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  #31  
Old June 29th, 2002, 09:38 AM

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Default Re: Rise of the Remorhaz Society

Consolidation

2406.7

Governor Luciano Raillo looked out over the surface of the planet Norak. The world that the Norak had once called home was a bLasted, shattered land. Fires from the orbital bombardment still burned over the horizon. Great craters could be seen from low orbit, the only remaining indicator of the previous existence of a Norakian city. The scale of the destruction made him shiver. Maybe we should have named this planet Cinder, he thought.
It was his job to establish this planet as a Remorhaz colony. He was determined to rebuild this world, but on the bones of two billion Norakian corpses. How would that sit with the colonists? It was a good thing they had a larger than usual Army compliment with them. That should help keep everyone in line…for a while. He looked up into the night sky, and could see the bright stars that were actually Remorhaz ships. They needed Norak as a forward supply base, and so that was the priority. Raillo turned back to his work, and tried not to think about what the future held.

On the edge of the Lapzooli system, Nemesis and her fleet raced to intercept the Norak Ampara destroyer that was trying to run for the wormhole to Wurtuy. It would be three frigates against one destroyer. Gina wanted to take this ship down to atone for her defeat at The Battle of the Rocks.
As they approached the quadrant where the Ampara was, Gina worked out the battle plan with Captain Jennings and Captain Reed. Nemesis would try and hold the destroyer’s attention while Hyperion and Furious took up positions on his flanks. The Norakian had longer-range missiles, and flanking him might be their only hope of getting a hit in on him.
The Ampara fired first, locking up Hyperion at extreme range and firing off a salvo. Captain Reed kept his ship out of harm’s way as Nemesis and Furious closed range. The Norakian captain fired and moved, targeting whichever ship was closest. Gina got a wonderful surprise, as a flight of missiles from Furious approached the Ampara were knocked out of the sky by some type of point defense laser mounted on the ship.
We need get some of those! Gina thought. Suddenly, the Ampara fired at Nemesis. Gina moved the ship out of range while the other two Remorhaz ships closed. Suddenly, the Norakian closed within missile range of both Nemesis and Hyperion. Both ships emptied their tubes, and the Ampara now had four missiles streaking toward her. The flight from Nemesis struck first. The point defense weapons knocked one of the missiles down, but the other streaked in for the kill. Before the missile could hit the hull, there was a tremendous bLast as the missile struck some sort of shield surrounding the Ampara.
“Son of a *****!”
“Captain, the missiles from Hyperion are closing on the target!…Captain, direct hit with both missiles!”
Gina watched the tactical display that hovered before her eyes. The two shots from Hyperion had hurt the Norakian destroyer. She could see two holes in the ship where the engines had been, and a large hole in the starboard “wing”.
She watched the missiles from Furious bypass the remaining point defenses and slam into the destroyer, shredding her port side. The Ampara was crippled. Gina watched in horror as Hyperion turned into the Norak missiles and headed for her position.
She stabbed the com link. “Reed! You still have two missiles homing on you!” She came in on the middle of a frantic conversation on the bridge of Hyperion.
“Belay that turn, Helm! Damn it, Mr. Douglass, what were you thinking?”
The com went dead as the two Norakian missiles struck Hyperion on her starboard side. One missile crashed thru the thin hull and continued into the rear of the ship before exploding in the engine room. All but two ion engines were vaporized in the explosion, along with the entire engineering crew. The second missile exploded right outside of the hull next to “broadway”, the main corridor stretching the length of the ship. Ten crewmen were killed instantly in the explosion, and another two were sucked out into space before the section could be sealed off. Hyperion was out of the fight.
It didn’t matter much. One Last salvo from Nemesis finished the Ampara. The missiles must have struck the engine core, because an explosion started in the aft of the destroyer and tore thru the ship, finally splitting her into pieces before the fireball burned out in the vacuum of space.
Gina sat back in her command chair. “Nice shooting, Weps. Get yourself a cup of coffee. Sensor, let me know if you see any sign of survivors.”
She keyed the com unit again. Both Captain Reed and Captain Jennings faces appeared on screen.
“Walt, how is Hyperion?”
Walter looked haggard. “Most of the fires are under control, and the exposed areas are sealed off. I would like it if you could take my wounded, Gina?”
Gina nodded. “We’ll come along side, Walt. What happened?”
Captain Reed got a concerned look on his face. “My XO made a bad decision. He was trying to open up the range from the missiles, but didn’t get the intercept angle correct. Ahhh, I should have been watching closer. I take full responsibility.”
Gina shook her head. “Walt, we’ll get it straightened out back home. Right now, let’s get you to port, ok?”
Captain Reed managed a weak smile and nodded. He broke the link.
Gina looked at the com unit. “Rita, I need you to cover us while we transfer the wounded, alright?”
Rita nodded. “Anything else you need, Gina?”
“How about a month of shore leave and a nice bath?”
They both laughed. It would be a while before that would be a reality.

