Get your fill of sci-fi, science, and mockery of stupid people
* FAQ    * Search   * Register   * Login 
Want to support this site? Click

Quote of the Week: "A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within." - Will Durant, American historian (1885-1981)


All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 11 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2012-10-22 06:02pm
Offline
Jedi Council Member

Joined: 2006-11-20 07:52am
Posts: 2274
Location: Scotland
Decided to post this story I was thinking of- and I need comments and critique on it, because I'm already juggling too many projects and, as usual, I haven't actually done all that much plotting in advance and am really struggling trying to figure out what is and isn't possible with Trek physics. I need to know where you think this can go, if anywhere.




-----------
'Well, Comrade, there she is. Project 918, phase III, World- Line Intruder, with the improved tactical-technical characteristics that you asked for.' the Master Shipwright proclaimed, as the slab- like little shuttle banked round the curve of it's parent star- station and the star/time- ship hovered there, free of the cradle for the first time, a swept- back, curve- lined four nacelled dart.

'As we found the mission required. The Relativity class are tough opponents; their only prominent weakness is the crews inside them.' Time-Captain First Rank Dmitri Alexeyevich Kondratyev stated. 'On many parallels we have done too thorough a job of teaching them to overcome their complacency.'

He knew, as the master shipwright did, that they were bound for the most closely contested target area of the time and culture wars; worldline cluster beta, deviation sigma two. Federation Improbably Triumphant. The yard had done their best for the ship, but the crew were still Kondratyev's problem.

'You still have a Mongol gun crew.' the Master Shipwright grumbled.

'No, I have a Klingon gun crew. They aren't the same- they're much less good with primitive weapons, and they never found their Temuchin and his four hounds.'

Easy for him to be dismissive, the shipwright thought. Kondratyev was big enough to pick most of the Klingons up with one hand- a true siberian bear of a man. As several of the Klingons had found out, he was also much faster than he looked. That gave the man an animal self- confidence that, although far from being enough for a time captain, did serve as a good foundation. The fact that most physical things were easy for him gave him more time to sharpen his brain, too.

The Ferengi Shipwright was rather a small being, and partly responsible for the security and upkeep of the giant yard- station; the Klingon weapon specialists had no personal respect for him, and in fact gave him many of his headaches. 'You wouldn't say they were no good with primitive weapons, if you had to keep them in order and clean up the mess of their brawls while the ship was being modified.'

'You wouldn't call them good if you had ever seen a mongol touman at it's work.' Kondratyev pointed out. 'I find them actually quite a shy, fragile species, essentially recovering paranoids, very slow to trust and requiring gentle bringing out of their shells. Their drinking and brawling is a defensive mechanism; overcompensation.'

He looked down at the Shipwright, saw he was being believed, and burst out laughing.'Some day I may even convince them of that. They are our fraternal socialist comrades, though, their people did invent what has become the primary weapon of the Project 918MUTTH, and they are quite useful with it when I can persuade them to cease to pretend to be blood- drinking primitives.'

'How they became so, I will never understand.' the Shipwright said. 'Their latest outburst was over a doctrinal issue- they wanted a hammer and bat'leth emblem painted on the side of the hull, and did not understand that just because it is called class war does not mean that it is appropriate to celebrate the warrior class at the expense of the denigration of the oppressed peasant.'

'There are two other advantages to having them around.' Kondratyev pointed out. 'It makes the mission more entertaining, and it reassures wonderfully. If they can grasp the elements of Marxism-Leninism-Trotskyism, then anyone may.' It was the Ferengi's turn to chuckle.

As they closed on and started to bank round the World- Line Intruder, the dark, sleek ogee-ogive hull, Kondratyev did say 'Perhaps a small one there, next to the Leveller...' The sinewave- shaped time duties rated deflector dish was on the belly of the ship, facing forward as it only made structural sense to do, but there was a ring of crystalline nodes around it, what Kondratyev had called the leveller; which in a way was exactly what it did, being a more advanced- not least in controllability- version of the Klingon stasis projector.

