What Comes Before
Part II: The Plan
Admiral Kinthi put down the pad and sighed. Why have they not contacted them? Now their fate is sealed. They have achieved hyperjump capability. The Cantharans have noticed them. They will be added to the long list of Cantharan conquests.
And there is not a thing that the admiral can do to prevent it!
What good is power if one elects not to use it? The admiral has repeatedly made this point to the assembly. Unfortunately, it would appear that only one person in the entire assembly holds that opinion. And that is himself.
The admiral cursed his fellow Ishimans. He still respects them. They're his colleagues. Nevertheless, the admiral often felt frustrated by their repeated refusals to use force.
"They mouth principles like preservation of unique cultures but they do nothing to further that goal!" thought the admiral. How many "unique cultures" have now become Cantharan? The admiral has already lost count. For too long, he warned his colleagues of the danger of Cantharans. At that time, the Cantharans were peaceful. Therefore his words fell on deaf ears. Now it's too late. The Cantharan crusades proceed with the force and speed of a tsunami. Anything that stands before them is crushed.
"There is still a chance," he thought. The admiral knows that Cantharan technology still has to play catch up to Ishiman technology, not to mention the Elejeetians. The problem being, as the admiral recognized, that every race appears to be just as intimidated by the Cantharan sponsors as the next! If the Ishiman Stellar Protectorate does not move immediately to curb the tide, soon the window of opportunity will be closed.
"Come in," said the admiral.
A commander enters the room and salutes the admiral.
"Let me guess, they sent a counter-protest."
The commander nodded.
"And our response?"
The commander hesitated.
"It's not anything you'd want to hear sir."
"The assembly votes to monitor Cantharan movements to determine their true intentions. Right?"
The commander nodded again.
"And you know, once after the Cantharans make their move, we'll issue our protest, they'll send the counter-protest, and the whole thing will begin all over again."
The commander did not know how to respond.
"Tell me," the admiral suddenly stood up. "How many times does this have to go on before the assembly actually does something? Until the Cantharans show up at our door? Until Mek Het himself shows up and puts the assembly under arrest?"
The commander remained silent.
The admiral sighed and sat down. For a moment, both stared at each other, contemplating the real possibility that perhaps his last 2 suggestions may be right after all. Both of them shrugged at the same time, as if a cold breeze suddenly entered the room.
The commander saluted the admiral and withdrew. Right before he was about to leave through the open doors, he turned around and asked:
"Sir, why are you doing this?"
"Sir, you've been sending me to represent you. You told me that I'll get to know people who will help me. You're probably right. But I don't think I can stand another session again. It'll drive me crazy. So I have to find out how can you stand this for so long before I make up my mind."
The admiral stared at the commander for a long time. Then he replied:
"You've been dismissed."
"Dropping out of hyperspace. Switching to light drive. Sir, we will approach their planet in 22 minutes."
Some time later.
"Sir, we have entered geosynchronous orbit. Establishing data link."
"Data link established. Downloading data."
"Scanning planet surface."
"Sir, we are encountering multiple security blocks. Our computer is overriding them."
"Acknowledged. Keep me posted."
"Very well, take us to the coordinates then engage hyperdrive. Once in hyperspace, start transmitting data to Thasero Station and Cantharis."
"Aye sir, leaving orbit."
"Do you think we'll come back?"
"...Our scans indicate a fairly primitive culture. Yes, they achieved hyperdrive. But they are still pathetic in terms of weapons technology. Their medical technology is laughable. Their communications technology is a joke. And their-"
The Cantharan speaker suddenly interrupted by a sound indicating an incoming call.
"What is it?" asked the chairman, slightly displeased.
"Sorry for the interruption, sir. But the Salrilian Ambassador suddenly arrived and he insists upon speaking to the council at once."
The members looked at each other in surprise.
"Is there any objections?" asked the chairman. The room remained silent.
"Let him in."
A short while later, the ambassador slithered into the room.
"Forgive my interruption, I mean no disrespect," said the ambassador as he bowed to the members.
The members bowed in return.