Remorhaz sent a colony ship to colonize the Yukra system. There was a large rock planet with an oxygen atmosphere there. Admiral Urian dispatched Falcon to escort her.

2406.8

Commandant Shawn Hunter looked over at his staff. They had been working at this for months now, and he believed that they had all of the kinks worked out. Since pretty much everything up until now regarding space to surface invasion had been theory, everything that they were working on was groundbreaking. Hunter and his officers had been up in orbit, dropped from a modified berth in the Space Yard that simulated a troop transport (none had been built yet, but Hunter had a design), and simulated a hot landing in the one prototype assault carrier that had been built. They had been running computer simulations and writing documents. They had been observing the training of the new Space Marines, ensuring that the Space Marine Corps doctrine was being instilled into these new recruits. Over the Last few months, these men had earned their pay, to say the least. All of that hard work seemed to be paying off, however, as it seemed that they had covered most of the bases.
Hunter picked up his data unit and glanced at the final unit structure. They would raise one complete division to start. The troops would come from all over the society, and each planet would have a training base established on it. The basic Space Marine Corps unit outline was as follows:

Platoon-the basic fighting unit of the Corps. The platoon could actually be divided into two squads, but most of the time would fight as a cohesive unit. The platoon was structured around a manpower goal of 20 men, as that was the troop capacity of the new assault carriers. A Sub Lieutenant commanded this unit.
Company-5 platoons made up a Company. A Captain or a Major commanded this unit. It consisted of about 100 men and the company staff.
Battallion-4 Companies made up a Battalion. This unit was 400 men and was commanded by a Major or a Lieutenant Colonel. This formation was the smallest formation to have heavy artillery integrated into it.
Brigade-4 Battalions made up a Brigade. A brigade consisted of 1600 men plus the commanding Colonel and his staff. The Brigade would have a complete staff and be capable of operation as an independent entity for extended periods of time. Most planetary assaults would be carried out in Brigade strength.
Divison-3 Brigades made up a Division. This was the largest Marine unit, and was commanded by a Brigadier or higher-ranking General. This unit would hardly ever be gathered in one place. It consisted of around 5000 men and a total of 330 assault craft. Also assigned to it were multiple transport shuttles, speeders, and other transportation mediums.
In an operation, the ranking Space Marine Corps officer would be in charge of the planetary assault. The basic doctrine for an assault was the assaulting of key points on an enemy planet by Battalion side units, or smaller. Only on rare occasions would an entire Brigade be dropped for an assault upon one objective.
The assault craft were an integral part of the Space Marine Corps fighting unit. Not only did it serve as the drop ship for the troops, but also once on the surface its guns would provide fire support at the platoon level. It’s high speed and rough terrain maneuverability made the Space Marine platoon a force to be reckoned with.
Some of the officers were toying with the idea of assigning Space Marines to ships, allowing them to act as boarders or become an extra security force for the ship. There was a lot more research to be done before this was even attempted.
Hunter wanted to instill esprit de corps into his men, and train them mainly in assault operations. At times the Space Marine Corps would act as garrison troops, but their primary mission was planetary assault.
The Space Marine Corps was coming together. Hunter listened as his staff gave him figures on the various training operations going on throughout the Society. It looked as if the officers and non-coms brought over from the other services were really building a team spirit, and believing that they were becoming an elite fighting unit.
As night approached, Hunter sent all of his officers home for a night of well-deserved rest. For him, there was no rest. He had to write up his findings for the Chairman.

