The Nemesis Vector

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Prolog (v.1)

Submitted: August 14, 2017

Reads: 2611

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Submitted: August 14, 2017

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Chapter 41

In the wake of the bearing gun ordinances slamming into the supporting ships, massive amounts of debris and hundreds of alien bodies litter the cold void of space. In just a matter of seconds, the alien armada had been crushed and the only remaining vessel intact is the mother ship with a crew still reeling and trying to understand what has just happened. Repeated explosions blow what is left of the ships apart in a spectacular display of destruction and death.

Command aboard the mother ship, believes that a sudden unseen meteor shower has impacted their comrades, and is reacting just as Dr. Rice’s think tank had hoped they would; dazed, confused and distracted. Dr. Rice counted on this scenario, believing that in the mayhem caused by the attack, the mother ship would stay positioned in a hope of helping any survivors… but there are none.

As the confusion continues, Rex, Rory and the Seal Team ready themselves for the boarding of Nemesis Vector. ETA, now directing their move towards an area that it describes as the entry portal, follows their moves and when upon the opening, puts a code into the com which allows a set of doors to open into an unbelievable world.

“This is it gentlemen… here we go,” Rex says as he nudges the ship forward into the incredible inner space of the Nemesis Vector; the pathway to Earth’s hope of survival.

“Oh my God,” Duke exclaims. “This is absolutely incredible.”

All six men now huddled up in the com area look upon millions of hexagonal shapes seemingly held together by a fine dust which radiates out away from the gigantic monolith. As they stand in awe of the structure, ETA guides Rex deeper into it.

“ETA, how much farther before we dock and then where do we find these techs?” Rex asks.

ETA responds through his thoughts that it is not far and Rex remarks, “This is too weird; hearing ETA’s words but hearing no words… too weird.”

As ETA leads the way, Rory finds himself interested in why this creature would want to help any of them, and then as if his thoughts were spoken, ETA turns to him and tells him, “I want to live; I want to help your planet. Our species had no right to attack your people so viciously; there were other planets we could have gone to for colonization other than Earth. My species chose Earth to destroy humans; a lesser species… I do not agree.”

In a moment of disbelief in what he thought he heard coming from this creature and brief softening of his hatred, Rory stops himself… looks at ETA and says, “You’re right… you could have gone somewhere else,” and then looks away.

Inside of the Nemesis Vector, a number of empty ships are docked and yet there is more than enough room to accommodate a minimum of ten more large ships. Rex surveying the situation asks ETA why all of the ships are there and ETA replies that some of them are in need of repair; others are slated to aid the command ship if necessary.

“I see… an alien air force.”

“All right, Seals… get geared up… check your masks too… we want to be sure the air is breathable and not contaminated before we remove them… got it?” Duke asks as he slips on his own equipment.

“Man, it looks cold and nasty out there,” Rider yammers.

“Then, you should feel right at home Rider,” Beck taunts causing the other Seals to chuckle.

“We have touchdown gentlemen… we are inside the Nemesis. On my order we will commence boarding,” Rex says alerting the crew to be ready. “ETA goes out first as planned; Seal Team One will follow ETA up to command and control. Commander Scott and I will bring up the rear and on your order Duke, we will sedate the techs... any other interloper; shoot to kill. Is that understood?”

With an adrenaline filled, “Sir! Yes Sir!” the Seal team moves to a readied position.

“Door is opening… make your exit now,” Rex orders.

The interior of the Nemesis Vector is dark and filled with breathable, but somewhat stagnant, air allowing the men to remove their cumbersome masks. They walk along a bridge like structure that stretches the length of the dark walled chasm; the only light being a bluish purple and fuchsia hue that reminds Rex of the northern lights sometimes seen from the space station. The temperature, significantly warmer than expected, allows them to off their unneeded space suits.  From the bridge they can see the many ships sitting idle in the hanger-like structure.

“Man, this is an important find for Earth,” Rex exclaims. “We can certainly confiscate this group of ships for defense should these bastards return in the future.”

