The Evon Experience
by Alex Poff
Part 2 Chapter 1 The Rest of the Galaxy
Life for the Evon people was extremely good and relatively calm over the next few years. On the political front, agreements with our four respective neighbours were either strengthened or, if they had lapsed, renewed. The Olaptra continued their border skirmishes with the Eolodi and occasionally both asked us to help them kill the other but we always politely declined. It did seem that the Olaptra were getting the worst of it and we truly hoped that they would be able to settle their differences, but Labon continued to advise the High Council that we were not yet in any position militarily to pick a side and go to war.
Labon was given additional news regarding scientific weapons advancement approximately one year after our peace agreements with the Tralaifa and Eolodi had been established, that being that a material called Neutronium was now available to replace the Zortium for our armour-plated hulls on our spacecraft. This was a significant advancement in ship defense and so Labon ordered a now 4th generation of all vessels to be created at our shipbuilding facilities. Labon was quite pleased with the status of our fleets, as their number was increasing greatly. Surely, anyone would be considered foolhardy to attempt war on us at this point.
It was shortly after this new implementation that news came that Xetaph had passed away. His attendant had gone to wake him one morning and he had simply not woken up. Our people were saddened by the loss, but we had been expecting this sooner rather than later. Xetaph was well into his nineties and had become quite frail, yet still sound of mind. A state funeral was planned and, as is standard practice for all high-ranking officials within our world, an autopsy was performed to officially determine the cause of death. It was then that we discovered the breadth and depth of the evil that was the Laaran.
A chemical known to be a significant part of the Laaran biological weapons’ arsenal had poisoned Xetaph. In fact, no other known species had used or even developed this type of disgusting pathogen. Lebak was enraged when he was informed of the news. He called Lebon to his chambers, intent on revenge.
Labon informed Lebak that the Laaran still held only one system comprised of three planets approximately seven cycles travel into the heart of the galaxy. To get there, our fleet would have to pass through at least four other systems, but that these systems were currently under control of one of our four allies (depending on the system in question) and that travel should not present a problem based on our current allied status. Labon was also able to inform Lebak that assembling a new fleet for the assault would pose absolutely no problem, for Labon had many ships sitting in reserve. “Let it be done, then” commanded Lebak. “I want these rocks exterminated, wiped from existence, now!”
And so it was that we were at war again (actually, we had never been at peace with the Laaran). Hektar was to assume control of the Moya sector, taking command of ten new Superdreadnought TF’s mobilized there for our chokepoint defense and Coilis was to take the ten existing Dreadnought TF’s currently mobilized there along with three armor armies in Battleship Transport TF’s to the Tuscanni system, the last remaining Laaran system. Once there, Coilis was ordered to kill all Laaran, except for a few remaining rocks on each planet, which would be subjugated. We had no intention of sending vulnerable Colony ships into space with our own people aboard.
The trip to Tuscanni was uneventful, as expected, with all our allies wishing us well. The Trilarians even offered their support in the form of eight warship TF’s. While we did not believe we would require their assistance, we did not turn down their generous offer either. The only true resistance came when we first entered the Tuscanni system via the jump lane. We were met by five Laaran TF’s but they were no match for our relatively outdated Dreadnoughts. All the Laaran vessels were smashed like shards of glass, leaving all three planets open to invasion. Coilis transmitted his victory message to Labon and the High Council with a tally of zero casualties and that individual planetary invasion was about to begin.
This was also the first ground force assault for the new Rhean commander, Kaytapa. Much as Lotar had passed on the torch to Labon, so had Sasktewel passed on command to his apprentice. Kaytapa was instantly impressed with the Laaran’s desire to survive in the face of overwhelming odds. We had deployed only a single armor army to the first Laaran world and a force equivalent to two armies in defense met us. Our initial assault was successful in establishing a beachhead, but it was plainly evident that reinforcements would be required to conquer the planet. That being said, at least one additional Transport TF would have to be dispatched from Moya because we had only sent three (one for each planet) in our initial fleet. Kaytapa was quietly pleased, because it would give him an opportunity to test his newest assault weapon, a battleoid, which was a mechanical, robotic fighting machine. While a second armor army was landing on Tuscanni I, two battleoid Transport TF’s were being mobilized and dispa
tched from Moya.
While the battle on Tuscanni I was a long and hard fought one, in the end there was no doubt as to who would be the victor. Tuscanni II fell to our remaining armor army easily and Tuscanni III was a cakewalk for Kaytapa’s new battleoids. Our military liaison within the Eolodi empire confirmed that, finally, the Laaran were no more. Xetaph had been avenged. While some of their kind still lived as subjects of our empire, never more would they threaten civilized societies throughout the galaxy.
Throughout this entire sequence of the subjugation of the Tuscanni system, three TF’s had been waiting patiently in the bordering system of Tapau, a single-planet system held by the Tralaifa. They were waiting for the final Transport TF’s deployment so that they would then join the existing seven TF fleet now in Tuscanni to form a full ten TF defensive fleet. They were just preparing to leave Tapau when the “Red Alert – Proximity Warning” sensor screamed.
Thankfully, our ships’ commanders were on full battle readiness. “Give me a sensor reading and continue full impulse for the jump lane!” barked Hetat, the captain of one of the three TF’s. “Who the hell is after us?” As they made their way to the exit point, sensors indicated what we did not expect. No new enemy had entered the system; instead it was the five TF Tralaifa defense fleet that had locked their weapons on our hulls, automatically kicking in our proximity warning. Hetat didn’t want to engage for a number of reasons. They did outnumber us and Hetat couldn’t be certain at this point if this was just a gross misunderstanding, an error or the real thing. Hetat and his two wings made the jump lane and headed for Tuscanni, calling in to Coilis and Labon to update the new twist in interstellar relations which was sure to arise from this situation. As Hetat and his wings entered the Tuscanni system, things were becoming quite clear to Labon, Lebak and the
rest of the High Council.