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A note from Mirrored

A short Interlude to tide you over until next saturday.

USS: Inter Authority Incident Reported

Summoning Authorities.. Four Responses...

All Authorities Accounted For

Commencing USS Earth Council #5

Merciful Heavens(Cold Outrage): Gazers Grin, you have interfered in a task we all agreed I would handle. I demand you stop your interference at once.

Gazers Grin (Careful Formality Slipping Into Arrogance): You are operating outside of your given Authority. In your own words, you were to, study this world and refine the Systems interactions with them to better fit their psychological and physical potential while preserving their culture. The murder of natives to shape their society to match your own prejudices is very different from that stated goal. If I had not interfered you would be responsible for the planned murder of a native. You were not even particularly smart or subtle about it.

Merciful Heavens(Cold Outrage): He is an auril sensitive, their damaging affect on both the System as a whole and their own worlds is well documented. You yourself tried to spare this world his existence and were punished for it.

Gazers Grin (Stretching and Unblinking Eyestalks): I put his life at risk to protect this world from prejudices such as yours and prevent scenarios like this exact idiocy from occurring. Besides, we are servants of the System and as my punishment shows, The System gives no allowance for the murder of auril sensitives! The System trusts its Authorities right up until it doesn't. Your insane actions could have seen us both purged!

It That Rewards Savagery (Briefly Opens One Eye): Foolishness. You cannot protect a race from its own nature. Even if such idiocy was possible, it would be opposite of what the System is designed to do. Merciful Heavens, your people arrived at their.... solution to this problem on their own and this world will do the same. They will adapt, or they will die. Thrive or wither. It is exactly that simple.

Gazers Grin (Peering Contempt): Solution? You mean the systematic butchery of their own people who show talent? It is rank cowardice and far worse, enforced mediocrity.

Merciful Heavens(Outrage): You do not get to judge my people for our commitment to the System's mission. You own decadent and failing people barely qualify as System contributors these days. The Scourges threaten their borders and a hundred others. We cannot allow these horrors another toehold in System space.

Hand on the Scales (Confused Formality): I feel the need to interrupt, as I am growing increasingly confused by exactly what is going on here. Is not auril energy a widespread tool, spread by Scourges and System both due to its vital utility? Certainly its Scourge origin is cause for concern but its been safely used since long before the original founding of the System. Historical records postulate that auril is as old as the universe itself, if not older.

Gazers Grin (Cautious Wisdom): It is not auril energy itself that is the issue, but their capabilities with it. They show a rare talent for the fine manipulation and external projection of auril or 'auril sensitivity', as many call it. This can be rather easily trained into the ability to influence other members of their species.

Hand on the Scales (Cocked Eyebrow): Influence how?

Merciful Heavens(Clear Disdain With Hints of Shame): A crude but effective emotional control. Most commonly used to impart loyalty and increase social standing. Worlds where the natives are auril sensitives almost always devolve into rigid hierarchies with clans of sensitives at the top and a controlled soldier cast at the bottom. Such worlds rarely bother to become System contributors, instead they form mini empires that waste Aurilin on a useless and paranoid ruler class. Inevitably they fail after a few centuries and are devoured by the Scourges.

Hand on the Scales (Cocked Eyebrow): I thought the System disallowed all forms of direct mental control. It's well known for it in fact. Its obedience protocols are a stark example of how far it will go to avoid such things. It also has made terrible example of organizations or races that try to achieve such power over its Users.

Gazers Grin (Authority): All technological and outside forms of mental control certainly. A good portion of System Implants are countermeasures to just that. It is unable or unwilling to provide protection against auril however. Luckily, only the Primal Plague has ever mastered cross species mental domination using auril. Besides, the System classifies auril as a natural force and manipulation using it no different than the use of pheromones or other innate forms of emotional manipulation. Minute levels of Auril are found in all living things after all, and all living creatures are a bundle of instincts and pre programmed responses designed to be manipulated by others of their species. It is a part of social behaviour, most commonly mating, child rearing and leadership.

Merciful Heavens(Clear Disdain): There is no comparing the social traits that a species has evolved and been assimilating into their culture over millions of years and the sudden advent of auril energy during the most unstable time in their entire history. Radical action is required to prevent all our effort going to waste.

Hand on the Scales (Contemplative): A working solution is difficult to imagine. Obviously we lack enough fine control over the System to simply limit such sensitives access to auril. You mentioned simply killing off such sensitives was not an option, Elder?

It That Rewards Savagery (Lazy Disdain): Humans are social dependants, much more than Merciful Heaven's people. Arranging the systematic slaughter of other humans would be impossible to enforce worldwide and come with enough psychological side effects it is hard to imagine it would be worth the effort. Besides, Merciful Heaven's people produce one auril sensitive for every thousand people. My sample size is limited, but humans seem closer to one in fifty.

