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Part of USS Centaur: Mission 4: Road Not Taken and Bravo Fleet: The Stormbreaker Campaign

Epilogue

USS Centaur / Hercules
March 2400
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The Centaur is on its way back to the Devron Fleet Yards at cruising speed. The life on board the vessel with merely fifty crew members, was pretty bleak. While most of the crew were going about performing routine maintenance, the four Ensigns were in the mess hall, Ruby and Mizu competing on who can chug the most synthahol. Seemed like a pointless competition where no one will get drunk, but suppose it is about who can hold the most liquid in their stomach.

Gomez and Gatia were down in the torpedo pod section, checking in on the secondary deflector dish. Analyzing the damage and marking the parts that were either completely gone or ones that could be easily repaired.

Maya and Koyda were in the security section, where they were debriefing the rest of their security staff about their encounters on board that strange vessel and the strange creatures that they had fought.

Ryker was on the bridge, sitting in the ‘Captain’s Chair’ while going on and on about his ancestry. Gomo sat at tactical trying to ignore him and Bazial sitting at her station with fingers in her ears.

Sucil was in her quarters trying to speak to Captain Maxwell about reassigning her to someplace else. Explaining that her mission here to keep an eye on Vakai was completed but the Captain does not yet think so and this was making her more frustrated than ever. On a ship this size, she had no office, no staff, she felt not only limited here but also unwanted.

As for Vakai and Sivol, they remained in their quarters together for the duration of the voyage back.

 

Meanwhile in the ‘other’ universe…

 

The Hercules just dropped out of hyperspace in the very star system where the Alpha Site was located. When they had finished crossing through the subspace rift, for some reason their communication systems had gone on the fritz and had been unable to contact Command or anyone else. With that being said, with their critical system inoperable, Colonel Ryker chose to head straight for the Alpha Site for repairs. But as soon as the ship had landed in the designated landing pad that had been constructed years ago at the Alpha Site, they were in for a surprise.

“Colonel, multiple beam-ins throughout the ship. Armed soldiers are seizing control!” Maddison reported. She then looked up from her station when three individuals were beamed in right at the front of the bridge, two armed soldiers with their weapons up and trained on Ryker’s crew.

Ryker stood up from his seat and looked directly at the base commander. “The hell is going on, Colonel Matthews?”

“In due time. Authentication code, now.” Matthews ordered.

“Delta-Zulu-Sierra-Niner.” Said Ryker.

Matthews exhaled heavily in relief then gestured his men to stand down before he grabbed his radio. “All teams. Stand down. I repeat, stand down.”

“Sir, we got Wraith prisoners in the holding cells.”

“Colonel?” Matthews looked at Ryker.

“Long story. The hell is going on?” Ryker asked once more.

“Long story.” Matthews looked about before he returned his gaze to Ryker. “We have been trying to contact you since you entered the system.”

“Comm systems are down.” Ryker reported.

“Thought as much but can never be too careful.” Said Matthews.

“Colonel, with all due respect. What the hell is all of this?” Maddison spoke up.

Matthews glared at her for a moment before returning his gaze back to Ryker. “The Russians declared war on Ukraine. They’ve been invading the country since you have been gone. But that’s not the worst of it. The Russians are targeting civilians. All Ukraine civilian offworld research sites have also been hit. No survivors.”

As Maddison covered her mouth, Ryker balled up his hands into fists before relaxing them. “Then what are our orders?”

“So far, NATO and the US have only been throwing heavy sanctions at them. But I’m not going to lie. It’s getting worse. Putin won’t talk to anyone, and anyone who establishes a ‘No Fly Zone’ are effectively combatants in their war. China has also joined them as allies. We have some Ukrainian survivors here from offworld sites that were hit, those that were able to escape through the Stargate. For a second there, when you entered the system and did not respond, we had feared that you were taken over by the Russians or the Chinese.” Said Matthews.

“Sir! A BC-304 just entered the system. Its IFF is Russian!” A Voice came from the radio.

“Damnit. Aside from Communications, is anything else damaged?” Matthews asked.

“No, Colonel.” Ryker told him.

Matthews then pulled out a communication device that was used by the Tok’ra and handed it to Ryker. “That will have to do for now. We need the Hercules ready to act as a deterrent to the Russian ship. They don’t have the same armaments as we do, not all of them anyway. So your ship will be superior to theirs. I can only hope that they will be smart enough not to engage.”

“And if they do engage?” Ryker asked.

“Then the Russians would have effectively brought the United States into this war. Then the President and our NATO allies will have no choice but to inform the world about the Stargate Program. Worse, our current space faring allies are threatening to dissolve the Alliance due to our internal conflict.” Said Matthews.

“Colonel, there’s something else.” Ryker stepped closer to the man. “I had a talk with one of the Wraiths in our holding cell. They finally divulged as to why their hive has refused to come to the negotiation table. They believe that there is a race out there that is far worse than the Wraith. Worse than the Ori. If they do come-”

“If they do come and we’re busy fighting amongst ourselves, then we’ll be nothing but easy pickings for whatever it is. Yeah. Terrific news, Colonel. Earth has been in worse situations before but this time…If what you say is true, I’m not even sure if we can pull a miracle out of this one.” Matthews sighed as he shook his head then brought up his radio. “All teams, depart.” He looked at Ryker. “Get the Hercules in orbit, Colonel. Evacuation to Earth should already be under way but if they choose to attack now…”

“Then we will have no choice but to defend the Alpha Site. Understood.” Said Ryker.

“Godspeed, Colonel.” Matthews told him before he spoke into his radio. Then he and his two guards were beamed off.

“Starting to wish we stayed in that universe.” Said Maddison.

Ryker looked at her, “You and me both.” He looked at his Pilot and Navigator. “Get us back in orbit. And prepare to defend the Alpha Site.”

  • Vakai

    Executive Officer