Palinchron Concordance

It is just two months after the death of Gerard DuGalle. Kerrigan is strengthening her forces for an attack against the remaining forces of the Terran Dominion. Zeratul, who was exiled to the outer fringe worlds for his murder of Matriarch Raszagal, lies in wait, preparing an army including the forces of Artanis and the few Dark Templar who remain loyal. A new Dark Templar Patriarch, Arzakon, is rising to power. Emperor Arcturus Mengsk and his armies are busy bolstering their defenses on Korhal, preparing for the inevitable battle with Kerrigan. And hidden away on a small moon of the planet Braxis, Samir Duran is covertly continuing his experiments with Zerg/ Protoss Hybrids, and his new right-hand Zerg - a sentient servitor Duran personally created named Baragon - is carrying out the task of distributing those Hybrids across the Koprulu Sector.

And on Korhal, going completely unnoticed by any party, is UED Strike Team Gamma, a small detachment that was left on Korhal after Arcturus Mengsk's defeat at Augustgrad. With the element of surprise theirs, the UED detachment is planning to finish what was one of Gerard DuGalle's primary mission objectives: the taming of the Zerg. With the Overmind destroyed, such a mission is not entirely possible. But the UED intends to do the next best thing and take control of a Cerebrate...specifically Cerebrate Vorge - a beast spawned of cells cloned from the deceased Cerebrate Zasz - which has taken up residence on Korhal.

But unbeknownst even to the UED is that Vorge is but one factor in yet another party, a concordance one would never expect to be reached...


 
PROLOGUE

It was a dusty night in the small Tarsonis colony of New Bangor. Terran refugees from the Zerg attacks against the UED were sleeping quietly, protected by a small but well-trained colonial militia which stood guard at all times. There had been no threats to the tiny colony in the period of roughly two months in which it had stood. Only the residents of the town and the precious few soldiers that remain from the UED's original fleet are aware of the colony's existence.

But, as is often the case in war zones, the silence can only last for so long. In a bunker to the west side of town, two soldiers were preparing for another long night of security duty.

"Hey, Panopticon. You remembered to check on the Psi Emitter, right?" said a scruffy-looking marine.

"It ain't gettin' any more secure, Gutierrez," replied the tall, buzz-cut Ghost, who was idly pointing his grenade launcher out of one of the bunker's turrets. "Why the hell do we even have the thing anyway?"

"I don't know. Maybe you can beat the explanation out of Lieutenant Drogen. All he told me was that if we ever try to carry out Gerard's mission, we're gonna need a Psi Emitter. Supposedly it does somethin' to the Zerg."

"I don't need some taffy-ass Psi Emitter to do somethin' to the Zerg," the Ghost snorted. "I'd frag all those bugs myself if it meant we'd be able to go back to Earth."

"Knowing you, I don't doubt that," the marine laughed. "Here, try some of this. I bet you'll need it tonight. It's gonna be a long shift." He tossed the Ghost a small metal cylinder.

"And this is...?" the Ghost asked.

"Java, man. We smuggled a whole bunch of it from Earth."

The Ghost opened up the thermos and leaned his head back, pouring coffee into his mouth. "Holy crap, it's scalding hot! Just the way I like it..."

BOOM. Suddenly the earth shook.

"What was that?" the marine asked, quickly pointing his gauss rifle out of the nearest turret and searching for a potential threat.

The Ghost put down the thermos and put on his helmet. "We've got incoming."

As the two soldiers readied their weapons, a gigantic, reptilian quadruped began to approach from the swirling clouds of dust off in the distance. "Madre de Dios! What the hell is THAT thing?" the marine shouted.

"That, Gutierrez, is an Ultralisk. Though I've never seen any Ultralisk as big as this freak..." The Ghost put his finger on the trigger of his grenade launcher. "In any case, we gotta waste 'im." The two promptly opened fire upon the creature, only to have their attacks blunted by the beast's chitinous carapace.

"This might be a problem," the marine noted, as the Ultralisk drew ever nearer.

"The Psi Emitter is MINE, worms!" the Ultralisk boomed, as a platoon of Siege Tanks began to roll out and attack. "You will give it to me or suffer a most untimely fate!" The Ultralisk charged towards the Siege Tanks and trampled them into unidentifiable chunks of twisted metal.

"Can't say I've heard of a talking Ultralisk before," the Ghost commented, unfazed. "So maybe the Zerg are intelligent after all. Now I almost feel bad about slaughtering 'em." The Ghost then scored a direct hit upon the Ultralisk's head. "Almost..."

Needless to say, even though it failed to cause any damage, the grenade blast caught the Ultralisk's attention. The creature came charging toward the bunker. "Run!" shouted the marine. The two soldiers escaped just seconds before the solitary Zerg crushed the bunker like a soda can.

As the two Terrans tried to run, the Ultralisk ensnared the marine in its giant bone-like blades. "Let this fool serve as an example to all who would defy the will of Mawcor!" the Zerg roared. Almost effortlessly, the Ultralisk then split the hapless marine in two.

"Gutierrez!" the Ghost shrieked, and fired a barrage of grenades at the Ultralisk. "I'LL SEE YA DEAD, ZERG, IF MY NAME ISN'T KYLE RICHTER!!!"

The Ultralisk simply swatted the Ghost aside with one blade and continued on its unstoppable rampage through the town. It eventually smashed its way into the colony's science facility and picked the Terrans' hard-earned Psi Emitter up in its blades, laughing maniacally and trampling everything and everyone that happened into its path as it left.

From the ruins of the colony, the single Ghost eventually emerged, virtually undamaged. "You can run, 'Mawcor,' but you can't hide," he snarled softly to himself, as he started to give chase.