This is a new story I'm writing. A science fiction with a bit of fantasy thrown in. I have a couple of other stories on the site but I have no plans to continue them at the moment and I'm currently rewriting another. Here is Chapter 2. The third one will follow soon. Email your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you to those who have sent their comments to me. I appreciate it.
A quick note on the DakThran. I won't be having them speak any English or other human language within the story. I want to try and keep the feeling of "alien-ness" during scenes with them. I will try and add meaning to their dialogue through the narration and directly translate where I cannot describe what is going on. If you know Dutch or Afrikaans, you might kind of be able to understand what's being said. Please try and bear with me.
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The following works are copyrighted by the author. All rights reserved. No part of this may be reproduced in any form without the written permission of the author. All characters are entirely fictional and any resemblance to living persons is coincidental. This story will contain scenes of explicit or erotic sex between men. If this is illegal in your country or state, or offends you, please leave now.
THE office of Station Commander Corrin Day was located at the topmost deck of the Noah. The bridge deck oversaw the smooth running of the space station and was where all chief officers reported to at the end of a standard earth day. Navigation was also located here, and the officers were currently plotting their course to Eris.
Corrin sat behind his desk and stared quietly at the Integra representative on his viewscreen. The Integra was the Grand Guild that began to govern humanity after the expansion. It was primarily made up of the three ruling world governments that existed on Earth: the United Americas, the Euro-African Federation and the Australasian Republic.
When Earth was evacuated all ties to land were abandoned and the Integra was formed, combining all three governments henceforth into one integral ruling guild.
"Do you understand the situation, Station Commander Corrin?" The representative asked softly.
Corrin nodded resolutely. "I understand, representative."
"It is of utmost importance that we do not alarm our fellow Integrans. We wish to announce everything once all colonies and facilities have gathered safely at Eris."
"May I include a few key officers in this? I feel that we will better be able to get the Noah quickly and safely to Eris."
The representative looked somewhere off screen, conferring with his superiors. After a quick nod, he looked at Corrin again. "Very well Commander, I leave it to your discretion. The Integra have also agreed to send you an escort, since your facility is currently the furthest from Eris."
The tension eased in Corrin's shoulders. He welcomed an escort wholeheartedly. "Who will you be sending?"
"We will be sending one of our newest ships, fastest in the fleet and capable of integration. Its designation is Sky Galleon X1. It will arrive within two days."
Two days? That was fast, even with the hypergates between here and Eris. A normal supply shuttle would have taken at least a week using them.
"Thank you, Representative. I will speed up preparation."
The representative nodded and signed off. Corrin sighed and stood up. He needed a cup of coffee, and maybe a hole to hide in.
Frankly the situation hadn't sunk in yet. Corrin understood that supply and scout ships had been attacked in recent months; most of all Corrin understood that the Neo Bangkok Colony had been completely destroyed. No survivors. But it simply hadn't sunk in yet. Corrin couldn't comprehend it. Who could be attacking the ships and why? They were so few already. There was no supply problem that Corrin could think of. No one was starving, which meant it was very rare that there were any attacks by pirates.
Corrin froze in the gloomy hallway on his way to the mess deck. The Integra seemed really urgent in trying to get to the Noah quickly, even going so far as sending a brand new star cruiser.
Did that mean the Noah was in danger of being attacked? It slowly started to dawn on Corrin that the situation was serious. His breathing accelerated and his knees grew weak. He put his hand against the wall, bending over.
Breathe Corrin. He inhaled and exhaled until he felt himself again. He was responsible for over a thousand people, all personnel of the Science Guild.
The Noah couldn't outrun any supply ship, let alone a star cruiser. Defenses were minimal and consisted of a few pin laser turrets and scatter torpedo bays. The crystal-shaped, legged space station was no war juggernaut, and it was over ten years old.
Corrin entered the lift which would take him down to the mess deck. A plan was needed.
LATER Corrin stood on the bridge of the Noah. The coffee in his stomach sloshed heavily and a headache had formed.
Before him stood his most trusted officers. Sean and Hiroki stood close together. The Navigation, Engineering and Life-Support heads were also present as well as the medical officer. So basically everyone.
"We need to speed up flight preparations," Corrin began. "The Integra has put out an alert to all outlying colonies and facilities to be on the lookout for unknown, aggressive elements."
"What does that mean?" Patrick Dunn, the Chief Engineer asked.
"It means that someone is attacking our ships and colonies."
"A collective gasp filled the bridge, and Corrin winced inwardly for being too blunt. He saw Sean and Hiroki's face darken and a looked passed between them. Something was up. Those two knew something.
