Hello, my name is…
1 – Hello, my name is Jack. The African colonies are interesting. I love visiting, but my word are they not exactly what I’d call normal. The Africans have totally different cultural ideas, and they love planets that I could barely live on. Oh, every planet has a range of environments. They are planets after all. Really big balls of dirt. But them Africans sure do like to place their cities and spaceports in the really hot parts of those planets. I try not to stay in those places long.
2 – Hello, my name is Charles. The 1700s were a time of religious revival in America. The First Great Awakening it is called. New preachers taught that the Bible said all men were created equal, and that it was our place to read the Bible and debate its meaning with anyone, even our ministers. They challenged authority to fractious Colonists who had left England to escape religious persecution. They were a willing and ready congregation for those preachers.
3 – Hello, my name is Betty. The colonists of Novaya Rodina were screened for any illness, and any genetic predilections towards them. Every future colonist was similarly screened, to keep the planet itself from killing them. They were an entire population chosen from the best of the best of the best, both physically and mentally. The planet still almost killed them, but the survivors adapted and in time became something even greater. Novayan. What many call a new race of humanity.
4 – Hello, my name is Jack. The Indian worlds are different from most other worlds I’ve been to. India is one of the oldest civilizations out there, with cities thousands of years old on Earth. I’ve been there, and the sense of age is amazing. The crazy thing is, they’ve somehow managed to keep that feel in their new colonies. Going there, it’s hard to realize that they’re only decades or centuries old. They feel…real old. Established. Like India has always been there.
5 – Hello, my name is Charles. The traveling preachers of the First Great Awakening traveled across the Colonies, and even into Indian Territory to spread their word. They said we should have an emotional relationship with God, not merely sit in a pew and listen to what a priest told us in a dry sermon. The worth of man was based on the way he lived, not the class or even race he was born into. The King of England, who of course ruled by Divine Providence, did not approve of such teachings.
6 – Hello, my name is Dawn. We are a product of the normal universe we live in. Einsteinium Space or normalspace as many call it. The universe we can see from the surface of a planet. We can no more live in hyperspace without shielding than any other human. But there’s a theory that hyperspace isn’t another universe at all, but a transition between universes. It says that if we go deep enough, we just might find these universes, or people from them using hyperspace to travel like we do.
7 – Hello, my name is Betty. The people of Novaya Rodina have spent centuries slowly diverging from the rest of humanity. Between the early genetic screening and later planned and unplanned genetic manipulation, the change has been pronounced. The first difference that most people notice is that the Novayans are far stronger than other humans. They spend their lives fighting Novayan gravity, which gives them endurance and strength that few who grew on lesser worlds ever achieve.
8 – Hello, my name is Jack. The Indian worlds are unique. They’re part of the British Commonwealth, but not part of the Western Alliance. Makes for real interesting politics. They’ve remained neutral in matters between the Big Three alliances for instance, maintaining their official pacifism. Gandhi would be proud. Of course, they still have one of the larger militaries out there. They may not want to start a fight, but they will, by all of their gods, finish one that some other idiot starts.
9 – Hello, my name is Charles. To the authorities in England, the First Great Awakening was an attack against King and Country, a rebellion in thought if not in deed. They tried to silence the traveling preachers, to force them to give up on their foolish ideas. Many pastors died when they were lynched by religious mobs, or were hung by British courts. My family stayed out of the line of fire, preferring to do business and make money. But increased taxes and trade restrictions hurt even us.
10 – Hello, my name is Betty. The thicker air of Novaya Rodina has caused many changes as well. Visitors have to wear ear, mouth, and nose protection to keep the pressure from doing damage. The native Novayans on the other hand can breathe that thicker air without any technological support. In fact, they find Earth normal air pressure to be uncomfortably thin. Hyperventilation and feinting is common when they come on board non-Novayan starships. Interesting times those.
