The Last Angel

Discussion in 'Original Fiction' started by Proximal Flame, Dec 14, 2012.

  1. Chaos Blade

    Chaos Blade Procrastinating Writer

    Ok, this is... this is.... very interesting. Really don't have the words for it, except that it is good, very good.
    13th Fleet likes this.
  2. 13th Fleet

    13th Fleet Citizen

    What he said.
  3. TheSandman

    TheSandman From NERV's Heart I Stab At Thee

    After 2000 years, still able to compete with new ships...

    Is technology in the Compact particularly static, or has Nemesis been upgrading itself periodically?

    And if it's not too spoilerish, to what extent do the Tribunes understand that their Compact is a massive sham justifying why they keep any race they conquer as slaves for eternity? If they've been doing this for 6000 years, surely enough of them have drunk their own kool-aid that there are people in at least mid-level positions of leadership who wonder why no other species has been deemed fit to stand beside the Tribunes as Compact Citizens despite thousands of years of "uplifting"? Or who think it's because the current methods don't work very well, and don't realize that it's a lie?

    ...for that matter, are the Triarchs even the same species (and why do they have that name when it seems there's more than three of them?), or are the Tribunes merely the oldest victims?

    EDIT: And yes, move this to the main CrW forum. If it stays here in the Original Fiction ghetto, it'll just wither and die, and this is far too well-written to deserve that fate.
  4. Duzzit

    Duzzit Fleet Admiral, UNSC

    I can't really say much more than this is very very good and I hope you continue.

    The only thing I question is the 2000 year figure, even assuming some level of self repair, etc surely after 2000 years things would be fairly broken down.

    Now, if the ship had at least some shipyard time (even if it was once every hundred odd years), then I could swallow that figure, but even then, by that point, there shouldn't be much (if anything) of Nemesis original hull/parts/computers.

    Of course, such minor points are not going to stop me reading this fic, since it's awesome.
  5. Chaos Blade

    Chaos Blade Procrastinating Writer

    hey, it misjumped when it used its FTL drive, so t is probably less than 2000 years, subjetively, how many IDK, given that it has used its damaged drive multiple times, so...
  6. Duzzit

    Duzzit Fleet Admiral, UNSC

    See, I'd agree with that, except we get the 2000 thing also from the enemy.

  7. Atlan

    Atlan Holiday Toaster Super Awesome Happy Fun Time

    This is excellent. Please move to the main CrW forum!
    Damar likes this.
  8. Daraken

    Daraken Formido Oppugnatura Exsequens

    Considering it could create or alter drones for internal defense, I think we can assume the ship has some kind of manufacturing capability.
    Nemesis definitely has some capability of repairing itself so the two thousand year mark isn't that improbable. It's most likely failing due to lack of exotic materials and the fact that it's insane and continues to make endless attacks for the last two millennia.

    Like everyone else is saying, this story is looking great so far. Loving Red One, it's like a combination of SHODAN and a Bolo.
    Le0pardonVEVO likes this.
  9. Heh, Red 1 Reminds me of AM, only he HATES the Compact.
  10. Proximal Flame

    Proximal Flame In Midnight Clad

    Holy crap. That's a lot of response. Thanks to all who are enjoying the story so far!

    To address a couple other issues that came up:

    Without spoiling too much, let's just say that you're both a little ahead of the curve :))); this is an issue that I've thought about (and actually been writing up currently) and am planning to touch on in the next chapter and flesh out more fully moving forward.

    Normally, I dislike doing comparisons between works, since it often leads to unintended parallels, but without spoiling too much, I can say this on this issue: The Compact of Species is inspired by a few sources; two of which are the Covenant from Halo and the Federation from The Excalibur Alternative. The Tribunes, by and large either believe that it's their mission to watch over the less civilized species (such a burden they must bear, guiding and caring for these primitives) or simply consider other species as not really intelligent. Consider the way Usul regards the humans - they're beasts, animals that can be taught a few tricks but expecting anything more from them? Really, now. Any competent exophysiologist can tell you that most of these species lack the ability for true comprehension, innovation and creativity that marks the fully civilized being. Once they advance far enough - physically, morally, culturally - than of course they'll be welcomed as equals. Until that day, it is our solemn duty to watch over them.

    Also, it keeps these flybitten lowborn in line.

    Think of how black people were regarded in slavery-era America by 'enlightened' slave owners and you'll have a pretty good idea of how client races are treated. There are those who agitate for the advancement of the client races out of genuine concern, and those who wring their hands about what's to be done with these poor, benighted savages - especially when they get "uppity". i.e. the Understone Heresies Demagogue Rensel referred to. Indifference and institutional racism have solidified pretty hard in the Compact. Another example: if a client race was truly civilized and intelligent, why they'd be elevated to full status, wouldn't they? That they haven't been proves that they're not ready.

