Game Of Thrones: In my subconscious it’s taken a sci-fi/geo-political drama twist.

1 05 2012

Game Of Worlds

Ahhh, the sublime pleasure of following a big TV series and letting it pervert your subconscious as you fall asleep.It’s happened with The Wire marathons (I still say “police” as “pol-lice”) and Battlestar Galactica (where I sided with the Cylons and don’t act like you are surprised) and now it’s happened with sex and sorcery fest Game Of Thrones.

If I have one problem with the fantasy genre it’s that it lives in the past. Now I’m not against historical entertainment (although using “historical” to describe Spartacus is stretching things a little it’s still appallingly good fun) but I get a little uneasy when Fantasy glorifies a luddite world in which democracy and equality hasn’t been invented yet. I’m a republican (in the British sense, not the horrific America sense of the term) so swearing fealty to some noble twat because of his birthright sits badly with me. I’m with the anarcho-syndicalist in Monty Python’s Holy Grail, leaders will only fuck things up (unless they are of the Machine variety!)

So this morning my mind tweaked Game Of Thrones into a form more pleasing to my ideology;

What if a technologically advanced world of 7 billion people on the brink of collapse accidentally created  a wormhole to a sparsely developed land of medieval kingdoms who still believed in magic?

The dream opens with a learned and cynical stranger advising a boy-king without a kingdom on who these strange and powerful new ursurpers are in the land of Westeros. With their powerful machines, odd customs and miraculous medicines they have established a foothold on the land and hookwinked lords and bannerman into allowing vast mines and oil drilling to take place. Their peasentry have been turfed off their turnip farms to operate jack hammers and carry pipelines through virgin forests.

Though to the boy-king’s eyes the strangers operate in magic the teacher from afar assures him it’s not magic but something called “science” which makes their miracles come to life. Mirrors that tell stories and show sporting events, noisy contraptions that hover and fly across the land, lamps which burn forever and light up the night sky so the stars are blocked out, huge metal monsters on wheels that dig up the ground like the giants beyond the Wall and most of all a supernatural link connects all the outlanders via little boxes in their hands or things in their ear. The teacher tells the boy that his people are in constant contact with one another regardless of distance. When political machinations occur in Kings Landing the outlanders know about it on the other side of Westeros. What is more, through their mechanical eyes in the sky the outlanders have seen things of the boy’s world only spoken of in legend, strange blue people in the icy north and fire-breathing dragons and vast ruined cities in the deserts of the East. And the Outlanders want to know more.

From a rain soaked pre-fab cabin the Site Administrator pours over last night’s reports as he sups what passes for coffee on this world. Oil and gas production from the Dornish Marshes continues it’s steady increase, millions of gallons of precious energy helping to put Europe back on the world map again. Minerals and metals from mines in the Vale Of Arryn coming in via the new railroad, delivering the raw materials that have brought the economies of the Eurozone back from the brink. But despite all this good news the Administrator feels a great unease, an unease shared by many back home, back through the wormhole accidentally opened ten years ago by a daring experiment at CERN.

The price of Europe’s second renaissance comes at the exploitation of a whole continent. Sure, the nations of Europe have a long tradition of imperialism but those days were supposed to be long behind them. To compete with the new super-power of China and keep their heads above the up and coming BRIC economies the liberal Europeans have had to unearth some dark habits from their past.

Would that the Wormhole been opened in China (and it will surely be any day now when their own wormhole project gives fruit) then the outside world would never have heard about the scandals and crimes committed by rogue operators. The barbaric conditions of the Rio Tinto mines near Harrenhal wouldn’t have been leaked to the Internet by activists and the rebellion would never have happened. Had the citizens of Europe not been so passionate of their right to free speech the Administrator would not have been forced to deploy military units to “pacify” the situation there.

Such acts made the facade the Administrator put up to smooth relations with the people of this world (and the more left wing  members of his own people on this world) ever more difficult. “We healed their sick, cleaned up their filthy cities and showered the upper castes with trinkets and baubles” thought the Administrator  “but some of the more wily characters in Westeros are catching on to what a one sided deal they are really getting from us. We never should have let that little fella onto the Internet, not that he wouldn’t have worked things out for himself eventually anyway.”

