Hope Starved

June 8 YC122
Gulormola District
Skarkon II

It was well after midnight when Metz finally collapsed back into his desk chair in his safe house. The autoinjector which would wipe his memory remained where he had left it in front of his terminal, along with the desiccated corpse in the corner of the room which he’d only noticed after taking the drugs from the first injector. Above the corpse was a hastily scrawled message, written with a marker still held in the corpse’s lap along with the gun she had used to kill herself. 

If you can see this you are in danger! They’re out there everywhere. They’ll come for you. I know they’re coming for me soon, I won’t die like the others. Don’t remember! Don’t remember! Don’t remember! Don’t reme

The mystery that Metz had been unwittingly drawn into continued to expand in scope and danger. Long dead corpses, mysterious bases, lost Jovian technology, the fact that Metz seemed to have been involved in it since the beginning despite not remembering anything about it, whatever was responsible for the string of horrifically gruesome deaths occurring all across the city now, it was enough to leave Metz a nervous wreck. He was exhausted but still shaking with adrenaline. 

With shaking hands he lit a cigarette and sucked down nearly half of it in one drag. His lungs screamed but the shakes started to subside.

“Maybe you’re the lucky one, between the two of us,” he said to the corpse. He’d need to do something about that, just leaving the body sitting there was going to fuck with him to no end, but one thing at a time.

The angel fixer turned the yet unused autoinjector over and over in his hands then set it back down. The situation wasn’t contained, far from it. It would do no good to wipe his memories now. He needed to be sharp, he needed to remember, even if it might kill him. On top of everything else, the whole city was still a warzone, the damned Krullefor were still out there fighting tooth and nail against the local militias and angel troops. The last thing he needed was to be left clueless.

“Well fuck it,” he said, collecting his weapons. They hadn’t done Etraz much good but the whatever had killed him wasn’t the only danger out in the city. This point was reinforced by a distant flash of light as a dropship exploded, its flaming wreckage tumbling into the wartorn streets below. 

He grabbed the autoinjector and his portable terminal and walked over to the mummified body. The corpse belonged to a young woman, a member of the Dominations judging by the insignias on the tattered remains of her clothing. Her body was mummified, her skin shrunken onto her bones like old parchment. She must have been there for years, and nothing had touched her in all that time. The fact that a corpse had sat in the room with him for years without his ever noticing was yet another unnerving puzzle piece. What had happened to her? Was she someone Metz had known? He must have known her for her to be in his safehouse. What had happened to render her so impossible to see that not even insects had touched her? and why could he see her now? 

It hurt his eyes to look directly at the corpse, whatever effect had erased her from his notice for years was clearly still present, just weakened by the chemical cocktail that he’d taken. He forced himself to examine the body, and that was when he noticed the creatures. They were tiny many-legged crawling things and seemed to emit a faint violet light. They were slowly working to consume the corpse as well as crawling across the walls, seeming to flicker in and out of his awareness as he forced his attention to them. Despite their number, it seemed like they had barely even begun to consume the remains. Metz sucked down the rest of his cigarette and immediately lit another, he was thoroughly disgusted but somehow doubted these creatures were responsible for whatever had killed Etraz and all the others still dying out in the city. 

However, observing those tiny creatures and the body gave him an idea which he didn’t much care for. Some sort of effect was shrouding a certain class of objects from the mind. It didn’t seem to be making them invisible, just impossible to remember or commit to memory. Whatever that effect was, the drugs he had taken had reduced it to the point where he could force himself to remember. The rest of his memories had also been sharpened to an uncomfortable degree, so it seemed likely that the first autoinjector had contained some sort of memory enhancing chemical. That gave him a very dangerous idea. 

Metz went to the window and looked out over the city. Whatever was killing people was clearly hidden by the same effect that had hidden the corpse, only strong enough for him to look directly at it and still not see it despite the drugs. He watched missiles streak into the dark sky in a brilliant series of fireworks flashes, their lights fading as they travelled out over the sea towards airborne targets approaching the city. 

Etraz had seen it and he wasn’t on the drugs. So had that man who had been killed. What was the trick there? That they were aware of it? They had realized something was there and that realization had let them see it? But why hadn’t it attacked all of them? Why just Etraz? 

Because Etraz saw it, his mind supplied before he could stop himself, and that was the last piece of the puzzle he needed. 

Several blocks away from the safe house, a strange creature rose hundreds of meters above the city streets. It was An alien amalgamation of fractal limbs, like some horrifying hybrid of a tree and a spider. Long emaciated legs extended themselves and retracted into a grotesquely pulsating central mass as it moved around, sending feelers and tentacles in every direction as it shambled carefully along. 