A very useful weapon for a time traveller, especially one whose main enemies were other time travellers fighting for the shape of History. Not that the ship was short of other weapons- sometimes the fighting became very literal, alternative pasts were often surprisingly capable, and there were moments when something had to be done away with to give something better a chance to happen.

The shipwright's people had nearly destroyed themselves in how many parallels, for instance, playing the losing game of short- termist, hustling capitalism, and cheating incompetently at that; they themselves had come close to the status of a commodity, especially to the Orions who liked to keep them as amusing pets- and they had had to be pushed that far down into the abyss by a previous generation of Intruders, not a subject Kondratyev wanted to bring up, before they started to fight back; had to be given the chains before they managed to arise.

There was an opalescent silver- white shimmer across the sky; the temporal sheathing and shielding of Engels Station reacting to, resisting something changing further up the stream of history. It was not an unusual occurrence. Not many changes that profound, though.

The shipwright looked over and saw Kondratyev was grinning. 'Something to do with your mission?'

'The preparatory barrage going in.' The time- captain explained by analogy. 'On at least one of the parallels, the world and race of Vulcan should just have ceased to exist; an essential move against the indifferentism that makes the federation's most fundamental law a covenant to allow others to suffer, an essential weakening of the defences of the federation that will give us room to change them for the better.

They are such a frustrating people, because they are half way there and determined to stay no more than half way there. They glimpse the truth, but their mysticism and lack of empathy hold them back from True Communism; perhaps there is some parallel, somewhere- perhaps this one- in which they can be persuaded.'

To the Ferengi's raised eyebrow and canted ear he added 'It is important to begin the mission in a spirit of optimism.'

'Concerning that,' the Shipwright said- the transformation, elimination, bringing into being of whole peoples were heady stuff indeed, but they were also the job of the Intruder Flotillas, so it would not do to make too much of a fuss over it. 'The mission, and the ship, still have no name.'

Officially, the intruder still would not have a name after one was picked; project and production number, that was officially all, and enough. Unofficially, in a tradition going back to the earliest days of astronautics, the mission crew would name the ship. In some cases that would be left to the ship's soviet; Kondratyev was more of an autocrat than that. He would choose.

Names tumbled through his head; appropriate people, historic events, private jokes he could have made, past great ships with a tradition worth appropriating. Varyag, Donskoy, Nevsky, Petr Velikiye- Zhdanov, Ulyanov, Chuikov- stars and battles and turning points, the adjectival names of small ships; seriously toying with the notion of Grigoriy Patyomkin before deciding on something to set a mark the crew would have to live up to.

The first choice- Spravedlivyy, Just, perhaps on another day but not after that shimmer of fissioning time. Even if you were genuinely convinced that they had done more harm than good, having to do something like that was hardly a cause for self- righteousness. Even if removing the Vulcans- by indirect and somewhat demented means apparently- would ultimately, with much further prodding, set the federation on the right path, even if it was a lesser cost, it was still a cost.

Even if you did get further with dialectical materialism and a disruptor than you did by dialectical materialism alone. Perhaps that would do for a good name after the time stream had sorted itself out, after the results were in, but for the moment- 'Nastoychivyy. Persistent.'




-----------
So there you have it. Attack of the Klingon Time Communists.

Disclaimer; I had a mostly typical disgruntled- misfit's flirtation with extremism when I was younger, and I remember a fair bit of the doctrine and jargon, but time moves on, circumstances change, perspective changes and opinions change with it. The only political opinion I consider worth holding now is that politics is an inherently futile and destructive activity, and should wherever possible be prevented. On the other hand, this is practically nostalgia.

Comments, ideas?

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2012-10-22 07:10pm
Online
Emperor's Hand

Joined: 2009-05-23 07:29pm
Posts: 21936
Around here, openly waving a red flag probably wouldn't be good for much more than shock value. Look at Stas Bush...

