Literary Challenge #27 : Return to Terra Nova
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Join Date: Jul 2012
09-11-2012, 08:01 PM
"No ma'am, I am not sure what happened after we all lost consciousness."
Admiral Farber failed to restrain her fury. "So basically, Section 31 drugged your crew, stole your ship, took it somewhere and did something, and all you can say is that you are sorry?"
Captain Carter tried hard not to scream at the screen. "Admiral, I could tell you that you underestimate Section 31, but what's the point? Whatever they wanted, they got. We are pawns in their game."
"I will try my best to strip you of your commission. Farber out."
After the transmission ended, Carter looked down at the data rod in his hand.
They promised that this would come in handy one day. When will that be?
Eight days earlier
"Bridge to Captain Carter??
OK, time to wake up. No red alert klaxon, looks like we?re still at warp speed, inertial dampeners online. It?s 0347 hours. Ugh.
"Lieutenant Carpenter, why are you waking me up? What is your job title?"
"Sir, we've received a distress signal from Terra Nova?and as you know, I'm the acting captain for gamma shift."
"Ok, so as acting captain, you can make the easy decisions and let me sleep. If the ship isn't being attacked or about to explode, leave me alone. I'll report to the bridge 5 minutes before shift change so you can brief me on the situation. I?m going back to bed." Rolling over, the captain wondered if Carpenter was promoted too soon.
Four hours later
was fifteen minutes away from Terra Nova, so the senior staff had gathered in the conference room. The ship?s librarian, a photonic being named Alice, had effectively put half the room to sleep.
"...and that is why we cannot interfere with the Novans." Alice brushed some of her shoulder-length hair away from her ear and sat down, satisfied.
Carter jerked awake and sat up straight. "So you really believe we have an ethical responsibility to ignore this distress signal? It's too early for fuzzy logic."
"My logic is not hairy, and this is quite simple. The Novans have spent the last 200 plus years in relative seclusion. They decided to develop their own technologies at their own pace. Eighteen years ago, the Novans sent a representative to San Francisco and asked for partial protectorate status. We keep the Borg away and they stay out of our business. If you were awake, you?d know that the distress signal was sent by an illegal monitoring satellite operated by a less-than-reputable Alpha Centarian firm called Interstellar Partnerships Corporation."
Operations officer Glotz perked up. "If I recall correctly, IPC is a dummy corporation for Section 31. No one has been able to prove it, but that has a lot to do with the existence of Section 31 being a secret outside of the Federation. No one wants to imprison a 'legitimate' CEO and charge him with being a pawn in a rogue Federation outlet that runs amok and never gets caught."
Carter sighed. "So Section 31 places a network of illegal monitoring satellites near a planet of humans that have chosen to stay 400 years behind the rest of the galaxy technologically. Then they call for help. Is this a trap, or are they really in trouble? Terra Nova is so close to Sol that it's our responsibility to respond on the chance that it's a Borg threat or other absolute disaster."
's shields failed three seconds after exiting warp speed. While Security chief Hillel warned them of an authorized transport, main power failed. Captain Carter lost consciousness shortly thereafter.
Carter awoke in his bed, fully dressed in a wrinkled uniform. It took a few moments for him to realize that his last memory was sitting on the bridge. As he arose, he was not surprised to see a man dressed in black sitting at his table.
"You are awake. So now?s the time to thank you for your services."
"I will do no such thing. What happened to me and my crew?"
"You enjoyed your sleep, right? Everyone else is laying in a bunk in one of the cargo holds. Sedated, of course, but perfectly healthy. They should wake up in about 2 hours. You have that long to consider what I have to say."
"Speak your peace and get off my ship."
He probably has a personal shield, so assaulting him is pointless. If he can steal my ship, he can protect himself.
"Fine. While you were dreaming, you helped advance the well-being of the Federation and the galaxy as a whole. Of course, we erased all ship logs, so you'll never know what precisely you helped with. But I am leaving you with this data rod as a thank you. As soon as your anger dies down, open it up. You'll be pleasantly surprised. In fact, you may find that this data rod comes in handy in the near future."
"What the..." before he could finish his sentence, the intruder had left.
How am I going to explain this?
Last edited by superhombre777; 09-11-2012 at