View Full Version : TXU Writing Competition - October 2007 - 2500 - 5000 Words Short Stories

23-10-2007, 07:58 PM
Part 2: The Return

Ban Danna spent his weeks doing what he did best, watching over Argon with a silk glove. No one doubted for a second he had a steel hand in there it was just understood, but he had a new hobby to occupy him lately. His new friend was very elusive, but the spy sats picked his movements up from time to time. He had been seen doing a little trading, and had sold now more than a hundred weapons to the equipment dock in Argon Prime. Ban had wandered where he got them all, and indeed had bought some of them for use on the fighters on board the Argon One. He had never gotten to see the work being done, oh, no, the young man was too quick for that, and as Argon had been having hard times of its own, sats were getting hard to come by.

After a few weeks he had a report of pirate activity in Elena’s Fortune and by the time the patrol had gotten there, all that was left was an old buster picking up cargo containers. It was obvious to Ban that the new pilot had skills, but the ship he chose was not even in good condition, but for him it worked. Ban was keeping as close an eye on him as he could without breaking his promise to let him experience Argon life alone. After all, he was a stranger here and whoever he was going to report to was going to hear the best, hopefully. Ban decided that if he was moving from somewhere in Argon to Elena’s Fortune regularly he would place a new spy sat in Presidents End, just to help, well….cover things better. It was ordered and done, now Ban just had to have someone keep an eye on it, he was sure he’d soon see the old buster again. The sat was checked and all ship movements were recorded daily for signs, now he just had to wait.

As he walked into the office a few days later a call came from the intelligence office, he had a recording of the ship he wanted watched on his desk. The report was a little cryptic so Ban decided to view it over his morning coffee. What he saw caused a huge smile and for a second, nearly cost him a mouthful of coffee too. The old Buster came in, moving along slowly, and then seemed to dock, or hide for a second when no one was around in one of the old wreaks that floated there. A few seconds later, a new, shiny, and VERY fast ship appeared and in a blink seemed to disappear right before the cameras eyes. Ban stopped the recording and reversed it, then a freeze frame. There it was bright white with some small trim, but definitely not the old buster he had been flying on the Argon one. The intelligence office had said that the speed it disappeared with was more than any SETA ever made and it gave Ban a good feeling that someone with such great technology was being as kind and considerate as he obviously was.

Ban sat back looking at the screen, he’d give a years salary to get to sit in that ship; maybe he’d mention it sometime. It had been many weeks since the stranger had come on board, and he had done exactly what he said he would. He was exploring the area and living a small piece of Argon life for himself. If anything, Ban decided, this new man was having the time of his life, and that couldn’t look too badly for Argon. He finished his coffee looking at that picture, and wondering to himself. How fast was it really? Did it use the gates somehow? These and other questions would have to wait.

Ban patiently waited, and in a few more days it happened, the old Buster was here again and Ban was all smiles when his new friend came into the office. He smiled as he entered and then stopped dead in his tracks. There, behind Ban on the wall was a new framed picture of a very good looking fighter. He dropped his head, smiling to himself as he walked over to the desk as was asked to sit.

“Your sats have better quality than I expected.” The young officer said, with a sly smile. Ban turned slowly around and looked at the picture just a bit embarrassed.

“I had it mounted, it’s the best looking ship I’ve personally ever seen, and I hope you don’t mind.” He said with a crooked smile.

“Not at all, I’m very happy to say I’ve seen all I wanted and you, and your men...” He said with a small pause,” Have been very cooperative.”

“We aim to please here; I hope your report will have a satisfactory view of Argon.” Ban said, fishing a bit.

“It will.” The young officer said smiling. “I can say without pause that my report will speak kindly both of Argon and its military, after all, you could have made my stay a lot harder.” He said.

“It would have been counter productive to bother you when you were so open from the very beginning.” Ban said.

“Well, I must now return to a position where I can make my report. If it comes back as I expect, then I will be able to give you all the information I know by now you’re dieing to ask.” He said smiling.

“Anything you’d like to tell me will be kept in the strictest confidence.” Ban said very officially.

“Of course, but first I must report, if I get a favorable report, then I’ll return at once for a briefing, I hope that will suffice for now?” He asked.

Ban wasn’t to happy but he smiled his best smile and let the young man go, maybe just a few more days, he thought.

The old Buster made a good trip to the old wreak and then a return trip to the shipyard, on autopilot. Ban saw it coming and dock and for better or worse its use was over, he thought.

The new fast ship streaked from the wreak and into unknown space at, as yet, unknown top speed. The spy sat recorded it just like the first time and Ban was not at all happy to see it go. Who knows how long it might be gone, he just wished he was still in charge when it returned. He had no worries there. In three days it was back, this time sitting right outside at lunch time as Ban was finishing up eating. The call came in asking for permission to dock and it was quickly accepted. The young officer, now wearing a definitely better outfit and carrying a powerful looking pistol, walked with a huge smile into Bans office. Obviously things had gone well, Ban hoped.

“Commander Danna,” the young officer said as he approached and stuck out his hand. Bans reached out and shock it this time, not being caught off guard again.

