Star System: SagittariusDate: 2501-01-20 Noted Historian goes missing
Pascal, CONCORD SAGITTARIUS - Xavier Sanchez, professor of the Justice-Ethics school, recently implied to be a “perpetrator of lies” by the Thuldan Bureau of Information, had reportedly disappeared just ten days after agreeing to be interviewed by GNN. Approximately a month ago, during the bi-annual Galactic War symposium, the Professor provided details concerning little known military operations by the Thuldan, that ended in disaster on the edges of known space. This speech had earned particular attention from the Thuldan Bureau of information. The Ministry of Information had indicated at the time of the possibility of a response, although it was not specific about what that might entail.
After the story broke, GNN dispatched a reporter to get an interview with the professor. Xavier sent a response to the GNN bureau located at Kropotkin. Due to the normal delays caused by travel, the reporter did not arrive for twenty-five days. Upon arrival, our reporters confirmed that the professor had been missing for fifteen days.
“It is unlikely anything happened to him,” Deborah Green, Provost of the University of Justice Ethics on Pascal, and Xavier’s boss has said. “He has always been known for his flights of fancy. Since he doesn’t really teach anymore, we have no real need to keep tabs on him. He probably decided to follow up on some story he heard during the symposium.” Deborah added, “ He has never been to the Verge. Perhaps he wished to see Algremon up close and personal. Or, perhaps he decided to visit Hammers Star.”
Others are not so sure. A campus security official, speaking on condition of anonymity noted that “on the day of his ‘departure’, the professors office looked like a wild animal went through it. Everything was wrecked. “ The individual added, “even if the professor left Pascal, it seems unlikely that he would take all of his assistants with him.” In addition, the official stated that the one assistant professor, and three students assigned to Xavier had not been seen since his disappearance. School is still in session on Pascal, and at least two of the students were attending classes this semester. He also noted that leaving the planetary surface would have been difficult without Planetary security noticing. In any case, “Most of this region is nothing more than the wreckage of former colonies, or Hatire missions. Given that his ship probably only had a maximum range of 5LY, he would have had to do some serious planning for a journey. Planning that someone would have noticed.”
Thomas Helios, Dean of Pascal, Dean of High Rationalism, has indicated that he believes that the Professor was murdered, in a speech given three days after the news had hit the local Pascal Grid. GNN requested and received several quotes from his press secretary. “The professor was close to retirement. It is unlikely that he was going anywhere.” The press secretary, Maria Xiopious added, ‘even if he is alive, it is likely that anyone that has him is in the process of making him dead, either spiritually, mentally, or physically.” Thomas Helios had already issued an executive order, starting up the “martyrs” clock on Xavier. Under a quirk in Pascal law, left over from the early postwar days, when Thuldan Warbeasts were accidentally set loose on the planet, individuals who disappear under mysterious circumstances for more than thirty days can be presumed “dead”. That allows for any genetic material in the government registry to be publically released. Xavier is on public record indicating he did not want his genetic material used for any cloning, (at least not in its “pure” form.) Once legally recognized as dead, the state is allowed to use the material of its citizens, who profess “high and noble traits.” Helios is on record for allowing all interested Pascal citizens access to genetic material, which can be used to “recreate the heros of our proud planet.”
Helios, in his public speech, was also clear in what he believed happened. “Those Thuldan mutts are probably hiding the individual or individuals who have targeted the professor.” Mutts, is a local pejorative referring to the small band of illegitimate Thuldan-Borealin children, who were not accepted back into the Empire at the conclusion of the war. Often referred to as mutts, (not only because of their mixed heritage, but also due to the presence of mutants amongst them), a small community of them exists in the capital, over the objections of much of the population. Assuming the Deans accusations are true, it would be ironic since it was Xavier who allowed them to settle on Pascal, when he was President of Pascal.
Provost Green dismisses Helios’s notions, noting he has many reasons to encourage the perception the professor is dead. “Xavier’s death gives him an excuse to push his reactionary Back to Borealis agenda. He is the one changing everything back to the pre-war days, as if that is even possible. The fact that he would use “that” phrase in a public speech is morally repugnant, and suggests an alternate agenda that will only hurt our planet in the long run. He is a born Solipsist, and the only thing I fear more than him is that others are listening to him.” (Solipsist is a subtle Borealin insult (except to the neosolipists), referring to the excesses of the ancient Greek school.) Green and Helios are known political foes. Green also noted that she was unaware of any other missing students. However, she was aware of the missing assistant. She countered that this individual disappeared before the symposium. Green indicated that a private investigator, (who was serving the assistants rich family), was looking into the case with the help of university security.