“No kidding,” Rory agrees. “However, we should, perhaps, worry about the ones that are still here first… don’t you think?”

“Oh ye of little faith… these bastards that are here are as good as dead.  Just need to get to where those techs are and harness the power of that beam… dead… they will all be dead.”

“Fine with me,” Rory replies in a tone void of emotion.

ETA, moving quickly, leads Seal Team One through the structure towards the location where the technicians are typically working. The Seals follow ETA with a cautious trust, as Rory watches… hoping for ETA to betray them. Understandably, he cannot let go of his hate for these creatures; ETA is just a constant reminder of the loss he has suffered.

Intuitively, the lights along the walkway glow brighter in the area of their steps, but dim again after they have passed. The Seals marvel at the level of technology, but watch cautiously for  behind ETA, questions the creature as to how much farther they will need to go before reaching the technician’s stronghold. ETA assures him that it is only a short distance further.

Stopping alongside a wall which leads to the opening of the technicians work area, ETA stops and communicates that there will be at least two guards inside of the work area and that they will be armed. The Seal Teams readies themselves with both their weapons and their tranquilizer guns.

 “All right gentlemen, when this door opens, pick your targets; let’s keep it tight, no killing unless it is absolutely necessary,” Duke whispers.

Coming upon the door, ETA taps a key pad and the door opens; the two alien guards standing there are apparently startled by the opening of the door. The aliens, drawing their weapons to fire, are killed by Price and Beck; their silencers muffling the discharge of the bullets.

Walking further down the corridor, ETA opens a second door and sitting at the control monitors are ten alien techs. One of them abruptly jumps up and Duke shoots him with a tranquilizer dart and as a result the others offer no resistance.

Seal Team One secures the remaining techs and Rex asks ETA to find out if there are any other techs or guards on the Nemesis Vector. The techs seeing their alien comrade laying on the floor and believing he is dead, tell ETA there are two other techs in a repair area further down the walk way, but no guards. As ETA communicates this to Duke, two of the seals head in that direction to secure the remaining techs.

Rider and Beck return within minutes herding the two techs back to the area where Rex and Rory are now looking over the com area.

“Alright, ETA… now we need to know how to re-direct that beam in the direction of the command ship. 

ETA, with the techs looking on in amazement that he is aiding the humans, resets the laser direction so that the mother ship has been targeted. ETA shows Rex the touch controls and in a matter of seconds has moved the energy beam in the direction of the craft and steps back away from the com, bowing his head as a gesture of submission and respect in Rex and Rory’s direction.

As Rex looks out on the screens in the direction of the command ship, he takes a deep breath, and lets it out with a huge sigh, “Well gentlemen… here goes. This will either be all we need or with the firing of this beam, we will realize that we have lost this fight and Earth is doomed. I actually don’t see much in the middle… but whichever way it goes… I want you all to know that it has been an honor serving with each of you. I could not, as a Commander, have asked for a better group of men to work with on this mission… or for that matter, any mission.”

As one of the techs begins to understand the intentions of what Rex is doing, he struggles to free himself from the bindings.

“Oh, a mal content,” Rory notes and grabs one of the Seal’s weapons and offs the struggling technician.

The remainder of the techs, now realizing that they too could end up like their comrade, sit back watching in silence the situation, as it unfolds. ETA explains to Rex how to target and execute the firing mechanism of the beam.

Rex stretches out his hand to unleash the energy beam, but stops short turning to Rory.

“Rory… this one is yours… for Sahara and for your baby. Make them both proud my friend; I am certain without a doubt that they are watching over us right now and cheering on our efforts.”

With those words, Rory reaches for the button and with a single tear running down his cheek, whispers, “This is for you baby.”

