"This... oh my goodness."

Even after we parted ways with Balmarians, it turned out the visit to their now-destroyed home planet was not entirely fruitless (not counting the part about saving Armana and her kind from certain doom). As promised, one of the Balmarian ships deposited an ancient artifact in Project Unification's care. A strange crystalline device, or perhaps it'd be more accurate to say - a chamber, with a device in the center.

"Ahem. Yes, this is very good." Inspector Jou removes and rubs his glasses, a strange gravity to his move.
"What you see is a device similar to the ones that, ages ago, created a weapon against the Lady. If the Discovery of Self was our finest soldier, then this is the forge that hammered out its sword. How it worked is: it took a mental imprint of a person, and gave it physical form. The Lady's mind operates in ways of stories, archetypes. With this, we can force her to realize people aren't just actors with roles to play. In that realization, her powers will be stripped away. And the more individuals the device takes an imprint of, the more powerful the resulting weapon will be."

"There is just one side effect."

Points of contention )

Do you wish to talk to the commanders gathered? Help with the plan in question - by volunteering or otherwise? Or perhaps: question it?
Following the fight at Sakihama, SSR forces arrived - and soon after, even the Shirogane. This can't be just a coincidence or reinforcements to fight Balmarians, and indeed it isn't.

"The ESUN council made its decision regarding Linjun's request. It's only fitting that I, being the inspector and envoy to ESUN, read it." Inspector Jou speaks to a hall full of personnel from both organisations, while others are watching on video feeds.

"From this day on, Unity Group and SSR assets are being combined into one force, known as Project Unification. The force's primary objective is to stop hostile encroachment of alien forces - Za Balmary Empire and the entity known as the Lady, into the Earth Sphere, by any means necessary. For the sake of this objective, Project Unification has full jurisdiction and doesn't respond to any external chain of command other than itself. Its secondary objective is to neutralize hostile groups from within the Earth Sphere, such as the Lost Seekers and still functioning members of Cambio Protocol. Jurisdiction here is limited, and full reports are expected to be submitted..."

"Not to interrupt you Inspector, but let's leave the minutae for people who deal with them. What of the joint organisations' personnel and their standing?"

"Of course. Project Unification members will mostly hold their old ranks until the project's dissolution, which will come after the primary objective is fulfilled. The exceptions are limited to shuffling among the leadership ranks. The acting commander and highest authority of the Project was, despite some protests, in the end decided to be..."

The leader reveal )

The first briefing )

[3 - a bit after the briefing]
A chance to converse with SSR members - or rather, Project Unification ones. You're all in this together!

"Did you see Linjun's face? That guy had it coming a long time."

"I was never a fan of the way he did things. And, it looks like I got a pay rise. But that's the least of my worries now."

"Bout time all of us worked together officially. If you need anything fixed up, it's on the house!"
"Allow me to start from the beginning..."

Unity Group was late to the party. Frustrated that ESUN did not support him, Lee Linjun made the first move. SSR approached the Discovery and fought the Guardians and the Seekers, only to receive help from people trapped inside. People who managed to break out, not without outside help. Linjun tried to have the Shirogane fire on the Discovery, but he was stopped, stopped by the very same outside help.

Now, the fight is over, the Discovery secured. And the ESUN inspector, the one who visited Unity Group many times - Inspector Jou has some very important things to say.

"I'll repeat myself for those who were not here to hear it."

"Aeons ago, sentient beings of the universe were enslaved by an entity of godlike power. The entity loved stories, but it could not tell new ones by itself. It could only recreate stories already known, and it did that by changing reality itself, with others as unwilling participants. To be the hero of a story is good, isn't it? But what is it like to be the helpless victim? The villain, or one of his henchmen?"

"The sentient beings of the universe rebelled. Putting their differences aside, they cooperated, all working together towards a shared goal. This is the process known as..."


Massive backstory reveal )

[One more thing of importance - also taggable]

"You're right, inspector. What we need is another Unification."

"But you must also realize you're putting the weight of the universe's fate on shoulders of a group with limited jurisdiction. To put things simply, Unity Group has no authorization to do things you ask it for. And having lived for so long, surely you realize how important it is to have a strong leader in charge."

"I'm going to petition ESUN for integrating Unity Group into SSR, all its assets included. The personnel will retain their ranks, or receive SSR equivalents when they lack one. It's a reasonable request, so I don't see why it shouldn't be approved."

"In times like these, all we need is discipline and a clear chain of command."

[See also the OOC post.]
[Route split explanation]
Read more... )

[1 - route A, mingle/reaction prompt]
The Discovery has launched into space.

The ancient stone building raised from the earth, freed from the cave that sheltered it for thousands of years. It's no building - but a giant cathedral-like starship. A starship that quickly rose through the atmosphere and before anyone could stop it, took its place on Earth's orbit.

Now it's floating in space, slowly circling the planet and not responding to any signals, seemingly lifeless. Something has obviously happened inside, something possibly not good at all - but there's just only one little problem preventing anyone from getting in close to investigate what has happened.

The Seekers, the Guardians (of Past, Present and Future) - even one of those was a very formidable foe. Now there are many, floating around the Discovery and, as an observation probe found out, attacking everything that comes close.

How much worse are things going to get?

"I'm assuming command of Unity Group."

Here's a message from Lee Linjun.

"Your little game, where the organisation continued to exist and pretend nothing's wrong despite not even having an acting officer, moved on for long enough. As long as it only affects internal affairs I couldn't care less, but now the stakes are simply too high."

"You know well what happened. The alien known as the Lady has made her move. She has the power to affect reality itself and wants nothing less than to subjugate humanity, it's not too late to stop her but we need to act, and we need to act RIGHT NOW. Her vessel, what we all used to know as Discovery, is now in Earth orbit - but not for long. Using the Shirogane's Tronium Cannon, I'm going to take it out."

"The only problem is the Lady's grunts on the way. That's where you come in. I've sent a similar message to UN Spacy, the ESUN military, anyone who still has a space force. We're gathering a fleet, and then we strike."

"I hope to see you there too, Unity Group. Not even for your own sake. This is a crisis where individual lives and organisations no longer matter. This is for the sake of humankind itself. Lee Linjun, out."

[2 - also route A]
Read more... )

[3 - route B, talking with NPCs and/or mingle prompt]

"Are you alive?"

Read more... )