As president Juarez is murdered, the Terran Alliance declares war…
| PART I: President Juarez
President Juarez of the Terran Alliance rose from his desk and left the stacks of administrative junk behind. ‘Enough for today’, he thought. “Virgil! It’s time for my daily walk in the parc.” He shouted to his assistant.
“And the reports of the Marsian Research Comm … ” Virgil replied.
“No. I can’t see any more reports! Let’s just go for a walk.”
“Y...Yes sir, but ...”
Without leaving his assistant time to react he walked through the door, out of his office. Where his two bodyguards, who always waited patietly outside, joined him. He took the elevator to the 118th floor. Then he walked over the bridge to the roof of the adjacent building. The roof of the ‘Lishma-Tower’ as it was often called, consisted of an indoor parc with many exotic flowers and other rarities. This particular place was his favourite. He came here at least once a day to enjoy the exclusive aroma’s of long extinct orchids.
But today he had the feeling this could be his last time ...
He didn’t understand where the feeling came from, or why ...
He was safe here, and he had his two bodyguards with him. What could possibly happen?
He told his bodyguards. They searched the whole parc: no danger to be seen.
Suddenly he saw something metallic shimmering in his eyecorner.
He turned around … and was death.
His bodyguards immediately saw it and went after it, while his assistant looked after the president. They intercepted it near the edge of the parc. It was a remote killer-droid. That meant the killer could be anywhere ...
They distroyed it with a few well-aimed shots from their lasers and ran back to the place of murder.
“He’s dead.” said Thomas Tsjolkovsky, head of the medical facilities in the European sector.
“As dead as he can be.”
Vice-president Sivaa wondered how this could have happened. Juarez had been walking in one of the most secured parcs in the world with his two fine bodyguards, and still ...
“I presume a reconstruction isn’t possible?”
“No, I’m sorry. The projectile went through both of his brainlobs. Whoever did this, had plenty of time to aim.”
“This shouldn’t have happened! Not in these difficult times. I’ll call for a crisismeeting immediately.”
“Sorry, but there really was nothing I could have done for him.”
“I’m convinced you did everything you could. There’s no blame for you, doctor Tsjolkovsky. And Thank you.”
“Eh ... you’re welcome, vice-president.”
An hour later Vice-president Sivaa left the medical department of the government. He had a lot of work to do.
In the mean time, somewhere lost in the rush of the metropolis, a secret agent reported the succes of his mission to his superiors. The killer then left for the spaceport of Belgan and took a flight offplanet, booked under a pseudonym. Less than 3 hours after the murder of the president, the killer had left the planet.
The crisisdeliberation was held in the presidential chambers. The area crawled with security guards, secret agents, and special forces, ensuring the safety of the government leaders. No one and nothing was allowed closer than ten stories up or down the sealed level. The Alliance government was gathered regarding the assassination of president Juarez.
Inside the room the accusations packed skyhigh.
Vice-president Sivaa tried to reason them for one final time.
“People, people. Calm down please. I’m convinced that no one in this room is to blame.”
“Well, then who do you suspect?” shouted one of the Marsian congressmen.
“Personally, I suspect the Confederation Of Starsystems.”
“Yes, indeed. That’s definitely possible. Relations with the Confederation have never gone so sour. They keep violating our trade laws.”
“They’re provoking us for years now. We should’ve seen this one coming.” Said the Venusian Gina Suoi. “After all, the remote controlled droid was of Confederan design.”
“And the Anurati Empire?”
“They’re to cowardly to pull off something like this. And what do they have to gain in this? There haven’t been any conflicts with the Empire for decades.”
And so it went on for hours and hours … Eventually they reached a consensus. The Confederation Of Starsystems was responsible. Everything that obstructed the Terran Alliance was a cheer-up for the Confederation. So plans were made to avenge themselves.
The years of tolerance had passed. No more excuses. They would teach those Confederan dirtbags a lesson they’ll never forget and show them the Alliance was not to be mocked!
During the next few days the official mourning … rolled in, from the Confederation as well as the Empire. The Confederation pledged their support and even sent tens of thousands of Zi’Dek flowers for the funeral.
They were very surprised by the attitude of the Alliance: they simply received all flowers back. And the Pentagon, planning to attend the funeral, was refused and told to stay away from Terran space.
The Terran Alliance immediately raised an embargo. No Confederan vessel was allowed in or out. Trade routes were closed and ships stranded.
This agitated the Confederation badly. How come the Alliance all of a sudden cut all bonds? Relations weren’t good, but certainly they couldn’t be that bad? Relations’d been stable since the very founding of the Alliance. It appeared it had something to do with the dead of the president … Secret agents discovered that the government accused the Pentagon of ordering the assassination. Thus the reason for the recent hatred. In reaction the Confederation threatened to send the Terran ambassador home, keep all their trade ships out and forbid any form of trade.
When the Alliance didn’t respond, and even removed the ambassador on their own, ordering their traders to avoid Confederan space, the Pentagon feared for war. The Pentagon used every diplomatic asset to push for a peaceful solution.
TO BE CONTINUED ...