The Three Colonies

COLNET Log Date: TCD 478-309

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It's me, Praetel!

Hello, friend! It’s Praetel, your friendly nebular spacer from the Eastern Reaches Mining Consortium on break from the ore chutes to bring you another blurb for your COLNET feeds. Today I’m here to talk about the colonies. Yes, the Three Colonies we know and love!

What’s that? Old news you say? Well, I’ve got hard fact stacks that say different.

Did you know that that fewer than two-thirds of all colonists have set foot on a colony besides their colony-of-birth? Yes, that includes enlisted CDF personnel! And hold on to your rebreathers, friends, because fewer than five percent of colonists have seen all three.

Now that, friends, much like gravity, is oppressive. But don’t you worry, ol’ Praetel’s been around. Sure, you could watch the GOVNET or CDF feeds if you want the “official” story. But I think you’ll find mine more… clarifying. Or at the very least, more entertaining!

Respitia: First of the three, home of the Founding Council and the heart of colonial manufacturing. You might be the heir to a wealthy debutant or executive, clerking for the Council. Or an industrial-ring fab worker queuing for your daily vat loaf. The diversity of people and circumstance there is staggering, and, for most, opportunity slips through their fingers like so much dry sand.

Thanks to the ERMC–the unofficial sponsors of my humble feed–I’ve had the privilege of seeing Respitia first hand. Well, not exactly first hand. As a spacer born-and-bred, my tolerance for gravity is… limited. Oh, don’t get your chisel in a bind, I said I’d been around. I didn’t say nothing about no solid ground.

But, lest you doubt the veracity of my tale, I’ve shipped enough ore to Respitia’s fabrication and manufactory plants to build the the CDN fleet thrice over, and met my share of dusters. I’ve even seen an honest-to-Twelfth Founding Councilman in the flesh. Some of him was flesh, anyway.

I’m sad to say the plight of the dusters is real. There’s a lots of pain and heartache on that desert orb. The fabricators and manufactories run day and night, orbital and planet-side, and the poor dusters have little choice but to get in line and keep them running. Lots of widows and orphans get made that way, but it beats slow starvation on Council rations.

They have a saying there: “There’s the haves, and there’s everyone else.”

Billings Point Corporate Settlement

Aegia: A hard world for hard people. A natural fortress and headquarters of the Colonial Defense Forces. A place where faith is stronger than granite, and the mountains only get bigger the further you climb. A coincidence they recruit more Marines per capita than the other colonies? I think not.

These are my people. Maybe they take life a bit more seriously than me–okay, a lot more serious–but Aegians know their rocks. Their cities are literally built in the side of them! Oxygen’s too thick on the surface and damn thin on the peaks. Ironic, I know. But it’s just right just near the summits of their largest mountains.

And when I say large, I mean large. Like, visible from orbit large. I’ve seen ’em all, what with all our refueling stops near Prime. Best shore leave in the Cradle, Aegia Prime is. It’s the primary assembly and training yards of the CDF. The ale and hard wine there are abundant, and the Marines and sailors have the craziest stories, usually about each other.

Just don’t get between them when they get to the punchline!

Vestia: A tiny verdant moon orbiting a gas giant. The lush green biomass and ample fresh water provide fuel for the thousands of square kilometers of vat farms that keep even the poorest colonists in their daily loaf of fermented protein. The air is clean and breathable, by us and the multitude of deadly flora and fauna. There, your belly might be full, but every breath could truly be your last.

The Vat Farmers of Vestia

Now I don’t know if Vestians are insanely brave or insanely dumb, somewhere in the middle I’d wager. Twelfth knows I’m grateful for my daily Council rats they make there. But the things I see coming out of their HAZNET feeds are pure nightmare fuel.

Insects that lay their eggs in your brain. Carnivorous plants that dissolve you alive. Who would want to work in a place like that, let alone raise a family there?

No, I’ve never been to Vestia! Are you crazy? Screw that place with an ore sampler. Okay, so what, I’ve just seen two out of three. That’s one more than 66% of you out there according to the fact stacks, and I’m not even colony born!

Point is, I’m a reliable source for all things Three Colonies and Cradle Nebula. Ninety-two subs doesn’t lie. I’m practically famous on Ore Platform Twelve-Alpha, blessed be her holy hull.

I’d love to go deeper, but I’ll have to save the really good stuff for another COLNET feed. I can already hear the shift change klaxons singing their sad siren song and next rotation’s O2 won’t buy itself.

Remember, if you like what you hear, mash that grubby little “subscribe” node to get my comms in your feeds in real-time as they transmit, it boosts my signal on the COLNET feeds. Who knows, maybe someday I’ll be a star?

Until next time, friends, here’s hoping your gravity is weak, your hull sound, and your atmo rich. This is Praetel Frash, ore intake hand, Eastern Reaches Mining Consortium, coming at you from the most blessed Ore Platform Twelve-Alpha, signing off.

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B. R. Keid
B. R. Keid

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