"We shall start by answering the questions in the order they were asked," Astra begins. "A lot of it can be traced back to what Jake said long ago during the time jake first met the Gunslinger out in that desert: ‘There are other worlds than this.....'"
Jake blinks, wondering when exactly this strange woman heard about that!
He has a feeling, as well ast the others, that the answers will indeed not be easy to swallow......
What's with this Probe 2 business?
Probe 2 is the commanding officer of the group of AIs that Elrondir (back when he was an AI himself and calling himself Seeker before meeting B'elanna in Nod). This is an analogous person from a reality where a Terra was destroyed by the Lizards. Later on, due to Elrondir (now an elf) approaching the Military on Terra Prime, the Military used a second wave of Slammer ships (automated kamikaze spaceships) to attack and cripple this second batch of Lizards that this *other* Military (surprised the bejeebers out of them). That was something like nine and a half years ago.
The major differences between this Probe and the other is that: (1) Probe 2 is still an AI (not a golem), (2) Probe 2 is still in the Military (not semi-retired), and (3) the universe where Probe 2 comes from still has the Alliance (the Military was able to do some.....er......corporate restructuring of the higher management for crimes committed by the Company in the past).
Who are these Military folk?
They are an inter-dimensional alliance of what was initially 13 parallel Earths who joined together against a belligerent race who became known as the Lizards. The Lizards are a race of reptilian humanoids who have the bad habit of believing that if you are not a Lizard, that you are not a person....but food stuff.
In other words, they viewed humans as food, and like something like a bunch of aliens from a bad 1950's film they went about trying to smash world after world of humans.....to break their ability to resist and fight for easy harvesting.
Thus the Alliance came into being.
"As for the reality I'm from....." Probe put in. "The Military - One of two organizations that make up the Alliance, they're brave and committed and are really good at blowing things up. also good at running to the rescue of certain Federation people when another group of Enemy show up......and dump something called Omega all over that universe. The Company - The other organization that makes up the Alliance. If the Military is like a machine, the Company is the grease that makes it run smooth. And if you believe that, I've got swampland in the mythical land of Florida that I'd like to sell you! We made ourselves, over the course of years, more and more independent from those bastards (if we ever came to blows with them). Pity that they took similar steps with us in as far as building their own fighting forces..... But that's past and nothing to do about it now. A cease fire has been declared and we now have an uneasy piece between our half of things and their half of things. Sigh. No longer an issue."
"Some have called us fanatical," Probe finished up, "I prefer to think of us as.....patriotic and dedicated.....but I'll admit we've gone overboard on a few things.... We've won the war and now with it over we hope that we can.....decompress and settle down. We are doing it, but we can not be lax. If nothing else, the Lizards have proven that the multiverse....as well as the universe in general......isn't always a friendly and happy place."
Some back and forth is needed to fill in knowledge gaps, but eventually the others are in the know.
The discussion then goes into the details of just how Terra Prime got roped into this war.
"It's all about tiberium," Astra says, "The Lizards came and turned things upside down. Even if the Military had found us first, they'd have been forced to make contact with us....which would turn things upside down because we have so much tiberiium. Too much to be ignored. Too much to be overlooked, because just as soon as the mere existence of Terra Prime came out, the Lizards would have been scrambling to take Terra Prime from the Military was so foolish not to try to bring it into the fold. It was the means of winning the war in one fell swoop, after all.
"Now, as state, there is a substance on Terra Prime that is about as common as dirt....that is extremely rare elsewhere. It's called Tiberium by those of the Alliance and Military. In another reality there is a terrorist organization called the Sons of Nod who call it tiberian. In the place some call the Whoniverse, it's called Jethryk. But whatever the name, it's fuel for the war machine of the Military, the Alliance.....and the Federation of Star Trek."
"WHAT?!" Jake and Eddie shout.
The others not familiar with Star Trek look at the two New Yorker in askance.
"Hun, what's the matter?" Susannah asks, perplexed.
"Star Trek is....a TV show," Jake explains, "How can...."
"I spent a few good nights watching the opening credits trying to figure out which star would turn into the Enterprise," Eddie says softly, remembering those nights he'd been especially high.
"There is a theory going around that works of fiction are actually glimpses of other realities," Probe 2 puts in over the PA system, "That's why we have seem to have encounters with supposedly fictional characters from Star Trek: The Original Series, Star Trek: the Next Generation, Babylon 5, and Doctor Who."
"And that is brings us to just know why we know so much about you folks," Astra finishes, showing them a series of books from Stephen King.
11/24/2000 4:34:54 PM
The Never Ending Quest Home
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