Fort Asch

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Fort Asch is a large abandoned surface base on HIP 22460 7 c formerly run by Azimuth Biochemicals as part of Project Seraph – an attempt to make human controlled Thargoid ships.

To get access to HIP 22460 you may need to get the system permit – available by scanning the Listening Post (Beacon) in Synuefe Gb-O c9-8. To reveal the actual base use the Detailed Surface Scanner to scan planet 7 c. You may need to drop out of supercruise to see the actual location.

There are five scannable data points that tell the story (which carries on from Oaken Point and was discovered as part of the Hyford story). There are also several crashed ships, many cargo containers with raw materials, a comms point scannable for data materials, and some server banks (of no known use). There is also another data point, but the message just says it is corrupted. There is an Antimatter Containment Unit near the crashed ships, which is a rare salvageable.

The main logs are voiced – the text is given below:

FORT ASCH LOG 1/5

Project Seraph, Log #34. Professor Kaley Orenn reporting.

Following Professor Dorne’s reassignment, I’m responsible for logging the next phase of Project Seraph. The primary objective is acquiring a new Thargoid vessel. Our human pilot integration tests aren’t going to achieve much without one.

The staging facility in HIP 22460 is up and running. Black Flight ships are patrolling in anticipation of non-human activity. Ground teams are examining the system’s two Thargoid surface sites in the hope of attracting a Thargoid vessel. According to Captain Stenson our operation is ‘textbook’. I’m not convinced the Captain could read a textbook. but I’ll take him at his word.

The permit check is still active in this system’s nav beacon. I have to say, the considerable investment in securing that permit is impressive. Pass my thanks on to the relevant donors.

Initial system scans aren’t showing much promise. If the Thargoids are still interested in this system they haven’t left any recent evidence. Reports of strange encounters in the Pleiades sector have increased, though. Multiple pilots have claimed they were pulled out of hyperspace by an alien craft; as you know, this tactic was common during the First Thargoid War.

I hope you understand we’re potentially acting as bait out here. Assuming the surface sites are in ancient Thargoid territory, then our ground teams are trespassing. We don’t yet know how they’ll be received. This risk has been calculated into your plans, I assume?

I’ll report again in a few days.

FORT ASCH LOG 2/5

Project Seraph, Log #37. Professor Kaley Orenn reporting.

Still no Thargoid vessel. The surface sites are providing valuable data on Thargoid architecture and construction methods. I’ve requested a sweep for evidence of Mycoid activity on these relics. I’m sure we’ll find a use for the ground team’s analysis either way.

Dr Granmore has provided a very long essay on his team’s findings at Research Site Amber, which I’ve sent on your preferred channel. You should get comfortable before reading it. A cup of coffee or several would be smart, too. As I said: very long essay.

One interesting development relates to the disappearance of Subject D-2. Our security team found several unauthorised messages which had piggybacked along our encryption network. The datapad that sent these messages belonged to Dr Edmund Pierce; evidently he’s not as good with technology as he is with bioengineering, so it was simply a matter of time until we noticed. Decoding these messages revealed Pierce has assisted D-2’s escape from the Oaken Point infirmary.

Pierce confessed and is now incarcerated. When the interrogation is complete he‘ll be executed. There was talk of making this a public event, but Pierce is popular with his colleagues. I’ll announce the transgression and punishment after the fact. Better to let the traitor’s deed speak for him.

D-2’s whereabouts remain unknown. Pierce’s messages at least confirms she was placed on Commander Hyford’s ship without his knowledge. Hyford’s elimination shouldn’t affect our flow of test subjects.

Until next time. Say hi to Dorne for me.

FORT ASCH LOG 3/5

Project Seraph, Log #39. Professor Kaley Orenn reporting.

One of our trade ships has encountered a possible Thargoid vessel! The trader jumped into HIP 22460 with a delivery for Research Site Bronze when it was yanked out of hyperspace.

The pilot claims his modules were temporarily shut down. An alien vessel – much larger than the one held at Oaken Point – swept the trade ship with a visible energy wave before departing through a rift in space. The tactics, visual description and residual wake readings all indicate a Thargoid craft.

The trade ship carried one of the artefacts recovered from the Pleiades region for Dr Granmore’s work. Maybe it attracted the alien vessel. if it is of Thargoid origin, it would confirm they’re still interested in this system. Perhaps this whole region. If we can somehow draw the ship back into regular space…Surely Captain Stenson has a plan to disable it.

I don’t know what to make of the encounter. Thargoids have always been aggressive towards humans. Why intercept our trade ship only to leave it intact? Was it gathering information? Attempting to communicate in some way? The potential answers make me a little uneasy. At least violence would be typical behaviour. Predictable, even. But this report suggests an adaption of sorts. The kind ordered by further up the chain.

At least we know they’re watching. I’ll outline some theories on how to initiate a repeat encounter.

FORT ASCH LOG 4/5

Project Seraph, Log #42. Professor Kaley Orenn reporting.

Less than an hour ago a Black Flight squadron was intercepted by Thargoids.

Seven Black Flight ships were en route from Research Site Bronze to Fort Asch. They picked up an unrecognised signal source and were ordered to investigate. What little telemetry we have shows the ships were attacked soon after dropping from supercruise. At least three Thargoid vessels were involved. The skirmish, if what happened even qualifies as one, lasted less than two minutes.

By the time reinforcements arrived there was nothing but debris left. The Thargoids had departed. There were no survivors.

Professor Dorne always sounds so confident when he talks about our study of Thargoid technology. Our dominance over the aliens seems certain when he discusses Project Seraph. I’m fascinated to know what he makes of this.

FORT ASCH LOG 5/5

Project Seraph, Log #51. Professor Kaley Orenn reporting.

This will probably be the final log for Project Seraph. I don’t see much point in continuing after the withdrawal.

I know, I know: the Witch gave the order. That attack on the Federal convoy is going to draw the superpower’s attention to the Pleiades. And the Thargoid presence is growing stronger each day. We can’t risk exposure so we’re pulling out and taking our research with us. I get it.

It’s just frustrating. I was so sure we were making a difference here. The first human-piloted Thargoid ship will be a huge step in our technological evolution. We were getting closer with each test and then it just…stopped. All the momentum we’d enjoyed ebbed away. People trained to work with hard data have resorted to chasing ghosts.

The objective was to find a new Thargoid vessel. As though it were just a matter of time. I guess you could say they found us instead.

I’ll arrange transport for the remaining test subjects. We have a few locations which could house them for a while. If the Thargoids really are back then there should be an opportunity to obtain another vessel eventually. Assuming they don’t wipe us out first, of course.

I’ll be at Azimuth headquarters for a full debrief within forty-eight hours.

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