I hope you're not surprised at finding the starmap at the beginning of an update, because I'd question your ability to notice patterns. Our destination this time is Gamma Serpentis, homeworld of the Yehat. Notice that I've bought a couple Shofixti Scouts.
Along the way, though, we stop and have a chat with the Pkunk, to see why the hell they're drifting to the right.
Pkunk: We have decided that our Yehat siblings are in need of our love and good counsel. We have waited far too long to return home and heal the wound that has kept our race apart these many centuries. When we arrive in the Serpentis constellation, we will greet our Yehat brethren with warm hugs of affection, which I am sure shall be returned in kind.
Captain: I seem to be having a little trouble defeating the Ur-Quan Hierarchy.
P: Well, not advice exactly, but I can offer you plenty of moral support. Also, I can tell you about another dream. Yes, perhaps I will tell you about my dream.
In this dream there was a small creature, fragile and weak. Above it loomed a much larger creature, dark and foreboding. The large creature was preparing to take the smaller one into its slavering jaws, when the little one looked up and said, "Hold! Why do you do this! What you are doing is wrong!" This made the large creature pause, while it pondered the question. Then I woke up, and I'm not sure if the little creature got eaten or not.
Come to think of it, it really wasn't much of a dream. I would have much preferred Awkky Birdy's dream. Anyway, just thought I would tell you about that.
Captain: Turn back! Our most mystical device, the, er...Ouija Board, gave a definite NO when we asked it about your trip.
P: Hmm...this is an ominous portent. We must consult our spirit guides before proceeding. Unfortunately, we will have to return home to do this properly Thank you for your concern.
And easily enough, they start heading back to the Krueger system, as well as gain an interesting little tidbit that we'll use later. I believe that if you actually let them get to Serpentis, the Yehat will blow them out of the starry skies. We continue on our merry way to Serpentis, and beeline it for the homeworld.
Note that the picture above is from a patrol, but the pictures are the same, just the options are different.
Yehat: It is sure and a true thing that the alien interloper has now been warned not to approach Caer Zeep-Reep, the Queen's High Perch, lest it be blasted without further warning!
Captain: What happened in the twenty years since our species last met?
Y: It is a wondering thought that crosses my mind human starship Captain. Are ye not knowing that the cause of our Queen and empire is now allied with the fortunes of the mighty Ur-Quan, and that yer presence here is being only the end of yer life? Haven't ye got the sense, human, to know this simple thing?
C: You must help us. Surely you owe us this much, at least!
Y: It is an unbelievable thing! Ye speak the words that ruffle our feathers and cause our blood to boil! We, the loyal servants of our Queen, bless her Beak, will not be helping the likes of you, or any of the traitor Yehat bastard ye may have found among the ranks of the starship Clans!
C: Surely giving us some scraps of information would be okay, wouldn't it?
Y: Our Queen has spoken the commands to us, and we are obeying her words! No assistance, of any kind at all, shall be given to you, human, so do not be making the assumptions, that ye know a right thing from a wrong! Are ye smarter than the Queen, is that what yer saying, human? We shall not be giving ye a SCRAP OF MEAT, much less our secrets.
C: I, Stubing, of The New Alliance of Free Stars commanding the LoveBoat demand that you uphold your duties as allies of the human race!
Y: Are ye DAFT human!? Have ye not heard our words? You and yer kind are slaves, just as we, but you humans have been confined within a shield of slaves! To be found outside this selfsame shield is surely yer own doom! It is NOT permitted fer ye to be a-travelling through space, and now, we must be conforming to our Queen's oath to the Ur-Quan. We must be getting about the business of killing you!
Well those guys are dicks. I guess I'll say that the Yehat Terminator is one of the better, if not the best, mid-class ship. It's fast and maneuverable, it outputs a lot of damage via its primary dual machine guns, and it has defensive capabilities via its secondary shield. Yep, it's pretty good.
So we talk to one of the patrol ships, since the starship clans seem to be cooler.