“I am here as an OFFICIAL member of the Great Colonies, a group of 12 human colonies that extends out from our home world into space. We heard from ship captains that there were signals emanating from this area of space for quite a while but just recently were we given permission to enter and explore here. I commend you on a fine, friendly civilization, Commander and we welcome you and Argon to the Great Colonies.” He said with great enthusiasm.

Bans stood and shook his hand again, this time saying, “You have a deal.” in return. The young officer got a chuckle as both he and Ban sat to talk.

“I have many questions.” Ban began.

“I’m sure you do, and I have been given permission to start sharing information with you as we get to know each other better.” The young man said.

“This ship of yours, what speed does it actually fly at? Our sensors don’t seem to be able to track it very well.” Ban said.

“Ah, my Viper,” the officer corrected, “It can travel at speeds in excess of light, so many of your scanners would definitely not be able to read it in ftl drive.” He said with a grin. Ban sits back with a thud, Argon used the gates for their ftl travel, but here was a ship, a FIGHTER capable of it independently, amazing!

“And as a member of the Great Colonies now will we get access to such ships?” Ban asked hopefully.

“In time, I’m sure you will, my message can travel many times faster than my ship, so it covered the huge distances back to my base in days, but I need to go home personally so they can get the full details and send someone more…professional, to do all these negotiations, I’m sure you’ll understand.” He said smiling with a slight bow in Bans direction.

“Of course, we all have our limitations, how soon will your ... Ambassador be arriving do you think? I’ll have a place set up for his or her return.” Ban said.

“I can’t say for sure, but you’ll have lots of time, as my signal traveled the distance quickly even my ship is weeks from home, but I’m sure you’ll be ready in lots of time.” The young officer said.

Ban nodded with a huge smile, this was going to work out well, he could tell. The young officer stood, shook Bans hand again, and said his goodbyes.

“I will leave at once for the colonies, the Ambassador they send will have a full report of our abilities to help you as well as any requests we may have, but be assured they will have full diplomatic rights to negotiate when they return.” The officer said as he walked away. Ban started planning for the return of the Ambassador; he would have many requests and a few favors to ask as well. He thought if all the Colonies soldiers were this well trained, Argon could certainly learn a lot from them, new training, perhaps, or even better equipment. Ban was all excited for the first time in yazuras; he could see great things coming to Argon. The Great Colonies might even want to add Earth to their list of friends. Ban cursed for a second at himself, he had completely forgotten to mention them as they were now Argons friends too. Better wait and deal directly with the new Ambassador, just a few weeks, and Argon would really be put on the map.

The Viper slipped into ftl drive as the young Lt set the sleep mode to return him home. He had weeks to go and a very exhausting report to give. The Argons were indeed human, he had seen for himself. Maybe related to the mysterious 13th colony. It was possible after hearing some of the argons talking they had information about the existence of Earth, and the mysterious 13th colony they had searched for for so long. He would make Captain for this, he thought, if it worked out as he had planned. That would have to wait, he thought as the gas dropped him into blackness.

He traveled without sight or sound for weeks, and soon the gas retreated and he awoke. He was on the edge of Caprica when he noticed ships approaching. He scanned and was horrified to see three Cylon heavy fighters coming his way. They attacked and he responded, driving them to early graves. He couldn’t believe Cylons were this close. He called his Commander to report the incident, but never got a reply. He tried again, on a different frequency, but got nothing. Now he was worried, his base wasn’t far away. He sped towards it at best speed; there ahead of him were the remains of an orbital military base. Just the shell remained. He stopped right along side of what was his home for many months. His friends surely had escaped this, but where were they? He tried every frequency he knew but found nothing. Where were the Battlestars and the Colonial Navy? Were they all dead as this base? No! He thought, this can’t be happening, I’m just not seeing this right.

Tears filled his eyes, he had been gone for nearly a year, and even a few weeks ago he had reported in without trouble. What had happened here? What had he missed? He stopped short and stared at the ruined base. He tried calling the planet but got nothing, he tried different frequencies, but again nothing. He was sick at heart and body when a faint signal was spotted by auto scan. He moved towards it at best speed till the signal was clear. It was a beacon, sending a repeating signal every few minutes. He turned it on audio and listened.

“This is Commander Adama of the Battlestar Galactica. The colonies are no more. If anyone hears this in the future, you are in grave danger. Leave this area at once! The remains of the colonies have been gathered and are in ships on the way to search for the 13th colony. They are our only hope now. I wish we could give anyone who finds this our course or even a chance to join us, but to leave this info would lead the Cylons right to us and this we can not do. If anyone ever hears this, may the Lords of Kobol protect you. Find a safe haven and stay there, we will return someday to take back what is rightfully ours, Adama, out.”

The young Lt wept, he had been away when he was needed the most, and he had failed his people. He had spent weeks among the Argon, a free and friendly race who took him in as one of their own. He had lived well and made friends, but it had cost his friends and family their lives. The Navy he had served so well was no more, seeing the faces of his friends, his family before him he never opened his eyes as the alarm sounded. He didn’t even look up as the Cylon fighter approached him, the end was quick and painless, he deserved no more.