11 – Hello, my name is Jack. The Indians are…what’s the ten-dollar word for it again? Polytheist. They believe in a lot of gods. A god for every idea and pastime and job and more. Kinda like the Catholic Saints actually now that I think of it. Anyways, their cities have lots of temples, as many as one of ours has churches, but each one is devoted to a different god. Complete with statues and everything. And in India herself, some of them are thousands of years old. Now that’s history there.
12 – Hello, my name is Charles. It is interesting that we would have been happy to remain British forever. Some of us were outcasts, the dregs of English society, pilgrims who came looking for freedom from religious oppression. Others of us were businessmen, come to make more money. But we were all British. We wanted to be British. Most of us thought we were loyal to England. But England did not agree.
13 – Hello, my name is Dawn. I am the mind of Normandy. She is an old ship, part of the first generation of gravtech carriers the Republic of California built after Contact. They retired her long ago, after more capable designs eclipsed her capabilities. I got her during The War, after Malcolm and I found her rusting away. Not that ships rust in space of course. I just like the poetic nature of the word. She’s better now. The Peloran saw to that. She’s a good body to have.
14 – Hello, my name is Betty. Novaya Rodina was only the second major world we colonized without a moon, after Venus. Both worlds have small asteroids orbiting their star in company with them, but these are nowhere near large enough to be considered moons. Because of this, Novaya lacks the daily tides of Earth. The local animal and plant life are adapted to that kind of world, making them distinctly different to Earth species in many ways.
15 – Hello, my name is Jack. I’ve been to Persia a few times. It’s one of those really old places. Well, all places are really old, but Persia’s been held by a serious civilization for thousands of years. Means their cities are some of the oldest on Earth. Real good places to search for information about our past. You’d be amazed what you can find when you start looking. Persia is one of the places we still do. We’re always finding something new. Well…old. Whatever.
16 – Hello, my name is Charles. The British governors shut down the local Colonial governments. They silenced newspapers and took over private homes for British soldiers to live in. They arrested Colonists and shipped them to England for trial. They banned the importation of weapons and levied new taxes. Even my family began running into economic problems. In the end, the British tried to confiscate Colonial guns and kill President John Hancock of the outlawed Continental Congress.
17 – Hello, my name is Betty. Before we entered space, the evolutionists taught that life on other worlds would have different genetic codes then we did. The animals and plants would be incompatible with Terran life. But on Novaya Rodina, like every other world we’ve colonized, we found instead that the underlying genetic code of the local life is nearly identical to Terra. We can eat them, and they can eat us. They may appear different, but life as we know it is related at a genetic level.
18 – Hello, my name is Jack. Persia’s had a long life as civilizations go. Thousands of years. They’ve seen lots of nations, lots of faiths, and lots of people flow through them. And while others have conquered their land, nobody ever really conquered the people. They waited, and when their occupiers revealed their idiocy, they took over again with their Persian Revolutions. Every time. Governments and names may come and go, but Persia is eternal in their eyes.
19 – Hello, my name is Charles. In 1775, Reverend Clark and Deacon Parker of Lexington changed the world. Clark welcomed John Hancock and Samuel Adams into his home when the British occupied Boston. Parker organized the town militia in front of their church. And when the British came to demand their surrender, they remained standing. The British killed eight Colonists that day. It is called The Shot Heard Round The World.
20 – Hello, my name is Dawn. The Wolfenheim Project was a giant leap for us. A new colony expedition, not supported by any major government. Funded by a single family in fact. Of course they were bigger than most families, and better connected. But most of the family didn’t even know they were funding it. They didn’t react well when they found out. And they were very well connected. Their reaction was impressive.
21 – Hello, my name is Betty. Everywhere we go, we find life that is compatible with us, that has the same basic genetic code. Worlds we can live on are far more common and far more hospitable than pre-space scientists suggested. Why? Why are the Aliens we meet as human as we are? Why do so many systems have so many habitable worlds? Why is life out there related to life right here? These are real big questions, and we are searching for the answers real hard.
