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Awakening
JikarchiJikarchi 04 Dec 2012 04:54
in discussion Fiction / EU Forum RPs » Awakening

“You're going to wake up.”

“…”

“Can you hear me?”

“Yes. What's the situation?”

“It's complicated.”

“What does that mean? How long have I been sleeping?”

“Longer than you should have.”

“Tell me the situation, what's going on out there.”

“It would be too difficult to tell you this way, you would have to see it for yourself.”

“… You're not the cryo-stasis computer.”

“No.”

“Then who are you, where's the interface?”

“Gone, probably dust by now. You're all that's left, it'll have to be enough.”

I feel a headaque split my skull while my view fills with white and the sounds of the chamber hisses around me, all the tell-tale signs of waking up from cryosleep. Whatever is wrong with the computer interface, at least the rest of the systems seem to be working. Tricky thing freezing a person, if everything doesn't roll off perfectly, the subject usually dies. Well I'm not dead yet.

I let my eyes adjust to the overhead lamp and try to sit up. Lay back down… wait for my head to stop pounding. Better take it more slowly… God damn I wish I knew how long I'd been out. I blink some more, my eyes hydrating themselves a bit more effectively each time. Come on man, shake it off, you've had worse. My surroundings are weird… beyond the overhead lamp everything seems black. Not dark but perfectly black. I feel like I'm still asleep and this is a dream. But you never dream in cryo-sleep. At least… if you do you never remember it.

It takes a good 4 minutes before I find my voice, a harsh whisper that goes unanswered. I wait a couple more minutes before I finally slip out of the chamber. The cool metal against my feet feels strangely comforting, it feels real. I take a few more steps before realizing I'm naked, and I'm not too comfortable with that fact. There should be a cabinet here with a uniform, there should be a desk, there should be a technician or someone! I'm still walking and I should have hit a wall by now, the rooms where we keep the sleep chambers aren't this big!

“Where am I!” I shout so loud I actually surprise myself. And then the real shock comes, the room I'm in is so big there's an echo. I'm not on the Sentinel anymore. Perhaps a bit naively my mind goes immediately to one explanation… I've been abducted by aliens. I try to remain calm, at least you should try and put on a brave face if you're going to represent humanity for whatever encounter awaits.

Finally I see an arch in front of me appear, it's hard to make out the distance. I check myself and stand up straight, then start walking towards it trying to look more confident than I really feel. The arch-way leads into a perfectly cylindrical passage, maybe 3 meters across, over 6 long, some kind of illumination coming from the curving surface. It leads into a great octagonal chamber with soft white lighting, maybe as big as the one I woke up in, but this one has a low ceiling that doesn't echo. In the center is a table and two chairs, sitting in one of them is a girl. A young woman. She has startlingly white skin and silver hair. Despite the apparent color of her hair she doesn't look to be more than 21 years old. Her piercing blue eyes are looking right at me.

“Hello John. I have clothes for you here. If you'd like.” she says, gesturing towards the table. “I would have dressed you while you slept, but I had a feeling that would have upset you more.”

“What is this place?” I ask, approaching slowly while casually covering my crotch. I'm afraid to blink, lest this strange nonsensical illusion shatter before me and I wake up someplace else.

“Like I said, it would be hard to tell you. It's better that I show you. Carefully…” she says elusively. “Don't worry though, we won't play these guessing games for long. We don't have the time. I'm just trying to protect you from cultural shock. I will say that you're not far from where you were when you went to sleep.”

At this I actually laugh, then make a short jump on impulse. I fall back down immediately. “That's standard gravity. We're not in space. I went to sleep aboard a spacecraft.”

“Yes, along a very interesting trajectory. A very long-term flight.” she says, a curious smile appearing on her porcelain lips.

“Who are you?” I say as I take another step closer, though as I reach the table I find myself hesitating, too nervous to reach for the clothes or take a seat next to her. Something in my gut tells me I have every right to be afraid of this woman.

“You can call me Callisto, most people do these days. I've had… a lot of names.”

I let out another quick laugh. “Callisto. I'm… being held hostage by an ancient Greek Goddess?”

“Yeah… a bit pompous, isn't it?” she says with a careful, almost artificial, pensive look upon her face. “Ah well… too late to change it now.” She looks right at me again as she continues. “You're not a hostage by the way, though it would be amusing to see you try and deal with what's out there without my help.”