The Administrator had a lot of respect for the new king on the Iron Throne, he knew how to play the game and sidelined many dangerous players with little bloodshed (although the massacre at Pyke and the drone strike at Dragonstone were notable exceptions) but he was never sure which side the diminutive guy was on.

The Administrators PA buzzed in the first meeting of the day. It would be a difficult meeting for it was to be with the Director of Sustainability and as the Administrator glanced across the vast and ugly building site that was Base Alpha  (also known as the “Dirty City Of Eternal Lights” by the locals) the Administrator admitted she had a point. Back home they said that by 2030 Earth needed another planet of equal size and resource to sustain her expensive lifestyle (and thank the playful scientists of CERN) they had found one, but the people of Earth were making the same mistakes with this planet as they were with their tired and worn homeworld.

Confidential reports however, hinted that this world wasn’t entirely defenseless against the might of 21st century Earth. Drones had reported strange things going on beyond the impressive wall the locals had built across the North. Relics brought in by traders from the East in exchange for a 3D entertainment system (and the fuel cells to power it) showed levels of technology beyond even that of the home planet. They called it “magic” but the Administrator couldn’t accept that as an explanation and the boffins in the top secret labs of Base Alpha found evidence that past civilisations of this world had a mastery of genetics and nano-technology that were at least a century ahead of Earth’s if not more.

Drone cam footage of Dragon attack near Qarth

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A remake of Flash Gordon is about due….

23 12 2011

OK , how about this…..
Flash Gordon re-imagined where Flash is an agent of some Human Rights NGO who smuggles himself aboard a starship to Gilese 581 d  with the latest cyborg enhancements for a 21 year journey in hibernation.
When he arrives his mission is to find out if all the rumours of genetically engineered beings being used to amuse the bored descendants of the original l33t settlers (people from reddit, 4chan etc) in decadent and elaborate ways. A world of bubble cities in the sky (Gilese 581d is a super-terrestrial waterworld) one such city has a self proclaimed “Emperor of the Universe” who rules a mostly consensual monarchy based on status and sexual deviancy with an underclass of genetically engineered replicants who battle amongst each other for their master’s adoration and amusement.

Ben Fogle to star as the Peter Duncan character from the 1980s version who gets stung by the tree stump creature and dies. Any other actor suggestions welcomed (naturally Brian Blessed to reprise his role, but with a twist maybe.)

More to follow as it comes to me……





Holidays On Chickenworld pt 1

26 10 2008


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Holidays On Chickenworld

It was Rear Admiral Voshal Hreen-Garlds’ idea. Amongst the officer classes of the more civilised Nuur Clans it was understood that such professional and glorious defenders of True Humanity needed to unwind in ways more fitting to their demeanour. So instead of debasing themselves with simple “civilian” amusements Worriunt lead his most trusted staff on what was boisterously known as a “Jaunt.”

Much of the preparation was just for show, the exercise and equipment maintence in the hanger, the bawdy fighting songs as they swaggered into the dropship and the cheeky sexual innuendos as they slipped into the individual landing pods. Some even felt cocky enough to joke on the way down through the atmosphere, the re-entry flames and jarring motions of the descent rockets seemingly just another day at the office for them.

The planet they were falling towards like a drunken rugby team on tour was a secret, or rather a little surprise that almost forgotten, far out beyond explored space. Halfway between the hellish Tarantula Nebula and the sphere of Humanity in the LMC lay the humiliatingly named “Chickenworld.”

It shouldn’t be named “Chickenworld” of course, the intelligent inhabitants of the planet had many names for their homeworld, and when the day came when all the tribes of the planet became nations and those nations started bickering among themselves as to who’s name should be used to refer to their planet to the wider cosmos they would choose a name less demeaning than that of a simple minded and somewhat comical terrestrial farm animal.

The resemblance to chickens was passing anyway; chickens don’t have two independently moving sensor heads nor four prehensile limbs where their wings would be. Nor do chickens wear shawls and adorn their bodies with beads and tools. The intelligent beings of the planet where the size of dogs anyhow, and no group of chickens (except that horrific experiment and art project at 37 Geminorium) could ever hope to create a wealth of culture and technology comparable to Terra in the 15th century.

Sadly when angry and waving their four arms around as about to attack they did dance and squawk like a chicken, a fact which made them so hilarious to fuck around with.

