Return

By JWJ

Note: For your convenience, the green one is called the Zoq, the brown one the Fot, and the Gray one a Pik. Also, ZFP is often used as an abbreviation.

 

Chapter 1-The First to Fall

Gamma Leonis, September 2142

Like a plague of locusts in the night, the Kohr-ah fleet warped into truespace near the Gamma Leonis system. The hyperwave broadcastings were definitely coming from this system, and the most likely planet was obviously the fourth with its lush vegetation and water. Every single one of the massive marauders moved toward the Gg homeworld.

Rt, emperor of the Gg, was told that he had a message. Burvixese, of course, he told himself. He switched on the hyperwave broadcaster. "It is good to hear from you again, Burvix-"

An evil and sinister voice, ignoring the fact the Rt had mistaken him for someone else "We are the Ur-Quan Kohr-Ah. Prepare to be annihilated. Make any rituals necessary for your species. You have two minutes."

Rt was shocked by this brief threat. These monsters hadn’t even been told why they wanted the Gg dead. "What do you have against us?"

The voice replied, "I am Death 1. The Eternal Doctrine requires the destruction of you…And of all non-Urquan sentient life. The time has come for your cleansing."

Suddenly, thousands of spinning circular discs came raining down. They were large, and had four blades wickedly curved blades sticking out of them. A blade slammed into a warehouse near the capital building, spewing white-hot flame and radioactivity. Rings of fire burst from the destroyers. Laser Drones began to descend, drilling their way through the planet’s rocky surface in search for subterranean creatures.

Rt saw only one thing he could do. He changed the hyperwave channel to the Burvixese and began to send a message…

Burvixese: This is Rt speaking. We are under attack by a huge fleet of deadly ships, made by a sinister species that lives to kill. The entire Gg race, I fear, will soon be destroyed. We were probably detected by our hyperwave broadcasters. Turn off yours NOW or you will suffer a similar fate.

Rt had warned the Burvixese, probably the last thing he’d ever do. A blade hurtled in toward the capital building…

 

 

Chapter 2-Warnings and Preparation

Arcturus 1

Riffyup, the prime minister of the Burvixese homeworld (known to the Burvixese as Wuxiyip), stared in terror at the message that had just been received. The Burvixese had some weaponry, but a spacefleet? The Burvixese had just began to colonize nearby planets in the Arcturus system. The Burvixese were not a violent race (except for a few civil wars, which nearly every species has).

The Burvixese had a body similar to that of a turtle, with a wide variety of shell colors. The heads were triangular (males) or round (females). The eyes stuck out of the underside of their shells on little "stalks". If necessary, a Burvixese could hide inside its shell and cause spikes to stick out (male spikes were bigger, but females had more spikes and harder ones).

Riffyup sent out a message to all of Wuxiyip, warning everyone to turn off any hyperwave ‘casters they had. He then sent the same message to the rest of the Arcturus system. His communications chief, Iglippy, said, "Should I turn off the ones here in the HQ?

"No," was Riffyup’s reply, his voice quivering with terror. What if these genocidals had already picked the Burvixese transmissions up? If that was the case, the Burvixese may as well be dead already. His shell turned black (black is not a natural Burvixese shell color), which is a sign of extreme emotion (or, in the case of females, white)-whether it be happiness, sadness, anger, love, or, in this case, fear. "First send a warning to the Druuge and the Utwig. Make the transmission as tight-beam as possible to avoid detection. And be sure to activate an antidetection sphere, however ineffective people say those things are."

"Yes, sir," she said, preparing the transmission. Would they escape detection, or would the Burvixese be obliterated? He decided to stockpile as many Surface-to-Space missiles as possible, though they would probably be useless against this fleet the Gg described.

