A 12-post collection

Challenge #04032-K014: Going Undercover

May we see the mission to the lands where ones such as this young human escaped from? And what became of the lands, and the cruel slave owners? -- Lessons

Vaphambryl. Picturesque Archduchy renowned for its fine arts and gloriously beautiful farms. Even those who visit rarely wonder where all the workshops are. There might be a few little hobbyists here and there, but they aren't producing the quality of detail evident in their exports.

Those are things made with love.

The things made for profit don't see the sunshine until after they're unpacked in the emporiums they're exported to. That's because the fine arts are made underground. No inspection before this one has found Vaphambryl's dirty little secrets. No inspectors looked hard enough at the barrows or boarded-off mineshafts. They'd have seen the hinges or found the mechanisms if they did.

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Challenge #03312-I024: Heart of Silicon

Humans study their past and how they viewed AI. How they had the fear of AI both being the ultimate slave where humans could live for the rest of eternity in leisure, and being the ultimate enemy, that would destroy all of human-kind brutally. And how the AI has shown to be neither, but instead, another kind of intelligent being that they needed to learn to understand. -- Anon Guest

Humans probably devote too much time to pondering how their own creations

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Challenge #03291-I003: The Real Enemy

Their people were on the brink of rebellion. True they were insanely wealthy, they owned entire solar systems, but that means nothing when everyone, even their security, was ready to turn on them. To PROVE that all the people were given was good for them, and the health measures "worked", they decided to live for one month like the average citizen of their worlds. Within two weeks they were so sick they could barely move, wracked with pain, and no access to

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Challenge #03052-H129: From One Cog to Another

You can’t break a man the way you break a dog or a horse. The harder you beat a man the taller he stands. -- Anon Guest

[AN: Link leads to an audio clip from a video game where the quote is from (I think?) that is all edgy tough growling with a warning at the end]

There's a saying in the Edge Territories: You can only try to break a Human. This is a warning, not an instruction. Many have

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Challenge #03017-H094: Benevolent Weeds

Those lovely blossoms known as dandelions to us. Whole thing is edible, though better when its young. There are a few other plants like that where the entire thing is edible. Well, she was a botanist, not that she let her family, or the deregger, government knew she'd become so well educated. A well-educated young woman there? They'd kill her for being too smart and her family followed the CEO's like they were gods.

Everyone thought her too simple to be of

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Challenge #02664-G107: Killing Philosophy

"Ain't no kill like overkill." -- SilverRey

When there is no diplomatic recourse. When trade restrictions fail. When there are no other alternatives... they send in the humans. A small team, an individual, an army... Humans are sent in to deal with the problem.

Pinpoint accuracy is preferred, but there are other times... regrettable times, when one despot will simply be replaced with another. The revolution comes full circle with another power-hungry iron fist in charge, promoting those who agree with them,

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Challenge #02577-G020: Calling All Rules Lawyers

They wanted to keep the masses obedient. They wanted to keep the people miserable. They didn't want them to learn to think for themselves. They wanted the people to be living parts for their industrial complex. Then role play gaming came in. When power outages would occur, to "protect nature" of course, gaming systems would be useless. They forbade most board games for being "damaging to young minds" and the high ground of "wanting to stop gambling". But this new game... it

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Challenge #02277-F087: Survivors

Humans have an oath, a promise they make to the world when they are born:

I will Survive.

Survive out of spite. Survive as a witness. survive as a warning to the future. survive so these stories do not disappear.

I will survive or else. -- Anon Guest

Every living creature greets their first taste of life with a complaint. Brief or lengthy, living is worth making a fuss over. Humans, especially, enter their lives and rage at it. Fighting from the

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Challenge #02084-E260: Warned You So

It's been said, regarding history, that "Everything repeats over and over again. No one learns anything, 'cause no one lives long enough to see the pattern..."

...but what if someone did? -- Anon Guest

My name is Loth. It rhymes with moth. I've taken up variations on the surnames Smith and Jones, all over the world. I know a lot of people who do illegal things to make certain my identities are stable. See... when you're immortal, you don't always want the

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Challenge #02077-E253: How Sissyphus Rolls

the Galactic allegiance was used to most of the human emotional quirks, they knew about our anger, and packbonding, our mental illnesses like depression, and how small things and gestures can bring us joy, and especially our compassion. but they had never experienced human indifference. Especially when confronted with those that had caused great pain. Humans have the capacity to just not give a damn -- Adam in Darwin

Of all the Human reactions that could have occurred when the Vol'nath Empire

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Challenge #01978-E154: Ozimandias' Stepchild

Treasure comes in many forms. -- Knitnan

When the wealthy can afford room-sized vaults to protect themselves and their treasures, those who can't do so are bound to revolt. This is a fundamental truth. Civilisations end when the gap between the wealthiest and the rest are too large to be withstood.

When the wealthy live in secret, secure bunkers, separated from the real world by armies of their own guards and throngs of their own servants, you know the world is about

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Challenge #01749-D288: Hear Me Roar

They called them "The Ladies from Hell" the bravest one was not carrying a weapon but a musical instrument. -- Knitnan

Revolution comes in many forms. A poisoned chalice. A coup detat. Violence in the streets. Quiet murder in between the sheets. This one began with an infant daughter, wailing in her mother's arms, and an urgent flight into the night.

Twenty women before her had borne that man daughters. And twenty women and their daughters had died the next day. Ralin

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