The Nuur Clans liked to pride themselves on their notion of honour, fair play and honest humanity as they went about their business defending Homo Sapien affairs. Sadly, this was not a charity passed onto the other intelligences in the Large Magellanic Cloud. Anything which had the audacity to speak not through a human mouth or not to have been created by the wise hand of humanity was The Enemy.

It was The Enemy which had lead to the downfall of Humanity ten thousand years ago, The Enemy which had turned humankinds machines against them in an orgy of megadeath and self destruction and therefore where-ever The Enemy cropped up (even if that particular species or culture had never even heard of the Tri’Ef’Fid and their war with the humans) they must be smacked down before they could strike again.

It was this rapant xenophobia and genocide which kept the Nuur Clans such a viable empire throughout the millennia. Descendants of the military forces that survived the Nanopocalypse which destroyed the Ashenar civilisation the Clans had cornered the market in playing up to peoples fears of the unknown. Thousands of worlds, habitats and outposts had sworn featly to the Clans in return for their protection form enemies real and imagined (sometimes after a degree of coercion and gunboat diplomacy.)

——————————————–

“More demons, from the sky” noticed Frontaar Eldestson and using his sensor heads, gestured towards the shooting stars in a motion that sadly could only be described as “chickenlike.”

The King fluttered his neck dongles (a sign of his great age) which in most of the kingdoms along the southern coastline of this particular continent was considered a dignified and wise expression, much the same way an old human male would thoughtfully stroke his beard.

“This day comes sooner and sooner as the years come by” The King consorted to his eldest son. “Why it was barely three seasons ago when the great port city of Efralm was smited from the land by the sky demons. I had always said they never hid themselves from the heavens as they should but it was so difficult to hide a city as large as that and the merchant classes just would not take head of the blessed teachings.”

“You were right father, but we shall punish those wicked giants for their bloodlust with the new sciences we obtained from the Eastern Lands” replied the eldest son, clearly fired by the chance of vengeance. “The townsfolk will already be as aware of demons coming as we are, they need their king to lead them in their darkest hour and no doubt in your absence the nurse-brooders will be interfering as is their way these days.”

“And you, my most wise and passionate son must attend to your duties too and remember all that I have taught you about the sky demons and their thousand cursed ways.” His throat dongles quivering with rage, the King spat the words out in a rare display of primal emotion, of the sort not seen since his queen had died of the pox three years. Composing himself for the Masses he descended from the watchtower of his castle to where the townsfolk were already extinguishing their fires and switching off their steam boilers to hide the heat signature of their town.

—————————————

“Dawn is in an hour folks so realign your assholes after that rough landing and lets break out the morning after pills!” joked Worriunt over the local net. He enjoyed the lack of informality you had with Jaunts. So much of his day to day work life was an exercise in front, his personal image as a stout and noble transhuman guardian of Humanity with the legacy of ten millennia behind him had to be maintained at all times in public. Showing weakness amongst the civilians would lead them to getting ideas of running the show for themselves and while that fruitless exercise in democracy was allowed The Enemy could sneak up behind them in the night and slit their throats.

“Maybe Chorlee needs a bit of extra realignment from you, Worri” whispered Psy-ps Squadron Leader Mysfitaa over a private message. Since their brief but adventurous congress ninety four years ago during the Banfaald Cluster insurrection, Mysfitaa and Worriunt had a private understanding that whenever their paths would cross they would always find time to consort and unload their personal troubles on one another.

It was in these private and brief liaisons that both parties vented a lot of psychological baggage. Despite her cold exterior (again, mostly a front) Mysfitaa was a deeply empathic individual who by now knew more about Worriunt than any Purity Council inquisition could find (or so he hoped) and she was more than understanding about the Field Marshall’s predilection for young males whilst on a Jaunt.

Corporal Chorlee was one such hopeful. To the outsider his presence on the trip appeared to be the kind of astonishing opportunity to progress up the ranks by hanging out with the big boys and girls that the Clans liked to throw out to the lower classes once in a while. It was an example of how egalitarian the more progressive Nuur Clans thought themselves to be, no matter what a persons’ background if they had the strength of character they could still get as far in the Clans as any Clansborn transhuman warrior could (but maybe not quite as far, after all glass ceilings had to be maintained and the millennia old linage of the Clansborn had to be protected.)

