Nuisance and Annoyance warships of the Sagittarius Preservers

Nuisance and Annoyances
Image from Steve Bowers
A Nuisance opens to disgorge its load of eight Annoyance ISOs

Nuisances are the warship of choice for the Sagittarius Preservers. A Nuisance has the outward appearance of a standard Preserver, being a decorated cylinder around 100km long and 25km wide usually equipped with a conversion drive, and is indistinguishable to anything less than transapientech sensors. Unlike the Preservers themselves, a Nuisance contains no interior ecosystem sample. When battle ready, the cylindrical shell of the Nuisance will unfurl into a disk and release up to eight Annoyances and a host of millimeter sized conversion drive magmatter fighters. The disk shaped shell of the Nuisance is capable of fighting alongside the Annoyances themselves, and is similarly armed.

An Annoyance is a second singularity battle ISO that usually takes the form of a slender black serrated ovoid 30 kilometres long and 8 kilometres wide (when encased in a Nuisance it is slightly curled and compacted in order to fit more efficiently) covered in irregular backward facing spines with a triangular "head" which will sometime have two blood red lights that give the impression of eyes, and a set of serrated "mandibles" (the Preservers do not underestimate the power of psychological warfare during battle). Propulsion is the same as the host Nuisance. Each Annoyance is bristling with weapons, having an unspecified number of total conversion bombs, particle beam weapons and lasers, hellbores, and multiple displacement cannons. The hull is a mesh of armour protecting numerous matter conversion power sources, possibly void bubble containment chambers, hidden weapons that can be revealed by peeling back layers or by destruction of the hull, and a distributed network of enhanced ultimate chips that contain the transapience. Presumably, an Annoyance will still pose a threat even after a significant fraction of its mass has been destroyed. The fractal nature of the hull means it is capable is disassembly in order to fit through stargates, in whole or in part.

According to the Preservers, Nuisances are incapable of self replication beyond the first generation. Any Nuisances created by a parent Nuisance will be sterile. Parent Nuisances must be spawned by two or more Preservers. It has been hinted that an SI:4 node of The Great Ecologist may be capable of overcoming this limit to create Nuisances that can replicate without limit. It is also worth noting that the Preservers themselves could quite easily create autowars or biowars from scratch if they chose to do so.

It is claimed there were originally five Nuisances when the Preservers came into being in 8500, though their existence was not revealed. A fairly slow steady production alongside standard Preservers lead to a population on the order of 5,000 by 9500. Sometime around the year 10000 the number of Nuisances began to increase precipitously. Though the Preservers have been willing to admit this much, they remain silent on what the reason for this was, or how many there currently are. The Periphery War has been suggested as the most likely reason, though some more paranoid suggestions have been put forth that the Preservers may be preparing for whatever event may cause the downfall of Terragen civilisation.

So far, no Nuisance has seen live combat against another polity. Standard Preservers have shown themselves to be quite capable of defending themselves against anything up to second toposophic attacks. All information comes from a demonstration on the outskirts of Lasyuka in 9740 where two conversion drive Nuisances were pitted against each other and against a number of other vessels purchased for the demonstration, and subsequent questions asked by modosophonts. Neither the displacement cannons nor the conversion bombs were used during the demonstration. It is speculated that the main purpose of the Nuisances is to discourage potential attacks from other transapients, and to provide an initial war fleet should the Preservers be forced into in direct hostilities with an aggressive hyperpower. The Efficiency Maximisation Paradigm in the direction the Inner Sphere, the expansion of the Arion Ascendancy into the Disarchy and the Laughter Hegemony on the coreward side are thought to be the main worries, though some Preservers claim to have been most concerned about the Oracle War extending as far as the Disarchy.

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Development Notes
Text by Liam Jones
Initially published on 01 February 2011.