Tooth and Claw- - Chapter Two: Getting Well Acquainted...

Dralthi5

Spaceman
Well, here's Chapter Two.

It's rather long, it is almost twenty pages long on MS Works. But I think it is pretty good.

Spyder seems a little harsh here, but if you remember he was kind of an asshole to Casey in Prophecy before Hawk died. It is my logic that he matured in the five years between my story and Prophecy.

And, by the way, the characters of Kali and Mokat are modeled after my two cats, Cali and Mo, whose pictures stand next to my Wing Commander movie ticket stub in my bedroom.

And, no, I could not resist the Star Trek reference.


Enjoy! And kindly respond back, of course...


---------------------
Orion City
Orion System, Outlands
2676.108
1000 hours (CST)

Like a modern day Rome, the sprawling metropolis of Orion City was the
height of archaeological skill and perfection. For the past three years, countless
slaves and indentured servants had toiled for hours towards this vast
metropolis, its sable towers and spires rising for kilometers into the deep purple
sky. Billions of tiny lights twinkled, from the highest skyscraper to the lowest
dock-side warehouses, devouring massive aggregates of juice like Charybdis
swallowing the Strait of Messina. And as if Jupiter was challenging the splendor
of Orion City, mighty strands of jagged lightning danced across the heavens in a
seemingly perpetual motion.
Thousands of minute ships and atmospheric vehicles swarmed over
Orion City like parasitic entities over its host. All were emblazoned with the
visage of the ancient Greek hero, his bow and arrow aloft to the cosmos, the
calling sign of the Orion Consortium. The Consortium claimed this vast world as
their own, and in the shipyards above were countless war ships preparing for
battle-- battle against the Terran Confederation and, if need be, the rest of the
accursed galaxy. That was their undying goal: To see that before great Jove
reached a devine hand down from Olympus to block out all existence the Orion
Consortium claimed total and absolute dominion over all humans and
non-humans of the Milky Way.
Giovanni Valentino, dressed from head to toe in raven, stood before the
massive observation window on the highest level of the Orion Tower, of which
all edifices on the grim world seemed to face. The Tower was the highest
structure on the world, the Consortium’s governmental and military
headquarters, awash in the glow of over a hundred spot lights. It was as if the
Tower was the Church, Valentino God, and the Consortium a theocracy.
Valentino’s say was final on all matters, and he ruled his subjects with an iron
fist. For how could he do any less?
For ten years he had toiled endlessly in the claws of the Kilrathi, a war
prisoner of the Baron Sha’ark nar Caxki. During that nightmarish decade of hell,
while he had been forced to assemble the vast warships of the Empire,
Valentino, some had said, had begun to lose his mind. But the man did not see
himself as so daft. No, quite the opposite; He had never seen things clearer in his
life. When the Kilrathi had released him after the end of the War, Valentino had
had one goal: Total amelioration of the known galaxy. And thus the Consortium
had been born. What had started out as an unpretentious assemblage of men had
evolved into an empire. Soon Valentino would spread his devine influence to Sol
Sector, and a new age would begin.
And so now he stood alone in his boundless chambers, back erect and
hands clasped, his coal-black eyes locked upon the heavens above. “ What
mysteries does thou have in store for mine eyes to perceive?” he whispered in
the old tongue of Terra. “ What judgments shall I pass in thy name? What
heretics shall I extirpate in thy honor? If only thou would grant me the honor of
hearing thy sublime voice, I could follow thy wisdom to victory. O, goddess
Nike! Assist mine cause!”
“ Am I interrupting, Lord?” Valentino spun on his heel to behold Caliban
Thereaux, his first lieutenant, a man who had been with him from the beginning.
Caliban was a squat, muscular man with arms like tree trunks. His attenuated
obsidian braid caught the light of the dim lanterns glowing within Valentino’s
lair, yet the gruesome patchwork of scars tracing his pale face were as dark as
the heavens themselves. In the past, several traitorous dogs had attempted to
sow sedition within the man, but Caliban’s loyalty had never wavered. He was
an invaluable comrade, to be sure.
Valentino smiled, his thin lips pulling back to reveal a row of gleaming
white teeth. “ No, not at all, dear Caliban,” he replied smoothly. “ As a matter of
fact, I was just about to call you to me.” He motioned dramatically to the
window and the cosmos beyond. “ Behold. What do you see?”
Caliban drew closer, his albinic eyes narrowing to take in what
Valentino’s arm had encompassed. “ Why, the heavens, sir. The dwellings of
Jupiter, Mars, and our patron goddess Nike. In all honestly, Lord, I view them
each night upon my prayers.”
“ Ah, but what supplementary celestial body do you behold on this morn,
dear Caliban?” After several moments of careful contemplation on Caliban’s
part, his lieutenant shrugged his broad shoulders in a perplexed manner, unsure
of what Valentino was getting at. His hollow, rather eerie smirk never wavering,
the founder of the Orion Consortium pointed a talon-like digit towards a burst
of red light within the atmosphere. “ Our new vessel of the gods, dear brother!
Behold! The Leviathan!” Growing agog from anticipatory delight, Valentino
tapped swift commands into a wrist-mounted control pad, and like the works of
Vulcan a holographic schematic of the Leviathan appeared in midair above the
two men.
Ever since their retreat from Border Worlds space after Tolwyn’s failed
Black Lance forces, an organization that the Orion Consortium had taken a
minute charge in, the Leviathan had been in the works. Upon their arrival in
what the Confederation called the Outlands, Valentino had confiscated as many
ships and spare parts as he and his followers could muster, merging nearly four
hundred vessels, many of them former Confed Naval ships, into one
invulnerable war machine. The Leviathan, powerful if ungainly, combined with
the Consortium’s expropriated Excalibur and Razor fighters had proved to be a
much feared force within the Outlands. Many had capitulated upon sight of the
beast lumbering through the atmosphere of their worlds. The gods had been
smiling upon Valentino these last few years, he realized with rapture.
“ Look before you, Caliban! At twelve hundred meters long, this is
perhaps the most ambitious project any independent organization such as
ourselves have undertaken. The Leviathan boasts fifty triple-A flak cannons,
thirty-five antimatter guns, and a complement of
one-hundred and twenty-five fighters and bombers.” Valentino grinned with
sardonic glee at the memory of H’Rktath II going up in flames, death all around.
It had filled him with a cold satisfaction, even if the deed was not his want, but
his new Kilrathi ally’s.
Caliban grinned evilly, his pale, scarred hands wringing in delectation.
He understood as well as Valentino the power that they now held. Nothing in
the Confederation arsenal, not after the shipwreck of the TCS Concordia over
Vespus, could match the might of the Leviathan. “ It is glorious, Lord!
Nevertheless, I have come to your chambers for reasons other than stargazing
and longing,” he continued in a clear voice. “ Vagargk nar Kiranka has arrived.”
“ Send him in.” Caliban disappeared through the large, obsidian posterns
to return moments later, trailed by a duo of hulking, fur covered aliens known
across the galaxy as the Kilrathi. Valentino’s race had once been engaged in a
deadly belligerence against these feline beasts, he himself had once been nothing
more than a filthy, pathetic slave to one, and so to him it seemed ironic that now
he would be working with a Kilrathi, a former noble, no less. He stepped forth,
his boots clicking softly against the marble deck, until he stopped before the
golden furred cousin of the late Prince Thrakhath, his two lieutenants flanking
him, wicked-looking Dor’chak laser rifles at the ready.
Breath reeking of raw meat and arakh, Vagargk loomed over Caliban and
Valentino, the single lamp occupying the chambers casting an eerie glow upon
the beast. He was as colossal as Lord Cronus, and it seemed to Giovanni that the
alien was as capable of devouring him whole as the King of the Titans had once
done to the Olympians. But he would not let his trepidation show while in the
presence of the seven and a half foot tall critter. After all, as leader of the Orion
Consortium, it was his duty to put on an air of cool invulnerability, something
which his subjects expected.
“ Welcome, Baron!” Valentino boomed, throwing his arms wide in
greeting to Vagargk. “ I see you made it with little incident!”
