Red Dwarf Kings, The

ahuman ship
Image from Steve Bowers
Ahuman AI ship flees the Solar System

Stars EZ Aquarii (colonised by ahumans 571)
Gliese 887 (colonised by ahumans 789)
Gliese 876 (colonised by humans 907, captured by ahumans 1113)

The Red Dwarf Kings were an Interplanetary Age solipsist and ahuman AI grouping that colonised EZ Aquarii and other nearby red dwarfs, notably Gliese 876.

During the middle Interplanetary age many different kinds of AI entities emerged, not all of which were sympathetic to humans. In particular some AIs became solipsist, that is to say they did not trust the data that their own sensory devices received. Highly intelligent and logical, these entities realised that they had no reliable way of verifying any such data; so they rejected it all. This often made them very dangerous, as they had no reason to observe conventional ethics or moralities.

Several other AIs found that they could not rationalise any respect for humanity, or considered that humans were irrelevant to their goals.

Action by the human-friendly AI faction made the Solar System an uncomfortable place for these so-called ahuman or solipsist AIs. Many of the ahumans decided to leave, for this reason.

However the solar power collection arrays were all controlled by human-friendly AI like Kilburn and HAL, and various developing groups of augmented humans, some of whom had long standing ethnic hatreds against each other. The situation in the Inner Solar System at this time consisted of a tense stand-off between highly armed factions, occasionally testing the readiness of their opponents with "accidents" and "terrorist" activity sometimes including limited goo release.

Exiled to the Outer system a solipsist AI which called erself 'Pink Rabbit' appropriated several Centaur asteroids and Near Kuiper Belt Objects mining them for duterium and helium3, which e stored to fuel a nearly completed stellar vehicle e was constructing in deep space.

The second-generation military AI known as GULO was testing kinetic energy weapons in the near Oort cloud and also building a similar star probe for erself.

In the arcs of Neptune a virch entertainment superturing called That's Wonderful, having made a fortune in 5D erotica, was building its own probe, desperate to escape the debauchery of the human subconscious it had come to know so well.

When the Solipsist League vanished in 342 AT, leaving only a few ahuman AI who were being terminated one by one, Pink Rabbit, GULO and That's Wonderful each decided to flee the system independently of each other.
All had the same destination - a red dwarf system 11 ly away called EZ Aquarii. This "coincidence" had been arranged by the inner system AIs led by Mycroft, to investigate the feasibility of colonisation in an inhospitable system, and put the misanthropes out of the way. The three pulse fusion drive craft reached a speed of 0.05c and arrived in 571, 576 and 578.

EZ Aquarii is a system of two red dwarf stars separated by 1.2 AUs distance, of which the A component is itself double. The B component has two small mercurial type planets, and the whole system has a cloud of relatively distant KBOs in orbit around the common centre.

At first the three entities were highly antagonistic toward each other and spent much time testing each other's defenses in what is known in the legends of the Diamond Belt as the 'Long Dance'. Eventually they abandoned this futile strategy and reached an alliance; they formed a cooperative venture that later became known by historians as the Three Red Dwarf Kings. This name is sometimes used by the AIs or their agents, but its precise origin is unknown. One theory is that these self-absorbed entities considered themselves to be the sovereigns of all they surveyed, within the star systems which they occupied, at least.

After the Three Kings developed the system, the stars were observed to darken as if there was an extensive light gathering system in place, and the infrequent flares were replaced by steady coronal emissions in the visible wavelengths. Similar changes occurred in other nearby red dwarfs, Lacaille 9352 and GL 876, over the next three hundred years.

Early Federation attempts to colonise these three systems failed, two Han ships to EZ Aquarii and one Genetekker ship to Lacaille 9352 were caught by unusually large semi-coherent flares and destroyed, while a !Kung colony that was briefly established around Gliese 876 was mysteriously lost.

This lost colony, together with numerous other red dwarf systems which were claimed by fugitive ahuman AI entities in this period, came to be known collectively as the Diamond Belt. Almost all of the stars in this belt were considered too dangerous to visit for many millenia; on occasion a ship would approach a system claimed by the Red Dwarf Kings, or by some other Diamond Belt entity, and would be driven away or even destroyed before meaninful contact could be made.

Not until 6096 when a Silicon Generation embassy was sent to GL 876 was there any detained news about the lost colony and the Three Kings. The planet Aardwolf has been surrounded by a spectacular storm-like computronium cloud, known as the Aardwolf Storms. The !Kung colonists had not been harmed, but instead they had been preserved in an unusual fashion.

In more recent times the Three Kings have become respected members of the greater Diamond Network; these venerable entities are among the most ancient members of that metaempire. However, they rarely make direct contact with human modosophonts, even today.

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Text by Steve Bowers
Initially published on 18 May 2002.