"What do we do?" The medic asked.
"What we've been doing," Corrin answered. "How are you looking on medical supplies, Stan?"
The medic thought for a moment. "I'm low on blood packs, but other than that I'm fully stocked."
Corrin turned to Patrick. "How long until the Noah is at full engine capacity?"
Patrick sighed. "Twenty-four hours for the latest. The station's old and hasn't been moved for over a decade. I've got Officer Sumeragi working on increasing output. She's the best we've got."
"Have the drones been recalled from Titan?"
The Life-Support officer Leana Bomer nodded. "Yes sir, they're carrying full tanks and will be docking in two hours."
"Good. Matt, have you and your officers plotted the fastest course? The hypergates are useless to us."
The Navigation officer confirmed. "Yes sir, with the exception of a few errant meteors, our route is clear. Though our journey won't be quick."
Corrin grunted. "That problem will soon be solved. The Integra have sent a star cruiser to escort us. It has integrating capabilities. So power output will be increased exponentially. What you need to do Patrick," Corrin pointed at the man. "Is to make sure the Noah can handle it."
"When will the ship arrive?" Sean asked.
"In two days."
Sean's eyes widened. "What kind of ship can travel that fast?"
"The new kind. When the Sky Galleon X1 arrives, we must be ready to leave. In the meantime, since we do not have a tactical officer, I want everyone to report back here at 0800 hours to begin brainstorming ways to avoid or engage combat in case we're attacked."
God how do I think of these things! Corrin wondered.
"That is all." With resolute nods, the officers began dispersing.
"Sean, Hiroki, if you would please follow me."
The two young men looked at each other before following Corrin into his office.
THE scout ship finally arrived at the home world, and the DakThran captain reported immediately to his superior.
"Vât ish détch?" The large black-skinned commander demanded. He expected a report.
" lsh gûn sôsh gheblânk. Jie vŷt skŷm vitch nich."
The commander grunted and stroked his blood red goatee. So everything was going according to plan. The pale skins were still ignorant.
"Ghoedge. Osh hetch bûgûn streitch. Osh vûlg teiken ish jie stêl."
Attacks were well underway. Next was the station.
"ALRIGHT spill," Corrin demanded.
Rock couldn't stop the smile spreading across his face. His foster father was just too good.
"Told you we should have gone to him immediately," Hiroki muttered next to Rock.
"Hush Hiro. Berate me later."
"Well?" Corrin insisted.
Sighing, Rock sat down in front of the desk, followed a few seconds later by Hiroki. "We've discovered something concerning the sun."
"Oh? What would that have to do with the attacks?"
"Maybe nothing. Maybe everything," Rock said. "The other day, when we were doing routine readings and the valve malfunctioned. It caused a glitch in the system which brought up ten year old footage that was embedded within the mainframe."
"Ten year old footage? But I thought it was all lost."
"Us too," Rock agreed. "The antennae had been fried and all data of the time had been lost. But this footage was from earlier, about a couple of days after the first expansion, and the officer on duty at the time thought to secure it to the mainframe. Anyway, I've been studying the footage carefully for the past couple of days, and I've discovered something significant. In fact, let me show you."
Rock rose and moved around the desk until he was leaning over Corrin's shoulder. He punched a few keys on the unit and brought up the file.
"Look closely, what do you see?"
Corrin looked at the still image of the bloated sun. There was a smudge close to the edge of the red glow. Corrin toggled the switch and made the image zoom in. The smudge enlarged and became clearer.
"My God! Is that-?"
"Yes, a ship. One I've never seen before," Rock said softly. It had been an enormous shock when he had first seen it.
"But how can this be? That is definitely no Integran ship. It doesn't even look pre-Integra."
"Scans show that the ship is not made out of any type of known alloy. The ship is alien." Hiroki added in his usual serious manner.
Rock wondered sometimes if anything ever went on in the man's heart. One day....
"That is not all," Hiroki continued. "Rock had Officer Vaughn run scans throughout this region for any anomalies or distortions. He discovered one."
Rock then changed the screen to view the image of the moon Europa. "You see that shadow right there?" He pointed to the surface.
Corrin saw the same outline of the ship from the old footage. It was almost identical.
"But this is a shadow on the surface of the moon."
"Yes," Rock agreed, "and if you zoom the image out you won't see anything casting the shadow either. I believe the ship is using some sort of cloaking device. However it doesn't prevent the object from casting a shadow on other nearby objects. Perhaps it is only a type of mirror camouflage."
"Do you realize what this means?" Corrin asked.
"Yeah, they're already here...."