Myth Galaxy Universe
This article exists only within the Myth Galaxy setting.
|Operation Dark Secrets|
|Main author(s)||User:Krayfish, User:Nra 'Vadumee|
|Story arcs||Dark Prophecy story arc|
Operation Dark Secrets follows Operation Money Cushion.
Chapter 1: The Briefing[edit | edit source]
"All GSSOC members, report to room F3. All GSSOC members, report to room F3."
They all quickly made their way to the briefing room where they saw Grandmaster Ckeros there. Ahrganot was not present as he had gone on leave, departing the team to resolve some family business. "GSSOC, this is utterly crucial. Using all the data you gathered from the Genodraco and the Dark Warrior Umbra Castra, we’ve managed to locate what we may believe to be a Hashaeon base. If our sources are correct, we may have found Renr Gron himself."
"Renr?" Etah said to himself. “Grandmaster, are you sure about this?”
"Certain," Ckeros replied. A holographic map of the galaxy appeared. A yellow square zoomed into a particular area of the Scutum-Centaurus Arm showing a collection of star systems. "He's here - the Sauren Frontier Worlds. On a currently unnamed planet at these coordinates."
"What else can we expect when we get there?" Tholker asked.
"Renr is more than likely to have fleets of Genodraco ships. This will be an invasion. GSSOC, your job is to get to the ground and disable any AA towers. After that, we can lead a proper airstrike giving you access to the base."
"Sounds good. And the invasion force?" Tholker asked.
"A fleet of Karnasaur ships will hold them off while you get the Batra within a few kilometers of the base. It will be a long trek to get there, but based on our recon scans, that's the closest your ship can get without being gunned down."
"And what is the planet like?" Galiana asked.
"We've gathered general data on it with our recon probes, but we haven't been able to get close enough without drawing attention. From what I hear, the wildlife is hostile so be careful. The atmosphere is your standard nitrogen-oxygen mixture at 1.1 atm so you won’t need pressure suits, but be advised of the sun’s UV blasts. If the sun begins to suddenly increase in luminosity, then take cover in some shade."
“Okay, I’d rather not get a tan under that type of star,” Galiana half-jokingly said.
After taking a short fifteen minute break, the GSSOC once again made their way to the Batra to leave Ilion and head for that sector on the galaxy map. A rather remote area within the borders of Karnasaur territory - mapped out but never explored. Large fleets followed them.
Chapter 2: The Wild Frontier[edit | edit source]
“ETA 10 minutes," Etah announced. "We need to be on our guard. This area is between Sauran space and the Frontier Worlds.”
“Frontier Worlds?” Galiana inquired.
“The ‘Saurs have population issues, I hear. So Emperor Clar issued a proclamation that whoever settles in the area between this arm and the next, which was pretty peppered with planets, would get tax deductions and eventually government grants. But since there’s not a military or peacekeeping force around, it’s kind of a hell hole for people. A godsend for criminals, but a hell hole for people.” Tholker explained.
After getting close, the radar begun picking up some readings relayed from the Universal Positioning System. After a few minutes, several different planets begun showing up on a computer monitor. There was one in particular that was orbiting a red dwarf star. Readings on the planet’s geography and atmosphere were relayed in.
“Look at that one,” Sol I Dor said pointing to one of the planets. “What a strange planet...”
Etah glanced at it closer, examining the basic data laid out on the side of the wireframe diagram. The planet had a ring system as well as four large asteroids in stable orbit.
“Odd...it seems the roles of flora and fauna on this world...are reversed,” Etah said.
“So we got giant carnivorous plants and photosynthetic animals?” Tholker asked.
“Correct, but we need to get closer to get some more accurate readings,” Etah said.
As the ship approached the peculiar planet, a small fleet of ships had approached them dropping out of warp, varying in design from Eteno to Dhragolon to Karnasaur. Each of those ships were equipped with a wide array of plasma cannons ready to fire. A small group of corvettes and a frigate.
“Those aren’t Genodraco ships...” Sol I Dor said.
