Part 11We begin this session by setting a course for Gamma Krueger, to meet with the Yehat's wayward cousins, the Pkunks.
Unfortunately, as you can see, that cuts right through Ilwrath space. Fortunately, our cruiser is fast and evades all fights, which is a good thing because Ilwrath are a pain in the ass to fight. Cloaking devices blow.
We first meet with a patrol, as they beeline right for the cruiser.
Pkunk: Welcome to the home stars. We are the Pkunk. Pkunk we are. Seekers of the deepest truths, askers of interesting and significant questions. Even now a question of great transcendental significance comes unbidden to our minds: "Who are you and what do you want?"
Captain: We are friendly beings who seek to establish friendly relations with your species.
P: Although we Pkunk have no rank, no pecking order, no arbitrary scheme of dominance, we do recognize that some of the souls in this universe have lived many lives, while others are but spiritual chickadees. I, Captain, have lived thirty-eight lives, a paltry number compared to those wise and ancient souls who guide our race. You must consult them, Captain. They will help you to understand yourself, and in doing so, understand others, who in turn may or may not understand other things. Seek those wise birds at our homeworld, at Gamma Krueger I. They have all the answers.
So we do.
Pkunk Homeworld Introduction.
Pkunk: WAIT! A spirit voice rings within my soul, it tells me that I must give you something, something to aid you on your noble quest! What, spirit? What must we give this young human?
Mineral resources? ...No.
Important secrets? ...No.
Then what is it, spirit, spit it out! What?!...that thing? Are you sure? Okay. Here you go, Captain. Take this Clear Spindle. It is an ancient and powerful device built by the Precursors hundreds of thousands of years ago. What does it do, you ask? I haven't the slightest idea. Auspicious portents and serendipitous omens have foretold your arrival. Welcome alien guest to the home of the gentle and playful Pkunk, Children of the Cosmic Light, Hobgoblins of Joy, Seekers of Spiritual Truth, and other neat stuff like that.
Captain: Suddenly I find myself very curious about your species.
P: Not at all, we are after all a fascinating species. Of course, modesty prevents me from talking at length, although perhaps if you were to ask me specific questions, propriety might be better served.
C: What can you tell us about the history of the Pkunk?
P: Ah. An intelligent question. But where to begin? Surely you know that we Pkunk were once one and the same species as the Yehat. Yes, it's true. We were once brutal birds of prey, oblivious to the mysteries of crystal magic or the 7 dimensions of psychic beings. It was not until Weeny Wikki Beeki Birdi sat on the mystical egg of Icelike Temperature and gave the Original Squawk "Rup-rup-rup-BGAK!" that our transformation began. It was the Squawk "Rup-rup-rup-BGAK!" that triggered the Harmonic Oscillations that would lead us to become the enlightened avians that we are.
C: What about the Yehat? Are you friendly with them?
P: That depends on how you define friendly. We love our Yehat brethren, whereas they open fire on our vessels on sight. Fortunately, our psychic abilities allow us to sense the deep, abiding love and yes, even shyness in our Yehat brothers and sisters. How we must have hurt them when we left so long ago. Soon, though, it will be time for the loving reunion, as our destiny is fulfilled and we are once again reunited as one people.
C: What interesting things can you tell us about your culture?
P: Just off the top of my beak, I suppose I would say that our culture could be defined as the ultimate unification, or Oneness if you will, of the extradimensional convergent-chakra being-energies, to form a togetherness self which both is and is not a culmination of the now essence.
C: Do you refer to the Now Essence as an extension of the Cosmic Whole, or as a subset of the totality of Oneness?
P: Ah, excellent question. The answer is in itself, an answer, containing the explanation you seek. And more! Let me say the revelation includes the mysteries of Pyramid Power, which is merely a subset of the greater and more general Pointy Power. UFO's and FO's are significant, but their role should not be overplayed. I'm sorry, but I can be no more specific than that.
C: Is it true that you can really see into the future?
P: Yes, it's, uh...wait, a vision comes upon me! A shining light - a crack in the egg! A swirling vortex...a tunnel. I see my past lives! Your past lives! More shining light! Ah, there it is now, the future! It's coming in clearer. Yes, I see tears. Tears of joy! They are coming from our Yehat brothers and sisters, who welcome us back to the nest, wings outstretched, beaks stuffed with grubs! Soon we shall return. Soon.
C: Would you mind if I asked you a few things about the Ilwrath?
P: Why should we mind? We bear the spidery creatures no ill will. Without darkness, there is no light. Without death, there is no birth, and thanks to the Ilwrath, there's lots of birth.
C: This is just my impression, but they seem rather hostile. Why is that?
P: We have delved most deeply into the dark and greasy heart of the Ilwrath. And what do you suppose we found there? Well, we found a torpid, vile, malign, odious, spiteful spirit. Right, no surprises there.
What did surprise us though, was what we saw when we regressed into their past lives! It turns out that in their last lives, the Ilwrath were all shining beings of pure light and blissful love. They had reached the pinnacle of spiritual evolution and could go no further.
