Post by Van on Jun 1, 2018 14:40:02 GMT -5
Aboard the Dominion defense station “The Queen’s Haven”
The recent events across the Galaxy may have brought some changes to the Dominion’s forward defense station, built near the Galaxy’s supermassive black hole to harness its energy and use it for defensive measures, most importantly the expansion of the facilities, but the morning routine stayed the same as always. Saiyans were a species comfortable with waking up early and warming up their muscles right after breakfast. And with the drill of Commander Taro, assigned to command the fleet and soldiers here by Queen Radia herself, discipline was at an all time high. Rows of Saiyan soldiers ran across the corridors of the facility for a few laps, the gravity chamber always received visitors, while the Xeno staff members, not as enthusiastic about training their minds and bodies every single day, spent the time cleaning the rooms and hangars, chatting in the cafeteria or testing the combat preparedness of the vessels lined up.
The Queen’s Haven, as it was nicknamed - the real name of the station was North Quadrant Defense Station 01, but that did not roll off the tongue as easily - held a strategic position in the Saiyan Dominion’s geopolitical situation. The Saiyans beat the Patrol and the Frieza Force in establishing a presence at the very core of the Galaxy, right next to the supermassive black hole around which the entire structure revolved. From there, they could project power and threaten much of the Galaxy - and the Queen’s Haven was built to reflect that. A Katchin-reinforced steel construction triangular defense station, armed with the most state of the art weaponry and housing hundreds of hardened Saiyan warriors, which also served as a base for much of the Dominion fleet. Gravitational and gamma ray burst energy collectors pointed at the black hole made sure that the entire station was completely energy sufficient, and could even serve as a fueling base for vessels. Only Saiyan ones, of course. You wouldn’t let the enemy to fuel in your base and potentially learn of its layout.
All for the price of knowing that a few dozen million kilometers below where you are - and that’s peanuts for space - is a blob of emptiness, from which no light will ever escape, as large as the diameters of the orbits of some planets.
After leaving the shower, putting his armor back on and letting his hair naturally dry, the Commander walked up to a hologram computer in his room to check the Galactic Hypernet for any recent news in the Galaxy. The Dominion, unlike their counterparts in the First Galactic Empire, had no plans to fully censor the Hypernet - outside of a few blacklisted sites openly threatening the royal regime, all content was free to flow. The news were not promising - the diplomatic crisis between the Empire and the Dominion was only getting worse. Relations were awful ever since day one - Emperor Polaris blamed the Saiyans for assassinating the Galactic King and threatening peace in the Galaxy, while the Dominion kept rejecting these allegations and accusing the Imperial regime of staging the coup and making open military maneuvers in preparation for an invasion.
Taro’s contacts with Queen Radia had been brief during this time, mostly limited to military orders and a few chats through the Hypernet, but from what he could tell, she was worried about the ongoing situation. And not just worried, but furious. The Dominion was in the process of remilitarization unseen since the Saiyan War, their fleet was being rapidly rebuilt ever since Cumber’s failed debacle against the Golden Fleece Armada - after all, it was obvious to anyone watching that war with the Empire is coming. Taro did not share the Queen’s worry, however. Being the commander of a central crossroad in the Galaxy always brings interesting news - and one of those was the news that the Empire was struggling with internal rebellions. An uprising led by Gadon and the Valkyries, and supported by Earth, scored a definite victory against the Ultramarines on Planet Pepper, not far from the Queen’s Haven. In addition, a person versed in history knew that totalitarian dictatorships, which is what Polaris’s empire had become, need someone to rattle their saber against, even if it’s an empty threat. Remember Frieza’s empire? The paranoid Frost Demon would make up enemies on the fly just to keep himself and his men on the edge, that’s why old Vegeta ended up destroyed.
Factoring both of this into the equation, Taro believed that the Empire needed at least a year to prepare for a war by squashing internal rebellions and building up its forces - and by then, the Dominion will have rebuilt its fleet and would be able to take the fight back at them. This will not be the first Frost Demon emperor the Saiyans will kick out of his throne. And yet… Leaving his room and walking across the empty corridors of the defense station, occasionally looking across the reinforced glass windows, to a vision of space half covered by a black hole event horizon, Taro felt as if a tinge of worry still sparked within him.
The Commander stopped for a moment in a vantage point at the corridor, sticking out of the building, decked out with a turret and giving him a clear view of the entire defense station, including the hangars, the barracks and the front turret networks. There was something bad in the air… like a feeling of ominous dread. Maybe he should have read a little less political news before going on a walk.