As the beam is unleashed on the command ship, a massive explosion cuts apart the nearly ten mile long vessel. The repeating beam cuts through mile after mile of the vessels length destroying the ship’s entire population and throwing massive amounts of debris in all directions. In the midst of the chaos, alien command realizes that it is the lower life form humans that have taken control of their own technology and are now using it against them. Knowing that their annihilation is imminent, the alien command launches an emergency beacon directed to colonization ships approximately one Earth year behind them. The beacon carries the news of their impending destruction and the loss of the Nemesis Vector to the lesser species inhabiting this solar system; it is the last communication before all that remains of the invaders ship is cosmic dust.

As a cheer goes up in the command center of the Nemesis Vector, Rory feels tears welling up in his eyes. Confused by his feelings, he wonders, what did he expect to feel? What did he hope for? Did he expect that the destruction of these bastards would take away the pain and the emptiness he feels in his heart? All he feels and knows now, is that with the destruction of this final ship, he has no purpose… he is alone and the mission is over. They have the ships… they have the techs… they have the Nemesis Vector… the Earth is safe… but he is alone.

“Do you feel better now Rory?” Rex asks with a smile on his face.

Quiet for what seemed an eternity, Rory finally answers, “I’m really not sure. I just feel empty… so very empty.”

“Buddy… Sahara would be so proud. Your efforts here today secured the safety of the inhabitants of Earth. Your efforts have secured that they will have a long and wondrous future ahead of them… you will always be her hero.”

“But what does that mean without her Rex… what does that mean? She was everything to me… she was my world,” his voice trailing off.

Feeling Rory’s pain, Rex put his hand on his shoulder and repeats, “She would be so proud of you Rory Scott and she would want you to go on… I know she would.”

“That might be true Rex… I just don’t know how to do that at this moment. I feel so cold inside; like I’m dead but still breathing.”

“You can… and you will. There is a lot to do now… a lot to rebuild, and a lot of learning to do so that we can protect the Earth with this technology against any future invasion. I need you my friend and the Earth needs you. Although that might not seem like much right now, I’m telling you Rory; I cannot do this without your help… and I mean that my friend.”

With that, Rex turns and walks back towards the other men, leaving Rory with his thoughts.

“All right… that was a great job gentlemen. Let’s head back to the ship so we can update Houston. I’m sure they have all been sitting down there anxiously waiting to hear back from us. I’m also sure that they will be extremely pleased at the outcome of this mission.”

On the walk back, ETA shows Rex a different part of the Nemesis. In a cavernous area hidden behind a door barely visible, is what appears to be a robotic manufacturing facility. ETA points to a half completed space ship and together they watch as hundreds of robotic figures work on it. Rex marvels at their advanced technology as the realization of what this technology will mean to UEA Command floods his thoughts. Although exciting, he can’t help but wonder if the world as it is today, is really ready for such a giant leap in technology. ETA takes Rex to another huge room where the glass-like walls are glowing. ETA explains to Rex that in this area, a huge AI computer, with all the known knowledge of the alien species, is housed.

The Seals, awed by the magnitude of what they are seeing stand silent, until Duke remarks, “Hell… can you believe what we are seeing? It is crazy how they are building these ships. Just imagine, with these robots NASA’s entire space program could be outfitted in no time!”

“Duke, you are absolutely right about that. UEA Command, I’m sure, will put them to work building an entire fleet,” Rex replies.

“Yeah… no doubt. It looks like they might mold these ships all in one piece, Commander.”

“You know Duke… it does. That would explain some of the questions UEA had when they analyzed the material sample Commander Scott and I brought back initially.”

“I’m betting with this monolithic structure, they will get a lot of their questions answered.”

“You’re right Beck; I think they will indeed.”

“Dr. Rice will certainly be interested in all that this AI computer might offer as far as knowledge. I’m sure advanced artificial intelligence is just the beginning of what will be in the Earth’s future,” Rex notes.

Walking back to the ship, Rider remarks, “I just can’t get over just how huge this structure is. I’m betting that it could take months to explore it fully.”

“No doubt Rider... no doubt.”

