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Selathorn

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Wed Sep 18, 2013 3:05 pm

Admiral Carran sent her own message to the Christanans as well. "Attention, Christanan fleet. We cannot recognize your alleged territorial claim to this system: this is and remains a neutral system, and you have no justification for holding it. We are here solely for the purposes of engaging the enemy that launched an attack against Heraklean space, not to begin a conflict with your nation. Though I will not hesitate to order retaliation the moment any ship of this fleet is fired upon, the Centauri portion of this fleet shall hold fire and summarily request that you depart this system, lest you suffer severe diplomatic consequences."

***

"Damn," Major Alinari swore, as he turned to the Heraklean commander. "I'm tempted to think that this is a bluff, and yet the idea of the Christanans pulling off a bluff this big seems unlikely. Shall we press on, to the control chamber? I don't want to be the one who fires the first shot of the war, but it might as well have already started. Your opinion?"


Last edited by Selathorn on Tue Sep 24, 2013 9:25 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Heraklea

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Wed Sep 18, 2013 6:47 pm

This lends strength to our suspicions about Christana, thought Fleet Admiral Kirrin. The math on this doesn't add up favorably, though. FOABs should guarantee us victory, but that might be little better than a Pyrrhic one, given their numbers and distribution. The combination of Paros remnant forces and what the Chrissies have brought to play with... The outcome is far from certain. My plan included contingencies for interference, but the Chrissies must have sent almost everything they have. And even if we break them here and move against Christana, that just might trigger the Rays and the Kitties*. Ophelia leaned forward in her chair. Dammit, I hate uncertainties. She began recording a message.

“To the Christanan commander, we demand to know on what basis you claim sovereignty over this system and planet.”

* * * * *

“As far as I'm concerned, that announcement could just be a Chrissy hacker gaining control of the announcing circuit. I see no reason that should stop us.”

“And the Christanan fleets, Commander?”

“Fleets? What fleets? I haven't heard about any fleets. There's so much damned interference from the EM shielding in this facility, I haven't been able to contact flag since I came in here. Have you had any more luck than we have?”

“... No I don't believe we have.”

“Well then, absent any countermanding orders, I intend to proceed with my previous ones: ensure that the threat from Paros is neutralized.” With that, the commander turned and proceeded to the door to the control room. “Cutters,” he ordered, and a pair of marines moved forward and began cutting through the door. Upon breaking through, the door fell inward and the marines moved in.

“What in the worlds?” said one when they saw Stefan's body.

“The mind is barely human anymore,” said the Psyker. “I don't know if I can do anything with it.”

“Try,” said the commander.

*Ray and Kitty are Heraklean slang Rhea and Bastia.
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Selathorn

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Wed Sep 18, 2013 7:02 pm

Major Alinari nodded, and said, "Very well, I trust your judgment. My instinct was to move on as well, but I did not wish to do so without further input. Comrades! We advance onward!"

The Hoplites followed up after the Herakleans, when they broke open the door. When Major Alinari saw Stefan linked into the AI's command node, enveloped by a mass of wires that linked to his head, he grimaced. This was hardly a usual sight for him, and as he suspected the Christanan wasn't bluffing after all. God knows what they managed to do, but it certainly seemed to work. While the Heraklean psyker began their work, the Hoplites cautiously watched the door behind them for oncoming attack, while a few observed the proceedings and cautiously kept their weapons trained on Stefan.

"So," Major Alinari said slowly, "it seems that it was not, in fact, a bluff."
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Christana

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:26 pm

As the Psyker attempted to connect to Stephen he saw the entire network of Praos in flashes. It was too much for him, he fell back in pain screaming.

"It's too much, too much!"

After the Psyker failed, Stephen stood up and faced the group, his eyes were nothing but two blue glowing orbs. He walked up to the group with no fear and opened his voice, it was deep and inhuman.