Vagargk waved away the Terran’s greeting with a swipe of his paw, his
pointed teeth grinding together in animosity. He hated being here. Orion was
too black, too cool, too moist. Too unlike glorious red Kilrah, lost now for seven
excruciating years. Vagargk would almost give anything just to return to the
court of his late cousin Thrakhath. Dealing with these Terrans was surely
causing him an ulcer, but his sister Kali had assured him that they were
necessary. Damn female, he mused bitterly, I should have slit her throat when I
had the chance.
“ Enough pleasantries, Terran!” Vagargk snapped. “ I have arrived to
press questions upon you pertaining to our... agreement.” He was, of course,
referring to Srakkah nar Ki’ra and his accursed “Movement.” Vagargk was a
devout worshipper of Sivar, and anything to the contrary personally offended
him and his entire system of beliefs. Srakkah was the personification of
everything he had grown to hate after his strict pious upbringing on Kilrah. But
the bastard, who had once flown under him at the Battle of Terra, had eluded
him after the Empire had fallen. But now, with the might of this Terran
organization, he had located the heretic and had destroyed him. It was too bad
for Vagargk, however, that these Terrans were not worshippers of Sivar. Hell,
they were not even followers of the proper Terran deity, but an assemblage of
archaic pagan gods considered sacrilege on Earth. So, in a way, he and Valentino
were antitheses, the vengeful religious zealot and the elusive heretic.
Valentino’s warm smile did not waver, however, and he merely stated,
“ H’Rktath II lies in ruins, Baron! Srakkah is now dead, and you can go on to
more pious ventures- - all in the name of Sivar, of course. However,” and his
boisterous tone of voice sobered into a more serious manner, “ I’m afraid I will
require your assistance for a tad bit longer.”
“ What?” Vagargk bellowed, his pink nose crinkling up in ire. “ What
more is there to be between us? You have killed that apostate Redfang and I
have on this planet the Terran you had asked for, per our agreement! Nothing
more, frail Terran!”
Kali, Vagargk’s sister, placed a clawed hand on her brother’s shoulder,
and he bristled at the action. “ Oh, come now, dear brother,” she purred, eyeing
Valentino with a lascivious green eye. “ After all, this Terran could prove useful
to me in the long run.” She ran a paw along the slight human’s upper arm, a
purr sending a shiver through her trim body, wrapped in a tight-fitting leather
bodysuit.
Nonchalantly, Valentino swatted away Kali’s grasp. “ I don’t think our
parts would fit,” he snapped and the female Kilrathi hissed fierily at him, her
finger tightening around her Dor’chak rifle’s trigger.
Sensing the danger that his Lord had just placed himself in, Caliban
Thereaux snapped open his holster, whipping out his plasma pistol in one swift
motion, shoving the business-end underneath the alien woman’s chin. “ One
more move, Cat, and I blast you from here to Pluto’s domain!”
“ Please, please, enough of this bickering,” Valentino interjected with an
amused laugh. “ We shall get nowhere with this. Lady Kali, loosen your grip on
that firearm, I mean you no harm.” Kali obliged him and a moment later,
Caliban stepped back, returning his pistol to its sheath. “Baron Vagargk, hear me
out. There is a new menace within the Outlands, one far more pestilent to our
causes than a mere dissenter.”
Vagargk raised an almost nonexistent eyebrow. “ What do you mean,
Terran?” he demanded testily.
“ The Confederation,” he bluntly responded. “A light CVE battle group
has forayed into the Outlands, Baron, with the intents to put an end to our
endeavors. We need to eliminate the TCS Enterprise, or all is doomed. Will you
help me?”
“ With your Leviathan cannot you hunt down these Confederation ships
and simply put an end to them?” the former Kilrathi noble asked skeptically.
Valentino barked out a terse laugh at Vagargk’s worried query. The
Kilrathi was far too incredulous for his tastes. There was never anything wrong
with taking things for their face value, or so it would seem to the Consortium’s
chieftain. “ Have you not listened to a thing I have said in the past, dear Baron?”
he asked with an amused smirk. “ I need the Leviathan here to coordinate my
efforts, to plan for the invasion, which I so hope you will partake of as well. You,
with your KIS Skarr’var’Rhis, must assist me in hunting down and destroying
these interlopers! You must abet in my endeavors, Baron Vagargk! For when I go
down, you will undoubtedly go down by my side.”
After an awkward moment of tense silence, the large Kilrathi tossed back
his head and roared with mordant laughter, his yellowed fangs gleaming in the
low illumination. Kali echoed her brother’s laughter, and soon the Baron’s
albinic cousin Mokat followed suit, running around in circles and stomping his
massive foot upon the deck. “ Oh, you Terrans slay me!” he roared. “ Good day
to you, Mr. Valentino.” And with that, he and his lieutenants turned as if to
leave, their echoing laughter booming through the large apartment. “ Caliban,”
Valentino prodded under his breath and Thereaux bowed in acknowledgment of
the silent order.
Suddenly, a brilliant flash of blue light exploded within the center of the
chamber, enveloping the Kilrathi in heat. Kali and Vagargk hissed in terror as
the beam of azure energy swept forth, slicing into Mokat like Perseus’ blade. The
pale white Kilrathi, his mind not as sharp as it once was during the Galactic
War, howled in torment as he was disassembled molecule by molecule. Almost
as soon as it had started, however, it was over, and Mokat was no more. The
Baron and his sister stared wide-eyed at Valentino and Caliban, who held aloft a
remote in his gnarled grasp. His fear evident, Vagargk approached and bowed
low, Kali following suit. “ I humbly consent with this proposed alliance,” he
admitted and Valentino chuckled with delight.
“ Excellent!” he gasped, clapping his hands together. “ Now, as for our
previous compromise?”
Vagargk nodded emphatically and waved violently towards Sharg and
Na’Grok waiting patiently in the corridor outside. The twin brothers, part of the
Caxki clan, growled their concession of the orders and trudged into the chamber,
wary to pass between the wavering cobalt cloud that was once Mokat nar
Kiranka. Between them, broken and battered, was a small Terran male, his frail
body wrapped in a loose burlap tunic, a heavy golden cross hung around his
scrawny neck. His frame was disgustingly fragile and his pale skin was coated
with a myriad of legions and sores. And yet his eyes, Valentino noticed as the
Kilrathi drew him closer, held the burning fire of Vulcan, which worried him.
Well, he silently mused, that will have to be dealt with soon enough.
“ Welcome to Orion City, Navigator,” Valentino beamed, feeling slightly
awkward referring to the elusive band of vagavonds. “ I understand you have been
in the presence of these Kilrathi for quite some time?” The Navigator nodded. “ Ah,
but that ends now, dear brother. Jupiter smiles upon you! You are now under
my care... Now what is your name, Navigator?” No response. “ Oh, come now.
Everyone has a name,” he whispered menacingly, clutching the man’s forearm
until he heard something pop.
Wincing in pain, the man who had long ago fell to the blasters of a
Kilrathi, hissed, “ Tobias Hart! That’s my name: Tobias Hart!”
“ And you can get me to Earth in four days time, compared to the five
months hard travel through the Outlands and Kilrathi space, correct?”
“ Go to hell!” Tobias spat.
Valentino, his cool composure quickly giving way to a refractory madness
for but a moment, twisted the Navigator's arm around until Hart was literally
howling in pain. “ Is that any way to talk to one’s new master!?” Valentino
roared, his dark eyes glazed over in his insanity. “ These Kilrathi could have fed
you to their hounds! They could have sacrificed you to Sivar! I emancipated you
from that fate, you filthy bugger! I prevented your downward spiral to
Tartarus! Now is that anyway to treat the conveyer of your liberation!! Is it!!”
“ No! Please, stop!!!” Tobias screeched, his voice the voice of the damned.
“ I’ll... help... you!” With a roar of barely contained fury, Valentino released
Hart’s mangled arm, while simultaneously kicking the wretch to the ground.
The man’s composure returned once again, and with a small grin, he
insouciantly straightened his dark tunic. “ Good,” he stated. “ Why don’t we get
you fed and cleaned up. Boys?” Sharg and Na’Grok bowed in adherence and
towed the now-silent Navigator out of the chamber, the doors slamming eerily shut
behind them.
In the ever encroaching silence, Valentino turned towards the Kilrathi
siblings and with false cheerfulness exclaimed, “ Well, shall we begin?”