“Commander, how can we be sure that aren’t more techs or alien guards somewhere else in this structure?” Duke asks.

“Well Duke… I guess that we will just have to trust that ETA is telling us the truth. I know trust is earned and we are certainly early along that path with this creature, but thus far, I believe ETA actually wants to help us. I think we would all have to agree with that, but I do suppose time will be the telling factor.”

“Yes Sir… I suppose that is true,” as Duke looks in ETA’s direction.

Arriving back at the ship, Rory sits down quietly in the co-pilot’s chair as the Seals secure all of the techs in one area.

“Commander Scott, are you okay?” Rider asks.

Without looking up, Rory answers in a monotone, “Yep Rider… I’m fine. Thanks for asking.”

Rex motions for Rider to head on to the area of the ship where the techs are being held.

“Rory… are you okay?” Rex asks.

“Rex, I guess I am as all right as I could possibly be.  I was just thinking…”

“Thinking?”

“Yeah… thinking about how I should have done more for her… how I should have been there for her… how I should have maybe left NASA so I could have spared her all of the worry… the fear. I know how it tormented her, but I did it anyway. I should have been better to her.”

“Rory Scott… she loved you for who you are… and part of who are is what you do as an astronaut. In this life we do the very best we can with the information we have at the time… surely there could always be better information, but for whatever reason, the ‘better’ information is not readily available. I will tell you this… I didn’t know her well, but I am absolutely positive, she would have NEVER wanted you to give up your career as an astronaut… never.”

“I should have been better to her Rex, it was selfish of me…”

“C’mon buddy… I need you to get on the com… hail Houston. I want you to let them know that our group of warriors kicked some alien ass today… and I want you to let them know we are all damn proud of it too!”

“Rex… why don’t you go ahead and hail Houston.”

“Rory… we did a great job here today… it’ll make you feel better to be the one to share this news… believe me, it will.”

“All right…”

As Rory moves to the com center, Rex surveys the radar just to make sure everything is clear.

“Houston… come in Houston.”

“Houston here; Commander Huntley?”

“No Houston, Commander Scott here… Just wanted to give you an update Houston…”

“Good to hear from you!  Everyone okay?  Where’s Commander Huntley?”

“He’s over here on the com wishing that he had a bottle of champagne to celebrate… mission accomplished today, Houston. The alien armada has been destroyed; the Nemesis Vector secured and ETA’s still alive… that was part of the mission, correct?”

“Pardon me Commander?”

“Just kidding Houston… Our mission objectives have been met… everyone is fine, including ETA and we have captured the Nemesis Vector, secured eleven techs, destroyed the mother ship and are hoping to be home by dinner.”

“That’s good to hear Commander… really good to hear. We will inform the President that the alien threat has been destroyed and inform UEA command of your success… in fact, I’m sure that in short order, they will want to make an announcement to the entire world. You and your team Commander are one hell of a group… a group of heroes that is.”

“Thank you Houston… Thank you. We will be waiting for further orders Houston.”

“Copy that Commander… we will be back in contact here shortly as soon as UEA has made a decision as to what the next step will be.”

“Next step Houston?”

“I believe they are going to want to secure the Nemesis Vector with some additional soldiers, which might mean you will be heading back to Earth to transport those soldiers. Once they make their decision, which I expect will be straight away; then we should have new flight orders for you.”

“Copy that Houston. I will communicate that to Commander Huntley and Seal Team One.”

“And Commander… communicate to all that they did one hell of a job… yes, one hell of a job.”

“Copy that Houston and thank you. I will be sure to let them all know… and Houston… one more thing, not important, but thought I should share. In the securing of the Nemesis Vector, we’ve also captured a robotic manufacturing center for this space craft… If you place your order early, we can probably have an entire fleet of these ships by year’s end.”

“Commander?  Excuse me?”

“I thought that would catch your attention Houston. Here on board the Nemesis, there is a robotic construction facility with several hundred robots and all they do is build space crafts. The technology is unbelievable. We also have in our possession their AI computer system.”

