|2.51 June 29, 2249 CE - UGTO Biological Weapons deployed|
|June 29, 2249 CE: The UGTO has been successfully preventing advances of the SFA forces. In order to attempt to finish the war more quickly so as to reduce expenditures and loss of UGTO military lives and assets, on June 29, 2249 at 09:23:19, Grand Chancellor Messinia signs a classified approval for the use of biological weapons developed on Charon against an SFA-aligned planet.
Seeking to demonstrate their technological superiority, the specially tailored virus is relased on Price, in Delta Pavonis. The virus is designed to spread quickly and the scientists estimated the entire population would be infected within a month.
On July 9, 2249, at 12:17 precisely, the exact radiation to trigger the virus is directed at Price; the scientists involved said it should cause total nervous system failure and cause death within 30 seconds. And because of the early activation, estimates were that only some 20% of the population would be affected. This was seen as an effective way to demonstrate to the SFA that its cause was hopeless and the UGTO was resolved to take any steps necessary to win.
However, the virus apparently mutates soon after introduction. Rather than quick deaths, most suffer a flare-up of the nervous system, causing swelling, pain, and degradation. All nerve receptors are stimulated by the virus, causing massive mental overload and unbelievable pain; the swelling damags internal organs and causes brain hemorrhaging. Additionally, 30 seconds to death is a dream to those affected, many of them taking days to finally die.
And it spreads more widely than expected. Probably because of the links of modern trade and travel, the entire population of Price is wiped out in less than two weeks, and the virus soon shows up on Zayd, decimating its population, followed by the Bellema cluster. The disease strikes quickly, causing pain to build within an hour of infection, so that live interstellar network transmissions would often show people acting normally one moment and writhing in pain the next.
Due to the speed of its spread and the visciousness of its effects, a quarantine is placed on the Delta Pavonis system on the morning of July 20. Despite being at war, SFA and UGTO ships are diverted from active battles to patrol the jump lanes out of the system for ships desperate to flee the carnage. They are destroyed without mercy; the risk of the disease spreading out of the system is simply too great.
By the end of the year, the disease claims all the residents of Delta Pavonis.