Prosperous: Chutes & Ladders

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Merchant Raitor Union

‘Sol Civilizations, Vol. 4’

WITH THE TERALLIANS DEFEATED, and many humans having developed a lust for life in space, space-faring vessels became a commodity not just of the government or wealthy. The first human to venture outside of our solar system, or Sol, was Andrew Jacobs. He flew solo in a craft measuring 7.1 meters by 3.26 meters by 2.35 meters. Jacobs was an American who believed in the American dream. Not the one about freedom, or the one about baseball and apple pie. He believed that a man should die rich and get there by any means necessary. The first alien species he encountered was the Avinion.

In his memoirs, Jacobs wrote, ‘They almost shot me down on the spot. I was surprised that they could even understand me and I could understand them. I didn’t know about translating devices then – hell, no human did! But somehow the conversation turned to trash, which is what they were hauling. I don’t know exactly what kind of industry they have back on their planet, even to this day I don’t, but the waste put out mountains of gold. When I got on their ship and saw cargo holds the size of jet hangers filled with gold, that’s when I knew space was going to become a very friendly place.’

He was able to entice them into sampling his food stores and they developed a taste for dehydrated pineapple and ice cream, and in 2576 the first intergalactic trade between an alien race and human was made.

Jacobs’ success brought more and more humans out of the Sol system in search of trade. Some with fast, sleek ships, some with old tug boats that took them generations to get to the next solar system. They discovered another little known fact about the Universe. There were species out there trying to kill each other and anyone who got in their way, and space pirates who made Earth pirates look like innocent children’s tales. For twenty-nine years, space trade was a risky, often deadly, business.

Jacobs returned again to the business of space trade in 2610 but this time to ensure its future. He had amassed a fortune large enough to buy America (he had already purchased Jamaica) and was president of several mining and space trade corporations. At age seventy-one, he was still one of the sharpest businessmen on the Intergalactic Trade Market, and he had watched the market rapidly drop toward a crash as the wars and attacks among races began to take their toll on the economy.

He contacted several of his fellow Trade Market commissioners, a few other influential individuals in space trade, and ambassadors of the races he traded with, and requested a summit at the Jupiter Twin resort. From this summit Merchant Raitor Union was formed to help ensure trading across galaxies would continue, along with sustainable economies on the worlds in the Union, and protection along trade routes. As time progressed, the union became more military-like, adopting ranks and commissions. The Merchant Raitor Union goals shifted to their primary interest of protecting trade routes, secondary interest of ensuring longevity of the Union commerce influence, and lastly the protection of nations who had joined the Union.

By 2609, the Merchant Raitor Union was overseeing all trade and commercial traffic, and managing all space related business. While trading outside of the Merchant Raitor Union wasn’t banned, most nations chose not to. The Merchant Raitor Union offered protection of highly traveled trade routes, supplies, maintained a fleet of luxury and cargo ships, had the best space faring wages known to any nation, and guaranteed buyers and sellers that cargo and payment would arrive within a reasonable time. The peace and prosperity that Merchant Raitor Union brought helped to stabilize numerous alien nations.

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