As soon as he saw it, Metz knew it had also seen him. A knobbed tendril pulsed out towards him, making him stumble back away from the window. He fell onto his ass as the thing splashed against the window and a glittering black ooze began to seep into the room. 

Shuffling backwards, Metz clambered to his feet and ran for the door. He felt the autoinjector again and again decided against using it. He couldn’t fight something he wasn’t aware of and he needed to do something about this. Was this what was being researched in the now-destroyed base? Had the Krullefor let it out? His eyes went to the body again. No, he thought, the Krullefor had let it in. It was always out there.

He rushed from the room and slammed the door shut as the window imploded behind him. The building shook as he flew down the stairs and into the parking garage. His personal groundcar was still stashed there and he threw himself into it. Ribbons of black ooze were beginning to emerge from the stairwell when Metz slammed on the accelerator, smashing the armored car straight through the garage door and peeling out onto the war torn streets. 

The creatures were everywhere. Enormous lumbering shapes littered the horizon like a vast alien army, but they were scattered far enough apart for Metz to aim for a mostly clear direction. Civilians fleeing the war torn city honked and shouted at him as he weaved around them and blasted down the highway. He didn’t have a plan yet, but at least he knew what he was up against. He still had the autoinjector, if he could stay alive long enough to come up with a plan, he could wipe his memories and pass the plan off to his mindwiped future self, like the past him had done by leaving him the injectors in the first place. It was a desperate hopeless long shot, but it was the best he could do. 

He was abandoning the front, heading out into the deep desert, and he hoped no one would notice his absence since he couldn’t explain himself without putting his comrades at risk. The situation was beyond fucked and getting more fucked by the minute. The knowledge of the creatures had gotten into the local population and as that knowledge spread it would become harder and harder to contain, resulting in more and more deaths. 

But the first problem was staying alive, the rest would have to work itself out as he went, it was the best he could do. He pressed the accelerator to the floor as one of the creatures began moving in his direction. The city lights faded behind him and the vast and empty deserts loomed up ahead. A weaker man would have given up, would have injected himself and been done with it. But Metz Jerindold was not most men, he was The Devil You Know, the demon fixer of Skarkon, and he wasn’t about to let some monster get the best of him. He took a slow breath to control his labored breathing and drove onward into the night.

This is Not a Place of Honor

June 7 YC122 
Kalilia District
Skarkon II

While not one to be easily spooked, the more he saw of the Jovian city, the less Casmir liked what he saw. On the northern edge of the ruins, the orderly arrangement of buildings terminated in a strange distorted cityscape of misshapen thorns of an unknown dark material. 

The RSS team had already marked out a path leading towards the interior of the artificial briar patch, one which, after a somewhat annoyingly long hike, terminated in a massive monolith, a perfect cube rising ominously through the sea of spikes. It was nearly sunset by the time they made it to the cube and the thorns sent long ominous shadows across the landscape, throwing it into an uninviting patchwork of dark and light. 

A thought wormed at his mind. He had seen designs like these before. Not identical, but similar enough that he was pretty damn sure he knew why the Jove had gone through the trouble of constructing such an alien and foreboding place. 

After the long hike, Casmir knelt down on the dusty landscape. The fossilized remains of trees and scrub poked through the rising sand here and there, as invisible without the memory enhancing drugs as the rest of the ruins. 

“What do you make of this Cosra?” He said to the RSS agent who had been quietly following him while he made observations. 

The RSS Agent crouched down beside him, peering off into the artificial briar patch that had been created in the desert before them. 

“Our guys haven’t been looking at it that long, but none of us are sure of what to make of it,” she responded, “It’s about four kilometers in diameter and sits just off to the north of the city. It’s roughly circular. There were theories it might be some sort of transmission array or telescope.”

“You know why this planet is dead Captain Methanjald?” Casmir’s counterpart, Sari Atavuli said, crouching beside Cosra, connecting the same dots that Casmir was. Once you knew what to look for, the fingerprints were rather obvious. 

“Is that rhetorical?” she asked him, “I don’t. It had no atmosphere when the first colonists arrived but we know there’s evidence of there having been a biosphere at some point. Once you’ve taken the eidestics, you can see fossil plants all over the ngelgnieg.” 

“This place was salted,” Sari responded simply, running the dust between his fingers, “It was made to be as uninviting as possible.” 

“The atmosphere was blown off into space and the world was seeded with nanites that attack and kill microorganisms required for the base processes of life on most worlds,” Casmir said simply, killing the suspense Sari had been trying to build, “The nanites themselves are shielded by the same contracognative effects that shields the city, so to any normal colonists, all they know is that the world won’t support life for some unknown reason.” 