"Our analysis of the data you just sent us indicates that they are a threat."
Those words sent the council into turmoil.
"But how is that possible? Did you double-check your calculations?" asked the previous speaker.
The ambassador raised his head.
"Our calculations are always accurate." The Cantharan speaker lowered his head. "Never doubt that."
"In that case," Mek Het, who was silent throughout most of the debate, suddenly said:
"I motion that we send a fleet to crush these people."
The council was still filled with murmurs. However, a single pounding from the gavel ended all sounds.
"Is there any other motions?"
There was a cough or two. Even those were silenced by Mek Het's sharp and penetrating eyes that were scanning the room, looking for opponents.
"Is there any objections?"
Now the Salrilian Ambassador joins Mek Het in their screening.
"Then it is settled."
"I motion for appointing Admiral Mek Het to lead the operation," said the original Cantharan, now eager to redeem himself.
The Salrilian Ambassador, sensing that the council's deliberations has become a formality, let loose a quick smile. He bowed to the members and withdrew.
"The operation will proceed as follows," said Mek Het. Like his past campaigns, he gathered his staff and commanders in his office where they surround the desk which was projecting a holographic projection of the Sol System.
"Since they do not know who we are, we might as well take advantage of their ignorance."
Some let off a short laugh.
"As if we need it," another said softly.
Mek Het ignored them and continued:
"I will be on the carrier, the Gaze of Zom, along with the gunships and the transports. The cruiser, Left Hand of Doz, will make first contact with the Humans. The rest of the cruisers and heavy cruisers will be in position surrounding their homeworld. Captain Xet, you're the lynchpin of the operation. You must convince them that you have no hostile intentions. Drop your shields and tell them that raising shields is regarded as an offensive gesture in our culture. Their limited and infrequent use of their cranial matter will be of critical importance to us. Chances are, they will lower their shields. Once they do, the fleet will jump in and tear their ships apart while the cruisers and heavy cruisers will de-cloak and start planetary bombardments. The transports will land and take over their planet. Is there any questions?"
"Just one sir." said Captain Thut.
"What is it?"
"Why are we bothering to do all this? I mean, all we need to do is to swarm in and send them all to hell or wherever these people go when they die. They won't stand a chance even if we don't go to all this trouble."
"You're right of course," Mek Het smiled. Then he added:
"Tell me, other than our campaigns against races with no hyperjump capability, did we ever defeat the enemy without the loss of a single ship?"
"Well, there was the Battle of Vorzel where we only lost 14 fighters-"
"No, that's not good enough." He paused, then he continued:
"The Vorzelians, technologically speaking, are even more inferior than these people. These people have cruisers and fighters. What I am trying to accomplish is no losses, at all."
"Does that mean you won't be launching fighter support?"
"That's right, the warships will win the battle this time." Pulling back, he pressed a button and the holographic map disappeared.
"And we will win the battle."
His staff saluted him and left the room. He sat back on his chair, lost in thought.
"Do we have to prepare some of them for the Salrilians again?" asked Captain Thut.
"I suppose so," answered Captain Xet.
"How do you think they test their subjects?" asked another.
"How should I know?"
"Do you think they test what they taste like?"
"Hmmmm. Steamed or boiled. Tough call."
"The next time I see the ambassador," Mek Het suddenly called out "I'll ask him."
Captain Rhat turned and said:
"See if you can get us invited to their embassy dinner."
Damnit Sargantanus! I was trying to keep everyone in suspense!
Oh well. The story's shaping up nicely. I, for one, am finding it the most entertaining Chronicles post I've read. But then again, I don't get much chance to read them really. I'm too busy scanning for errors.
Sundered Angel ,
The One and Only
Ares Webboard Moderator, and all-around Nice Guy
Originally posted by Sundered Angel:
Damnit Sargantanus! I was trying to keep everyone in suspense!
Okay! Jeez, I'm sorry! I thought there was enough suspense. I'll wait a week before I release the next one. But no longer than that.
Throughout their history these "unenlightened" beings have continually opposed and fought abuses of power wrought by their own bretheren. We, as the prophets would do well to learn from these Humans.