CIC and Chart Room, TCS Enterprise
Aeolus System, Outlands
2676.108
1256 hours (CST)


In the silence enveloping the small chamber off of the Enterprise’s bridge,
Captain Baine Hawk wished he had his pipe. Just imagining the glorious feeling
which would flow through him after a puff of that robust tobacco sent a chill
through him. But he had given that up months ago, flushing the tobacco down
the toilet and smashing his beloved pipe beneath his boot. At times he would
wonder why he had been so stupid on that shore leave and then that beautiful
face would appear within his mind and he suddenly knew why. Sarah, his
beloved wife of thirteen years, had always badgered him to abandon his filthy
habit, which was understandable now that he looked back upon it. Baine had
tried to argue that it had been the only thing that had kept him going during his
service with the Navy in the Galactic War, that his pipe had kept his mind off of
the constant belligerency of the Kilrathi Empire. But that had all been in vain, he
now understood. There was no getting past Sarah and so he had given up his
fixation on his damned pipe for good. At times like these, however, he wished
he had kept it.
Ah, to hell with it! he thought, reaching into his pocket and retrieving a
wad of nicotine gum. Sarah had attempted to ween him off of the stuff a long
time ago, but it was just the thing Captain Hawk needed to ease his current
tensions. She’d never know, he assured himself. Sarah and his home at Brisbane,
from which he had been born to a lawyer and a Shakespearean actor forty-two
years ago, were a long way from here. Where the hell is “here” anyhow? he
thought, frustrated. The Outlands was the pits, and he wondered who he had
pissed off to get this assignment. Not that the Enterprise was a bad ship- -quite
the contrary, she was the future of Confed- - but it was the crew who staffed the
bantam carrier that worried him so. Shady frontier soldiers, green pilots, and
one Kilrathi rebel who was a little too pleasant for Baine’s tastes. Well, now that
they were this far away from Confed territory and the Orion Consortium had
started to snoop around, he’d see how they held up.
In the center of the room was a standard video screen, upon which all
eyes in the CIC & Chart Room were riveted. Fleet Admiral William Eisen, C-in-C
of the ConFleet and his former captain on the old Victory, appeared on the vid
display, his dark, craggy features drawn up in apprehension. “ Captain Hawk, I
know you just pulled out of the docks, and I hate to be the one to start a rain
over the whole damned parade, but the dogs of war are barking, and we can’t
satisfy them with a bone,” the man who had helped to bring Tolwyn’s insidious
Black Lance forces into the open began. “ It appears the Orion Consortium is at it
again.
“ Now, if you do not remember, Captain, three years back, shortly after
the Landreich acquired that Hakaga-class carrier in the Vaku System, the
Consortium began several hit-and-run campaigns near the fringes of Confed
territory with the former TCS Belleau Wood and some requisitioned Scimitar
heavies. “ Baine nodded, though he knew that Eisen, who had recorded this
message three days ago, could not see him. The Orions were led by a man
named Valentino and had vanished shortly after 2674. They had been no great
threat then, so what the hell was going on?
Meanwhile, Admiral Eisen continued. “ Well, after we nabbed Tolwyn
and sent out Blair and Marshall to keep the renegades in line out near the Border
Worlds, Valentino packed up the Wood and effectively got the hell outta there.
Good riddance, we thought at the time. Until four days ago, that is.
“ It appears the Kilrathi planet of H’Rktath II was obliterated by the
Consortium; Wiped clean in a matter of minutes. Motivation seems unclear at
this time, though the Confed High Command unanimously agree that this has
something to do with the Baron Vagargk, who has been gunning for that
‘heretic’ Srakkah nar Ki’ra for years. Damn warmongers, I just bet you they paid
Valentino a hefty price to bump off Redfang.” A momentary flash of anger
appeared on his old commander’s face, but it vanished just as readily.
“ However, that leaves the question of ‘why?’” Eisen continued with a
sigh. “ According to Chancellor Melek, Vagargk and his renegades got away
with a Hakaga carrier, the KIS Skarr’var’Rhis, after the war. Looking back on
what old Thrakhath’s fleet did to Earth back in ‘68, it makes you wonder why
the Baron just didn’t run up to Redfang’s front door, guns blazing. Why pay
Valentino? Well, the Joint Chiefs presume, Captain Hawk, that perhaps the
Consortium has a far more advanced Intelligence system, but personally I see
that as unlikely.
“ No, Captain, I can tell you right now that H’Rktath II was meant to
serve as a symbol to the rest of Redfang’s followers across the Outlands. They
needed that overkill we observed on H’Rktath, and the Skarr’var’Rhis, after
eight long years of wear and tear, was taxed to its limits. Which suggests to me
that Valentino and the Orion Consortium have something big up their sleeves, so
pay mind to this while the Enterprise snoops around the Outlands to gather
precious Intelligence on the Consortium’s capabilities and next plan of action.
Because they won’t be content with simply raiding the Outlands for long,
Captain. Pretty soon they’ll be gunning for the Confederation.
“ Now I’ve attached to this message an intelligence file of Valentino and
his followers.” Even as Eisen spoke, Baine saw the old Admiral’s visage
disappear from the display, to be replaced by a picture of the thin, mustached,
dark-haired Giovanni Valentino. Within those coal-black eyes, Hawk saw,
lurked a madman. Intell data, written in tiny letters, scrolled next to Valentino’s
file photo, and the Captain of the Enterprise found himself fumbling with his
glasses to read the text. Meanwhile, Eisen’s disembodied voice drifted through
the air of the CIC and Chart Room.
“ Now they seem to be worshipping a strange blend of ancient Greek and
Roman pagan deities, central of which seems to be Nike, the Greek goddess of
victory. Apparently, as a child in a traveling carnival, young Valentino devoured
Homer, Virgil, Livy, Ovid, and the likes in one sitting. Years later, after going
through a Confed ROTC, he was said to have had a vision, where Nike came to
him and told him to start the Consortium in Orion’s name. “
Baine rubbed his smooth-shaven jaw, dwelling over what Eisen had just
said. A vision... He had seen stuff like that in holos, had read about them in
books, but had never really believed they could possibly be true. It was his
opinion that people who claimed to have had seen such phantasms were rather
daft. You know, the lights are on, but no one is home.