“That is fantastic news and definitely something we will want to hear more about.”

“Copy that Houston… copy that. We’ll be looking forward to hearing of our new flight plan Houston.”

“Copy that Commander… we will be back with you shortly.”

As Rory walks away from the com, Rex inquires, “Now, didn’t that feel good Rory?”

“You know… actually it did. Thanks for making me do that.”

“No problem,” Rex says with a big smile.

“Did you hear that?” Duke comes back in to the com.

“Hear what Duke?

“I’m not sure, a loud creaking and groaning like noise,” Duke responds.

“Hey man, I think you’re hearing things, but if it would make you feel better, post a watch at the ship’s entrance. We should be getting orders shortly.”

“Copy that Commander; I’ll put Price and Beck on guard just outside the ship’s entrance. I think we are all just a little jumpy.”

“Duke, that’s definitely understandable… big place and lots of unknowns,” Rex responds.

With the alien techs all secured and sedated, Rex, Rory and the remaining Seal Team members settle back waiting for some word from Houston Control.

Breaking the silence, a voice loud enough to wake the dead, startles the men, “This is Houston control, do you copy?”

“Loud and clear Houston! Commander Huntley here.”

“Hey Commander, it’s good to hear your voice.  Commander Scott mentioned you were ready to do a little celebrating… is that right? If so, we will make sure we have a case of the best champagne money can buy at the package store available for you this evening.”

“Copy that Houston… sounds good… real good.”

“Commander, UEA Command has cleared you and Commander Scott to return to Kennedy.  They have asked that the Seal Team remain on site until such time we can have you return with a group of Marines to relieve them. If you are heading back today, we can certainly have a group of Marines ready to be returned to the Nemesis within forty-eight hours. Is the Nemesis habitable for twenty-five Marines to stay for several weeks?”

“Houston, there is enough room for twenty-five thousand Marines to stay.”

“Well that’s good to hear; I will recommend we send fifty men up then with adequate supplies for one month.”

“Copy that. Houston, I think it would be wise for both Commander Scott and I to bring back a second alien ship. There are several here, and since we both are making the trip, we could transport an additional one down to Earth.”

“Commander, I think that is a good idea…  

“Copy that Houston… my thoughts exactly!

Do you have an estimated time for departure Commander?”

“Well… we will need to get Seal Team settled. I’m not sure how keen they will be being left up here for a couple of days… they seem a little jumpy. It’s a damn big structure, and although ETA assures us there are no other alien personnel anywhere on board, I think there is still a trust factor… if you know what I mean.”

“Yes Commander… I can see that being an issue for some time actually. Did you have any behavior issue with ETA?”

“No Houston… everything went very smoothly and everything ETA communicated was right on point, he was a great asset.”

“Well, that’s good to hear. We honestly hope ETA will continue to be a trusted ally to our future endeavors operating and exploring the Nemesis Vector.”

“I believe you are right Houston. Let us get everything settled here… get the Seal Team acclimated, and whatever else we need to do. What about the techs? We have them all sedated, but if we left ETA here, he could just get them back to work again terraforming the moon… what d’ya think Houston?”

Rory, flashing Rex a concerned look whispers, “Do you think that is wise?”

“Rory… there is a point that we have to draw the line and make the decision that now we either trust ETA fully, or go on about this endeavor without the help ETA provides. I think that the risk of not taking the chance of trusting this creature is greater than trusting it for sure.”

After a bit of a pause, Houston responds, “Well consensus is that ETA stays with the Seals, along with all of the techs. Just make sure that they are all secured when they are not working and eyes are on them at all times.  From what ETA disclosed, the techs are just worker bee types and really don’t think for themselves… artificial intelligence… just do what they are told.  ETA, however… well, you hear what I am saying… just keep watch, appoint a handler to him.”

“Copy that Houston. We’ll get everything squared away so we can be out of here within the hour… well maybe two… I will need to give Commander Scott a remedial flying lesson prior to our departure.”