“Pirates...A common sight in the Frontier Worlds,” Etah said. The Batra was heavily armed and built for maneuverability. The ship’s thrusters were equipped to be able to rotate in multiple directions, but even then, it was incredibly difficult to fly it like an aircraft could within an atmosphere. Shortly after, a transmission was sent to them.
"You are surrounded," a pirate said through the comm. "Give us all your stuff."
Tholker casually replied, "Silly pirates. You can't surround someone in space." That moment, Etah signaled Sol I Dor he activated the propulsion engines and took off, narrowly dodging several bolts of plasma. Spotting a large asteroid nearby, Sol I Dor quickly zipped the ship behind, then under it as the pirates begun chasing after them taking cover.
One of the corvettes flew within firing range. Sol I Dor pressed a button and from a large cannon the Batra's roof, a stream red hot Maj came bursting out at a fraction of the speed of light, incinerating the ship.
"Nice shot!" Galiana said.
Several more corvettes were surrounding the asteroids returning fire with bombardments of plasma. The Batra had to take cover once more. The next asteroid was too far away. Despite the Batra's firepower, it was not equipped to fight in wide open spaces. It relied on using other celestial objects to its advantage. Without the support of an entire fleet, the Batra would be nothing more than a sitting duck. The next maneuver was to maneuver into the ring system on the planet below. Sol I Dor tapped a few more buttons - the ship's engines spun around changing direction. Frantically, he kept his eye on the radar as well as enemy fire. Even so, the Batra was already being pelted with plasma bolts. The telekinetic shields created from the Maj core managed to absorb some of the projectiles.
"Shields at 60%," a computerized voice replied.
Seeking cover, the Batra quickly immersed itself into the dusty ring system. Dust and small rocks had surrounded them. Most of the pirates had left after that, but there was on in particular that was continuing its search. The dust from the ring system was obscuring the Batra’s signals. Inching out and rising above the ring, the Batra locked onto the ship and fired a particle beam, obliterating it.
“That’s the last of them,” Sol I Dor said.
“Ha ha,” Tholker chuckled. “I love it when the bad guys forget about the third dimension..”
After the pirates were destroyed, the radar started sounding off. Unusual activity was being detected below. The data matched that of Eska and Grjdonsk from both Operation Dragonslayer and Operation Raising Hell respectively.
“Genodraco...” Etah said. “We’re not done yet.”
“The ship is detecting some sort of encampment on a small peninsula just above the equator. A few AA towers there, so we need to land at least a few kilometers away,” Tholker said.
Chapter 3: The Planet of Light and Dark[edit | edit source]
The Batra prepared itself for atmosphere entry into the unexplored planet. After a few minutes, the ground itself became visible after the Batra emerged through the cloud layer. Through the viewscreens, they could see large fields of dark pink and red vegetation.
The Batra was finally close enough to create a wormhole. High enough off the ground to remain relatively unnoticed by the Genodraco - they might see it as a wandering explorer. Promptly, they proceeded to put on protective visors. Sol I Dor would stay aboard to provide aerial support.
“I’ll beam the rest of you one mile away. That should give us some good distance,” Sol I Dor said.
“Just a reminder, this planet should have a breathable atmosphere, but regularly, its star will triple in luminosity and output dangerous UV radiation. So...just stay out of the sun as best you can really,” Tholker said.
A wormhole had opened up inside the airlock and the four them stepped through emerging onto a mud plain with strange plants. In the sky was a motionless red sun which glowed brightly. Short mandible-shaped shrubs sparsely dotted the ground. The sounds of heartbeats echoed across the landscape, a well as the moans of some unknown creatures. Soon enough, the plants began rustling - a large flower-like beast with roots for legs trudged itself along the mud, dragging itself along the ground. This flower creature stepped on one of the mandible shrubs which promptly pierced against it, severing it. Galiana jumped at the crackling sound it made.
“You know, did the Grandmaster say what this place was called?” Tholker said.
“Actually,” Sol I Dor said. “He didn’t. This is an unnamed world.”
“How about let’s call it Silva?” Galiana said. “It’s a forest planet after all.”