22 – Hello, my name is Jack. Persia went through some real changes back in the 2000s. For one, they got rid of the name Iran. Iranian fanatics did enough crazy stuff during the Islamic Jihad that the Persian Revolution wanted nothing to do with that name anymore. They also made certain said fanatics contracted a permanent case of dead along the way. And a surprising number of the Revolutionaries are still kicking. A bit on the old side mind you, but they don’t forget. Kinda scary that.
23 – Hello, my name is Charles. During the Revolutionary War my family was Tory. We remained loyal to England. Mostly. We did very little real fighting though. We were merchants after all. And we were not named Hurst. The elements of my family that survived in Normandy, also not Hurst, had a different agenda. To them, the war in the Colonies was one more chance for France to weaken England. They took it. That was one of the more interesting times in my family’s history.
24 – Hello, my name is Betty. Our oldest religions teach that God created the universe, and all life in it. That He created us in His image. They say that is why all life is so similar to ours. Other people theorize that an older race seeded or engineered life through the galaxy. And others say that life has simply evolved along similar paths due to circumstances we don’t understand. And then some ask if those theories are as different as they appear. Not many like that question.
25 – Hello, my name is Jack. I’ve read a lot of crazy studies focused on Persia’s Iranian days. The problem they still have is that some people think the stuff the Iranian regimes did reflects the true culture of Persia. You know that’s like saying that Hitler reflected traditional German values. Everybody’s had their unfair share of nut cases in charge. Even America. If you don’t believe me, read up on some twenty-first century history. Things got real bad all over before they got better.
26 – Hello, my name is Charles. The Revolutionary War was a long and hard fight. It was not really a revolution of course. We did not overthrow the English government. War of Independence is more accurate, but everybody knows it as the Revolution. Possibly that is because our survival sparked true revolutions in so many other countries throughout the world. Death to Kings. Rise of People. It was a Revolution of Thought. So maybe Revolution fits after all.
27 – Hello, my name is Malcolm. My mission was to launch a colony mission farther away than any previous colony. We called it the Wolfenheim Project. We had all the money we needed. We had enough ships to make the trip in security. We even managed to recruit the right colonists. We had all the support we needed. What could possibly go wrong? No, I didn’t ask that question. Even then, I wasn’t that stupid. But maybe I thought it a bit too loudly.
28 – Hello, my name is Betty. Pre-space scientists would have considered our colonization of Independence to be a remote possibility. You see, Tau Aurigae is a G8 III, a yellow star whose surface is cooler than Earth’s sun. But she is a giant star, one that reached the end of her previous life cycle long ago, expanded, and presumable burned her habitable planets away. But when Independence Seven arrived in system, she found three planets orbiting the star. One of them was a paradise.
29 – Hello, my name is Jack. Most Persians follow Zoroastrianism ever since the Islamic Jihad. It was a big religion native to the area back before the original Islamic conquest, and it’s made a big comeback. Looking from the outside, the faith seems fairly simple. Creator God that’s good, beware that nasty guy that wants to destroy everything, and the best way to beat him is doing good onto others. Seems a bit familiar to me. I’m rather in favor of starting out by being nice to others.
30 – Hello, my name is Charles. There were two main winners in the Revolutionary War. The Colonies of course. The French as well. They weakened the British Empire by helping tear the Colonies away. Unfortunately, a century of on and off war with the British had strained the French economy to the breaking point. My family in Normandy had done well for themselves, but the rest of the nation was troubled. Those troubles soon rolled into a full-scale Revolution that changed everything again.
31 – Hello, my name is Betty. Defiance is the outer planet in the Independence system. It’s a very appropriate name. A tiny little toxic, corrosive ice ball with only trace atmosphere, it takes a particularly defiant individual to live there. We probably never would have bothered with the place if it weren’t full of valuable minerals and if her low gravity hadn’t made it easy to mine. But those factors make Defiance a surprisingly attractive world. For certain definitions of the term.