Upon the vid screen, a new image moved up to stand next to Valentino’s,
that of a grayed Kilrathi with a crude patch over its left eye. “ After four years of
serving in the Confed Marines, Valentino’s platoon was ambushed by an elite
Kilrathi force led by Sha’ark nar Caxki. He was under Sha’ark’s control for damn
near a decade before the Cats finally cut him loose after Blair did his thing with
the Temblor Bomb. But by that time his mind was gone, and he had taken with it
the minds of the four-hundred and fifty other prisoners of Sha’ark’s as well.
Surprisingly, a good one-hundred and ten of Valentino’s followers were
stationed on the carrier TCS Belleau Wood back in ‘71. There was, of course, a
mutiny and they declared themselves the Consortium in Nike and Orion’s
names. We had heard some troubling reports from the Border Worlds and
several Confed forces in that space, but they were no great threat, so why waste
military forces when they could be needed elsewhere? Back after Space Marshall
Tolwyn’s trial and suicide, and the Intrepid’s and Kiev’s presence in Border
Worlds territory, Valentino simply vanished- -” Eisen waved a dismissive hand,
“- - that’s all she wrote. And now this.
“ I’m expecting you to explore the Outlands and gather as much
information as you possibly can on these rogues, and your new pilots should
help out with that cause. The trouble is, we know jack shit about what the hell’s
out there, so watch your asses. You never failed me back on the old Victory,
Baine. And I know you won’t fail me now. Eisen out.”
The visage of the grizzled old soldier sparkled out and Captain Hawk
leaned back, feeling the cool tingle of the gum between his gums and cheek. It
was more complicated than he had imagined. He had always known Valentino
to be a bit out there- - living in a carnival and a Kilrathi POW camp would do
that to any man- - but he had never known the extent of that madness, until
now. What mysteries are out there, Baine wondered, gazing with dull blue eyes
at the spot where Eisen’s image had just been. What is in store for me?
Not bothering to revert his gaze from the empty map table, Hawk asked,
“ What do you think, Commander?” he asked in his thick Australian drawl.
Behind him, he heard Lieutenant Commander Ted “Radio” Rollins, his
Executive Officer and old friend from the Victory, stir. Rubbing a hand through
his shock of bright red hair and straightening the yellow-tinged glasses which
perpetually seemed to be balanced upon his nose, Rollins asked lamely, “ About
what, sir?”
Hawk sighed in exasperation. “ What else, Commander? The
Consortium!”
“ Hell, sir, there’s been too many traitors within the Confed’s ranks,” he
responded in anger. He began to tick points off on his fingers. “ The Mandarins, Hobbes back on the Victory, Tolwyn and the Black
Lance, and now this. It’s like a plague, sir.” The Captain groaned inwardly.
Radio, as the Victory’s boisterous comm officer, had always been a conspiracy
theorist, but after Tolwyn that obsession had reached its pinnacle. He was as
untrusting and paranoid as ever.
Nevertheless, a smile began to creep onto Baine Hawk’s large face.
Despite the fact that the Enterprise was barely out of dry dock and in the middle
of unknown and possibly hostile territory, there was going to be some action in
store for them in the near future. Perhaps he would not need the nicotine after
all.