The weeks went by and after a while Ban stopped waiting and watching for the young man or his representative, to return. He had no idea, of course what had happened. He only knew his hopes of a new friend and possibly a fresh start for Argon were dashed once more. He cursed himself for not ceasing the new fighter when he had the chance. He had left all that wonderful technology slip right through his hands while trying to make a new friend. He was more upset with himself than he had ever been. All he knew was it was never going to happen again, he would do things differently next time. All for Argon then make friends that was going to be it.

He walked over and looked out at the bustling Argon around him. He remembered the young officer well, but it wasn’t the same now. He could see his face and hear his voice when he remembered their talks. This man had not forsaken him, something had happened. He was sure of it. If he had pushed a little more then maybe he would have a chance to know what direction he had flown in. I f something had happened to him, then Ban would like to be there for his funeral, if they had such things. He thought about checking the sats last images to see what direction he had flown in. He knew the ship was faster than light, and he was just a few weeks away from his base... maybe. Ban shook his head. No, if they wanted to talk they would come; no need going looking for them right now, besides, the Argon found new gates almost every Mazura now. Eventually they would find this new race and then he would know what had happened. He had a bad feeling about it, but he would be patient. Only time would tell.

Anon loyalist
24-10-2007, 08:19 AM
2600+ words.

Raphiel Farpha
The man with an iron head

Raphiel was laid spread out on the floor holding on to a bottle of whiskey when two dark men stood over him looking down with very plain faces. Argon whiskey by the way, the illegal substance he so much pleasured in drinking. He stood no more than 5’5 feet tall, when he wasn’t lying on the ground. Short black hair, a beard to match and no fashion sense to be concerned about.
“So gentle men, of what use can I be to you?” asked Raphiel trying to gain the strength in his arm to move the whiskey closer to his side.
The two men said nothing wondering whether to help him up or kick him up.
“I know you two,” said Raphiel squinting, “Your Van’s boys. No doubt you’re here to take me back to my ship. Yes?”
“Yes.” said the taller of the two.
Raphiel nodded and began to stand up. Neither of the two men helped him but just stood and watched.
Raphiel had been lying on the bar floor in a Teladi station in Ceo’s Buckzoid since 3 Tazuras ago. His reason for being there? Teladi space is the only place he can buy Whiskey from, legally.
So really, what better place for him to sleep than the bar where his favourite drink was supplied.
“Van wants you back on your ship ready to demonstrate the device. He isn’t happy about waiting for you.” again said the taller of the two.
“Very good, you may come aboard. But, please first wipe your feet.” He smirked and staggered to the exit, with the two men following.

His ship was a small Yaki courier ship with no one else on board but him. He piloted it, fixed it, slept in it and pretty much did every thing in it. The layout of it was a joke. He didn’t care for the smell inside or even the state of the consoles; sticky from poured drinks or worse. The floor was muddy and damp and full of empty bottles. As the airlock opened the two men received a very noticeable smell.
“That is the smell of a man ship, ay.” said Raphiel winking at the two of them.
He welcomed them in with no more hospitality than that of a beetle. The smaller of the two men tried to sit down on a chair but then changed his mind and the other stood at the console where Raphiel was trying to remember how to start his ship.
“I’m sure this button should start it.” He said confused due to the whiskey flowing through his veins.
He toggled with the consoles buttons and finally remembered to press the button that said, ‘Drive start.’
“Now we are getting some where.” said Raphiel, after clapping his hands together.
He left the dock without paying the departure fee. After hearing a few curses from the Teladi station manager he flew off into space, going no faster than a piece of space dust.
“Hurry up and get to the rendezvous point before you get into real trouble with Van.” said the taller man.
“What is your name good sir, because I know your ugly… face but can’t place your name. I mean, I don’t, know… your, err.”
“Watter.” Said the man, interrupting so that he would no longer have to listen to him.
“What, err.” said Raphiel, making a pun at his name.
He received a glance and then turned the chair around to look at the other man.
“Good sir, what is your name?” he spoke with a slow and dense speech.
“Lambu.” He said without looking. He was concerned with his surroundings. He was trying to see if he could find something, clean, to put on the seat so he could sit down.
“Lambu? As in… err, No I can’t think of a joke for that one.” said Raphiel but the man did not respond.
“Get on with flying and do less talking.” said Watter.
“Yes captain.” said Raphiel saluting; he then suddenly pulled the ship to one side and back again making flying sounds with his mouth.
“Enough!” shouted Watter.
Raphiel, realizing he had gone too far, engaged the engines to the full and set course to the rendezvous site.

