Sunday July 21, 2002
Book 2: The Teraport Wars — The Teraport Wars


Narrator: Safe aboard a rescued prison module, kevyn has an epiphany, and powers up his no-longer-jammed hypernode. It's about time he phoned home...
Kevyn: Petey, this is kevyn. I need you to run some very scary numbers for me. I just had a bad idea.
Narrator: Unfortunately, last week we left some f'sherl-ganni smart munitions in flight, and we really need to get back to the beginning of that thread lest they go off unattended. Hopefully Kevyn's idea will keep...
Kevyn: Oh, sure. I'll just write it down on my hand here so I don't forget it, shall I?
Narrator: The fleetmind is very quick to see the missiles for what they are.
Athens: That's odd. The star just lost a tiny percentage of its mass.
Narrator: If artificial intelligences had hearts, this entire dialog would last less than one beat.
Nejjat AI: Mass-change confirmed. I just tracked twenty-point-oh-oh-three billion distinct gate-pulses, simultanious to the stellar mass change.
Petey: It's a counter-attack. Prepare for an assault from these pulsing mini-gates.
Human AI Hardhat: Confirmed. I'm tracking inbound breacher missiles, and teraport jamming systmes.
Human AI Hardhat: Bad odds here, there are over sixt-
Narrator: If artificial intelligences had hearts, this silence would mean one of them was no longer beating.
Athens: Bad odds confirmed, Enemy anti-port jammers are in effect, and we don't have the drones to counter this many breachers.
Narrator: Artificial intelligences don't have hearts, though, and that allows a frightening brand of defensive efficiency. Whether this is good news depends on whose side you're on...
Petey: The odds look better if we start using enemy habitats as shields.