Part 9: Why can't we be friends?
my dad posted:
Ask the about the Skeetch and about yourself.
How about Employment? Recruiting some pirates would be a totally great idea.
: So, big yin, whit's it like going against the over-sized Hellbenders that are the Skeetch?
: When it comes to the Skeetch, well... a pirate's got to know their limitations!
: And yet you lot took me on...
: Well, I never said that we know MUCH...
: Fair dos. What else are you willing to divulge about yersel'?
: Moving swiftly on from that 4th wall-breakage, any views on the field of employment?
: You're too soft to join my crew!
And before we leave our boy to resume his degenerate life-style of plunder, piracy and general villainy, there's one last thing I want to ask.
: I humbly request information about tactics.
:...Well, well, well. It seems we're not so different, you and I...
But annoyingly, after talking on a single subject, Frederic the pirate-apprentice here fobs us off most brusquely.
: The novelty of this conversation has faded.
: You can be certain that we'll meet again (heh).
Well, come that day I hope you look forward to be reduced to yer constituent components, like.
And with that, off he flies, pirate crew member; alas not to be.
Ah well, at least we can register this planet for the Ghebs, thanks Polaron. I'm sure they won't mind the name given, since it was us who did all the leg work for them. I had unfortunately got the whole naming done before Bugtopia got two votes. Sorry about that, peach and horse.
Also, heading back to the earlier star system...
Now to head off to Bordertan to make some money, get some fuel and donate to the cause.
Hawking was pleased with the info we gave him, let's see what's on the news, shall we?
: Commander Bowman has registered planet Krenderlay. This discovery was made at coordinates 171,072
Eh, I don;t care. I don't even care!
I care immensely.
: Commander Shaw has registered lifeform Wryneck Crab. This discovery was made at coordinates 156,051.
: To: Arlus Re: Job Offer; You still owe me for the last job. What makes you think I'd work for you now?
...and then there's our discoveries. I WAS going to head to that one star system that had planets belonging to the Ghebs and the Deresta, but I think you can guess where I am high-tailing to now...
Huh. Damned close to that last place we visited. Gosh darn.
ARGH! Did you see how much damage they just caused to me there?
Ugh, three guys at once - this is going to be a bitch to deal with.
But wait... what was it that you guys suggested again?
The Tharaddash required you to go to their homeworld and defeat a certain number of ships before they would ally with you. Not saying this game would *ever* copy Star Control 2 quite so blatantly, so I imagine you'd have to find a random large group, destroy a few, and the rest will be willing to talk to you. If the game is feeling particularly merciful, you won't even have to do that all over again every time you want to talk to this race.
Alternately, maybe we need to surrender or something. Show them the value of pacifism.
Well, when I first played this game, I thought it was the former. Something along the lines of blasting out their engines and tactical, then forcing them to have a sit-down and talk. But no matter what you do, these boys just don't want it. PurpleXVI, on the other hand, was right on the money! For that, you get a biscuit.
It physically pains me to do this, but... This is Commander Samovar. I am at your mercy! Christ, I wish I didn't sound so grovelling doing that
: Now be just as smart 'n prepare for boardin!
Well, that didn't seem so bad - I just hope they left the Deresta unmolested, now let's jus-
Hold the fucking phone here
YOU SONS OF FUCKING BLUE BASTARDS! YOU TOOK OVER 100 UNITS OF FUEL FROM ME?! WHEN I GET MY HANDS ON YOU I'M TURNING YOU INTO A GODDAMN PAIR OF FUR-LINED GLOV-
Deep breath in...
Yep, and I thought working with the Gheb would be hard. This is so, so much worse. Let this be a lesson to me; when dealing with Kaynik, bulk up with a bunch of useless stuff in the cargo.
Running off, with out tail between our legs, let's just get to where we need to go, OK?!
Yep, that looks like a habitable world to me. Let's see if we can find what we need before we lose start running on fumes.
Now, to the nearest outpost to BUY BACK ALL MY GODDAMN FUEL!
After a brief interlude whereby three very silly pirates got themselves reduced to slag and we re-filled on high-octane, we find ourselves in the upper orbit of the planet Whainze. To the surface!
And hello to you too, mate. I've located a planet that I think you'll find suitable.
: Information is needed... data to be transmitted.
: You should be receiving my scanner file momentarily.
: Ghebraant is receiving... Ghebraant is processing... processing...
: Jesus boy, does yer ship run on a Commodore 65 or summat?
: Human is correct... planet is new world... Ghebraant is content.
: You would like me to choose a reward?
: Human is correct.
: What determines my selection? Can I choose anything? Because I'd love it if you could introduce me to the guy who played Christopher from District 9. He was great in that movie!
: Ghebraant is rescued... hive is rescued... Human is benefactor. Reward to be appropriate. So, no.
: Aw. An appropriate reward for rescuing the Ghebraant from an endangered homeworld? And by endangered, I mean, a planet which you managed to put in jeopardy through gross environmental negligence which threatened the very existence of your race? You know, you'd never see us Humans do that kind of thing!
: Human is correct.
: My homeworld is also endangered.
: It's a different situation.
: The Skeetch are sieging Human space somehow, and my homeworld is threatened.
: We're forming an alliance here in Thule sector to put an end to the Skeetch operation.