“You ever see the ruins around one of the republic’s older fission waste disposal sites?” Sari asked her. Casmir could see the gears turning in Cosra’s head, her eyes widened as it all started to click together in the fatal chain of calculations. 

“We considered ourselves to be a powerful culture…” Cosra said softly. 

“Yeah,” Casmir nodded, staring into the lopsided forest of dark stone. “This place, it’s a message, one the Jovians went through a lot of trouble to send. It’s a warning, stay away.”

“Think we should do what they ask and ship off?” Sari asked jokingly, brushing the dust off his pant legs. 

“Nah,” Casmir said, ringing his fingers and smiling faintly, “archeology is the profession of graverobbers and fools.”

He stood and approached the obelisk, “If this is a waste disposal site, there will be markings on the stone here indicating what they were burying here.”

“You think that’s what the Angels were after?” Sari said, shoving his hands in his pockets, “Some sort of exotic waste products which they could weaponize?” 

“Maybe,” he said, running his hands over the smooth stone. He walked along the flat face of the obelisk, it was easily three hundred meters on a side, it towered above them higher than any of the skyscrapers in the Jovian city, “Or maybe something that they used to irradiate this place in contracognitive effects.” 

“Why would they hide a warning behind contracognitives like this?” Cosra said, asking the question that would end her life. “If they wanted to send a message, why hide the message and the city and everything else?” 

“Because you need to be on contracognatives to be at risk from whatever they buried here,” Sari answered automatically. It wasn’t something he needed to think about, it seemed rather obvious. However, once he’d actually said it, all three of them paused, looking at one another.

“We’re all on contracognatives,” Casmir said carefully, looking around somewhat nervously now.

“Like what?” Cosra asked him, “Some sort of…monster” her voice trailed off and her eyes widened. She wasn’t looking at Casmir and Sari anymore, her eyes were glued onto a point in the middle distance, and she began backing away from them. 

“Cosra?” Casmir said nervously, looking at a spot in empty space where her eyes were glued “What do you see?” 

“It’s some sort of…it’s huge, bigger than the obelisk. I think it sees us,” she said desperately. Without warning she had her sidearm out and was firing madly up into the air, sending both Casmir and Sari diving away, “Run!” she shouted at them before her body suddenly and without warning collapsed in on itself in a horrifying squelch of blood and viscera. 

The mental image of the RSS agent’s body being obliterated in an instant was enough extra information to fill in the blanks in Casmir’s mind. Some sort of creature, wreathed in a contracognative effect, that became aware of them when they became aware of it, something hostile and malicious, something that would now be coming for him. 

He saw it, and he knew it, and it saw him, and it knew him. The archeologists took off running.

Author
Saede Riordan

Bad Gateway?

Transhumanity Today

Bad Gateway?

121.09.11
By Jhena Jorindar

Some speculate that a conflict between Biko and another Coordinator turned violent

Office of Special Surveillance – Rumors concerning a severe conflict between Gateway Ché Biko and (part of) the Board of Coordinators persist due to the Gateway’s prolonged absence from Origin, and due to the fact that no official response from either the BoC or the Gateway office denies any conflict, among other things. Biko and his wife departed Origin on the 8th of June, after the first rumors of a possible conflict started circulating. Sources on the Office of Special Surveillance citadel report that Biko was treated in a hospital on the 22nd of May after suffering blunt force trauma serious enough to break one of his arms and damage his liver, and some pictures of Biko with a bruised arm had made their way to the media.

Biko commented his injuries were caused by pole-arm strikes at the OSS training hangar, but has so far refused to say who was striking him, or why he was there, but a witness has reported at least one other ALXVP Coordinator was also in the area at the time. Due to the fact that Biko is not known to usually take part in physical combat training, and that he has refused to go into details has led some to speculate that there was a conflict between Biko and another Coordinator that turned violent.

Office of Gateway downplaying severity of conflict

At the time, it was believed that the conflict concerned the ALXVP Rules of Engagement concerning the Triglavians. Biko, a pacifist who has in the past resigned from two other capsuleer corporations due to disagreeing with the RoE, was said to disagree with ALXVP pilots engaging the Triglavian forces. The office of the Gateway, while downplaying the severity of the conflict, more or less confirmed this by publishing the following statement:

“It should be no surprise that Gateway Biko, as a diplomat with his reputation, would rather see that conflict is resolved with non-violent methods, whether the opposing force seems to encourage violent “proving” or not. However, if the ALXVP RoE would be sufficient reason for a conflict between the Gateway and ALXVP, then he would have left them a long time ago.”

This statement is the last and only official one on the Triglavians from the Gateway’s office since the first on the 2nd of May, where Biko said that the Triglavians posed “no immediate threat to Origin. It was believed that Biko and his wife were just enjoying some time away from the prolonged increased interest from the media and population after news of the OCP investigation, Biko’s injuries and the Triglavian invasions in New Eden reached the press.

