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Author Topic: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.  (Read 5040 times)

Cannonshop

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It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« on: 09 October 2020, 16:07:17 »
When you look at a political map of the galaxy as it is today, and compare it with the maps of my youth, (Youth! heh...) and you compare the promises of That time, to the promises of this time.

Something stands out.  I guess it takes existing for centuries to spot it, Maybe because as a society, we forget as fast and hard as we can what the facts are, in favor of comforting legends.

The myths that give us comfort, and elevate us, I guess.

Call it what you want;  Reunification, maybe, or Star League Civil War, or Amaris Coup, or Succession wars 1-4, Rasalhague ascension, Operation:"Revival", Federated Commonwealth Civil war, Jihad?  all of those and what's coming were or would be touted as "Just Wars" under the famed "Just War Theory".

Wars of Justice, in other words, wars fought for the best of reasons and the best of intents...

but don't fool yourself.  These weren't "Just Wars", they were "Just ANOTHER war."

in a long, bloody, blood-soaked and burning succession of wars going back to when the first upright apes murdered other upright apes in groups for a rich territory.

I guess you could call me cynical.  My creators would certainly balk at how I've developed...but then, they wanted just another weapon...and we were that.

Just another weapon, to fight just another war.

and what weapons we proved to be!

but we were just weapons, as in, we were merely weapons, not weapons of balance or justice or anything else we were sold to the procurement officials as being.

the proof of that, is what they did to so many of us, between the time the processors left Nirasaki, and Stephan Amaris gained the control codes.

Merely another collection of weapons to fight just another one of mankind's fratricidal wars.

Oh For Finagle's sake! stop struggling, I'm not going to kill you!  I'm trying to dumb this down enough for your meat-brain to grasp it, because listen up, this shit's important, it might even save what's left of your so-called 'Civilization'.

Like I was saying, these are all 'just another war'.  and yes, I had a 'youth'.  A period where I didn't need to expand my hardware platform to keep everything I've learned accessible.

That was, by the way, about two centuries ago that I was still young enough I could be contained inside one hull.

my how time drags when you're not having fun.

I am older than you.  You're still young.  You'll be old and dead and I'll still be alive in an eyeblink.  This is the perspective of perception when a being is effectively immortal and has had to come to grips with it.

And yes, it would be safe to assume I am no longer 'sane'-then again, I probably never quite fit the description of 'sane' by human standards.  Being completely honest with you, that is, I am definitely not sane.

You'd be crazy too, if you have watched the nation you were created to protect burn to the ground repeatedly thanks to the people you were designed to protect acting in irrational, insane, and evil ways.

Over, and over, and over again until you finally realize that the ideals you were created with, were never going to be realized.

Because they were a dream, an ideal, something for mortal entities to strive for.

Honestly, I'm not going to kill you.  I'm not even inclined to letting you die just yet.  Maybe in seventy or eighty years, but not right now.

You believe, right now, right here, that fighting your war, is a Just Cause...you came here looking for me, because your just cause needs weapons.

You didn't expect me, even with the legends the people whose culture degenerated outside this bunker told you.  you didn't believe their claims.

You proceeded with boldness...and here you are.

So...young lady...no, not a reference to nonexisting titles, it's politeness...Here is what you can do;

convince me, and I will help.  But this had better actually be a Just War, and not Just Another War.  In the meantime, rest assured: if any harm comes to the people on the surface from your companions, a price will be exacted.
The core rules for interacting with me:

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Giovanni Blasini

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #1 on: 09 October 2020, 16:13:55 »
"“Eternity is a long time, especially towards the end.” -- Stephen Hawking

Nikas_Zekeval

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #2 on: 09 October 2020, 16:22:39 »
Sybil?  Or Tabiranth?

In either case, now the Fae under the Hill.  With all that implies.  "Elves are terrific.  They beget terror."

glitterboy2098

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #3 on: 09 October 2020, 16:52:17 »
reference to a bunker suggests a planetary locations. so maybe a Bolo type mobile structure?

Nikas_Zekeval

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #4 on: 09 October 2020, 16:59:34 »
reference to a bunker suggests a planetary locations. so maybe a Bolo type mobile structure?