2406.9

The Repair Ship Icelus moved into position to begin repairs to Hyperion. The fleet had been creeping along at a snails pace, but some underway repairs should get them to Norak sooner. Captain Jager watched in wonder as the ship mounted repair bay went to work on the damaged frigate. I sort of looked like a giant insect was feeding on Hyperion with all of the arms from the repair ship moving about, cutting something here, removing something there. Well, the Admiral was right, she thought. The fleet is definitely becoming self-sufficient. It was a good thing, too. They had to find out where the rest of the Norak worlds were, and eliminate or capture them. It made Jager uneasy to thing of Lapzooli as Remorhaz space. She kept expecting the Norak to come charging thru a wormhole with an armada which they had no chance of stopping coming to claim their birthright. Then again, maybe they were on the edge of extension.

In the Xillantha system, RSS Hawk jumped thru the wormhole where Eagle met her fate. Lieutenant Commander Harry Norton was expecting to find the Rage home system there, but instead was greeted by an empty system populated with asteroid fields. This system looked to be another key junction in the galaxy. If they could hold this system, they might be able to eliminate any Rage threat to the Lapzooli system. Commodore Lu requested a satellite field be laid in the wormhole as soon as possible. The more early warning, the better.

2407.0

Governor Kalashnikov woke to the sound of his com unit ringing. A full nights rest is all that I ask for, he thought. Every night for the past year it seemed as if something required his attention. Couldn’t anyone handle things by themselves? Imitative! That’s they key, boys! He told them that time and time again, and yet here he was, wiping the sleep from his eyes. Whoever it was had better have a good reason for waking him. He pushed the button to answer.
He was greeted by the face of Rear Admiral Shiro Sakazawa. “Sorry to wake you, governor, but I’m issuing a Class One alert for the colony. Sensors picked up a large Rage fleet, and it looks like they are headed our way at full steam. I think you should get your people under cover, as much as possible.”
“Thank you, Admiral. Shall I switch production to defensive systems again?” Honestly, Kalashnikov was getting a bit tired of this. He had been governor of Fort Justice for a little over a year, and he had put his colony on alert three times before. Each time, the Rage fleet turned away. This time, he honestly didn’t care.
“Do what you think is best, Governor. We will be up here protecting you throughout.”
Kalashnikov shook his head. More of the same non-committal chest thumping. These Navy types had a flare for the dramatic. Life didn’t work out that way, in his experience. Life was messy. It wasn’t some heroic epic to be sung for eons.
“Thanks for your help, Admiral.” With that, Kalashnikov broke the connection. He considered going back to bed, but decided against it. If the Rage did attack, hopefully some of his people would survive. He doubted very much that the “grand fleet” would.

On Norak, the resupply base was finished. Commodore Lu ordered an expeditionary fleet be organized to check out the wormhole thru which the Norak destroyer had appeared. For this mission he detached Nemesis and Furious. They were to check the system for Norak presence. If they did detect the Norak, they were to gather as much information as possible and await further instructions.

To be continued...
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  #32  
Old June 29th, 2002, 04:44 PM

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Default Re: Rise of the Remorhaz Society

Well done sachmo! Keep it coming!
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  #33  
Old June 30th, 2002, 04:15 AM
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Default Re: Rise of the Remorhaz Society

I have just started book VI, the Generals. Actually I am half way through it. The Corp is coming. I have all the books, a neighbor of kindred spirits loanded them too me. I must admit, They are a good read. I am glad that I am not alone in reading and liking them.

I also read the Clive Cussler "Dirk Pitt" series. Inca Gold is a damn fine book.

I am about to read Atlantis Found, as soon as I am finished with The Generals.
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  #34  
Old June 30th, 2002, 11:46 AM

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Default Re: Rise of the Remorhaz Society

Norak Continuum in Check

2407.1-.2

The fleet was gaining strength. This month both Glory and Remorhaz launched Nemesis Class C Frigates, the RSS Gallant and the RSS Mercury respectively. Both ships were ordered to reinforce the Xillantha Defense Fleet orbiting Fort Justice.

