Thursday, September 17, 2020

Microstory 1454: Growth of the Thicket

One of the rules that the government on Durus set forth in regards to the Ladytown outpost was that Aljabarans would be allowed to visit whenever they wanted. As it stood, this had never actually occurred. The condition was there to make it so that they could enter the town limits in case they ever needed anything from the townsfolk, not to encourage camaraderie and community. For any Aljabaran to leave the city, for any reason, they needed explicit permission from someone pretty high up in the ranks, and no one had ever been granted this permission in order to travel to Ladytown. So while life was difficult in the outpost, and the Republicans had made numerous to destroy them, they were generally free from prying eyes. This all changed in the year 2140. A psychic spy sought audience with a government official, and claimed to him that he had heard the sound of crying babies through a vision. Now, he was only a mage remnant, and not a very good one at that, so no one believed him without question, but it was enough to spark an investigation. A team was sent to visit Ladytown, to see if it was true. This visit turned into a raid, and although they saw no actual babies, they did find signs of young life; cribs and the like. It was a miracle that they didn’t find the stolen books, or combat training paraphernalia. It would seem the psychic was telling the truth. Having been built on top of the old town of Hidden Depths, there were a lot of secret passageways the Ladytowners could use to keep their secrets protected, but that wasn’t going to be good enough forever. The government was going to send more goons, and they knew that it was only going to get worse. They were right.

A second team came through with a life signs detecting mage remnant, who found the babies for them. Without orders from on high, this team attempted to abduct the children, and the women were forced to show their skills by fighting back. No one was seriously hurt, but the proverbial shots were fired, and unless a remnant was born with the ability to reverse entropy, the bullets were not going back into that gun. This changed everything. Whereas before, they were training to defend themselves, now they were training to actively work against their oppressors, and drive real change for women on Durus. When Ladytown was founded, people just wanted to live how they pleased. And when the men were wiped out, they just wanted to prepare for the worst. But the government was forcing their hand, and building a real rebellion was the only response at this point. The town itself still needed to be preserved, however, so they could no longer maintain a base of operations there. Many would stay behind, in case another team came by to threaten the children, but the rest would move away. They set up shop so far from Hidden Depths that the government could not make any reasonable connection between the two groups. They could no longer live in houses, for they were too easy to spot, and impossible to move when one area became too dangerous. They lived in the wild, and scrounged for food wherever they could find it. When one campsite lost its value, or the government was too close to catching them, they packed up, and headed to a new location. Most of the planet was now covered by a sea of plant life that had always been referred to as the thicket. So this was what the insurgents decided to name themselves. This was the start of The Thicket Revolutionary Faction.

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