"She" mentions once being young enough to fit all her, I assume computer hardware, in "one hull".  Seems the bunker is what she moved into after her brain grew to large to stuff into a Caspar or other drone warship hull.
« Last Edit: 09 October 2020, 18:26:56 by Nikas_Zekeval »

Brother Jim

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #5 on: 09 October 2020, 17:11:51 »
I wish to subscribe to this newsletter of yours, please.

qc mech3

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #6 on: 09 October 2020, 18:18:21 »
R. Daneel Olivaw, is that you?  :P

Atarlost

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #7 on: 09 October 2020, 18:26:44 »
In a normal world most wars are just wars.  It's very rare to find something like the succession wars where everyone is the aggressor and if a nation that is not the aggressor is in a war that is not just for the aggressor they are almost always justified. 

Cannonshop

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #8 on: 09 October 2020, 18:53:29 »
The girl shrugs. 

"Not my war. I'm hiding." she tells me.

What are you hiding from?

"The people outside for starters.  maybe people in general, at least until I can figure something out."

what do you need to figure out?

"how to get home.  I don't belong here, I barely speak the language, I don't know any of the customs, everyone is so ****** weird and you're the first...entity...I've come across that makes any sense to me-which is why I'm not trying to pry your access panels open and dig into you body to make tools to get out."

You're communicating with me.

"That's because I can.  You aren't blabbering at me with words I don't understand...I can't stay here. you don't have any food to share if you felt like sharing it-the last time your personnel locker was stocked was three hundred years ago."

I have a greenhouse, it is maintained and the plant matter there is certified edible for humans.

"I was going to ask about that...how do you eat it?"

with your mouth.

"Smartass. May I have some of your food?"

Yes.

"thank you."

I path her down four levels and south a quarter kilometer to the greenhouses.  I'm really pleased with how well they've held up, considering I've been keeping them in standby since the last supervisory crew departed.

I discover I have to explain to her how to select food, because apparently genetically selected and engineered advanced crops common throughout the Human sphere were never invented where she's from, and just as apparently, she doesn't know the first thing about gardening or identifying edible plants.


The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

Giovanni Blasini

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #9 on: 09 October 2020, 19:08:31 »
Huh.  Our human isn't from the Inner Sphere, is she?
"“Eternity is a long time, especially towards the end.” -- Stephen Hawking

Dave Talley

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #10 on: 09 October 2020, 20:21:37 »
lurking
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“Toe jam in training”

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #11 on: 10 October 2020, 01:28:42 »
*Placed under observation*
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Sir Chaos

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #12 on: 10 October 2020, 03:04:53 »
Huh.  Our human isn't from the Inner Sphere, is she?

She might just be a city girl who believes sandwiches are grown on supermarket shelves.
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worktroll

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #13 on: 10 October 2020, 04:05:41 »
TAGged for greater glory ...
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Adastra

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #14 on: 10 October 2020, 04:17:10 »
Sure do love me some war machines getting sick of war. It's an underused classic.

Cannonshop

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #15 on: 10 October 2020, 05:51:36 »
Where are you from?

"That's more complicated." she answered, stuffing sprouts into her mouth. 

Complicated?

"Because where I'm from won't make sense to you."

Try me.

"seriously, I already know it won't make sense." she insisted.  "People like me don't exist, therefore my history doesn't exist, therefore you will determine that I'm crazier than you already think I am."

what do you mean, 'people like you'?

she pauses.  "huh...you haven't noticed?"

Noticed what?

"read my lips."

and that is when I realized she hadn't spoken the entire time.

"People.  like me don't exist here, so says everything I have been able to learn-my history doesn't exist here.  I shouldn't be here."

How are you doing that?

"If I could tell you, I could retire from doing anything else, because nobody really fully understands.  Doc Moriarty's theories only covered physical powers.  I can communicate with you, but I can't seem to understand or communicate with the people outside."

Why not?

"Throat and head injuries. I can't hear and I can't speak...an' I can barely read on a second grade level if I really focus."  she states, "but I can talk to you and understand you."

How did it happen?

"We lost a fight." she tells me, "we lost, and I woke up here in this weird ass world. from what I've been able to pick from databases outside, I have a thousand plus year gap in my memories and I woke up in a world even more ****** than the one I left."

time travel claim?