"Leave now." He commanded as electricity pulsed from his finger tips showing them off as a threat. As he said that he also ordered for his heavy bots to surround them. As he stared at the group, around 100 heavy assault droids jumped down behind the Hera forces.

"Leave now and you will be allowed to leave peacefully."

(OOC: The bots are the size of space marines.)
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Heraklea

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Sun Sep 22, 2013 10:31 pm

“Well, it looks like Chrissy still know how to respond in a timely fashion.”

“Just send them another hail.”

* * * * *

“To the Christanan Command, I say again, we demand to know on what basis you claim sovereignty.  Respond or we will have no reason not to defend ourselves against your unwarranted aggression.”

* * * * *

The Commander stepped up to Stephen.

“I wonder if there is even anything left of you in there.  Not that it really matters.  We were sent to make sure this planet is never again in a position to threaten Heraklea.  I'll do that even if it costs me my life.”  Active lights on all of the Commander's grenades energized.  “Every one of my grenades are now on a dead man's switch tied to me.  If I die, ionized plasma will cover every control panel and body in this room.  You better believe that will fry your circuitry.  I won't retreat without orders, so you better give me a reason not to incinerate us all.”


Last edited by Heraklea on Sun Sep 22, 2013 11:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Selathorn

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Sun Sep 22, 2013 10:38 pm

Major Alinari remained behind the Commander, and his face betrayed no reaction to Stephen's threat. Once the Commander was finished speaking, he said, "We stand in solidarity with the Herakleans. We will not tolerate this attempt to threaten us, and we shall see through that the planet is neutered as a threat to the State of Heraklea and to the Planetary Governate. We carry no fear, for if we die here, then it will be a death well-served. Indeed, we shall back his warning: our fusion generators are collectively enough to collapse this entire complex if we chose to let them. Remove yourself from the system or we shall take care of that ourselves."
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Sacae

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Sun Sep 22, 2013 10:49 pm

*Paladin Komtur Maya, who had tapped into the Heraklean team's equipment thanks to the Arcanii Network, had been listening in and monitoring the team's status just in case the Black Hole Legion was needed. As soon as the Centauri and Herakleans were finished speaking she spoke up through the Herakleans external speakers.*

Maya: ...and failing that the Ordenreich fleet has full authorization to bombard this planet with FOABs till the very crust is pulverized. Regardless of what you do this planet will either still exist but demilitarized or become another statistic of galactic war. Choose your next steps very wisely...
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Sun Sep 22, 2013 11:37 pm

Stephen started laughing which haunted the entire complex, he found their attempts to be childish at best.

"It is adorable, really. You see a body, a body attached to a vast network with many back ups of my brain deep underground along with multiple complexes that you have not even seen yet. All your attempt would do is rid me of pests and give me a slightly more annoying rebuild schedule. The technology more complex than you understand, even if you blew this entire planet up you would face a worse fate than you thought. This planet's destruction would affect planets within 100 planet range, including territory of your beloved state."

---
"We have word that a ranger who was here before you linked himself to the ai and took control. We have data proof that this is not a false report, if you wish we may send it to you."
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Selathorn

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Tue Sep 24, 2013 8:11 pm

Major Alinari's expression did not change, if anything his resolve only seemed to harden. "Christanan, you bluff. For one in control of a technological system as powerful as this one, you seem to have little grasp of physics. The sheer amount of power necessary for the destruction of the planet to affect such a large range is absolutely absurd, and it is clearly nothing less than a lie in plain sight. And you call this technology more advanced than I can understand? Perhaps that might be true, for I am no trained systems expert, but if a Christanan ranger could take control of it without anyone to back him up, I have no doubts that our probe teams could do the same."

"Of course, I do not believe that your threat of our destruction is a bluff. Yes, you will be able to destroy us, I have no doubt of that. We are outnumbered and surrounded, but your victory will be meaningless. Perhaps you will wipe out our contingent, but there plenty more good men and women ready to continue to the fight. Your infrastructure is ruined, and your forces are in no position to continue to wage war. If anything, I welcome death - is there nothing more than martyrdom to inspire your fellow comrades?"

