The Fever Breach

This is it...

"I know this system. How did you know to bring me here?" I ask.   "You've been here before?" Fraeia replies.   I shake my head and Viritine says, "This is the closest planet under eden control relative to our previous location."   My eyes are fixed on the event horizon as I speak, "My dreams. I've been dreaming about this system since I left Safeharbor."   Fraeia shakes her head, "Not possible."   "You're telling me like I don't know that."   Viritine speaks in a soothing voice, "Maybe someone contacted you after all."   "You can't send a message to someone's mind or through dreams," I reply.   "According to you." Viritine laughs and shifts in the multicolored fluid. "You haven't been honest, I feel. Don't worry, I wouldn't be either. Tell me, do you have any implants?"   She calls me out with such a casual tone, as if ready to move on. "Sorry. Yes I have A translator. That's it."   Viritine seems all too excited to hear it. "That's more than enough. I have a theory, but I'll need access to the implant."   "It's in my head. How would you-"   Fraeia cuts me off with a chuckle. "She's not asking for the implant, itself. She's asking for your consent."
 
The Fever Breach lies on the very edge of Eden-controlled space. It's a strategic location due to its location and plentiful resources. It's also a holy site for the eden and is believed to be the place where the first eden gods were born, kicking and screaming from the black hole slowly eating away at its star.   Every system the eden control is managed with war in mind. The Breach is no different. It is a bastion, an anchorage backed up by several fortress worlds. Despite being a warlike species, they always seem to be at peace unless provoked. Their borders haven't changed for thousands of years.   I've seen this system in my dreams, though it's more peaceful than the visions made it out to be. Why am I meant to be here? Why would my enemy show me this place and what are the odds of me finding it with such little effort?

A line in the sand

The eden were one of the first species to travel to distant stars and spread out in all directions, uncaring for those they crushed. As if they'd grown bored of expansion, they stopped. It happened without warning and for some, it happened not a moment too soon.   The galactic community wouldn't look a gift horse in the mouth and accept peace. All sat on the edge of their seats and waited for the eden to make a move. Most were certain they'd rise to take more given enough time. The eden remain peaceful, exploiting the planets they've conquered over their long reign as one of the galaxy's strongest contenders.   The Eden claim all the territory they conquered was rightfully theirs and cite their religion to back up their argument. Their holy sites were now firmly in their grasp. Many wonder if their backward religion was created to justify their claims in the first place.
       

The cradle of the gods

Based on what little information we have, The Fever Breach is one of several systems assailed by a black hole, and one of several where gods supposedly emerged to lead their species to glory. Their gods were doused in prism, a form of matter that lacks equilibrium and defies much of what we know about the universe.   The gods who emerged change from telling to telling, though it's possible they appeared at different times throughout the eden's long history. We know the entities exist but what they truly are is difficult to define, biological anomalies beyond our science and reason.   It's possible they were Eden before their ascension to divinity. Many eden claim this and our record lists the names of gods as well as what they were called before godhood. We're missing something, a piece of the puzzle that may never be found.
 

Assets

There are four planets in the system orbiting the clash between a blue star and a black hole at the center. There are 10 moons orbiting these planets and an asteroid belt. The population sits with the eden as a majority but their religion has spread among other races. Many pilgrims find their way to this system before long.   The belt is what remains of 4 other planetoids that likely broke apart when the black hole altered their orbits and gravity. This forced their moons to crash into them, and some likely had overlapping orbits which caused them to slam into each other, slowly forming the belt over time.   Resources are abundant In the system. It's capable of farming its food on the surface of its innermost world and its infrastructure is also maintained by its mining operations. Most of its raw materials come from the belt, mined from numerous stations placed along the rim.
Loph Nereva, Meaning: Field of Colors A gas giant and the outermost planet in the system, Loph Nereva is a treasure trove of resources, many gathered by drones that descend from refineries in orbit. The bulk of the planet is hydrogen, helium, oxygen, and methane, but many other gases drift in its stormy atmosphere.   Alphia, Meaning: Mercy Alphia is an agricultural center capable of feeding a hundred systems. The Eden offer free room and board to pilgrims in exchange for work while they are staying in the system, and this exchange has led to a rapid surge in output over the last thousand years (relative to the planet's orbit.)   Krys, Meaning: Malice Krys is a fortress world, every bit of its infrastructure dedicated to military production, training, and defense of the system. It produces ships in dry docks as well as the defensive station in its orbit, and these ships are dedicated to the system's defensive fleet. These ships are also responsible for intercepting enemy fleets attempting to warp beyond the system and further into eden space.   Opora, Meaning: Calm An ocean world responsible for the production of ships, Opora is most known for its planetary defenses. As the first habitable world an invading fleet would encounter, Opora houses numerous defensive installations beneath the waves of its ocean capable of targeting anything within ten thousand kilometers of its orbit. This is to defend its citadels, defensive stations that can engage almost any target within the system.
I take a deep breath and nod. "I give my consent. Don't kill me please." I feel a sudden rush of heat through my entire body. I lose hearing for several seconds and clutch my head in response to the splitting headache that followed.   I can almost feel it, the shadowy tendrils reaching into my thoughts and plucking the ones they seek from the ether. Soon after, the invasion ends.   "Denina despha." Viritine whispers. The Black Signal.
 