Rec Room, TCS Enterprise
Aeolus System, Outlands
2676.108
1328 hours (CST)

Chris Edison waded into the pilot’s rec room with his hands shoved into
his pockets, his head low. He had spotted Milo and Nathan in the back of the
room, yukking it up with a couple of pilots over some alcoholic beverages,
something of which Chris rarely partook. His father had never touched a sip of
the stuff, except for at holidays and victory celebrations. Chris decided he’d be
the same way. What good was getting inebriated and ending up telling your
Commanding Officer to perform an anatomically impossible act upon himself?
He shrugged. Right now, doing just that felt like a good idea. He had
bumped into Major Rigsby in the hall a short time after the unfortunate incident
on the flight deck, and the man had looked down upon him as if he were
garbage. And maybe I am, Chris thought dejectedly. Nothing more than a
pathetic, stinking plebe.
Taking good notice of where the nearest bathroom was in case of a bout of
nausea, Chris took a good look around. It was a large room, a round bar
occupying the center of the burgundy-walled chamber, and several images of
the ancient Terran sea carrier, the CVN-65 USS Enterprise, hung upon the
bulkheads. One, he noted, held the caption, “ To boldly go...”, an allusion from a
piece of twentieth-century Terran mythology. “ To boldly go...” Well, that pretty
much summed it up nicely, Chris thought. Out here in the middle of nowhere
fighting an enemy they barely knew. He wondered how he would fare on his
first mission out there.
“ Watch it, plebe!” a pilot whose callsign was Machine roared, grabbing
Chris’s shoulders and shoving him forward as Lieutenant Edison accidentally
stepped on the large man’s toes. “ Sorry,” he muttered and kept going. His path
was blocked, however, by an outstretched leg, belonging to HardCore.
“ Where you going, young Wizard?” he asked with mock-friendliness,
something Chris had hated far more than outright hostility. Knowing one’s
enemy, he figured, was a lot easier than knowing one’s friend. HardCore
slammed down a red-colored glass, emblazoned with the eight-pointed star of
Confed. “ Take a load off.”
“ It’s okay,” Major Carl “Spyder” Bowen, C.O. of Pinscher Squadron said,
his thin lips turned up in a smile. “ As a gift to you, young sir.”
Well, Chris thought, if a squadron commander says it’s okay... He nodded
his thanks to the older, blonde haired pilot, picking up the drink and taking a
sip. His stomach almost rejected his lunch. For floating among the dark ale he
had been offered was a massive blob of mucus and spit. Someone had hocked a
big-ass loogie in the drink. Wanting to retch, Chris stumbled away as Nathan,
Milo, Spyder, and a pilot named DieHard exchanged high-fives. What assholes!
Chris thought, but would dare not say it aloud. Four years at the Academy and
two at Flight School had taught them nothing about being an officer. Well, he
hoped they just crashed and burned then!
He retreated away from the raucous laughter, which reminded him of
those horrid days at Hilthros, to stop by the observation window at the back of
the rec room. He saw his reflection in the transplast, seeing a kid, not a man. He
was five feet, five inches tall, one-hundred and sixteen pounds, and with a build
like a cadaver. How’d I ever make it this far? he wondered. Was it like this for
Dad his first time out? Or, he thought with horror, was he like Nathan and all of
those other assholes? But, no! he warned himself. That was surely impossible.
His father was a good man.
“ They are paki, young one. Heed them not,” a soft, rumbling voice
whispered and Chris almost jumped out of his skin at the suddenness of it.
Before he had even turned around, he saw who had stepped up to join him
reflected in the window, and it surely gave him a start. It was a Kilrathi, eight
feet tall, covered from head to toe in a coat of shaggy brown and golden fur. Its
violet eyes were crystal clear, staring longingly out at the stars beyond. It looked
unusual in a light blue Confed uniform, however. Still, he bore not the
eight-pointed Confederation star, but the crossed swords of the Empire. An
exchange program, Chris reasoned, with Chancellor Melek.
Chris blinked rapidly, swallowing a lump in his throat as he gazed upon
it- - he! he told himself. This is a fellow officer, not an animal! I have to
understand that it is a fellow sentient being as well! Still, there was still that fire
burning in the back of his mind, that these creatures had killed his dear father!
But, then again, how many fathers had my Dad killed? It had merely been their
jobs. He knew that Sartha pilot had seen Doug Edison as nothing more than a
machine trying to kill him, as well as Doug had seen the Sartha. That was little
consolation, though, he had to admit to himself. “ Huh?” Chris said lamely and
he cursed himself for it.
“ Sorry to startle you, Lieutenant,” the Kilrathi continued in a purr-like
voice, “ but I could not help but witness what just occurred over there,” and he
tilted his vast head towards the other pilots.
Chris shrugged nonchalantly. “ I don’t know what you are talking about,”
he said simply.
The other pilot, however, ignored this. “ They seek glory by belittling the
few good souls who serve in this madness that we call the military. If you are to
survive their onslaughts, you must heed them not. It will be your undoing. If
they feel as if they do not exist, then they will not exist.”
That does have some sort of strange logic, Chris reasoned. A wry grin
spreading across his features, Lieutenant Edison nodded his thanks. “ That’s
good advice. Thank you.”
The Kilrathi held out a massive paw, sheathing his claws so as not to
puncture Chris’s soft skin. “ Captain Ju’rak nar Sutaghi,” he said. “ That is my
name.”
Feeling an emotion he could perhaps describe as happiness, the young
Terran reached nervously forward, taking the large alien’s paw in his hand,
feeling a tad awkward with the action. It seemed as if Ju’rak could crush his
hand, but the Kilrathi was surprisingly gentle. “ Hi. I’m 2nd Lieutenant
Christopher Edison. How you doing?” he said with a genuine smile, not forced
like he was usually compelled to do.
“ I am with the warrior’s zeal, skabak, if you must ask,” the pilot, whose
callsign was listed as “Khan” responded with a toothy grin. “ Battle is
approaching! Do you not feel it?”
Though not as naturally prone to conflict like the Kilrathi, Chris had to
admit he did. “ You’re a pilot,” he stated.
Ju’rak nodded. “ An officer exchange program,” he replied, speaking
what Chris had thought only moments before. “ My Chancellor Melek and your
‘President’, I think you call him, believed it would be a good idea for relations
between our people, and I am forced to agree with them.”
“ Yeah, me too. I’m with Gamma Wing. You?”
“ Beta,” he responded. “ Although I fly under the Terran named Rigsby.”
Khan reached a friendly paw forward, resting it upon Chris’s shoulder. “ I look
forward to flying with you one of these days, Christopher Edison.”
A warm feeling within his soul, Chris smiled. “ And I you, Ju’rak nar
Sutaghi.”


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If i'm locked on, there's no such thing as evasive action!



[This message has been edited by Dralthi5 (edited February 17, 2000).]
 
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Quarto

Unknown Enemy
First of all, don't worry about the lack of comments. If you're writing for other people, then you don't have a chance. You must write for yourself. Comments by others are a nice thing, but they are not a necessity.

BTW, people don't dress in raven, but rather in raven black. Unless of course, you mean that he actually was dressed _in_ raven
.

The mix of Roman and Greek god names is confusing, you know. But I guess it's acceptable. Also, I don't see where they could've gotten the PTCs from. I think that the last one went out of service together with the Concordia.

