September 8, 2014 by crew
In this Deadzone THE Article we have decided to try something a little different. Instead of the usual inane banter we spew in our articles we’re trying a more narrative approach. And to test this one-off idea we’ve chosen to focus on everybody’s favourite underdogs; The Rebs.
Enter The Deadzone
Let’s set the stage for this little tale. The galaxy is a big place. We mean really, really big. And within the galaxy there are countless worlds and inhabited asteroids or space stations. On many of these space stations there are little, insignificant news stations. One of these news stations is NewsPod1. NewsPod1 claims to be an unbiased source of independent news, whatever that means. To prove their unbiased-ness, NewsPod1 has sent one of their intrepid reporters to be embedded with a small rag tag group of Rebs. These Rebs are out on a resource run near the galactic edge. We now join NewsPod1’s head anchor JohnSmith2 as he begins the broadcast day.
“Hello GCPS, Welcome to NewsPod1. I am JohnSmith2 and today we have a very special report from field reporter JohnSmith5. JohnSmith5 is embedded within a Reb group who are, as we speak, making a raid on the settlement of Nexus Psi. We tried to find where Nexus Psi is on our galactic maps but it has suddenly disappeared from them. We’re looking in to why that is but right now we go to JohnSmith5 on the ground.”
The field camera is slightly off axis and shaking as they switch to JohnSmith5 on the ground. You see the back of the cloned reporter as he rushes down a ramp and out into the open air of Nexus Psi. Various Rebs rush to take up positions around what looks to be a small, abandoned landing zone.
“Thank you JohnSmith2. We are just disembarking the landing craft now. As we made atmosphere we had an issue where our navigation went out but we made it down safe and sound thanks to the Rebel pilot.” JohnSmith5 is slightly out of breath. “I am with this scrappy group of Rebels. We have many different races here with us; Yndij and Sorak next to Humans and even a Teraton. It is amazing to see all these divergent races working together. “
The reporter goes into interview mode instantly. He was bred for this and even an illegal raid won’t stop him from getting that all important 20 second news bite!
“Here we have the Yndij Sergeant of the group named *Beep*.” Part of the deal with the Rebs is to hide their identities to avoid undue prosecution.
“Sergeant *beep*, can we get a second of your time? How do you feel about species of every colour working together like this?”
The Yndij just looks at the perfectly groomed reporter and cocks his head.
“I don’t even see colour, everyone is purple to me.”
“I don’t see colour either!” A Sorak walks by and speaks up.
“That’s because Soraks don’t see in colour!” The Yndij spits back as he leaves the reporter standing there.
“That was a Sorak soldier named *beep*.” The reporter doesn’t even take a breath before finding something else to focus on.
“The alien nature of the Sorak standing on his hands and holding his large blaster in his clawed feet is a little unsettling at first but no one else even bats an eye.”
A large Teraton walks by slowly and the reporter snatches a question.
“How about you *Beep*? What do you think about the class struggle within the Galactic Co-Prosperity Sphere?”
The large, turtle-like creature slowly turns to JohnSmith5.
“I donnnn’t knnnoooowww… I like teleporting…”
JohnSmith5 opens his mouth to say something but changes his mind and turns to a winged Kraaw sharpening a long machete nearby.
“What about you, Mr. Kraaw? Do you have an opinion on the current struggles within the GCPS?”
The Kraaw looks over with a wise look then starts talking in its chicken clucking language. JohnSmith5 has no clue what the bird-like alien is saying but it does go on for a while.
The reporter eventually moves along and sees even more aliens working side by side, without the prejudices that are prevalent in the core worlds. He turns to camera.
“I dub this the United Colours of Rebeldom; Aliens working hand in hand to vanquish the oppressive Corporate Empire. That is what they say they are doing. They claim they are making sure that vital medical supplies are procured to give to the poor. Of course the Corporations say they are thieves and terrorists but let’s ask the smallest race here on this mission: the Zee’s. Some say the Zee’s are genetically engineered monkeys. Why did you join the rebellion Mr.*beep*?”
The monkey like Zee jumps up on a box with a relish. His smile is huge.
“It’s cuz I like stealing things!”
The Reb Commander jumps in immediately when she overhears this.
“Ummm, he means he like procuring things for the poor on the oppressed worlds. Don’t you!” She scowls at the Zee.
“Yeah yeah that’s it… procuring…” The little Zee responds then jumps away to procure more things.
The reporter is a little off put but the Reb Commander grabs another Human in the squad and pushes him towards JohnSmith5.
“Ummm okay. Anyway, I’m glad I get a chance to talk to one of the few of the Humans who work along side of these aliens. So, *beep*, Why did you join these rebels?”
