On Monday 21 May 2033 sensors picked up something large entering the solar system, the radio astronomy observatories watched this object perturb the paths of known asteroids. The speed and direction of the object showed that it would head for the Earth. Eventually.
Scientists determined that a rogue planet, a wandering world with no parent star had been captured by the sun's gravity and pulled in. Many people were frightened and there was panic buying and selling in some parts but this very premature and rare enough to be an oddity.
It was soon determined that this new world was about the same diameter as the Earth and just a little less dense, but still making it the second densest planet in the solar system. It had an atmosphere of some type, almost as thick as the one on Earth.
On 14 August scientists held a press conference to report that the new world would enter into a proper orbit around the sun by the end of the year. The big news was that this planet would share Earth's orbit and would end up being close enough to see in our daylight sky. Especially at dusk.
27 November 2033, the planet was now a dot in the night sky. More big news was revealed by the global community of scientists. The new world had a nitrogen-oxygen atmosphere, much like our own and oceans, although shallower than ours.
4 December 2033, a whistle-blower revealed that radio signals were being detected from the other planet and that these were not natural phenomena. The new arrival had radio broadcasting systems although they had not been decoded. This was the most shocking news so far, of course.
7 December 2033, the FBI and other agencies raid and shut down a religious organization who were sending radio waves directly at the planet. They had the intent to convert these beings to Christ. The governments warned that we had no idea what might offend our new neighbors.
11 December, the new world was now almost as big as the moon in the sky although more than twice as far away. It did not orbit the Earth, it just stayed in a leading orbit. You could now see the world in the sky before the sun went down and a little while after, a large reddish planet. It was something that nobody had really imagined before.
23 December 2033. Multiple “falling stars” were reported across Asia as night fell, with many said to have hit the ground and the sea. Then live pictures were picked up from Nogura, Japan of a wrecked building. A black sphere sat amidst the rubble.
As the reporter watched police rope the area off to await the soldiers of the Japan Self-Defense Force, the sphere split in half and a black shadowy shape emerged. It quickly lunged at the nearest police and civilians and lifted them into the air, shook them and then threw them against the wall. A police officer fired several times from close range only to be lifted by his head and then his head was crushed by the claws of the creature.
The world was now alarmed as reports of these “falling stars” were now being reported in mainland China and later parts of western Russia. It was moving along with the side of Earth that faced this new world. North America had less than a day to put the military and the people of the country on alert. Highways and airports were closed, ammunition and firearms sold out wherever they were sold.
Reports of attacks from Asia were studied. The tiniest piece of information could prove to be valuable n repelling these invaders. Reports from India and countries farther and farther west were added to the pile as the day wore on. The beasts did a lot of damage but eventually they were killed by large caliber rounds.
Russia launched several ICBM missiles that exploded in space when the incoming spheres were detected. Radar had now been honed to find them, but the reaction time was short because radar could only be extended so far. The west waited for the news.
A smattering of the black spheres fell on eastern Russia, most of them did not split open. The Russian military cut one open and found an alien beast dead inside. It was brought to a secret location for study, the information they found was shared. Already, though, western Europe was faced with the decision,
The EMP from the explosions had caused scattered outages, this news emboldened the Europeans so that France and the UK fired their own nukes as a shield from invasion. It seemed to work, a few beasts survived but the military was ready and had dispatched them. They did a lot of damage, but they were mortal, they did die.
While North and South America awaited their turn, the new Space Station Terra was boarded by smaller beings. These beings wore space suits and carried weapons and killed the astronauts as the whole world watched. The last one they actually made sure was in front of a camera before they used a blade and impaled the poor man from behind, the blade coming out of his chest.
The United States used its ICBM arsenal to shield the America's from the wave of spheres, more or less successfully, reports were confirmed than a second wave of larger vessels had departed from the new world now universally called Nemesis. So while mopping up the surviving beasts of the first wave had been pretty simple, in relative terms, the worst was yet to come.
At a secret meeting in the White House basement a group of countries agreed that somehow a military force had to be sent to Nemesis. It might be a suicide mission, but if they could somehow hold off the second wave, it would be done. While the world awaited the new invasion, it secretly planned to invade the alien world in response.
To open a second front.
The aliens were about as tall and strong as we were. They were more agile but they were not any less mortal than us. They wore powered armored suits but this did not protect them from large caliber rounds.
Their skin was splotchy between gray and dark black, their eyesight in their red eyes was not great, but many of them had enhanced themselves with implanted visors. They had bat-like ears and could hear really well and they had claws on their three fingers and their thumbs.
Whether they had intentionally used their planet as a spaceship or not they had some technology far beyond ours, but in many respects they were peer competitors. Probes showed Nemesis was a barren wasteland, the trip through the void had probably taken generations. Without light and heat from a parent star nearly all the vegetation on their world had been killed. It was believed that the aliens lived underground.
“We need six-man teams. The idea is that we will send them to Nemesis.” The General explained to his peers from the UK, Russia, Korea and Australia.
“A bloody suicide mission, mate.” The Australian officer responded.
The others on the LCD screens were nodded. They were having their meeting over the military network of satellites, it was heavily encrypted.
“We know that. In all likelihood these men will never survive, the first ones there will face an environment unknown to them. We do not know what kind of germs and viruses that world has, for one thing.” The American told them.
“The bottom line is their world is dead, they want ours.” The British officer said, “Assuming the second wave can be handled, we don't know how many of their soldiers are on those ships, you will have all the volunteers you need, I'd imagine.”
“They will carry suitcase nuke, no?” The Russian General asked.
“Yes, we call them Man-Portable Tactical Nuclear Weapons. Or backpack nukes.” The American told them, “Each of the teams will have one or two of them, these devices weigh about 22.6 kilograms, they will be carried in separate packs by separate soldiers and assembled at the sites.”
“How do we plan on getting these teams to Nemesis?” The Korean General finally spoke up.
“That is a right good question!” The Australian said.
The American General touched some keys on a keyboard. The image of a small, blunt shuttle on the tip top of a large rocket was shown to them. “Meet the XSR-75. Quite capable of lugging a team of 6 into orbit and then to Nemesis without refueling.” The US General told them, “One of our secret projects turns out to actually be useful, for once.”
“I assume you want Marines for this.” The British officer said.
“Mostly.” he answered “We intend to send an Army Ranger or equivalent with sniper experience with each team.”
“We're about to have a bloody hell lot of soldiers with a fookun' lot of experience, General.” The Australian said, referring to the second wave.
“Yes, come to that, we all have better things to do than talk about what comes afterward.” he told them and the connections were terminated.
A new possible on-going story for this blog. This is just the prologue, expect part one in a couple of days.