Birthright (Pulse)


Staff member
Jun 15, 2018
September 10th
High Security Asteroid Datacenter & Research Facility "Charon"
4:00 PM


Funny how, even for a ruler, there were parts of his domain that were shrouded, and dark.

"Charon" had been the Directory's spacefaring Fort Knox - a research facility and military fortress that had, unfortunately, been left only half-finished at the time of its dissolution. Thus, there were sections of it that were in better shape than others, where it was whispered that illegal alien artifacts had been studied and coveted, away from prying eyes, by those who tarried in the dark with powers across the stars. Of course, very little had emerged to validate these rumors - but nevertheless, it was here that Elhirut had been led, on the basis of an emergency, pending a note from Cicero.

Esteemed Meyven Elhirut,

There's a matter requiring your immediate attention on Charon requiring sensitive information relating to the attack on the Tantra. The arrangements for travel have already been made.

Unfortunately I will not be able to accompany you at this time, as I am undergoing emergency surgery. Please forgive me for being unable to safeguard you at this time, but I will continue to advise and support you as best as I can. One only needs one hand to be able to lift a phone.

Best wishes, A. Cicero
So it was that Elhirut found himself walking down Charon's corridors, with only the sound of his own footsteps echoing on the polished, practically new floors to assure him. He was accompanied by a pair of Bioroids who led the way, but any inquiry would have been greeted with only mute silence. Combat Bioroids, he would likely have been told, had only minimal social programming installed, and those on highly secure installations such as this might have said function removed entirely in order to safeguard information leaks. The result was that his handlers seemed almost indiscernible from the equipment that he passed along the way, merely pieces of the fortress, walking weapons that felt nothing, knew nothing, and were nothing.

What's more, there was a certain familiar sensation. Something that, perhaps, he had not felt in a long, long time, emanating from deep within the station, one that became more certain with every step-

As if he were being drawn closer to his forgotten past with each passing second.
Nov 12, 2018
He was alone.

The machines marching ahead of him hardly qualified as companions. Not only were their steps disconcertingly light, but they were cold and silent even to his impossibly sharpened sense of the world. Bertrade's engineering was precise. She'd done everything he'd asked of her. But he'd never asked her to make her bioroids feel alive; at the very least, not these models. They were as numb and metallic as the rest of the facility. The idea that people would have lived here was bewildering. The casual indifference in its architecture was maddening. The solitude was absurd, the insanity of building something (here in the dark?)

His steps slowed. The bioroids adjusted their pace to match.

He'd made a mistake. Even as the artificial gravity whirred on, maintaining a constant acceleration of 0.8 Terran G's, Elhirut was lightheaded. He stumbled and caught himself against a jutting collection of dirty, copper-colored pipes. What had he hoped to find here? What would it mean without anyone to listen, to commiserate with his indecision, to act? Would these dolls that might as well have been clay - what could they even do for him? What was there to fight?

Remedy, at the very least. He'd sever an arm to have her here. He'd paint the walls with his own blood if it would summon her. She was everywhere. She would've volunteered to follow if he'd asked. But she wasn't here. He had walking statues of cold instead. Inadequate. Infuriating.


He regretted the thought as soon as it occurred to him. He wanted to rip the pipe in his hands free and send it sailing into the far wall. He wanted to shatter the scattered displays lining the walls, turn off the gravity, and fill the hallway with drifting glass. He wanted to float amongst the glittering shards and match their infrequent sparkling with salty tears. He wanted the station to spin wildly out of control and tear itself apart in a tidal shriek of conflicting forces. He wanted something to make a noise that wasn't soft blinking or clanking metal, anything that expressed for him what was threatening to burst from his lips. Something burned. His collar was suffocatingly tight. On the edge of spiraling again. The indignity of grief.

"I'm sorry," he apologized to nobody. His voice was hoarse and creaked. The words were a pointless gesture. The bioroids waited ahead with dispassionate, consummate faces of nothing. He wasn't sure if they'd even turned to look at him.

When he finally released the tubing, he wasn't quite there, wasn't really behind his own eyes. As he let go and continued down, winding through the sea of stillborn corridors, something between his ears pricked at him and he obeyed its gravity. Just the call of forgotten things, the puzzle pieces that fit in the holes. Nothing to be afraid of. He'd see what he came here for. Alone. He'd know again. There was the chance, right? He could go back. He could see what he'd lost. He deserved this one triumph for himself.

The splinter of him that knew better - the part of him divorced from his animal limbs - tasted only bitter iron. Nothing worth finding would be locked away here.

Nobody went alone into the dark to find hope. This was destiny. Like old bone. A call from the grave. Fated. The doors were ahead. They had to be.