Chorlee had been only recently fitted with the cybernetic and genetic upgrades as befitting a solider of his rank, a commission obtained on the battlefield during that most frustrating and troublesome insurrection in U Caendevibel (and to Worriunts weary eyes there seemed to nothing but insurrection these days.) Still recovering from his recent modifications at the Clans’ expense the harsh G-force of the drop had struck Chorlee the worst and he staggered out his pod like a sickly child off a rollercoaster.

Stifled chortles ricocheted around the group net as everyone else noticed Chorlees’ newbie state. Most stifled their amusement not so much out of respect for the Field Marshall’s rank but out of respect for an old friend with amusing predilections. Knowing winkies and smileys were distributed across the Jaunts’ network as Worriunt helped his latest “special Jaunt friend” out of the pod and helped him adjust his bio-rhythmic settings.

“Thanks Field Marshall, I feel like a bit of an idiot” said Chorlee looking up to the Field Marshall with those piercing blue eyes. “Don’t mention it, why even the best of us can come a cropper from a Drop” Worriunt winked fraternally back, at the same time suppressing a wry smile as rampant thoughts raced around his head.

“I am ready to get me some chicken-bashin you fuckers!” exclaimed Colonel Panthars as he fired kinetic rounds with reckless bravado into the dawn sky. His fellow members of Battalion XV yelled in approval and fired off a few rounds themselves in a cacophony of phallic abandon. In his youth Worriunt was as boisterous and arrogant as Battalion XV were today and after the psychological mindgames, memewarfare and cyberassaults of U Caendevibel he thought it refreshing to be around good old fashioned infantry soldiers. He reasoned that harking back to his glorious past in the lower ranks might have been just the tonic he needed to settle his troubled mind. In reality they were turning out to be just annoying, tiresome and unprofessional with the drunken Colonel seemingly the worst of the lot. Their little fireworks display would have alerted the “chickens” in the valley of their whereabouts and no doubt the ridiculous creatures were relaying their position to whatever kind of freakish poultry had for a leader.

Mysfitaa relayed a similarly disapproving emoticon to Worriunt and then announced to everyone “Now, we know there is a sizable chickenmen settlement over the bough of that valley so it’s a good old fashioned root march of 10 klicks which should get the juices racing and work up a thirst for beer. Huzzah!”

“Huzzah!” bellowed the fellow Jaunters. This was a curious expression to Worriunt that had seeped in (along with a lot of things) from the Community, apparently a reference to age when the Terrans were all on that one planet in the Great Galaxy and happily knocking the hell out of each other with primitive firearms and swords. Around that time the Terrans were like savages Worriunts’ great-grandfather, Worriunt The Redoubtable was leading the final and glorious cleansing of the traitorous Clan “Memory of the 7th Fleet” before the misguided maniacs could defect to the greedy and cowardly Federation. If the Federation were bad enough nothing about Community (of which the Terrans were a founder member) sounded good to Worriunt. From their blasphemous allegiance with all manner of non-humans, half humans and half animals, to their claim that Earth was the home of all Humanity and to their almost laughable naivety in how civilisations should all just try to get along and live and let live it all sounded like poppycock and balderdash to the Field Marshall.

So many among the rank who had dealings with the Community played up to their stereotype of the Clans being overgrown cadets blundering around on ill advised campaigns purely for long obscured traditions of glory and honour. Shouting “Huzzahs” and growing extravagant facial hair like the caricatures ‘cast on Community networks was a way many appropriated and threw back the insults peddled by the devious Community.

Scout drones were launched into the air to get a full view of the area and a path of destruction was plotted to the nearest large settlement which the dropship now meandering down the gravity well to the prearranged “after match” rendezvous point out to sea recommended as a good chance of sport.

Despite a flood of information now coming over the Jaunts’ local net Worriunt was still pre-occupied with the Community. Its genetically engineered talking animals, its deceitful and freakish xenos, and the thinking machines they thought to be people in their own artificial right meant that by rights they just shouldn’t be. In all the schools of thought that he had been educated in they should have descended into chaos and self destruction centuries ago, like all the perversions that came out of the Dead Core. Nothing quite so extreme and subtly dangerous had been seen in the LMC for many thousands of years. Some amongst his peers even referred to the whole meta-civilisation as a Blight, a seething mess of rampant technology and social chaos almost as dangerous as the Posthumans of Prastoj that threatened to pollute the rest of Humanity with its insanity. And by Great Ashenars Memory they were smug!