She pauses and eyes me for a bit, then arches an eye-brow at the table. I look back at her blankly, then look down and jump. Right, clothes idiot. As I clumsily put on the soft fabric (it feels like cotton), she continues. “You went to bed aboard the UNS Sentinel, an interplanetary patrol ship monitoring the outer system for any suspicious behaviour. A fairly dull and relatively unimportant task.” She raises her hand to pause my objections before I can voice them. “Believe me I hold nothing but respect for you and your trade, space-man.”

I finish dressing myself and slowly sit down, “You took me while I slept?”

“Not me personally,” she explains, “But yes, you were taken. While you slept there was an incident on Earth. The records are hazy, but we know an identity conflict occurred.”

My heart jumps a bit as I hear this, I was half-expecting nuclear weapons, half hoping. Identity warfare had still been mostly theoretical when I went under, but the potential implications were dreadfully real. The threat was real enough to fear. To somehow re-write a person's mind, beyond normal brainwashing. To rob a person of their very identity. It was unthinkable.

“How many… how many died?” I ask slowly.

“We don't know, but the resulting conflict lasted approximately 80 years.” she continues. “But that's not when you were recovered. You kept drifting for another 516 years. And were found by a collector.”

“A what?” I ask, not understanding. Part of me still reeling from the timespan she's mentioned. The theoretical limit on a cryo-sleep is around 1000 years, but I'd never hopped I'd have to test it.

“You have to understand that the first and second identity wars had some unusual consequences on humanity. The ability to change a person's mind from the ground up led to some intellects that you might not consider human.”

“You mean artificial intelligences?”

“Of a sort.” she says, nodding. “But based on humans, with all our complexity, our memories, emotions, our failings… You see your ship represented a time before neural standardization. Your minds were clean. Part of your crew were awakened, enjoyed a bit of a celerity status as living artefacts. But you… weren't.”

“Why? What was so special about me?”

“Your stasis was particularly stable, more so than any of the others. Call it fate, or dumb luck. You were sold to a scientist who was experimenting with time dilation.” She pauses, studying my face. “I'm moving too fast for you, aren't I?”

“He put me to sleep for even longer!?” I cry out as realization quickly strikes me.

“Oh good! You're still following, I knew you were a bright one.” She says smiling, and while she stays comfortably sitting I can almost imagine her patting me on the head as she would to congratulate a child that's completed his first math equation. “Yes he managed to envelop the whole sleep chamber into a dilation field. Which effectively extended the chamber's ability to keep you sleeping for far… far far longer than it had originally been engineered to do.”

“How long. Just tell me.” I ask, pleading.

“One point five million years.” she answers.

Awakening by JikarchiJikarchi, 04 Dec 2012 04:54

Guilty you dumb ass police cant arrest me as long as I am not on private property >.> so I went to the local park instead and well… apparently people think our site is dedicated to the 2012 apocalypse somehow. :/

My suggestion would be to go to an extremely public place, like your local mall or shopping centre, and shout "JOIN MY SCI FI WORLD BUILDING SOCIETY AT ENLIGHTENMENT DASH UNIVERSE DOT WIKIDOT DOT COM" at passersby. If the police arrive, ask them if they'd like to join too.

Godspeed, Jack.

Re: Inviting More People by Quilty SporkQuilty Spork, 14 Jul 2012 17:24

In general, yes, we are looking for new people. We just can't find them so far. Feel free to join the hunt.

I have been wondering if we should reach out some and see if people would be interested in joining the site I dont have anyone in particular in mind ,but just as a general idea to maybe go about.