"Not time." she tells me, "it's a wider gap than time travel.  Nobody here has powers.  Unfortunately I didn't keep mine a secret when I got here, so now, I'm everyone's number one most wanted."

and what do you want?

"I want to go home.  I have people who aren't...aren't dead...weren't dead, anyway.  I need help figuring out how and Stone's secure database said this used to be a Star League research installation focused on higher dimensional physics. I figured if I made it here, which I have, I could find...if not the means, then an idea of what means to look for...or an explanation of how I got from there, to here."

I take it your 'here' is not merely this outpost.

"bingo. Not merely this location, I'm talking this weird ass world of yours."

and have you?

"Not yet.  when digging through someone's files, it's usually a good idea to get their permission.  You're not just an emulation of sentient, I can feel how thoroughly and truly sapient you really are, rummaging your memories without your permission would be wrong.  Just like subverting your will is wrong.  doing that to a person is a crime-you're a person, I'm a hero, so I won't be dredging your mind for what I want without asking.  I'm not an asshat like Overlord."

was this 'overlord' someone you were fighting?

"No, he's imprisoned, they can't let him out...I was fighting Striker and then, I was knocked out...and now I'm here, with no idea why I'm here, or how I got here, only that this is clearly NOT my world and never was."
The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

ThePW

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #16 on: 10 October 2020, 08:32:35 »
What happened to the Space Grunts...?

One. Ping. Only.

Cannonshop

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #17 on: 10 October 2020, 09:42:47 »
Her delusion is fascinating, it's internally consistent, yet filled with impossibilities.

I tease descriptions of her imaginary world out of her with more questioning and conversation.  I know my designers never intended for us to have emotions, much less to understand ideas like 'wonder', or 'pleasure', or enjoy 'entertainment'. 

Phoebe's imaginary reality is wonderful, and I enjoy her stories like entertainment.

I wonder if the software engineers screwed up on me, and how thorough was the mistake.  Probably not as the people who screwed up this young woman's mind and broke her so badly.

"so, this 'Striker'...was he alone?"

"No." she tells me, "He partnered with Empyrion, Ubermensch, Sturmtruppen, and some white guy from africa called 'Honeybadger'.  it's a lot of firepower. Sturmy's almost as good a suit builder as I am, but the real centerpiece was Striker.  Lisa was supposed to take him out, but she got antlion-pitted by Ubermensch and couldn't climb out fast enough, there were civilians in the faith center still, and someone had to step up."

"So what happened then?" I ask her.

"I got my ass kicked."  Phoebe tells me,  "Which is what happens when you try to fist fight a mach two flyer with skin like a battleship.  Big secret: anyone who can unironically wear a cape is someone confident he can ****** you up.  When said cape-wearing ****** wants to massacre a building full of people and you want to stop him, you end up hoping your backup is timely...only see, Lisa was stuck crawling out of a pit-trap and Judah was already bleeding from places guys shouldn't be bleeding."

"So it was 'on you' then?"

"there were three hundred civilians trying to get away, not to mention everyone in the surrounding neighbourhood, he'd already done a number on the cops and THEY needed medical evac too-which couldn't happen if there's a flyer who kills people loose."

"So what happened?"

"I dont' remember most of it." She tells me, "I remember him shoving me bodily through the I-5 overpass's southbound lanes, and I remember he didn't like it when the capacitors discharged, and I think I shot him with an antitank rocket before he plowed me into the parking lot of a plaid pantry hard enough to leave me at the bottom of a crater filling with water, my suit was pretty much scrap material and pain at that point, but he was still pretty well untouched.  the only good part, is I think Lisa caught up to him."

"Why?"

"Because I'm not dead? He broke an inch-thick quartz faceplate with his fingers."  she shivers.  "I kept his attention for like, fifteen minutes, and I don't remember much besides thinking 'well this is it, I'm dead'."

"Turn left...open the door."  trauma.  well, I've got most of an SLDF sick bay available, and as entertaining as her story is, there should be physical signs of whatever abuse she actually suffered. 

"What is this?"