——————————–

Frontaar held the seeing tube the ocean merchants used to view at distance to spy the landing site. Though the fireballs in the sky lead to this direction he couldn’t make out any smouldering craters. This could either be confirmation that the sky demons with their stealthy magic had come down or maybe he had miscalculated and the demons were in another valley. For a moment Frontaar was gripped by fear of failure. His father and his kingdom had trusted so much in him and that he might, through his own weakness and stupidity have let everyone down already sickened.

TWACK!, a distant clap of thunder echoed around the valley.

TWACK, TWACK,TWACK, it went again and Frontaars’ dual food and sex orifice curved into what to his species was a devilish smile. He squawked back to his trusted steed, (which on this continent was a creature the size of a pony and with the appearance of a furry caterpillar on eight deers legs) and led his men down to the entrance of the valley leaving no time to explain the plan formulating hurriedly in his head.

———————————

On the invigorating march out the valley (vehicles and levitators were tradionally eschewed on activities like this) the Jaunters amused themselves with AV footage and memory-cordings of previous Jaunters out “chickenbashin” The members of Battalion XV were clogging the groupnet with cruel laughter and de-humanising jibes. A scene of a Clansman burning down a market town made out of mud-dwellings that were disguised as piles of rocks prompted one infantrymen to gleefully comment “man, I’m gonna cook me up some of those chickenmen with some old Granjee herbs and some baked potatoes and we’re gonna have ourselves some good old fashioned meat-fry!”

“I wouldn’t.” icily chided Mysfitaa. “This whole planet is an Original, nothing here is edible. It all evolved without the Hand Of Man so don’t eat it and don’t fuck it!”

——————————————–

“It’s a bottleneck, like when the Enflaat tribe made their stand at Tempus Ridge in the old legends” explained an excited Frontaar, his arms flapping excitedly. “We use the new exploding power to collapse that narrow passage there and then while they are trapped we unleash a timely vengeance for Efralm and for all the times those sky demons have plagued us!” embiggened the Kings son and stamping the ground in a manner which to his species expressed noble defiance but to humans could only be described as “chickenlike.” His fellow countrymen stomped their feet in agreement and emboldened by the possibility of finally getting their own back for centuries if not millennia of oppression and death from the skies.

In an interesting cross-cultural co-incidence many of the “chickenmen” referred to themselves in their own languages as “Children of the Soil.” This relates to their egg hatching nature where “Soilers” emerge from their fleshy pod into a nest half buried in the ground. These days and particularly in Frontaars affluent kingdom artificial nests that were warmed by steam boilers were more and more common which had led to a major societal change in for sexless “nurse-brooders” of the species. Due to the long gestation of the fleshy pods and the high death rate the nurse brooders traditionally found themselves tied to their nests all day, rarely playing a part in larger affairs. But now, with the steam boilers allowing some escape from their domestic servitude they had suddenly become a lot more vocal in the running of the Soilers affairs if only because they liked to chatter and gossip. Times were certainly changing for the Children of the Soil so maybe an omen for victory against the Skydemons hoped Frontaar.

————————————

“Am I right in thinking that my sensors show there are chickenmen and those weird horse things along that ridge near the valley passage?” asked an unsure Chorlee. Worriunt smiled, despite what some had said (never to his face, mind) the young man was not just along to be Worriunts plaything. He had promise, as shown at U Caendevibel when Chorlees’ quick action in his native world of Betor Tipic had prevented his squad from being sucked out of a domed city and into the hardly breathable air of the barely terraformed planet. Corporal Chorlee (as he was after that) had shown a lot more strength of character and allegiance to the Clans than many of the others in U Caendevibel the majority of whom seemed ambivalent to the insurrection. Chorlee was one of the few good points in the whole misbegotten mess of that system, perhaps the only.

“That’s right, I spotted them about half and hour back but there’s nothing they can do at that distance. Even though the Chickenmen now have chemical projectile weapons they make as much dent in our armour as their poison darts did so nothing to fear” advised Worriunt.

“They look even more stupid with guns than they did with the spears” laughed Colonel Panthar and fired an aimless shot towards the general direction of the Soilers, who were by now quite close. “Take that your alien fucktards! Whoo, YEAH!” heckled the Colonel who was gyrating his groin offensively, which his fellow battalion members found to be the height of wit.