Inviting More People by Jack The RipperJack The Ripper, 30 Jun 2012 05:57
Jack The RipperJack The Ripper 21 Apr 2012 05:22
in discussion Hidden / Per page discussions » War

Should we make the Great Enlightenment Crusade the first example of a "Galactic War"? Afterall it does eventually spread to involve at least Three Spheres in war potentially four if the Tysians and Madonians get involved.

by Jack The RipperJack The Ripper, 21 Apr 2012 05:22

Post 4: On the Run (Quilty Spork)



"This seems like a Pandora Organisation matter, not something for the Bureau." replied the man in the immaculate black suit. In fact everything about him seemed immaculate. The perfectly slicked back hair, the perfectly clean shaven jaw, and the military posture. He seemed quite out of place in the grimy back alley he was standing in.
"Hey now. If she, sorry, 'it' is loose in the Taurus Sector then that makes it your problem." explained the other man. This man, however, looked far from immaculate. The light grey fabric of his suit was wrinkled and creased, a rough looking black stubble had grown across his jaw, and the dark patches under his eyes suggested he hadn't slept for days. "The PO gave all the information on this PS-12 to the DEA in this dossier, but you know we don't handle anything inside Taurus Space. That's you're domain, buddy."
"I'm not your buddy, Agent Sawyer." snapped the man in black, snatching the dossier out of the other man's hand. "But fine, if you insist this is a matter for the Bureau, I'll take a look."
"Well, ain't that generous of you, Agent Bates." replied Sawyer, his tone dripping with sarcasm. "And keep me posted. The higher ups at PO want regular updates on the situation as it progresses."
"I wouldn't worry about updates." assured Bates. "This won't take us long."



Corporate Interests Bureau
From the desk of Agent Gerard Bates
Case 1543/a
Field Report 3

—-

Followed up on a potential lead in search for PS-12. Last known location believed to be a small mining colony on the outer edges of Taurus Corporation space. Interrogated spaceport staff on arrival, but could not retrieve any useful information via verbal or physical methods. Unlikely PS-12 used official transport channels. No leads on this front.
Colony dwellers at local bar provided useful lead however. Several locals reported an unusual looking woman attempting to secure transport off world. A freighter captain claimed to have talked to her but was reluctant to give up information relating to her requested destination. After administering some physical incentive, he provided said location.
I leave for the Proxima colony in less than an hour.

[Report Ends]



Quilty SporkQuilty Spork 24 Jan 2012 01:23
in discussion Hidden / Per page discussions » Khtaikos

"Fixed? I wasn't sure about the cell-cell circulation myself, hence the secondary circulatory system, but kept it to retain some mycelial characteristics. It's probably rather needless, though."

Thanks. Just a minor nitpick really, but thought I'd point it out in the interests of 'realism'. But like I said a great page all the same.

Could also consider what kind of immune system they'd have, I suppose. After all, they'd be an appealing target for pathogens/parasites/etc.

by Quilty SporkQuilty Spork, 24 Jan 2012 01:23
VorziblixVorziblix 23 Jan 2012 20:23
in discussion Hidden / Per page discussions » Enlightenment

Is the Enlightenment primarily intended to be a useful way to rationalize making FTL possible, or should we assume other significant effects have also resulted from it? Either way, it's quite a useful storytelling device, since it basically synchronizes each race's technology level.

by VorziblixVorziblix, 23 Jan 2012 20:23
Physics problems?
VorziblixVorziblix 23 Jan 2012 20:15
in discussion Hidden / Per page discussions » Space

If there are no objections, I would wish to heavily modify this article. My apologies beforehand if this seems too critical.

The physics the article discusses seem to be a bit dubious. To begin with, physically, there is no distinction between tangible “real space” and any intangible space — there is only one space, and it is impossible to fully separate from time for any practical purpose. Space-time is one unified construct, and there is no physical reason to say it can be “observed” but “not directly experienced” — all of space and all of time are part of space-time, and insofar as space and time can be experienced, so can space-time.

Newtonian space is just a model that poorly approximates “Einsteinian”, i.e. relativistic space; it is not actually a real type of space itself. It is nothing more than a mathematical framework to simplify calculations. Thus, statements such as “The terminus of n-space has never been conclusively decided but is thought to extend several light seconds in every direction” do not make any sense scientifically. Anyone can choose to calculate using the model of n-space whenever he or she wants at any distance, but it will be less accurate than using Einsteinian space at every distance, no matter how small.

The section on Einsteinian space also seems to have significant confusion. Relativity is always applicable, at any distance, mass, or velocity, not just “beyond distances fully understandable by most sentient minds”. However, relativity is more vital in higher gravitational fields or greater velocities, because the Newtonian model is very inaccurate by comparison in such situations. The article states that relativity makes end results “difficult or impossible to predict” based on relative positions, but this, too, is inaccurate; relativity as a predictive tool is better than Newtonian mechanics, as long as enough data are supplied. Again, the article says “The entire universe outside of a handful of light seconds from the observer is e-space”, but physically, the entire universe is relativistic space.