Within a Mazura they arrived at the coordinates in good time, where a Yaki Jizo waited.
Raphiel commed the ship and waited to speak to Van.
“Raphiel, you are a waist of space. You are so fortunate I need the technology you have to offer, other wise I would have cast you out in to space long ago.” said Van, staring at Raphiel through the monitor with cold and dark eyes. His nose was long and pointy and wobbled as he emphasised words.
“I’m glad you missed me. I love you so much more than you know Van. My heart pounds every time I see your face. Such beauty and such elegance. You remind me of your mother. Manly and strong and so…” Watter pulled his head back and spoke with quiet words, “Shut up if you want to live.” He pushed his head back and Raphiel shook it hard, “Hello Van. Nice to see you.” He smiled and stared back at him.
“Demonstrate.” said Van, and then abruptly turning off the comm.
Raphiel stood up and walked to the back of the cockpit to another console and typed a few commands into it. “Press that button.” said Raphiel to Lambu pointing to the main console. He walked over to it and pressed a button after confirming it with Raphiel. Lambu was hit by a sudden burst of air from a vent over head. The air was cold and shot all the way down his back, making him jump out of his skin.
“That’s it.” said Raphiel without looking.
“What purpose did that serve?”
“None.” said Raphiel.
Lambu looked at Watter, “Please can I hurt him now.”
“Not unless his ‘Device’ fails.” He stared as if to threaten Raphiel.
Raphiel smiled and waved at them both with the tip of his fingers, pouting his lips.
He typed some more commands into the console and then sat back down at the main console.
Opening a comm to Van he turned away from the monitor; Van’s face appeared on the monitor and was surprised to see the back of Raphiel’s head. He moved in closer to the screen and squinted.
Raphiel suddenly turned around and jumped back, acting as if he were surprised.
“O, for a second I thought it was your mother. Still, I’ll make do with you, right, if you scan my cargo bay and tell me what’s in it I would be grateful. But not grateful enough to go out on a date with your sister,” he lent in to the screen, “because she looks like here mother too.”
“I don’t have a sister.” Said Van, extremely unimpressed.
“O… Brother?”
“Enough with the absurdity’s I am scanning your vessel now!” He turned away from the monitor and his face disappeared from view. Raphiel lent back into his chair, the cold torn leather was comfortable to his old back; being 50 Jazuras old now with no wife or children to worry about. He loved being the centre of attention and having a wife or children would mean that he couldn’t be. This was most obvious to other people, especially to those that had never met him before, as bizarre as that sounds.
Van finished the scan.
“You have 400 units of energy cells on board.” he said without a single expression; fearful of Raphiel making a pun.
“No I don’t!” said Raphiel looking confused. “Are you sure your sensors are working?”
Van looked at the console, panicking slightly. “My scanners say you have 400 Energy cells on board.”
“Do they? Strange, because I have 20 units of space fuel, a.k.a, Whiskey.”
Van looked confused. He pressed some buttons and then looked at Raphiel.
“The device I have,” began Raphiel with a serious tone, “is a ‘Cargo cloaker.’ It, as you have just witnessed, tells the scanner one thing when in reality there is something completely different inside.”
He smiled, making obvious there was no need for being serious now.
“It’s yours if you want it.” He finished.
Van now lent back into his chair, contemplating the usefulness of such a device.
It could mean absolute control of situations, he thought.
Nothing would hinder supply routes.
The Argonian’s would never know any better.
“How much; is the price of your life enough?” he said threatening him.
“Should just about cover a meal that so have you anything else to offer?”
Van signalled to Lambu and Watter to hold him, which they did; fighting off Raphiel’s resistance.
Raphiel exchanged words with them before Van interrupted.
“Raphiel, I have decided that you are no more use to me then at any time before so I have decided to fire you.” He smiled.
“And by fire you mean, I’m sacked. That’s it?” asked Raphiel, no longer joking.
“No I don’t. Watter, tie him to his chair and transport back here.” Van closed the comm.
Watter used some cargo holders to tie him into the pilot seat. The buckles were strong and secure; there was no real chance that Raphiel could escape. So he devised a plan, one of cunning excellence, unique and proud.
“Please don’t kill me!” he pleaded with fake tears. “I have a wife and children at home. A Barrak called Roof awaits my arrival. How will it live without me? It needs me to bring home its food. My wife needs my caring soul and my children need a farther figure.” He began to shed tears.
Watter laughed out load and stood up off the floor after tying Raphiel’s feet around the base of the chair.
“You, have a wife, and children, and a Barrak named Roof?” he laughed again and turned around to the wall next to the airlock. He pulled off a fire escape axe.
Wiping his fake tears on his arm Raphiel finished, “Well it was worth a try. O and by the way, even if you kill me, my name will live on and people will remember me.”
“No they wont.” Said Lambu, stood cross armed and smiling.
“Will both of you stop ruining my moments please.” He waved his head around in circles trying to scratch his neck.
“Were about to ruin the next one I’m afraid.” said Watter. He used the main console to send the Cargo Cloaker design to the Jizo and then used the axe to smash the console and monitor.
After finishing he tapped Raphiel on the check and winked.
“Live long and… O, you wont.” said Watter. He used a device to transport him and Lambu back to the Jizo.