——————————————

Frontaar had forgotten how terrifying the sky giants weapons were close up. As Panthars’ volley hit the ground around them some were flung from their steeds but Frontaars’ heart swelled with pride as his fellow warriors who had hidden themselves in the valley entrance kept their subterfuge and nerve despite the explosions around them.

“When confronted with a more powerful foe, evade. Lead them into a trap, try and turn their own weaknesses against themselves” a wise old Soiler had taught Frontaar. The Kings’ son had spent years away from his family and his homeland being taught by the wisest and most experienced Soilers in all the lands (including some kingdoms which Frontaar thought only existed in legend) on how to possibly fight back against the sky demons. This was a recent change of events, for so long the Children of the Soil had thought the devils from the sky to be a mere force of nature or god, something only prayer or fate could deal with and not something they could realistically do anything about.

But then a fateful day three centuries ago one of the giants appeared to remove its head after destroying the city of Gra’heim. It turned out it wasn’t the demons night-black skull but a helmet, protecting some kind of horrific one headed being which then proceeded to stumble and vomit over the charred remains of the Holy Gardens of Gra’heim.

The Priestess of Gra’heim saw this bizarre and unholy event and soon told all she could of it. Though the sky-demons were mighty and in their suit impervious to all that the Soilers could throw at them they were but of flesh and blood like them. And if they vomited, they could be killed. Having only one head put them at a disadvantage too.

—————————————-

“I think it’s about to kick off, they’re jumping about on the path ahead” commented Worriunt.

“I’m going to run up ahead and kick the little fuckers to death” laughed Panthar and he galloped up the path, the powersuit amplifying his movement so it felt like a giant gorilla in crimson and gold embossed armour was charging up the passage. His cohorts followed him in wild abandon, like troops who had spent too long in a jungle and let the primal frenzy get to them.

Out the corner of his eye and just as he passed through the tightest part of the passage a chickenman jumped out to the side the Colonel with a flaming torch. As he turned his arm with a maser pistol mounted on it one side of the valley exploded, catching Panthar and the chickenman in the blast. The dust from the bellowed down the passage to a stunned Jaunt and was then followed by Panthars cursing which had reached new heights of obscenity. A second explosion went off, this time higher up the valley side and a massive boulder came down to trap Panthar which was then followed by a comical trombone like sound.

————————————

Frontaar wept for the death of Wantsee Thirdson, even though he knew his role was dangerous and he was given every chance to decline with honour the chance to get one back for his people fired him on. He sounded the mighty and noble horn his father had given him to lead other into battle. “Wantsee will be honoured” thought the prince, “ if there was a kingdom to get back to.”

————————————

(continued in Pt 2)





Stuff and things from the 31st Century.

7 09 2008

Pascal on Altair: Vignettes from the Old Worlds

Raighleigh watched as one of the larger WD-800s helped a struggling AF Series "Little Rascal" move a cargo container. "Look," she said "that big robot is helping the little one!" Pascal seemed remarkably unmoved at this revelation of machine altruism. "I wouldn’t be too amazed by it" he mentioned, barely looking up from the screen. "On this planet the authorities made sure that all cybernetic devices capable of even a monkey like level of awareness have morals. Kinda like the Three Laws but for machines which don’t even come near being self aware…"
Pascal went on to explain, his pleasure in complaining about eccentricities of Krell now more important than the data he was watching on the screen.” You see it comes from the founders of this planet all being religious, mostly Catholics. And with their Industrial Age thinking they were never really comfortable with the idea of the Machines amongst their society so every once in a while a Board or two gets up some ridiculous meme about" , and with a derisive snort Pascal concluded with "immoral godless machines" (the irony that the 100km sphere which orbited Krell and many believed to be a mouthpiece to God was nothing but a machine itself was never lost on him.)
"So a new law is passed making sure toasters and garden-bots are programmed to kind and considerate to one another and especially their human masters."

"Pascal," sighed Raighleigh "if you hate this planet so much why do you live here? It’s not like you don’t have a choice to live wherever and with who ever you want?" Raighleigh had recited that ago old tautology in the Community, that if for whatever reason you didn’t like the society you grew up in you could always move to one you did want to be a part of , or start your own out on the frontier. Now that M-space travel and wormholes were commonplace in the affluent Community there was no excuse for whinging away on a planet you just couldn’t get to grips with. This made Pascals bitterness towards the people he shared a planet with all the more puzzling.