They were perfection.
And then, somehow they got just a tiny bit better and WHAM, they were all of a sudden totally evil. Wouldn't you know it, get too perfect and you wrap right around to evil. That is why us Pkunk strive to be perfect, but always do little bad and annoying things to keep from ending up like the Ilwrath.
C: When was it that they started attacking us?
P: When? That's easy. It was exactly 27 thousand rotations of the 7th planet in the house of Plarty Fum, BEFORE the first alignment of the auspicious constellation of Bis Bis, with the heavenly body of Shamla Sool, which was really only a partial alignment. I guess you would say 8 years ago.
C: How are you faring in the fight against them?
P: We have calculated that at our present rate of attrition, we will exist only on the spiritual plane in a matter of a year or so. Of course, the physical realm does hold a certain coarse attraction, a material quaintness, if you will. We will be somewhat disappointed to have to leave it.
C: Is there any way to stop the Ilwrath?
P: Hmm. An interesting question. The answer would be...YES! If some benign and loving, yet incredibly destructive and powerful force were to simultaneously rip off all their legs and drop their putrid egg sacs into steaming piles of molten metal, that would have the desired result of ending the conflict. Ah, but I jest. Of course I bear the Ilwrath no ill will, how could I, when I am filled only with love.
C: Perhaps we should introduce ourselves. I am Captain Stubing in command of the LoveBoat.
P: Yes, yes, we know all about that. We are not known throughout the galactic sector as powerful psychics for nothing! Of course we already know the answer to this next question too, but we enjoy conversation. Why have you come here?
C: I have come to ask for your help in the fight against the Ur-Quan.
P: The fight. Always the fight. We Pkunk are the Yin and you are the Yang. I suppose the problem is that the Ur-Quan are a little more Yang than you are. Well, be that as it may, we are sympathetic to your concerns. We were not always the mystical, aloof - and yet caring - enlightened beings that we are now. If need be, we can still kick some serious butt! Let us unite and form an alliance!!
We will provide you with all the crew, ships, and resources you desire. We will give you...wait!
I sense that you are offended by our crass material offer. Yes, I am ashamed. Any war mongering species could offer this...we are Pkunk! Children of the Stellar Breeze! We shall give you what all others could not! The greatest of gifts! We shall give you our love.
Ah, you are speechless. Do not talk now. I can feel the energy connecting us. Let us part while the silence remains. Farewell...But wait! Before we go, as a small token of our love, not as a material gift, mind you, we give you 4 of our meager ships, fully crewed. Good luck!
And with that, we're done with the Pkunk for now (and hopefully ever). The Pkunk Fury is an interesting ship. Like the Arilou Skiff, it's a lightweight ship, but among the top tier of the lightweights. It's super fast and maneuverable, possibly the fastest in the game, and its primary shoots pellet type bullets very quickly. Its secondary is amusing, in that the Pkunk just starts spouting off insults to regenerate its energy (remember what they said about perfection?). Like all lightweights, its crew complement blows, but it does have a random resurrection ability. I believe the highest I've seen is one Fury raising 26 times. That makes for frustrating melees.
Unfortunately, since space is limited in our retinue, all I see is 6000 RUs (I keep one as a souvenir). I hear that if you lose all your Furies, you can go back to the Pkunk for more, so that you can get a good bit of profit if you had the time. But it's only a rumor, and I've never cared enough to test it out for myself.
Before we head back to base, we travel via Quasispace to follow up on something the Melnorme said.
These little squid fuckers tried to munch on me as I took a picture, but luckily I had my Melnorme lander shield.
Touching one of those nuked cities:
These ruins seem to be remnants of a civilization which called itself the "Burvixese." All their cities have been reduced to radioactive slag by some form of energy weapon similar to the Ur-Quan's fusion blaster. From evidence we have gathered here, we can conclude that this entire civilization was destroyed from orbit sometime in the last 8-12 Earth years.
There are no survivors.
Going to the planet's moon and touching this nifty thing, complete with dramatic lightning bolt!
We have found an immensely powerful Hyperwave transmitter here on the surface of this moon. It is sending a strong Hyperwave signal outward, into the unexplored, anti-spinward region of the galaxy. Since this equipment is extremely valuable, and we have found no sign of any intelligent life on this moon, we have decided to disassemble the transmitter and bring it back to the ship.
Time to go back to base and get our new devices analyzed!
SUBJECT: Clear Spindle Device.
DATA: The object in question has no clear use or means of activation, but does have super-conductive characteristics between 18 and 22 degrees C. We suspect that it is of Precursor manufacture, but we cannot be certain without extended study.
SUMMARY: In all likelihood, this object is part of a larger device whose capabilities remain unknown.
SUBJECT: Hyperwave Broadcaster - Unknown Design.
DATA: This technology is new to us, but though a bit primitive by Alliance standards, is capable of generating a VERY strong signal.
SUMMARY: Should you wish to call someone in Hyperspace, or send a message through a mile of steel, this baby will do just fine.