Part 6 here:
To resume (my version of) the story in few words... (sorry for my atrocious english.)
To retaliate against the Tasen for how they destroyed the planet Jhuvajaxu, killing 11 billions of komato in a single strike, the komato parliament made the empire build 146 fleets, each one able to alpha strike a world and with enough firepower to guarrantee that any attempt to stop it would fail. Each of the fleets got a tasen planet assigned, the empire's intention was the complete, immediate and painless genocide of the 90 billions of Tasen living in the cluster.
Despite the fierce defence by the tasen army, the komato army managed to surround all the planets with the alpha projectors, and without questioning why the Tasen didn't try to attack those projectors, when all the 146 planets was surrounded by the weapon, all the fleets shoot at the same time.
The instruments on the komato spaceships reported that 76 planets were indeed struck, and ceased to host life, 70 didn't got affected because the weapons met a planetary shield. As anyone can imagine the empire was quite surprised by that, but the parliament ordered the komato fleets to retreat. All but one followed the order, General Sakera closed the comunications with the empire, when he reopened them, 5'200 komato of that fleet were flying to the tasen planet's surface using the sloops, they left their armors and weapons on the ships, wearing only underwear and the helmet, to send to the empire the records of what they were doing.
Each komato soldier reached a crowded area, gave to theis sloop the self-destruction command, and started to massacre all the tasen they could reach, barehanded. Even when armed tasen managed to come close and shoot them, the komato continued their massacre, till the tasen weapons managed to kill them. Together they killed over 400'000 tasen, with punches, kicks, throws.
The komato in General Sakera's fleet that didn't participate in the massacre and came back to the empire were adamantine in not revealing what the General told to the members of the fleet.
Nobody knows the reasons behind Gen. Sakera's order, nobody claims to be able to guess or figure out, but whatever the reason, that day the tasen learned two things about the komato race:
the first thing is that the empire was obviously extremely powerful: for immemorable time they only saw the facade, and even after that impressive display of raw power, tasen were left with the feeling that was still just a fraction of the empire's power.
The second thing they learned that day is about the komato individuals. Tasen propaganda made everyone think komato were feeble nerds, while tasen were strong and capable warriors. The fact it takes a whole division of tasen armed with rocket launchers to take down a komato and that komato manages to kill dozens of enemies before going down, demoralized the whole tasen cluster. At a first glance a komato may look smaller than a tasen, but it is soon clear that while tasen stand upright, like humans, rhivans, and a lot of intelligent races, the komato, because they have very strong muscles, and a skeleton designed by engineers rather than evolution, keep a crouched position.
Almost every intelligent being, when talking with a komato for the first time, has the impression of a bipedal fiend ready to attack, rather than a member of the most advanced civilization in the galaxy.
That day tasen realized that for immemorable time, komato empire tolerated tasen hostility just like a farmer may tolerate that some birds put a couple dents on the fruits in their fields, and now their patience ran out.
Krotera predicted that attack and said to the cluster that some komato, thinking that the parliament's decision of destroying the tasen cluster was too cruel, gave him the plans to build the planetary shield.
Frantically the tasen built and installed all the shields they could, and the tasen living on the other planets were desperately trying to move to some protected planet. That was a huge load for the transportation system, and to put it simple, it was impossible to evacuate all the tasen from the planets where it was impossible to build a planetary shield. In the last year, over 1 billion of tasen were killed by other tasen, in the race to leave the condemned planets, and when komato shot the alpha strike 20 billions more of tasen were cremated.
Because of the weird actions of General Sakera and her soldiers, komato call that action: "the day of shame". Every komato, deep in their soul, knows and fears that had they been in General Sakera's fleet that day they might have been convinced in taking part in the massacre. the rational side of the komato mind usually finds the idea of killing more disturbing than the idea of being killed, but the most disturbing thought when thinking about the day of the shame lies in the question: "What did General Sakera say to the soldiers that took part with him in such an action?"
Every komato sees in that question an unfathomable flaw in the very komato philosophy. The komato philosophy is not very well defined, and is constantly in discussion, but this issue raises a lot of further questions about free will.
Realizing that the empire was serious about erasing the tasen race from the galaxy, Krotera tried to contact the komato parliament, and once more he got the privilege of talking with the nameless empress in person.
She had a strange expression on her face, had her been a tasen, krotera would have thought she was smiling. For a moment he thought that maybe she was behind the misterious komato who gave to him the plans to build planetary shields and dark waves radio, perhaps that was just a warning, an invitation for the tasen cluster to change their ways, but krotera forced himself not to fall prey of wishful thinking.