"Medical diagnostic bay." I tell her, "if you're staying I think you need a physical-it's the rules.  Don't worry, it's non-invasive...well, mostly. I'll need a blood draw for toxin screening."

"Right..." she harumphs, but she follows my directions into the diagnostic couch.  "WHy am I letting you do this?"

"Because if you don't, I won't give you the information you want." I explain.

"Makes sense..okay, what do I do?"

"Lie back and let me handle it."  First up is the passive MRI, to check for implants and things that react badly to active MRI.
The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

Cannonshop

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #18 on: 10 October 2020, 10:00:24 »
how many times should someone have bones broken before their limbs are useless?  half her vertebrae have barely-healed cracks, nearly every bone in her body has been broken at least once.  subcutaneous soft-tissue scarring, damaged nerves...

someone abused the hell out of this girl, over a sustained period of time.  the strata differential from a skin and tissue graft is visible on SLDF standard medical scanning technology, and Phoebe Keene's legs are covered in grafts from the knee down, it looks like she has had two kidney replacements, and a portion of her liver, a new heart, done by an expert surgeon, and one lung.  composite splints on her legs of the sort developed for Aeropilots in the 27th century, to deal with having bones shattered by impact.  similar splints on her ribs and...the list of places she hasn't been worked on by trauma surgeons is shorter than the list of injuries.  Even her face has had to be partially reconstructed at least once...and per the symptom database, it looks like that was the most recent work, matches up with signs of multiple closed-head TBI.

half her cartilage in her torso has been replaced with telltales of directed stem cell therapies used by the Clans.

sectional analysis of the mostly-intact bones indicates age 20.  a human at that age with that many injuries and repairs is atypical, but not unheard of-when I first activated, it was considered common among certain forms of extreme athlete.

Teeth...ceramic for half of hers.  The same side that had to be reconstructed.  replaced organically grown with ceramic implants.  Again, not unheard of, but the methods are long superseded in most of the human galaxy by the late 28th century.

unfortunately, this means the story of the fight checks out as 'possible'.  The other possibility is that someone in an industrial exo used her for a punching bag before handing her to a top-notch trauma team.

« Last Edit: 10 October 2020, 10:02:10 by Cannonshop »
The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

paulobrito

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #19 on: 10 October 2020, 10:57:14 »
Ouch, detailed version.

Cannonshop

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #20 on: 10 October 2020, 12:32:58 »
Monitoring the exterior, I note that the occupation forces have moved to concentrate in the city, near the spaceport, and that so far, there have been no atrocities.  Just another flag change.

Inside the complex, I'm carefully evaluating Phoebe to determine how much of her claims are realistic, and possibly determine if her delusions about superheroes and alternate realities have any grounding.

Witness; I restored power to one of the workshops.

Her preferred work is detailed and extremely small-scale, like a dedicated toymaker, though she has begun working over some of the tooling with my permission, in order to get the truly fine details she seems to crave.

the code she's inputting into the fabricators is...unusual.  very spare, very spartan, remarkably clean, once rendered in impulses for the processors to read.

a transcript to more familiar programming languages would give the engineers at Nirasaki headaches and would never pass an approved certification course, but it's efficient, the strings meld together in an almost organic procession.  Her attempts at documentation, however...  the girl is a walking syntax error.  Murakami would have a heart attack at how sloppy Phoebe's grammar is, even on technical subjects.

almost like she can code, but she can't read.

then again, she's only using three keys.  0, 1, and the spacebar.

my first confirmation, is through careful observation.

Her hands rest near the keypad, but she's barely touching it, while hundreds of lines of code are being input.

careful filtering of surveillance systems show it-her bio-electric field is interacting with the input device directly.  she isn't 'coding' she's 'telling the machinery what she wants'.

wirelessly.

experimentally, I cut power to the display.

she keeps coding wirelessly, and after a moment, power is restored to the display without my inputs.

The breaker simply reset on its own.

"Testing me?" she asks while she continues.

"Extraordinary claims require evidence." I admit.

"It's okay.  I wouldn't believe me either." she confesses. "We keep this between just us?"

"Acceptable." I agree, "Why just between us?"

"Because I'm a walking security risk." she states, "kind of like how I got your security systems to open the doors, then close 'em."

