A new networked database system named the Codex has been released to the galactic community.
The Codex is a joint initiative from the Pilots Federation and Universal Cartographics, which issued the following joint statement:
“We are pleased to announce that the Codex has been automatically uploaded to the onboard systems of all vessels registered with the Pilots Federation.”
“The Commander section of the Codex collates all ship data, including the pilot’s personal achievements, while the Knowledge Base contains information on the galaxy’s most prominent organisations and individuals.”
“The Discoveries section is designed to support deep-space exploration. As well as cataloguing stellar bodies and other phenomena, it also logs confirmed and unconfirmed findings from fellow explorers.”
“We hope the Codex will prove valuable to all Commanders, and we look forward to it being updated with their findings.”
Renowned billionaire Zachary Rackham, owner of Rackham Capital Investments, has made a sizeable charitable donation to build new shipyards in the Colonia region.
Mr Rackham, known in some circles as ‘Calico Zack’, made this statement:
“If there’s one thing I remember from flying around the galaxy in a second-hand Sidewinder with a leaky life-support module and only fifty credits in my pocket, it’s the thrill of exploration. And Colonia is the embodiment of that spirit, the farthest-flung outpost of civilisation.”
“That’s why I want to support it by funding the development of new shipyards. Every planetary port in the region, bar Colonia Hub, will soon be able to offer pilots the support services they need. It’s my way of celebrating a youth filled with poverty and danger, by giving a boost to the next generation of explorers.”
Bryanna Blanco, a financial journalist for The Federal Times, also published a statement:
“Obviously this is tremendous news for Colonia and all those operating within the region. The timing of Rackham’s donation is curious, however, coming as it does shortly before a company-wide audit. Having such a colossal sum placed beyond the reach of tax officials will certainly help that old pirate – and his crew of accountants – sleep better at night.”
Professor Cora Shaw, director of the Palin Institute, has published a paper speculating on the origin of the Thargoids.
Extracts from her paper are reprinted below:
“Considering the Thargoids’ impact on our civilisation, it is disturbing that we still know so little about them. Information from Guardian sites has shed some light on the Thargoids’ ancient history, but it’s clear they were an established spacefaring species long before they encountered the Guardians. So where did the Thargoids come from?”
“We know that the Thargoids are insectoid in nature with an affinity for ammonia-based worlds. This suggests they may have evolved in a harsh, low-temperature environment, which might explain their overdeveloped survival instincts and aggressive nature. But we also know the Thargoids are experts in bioengineering, so they may have augmented their own biology to a point where natural evolutionary processes are meaningless.”
“Since much of the Milky Way remains uncharted, the Thargoid homeworld might be just beyond known space or on the other side of the galaxy – if it exists at all. It’s possible they are now a nomadic species, existing entirely in space, or within fabricated hives of some kind. It may even be that they have journeyed across millions of light years, from Andromeda or beyond, like a swarm of locusts seeking fresh crops to consume.”
“Other theories are more esoteric but worthy of exploration. We know that their vessels are capable of hovering in hyperspace, suggesting that witch-space is comfortable for them. Could living beings actually originate from hyperspace?”
“Alternatively, they may be using hyperspace as a conduit from a dimensional plane entirely separate from real space. The Thargoids may not just be extragalactic in origin, but extra-universal.”
Following the recent Aegis report detailing the Thargoids’ history, many members of the Pilots Federation have made public statements.
“Everything is different now,” said one Commander. “It was disturbing enough when the Thargoids returned. To find out they’ve been around for millions of years, and that even the Guardians had trouble stopping them… It’s like being told that the ancient gods, the vengeful ones who smite from above, were real all along.”
Other pilots had more practical concerns about the impact on the galactic community:
“What worries me is when they start up their strip-mining operation, which seems to be on the cards,” said an experienced trader. “I transport ores and metals between dozens of planets. If those planets end up being gutted of minerals, that’s my livelihood gone out the airlock.”
There were also emotional comments from those who value space exploration:
“I bought a ship to discover what’s out there, you know? To voyage into the black. But now, knowing the Thargoids were there long before us, and might have infested anywhere we go… The black’s theirs already, it was always theirs!”
However, one seasoned Commander struck a belligerent tone:
“All the Aegis report tells us is that these alien scumbags can be beaten. The Guardians did it once – now it’s our turn. I’ve fought the Thargoids in the Pleiades and I know they’re not invincible. With Aegis’s new weapons and now their megaships, we can make those insects wish they’d stayed in their hives.”
The Federation has announced plans to construct a new survey outpost in the HIP 17692 system. Federal sources have confirmed that the outpost is designed to give the Federation a vantage point, close to the Pleiades, from which to monitor Thargoid activity.
A Federal spokesperson gave the following statement:
“To date, Thargoid vessels have been encountered in the Maia system and around the Pleiades Nebula, so we feel it is important to have a reconnaissance outpost as close to this region as possible.”
The Federation, in coordination with the Pleiades Resource Enterprise, has placed an open order for power generators, geological equipment and meta-alloys for use in the campaign, and has promised to reward pilots who deliver these commodities to Blackmount Orbital in the HIP 17692 system. The Pleiades Resource Enterprise has also placed a kill order on all ships on its wanted list, to ensure that those delivering material to Blackmount Orbital can do so safely.