    There are other ruling species, but we've focused mostly on the Tribunes, since they are the most populous and militaristic. We'll be seeing rulers of the Compat as well. Already touched on 4 of those races (two directly and two very indirectly)

    They are not the same species as Tribunes. As to why they have that name... why are Tribunes not the protectors and defenders of the masses? Why are Verrish called Brutes, when we know that they are not unthinking, blinkered savages? It's an appellation that may or may not have had some greater relevance in the past, but stays regardless of changing roles.

    Hope all that answers your questions!
  11. ttestagr

    ttestagr Joy

    This was really quite good. I look forward to reading more. I'm a bit tipsy, so I'm not particularly able to but in a lengthy review. Can't wait till the next chapter though.
  12. Candid Opinion

    Candid Opinion Heads, or Tails?

    I too agree that you should request this be moved to the main CRW forum. I would have missed it if not for the rec in the other thread.
  13. 13th Fleet

    13th Fleet Citizen

    I'm fine with it staying here. It will get less meaningless dribble and drabble.
  14. Splendid start and excellent work with the world building. Seems some aliens have wiped out Earth, after a bloody war, then rewritten history into a walk over. With the Compact resorting to faking distress calls and ambushing medics humans can't have gone down easily.

    That they refrain from making the existence of Nemesis public knowledge indicates that they have a desperate or narcissistic need to look strong. Nemesis probably helps them out here, inadvertently, by leaving no survivors.

    "Grace looked over at Allyria, then froze. The Verrisha’s expression was... she didn’t know what it was. Disbelieving. Awed. Overcome. She didn’t even know she was doing it, but Grace watched as Allyria moved one hand up between her breasts, where her pendant lay beneath her tunic. Her lips moved as she said something, but so softly that no one heard what it was"

    Allyria isn't human, but still the only one to recognize the ship. They also share genetics with humans? There's a mystery here.
  15. mdman1

    mdman1 It's a trap! (╯°□°)╯

    Very good story, subscribed.
  16. tkioz

    tkioz Rabid Bunyip

    Humanity's Daughter is coming for you, and she isn't happy!

    This is terrific! Really looking forward to see where you go with it.
  17. This is creepily wonderfully splendid.

    It's what, 4 chapters and i'm already finding Red 1 more interesting than most ai's i've run across.
  18. Very good more please
  19. Duzzit

    Duzzit Fleet Admiral, UNSC

    By the way

    That entire encounter, nothing within it suggests that those ships had -failed- to get away. This could mean that there is a small Confederacy Planet/Orbital/Fallback in existence, especially if Nemesis managed to rescue several groups.
  20. DakkaMania

    DakkaMania Techpriest

    Those same ships may also have founded Rally. The name sounds like it was a gathering place for the survivors that was then subjugated. But yes, their escape is a possibility. And 2000 years are just enough time to rebuild civilization and prepare to strike back.

    Allyrias recocnition and the pendant may also point to Nemesis having helped Allyrias people in the past. With a 2000 year one-ship war, there is a good chance that she intervened in several battles when Allyrias people were conquered. Enough to make a lasting impression.
  21. Duzzit

    Duzzit Fleet Admiral, UNSC

    True, Rally does sound like a place humanity might name after Earth's destruction, but I'm curious as to why the Compact would let the name stick.

    Of course, we don't know how big the human 'Confederacy' actually was, so for all we know, a world or two did manage to escape unscathed or hidden (destruction of all files relating to it, etc).

    And, given Nemesis size, there is a decent chance that there were at least a few Orbitals, perhaps even capable of FTL that got out of dodge.

    Unlikely I know, but one can hope.
  22. Doomsought

    Doomsought Sliver Overlord

    If you have a FTL capable orbital and are capable of going without external resources for a few decades, getting out of the Galaxy is an option.
  23. Duzzit

    Duzzit Fleet Admiral, UNSC

    First off, we have no idea of the limitations of the Drive(or if it works outside galaxy), secondly I'm sure that while they'd run, eventually revenge would be on their minds.
  24. Proximal Flame

    Proximal Flame In Midnight Clad

    Thanks to everyone who commented; glad to see people are enjoying this. I'll also be finishing up the next chapter sometime this weekend; maybe tonight - have to see how busy I am. Anyways, I'll try and provide some more commentary as well as tossing a small tidbit in.

    It wasn't so much necessity as a combination of zealousness and a lack of scruples. For example, let's say country A and B start shooting at each other and have comparable military power. If country A guns down surrendered soldiers, lures B's forces in with faked distress calls we wouldn't necessarily say that they needed that edge to win. We'd be more like to say that country A is committing war crimes and obviously gives no fucks that they are or who knows about it. In the modern world, country A would soon find itself on the wrong end of trade sanctions or even find other countries stepping in to stop it. In this universe where the Compact is the biggest star nation out there, they get to decide what's legal. For them. Not you.

