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Legacy of the Guardians
Randall made his way into the council room wondering what was going on, the president had called a special meeting. There was no news from the Skartians that he had heard of. He guessed that he would have to wait and see for himself what was going on.
"Hey Kinser, do you know what's going on?" Randall asked the Ilderian ambassador as he sat down.
"No, I do not." Kinser replied. "I thought that maybe you would know something, after all you are closest to the Skartians."
"They've been quiet so far, but we are keeping our defenses up just in case." Randall said to the Ilderian. Randall, himself, did not know what to expect either. He had hoped that the council meeting had nothing to do with the Skartians. He knew that the military had increased the patrols at the border and around the Earth, but that did not mean too much.
They did not have to wait too much longer as the President walked into the chambers and went straight to the podium. He looked a bit worried to Randall, and he wondered what to have rattled such a calm person.
"Wonder what has him so worried?" Randall whispered to Kinser.
"I don't know, but whatever it is has spooked him." Kinser replied. "I only know that their race is one of the oldest races still around."
Randall had to agree, there were only handful of races that could count their age to be over a million years old. Looking around he saw the other races that were old, and they also looked a bit rattled.
"Something strange is going on Kinser, the other older races also looked worried about something." Randall said to his friend who also looked around the room and could only agree with Randall.
"Well, I guess we wait and see Ran Dall." Kinser said as he sat back in his chair and waited for the announcement to come from the president.
"Selected delegates of the council, I have some disturbing news to tell all of you." The President said starting his explanation. "Many of you know about the planet that many call Tagad, others call it Alpha-X-5, or the mysterious planet of the system. Some of our ships registered an enormous power reading recently. Together with a few other races we investigated the event and found that something has destroyed, not only the planet, but the entire system including its sun."
Randall was a bit shocked at the statement, to destroy a planet was impressive, but to destroy an entire star, that was beyond impressive.
"At first our scouts thought that they were in the wrong area, but after careful calculations they arrived that there was no longer any system in the area." The President continued on saying. "Not only were all the planets gone, along with the sun, but there was no trace of the system ever existing at all."
Kinser was not happy with this news either. The technology that would be required to carry out this type of attack would be far ahead of even the most advanced race in the know universe.
"I don't think that this has anything to do with the Skartians." Kinser whispered to Randall.
"My gut tells me it's not directly related, but it's important." Randall said. "If it is the Skartians testing out a new weapon system, then they could be unstoppable this time."
"It could have been the lost inhabitants of the system finally came back and wanted to hide?" One ambassador asked.
"We thought of that and sent a couple of science ships into the area and they found no power sources or holes in the time fabric." The president replied.
"Do we have any idea who did this?" Randall asked.
"There were no witness and nothing as to who could have caused this either." The President replied. "I am to ask the council if anyone has any information about it."
As the President expected silence greeted his statement.
Steve walked back from the cafeteria after having a sandwich for lunch. He had a few things to take care of before he reported back to Jack about the readiness of the Seydlitz and the organization of the newly formed Fleet R. He was just about to enter his office when his secretary stopped him.
"Oh, sir." She called. "You had a call from Ambassador Randall, he says for you to call him right back, that its urgent."
"Ok, thanks Marcy." Steve said and proceeded into his office and was wondering what Randall had to say that was so urgent. He picked up the phone and dialed the number and waited for Randall to pick up.
"Randall here." Steve heard the ambassador say.
"Randall, Steve here. I got a message from my secretary that you called, what's up?" Steve asked.
"I've got some bad news for you." Randall said and Steve was wondering if any good news would ever come in again. It seemed like all they had been getting lately was bad to worse news.
"Well," Steve said with a sigh. "Let's hear it."
"You've hear of the planet Tagad, right?" Randall asked and waited as Steve replied.
"Yeah, that's the universe's equivalent of the lost continent of Atlantis, only in this case we have a location, just nothing about the race." Steve said recalling what he had read. "We've got a vessel that is scheduled to explore the planet next year."
"You might as well cancel it." Randall said. "The planet is no longer there."
"Someone blew it up?" Steve said in a bit of shock.
"Oh yeah, not only blew it up, but also the other planets in the system along with its sun." Randall said. "There is no trace of the system left at all, no debris or anything, just gone."