Utwig and Supox Territory

The Utwig were grateful for the warning, and turned off their hyperwave transmitters. They told their neighbors, the Supox, of the warning they had received. Both the Utwig and the Supox agreed they should prepare for an encounter, even though it was possible that the Kohr-ah would miss them. "The Ultron shall guide us," said Krisk, one of the Utwig generals. The Utwig put on the mask of war, while the Supox recruited officers for their vessels harder than ever (The Supox always had been short on competent crews for their blades, because Blades are such difficult ships). The two races began to prepare for battle, for they might have already been detected…

Zeta Persei

Muldar, head of the Crimson Corporation, thought over the Burvixese transmission. Of course, the Druuge had probably already been detected because of the powerful and long-range broad-beam advertising beacons. Mauler starships could pack a punch, but were by no means a powerhouse. Of course, the Druuge didn’t want to risk a war with these species. Muldar wondered how long the Kohr-ah would be occuppied with other species. He thought, I wonder if we can bribe them off with slaves or other things. No, they’re genocidal and self-sufficient. Wimbli’s Trident would be meaningless-it IS meaningless. Of course they would cease transmissions, but the Druuge had probably already been found with there hyperwave advertising transmitters. He thought about what to do, and suddenly an evil plan came to mind.

Chapter 3-A wicked plot

Hyperspace (between Druuge territory and Arcturus)

Five maulers left Druuge territory, moving through hyperspace. The plan was simple: assemble one of the most powerful hyperwave ‘casters ever and turn it up to full power. Hopefully, the Jorr-bah-no, the Kohr-ah-would be attracted to this and kill the Burvixese instead.

Warping into the Arcturus system, the Druuge quickly began to assemble the caster that could save their species and cause the death of another.

On Arcturus 1, Riffyup watched the first alien ships ever seen by the Gg assemble something on the-it looked like a ‘caster. These certainly weren’t the ships the Gg had warned about; there were only five of them. But why are they doing this? He switched on the communications unit.

Yulag, commander of the small Druuge task force, noticed the communications light blinking. She had no choice but to playact as a friendly race. If Yulag didn’t talk, the Burvixese might become suspicious. She engaged in visual communication.

"Greetings from the Burvixese," said a turtle-like alien. "I am Riffyup. Who are you and what are your intentions?"

Like most Druuge, Yulag was a horrible liar. Of course she couldn’t just tell them what they were up to. "We’re the, ah, Druj from the Crim-never mind. We are assembling a, er, a mineral harvesting center."

"And why would you do this in our territory? Our moon has little more than common metals anyway, so there’s no need to go to our territory to build a resource base there."

The alien was clearly suspiscous "What about below the surface? You might be able to hide from the Kohr-ah there." Yulag said.

Ignoring the question, Riffyup asked, "How did you know about the Kohr-ah? Tell me, are all Druuge as bad at lying as you are?!! Commander! Prepare the Surface-to-Space missile launchers!"

Riffyup almost laughed. What a pitiful charade the Druuge had tried! The Burvixese missiles could probably reach the moon, and certainly the ships, which were between the moon and the Burvixese homeworld. The first volley of missiles tore through a Mauler’s hull, causing a spectacular black-and-orange fireball that crippled another. The other ships began to flee, another split in half by a missile volley. The crippled ship’s engines were no longer functional, and it slammed into the Burvixese homeworld in the sea. The remaining two ships fled. Just as the missiles were targeted toward the caster, the master radar was covered in a sea of blips, each one identified as a large ship…

It was too late. Destroying the ‘caster was futile. Riffyup was enveloped in hatred for the Druuge. The Burvixese would die completely, just like the Gg had.

Seven hours later

The Burvixese homeworld lay in ruins. The Burvixese had been a bit tougher than the Gg with there missiles (two marauders were destroyed) and their tough bodies, but still the Burvixese had been no match for the Kohr-ah. The planet lay wasted. As always, laser drones had searched for lifeforms, especially subterranean ones. The Kohr-ah began to head coreward, having picked up some very weak signals in that direction earlier.

 

Chapter 4-Skirmishes

Alpha Leonis

Two Utwig Juggers and four Supox Blades patrolled the Alpha Leonis system, on the lookout for the Kohr-ah the Burvixese had warned about. Were the Burvixese gone yet or not? What about the Druuge? The Supox and Utwig didn’t know, and knew better than to risk finding out.