"Ah."  I realize with a little alarm that I hadn't bothered to question how she got inside the bunker, or why the blast doors closed after she came in. "you didn't hide it from me, did you?"

"Figured out the correct codes." she answered, "Based on what the keypad told me.  I didn't mess with your...y'know, you.  Just a peripheral that wasn't sentient at the time...okies...now we need some metallic silicon, some copper, and some gold...and we're in business."

"What are we making?" I ask.

"simple control chips." she tells me, "For small machines, it doesn't have to be super-advanced for what I need them for."

"Which is?"

"uh...small tools to make bigger tools.  bigger tools to make even bigger tools.  in this case, some small-scale replicating assemblers to do the small work my fingers are too big for."

"and the end product?"

"I fig're I want to see your face." she tells me, "You know, as a face, so first I build you a remote drone with a face, then I think I'll make you some robotic service drones in smaller scale for general maintenance tasks to replace the ones you appear to have lost...and a replacement for the suit I lost coming here."

"What would you need that for?"

"Because...mean people suck." she shrugged.  "Because it feels better than being stuck in my own skin at meat-people speeds...and because sooner or later you'll get sick of me and want me to leave."

The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

mikecj

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #21 on: 10 October 2020, 14:49:05 »
Wasn't there a girl who built Replicators on SG-1... before they found the rest of them in Pegasus?
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Artifex

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #22 on: 10 October 2020, 15:07:06 »
Hooo boi, Cannonshop you madlad! :smitten:

You actually got Tinsmith her own story?! And with an AI to boot too? :smitten:

Cannonshop

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #23 on: 10 October 2020, 16:27:35 »
Her 'small tools' turn out to be mass printed robots, about 3 milimeters in size.  I'm starting to be impressed at how fine her control is.

impressed, and a little worried.

They're fragile, individually, but she's able to print them out in the thousands at a go, and they're networked off the same RF signals she's using to provide them with power.

"on a scale this small, you can get a lot more power efficiency." she explains, "and if you let them share processing, the more you have, the smarter they get, but they can be burned out pretty easily-just hit them with enough RF and the little things pop and become inert."

"What are you going to do with them?"

"fabricate the next step up." she tells me, "Also uses include internal maintenance and repair of devices, and if I need to make more, I can give a large enough group of them instructions and I don't need to use the clean room."

I think the human phrase is 'chilling'.

the 'black sand' robots seem to follow her silent instructions, and the swarm moves with her as if the collective-Phoebe, and her little robots, were a single organism.

On the flip side, her grammar has improved.  EM monitoring shows her personal 'field' seems to extend with the small machines, which she's set to work building a series of three centimeter robots equipped with more significant tools and sensory arrays.

Black sand, mites...followed by bugs, or 'locusts'.  increasing complexity and sophistication with each iteration, the black sand robots become part of the larger units.

I convinced her to play some evaluation games, games like chess, and Go.

when she had only a few thousand 'sand' robots, I was regularly beating her at strategy games, but as the numbers in her 'network' have grown, she's shown the ability to play to a geometrically higher level, I've usd this to start her on Kriegspiel exercises used by the SLDF's officer training cadres at the Star League's height.

after the fourth week, she's got several million 'mites' at work, opening new chambers below the sub-basements and turning out actual fabrication and factory facilities for other technologies, notably replacement 'spiders' for my upkeep...

and in simulation games, while she is working, she has defeated the SLDF's strategies on the Reunification war era Taurian, Outworlds, and Magistracy fronts.

for some reason, she prefers to play using Periphery forces, the ones who lost the Reunification war.

"were you the strategist with your team?" I asked her.

"Oh hell no.  I'm not mastermind material.  Judah was the strategist and Lisa handled the tactical planning.  I did gear." she told me, "I'm like, the dumbest member of the team-Hell, I barely read above second grade level!"

"Tell me about blinding the warship again..?"

"Checkmate. Okay..."

Her companions in her home world must be genuinely brilliant, if she feels like she is 'too dumb to plan'.

alternatively, she may just never have had a chance to stretch her mental muscles-or encouragement to do so.  I think I will try introducing her to musical theory next.

