10 Years Later
The attack on the Arzat ship was only one of multiple simultaneous attacks that took place across the ocean world.
The humans managed to capture three submersible dreadnought's like the one Ven had been held on, along with seven submersible destroyer vessels, fifteen scout submarines,
twenty two surface ships ranging from scout to destroyers, and two aircraft carriers. More than one hundred other Arzat vessels were destroyed or sank.
The captured ships were quickly modified by the humans and then the small fleet was used to conduct a long series of coordinated naval battles.
The Arzat were caught completely off guard by the ferocity and coordination of the human assault. It was like no resistance the humans had given them in nearly three centuries of subjugation.
Within two years the human fleet grew to more than one hundred vessels, and the humans for the first time in anyone’s memory had been able to claim an island of their own.
It was this island that gave humanity the home they needed.
Aecor, an ancient and massive super volcano who's caldera had collapsed in, was nearly four hundred miles across, and the entire interior was protected by a ring of mountains.
This allowed for forests and meadows that were protected from the massive storms and tides of the planet, and gave the humans a place to live and farm.
The Arzat had only a few bases placed across the island, and Tirus had personally led the assault on the largest one.
The Arzat weren’t nearly as vulnerable to the elements as the humans, and so they didn’t see the strategic value of the island.
Ven had been sent underwater to the hidden base of the human resistance.
They called it Atlea, and though they had tried to keep it small in order to keep it secret, it had already grown to nearly ten thousand people by the day when the human assault began.
It was hidden in caves deep down near the ocean floor. The entrances were small and at the bottom of massively deep fissures.
The pressure was so immense that most submersibles simply couldn’t handle it.
This meant there was even less risk of Arzat detection, but it also meant that they frequently had to ferry people back and forth.
After the initial attack had been completed the small vessel that had been used to send in the strike team was used to shuttle Ven back to another vessel which took her deep into the caves.
It was here that Ven would begin to get her education about the real world she lived in.
The Arzat forbid humans from reading and being caught doing so, or with books, was frequently followed by execution. But Ven’s father had insisted on teaching her in secret.
Upon arrival in Atlea, she was grateful for the leg up in her classes.
In addition to math and science she learned the history of Earth, the birthplace of her species.
The planet had become inhospitable, and the humans who could left in a massive colony ship bound for a mostly ocean planet that appeared to have the best promise for the species.
But the planet was inhabited by the Arzat, and though not as advanced as humans, they had developed sufficient firepower to bring down the colony ship as it entered the atmosphere.
The ship itself had been thought lost, while the people on board were brought down in escape vessels that landed all across the planet.
Though the humans had been more advanced than the Arzat, they stood no chance. They were scattered, with most landing in the sea, and were quickly overwhelmed by superior numbers.
It had been hundreds of years when Tirus’ father, now retired admiral Isaac Yaeger, had found the core of the colony ship in his youth,
buried under sediment within the same fissure system that hid Atlea.
The fusion power supply was still active, and there were computers with virtually all of the information that the combined human race had acquired on earth.
There were fabrication machines for building whatever they needed and three utility assault androids, one of which was Felix.
As a young man, Admiral Yaeger had seen the opportunity and the ancient ship had been the start of the base that might restore the human race.
Of course there had been no military or ranks when it was just him and a ragtag group of compatriots,
but he’d been given the title honorarily in recognition of his dedication to the human race.
His son, Tirus Yaeger, now in his late fifties, had taken over leading the human forces shortly after the human offensive began.
In the ten years since the humans first acquired their fleet, there had been no promise of any end to their conflict with the Arzat.
The Arzat still refused to see the humans as people, and so the battles and skirmishes had carried on and on.
There were still millions of humans enslaved under their rule, and they still controlled nearly eighty percent of the planets surface area.
The initial attack had been successful primarily because it had been such a surprise to the Arzat, and while the human’s had many victories on their belt since then, none had been so significant.