Kinda interested to see where you take it- a time war is easy to make bewildering, and where/when you choose to put the participants is half the charm.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2012-10-22 08:28pm
Offline
Padawan Learner

Joined: 2009-06-02 07:16pm
Posts: 258
Location: Largest Island, Sol III - invasion not recommended, terrain and wildlife extremely hostile.
Intriguing. On the one hand, I look forward to more, it looks good, from what I can see - and my brain is already mapping possible directions from here, always a sign that a story has captured me. On the other, I want your other stories to be finished... eh, I've seen writers pull off four or more stories before - if this is where your inspiration takes you, it might do more harm than good to your productivity to discourage you from writing this.

I say go for it.

Am I right in thinking that the "indirect and somewhat demented means" was Nero? And that we'll be dealing with either '09 Kirk, his successors in that universe, or a similar timeline where things went slightly differently and the '09 movie was a spinoff of the target timeline?

Changes being made like that all throughout the timeline would explain the sudden increase in ship size and capabilities seemingly Alpha Quadrant-wide, and some of the other differences that we saw.

EDIT: Like Kirk's somewhat disappointing handling of the Kobayashi Maru simulation - hell, the fact that the ship was named that, so that cadets knew going in that this was the famous "no-win scenario," rather than springing it on them so they have to try their best, while keeping the tactical details secret from cadets and changing ship names and incidental details around to obfuscate it. Have it based on the historical Kobayashi Maru, but change everything but what makes it so important!



Yes, I know my username is an oxyMORON, thankyou for pointing that out, you're very clever.

MEMBER: Evil Autistic Conspiracy. Working everyday to get as many kids immunized as possible to grow our numbers.

'I don't believe in gunship diplomacy, but a couple of battleships in low orbit over my enemy's capital can't but help negotiations.'

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2012-10-22 09:05pm
Online
Emperor's Hand

Joined: 2009-05-23 07:29pm
Posts: 21936
ECR's output patterns seem to depend more on inspiration than productivity. Having two stories doesn't necessarily make him much slower to write than having one, or so it seems.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2012-10-22 11:21pm
Offline
Padawan Learner

Joined: 2009-06-02 07:16pm
Posts: 258
Location: Largest Island, Sol III - invasion not recommended, terrain and wildlife extremely hostile.
Yeah, that was my impression of his muse's whims, as well.



Yes, I know my username is an oxyMORON, thankyou for pointing that out, you're very clever.

MEMBER: Evil Autistic Conspiracy. Working everyday to get as many kids immunized as possible to grow our numbers.

'I don't believe in gunship diplomacy, but a couple of battleships in low orbit over my enemy's capital can't but help negotiations.'

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2012-10-23 03:49pm
Offline
Glamorous Commie
User avatar

Joined: 2003-02-26 12:39pm
Posts: 17450
Location: 差不多先生
Simon_Jester wrote:
Around here, openly waving a red flag probably wouldn't be good for much more than shock value. Look at Stas Bush...

Waving the red - or any - flag for that matter also takes some skill. With my own writing well underway, I've found it rather difficult to seamlessly integrate ideological lines and storytelling as some classics and modern authors (e.g. Stephen King) manage to do. A good "red" story shouldn't look like Lenin in October, with all the fancy talk and such, looking like a pure propaganda story. It should look more like Gorky's Mother or Márquez (One Hundred Years of Solitude). Communists are first and foremost people. Their qualities as people merge with their qualities as political revolutionaries. When this happens, you get interesting and truly inspiring or frightening characters.

Also, the name... it's written as Potyomkin. And of course naming the ship Potyomkin does not mean it is named after the knyaz Grigory Potemkin; rather it means that the ship is named for the rebellious cruiser Potemkin.



Misereor

A short story of humanity's first contact

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2012-10-23 07:51pm
Offline
Jedi Council Member

Joined: 2006-11-20 07:52am
Posts: 2274
Location: Scotland
Never saw Lenin in October, have read Marquez, and a little Grossman. Personally I've bounced from one end of the political spectrum to the other, from Young Conservative to student Trotskyist to SNP to Lib Dem to bring-back-Old-Labour to- at this point, I'm not even sure I know.

