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Fanfic / The Thirteenth Tribe

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The Thirteenth Tribe Book I: The Great Exodus is a Crossover Fanfic between Stargate and BattlestarGalactica2003 by Eternal_Freedom. The basic premise is that another Battlestar survived the Twelve Colonies' destruction and made contact with the titular Thirteenth Tribe of Kobol. Eternal_Freedom takes that premise and disappears over the horizon with it, fleshing out his take on why the Cylons initially rebelled.


Book One deals with the Cylon threat, contact with the humans of the Stargate universe and then the campaign against the Wraith. Book Two is set three years later and expands the crossover, this time bringing in the Halo universe.

Book One - "The Great Exodus" can be found here. Book Two - "A Symphony of War" is in progress and can be found here

Specific tropes found in The Thirteenth Tribe include:

  • A Father to His Men: Two examples, each both figurative and literal: Bill Adama to Lee Adama, as in BSG, and Admiral Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart to Kate Stewart.
  • Advanced Ancient Humans: Straight out of BSG, and Played With on the Terran side since 13!Terra is not Stargate!Earth.
  • Apocalypse How: Multiple Class 3a's in the backstory in the Fall of the Colonies. Another Class 3a is attempted by the Cylons over Terra but prevented. The story works up to the finale, which is a rigged ZPM set to overload catastrophically. Would have been Class X-4 via false vacuum collapse, but the Ascended Ancients managed to limit the effects to only Class X-2. The attempted X-4 was not intentional by the humans, they were expecting a Class X, taking out the entire Wraith Fleet in the process
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  • Arc Number: The number 13 shows up quite a lot, as you might guess from the title. 13 Tribes, 13 Colonies, 13 Lords in the Colonial Pantheon, 13 winners of the Star of Kobol, 13 Battlestars, and the Terrans and Colonials lose 13 ships over the course of the story.
  • Arc Words: Straight out of BSG, from the Scroll of Pythia: "All of this has happened before, all of this will happen again." but by the end of the story Janus/Prometheus tells them it's changed to "All of this has happened before but it will no longer happen again."
    • This is subverted somewhat by the most recent chapter - turns out the Cycle may not be as broken as Janus/Prometheus had hoped.
  • Badass Moustache: Lethbridge-Stewart.
  • Back from the Dead: In Book Two, Admiral Preston J. Cole and the UNSC Everest - the ship made an in-atmosphere slispace jump away from Cole's Last Stand and wound up at the Ark (and a few years in the future from his perspective). Cole is recognised as a Reclaimer and gets his ship upgraded, before sending the Monitor back to the Terran universe to gather allies while he heads off to fight the Covenant and make contact with the UNSC.
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  • Big Bad: Ba'al - For the first half of the story anyway. He survives getting killed and comes back for the sequel. After his death the Wraith take over, led by their High Queen, who is definitely not an example of that trope!
  • Chessmaster: Adama Senior.
  • Call Sign: Standard practice for the Colonials - Terran Captains are not usually pilots so did not have callsigns before the Union but have willingly adopted them since.
  • Cool Starship: The Terran Battlestars. Damn can they take a beating. The Warstar Nemesis also weighs in. Actually, pretty much all of the capital ships seen qualify, be they Terran, Colonial, Tau'ri or Asgard. Eternal_Freedom one-ups himself in Book Two, with the Warstar Jupiter.
  • Crisis of Faith: Laura Roslin, upon learning that the Thirteenth Tribe exists.
  • Driven to Suicide: Gaius Baltar, sort of.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome: TCS Barham and her second and final captain, Commander George Shtarker
  • Four-Star Badass: Bill Adama.
  • Gambit Pileup: Cavil's rebellion.
  • Ghost Ship: Invoked in the interlude of the same name, when Commander Kirov leads teams aboard the derelict and depressurised Eridanus, complete with empty corridors, dead bodies and a final log entry from the ship's previous Commander.
  • Good Is Not Soft: Adama Senior. As a Cylon defector finds out firsthand.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Hints have been dropped in both the epilogue and the sequel that there is some larger force pulling the strings and whatever it is has already caused the extinction of the Furlings, the effective extinction of the Asgard and, per Word of God, may have caused the Wraith to evolve and attack the Ancients as well.
