The Merged races were in a panic. An'durion was the first into the council chamber, his severed Psionic appendages itching from the hate-filled thoughts of those assaulting their home planet.
Ki'ana was next into the room, returned from the planet she had habitated with a small group of Proto-terrans-now overrun by the Templar. Her once-blond hair was curled up tightly against her own Psionic Nubs, now grey and pale. Deep wrinkles carved her face, and he himself knew that he was no better off. The two siblings were 150 now, the oldest of their race, but they were young by Protoss standards. An'durion suspected that the stress of the war-and the pressure involved in subduing the dark powers with which he was familiar-had taken a deeper toll on him than on his youngest sister.
She took a seat at the council table, and they patiently awaited the arrival of the last representative. The...Terozerg were easier to deal with than their source races-either of them-but they were still something of an interruption to most meetings.
His face darkened. Bae'Raga, his half-sister, had died young. Old for a Zerg, but still far too young.
Her descendant, the current Queen of the Terozerg, entered then, rushing. She was new to the throne, her skin still smoothe. An'Durion found this new queen strange, as she was obviously the offspring of one of the drones. Normally, the royal family preferred ultralisk blood.
Traces of that still showed in her appearance, but the skin patterns gave her away-along with the lack of carapace.
"The Protoss forces have struck us hard on Shalagos." She stated as she sat down. "-All of our people-those left-have retreated to this world. We're holding off protoss forces on the southwestern hemisphere-but that's not saying much. We'll be overrun shortly. Terrans took out our other worlds as well."
An'Durion nodded at the girl-Cho'nira-and allowed the others of the council to file in. Younger masters of the Acadamies, The chiefs of the Terozerg breeds, and the few humans who had sided with them in their war. The Dark Templar who sympathised had few of their number on this world, and they sent one to the council. An'Durion recognised him-it was the same Dark Templar who had trained him in what he knew.
He himself spoke next, An'Durion's bones creaking, protesting the movement as he stood to get the attention of the gathered council.
"We Darksiders are gaining some relief from the assault in the eastern hemisphere, but we are also failing. Ki'ana-"he gestured towards his sister- "Has informed me that the Zealot forces are also failing. Our academies can only produce so much-and the races who seek our deaths have advanced far more than we. Our scientists predict that we will be anialated within six weeks unless something changes. A combined fleet of Terran Battlecruisers and Protoss carriers approaches, they will arrive here then."
One of the Breed-leaders of the Terozerg spoke up.
"What hope do we have then?" He asked, tusks interferring with his speech. "If the Protoss and the Terrans are so far advanced, what hope for survival do either of our races have?"
An'Durion turned to Ki'Ana. It was time to tell them.
She stood, slowly, calmly, to address the council.
"Our scientists have not developed much, but our two Psion academies-the Darksiders and the Temple Knights, may have learned something."
Cho-Nira smiled at her Great-Great Aunt. Or well, Half-aunt. She stood, and An'Durion was surprised, as were the others.
"I myself assisted with the project of which Ki'Ana speaks." She nodded at the Elder of the Prototerrans. "I personally believe that it is my race's only hope of success. You may pursuade the Protoss and the Terrans to leave you alone, as you have done before, but the Zerg have been destroyed. With them gone, the Protoss and the terrans have shifted their hatred to us. Donivan intended for us to survive and thrive, and to be more peaceful than our predacessors."
She flashed a toothy grin at the council, her canines briefly menacing, "Not too difficult with our former race, the Zerg, but a bit difficult with the Protoss."
"Get on with it!" One of the younger heads of the Acadamies barked out, his crest flushing with frustration.
Ki'Ana smiled knowingly at An'durion and Cho'nira.
"The Psions have found a way to pursuade the Void-skills and the Bright-skills to work together. Darksiders and Temple Knights together can create a feild, that could theoretically relocate this entire starsystem."
The council fell back in shock.
"The whole system?"
Ki'Ana nodded. "To do so would be dangerous, but possible. All of our Psions may be killed in the battle, but we would at least be safe from the Protoss and the terrans."
The Cheif of the Science acadamy stood next, hesitantly, and spoke softly.
"How far would we have to go to be safe? You fled far from our ancestor races when the first Merge war broke out, and they have expanded to our position. Soon, the entire galaxy will be in the posession of our Ancestors. Where can we go?"
An'Durion lifted a hand, the elder weary-and growing irritable. He would pass on soon, he could feel it. The Dark-side energies he had been burning only marginally affected the Protoss, but they greatly cut human lifespan.
"My companions." He said firmly. "We do not present this option as a matter to debate. The council will decide if we shall try. However, If we do not attempt this, then we will fall."