I've been on too many sides, and from the worm's eye they had more in common than they had apart- I started to think that the people in charge of each of them had far more interest with their own kind, their own class, than they did to plebs like me, even the supposed revolutionaries. That and most of what they were doing wasn't helping. The nostalgia is personal- for the time when I was young(er), and believed.


There is also a half written rant where Kondratyev has one of the junior officers on the carpet for brawling, and more or less says- after a lot of polishing of the language- that communism speaks in the language of violence for several reasons, the most immediately important of which is that it is in that greatest of inhumanities that one sees clearest the need for humanity; in the terror and confusion and deprivation of war that it becomes unmistakable how much each depends on all, how much each one of us is supported, made human, by our comrades and our brothers.


And the name, he was only kicking around the idea- and it would have been the man, not the battleship, as despite rank and station one of the greatest Progressors of his time- but decided against it. The final choice was for Nastoychivyy, which I believe translates as Persistent.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2012-10-24 05:38am
Offline
Glamorous Commie
User avatar

Joined: 2003-02-26 12:39pm
Posts: 17450
Location: 差不多先生
I've been a communist consistently throughout my entire adult life - which is quite short, but quite likely will remain like this in the future. I'm too much of a materialist to hold other views. As for some person being a "progressor"... The anti-aristocratic idea in communism is even stronger than in liberalism. Especially in revolutionary communism, which seeks to abolish the ancien regime in entirety and get rid of all "vestiges" of the old order, of which aristocracy is a key element (since revolutions typically happen in backwards monarchies). True, in some cases an ancient aristocrat may become a rallying figure, but this usually happens with "popular front" type movements, which combine socialist and nationalist ideas, not strictly communist per se. Tupamaros is an example.



Misereor

A short story of humanity's first contact

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2012-10-24 06:16am
Online
Emperor's Hand

Joined: 2009-05-23 07:29pm
Posts: 21936
Being a time-traveling civilization at war with other time-travelers, I think I can forgive the protagonists here for having a somewhat strange attitude toward certain historical figures. Even if it would get them funny looks from real 20th and 21st century communists on Earth.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2013-01-05 10:37pm
Offline
Jedi Council Member

Joined: 2006-11-20 07:52am
Posts: 2274
Location: Scotland
At long, long last, another chapter. I didn't think this was going to happen; the more I read about the Federation, the more convinced I become that it cannot possibly work. That's one thing.

The other- just to remind you again, I am an ex-Trotskyist; I actually left the (UK) Socialist Workers' Party as a result of a wierd flashbulb memory while attending a party conference at the University of London student union building. One of those moments that just pops into your head.

I had a pint tumbler in my hand, and I was on the union balcony looking out over the city as the sun was going down trying to sort the day's lectures and conferences out in my head, when I just had this moment- and I was three thousand miles away, standing on muddy, trampled grass in a close- packed crowd, looking up at a tall thin man behind a lectern; listening to Lincoln read out the Gettysburg Address.

Maybe it was just doubts crystallising, and I was due to do a course on American History the year after, but it just came to me that people were wierd, most of those at the conference didn't fit all that well into their own theories without a mallet being involved, that there were other paths to and ideas of the Good and people do all sorts of strange things for reasons more idiosyncratic than any formal theory understandable enough to believe in could account for.

I left, and I've never been able to drink Kronenbourg 1664 since.

Anyway, ch 2, and somewhat strange just about starts to cover it. Klingon Communism turns out to be about a gnat's wing off Makhno- esque anarcho- fascism for a start.


---------------------
Intruders were, of necessity, flexible vessels. Replicators, synthesiser and holo- chambers made being prepared for all eventualities relatively easy, but it also left a wilderness of options, customisations, interior decoration and mood rooms.

On most ships, anyway. So far this one was strict Functionalist, neutral light grey with service markings for all cables and conduits, and would almost certainly stay that way.

The wardroom was better lit and friendlier, soothing blue- green, and most of the section leaders were there.