Cultural Cruise

Biko indeed seemed to be on what could be seen as a leave of absence, engaging in some cultural activities, and possibly some unofficial diplomatic ones as well. Biko visited the exhibit Love Triangle from capsuleer artist Saccade Amir on Triglavians and sexuality on the 8th, the same day he departed Origin. Following Amir’s art exhibit, he volunteered to take part in a cross cultural art exhibit, which is an initiative of former ALXVP Sub-Coordinator Verin Hakatain. He also attended the Khanid Cultural Dinner hosted by ALXVP allies SFRIM on the 22nd of June, and then visited the Awards Gala for SFRIM’s New Eden Capsuleer Writing Contest on the 29th. His entry for the NECWC, the poem named The Winter of Origin (which was popular inside Origin to the point that the populace have broadly adopted the term “Indigo Tears”), failed to impress the jury enough to even get a honorable mention.

OCP investigation concludes: “Biko did not abuse his position”

It was expected that Biko would return for conclusion of the OCP investigation on the 4th of July, but he seemed to have changed his mind just before the session. The OCP concluded that Coordinator Biko did not abuse his position to pressure OCP staff into a lenient approach concerning a family placed under OCP supervision, at least not intentionally.

Furthermore, after hearing testimony from the family’s older children, the OCP decided to reverse the decision prohibiting Biko from having contact with the youngest child of the family.

Tary Lacote hints at knowledge of conflict as SeeBee ramps up activity

Since June Decentralizer Tary Lacote, a known associate of Biko and COO in Biko’s SeeBee corporation, published noticeably more anti-ALXVP/Riordan propaganda among his anti-centralization publications, some hinting that he has knowledge about the Biko-BoC conflict and other matters that might be shared with the population later this year. Particularly the critique aimed at Coordinator Saede Riordan has led some to believe that the conflict is one between Biko and Riordan, even though Decentralizers have in the past also been critical of Riordan. At the same time work on SeeBee’s Open Surveillance Society Network ramped up and the 3rd open beta version was launched on the 9th of August.

“Hey Triglavians. Offense Taken.”

Biko has all but disappeared from the public eye since the NECWC Awards Gala, but it has been possible to trace his whereabouts. He stayed docked in Yulai for a few weeks following the awards, then traveled to the Castle of the Sapphire Sun on Deninard IV 2 jumps away, where he visited a Grand Masquerade Ball hosted by Sani Sabik capsuleer Lithara.

He seems to have stayed on Deninard IV until the 3rd of August, when he lost his Astero to a Triglavian attack in Tar while en-route to Jita. The following broadcast was transmitted to the local channel before he continued on his way:

[ 121.08.03 21:00:14 ] Che Biko > Hey Triglavians. You shot a diplomat in an unarmed search and rescue ship, looking for survivors on wrecks. Offense taken.

The office of the Gateway has so far made no further comments about this attack, and instead refers to Biko’s broadcast above.

Honoring passed away ally

The Gateway departed Jita on the 23rd and traveled to the New Eden system. The next day he piloted one of the capsuleer vessels in a fleet honoring one of their own who had passed away; Druur Monakh, a member of allies SFRIM. According to our sources he has remained in that system and has spend at least some of his time there under heavy influence of various substances.

Popularity remains steady despite rumors and absence

There have been more periods where Biko vanished from the public eye for considerable periods since becoming a colonist in Origin, most notably when he disappeared in the Great Wildlands after he was rumored to become Sub-Coordinator for the Biomass Division, but this is the first time he has done so while also leaving Origin since becoming Gateway and Coordinator. People have also taken note that, despite his claims that he has no plans to permanently leave Origin, he has still not moved into the Foundation City penthouse he purchased in early YC 120, leaving quite a few wondering about his loyalty to Origin and/or ALXVP and if he’ll ever return.

On the other hand he still has the support of a large number of the populace. His popularity had increased steadily since the “Fall of Origin”, especially after his involvement in the defense of the OSS during the last two attacks and it has now plateaued on a level rivaling that of Coordinators Streya Jormagdnir and Riordan, even surpassing it in some demographic groups like the Decentralizers.

Author
Che Biko

Gateway: “Triglavians No Immediate Threat”

Transhumanity Today

Gateway: “Triglavians No Immediate Threat”

121.05.02
By Jhena Jorindar

Foundation City, Renaissance – During a press conference held in The Nexus Building, Gateway Biko addressed growing concerns about a possible Triglavian invasion. These concerns mostly originated from the subgroups of The Conjoiners, The Coalescents and the AGIs following messages from the Triglavians that some think may indicate that they are hostile to certain forms of hive minds and Artificial Intelligence.