Staff member
Jun 15, 2018
True to Elhirut's prediction, there were indeed doors ahead. The Bioroids halted their mechanical march, greeted by a pair of twins at the door, who snapped a salute that was returned with equal precision. After a moment's pause, they ground inexorably apart - heavy, featureless slabs of metal that signaled the end of one life, and the beginning of another. It was likely that the young man needed no further prompting to venture into its dark recesses, where the answers he had long sought were waiting.

It was dimly lit, yet vast. The silhouettes of heavy construction machinery lay inert about Elhirut as he walked, lit only by the occasional torchlight, so dark that it was impossible to see all the way above him. Though, if here to gaze skyward.

Something fell lightly on his shoulder. White, and airy, like marble-dust under his fingertips.

A floodlight light clicked on, illuminating a vast shape overhead, which cast a shadow like a great falcon. A feathered wing, vast in size - or perhaps more accurately, veined pieces of a pearlescent, statue-like wing, strung together over a mechanical frame that in itself must have been a work of peerless craftsmanship. Old and new, blended alongside one another in dubious harmony, as if it were the largest metal cast, created to fuse back together bones of immeasurable size with bolt, rod, and glue.

Ka-chak, ka-chak-chak.

More lit up, one after another. They illuminated arms, legs, wrapped in a flowing shroud of white, spiderwebbed with cracks, the artistic exterior interrupted occasionally by a gaping hole, where mechanical details were visible, telltales winking deep in the recesses, hinting at machination yet still. The display terminated with the face - itself the picture of peace, were it not for the black recess in the place of its right eye.


Porcelain skin, what once had been white as snow, now scuffed and chipped, as if it had been long neglected. It radiated a kind of familiarity, a nostalgic peace that was both welcoming and yet unfamiliar - an echo of times gone by, of faded glories and a past that had long since been forgotten. Perhaps Thane Ashford's thoughts on blood, which he had doubtlessly, shamelessly voiced to the young Meyven, would come to mind as it seemed to call to him, in a silent cadence that brushed the heart.

Geber Ganeden.

"Do you like it?"
That silence was broken, as a familiar voice spoke - and stepped out of the shadow of the reconstructed quasi-deity. The body was new - presumably it had needed to be replaced after the incident that befell the Tantra, but the features atop it, the confident, yet purposeful steps, and relaxed shoulders - were all as exactly as he would have recalled on that fateful day he'd awoken.


Myr Rodis, the Strategist for the Great Circle, aide de camp to the late Meyven Madin Eo, gave Elhirut what amounted to a welcoming smile. At length, he looked upward, as if noticing the statue for the first time.

"I had to make up for things." He said, solemnly.

"For keeping the truth from you all this time. For keeping this... your birthright... A secret."

He gave a sigh - but the stern expression didn't waver, not even for a moment. It was the attitude of a man who experience had sharpened into a hard, unyielding point, fixed inexorably towards a point on the horizon visible only to him - and this demeanor had paid dividends in spades. He paced towards Elhirut leisurely, arms behind his back, each step carrying with it the weight of metal and flesh made one.

"After all..." He continued; "The Circle considered you a mutant. An undesirable. I had to protect you from them. From those who would persecute you for being... different."

Myr paused, as if he were weighing the moment atop his palm in a moment of infinite contemplation before meeting Elhirut's eyes as he spoke once more, one hand reaching out to close about his shoulder.

"Any father..." He said, "Would do the same."
Nov 12, 2018
No. He'd made a mistake; how foolish was he to come here when he already knew? The resignation settling below churned to a violent boil; something hard and dry leaped up and caught in Elhirut's throat. Any comfort he'd found in Ganeden's silent form vaporized in a single instant. This excursion was no longer a visit to a grave.

First, the Terran words: Frankenstein. Chimeric. Then, the native ones: ⏃⏚⍜⋔⟟⋏⏃⏁⟟⍜⋏. ⌇⏁⟟⏁☊⊑⟒⎅.


Elhirut's flesh - as if reanimated from his sleeper pod once again - moved sluggishly. A single, shaky step found itself but crumbled at the knee. On autopilot, he caught himself and stumbled back; the world seemed to contract to a single point as he slipped away from Myr's reaching grasp. Without thinking, he was already gazing vacantly past the Strategist's impossible words. It was still there. He felt as if he were staring at a blinding tower of snow or sliding his gaze across a knife's glittering point. Each iris wide open but not seeing. Looking was becoming painful. Burning. Something behind his eyes.


Connections. Instinct. Comprehension, as horrible as it was. Haltingly, Elhirut spoke; his speech emerged no less strained than before.