'Finally we move.' The gunnery officer, was saying. A Klingon of the old core imperial race, lean and long- limbed; most of 918-003's blower-uppers of things deemed unnecessary for the future were of his people. It was hard to stop them gravitating towards the role, even if it would be appropriate to do so- "from each according to their abilities" after all.

In fact there had always been a resonance there, between the Klingons' version of the concept of glory and the labour theory of value; both of them could be reduced to the idea that a thing was worth the toil and struggle, sweat and blood it had taken to get it.

'Under Kondratyev, again.' The intruder's Alternate Historian said; female human, and looked like she should be suffering from Dolph Lundgren Syndrome, the size of her muscles compressing her brain and reducing her intelligence. She wasn't- nobody whose job was to comprehend the branching of timelines could afford to. Did goof occasionally, though.

'You have to do something about those Freudian slips.' her friend the Psychodiagnostician gently prodded her. Even the Klingons had picked up enough human culture to get the joke.

The Alternate Historian blushed, embarrassed, before making the mistake of trying to impersonalise it, going on the attack- 'You know what he's like. Who he chooses to model himself on. He's simply not a socialist. Never asks, never discusses, never confers-an autocrat. I don't see how this can be ideologically sound.'


'You're wrong, and your theories are wrong.' The gunnery officer said. 'The prophet Marx lived in an age of inequality, it was obvious around him, and attempting to pretend that it is not so was not a favoured strategy- it poisoned and destroyed two centuries of progress.'

'That's a fascist concept!' She napped back at him. 'Exactly what I could expect from an unreconstructed imperial power.'

' "From each according to their abilities; to each according to their needs". I assume I don't need to remind you of the source of that.' The gunnery officer said, voice like hydrofluoric acid. 'Inequality is inseparable from being alive, and intelligent recognition of that, the individuality of ability, the individuality of need, is at the core of successful communism.'

'You can't separate communism from socialism.' The Alternate Historian demanded angrily.

'I concur with you on the subject of the human inability to do so.' the Klingon sneered. 'Children and fools with your begging bowls out. It was hardly worth saving you.'


Before it could get any worse- she stood up about to threaten him, not a wise move- a voice said 'Enough.' Executive officer, Captain's right hand man. Localisation specialist. Time heritage was his thing.

Shigeru Yermakeyevich Gurung was not a tall man, but his ancestors had stood on more than a few heaps of skulls- literal as well as metaphorical. Even the Klingons were willing to respect a human who fought with a katana in one hand and a kukri in the other. And when that didn't work he could always throw his horse at them.

'The constructors have already done the shakedown cruise, they warrant the ship is fully operational. We are operating on a minimum predictable path; we will depart for the transition zone as soon as all are aboard. To your stations.'

The wardroom emptied in short order; confused by the suddenness of it all, but no bad thing to avoid what would almost certainly have been blood spilled, and a bad start.

Gurung had actually initially set out to be a veterinarian; the whole edged weapon, discover your heritage thing had come relatively late in life, it was still something of a pose. As he suspected most Klingons went through their entire lives doing.

The boss- Kondratyev- had done something of the same; the community he had been raised in had believed that while it is good to have a natural talent, it is better to work hard at being something else, something needful. If nothing else then you have two options, the labour and the gift.

It would have surprised most and horrified many that he had chosen to become the control freak he was. Thinking of surprises, and control, and crew yet to join, their political officer was still adrift. Now do I prepare a pot of tea for him, Gurung thought, or simply check the edge on my sword?


In terms of personal weapons, Kondratyev was a pragmatist; easily enough of one to know that for all that there are right tools for the job, sometimes simple purpose isn't what it's about. Sometimes it is about the symbolism, the moral effect; the meaning of a weapon can be a force in it's own right.

There was something very profound and symbolic about a knife to the throat, for instance. Such as the one he was holding to the neck of his political officer, who was wriggling half way up the wall of the personnel pod that had just docked.

'You can't do this.' The political officer was saying, trying not to sweat too much; it was too late not to show fear.