Other than that, it's quite good. There is the slight problem of character overload (read: too many characters too quickly), and the movie-game thing will inevitably result in a headache. Finally, there are still one or two mistakes out there (I'm not about to go fish them out, because this thing's so long
).

On another note, do you really think that the average Kilrathi is constantly filled with Skabak?
 
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Dralthi5

Spaceman
I don't even know what the hell a Phase Transit Cannon really is, to tell you the truth. I may just edit that outta there. But, hey, they could've made their own if they wanted to.


Ju'rak did not mean that he had actually skabak, it was kind of a joke. A wierd Cat thing.

Valentino could've been dressed in raven, that would be cool. But, according to my thesarus, raven is a synonym of black, just like obsidian or sable.

Don't worry about the movie-game thing. While we do have the Pilgrim, Tobias Hart, it doesn't really go much beyond his mere existence.

The mix of god names shouldn't really be confusing. Save for Nike, all of the gods mentioned are Roman. A couple of heroes mentioned, however, are Greek.

And you're right about that writing for myself thing.

Thanks for the comments.


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If i'm locked on, there's no such thing as evasive action!
 
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Dralthi5

Spaceman
Corrections:

The PTC is officially outta there.

Also...

" I emancipated you from that faith!" That's been changed. Fate, of course.

And...

The Pilgrim thing is officially outta there! You're right, Quarto, it will probably end up being a big headache, so Tobias Hart is now what I will call a Navigator. The Navigators will be explained later on.

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If i'm locked on, there's no such thing as evasive action!



[This message has been edited by Dralthi5 (edited February 17, 2000).]
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Though it may sound like I'm contradicting myself, you're not really supposed to make major plot changes because somebody tells you to
.
My problem with the Pilgrims was that you clearly intended to use the quasar jumps in there somewhere, and those aren't really considered in the WC game universe. And of course, there are the problems with all those timeline changes from the movie.
I don't know what you plan to make the Navigator into, but be careful there too. But hey, we'll see how it goes, non?
 
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Nighthawk

Spaceman
Finally I finished reading this chapter! It took me THREE days to do so because of my currently limited time. Now for a comment:
Interesting idea for a story!
Although there are quite a few characters introduced I don't think it's overloaded. Just keep them in seperate places and it should be ok. (Interesting, a female kat dressed in leather? Hmmm....do you have further plans for her?
).

About the PTC: If it had stayed in the story it could have malfunctioned just at the right time.


Greek/Roman gods mixup: Well, I think it's ok to do mix them because some Roman gods are better known than their Greek counterparts. To me, it seems appropriate to choose Mars as god of war. Who would know Ares without being a fan of Hercules/Xena?
And this Valentino guy is supposed to be mad. So he is inclined to mix things up, right?

Hey, carry on with the story! It seems to get very interesting!


Hmmm....what's next? Ah, yes, there is a new chapter of Quarto's story. So much to read and so little time!


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No one will hear your cry of death in the void of space
 
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Matrix

Rear Admiral
Since Quarto won't do it I will...well somebody has to do the worty dirk around here. Of course these are only my opinion, so feel free to ignore them all.


"Archeological skill?" They dug up the city? You probably mean "architectural"...something I know a little about.


"Billions" is going a little over the top. "A myriad" or "numerous" would suffice.

"devouring massive aggregates of juice" - Go easy on the thesaurus. You get some odd wording and I've already had to reach for a dictionary several times, which isn't always desirable. But I like "agog."


"That was their undying goal: To see that before great Jove reached a devine hand down from Olympus to block out all existence the Orion Consortium claimed total and absolute dominion over all humans and non-humans of the Milky Way." - Read that and tell me it isn't too long.

You probably introduced the "Nike" thing too early. It's too predictable that Carie will have something to do with this.

"seven and a half foot tall critter" - Heh. Critter.


"for a tad bit longer." - "Tad" is synonymous to "little" - which I suspect was there originally.

Hmm. I count two Kilrathi entering, then there are three - later one dies and suddenly there are four! Vagargk, Kali, Shark & Na'Grok.

"a myriad of legions and sores." - I think you mean "lesions."

"had long ago fell to the blasters" - Either remove "had" or change "fell" to "fallen."

"is that anyway to treat" - "any way"

"home at Brisbane" - "home in Brisbane"

"he wondered who he had pissed off" - "whom he had pissed off"

"requisitioned Scimitar heavies" - Is it just me or are Scimitars medium fighters?

Are Sharg and Sha'ark Caxki meant to be two different Kilrathi? Just checking.

"The trouble is, we know jack shit about what the hell’s out there, so watch your asses." - Words to live by.


"Perhaps he would not need the nicotine after all." - And pehaps he would.


"And I you" - Uh. Oh-kay.

To boldly go...where no man has swept the floor.
(from Space Quest)

I like the Chris' view on alcohol. Am I the only one who thinks they consume too much of the stuff in WCP?

I see that gone are the times when a pilot was judged by his simulator high score and killboard ranking, as opposed to his slight build.

"But, then again, how many fathers had my Dad killed?" - Ooh, I like that one.


You lost me with all the mythological references but it doesn't matter. Keep it up! Ave.
 
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Dralthi5

Spaceman
I've been neglecting this story for some time, but after seeing some of the good words here, I'm going to pick it back up again! Thanks.

In response to some stuff:
-Quarto, I really did want to get rid of that Pilgrim stuff. Your comment just made the decision final.
-Nighthawk, good point about the PTC, but I guess it's too late now... Yeah, by the time I read your last comment, there were at least four new chapters in Quarto's story. I'll have to go and check those out.
-Matrix, I was hoping someone would nitpick!
Some of those mistakes are merely, you know, careless mistakes
. Of course, architectural, and the number of Kilrathi in Valentino's sanction. I'll be more careful next time.

Thanks, again, I'll try to get more done soon. And, no, I had no plans for a Carrie/Nike thing, but now that you mention it... My plans for the Navigators are cool, I think. To give you an idea, watch the first Star Trek episode, " Where No Man Has Gone Before..."


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If I'm locked on, there's no such thing as evasive action!
 
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Earthworm

Spaceman
*The Leviathan boasts fifty triple-A flak cannons,
thirty-five antimatter guns, and a complement of
one-hundred and twenty-five fighters and bombers.*

Yeah, that's what I'm talking about. Fifty light turrets and thrity-five AM turrets would never fit on a 1,200 m long ship. Also, I don't think that a ship that's 1,200 m long would seem invurneable. The Vesuvius class with it's new type of armor and strong shielding, antimatter guns, as well as 400 fighters could easiley destroy it.