In the Xillantha system, the planet Fort Justice was able to breathe a sigh of relief as both Rage fleets made for the wormhole leading to the Lundra System. This did not disappoint Rear Admiral Sakazawa, as he currently had a fleet consisting of one destroyer, one frigate and a system patrol ship. He believed he could make do with what he had, but as for guaranteeing the well being of the colonists on Fort Justice he was not sure. Any delay by the Rage was another day for the Navy to strengthen his fleet.
Commandant Hunter watched nervously as the first production M1 Blazer Assault Craft was hauled into the compound. This was the prototype of the actual production model, the final design of the assault craft his troops would be riding into battle. By the end of the month, he expected to have around 17 Blazers built, enough for almost an entire company. Meanwhile, the training facilities on other planets would be producing troops also, and the workers at Glory Space Yard were hard at work building the first production troop transport. They expected to launch her within the next two months. Then, his Marines would ship off to try and help knock the Norak Continuum out of the war once and for all. With the Blazer in production, Hunter believed that they could.
Time to suit up, he thought. Today would be the first actual combat drop of this final model of the Blazer, and Hunter intended to be along for the ride. He strapped on his combat armor and headed for the Blazer.

Captain Jager was ready for anything. They expected the jump to take them into Norak space. In fact, she half expected to run straight into a Norak fleet. As Nemesis and Furious finished the jump, they found themselves in a strange system. The Regotha system had three stars; a blue, a white, and a red star. Gina believed that it was the first system that they had found with three stars. The light given off by them was dazzling. All three stars mixed to give the system an almost purple glow, with green halos. The view was breathtaking. All of the planets were clustered in the northeastern quadrants of the system. Three worlds in this system had Norakian presence on them. The largest was Regotha I, a rock world with a carbon dioxide atmosphere. Sensors showed about 63 million colonists on this world. Second was Regotha II, a tiny rock world with a carbon dioxide atmosphere. There were about 61 million Norak on this planet. Third was Regotha III, a rock world with an oxygen atmosphere. There were only 14 million colonists on this world, with the majority probably on the colony ship parked in orbit over the planet. This planet would be a prime target for the Space Marines, whenever they were ready. Captain Jager sent all of the data back to fleet, and then made course for the asteroid field present in this system. Within hours, she was informed that all of Gamma Fleet less RSS Intimidator was headed for the Regotha system. Jager was to hold her fleet and observe until Gamma could join them, which shouldn’t take more than a month.

2407.3

The first company of Space Marines was officially deployed. The multi-purpose transport RSS Marne headed for Salvation, then Black Hills to pick up two more full companies. The full battalion would then be transported to a landing ship, which would head for the Regotha system, where the first ship to surface invasion in known history would take place. The men were in high spirits, and looking forward to the journey.

In the Regotha system, Commodore Lu ordered Gamma Fleet to make for Regotha I. Zeta Fleet, consisting of Nemesis and Furious were ordered to guard the warp point.
“Captain Jager, the Norak colony ship is within range.” Commander Olaf Svenson said. “We could jump her if you would like, and still be between anything the Norak could launch and the wormhole.”
Gina weighed her options. The XO was right, even if the colony ship slipped past them, they could easily catch her before she made the wormhole. If any other Norak ship tried to slip past, they would be in fine intercept position.
She looked at the Commander. “Alright, Mr. Svenson, set a course to intercept that colony ship. Sparks, radio Furious and pass the word along. Let’s get moving, folks. We don’t want that colony ship to get away.”
Gina watched as her crew jumped to the task at hand. They were getting very good. Everything went like clockwork. She smiled, thinking of the early days before the war, when she and her crew were getting to know each other. Now they were a unit, confident and deadly.

2407.4

Glory launched the RSS Mongoose the first troop transport in the Remorhaz Navy. She moved to rendezvous with Marne for the transfer of troops.

In Regotha, Zeta Fleet closed on Regotha II, determined to intercept any ship attempting to get to the southern wormhole. Across the system, Gamma Fleet headed inexorably toward Regotha I.

The Xillantha Defense Fleet received some much-needed reinforcements as the frigate Gallant and the destroyer Honor arrived and joined the fleet.

