The beginning of a novelisation of the game 'Beyond Good & Evil'. Slightly reedited since my first attempt.
A timeline of sentient-kind
8631 AD- First extraterrestrial colony founded. Alien life is discovered in the form of animals, plants and diseases. New diseases are prevented from becoming epidemic by quarantine procedures and animals and plants are introduced to new worlds through controlled terraforming programs. Human kind enters the Age of Exploration. No intelligent life is encountered throughout the galaxy.
12,212 EX- Planet Earth dies. Its resources stripped and its atmosphere heavily polluted, the world becomes uninhabitable. The human race immigrates to space colonies to survive. Tensions quickly rise between rival governments and corporations who compete for limited resources, and between opposing religious movements. Galactic wide wars break out.
12,286 EX- Warring factions agree to a truce. Many of Planet Earth's original animal species begin evolving into intelligent life forms. The sentient-kind senate is established to encompass both human and Animal kind. Entire planets are settled and cities built in the name of the sentient-kind confederation, providing vast resources. Peace is restored and sentient-kind enters the Age of Enlightenment. A seventh of the galaxy has now been officially mapped.
2415 PS- In the Age of Prosperity, intelligent alien life is discovered. The DomZ species appears from the unmapped areas of the galaxy and aggressively capture countless worlds within a single year. Sentient-kind's varied military forces are unable to repel the invasion as the DomZ armada spreads across the galaxy. A new political party known as the Alpha Section rises. Mustering a private army, the Alpha Section drives back DomZ invasions on several worlds, gaining popularity in the public eye. The Alpha Section votes to assume control of the senate and declare a state of martial law in order to defeat the DomZ forces. Major political opposition stall their attempts, and the Alpha Section's campaign is halted, allowing several worlds to fall to the DomZ.
Five out of the nine systems of the sentient-kind confederation have been completely conquered. The DomZ now move to system four.
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Beyond Good & Evil: Beginnings
2435 PS: System 4- Planet Hillys
"The war has arrived at the gates of Hillys!" the bald news reporter announced dramatically. His rust red shades and neatly trimmed chin hair and triangular soul patch beard screamed of an attempt to seem cool but didn't carry very well, even with the digital enhancement from the monitor.
"This peaceful mining planet in system four is now completely encircled by the DomZ armada. General Kehck, supreme commander of the Alpha forces stationed on Hillys, would like to address a final message to the population."
The general's message proceeded to call on the Hillyans to remain faithful in the Alpha Section's effort to fight off the DomZ and to beware the terrorist group known as IRIS who seemed to be working in sympathy with the invaders. Kip watched the bulletin upside down as he lay on the sofa. The general's speech seemed encouraging, but he wasn't sure. Jade had once said he shouldn't pay attention to everything he heard on TV, while Uncle Pey'j claimed the Alpha Section was bad news altogether. But in that case what did the report mean? Was there something else going on that wasn't being reported? Why would the general and the reporter be lying? He thought maybe he should ask someone about it, but he didn't know where Pey'j was, and Jade was still outside praying.
To be exact, the girl was perched on a cliff top ledge in the shade of a freshly blossomed wisteria tree. Even at sundown the air was thick and humid, but Jade's green and aqua pants, green jacket and midriff baring white vest were airy and kept her cool. The young woman's green eyes were closed in concentration as she moved her hands in the repetitive, yoga like motions over her head and then down into her lap again. The ritual of higher conscious meditation brought overwhelming serenity to the girl's strong face that was marred by stress lines along her brow and lipstick the same colour as her name. The only accessories she carried was her S.A.C, held in place by a strap going across her body, and a green head band that held up her shortened hair which was the perfect black of the void of space.
To Jade's left sat the twelve year old goat-humanoid Fehn, trying to mimic the girl's exercise. She usually preferred solitude when meditating, but she couldn't bring herself to turn away the child's pleading eyes. If nothing else she'd be glad to introduce Fehn to the higher conscious meditation technique. The boy was finding it harder than the other orphans to cope with the loss of his parents, kidnapped during the more recent DomZ raids, and Jade had quickly decided that a good meditative trance to calm his agitated body and mind was just what he needed.
Jade found herself drawn from her mental seclusion by a pang of foreboding. Nothing had happened yet, but she trusted the effects that higher conscious meditation had on the mind, and as always her enhanced senses didn't lie. She opened her eyes just in time to catch a glimpse of the sunset before the heavens were stained toxic green as a hurricane like vortex opened in the atmosphere, the sonic boom knocking graceful seagulls from flight as it lashed through the air.
"They're coming!" Jade exclaimed, alert but not panicked. "Quick, Fehn- jump up!" she indicated her back as she moved into a crouched position. The child bounded from where he was seated and onto Jade. She managed his weight with ease and took off back toward the lighthouse, piggybacking Fehn all the way. As they ran she could hear the boy's breath growing into rapid gasps of fear. Jade wanted to take a moment to comfort Fehn, but there were only seconds to go and she couldn't afford to stop. Under the circumstances Fehn's safety, not comfort, was her first priority.
