17th of Triarö, Hour 20
Allowed Territories of Mekagrûl, Mark-1 system
High Captain Kalkero Erran
HC Erran was indeed perplexed. Less than a full month after FC Anderhold’s famous first contact with these “Galactyan” Aliens, he got the following message on a regular border patrol from unknown space.
ALERT TO ALL NEARBY FLEETS. BORDER CROSSING AT MG-MK-1. MIXED BIOLOGY READING. PARTIALLY HUMAN, OTHERS UNKNOWN. UNCHIPPED. REQUESTING CONTACT.
After talking to his fellow Captains he decided to jump in. He didn’t know anything about these intruders so it wasn’t reasonable to assume they were friendly like the Galactyans. Moreover, they didn’t match any signatures that had been given to them, so it wasn’t some unscheduled visit. It was best to assume they were a hostile force until they proved otherwise- Any war they had on their hands, they had to be diligent. For this reason, he decided to go in with his Flagship- Behemoths of ships that were some of the most powerful in the entire Sector. Even with over 20,000 workers alone and many more specialized defenders, these things contained tens of thousands of droids to help automate them a little bit. These things were known to take on powerful fleets and come out unscathed. For this reason, they agreed to send his Flagship, the Karn to investigate. Even if they had a massive thousand-strong fleet, the Karn could probably win a battle on its own. And Flagships were never truly on their own, armed with Swarmers and sometimes- and in his case- Corvettes up to Destroyers (Although they carried only Corvettes on the Karn) ready to engage the enemy. Even if their plan was to attack… they would have to reconsider. Even if they were here for peaceful purposes, the power of Trianar had to be instilled to these border-crossers. That future crossings would come with a price if they forced the Imperium and Imperö’s hand. And so the ship of Kanareö, Sycriûn, Humans, Mekagrûl and one Ikaranarean leading them jumped in at high superliminal speeds to the oncoming Aliens.
Admiral Yoom, a Treecuu mammalian, had never really understood why the Joint Exploratory Fleets had to be so big. They seemed a bit clumsy. Though in the end it was up to her as commander of this fleet, so she had decided to use only two ships for this mission and leave the rest behind. They were after all knowingly crossing someone’s border, and arriving in numbers could be seen as an act of aggression.
She had decided to be on the bridge of the Gagarin-class exploration cruiser Neighbour as she wanted to see her newest captain - a Terran called Abiy Salon, apparently from one of those sub-ethnicities called the Yaltopyan - at work. Meanwhile, her old ship the Treecuu-built Cim-uumth-class heavy cruiser Avtic was tailing them a few AUs behind in full stealth mode.
“Captain! Priority sensor reading!” Treecuu insectoid helmsman turned his chair around to get the captain’s attention.
“Report!” answered Salon calmly.
“Massive vessel on intersecting course, high superluminal. Time to contact: 4.3 minutes.”
“Come to full stop.”
Salon looked at Yoom, who nodded back.
“Coms, signal the Avtic to hold its position. Helm, assume a casual posture.”
Letting the ship assume a casual posture had two purposes. It showed that they hadn’t come to fight, but that they weren’t afraid of one either. The favourite Treecuu procedure.
Yoom looked forward to seeing the alien ship.
As the Flagship seemingly manifested into existence due to its high speed, It was clear that it was a formidable ship. It appeared massive and elegant dwarfing the singular visible ship in size, with it’s broadside to the alien ship, with many weapons pointed to it. They had detected only one ship so far, but aliens might be tricky, and showing them that whatever tricks they had were useless was of an imperative nature. Showing weakness to these aliens made them seem like a viable target, something HC Erran was unwilling to do. Even as he transmitted a message weapons were trained on the ship, showing that diplomacy wasn’t shorthand for weakness.
WARNING. YOU ARE IN TRIANARÖ SPACE. OPEN DIPLOMATIC CHANNELS IMMEDIATELY OR RETURN TO YOUR OWN BORDERS. IF YOU CONTINUE TO MOVE FORWARD YOU WILL BE CONSIDERED AN INVADER AND WE WILL BE FORCED TO DESTROY YOU. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.
He sent the message in both Trianarö and, after hesitation, the “English” Language they got from the Zeltrex a few years ago. Although they scanned none of those damned aliens on board, it was reasonable to assume that as they were nomads any languages they spoke got around. He awaited a response of some kind but was poised for a war. A war which Trianar would win no matter the cost. However, another message was sent to the Imperö herself on secure channels, informing her of the events. Another would be sent shortly to inform her of war or peace.
Admiral Yoom was almost stunned by the sheer size of the alien vessel. Some of the human crewmen had their jaws “dropped” as they called it. Immediately, all kinds of alarms were set off. She recognised at least three different weapons lock alarms as well as the proximity one.
The tall human by the communication systems station on the bridge spoke up.
“Captain! Priority communication received!”
