Hail to sweet Terra
The jewel of the universe
We are your warriors
Defenders of the earth
The sun and the moon
Dance around the sky
The red dawn comes soon
Our enemies shall die
Between the rusted hulls
And the vast array of lights
This place, far from dull
Is your home for the night
We men of space
Travel far and wide
This cosmic race
Warms us inside
Beware the Murdral
They’ll kill you outright
Heed to my call
And prepare to fight!
-Terran Federation Anthem
The year is 3405, the Human race spans the length of the Milky-Way Galaxy, and is beginning to explore further, and further outwards. Over the centuries we have come into contact with 54 different species of Alien life, some hostile, but most quite friendly, and also quite aware of our presence, long before we were of theirs.
We’ve made alliances with the Shai`Rai (A race of bipedal lizard-like creatures, Master traders, if it exists you can find it on the Shai`Rai home world), the Geolodes (The geolodes is a race of 10 foot tall giants made of solid rock, very strong and completely fearless, they are masters of mining and underground work), and the Farseer Race (A race of humanoid beings with incredible mind powers and great intelligence, very peaceful by nature). We’re also on peaceful terms with a couple dozen more races. We are currently at war with the vile Murdral, a race of fierce bipedal boar-like warriors, bloodthirsty, unmerciful, they dominate and enslave any race that gets in there path of galactic conquest.
I am Barshee, I used to be the best pilot the Terran Federation had until my wife died and I left. This is my story, and what a story it is.
Chapter 1- Ignition
Her hair was like a raging inferno; her eyes were the color of the deepest, darkest, green emeralds. She walked into the bar with a cantor of someone who has business and knows very well what it is. I stared at her; I couldn’t help it, as was the same with most of the other tavern patrons that night. She began to scan the crowd, looking for an entity currently unknown to me. After about a minute of this she spotted me, at my small table in the back corner of the room. As she began to approach me I couldn’t help but wonder, what did such a beautiful girl want with a washed up has been like myself? The answer I got was far more than I could ever have anticipated or expected. She sat down at my table.
“Hello girly, did you come to hear some pilot stories or something?”
“No, I didn’t I came here on business,” she said.
“Well what then? Normally people like you don’t wander into places like this unless they’re lost. You lost, or did you hear about Boomak’s famous beer?” I laughed hysterically at the joke I just made, not caring if she understood it or not.
“I’m here to see a man called Barshee, I have a job for him, if he’s up to it…Do you want to see it, or are you too busy chugging away your problems in this hell hole?”
“So my secrets out already. I was hoping to lay low for at least a couple more months, but sure I’ll see your offer, probably won’t accept it but I’ll at least look. I’ve been idle here for some time now.” Barshee says while at the same time pulling out one of the three cigarettes out from behind his ear. “Gotta kick this damn habit.” He lighted up the cig and inhales deeply.
“You should, it would be a shame to see a man with a reputation like yours to be killed in such a pathetic way. Anyways, here’s the job.” She passes a large envelope full to papers to him.
After I was done leafing through the papers I said, “Ya, sure I’ll do it, what’s it pay?”
“Seven and a half million creds, and you get to keep the ship we give you to use.”
“Sounds far enough, you got yourself a pilot. When do we leave?”
“Right now, you won’t need to pack any bags, not like you actually have anything to pack”
“You sure you got the right location?”
“Yea, positive, XM-437, that where were going, but if you aren’t up to the challenge, then I’ll just find a new pilot.”
“No need for a new pilot, I can handle it. But are you sure what you need picked up is in the center of the universe?”
“If you say so, but I hope you know what you’re getting yourself into. I can see why you’re willing to offer so much. By the way what’s your name?”
“My name’s Andrea, and I know very well what I’m getting in to.”
They Exited the Bar.
* * *
As he walked off of the wooden boardwalk and out onto the scoring sand he saw her, tall, long slender legs, blond, perfect. He walked up to her.
“Need someone to put tanning oil on you,” He said.
“Sure, that’d be great. Put it everywhere I tell you.” She pointed to left and right breasts, and down by her waist and added, “You can put it anywhere else you want to.” She giggled.
