The rhythmic thump of the warp core at idle was comforting to Marcus. He never wanted to leave engineering and over the course of his forty years of serving the Empire he had made the Empire’s flagship. When the Empress had been deposed and fled it was never a question to leave this battleship. It was his home, and it was one of the most powerful warships in the galaxy… no matter what reality they found themselves in.
And that was where they found themselves. Crossing from one reality to the next, with the Empress looking to regain that status that had been stolen from her. It was one reality that they came across a two-bit despot who ruled Earth. In so many way that reality was the stone age compared to where they had come from, but Bellator had fallen in love with Emperor Dominus and for every bit that he was brutal and cruel he was smart. Marcus hated to admit it, but he learned fast.
And it was in Dominus’ original reality that they found the artifact in front of them. Nothing remarkable about it. Just a charred hunk of hull with two block letters painted on its grey surface in black. “ZE”. Not much could be figured out about it, but it wasn’t that chunk of hull that was interesting. From the wreckage they had been able to salvage the backup computer core. Most of the data was corrupted. An anti-matter explosion often did that to computer memory, but Marcus had been successful in reconstructing some of the data. It appeared that that component belonged to a ship known as the USS Zebulon Pike.
It would seem that the Pike was some sort of a scout ship from an organization known and the United Federation of Planets. This Federation was every bit as powerful as the Terran Empire that he came from, but that was where the similarities ended. How it hadn’t fallen under its own weakness is anyone’s guess, yet somehow it flourished.
The doors to engineering swished open and Bellitor entered, “Marcus what have you found?”
“Using the wreckage from the Sitek and comparing the quantum signature with that of the Pike… Yes mistress, the two vessels are from the same reality.”
“Excellent work Marcus,” Bellitor responded. “Have you reconstructed any of the logs?”
“It’s a slow process mistress,” he said expecting the worse, though, Bellitor wasn’t known to fly off the handle. “Of the recoverable data that logs are the most damaged. I was able to reconstruct some of the captain’s last log entry, and should have the XO’s by tomorrow… maybe tonight.”
Marcus led Bellitor to a monitor. Entering command the image of a man wearing an odd uniform, even for this reality. The image was grainy and there were plenty of artifacts in the image. “…. a plan… the down… is that we… sacrifice the …lon Pike to get home… self-destruct…” The video playback abruptly ended.
“Well,” Bellitor said with a sigh. “That explains it.”
“It does?” Marcus asked confused.
She smiled, “Explains why a ship that seemed so much more advanced than the rest the ships humans had was there. It didn’t belong and I it was an accident that it was in that reality. Now I know we can escape if we have to. Good work Mr. Washington.”
“Thank you mistress.”