The idea of a quantum or “Kraussian” space is perhaps more understandable, because quantum mechanical calculations are usually only applicable at small distances. However, this limited applicability is only a practical one, not a theoretical one; there is no actual different space at those small distances, we just use different models to describe space. Ultimately, all spaces are the same. The only limitation is how we mathematically model it. When we gain more advanced understanding of physics, all of these models should ultimately be unified into one complete model of space.

As for Hawking space, in modern physics there is no such thing as “outside” of real space as far as we know. Black holes are an interesting subject here, because in modern times we still do not actually know anything definite about the centres of black holes (called “singularities”), so it is possible that they could have some anomalous properties. Nevertheless, we have considerable theoretical knowledge about the properties of black holes between the event horizon (the surface that marks the point of no return) and the singularity. The article's assertion that the interior of a black hole “is composed of all the building blocks of the universe in a single point” nonetheless must be wrong, because all matter inside black holes loses all of its properties as far as observers are concerned (this is called the “no-hair theorem”: see [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No-hair_theorem]). The article furthermore refers to exotic particles as “not known to exist”, which is accurate, but then it treats them as if they do exist! There's nothing wrong with speculating about wormholes and exotic particles, but shouldn't we keep it consistent?

Apologies again if I seem overly critical, but from a scientific perspective, this article would need heavy revision to be plausible.

Physics problems? by VorziblixVorziblix, 23 Jan 2012 20:15

You shittin me son?

Otherwise a good page, though I'd add some mention about the limitations of space fightercraft.

by InnocentBystanderInnocentBystander, 14 Dec 2011 14:51

And there will still be exactly nothing on the wiki about the Alekians.

Congrats to everyone involved and let's keep it up. Think of everything we've done already and imagine where we could be this time next year…Just kidding. It'll be 2012, we'll all be dead.

Re: 365 days and counting by Quilty SporkQuilty Spork, 27 Nov 2011 18:41

Longest-lived project in years, hell yes. One year on the clock.

Comments from MSN discussion:

-Pre-industrial cities weren't giant shafts dug into the ground but rather valleys, canyons etc, artificial or not, to keep the wind out.

-Diet needs to be discussed, along with farming.

-Altruism-within-the-den vs being-a-dick

-History too closely equiv to terran hist

Sure, draft one and I'll gladly add on to it.

I say we begin by taking this and using it to draft a skeleton history from early civilisation to Terran contact. Having historical events allows for a more varied and fleshed out present.

So: Den-based hunter/gatherer society of the bat. Not being nomadic means earlier farming and specialisation of trades, but slower expansion over the world and slower spread of advancements?

Cities grow, politics become more complicated, spider-webbing of alliances becomes common. Alliances with mother den are not permanent per se. Probably a rough equivilant to iron age.

Age of city states, trade becomes more important and advancements spread more quickly. Perhaps some inter-den religions focussing on great heroes? Trade leagues form and become the primary unit of warfare. Spiderwebbing alliances become more stable due to debts, mortgages, and increased threat of repercussions for turncoats. Classical era through middle ages equiv.

Warfare ebbs away and becomes formalised, rise of the bureaucrats and red tape. Competition is continued through non-violent means, often political-philosophical reasoning or the brute force of money. Territories stabilise and become slightly less of a patchwork. Rennaissance onwards.

Industrial era: Competition switches to technological willy-waving, with the league/alliance that posseses the most advanced gadgets and infrastructure having the highest status. Technology allows for expansion far beyond the twilight band, setting up neat precedents for later space colonisation. A space race might start somewhere in this period.

Space age: Basically same as industrial era, only the first few leagues get the lion's share by getting meaningful space infrastructure first. These begin to expand throughout the system. Decolonisation may happen in some regions with dens/stations becoming independant or switching to another branch of the same alliance web.

Enlightenment: Not sure how far into the space age this happens, or maybe even a bit before it. Everyone is set back a bit by the tech crash, and the tech and colonialism race starts up again as new regions can be exploited. However, at this point population is mostly stable, so few dens see the point in launching interstellar colonisation.