"The Custos. My data, dummied over, so nobody else could use it. You. It was-"

Another step back. This time, the young Meyven didn't stumble, but his hands fumbled for the sidearm at his side. It was as if he were reaching desperately for a magic wand, seeking a force that could utterly banish the events of the last few minutes. In comparison, the explosive power of a gun was insufficient. He could fire. He could pull the trigger. He would miss. The Bioroids outside would crush him before he could blink. But even if he hit his mark, even if he silenced the man before him now, nothing Elhirut possessed could destroy what he'd already seen. The memories were right there. Familiar. They promised a world beneath those wings; no, a civilization, the way it had been before.

Was that what Myr-


Was that what the man offered?

"You protected me." The venom suffusing each word was unfamiliar; his sarcasm felt like poison. The Terrans had worse words. He knew this now - he wanted to use all there was. He wanted to exhaust his programmed arsenal in a rioting cavalcade of language and fall asleep right there, on the metal floor.

Instead, as he tasted salt, as his second stream of tears fell to the floor, the pistol's barrel rose. It felt more alien than anything else here, a jagged brick of ceramics and ergonomic curves. Pointing it at Myr's chest was natural, even with the safety on and with the sights wavering in his blurry vision.

A sharp inhale, like the gasp of a drowning man.

"I was alone!" Elhirut roared. His glare had sharpened. He was no longer inspecting the half-assembled body looming above. He met Myr's eyes.

"I - I still am. What right - no. Even if you are my - even if what you implied just now is true, your duty is to - "

The pistol trembled.

"...Madin. Did he die for your protection? Did you know that he'd meet his fate against Decima?"

He was still searching. Trying to express something beneath the questioning, beneath what he'd already assembled. It only took a moment more.

"Light-years. Trillions. I dreamt. I felt our journey here. No. I don't want this - this gift. What you're asking of me."

The pistol steadied. Elhirut's stance was wire-tight, coiled, the tears long since stopped.

"You're too late to give me this back. You're too late to say this was all for me. I will not call you - "



Staff member
Jun 15, 2018
"I know."

Myr registered the raised pistol with a scowl - but the reassuring metallic click of the Bioroids' own arms made him relax once more. It was almost as if Elhirut's boldness had taken him by surprise - but only for a moment. Looking down the barrel... he began to pace in a slow circle around Elhirut, his every deliberate footfall echoing across the room.

"All those stories about sacred bloodlines... About demigods mingling with these apes... Complete and utter nonsense." He said, dryly.

"A mere psychic signature. A little technical, but nothing that couldn't be reproduced. These Terrans have an obscene fascination with your... kind."

There was something about the way he said it, how it dropped neatly into the sentence, yet as if he were holding it at an arm's length, lest it contaminate him.

"And that... is the key, Elhirut. The key that turns in the lock. Behind that lock, that door... is power the likes of which we can barely comprehend.

The power to cleanse this wretched planet of its insufferable, barbaric inhabitants... and pave the way to a new, enlightened era of martial wisdom. Let the people have their idol to bow down to... so long as it knows its place."

Myr paused, as if savoring the now all-too-close vision, as if it were right before his eyes. It was gunmetal gray, and it marched those unwilling forward at the point of a bayonet. It was a world of deciders, of makers of action and drive - and it had all the components needed to stretch his grasp from one end of the cosmos to the other.

Not even the smallest speck of dust would escape being swept aside, to suffer for its sinful uncleanliness.

The Strategist gave a long, low sigh of disappointment as he stopped his pacing, turning his attention back to Elhirut with a thin smile.

"That... could have been you, my boy. A true Spirit Emperor... But instead, you let Madin and his idealism poison you. That soldier was just too trusting for his own good... but convenient."

He gave a low chuckle, as if recalling a private joke as a metal hand stroked his chin...

One Week Prior to "Starfall Tears"
The Tantra, Lower Decks

Deep in the depths of the Tantra, Myer's hands moved across scans of biometric data. Swapping out the necessary components to fool the ship's main computers was child's play with his superior authorizations... after all, no need to upset the condition of his precious "cargo". From here, he could see the whereabouts of every crew member, guests included. Speaking of, he reasoned, it was about time for him to be accosted by-

"Hey, tin-legs."

Right on time. Putting on his most disarming smile, Myr turned to face Decima, who gazed up at him with the audacity of badly-behaved children everywhere. Concealed behind her back, he knew, was a pipe - one she'd earlier wrenched free from the ship's innards, and which would soon, by his estimation, be further misplaced by being rammed through his skull.

"Watcha' doin' down here in the dark? Something naaaaaughty?"

Rodis gave a polite chuckle as his fingers moved the monitor behind him, pulling up a certain file he'd prepared in advance.