"Where do you wish to relocate to?" The head of the Science Acadamy asked, crest indicating subservience.
An'Durion spoke softly.
A ghasp rushed through the council chamber. The Terozerg cheifs stared in awe, visibly warming up to the idea, but the Prototerran Academics were stunned.
"But-To transfer our solar system to an entirely different galaxy…."
An'Durion nodded. "Would cost the minds of nearly every Psion on this planet. I am not sure if we will reach this destination, but we will at least be out of the reach of the Protoss and the Terrans for generations. They may never learn to do this, as we beleive it is our very merged natures that allows for this combined use of the Void and the Creation energies."
Cho Nira stood. "I have already pledged my Overlords to this cause. We will be left with precious few to manage our affairs-and our expansion, but as I stated-this plan is my race's only hope. I have committed fully, and discussed the risks with every Psion among my people. The Hive-minds will assist, and my Defiler-merges. But we cannot move this planet on our own, let alone the solar system. We fall too heavily with the Void energies, by nature of our race."
Ki'Ana stood taller. "We ask the council to agree. We have only six weeks to gather all psions on the planet, leaving a few to manage when they are gone-if they must be gone. Prototerrans lean towards the light-together we can pull this off."
Cho'Nira and Ki'Ana sat down, leaving the council members to think.
The President of the Science Academy was the first to stand.
"I support the plan proposed by our elders and the Terozerg queen." He said softly.
"We relocate the system to Xar'os'tura."
Tilovan stepped through the Terran ship, examining the grey blur, swirling black and white patterns, outside the veiw port. Warp-space was a strange environment. There was no sense of movement, no sense of change, and yet he knew personally that the ship was advancing quickly to the last World of the Merged-the cursed races, defiled forms of his people.
He adjusted his headdress, his multi-jointed knees folding and unfolding to relieve pressure and tension from the jump. Terran ships only crudely accessed the warpspace, but the terrans were, for the most part, blind to the psionic pressures exerted by the environment.
A man stepped up, a short, strong human who Tilovan had begrudgingly come to work with. The general had been assaulting the new Zerg population-the Human hybrids, and had eliminated many of their colony worlds. Tilovan had been focusing on the "Prototerrans", the Half-breeds that dared to claim Protoss blood. After they were gone, Tilovan hoped to eliminate the Humans as well...but that was a battle for another day. The merged would die soon.
The human scowled.
"You are sure the data on the Prototerran base was accurate?"
Tilovan nodded, responding with the psionic vibrations of his people. "Our templar have examined the data thoroughly. They believe the information is not only accurate- it is precise to every detail. Their world is not sufficiently defended. They will be crushed. ¨
The general seemed to think about this for a moment.
"I hope you're right, Protoss. The Federation wouldn't take kindly to losing a fleet this far from home."
Tilovan made no mention that he wanted the Terrans to lose that fleet.
"Are all your ships fully charged?"
The terran chuckled. "If they all fired at once, we could destroy a small continent. But yes, they are charged."
Tilovan nodded, and it was then that a deep pressure-a kind he had never felt, began to rush out from the grey dimness around them.
He groaned, his mental anguish transmitting into the surrounding air.
He rushed to the bridge of the ship, the Terran General following close after, barking orders at his men to pull up the viewscreen.
They did-hurriedly, and the two commanders were left staring. All around them was a swirling of dark and light energies, but before them….was a brilliance. It appeared to their eyes to be a perfect shade of grey...yet it drew the eye, demanding attention.
Tilovan fell to his knees, groaning from the pressure in his head. Psionic energies wafted from the distant point, crippling him with their strength.
"Sir," one of the terran soldiers said from a side screen, "There's an immense energy reading, coming from ahead of us."
"What kind?" the general barked. He was beginning to get a headache, as if he had been listening to a high-pitched noise.
"What's the source?"
THere was a long pause before the underling answered, but Tilovan already knew. There was only one option, one possible source.
"Acturas, Sir. The Merged Homeworld."
There was a final burst of Psionic energy, and then….silence.
Tilovan stood, inhaling and exhaling heavily, body shaking from mental strain. He began to leave the room, and the general cursed at him.
"Protoss! Where are you going?"
Tilovan turned to the general, defeated.
"I must turn my fleet around, General. Acturas is no longer there."
Tilovan left the room, and the General stared at the door, demanding confirmation from the sensor readings.
Within two days, every possible reading confirmed: there was no gravity well where the solar system should have been.
Within four days, when the fleet arrived, their own eyes confirmed.
The solar system was gone.
The Merged races had fled.