"Are there any ideas as to who was behind it?" Steve said with some concern in his voice.
"No, and I've never seen the older races look so rattled in all my life. Something big is going down." Randall said starting to voice his thoughts that he did not say to Kinser earlier.
"What do you think?" Steve asked.
"My gut tell me that the Skartians are somehow involved in all of this, I just don't know how." Randall said.
"That's what I thought you would say, I feel the same thing, let me talk to Jack about this and I'll call you later." Steve said and waited for Randall to agree before he hung up the phone.
"Is something wrong?" Marcy asked as Steve walked briskly out of his office.
"Yes, I'll be over at Jack's office, if anyone need me I'll be there. I don't know how long I'll be over there." Steve relied.
"Yes sir!" Marcy said and watched as he left the room and walked quickly down the corridor. Something was wrong Marcy thought to herself. She only hoped that it was not as bad as she thought it was.
Steve stepped into Jack's office without even a knock and Jack knew that something was wrong.
"What's up?" Jack said in a no nonsense voice.
"There could be a huge problem Jack." Steve said. "I just got off the phone with Randall, and there could be a dangerous new player in the universe, or the Skartians just became thousands of time more dangerous."
"What do you mean?" Jack asked now very interested in what Steve had to say about what was going on.
"The planet Tagad, and its entire system are gone." Steve said. "Everything, is just gone, no debris, planets or sun. Everything in the system is gone."
"Let me guess, there no clues as to who was behind it, right." Jack said and Steve nodded his head as an answer. "That's what I thought." Jack said continuing. "You think that the Skartians could be behind it?"
"It could be a test for a new weapon, and what better place to test, usually no one even monitors that system because its a dead planet." Steve said logically, as he had run through possible scenarios himself as to a place to test that type of weapon.
""You could be right, get everybody looking in the wrong direction and when they are looking the opposite way hit them hard." Jack said. "Send a warning to all patrols, that an attack could be expected within the next coupe of days."
"I'm on it, anything else?" Steve asked.
"No, I can't think of anything just yet. Have you had time to check on the status of the Seydlitz yet?" Jack asked.
"Not yet, but I have heard that they are starting construction of a sister ship, they are thinking about calling her the Goeben." Steve said knowing that that would be welcome news to Jack.
"That is good news." Jack said. I see that they are going to be naming this class after German World War One battlecruisers."
"It appears to be looking like it." Steve said. "It will be a welcome break from using city names, and it brings some classic names into the mix."
Jack nodded his head, the city names were nice and they came from all over the country, but sometimes he wished to have a person's name or a classic ship name from the past, to carry on the tradition. This was the first time that the battlecruisers were named for something other than cities. The carriers were named after battles that had taken place on earth. The latest carrier was actually named after Pluto, the place where they had defeated the Skartians decisively.
"Let me know if anything else comes up." Jack said and watched as Steve left the room.
Ahmed tried to stretch his muscles as much as his restraints would allow him to. Ever since his captors had told him that they had his parents he had not heard anything from them. There was only a frightened woman who came in to deliver some food and water to him as his only contact. It was clear that she was only following because she was scared to do anything else. Ahmed felt sorry for her even though he did not know her name.
More than once Ahmed had been tempted to call in the rescue force and get himself out of the situation. He decided that he would wait a bit longer to see what had happened to his parents. He could only hope that the special ops team had beaten the kidnappers to their house. He did know that if they did, it might give him some credibility to his story and he might meet some more of the higher up levels of the organization that his brother was apparently a part of.
Ahmed was still wondering himself what he was going to say to the top person, if he ever saw him, because he was not sure what to say. If the person was truly Skartian, like he believed he would be, then Ahmed knew that he would have to be careful not to let the alien know that he was on to the disguise to early or else the entire mission could fail.
Ahmed wondered at the lies that the Skartians had told his brother. They seemed to have a common theme. They would tell the native people that they were better or stronger, either physically and/or mentally than other people. This was usually the first stage of the plans. From there it would be divide and conquer, similar to how they started World War Two, and it looked like they were trying it again. They were again using religion as a way of division, but this time they were putting the religions against each other, Islam against the Catholics. It was an old rivalry, and it would appear that there was probably a plan to bring the Jews into it as well.