This concern has increasingly spread among the other citizens of Origin in the last weeks as speculation about a possible Triglavian invasion is taking place in the media and GalNet fora. The topic has also been raised in The Digital Council but so far the Board of Coordinators has remained silent on the issue.

Gateway Biko appeared a bit nervous as he approached the podium and glanced around at the assembled press before looking down as he prepared for what was to be his first official address in over a year. However, as he progressed through his opening statement he appeared increasingly calm and confident facing the press, and even a bit cheerful:

Good evening. I stand before you today to address concerns about a possible Triglavian threat to Origin. First of all, I’d like to say that despite some rumors to the opposite, we are keeping a close eye on any developments concerning the Triglavians. Behind the scenes we are actively working to understand the Triglavians and interpret their words. The communication lines with the Arataka Research Consortium, which I and many others consider to be one of the most knowledgable groups concerning the so-called Emergent Threats, are short.

[pause]

Secondly, while they indeed seem to be hostile towards Sansha’s Nation and, to a lesser extend, the Rogue Drones, it is still unclear whether or not this hostility extends to other hive minds and AIs. In fact, there are some signs that the Triglavians, in whole or in part, are themselves part of a hive mind. They also could be AI, or there could be AI among them. We just don’t know enough about them yet to draw any conclusions either way. Regardless, I think it is safe to say that the Triglavians pose no immediate threat to Origin. We have not seen any of them in Origin, or any indication that they even know about our colonies here. As such, if they are indeed planning an invasion, it is likely that they will be targeting Nation and the Drifters.
[pause]
Thirdly, we’ll be consulting with representatives of our population on whether or not to seek contact with the Triglavians in order to determine their position on hiveminds and AI, if and when a means to communicate with them has been established.

[small pause]

Any questions?”

During the Q&A, Biko revealed that he had aquired a set of Semiosis Conduction Consoles from ARC, but that they had not been taken inside Origin yet, and that there are currently no plans to do so.

We’re currently investigating wether we can use these devices to communicate with them, but there’s no need to do that in this system yet. We may relocate them to Origin after further investigation will reveal that it is safe to do so, and if it’s worth the effort to do so.

Asked about wether Alexylva Paradox is capable to defend against a Triglavian invasion his response was a quick but cheery “We are always ready to defend against any and all threats. Next question?

When asked about ALXVP’s relationship with ARC and wether the corporation may become part of the alliance, he responded by saying that “We’ve been working together on some fronts, mostly…with research. […] We’re…tentatively looking for other possible areas of cooperation, including inside Origin itself, but I can say nothing concrete about this at this time.” He also said that SFRIMs departure from the ARC alliance had no effect on the relationship between SFRIM and ALXVP. “We’re still on good terms.

The questions then became increasingly more about Biko himself: why he has made so few public appearances lately (“I’ve been busy.”), about the state of his marriage (“Steady. Next question.”), and about the Origin Child Protection’s investigation. He answered that last one with “I think it may be concluded before the end of next week.” before calling an end to the press conference, saying goodbye with a bow of his head and “Thank you, peace.”, then leaving with a blank expression. I’m Jhena Jorindar and this is Transhumanity Today.

Author
Che Biko

Somber Notes Carry the Day at Landfall Festival

Transhumanity Today

Somber Notes Carry the Day at Landfall Festival

7.8.YC121
By Mira Ming Wei

Foundation City, Renaissance – After being cancelled in YC120 amidst the turmoil of reconstruction following the Sacking of Origin, the Landfall Music Festival returned to Landfall park this year. The Fifth Landfall Festival was notable for many reasons. In addition to celebrating the establishment of Origin as an independent colony, the festival also serves to shake a defiant fist to the heavens at the forces who just last year tried to end the dream of Origin forever. It is also notable in that just last month the backlog of sentients killed and awaiting relifing following the Sacking of Origin was finally processed.

However, as the number of relifed grew, so too has the number of Lost and Fallen, those sentients who, for reasons not yet understood, failed to emerge properly after cloning. The Lost and Fallen number nearly four hundred thousand, a major point of pain for Cloning Services Coordinator Mikai Heliokanen.

With so many lost, and with nearly half the population fleeing the system for Known Space in the year following the Sacking, this years Landfall Festival has taken on a quieter, more somber tone than that normally present at the celebration.

Speeches given by prominent artists and political leaders this year featured many themes of loss and recovery, fear and hope, separation and community, and even the music played has been somewhat more muted than previous years.

Adding to the somber mood was the unveiling of the Indigo City Memorial on the north side of Landfall Park. The memorial consists of a long curving trench set into the hillside, with stones plates containing the names of all of those who died in the conflict on a short section of wall and the names of all the Lost and Fallen on the longer section. Copies of the Lost and Fallen’s clone state data was also backed up in secure servers beneath the monument.