There were no guarantees that the Burvixese, Druuge, Utwig, or Supox hadn’t already been detected when they shut off their hyperwave transmitters. The Gg were already extinct, a species the Utwig had heard about from the Burvixese. The Burvixese said they had no space fleet-they had just started colonizing their star system-and had no chance if they were detected. The Druuge would put up a better fight than the Burvixese would if found, but if they didn’t have an ultra-powerful fleet, these Kohr-ah would have been stopped years ago by a species with a capable military.

Although Alpha Leonis wasn’t really in Utwig or Supox territory, it was a border star, and the Utwig and Supox both agreed that advanced warning was important if they were found. Small robot-controlled planetary defense stations had even been set up.

Krisk, leader of the small patrol squadron was thinking these thoughts and about the "pilgrimage" to see the Ultron (which the Utwig say every one of their species should make) when suddenly Sprout, a Supox captain said, "Unidentified ships! Twenty of them!" So much for not being detected.

Death 467, who was in charge of this search group, saw six blips. The beginning of another cleansing, he thought.

Krisk’s comm officer said they were being hailed by one of the ships. Krisk engaged in communication, not sure exactly what to say.

This beast was repulsive! It was like a black gyter(what we would call a caterpillar), only much larger. One its head were six bloodshot eyes—three large ones, three small ones. The Kohr-ah (at least that was what the Burvixese had said they were called) was hanging over a pit of what looked like bones. "We are the Kohr-ah. Prepare to be cleansed." they said. The voice was evil but not angry, the Kohr-ah talking as if he was merely fulfilling a duty. Krisk punched a button, which automatically sent out a call for reinforcements.

"We will smash you if you shoot us," he warned.

"We are unmoved," replied the Kohr-ah. "The time has come. Attack." Blades whirred through the air, and gas rings radiated out of the huge ships.

Beta Tucanae

Fyok, a Pik, was thinking about Frungy. The championships would start in just two days! She could hardly wait. I wonder if my favorite team will win the title again—

"Alert!" said Spluck, the Zoq, captain of the stinger-class ship Wasp. "Yit [the Fot], Fyok, to your stations! I think these ships are the ones the great crystal ones warned us about!" A huge ship showed up on the display screen. It was green, with two large secondary engines sticking out of it. Near the ships were several small red things. Probably small fighters, thought Spluck.

The Wasp and several other Stingers formed into attack formation. One of the huge devastators engaged in communication. "We are the Ur-quan Kzer-Za. You may serve us as battle thralls or be trapped under an impenatratable shield for all time. Perhaps you do not take this seriously. Soon you will."

Sprayguns shooting, tongues licking, the Zoq-Fot-Pik fleet threw itself into a hopeless battle. The defenders sent out a distress call, hoping some of the bigger ZFP ships would come. Before it could even get close, devastating orange blasts tore a Stinger apart. Fighters surrounded another and blasted lasers.

Alpha Leonis

The battle raged on. Reinforcements for the Utwig and Supox had arrived quickly. With their shields and energy spear racks, the Utwig had decimated most of the first wave of Marauders, and the Supox had also killed a fair amount of Kohr-ah. At first it appeared they had won, but soon after the first wave about 100 Marauders warped in. The Kohr-ah tried a new tactic: making a blade just miss a Jugger, which would often make the Utwig activate the shield too soon. Using this strategy enough, the Jugger’s batteries would be depleted, making it a sitting duck.

Of course, this tactic didn’t work perfectly, and neither the Kohr-ah nor the Utwig and the Supox had a clear advantage. Each side had reinforcements trickling in every few minutes, but only two or three ships at a time. The battle showed no signs of winding down yet. A Supox zipped past a badly damaged and finished it off with a volley of seeds, only to be caught by another Marauder’s gas ring. A wave of Juggers advanced, shielding the Supox behind them, as a formation of Marauders got a gravity whip.