And then the alarms rang. The lighting across the corridor shifted to dark, flashing red. A scared, frightened voice flew across the room:
“ATTENTION STAFF OF DEFENSE STATION 01. WE ARE UNDER ATTACK BY IMPERIAL FORCES. THIS IS NOT A DRILL. I REPEAT - WE ARE UNDER ATTACK BY IMPERIAL FORCES. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.”
In the distance, above the event horizon of the black hole, the first salvo of energy shots began flying towards the defense station. No warning. No prior declaration of war. Just a sudden sneak attack to take advantage of the Dominion’s unpreparedness.
“...I should have expected this.” Taro muttered to himself, then immediately moved away from the window and began walking towards the hangars while pressing a few buttons on his scouter. The Commander cannot complain - all is fair in war, and he had been an example of such thinking before. There is no war crimes court he’ll be able to drag the Emperor to - all that’s left is to hold out as much as possible and bloody the Empire’s nose here. The scouter’s communications finally opened. “All officers, move into position. Ground troops and staff, form platoons to thwart any enemy landings. Fleet crews, prepare for battle immediately. And as quickly as possible.”
However, there is only so much speed you can pump into preparing a warship and taking off, especially when you are being attacked and are unable to defend. By the time Taro reached the hangars, and the first Saiyan warships took off, the Empire had released five volleys of laser, plasma and railgun fire. And they were not firing randomly, either - priority was given to taking out the station’s stationary turret defenses and the ships docked at the port, and by the time that the first Saiyan warships entered the battlefield, large portions of the Dominion fleet were already turned to scrap metal. Turret fire helped pick off some of the smaller and less armed enemy ships, but even that was not enough to slow down the Imperial momentum. They were flying unnaturally fast, dodging most of the incoming blasts - and, interestingly enough, in an orbital trajectory, aimed directly at them. Taro was never a master in physics, but even he could tell what was going on.
“They’re using the black hole’s gravity assist,” he muttered to himself. They’re using the setting of the black hole to their advantage - even though when the station was designed, the location near it was believed to be a defensive advantage. The gravity assisted speed of the Imperial fleet was enough to overpower any engines the Saiyans could muster back at them - but despite this, the Dominion fleet was putting up a fight. Taro watched the clash develop from the safety of the defense station, trying to make out anything concrete from over here - from what he could tell, the first initial clashes were inconclusive, with light casualties for both sides. However, then a small squadron of Imperial spaceships, protected by an energy shield of unknown origin, pierced through the Dominion ranks like a spearhead and flew directly towards the defense station.
A bold strategy, again.
“Concentrate all turret fire on the incoming ships. Raise the emergency shields! Ground troops, enter position!” Taro exclaimed a number of commands into the scouter, himself running to the front of the hangar, assuming that’s where the ships are attempting to land. A slight mistake. After ramming through the energy shield and breaking it, the ships, instead of landing by themselves, made a sudden U-turn while releasing a barrage of attack balls and landing pods towards the defense station. Though a few ended up shot down in mid-air, sending their pilot to horrid death in open space, the rest landed, punching through windows and occasionally walls to release platoons of Ultramarines into the facility. A battle broke out within the station.
The Saiyan warriors in the station were not numerous, only numbering around 100, and supported by a few hundred Xeno conscripts, while the Ultramarine landing force had three times that. As such, while the Saiyans managed to maintain control of the hangar, where Taro and his elites easily overpowered the few unlucky aliens to land there, as well as the control room, many of the turrets and the storage rooms ended up falling to Imperial forces. The station’s defenses began firing to the back of the Dominion fleet, giving the Imperials in the skies the edge they needed to scatter the slower and not as prepared Saiyan fleet.
Taro did not even waver at this news, broadcasted to him every single second. Turning off his scouter for now, he swiftly formed an energy clone of himself, letting him to sneak away, then waved at the Saiyan platoon closest to him to follow - they’re going to take a little tour of the fortress, sweep it from this scourge. It’s unlikely that the Empire sent someone as powerful as the Commander alongside this mission here, after all. Maintaining a tight formation to protect all of their blind spots and maintaining focus at all times, the Saiyans moved from room to room, encountering, at most, a few scattered Ultramarines who would throw some light shots at them and immediately retreat. This row of skirmishes continued for a good few minutes, until the platoon reached the cafeteria - and it looked like something taken out of a horror movie massacre. All the tables and benches were knocked over, some broken and burning, a bunch of Xenos were scattered across the floor, the absolute majority of them wearing Dominion uniforms. Poor sods. Did not get the signal and ended up slaughtered by the Ultramarines.
