Quadrant 3 ‘Ultron Crisis’ Growing
Dateline 3202.075, Q3
Reports are now being confirmed of a major military criris developing in Quadrant 3. Warships from all polities are reported as having been taken over by malicious code embedded in the new Ultron anti-piracy device. Doomsayers are announcing widely that they ‘told us so’. Dr Henry Pymm, the alleged creator of Ultron is reported as missing and warrants have been posted across the quadrant for his arrest. With everyone in the quadrant after him, it should not be long before he is brought to justice.
Meanwhile, military authorities are being tight-lipped about the extent of the crisis – rumours of several capital ships ‘missing’ remain unconfirmed – but what is known is that the remaining warships have burned for an undisclosed destination. A final showdown perhaps?
Shipyard Order at Shamash
Dateline Q0 3202.121
Mitsumura Heavy Industries’ big merchant shipyard at Shamash is facing record levels of profitability this year as it takes orders for two new Interstellar Destroyers from the recently-formed 7-Worlds Defence Alliance in Quadrant One. A spokesperson for the 7WDA said “This is a proud day for us – our alliance is strong – we have been defeating piracy and lawlessness – and now, with proper fighting ships for the first time, we will be able to ensure our alliance is strong and a haven of peace and prosperity“. The Alliance, formed at the start of this year is currently a purely defensive military alliance – though they are in the process of setting up an integrated combined Fleet HQ, and there is talk of closer economic ties between the seven member worlds in the near future.
Luwum Subject to Downsizing
Dateline Q8 3202.068
The Centauri colony of Luwum in Quadrant 8 has been effectively expelled from Partnership Status in the Centauri Conglomerate. A conglomerate spokesperson said “… of course it is a sad day for everyone – but we feel that the citizens of Luwum need the freedom to seek new opportunities elsewhere.”
The economy of Luwum has been declining steadily for years – despite Centauri inward investment – and under the conditions of the partnership contract with the Conglomerate, the relationship can be dissolved at such time as the colony shows a decline with little prospect of recovery. Share prices on the Centauri Exchanges in Q8 rallied at what the traders clearly see as the hand of firm financial decision-making at work. A Centauri planetary economist said “…well, you know, its like this – Luwum is a fine world, but it’s people are not all that entrepreneurial – I would describe their economy as just about at subsistence levels – far too weak to be a full partner in any worthwhile enterprise.”
The Governing Council of Luwum was forced to resign at the news – an Interim Council has been appointed pending fresh elections.
Binnian Terrorism Reducing
Dateline Q0 Binni 3202.101
As a result of the landing of additional Martian forces,combat exhaustion by the insurgents, and prolonged talks between the Martian Interim Authority and various ‘warlords’ – incidents of lawlessness and random murder have reduced on the East Continent of Binni (formerly the Free Republic of Binni). The situation is still tense, but a military spokesperson for the Martians said “We still need GF armour to visit some parts of the cities, but the civilian casualty rate has dropped. We reckon it’ll take a while yet before normal civil life is retored, but it’s coming”.
Mining Station Raided
Dateline Meo Q7, 3202.082
A major pirate raid hit a remote mining orbital in the asteroid belts of Meo, Q7. Starguard were despatched but arrived too late to prevent the station being boarded and substantially looted by up to 6 pirate crews. Loss of life was high, over 30 casualties were reported. In addition the daring pirates managed to break into the heavily guarded station strongroom, using plasmatic mining equipment and stole over 2 million credits in payroll cash.
‘Prof’ Van Hazard to head new Institute
Local Dateline Q8 Clewg 3202.060
The Sirian regional government on Clewg has agreed to consider setting up a funded committee to investigate the possibility of creating a new forerunner research institute to be headed by the controversial researcher, Porfessor Van Hazard of Bandog U. The Professor said “This is a clear vindication of my position and theories. The Sirian Government is clearly far sighted and enlightened, unlike those hide-bound and ossified acadmeics in their safe heavily funded institutes in Qyuadrant Zero. I mean, what do they care about other than their next big expense account lunch… I mean, when I started out…” (cont’d page 94).