“Copy that Commander… we will have the champagne on ice. Just a heads up though… coming into Kennedy might be a little chaotic.  With that west Florida attack, a lot of things are a little crazy… as I’m sure you can imagine.”

In a quiet voice, Rex replies, “Yes… I’m sure that’s true.”

“Have a good flight Commander, Houston out.”

Closing down the com, Rex turns to Rory, “What do you think about taking a second ship down from here… you’re in the driver’s seat.”

“I think that’s a great idea… but what do you mean ‘remedial flight lesson’?”

Laughing, Rex counters, “I knew that would raise the hair on the back of your neck!”

“Not a chance, no hairs raised here! I’ll challenge your flying skills any day of the week!”

“All right… I’ll let you put your money where your mouth is. I’ll let you get a little time in the air with her, and we’ll just see,” Rex retorts with a wink and a smile.

“You’re on! as they do a fist bump. Hundred bucks first ship on the tarmac.”

Rex smiles to himself, seeing Rory’s response; first time in days, he has seemed like his old self. “Fine, a hundred bucks it is.”

“Rory, get Duke and ETA in here while I get the rest of the men up to speed… I want the two of them to find one of the ships that is ready to go. Once they find that, we can get you into the driver’s seat for a little test drive. After all, like Dr. Rice says, there’s not much to run into up here.”

“Very funny,” Rory laughs as he walks back out into the corridor of the Nemesis.

As Rex double checks the radar and some of the other indicators, he thinks about flying into Kennedy. He knows they will pass right over the devastation done by the alien’s attack; a grim reminder to Rory of his loss only days before.

“Duke, glad you’re here…”

“Commander, you needed us?” Duke asks as ETA looks on.

“Yes Duke… we have our return mission orders. Houston ordered you and Seal Team One, along with ETA to remain on board the Nemesis for about forty-eight hours until we are able to bring back a squad of Marines that will remain here on guard. There will likely be about fifty of them. What Houston needs you to do is get an area set up where these men will be able to make bunk and also a place to store supplies and rations.”

“Yes Commander, not a problem.”

“First things first though… I need you to go with ETA down into the Nemesis hanger and find a ship that is ready to go. Commander Scott and I will be taking a second ship back to Earth here shortly. Take Price with you too.”

“Copy that Commander… anything else?”

“Yes Duke… when these techs wake up get them back to work. And ETA… this is a true test of where his allegiance lies… make sure that the com is secure so that in the event they are able to think for themselves, there is no chance of them alerting any of their kind still on the moon.  Is that understood?”

ETA, bowing his head forward as a sign of submission, responds affirming that the order will be followed.

“Also, ETA… after we are headed back to Earth, I want you to train Duke on how to fly one of the remaining ships. I think Duke it would be wise, don’t you?”

“ME! Fly? Commander that would be such an honor! Thank you!”

“ETA, just make sure it is far enough out away from the Nemesis so no one gets hurt… ok?”

Again, ETA responds favorably to the order.

“Again, thank you Commander! Thank you. ETA, Price and I will get right on it.”

“Copy that.”

As Price and Duke walk along the bridge overlooking the completed and partially completed alien ships, Price remarks, “Look at the size of this place and the size of these ships! You know, I’ve been looking at them and I honestly think they mold the hull in one piece… I see absolutely no seams anywhere; do you Duke?”

“Now that you mention it, no I don’t. It’s absolutely amazing we now have control of alien technology…that is literally light years ahead of anything even on the drawing board back on Earth.”

“Yeah, no kidding… ETA, which one do we take? Commander Huntley is waiting for us and I’m sure he wants this ship back sooner rather than later.”

ETA points to a ship, third from the end and Price asks, “How do we know we can trust it?”

Looking back at ETA, Duke replies, “Because ETA gave its word to do exactly as the Commander wanted… didn’t you ETA?”