The Saiyan formation loosened and Taro knelt down next to one of the corpses. The blood was still fresh and flowing, but the person was dead as mud - so this couldn’t have happened too long ago. The perpetrators could not be all that far away… The scouter of a few of the soldiers suddenly beeped, alarming everyone in the cafeteria, and for good reason - mere moments later, one of the Saiyans, a slightly chubby one with neon dyed hair, collapsed.
“Powtato!” Taro exclaimed, running up to the victim. No, he did not slip on a banana - the throat was wide opened by a clean sword-like cut, killing the soldier in an instant. The Commander’s muscles tensed. “Stay on your guard.”
“The hell?” a nearby slender Saiyan warrior muttered, with an ounce of fright present in his voice. “My scouter caught a power level for a moment, but then it-”
The same happened. A sudden power level beep, a flash, and the man fell, this time with a freshly burned hole piercing through his forehead. However, Taro caught a glimpse of the perpetrator this time - a sudden blur of white and blue had appeared in front of the Saiyan for a moment and vanished just as quickly. No, it was not moving extremely fast or anything like that. If that was the case, their scouters could track its trajectory. It was just… appearing in and out of reality. A teleporter?
“Form groups of three, cover each other’s blind spots. This is a teleporting enemy.” the Commander gave a brief command, intensifying his aura a little to boost his own defense, while at the same time ordering his energy clone to hurry to its creator. The Saiyans hurried to execute the order, but the menace caught what was going and suddenly began plowing through their ranks even more quickly. The blur flashed in and out of reality, taking down warrior after warrior, and all Taro could do in response was to look around, try to follow its trajectory and wait for it to strike him. Forming an energy shield wouldn’t help against a teleporter. A few of the Saiyans fired energy bolts, hitting nothing but air. Was it just going to keep doing this until it tires out or all of the Saiyans fall? Neither, apparently - with the unit’s ranks thoroughly thinned out and the survivors frightened just enough, the blur stopped in the center of the room, a few meters away from Taro, coalescing into the body of a particular light blue-skinned Frost Demon.
“What a nice base you’ve got here, Saiyans,” Emperor Polaris muttered, hands placed on his hips and a smirk formed on his face. “It’ll certainly be a useful base of operations for the First Galactic Empire.” As he spoke, Ultramarines began to surround the cafeteria, entering through doors and corridors with weapons locked and loaded.
What is he doing here? What is he doing here? Doesn’t Polaris have something much more important to do than to personally lead a unannounced surprise strike on the Queen’s Haven? Unless he knew about Commander Taro’s presence here and believed that nobody else in his army could defeat him… but that’s rubbish! The Empire would not hold galactic ambitions in that case. Unless… there is something personal in play here, and Taro definitely remembered the time he fought and humiliated Polaris in battle before. Heck, his own pupils humiliated him in battle before.
“Lord Polar-Star...” Taro muttered, focusing his eyes on the Emperor, whose smirk shifted to a frown.
“That one was on purpose.”
Taro said nothing, hoping to stall for a little bit more time to prepare, leaving Polaris to continue the conversation:
“It’s been a while since our last meeting, hasn’t it? What was it about last time?... Oh, right, you almost killed me. But the tides are about to turn, aren’t they?”
Taro took a breath, remaining as stern as always, and soon shifted the topic:
“Your empire is in the middle of civil unrest and yet you’re entering a war with us.”
Polaris grinned a little bit. “Those who don’t risk it don’t end up drinking champagne. You think I don’t know about what you Saiyans are planning here? Gathering much of your fleet in a base etched into my territory like a dagger into a person’s heart… But that’s not a problem, we’ll play chess by my rules - with a Dominion fleet completely destroyed.”
Taro closed his eyes. If he knew anything about chess, maybe he would respond with a metaphor from that game here. But nope, not gonna happen. So instead, he clenched his fists, stretching out his muscles, and replied:
“You’ve certainly made a detailed plan here. But it hinges too much on the assumption that you’ll win here.”
On the very next instant, the Commander let out a powerful roar and his aura flared to life, a wild and powerful purple one, which soon, as well as his hair, turned into pure bright golden. The Saiyan’s muscles grew in size and so did his entire body, while Saiyans and Ultramarines alike watched in awe. Not Polaris, though. He was simply marking down the sixth Super Saiyan he has witnessed this year. The transformation into an Ascended Super Saiyan was finalized by, first, a burst of energy from his body blowing across the entire cafeteria, and, second, by Taro’s energy clone bursting through a wall and ascending into the very same transformation to be in sync with its creator. Without any further warning, both the Saiyan and his double lunged towards the Frost Demon - however, by the time they reached him, Polaris had already entered his Fifth Form transformation, reaching Taro’s height and growing a horned suit of bio-armor in an instant, and blocking both of the attackers with his forearms. A clash unfolded, shaking the entire fortress with the power released out of it - although the Emperor was more powerful individually, Taro had his double by his side to even the advantage out.
