Planet of War

Diary of Carl Gehrig

April 14, 2466

Mars is a planet of war. So named after the Roman god. So named because it's always what happens in the end. The second closest planet to Earth in our star system. And yet always eager to get further away.

We're on Phobos right now, waiting for the planet's latest rebellion to be crushed. Just after two decades since the Third Martian War, and already it's made a bid for independence, this time from the MIDA. Government taken, Earth-loyalists set to be executed or, in the case of my family and myself, safe on Phobos. Not on Deimos though, what with it being converted to some inter-system starship for a colonization mission to Tau Ceti. I can't help but wonder what the point of it is. Why establish a colony when you won't even be able to communicate with it in a reasonable amount of time, let alone travel there?

Done my chores for the day. Head out the airlock, collect rations, head back in through the airlock. Rinse, repeat and wait for UESC forces to put down the latest rebellion. Wish I could say more, but Phobos is little more than an asteroid. It's hard enough to walk properly on the damn thing.

All I can do is write. And just wait for this all to boil over.

April 24, 2466

Had lentil soup for dinner again. If there's one more thing that I'm sick of more than Phobos's landscape, it's that bloody soup. But hey, misery loves company, and I can take solace that mum's got as sick of it as I have.

Don't see dad much these days. He's at the moon's command post, liaising with Earth. Government official and all that. From what we've heard, the MIDA's control of the surface is hardly solid. With any luck, it'll collapse before the Earth ships get here. But until then, I'm stuck on this asteroid/moon.

Funny…Phobos was named after the Greek god of fear.

Yet all I feel is boredom.

May 20, 2466

A few dozen people died today.

Oh yes. One of the habitation domes was breached by a MIDA operative. Bastard probably smuggled on-board a UESC evacuation ship. Can't be a pleasant way to go, all things considered. Asphyxiation…

You can breathe fine on Mars. Air's a little thin and dusty, but otherwise, one manages. Of course, now that UESC forces are in orbit, it remains to be seen how long the MIDA will hold out.

Hopefully not too long. Sooner this ends, the sooner we get back to Mars. And the sooner we get back to Mars, the sooner we can have something other than lentil soup.

May 30, 2466

From orbit, I could see fires. They didn't last long though. Due to the thin air, fires don't last long on Mars.

I'm not feeling well, with all this low gravity. Sooner I get back to Mars, the better. And I really hope it is Mars, because heading to Earth instead would make readjustment even harder.

June 19, 2466

The UESC delivered an ultimatum to the MIDA today-surrender or suffer the consequences. Cause it was more eloquent than that, but there's only so much holo-news one can watch before drowsing off. Suffice to say, it hasn't surrendered and right now, the planet's capital is suffering the wrath of orbital bombardment.

And the bastards are still holding on. "Free Mars" and all that. What makes them think they'll do any better than those who came before? What makes them think that we want to be 'free?' What makes them think they have to live up to this planet's namesake?

July 9, 2466

The rebellion's over. We'll be heading down to the planet tomorrow. Already I can see trade ships in the Martian sky alongside the military ones. Three short months of war, and the planet's back on track. Not too bad I suppose-the last one lasted four years.

I can't help but think of Deimos though, of the ship that's being built. Can't help but wonder if Tau Ceti IV will meet the same fate.

Still, there can't be anything out there worse than us, right?