Altair

SOLA-STAR #1950

SOLA-STAR #1950 – Altair
. . . SID: ORI647-7b
. . . EST: 781 SVE – Companion #458

XXX . . . Audio Transcript: extracted from discarded raider jump suit, Tarken Plateau, Altair IV

[begin transcription – female 17yrs]

Momma said the Earth was like an old couch, worn down over the years by life
You could throw a blanket over the threadbare spots, prop up the broken leg with an old book
But eventually you had to set it by the curb, along with all those memories, and get a new one
Trouble was, you couldn’t do that with a planet

[illegible, coughing]

So, they left, like them Okies fleeing the dustbowl, just packed their things and got out
But they didn’t go to California, no, they went to the stars!
Papa says those brave bastards climbed on top of an iron mule and lit its ass!
Bucked them right into the dark of the night, the whole time praying to God to find them a new home
A place to start over, have some kids, grow old in peace, nothing fancy, just life
They say God knows all… I don’t know, maybe
All I know is, he can’t hear for shit

[rasping breath]

And now, I drift through space,
Wrapped in my metal suit, a brittle skin between me and nothing
Fragments of life drift beside me, blasted out of the shell of that hulking Ark
A tomb, silent in the dark sky, spilling its content across the dark desert of dancing stars
Dreamers, architects, mothers, fathers, children
I did that
We did that
All of us starving and lost souls, scared and alone

[dark laughter]

Welcome to the show, humanity, scrabbling to find our way in the dark
An endless sea of hands and silent voices spread across a vast sea of emptiness
Praying on each other in a desperate bid to survive, they knew the odds
We were waiting
Hammered them right before the jump, ripped a hole in their belly just after
Raiders, that’s all we are in the end
All of us

[end transcription]

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XXX . . . Star System

Registered as a Gaia class star in the Helix nebula, Altair (1950) is a type-A main-sequence star in the Earth-based constellation of Aquila. Historically, Altair is one of three sister stars comprising The Summer Triangle, an arrangement it shares with Vega and Deneb that was visible only during the Earth-based summer months. In addition to hosting seven habitable planets, Altair is orbited by two asteroid belts, the closest comprised of a failed planet and the farthest comprised of the remnants of its early formation. Both belts are rich in elements vital to the growth of the SolaVerse.

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XXX . . . Colonization

Discovery of system 1950 by Companion #458 occurred in 781 SVE initiating standard notification and jump procedures. Initial estimates identified Altair IV as the primary choice for colonization and an Ark I class ship was dispatched with a contingent at 500 families. Composed of individuals with scientific, engineering, and agricultural backgrounds, this initial colonization was intended as an outpost class III habitat.

Disaster occurred in the form of a small band of raiders from a nearby exile colony. The raiders struck moments prior to jump and they, along with the Ark, were transported to Altair, in full combat. Upon arrival, the raiders managed to breach the hull of the Ark causing destruction on both sides. Immobilized, drifting, and surrounded by loss, the survivors salvaged what they could and took to escape pods. Landing on Altair IV, approximately 200 souls, comprised of both settlers and raiders, arrived, and established the first colony.

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XXX . . . Ecology and Geology

With seven habitable planets and two asteroid belts rich in ores, the Altair system provides a variety of options to a new breed of SolaExplorers! The desert planet of Altair I, replete with giant worms, fierce flying reptiles, and volcanic ranges bursting with gems, provides a challenge and immense rewards! The calm, peaceful world of Altair IV hosts a secret in rumors of a long-lost civilization of immense wealth and technology! And the outlying planet of Altair VII from its valleys to its high mountain peaks is covered in snow and ice, hiding gold and silver! However, there have been sightings of Yeti on those mountain passes, at least from those adventurers that manage to survive. As to the other planets? Who knows! Come find out and help write the next chapter in Altair’s story

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XXX . . . Risk Assessment

Travelling to and from Altair is a standard class-A jump with a 92.3% survivability record. Planetary risks are calculated against their individual environments, level of colonization, and unique threats relative to the Altair system overall. The following chart provides a breakdown of each planets level of risk as rated by the Interplanetary SolaStandards Survivability Matrix:

Altair I Good – Remember to wear sunscreen and don’t look up.
Altair II Better – Water is everywhere, learn how to swim and bring flippers.
Altair III Pretty Good – We recommend boots and bring a buddy you can outrun.
Altair IV Dang Good – just be careful about pushing buttons on any artifacts you find.
Altair V Not So Good – A great place to visit with your pesky neighbor!
Altair VI Amazing – Paradise in the sky! Just remember to bring your own oxygen.
Altair VII Unsure – Those who returned reported Yetis. Beware snowballs!
Asteroid Belt I Risky – Lots of rocks flying around, bring a helmet.
Asteroid Belt II More Risky – Same as above, but farther away from medical assistance.

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Operation Dawn