Sat alone, Raphiel contemplated his life for a few brief Sezuras before the time had gone and passed.
In those Sezuras he had looked back on his whole life and had briefly nodded off before waking up and realizing the predicament he was in.
“Better deal with this situation before I can sleep. Those two thought they were so cleaver. Computer?”
“Yes captain.”
“How many energy cells are on board?”
“Engage jumpdrive to the fauvist sector on map.” He smiled to himself. How stupid he made himself look was only a facade to confuse others. He had known what the whole out come of the events would become. Using the device as a cover to escape worked very well. Van would most likely leave him alone if he had the device and Raphiel would be free to escape. So far everything was going to plan.
“Jumpdrive engaging.”
He smiled once more.
“Fancy not turning off my computer. O, computer did you manage to scan their vessel?”
“Yes captain.”
“What did you gather?” all the time he was still tied up.
“We have their supply routes and data to do with tactical arrangements.”
“Delete the latter and secure the first.”
“Yes captain.”
He smiled for a third time. “Good girl. We like having tricks up our sleeves.”
“I was talking to my self.”
He imagined Van’s face at this moment in time as he was informed of Raphiel’s departure. They planned on destroying his ship, not much hope now.

Unfortunately for him, Raphiel’s computer for some reason jumped them into a Xenon sector, Xenon sector 598 to be exact. The Xenon are very in hospitable but are very much hostile. They roam their space always busy doing something, unless of course a ship they do not like enters their space, in which case they always drop what they are doing and attack. This time, again unfortunately for Raphiel, was no different.
“You stupid computer, there is a very good reason why no one comes to Xenon sectors. O, look, he comes one now.”
A xenon fighter came into to close proximity of his ship, scanning it and calculating the risk.
“Send us to a non-Xenon sector and quick.”
“I was following your orders captain. This was the furthest from our original position.”
“Jump now.” He said trying to free himself from his restraints.
“Jumpdrive engaged.” said the female voice.
Another Xenon joined the first, it itself scanning to determine the level of danger. With in a few Sezuras, 5 other ships had joined the original.
“80 90… Jumping.”
The swirling vortex opened and sucked them in, still before the Xenon had calculated the situation. Maybe they were contemplating the device he had on board. Or maybe they thought he was cute, he thought. Not really.
“Entering system Nyana’s Hide Out.” said the computer.
“Thank you.” said Raphiel out load with no care for pitch.
“Your welcome captain.”
Raphiel froze and looked up at the ceiling, “It was your flippin fault we were there in the first place.”
She said nothing.
He shook his head. Around 20 Mizuras later he managed to free himself of the restraints; leaving himself with a few broses. He cleaned himself up and looked at the damage to his ship. The console would never work again and the seat he had been sat on could do with burning he thought. Still, look at the necessities. Now what to do?
“Computer, find us somewhere I could go to sell the information I have.”
“What information captain?”
“The info you took from Van’s ship, the Jizo.” He raised his eyebrows.
“Certainly captain.”
She spent a time asking every other ship in sector for information.
“2 out of 43 vessels responded captain. Both advised we go to the trading dock and look on the bulletin board for a specialised corporation.”
“Make it so number 1.” he said with a husky voice.
Some how the computer understood his answer and set course to the dock.
Arriving 45 Mizuras later, they docked at the station.
Boarding the station, very cautiously, he walked through the dock to the board.
Two Boron’s were stood reading it, out load. They looked old and decrepit. Raphiel so much wanted to say something, but thought it best to keep quiet; especially at this moment in time.
He read the board and found a section talking about C-corp.
A corporation involved in conspiracies, or should I say dealing with conspiracies.
Considering there was nothing else on the board he decided to try them. Maybe they would want information to do with the Yaki, if not they would no someone who did.
He decided to send a long distance comm and leave a message with them, asking them to send someone to meet him. Ceo’s Buckzoid, he thought would be a good place. Forgetting the fact that is where he was nearly killed.
The message was sent and a communication came back the next Tazura telling him someone would visit him. A man called Raig Truuit. So he set course back to Ceo’s Buckzoid and waited for the mans arrival…

That is the end of Raphiel’s account for this short story. It will continue in my next story called “The Tailor made Hybrid.”

29-10-2007, 07:59 PM
Here's my entry. Just fits into the 2500 - 5000 words category, (2517 words in total)

It's Part 1, the second part will come after the competition, but the story is there for now... :)

Family Njy - Part 1 (A Liom Slammer Tale)

The four Argons crouched in the bushes silently. The wind gently rustled the trees in the jungle around them.

In the distance in front of them, through a clearing in the trees, was a small building, fortified, and covered in electronic weapons of every shape and size. On top of the small guard tower that rose up from the eastern side, a creature, humanoid in shape with a yellowish skin, watched over the jungle. Dressed in a camouflage uniform, the creature stood taller than a human, and had the glint in his eye that confirmed his non-human ancestry. He was there to hunt.

The four humans, wearing matching uniforms, slowly crept along in the shadow of the slight ridge that ran along the southern boundary of the grounds of the building. Trees disappeared into the endlessly unseen beyondness behind them.

In front of the other three was a middle aged man of medium build, a sniper laser rifle slung over his shoulder. He stopped and watched the creature on the rooftop. After a moment he signalled to the team to follow him around the far end of the ridge.

As they reached the point, barely a few steps from the building, the leader gestured to one of the other team members, and pointed towards the creature on the roof. He counted down with his fingers.






The young man, with tousled brown hair, threw a stun grenade high into the air.

Hell broke loose.

The automated weapons setup around the house initiated, attempting to track the grenade while it moved through the air, but the throw was too good, too fast. The grenade landed right in the middle of the roof of the guard tower.

