This story takes place in a futuristic universe, where the Alpha Quadrant of the Milky Way Galaxy – the quadrant that is home to Earth, or Terra as it is more commonly known – is populated with species of all kinds. A pacifist, highly sophisticated race called the Shuak R’ni discovered the inhabitants of the Sol system in 2064 and invited them to join the Interstellar Council, the governing body in the quadrant. During the next 60 years, Earth’s technology and culture rapidly evolved until it had caught up with the interstellar standard. Because of their eagerness to explore their expanded horizons and an ability to adapt and conform to their new environment, Terrans have become very influential on the Council. They are also responsible for the formation of the Galactic Directorate, the peacekeeping arm of the Council’s armed forces.
The main character of this story, Rhiain O’Connell, is actually a humanoid from a backwater aristocratic world called C’heras. “The Bully” takes place in 2123 A.D., during her first year at the Galactic Directorate Academy on one of the R’ni worlds, Shunieke. The Academy is the training ground for future GD officers; a student cannot enroll until he or she is at least 11 standard years of age or above. Schooling lasts for seven years.
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