Yehat: What am I seeing on my view screen!? It is none other than the flattened old face of our friends the human! But old ally, are ye not knowing that we, the Yehat, are allied with the Ur-Quan now? And yer presence outside the slave shield, and in an armed starship, are clear violations of yer Oath of Fealty?! Whatever shall we do? It just isn't a right thing to kill you, human, but as a loyal member of my Clan, I must obey the wishes of our Queen!
Captain: We should be allies...friends! Explain why this cannot be.
Y: Your words are flying in the face of the facts, human. We are no longer being your allies. But unlike the nobles of our homeworld, we, the Starship Clans, are bereaved at this course of events. The Queen's decision to be joining the Hierarchy pains us!
C: At least help us with materials for our struggle!
Y: We cannot! To be doing so would be a direct violation of our royal Queen's commands!
C: Think, Yehat. The sheer dishonor of it all.
Y: We cannot be giving ye material aid, Captain. But perhaps ye can make use of this information, Captain. When we were fighting the Great War against the Mycons, we encountered a number of odd worlds which seemed to be having their crust shattered. Molten lava ran across the surface in huge rivers, and dense metallic elements were abundant.
But the stranger world we found was the first planet at the star at coordinates 639.5:231.2 The Mycons were guarding this planet with an almost limitless number of their Podships, as though there were something of great value there. We could never break through their forces, though we destroyed scores of their ships. Perhaps, if ye fare better than us, or can somehow trick the Mycons to let ye land, you may discover this secret, and it may help ye in yer quest.
C: By your honor, Yehat captain, I, Stubing, master of the LoveBoat, in the name of The New Alliance of Free Stars call upon the Starship Clans to honor their word and fight for our cause!
Y: As much as my heart cries to aid ye, valiant human, I cannot! Each of us is sworn first to our Queen who has commanded us to treat ye as an enemy of the Crown!
C: Your species' obligation cannot simply be forgotten! What about your honor, your pride!?
Y: Can't ye see that ye are killing me, human? The shame! The awful shame of it! What ye say is true, we SHOULD be under the same wing, but DAMN YER EYES! Our Queen has given the Ur-Quan our allegiance, and there is nothing I can be doing about it now!
C: How did the Ur-Quan defeat you? What happened?
Y: WE - WERE - NOT - DEFEATED, HUMAN!!!!!
Never! Never in the two-thousand years of the Veep-Neep Queens have the Yehat ever, EVER suffered a defeat! It is this fact ALONE that is making our loyalty to the Queen so strong! This is the unbreakable bond that keeps the Clans together! When the Ur-Quan were entering our home star system at Gamma Serpentis, we had a thousand starships prepared to defend our home, and then...the Queen...she...she...allied with the Ur-Quan, and the fight is over before it is even begun. AWK!
C: This may come as a shock, but the Shofixti are reborn.
Y: If this is being a true thing, there will be many changes. But we are a species long wise in the ways of deceit. Ye must be proving these words ye say, Captain. Send the Shofixti to us as a way of proof.
C: All right, I'll send over the Shofixti, but don't mess with him, okay?
Y: We are scanning the separation of a vessel from yer fleet, Captain, and indeed, its configuration matches that of a Shofixti Scout vessel. This had better not be a trick, Captain! We are knowing the power of a Glory Device, and if you detonate the weapon near us, the price for you shall be dear, very dear. The Scout has docked, and we await the pilot's appearance at the airlock. The atmosphere cycle is complete, the door slides open, and...
IT IS TRUE!!! THE SHOFIXTI ARE ALIVE!!! Look at that furred muzzle, those shining black eyes, the sweet claws! Our children have returned from oblivion!! But now we are faced with the cruelest truth! We who have sacrificed our honor! We who have lain with the enemy! WE ARE NOT WORTHY! WE ARE NOTHING! We are less than nothing.
But wait! We are not Spathi. We are Yehat...OF THE STARSHIP CLANS! We will NOT live this lie any longer! Listen as I speak these words! If our Queen makes the dishonorable command, then it is THE QUEEN WHO HAS NO HONOR! And a dishonorable Queen is NO QUEEN AT ALL!
We, the Zeep-Zeep, are the only Clan who remember the TRUE MEANING of honor. We shall TEAR THE QUEEN FROM HER THRONE! The two-thousand year reign of the Veep-Neep Queens IS OVER! THE REVOLUTION HAS BEGUN!
