Copyright © 2014 Gideon Fleisher
All rights reserved.
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Dedicated to those who served.
Halfway between the center of the Milky Way galaxy and its outer edge was the Prussia star system, and on its fourth planet, Ostreich, was its capital city of Ostwind. The city was home to the Mercenary Review and Bonding Commission, housed in the largest building on the planet. Standing four hundred meters tall and a hundred meters square at its base, the titanium-alloy-framed and transparent-armor-covered building was filled to capacity with the agents and associates and staff that managed the planet’s largest industry: Mercenaries. Nine centuries before, Ostreich was little more than an operational base for space pirates picking at the carcass of the collapsed Terran Empire. As more planets became inhabited, Ostreich grew to be the economic and professional center of the Galaxy’s mercenary industry. Above the building’s main entrance doors, in bronze letters three meters high, were the words “LEAVE WAR TO PROFESSIONALS.”