“I see you’ve done some research on the Sauren language,” Etah said. “Quite fitting.”
Very soon, the group followed the map that the Batra had created. About one mile away was an encampment of sorts. Soon, they began making their way through the forest, carefully making sure not to step on those mandible shrubs. The forest was literally alive as the plants were constantly shifting around - moving like animals in search of good soil patches as well as spot to capture sunlight. A truly alien planet.
As they walked a brisk pace through, the forest became more and more unclear as it kept shifting around. Very soon, they were more spaced apart from one another.
Galiana had gotten slightly off track losing sight of the rest of the team. She stopped for a moment trying to get her bearings. After a moment, she spotted one particular stationary landmark she had passed by earlier. A tree with tentacle-like branches. Galiana took a few steps closer to the tentacle tree, examining it. Unlike some of the other plant creatures, this one was completely stationary. The plant slightly leaned towards her and the tentacles raised upward. Sensing the danger, she took a few steps back, but the tentacles wrapped themselves around her ankle. Before they could pull her into its mouth, she slashed them off, and the plant let out a high-pitched shriek.
“That was too close, Galiana...” Tholker added.
“Well...should we get going?” Galiana casually replied.
“Are you sure you're okay?” Etah asked. “Do you need a break?”
“No, I’m fine,” Galiana said. “Let’s keep going.”
Chapter 4: The Traitor's Camp[edit | edit source]
After passing through the shifting forest, they arrived to some great metallic walls with a large gate. The top of the wall was aligned with turrets. Giant anti-space guns towered at the four corners of the encampment. Surrounding this fortress on the other three sides were expanses of ocean. In the distance, they could see a frigid wall of ice that made of the nightside of the planet. A serene, yet sinister place.
"So...how are we going to get past that?" Galiana asked.
"Good question," Tholker said. "Our infiltrator isn’t here."
"Tholker," Etah said. "Our only option is to disable those AA towers. Then, we can get the Batra close in."
"Sure, I just need to get closer," Tholker said casually replied.
"Sol I Dor, Galiana. We are going in once the Batra bombs open the gate."
Like a worm, Tholker began wriggling his way through the moving plants, being careful not to step on any of the carnivorous ones. He quickly approached one of the enormous anti-space guns to the left of where GSSOC was standing. He looked to the control panel and proceeded to hack it away.
“Hmmm...let’s see here…” Tholker said scanning it. “Never seen this type of encryption before.”
(encounter with Hashaeon)
-more to come
Chapter 5: Apostle of the Dark Prophet[edit | edit source]
Tholker was about to hack his way through the final room of the complex, but oddly enough, it was unlocked already. That...was strange considering any sane man would put the whole place on lockdown. Etah signaled Sol I Dor, Galiana and Tholker to remain outside to secure the area while he went in alone. That way, whatever confrontation Etah would go through would remain uninterrupted. Upon walking inside, he spotted a menacing creature sitting on a chair, watching a series of monitors, holographic screens and galaxy maps.
“Renr. You left the door open. You should know better than to make such an amateurish mistake.”
The cybernetic Karnasaur remained still in his chair facing the monitors, but Etah swore he saw his frame tense slightly.
“I was waiting for this moment, Etah,” Renr said still gazing upon his maps. “Not to fight you, but to negotiate. So I kindly invited you in.”
“Then why all the resistance? To test me? I don’t have to tell that I’m not here to negotiate.”
“So you’ll kill me, then?” Renr replied spinning around in his chair, then standing up to face Etah. “Can you really do that so easily to someone with the face of an old friend?”
An awkward moment passed as the two former comrades stood, Renr’s back to Etah, with the latter’s gaze drilling into the former’s form.
“Renr...What did your boss offer you? Luxury? Power?” Etah interrogated.
“Freedom,” Renr stated bluntly.
“Freedom from what?” Etah countered snidely. “Sanity?”
Renr raised his head, but still refused to turn.
“You fail to understand the hard work the Dark Prophet does for us. His methods are questionable, yes, but he has shown me the true path to the continued existence of the universe. It is the likes of you that prevent his plans from being set into motion.”