"Surrender now, Christanan. You fight a losing battle. Even if you do not, we will find you, and we will capture you. In a punishment sphere - virtual or physical, I know not - will you carry out the rest of your days, to spend the aeons pondering every single mistake, and I will make sure these very words haunt you, forever and ever. If you wish to carry us to glorious oblivion, let it be so, but know that the torments of a punishment sphere shall await you."

***

While listening to the Christanan reply, Admiral Carren almost seemed to seethe with repressed anger. It was clear that she found the reply infuriating, and she paused to take a deep breath and to take back full control over her emotions. Nevertheless, it was clear enough to her that the response was nothing less than an insult, and in her mind it was tantamount to a declaration of war. She demanded a justification, and she could not even see the sliver of a justification in the Christanan's reply - no, if anything, it was the exact opposite of one! Deliberately, she waited for a minute to calm herself done, and replied,

"Christanan fleet, your 'justification' is, in the eyes of both the Centauri and international law, without merit, and your actions here have been nothing less than illegal. It does not concern us whether or not this alleged ranger has taken control over the Praos AI - either way, you have no legitimate claim to authority in this system, especially not when this takeover has occurred by subterfuge! Your actions here interfere with the legitimate operation of the Joint Task Force in retaliating against attack by a stateless entity, and your having assumed control of the planet's AI does not constitute a claim to the system, for there are no grounds to base this takeover. It is more than clear that you have taken this system for the sole purpose of acquiring its resources, and nothing else. We will not relent."
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Tue Sep 24, 2013 8:34 pm

{Encrypted}

To: Admiral Carren
From: Paladin Komtur Maya

The Arcanii Network has been laying out a nuclear minefield in secret around the Christana fleet and our artillery fleets have finished aligning their targeting on the Christanan fleet. Give the word and the Ordenreich will unleash firepower not seen since the Hildenburen War. I've attached a copy of this message to the Heraklean admiral as a precaution.

Sincerely,
Maya

*After sending the message Paladin Komtur Maya sent two more transmissions. The first she sent through the Heraklean teams communications in the AI control center after hearing the Centauri's retort.*

Maya: I would listen to the man Christanan. I have seen Centauri engineering and their probe teams on their homeworld and believe me, you have nothing on them.

*She sent the second message to the Christanan fleet*

Maya: Admiral Carren couldn't have said it any better. This farce is over. Turn your ships around and get out of this system or be prepared to back up your quote, "justifications."
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Heraklea

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Tue Sep 24, 2013 11:07 pm

Ophelia dispassionately reviewed the dispatches and updated intelligence reports. It was a mess to be sure. If things went sideways, the next war with Christana would start. If it happened here, the Ordenreich would have little choice but to be join Heraklea in the fight against Christana (a possibility that may not be present later if she was reading the dispatches from Livenstein correctly), but at the same time the situation was ambiguous enough that the Christanan may well convince the Rheans they had cause, which would bring both the Confederacy and the Bastians in on their side. Further, intel suggested that while maintaining their neutrality, the Burninites may decide to become neutral in favor of the Christanans, which may pose all sorts of problems. It seemed, unfortunately, to forestall a potentially disastrous war, a diplomatic solution would have to be found. She began drafting a proposal to send to the Christanans after it was reviewed by her allies...