-Final statement of the Salrilian reformist Sirthis shortly before his execution.
Originally posted by Sundered Angel:
Oh well. The story's shaping up nicely. I, for one, am finding it the most entertaining Chronicles post I've read.
You're overly generous with your compliments. Not that I don't appreciate them.
Damn! I spend so long making, editing, proof readeing my Chronicles, and you blow me out of the water!!!!
Gez, I guess it's not worth it to continue my silly little stories.
Good Job (coming from an ex-commodore, that's impressive)
Originally posted by Nothing:
**Damn! I spend so long making, editing, proof readeing my Chronicles, and you blow me out of the water!!!!
Good Job (coming from an ex-commodore, that's impressive)**
Thank you for your compliments although I sincerely hope you are not serious about discontinuing your stories.
To the moderators:
I believe I might have made a mistake in numbering the various parts of my story. Please allow me to explain:
The Explanaion: (Short Version)
I might've numbered Part V: The Aftermath as Part IV in the beginning of the text.
The Explanation: (Long Version)
I was working on Part III. Half way through, I realized that it was getting too long. So I chopped it into 2 pieces. The first piece becomes Part III: The Deception and the second half becomes Part IV while retaining the title that I had intended (The Execution of the Plan).
This played havoc to my plans (no pun intended) as I have to re-number the files and the title text. I believe Part V: The Aftermath (formerly Part IV) slipped through.
The correct ordering is as follows:
Part I: The Investigation
Part II: The Plan
Part III: The Deception
Part IV: The Execution of the Plan
Part V: The Aftermath
Part VI: The Embassy Dinner
and the soon to arrive Part VII: Calculations
Please make sure that the various parts are posted in order.
Thank you very much for takng your time to read all this and serving as editors to my story. Without pay! You should be paid! (Just not by me. I'm just a poor writer toiling in my cell. Ask your employer, namely Ambrosia, for pay.)
Hey htjyang, I have one question for you: Do you like government stuff?
Good story htjyang! Keep on writing!
Originally posted by Captain Carnotaur:
**Hey htjyang, I have one question for you: Do you like government stuff?
Thanks for your compliment.
Note: Apparently what happened to Nothing happened to me as well. Someone is trying on many disguises. The above is the new name I am using.
For whoever decided to use my name, all I can say is this: If I can write a long story, then I have enough imagination left to give htjyang enough variation. Besides, you may be able to post using my name, But you won't be able to use my IP address.
I also have to say that I am flattered by you choosing to post as me. I never thought I was important or respected enough to have my name copied. Apparently your original name was not good enough for you that you have to use mine.
Here is some information that will help you locate my imposter. I posted earlier on today and only discovered that the name I used for so long had been registered later on. Therefore we can establish that the imposter registered my name today.
To my imposter:
From now on, I will be tracking down everything you post on Ambrosia's web baords using the search engine. If I find one of your posts, I will immediately inform everyone in that forum that you are an imposter. Congratulations, you have registered my name but you will never be able to post using that name without seeing some public condemnation of your disgraceful action. I am on to you, whoever you might be. You can be sure that I will be vigilant.
I hate to break this to you, but the registration was purely to spite you. The e-mail was typed at random. If whoever registered was planning to use this account, then they were a moron, since they won't get the password. But I strongly suspect that this is not the case. I smell the work of a wannabe hacker. Someone who loves to annoy people on these boards. I have a hunch that this person is MotherLove.
Originally posted by Sargatanus:
**I hate to break this to you, but the registration was purely to spite you. The e-mail was typed at random. If whoever registered was planning to use this account, then they were a moron, since they won't get the password. But I strongly suspect that this is not the case. I smell the work of a wannabe hacker. Someone who loves to annoy people on these boards. I have a hunch that this person is MotherLove.
Thank you for the information. I was only concerned that someone may use my name then make a fool of himself and everyone will think that it's me. I never let this kind of juvenile prank get to me.
Htjyang, I think your story has been one of the biggest hits on the Ares chronicles site!
Same here. Which is why I'm putting the next part out now