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A Break In The Clouds

The terraforming of Venus was probably the greatest accomplishment of the third millennium, greater than the relatively simple transformation of Mars, greater than the building and launching of the interstellar Cityships, even greater than the effort of the M'kkiae War.

The highlands and far longitudes on Venus are pleasant, but the equatorial regions are still hellishly hot. Storms ravage the lowlands and sweep across the oceans with winds approaching four hundred klicks an hour.

Before the terrforming rains (and comets) fell, great towers lined the equator. In the shallows off Aphrodite Terra and Phoebe Regio many still stand above the seas, battered by centuries of storms.

Even after reunification, the equatorial region remained sparsely populated and lawless. Smugglers and pirates used the towers as encampments, shielded even from satellites by the hostile weather. When the storms subside, scouts from the LAOS (Land Air Orbital Sea) Patrol take to the skies, scanning the seas for trouble.

With luck, planning and an accurate forecast, they make it back to base before the next storm hits.

-excerpt from  Venus off the Beaten Path, Edition 3.02, edited by Nostra Veerboden, Salamander ePress 2532
 

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