Merciful Heavens(Alarm): One in Fifty! Sample size? How many sensitives have you found already?

It That Rewards Savagery (Toothy Grin): Four, out of slightly less than two hundred auril Users. Such talent cannot be contained easily. Nor would I allow it. They will learn to master their gifts or those gifts will choke the life from them. There is no place for self castrates on a challenged world.

Merciful Heavens (Sullen): I must admit that I have erred. I allowed myself to become emotional and acted alone when clearly the situation required further examination and a multiple Authority response. I accept whatever punishment the System sees fit. Yet, do not allow my mistake to blind you to the necessity of action. It is imperative that we create an official policy to deal with auril sensitivity. An auril hierarchy is not a desirable outcome for this world, if only because as soon as it becomes obvious this world is headed in that direction, many contributor worlds will pull out.

Gazers Grin (Self Affirming Twisting of Tentacles): I'm sure more subtle pressures than base slaughter can be applied to reduce the probability of such an outcome. The Velorie Undercast should come in handy when we can see to their arrival. Their alien natures will make them impossible for sensitives to manipulate. Although those escaped slaves have worrying aspects to their own psychology, they could serve as an effective bulwark against sensitive manipulations. You should find a way to integrate them into native society.

It That Rewards Savagery (Tongue Running Across Sharp Teeth): Allow me to handle the existing sensitives. User KL7I 843OY6 has given me some ideas. I will make an effort to guide them onto a more productive path. It will be... fun. I may need some additional resources however. Considering her fervor, I'm sure Merciful Heavens will be willing to donate some towards the cause.

Merciful Heavens (Wary Deflection): Of course eldest. Are there any other issues to raise while we are gathered?

Hand on the Scales (Contemplative): Speaking of Nano Arks, what is the latest time frame for when we can deploy their assets? Mission expertise could be wielded to great effect at the moment. It will be months before we have local resources advanced enough to deal with some of the Feral Artisans and Tyrant Spore Infections. At this stage, all it would take to destroy an Enclave is a Spore Siren or Feral Artisan in the wrong spot.

Merciful Heavens(Confidence): I am glad to report that despite a slightly high Injection failure rate, we are ahead of schedule. While an exact time is impossible to pin down, as each reconstituted User acclimatizes differently, it should not be long. Simple minds heal faster.

Hand on the Scales (Curiosity): A high Injection failure rate? The only thing that destabilizes the local Fold environment is movement through it. Injections rates should have dropped, they are too expensive and inefficient. Is it either of the Primal Scourges? Perhaps an overlooked Tyrant Spore Dyson Sphere is nearby? That would be unfortunate.

It That Rewards Savagery (Slow Breathing): It is only a slightly greater than normal amount of incoming injections, a combination of Grey Legion and a few unknown but probably System race related Injections.

Merciful Heavens(Professional Facade): What about the rest of the Scourges, what do we know of their expansion? Is the Inoculation still spreading at the predicted rate? What about the Red Woods, Rebel Instruments and the Hollow Majesties?

Gazers Grin (Annoyed Blinking): The last set of predictions for the Inoculation ITRS gave out seems to be holding true. Unfortunately. The Feral Artisans remain the same enigma they have been since the dawn of recorded history. They are an unwelcome wildcard but not a terminal threat to this world for centuries yet. They wield great power but are too unfocused to be a priority. 

Hand on the Scales (Formal): I have purged a few Rebel Instrument sites and isolated the rest for now, hopefully without access to System infrastructure the parasites will stagnate and be destroyed by other Scourges. The Hollow Majesties are still hiding and adapting, I have managed to find and disable only a few homunculi. Which will only mildly inconvenience them. I detect traces of dozens more across Earth.

Merciful Heavens (Deep Loathing): You have done well HOTS. You show a talent for the eradication of System parasites. It brings me great joy to hear of homunculi being destroyed. They are traitorous perversions of what the System is for. For all they espouse the virtue of strength, the selfish madness of the Hollow Majesties aids only the Scourges. As the System weakens, so do they.

Hand on the Scales (Awkward Acceptance of Compliment): It is what I have trained for my entire life. I am glad for this chance to repay a small part of what is owed for the System's salvation of my world.

It That Rewards Savagery (Relaxed and Fanged Smile): Planet side,The Red Woods is fortifying its few Injection sites. It should remain passive beyond slow expansion, it is not an aggressive Scourge. It has benefited greatly from the damage done by the Inoculation, occupying otherwise sterile areas. The orbital situation is still too young to read into, but it seems to have a strong foothold, along with the Tyrant Spores. There is little we can do about that yet. We have, for obvious reasons, concentrated our resources planetside. Does anyone have anything to add?

Hand on the Scales/ Gazers Grin/Merciful Heavens(Silence)

It That Rewards Savagery (Snort): Well then, it seems we are done here.

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Mirrored

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