The creature screamed, grabbed the grenade and was about to throw it when it activated. A flash and a poof of smoke came from his hand, and the creature fell back onto the floor unconscious.

The four team members hadn’t watched the trail of the grenade, or the weapons tracking the device, or paid any attention to the screech of the alien. They moved under the cover of the chaos to the edge of the building, broke through the door, two of the team setting up a watch over their exit.

Inside the building was a single wooden table, with a single wooden chair. Strapped to the chair was a human in a long flowing cloak, he looked ill, worn out from several days of neglect.

“Come with me, sir,” the leader of the team commanded kindly, “We are here to save you.”

The stunned guard woke up, shaking his head from the groggy effects of the stun grenade. He quickly hurried down into the room below and discovered the prisoner had escaped.

He thought for a moment. Death might be the quickest solution to his problems. But the pride of his Njy blood forced him to consider the alternative, that of contacting his superiors. He reached for his radio transmitter.

“This is Sai’t,” he said confidently. “Urgent Communication.”

“Go ahead Sai’t,” came back the response.

“I report a problem, sir,” he swallowed nervously, “Prisoner has escaped. I was ambushed.”

“This is not good news for you Sai’t,” the contact on the other end of the radio channel responded. “Return to base immediately for punishment.”

“Yes, sir,” the despondent Sai’t replied. He turned the radio off and started to make his way to the vehicle outside. He drove rapidly down the track that led to the base a jazura’s drive away.

The leader of the rescue expedition sat down on the side of a river a few kilometres away from the prison they had raided . His red hair was swept back as was the style among Argon Commanders. He placed the lid back on the canister he’d been drinking from.

“Lieutenant Springer ,” he said directing his words to the young Argon who’d thrown the grenade at the unawares Split. “What is the status report on the Split guard?”

“He’s radioed back to his base, and been ordered to return for punishment. Should be the last we see of him.”

“Let’s hope so,” replied the Commander, “Split aren’t the nicest of people to encounter under hostile encounters, especially up close.”

The young woman of the group, a small brown haired girl, tanned and toned, looked back at the Commander from her watch position. “He didn’t have much to say, he’ll think twice before coming after us, Commander Sillarn.”

“Private Gilharno,” Sillarn responded, “he never saw what was coming. He only lost because there were four of us, and he was on his own. It was bad planning from his Split commander.”

Sillarn shook his head, stood up and moved over to the prisoner they had rescued. “Castillo, how are the wrists now they’ve had some freedom?”

“My wrists are fine Commander, many thanks for that rest upon your shoulders, and with your officers.” The young Goner massaged his wrists a little, and then stood up. “I must take you to the cave where this artefact can be found.”

“Gilharno, Slammer, you scout on in front, Springer and I will bring up the rear.”

The four navy personnel and the Goner slowly made their way along the river as it weaved through the mountains of the jungle planet they were on.

The mountains of this jungle planet were steep and jagged. Only the best climbers could make it up the tops of the mountains. The heavy rain that fell most days produced hundreds of rivers and streams, which carved their way through the soft limestone mountain valleys. It was in one of these valleys that the small group headed for. It was at the head of this valley that the cave they sought could be found.

Castillo made his way quickly along the valley floor and part way up the side of the valley. After two jazuras of trekking they finally reached this small cave, partially hidden from view.

“How did you come across the cave?” asked Liom Slammer, the youngest officer in the troop. Though the youngest, he had a keen desire, and many at his academy had predicted that he would rise through the ranks of the Argon military with speed.

“My ship spotted the geological fault that it came from. It seems this alien race likes to use such places for storing their ‘treasures’.”

“But why do they store these items?”

“That is still unclear. There are many theories. Some believe they are left there to help the species that find them. Others feel they are part of a network of items that are used to aid this alien race in navigating the stars. Whatever it is, we still do not have enough evidence, or enough of these items to be even close to sure.”

“And that’s why we’ve been sent to help you retrieve the item,” added Sillarn. “The Argon military do not want the Split to access such technology at all costs.”

The group made their way into the cave, with Slammer watching the cave entrance. The back of the cave was lit up by the lights from the team. On the wall was a small rectangular panel, with a small crescent shaped object in the centre. Castillo gently unlocked it from its holder.

The object was smooth and metallic, with not a single button or control of any sort to be seen on its surface.

“Time to call in the shuttle I think,” said Sillarn as he made his way back to the entrance of the cave, “Let’s get it out of here before any Split turn up.”

Castillo wrapped the artefact carefully in a cloth and placed it gingerly in his backpack. Gilharno and Springer followed him out as he made his way to the cave entrance. As Castillo walked into the open sunlight, a figure darted from behind the cover of one of the nearby rocks and sent the Goner flying. He grabbed the backpack, and dragged the Goner by the hood of his cloak.

Springer and Slammer reached for their blasters, and each fired a shot off at the marauding Split. Both shots missed and the Split jeered them.

“Only Split can shoot properly. You Argon are fools.”

Slammer quickly realised that the Split was the guard from the prison they’d broke Castillo out of. He quickly followed the Split down the side of the valley, struggling to keep up with the surprisingly nimble creature.

Behind him Springer and Gilharno took aim.

