“We are approaching the Sol System,” the Pikes’s navigator announced.
“Slow to impulse,” Ethan ordered.
The Zebulon Pike dropped out of high warp not far from the azure ball of Neptune. The cloak had been taxing their systems, and it had taken them nearly two weeks to reach Earth. But, there was something about Sukitha that told Ethan that she wasn’t one to give up so easily. He just hope his story was convincing enough.
Standing up from the center chair he walked over to his first officer who was manning operations at the moment. “Any indication of Starfleet?”
Jolie nodded but the look on her face was not that of joy but of confusion mixed with dread. “I have found what we are looking for but,” she paused as she looked at Ethan. She then brought up the closest ship and it was an NX class. “It appears that we have a serious problem.”
“NX class?” Ethan replied unable to fully comprehend the situation. “That doesn’t make any sense.”
“You’re telling me,” Jolie said as she looked at Ethan, “It’s like Earth is just starting out. Also, the ship’s composition is that of our first ships.”
She brought up a freighter and shook her head. She then scanned the moon, “Ethan, the Lunar colony,” she paused as she brought it up on the viewscreen, “It’s…it’s… not there,” she stated as the Pike flew over the area that should have held a healthy population.
“How does this make any sense? ” Ethan said completely confused. “How are Romulans more advanced than us, yet humans are 250 years behind us? I know there is a Sukitha in our timeline, and there’s another Romulan on that bridge that my mom saved during the Dominion war.”
“Ethan, we need to find out what is the missing piece that will get us back to our timeline,” Joile stated in a flat tone, a tone that Ethan hadn’t ever heard come from her.
He nodded, “I couldn’t agree more. What do you suggest?”
“Recon, and find out what is going on and if the Federation has been established or if the United Earth Commonwealth is in place. I can only hope that it is the Federation and not the UEC as that would mean that Andoria, Vulcan, and Tellar Prime have not been contacted to establish the Federation and its principle,” she stated as she stood there in front of the operations console.
“We can start with that NX-class ship,” Ethan observed. “Since they are human, and this isn’t our reality I think the Prime Directive doesn’t fully apply here. Or do you suggest we beam down to Earth and pretend to be a local?”
“I think beaming onto the NX-class would be too risky as most of the crew would have known each other for some time. So to take a less risky course of action would be to beam down to Earth as local citizens and maybe even Starfleet personnel to see what is going on. I am sure that being Starfleet personnel might be a little riskier but it should give us more on what is going on,” Jolie says as she looks from Ethan to Adam. “What do you think Mister Stephens?”
“Beaming down in uniform is a bad idea for sure. Especially if we don’t even know for sure what uniform they are wearing. We should beam down in civies and try to hit a remote section of a bigger city at first and then explore from there.”
“I agree. We should beam down as civilians. I think in a uniform is too risky at the moment. So I guess the next question is where? San Francisco or Paris?” Ethan asked.
“I think San Francisco is going to be our best bet personally.” Adam chips in.
“San Fran it is,” Ethan quipped.
The air was crisp in cold as the Bay Area often was in the morning. The fog had settled in on the area, as it usually did and the sun had yet to burn it off. Aimee Sandoval paused at the ringing of a device in the pocket of her tan pea coat. Sighing she dug into her coat one-handed as the other had was occupied by a Starbucks cup.
“Sandoval,” she replied into the device. There was a pause as she listened to the voice on the other end of the line. “I understand Doctor, but those bones indicate a significant evolutionary leap in hadrosaur development. The apparent shrinking of the skeletal structure to roughly two meters and a more upright posture indicates a more humanoid development in their movements… No, the evidence of stone tools is not a coincidence… No Doctor Armstrong, fossilization doesn’t work that way, and we have never found any evidence of hominid activity in the Cretaceous Period… That’s exactly what I’m saying… That and in conjunction of development of opposable digits I believe hadrosaurus did in fact evolve to become the first intelligent species on Earth.”
As Sandoval continued to speak in the device a man dressed in a solid grey uniform, except for a red shirt, came around the corner. His piercing blue eyes looked directly at her.
“Excuse me, ma’am,” he said as he came to stop next to her, “Are you, Doctor Sandoval?” He asked her.
“Hang on Doctor Armstrong,” Aimee announced. She looked the strange man over with her own green eyes, “PhD yes. What can I do for you?”