What Is Omega Station?

Omega Station, aka the Rock. A barren, airless asteroid on the outermost edge of the galaxy, home of the richest of the rich and the poorest of the poor. Dotted with commercial, military and residential domes, the outer surface is the place to live for those who can afford it or are lucky enough to work there.
But the vast majority of the Rock's residents don't live in the surface domes; instead, they have tunneled downwards, moving ever further towards its fiery heart. The upper levels are safe, comfortable, secure—or as secure as anyone can be on
Omega Station. The lower levels, now; they are home to the detritus of a double dozen races and species, all living in uneasy juxtaposition, fighting, loving, eating—and being eaten.
The Rock's location in space, the last real port before exiting the galaxy, has made it a valuable commodity to many governments and private corporations, as has the addictive drug straz, which grows only in its recycling vats. Control has been taken and given in a hundred bloody battles over the years, but those who live in the lower levels—and further down, in the Depths—are often barely aware of whoever claims to be in charge.
No one, really, rules the Rock, whatever they may claim, however many weapons and warriors they throw against it.
For the Rock is eternal…and it has many secrets...and many stories...

Friday, May 2, 2014

Part 7 of SCUM by J. A. Johnson

The Starview Lounge was one of the places where famous and important sentients hung out. Rudof Dyll could sometimes be found there; Core, he probably owned it. No secret there, the Dylls owned half of Omega Station. They probably had stakes in the other half as well.

Simikus stepped inside.

The Starview was packed with patrons, its floors teaming with dancers moving to the undulating rhythms of the live somasar music that filled the establishment. Simikus felt instantly out of place, as all of the beings in his immediate vicinity hurled a barrage of disdainful glances his way. Nicovan were not popular with the general public. Only a few of his species had ever been accepted into the social upper crust, and those grudgingly.

Ignoring the glaring eyes, Simikus moved deeper into the restaurant. Rudof Dyll was rumored to have his own private table. Simikus hoped the rumor was true. If he could just speak to Dyll, he knew that he could convince the rich Human to do business with him.

Nobody was ever rich enough, right?

Simikus looked around; he was growing increasingly anxious. Surely the rumors of Dyll frequenting the place were true. They had to be; all of Simikus's plans hinged on Rudof Dyll. Without Dyll, who else was big enough to deal with Simikus on the level he wanted?

Malik Blayne, possibly, but that man was too enigmatic, too hard to find.

No. It had to be Rudof Dyll.

Just as he was beginning to sweat, Simikus looked up and spotted his intended business partner. Dyll's table was situated on one of the floating platforms drifting over the dance floors.

Though he had never before laid eyes on Rudof Dyll, there was no doubt in Simikus's mind as to who he was looking at. The Human was so wonderfully gaudy that Simikus could only stare. What wealth, what style! Simikus sighed in unconscious envy as he took in Dyll's loose, frilly shirt, studded with sparkling… jewels? Yes, jewels by the score. Turning a faint purple with envy, Simikus envisioned himself in such clothing.

As the platform rotated in his direction, he was enraptured by the profusion of glinting gold rings that marched up Dyll's ear lobes, wrapped around his fingers, and there was even a ringlet looped through his right nostril.

The only thing about Dyll's appearance that even Simikus's healthy imagination could not apply to himself, was the red and yellow mane of hair that the Human wore tied behind his head by a golden clasp. Nicovan had no hair. Simikus smiled—well, then, what he lacked in hair, he would simply make up for with additional jewels.

Someone seized him by the arm and spun him about.

"What do you think you're doing in here, Neek?"

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