Beta Tucanae

The Wasp coasted by a Dreadnought and licked it in the left secondary engine, melting a hole in it. Small explosions went off across the engine, which then died. The Wasp flew off, tonguing down a fusion blast.that was about to hit the stinger.

"Yee-hah!" yelled Fyok, the Pik. "That reminds me of that Frungy game when-" Spluck (the Zoq captain) threw a wet cloth at Fyok, nailing her. Fyok got the hint and shut up.

The Ur-quans would have routed the ZFP by now if it weren’t for two factors. First, there were only 100 or 200-no more than 250 ships in the system, much less than the Great Crystal Ones had said the Ur-quans had in their fleet.

The second factor was the Killer Bee, the biggest ship in the entire ZFP fleet. Twice the size of a Dreadnought, the ZFP had began to build this a few years ago, when the Chenjesu warned them. The Chenjesu had told them to beware and start preparing, but had also said that joining the Alliance would be futile at this point, since the Ur-quan were going to win soon. The Chenjesu had provided the ZoqFotPik with some resources and technology, telling the ZFP to construct starships with what they had been given.

Equipped with long-range tongues, thick armor, and drill missiles which could go through an enemy ship, the Killer Bee was really the main thing keeping the ZFP alive at this point. Stingers could even dock at the Killer Bee for repairs. Several Hornet class ships (which had also been made from the Chenjesu gifts) also kept the ZFP going. Most of the Stingers and all of the bigger ZFP ships were int this battle. The Ur-quan were slowly gaining the advantage, though. It was just a matter of time.

Alpha Leonis

The Utwig and Supox fought on, when suddenly at least 400 ships entered the system. It’s over, thought Utwig captain Krisk. The defenders gathered together for one final charge…

Beta Tucanae

Five Dreadnoughts pulled out of Hyperspace. Just a few seconds later, Spluck saw the Killer Bee and all nine hornets catch on fire. Purple ships that had curved wings and a bar sticking out of the center spewed fire, killing all of the slow ships (which left only the Stingers) . Somehow, Spluck thought, a group of these starships had managed to warp in right next to the Killer Bee and the Hornets, then blast them with fire. "Those must be the Ilwrath the crystal guys told us about," said Fyok.

"Yes, that’s it. We’re dead." A ZFP Stinger nearby burst into flames.

Alpha Leonis

For some reason, the Kohr-ah reinforcements weren’t fighting. Instead, they were apparently communicating.

Death 1 listened as Death 15 explained that their brothers had been found. The Kzer-za were a greater priority than this filth. It was time for the second war. The winner would control the Sa-Matra.

Suddenly, the entire fleet just turned around and left the system, even though the Kohr-ah could have quickly annihilated the Utwig and Supox here, and at least 60 percent of the two races’ combined fleets was at Alpha Leonis. Why? What was the purpose of this retreat?

Beta Tucanae

Lord 2 ordered a full withdrawal. The second war was about to begin. Every Ur-quan ship turned and fled. The Ilwrath didn’t in their lust for blood and pleasing their gods.

Lord 2 knew that if you let one slave disobey you others might follow. The Ur-quans had given the Ilwrath the cloaking technology, so of course they could detect the Ilwrath. He fired a volley of fusion blasts at the lead avenger as a warning, intentionally missing the ship by a hairsbreadth. The Avenger did not even hesitate. A volley of fusion bolts slammed into the avenger, which b flames as its fireblast overheated. Another Dreadnought also opened fire. After two more Avengers were destroyed, the rest got the hint and went into hyperspace.

What the heck? Thought Spluck. What was going on? The Ur-quans were retreating when they had the upper hand, and they had killed three of the purple ships. This didn’t make any sense at all. It was as if the galaxy had been turned upside down.

To be concluded…

Please tell me what you think of this story at the comments part of the news at the PNF, or at the following e-mail address. This is my first fanfic, so I'd like feedback

WmWmsn@att.net