2407.5

The month opened with Gamma Fleet destroying the Norak colony on Regotha I. Zeta Fleet was also able to destroy the Norak colony on Regotha II, and scout out the wormhole from the system. The Knoglam system was devoid of any planets. Was it possible that Regotha III was the Last Norakian planet in the galaxy?

The Research Guild made a significant breakthrough in propulsion technology. The Contra-Terrene engine was discovered. This engine relied mainly on anti-matter to provide the locomotion. It was also discovered that an extra anti-matter “booster pack” could be added to the engines, to provide another factor of speed. Unfortunately, the process consumed the pack in the process, along with anything in a two-foot radius. So the Guild created an anti-gravity suspension mount for the “booster pack” which would allow it to be fitted on ships and activated whenever the crew needed extra speed. With the anti-matter drive, the scientists believed that they could create a weapon that would use that same anti-matter to overload and destroy an enemy ship’s engines. Of course this would require additional research.

In the Yakura System, Remorhaz colonists landed on the planet Yakura II, and renamed the settlement Timmeron. This colony was now the furthest Remorhaz colony to date. The System Patrol Ships Falcon and Peregrine were already in orbit around the planet, but low on supplies. The colonists started constructing a supply base. This base would expand the frontiers of the Remorhaz Society.
The Marne and the Mongoose met up over Black Hills. All of the Space Marines were transferred, and Mongoose headed for Glory to pick up the Last Company of Marines. Before she left the system, Mongoose would be loaded with a full Regiment of Space Marines.

Remorhaz launched another frigate, the RSS Midguard. She took up garrison duty in orbit around Remorhaz.

The Rage front was still quite. Other than their unexplained movements into Remorhaz space, they had attacked no Remorhaz world since Cirius was destroyed. The Admiralty began running scenarios, trying to find the best course of action to pursue against them, once Norak was taken out of the war. They had come up with nothing concrete yet, but Grand Admiral Urian always had something up his sleeve. Depending on what Zeta Fleet found on their next jump, the Navy might be able to come at the Rage from three sides, depending on the wormhole configuration. Time would tell, but the Grand Admiral had to smile. Yes, the Navy would make the Rage pay for starting this bloody war. It was only a matter of time.

To be continued...
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  #35  
Old July 1st, 2002, 06:41 AM
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Default Re: Rise of the Remorhaz Society

Wow, I just now got done reading this Last "installment" of your story. Due to lack of time I had to wait till tonight to read it. But excellent job that's to say the least. Loving how this story is developing. The episode b4 this Last one was great too. All newbies should read this and History of the Galaxy thread. By far the 2 best story threads I've ever seen. Keep it up!
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  #36  
Old July 1st, 2002, 04:42 PM

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Default Re: Rise of the Remorhaz Society

Thank you... *BLUSH*

I'm glad people are enjoying it!
I too am enjoying The History of the Galaxy thread. The different points of view make it an incredibly interesting story. I wish I was part of that game!!
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  #37  
Old July 1st, 2002, 07:52 PM
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Default Re: Rise of the Remorhaz Society

Quote:
Originally posted by sachmo:
I too am enjoying The History of the Galaxy thread. The different points of view make it an incredibly interesting story. I wish I was part of that game!!
Really? Well, that could be arranged if you are serious. There are still 4 races being controlled by the AI in that game. I left them closed because I didn't figure anyone would be interested in controlling them because they are so small. One is a Neutral, which really wouldn't allow much because you would be hardcoded into not ever leaving your home system. The other three are the Amon'krie, the Cue Cappa and the Sergetti. I don't recommend the Sergetti as they are about to be the target of a serious revenge war on my part , but the Amon'krie and Cue Cappa would allow for some creative role play for someone. They are pretty small and boxed in between the Norak and myself, but they would allow you to get involved in the story. The point of the History game isn't to win anyway.