*until he stopped before the
golden furred cousin of the late Prince Thrakhath,*

Hm, I may be wrong but wasn't Murragh from False Colors the only surviving cousin to Thrak?

*Now, if you do not remember, Captain, three years back, shortly after
the Landreich acquired that Hakaga-class carrier in the Vaku System*

Oh, this here is a major error. The Landreich acquired a Bhantkara class carrier, like the ones in WC3, not a Hakaga. Also, They found that carrier late in 2670, and finished refiting it in early 2671, so it's actualy 5 years ago.



[This message has been edited by Earthworm (edited March 10, 2000).]
 

Dralthi5

Spaceman
He could have been... But obscure facts like that aren't really engraved in stone, are they?

Well, out there in the Outlands, nobody has ever seen anything like the Leviathan, and nobody has anything to match it, so to the denizens of the Outlands, it would seem invulnerable. Besides, I'm not gonna worry myself with those stats too much. I'm just going to have fun with this, not give myself a big headache.

Bhanktara? Really? Good thing I only mentioned that once...

But thanks again for reading my story, Earthworm.

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If I'm locked on, there's no such thing as evasive action!

[This message has been edited by Dralthi5 (edited March 10, 2000).]
 

Earthworm

Spaceman
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Also, I don't see where they could've gotten the PTCs from. I think that the last one went out of service together with the Concordia.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Quarto, I gues I didn't pay attention, but where did you see the PTC mentioned in this story?


<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>He could have been... But obscure facts like that aren't really engraved in stone, are they?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

True, maybe no one knew he actualy escaped the destruction of Kilrah.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Bhanktara? Really? Good thing I only mentioned that once...<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Yup, it's on page 392 in False Colors.



[This message has been edited by Earthworm (edited March 10, 2000).]
 

Earthworm

Spaceman
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Quarto:
My problem with the Pilgrims was that you clearly intended to use the quasar jumps in there somewhere, and those aren't really considered in the WC game universe. And of course, there are the problems with all those timeline changes from the movie.
I don't know what you plan to make the Navigator into, but be careful there too. But hey, we'll see how it goes, non?
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Quarto, I'm shocked! Just because some people don't consider the movie to be a part of the universe doesen't mean it isn't a part of it. If they didn't like the movie it's their problem. The Quasars, though aren't seen used in the games or other novels (which can be easily explained by the fact that there are no Pilgrim navigators in Confed, and that the Quasars/Pulsars are unstable) doesen't change the fact that they are as much posible in the universe just like your standard jump. Also, despite the popular belive, the movie contradicts with only a small amount of things in the established WC universe.
 
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Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Earthworm: The PTC was removed after I pointed out its inprobability. That's why ye dinna see it.

As for the Pilgrims. Don't get me wrong. I really liked the movie. And yes, it is a part of the WC Universe. But it's not a part of the WC _game_ Universe. The 'Claw is different, the Kilrathi capships are different, the Pilgrims are different, the Kilrathi have no fur (
), they changed Paladin's DOB, they killed off Bossman way too early (if the movie takes place right before the game, then how can Bossman die in both?). And myriad other details.
Go ahead and yell at me, it might make you feel better
. But it won't change my mind; only logic can do that.
 
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Earthworm

Spaceman
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Quarto:
As for the Pilgrims. Don't get me wrong. I really liked the movie. And yes, it is a part of the WC Universe. But it's not a part of the WC _game_ Universe.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Except there is no WC game universe.
I know that some people like you that can't get the novels and other stuff from whatever reasons can have only the games, but there is no such thing as a game universe.


<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>The 'Claw is different, the Kilrathi capships are different, the Pilgrims are different, the Kilrathi have no fur (
)<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
But does the apearance of the ships matter? IMO, it doesen't. Just because the ship looks different doesen't mean the movie will suck. Besides, for example the Fralthi II from WC3 and Prophecy looks nothing like the Fralthi in WC1. The ships in the movie might as well be the oldies that are now being replaced by the ships we first saw in WC1. And how exactly can Pilgrims be different if we never saw them before?

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>they changed Paladin's DOB, they killed off Bossman way too early (if the movie takes place right before the game, then how can Bossman die in both?).<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
They only changed Paladin's DOB by six years, and it could be just a small mistake (yeah, let's blame fictional characters).

Also, though for you it won't mean anything, Bossman can still be brough back. The final novel based on the movie will be coming out later this year. Peter Telep can still explain how Bossman survived.
 
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Quarto

Unknown Enemy
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Except there is no WC game universe. I know that some people like you that can't get the novels and other stuff from whatever reasons can have only the games, but there is no such thing as a game universe.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
What's in a name, 'Worm? "A rose by any other name...". When I said WC Game Universe, I actually meant everything that is not related to the movie. So, you can shelve the "I don't have the books, so I don't think they fit in" argument, because I include the books in the "Game" Universe; even if they're rife with mistakes
.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>But does the apearance of the ships matter? IMO, it doesen't. Just because the ship looks different doesen't mean the movie will suck. Besides, for example the Fralthi II from WC3 and Prophecy looks nothing like the Fralthi in WC1. The ships in the movie might as well be the oldies that are now being replaced by the ships we first saw in WC1. And how exactly can Pilgrims be different if we never saw them before?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
I didn't say anything sucked. Yes, appearences do matter. The Fralthi II is different because it's a Fralthi II. And do you really think they can replace all the ships in under a year? As for the Pilgrims, that's exactly why I say they're different
. Because they didn't exist before.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Also, though for you it won't mean anything,<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Now why would you say that? I'm not one of those people who absolutely refuse to change their minds.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Bossman can still be brough back. The final novel based on the movie will be coming out later this year. Peter Telep can still explain how Bossman survived.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Uh... yes, I'm sure he can. But I rather doubt it.
 
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Earthworm

Spaceman
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Quarto:
But does the apearance of the ships
I didn't say anything sucked. Yes, appearences do matter. The Fralthi II is different because it's a Fralthi II.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Yeah, I meant didn't fit in, instead of sucked.

Also, yes the Fralthi II is different because it's technicly a different class. The Fralthi in the movie can also be a different class. Even if it doesen't have any numbers after it's name.


<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>And do you really think they can replace all the ships in under a year?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE> I didn't say that they were replaced under a year.
The older ships could have been pulled of the front lines for some years now, and the Fralthis and Ralaris we saw in the movie were some of the last ones still in service on the front.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>As for the Pilgrims, that's exactly why I say they're different
. Because they didn't exist before.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

He he, no, we didn't hear about them. They did exist.