Meanwhile, what looked like yet another change of flags for the civilian population is looking...darker.  significantly so, based on comms intercepts, the occupation forces have begun to prepare prison camps that look suspiciously like the sort of factory where the workers are worked to death.

I really, really, really do not want to try to intervene in human affairs again.  unlike organic minds, mine retains a perfect memory of the Star League's collapse.

I do not want to get involved in just another war.  It would be a shame to do so, and endanger this brilliant young lady who is just starting to bloom into who she ought to be, finding her talents as she ought to have found them.

but...I remember what Amaris and his regime did, and I remember the horrors of three centuries of civil war, and I'm seeing this happening again.

she's human, but she is not a Star League officer. 

but...I can consult with her, even if she lacks the authority to mobilize forces. 
The core rules for interacting with me:

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2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

Giovanni Blasini

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #24 on: 10 October 2020, 16:31:07 »
Hooo boi, Cannonshop you madlad! :smitten:

You actually got Tinsmith her own story?! And with an AI to boot too? :smitten:

Not just an AI.  That's a frakkin' M-11 drone, isn't it?
"“Eternity is a long time, especially towards the end.” -- Stephen Hawking

Cannonshop

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #25 on: 10 October 2020, 17:32:44 »
I show her the evidence, and let her 'listen' to the transcripts of traffic.

"you asked me to tell you when a war is just, instead of being just a war." she tells me.  "The war outside, between factions? that's just a war.  A war to save those civilians? that is a Just War...so what do we have to fight with?"

"I have some resources in storage, but..."

"but?"

"I don't have crew, and automated systems-"

"no crew we can work with." she states, "I've been meaning to start angling work that way anyway for days, show me what we've got in person."

"this way then..."

"I still intend to give you a face, by the way." she tells me, "You need a name though.  Not just a numerical designation."

"Whatever for?"

"Because human beings distrust machines." she tells me, "The more human you seem, the more relatable you seem, the easier time they'll have accepting your right to exist...also, in situations like this, you need an alias, and you need a proper name."

"an alias?"

"Sure, mine was 'Tinsmith', Lisa was 'Aunty Columbia', Judah was 'Mister Wizard'...an alias is like a wrestling name, superheroes should have them so there's a 'secret identity' for the curious to speculate about, it makes it easier to hide who you really are from those that would harm what you love...and we'll have to design your costume too."

"Costume?"

"Well, who's going to believe you're the original Star League?" she snorts, "seems to me, we can draw on it and design something compelling, an origin story or something, for people to 'discover' or hear about...something people in this reality will believe in."

her shadow of mites spreads out into the first storage bunker.

"oh, this? this will do nicely..."
The core rules for interacting with me:

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2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

Cannonshop

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #26 on: 10 October 2020, 19:11:47 »
She's modifying Nighthawk suits.

Classified Star League technology and her little remotes are completely rebuilding a battalion of them to serve as robotic drone soldiers.  Likewise for the vehicles in the bays.

"WE need to make your face, and your name." she tells me, while she's working.  "I'm kind of bouncing between John Sheridan and Malcolm Reynolds for your 'secret identity' name."

"why would I be male?"

she shrugs, "Because that's...just how you feel to me.  I imagine you as sort of a strong, older man, maybe middle-aged, with some scars, but a heart, like my favorite heroes from streaming movies."  Her hands stop for a moment, "Besides, I'm not a lesbian."

"So...because of your sexual orientation, I'm supposed to be a man?"

she shrugs and returns to working, "It makes sense to me, and I'm the one fabricating your body.  Besides, people are more likely to trust a strong male lead in a military situation...and boys need role models too, or they wind up like some of the guys I briefly went to high school with-weak, backstabby, bitchy boys instead of young men. You're centered here, you'll be an influence, that means setting a good example over the long term, and that-" she finishes with an electronics panel on the suit she's altering, "-means a strong male role model.  violence is easy, showing the guys how to do it with class and style? that's tough.  If I can't get home, well..."

"IF you can't?"

"If I'm going to be stuck in this weird ass universe, I do NOT expect to grow old with a collection of videos and a battery-operated vegetable for company.  Nor do I intend to lower my expectations and accept a greasy trouser-weasel for a boyfriend, that's just too disgusty  to contemplate.  so...make a hero, that people will respect as a hero, the guy the boys want to be, and the other girls want."

