Before the raiders first came to our own homeworld, we were confident in our ability to defend ourselves from outside attackers--or we would have been, at least, if anybody had ever asked the question. We were strong, we were united, we had advanced technology compared to most other races that we knew of that we could turn toward combat and self-defense.
We were not entirely prepared for the attack, but we rallied and fought back.
There were less than 100 refugees who survived to flee.
We found another civilization that was on their route, I and my brother and several others. Their technology was not as strong as ours, but more of it was dedicated to actual weapons and defense. They were not as involved in interplanetary affairs as we were, but they knew about outside civilizations and they welcomed us when we arrived. We explained to them the imminent threat, and we helped them prepare a defensive plan.
We had tremendous armies, powerful weaponry, advance preparation for the attack with knowledge of the raiders' goals and tactics.
I do not believe that any members of that civilization escaped the utter destruction of their planet's ecology, and only three of us escaped.
As we approached Earth, Enri defected and retreated to join the other refugees. My brother Arket and I were the only two coming to defend this planet. A planet that had never had any open contact with anybody outside of their world. A planet with a geography that resulted in a wide variety of disparate civilizations (the humans, the intelligent race here, are land-dwelling despite the majority of the planet's surface being ocean--I suspect there may be an unknown intelligent race that calls the depths of the sea its home, but perhaps the depth and darkness has prevented the evolution of advanced lifeforms). These civilizations are not united against outside threats that they could never foresee, and in fact largely see each other as threats (and because they are paranoid they actually do threaten each other with the potential for preemptive "self-defensive" attacks, making the paranoia a requirement--a dangerous cycle). Their technology is not primitive and is advancing quickly, but it is currently a similar level to our own Dark Ages. They have no defensive or offensive technology that I expect to be useful against an outside threat.
Arket and I took separate smaller crafts to explore the area. Arket's explorer had been damaged in our recent retreat, apparently more than we had previously realized, and he began losing the battle against the planet's gravity. I believe he planned an emergency landing in a relatively unpopulated area, but he was spotted by humans who perceived him as a threat and shot the craft down.
I have been told that the human doctors tried to save him--by somebody I trust--but that they ultimately failed. A human psychic attempted to probe him mind, and in him weakened state he failed to lower the subconscious psychic defenses we had learned as fledgling warriors. The backlash quickened the inevitable, and he died in seconds.
The humans dissected his body. Some would find this horrifically insulting and refuse to forgive them, but, while I was not happy, it is difficult to blame them if I consider the events from their perspective. Arket was their first contact with an outside race. I do not condone that he was shot down in the first place, and for this I blame human paranoia, but I will not hold it against an entire planet's population.
The humans as a whole are selfish, paranoid, cowardly, and prone to panic. Those who are not cowardly are frequently instead aggressive. Compared to our own race they are physically weak, slow, and fragile.
But on this planet, I have found a few allies. They are not the governments, which should exist to defend their peoples. They are a group of individuals. Three human women, four human men, and an anthroid--the first true artificial intelligence this planet has ever been home to, technology well beyond what one would expect to find here.
These eight individuals display the true diversity of the people of this world. They are courageous, compassionate, empathic, wise, intelligent, and all manner of good things. They are also powerful. I have stated that the humans are weak compared to us, and I believe that if I were to choose to do so I could destroy an entire city with little fear of defeat, but against my eight friends? I am not confident in my ability to win even a duel against even one of them.
On this planet, I make my final stand. I do not have an escape route, a backup plan, any ideas in the back of my mind to retreat if the fighting goes badly.
Here I die or I win... or both, I suppose.
But it is not out of resignation that I say that. On other planets, I have led armies of millions and knew that we were outmatched. Here on Earth I stand alone with a team of nine individuals and feel confidence.
Perhaps I have merely grown foolish, the death of my world has finally taken its toll on my mind. But I do not believe so.
I truly believe that if there is any force in this universe that can drive back the raiders that I have found us.
There are nine of us. Nine against billions.
And I fully intend to win.