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Old July 1st, 2002, 08:07 PM

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YES! I would enjoy playing in the history game and being a part of...history! A couple of question, though, as I have not been in a multiplayer game before:

1. How much free time would I need to have to take part in this type of game?

2. Is it PBEM?

3. Will my relative lack of experience hinder the game in any way?

4. How do I sign up?

If I can provide enough time to join the game, and I can figure out how it works, I would love to join.
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Old July 2nd, 2002, 02:18 AM
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Ok, well it is a PBW game. Since you aren't that familier with multiplayer maybe it's best to hold off for now. This game appears to be working towards a conclusion in the not too distant future. We have talked about doing another history type game with more players. The people that stepped into the game late have done a great job, but I am sure all of them would appreciate a chance to show what they can do frmo the beginning.

That would give you time to get familier with the PBW format and then be ready to go when the History 2 starts in a couple months.

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Old July 5th, 2002, 12:48 AM

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Discoveries

2407.6

Another Rage fleet appeared in the Xillantha system. Fort Justice, still on alert, prepared once again for an assault that may or may not come.

In Wurtuy, Hawk met up with Mongoose and the Space Marines aboard her. The 1st Space Marine Regiment, plus an extra company, were on board. They would move to Norak and pick up another brigade of Marines before assaulting Regotha III. In the meantime, Gamma Fleet moved into position to blockade the Norak planet.

2407.7

Zeta Fleet entered the Lezzari system, and found one Rage colony within, but no Norak planets. Any further recon would have to be done in force by the entire fleet.

In Xillantha, there were once again two very large Rage fleets threatening the system and Fort Justice. Vigilance was maintained.

2407.8

Yarboro waited patiently for the Chairman to finish his vid call. He could feel the energy crackling from outside the Chairman’s office where Dr. Harkness, the head of the Extraterrestrial Studies Group waited. So the news was important enough for the doctor to come down for the university in person, was it? Yarboro allowed himself a brief, hidden smile. God help the doctor if it isn’t, he thought. Lately, the Chairman had been in a horrendous mood, and when people wasted his time, it made him absolutely livid. The Chairman ended his call.
“Sir, Doctor Harkness is waiting for you outside.”
A very tired Chairman looked up at his assistant. “Damn. I’m really not in the mood for him. He can prattle on so. Well, there’s no avoiding it, I suppose. Send him in.”
“Very good, Chairman.”
Yarboro moved quickly out of the Chairman’s office and back into the entryway. “Dr. Harkness, the Chairman will see you now.”
“Ummm, oh yes! Very good. Thank you!”
The doctor stood up and straightened his tie, then followed Yarboro to the door. The door was opened after a knock and a brief pause.
“Doctor Harkness, how good to see you! Please, won’t you sit down? Thank you, Yarboro, that will be all.”
With a bow, the silent Yarboro left and closed the door behind him.
“What brings you all the way down from the university, doctor? Your message said that you had important news? I hope it is good news…I can use some.”
The doctor laughed. “Mr. Chairman, I think it is wonderful news.” He cleared his throat.
“Would you like a drink, doctor? I have a wonderful fruit juice made from dachenberries. We discovered them when we colonized Norak. Extraordinary taste.”
The doctor nodded, and the Chairman poured them both a glass.
“Mr. Chairman, based on the public reaction the destruction of the Norakian colonies, my staff and I have been concentrating on trying to understand the psychology of the Norak. With the inception of the Space Marine Corps, we now have a viable alternative to complete colonial destruction by orbital bombardment. However, with military conquest there are inherent issues. Namely, how does on control a hostile population without incurring tremendous loss of life? Also, since our troops will be in contact with the conquered population, we risk the loss of lives of our own troops.”
The Chairman listened. “Yes, we have discussed this many times. The Norak are so devoted to their religion, that our projections show that it will probably require a four troop to one ration to pacify the population, assuming they don’t fight until the Last Norakian is dead. History shows us that religious fanaticism can bring out such behavior.”
Doctor Harkness nodded. “Yes, Chairman, but I believe that we have found a way to pacify the Norakian people which would require only normal troop levels to successfully occupy a planet.”
The Chairman’s eyes widened in surprise. “If this is true, then it is indeed good news, doctor.”
The doctor smiled. “Chairman, we have discovered that, theoretically, we should be able to build an Urban Pacification Center on the captured worlds which would allow us, over time, to turn the Norakians into productive members of the Remorhaz Society. These centers will allow them to continue practicing their religion while at the same time subtly training their minds to begin thinking for themselves. There is still some work to be done on the actual psychological methods involved, but we believe that with these Pacification Centers, we will be able to save millions of lives in the long run.”
The Chairman was smiling now. “Yes, and more. It was always the dream of the Old Earth Republic that all races would be given equal rights within as long as the people wanted to be part of it. The Remorhaz Society will be the same. We will accept the Norak people as full members of the Society, and not as a conquered race. Doctor, you and your staff have done very well, please keep me apprised of your progress in this matter.”
The doctor smile seemed to cover his entire head. “Yes, Mr. Chairman, I will.” He took a sip of his drink. “Mr. Chairman, you were right. This really is excellent juice.”

