The Carbon Pirates

Part 1

"The Captain had ordered us to dock with the ship and take her cargo," continued the Pirate. "So, that's what we does. She was now just a sitting there drifting. Her crew put up a bit of a fuss in the whole boarding process, but they settled down quickly. We were about to start packing up the cargo when out of nowhere we were attacked by an Izanian ship. We were just doing business as normal, and this Izanian ship swoops down from who knows where. The Captain was all in a panic. He ordered us to get off that ship. We does what he says because he is the Captain. With the Izanian attack, we had to disconnect the other ship. Once we released the ship and began to pull away, the Izanian vessel went right after our quarry. In a flash, they destroyed it with all the crew onboard. I watched it happen on the view screen. We were sure they was all dead. How could our eyes deceive us so? Well, two weeks later, I see the Captain of that ship in Galactic court testifying against my Captain. I don't know how it happened. We had there ship and cargo, but them Izanians came. It was destroyed. I saw it! It was the Izanians that done it. I don't understand it."

"It's simple," explained Yarnspinner. "You're entire vessel depends heavily upon its computer. If an outside force can gain access to your computer, he or she can make you see anything. If he or she runs a program that has your computer tell you that an Izanian ship is attacking, you have nothing to double check the validity of the report."

"What alternatives do we have?"

"First, you could increase your computers security. However, that is a great deal more difficult than it sounds. The other solution is to get yourself an old fashioned window."

"A window! Nobody has a window on a space ship. Either they are way too thick or they are way too fragile. Either way, you can't make one big enough to make it worthwhile."

"You can have one made out of carbon. It can be as big as you like, and one of the toughest materials anywhere."


"The molecules in their translucent arrangement are sometimes called diamonds. This form of carbon has a multitude of uses including cutting silicon dioxide panes. You can use carbon to cut these panes to be used for windows for instance. However, for space flight these windows would be too fragile."

"Nobody has carbon windows..."

"The Iguana II has."

"Eagle Douglass' ship?"

"That would be it. He is probably the person that assured that your Captain was put away."

"Aaaaaaarrrrrggggh! I'm leaving!"

"Pardon me Yarnspinner, I don't mean to interrupt here, but I'd like to hear the story about Eagle's window. I hear it is a good story. I have already taken care of your fee."

It all started on the carbon-processing world of Sometimes I hate unnamed worlds. Anyway, this planet is one of the largest importers of carbon. This world has plenty of iron, and they are the galactic commonwealth's greatest steel producer. It is mostly a manufacturing world, as it has no inhabitants of its own. Individuals from all over the commonwealth work in the manufacturing centers on this planet. They use the natural elements of the planet, import others, and make a great deal of useful products that they sell.

They are a very successful enterprise, but Pirates were plaguing them. They had received a large order and they needed a large amount of carbon to fill the order. However, a group of pirates intercepted the shipment and it was going to cost the factories millions of credits. They called upon Eagle to stop the pirates and retrieve their latest shipment. It was going to be a difficult task.

Eagle did some investigating, and the clues pointed towards Sennicam. The Emperor there had been attempting to procure a great deal of carbon, but his treasury did not have the funds to pay for a shipment. Thus, Eagle believed that the Emperor simply had some of his people steal this shipment. Therefore, Eagle paid the Sennicam a visit.

This planet is hot. It is really hot. If it had ice caps in its past, they had long since melted away. The atmosphere was full of carbon dioxide. The Sennicam people were burning fuels for electrical generation. Imagine! They were burning things for electricity in a space age society!

The amount of CO2 in their atmosphere had long caused numerous problems besides just the heat. However, the planet's scientists had come up with many solutions to deal with the various problems. For instance, the inhabitants of the planet lived in large domed cities. Rarely did they venture out into their own planet's atmosphere. Those, that occasionally had to work outside the domes, earned hazard pay. They would wear specially designed suits for this purpose.

Nonetheless, the Sennicamian scientists never worked on a solution to their biggest problem. They did not use the power of their sun. They did not use wind or nuclear power either. With all of their work, their solutions did not eliminate the cause, nor did it increase the amount of oxygen in their atmosphere.

They had incased a large proportion of their landmasses with structures. This meant that most of their plants and animals had to adapt to an indoor environment. It also meant that the bio-diversity was low which also added to their problems. The atmosphere outside of their encased cities became more and more choked with CO2.

Eagle arrived at their port, but found nothing suspicious there. He looked around and asked some people about their electrical generation. He determined that something needed to be done about the amount of carbon dioxide and oxygen in their atmosphere or they would be in serious trouble.

He decided to break one of his primary rules. This planet's citizens needed some technology to help with their atmospheric problems. However, what was he going to give them? The Arijog had the perfect technology. It would strip CO2 from the air, and convert it into oxygen and carbon. Better yet, the Arijog technology obtained its power from the sun. Where I come from, we call them plants and trees. On this planet however, exterior plant life had died off long ago. The only plants that survived live in their domed cities.

Nonetheless, these mechanical trees would fit the bill perfectly. The carbon could then be sold, or even burned for fuel -- space forbid. The solar technology could help them with their energy problems. At least it would be a good start for them.

Eagle used up all of his available credit to purchase 2 of these mechanical trees. He planned to use one as a working model, and one to show them how to build their own. Eagle was hoping that this could be a very unprofitable venture. If the Sennicamian people were not interested in a technology, then he may not be able to gain any contacts to see if they indeed had stolen the carbon. He was going to use the technology exchange for bait. It was going to be the best thing for their civilization.



Arijogs use solar energy? I thought for sure it would be nuclear.

Nuke-u-lar? Nope. They hate nuclear power. They'll destroy a city that uses nuclear power. I've seen it happen a few times!

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This page contains a single entry by Douglas Gogerty published on February 5, 2006 11:05 AM.

"The Curse of Agnar Sun" - Part One was the previous entry in this blog.

"Terra Mortis II" - Chapter 21 is the next entry in this blog.

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