Renr, in a flash of spite, turned around. Etah had not seen Renr’s face yet; he had been covered by a hood last time, and when the demonic red lights from his eyes reached Etah’s vision, a shiver of disturbance ran down his spine.
‘Renr... what have they done to you...’ Etah thought.
Etah looked over the abomination before him. His eyes glowed red, his neck lined by scarlet light patterns, his snarling mouth showing off an array of metal incisors, razor sharp and obviously made to reave and tear before killing. He was shirtless from the heat, and the crimson lines ran down his chest and lead into where his heart would be; A brightly glowing crimson circle gleamed over where his circulatory center should be, and his arms were lined like his neck. And from his back protruded mechanical gliders like wings.
“Yes, Etah, gaze upon me; Look upon that which has befallen me. Look upon the marks of my destiny.”
“Destiny?” Etah inquired.
Renr scoffed and gestured at the screen, which had strange information pouring across it.
“This? This here is the salvation of the universe.” Renr explained.
“Right, and I’m Angel of Forgiveness.”
“You meet salvation with sarcasm. Always so thickheaded, always...”
“Then pray do explain; How will it save us, and from what?”
“From the Destruction...from Vernietigen. Angels, Etah. You don’t even know what that is, do you?”
Renr chuckled and reached for something, and brought up to Etah’s eye level a vial of clear fluid. “Synthesized from this data. It’s ingenious design, really. Quantum computing at its finest. I even have the blueprints for the cybernetics. They’ll be perfect for them when I’m done. Perfect for the Harbingers of Fate,” Renr explained. “Their very existence is the key to saving us from Vernietigen - end of all things.”
“And how do you know this?” Etah said. “Did the Dark Prophet tell you?”
“Indeed, he did. By the decree of the Creator, there must exist a race of beings to destroy and oppose the others. An adversary, an antagonist to the protagonist. First, organic life builds great civilizations much like ours. Then, the Harbingers reduce the civilizations to ashes. In time, the survivors of those civilizations will avenge their ancestors and destroy the Harbingers. And then, a new species must be chosen to replace them to continue the cycle again and again. A true catalyst for diversity.”
“Let’s assume for a moment what you said is true. What the hell kind of sense does that make?” Etah barked. “The Deus we all know would never create a universe with such backwards, abhorrent design!”
“Then the caring, loving, personal Deus you know does not exist,” Renr retorted. “However, the Dark Prophet whom I hold so dear is very real. He is the Lord of the Harbingers that chose the Genodraco are the prototypes for the next generation of Harbingers. We needed to test them out on something before we begin mass indoctrination.”
“And you think this Dark Prophet is Cain?” Etah sarcastically remarked. “That floating corpse exiled into the void so long ago? He is long dead. This Dark Prophet is likely nothing more than a con artist that manipulated you!”
“Fool,” Renr said. “It is Baba Yetu who is long dead! Cain is very real and alive. I have spoken to him personally. Cain was never bound by the physical tethers of the material universe. Many thousands of years later, he was reborn as the Dhragolon Altus Banya. All this is done to repel Vernietigen, the destruction that will consume the universe unless the design is preserved.”
"Renr...what the hell did they do to you?” Etah said. “What madness were you spoonfed to believe all this? Have you rejected the teachings of Deus? Of Baba Yetu? Do those mean anything to you?”
“I speak the truth, Etah, not some make believe ancient superstitions. I speak of a scientific law of the universe as real as thermodynamics and gravity. An unchangeable rule incorporated into the very fabric of existence. We must continue the cycle. Continue the diversity of organic life. Continue the chaos. Isn’t that what you want?”
“We’ve been at war with the Harbingers for thousands of years, and you want to bring them back? I’m all for the diversity of organic life, but this is not the way, Renr,” Etah pleaded. “These Harbingers aren’t promoting chaos. They are promoting oppression and tyranny!”
“Etah, you must join me. It is the only way you’ll be safe from the wrath of Cain. It is the only way to ensure that future species can learn from the mistakes we made. To be safe from Destruction, from Vernietigen. Open your mind. Embrace the wisdom of the Harbingers.”