Starting a Yehat revolution.
Now you have a chance of meeting with "friendly" Yehat and getting a couple Terminators. At this point in the game, though, it's largely pointless.
Before we finish off, since it was requested, we venture into Ur-Quan territory. We first begin with the Ur-Quan Kzer-Za:
Ur-Quan: There is something wrong here, something which makes my sheath retract and my tendrils ooze. I sense the ugliness of a thousand evil thoughts, and I have located the source of these fetid emanations. They come from abord your vessel!
Foolish renegade human, why have you come here? All that you have found is your inevitable punishment. We will give you no more warnings, renegade human.
Captain: Hold! What you are doing is wrong! Why do you do this thing?
U: Alien, you have spoken the Words, and you have spoken them rightly. We will tell you our reasons why we enslave all other sentient life. We evolved on a hostile world, the descendants of solitary hunters. In those ancient days, there was no Kohr-Ah or Kzer-Za, only the Ur-Quan. We explored our world, and then the space beyond. Here we met the six races of the Sentient Milieu, which we joined as partners.
It was on a routine planetfall that one of our Milieu scoutships first met the Dnyarri. They were evilly intelligent creatures who could control the minds of others. They wanted to rule the universe. We had no choice but to give it to them.
For thousands of years, we were unthinking slaves to the Dnyarri. The Dnyarri had a special liking for us Ur-Quan, so they began to tinker with our genes. They built tow Ur-Quan sub-races: one Green, the thinkers and planners, the other Black, the warriors and laborers.
When the martyred genius Kzer-Za gave us the secret to defeating the Dnyarri, we destroyed them. Then we decided that we would never again be slaves. We would follow the path of Now and Forever. We decided to enslave or imprison all other intelligent life in the galaxy. We had slave-shielded one world, when we learned that the Black Ur-Quan, under a new leader, Kohr-Ah, had devised the Eternal Doctrine, which called for the "cleansing," the annihilation of all non-Ur-Quan sentient life.
Before we could stop them, they burn the Yuptar races home world and were on their way to the planet of the last remaining free race. We met the Kohr-Ah in orbit above that planet. We confronted them. They would not submit. We fought. When our battle was done, the Kohr-Ah were defeated.
We exiled them, send the remnant of the Kohr-Ah fleet into the unknown reaches of the galaxy. Then we began our own migration, moving around the galaxy in the opposite direction of the Kohr-Ah. Captain. You have heard our words. Now you have a decision to make. Submit to us, the Ur-Quan Kzer-Za, or face our wrath.
C: Hello? Ur-Quan? Are you paying attention to me?
U: In our twenty thousand years along the Path of Now and Forever, we have dominated thousands of species, yes, but we have saved hundreds from extinction. You imagine the threat of unknown invaders, or alien pestilence borne on the solar wind. We have seen these. But you do not acknowledge your own worst enemy: yourselves.
We have found dead worlds without number, planets ravaged by atomic fire or gaian collapse. These planets were not rendered sterile by outside forces. They bear sad testament to the effects of unrestrained instinct and emotion, or simple ignorance. We will prevent such mistakes.
The Ur-Quan Kzer-Za
And then the Kohr-Ah.
Kohr-Ah: We sense...something...something ancient...a sickly smell...a chilling wind. My ancestors scream from within their chambers in my mind. But I cannot understand their words. This feeling...a memory? It sickens us, and for the first time in our lives...for the first time in generations...
We are the Ur-Quan Kohr-Ah. You have evaded our attempts to cleanse. You are no longer filth. You are a threat. Threats deserve greater attention than filth.
Captain: Hold! What you are doing is wrong! Why do you do this thing?
K: THE WORDS! ...the Words...the words...Alien, you have spoken the Words. You have spoken them rightly. We will explain to you about the Dnyarri, our slavemasters, the Taalo, our only friends, whom we exteriminated, and our reasons why we cleanse the galaxy of all other sentient life.
