• 📅 April 2023 is YE 45.3 in the RP.

[Seventh Fleet] Fletcher's Lesson


Convention Veteran
RP Date
YE 45.2
RP Location
YSS Denetsu

Fletcher was a patient man, but as the information came in and White Hammer was about to visit Gashmere for the second time, he was decidedly impatient. They weren't far outside the system, he hadn't wanted to make it look like he was hovering. However, now he would definitely be hovering.

The fact was that all options were on the table. They had given him a free hand to do as he wished. He could do anything he wished, up to and including just destroying the rebellious planet. It wouldn't even be the first planet he personally had turned into a field of rubble or even the second. If he did so, he would answer only to the Empress and the Mistress Taisho about the appropriate necessity of the act. However, he suspected that it wouldn't come to that. There were too many Kodian loyalists who loved their homeworld and Yamatai. The destruction would hurt the Empire, as satisfying as Irim might find it.

For a moment he contemplated what Irim would do in his shoes, short of destroying the planet. She did not suffer fools gladly. To be foolish in her presence was to have your life shortened considerably. She would confront the General Assembly directly, probably killing or maiming many of them personally. Gashmere would become a bloodbath as any Kodian even suspected of disloyalty to the empress would be arrested and likely executed. There would be zero mercy for anyone who sought to oppose the Empress. Internment Camps possibly. It would be destruction second only to Rafaris.

Fletcher wanted to avoid a bloodbath, he disliked the idea of killing innocents. The fact was that the majority of Gashmere supported Yamatai. He had wanted to avoid the necessity of a full occupation. There was no way around the fact that it would turn some of those who had supported Yamatai into rebels. Operations against insurgents were difficult at the best of times. However, it was clear Gashmere needed a object lesion, not being spanked with an axe.

That said, a demonstration needed to be made. "Give me a list of all impact zones by region and likely death toll." He said, calmly as a plan came together. He designed a targeting priority list and sent it out to the fleet with some special orders. Then they were in orbit of Gashmere.

"This is Seventh Fleet Actual, Taisho Fletcher speaking. Gashmere orbit is under martial law effective immediately. A anti-xenoist attack has launched asteroids at Gashmere, the station, and Gashmere's hammmer. We are unable to tug all of the debris out of orbit. At this juncture we must sweep the whole thing out of orbit. Consider your vessels commandeered. Your individual flight plans are attached. If our attacks are not precisely coordinated, we'll find ourselves with a Kessler cascade, rendering Gashmere orbit inhospitable for a long time. Authorizations for these actions are attached."

Fletcher paused to let that register. "It's been said that if you are not part of the solution, you're part of the problem. In this case, if you're not part of the solution, you will become part of the precipitate, and Yamatai's finest forensic scientists will not be able to find all of your falling pieces. You have your orders. Fletcher out."

One of the ships decide to defy Fletcher's orders and was instantly vaporized by Aether fire, the rest of the ships in orbit fell into line. He looked out over the tactical map. "Tell Chusa and his ships to, intercept and rescue the station and those on it. We need to minimize casulties."

Fletcher turned to a communications officer. "Put me in touch with every member of the Gashmere General assembly, I don't care where they are or their state of undress. If we have to teleport someone down there to personally project my message, do it."

As he spoke, the sky of Gashmere lit up with Aether Fire. On the night side of the planet, the brightness of the discharges turned the sky into day and various animals thinking it was morning, began to awake. On the day side, the crisscrossing lines of fire outshone the sun. After several minutes of sustained fire, it finally stopped.

"Open a line to the General Assembly and broadcast it to the system." Fletcher said, looking to the screens that would show him the General Assembly.

"There are now several asteroids still on course for Gashmere one for each member of this assembly. Each and every one of you must decide for your people if you want Yamatai's help or not. You have sixty seconds from my mark to vote, and there will be no abstentions, not voting is a vote against Yamatai's help. Mark."

There was a tense sixty seconds as each of them voted. Many of them voted for Yamatai, some of them voted against. He had ensured that their vote would be public record, public memory. Then the voting ended.

"As you wish." Fletcher said, lances of white aether fire launching out of the ships of seventh fleet, destroying the exact number who had voted with Yamatai.

"There asteroids still in flight will kill a hundred and eight million Kodians. In light of this irresponsibility, I am immediately disbanding the General Assembly of Gashmere, assuming direct control, and choosing more wisely then they." A second salvo of white lighting flashed out, destroying all but one of the asteroids.

"In deference to those who wish to see their own people die. Let this crater warn you about what could happen if Yamatai did what they wanted. Nothing." Then deep in a part of Gashmere, the asteroid hit with the force of ten megatons, forming a crater almost two kilometers in diameter. It was an impact that would leave a scar on the planet, but wouldn't kill it. He had chosen that one specially because the estimated death toll was zero.

"This, this is a violation of the treaty of Gashmere!" One of the former members of the assembly sputtered.

"No, a violation of the treaty would be something like a Battleship. Oh, wait, you already did that didn't you?"

"An killing citizens of Yamatai is an appropriate response to that?"

"Ah, so you do want to be part of Yamatai after all. Your vote said otherwise. What a surprise, since you've been acting like enemy combatants. Yamatai to this point has been pleased to allow you to work out your own squabbles without our interference. However, the Anti-Xenoists have declared war on Yamatai, and so it is war we shall give them. You condemned millions of your own people to death citizen, fortunately for them we chose more wisely."

"Do you think you can get away with these threats? All of Gashmere will rise against you!" The Kodian raged.

"I think the people of Gashmere have too long tolerated an ideology that values suicidal independence over the lives of their fellow Kodians. It is a death cult that is a danger to themselves and to all of Gashmere and apparently now to Yamatai as well. We will no longer allow your petty internal squabbles to spill on over to us or to our people." Fletcher responded.