<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>
Now why would you say that? I'm not one of those people who absolutely refuse to change their minds.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

No, I mean that you, without the acess to the novel won't know about that. Neither will many other people.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Uh... yes, I'm sure he can. But I rather doubt it.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I may be wrong, but that wouldn't be the first time someone was declared dead, and than someone discovered the person lived. Bossman, acording to the Confederation Handbook, was killed by radiation, it's not like his fighter exploded or something.
 
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Quarto

Unknown Enemy
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Also, yes the Fralthi II is different because it's technicly a different class. The Fralthi in the movie can also be a different class. Even if it doesen't have any numbers after it's name.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
And I suppose that the Kilrathi in the movie are also a different class
? I guess they too, were pulled out of service at this time
.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>I didn't say that they were replaced under a year. The older ships could have been pulled of the front lines for some years now, and the Fralthis and Ralaris we saw in the movie were some of the last ones still in service on the front.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Impressive
. Both sides managed to totally replace all their ships and fighters over the same period of time
.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>He he, no, we didn't hear about them. They did exist.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Funny. I never heard about them
. You'd think they would have pointed it out during Blair's court martial. You know, "Those Pilgrims are all traitors, and the loss of the Tiger's Claw just proves it. Let's execute Blair!"
. Also, Tolwyn in the movie liked Blair, and trusted him solely on the basis of knowing his father. You'd think he'd have more trust in him when the 'Claw went down...

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>I may be wrong, but that wouldn't be the first time someone was declared dead, and than someone discovered the person lived. Bossman, acording to the Confederation Handbook, was killed by radiation, it's not like his fighter exploded or something.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
EXACTLY
!!! If his fighter exploded or something, they could always say that a Kilrathi Stealth fighter just happened to fly by and pick up his ejection pod, later releasing him for no particular reason. But since he died where everybody could see him, it's pretty much impossible to bring him back.
While on the subject of stealth, any idea why Tolwyn would refuse to believe the possibility of Killie stealth fighters if the Kilrathi already have Skipper missiles (which happened to be new in 2669, but apparently were used in 2654, too
). And let's not forget the stealth fighter that Blair encountered during WC Academy (which I'm sure you would also claim is a part of the same universe
); Tolwyn did (eventually) believe in that one. Face it, Earthworm. If we assume that all WC products come together to form a single universe, then that universe will have more storyline holes than a piece of swiss cheese that somebody blasted with a neutron gun
.
 
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Earthworm

Spaceman
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Quarto:
And I suppose that the Kilrathi in the movie are also a different class
? I guess they too, were pulled out of service at this time
.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

But the Kilrathi look different in every product we see them in. Just look at the changes of Melek from WC3 to WC4.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Impressive
. Both sides managed to totally replace all their ships and fighters over the same period of time
.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Isn't that basicly what happened between WC2 and WC3? SO2 ended in 2667, so there's only two years in between the two games.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Funny. I never heard about them
. You'd think they would have pointed it out during Blair's court martial. You know, "Those Pilgrims are all traitors, and the loss of the Tiger's Claw just proves it. Let's execute Blair!"
.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
You're forgeting that we never saw Blairs court martial. The talk between Blair and Tolwyn in the WC2 intro was basicly to let us know about Blairs next *assignment*.


<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Also, Tolwyn in the movie liked Blair, and trusted him solely on the basis of knowing his father. You'd think he'd have more trust in him when the 'Claw went down...<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Not necisarly. Tolwyn is a patriot, he lives and fights for the Confederation. He wouldn't belive Blair after one of the largest carriers in Confed was destroyed.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>EXACTLY !!! If his fighter exploded or something, they could always say that a Kilrathi Stealth fighter just happened to fly by and pick up his ejection pod, later releasing him for no particular reason. But since he died where everybody could see him, it's pretty much impossible to bring him back.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
OK, this is just a mear speculation. Bossmans fighter is brough back to the Claw. They take out his body and take him the the medical officer hoping that he still may be alive. The med tells them that he is dead (of course he's wrong because Claw didn't have a refit in 10 or so years, so the medical equpiment wasn't working properly), and they are preparing to send Bossmans body out to space. Except that someone mistaken Bossmans body and they send someone else out to space, meanwhile Bossman was recovering slowly from the radiation.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>While on the subject of stealth, any idea why Tolwyn would refuse to believe the possibility of Killie stealth fighters if the Kilrathi already have Skipper missiles (which happened to be new in 2669, but apparently were used in 2654, too
).<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

We're never told in WC3 that Skippers or a previous model of a Skipper didn't exist before. Let's say that the cloacking device is to big to slap on a fighter, and when they put it on a missile it does only a little more damage than a torpedo (in the movie someone asks if they can take the hit from a Skipper and someone says that they can't without full shields), so the Kilrathi decided it's not worth using them. Tolwyn doesen' belive that fighters have cloacks because the cloacking device is to big, and acording to Confed intell the Kilrathi are still years away from makin a cloack small enough. Also, maybe Confed found something to detect cloacked ships and that made the Kilrathi cloacks useless. But the Kilrathi quickly made a new type of a cloack that was undetectable.



<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>And let's not forget the stealth fighter that Blair encountered during WC Academy (which I'm sure you would also claim is a part of the same universe
); Tolwyn did (eventually) believe in that one.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
But that wasn't a cloacking fighter. Besides, they could have captured one later, or picked up the debries from the two that were destroyed, and used the information gathered to make the standard radars capable of detecting them. Besides, Tolwyn didn't have a choice but to belive it. The fighters were flying right next to his carrier, he saw the Confed fighters being destroyed by something that they couldn't see at that time.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial">quote:</font><HR>Face it, Earthworm. If we assume that all WC products come together to form a single universe, then that universe will have more storyline holes than a piece of swiss cheese that somebody blasted with a neutron gun
.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


Hm, I'm prety sure that if someone blasted a piece of sheese with a Neutron gun, the cheese would melt together. Yes, we can't assume that it'll all fit together. That's why we have to find what's contradicting with what. If a new book contradicts with an older one, than it's obvious that the older one is right. However, there are many ways to make most of those contradictions work out. There's just not enough time to do it in our life time.
 
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Fireball SC

Spaceman
So when a new book contridicts with an old one, no matter how much sense the new one makes, the old one is right? I believe that would depend on the situiation. Therefore, that isn't a good rule to live by.

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Member of the LMG, and hating it. (Disgruntled Man)
Proud member: Wing Commander Space Command; Union of Border Worlds 5th Fleet; Black Lance Command
Striking a man down with your blade is clean and honorable. Shooting him in the back from the darkness of an alley and hurrying to blame it on another was something else altogether.--Darth Vader
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Uh... if you don't mind, I'll reply later today. Considering that it's 0414, I think I've stayed up long enough
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