nebula

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Chapter One: Planet X

     A global space initiative has launched and finds itself in the Andromeda Galaxy.  It is the not-so-distant future.  They've picked up frequencies from a mysterious planet within.  The crew is made up of 3 biologists, 3 zoologists, 3 ecologists of world renowned stature.  Also there are 5 IT specialists, 10 navigators, and a Captain.  There are only light hand weapons aboard and the ship, The Cosmopolitan, and it is unarmed...

     ¨Imagery is coming in, Captain.¨  A navigator says.  ¨It is lush with life, green everywhere!  Look at those massive, artistic structures, sir!¨

     ¨Amazing.¨ Captain Beauregard had marveled. ¨Do see if you can decode their signal.¨

     ¨We have it now, sir.¨

     ¨Identify yourselves.¨  It had said in a cold, robotic voice.

     ¨We are...we are of earth and we come only in peace.¨  Captain Beauregard explained.

     ¨The mammals.¨  This was not put as a question towards them, but as a conversation among themselves overheard.

      ¨We should leave.¨  A navigator had began to implore.  ¨I have a bad feeling about this.¨

      ¨We did not come all this way and spend billions of world dollars to simply turn back on a feeling.¨  The Captain explained in a whisper.

      ¨Are there more of you on the way?¨  The cold voice asked.

     ¨No, we are on a peaceful mission of exploration sanctioned by the United Nations.¨  Captain Beauregard said trying to keep his composure.  ¨We simply offer our hand in friendship.¨

      ¨How many male and female subjects are on board?¨  The voice said somehow managing to get colder in tone.

      ¨Wha-what?¨  The Captain responded.

      A giant, red flash came over them, the ship shook, and then a navigator cried out, ¨Our propulsion engines have been taken out by an tactical EMP!¨

     "We're on a fucking peaceful mission!"  The Captain exclaimed.

     An entry door opened behind them and a large, silver, spherical drone entered the deck.  It hummed as an image of leathery, purple lips frowned upon the crew.  In front of pale, placid, white skin those horrible lips had the grimaced in utter disgust as we were vermin.  There was a buzzing sound and then the crew collapsed on the floor  unconscious.  All were as if they were shut off like a switch, except one.  The navigator with the ¨bad feeling¨ was left alone standing with the mirror like sphere. 

     The repulsed smile on the reflective drone simply became angrier.  It launched another charge and the lone navigator ducked behind a console.  She fumbled for some sort of weapon on her utility belt desperately as the drone grew closer.  The buzz intensified as it floated closer to her.  Pulling out a pocket stun gun, she said a prayer, jumped up, and shoot 46 million volts at the evil grin.  It crashed into screen and then another as it struggle to stay airborne.  A strange language yelled out from it in rage.  She fired at it one more time and ran for the elevator, punched open the manual control box, and pressed the ¨Evac¨ floor symbol which was a red triangle with an exclamation point.  A small laser pierced through the closed doors and removed her right hand as it sealed the wound.  Another took her left leg from the kneecap down.  An immediate third shoot made the left half of her face feel warm.  The pain almost caused her to black out, but her adrenaline was pumping and the will to live was too strong. 

      Crawling to the nearest shuttle, the lone navigator could hear the drone cutting through the thick metal of the elevator roof.  Tears rolled down her face as she cried, ¨MedBot!¨

      An all white drone with a red, smiling face and an yellow emergency light on its head, complete with stretcher, flew out and placed her in a shuttle.  Through a small window she could see the happy face of the MedBot in one instant and then watch it get disintegrated in the next.  The shuttle rattled away into the cosmos and through her tiny viewport she could see the angry drone observing her from the evacuation bay.

     ¨Screw you.¨  She said as she raised her left hand's middle finger.

     ¨Prepare for sedation.¨  A voice from her shuttle said as nanobots and synthetic arms sprang from compartments.  ¨Emergency surgery must be performed.¨

     ¨Map nearest portal at max speed for earth.¨  She said with a whisper that took all of energy to say while her eyes began to become to heavy to remain open.

     ¨Complying.¨  The escape pod answered.  ¨Subject: female crew member navigator.  Name: Janus. Only survivor.¨


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