Log #218 – ENOS boss

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A new lead led to the head of the ENOS conspiracy. We tried everything to finally put an end to ENOS.

We were standing in a musty chamber, hidden behind containers in the warehouse of the Port Tressler orbital station. Kjeld Stormanson and Thane McMarshall explained their latest findings on ENOS.

“We were able to open the data plaque that we found on the 600i. It’s the last, but crucial clue from Ignotus. Aetherius is the head of MACH. He is known by his real name Arthu Esei and is Ignotus’ half-brother. Aetherius seeks to usurp the inner structure of MACH and use ENOS solely as a means of ultimate dominance. He seems to be completely megalomaniacal. Today we have the chance to cut off the head of the snake for good. Aetherius has a private bunker on Microtech. It contains his imprint and important evidence to uncover the conspiracy. Aetherius will also be commemorating the death of his mother on the planet Crusader today. We can catch him there. But first we have to delete his imprint and secure the evidence.”

“Once the imprint has been deleted and the data secured, we can blackmail Aetherius into turning himself in or dying for good,” Thane added. “We can smash MACH for good. With the fall of Aetherius, the MACH circle goes down and I can use the evidence to launch official investigations into all the conspirators, including those in the Microtech Bureau of Organized Crime.”

“If we do it right, we might as well ghost the guy and get rid of the problem for good,” said Hermieoth.

“That’s out of the question,” Brubacker blurted out.

The two of them started arguing, once again. About morality, about good and evil, about whether judge and executioner should be one and the same person and whether one should fight injustice with injustice. I didn’t understand the discussion. We had the chance here to finally put a stop to the power behind ENOS that was pulling all the strings. We couldn’t get anywhere with words, we had to act. And we had to do it now! Finally, my impatience burst out of me.

“There’s really too much talk here. I want to go now, otherwise we’ll miss the guy.”

Without waiting for a reaction, I left the hiding place. The others followed me.

We flew to the bunker on the planet Microtech in a Freelancer. Friedrich Winters accompanied us as backup in his 600i. Both spaceships landed in different places, some distance from the bunker. Friedrich stayed in his ship, the rest of us made our way to the bunker on foot.

The snow crunched under my feet as I walked through the dark night. We were lucky. Microtech spared us from its relentless storms and gave us crystal clear air. As we crossed a hill, we saw the lights of the bunker a few hundred meters away. With the optics of my sniper rifle, I checked to see if any guards were patrolling around the facility. There was no one to be seen. The way to the bunker seemed to be clear, but how many guards would be waiting for us inside? Would we run to our doom again, like the last time we tried to put an end to ENOS? Painful memories of my demise and the first activation of my imprint came flooding back. For a while, I remained in an uneasy feeling until I realized that the others were already far ahead and had reached the bunker.

After I had caught up with the group, we took the freight elevator down into the lion’s den. In the entrance area, I took cover behind a parapet and waited. Let the others clear the way first, I was here as a hacker, not as a fighter. I heard the efforts to take out the guards over the radio.

I was just about to relax a little behind my cover when I suddenly heard footsteps. I cautiously peeked around the corner and immediately flinched. A guard was coming straight towards my hiding place. The rest of my group was already deep in the bunker and I was on my own. My heart was beating faster and louder in my chest. In a desperate attempt to become invisible, I crouched low. Suddenly, the guard stood next to me. For a second, time seemed to stand still. Then everything happened very quickly. I shot upwards like a cat. The butt of my gun smashed into the guard’s helmet. He grabbed me by the neck. In a panic, I yanked the rifle upwards with all my strength and hit the guard on the chin. He collapsed unconscious.

Breathing heavily, I stood over the motionless body and reached for his gun. I had to get to the others, I was only safe near them. I took the quietest possible steps into the winding bunker. After just a few meters, I stumbled over two unconscious guards. They were lying peacefully on the floor. I bent over them to take their weapons. Just as I reached for the second weapon, I was startled by a voice.

“What are you doing?”

It was Hermieoth.

“I’m taking the weapons. If they wake up again, it would be better if they were unarmed.”

“We don’t have time for this. Let’s go! The way to the computer terminal is clear. It’s your turn. Hurry up.”

A little grumpily, I dropped my weapons and followed Hermieoth to the terminal. With the password we had from Ignotus, I was able to log in without any problems. My eyes widened when I saw the data. The proof was in front of me. Aetherius wanted to achieve ultimate power with ENOS, he wanted to create a new empire. With ENOS, he had a universal weapon at his disposal. These were organically programmable bio-bots that were fed with test material from various species. Mainly from humans and Vanduul. That’s why they needed test material from different species. They wanted to sell ENOS as a panacea and put it into circulation, first in Stanton, then throughout the UEE. Some prisoners in Klescher had already been injected with bio-bots. These served as sleepers and could be activated and programmed for various tasks at any time. With ENOS, they were able to create remote-controlled humans that they could direct like puppets.

