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The War for Mars United, Chapter 36: The War Room: A Hostage

October 7, 2017, 9:44 pm

  The mood in the war room was glum, to say the least. Colonel Oltman had positioned a satellite above the Tharsis Bulge, so that all of them could watch the live video feed of the mothership floating above Olympus Mons. It seemed to be powering up. “Madam Prime Minister?” called Chee from his jet. “How are you doing?” “How am I doing?” Norine Maciel almost laughed. “How are you doing?” “We’re fine, Ma’am,” Chee said, answering for the thousand […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 35: New Dagreb Facing the World

September 29, 2017, 5:30 pm

New Dagreb was on the move. Though the floor was designed to cushion the effects of movement, everyone in the snow globe city could feel the lurching, like a cruise ship making a turn. New Dagreb occasionally twitched, but this was different: anyone could tell that it was moving steadily and purposefully…somewhere. The movement was enough to awaken Julia, who found herself strapped to the same table where she’d found Kenyatta. Her hands were bound to the same places on […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 34: Waste Pipes

September 22, 2017, 4:42 pm

The stench was almost paralyzing all by itself. Crawling through the waste pipes of the mothership was just about the most difficult thing Martina Maciel had ever done in her life. First, there was the diameter – exactly 50 cm. Her shoulders and hips were squinched to the point of vicious soreness. Martina wasn’t someone you typically accuse of poor planning. After learning about the Trojan Horse scheme, Martina got Chee to give up all he had on the ship’s […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 33: The War Room: Under Attack

September 15, 2017, 9:10 am

Just like that, the main phase, namely the air war, was over. About 34,000 of Mars United’s 39,000-odd planes had fallen, disabled, somewhere on the slopes of Mt. Sharp. Mars United had fought well. The Asian Alliance had lost more than their fair share; about 50,000 down, and another 26,000 or so heading back to the mothership and refuel. The Asian Alliance still had about 25,000 to provide air cover for the ground melee on Mt. Sharp. When the last […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 32: Godfrey’s Manse

September 1, 2017, 3:56 pm

Julia Maciel walked to Kenyatta’s farm. Between the walk with Godfrey and the talk with Aquinas, this had been one of the worst mornings of her life. It all started so simply, didn’t it? She thought about looking at the website back in her dorm room. War doesn’t prove who’s right, only who’s left. War is costly, peace is priceless. War is unhealthy, aren’t you sick of it? Those were so right, so right. How did New Dagreb screw all […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 31: The Trojan Horse

August 25, 2017, 3:05 pm

As their plane came within laser range of the mothership, Martina labored not to appear astonished. The crew on the mothership would have visual now, and she couldn’t afford to look as though she’d never seen the massive monster up close before. It was a thing of almost-beauty, two city-sized teacups locked together at the rims, glistening with a black-silver metal alloy that sparkled better than polished obsidian. It had minor curved ridges all the way around it, an undulating […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 30: The War Room: Talking to the Enemy

August 17, 2017, 2:16 am

Parts of the air battle were going terribly. M.U. had managed to staunch the bleeding of the early phase, where the losses were near 1-to-1. At this point, the A.A. had about 70,000 planes left, and M.U. about 26,500. Perhaps the A.A. had led with its best soldiers, more likely the ones with the most experience in non-Earth g. Perhaps M.U. had overcome an early case of nervousness. Whatever the case, M.U. was doing incrementally better, occasionally knocking out two […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 29: Aquinas’ Mansion

August 11, 2017, 9:49 pm

Julia Maciel had barely slept during the two nights since her lakeside chat with Godfrey. How could he have known about Martina’s kids? Martina was tabloid-famous, yes, but her kids were born years after the founding of New Dagreb. This little snow-globe-paradise was supposed to be entirely cut off from media, except when new members managed to find the pneumatic tube. Could Isabel or Kenyatta have said something? After bojutsu training, Julia pulled Isabel aside. “Isabel? Do you have a […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 28: The Sky Above Mount Sharp

August 5, 2017, 8:18 am

The war had no drone phase. The A.A. hadn’t bothered to bring drones, knowing that it wasn’t worth the trouble of fighting off M.U. jamming signals. Now, the dogfight between Mars United and the Asian Alliance resembled the vision of a thousand microbes, seen through a microscope, exposed to increasing heat. It was total chaos at 10,000 meters above Mars’ surface. Only this time, it wasn’t a sim. This was as real as a heart attack. “Peterson!” Martina barked into […]

The War for Mars United, Chapter 27: In Mars Orbit

July 28, 2017, 1:24 am

“FIRE!” commanded Prime Minister Norine Maciel. With one word, then, Norine had begun the real war – Mars United versus the mothership. With the fate of human freedom hanging in the balance. No big deal, Norine told herself. She watched on the virtual cameras as their nuclear missiles sped to the mothership. “The virtual cameras are really doing their job,” Weaver said. “I know it’s just a composite image of the missiles, but they look so real.” “Definitely better than […]