* * * * *

TO: Admiral Carren, Paladin Komtur Maya
FROM: Fleet Admiral Kirrin

Would a demilitarized Christanan Mandate for Paros be an acceptable solution to our current situation?
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Tue Sep 24, 2013 11:59 pm

(OOC: You wouldn't need intelligence. Jenova would have told the Heraklean ambassador living with the Burninites that the same offer is being extended to the Christanans. So it'd be obvious. But also, if Ophelia was truly reading this news dispassionately, I don't see how she could think the Burninites wanted to come out in favor of the Christanans over entirely neutral.)
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Heraklea

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Wed Sep 25, 2013 12:21 am

OOC: They are the only ones that the Burninites have extended the offer to. That implies a situation of what is in international relations called "neutral in favor of..." It implies that while a state is officially neutral in a particular political or military struggle, they are tacitly supporting one side over the other. A good example is the United States towards the European powers in WWI prior to entry. Between 1914 and 1917, the United States, while officially neutral, provided substantial loans to the British and French governments to finance their war efforts. Given that the only state you have sent ambassadors to is Christana, Heraklea is naturally concerned that such a situation would arise. Such possibilities would be raised by intelligence analysts, which is why it comes from intel and why she is concerned about the possibility of a neutral in favor of.
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Wed Sep 25, 2013 1:25 am

To: Fleet Admiral Kirrin
From: Paladin Komtur Maya

You're going to have to. Half of my threat to Christana is total bullshit. A citizen's movement in the Ordenreich temporarily shut down all war factories producing FOABs. Our Artillery Fleets are effectively dry. Resupply ships are en route as that crises has resolved itself but the time it takes to load the FOABs onto the ships and get them to the Artillery is about 8 hours. This is time we don't have because I'm pretty sure O.S.S.C. Livenstein is seriously considering pulling us out because of the apparent instability in the Ordenreich.
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:00 pm

To: Fleet Admiral Meagan Ida, Paladin Komtur Maya von Danzig Nova
From: Admiral Zahara Carren

In lieu of a more preferable outcome, we can tentatively accept the creation of a demilitarized Christanan mandate at Praos.

Cordially,
Admiral Zahara Carren
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Heraklea

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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:39 am

“Christanan commander, this is Fleet Admiral Ophelia Kirrin of the Heraklean State Navy. In so far as neither we nor our allies have a particular interests in this system beyond removing the threat of further attacks against Heraklean sovereignty and the sovereignty of our allies, we have concluded between ourselves that it would be acceptable for us to recognize a Christanan mandate for administration of the Paros system as a demilitarized zone, pending a more permanent solution to the question of sovereignty in the Paros system to be negotiated at a later date within the next twenty years. Would your government be amenable to such a solution?”
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Thu Sep 26, 2013 3:45 pm

"We will accept these as temporary terms, the council will wish a full annexation."
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Thu Sep 26, 2013 3:50 pm

"Such matters will be determined at a later date in discussions between our respective diplomatic services. We will need to insist on regular allowance for inspectors to enter the system and verify its continued status as a demilitarized zone."
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Thu Sep 26, 2013 7:27 pm

(OOC: Yay! Peace! At work today, I was seriously contemplating having the Rhean fleet glass the planet completely to remove the cause of friction. Hey, you're not fighting over Paros anymore.)
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Thu Sep 26, 2013 7:29 pm

(OOC: Well, to be fair, the Centauri would have preferred that too. They don't want to take control of Praos, they just want to eliminate the threat, permanently.)
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Thu Sep 26, 2013 7:46 pm

OOC: Well damn, we definitely would have preferred that. Oh well.
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Thu Sep 26, 2013 8:20 pm

(OOC: Have tensions flare up over the planet again at some point? But yeah, that's one change in Rhean mentality due to the galactic wars they've been involved in. They are much more willing to take extreme measures to protect Mother Rhea.)


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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Thu Sep 26, 2013 8:20 pm

(OOC: I got you covered)

*Paladin Komtur Maya was silently listening to the negotiations when her message screen lit up. She thought it was another update from the ground forces when she saw it had privileged encryption. She knew the only ones that could send those type of messages was the Paladin Komturs or the Hochmeister. She entered her passcode and read the following message.