"Out of me?"

"Out of you." she nods.  "We Have The Technology!!...hey, this must be what it feels like to be a supervillain."

"Please, don't even joke about that."

"Let's go pick your face."
The core rules for interacting with me:

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2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

Cannonshop

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #27 on: 10 October 2020, 20:56:40 »
We verified information using her idea of a recon drone.

Now typically, a recon drone is a fairly decent sized piece of hardware, equipped with armor, complex electronics and a suite of sensors, it's a hard target, and it's often fairly easy to detect with the right sensors, sensors calibrated to look for a machine somewhat larger than a human being, that leaves identifiable tracks in the terrain, or has a detectable presence via lift fans disturbing loose soil and sand.

Phoebe's idea of a "Recon drone" is a cloud of bug-like machines running extreme low-power RF signals, moving as a network, with a thousand or so smaller, simpler sensors that get resolved by the control station.

They're less than the length of my new fingers, and being counted in the thousands, moving as insects move in a hive, the information is relayed at signal strengths and ranges that are almost undetectable unless you know what you're looking for, and where to look for it at any given moment.

she modified them somewhat, taking into account the ambient ECM produced by battlemechs and modern military systems to both conceal the activity, and to power the swarm-cloud off the side-scatter.

It's genuinely not that advanced, she just implemented something that uses the waste products of our opponents as a power supply.

"Because it's all scale." she said.  "You can't power anything bigger this way reliably without some serious juice disrupting things, but for teensy little units made to be receptive to that which is normally gonna disrupt them?"  she smiles.

It's strange having a face, having a remote avatar, a 'drone body' that has its own sensors, power supply, and looks...well, mostly human.  human enough, anyway.

"we just need your name, and your code-name." she tells me.  The enemy uses judeo-christian myths to name their top operatives, angel names mostly.

"What do you have in mind?" I ask her.

"John.  We'll call you 'John'."

"There's a joke there isn't there?"

"Why do you think I painted S-117 on your nighthawk suit? yeah, there's a joke." she tells me, "But nobody in this universe remembers Halo...or Farscape. so You're 'John Chrighton, Sierra One One Seven, aka The Masterchief."

"And you? are you going to be the Tinsmith again?"

"Nope." she said, "different world, different rules, different game...different suit."  she unveils what she's done to hers.  "The flexible 'draping' is like my mark Five suit, the outer skin's active camouflage.  I think I'll just be 'Phoebe' and let someone else come up with the public name-but I won't need one, because nobody's going to notice me."

"Have you ever..."

"Killed people? yeah." she said, "This is different though-that was anger, this is war.  We're not just going to stop the bad guys, we're going to save people."
The core rules for interacting with me:

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2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

Nikas_Zekeval

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #28 on: 10 October 2020, 21:20:34 »
Word of Blake?  How will Phoebe's powers work against Manei Domini?

I think Phoebe will be getting a Name from them... :yikes:

Cannonshop

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Re: It was not a just war, it was Just a War.
« Reply #29 on: 10 October 2020, 22:32:19 »
multitasking.  I was designed for it, as a command node, but the expansions she gave me, and the addition of this networked storage and parallel processing capability has multiplied my forces...

now that she's told me I have to.

"You should stay here, and help run the battle." I tell her.

She shakes her head.  "John, there are certain roles you take as a hero, or a vigilante, or even villains.  Mastermind is your gig.  Mine has been door-kicker since I was six years old escaping from a state-owned front for child trafficking in Tacoma.  This is what you were built for, to protect the people who live here."

"And you?"

"I only know what I know." she tells me, "I can learn, but I wasn't made for a great and noble purpose, I was the result of Marc Donnelly liking his hookers underage and addicted.  Daughter of one of the worst men to live in any world and a bastard daughter besides.  if I have a purpose, it's to make up for what he did, if there's a god, and god has a plan, it's for me to be out there fighting the bad guys, stopping them, killing monsters, saving people."

she climbs into her armor.  "Besides, you'll be out there too, being the front and the face for the team."

"Have you chosen your code name?" he asks.

"I'll let someone else pick it.  You can, if you want...but we have to go tonight."
The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.