“Hold your fire,” ordered Sillarn, “You risk hitting Castillo or Slammer. Follow me, and watch out for an ambush!”

The three navy personnel quickly descended after the others, Sillarn radioing his command ship for backup quickly. Suddenly, close by them, a rock exploded. The debris fell across the chasing group, knocking Gilharno and Springer out instantly, and wounding Sillarn.

Two more Split soldiers clambered over the side of a nearby crag, one carrying a bazooka like weapon. The other moved up to Sillarn who was struggling to get at his blaster in its holster, his face lacerated badly from the rock that had disintegrated. One quick sweep of his blaster butt and the Split knocked the Commander senseless.

Meanwhile Slammer chased the Split down the valley edge. Castillo was bruised and unconscious, his clothes ripped from the stones he was being dragged over. The Split continued to jeer at the young soldier as he made his way towards the river.

As they rounded a corner Slammer saw a Split Jaguar sat by the edge of the river, its hull gleaming in the sunlight. The door was open, and a Split was stood watching the running creatures. It reached for its blaster and started firing towards the Argon.

Slammer took aim at the Split as he dodged the incoming fire, and let loose a salvo of quick shots, catching the Split on his shoulder, causing him to drop his weapon.

Sai’t stopped jeering. He had barely a hundred metres to run before he got to the Jaguar. He never made it. Slammer made one last desperate lunge for the Split, and slammed his blaster butt into the side of Sai’t’s neck. He went down like like a sack of Cahoona Meatsteaks.

The Argon quickly knocked out the other Split, and bound the hands of them both, before hurriedly bundling the Goner into the Split Scout ship. He sat himself at the control panel and took off, facing the ship towards the head of the valley where the other members of the troop had been.

As the ship skirted the edge of the valley, the other two Split came into view, working their way down the valley edge, unaware of what had happened below until they heard the roar of the Jaguar’s engines. They looked into the sky one pointing towards Slammer. The other took aim with the bazooka like weapon and fired a shell into the sky.

Slammer gently pushed the ship out of the line of the incoming projectile and activated the light cannons on the front of the craft. He strafed the Cliffside behind the Split, causing a mini avalanche which engulfed them.

With them Split incapacitated, he flew down towards where the other members of his troop had been. The hurriedly brought the craft down, opened the hatch and jumped out, racing to the side of his injured friends.

Sillarn looked in a bad way. His face was badly cut, and his forehead was swollen. Slammer picked him up and carried him into the Scout ship. He returned to the other two, managing to awaken Springer.

“Daye,” he said holding his head up, “Wake up Daye.”

Springer’s eyes opened, and he coughed. “I’m awake, bud. I’m awake.”

“Quick, get into the ship before any more Split turn up.” He helped his friend up, and the injured Lieutenant struggled into the ship while Slammer went back to Gilharno.

The young Private was laid still, her arm at a sickening angle. Her face was pale and bruised. He kissed her forehead gently.

“Come on Rabeka, wake up.”

She didn’t respond. He listened for a heartbeat and found one, and she was breathing. He gently picked her up and stood up. As he did so a small group of Split Scouts flew over head, circling round and firing on the pair as Slammer made his way back to the capture ship.

He dodged the fire, stumbled and almost fell, but managed to stay on his feet. He staggered towards the Scout and placed Gilharno gently inside. He jumped into the pilot seat as the Split ships returned for another pass.

He engaged the thrusters and roared into the sky, leaving behind the rocky ledge he’d settled the Scout ship on, which disintegrated moments later from the laser fire of the pursuing ships.

He brought the lasers online and weaved up into the sky, taking every shot he could on the three pursuing ships. Every shot they fired on him, he successfully out manoeuvred, steering the ship with the skill of a veteran.

He raced to be the first into open space where the Argon Command ship was waiting, but the Split pursuers were not leaving him alone for a moment. They were bent on revenge.

The glow of the Split lasers flickered around the little Scout ship as he dodged and weaved. As he reached the point where the atmosphere ended and space began, he swung the ship round, catching the Split ships off guard. He fired on the now pursued pursuers, damaging the engines of two of the ships, forcing them to pull out of the chase.

The third ship swung round, catching Slammer by surprise. He dodged the incoming fire, and angled his ship towards the location of the Argon Command Ship. His gravidar showed up the Argon Centaur, and Slammer radioed in for docking permission.

No one responded. The last pursuing Split Scout was right on his tale, less than a few hundered metres away. It continued to fire, the odd bolt catching the shields of the Jaguar. Slammer flew hard to port, but the Split followed him. He turned back towards the Centaur, and pushed every last bit of speed from the straining engines. He slowly moved away from the pursuer, but not out of range of his lasers.

The Centaur was less than two kilometres away, and he tried radioing it again.

“Centaur Alpha thirteen, come in,” he said, concentrating on not being caught in the Scout’s fire, “Come in Command.”

Still no response.

The distance between the Centaur and Slammer dropped to a kilometre. Then he saw it. The Centaur’s engines ignited and the nose of the ship angled towards him. A barrage of green HEPT fire soured past him and impacted on the ship behind him.

It disappeared in a ball of fire.