    We'll be looking back on the war between the Confederacy and the Compact more later on, but while humans did not go down easily, it was a long, slow ugly grinding-down process. They just didn't have the tech or numbers to combat the Compact on an equal footing. Nemesis was planned to redress both of those points but, well...

    Well, it is hard to claim that you are the greatest and strongest nation in existence, that no one has ever truly fought against you except out of ignorance and fear when you have a two thousand year old reminder running around blowing your shit up. There's a sort of symbiosis here; the Compact wants Nemesis dead... but they can't admit that yes, they haven't been able to take out one single starship for two thousand years; that would be a massive blow to their collecting pride and towering egos. It would be like if the Bismarck was still running around sinking British shipping today - how seriously would anyone take the Royal Navy then?

    By the same token, Nemesis's ruthlessness also means the fewer people there are that recognize her for what she is means the Compact can continue to hunt her down - but quietly. If she were ever made public, the Compact would have to mobilize on a large scale to go after her - their pride would dictate that, just as it dictates that until a few billion people get an eyeful of her, they can't admit that she exists.

    This is something that Red One finds hilarious.

    Not necessarily. I may as well admit this upfront, but one thing I'm fond of doing in my writing is referring to rumours that, like many rumours today have absolutely no bearing on the truth... or may be quite accurate. If all rumours were true, then Obama would be a secret socialist Kenyan Muslim out to detonate a dirty bomb inside the internet. So Verrish and humans may have some kind of genetic relationship... or it could simply be a case of parallel evolution and racist comments made by Tribunes...

    Correct; Extermination Force Anselm was destroyed and the refugee convoy managed to escape. Their fate will come up in the future as well. I can't give away everything in the first for chapters, but one of the other possibilies suggested just may be the truth... :)

    One part not giving a fuck and one part enjoying the irony of their subservient humans living on a planet that still bears part of the name for an intended regroup site. Besides, it has propaganda uses. This was where the humans population rallied to the Compact's banner upon being saved from the Cataclysm. What better name than to let the humans know this was the world where they came to join the Compact and could live under its protection and guidance? Humanity was united on that day as they left old, primitive notions of nation and country behind, coming together to stand beneath the banner of the Compact of Species.

    There were. They were all hunted down, one by one and year after year. Every rag-tag fleet that thought they were safe. Every fledgling colony that thought that they had run far enough to start rebuilding. They all died. The Compact's Extermination fleets were very thorough; it's a miracle that Nemesis managed to survive the culling. They wanted no one left who could come back seeking revenge. No witnesses to their atrocities that would carry the memories of murdered worlds. No survivors who bore the pain of lost loves. No soldiers. No starships. No stations. Nothing.

    Not for Nemesis; Red One has unfinished business in this galaxy. Fuel and range are also issues. Some ships might have been able to escape up into the Sagittarius Dwarf Ellipitical Galaxy that's strung around our own - it's closer than the Magellanic clouds (in fact, some SagDEG stars are inside the Milky Way... but if they did, they either hunted down and destroyed long before reaching safety and any few that did most certainly died amongst the many old, resource-poor stars of SagDEG.

    Whew. I think I got everything.

    Now for that tidbit. I've been referencing Compact ranks somewhat and the next few chapters are only going to be throwing more out there, so I figured I'd toss out the Compact's Space Force rank structure:

    Bastion Leader Prime: Fleet Admiral
    Bastion Leader: Admiral
    Bastion Leader, Submissive: Vice Admiral
    Column Leader Prime: Rear Admiral
    Column Leader: Commodore
    Group Leader Prime: Captain
    Group Leader: Commander
    Group Leader, Submissive: Lieutenant Commander
    Pack Leader: Lieutenant/lieutenant j.g.
    Sectator: Ensign

    Faithful Prime: Master Chief
    Faithful: Senior Chief/Petty Officer First Class
    Epigone: Petty Officer Second Class
    Epigone, Submissive: Petty Officer Third Class
    Disciple: Seaman
    Disciple, Submissive: Seaman j.g.

    Janissaries (Marines):
    Demagogue: Major
    Ideologue: Captain
    Ideologue, Submissive: 1st LT/ 2nd LT
    Champion: Sergeant Major/Master Gunnery Sergeant
    Zealot: Master Sergeant/1st Sergeant/Gunnery Sergeant/Staff Sergeant
    Advocate: Sergeant
    Advocate, Submissive: Corporal
    Convert Prime: Lance Corporal
    Convert: Private:
    Convert, Submissive: Private 1st Class
  25. Xon

    Xon Cabal Arm Commander Staff

    This is something I love about this fic, you've written an AI as reasonably not-human but at the same time not some utterly rational moron incapable of having motives and wants. Incapable of self-direction, outside of author fait is something I hate for characters. AI or human.

    The lovely irrational decisions that show Red One is an individual with thier own mental failings and shortcomings but knows it is something that is all too missing in most sci-fi with AIs.