    • In the chapter "Quiet Reflections," Janus/Prometheus confirms to Admiral Jellicoe that there is some greater evil stirring in the darkness, and that it created both the Flood (which destroyed the Forerunner/Furlings) and the Wraith (which destroyed the Lanteans) - and that it is coming for humanity, and that Jellicoe will be the one to lead the fight as Harbinger of the Lords.
  • Hard-Work Montage: The Colonials teaching the Terrans how to fight as a fleet.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: TCS Barham, as a result of Frankie's Wild Ride.
  • Kinetic Weapons Are Just Better: Subverted by Book One - the standard Colonial kinetic weapons are stated to be completely ineffective agaisnt shielded Cylon vessels.
    • Returns with a vengeance in Book Two - Kinetic weapons are standard UNSC equipment and are effective, just not effective enough against the Covenant - at least until the UNSC MAC guns get a burst-fire mode upgrade. - This trope is not universally applied however; the Terrans, Colonials and Tau'ri continue happily using existing energy weapons, and some UNSC ships are upgraded with them as well.
      • Played with somewhat with regards to the Orbital Defence Platforms and Super-MAC guns they're armed with - they aren't given any upgrades to the guns at all, because (as per the Halo games) one shot will destroy anything short of an Assault Carrier.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Subverted by Frankie's Wild Ride.
    • Shows up again in the sequel and again is subverted, this time by Commander Jacob Keyes and the UNSC Iroquois, exactly as it was in canon.
  • Macross Missile Massacre: Cylon standard operating procedure, originally rejected by the Colonials as Cylon missile defence was too powerful. Later, the Scimitar bombers, Scythe gunships and the Warstar Nemesis join in the fun.
    • Standard practice by the UNSC in Book Two for their missile weapons - given how effective the Covenant pulse-laser defences are this is the only way to hurt enemy ships without MAC rounds or nuclear weapons.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Ba'al. Water is wet, film at 11.
  • Mass "Oh, Crap!": On both sides - the humans when shielded Cylon vessels turn up and the Cylons when the humans decide to do something about same. Comes up again in the finale when Janus and Morgan Le Fay tell the other Ascended about the ZPM bomb.
  • More Dakka: Forms a general part of Kobolian Combined Fleet battle tactics - where possible, surround an enemy with overwhelming force and destroy it quickly before moving on.
    • Becomes a key element of the Alliance upgrades to the UNSC Fleet in the sequel. The MAC guns on the UNSC ships are upgraded to fire three shots from a single capacitor charge, just like the UNSC Pilar of Autumn in canon - except now all the human ships have those upgrades - or will do soon. This results in some truly epic gun salvos being hurled at the Covenant ships, resulting in many casualties.
  • Nepotism: Downplayed - the Colonials, being genocide survivors, couldn't afford to be overly picky, and the Terran example is a chip off the old block.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: The Warstar Nemesis has elements of this - the only time her shields are breached and she takes any damage during the entire Pegasus Campaign was when she took three hits in rapid succession from Wraith cruisers ramming at near-lightspeed.
    • The Covenant CSO-class Supercarriers in Book Two do this as well: the Sublime Transcendance essentially No Sells a nuclear minefield and several Super-MAC rounds - it takes twenty Super-MAC rounds to bring the shields down, and Super-MAC rounds are One Hit Kills against almost every other Covenant vessel.
  • Nuclear Option: Almost by default. The bigger the kaboom the better, it seems. Then there's a rather big boom in Book Two... NOVA bomb + naquada enhancement = Earth-Shattering Kaboom. At least one forumite has asked where the trend is going.
  • Oh, Crap!: Cylon reaction to Warspite's charge in the opening. Cavil, upon hearing "We're better than you.... we're not targeting civilians"
  • One-Liner: 'I’ve no idea sir, but there seems to be something wrong with our bloody ship today.' Per Word of God, this "was too good not to use".
  • One-Hit Kill: The Terran superlasers mounted on Nemesis and Phoenix - so far the only thing to survive a hit from the Warstar's main weapon is the Covenant logistics base Unyielding Hierophant, a structure that is thirty-plus kilometres long.
    • Also applies to the Super-MAC guns on the UNSC Orbital Defence Platforms. Anything that isn't a Supercarrier dies in a single hit. In the battle over Carver V, one Super-MAC round hits a Supercarrier's shields and ricochets off, hitting and vaporizing a DDS-class light carrier.