“Short message in two languages. One is English, the other unknown. Estimated preservation: 100%.”
“Let’s hear it.”
The human pushed a few digital buttons on the colourful interface and the message was played through loudspeakers for everyone on the bridge to hear.
“I haven’t heard of any designated ‘diplomatic channels’. Have you?” the captain asked his comms officer after having listened to the message.
“Negative. But I can respond on the same channel.”
“Good. Transmit the following in English.”
“Message is understood. We will hold this position. We are explorers from the Stoinian Star Kingdom and the Treecuu Star Empire. Our mission is peaceful and we wish to establish diplomatic contact with your nation.”
HC Erran was only slightly relieved by their message. Their scans indicated that there were humans on this ship. A Lower Race. He remembered stories from the Hemmerhaldian War. Trillions dead, almost worse than the Xanstal War in terms of Ikaranarean losses. Any ship with humans on it needed to be treated with caution. They were a volatile species.
It also seemed that giving out the message in English was a good idea that sped up the process. He made a mental note to himself to give this information to the Imperö.
YOUR COMPLIANCE IS APPRECIATED. DO YOU PREFER DIPLOMACY IN PERSON OR REMOTELY? IF THE LATTER, WE NEED TO KNOW WHAT GASSES YOU BREATHE IN ORDER TO ENSURE THE SAFETY OF YOUR CREW.
He awaited another response, and did not disengage weapons targeting systems. He wanted to drive his point of supremacy home.
“Definitely in person” Yoom exclaimed with a wide smile. “Always in person.”
Salon nodded. “You, me and Tacuu?”
“Good. Respond, and include our normal atmosphere.”
Yoom and Salon’s intent was for the aliens to meet one of each species on the ship. Tacuu was a Treecuu insectoid and a xenolinguist by profession.
The following message was sent:
“In person. Gasses: 3/4 nitrogen and 1/4 oxygen, +/- 5%.”
GOOD. WE ARE COMPATIBLE WITH THESE GASES. WE WILL SHOW YOU THE DOCKING AREA.
They transmitted data about where to dock. FC Anderhold docked on the Galactyan ship with his Elite Defense Fleet during that first contact, but Elrai wanted these aliens to come to him. When up against a simple fleet, a boarding action could show their dominance, but with a Flagship, Elrai wanted them to witness the ship in all its glory and power, showing them the futility of attacking. These Aliens had been diplomatic so far, but they needed to be shown the might of the country they had so boldly entered.
Elrai would meet these Aliens personally. Before, he may have considered such a task beneath him as an Ikaranarean, but as the Imperö herself had met the Galactyans in person, he didn’t think it unreasonable to do something similar. He travelled to the room with many of the onboard troops; A room that would show these aliens who they were up against.
“You sure we shouldn’t carve the hull open and create our own entrance?” Captain Salon smirked. He was referencing the now legendary encounter between a Treecuu border patrol and a Zeltrex ship.
Tacuu chuckled in his unique insectoid way.
“I’ve heard that they are making it the standard procedure in the Remote Fleets, but this isn’t our territory…” answered Admiral Yaam, not making it abundantly clear if she was joking or not. Typical for the Treecuu sense of humour.
Still smirking, Salon ordered the pilot of the captain’s yacht to proceed to the designated docking facilities.
Nearing the massive alien ship made it appear even more impressive. It came as no surprise that they had assembled a large military force in room they were landing in. Stoinians would have done the same, but Salon wasn’t sure about the Treecuu. They often seemed to think that the opposite - appearing confidently alone - would have the same or even a greater effect. And that was why only the tree of them would disembark.
They walked down the ramp in ranking order. First the admiral, then the captain, and then the xenolinguist. They formed a triangle, with the admiral at the front, flanked by the other two. They waited.
The Sycriûn were probably the most intimidating of the soldiers. Sycriûn were all 6.5-8 feet tall, so they dwarfed the Aliens by a large margin, with scales covering them and massive weapons. As the Aliens walked in, the 4 races of soldier- The massive, lizardlike Sycriûn, the Kanareö in suits due to them being unable to breathe gas standing with elegant yet powerful posture, The Mekanakûl with their uniform military design and humanlike form, and the humans, standing with perfect discipline and emotionless faces- stood in two lines, with one in the beginning motioning them to move onward. At some point, the soldiers, seemingly unprompted, started hitting the end of the shafts of their spear-like rifles on the floor in threes with perfect unison, creating a thudding that sounded like one sound.
Once the Treecuu and singular Stoinian reached the end of this hall, the thudding stopped just as suddenly as it began. The room opened up into one much brighter and in it stood what was clearly the captain of the ship. What appeared to be a dark-skinned human, although his eyes were a blood red, not a natural human color. This was of course no human, but an Ikaranarean.