Following the sharp crack of noise from the sky, a terrible silence had fallen over the local area, even muting the sound of the ocean waves. Quite literally the calm before the storm. The nearby city was the main target of the DomZ aggression, but the small island which Jade and Fehn were on was no safe haven.
Jade's own fear threatened to bubble from her stomach and overspill into the rest of her body, but she didn't allow it to. Instead she compressed it, changed it, made it work for her. She focused her fear and turned it into energy, using it to make her run faster rather than to dull her senses. Another trick she learned from higher conscious meditation.
Reaching the base of the lighthouse she said "Go tell Pey'j; I'll take care of the shield," as she stopped to allow Fehn to leap from her back. The boy hit the ground running and disappeared into the lighthouse while Jade turned to the arch shaped console. She hit the button with its glowing palm print light, and quietly whispered encouragement as the device warmed up.
Atop the lighthouse, the lights set in the shield reflector than ringed the lantern room ignited as the disc expanded outward in segments. The domed roof of the lantern room extended upwards and channelled energy down into the reflector. The panels redirected the energy, and an iridescent barrier of kinetic force enveloped the lighthouse and the knobbly island it was built on.
"Shield activated," droned a mechanical voice.
And not a moment too soon.
Above the city, similar shields had umbrellaed into place, defending key positions. Incandescent flares were already burning where the opening shots from the DomZ fleet in orbit were obliterated against the energy fields. As always, the first attacks that came down in an unsteady trickle grew quickly into a hail of emerald green DomZ meteors that hammered against the surface of Hillys, consuming Galapagos City in light as the DomZ bombardment met the defensive barriers. Somewhere on the edge of town there was a brilliant flash as a badly maintained shield overloaded and burnt out, leaving those under its guard to the mercy of the storm.
Space rocks began falling outside the confines of the city limits, diving into the ocean and crashing into more shields or the occasional uninhabited island, moving steadily towards the lighthouse.
"WHAT! ?" Jade exclaimed in horror as the energy barrier over the lighthouse flickered out and the shield system retracted back into the tower from whence it came. "No, no!"
As though in response to the girl, an automated female voice hummed from the shield console.
"Your Optima account is three-hundred and fifty credits short. Your electrical supply has just been blocked."
"You've got to be joking!" Jade pleaded with the machine as she slapped at the activation button.
"Thank you for understanding," it replied flippantly.
Jade looked up as she racked her brains urgently for a solution to the problem. Straight above her head, a particularly fiery boulder was plummeting towards the spot where she was standing.
Only the reflexes honed over many years saved Jade. She flung herself aside as the rock hit the earth and shattered explosively. Jade rolled to her feet and looked up as another DomZ asteroid clipped the edge of the lighthouse. Stone fragments and burning lengths of timber fell from the tower of her lifelong home, adding more fuel to the already heavy rain that splattered destructively over her home island. Another green glowing boulder hurtled down towards Jade's position. She executed a back flip, rebounding off of her hands and back onto her feet as the rock plunged into the earth with another deafening crash. Jade gasped breathlessly but remained focused as she watched for further threats to her life.
"Jade!" several young voices began crying out over the din of impacts. The girl looked for the source of the new noise, and spotted it in the funnelled entrance to the lighthouse. The orphans in Jade's care had gathered just outside the doorway, calling for her to get to safety.
Jade fumed at the kid's recklessness. She screamed "Get back inside and-"
Jade's meditation enhanced senses twitched.
She looked up, and above her a lone asteroid was coming down towards the island. This one was different- bigger, with no fire clinging to it and glowing a green stronger than any she had seen so far.
There was no time for another warning.
The DomZ projectile struck the earth in front of the lighthouse, and in place of an explosion was terrible tremble as the boulder jerked sharply, the ground caving in under its weight.
With fearful yells that made Jade's heart clench, she caught sight of all six of her orphans falling into the crater. She didn't make the fatal mistake of rushing to their aid. She knew what was happening.
Like demons from hell, three poison coloured objects floated out of the glowing mouth of the pit. They were triangular shaped, the corners on top protruding above the rest of each mass like sharp shoulder bones, the lower ends tapering into long, segmented tails. Six ribcage blades held a man-sized, transparent purple crystal in the central section of each object. Muffled screams and pleas came from within the crystals. The one at the fore of the trio held Fehn, trapped and struggling frantically in his diamond prison. Kip and Pablo occupied the other two.
The screams for help suddenly stopped. All three of the kids simultaneously froze, then as one fell limp in their confinement, though their bodies remained somehow upright and rigid. Dead faces vanished in green lights that made it difficult for Jade to look at them without hurting her eyes. She clenched her jaw, not allowing her emotions any chance to overwhelm her when she needed to stay focused- she'd need to give it everything she had if she was to free the orphans.
The pointed corners of each object levered up as they stretched out spindly appendages. Three spiked digits at the end of each limb reached out to seize the lip of the hole they'd emerged from.
Jade glared at the entities as they pulled themselves onto solid ground, tails coiling beneath each one to take their weight. These things were the cause of the destruction wrought on both Hillys and numerous other worlds. They were the enemy of sentient-kind and everything it stood for.
Sarcophagus domzii- the mainstream breed of the DomZ species. These things were the DomZ themselves.