'Which part? Threaten you or possibly let you live?' Kondratyev said. In fact he had wanted to do this to more or less every political officer he had ever met. Killing wasn't necessarily part of the plan. A Klingon wouldn't have done it this way, but he was feeling reckless.


'I simply don't need you on the trip out, you see. We cannot afford the luxury of ideological purity. We must grasp them in order to change them; learn their ways, assimilate their logic, predict them, find their vulnerabilities. It is necessary- necessary, or we are only drawing conclusions from a false social reality- to also understand them in their own terms, to see reality also from their point of view.

Only then, only by destroying them from within will we achieve the decisive victory of transformation, making them something good and glorious instead of a shattered ruin. The time of orthodoxy will come when we have to shake off the quantum dust of the other from our feet, and readjust to being good communists of the future again.'

That was not the sort of speech calculated to give a political officer heart; even if he half expected his to be cut out any moment. Could he get out of this by grovelling- was the loss of self respect even worth it- would cringing make him more likely to kill- how mad did the man have to be to be doing this?

'Of the future...that says interesting things about your sense of time, Captain. ' It was itself a stall for time, of course.

'True. For me "now" is the time when things are happening, when there is work to do. This century is just the home base we return to between moments of useful existence.'


'You're talking about useful existence and you're threatening to kill me?'

'When you chide a comrade for insufficient commitment, do you not have the apparatus of coercion behind you? Are there not knives, and needles, and slow maddening drip drip dripping in the dark? Consider this merely a gesture of equality.'

'This- this is not civilised.' The wriggling zampolit managed.

'Civilisation is the soft tissue of what is possible, what is feasible and good, but it cannot exist undamaged and untainted without the hard shell of what needs to be done.' more slight gestures with the knife.

'Civilisation requires barbarism? I don't recall that being one of the approved laws of history.' Another stall.

'You would not, as it is our job to break the laws of history- but you achieve truth by accident; unless stopped, the final degenerate form of capitalism, believing it needs no shell, regenerates itself by collapsing into feudalism and beginning the cycle over again. The process is obvious in the true history of the Orion peoples.

There are many paradoxes in time war; the most relevant of which is that war has its' own logic, and failure to think in it invites defeat against any opponent who is not also a hapless fool.

One of these is that people are pushed outwards from the norms of behaviour towards their best- and their worst. One is that centuries may depend on the tactical outcome, but it is split seconds that are vital.


Another is that collective responsibility is a very dysfunctional method of prosecuting a war. Do you recall the fate of the Yigael Gluckstein? No? An attempt at doctrinal correctness that resulted in fatal hesitation. "Comrades, convene the party cell" is not the correct response to "match generated bearings and shoot."

The Zhdanov? The command crew had separated into political factions and were no longer operating as a team. They were out reacted by early 24th century Starfleet- deaths do not get more embarrassing and shameful. The Malach isotai- Ch'rnr? Subverted on the inner front and defected to revanchist, imperialist Klingons.

The Eugene V. Debs? Computer converted to libertarian objectivism by the polytronic matrix of the Enterprise-R because none of the crew were intellectually flexible enough to understand and deflect the terms of the attack. The Saul Alinsky, the Bukharin, the Singaravelu Chettiar? Shameful failures- and many, many other partial and near failures.

In war, tyranny succeeds. That is why it persisted in human affairs for so long. I do run my ship as an autocrat and a tyrant- because it serves the objective. We fight for communism, not with it.' Not strictly accurate, but under the circumstances close enough.


He left a pause then added 'Now in the true spirit of Soviet Socialism, do you agree with me or do I have to cut your throat?' That was exactly the sort of joke Comrade (pfui) Stalin had told. The political officer's eyes rolled back in his head and he started thrashing.

He's either faking it- and a knee to the groin suggested he wasn't- or he really is having a heart attack. Now there is the effectiveness of symbolism. 'Medical? Anyone down there yet?'

'Yes- Captain?'