“Renr,” Etah said drawing his gun. “You’ve left me with no choice. I’m going to remove those...those brain-scrambling parasites from you. It is the only way to get you to see reason!”
“I’m sorry that you don’t understand yet,” he said. “Do not force me to kill you! I will show you the truth!”
Chapter 6: No Rest for the Wicked[edit | edit source]
"You fight well," Renr said. "You certainly have the strength to bring order to the galaxy, but not without Cain."
"I'm not interested in order," Etah said. "Order is only temporary."
"Temporary?" Renr laughed. "I show you a design of perfect, permanent order! My way ensures Vernietigen will never awaken to destroy the universe again. And what of your way? You deviate from the design which the Creator established!" Renr lectured.
"Of course! Chaos and destruction are not one and the same! Vernietigen relies on order: If the Creator allows this Vernietigen exist by his own law, then it’s only by the chaos of breaking those laws can he be stopped! Your prophet may be seizing control of the universe, but what happens when a new generation of heroes rises up and casts him down? Chaos will reign again! Why? Because the nature of life, knowledge, and even the omniverse itself is based on chaos! One can constrain chaos, but never snuff it out!"
"You fool! That is the very idea which the Dark Prophet wishes to enforce! It is a guarantee of stable order and a peace billions of years after you are long gone!"
"No, you are the fool! Peace is that which should be embraced freely, not forced upon others! Face it, Renr. You’ve been manipulated. You’ve been nothing but a pawn this whole time, blindly following a false god with a twisted agenda!” Etah's face clenched with anger; he raised his sword, readying it to stab Renr through the heart, though he hesitated.
"What are you waiting for?" Renr said, his face wreathed in wrathful humility. He knew Etah was right. He knew that he was wrong. His patron had used him. Manipulated him. How ironic, Renr thought, that the mastermind was ultimately just another pawn. But despite this, Etah hesitated more. His fists were shaking. This was still Renr Gron, his old comrade.
"Forgive me, Renr Gron," Etah said, "This is going to hurt a little." Etah finished, plunging his sword into Renr’s chest. And with that, his cybernetics broke. But the stab did not kill him. Instead, the cold, inhuman look in Renr’s eyes warmed up to one of earthly emotion.
“Etah…” Renr muttered.
“Renr?” Etah said, taking a knee. “Is it really you? The real Renr?”
“I’m sorry for betraying you. I...I failed to resist the implants. I didn’t have a strong enough will...”
“You can save the apologies once we get you to a medical facility,” Etah remarked. “We’ll get you up and walking about within a few weeks.”
“No, Etah...it’s too late. The cybernetics...they were wired into my vital systems, and as we speak, it’s sending a series of nanobots to consume me from the inside. I will be dead within minutes.”
“What are you talking about?” Etah said, remaining puzzled. “You’re immortal just like I am. A true ELICAN! There’s no trace of necronis on you!”
“The cybernetics...the Harbingers. They consumed me. With your removal of them, they took away my enhancements.” Renr coughed. “My immortality. My strength. It’s all gone.”
“Tholker!” Etah shouted towards the door. “Get your medipak out, asap!”
“Forget it,” Renr said. “There’s nothing you can do. The cybernetics were designed to kill me if they were ever removed. Nothing in that little medipak of yours will work.”
“Dammit, Renr. You could have been redeemed! We could have worked together one last time! If we just explained to the Galactic Senate that you were being mind-controlled-”
“Enough!” Renr shouted back. “I have sinned against Deus by denying him, and I deserve punishment. I await the Angel Mortalitates to guide me to the afterlife.”
Etah leaned closer towards Renr. “No, not yet, Renr! Not yet! You have to tell me! Is there a way to stop this Vernietigen? Without the Harbingers?” Renr coughed up blood. The nanobots were at work. “Tell me, Renr! I have to know!”