The Black Signal

The Eden knew of the signal long before they had control of the system. They felt as if it called to them, much like it does me. The black signal is ancient, yet intact. It doesn't seem to be coming from any one source. It's just there. The black signal is not a natural phenomenon. The problem is when reading the data, nothing appears. It's like a scream in the void, an endless cry that says nothing, and means nothing.   Translator implants can pick up on signals but they can't read them. It's how the software updates when entering a new system. Usually, a rogue signal manifests as hallucinations during the recovery of the procedure. When calibrated, your translator only reads a narrow field that is so fine-tuned it may as well be a channel unique to the user, requiring manual downloading of software to expand your lingual database.   I know my enemy. I've been searching for it for years. Gibraltar has done this before. I can't imagine how. This signal is older than me, older than mom. Hell, it's older than humanity. I guess we just happened to be the ones unlucky enough to have all the right variables in place to hear it. The more I think about it, the more I start to feel less like a hunter and more like prey. Maybe I'm not tracking my enemy down. Maybe I'm just falling into their trap.  


Cover image: by Istock

Comments

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8 Dec, 2021 08:52

Something is fascinating in the dialogues' structure that I find difficult to pin down — extremely engaging, with some mystery. The opening dialogue reminded me of the article about the Atlas.   I enjoyed this read pretty much like finding a new piece of a complex jigsaw puzzle, fitting into the bigger picture. Thank you for that.   With some additional information on the qualia of one of the main characters, who describes the Black Signal, I need (but don't want... but need) to ask. Is this connected to the scream that was recorded in the background when humanity "broke into heaven"?

Introducing my challenge entry, with my cat as the main character and visitor to the tavern.
Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
8 Dec, 2021 15:07

Oooo thank you very much. I've been reading through the dialogue this season and I feel I pick up on the same thing. Idk maybe it's the tense and structure. Present tense makes it feel so much more active for me. Thanks so much for the kind words, my friend. Oooo ok let make this private cause... AHHH!       O.O someone is asking the big questions... yes. The final recording from earth is the same black signal. Way to pick up on that! The black signal is directly tied to breaking into heaven. That's the big mystery I want to reveal this season. What is heaven. I won't say what happened to earth, but explaining what heaven is will be opened ended enough to allow anyone's theories to be potentially true. I wasn't expecting anyone to connect the scream. Well done.

8 Dec, 2021 15:48

Are you running a Kickstarter for a book or series for this world? Because for some time I have a feeling that these are just several pages from an almost ready book?   If not, then well... the world itself is a pleasure to see.

Introducing my challenge entry, with my cat as the main character and visitor to the tavern.
Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
8 Dec, 2021 19:01

I actually do plan on doing a kickstarter with added scenes to bridge the gap between articles. I'll be really digging into it likely after this final chapter. I'm glad to hear you're enjoying it!

8 Dec, 2021 15:42

What an interesting system, with the black hole in its center. I assume that must be some sight to behold.   The Black Signal gives me chills.

17 Dec, 2021 15:58

You haven't been honest, I feel. Don't worry, I wouldn't be either.
I really like this line

- Hello from Valayo! Featured work: How to Write Great Competition Articles
28 Dec, 2021 22:12

She wasn’t chosen by Viritine, She was chosen by something far older and far more dangerous. DAng it!   :D

You should check out the The 5 Shudake, if you want of course.
Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
29 Dec, 2021 05:03

Ahhh yes, but why?!

13 Jan, 2022 22:46

Why am I meant to be here? Why would my enemy show me this place and what are the odds of me finding it with such little effort?
  Gosh you and me both Amber, you and me both. But really I am obsessed, so many questions, I just have to know whats going to happen next. The black Signal is fascinating, and Gibraltar just keeps intriguing me. Right now I'm picturing it as a conscious black hole, though I can't even begin to figure out how that would work.   ... reads comments below ....   WAIT THE BLACK SIGNAL IS LINKED TO THE BREAKING OF HEAVEN?! HELLO???? God this is why I can't analyse media by myself I really need the answers spoon fed to me =_= but also OH MY GOD!! OOOOOH! AAh!   Thank god you're considering a kickstarter. Please make this a graphic novel, it would be amazing. The aesthetics... top notch. The colours too would just be *chefs kiss*

Author of Arda Almayed - check out my SummerCamp articles here!
Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
14 Jan, 2022 01:46

I'm gonna do something for sure. Idk what but something.   Also yes indeed. It is connected but not a cause. The mystery lays it on thick this season XD

14 Jan, 2022 08:44

Whatever it is, I'm excited to see! (and if you need help that is a project I would be more than happy to invest time in). And gosh yeah I'm just shaking my laptop waiting for new articles (speaking of omg LOOP TIME)

Author of Arda Almayed - check out my SummerCamp articles here!
Sage Timepool
Garrett Grace Lewis
13 Apr, 2022 03:57

Somehow you've found a way to make even a star system stand out, that's no small feat— seldom few sci-fi settings can manage this!   And Gibraltar seems yet more mysterious...

Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
13 Apr, 2022 13:04

You know, one of the coolest things about some people waiting to read or not having the time to is when they do, I can look at where the story is currently and think, "hell yes. I nailed it."   The fever Breach is SUPER important and it really is hard to make a system stand out. Thanks so much. It really eases some worry.

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