The campaign begins on the 6th of July 3303 and will run for one week. If the final target is met earlier than planned, the campaign will end immediately.
Professor Ishmael Palin, leading authority on xeno-biological research, has commented on the discovery of functional technology at the Thargoid structures.
“This revelation is significant not only because it gives us an insight into Thargoid technology, but because it confirms the long-posited connection between the Thargoids and the Unknown Artefacts and Probes. Unfortunately, we still do not know the exact purpose of these pieces of technology. Reconnaissance, surveillance, cartography? The specifics elude us, even while fresh discoveries are made.”
Meanwhile, Ram Tah, the engineer leading research into the lost civilisation known as the Guardians, has commented on reports of interaction between Guardian and Thargoid technology:
“The fact that Guardian artefacts react to the Thargoid device certainly seems to suggest some kind of prior contact, and although we know very little about Thargoid history, interaction between the two races is entirely possible. But the negative nature of the reaction could be a sign that the relationship was not entirely peaceful.”
After 96 days in deep space, the Mercury Seven expedition will soon return home to the Colonia system. Over the course of the expedition, participating Commanders made many new discoveries in the Orio-Persean Conflux, Wagar’s Reach and Ishtar.
The explorers involved banded together to pay tribute to the Mercury Seven, a group of astronauts from an early spaceflight programme. At the end of their journey, they will present their findings to the Colonia Citizens Network and the wider exploration community.
The expedition is expected to reach its final destination, Colonia Dream in the Eol Prou LW-L C8-76 system, on Sunday the 11th of June 3303 at 18:00.
A group of EM-transmission technology enthusiasts in the Tionisla system claims to have found a message in the exploration data gathered last year as part of a campaign organised by the Children of Raxxla.
A spokesperson for the group, which calls itself The Hamsters, said:
“It was inside one of the beacon modulator wave harmonics, and it seems to be some sort of rhyme. We’ve studied it but have come up with nothing, so we thought we’d share it with the galactic community.”
The message is reprinted in full below.
The river to the underworld
Gaia’s daughter all unfurled
Fourth minor bear in vain
By viper’s sting was slain
Also known as Nemesis
The doom of Chimera
She is tasked with soothing pain
Suckling Odysseus from afar
Mother of the mother of
Leader of the Titans
He transformed into a hawk
A daughter of Daedalion’s
The piercer was how he was known
Mother of Ulysses
Ruler of the winds
God of night, primordial flees
Zeus’ namesake now lies in Sol
Achilles’ favoured horse
Women of vengeance infernal
The vain queen rides not forth
A final word, a course to follow, a poor miser’s sum
If you would understand it all, seek Fibonacci’s Zephyrum
The Children of Raxxla, based in the HR 6421 system, have released an analysis of the exploration data recovered by the galactic community in November last year.
A spokesperson for the organisation said:
"There was a vast amount of data to sift through, but our analysis led to some notable discoveries in the Formidine Rift, the Conflux and Hawkin's Gap. There are indications that some kind of covert mission took place in these regions back in the 3270s. So far we have found shipwrecks, beacons and abandoned settlements dating from that time, and logs and records relating to this strange mission."
"It appears that a fleet was despatched, over 30 years ago, to install a series of beacons in the region. None of the ships returned to their point of origin. It seems that this mission was called 'the Dynasty Project'. The purpose of the mission isn't yet clear, but it was evidently a massive undertaking, particular given the technological limitations of the time – it would have taken a year to complete that journey 30 years ago."
The spokesperson was asked if the data supported the organisation's belief that Kahina Loren was innocent of the attempted assassination of Admiral Denton Patreus.
"Unfortunately there is nothing in the data that throws new light on Salomé's demise. But before she was arrested, she indicated that these three sectors were significant. We now believe that that is why she was killed."
Last month, the Federation launched an appeal for exploration data from a number of remote locations. A competitive appeal was simultaneously launched by a mysterious group known as the Children of Raxxla, which succeeded in completely derailing the Federal initiative. Karl Devene, head of Astrocartography at Mars High, was forced to resign as a result.
Federal exploration projects are currently on hold as a result of the failed initiative, and Devene's successor has not been announced. Meanwhile, the Children of Raxxla has yet to reveal any findings from the data it received, leading some to speculate that the organisation never intended to.
"I believe it was a cynical attempt to sabotage Federal research," said a spokesperson for Mars High Astrocartography. "It was never about exonerating Salomé – they just used her plight to gain the data at the expense of the Federation. Unfortunately, the galactic community proved itself easily manipulated."
Other commentators have concurred with the analysis. Jackson Trent, associate editor of The Imperial Citizen, said:
"I don't understand the allure of Raxxla. They attacked Patreus's flagship and have proved themselves to be criminals of the worst kind. Patreus dealt with Emperor's Dawn – perhaps it's time for him to deal with the Children of Raxxla."
Salomé, known in Imperial circles as Kahina Loren, was killed when the convoy transporting her to Koontz Asylum was interdicted and destroyed. She had been convicted of the attempted assassination of Denton Patreus.
Meanwhile, independent pilots returning from the expedition have reported a series of curious beacons in deep space, but few details have surfaced.