Ruan’s Real History

One of the first tasks the Academy neuro-architects perform on a new student’s admission is to remove or suppress all distracting past memories and details. Ruan, like his classmates, has no memory of his name, his family, or his life prior to the Academy. As it is impossible to completely wipe someone’s memory without also damaging their learned skills such as speaking or walking, Ruan retained an acceptable 0.8% of his past memories. These memory fragments manifest as images and/or deja vu feelings, but lack detail or clarity.

Ruan was born Evans Halliwell on Londinium, outside the protected government sector in 2495. He had one younger sister, Micah, born 3 years later. His parents were Mikhail and Havana.

On the earliest settled core worlds, there were many families, both rich and poor, white collar and blue, who proudly traced their heritage back to ancestors who first stepped of the original arks. The Halliwells were such a family, tracing their name back to John and Joe Halliwell, two brothers, engineers on the Londinium bound Aliyah*. They were proud not only to have come on the ark,Once planetside, the Halliwells immediately found need for their skills building up Londinium’s new cities.

With more work than the two of them could do on their own, they founded “Halliwell Environmental” and built up a sizable business bidding on both government and private building contracts. The Halliwells were hard workers and though they weren’t educated, they were smart. Working from their knowledge of the plant based supplementary environmental controls on very large long range space craft, they adapted these concepts for large buildings. By using rapidly overturning algae pools and highly efficient hydroponic green spaces hidden within a building’s walls and floors to scrub carbon dioxide from the air, control temperature, and turn grey water clear, they distinguished their company from those offering less creative and economical options.

Both brothers started families and their growing business was handed down father to son for generations. Though the Halliwell Environmental logo had become synonymous with quality operational control systems, they wanted to keep theirs a family business. Turning down offers from Blue Sun and others, they made sure their company stayed small enough for only Halliwell’s to run.

Mikhail Halliwell was a tradesman and a businessman, but he was also a tinkerer. At home he built miniaturized versions of his hydroponics systems, testing different plant species for oxygen exchange efficiency and growing exotic hybrid flowers for Havana and Micah. He tinkered with all of their apartment’s systems using the same tools his great great great (etc) grandfather used on the Aliyah. With his brothers and uncles, Mikhail earned a solid upper middle class living, allowing Havana time to focus on dance as well as tend to their two precocious children. Their son Evans was a gifted student and a talented gymnast (as well as an incorrigible practical joker) and while Micah followed in her mother’s ballet footsteps, she preferred her violin lessons.

Shortly after Evans was accepted into Londinium’s most exclusive private school for the gifted, Mikhail was inspecting one of his construction site when a load bearing wall collapsed. He was killed instantly. Havana tried to carry on, but Evans hardly communicated from school after that and Micah abandoned both violin and dancing. The Halliwell’s were a close family, but none of them dealt well with the loss. For the first time in its history, Halliwell Environmental’s books began to show financial losses.

Three years after Mikhail’s death, despondent, Havana hung herself in their Londinium apartment. She hadn’t heard from Evans in over a year. The now orphaned Micah was taken to the Academy where they hoped she would perform as well as her brother had. For the eight months before Micah, deemed a poor performer, was culled, neither recognized the other. Shortly after Micah was extracted from the program, Agent AG59955429 and his Operator Locke were put into operation and performed their successful first mission.

Despite Halliwell Environmental’s years of family cooperation and success, family infighting over Mikhail’s share of the business caused their organization to crumble. By 2510, now bankrupt, the company was dissolved and their assets were auctioned. Family relationships were so strained by then that despite the fact that Evans and Micah had 3 uncles, no one was willing to break the silence to ask who was looking after Mikhail’s children.

  • The name of the ark, Aliyah refers to the Jewish concept of return to the Promised Land or Home Land; a concept that exists deep in the roots of the Jewish Diaspora on Earth-That-Was. The name was chosen by the Ark's builders as a way to both honor their own heritage and imply that by leaving their used up planet, they were not fleeing, but going home.