: Human to fight... homeworld to be rescued... Skeetch to be stopped.
: Couldn't have put it better myself, son.
: Alliance is solution... union is superior... Ghebraant is unified... assistance is needed... Ghebraant to assist... Human is rewarded.
: The Ghebraant will join the Allied Species?
: Of course I'm correct! I'm ALWAYS correct! Even though I use words like 'sieging' instead of besieging.
: Ghebraant to prepare... contact terminated.
Hooray! Whoopee! Congratulations all round! The first of the four has joined with the humans, and all it involved was aiding and abetting colonization on literally a planetary scale!
In all seriousness, the Ghebs joining now means that come dialogue will have changed with them, usually with respect to us, any other species that have joined, Newfront and the Skeetch, if memory serves.
But enough about that! We've got some nerds to drop off. Quickly, before they start writing up a D&D campaign. To Mare Ptolemy!
As soon as we get to the surface, we're hailed by the locals.
: ...h-how did those Deresta get on your ship?
: They're the scientists you've been looking for. I rescued them from the pirates. No biggie. I mean that, no big problem at all. I could have done it with a goddamn feather duster. You guys are the worst at space-battles.
: Our beloved scientist? Really and truly?
: You can ask them yourselves.
:Oh gee! It sure is!
: We'll transfer them from your vessel right away!
: You know I believed in you from the start, Samovar.
: Even though others expressed their doubts, I knew you were to be trusted.
: Yes sir-eee... I've been behind you since day one...
: You don't need to lie to me.
: We all need to place prejudice behind us.
: Well, funny you should ask that, chief... Consider the following proposition.
: Your scientists were abducted by pirates because they were valuable and unable to defend themselves. Human space is under siege by the Skeetch for similar reasons.
: We're forming an alliance here in Thule sector to put an end to Skeetch operations.
: I believe the Deresta would be a great asset to the Allied Species. Wow, I can't believe I could say that with a straight face.
: Golly, I don;t know what to say... no species has ever needed the Deresta before... it seems we're always the source of ridicule...
: ...and no one ever invites us to social functions...
: ...in fact, few beings are sociable when they're with us... it's not that we deserve special treatment... ordinary consideration would be sufficient...
: Wasn't that easy? You pre-child-molestation-charges Woody Allen wannabe?
: Your wisdom amazes me, Samovar.
: I'll circulate the necessary reports to the other department heads.
Oh good, I'm guessing that should take only around 50 years.
Now before I go and put up the remaining animals to be named, there's one last thing I need to do, which involves passing the time, which you, lucky reader, need only to pass by flicking your eyes to the next picture.
: Can you spare a few minutes, sir?
: Of course I can.
: I'm patching you through now.
Oh hey! I remember you! You were that massive dweeb we rescued from the pirates! How's it hanging, chief?
: My name is Pharysha. I'm one of the scientists you rescued.
: I remember you. Shouldn't you be at your lab? Nerd?
: I bought passage on this vessel to get away from my work for a while.
: It's so neat that we managed to meet like this!
: I know! So very odd that we managed to coincidentally meet in this one sector consisting of God-knows how many Deresta and Humans at many different places. I mean, what could the chances be?
: Insanely low. I know, I calculated it. I REALLY wanted to thank you for saving us from those pirates.
: It must have been a harrowing experience for you all.
: Of course, for the others... that is... there were times when I found the danger sort of... thrilling!
: Oh boy, I can't believe I said that... but hey, it's the truth.
: Often when I'm sequestered in my lab, I feel a strong yearning for... MORE.
: Easy there, Napoleon Solo. What do you mean, MORE?
: More than my sterilized cubicle. More than recycled air. More than perpetual memos.
: More than cheap office jokes. More than 70 hour work weeks.
: Woah! It sounds like you just aren't satisfied with your current situation.
: Precisely... and I don't know what to do about it!
: Can I interest you in joining my crew?
: D-do you really mean it?
: I wouldn't fool with you. So long as I get to call you Spock!
Now I've made myself sad.
: Th-thanks, Commander Samovar!
And so we have our science officer, Pharysha. He/She seems neat enough, but is definitely the ugliest crew member we'll get. So, without further ado...
: Th-this is Pharysha. I'm really glad it's you, sir.
: It's an honour to be in your presence.
: How can I ever live up to this?!
As always, if you have anything you wanna ask Parysha or the crew, just ask.
NOW we can look at the last of the life-forms that aren't found on homeworlds
: ...visual and olfactory senses... unidirectional travel on six legs... spits digestive fluids at food source... mouth organ mounted on extending neck... frequently produced eggs swallowed by males during fertilization.
Textbook case for Sigmund Freud here. Maybe it was for the better you lot never got a chance to name this thing.
: ...primary sense is olfactory... shambles on four stunted legs... bony head used for butting when threatened... protected by moss-covered shell... infrequent eggs fertilized by male at rock nest.
Rhinoceride is not a word. Also, rhinos don't lay eggs.
: ...primary senses are visual and audio... quadruped locomotion on powerful legs... calcified head protection... facial talons used to uproot vegetation and for defense... frequent mating between sexes to produce offspring.
Looks like the Predator evolved into some kind of a lion-gazelle. Odd.
So, what names shall we come up for these two weirdos? Keep in mind that there's alas, only two more unknown animals to find in the game.