It had been just one week since the conclusion of the most sensational trial in the experience of the UNS Divine Scepter survivors. Several Crusader henchmen, followers of the corrupt and murdered Shaspa Hendricks, were found guilty by a Tribunal of four of the most influential leaders in this nomadic human society. They had perpetrated physical and sexual abuse against Marine personnel as well as those victims’ family members. Given sentences of life imprisonment, they were incarcerated in the ship’s brig awaiting transfer to a prison to be built on the planet below.
ArcLieutenant-General Helena Romano was visiting the home of her CO Thomas Hastings. On this day, Helena was fulfilling a promise to help Hastings’ daughter, Alexis, with her preparations for the entrance exams she faces in a few weeks. Alexis has decided on a Navy career and has applied to the Navy Academy for Officer Training. The entrance requirements are quite demanding, but the seventeen-year-old Alexis remains undaunted and committed. Continue reading “25. Romano: In Love?”
In our last episode, young JoJo asked his beloved grandfather why their new house on the planet surface had not yet been built. He asked if it was because of the monsters. The monster reference goes back to a brief encounter with giant aliens who suddenly appeared at the edge of the clearing where heavy dozers were preparing the construction site for Genesis City.
“Monsters? Where did you hear about monsters, son?” Jethro’s voice is soft and kindly so as not to alarm or discourage this topic. Continue reading “23. JoJo And Jethro #2”
The next day, JoJo creeps into his grandfather’s reading room only to find him fast asleep in his chair. The boy stands still in front of his beloved Papa and gazes at his peaceful face. Very carefully, Jojo climbs into his Papa’s lap only to find him wide awake and grinning.
“Did I wake you, Papa? Are you mad at me? Can I hear more of that story? Please?” Continue reading “21. Papa Jethro Continues His Story”
In our last episode, ArcGeneral Hastings had delivered a firm ultimatum to High Chancellor Hayes and the CO of the Crusader Army, Shappa Durant. Hastings pleaded with them to punish the Crusaders who assisted Shaspa Hendricks in the unlawful execution of one Marine, the torture and rape of that man’s siblings, and the coercion and violation of a female Marine. If they refused, an all-out war between the Crusader army and the Marine Corps could ensue.
[We join the conversation between Hayes and Durant after Hastings left their presence.] Continue reading “18. Ultimatum: It Must Stop… NOW!”
Previously, Marine Commandant Gerald Kingsley was on his way to meet with ArcGeneral Hastings in the hope of averting bloodshed between his Marines and the Crusader Army. Feelings were running high among the Marines and many among the civilian Naval or technical class after the execution of a Marine sergeant, the whipping of his brother, the sexual violation of his sisters and a marine private – all at the hands of Crusaders. Kingsley feared total disaster – a full-blown civil war between the two social classes aboard Scepter and on the planet surface.
(Office of ArcGeneral Hastings – Kingsley, Hastings, and Romano in attendance. We join the meeting in progress. Kingsley has finished his briefing about the unrest among many Marines due to Crusader abuses.) Continue reading “16. Can Disaster Be Averted?”
It has been two months since the survivors from Earth arrived at planet Genesis. The ruler of this divided society, High Chancellor Jerome Hayes, has been in office for less than a year. He is aware that the Naval class, oppressed and tormented for almost a century by the faithful class or Churcher class, are resentful and likely to rebel if given the opportunity. The cleric feels pressured by the need to appear strong and unyielding in the eyes of the Chancellery Council and the faithful. Hayes knows that the well-armed Crusader army and its superior numbers are an effective deterrent to rebellious members of the Navy and Navy Marine Corps. That said, the longer the survivors from Earth remain aboard the ship, UNS Divine Scepter, the more explosive relations between Churchers and Naval class can become.
On this day, Marine Colonel Roberto Gallo is meeting privately with Navy Marine Corps Commandant Gerald Kingsley, about an urgent problem among some Marines that is spreading. Continue reading “14. “There’s Trouble Afoot, Sir!””
Previously, a senior high school Botany class embarked on a shuttle to the surface of planet Genesis from the colonizer ship, UNS Divine Scepter. As a precaution, teacher Giorgio Pinto’s class was accompanied by a security detail of twelve Marines into the jungle adjacent to the construction site of Genesis City. Once there, the class of thirty students was given one hour to collect samples of flora to take back to class aboard Scepter for study. After that, they were to have a tour of the facilities at the capital city site and lunch with the Director of Building Operations, Jethro Hodge.
Unfortunately, two female students were startled near the top of the waterfall and fell into the churning water below. Two Marines searched frantically and brought both girls to the shore. Carla was underwater longer than Barb and the Marines were having difficulty resuscitating her ashore. Continue reading “13. A Jungle Field Trip (D)”
Previously, a senior high school Botany class embarked on a shuttle to the surface of planet Genesis from the colonizer ship, UNS Divine Scepter. As a precaution, teacher Giorgio Pinto’s class was accompanied by a security detail of twelve marines into the jungle adjacent to the construction site of Genesis City. Once there, the class of thirty students was given one hour to collect samples of flora to take back to class aboard Scepter for study. After that, they were to have a tour of the facilities at the capital city site and lunch with the Director of Building Operations, Jethro Hodge.
Pleased with his students’ performance since they left their home pod, aboard Scepter, Pinto’s stress levels had been in steady decline while foraging in the jungle. He had been assisting a small group beside the stream at the foot of a waterfall, who were collecting plant specimens in the shallow water. The teacher didn’t see the two girls climbing the grade beside the waterfall until Tanya Sablicksen called out to him. Pinto straightened up, turned toward the sound of Tanya’s voice and saw her pointing at the falls behind him. He turned in time to hear Carol’s scream, and the sharp report of a rifle. Helplessly, he watched as Carol pulled Barb over the waterfall with her. Continue reading “12. A Jungle Field Trip (C)”
Previously, Giorgio Pinto brought his high school Botany class to the planet surface from Divine Scepter. Upon their arrival, they met Tanya Sablicksen, a former student of Pinto’s.
“Class, I’d like you to meet Tanya Sablicksen, a former student of mine, and now assistant to Director Hodge. Tanya?” Continue reading “11. A Jungle Field Trip (B)”
Any way one looks at this starship, it was a technological marvel. It was built over a fifteen-year period by the Untied Nations Space Agency (UNSA) in their Lunar Yard facility and completed late in 2084. Divine Scepter, originally intended as a long-range exploration ship, had design features that made it possible to expand the ship’s size from parts manufactured aboard. Continue reading “9. Discover UNS Divine Scepter”