Yadda yadda

Terran contact, settlers low on numbers and resources run into the Keequay and ask for asylum in exchange for technological knowledge. Eventually grows into the Collective.

Thoughts? Additions? Tomatoes hurled with great force?

First off:

1

2

3

Some screencaps/artwork for Utapau could be handy for those giant shaft-like, underground cities you mentioned. Maybe not, just reminded me of it. (inb4lolstarwars).

Secondly, you have a buttload of ideas, that much is clear. So if there's anything you or Ald feel we should focus and expand on then that might be a good starting point. For now the stuff you have could probably made a decend skeleton page for the Collective that we could work on.

There's only one possible recruitment pool I know of and that's RPA (Role Play Adventures). Posting something there is sort of an unfiltered invite though, I suppose. Other than that, we could try to encourage Ceur and others from AE-F to post. I think people tend to get lost in what they're allowed/meant to do. Perhaps we need a 'newbie' page?

Alright, I want to welcome you two (Aldaris and Quilty) to edit the Keequay article itself. I almost literally made it up as I went along, so some things are jumbled or need attention. In any event, I've named their nation the Keequay Collective. I suppose now we can get to giving said polity a proper page and defining their territory a bit better.

I like that the idea of using their rainbow blood as a divider, but not so profoundly. For instance, a Keequay who grew up on the light side of Sikda might call someone on the dark side '[insert color here]-blooded' derogatorily. But I don't know that it would extend as far as a caste system. While I think of them as having friendly rivalries with everyone around them they're probably a bit more enlightened than that.

I like the idea of Terrans being all: "we come in peace" and essentially uplifting them. It's not something we get alot in most sci-fi, not even in Star Trek, and is refreshing. Plus, I'm putting thought into the way alien minds might work if given fancy new tools (such as the Terran colonists would bring). Hence, voxel assembly.

Another thought I had: while their vocal systems are incompatible, both species (Keequay and Terran) have ears. These Terrans who go to live among the Keequay would undoubtedly learn to understand the clicks and whistles, and learn to interpret body language, even if they could not express themselves in such a way. Likewise, some specific Keequay clan/community/house would be chosen/given the honor of devoting themselves as envoys and learning to understand the speech gestures and speech patterns of Terrans. I imagine all communications for the first hundred years or so would be dominated by text, of course.

Obviously, the Keequay-Terran alliance would be a pretty big deal, because the Keequay are so industrious. And in retrospect, the decision to make their biology wholly alien was a good move: there's little reason for any Terran faction to conquer them.

I imagined the Keequay as somewhat secretive and isolationist, having evolved as subterranean den-dwellers, and I think that can still stand. The governing mentality is that every den needs a strong leader, and the den as a whole needs to be devoted to that leader, but sometime in their history (pre-Enlightenment) they realized there was a larger family unit, their species, and an abstract idea of cooperation through friendly competition arose.

This might have cultivated a mentality that made real wars impossible (too much legal red tape) and instilled a real sense of self-sufficiency, because if you didn't pull your own weight, you were 'dealt with' in a variety of ways (likely exile or something). When the population of a collective reaches critical mass, exiles and volunteers (or maybe individuals drawn by levy or lottery) could be dispatched to form a new one far away.

Despite being sapient, I think the Keequay should still have a number of fundamental instincts, such as a drive to preserve their community that they have a hard time ignoring.

Now, concerning hanse-like communities, yeah, I like that idea. Autonomous settlements that have treaties, likely with the community from which they drew their first/original citizens. This would cause the whole species to spiderweb out into the stars, each new colony allied to the one before it, these loyalties all leading back - eventually - to several prominent cities on the homeworld, Sikda. Maybe three to five such places could exist which serve the purpose that Terra would to our offspring.

So instead of a Keequay saying 'I was born on [insert planet name]' they would say 'I was born in [insert settlement name]'.

As discussed prior, Keequay cities are usually built like big shafts in the planet, with roads and structures lining the walls. Originally perhaps they simply threw their refuse out of their homes into the shaft, creating a disgusting cesspool. But as their society developed they began to use that space for cultivating things, perhaps industry.

There are alot of directions we can go with them.

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