“You sure about that?” He Said.
“Oh yea, its fine go for it,” She said.
“Alright, if it’s what you want.” He squirted out the oil onto his palm and began to lightly massage it into her skin.
“What the heck do you think you’re doing boy?”
“I’m just putting some tanning oil on this girl, like she wanted me to, why? You got a problem?” He Said.
“Um, yea I do, that’s my girl and I think that you should be taught a lesson about touching another man’s girl. Hey Joey, Eject this punk.”
“Yea sure boss.” Joey said as he proceeded to pick up the “punk” and very rudely toss him at a nearby palm tree.
Virgil landed on his right arm outside the door of the VR chamber. “God, I hate people like that, it’s those kind of people with that kind of attitude that are ruining this galaxy for all of us.” He began to hold his arm and rub it now and then. “Well after that lovely foray I think that I’m gunna hit the pool cabana for some food and drink.”
* * *
Virgil sat by the pool, eating some toast and fruit, and slowly sipping the glass of alcohol that he held loosely in his hand, starring intently at the pool and the people around it. Then his gaze shifted up towards the huge wall-window giving those at the pool a clear view of space.
“Goddamn, wish I could go up there. I hate my dead end job, and just being the lonely drunk that watches all the happy people living their lives. Why the hell didn’t I become a pilot?”
A man and woman walked past the pool on their way to the docking bay, chatting about possible dangers and possible courses they can take to get to their destination. As they walk past the bar Virgil manages to pick up a few words of what is being discussed, enough to guess what they are and where they’re going. He sprints out of the bar with the bar-keep yelling something about not leaving any money.
“So you two are headed for the center of the universe to pick up a relic of some sort that your employer,” he pointed towards the woman, “needs for his collection or something to that extent. Am I right?”
“Who are you, and what the heck do you think your doing?”
“Oh, sorry. How forgetful of me, my names Virgil and I want to go into space with you.”
“Uh huh, and what makes you think we are going to take you along?”
“Not quite sure yet. What will it take?”
“I’d say 100,000 credits at least,” Said Barshee with a snicker.
“100,000 credits, do you think I’m stupid?”
“That remains to be seen.”
“How about 25,000 and I offer my skills as a programmer?”
“No deal, we don’t need a programmer. So just piss off, we got to leave soon.”
“Actually Barshee we may need him, might as well have him along. My names Andrea, and that is our pilot, Barshee.”
“Andrea, are you sure about this, he’s a civilian, and you don’t know him at all, he could try and screw us over somehow.”
“Positive, there still is some details to this mission that you don’t know yet, and he may come in handy. “
“Fine…you can come along. What was your name again?”
“Virgil, thank you for this, you won’t regret it.” Virgil said enthusiastically.
“Yea, sure whatever. Can we get going yet?”
“We should, we’re keeping the other members of our team waiting. Virgil come on, we’re leaving now.”
“Ok, but who exactly is the rest of our team?”
“You’ll see when we get there.”
“Come on fan boy, if you want to tag along with us you should at least keep pace with us.”
“Look, I’m coming whether you like it or not, so you might as well be nice about this.”
“I’m not a nice guy. Get used to it; we got a long flight ahead of us.”
“Come on you two, get a move on.” - Andrea
“Well at least I’m going into space. Even if I am unwanted by some of the members of “the team”, at least I will still be there.”
“Stop talking to yourself and walk.”
Chapter 2 – The Team
They arrived at the docking bay, and Andrea brought them up to, quite literally, the strangest ship in sight. “This, gentlemen, is our ship”
“What in god’s name did you call this? I thought I heard the word ship, but I musta been mistaken, I ain’t ever seen a ship like this one before”
“I’d have to agree with him on this one…”
“Think what you will, I guarantee this is the best ship either of you will ever see, even though it looks a tad awkward. Follow me inside, the crew is waiting” She passed through a very strange 8 shaped doorway into the belly of the ship, “Welcome to the Anderson Ross.”
“Hey Andrea welcome back!” said a very hairy, very brawny, bear-like fellow, “So which one of these is out pilot? I though you were just getting one person…now 2?”