'I have a body for you- the political officer's having a heart attack. He's the one in the transport pod who isn't me. Beam him down, and doctor; he's going to take a very long time to recover, and you may have to give him amnesiac drugs to reduce the psychological trauma. You may even have to put him in stasis.' Short pause. 'No, we don't have time to leave him behind.'


Almost everyone found their duty stations, and those that did not the ship was probably better off without them. Now we find out what weight we have, Kondratyev thought as he made his own way to the bridge. This is their- everyone but us- the last chance they have to stop us before we have an opportunity to change the past.

That conveys information, so the response will likely be non- linear; they, the late federation especially, have been known to massively over- react to prevent utter trivia like who becomes the leading spork manufacturer in a particular sector. We have also been known to manipulate such trivia to make the federation believe there is something to it when there is nothing, also.

Sometimes under- react, to make us think something was less important than it turned out to be; occasionally it worked, too, but it is an inherently dangerous game, one they loved to play- but learned not to play too often. Bluff has eventually to give way to honouring the threat, if there is reality to the threat at all- there is a bedrock of the logic of the situation they are bound to.

We are not entirely unlimited in time and space; always easiest to travel in space first and take evasive routings to the insertion point, possible that some attempts to block time intervention may simply have been unsuccessful.

Ach, ten thousand worlds- more, a hundred thousand all told- a thousand years and more, and the only constant is confusion. With a side dish of paranoia. This, I think, will be a hot one.


'Engels Control, this is 918-003 Nastoychivyy, we will depart in warp. Request runway. Weapons, external pod, zeronium mines, arm and make ready.'

That was a shock- to Engels Station traffic control more than to the gunners- but they could grasp the reason behind it; agreed. A section of the time shields took on a green heterodyned glow, rows of holographic dots of light appeared.

'Helm, impulse- sideslip, line us up with the runway; on my mark, direct to warp, minimum-time acceleration to factor eighteen.'

The helm and nav briefly boggled, before being glared into obedience. 'I've seen hot launches before, but this, Lenin lives? He'd have a heart attack if he saw this- aye, acting.'

Nastoychivyy was a new ship, but she was not looking as if she was going to be a well behaved one- cavilled, banked unpredictably and unbidden, dipped and twitched as her impulse motors propelled her over to the start of the runway. The helmsman looked at the captain in horror, but the word was given anyway. 'Mark.'


It was very far from a bold enthusiasm for the adventure ahead, but the helmsman pushed home the initiator, set the board for the run; Nastoychivyy leapt forward to warp.

We should have gone for a more aggressive name, he thought. This isn't persistence, this is bounce, dash, boldness. It wouldn't be honourable to call the ship "bouncy". Provornyy- Active- might have been better, but it is bad luck to change a ship's name.

We'll just have to run with it and hope to demonstrate that particular quality later in the mission. If we reach that far, because even with a running start, there is much in our way.

Sensors was calling out 'Contacts, port and starboard bow, beam, quarter- Breen, Romulan, Husnock, Orion- capital and supercapital-'

Exactly as I thought, if not worse; and no federation? Have they convinced their lackeys to do it all for them, or are the aftereffects counterproductive enough that that combination of forces has a special reason to stop us? 'Mines.' Kondratyev ordered. Klingon weapon officers seldom if ever hesitated when actually given the chance to kill something.


Nastoychivyy had left Engels Station under high warp precisely in order to flash through the ambush zone before fire could be exchanged; it had been expected, predicted, prepared for. Hence the mine pods.

A strap on, external load, the zeronium mines exploited something that did not, without special conditions could not, exist. A fluctuation into negative mass- energy, they could only be as a quantum anomaly; when they were scanned, or shot, or flown into by a careless pursuer, they collapsed and classically renormalised themselves by equalling out with their surroundings.

They sucked in energy, the more complex forms of it the better. In theory that could perhaps be survivable, but few ships tended to be able to cope with their structural integrity and antimatter containment fields shutting down, simultaneously with all the backups.

Romulan ships' quantum singularities passing below minimum sustainable mass and evaporating was if anything more entertaining, producing more interesting colours as it usually did.


