Gatecrasher’s Almanac #31

Before I begin with today’s post, a reminder that I have a Patreon that helps encourage me to keep making content here. If you can spare even a buck a month it’s appreciated.

Name: PXC-1007 (Reforged)

Location: 1300 ly spinward of Sol

Gravity: 1.2G

Atmosphere: Nitrogen oxides

Body Type: Toxic Terrestrial

A dead-end world whose Gate sits on the outermost of the world’s three small moons, Reforged is a system that would have little to recommend it to most of transhumanity. Unfortunately for the anaerobic life sluggishly evolving on the planet’s surface, there’s a small faction of the reclaimer movement who call themselves the Pavers. They’ve mostly moved to bases buried beneath the surfaces of the planet’s moons, with a few staying behind in the solar system to continue occasional relays of news from the system and to turn their efforts on Reforged into propaganda for their notion of reclaiming the Earth.

The Pavers see the ruins of Earth as a chance to act as geoengineering gods; their goal is to use the hellish landscape of Reforged as a proving ground for their methods and ideas, turning the anoxic atmosphere and poisonous landscape into an Earthlike world. Along the way they intend to build ready-made cities across both of the world’s continents, all the way down to supporting infrastructure, literally paving the world as they remake it in their image.

Given the amount of nanotechnology and bioengineering involved in this plan, it’s small wonder that their numbers are small. Still, any given Paver is more than a match for the most fervent religious fanatic, committed entirely to the goal of rebuilding the Earth as they want it to be. That their methods are being put to the test on a world lacking in hostile nanoswarms, TITAN war machines, and the radioactive wastes caused by the Fall is of no matter to them – they plan to build Paradise, and then wreck it into a replica of Earth before rebuilding it anew.

They’re using unconventional methods in their terraforming efforts, using nanoswarm hives dropped from orbit and building gigantic geoengineering morphs on the surface to literally move mountains, jamming them from orbit when working. Already they’re seeing results, even if the results are ending up skewed from what they want. Massive dieoffs are sweeping through the local ecosystem, elements buried in the ground are leeching into the air and water as they’re disturbed, and the planet is slipping steadily toward being even more uninhabitable.

While the Firewall server tasked with tracking the Pavers would sincerely like to believe that their behavior is somehow tied to the TITANs and the exsurgent virus, the truth is that they’re simply transhumans with huge dreams, strong motivation, and a lack of ability to translate those dreams into reality, at least for now. Reforged will almost certainly be a dead world long before they can bring it to life as Earth 2.0 – something that may disillusion many of the Pavers, but will likely cause a hardcore central group to chase even more extreme measures. It may only be a matter of time before they go looking for a TITAN nanoswarm to try to reprogram, or try to create their own from scratch.

So far, though, Reforged is shaping up to just be a reminder that transhumanity is not yet ready to be actual gods.

Gatecrasher’s Almanac #31

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