.  There are Four of Us against the Darkness.  Perhaps-"

 

And as the council convened, Red Portals opened up on the edge of the Zorg's Home Star System.  The Task Force had arrived!

 

To Be Continued...

 

Thoughts?  Suggestions?

Edited by Shex

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Brin (Theta Sculptoris) System, Orbit of Brin III  (Zorg Prime)

 

The Endeavor and her escorts remained in formation around the world.

 

After a lengthy discussion, a Zorg shuttle departed from Endeavor and began heading back to the surface.

 

Aboard that shuttle, there were a number of Zorg Elders.

 

"The Primarch must hear of this.  These creatures who claim to be friends:  their technology far surpasses ours.  The energy readings on their flagship alone could account for hundreds of Kun-Zis.  To have far greater power than our most powerful ship, yet insist upon friendship...  That is the essence of Oneness, no?"

 

"I do not believe it is wise to trust them so easily.  They have Mukitans on board their ship and yet those Mukitans did not come to the aid of their homeworld during Urluquai attacks.  If they had such great power, how could they refuse to support their brethren?"

 

"...  They mentioned coming from a different universe.  It would explain their ignorance of the situation here."

 

"Still!  I do not believe it is wise to trust a race that appears out of the blue to offer aid.  They must want something from the Zorg.  It is the only rational explanation."

 

The shuttle reentered Zorg Prime's atmosphere, and is it entered a planetside hangar...

 

Ill tidings began to settle upon the Zorg's home system.

 

One Thousand Years of Contemplation (Zorg Homeworld Starbase), Operations Deck

 

Turning and Turning in the tranquil void...

 

The Zorg Starbase spun slowly.

 

But horrors began to emerge, horrors from beyond the void.

 

The Starbase's sensors, however, were not idle.

 

"Commander!  We detect multiple signals inbound.  They are not discernible on the visual spectrum."

 

"...  They have come.  Deploy our Distress Beacon!  Tell every Zorg in the Galaxy to come back here!  Our Homeworld stands before the Great Darkness, and all Zorg must answer the call!"

 

BPS Endeavor, Bridge

 

"Commodore, there are multiple sensor ghosts inbound."

 

"...  So they've come.  All ships!  Maintain your positions, let them come to us.  Their range will be their downfall, and in order to fire they must decloak."

 

"What if they attempt to ram the planet?"  Endeavor's Captain inquired.

 

"...  They won't get that chance.  Have our Scout Cruisers provide AWACS.  We see sensor ghosts, we fire upon them indiscriminately.  They can try using their implosion drives, but they won't get that far."

 

And yet the horde of Urluquai sallied forth under cloak, flying at the planet at speeds believed impossible according to relativistic physics.  The sheer horde of ships hurling through the system would disrupt the very star's gravitational field...  The fact that their engines relied on imploding gravitons only exacerbated this effect, but the Urluquai soldiered on!

 

As the horde descended upon the world, the Brotherhood fleet opened fire, following closely by Zorg attempts at reprisal.  Unlike the Broes, Zorg ships were the aggressive ones, hurling themselves at incoming Urluquai like mosquitoes hurling towards the snout of a bear.  Perhaps it was a foolish gesture, but it was by no means a cowardly one.

 

The flashes of battle lit up the sky, and the people of Zorg Prime stared up into the void.  While humans might panic and pray for mercy, their wide-eyed counterparts were far more tranquil, not a few might say indifferent.  The shocking violence expressed by their starfleet was a clear cause of concern:  how could a Zorg ever want the death of another?

 

Particle beams and their far more horrifying positronic variants slashed through Urluquai hulls, revealing them as cloakers failed in the face of overwhelming firepower.  Several ruined husks of incoming ships hurled through the atmosphere, despite the attempts of point defense turrets to destroy them or smack them away.  From the surface of the world, anti-aerospace assets assisted in this daunting task, but ruined hulks continued to strike various locations on the planet's surface.

 

Even in death, the Urluquai would torment the Zorg.

 

As more and more Urluquai began to hurl into the system, they were met with surprise!  Zorg ships from across the sector made beelines for their very first world; for the cradle of their civilization!

 

And they were followed!

 

All four allied races came tumbling towards the Zorg home star, firing every weapon of use at their attackers.  The star system was awash with the fury of thousands of suns and ships clashed and people died.

 

Wreckage began to replace asteroid fields as Urluquai were destroyed before they could approach the inner planets of the system.

 

"All ships, advance!"  The Brosome Commodore declared!

 

Even as they sallied forth, the scars of this battle would not fade.

 

Death collected his bounty that day, even if it wasn't full of civilian souls.

 

After what felt like days of ceaseless waves, there finally was silence.

 

Garthan, Mukitan, Scathyran, Zorg ships flew about, collecting their dead on the many husks that floated around the Zorg Home Star.

 

The Zorg Homeworld was scarred, but not destroyed.  It was clear that the Urluquai had sent over a hundred thousand ships, perhaps their whole fleet.

 

"What would inspire them to act in such a way?"  The Zorg Primarch wondered aloud as his staff worked to pick up the pieces.  "Why would they throw everything at us in an attempt to end our civilization?"

 

The answers lie elsewhere.

 

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

 

Urlu (Urluquai Prime), Star Obscured by Purple Void Nebula

 

Where there was once a world of vast, plentiful seas...

 

There lie a sterile sphere in space covered in stagnant, heavily toxic liquid.

 

Where life once frolicked just underneath the ocean's surface...

 

The remains of that life lie motionless on the sea floor.

 

Urlu was a wet husk of a planet.  And the Stars nearest Urlu's were little better.

 

Amongst these sterile stars, how could there be an interstellar civilization?  What could possibly have evolved here?

 

Urluquai Flagship "Essence of Tranquility", Deep Hunter Class Battlecruiser, Captain's Log found on oceanic world near Gamma Fornacis

 

"We have traveled far....

 

"Only to find nothing.

 

"Urlu...  Exists in this universe.  But her seas are devoid of life.

 

"It seems that our brethren who evolved here murdered themselves using their own stupidity.  How could any race attempt to make use of fuels when their very home is liquid water?

 

"The historians that came with us have long forgotten why and how we developed technology.  Our scientists have concluded that a species that naturally evolved in water is incapable of developing technology in turn.  Those thrice-damned Scathyrans had help from *First Ones*, but it seems we were not so lucky.

 

"The Great Emperor Ulkiss massacred the historians and many other scholars of his generation.  He was known as a tyrant, but wanted the memories of better times purged.  His Children ruled Urlu for generations before he was overthrown.

 

"We forged a Confederacy, believing it to be a far superior form of Government.  Urluquai across the stars could work together, but not own each other.

 

"Some believe that our technology was a gift from some other superior species who visited our world.  The fact that our ships seem so in tune with the fluidity of space is no accident.  Our ships were initially designed to help our race leave our cradle, and Ulkiss used those gifts to massacre everyone who could record or remember the past.

 

"We have come home from another universe, only to find a barren world.

 

"Our scouts tell us that our enemies are far more numerous.  The Zorg, Garthans, Mukitans, and by all accounts even the Scathyrans survived.  Our three nemeses have even thrived!

 

"But what of our race?!  Are we destined to go extinct?

 

"No!  We shall not go gently into the dark night!  If our Great Enemies come again, we will butcher them and wallow about in their blood!

 

"We are a race without a home...  And all of us here would rather go extinct than let our enemies frolic on theirs!"

Edited by Shex

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