Tuesday August 5, 2003
Book 3: Under New Management — Part III: Board of Accidental Tourism
Note: S.T.I.Z. is short for Sol Teraport Interdiction Zone, and is pronounced "stiz." It's the zone in which the U.N.S. (United Nations of Sol) T.A.D. (Teraport Area Denial) systems prevent anyone from teraporting in. A lot of money has been spent on making the S.T.I.Z. very, very LARGE, so that any object successfully teraporting in is still several light-hours away from Earth.

Back when the Sol System wormgate still worked (it doesn't, thanks to Admiral Breya, who managed to disable just over 16% of the wormgates in the galactic network in a single stroke) travellers faced a similar problem. The only way out of the system was to travel several light-hours out at sub-light speeds. In essence the only thing that has changed is that now there's no bottleneck, and the goons watching the borders are trigger-happier.

Or in the case of Corporal Robert "Squinchy" Obscroy, trigger-grumpier.


Jevee Ceeta: I don't think we should pass judgement on these robots.
Tagon: I'm not going to let them ruin this system for the people currently living here.
Jevee Ceeta: I know. But with the teraport, we could hand them off to people who like to pass judgment.
Narrator: A bit later, aboard the U.N.S. Battleplate Tunguska. . .
Bobby: General, a giant sail-ship just teraported outside the S.T.I.Z. May I shoot it?
Sign: Push me