Again, bowing its head, ETA responds with a yes to Duke’s question. Climbing aboard the ship, ETA takes the controls and maneuvers the ship back to where Rex and Rory are waiting.

“All right Commander Scott… are you ready for a little flying lesson?” Rex asks with a big smile.

“I’m ready, willing and able… to kick your ass, Commander,” Rory smiles back.

“Well, we’ll see about that… hop in Ace. Duke, keep an eye on that radar screen and let me know if you see anything unusual.”

“Will do, Commander.”

Rex and Rory maneuver the ship out of the Nemesis into the star lit depths of space.

“Okay Rory… she’s all yours. Keep in mind she handles much differently than the Intrepid; at first you can over react on every turn… be gentle with her as she turns on a dime… and Rory…”

“Yeah?”

“Have a little fun, will you?”

“Copy that!”

After only twenty minutes in the air, Rory handles the ship like he has been flying it for years.

“Now that wasn’t so hard, was it rookie?”

“I told you I would kick your ass!” Rory smiles a big boyish smile.

“So you did… so you did. Let’s head back in; get these Seals squared away and get back to Kennedy… what do you say?”

The smile disappears from Rory’s face as flashes of the destruction and the thought of Sahara fills his consciousness. He pauses for just a moment and then responds, “Sure… let’s get back to Kennedy.”

Pulling back into the hanger area, Duke, Price and ETA stand waiting. As they walk back into the area where the twelve techs are, Rory notices that several of them are starting to stir and feels the hatred bubbling up, filling his gut once again. With Rex’s orders, he will stuff it back down, but he would just a soon jettison all of them out an airlock. As he watches them, he thinks about Sahara, their baby, and the life he had hoped for; now just a memory. Rory can hardly bear to look at them without wanting to kill… kill them all.

Sensing what is going on in Rory’s head, Rex looks directly at him and says, “Commander Scott… can you make sure the Seals have everything set and have whatever supplies they might need off loaded from the other ship. Price, you stay here with ETA; Duke… you go along with Commander Scott.”

“Copy that Commander.”

“…And Commander Scott… I want to be ready to rock and roll here in about twenty minutes.”

Looking back at Rex with different look in his eyes now, he answers, “Copy that.”

“Are you ready for this rookie?” Rex asks Rory with quizzical look and testing where Rory’s head is.

“Lead the way Commander… I’ll be right behind you.”

“Good… we’ll see how well you can keep up! Duke… keep things in order up here, will you?”

“Will do, Commander Huntley; safe travels to the both of you. We will be fine up here, but make sure they have some really thick juicy steaks ready for us upon our return… we are all feeling a little let down that we’re not going back with you today… but if we can keep focused on that big juicy steak, we’ll be fine,” Duke smiles.

“We can make that happen, Duke… but in the meantime, stay focused on our alien friends.”

“Definitely Commander… that’s a given.”

As Rex and Rory climb aboard their respective ships, Price and Duke stand on the bridge with ETA watching as they prepare for departure. For the first time, Rex feels almost relaxed as he thinks of everything that has gone on. With a sense of pride and accomplishment, he thinks of this group of brave men that have put their lives on the line to save mankind and to save the Earth. He wonders how he could have been so fortunate to have been paired up with this team and also someone like Rory. Knowing that they make a good team, he hopes that he will be able to convince Rory to working with him in this new chapter of Earth’s history. With this new technology and the ability to leave the Earth and ultimately even leave the solar system to explore and terraform new worlds, he sees the possibilities for the UEA space program to be endless. The very dreams of space travel he had as a child are now real possibilities and he wants to be part of this new page in Earth’s history. He also truly believes that this new chapter of the space program could help Rory to move forward after the death of Sahara but he also realizes that Rory may not feel the same way. As much as he wants Rory to continue to be part of the team, he fears Rory may leave the space program completely when things settle down… only time will tell, and he knows that.

 

 


© Copyright 2018 Bo Demont. All rights reserved.

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