TO: PALADIN KOMTUR MAYA VON DANZIG NOVA, COMMANDING OFFICER OF PRAOS EXPEDITION FLEET ORDENREICH CONTINGENT
FROM: PALADIN KOMTUR JAGER VON LIVENSTEIN, NEWLY APPOINTED COMMANDING OFFICER OF ORDENREICH STRATEGIC SPACE COMMAND LIVENSTEIN

***YOUR EYES ONLY***
***PRIVILEGED ENCRYPTION***

ANY UNAUTHORIZED PERSONS READING THIS ARE SUBJECT TO IMMEDIATE EXECUTION, DELETE UPON READING

MESSAGE BEGINS

Paladin Komtur Maya, O.S.S.C. Livenstein was rethought its stance on Praos. We have concluded that any AI presence on Praos is absolutely unacceptable, even more so if Christana is given any kind of influence over the planet. As such you are authorized to initiate the CLEANSING FLAME PROTOCOL. Inform our allies and as soon as all ground forces are off planet begin the operation. Jager out.

MESSAGE ENDS

*Paladin Komtur Maya was slightly shocked and it took her a few seconds to process what she just read before she deleted the message. She began preparations to enact the protocol by ordering all Ordenreich ground troops to retreat to the fleet and get off planet. She then sent an encrypted message to the Centauri and Herakleans.*

{Encrypted}

From: Paladin Komtur Maya von Danzig Nova
To: Allied Commanding Officers

O.S.S.C. Livenstein has just given me an order to begin a protocol we call the Cleansing Flame Protocol. Essentially I am being ordered to carpet bomb this planet with FOABs. I have begun the prep work by retasking the Artillery fleets to target specific points on the planet. This bombardment will wipe out everything on the planet's surface and cause the planet's crust to buckle which will effectively wipe this planet from existence. I have sent word for my ground troops to abandon the planet's surface and recommend you all do the same.

Sincerely,
Maya
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Thu Sep 26, 2013 8:56 pm

Admiral Carren took a double-take when she first read the Sacaen communication, and had to make herself read it again to make sure she read exactly what she thought she did. Apparently, the Sacaen fleet had orders to destroy the entire surface of Praos with FOABs, which while on one hand was preferable to putting it into the hands of the Christanans, on the other she scarcely believed that the allies could come out of it without a war on their hands. In way, this was what she wanted, but was the fallout - no pun intended in her mind - worth the outcome? Trying to make a decision about whether or not she should object was a frustrating process, but nevertheless she said to her subordinates after considerable thought,

"If this is what they shall do, then we shall let it be. Should this be the start of war, then we will fight. This is what we came here to do, and so it shall be done."

"And our ground troopers, ma'am?"

"From what I've heard in the reports, Major Alinari's men are deep in the central AI command core. Comms might reach them, but we wouldn't want to give the surprise away, now would we? Let them enter into their glorious oblivion in bliss, and let us honor their sacrifices well."
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PostSubject: Re: Echoes of the Dead   Thu Sep 26, 2013 10:18 pm

The outcome we were getting was less than ideal, but this is going to start a whole new war. At least we know that the Ordenreich hasn't become as passive as we were worried they might. Ophelia turned to her Comm Officer. “Recall Poseidon's Chosen from the surface.”

* * * * *

The Commander listened intently to his comm. “Understood.” He turned to the wired-up Christanan. “Well, Stephen, was it? It seems an accord has been reached. A team a few stories up just relayed orders to immediately withdraw from the world. Enjoy your fief.” He turned and began walking away and motioned for Major Alinari join him. “Major, have you heard anything from your commanders?”

“No sir.”

“Well, reportedly we've agreed to withdraw. Flag was apparently scant on details, but that's just the way of things, isn't it? Is your prisoner secure?”

“You need to ask?”

“Fair enough. How would you like a ride back into orbit?”

“Thanks for the offer. Don't mind if we do.”

* * * * *

“Let's go, let's go. Flag said to expedite the withdrawal. Get those dropships unlatched. We are off the surface within the hour. Move it!”
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