“Novarckas…” Renr muttered as coughed and coughed. “Novarckas…”
“Renr, no!” Etah pleaded. But the last bit of life from Renr slipped away as the nanobots devoured his remaining his vital organs, turning his insides to goop. He was dead. He solemnly nodded his head and quietly whispered a prayer to the Angels in his native language. He brushed Renr’s eyelids shut. “Farewell, Renr Gron. Always a friend and a comrade. May the Angels sing thee to rest.”
Etah stood up, and the rest of his team were cued to come inside. All curious to see what happened.
“Wow, Etah, I heard that whole ending monologue. Did you major in philosophy?” Sol I Dor asked.
“In my 5,000 years, I’ve had enough time to study that kind of thing.” Etah said slightly drifting off. “It...helps with my memory…”
“Can’t say I totally agree with it though. I don’t follow chaos philosophy,” Sol I Dor said. Etah’s final rantings to Renr didn’t quite mesh with the Delson Code. Different culture. Different species. “But as long we share a common goal to better ourselves, it doesn’t matter.”
“Not to cut this whole thing short,” Tholker said.. “But can we get off this rock before one of us gets deep-fried with a UV blast?”
“Yeah, I ran out of sunscreen…” Galiana added.
Chapter 7: Reflections[edit | edit source]
“Okay, seriously,” Tholker said getting frustrated. “I’m gonna need the Cliffsnotes version of all this. Cult of Cain. Altus Banya. Infra. Vernietigen. Too many freaking names to keep track of!”
“Yeah, I’m a little confused, too,” Galiana said.
“Etah, what do you know about this?” Sol I Dor asked.
“I’ll just explain what we need to know,” Etah said recalling ancient Karnasaur lore. “When Cain killed Baba Yetu, he claimed to do it because he was the adversary. He said that the day he would fall, he would exact revenge and summon an army of Harbingers of Fate to bring an end to civilization. Those Harbingers are the same ones the Senate destroyed only a few years ago.”
“Okay…” Tholker said. “So what’s that got to do with this Dark Prophet guy that Renr mentioned?”
“If what Renr says is true, then we can confirm that the Dark Prophet and Cain are one and the same. But now, he has been reborn as a new entity that calls himself Falan Rusit.”
“Falan Rusit…” Sol I Dor muttered. “The guy that Umbra mentioned?”
“Ahrganot knows this guy?!” Galiana exclaimed.
“Could be a coincidence,” Tholker said. “After all, people tend to run out of ways to look like. No offense to the Dhragolon, of course.”
“It’s no coincidence,” Etah said. “I’m sure of it. Especially if the info the far less zealous Umbra told us checks out. For now, the best lead we got is this Dark Prophet figure. We have to go back and get Ahrganot. He’s likely the only one of us that got a firsthand look.”
“Well, so what’s next?” Galiana asked.
“Aside from preventing this eerie sounding Vernietigen fellow from coming back.”
“The blind guy’s right,” Tholker said. “This Vernietigen thingy doesn’t sound too pleasant. Time dilation and general relativity was hard enough for me to understand at the Naval Academy, but all this real-life mythology doesn’t mesh well with me.”
“Hey, Etah, does the word Novarckas mean anything to you?” Galiana asked.
“That creepy cyborg dragon was probably blabbering gibberish,” Tholker said.
“No,” Etah said. “It’s a top secret KMF research facility only known to Emperor Clar, the scientists that work there, and people like me. Not even the non-Karnasaur Senators are aware.”
“Hate to say, Etah,” Tholker said. “If GSSOC is still going to be a thing, you’re gonna have to spill the beans. What’s Novarckas?”
Etah sighed. About to give out the KMF’s biggest kept secret. But these were his comrades. He could trust them. He was sure of it. ”Novarckas is an ancient, artificial world created by a long extinct civilization, housing untold technologies that jumped our kind ahead thousands of years of everyone else. It is said to be the place where the Omni got their technology from. But I don’t understand what that has to do with Vernietigen...unless they found something there…”
A pause filled the room. Whatever this was just got a lot more complicated, and a lot more grand in scale. First, a fanatic cult. And now, an ancient civilization that predated the Omni? The previous inhabitants of the Milky Way?
“I wonder how Ahrganot is holding up…” Sol I Dor muttered to himself.