HC Erran looked at the aliens. His face conveyed no surprise or any other emotion. Instead, his eyes seemingly glowed with an aura of power. The captain spoke.
"Welcome aboard the MS Karn. I can see- since you stand before me now- that your intentions are surely peaceful… And a good thing too. As you can see, there is little chance that you would have survived a conflict with us. That aside, welcome to the Holy Imperium of Trianar. "
He waited for these foreigners to respond.
The three of them were impressed with this remarkable display of discipline, though they wouldn’t let it show.
“Thank you, we are honoured by the invitation. I am glad this is a peaceful first contact and I appreciate your restraint, despite our violating your borders” the Admiral answered.
She reached for her communication device in one of the lower pockets of her green uniform jacket. She pressed a button and spoke into it.
“Avtic, return home. Oh, and you are clear reveal.”
Yaam had ordered the cloaked ship to go back to Treecuu space and decloak immediately. She hoped this would make an impression on the aliens. This was a gesture with two purposes. First, it fit neatly within the context of the alien’s display of power. After all, the Treecuu needed to show that they were a force to be reckoned with too. And secondly, it was probably best for a continued peaceful first contact not to keep military assets hidden from the aliens in their territory.
Yaam looked at HC Erran.
“There are no more such ships in your space. You have my word.”
HC Erran was impressed. These Aliens had shown they were reasonable. Maybe it was the presence of the Flagship and the discipline of their soldiers, or maybe these aliens were simply attempting peace regardless. They were also smart to uncloak when they did. Even though that warship would have done little to a Flagship, it would have not been a good idea to keep it in Trianarö space regardless.
“It seems that you are reasonable. The Imperö will be pleased.” The High Captain looked at these aliens once more. “I must ask you; what nation, or nations, do you hail from?”
“I, Admiral Yoom, and my xenolinguist Tacuu here hail from the Treecuu Star Empire across the border. Captain Salon is from the Stoinian Star Kingdom, which is a neighbour of ours. We are on a joint exploratory mission, and the ship remaining in your space is under Captain Salon’s command” answered Yoom. The other two bowed slightly as they were mentioned.
“You signalled us in the English language. Have you encountered Terrans before? Are you perhaps allied with a Terran nation?” asked Salon.
It took Erran a second to remember that “Terran” was a term used by some human groups. The Hemmerhaldians were humans from earth, while the Ikaranareans were from a planet that may have been called “Pacifica.” While the Hemmerhaldians used to have a comprehensive databank of all Earthen languages, it was destroyed on their migration to the planet Hemûldus, and thus they had no record of the English language. Salon had confirmed many Hemmerhaldian historians’ theory that the English spoken by the Zeltrex was indeed the English of old humanity.
“We do know of the existence of at least one other human- or Terran- state, however, this isn’t where we got english. A few years back we made contact with a species that called themselves Zeltrex, and while it didn’t go well towards the end, we were able to decode the English language. Our human historians will be happy to hear this wasn’t just a coincidence.”
Since Stoinia no longer exists in A1-0 I propose some slight retcons:
- The Treecuu are on a mission of exploration conducted by the Remote Fleets
- There are only Treecuu on the mission, but the things played out largely the same
- The Treecuu learned English either from the Zeltrex or the Ryccians and would still enquire where Erran had encountered that language before
(OOC: I’m fine with this.)
The Treecuu too had had dealings with the Zeltrex. They seemed utterly decadent, but also useful. The Admiral was curious to learn more about the encounter.
“The Zeltrex are… an interesting people. We too have encountered the. Why did it not go well?”
Erran spoke. “They landed stranded in our territory. We offered to fix their ship, and while it was being fixed we let them on a large ship similar to this one. Their… interesting nature did not bode well with the captain after an incedent involving a human ensign and a female Zeltrex. The captain was not pleased with this.” Erran specifically left out the fact that the captain ended up opening fire on the Zelrex- that was a bit extreme, even for the Trianarö.
(OOC: just a not for future reference that the above retcons were retconned because Mav decided to stay)
“Such a decadent people, but fortunately not a threat to security” commented the Admiral , smiling slightly as she remembered the fleet briefing on them and their incursion into Treecuu space.
Captain Salon nodded politely, realising he wasn’t entirely sure who the Admiral called decadent. Terrans or the Zeltrex. It would be typical for her sense of humour. He decided to change the subject.
“This is an impressive ship. Are there many others like it?”
HC Erran thought for a moment. First contact situations were exceptionally rare and he wouldn’t give any more information than necessary. “There are many ships of this class- We call them Flagships. However, the Trianarö Space Force is not dependent on these ships, they are still useful in a variety of applications.”
“I can imagine they are” answered Captain Salon.
“And method of interstellar travel? May I ask what kind of method they use?”
He knew this might have been a sensitive question, but it was according to first contact protocol to probe such matters. Often it helped building trust in the end, but the captain felt uneasy asking.