We have explained this before; over twenty thousand years ago. Your words, "Why do you do this thing?" echo that ancient plea. You see, alien, we were a proud and mighty race, who were cruelly enslaved. For thousands of years, we had no free will. We were nothing more than tools. Never again will anyone enslave our people. We cleanse the galaxy of such threats.
C: Kohr-Ah, tell us about yourselves.
K: We evolved on a hostile world, the descendants of solitary hunters. In a world where one species is the dominant killer, one's only threat is one's brother, one's sister, anyone of one's species. Civilization did not come easily to us. We earned it. We mastered our hatreds and murderous desires to form a mighty culture. In those ancient days, there was no Kohr-Ah or Kzer-Za, only the Ur-Quan.
We explored our world, and then the space beyond. Here we met the Taalo, the only species we ever called "friend." Our association with the Taalo and the Milieu lasted for three thousand years. We, the Ur-Quan who could not tolerate the presence of others became the Milieu's scouts, their solitary explorers.
C: Who were the Taalo?
K: Of all the species we have met, only the Taalo did not trigger our instinctive territoriality. They were the only people we could stand with, or talk to, without the hunter inside us screaming "Kill the interloper! Rip out its life!" We believe that the same factors that made the Taalo non-threatening to us, their unusual rock-like biology, also gave the Taalo natural immunity to the Dnyarri's psychic compulsion.
The Dnyarri would not permit this. After they had conquered all six of the other races in the Milieu, they commanded us to attack the Taalo and we did. The Taalo would not fight back...they died.
C: Who or what are the Dnyarri?
K: It was on a routine planetfall that one of our Milieu scoutships first met the Dnyarri, the creatures you know as our Talking Pets. But the Dnyarri were different then. They were evilly intelligent and wielded psychic powers to control the minds of others. They wanted to rule the universe. We had no choice but to give it to them.
Our Ur-Quan scoutships transported the Dnyarri through the Milieu. The war for dominance, such as it was, was quick and bloodless. Within weeks, the Dnyarri controlled all races but one...the Taalo.
C: How did you defeat the Dnyarri?
K: For thousands of years, we were unthinking slaves to the Dnyarri. Like the five other surviving races of the old Milieu, we had no choice. The Dnyarri's compulsion was too strong to resist. But the Dnyarri were not satisfied with their slave races.
The Yuli and the Drall were inferior, they decided, and so they instructed us to incinerate their worlds, and we did. The Dnyarri had a special liking for us Ur-Quan, so they began to tinker with our genes, to improve us, their favored slaves. Their efforts split the Ur-Quan into two sub-races: The Green Ur-Quan, effete scientists and bureaucrats, and the Black Ur-Quan, their Effectuators, the builders, the fighters, the doers. The Kohr-Ah are the Black Ur-Quan. The Kzer-Za are the Green.
I grow tired of talking, alien, and your time grows short. I will continue for but a moment longer.
When we discovered that intense pain could block the Dnyarri's mental powers, we were able to destroy them, but it took years. Can you imagine, alien, what it must have been like to wear an Excruciator? To live in constant screaming pain for months on end? No, you cannot.
C: I guess that's it. Thanks for the info. We'll just leave now.
K: No, it is not. There is more you must hear. When the war was over, the great Kohr-Ah rose from our ranks and declared the Path of Now and Forever. We would cleanse the galaxy. No one would ever threaten the Ur-Quan this way again. We had cleansed one of the three remaining Milieu races and were in orbit around a second's homeworld.
From the surface came a please, identical to the words you spoke a few moments ago. The one-eyed creatures, the Mael-Num, asked so simply, so clearly, that we felt compelled to explain. While we did so, the Kzer-Za appeared. They would not permit us to destroy, they said. Enslave, yes. Imprison, yes. But never destroy.
The moment was tense. Someone opened fire. The first Doctrinal War had begun. While we fought, the Mael-Num escaped. We never found them again. When our battle was done, we, the Kohr-Ah, were defeated. However, the Kzer-Za let us go. We were exiled. We traveled through space, rebuilt the strength of our battle fleets, and continued our plan, to cleanse threats from the galaxy, for all Ur-Quan.
You have heard our words, and perhaps you understand us a bit better. But now, it is time for us to cleanse you.