Excerpt from "Seven Days on the Captial Planet" Book 10, Renascence Alliance Series
Updated: 6 days ago
In Transit: January 11th, 2640 (Imperial: 8th day of the 78th week of the year 18908)
“Do the Alliance gods really exist?” I ask myself as I look out the window from my Alliance Starship quarters, where I can see the reflection of the small deity shrine. I cannot help but remind myself of what G.K. Chesterton once said, “The traveler sees what he sees. The tourist sees what he has come to see.” I have been invited by the Alliance Empress herself, Drusilla, first of her name and second human, the disciple of the goddess of home, to tour the Capital Planet for seven days. I have done my research, and I expect to be shown all the usual tourist sites; The Grand City Temple, The Imperial Palace, The High Council, and undoubtedly the Empire’s citizens will present their best faces to me.
When the Empress suddenly made Earth a territory, after the shock of being ousted from the Galactic Court, new Imperial Laws were imposed and humans resisted. We have come so far in our progress as a civilization, only to be dragged back towards religious superstition and governmental interference in our personal lives from the Empire and we don’t want it. For the sake of all of my Earth Today, ET, followers, I hope that I will be able to see more than what the tourist sees. That I will be able to dig deeper into Alliance culture and see what the traveler sees. My goal is to bring back to you, fellow humans, not what the Empress or High Council would have us see but the truth of what the Empire really is. And it is my hope that the Alliance is not as dire, dark, and as dreadful as what we have seen from the official broadcasts from the Empire to Earth.
Stay tuned via ET to follow my progress. As is my custom, I will allow viewers to witness every thought I have, every emotion I feel, and every interaction, no matter how personal, with a Mind-Body-Emotion Transmitter, MBET, which the Empire has agreed to. They replied that they have nothing to hide from the Lost People. As is my style, I will not edit my experience but allow viewers to decide what the Empire is really about for themselves. My goal is to experience as much as possible to provide an accurate and true account of the Empire through human eyes.
For those who don’t already know me, a quick introduction, I’m Harmony Lane. I’ve been a galactic investigative journalist for just over ten years, and most people know me from my coverage on the frontlines of the Jahay War 2633-2635 (GY 18903-18904). I’m known as the woman who brings back the truth to Earth without edits.
Today is the first day of my seven-day voyage to the Capital Planet on the Alliance Alpha Warship Dei with Captain Tol of House Joi. My journey over will act as a soft introduction to Alliance society as there are other humans, both diplomats, and entrepreneurs, making their way to the Capital Planet. However, as a personal guest of the Empress, I have special access to the ship and its crew. I can ask questions outside what is considered normal protocol and go where most human guests are not allowed.
I have been invited to dine with the Captain of this vessel in his private dining room this evening. I look forward to speaking to him one-on-one and will count this as my first real interview. I have, of course, met Alliance people throughout my time in the galaxy. However, I have never had the opportunity to have a real conversation with any of them.
I was given a recommended dress code by the High Council. However, as I am not a full Alliance citizen, Earth citizens still maintain their cultural rights to dress how they would like as a form of expression, so I will not adhere to their recommendations. First, because I do not own any clothing that fits the bill of a long and loose plain-colored maxi dress. Second, because I do not feel that the dress code is to keep me safe from the prying eyes of Alliance men, as it’s rumored that Alliance people think nothing of being naked.
So much so that they sleep naked, and when they wake in the middle of the night, a time they refer to as ‘The Watching,’ they happily meet one another without clothing. Third, I will not conform to this loose-fitting maxi dress code because the Dei’s temperature is kept at a frosty 15C, so I am wearing plenty of warm clothing. Fortunately,, I can keep my cabin at the maximum 26C if I so choose with a bathing temperature in the shower of 45C.
One would think that on such a technologically advanced ship, occupants would be able to control their own environments and water temperatures, at least, even if it might cause them bodily harm. But, I think my assumptions, that to be different as an individual, is something that is frowned upon in Alliance society. And that this sentiment is strong within the culture, that technology, government, and society, either by conscious or subconscious design, takes away one’s individual right to choose for themselves even the simplest of things.
One thing I must adhere to if I want to eat though are the rules of Alliance mealtimes. Also if I am to join any maximum or slave class people in eating and avoid being fined. These times are strictly observed both on planet and on the ship at 7:00, 13:00, and 19:00. I have been assigned a place at a table, specifically a chair, with the other humans onboard in the guests’ dining hall, where I must eat each meal. I was told our place settings were organized by rank. Although my rank as an investigative reporter is below many of the diplomats onboard, I am an Imperial Guest, which puts me as the most important human at the table. I have yet to take a meal with my fellow travelers, but I suspect we will all share a smile over our Alliance rankings, as they will vary greatly to how we humans would rank ourselves.