On Timmeron, the resupply base was finished. Work began on a small Space Port. RSS Falcon moved to one of the unexplored warp points, and Peregrine moved toward the other. It was time to push back a bit more of the darkness.

In the Regotha system, Zeta Fleet moved to take up position around Regotha II while Gamma Fleet started the return journey to Norak. Once there, they would perform a recon in force mission to try and gauge the perimeter of the Rage Collective.

2407.9

At Remorhaz, the destroyer RSS Virtue was launched. She immediately made course for Timerron, where she would be the flagship of the defense fleet in the Yukra system.

Lieutenant Commander Harper Douglass was a quiet man. In command of RSS Flacon, his crew knew what was expected of them. They also knew that he would rarely say anything, unless they were performing below their capabilities. Normally, they would have been surprised to hear him cry out, but they were seeing the same thing he was, and they were just a surprised.
“Good lord!”
The Sensor Officer regained his composure, and called out his reading.
“Commander, I have 17 unknown ships, ranging in size from frigates to destroyers. They are locked in orbit around Devonshire V. They appear to have seen us, but are making no hostile moves.”
He nodded. “XO, a word please?”
Lieutenant Jim Billings walked over to the command chair. “Sir, I think this is a race we’ve never seen before. I think we should initiate first contact protocol.”
Harper rubbed his chin. I wish I had shaved, he thought. I’ll be the first Remorhaz these beings see, and I’ll look like a slob.
“I concur, XO. Let’s get moving. Sparks, send out the first contact hail on all frequencies. All spectrums.”
“Aye, aye, sir” the Communication Officer shouted. Everyone seemed excited. Harper could feel it in the air.
A few minutes passed, when the Communication Officer excited yelled, “Captain, they’re responding!”
The message can thru the communications bank in Galactic Standard.

Chairman Sachmo woke up to the buzzing of the com unit. Lately, it seemed that being woken up in the middle of the night was the norm, and not the exception.
He hit the key to pick up the message. Yarboro’s face appeared on the screen.
“Sir, pardon the disturbance. The Falcon has made first contact.”
“How long ago?” Sachmo could feel his heart beating. A thousand thoughts ran thru his mind at once. He beat them back, and tried to keep focused on the issue at hand.
“Sir, we received the message ten minutes ago. Falcon transmitted it 12 hours ago. Apparently the Lieutenant Commander in command made quite an impression on them.”
The Chairman started pulling on his clothes. “I’ll be down in a minute. Please have Ambassador Mulatti meet me as soon as possible.”
“Yes, Chairman. At once.”
The Chairman hurried to the bathroom to brush his teeth and wash his face. As he looked at himself in the mirror, all of those thousands of thoughts assailed him again. What if they were hostile? Could we survive a three front war? Would we have warning this time? How advanced were they?
All I can do is take this one step at a time, he thought. First, he would carefully gauge their intention, and then take it from there. Hopefully, they had learned something from their first dealings with the Norak and the Rage. Hopefully, this time it would turn out better than the Last.

Across the system, Peregrine warped into the Iolo system. This system had two rock planets with Oxygen atmospheres. One, Iolo IV, was huge and possessed a great amount of mineral and radioactive resources. Iolo VI was a tiny planet, and was very poor in mineral resources, but possessed average organics and radioactives. No enemy presence was detected here, and so Admiral Urian put in an immediate request for two colony ships to be placed into production.

Also on Remorhaz, 242 million people boarded the RSS Marne and prepared to begin a new life on Spitfire.

To be continued...
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