“Private Slammer,” the radio emitted, “Proceed to bay 1 for docking.”

Slammer piloted the little ship inside the cavernous belly of the Argon Centaur, bringing it to rest with a slight clank of metal on the hull.

Home and safe.

30-10-2007, 05:52 AM
!!COMPETITION VOTING STAGE!! - The Short Stories under 2500 words section

The voting stage of the competition has finally arrived. The entrants have worked hard, so let's show our appreciation for their work.

Rules are as follows.

- It is expected for all entrants to vote. Not voting counts as a negative on the end result (it's the same as cheating in our eyes).
- You must not vote for your own entry
- There is one week to vote for the entrants (Midnight Monday 5th November is closing date)
- Votes should be formatted as follows:

1. Person who you think should win
2. Person who you think should come second
3. Person who you think should come third

Links to the posts that now have the entrants works of art in are here:

The Return (http://www.thexuniverse.com/forum/showthread.php?p=82119#post82119) - by krm398
The Man With an Iron Head (http://www.thexuniverse.com/forum/showthread.php?p=82185#post82185) - by Anon loyalist
Family Njy - Part 1 (http://www.thexuniverse.com/forum/showthread.php?p=82949#post82949) - by Mokonzi

Let the voting begin...

30-10-2007, 08:52 AM
2.Anon loyalist

30-10-2007, 09:03 AM
1. Mokonzi
2.Annon Loyalist

Anon loyalist
30-10-2007, 10:38 AM
KRM 398, I liked your story very much, but Mokonzi beat it by a split hair
1 Mokonzi
2 KRM398

30-10-2007, 11:16 AM
1.Anon Loyalist
Good job guys i really liked your storyes i had what to read but how exists only one winner my vote goes to Anon.Cya ;)

Anon loyalist
31-10-2007, 07:52 AM
Ma bucur sa va cunosc. ;) something a little closer to home Destroyer.
Cant put the right simbles in the right place so forgive me.

31-10-2007, 09:39 AM
haha, I wasnt writing for the comppetetion really this started as a story to get some free advertising for the BSG mod, hehehe.

Anon loyalist
31-10-2007, 12:02 PM
Then be proud you wrote a good story. Ay ;)
You sneaky... Teladi you. :lol:
Anon 8)

31-10-2007, 12:11 PM
Wow Anon :lol::lol::lol: i'm impresed.Nice too meet you too ;).Good profitssss.Cya ;)

31-10-2007, 01:39 PM
Well, it was difficult...

1. Anon Loyalist
2. Mokonzi
3. KRM398

Anon loyalist
31-10-2007, 03:01 PM
Sirus... what are you doing? :shock:
My stroy was never as good as Moko and KRM's.
This is a compo to do with the storys in this thread, not Anomaly.
Still, i am just a lowley registered user so ignore this post. 8)

31-10-2007, 03:22 PM
Anon Loyalist....

The man with an Iron Head was what I voted on.

I am convinced that you have tremendous potential (if you could just get your grammar & spelling sorted).

It was the fact that you have used a piece of technology (which happens to be in XTM) and wound a story around it, putting in a nice twist in that has made this number 1 in my eyes.

Anon loyalist
31-10-2007, 03:30 PM
My humble apologies Sirus. I thank you for your sincerity. ;)
My grammer is hopefully getting better. I'm only 20 so i have few years behind me.

Anon 8)

31-10-2007, 03:37 PM
OK, if you would like, I don't mind proof-reading for you...

Send me anything you would like sorting (sirusxtm@talktalk.net) and I will proofread it and put the corrections in so that you can see what I am correcting (Do you have word for windows?)..

Due to some personal problems currently and 3 young children, I may sometimes not be able to do it the day you send it, but should be able to turn it around in 2-3 days.


Anon loyalist
31-10-2007, 03:42 PM
Tell ya what... rather than doing that now, i'll try doing it myself and if i fail i may do what you requested.
It'll save you some much needed time by the sounds of it. ;)
Over and out captain 8)

31-10-2007, 04:27 PM
Well done again chaps...:)

1. KRM398 (also very good, I'm also a avid BSG fan):)
2. Mokonzi (I was Impressed Moko) :p
3. Anon Loyalist (But your "anomaly" was one of the better reads I've had in awhile):)

31-10-2007, 04:50 PM
3 KRM398

Moknzi is smooth and poilshed and eazy to read. Do you have more stories out there?

Ann Loyalist is rough to read but has a good tie into being believeble charter. I could see himand his ship.

krm398 is has good flow and detail. You would be great at longer stories where you can I bet.

I liked them and only wish I could have the writing protental of you three. I look foward to reading more stories here. Maybe I'll give it a go...

31-10-2007, 06:29 PM
Yep, I've got some other stuff to read:

http://www.thexuniverse.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2038 (Connected to Xtended so might have a spoiler or two in it)

For a list of all the Fan Fiction (bar one or two that still need adding):


Please have a go yourself, that's the aim of this forum, for everyone to have a go and develop their potential.

Thanks for the complements.

31-10-2007, 06:59 PM
1st - Mok
2nd - Krm
3rd - Anon

02-11-2007, 06:18 PM
1. Anon loyalist
2. krm398