Mikai Heliokanen gave a passionate and heartfelt speech at the dedication of the memorial, stating:

“This is not the end of your journey my dear friends, it is merely a temporary parting of ways. Rest gently knowing you will be remembered forever, your struggles will not be forgotten, you will not be abandoned to the dark night. We will search to the ends of the universe until we find a way to return you to us, until the last specters of death are forced in defeat to flee these shores. May we meet again.”

Copycat festivals have also popped up on Arboria, Crucifix, Serendipity, and Terminus, leading to speculation that the celebration may slowly morph into a holiday for the entire system. Reporting from Landfall Park, I’m Mira Ming Wei, and you’re reading Transhumanity Today

Author
Saede Riordan

Gateway Called Back By OCP

Origin Observer

Gateway Called Back By OCP

4.1.YC121

The Alexylva Paradox Gateway Ché Biko has been called back by the Origin Child Protection. Allegedly he used his position as Coordinator to pressure an OCP team to withdraw certain measures they wanted to take in order to ensure the safety of a child in a family under OCP supervision. When the OCP management learned about this, they took the case under their supervision to ensure any measures necessary for the safety of the child will be taken. Additionally, due to Biko’s involvement in the incident that caused the family to be placed under supervision of the OCP, Biko is not allowed to have any contact with the child until further investigation is concluded.

The last couple of months Biko has all but disappeared from the public eye, and even appears to have taken measures to avoid being recognized when out in the public, disguising himself with a cap and sunglasses and shaving off his beard. When the Origin Observer contacted him a few days ago for a birthday interview he declined to give one, but he was willing to answer some questions about the OCP today.

When asked for his comments he replied “The child is my godson, his mother is my best friend. […] I feel like it is not fair to say I abused my position as Coordinator, though I’m not denying that it may have helped in the OCP team trusting me when I personally guaranteed that things would still be safe if they did not take certain measures. […] I thought some of the measures they were taking or about to take were heavy handed, impulsive and defeating the purpose. I also thought the mother of the child was being treated unfairly, and I noticed some OCP employees were not completely honest about some things.

Biko declined to comment on (his involvement in) the incident that led to the family being placed under OCP supervision.

Author
Che Biko

Origin↔Destination (O↔D) Under Investigation, Intersystem Flights Suspended Following Security Breach

Origin Observer

Origin↔Destination (O↔D) Under Investigation, Intersystem Flights Suspended Following Security Breach

11.28.120

During a brief press conference today, Ché Biko, CEO of the Origin↔Destination transport company, revealed that at least one person had gained unauthorized access into Origin by bribing one or more of his pilots, and that he would launch an investigation to see which pilots are responsible, and whether it was an isolated incident or not. Biko closed his opening statement with “In the meantime, OD shuttles will not be allowed to enter or exit Origin without my express permission.” after which he took some questions from the assembled press.

When asked whether this breach in system security was related to the attack on the Office of Special Surveillance last week, he responded. “This seems unlikely, as the breach took place after the attack.” When asked about the identity of the intruder Biko declined to reveal it, but did say he knows who it is, and that “there’s no indication that the intruder had malevolent intentions. I don’t consider this particular intruder a risk as much as the breach itself. The next intruder may have malevolent intentions however…so this should not happen.”

At this moment it is not certain how this will affect Biko’s growing popularity. It had been in a steady rise since he became one of the most visible advocates for the Decentralizers. It took a dive during the visit from the Emissary of the Societas Imperialis Sceptri Coronaeque, when he was leading the diplomatic talks, but following the Sacking of Origin, it rose to unprecedented levels, and he was recently promoted to Coordinator within Alexylva Paradox.

Some of the citizens watching the conference expressed disappointment in the fact that the security breach was found in Biko’s own transport company, but most still had trust in him because he seemed forthcoming and honest about the incident.

Author
Che Biko

Relief and Celebrations Following OSS Repair

Origin Observer

Relief and Celebrations Following OSS Repair

9.17.YC120

Personnel present on the Office of Special Surveillance for the event say cheers, laughs and sighs of relief could be heard after the reparation of the structure was completed on schedule. The repair operation was required because of damage done during a recent attack on the OSS. Most of the citizens and non-essential personnel were evacuated in preparation of the repair operation, but little else was known about what other preparations took place. Today a brief press conference was scheduled at the Alexylva Paradox office on the OSS about the repair operation.

ALXVP Gateway Ché Biko took the podium in what was his first official appearance in months and introduced himself as the commander overseeing the repair operation. He continued by thanking “Mia Roberts, a former corporation member who contributed meaningfully to making sure the operation would proceed as well as it did.” Then he opened the floor for questions.