That advantage ended up lost when Polaris, after escaping the clash, released a powerful and fast burst of energy at his opponent, forcing the double to leap in front of the attack and take it, dissipating in the process. Under normal conditions, Taro would have just formed another one as a replacement, but the Emperor did not give him the window of time to do so, instantly lunging at him and tossing them both forward.
“I’ve beaten both of the pupils already, so it’s about time to get rid of the master as well!” the Frost Demon exclaimed while throwing a flurry of blows at the Saiyan. Taro did not respond, although he was well aware of who the opponent was talking about - Etohn (Etohn ) and Zarytto - and instead placed Polaris’s right hand into an arm lock. After struggling for a little bit, the Frost Demon reached out for plan B - his left hand formed an energy blade and he swung it forward, forcing Taro to retreat and release the grip. That was only the beginning of the offensive, however, as Polaris continued his relentless barrage of slashes, Taro only being about to respond by dodging and waiting for an opportunity to retaliate. That opportunity did not arrive, but instead, Polaris finally caught up on Taro’s technique - the first strike that landed on the Saiyan was a light cut across his shoulder, followed a bunch of other lighter and deeper cuts across the body, taking advantage of his slightly wavering defense.
A kick to the stomach and a close-ranged energy burst finished the combination, sending the Saiyan sliding across the battlefield and clutching onto his stomach. The fight was not yet finished, but Taro could feel which side had the advantage. Polaris had certainly improved a lot, like night and day compared to the Frost Demon he had fought a few months ago - not that it is completely surprising. Even Taro knew about the death of Lord Glacio, in which Polaris, back then still a Lieutenant, was an important participant. But the Commander had no plans to surrender or retreat - in fact, knowing that Polaris was now a worthy opponent for a Super Saiyan was getting his Saiyan blood boiling. One of his soldiers, attempting to check up on his Commander, only received a halt order hand gesture, and Taro soon straightened back.
Polaris turned off the energy blade in his left hand and instead ignited one in his right, the hand he is more comfortable with using. It would be a lie to say that he was not thrilled by how this was going.
“Ready for round two?” he muttered.
The two fighters clashed with the power to destroy planets, only the Katchin-reinforced casing preventing the fortress from snapping in half at that moment. Once again, the fight turned into a close-range brawl - Polaris continued to relentlessly attack with his energy blade, but this time, Taro was more prepared to counter it, deflecting the hits while maintaining his momentum and aiming for undefended spots of the Frost Demon’s body. After a top-down blade sweep resulted in the Saiyan catching the energy weapon with his hands, Taro put all the bulk of the Ascended Super Saiyan to use, suddenly snapping the blade and letting its upper half dissipate. Before Polaris could reform the weapon, the Saiyan suddenly flashed his aura as a blinding burst of energy, catching him off-guard and leaving him open to a combination of attacks. A few sudden jabs towards the Emperor’s joints, a force palm to blow the body away and let it slide across the floor, and, finally, for a finish, a dashing right hook to knock the bastard out cold here and now.
It all worked so well until the very last moment. Milliseconds before the jab was about to land right in the Frost Demon’s nose, Taro felt his fist suddenly stop and lock itself in place, unable to move forward or backward. An armored Frost Demon hand held it tightly, pressing onto it, letting the bones crack, while lowering the fist and revealing a smirking Polaris.
“You haven’t updated your line of tricks yet, have you?” the Emperor muttered. And that was not even all to it. Slightly glancing down, the Commander noticed that the energy blade around Polaris’s right fist was gone, instead replaced with a glowing, shaking fist. Even someone unable to sense ki could tell that some big power had just been condensed there - and you wouldn’t be wrong. Making sure to not let Taro make a response, Polaris let go of the Saiyan’s fist and unleashed his own at the very same time, releasing an utterly massive amount of energy - and this time, even Katchin plating did not help the fortress. Windows cracked, scouters and blasters burst, the Ultramarines and the Saiyans fell to the ground from the sudden trembling. And one Saiyan Commander flying across the room at near light speed, going through the walls of the cafeteria like they were coffee paper and finally slamming into the outer walls of the fortress thirty feet away with a loud thud.
Spine cracked, much of the ribs broken, internal bleeding all over, a massive migraine. Aura fading, the muscles and the hair receding, power waning, Polaris laughing, Saiyans scattering. That was all Taro could feel at the moment. He was sure he could probably feel a lot more agony right now were it not for his spinal cord getting ruptured.
