Monday, May 24, 2021

Microstory 1631: Confederates

In the early days of the Ochivari’s crusade—from their perspective—finding out whether a planet was suited for sterilization was a difficult task. They had spaceships, but transporting these to other universes was problematic. Each individual, with exceptions, will be born with the ability to travel the bulkverse, but they can only transport so much mass. A ship requires a lot of sacrifices, extremely precise timing, and can only happen on the surface of a world with a breathable atmosphere. Basically what they do is gather a bunch of Ochivari who they are willing to let die, and they will all die. While only half of them need to die to open the portal, the destructive force of sending a ship through it will kill the other half as well. The ship, meanwhile, has to essentially fly towards the planet’s surface, and risk simply crashing into it. Many have indeed crashed while trying to figure out this timing. Even a portal large enough to accommodate something so massive will evaporate quickly, so it’s not like they can open one, and wait for the ship to be ready. Once the vessel does manage to get through a portal, and begin exploring the new universe, gathering information takes a lot of finesse. They have to watch any given planet from afar, hoping to understand their history, and predict their future, well enough to determine if they should let them live, or not. They’ve tried to infiltrate the native population, but most people in the bulkverse are human, and not enough cosmetic surgery can make an Ochivar look human. So they walk around in hoods, and hope that no one notices them. They often do, and it causes problems. Fortunately for them, infiltration got easier when they found a group of humans willing to help.

In one universe, the human population of a version of Earth was intentionally primitive. Their technology progressed just as it usually does, but they halted it, and went backwards, in order to protect both themselves, and their environment. Progress seemed to be creating more problems than it solved, including an untenable barrage of wars. The survivors of these wars collectively decided that it was not worth it. Their main drive to come up with new inventions was to make life easier, and even prolong life, but if fighting over resources killed too many people, then it didn’t really make much sense. Without modern medicine, and other life-supporting advancements, the death rate went back to where it was before the world wars. So too did the infant mortality rate. Now, normally, a species such as human will compensate for this decline by increasing the birthrate. They may not even be conscious of it, but a couple will have more children, knowing that some will die. That’s not what happened here. Parents will have relatively few children, and if all of them die, and they can’t pass on their legacy, then so be it. They will die themselves when it’s time—which could happen rather soon without the proper medical treatments—and their bloodline will just end. By the time the Ochivari found them, the population was at about a billion, leaving them well spread out across the globe, and impacting their environment to a minimal degree. Within two centuries, they would have probably become extinct, and they were perfectly content with this. So they understood the logic behind antinatalism, and were eager to help the Ochivari in their cause. They were a lot better at infiltrating other human planets, which led to better intelligence, which honestly, actually probably saved a few worlds from being unduly sterilized when they didn’t truly fit the parameters.

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