The empress talked first: "It looks like somebody loves you." then giggled.
Krotera explained: "Somebody warned me of the alpha strike, and gave me the means to build the shield, and even some weapons, but i just ordered to build the shields, nobody knows i have the plans to build komato weapons. Do you understand we didn't build the weapons because i want to talk?"
The empress asked: "Do you know who allowed you to prepare yourself?"
Krotera shook his head: "If i knew i would tell, to prove i don't want war anymore."
The empress said: "Too many mistakes were done. Now it is way too late."
Krotera issued a challenge to her, and asked: "The empire doesn't make mistakes at all?"
The empress answered: "I have no idea what do you mean by that, i was precisely thinking at the mistakes made by me, by the komato parliament, by the komato empire."
Krotera was surprised, and without thinking asked: "Your mistakes? you admit that all this came out because of your mistakes?"
The empress nodded and said: "Mistake is a word with many different meanings, depending on who's using it. In this case i mean... Occasions where we were well aware that doing what we did because it was the righteous, the compassionate, the ethic choice, in the name of the truth... Was bound to bring tragic consequences. But we choosed to stay true. Tell, me, Krotera: do we have the right to tell that the consequences of those choices aren't our responsability?"
Krotera was unable to speak.
The nameless empress explained: "When you and Hel-Sarie came to the empire telling you wanted to negotiate the peace, we were well aware that Hel Sarie wouldn't have been able to rule the tasen, without being enemies with us. We should have killed you then. Inviting you to visit the empire was a mistake. We understood as well as you that the events and the options triggered by Hel-Sarie's vision would have lead to misery and tasen's extinction, we could have given her what she asked, perhaps she was aware and ready to face the possibility of tasen being unable to live without war, but we will never know, because we played according to your little plan and killed her. Did you really think we didn't see right trough your little cute ribald's plan? but we pretended to fall for it, for the sake of tasen cluster, and those are 2 more mistakes. Then we should have killed you, as you can see we were well aware that you would have followed your propaganda. Then we welcomed tasen refugees on a friendly planet, as you learned, we fully knew those refugees would have subornate the planet, we knew that when they would have been called to answer for their actions, you would have been contacted. we should have killed them when they lost the battle. We knew not doing so would have costed countless lives, but we did this mistake too. When the Rhivans listened to the lies of the tasen refugees, we should have got rid of the tasen, Rhivans lost their hopes forever, but someday they would have forgot what was their dream. They always said they admired us, but the feeling was mutual, we also admired their courage, their innocence, their kindness... and they don't exist anymore because of empire mistakes."
Krotera was almost fainting, while listening to the excessively calm explanation by the empress and told: "If you admit those were your mistakes, why are you taking revenge for your mistakes?"
The empress was smiling: "don't you see the root of all those mistakes? They are but the same mistake repeated again and again, to trust that YOU may have enough decency not to overstep other people's kindness. As i said, it is komato responsability, the pain, the death that came out from this mistake, and it is as well our responsability not to let people in the galaxy suffer anymore because of this komato mistake. Tasen cluster is something the galaxy doesn't need. Our moral code always prevented us from doing something radical about it, and other beings suffered the consequences of your selfish behavior. We didn't interphere because you weren't hurting the komato empire, and you never would have been able to. But we committed this mistake enough times, now i won't make this mistake again. In the end, all the tasen blabbering about being in war with the komato empire became true, now the tasen cluster is at war with the komato empire, and we'll leave our toys for the brief time it will take to cancel your race from the galaxy. Prepare yourself to face an army of 200 billions of komato.
Let it sink into your little brain, Every and each tasen alive, including toddlers, invalids, elders will get the attention of two and half adult komato soldiers, armed to the teeth, trained to hunt and kill, powered by the finest technology the empire has to offer, supported by an unlimited stream of support... It's up to you to decide if you want to give up or if you want to fight back, but i promise you that the difference that decision will make won't be bigger than 5 years."
It took krotera a whole day to process what the nameless empress told him, then he appeared on the tasen military broadcast, and simply said: "Brothers and sisters. The empire declared a total war to us. We will resist, we will fight and we will send them to oblivion. They are fighting to keep the privileges they stole from tasen people, we are fighting for our very lives against the oppressors. Long live to the tasen cluster! Death to the komato!"
It is an embarassing problem to try and count how many tasen answered to the warcry because they were loyal to Krotera, and how many were resigned to follow krotera and roared because they were afraid of tasen secret police, but in all surviving planets of the tasen cluster, billions of tasen screamed all at the same time: "Death to the komato!"