“Alas. Had I not wounded you with my blade earlier, I could say that I defeated you with a single punch.” Polaris spoke, walking across the cafeteria with his eyes focused on the wounded Saiyan. In just a single powerful strike, the battle turned around - that was Polaris’s favorite way of victory. Victory through near defeat. It’s even enjoyable in its own right.
“...so...” Taro muttered, weakly, still dazed from the impact of the punch. “...your plan is to torture me now, right? Because if so, sure… waste your time on me.”
“Under any normal situation, maybe.” Polaris gave a quick response, charging up an energy beam in front of his finger as he walked forward. “But forcing you Saiyans to go through torture is far too close to recognizing you lot as people. You’re more of a vermin, really. A scourge. You wouldn’t torture a virus or a cockroach, would you?”
Taro didn’t bother with buying any more time. Especially not when his body was about to fail with or without an energy beam through his heart. He just closed his eyes, not wishing to look at that god damn smirking face ever again.
“Just like your namesake in the Patrol, in fact. Removed like a cockroach. So I guess this is a fitting end for you.”
...guess he’s not closing his eyes for long.
“What? You mean… you...”
“No, just to be clear, I did not kill Taro Jr., if that’s what you are thinking. But he’s dead. Long dead. Perished in a Patrol mission a year ago. Love to be the bringer of bad news to you, by the way.” Polaris responded,
And followed with a little tangent.
“It’s quite interesting how I found out about him, in fact… I decided to look you up on the Galactic Patrol database I inherited before setting out here, and what do you know, there was a son of Radia in the Patrol a while ago. And he perished, brutally - that alone made my whole evening. Maybe it was your seed? Unlikely...”
Taro said nothing. Just closed his eyes. And squeezed the eyelids. Tightly.
“...don’t ignore your Emperor, you vermin.” was the last he heard before eternal darkness.
”After a long period of attempting to diffuse the ongoing crisis through diplomatic measures, the First Galactic Empire, led by the noble and benevolent Emperor Polaris, has finally began to take decisive action against the unprecedented hostility, warmongery and belligerence of the Saiyan Dominion. Aware of the threat of a first strike on the Empire and its citizens from the Dominion’s forward base of North Quadrant Defense Station 01, located near the Galaxy’s supermassive black hole, the Imperial Fleet has executed a preemptive strike to eliminate the hostiles, and it was successful.
As war correspondents report, the Dominion fleet was clearly prepared for offensive maneuvers and thus was unprepared to defend against the swift and bold strike launched and commanded by the Emperor himself. The station was taken within hours and the enemy fleet has been eliminated completely. The Emperor, who personally participated in the fighting, confirms everyone’s suspicions that the Dominion was planning to launch a first strike on the Empire and that Defense Station 01 was going to be the staging point of an invasion which could threaten Abbayor. Watchers of the Galactic News Network will surely remember the number of belligerent attempts by the Saiyan Dominion to threaten the territorial integrity of the Empire and even destabilize it from within. It is also publicly known that the Galactic King was also felled by a Saiyan assassin.
Here in the Galactic News Network, we fully endorse the choice of our beloved Emperor to take decisive action against the Saiyan threat in the name of galactic peace and unity! War is expected to begin between the Empire and the Saiyans shortly, and we call out to all of the citizens of the Empire to support their leader and the war effort in this hour of bringing justice and taking down the illegitimate, reactionary, jingoistic and Saiyan supremacist government of Queen Radia, all working together!
This was reporter Sheila Kuehl from Abbayor.”
ATTENTION CITIZENS OF THE FIRST GALACTIC EMPIRE.
Under the newly released Executive Order 151, in order to mobilize the Empire for the war against the Saiyan Dominion, all citizens are required to make the following procedures:
All males and females aged 18-25, or maturity equivalent of your species, are required to register in your nearest Military Conscription Station within the following three weeks for a health and physical condition check. Failure to comply or appear in any station within this time will be subject to punishment of up to five years of imprisonment.
All private companies employing more than 10 persons are required to register in the Department of Economic Mobilization within three weeks. Companies participating in vital war industries will be subject to either mandatory military projects, company reorganization or seizure of assets. Failure to comply will be subject to punishment of up to five years of imprisonment and seizure of assets.
All adult citizens of the Empire are required to visit their nearest postal office, spaceport or other government authority to receive food ration cards. Recipients of ration cards will have their current passports be replaced by updated ID cards. Any citizen sighted without an updated ID card one month after the release of this message will be subject to punishment of either up to two months of detainment or a fine of up to two hundred Imperial credits.
ALL CITIZENS UNITED FOR THE EMPEROR.