"I’ve got family here, amongst the Kabbalists. And strange though it may sound, this place is my home." Pascal finally looked directly at Raighleigh, the harsh blue light of the Altairian sun amplifying his piercing expression as he confessed his perplexing reasons for being on Krell.

Another Day in the Life of the Century Eagle

"Well, there is that theory isn’t there…." Victar went on to explain. "Theory?" questioned Ingstock, already suspicious of another onslaught of pop culture babble.
"Yeah, the theory that since the dawn of the Information Age all our cultural artefacts have been endlessly reproduced and regurgitated for each generation and whereas in earlier times the narrative rivers which guided the various isolated communities were prone to noise and reducing memes and led to wildly varying mindsets around the globe the homogenisation and……"
Ingstock closed his eyes as if a headache were coming on.
"…..standardisation of culture across the Earth since the 20th century has led to repetitive cycle that rarely progresses. So then, if the culture which illustrates our mindset is endlessly repeating itself then it is no wonder that memes from 1000 years ago can still
be prescient today." continued Victar who by now was on a roll and clearly enjoying himself. "If it weren’t for the injection of fresh memecomplexes from other intelligences such as the Blee and all the way across to genetically modified dolphins the narratives of the Information Age would be even more dominant in the Terran-based human noosphere!"
"Right" commented Ingstock, his face a mixture of wariness and tired bemusement. "So that’s why in the year 3008AD somebody still gets Batman?"
Ingstock turned away from Victars exalted face, clearly ending any further discussion. As he turned his worlds-weary head to calibrate the 11-dimensional fractals in the starboard M-jump nacelle he thought to himself that he much preferred Victar on his femme days, when he was masculine he was the most persistent geek.


Field Marshall Worriunt The Grand:

"and his journeys through the decadence of the Community”

The exoskeleton that encased his body was itself covered in tiny sculptures, sometimes abstract, sometimes of humanoid figures that seemed to be as alive as the man inside and expressing various emotions in much the way his natural body would. For example the anthropomorphic robot figurines that “lived” on his knees resembled a beloved childhood pet robot, all big headed and cute but capable of writhing around on his knees to emote all kinds of things. Such an intricate and ornate battledress was worn by someone who had done well in the martial rankings of the Nuur Clans. A suit no doubt earnt punishing the enemies of Humanity, from the millennia old but still marauding drone fleets of Mazdans, through to the everyday criminals that dared prey upon those populations under the “benevolent” protection of the Clans to the Ancient Enemy of the Tri’Ef’Ed the perennial bogeyman of the humans in the LMC.

Right now Worriunts’ impressive body armour was displaying a range of feelings, from his pharmologicaly inspired comfort and blissful satisfaction on the sprawling silken bed to a vague sense of restless and a need to get up.
Luckily for him that eternal battle most people feel between the drug induced bubble of warmth and an urgent need to perform the usual bodily functions was unlikely to affect his current mood. With a contented sigh he relieved himself where he lay and let the absorbent innards of this ornate red and white cybernetic suit take care of the mess and recycle it into a little flask of purified water. He would have some fun with that later with the lotus eaters writhing orgasmically around him.





Zombie Apocalypse

10 08 2008

zombie apocalypse

Sysum : Terrestrial world near Prastoj which was predominately run along communist lines. The posthumans, for reasons known only to themselves unleashed a nano-virus which turned infected into mindless meat puppets intent on spreading the virus further. The zombie plague although not actually reanimating the dead reduced a persons intellect to that of a drunken ape by causing the death of the part of the brain responsible for higher reasoning and general self awareness (“I think therefore I am”) and also bestowed incredible resilience to pain and injury hence the impression that the dead had taken over the world.
Due to Sysums largely peaceful and communist nature the virus spread quickly as the average citizen didn’t have firearms to protect themselves and relied too much on the State to protect them. The government collapsed under such chaos and soon only isolated communities (some of whom were seen as barbaric and backward due to their survivalist nature before the zombie plagues) and the few colonies in space survived. The Spacers inhabited three torus style stations, a rudimentary space elevator and high prestige bases on two of Sysums moons. The few thousand who dwelled in space were considered the cream of the crop of the Party’s ideal, plus a few brilliant eccentrics who the State felt would be better placed away from the general population.

