Expand and Exterminate — Phase 3: Codename Suck Less

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Broadcasting from CS Defiant, in the Icarus System
Day 528 of the Second Swaparaman Space Age

Everything is fine.

Completely fine, yes.

We have heard whisperings that our war effort is doomed. That we will be overtaken by the Vile Frutmaka. This could not be further from the truth.

And you should report anyone who says so to your local Thought Correction Center.

Let us be clear: it is true that the Frutmaka have stolen three worlds from us.

And that their ship has escaped despite our best efforts.

And that they’ve already constructed orbital defenses around Syzygifer I.

That too. But not for long. Now we begin to strike back!

The Liberator has come out of dry-dock shooting!

Of course, the Frutmaka shot back.

Despite our shields, the damage from each volley is significant.

Each day, their missile battery can fire only once. We have the capacity to fire three times!

However, after a day’s attacks, the orbital shields held.

The second day was the same.

But today, on the third day of the siege, after the third and final shot of the day… their shields fell.

Tomorrow, the orbital missiles will be ready to fire again, and the Liberator can’t survive another hit!

Do not despair, though. With the shields down, all we need do is fly into orbit and begin the invasion. Syzygifer I shall be ours again, and its citizens freed from Frutmaka tyranny. The Liberator is on course as we sp–

was on course. We’re out of juice after all that fighting.

SON OF A FUNGUS.

CS Defiant, in the Icarus System
Day 529 SSSA

[LPer’s Note: Our engines are either enough to get us to Syzygifer I in one turn or they’re not. If not, the Frutmaka won’t hesitate to blow us out of the sky on their turn. It all comes down to this one move.]

YEESSSSSSSS!!! WE MADE IT.

…o-of course we did, Don. It’s, uh… it was our destiny. There was never any question we would make it.

CS Defiant, in the Bodkin System
Day 559 SSSA

Today we broadcast while on layover in the newly-discovered and uncolonized Bodkin System…

Syzygifer I has been returned to its rightful owners.

Syzygifer II is now ours as well.

Construction of new defenses has already begun.

Just in time for a new visitor…

These “Kambuchka” greeted the “Great Swaparamans” politely enough — but if they had thought us perhaps an easy target for conquest, our now-impenetrable Syzygifer System put an end to those plans quite quickly.

The Kambuchka have turned and retreated through the star lane.

Meanwhile, the Liberator has just reached the next system, Hope, on its way to Aglarond and the liberation of Forward Station.

Tananni? The Mebes there in the Hope System are contacting us.

Yes, my Tender and Gentle Mebe Friend?

You will find your Mebe friends quite the opposite if you continue to refer to them in this fashion.

Of course, of course. I do not wish to bruise your ego any more than it need be by the mere existence of such a superior species as the Swaparamans.

The Mebes grow tired of your inflated self-worth. Perhaps you should remain in your corner of the galaxy and no longer trouble the rest of us. Return now and learn some humility.

I’m afraid we cannot do that. We are on an urgent mission.

Not through our space you aren’t.

…except yes we are.

Nice one, Tananni.

CS Defiant, in the Syzygifer System
Day 695 SSSA

Ah, home sweet home.

Indeed — both we and the Liberator have returned at last to the Syzygifer System. To… reevaluate the situation.

Traversing the Hope System proved too dangerous. This was the state of the Mebes’ colony, Hope I, at the time they declared war: Shields and two missile bases…

…so the Liberator turned around.

In a Impressive Display of wisdom and caution. Definitely not cowardice.

For now we are researching Orbital Docks which will allow us to repair both of our ships.

The Liberator is badly damaged as you know, and the Defiant took a missile on our way back home.

That research is still months away from completion. We cannot wait that long. The Defiant will be cannibalized to build a new warship.

But! It’s our very first ship, Tananni. And it’s been our home for a year!

Sentimentality will not win this war. The ship goes.

We will transfer to the shipyard and then take command of the new ship when it is space-ready.

It shall be called the Bulwark, and it will be the answer to everything. Keep the faith, viewers. Over and out.

WS Bulwark, in the Hope System
Day 775 SSSA

Battle is joined.

We rode the Bulwark into war in your name.

By the time the Bulwark was complete, the Mebes had a ship of their own in Hope. We drew them away from the safety of the planet…

Until they were in range of our new weapons…

And then…

Then we struck.

Their return fire was not even powerful enough to penetrate our shields!

Shot after shot is absorbed.

The battle seems won already. Perhaps the Liberator should have stayed back for repairs rather than following us in as reinforcements.

Yeah… maybe just send it b–

Just kidding. There goes the Liberator.

…merely a feint — while we deliver the final blow!

I don’t think that’s how a feint works. But the Mebes ship is neutralized.

We may have lost one ship, but the Bulwark itself was untouchable.

…for now…

So we shall fill the unexpected opening in our fleet with another ship using the same blueprints now that this design has proven itself on the battlefield. And then we invade this system and build more ships. The Lesser Species of the Galaxy will come to fear our armada, Don. Believe me.

Yes, the Lesser Species which certainly do not include us here at the bottom of this chart. I’m sure it was assembled in no particular order.

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