I was stunned. It could be painful to find out that you were right. We had suspected it for a long time, but we didn’t have the proof. Now we had it in our hands, including a list of all the masterminds. I downloaded the data and deleted Aetherius’ imprint with satisfaction. Now we had him by the balls.

“All done. Let’s get out of here. Let’s get Aetherius,” I shouted to the others.

We left the bunker undisturbed and flew to the gas planet Crusader. As expected, we found Aetherius on the floating platform Prospect Point. He was standing at the edge of the platform and looking into the distance.

When we landed, he made no attempt to flee, even though his spaceship was only a few meters away from him. Did he still have an ace up his sleeve? I wanted to play it safe and immediately put Aetherius in the sights of my sniper rifle. The others approached him from two sides. All his escape routes were cut off. He had nowhere to go, we thought.

“You won’t get me. My imprint will hunt you down,” he shouted at us and jumped off the platform into the depths.

Perplexed, I lowered my weapon and ran to the spot where Aetherius had just been standing. Together, we looked down from the edge of the platform. All we could see were pink clouds. There was nothing below us but the infinity of the gas planet Crusader.

“Did he really just jump?” I asked.

“He won’t get far without an imprint,” Hermieoth pointed out.

“He judged himself without knowing it,” Brubacker stated.

“If he hadn’t jumped, I would have pushed him,” Hermieoth added.

And another argument about right and wrong broke out between Brubacker and Hermieoth. The others joined in the argument. I looked at the group, speechless. What was wrong with them? We had won, it was over and done with. We had rendered Aetherius, MACH and the whole ENOS shit harmless. Couldn’t they just enjoy the victory? I took a can of whisky and cola out of my rucksack, which I had brought with me especially for the victory celebration. I opened the can with relish and took an intense sip. Victory, it tasted good. With a smile, I left the group at the edge of the platform and went to the spaceship.

However, despite all the joy, there were still doubts deep inside me. Was it really over? Somehow it had been too easy. And then there was Professor Usagi, who was researching ENOS in the Pyro system. Could we be sure that his research would go down with MACH?


The ENOS project. It kept us on our toes for three years. Many groups were involved. Organizations like TYR, Yellowhand Security, Helldivers and GBC. We were all just pawns and were played off against each other. We followed the breadcrumbs that Ignotus had laid out for us, collected many pieces of the puzzle and still couldn’t put them all together. Again and again we thought we had found the decisive clue. We followed the trail of the Thiago Lobby, the Forgotten15, the Versipellis Sica. But they were all just MACH henchmen. The powerful secret circle of representatives from the mega-corporations Microtech, ArcCorp, Crusader Industries and Hurston Dynamics. A shadowy society that was planning nothing less than a UEE-wide coup. They wanted to shape the galaxy according to their own ideas. MACH had become incapacitated with the fall of Aetherius. Thane McMarshall was now officially taking action against the remnants and the remaining masterminds, such as the director of the Microtech Bureau of Organized Crime (MBOC) Nils Mobi or the Crusader Security Judge Alexandrji Rusaro. And Brubacker had published a special bulletin in which he reported on the scandal.

So had the truth come out and ENOS was out of the picture? Or were there still people who thought ENOS was a panacea and that we were conspiracy theorists? And what about Professor Usagi’s illegal ENOS research in the Pyro system and the test subjects he held captive there? We knew that Professor Usagi’s research was on MACH’s money tap, that support and funds were flowing from Stanton to Pyro. We suspected that the end of MACH would also mean the end of support for Usagi. That there would be no more transfers from Stanton to Pyro. But I wanted to be sure.

I had been at the jump point to the Pyro system for days, listening to every communication. My powerful on-board computers analyzed all the data I had intercepted. They couldn’t find anything that indicated that information or support for ENOS was being sent to the Pyro system. It really seemed to be over. At least for us. For those who were looking for the people who had been taken to the Pyro system, it wasn’t over yet.

Suddenly I picked up a very weak and unusual signal. It originated 640 kilometers away from the Pyro jump point. In the middle of an area where the gas clouds were particularly dense and dark. I couldn’t make any sense of it. My curiosity was piqued.

Brubacker’s perspective: https://sternenwanderer.org/jahr-2954#S13

Translated with DeepL.com (free version)