His answers were mostly brief or nonspecific. In his answers Biko revealed that the OSS had been prepared for an attack and the Space Angel Scout Wing had increased their activity in the period leading up to the operation. There were possible threats in Origin at the time of the operation, but the structure had not been attacked. He declined to give details on the nature of the threats or the composition of the Origin Defense Fleet.

When the Gateway was asked why he, a capsuleer with nearly no combat experience was the commander during the operation, a moment of silence passed before he replied “No comment.” This was also to be his answer, sometimes adding a “I’ll only take questions about the repair operation.” to a series of questions during an increasingly less orderly Q&A, about ALXVP’s ability to defend Origin from invaders, the fate of the growing number of Lost and Fallen, his recent diplomatic activities as gateway, whether he could confirm if Raxi Elamp spend the night with him in the Club Inferno VIP section, and about ALXVP’s plans for the future of Origin, at which point he called an end to the conference before bowing his head to the assembled press and exiting the room.

Author
Che Biko

Gateway Ship Spotted

Origin Observer

Gateway Ship Spotted

8.1.YC120

Today around 1500 NEST, the diplomatic shuttle Axii Arkon Sarain undocked from the the OCR Station Office of Special Surveillance, stopped just outside the gates and remained there for a few minutes before returning to the dock. The ship was piloted by the owner, Alexylva Paradox Gateway Ché Biko. Both the ship and the capsuleer had not been seen in space for a long time. One of the last (and more prominent) of the few appearances of the ship was when it was used to escort the Societas Imperialis Sceptri Coronaeque emissary from the Amarr Empire to Icarus Station prior to its destruction. For the pilot, Gateway Biko, this was his only his second or third known appearance in space since the sacking of Origin’s orbital assets in April.

Biko is one of maybe a handful of ALXVP capsuleers known to have remained in Origin, but he has not made any official appearances on behalf the corporation since the spring conflict, either in the flesh, ship or on GalNet.

As far as known, he also does not patrol the system as part of the Space Angels Scout Wing. He has made some public appearances, mostly at Decentralizer events, but he is reluctant to answer questions about the presence, purpose, and future of ALXVP in Origin, or even if he still plans to move into his penthouse. His responses to these kind of questions are usually things like “No comment.” or “Personally, I have no plans to leave Origin.” He is sometimes spotted in Foundation City without his corp jacket, his recognizable features disguised by a cap and sunglasses to avoid the curiosity and questions of the populace.

There is still much speculation and discussion about the role and future of ALXVP in Origin, and the appearance of the Gateway’s ship is sure to add to this. Was it an action akin to flag waving in a way to say “I am/We are still here!”? Are there diplomatic negotiations on the horizon or in progress? At this time, we could not reach anyone knowledgeable to comment on the reasons for the undocking, and so the speculation continues.

Author
Che Biko

Diplomat Dating Disaster

V-lore Vanity Magazine

Diplomat Dating Disaster

8.9.YC119

Video starts with Ché Biko’s license picture.

“For a while, rumors had been circulating that capsuleer Ché Biko, a diplomat for the corporation Alexylva Paradox and their colony in Anoikis named Origin, was still in Villore following a charity Gala at the Zyphillian Gate. Until now, these rumors could not be confirmed, and sources within the Federation government denied there were any diplomatics going on with Alexylva Paradox or Msr. Biko.

Last night, however, we received a tip that Biko would be attending a concert with a +1, and we send a reporter to check this out.”

Footage starts playing showing Biko (dressed in this, carrying coat over his left arm) and Lasairiona Raske (dressed in this) taking their center balcony loge seats in a concert hall, filmed from their front left.

“The woman has been identified as Lasairiona Raske, the capsuleer proprietress of L’Amore in Ballo in Kasrasi, mother of four, and rumored to be in a romance with the Mercenary Coalition capsuleer Davlos, who had bid 1 billion ISK in a charity auction to date Raske. Raske had bid a quarter billion ISK in that same auction to date Biko, but whether or not their attendance of this concert was that date or something that followed is not clear.”

Footage showing Biko raising a glass of whisky to Lasa, who makes it meet with her glass of white wine.

“Their evening started off well enough…”

Footage showing a compilation of Lasa smiling very happily, Ché smiling slightly at Lasa, Ché looking at the orchestra with his eyebrows twitching into frowns and glistening eyes.

“…and they both seemed to enjoy the concert, and the music visibly moved them, barely speaking with eachother.”

Footage showing Lasa resting her hand on Biko’s arm, Ché glancing at this and the slightly smiling at Lasa, who smiles over at Ché and says something to him. Ché then bows his head and turns his arm, inviting Lasa’s hand into his. The camera zooms in on their hands as their fingers intertwine.

