2168 A Real Fictitious Spaceship.
Fans of the popular sci-fi adventure series *Spaceship Udyama* buy an old space station to convert it into a 1:1 model of the famous library cruiser Udyama, calling it "Udyama 5".
The series *Spaceship Udyama* takes place in a distant future where humans have colonized the galaxy and founded great empires. There are many alien species, some of whom also rule powerful domains. The Earth is almost forgotten. It is a museum planet without having a say in great power politics. The Udyama is a so-called library cruiser, a mobile library collecting the knowledge of the galaxy to make it available to all visitors of the "old" Sol system. For this purpose the Udyama is always on the move throughout the galaxy. The crew of the library cruiser is continually being drawn into adventures.
Captain Rani Kapoor and many other important characters of the series are time and again involved in conflicts between different species. Their creative approach to problem solving is a signature theme of the series. However, some of the measure taken later lead to unexpected and fatal consequences. Decisions of the Captain and other key figures are guided more by realpolitik rather than by idealized moral concepts. Surprising plot twists with tragic consequences for protagonists and entire species are characteristic of the series.
*Spaceship Udyama* is produced by Jamina Svapna/Mumbai (JSM). The series has a very dedicated fan base. It is a media phenomenon in the 30s of the 22nd century. The first season runs as a weekly sequel telling the adventures of the library cruiser and its crew. Due to its great success, the series is immediately syndicated by all major networks. The publisher then switches to a vario-approach with quick format changes.
Thus, the second season *Udyama Dina* (Udyama Day) runs as a daily show portraying the daily life of the crew between big adventures. This is followed by "Udyama Asimita" (Udyama Unlimited) as a slink (Sensory Link), one of the first major slink productions. The series is key to the breakthrough of the slink technology in the 30s.
The next phase, starting in 2135, *Udyama Paripreksya* (Udyama Perspective) is a new format that shows the same events simultaneously from the point of view of different participants, including some aliens. The portrayal of the extraterrestrial protagonists is so engaging that many viewers identify with individual alien figures and their species.
Starting in 2140 some of the alien protagonists get their own spin-offs in *Udyama Jala* (Mesh of Udyama). The plots of the spin-offs form a network whose paths repeatedly cross each other. All spin-offs have dedicated fan communities. Many fans reenact the behavior of their heroes and species from the show in the real world. They adopt their beliefs and customs. Some even have their physiology changed with the help of cosmetic surgery.
During this time *Udyama* enters the mainstream. A huge amount of additional material is created on the net much of it as a franchise authorized by the publisher but even more as unlicensed fan fiction.
As *Mesh of Udyama* runs out *War of Udyama* begins in 2145. This phase is primarily characterized by armed conflicts. *War of Udyama* is again shown as a multi-stream from the perspective of the different species. The daily program *Udyama Day*, also in multi-stream, now deals with the consequences of the war for ordinary people in the galaxy and on the lower decks of the library cruiser. *War of Udyama* radicalizes some fans to the point that conflicts in the series leak into real life leading to street fights among fans of different factions.
In 2151 the show returns to the original concept of the adventures of the library cruiser. The crew of the Udyama is instrumental in establishing peace in the galaxy.
Trivia: in 2158 at the inauguration the President of the European Council swears to the Warsaw Treaty and to the Uppruna, the constitution of the Wajans, one of the important alien species of the Udyama universe.
Planning for the Udyama 5 project begins in 2154. The name of the project is based on the version numbers of the library cruiser in the series. The current version in the series is 3. The two earlier ships being lost under dramatic circumstances. In *War of Udyama* the "legendary" version 5 appears at one point.
The publisher of *Udyama* supports the project, although many details of Udyama 5 are part of the extended community canon and not officially sanctioned. In fact, the fan fiction community is very disciplined and rarely collides with the official canon.
The project buys a 30-year-old orbital factory from Industrias Benavides. The purchase is funded by Björn Hlynur Gustafsson, the founder of Norware, an Eter giant. It goes without saying that Gustafsson himself is a fan of the series and the Udyama universe.
The costs for the conversion of the old orbital factory into a replica of the library cruiser are borne by the fan community. The conversion effort is also supported by several orbital construction companies which book the costs as marketing expenses.
From the outside the rebuilt station looks like the Udyama 5. Though the internal layout differs from the series. The space station has room for 50 permanent residents and 120 guests. It is divided into zones that resemble the environments of different species in the series. Fans who are dedicated to reenactment of series characters can choose to live in the appropriate zone. Most of them have bio-mods adapting their outward appearance to that of their preferred alien species. They also try to imitate their behavior. This includes the matriarchy of the Moputsoa, chemically induced schizophrenia in K'hoja shamans, and the name quest of the Rotna-Wajans, the Wajan warrior sect, who are born without names, which they must earn through valorous deeds.
2174 Asteroid Heist.
The biggest theft of the century and the "Rain of Gold".
In 2172, the asteroid mining company Seren-Enterprises maneuvers the core of a small comet from a near-Earth solar Orbit into high Earth orbit. The comet is 90 meters in size. It contains two million metric tons of water ice and an exceptionally high proportion of rare earths. The whole operation takes 14 years with fusion flare engines consuming most of the comet's ice.
Seren-Enterprises intends to mine raw materials for the orbital industry in cis-lunar space. The main customers are L4/L5 constructions, lunar production facilities, and research stations in earth orbit. In addition, the comet contains various precious metals including 50,000 metric tons of gold that is only needed in small amounts for industrial purposes. The project is running under the highest secrecy. The comet and the extraction facilities are hidden under a cover of aluminum foil.
Then in early 2174 the asteroid is occupied by well-equipped units of unknown origin. Seren-Enterprises is denied access. For ten months Seren explains away the delay in delivery to customers as being caused by operational problems without reporting the incident to the authorities.
At the end of the year the so-called *Rain of Gold* begins. The thieves land gold with deorbiters in remote areas collecting the cargo. These unregistered landings attract the attention of civil and military authorities worldwide. After three weeks in which the authorities try to negotiate with Seren-Enterprises units of the Space Guard try to land on the comet. There they encounter strong resistance and are repelled.
Now the hijackers change their tactics. They drop gold to the Earth, again into uninhabited areas, but now uncontrolled and without deorbiters. Much of the gold vaporizes as it enters the atmosphere. Drops of molten gold and nuggets rain down over wide areas starting a gold rush in the Sahara, Alaska, Siberia, and Australia.
The thieves land a total of 9,000 metric tons of gold. This accounts for about one percent of the world's gold reserves at the time. The world becomes aware that any organization in the future will be able to bring almost any amount of precious metal to the Earth. The price of gold collapses.
It quickly becomes known that 2,000 metric tons of gold had already been sold at the old market prices via futures contracts. The total value is equivalent to the gross national product of a small country. Later it turns out that the real purpose of the asteroid theft was not to sell gold, but to manipulate the markets, were the thieves probably earned much more.
In the chaos caused by the *Rain of Gold* the thieves leave the asteroid. Their identity remaining in the dark. Some facts point at state actors. There are many leads and clues, but no clear evidence. The real masterminds will never be revealed.