“The one to my left would be Barshee, our pilot, and the one to my right is Virgil, he overheard us talking and begged to come along. He has computer skills that might be useful.”
“Ah well, welcome about fellas!” said the Bear as he patted them vigorously on the back, nearly knocking them down
“Guys, this would be Julian, but most of the time we just call him Brute.”
A door on the far side of the room opens and a man and woman walk in talking, completely oblivious to everyone else.
“Those are the other two members of our team, the man is Gabriel, and the woman is Eve. Gabriel is in charge of navigation and information, and Eve is out mechanic, and the finest one this side of Jupiter.”
“Hey welcome aboard” Gabriel and Eve say in unison.
‘My god...that woman is enchanting. Now I’m really glad I came on this trip,’ thought Virgil as he saw Eve. He gave a shy smile when she looked at him.
“Ok crew, let’s assemble in the conference room and discuss our mission, this way.” Andrea walks out the closest door on the left and leads the team down a couple well lit corridors and then reaches a door marked “Conference Room” they went inside.
The conference room was small, and basically void of furniture. It consisted of a table, and 6 chairs, all welded to the floor. There were a couple maps and charts on the wall, and a big wall screen. On the center of the table was a holo-projector, to make 3D maps.
“All right, we’re all here. Every member of the team now we need everyone to know what we are doing. Ladies and Gentlemen we are going to the Center of the universe, to the Black Hole XM-437, nicknamed Alpha. We are on a salvage mission to retrieve an item disclosed only to me. Any questions?” asked Andrea.
“Uhh yea, what exactly does our employer need with this un-named item? And uh, who are they?” asked Virgil quizzically.
“Your employer need not be named, just know he is rich and has a lot of power in the Allied Territories. And what he needs it for, well not even I know that much, he is trying to keep this operation as secret as possible.” Andrea responded somewhat coldly.
“Don’t mind her, she just has a big head because she’s the boss, hehe, just do your job and everything will be a-ok.” whispered Eve.
“All right, now that the briefing is over, all uncertainties clarified, it’s time to take off ladies and gentlemen. Barshee, I’ll guide you to the helm.” Decreed Andrea as she got up out of her seat and left the room. Barshee followed her out leaving the other 4 members of the team alone.
The helm was like being on the inside of a living creatures brain, with buttons and lights all over, receiving signals from loose hanging nerve-like wires. It was a tad unsettling to walk into such a place for the first time, it was more unsettling to sit down and have it meld to your form and have your body seem to dink into it. The more Barshee was here, the more he could swear the ship was alive, but that wouldn’t make any sense, so he consoled himself that he was just being apprehensive of the abnormal ship.
“Captain Barshee, welcome to the helm. I will sit with you for the first bit of the trip to teach you about the helms layout, what the buttons do, and the monitor readings mean. Most of it is similar to in a normal Terran fighter, but it’s got a few surprises.”
“Ahh well, thanks for the offer Andrea, but I prefer to find these things out on my own, just tell me if there is a self destruct button and where it is so I can avoid it completely.”
“There would be no button for that, but on this keypad,” she points to a keypad up and to his right, “if you were to dial 33284, that would trigger a 10 minute long destruct sequence, once that sequence is triggered, there is one way to stop it, which is a manual override in the ships core. Is this satisfactory?”
“Absolutely, I’ll be keeping that code in mind, just in case. Now let’s go!” Barshee looks around for a second and finds what seems to be the launch button, which it is. The ship shudders and all they can hear is a loud roaring noise for a good 5 seconds, then silence, an unnatural silence that lasts probably half a minute. Suddenly a loud explosion and the ship rushes forward at an alarming pace. “Whooo, this baby's got some kick to it. I’m definitely gunna like this ship.”
Yea, I am an aspiring teen writer, who hopes to be a very influential writer and be remembered once he's gone. My hero's are Tolkien, Niven, and Poe. They represent my 3 aspects of writing, Fantasy, Sci Fi, and Poetry. I hope you enjoy my book, and hopefully I will do chapter 3 soon =)