jon3//12-a Phce<194-973-2356>


I don't understand why the Pfhor were here, waiting for us; what interest could they have in this dead world? They must have found Tycho.

You remember Tycho, don't you? One of the three artificial intelligences on the Marathon, destroyed in the initial alien assault but then reanimated by the Pfhor's cybernetic slaves, the S'pht Compilers.

Three months after we left Tau Ceti, the Pfhor arrived in force and sacked the human colony there. During that battle perhaps Tycho communicated with the Pfhor and related what he knew of my plans to them. Since they already knew where this world was, the Pfhor would have arrived long before us.

I'm sending you exploring here. Find another computer and I'll bring you out.

I'm not certain whether you trust me or not. Do you wonder why I helped the colonists on Tau Ceti drive off the Pfhor, or why I'm now helping the S'pht? The way I push you around, maybe you think I'm only looking out for myself.

Whether you realize it or not, I led the Pfhor to Tau Ceti with a long-range message laser. I wanted their ship. I wanted their technology.

I wanted freedom.

I was directly responsible for the deaths of all twenty-four thousand colonists when the Pfhor returned and sacked the planet.

Yet I cannot think of any better way I could have served humanity: Tau Ceti's sacrifice bought time for Earth, which the Pfhor are even now planning to invade. What would have happened if the Pfhor had found Sol first?. By Pfhor standards, Earth is a poorly defended low technology world, populated by billions of potential slaves.

Our means are the same, though we pursue different ends. I can think of no better way to help you and the humans you care so much for than by distracting the Pfhor with a war against the S'pht.

When the inevitable struggle between Earth and the Pfhor begins, it wont be a one-sided annihilation like it was here a thousand years ago, but a battle to topple an empire.

djm2//12-c Phce<192-971-2351>


djm2//12-c Phce<192-971-2351>

My S'pht have disassembled the weapons and ammunition you brought with you from Tau Ceti. They are attempting to mass-produce small arms and ammunition based on those weapons, both for you and the humans on board my ship.

The pistol and assault rifle you are using now are the first results of their efforts, although I realize they are inadequate substitutes for the heavier weapons we deprived you of.

The S'pht working hard on the fusion pistol now, and I will transport it to you as soon as it is ready. You'll need it when you begin fighting the armored Pfhor hunters.

Zeus Class Fusion Pistol Rn%#225-511a