"I should ask you the same. From your scans, you're certainly not Terran. Just enough to look the part."

The childish smirk dropped from Decima's face like a rubber mask. The pipe was swung forward at blinding speed - but the Strategist raised a hand, flicking a plastic cover up on a small device, exposing a bright red blinking button, nestled squarely in his grasp. Its appearance caused Decima to pause in mid swing, uncertainly.

"Oh I wouldn't be too hasty." Said Myr carefully. His words were punctured by a gentle bip-bip-bip from the detonator.

"Kill me... and this whole ship goes with me. By my calculations, not even your enhanced body could survive that."

Decimas' features morphed first into surprise - then disbelief - and finally, into a malevolent sneer.

"You're lying-" She began to hiss, but Rodis' features remained impassive. His thumb twitched.

"I've never bluffed in my life." He said. His thumb began to press down, and he closed his eyes-


The panicked squeal was music to his ears. That's right, he thought to himself. Behind all the enhanced muscle, you're still just a brat looking out for herself. The pipe clattered to the floor, and Decima just glared at him in unfocused hatred and confusion, as if her favorite toy had been taken away.

"What do you want, sicko?"

"Just a little tête-à-tête." He said, making sure to sound reassuring.

"A frank discussion of goals. Perhaps we can..." - He trailed off, bringing up an image behind him of a familiar, blue-skinned commander, grinning broadly and cheesily for his official portrait.

"Help one another."

He'd known, of course. As soon as that homonculus had appeared out by Jupiter, he'd rapidly incorporated her into his plans. A little obscuring of her bio-signatures, and she served as ample bait to keep the other two occupied whilst he worked away. Of course, he could never have imagined that she'd have brought the dreaded Dark One into their midst... But, he'd accounted for that variable too, in time.

The Tantra was a heavy sacrifice - but wars, especially wars of extermination, demanded atrocities, something that Decima - and by extension, Duminass - had been all too willing to provide. At length, he opened his mouth, unable to stop himself from smiling at the memory of being rid of the one who'd dreamed himself his better.

"Sending Madin to die was a mercy. Movements need martyrs, after all. But, just to spite me, who did he place his faith in...? You."

Myr's countenance darkened, and his voice lowered such that it was as if he wished to close his hand about Elhirut's throat, leaning up against the barrel, letting him feel the cold, hard metal that had replaced his once warm, beating heart.

"You, who neither desired, nor appreciated, or even remotely understood what it means to have power. You refused to listen. You refused to change. To let go of the weakness that you revere."

The Bioroids raised their rifles, more of them emerging from the dark now. There was vague, metallic banging in the distance that was getting closer with every passing second of uncertain origin, but it wasn't enough to drown out Myr as he spoke what were, assuredly, the last words Elhirut would ever hear.

"Do you think I would have revealed myself to you here... if I needed to rely on you, and your sickening fragility for even a second longer than necessary?"


Staff member
Jun 15, 2018
The silence dragged on. With nothing more to be said, Myr Rodis smirked and raised a hand. It was time to put the mistake in its coffin once and for all.

But suddenly there was a noise. A distant shrieking, like the hum of some impossibly large mosquito, that gave him pause-

And just barely enough time to duck, as a glowing green blade shot from the darkness, impaling one of the Bioroids through the helmet in his stead in a spray of off-white artificial viscera.

It punched clean through the other side and swung back around for another pass, screaming through the air as an explosion rocked the room. Rodis cursed and whirled back to Elhirut-

Only to find him gone without a trace. Gunfire filled the air as the remaining Bioroids opened fire on the sword, the distant booms growing closer with every passing moment. Rodis bit back a snarl... and collected himself.

A minor inconvenience. He had almost everything he needed. Now all he needed do was take what was rightfully his. His imposing figure turned, and flanked by a pair of Bioroids, retreated into the waiting interior of a shuttle. With a loud, monstrous groan, the hangar began to lurch open - and the assembled Zelanio class warships, as well as the imposing figure of Geber Ganeden, vanished from view.

The hiss of an airlock must have been like music. A hand slowly, and not unkindly lowered from the scruff of Elhirut's neck, having dragged him out of harm's way.

"All great men have their time, young Meyven."

Thane Ashford exhaled, and flicked the Orgone Rapier that had returned to his grasp once more, sending droplets of white splattering on the opposite wall. His eyes gleamed in the light, and it was plain to see the genetic perfection that so many Lunarians prided themselves on.

"Yours..." He said, with a smile.

"...Is not today."

The debt had been repaid, he thought. That man - Rodis - no, that alien would soon be marching on Luna itself. He almost had to laugh at the series of events as they unfolded. They were leading him home.

It seemed he couldn't outrun his judgment after all.