The Dying of the Loun

The famous Loun are dying in droves due to space pollution and the situation has become political.

News from the planet Shrsh in the Tonoos star system tells of the dying population of Loun. Loun are famous because they are gargantuan, aquatic animals which ascend to space to mate every Shrsh season. Their mating swoons are music to those lucky enough to witness them leaving the atmosphere for their mating ritual.

Even though the peaceful giants have been practicing this ritual for millions of years, their way of life is under attack. Human Kin who continue to emigrate to Shrsh riddle Shrsh sub-space with garbage and debris mostly from their occupation process. Kin apathy has led to an existential problem for Loun. Hazardous litter and jettisoned starship parts injure and kill Loun as they try to engage in seasonal mating rituals.

-Love and Dance-

As mating rituals begin in Shrsh skies and sub-space, thousands upon thousands of Loun float and fly in flocks as potential mates engage in mesmerizing dance. As they twirl and billow out mating calls, Loun swim through clouds and nebulous gasses. Upon finding a mate, Louns continue their dance with each other as they descend towards the oceans from whence they emerged. In all, Loun mating rituals continue for the better part of a cycle, which in Shrsh, is thirty Shrsh days. The first days are a sight to behold as thousands of Loun fly towards the sky singing returning hours later, some with mate and some without. Everyday fewer and fewer Loun ascend skyward as those engaging in mating stay in the oceans.

"Politics of Hatred"

As beautiful as Loun mating rituals are, atmospheric debris and detritus which are obscured by clouds and gasses shred and poison unsuspecting Loun. After a Shrsh decade of Kin invasion, the Loun population has dwindled down to a few hundred. Meanwhile, the Kin population has grown into the hundreds of thousands with a growing sentiment of colonial defiance due to unfettered indoctrination of thinly-veiled bigotry disguised as patriotism. The Kin colonies in Shrsh declared themselves a new statehood called, "The United Front of Shrsh" (UFS). Most of the Kin immigrants on Shrsh originate from the state of Vilantia on the planet Birg in the Fustom star system. Vilantian governing bodies struggle to assert their rule over their colonial citizens. Because of the Shrsh colonies’ growing rejection of Vilantian governance and outright rebellion, the UFS is defiant of Vilantian orders to rid Shrsh environments of pollution.

Time of Reckoning

Vilantia has commenced operations to war with the UFS and has garnered support from other nations and star systems through a campaign of propaganda feigning concern for the Loun and Shrsh. War between the Vilantian Alliance and the UFS and would be devastating for all life on Shrsh. Relocating the Loun is not an option as Loun can only survive in their delicate ecosystem. Besides Loun, there are over two-hundred and forty million different species of fauna and flora that live on Shrsh.