“As the concert went on, the two got increasingly intimate.”

Footage showing Lasa resting her head on his shoulder, then showing Ché watching the concert with a frown, a wry smile and teary eyes as Lasa tips her head slighty to look at him and say something low in his ear. Che smiles a bit wider in response and nods as a tear escapes the inner corner of his eye. He lets it flow halfway down his cheek before wiping it off.

“It even seemed they were about to kiss. But then things took a wrong turn.”

Footage showing Ché standing to applaud, Lasa gracefully doing the same and smiling at Ché. Ché wipes his eyes, then smiles slightly at Lasa, and says something to her. Lasa’s reply causes him to laugh. Lasa peers at him, flushed, and appears to ask a very short question. Ché smiles and shakes his head as he sits down again. He says something to Lasa, then starts laughing again, then holds the bridge of his nose. Lasa frowns, clearly not enjoying herself. Ché sips his whisky as he truns his attention to the stage, Lasa sits down again, her mood a bit less light than before.

“At the end of the official program, a verbal exchange between the two was clearly not equally enjoyable for both of them. Biko seemed not to notice this initially, distracted by an unscheduled encore.”

Footage shows Ché watching the performance, leaning back and stroking the hairs on his chin, perking up his left eyebrow amused. Lasa sits rather stiffy. The footage cuts to Ché standing and clapping, while Lasa sits and claps. Ché sits down next to Lasa with a soft smile and speak to her. Lasa’s reply causes him to frown, he then replies before smiling slightly. Lasa stands and replies. Ché frowns and speaks to Lasa. Lasa blinks and replies. Ché leans forward and bows his head, angry frowns twitching his eyebrows. He gulps up the last of his whisky.

“After the encore, Biko became aware something was wrong, and appeared to try to remedy the situation, but was seemingly unsuccessful.”

The camera picture wobbles as if walking, the viewpoint moving closer and more to the side of the subjects being filmed as they continue their discussion, Lasa clenching and unclenching her hand by her side, Ché scoffing and looking at Lasa briefly with an angry frown before looking at the floor again. He then smiles slightly in response to something Lasa said and shaking his head as he replies before leaning back in his seat and looking towards the stage with a grim expression on his face continuing saying something.

“He soon seemed to enjoy himself as little as Raske, perhaps even less so.”

Footage continues the camera now to the side and slightly behind the subjects. Lasa says something to Ché, which causes him to look at Lasa with teary eyes and an angry frown as he exclaims “Because, Lasa…you make me feel the same!” Ché looks behind him, over his shoulder. The camera pans sharply to a group of people behind Ché and Lasa who appear to have stopped exiting the hall to look towards Lasa and Ché in response to his outburst, but the quickly continue their departure. The camera flicks back to Ché and Lasa, who continue talking.

“The discussion between the two got quite heated, an outburst of Biko grabbing the attention of some of the departing audience.”

Footage shows Lasa and Ché continuing their talk as the camera continues to walk closer behind the pair, Ché resting his face in his hands, Lasa lifting her chin, Ché looking to Lasa sadly, Lasa biting her lip to stop it trembling.

Ché sighs and stands, smiling wryly and shaking his head slightly, remaining silent. Lasa quickly turns to gather her things. Ché frowns and lets his head fall forward. Lasa turns again, and speaks to Ché, the microphone picking up words gradually as it comes closer.

“You [.]ow, [.]I [.]t [.]ot be per[.]e[.]..I’ve [.]ev[.] [.]rofessed to be, [.]ut I do try to be nice to people. And that’s something pretty damned rare in this universe.” Ché remains standing, frozen, head down.

Lasa continues, “So, if you have something to say to me, say it now. Because I’m tired of feeling like dirt around you.”

Ché looks up to Lasa and responds, “…You…despite your imperfections…”, he tears up, “…I could never hope to be like you are…I can only hope to be the dirt beneath your feet.” He lets his head fall forward again. “Now go before we burn each other again.”

Lasa sighs, closing her eyes for a moment, before she departs. Ché watches Lasa go as tears flow down his cheeks. He then notices and turns to the camera and frowns angrily. “Fuck you!” He keeps his frown on the camera for a moment, then turns and sits back down on his seat, leaning forward, burying his face in his hands.

Footage cuts to Ché, filmed from behind, still sitting with his face in his hands. The camera then focuses on the stage, where Lasa can be seen talking to the orchestra conductor. She glances briefly in Ché’s direction before leaving. The camera focuses on Ché again, who seems to not have noticed Lasa.

“There you have it, folks. Special Ambassador Biko. Lets hope he has more success in dealing with Diplomats.”\

Author
Che Biko