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The Cleon Memorial Library For discussion of Traveller fiction, both official and fan-written. Fan-written drafts are explicitly welcome.

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Old Yesterday, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Blue Ghost View Post
Trying to let the brain cells recharge. I have an idea of how to end this, but don't want to cut it short, now drag it out, nor otherwise screw it up.

Given Traveller's longevity, I'm surprised there isn't more fan fic posted here and elsewhere. I'm not sure why that is. I guess a theory I have is that it's actually a hard game to write for given some of the restrictions it has, that, as opposed to how it started out.
From what I've heard....
It's not hard to write fiction that works within the tropes of the rules; it's a bear to write within the scope of the OTU.

Which is why Jeff Swycaffer didn't write OTU much, but he did write within the tropes. A couple of Bill Kieth's novels supposedly use the tropeset but not the setting, as well, but the only fic he's written that I've read has been in JTAS, TD, and/or MTJ.
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Old Yesterday, 11:45 PM
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Wow, 903 views. Incredible. I must be doing something right.

To the casual reader, I tried to go through and edit the chapters before posting them. I had word again read them back to me before presenting them for your consumption.

For those "really in the know" you might have discerned that Gahv is just a touch psychopathic And yes, he is a dire Vargr as per my Dire Vargr thread in the contact section of the forum.

So, the difference between being "psychotic" and "psychopathic", according to the experts, is that is you're psychotic, then you believe in things that aren't so. Say you think you're the son of Mister and Misses Santa Claus, or … "they" (the CIA and NSA) have Bruce Lee frozen in a missile silo down in Florida. Junk like that.

Psychopathy is where you're more sympathetic or warmer emotions just aren't connected to the rest of your gray matter, and so letting really harmful things take place and not helping, or, in the worst case, actually causing them to happen to suit your own personal gain, is what being a psychopath is all about.

I actually didn't intend to write Gahv as a psychopath. I truly did not. I was going to write him as an alpha dog come from the coreward region of the Extents to make his fortune. But somehow things just fell into place as the story evolved.

Gahv was going to be the epitome of the Vargr corsair captain, but I found that writing him as a calm yet hungrily motivated individual who bucked the trend of howling and growling at his crew, was somehow far more interesting and perilous. And to this extent far more entertaining. If I wrote him as a Dire Vargr, then I would have had to have put a great deal of empathy into him, and he just would not have made a good Corsair captain raiding the Spinward main. According to the few docs and other references on Dire Wolves, they are (as per current theory) characterized as having taken care of the sick and injured. Gahv really doesn't fall into that mode of thought unless it suits his personal agenda, ergo the reason he put Kael into a low berth.

Kael, as it turns out, is the name of the hero for Titan AE. I had no idea until I popped the the thing into the DVD player either last week or the week before last. Either way I was well into the story, and so just shrugged my shoulders at it. I think the names are spelled differently anyway, so whatever.

I didn't make Kael very sympathetic because anyone who joins a pirate crew, whether in the classic age or the 18th or 19th century, are just criminals at sea. Pirating is romanticized, and some of the reputation is marginally deserved given the attempt to escape social conventions at the time, but you're still threatening people and taking their stuff, no matter how you frame it.

I should had that I actually did have a pirate story conjuring in my gray matter. Something that was very flamboyant and cliché … something along the lines of "The Crimson Pirate" with Burt Lancaster, if you've seen the movie No Disney nor Johnny Depp stuff here. But, as I wrote that piece, and had my anti-heroes swash buckling across the page, I had a hard time creating a story where they just didn't pirate other ships, but maybe did something "good" and redeemed themselves. Well, that story may manifest eventually, but I really needed to write this one about Gahv and crew.

Tolchin is your typical WASPY blue-eyed naval commander type who has that nautical streak coursing through his being. I modeled him after one of the former Joint Chiefs at the Pentagon … one of the better known generals, but I can't recall his name off the top of my head. He's multidimensional when it comes to strategy and tactics, but otherwise a fairly simple individual to understand.

My one gaff with Tolchin is that he asks Haswell (named after my old Algebra teacher ) what to do should he run into the Stalker's Fang. That should actually read "If I run into a Zho ship, what action do I take?" asking what to do during peace time with high tensions between the Imperium and Zhodani Consulate. Well....I may go back and edit it. I may not. I'm feeling a little lazy, and feel the need to move onto other stuff.

The long time Traveller will note that I used basic starship combat rules, and not Mega Traveller nor T5 SFB-ish like power consumption and energy economy stuff. That level of gaming doesn't interest me. At one time it did, but simply put I kept getting different versions of battery discharge rules for SFB told and interpreted for me, so I figured someone was trying to cheat, steer me wrong, or they just didn't know the rules themselves, and I had no patience to re-read them for the umpteenth time and submit a question as to why everyone thinks that there's no down-time for batteries when recharging them. Ergo when it came to MT starship combat, and what seemed an attempt to create an SFB like rule set for the accountant mind war gamer, I just shook my head and stuck with the old rules. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. The basic rules are pretty general but also pretty straight forward. Ergo I could throw on any description I wanted to when it came to combat and damage. As per a referee using the old CT rules would do. Voila.

Gas giants are fun, but there's limits to them. I could have tossed in the enormous and highly lethal magnetosphere into the story, but since ships are rated to fuel at gas giants, then one presumes they have protection built into them. Ergo I skipped that part. I was not tempted to add gas giant critters into the mix. That might be an element for a novel if I should ever rewrite this, but I'm not sure Sagan's hunters, floaters and sinkers would add much to the story.

What happened to Gahv? I don't know. What happened to Veanch and his officers? I don't know. Maybe Veanch got back, maybe his officers didn't. I can't really say, and won't. I simply don't know, and am burnt out to the point of not wanting to speculate any further.

Anyway, there appear to be no questions here, so I'll leave the story as is It was a fun ride, and given the number of views I can only assume that some people enjoyed it.

Like I say, I'm kind of burnt out on Vargr for now, however absolutely entertaining they have been. Honestly, the "dogs of war" are a fun species to write for. However, I'm thinking I may tackle Droyne next time, or maybe go back to the Aslan minus the hand-to-hand pole arm faux paus. Who knows. "The skies the limits." so to speak.

Some special notes; I don't like the Vargr scout ship. I don't like the GT version of the Droyne scout ship. Even though I gave Aslan hand to hand weapons in my other story thread, to me, it seems to fit with who they are regardless of the rules. I would have loved to tackle the K'Kree if they weren't so one-track minded and paranoid. But we'll see.

Thanks for the views. May your fuel always be refined, and you never run out of battery power for your Gauss Gun.

Blue Ghost
Sir Ghost, Knight of Imperial occupied Terra, Sol.
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