Ahmed silently laughed to himself at that thought. The people really thought that the religion was so important in how it was done, they did not realize that they all worshipped the same God. They fought over petty differences that in the log run made no difference. He had seen many things that made the differences in the religions seem minor in comparison. When you find out that mankind is not alone in the universe, nor are they only ones with religion a person undergoes a change. There were several races, like the Ilderians that had several different religions, but they had recognized that it was the fact that all the religions were important, not just the one you believe in that made religion important.
The door opened and Ahmed looked to see who it was that was coming in. It was too early for the women that brought him food and water to be coming in. He saw four men enter the room, his brother being one of them.
"Well dear brother, I see that they are treating you well!" Ahmed's brother said with a sneer and Ahmed could only guess that they had not been able to find their parents.
"What's a matter little brother?" Ahmed shot right back. "Mom and dad already gone?" He could tell that he had hit the mark by his brother's reaction.
"I'd be careful if I were you brother." He replied right back. "You're treading on soft sand and you could sink."
"Perhaps, but the group I fight for are much more powerful than your group. And like I said before, my message is for the top man, not these lackeys." Ahmed said knowing that he was probably angering the men in front of him, but he had to make them believe that he was part of a very strong and secret organization, which was not that hard to pretend.
"Enough of this!" One of the other men said and Ahmed allowed himself to look at the other men. One was the Skartian he had seen before, the other two men he had never seen before.
One man looked to be a bodyguard by his body language for the other man. The other was definitely a person of much higher importance in the terrorist organization. The only question facing Ahmed now was how high up was this man.
"You will tell us what you have to say, now!" The man said.
"And who are you?" Ahmed asked in defiance of the authorities tone the man had taken with Ahmed.
"I could have you killed with just a word." The man replied threateningly. "Now tell me!" He all but screamed at Ahmed.
"And I can have you killed." Ahmed shot back with an amazing calmness that shocked the men.
"You are dilunisial." The man replied and Ahmed's brother was silently laughing.
"No, I'm not." Ahmed said with deadly seriousness in his voice as he stared at the man talking to him. "You would be wise to just let me talk to your head man. My people are only sending one person, and if I fail, then they will not hesitate to attack you directly. And if they do, no one will survive." Ahmed said making it a point to look directly at his brother.
"And just why should we be afraid of you and this 'group' that you speak about?" The man asked him.
"They managed to rescue my parents and, they are already out of the country." Ahmed said with assurance in his voice.
"What if I was to say that we have your parents?" The man replied.
"Then I would say that you are lying, if you are not you would have shown me them by now." Ahmed said knowing that he knew that they did not have his parents.
"Yes, its a pity they did." The man said without emotion in his voice. The bodyguard came up to him and forced him to stand up.
"Is this how you treat all of your guests?" Ahmed asked the man sarcastically only to have the bodyguard hit him in the rib area. Ahmed forced out a grunt of pain but kept his eyes on the man in front of him.
"A tough guy?" The man said when he was face to face with Ahmed. Ahmed looked into his eyes and noticed that the man was not a human, but a Skartian as well. This confirmed his thoughts that there was more than one Skartian on the Earth. Now Ahmed was sure that he had to find the leader of the group before he could call in the troops.
"Well, just to let you know." The man said to Ahmed forcing his attention back to what he was saying. "We have some strong allies as well." He smiled at the statement but was a bit shocked that Ahmed did not look concerned. With a glance at the bodyguard Ahmed was knocked out.
"Take him and put him in the truck, take him to see the big guy, then well see what he has to say, before we kill him." The man said and left leaving the remaining three to carry out the task.
Ahmed's brother looked at him and just wondered what his brother had gotten himself into before he carried out his leader task. He had heard that the group that was to kidnap his parents had just missed them. In fact the group had gotten into a fight and lost. The group lost two men and had several more knocked out.
They had followed the trail out of the town and just outside of town was a burning wreak of the escape truck. There were footprints all around the area, but nothing lead away from the area that anyone could find. There was also no bodies found inside the wreak of the escape vehicle. There was a small part of him that was glad that his parents got out of the country.
He helped put his brother in the back of the truck and was told to get in himself, as he would be accompanying his brother to see the leader.
End Chapter 12
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