Compounding the problem of finding the professor, are the grid problems that have popped up on Pascal. “It is unfortunate, the professor got caught up in this mess,” said Jose Ferraro, the Justice Ethics professor who coordinated the symposium on Pascal. “It seems some locals remain loyal to the Pentad, and took none to kindly to the perceived bias of the symposium. They, along with some enthusiastic off- worlders seem to delight in taking down our grid site, and as well as that of anyone involved..” The grid on Pascal has also experienced noticeable deterioration in speed, unexpected cut transmissions, and numerous “spoofing” incidents. This has also affected the grid sites identifying incoming and outgoing traffic on Pascal. The local head of Grid security in Pascal’s provisional police, Sarah Barnett, indicated that “older systems remain vulnerable to attacks of this nature. As a former VoidCorp employee, I learned the hard way, that new equipment and up-to-date software is the only way one can beat such security problems.” She added, “the professors situation is unfortunate. However, he and the symposium organizers only have themselves to blame for bringing these problems onto Pascal.” When asked her opinion on the symposium, she refused public comment.
The professor was born on Planck (Pascal) before the start of the Second Galactic War. He joined the Borealin Navy just after the Tau Ceti rebellion out of a sense of duty. After nearly eighty years of service, including twenty-five as an admiral, he retired citing his increasing uneasiness over the war. Unable to go home, he attended the school of Justice-Ethics on Sapphire, and eventually earned his Doctorate, with a specialty in history. Not content to study ancient human history, (unlikely anyway given the precarious relationship between Borealis and the Union of Sol during the war), he choose to study “evolving” history on the front lines of the Second Galactic War. As a former commander, he often had access in a way most academics would envy. His skills were also used to organize small teams of non-combatants on some of the front line worlds, often times just after a critical battle. His most impressive mission of this sort, occurred after the Battle of Halifax in 2460, when he organized a volunteers for a mass evacuation and food deliveries, while under harassing attack from a Thuldan detachment. Even with a bunch of civilians he managed to evacuate over a million people without loosing a single ship. Halifax was also the closest he got to home (15 light years away.)
He published numerous texts, including three seminal texts used in Concord Sagittarius and Borealis schools. After the war, he became a citizen of the Concord. He later reclaimed his citizenship on Pascal once its status was clarified. With his experience, he reluctantly accepted a lead title in the provisional government created on Pascal, over the objection of locals. As one of the few citizens, who remembered the Quanta school, he unsuccessfully sought to wrest the old college from the hands of the Hatire. He also won few friends when he (successfully) opened Pascal settlement to citizens of VoidCorp and the Thuldan Empire. But those who think his administration a failure accept that he had an important hand in Pascal becoming the capital of the Frontier Borealis Autonomous Region in Concord Sagittarius. His regime also had remained relatively tranquil considering all the repressed rage the colony had during the occupation. He handed his power over peacefully to Alba Orintino. His last ten years were spent studying the effects the war had on the edges of human settled space. He is believed to have visited Far Reach. The professor is also known to have had an interest in the “lost” Borealin colony on Spes, in the Verge. It is believed he only recently became aware of the colonies unfortunate fate.
The professor never married. Those who knew him have indicated he believed his soul-mate had disappeared just before the siege of Pascal. He had little hope of ever finding her. Most of his family did not survive the siege and subsequent occupation of Pascal. The only surviving family is a sister who lives with her husband on Nouvelle in Far Reach. She is believed to have three (living) children, eight grand-children, fourteen great-grand children, twenty great-great grand children, twenty-seven great-great grand children, and two great-great-great grandchildren. She is also believed to be in good health.
Story republished on TVN with permission of GNN. GNN is a Stellar Ring service serving the political communities in the Profit Confederation, (and in particular the Union Of Sol.) It specifically caters to the individual who “finds GNA reporting plain as vanilla, stale as four day old bread, and spun by the Pentad and Freespace Alliance like a top.” TVN will continue to publish GNN stories believed of interest to citizens of the Verge. TVN is not responsible for any inaccuracies reported in the story. However, we will note when inaccuracies occur. (To wit, the previous story suggested the Hatire-Thuldan invasion of Borealis commenced in 2359. Our research suggests it started in 2364. Additional digging has uncovered that the Hatire began harassing the space around Pascal in 2359. We believe this is what GNN was referring to. We apologize for any confusion this may have caused..)
December 04, 2010 - dblade