      • Also seen in the main weapon of the Forerunner Keyship Shield of Eternity - it's a hardlight cannon that's bigger than a UNSC cruiser and the first time we see it fire it cuts a Covenant battlecruiser in half.
  • Rage Against the Heavens: Cavil
    • Admiral Jellicoe is showing elements of this in the sequel - he doesn't believe in Gods or Lords (despite having spoken to two of them face-to-face) and seems quite annoyed at the whole idea of Gods and religion in general - which is quite understandable given that the Cylon "God" demanded the annihilation of the human race and the Covenant religion...also demands the annihilation of the human race.
  • Ramming Always Works: TCS Barham, again. That ship did not know the meaning of the words "give up". Later used with mixed results by the Wraith during the Pegasus Campaign. Darts on suicide runs cause moderate damage to the Battlestar Victorious while suicidal cruisers become standard Wraith battle tactics - resulting in the only damage to Nemesis and the destruction of the Battlestar Excalibur
  • Shout-Out: Doctor Who, Get Smart, Star Trek, Babylon 5, and, of all things, the Battle of Jutland.
    • Continues without any remorse in the sequel, though this time Sabaton seem to be getting the lion's share of shoutouts, whether it be chapter titles or ship names: Shiroyama, Blood of Bannockburn and Hearts of Iron are all present as UNSC warship names, while "Hearts of Iron" was a chapter title as well.
      • Word of God confirmed an accidental Sabaton shoutout (this time to "The Last Stand" in the chapter "Signal Fires;" when Fleet Admiral Harper's relief force arrives at Carver V they unleash a salvo from "the one hundred eighty-nine" MAC guns that the relief fleet possesses. This was, apparently, pure coincidence.
  • Sufficiently Advanced Alien: What part of Terran religious revival sees the Lords of Kobol as. The main debate isn't over whether they exist - that's historical record, and several people from the Alliance, most notably Admiral Jellicoe, have spoken with the Lords - but rather whether they actually are Gods/Goddesses or this trope.
  • The Battlestar: Galactica herself is Type-2. The other Battlestars are Type-1, with the obligatory Big Honking Space Guns. The Phoenix and the Warstar Nemesis continue the Terran trend of Type-1 Battlestars, being built around heavy anti-ship weapons and using fighters as a secondary and/or defensive role.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Warspite, the third surviving Colonial Battlestar. Pegasus and Galactica eventually catch up. As does the Eridanus after she is found.
    • In Book Two, the UNSC ships get a range of general upgrades to make them more effective but most notable are the UNSC Everest and the UNSC Pillar of Autumn, both of which get given superior shields, enhanced MAC guns, additional energy weapons and souped-up engines.
  • Tuckerisation: Applied semi-liberally to the Terran Captains - Wayne Davies (meatspace friend of the author) and Franklin North and Stephen Garrett (forum members).
  • Two-Keyed Lock: Used, averted and discussed in the first story's "Epilogue: Part One." Anti-ship nuclear ordnance (i.e. "tactical" weapons) can be used at the sole discretion of the Battlestar's Commanding Officer. Strategic-level ordnance (planetary bombardment warheads, for instance) do have Two-Keyed Locks and then some. The story explains that since the only planets Battlestars were expected to fight over were human-controlled worlds, there needed to be more control over the use of such weapons: it requires simultaneous turning of keys from the CO and the XO and it also requires an Admiral's authorisation and the entire crew being informed - and all commands repeated/confirmed by the XO over the intercom. Word of God confirms this was inspired by Crimson Tide.
    • Subverted with ship's self-destruct - The Barham had her reactors set to overload catastrophically by Commander Shtarker without any form of two-part authorisation.
  • Up to Eleven: Compare the state-of-the-art as at the start of Book 1, with what's going off in Book 2.
  • Wave Motion Gun: Nemesis' spinal cannon. Later joined by the smaller version on Phoenix. The Warstar's superlaser was calculated to have a yield of 1000 gigatons, which explains why it outright vaporised Wraith Hive Ships.
  • What Might Have Been: Jack 'They Don't Like It Up 'Em!' Jones, Admiral Commanding, Terran Commonwealth Navy.
  • You Are in Command Now: Shtarker aboard TCS Barham, an unnamed Lieutenant aboard TCS Valkyrie.

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