The communist spacers decided to sterilise the world using dirty bombs to clear the vast swarms of zombies, much to the horror of the few uninfected survivors and the odd weapon toting eccentric who hadn’t been placed under arrest by “emergency measures.”
Whilst debate hotly ensued in space down below the zombies had started to spread out from the cities in search of food , as civilisation collapsed there was no-one to resupply the government supermarkets or work the fields. During this exodus a dirty bomb was detonated over the most densely populated continent wiping out the zombies and many survivors too. The spacers were shown the error of their ways when a final radio transmission from an isolated community barricaded up in the capital of the continent was received lamenting the fact they had come so far in the zombie apocalypse only to be killed by their own kind.
After that tragedy it was decided to let things run their course and the planet was quarantined but for the ocean based terminal at the space elevator (although the survivor communities were eventually supported by supply drops from orbit) eventually the zombies , not being great at keeping a civilisation going started to die off.
In the following centuries while Sysum rebuilt itself the actual cause of the catastrophe was uncovered. Not only was the nano-viral nature of the plague revealed but also the method in which it came to Sysum in the first place, five “meteorites” that hit the world shortly before the chaos started. This fact and combined with Sysums now passionately survivalist nature (personal firearms were carried as a matter of everyday life and eventually became a fashion accessory) led to Sysums ascendance as a regional military power. When the wormhole to Mundessentlitz was rediscovered a massive armament program began as the Sysums believe who-ever was responsible for the horrors that had befallen them would be out there in the depths of space. Dominating the region (even defiantly resisting Mellard subversion) they eventually tracked down those responsible and led a powerful allied fleet to Prastoj in revenge.
After much preparation the battle was hard fought with the Prastoj only just managing to defeat the Allied fleet. The Allies even managed to infect the suspected artificial world of Artefact Terrus with a reverse engineered zombie virus (despite much public unease with its development and use) which had little effect on the posthumans and led to the Sysum alliance being shunned by the wider galaxy for using the verboten technology.
By the time the Community came onto the scene the Sysum Alliance though militarily strong had lost a number of its members and was in the grip of a recession brought about by the trade sanctions and destruction of much of its once mighty fleet.
In the interests of regional stability and having sympathy for the plight of Sysum (despite having reservations about its militarism) the Community has is currently working on trade and cultural links, also keen to have military allies in the volatile region and making a bold (and some would argue empty) pledge to bring the posthumans responsible for the zombie virus to justice.





The Erotic Beasts of Memulihul

8 08 2008

The Erotic Beasts of Memulihul were legendary even in Ashenar times. Using exotic pheromones and inter-species sexuality some delusional genetic hobbyist created a whole group of species who use sex as a weapon. Just before the Nanopocalypse these beasts were released into the wilds of the tidally locked world and caused sexy havoc amongst the population as the chaos of the Devils attack came down on ancient Memulihul.
Being a Metahuman world a fair few of the residents survived the destruction, their almost human bodies were spared from being devoured by grey goo although the experience of the insanity of those times left their impression on the surviving Memuls (add to that the horror of seeing people copulate then be consumed or enslaved by the Erotic Beasts as all Civilisation collapsed around them.)
Quickly developing a genetic resistance to the Beasts advances the surviving Memuls grew to view them with a wary respect. In the skewered histories of Memulihul the Erotic Beasts came to be part of the salvation from the decadent and oppressive “True Humans” of Ashenar times who had viewed the adapted Memuls as a lesser class. Whether this was how the sub-species of Humanity were treated is a matter of some debate, the Metahumans in this region of space rarely suffered from the prejudices that other genetically engineered people endured in Ashenar society and they had full access to cyberspace and nanoreplicators. This twisting of the facts may have been to create an enemy figure in the narrative of the surviving Memuls, in a universe gone insane and on a world where gigantic sexual beasts stalk it helps to have somebody to blame.
Although the Memuls are immune to the Erotic Beasts offworlders are not and a thriving if not disturbing trade in the tamed variety of beasts helps keep the economy of Memulihul afloat and warrants multiple wormhole links to the system. Adventure tourists (usually from the Community) come to Memulihul to risk serious injury and sexual violation to run with the Beasts on the plains of the world which has now leant its name to a whole sub-genre of pornography.