'The prognosis is excellent.' Kondratyev said, looking at the flowers of light erupting in the ship's wake as the stealthed mines found targets and detonated. 'Several factions committing much to stop us.'

Factor Eighteen, over fifty- eight hundred lightspeed, was the ship's maximum battle speed- the peak velocity at which the deflection envelope still had enough reserve integrity to permit manoeuvre and torpedo fire.

Could push harder, but higher speed travel would be better served by going to Tau-II Warpdrive, what used to be called transwarp before they got it to work properly, a subspace within subspace; and perhaps might be advisable. Project 918 was essentially a battlecruiser, fast agile and heavily armed, but not built for a standing fight.

Not against peer opposition, anyway, equally advanced time- craft. The Federation's Relativity- class were cruisers; exactly what a battlecruiser was supposed to be capable of eliminating. The Principle class- Harmony, Freedom, Enterprise- R, so forth- they on the other hand were battleships. Too much to take on, unless you could sneak up on them, and time travel made that tricky.

He had expected trouble waiting for them; would tell the crew that he had felt it in his bones, but in practise it had been an educated guess. A smaller blocking force, he might have tried to round on and eliminate, but there were too many bruisers there, too many ships of force among the Husnock and Romulan contingents.


Best to flee. 'Comms, pass warnings to the station and the screening group about the intruders. Helm, Engineering, energise Tau-II drive and prepare for transition. Tactical History, anything?'

Engaged in battle up and down the time stream, it was possible to literally watch history in the making. Their world line took them through events that became externally clear, chaotic garble resolving into information;

'Yes, resolving now..."it is clear that this extraordinary gamble must have been motivated by dire necessity, most of the ships involved having little enough structural and energy integrity to survive the trip forward in time, and insufficient for demimillennial retrograde travel. For the overwhelming majority of the ships attempting to stop the Intruder 003, it was a suicide mission.

It should not have been surprising that-'

'Drop to warp 12, diving turn starboard, activate cloak, corkscrew port.' Kondratyev gave a rapid but carefully timed sequence of orders- that more by luck than judgement brought the ship stern on to a monstrous blue- white detonation that sent shockwaves rippling through subspace.

'I wondered where the Federation were, and now we know. They were the stop party, ahead of the conventional ambush. They are here, and if they are firing Tricobalt warheads at us, they are very desperate. Let us give them reason to be.'

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Krazny Zvyozd (Star Trek AU) PostPosted: 2013-01-05 11:37pm
Online
Emperor's Hand

Joined: 2009-05-23 07:29pm
Posts: 21936
Eleventh Century Remnant wrote:
At long, long last, another chapter. I didn't think this was going to happen; the more I read about the Federation, the more convinced I become that it cannot possibly work. That's one thing.

The other- just to remind you again, I am an ex-Trotskyist...
Hence the timeline bundle "Federation Improbably Triumphant," no?

As to the rest- honestly, had no idea you'd ever been involved with communism, so 'remind' is a strange choice of word. But then I guess you can't always have been this idealicynical about politics. You seem to have gravitated toward political Vimesianism, which I myself am well content with as a personal philosophy. :D

Quote:
The Eugene V. Debs? Computer converted to libertarian objectivism by the polytronic matrix of the Enterprise-R because none of the crew were intellectually flexible enough to understand and deflect the terms of the attack.
:D !

Quote:
'Yes- Captain?'

'I have a body for you- the political officer's having a heart attack. He's the one in the transport pod who isn't me. Beam him down, and doctor; he's going to take a very long time to recover, and you may have to give him amnesiac drugs to reduce the psychological trauma. You may even have to put him in stasis.' Short pause. 'No, we don't have time to leave him behind.'
A convenient advantage of symbolism indeed.

Quote:
'The prognosis is excellent.' Kondratyev said, looking at the flowers of light erupting in the ship's wake as the stealthed mines found targets and detonated. 'Several factions committing much to stop us.'
:D !!

And I like the zeronium.

Top
 Profile  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 11 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group