The human doesn’t look amused that his fearless Commander threw him into this interview but he answers the question.
“Hurm. Not much choice… because if we had a choice…”
The Reb Commander once again rushes in. She just coughs and shakes her head. The human goes on.
“Er, I mean it is wonderful to be included in such a diverse and liberal group of…”
JohnSmith5 interrupts him. It’s the point of the interview to be hard nosed, according to his extensive training and years of experience.
“So you don’t feel inadequate to be surrounded by all these aliens with such great weapons and abilities? Because compared to all these guys you really can’t do much.”
“Well, Er… “ The human sputters out before being interrupted again.
“It’s just that you only have rifles. And the Yndij are plentiful and fill your roles pretty well… it’s like your superfluous to the team. The bar was set pretty high without you guys… Hey, where you going?”
The human just walks away.
“Hmmm was it something I said? I’m not sure why but maybe I can get to the bottom of it later. Oh well.”
The Teraton walks by again.
“How about you? What do you think about your human allies?”
“I donnnn’t knnnoooowww… I like teleporting…” She says and keeps walking.
JohnSmith5 is getting in over his head. Has all his years of experience on the red carpets on the entertainment beat failed him?
“Ummm, that’s not really an answer.”
He turns towards the Reb Commander who is standing nearby; watching like a hawk.
“You are a human also, correct? How do you feel about being surrounded by all these alien..… um why are you always standing on a box like that?”
She looks down and then back at JohnSmith5.
“This stance makes me look important. I would also be pointing but I have a data pad in my hand. Do you know how hard it is for a woman out here?” She starts to raise her voice. “Everyone would think the big Grogan would be the Commander! Do you know how hard it is to get respect in this male dominated universe? Do you see any other Commanders who are female? I don’t think so! Only the rebels believe in equality of the races AND the sexes!”
JohnSmith5 smiles smugly. He knows he has her now.
“Really? Equality of the sexes? How many females other than you are in the rebel faction?”
The Commander’s eyes blaze with anger.
“The Teratons are female you sexist pig.”
JohnSmith5’s smile fades instantly.
“Oh I’m so sorry.”
He turns quickly to the Teraton who is still walking away.
“So *beep* how do you feel about being a female Teraton in a male dominated universe?”
“I donnnn’t knnnoooowww… I like teleporting…”
JohnSmith5 refuses to let that be her only answer.
“What do think about the Plague?” He blurts out.
“What’s a Plague?” The Commanders asks.
The reporter sheepishly turns back to the Commander. He isn’t supposed to mention the Plague; Not on air. But it’s too late to stop now.
“You know the reason for what happened to the nav computer was a Deadzone… why did you think the Corporation erased whole systems from the galaxy maps?”
“We never really thought about it. We just thought it was a good place to get free stuff.” She responds with a shrug.
“So in all the Deadzone raids you’ve gone on you’ve never met a Plague?! You know this is a horrendously dangerously place to be. You could be attacked by these genetically mutated monsters at any time.” The reporter is starting to sound a little worried now.
“Huhhhhh… Oh is that why there is no one around. That must be what happened to Bob! We just thought it was Enforcers who ate him.” She says nonchalantly.
“Enforcers don’t eat people!” JohnSmith5 yells in a panic.
“That’s what they want you to think!” The Commander answers back with a nods and a wink.
Right then there is a menacing growl. The camera swings wildly looking for the source. Someone screams.
“Ahhhh!!! We have to get out of here!!!”
More screams and the camera falls to the ground. The sound of running. Then dead air. Back at NewsPod1 JohnSmith2 looks confused, alarmed and concerned all at once and yet just keeps smiling his toothy grin.
“Ummmm, Well I guess that ends our exclusive interview with the Rebels currently raiding Nexus Psi. Well I hope JohnSmith5 will be all right. He’s our best field reporter.”
Off camera a snide producer mutters, “He’s our only field reporter.”
“Well there is that too.” JohnSmith2 whispers before resuming his usual demeanor; after all the show must go on.
“From NewsPod1, your only source of Independent news, this is JohnSmith2 signing off. Be safe out there.”
Over To You…
Well I hope you enjoyed this special interlude from the usual Deadzone THE Article fun. We’ll be back next time with some Wave 2 unboxings and the like (we hope!). If you liked the story check out our other podcast, Vinnland Old Time Radio for audio plays and more absurd banter not about Deadzone.
I guess that ends this month’s article so in the immortal words of JohnSmith2; Be Safe Out There.
"I donnnn’t knnnoooowww! I like teleporting…"
""Enforcers don’t eat people!" JohnSmith5 yells in a panic..."