A short story/set of stories by XrayAlpha
A familiar sound echoes in the halls of the relative silence of the Boadicea. Still looking for a crew, Captain Xray picked up his morning coffee and bringing it to his lips smiled as he remembered why he was awake so early. Today was the day; today was the day that Calliope and Clio would align such that in a very specific spot on the northern hemisphere of Microtech a brilliant multi-colored flash could be observed as Stanton rose above the Microtech horizon. This phenomenon only happened once every few decades and today was one such day.
The corridors were eerie as Xray stepped out into the hallway, the lights deliberately kept at a low level. As the only crew member of the Carrack Xray was keen to conserve power where possible. After taking the elevator to the top deck, walking along to the corridor and stepping through the connecting door the command bridge systems began to activate, the holographic scanning suite hummed to life, the command deck lights brightened and the the MFD consoles sprung to life. Staring into the endless universe that stretched ahead of him Xray let out an audible sigh. While somewhat enjoying the solitude it had been a while since the last time he had seen civilization and the prepackaged ration food was started to become tiresome. What Xray longed for was a crew to share these voyages with. Stanton was all that he had known. The hunt for the jump gate was well under way but, as relatively small as the Stanton system was, the area to search was vast and, as of yet, fruitless.
Plotting a course for Microtech, Xray spun the ship by 180 degrees and engaged Quantum drive. Stepping away from the command console, Xray set out for engineering to complete a small repair that he had been putting off for several weeks. One of the power transfer coils had become worn and the 3D printer had fabricated a new one. Quantum travel would be a perfect time to undertake this repair as the power was mainly diverted to the quantum drive which would allow him to temporarily divert power from the sub-light engines, isolate the coil and safely perform the repairs. The repairs went flawlessly; Xray smiled as his newly fabricated coil slotted into place. The power was transferred successfully back to the coil which could then offload the power to where it was required. The quantum drive shifted to a lower tone and checking his omni-glass Xray saw the ship was about to complete the quantum travel and so packing his tools away he made his way back to the bridge.
Microtech came into view and became ever larger as the ship continued to quantum travel to its destination. Xray stumbled as the ship dropped out of quantum travel. "I must check the inertial dampeners on the bridge" he thought, once more wishing he had a crew that could help him with the upkeep of such a ship as the Carrack. Setting course for the ideal viewing spot, Xray engaged full power and continued his journey. About 1000m above the ground the landing gear was lowered into place with confirmation from the MFD that everything was nominal Xray began to lower the ship to the flat ground that he had chosen.
"WARNING: Low Power" the system blared its warning and before Xray could react the ship lost all power, plunged the bridge into darkness and suddenly the ship was falling. As the landing gear crumpled under the weight of the uncontrolled landing Xray was thrown into the air, landing in a crumpled heap on the floor of the command deck. After taking a few seconds coming to terms with what just happened Xray grabbed onto the railing in the upper bridge and pulled himself to his feet. Stanton had not yet rose above the horizon and so, still in darkness Xray carefully made his way across the bridge towards the door of the upper deck. Suddenly a dim light lit the door ahead of him, coming from one of the MFD's that was, up until now, in complete darkness. It was the command console.
Making his way back toward the command console the light seemed to be pulsing. Looking closer at the display in front of him all he could see was a symbol that appeared to fade in and out; a symbol he had never seen before
Confused, Xray made his way back to the doors that separated the bridge from the hallway. As he walked toward the bridge doors he noted that the system should open automatically...but nothing. "Okay well the power is obviously not working so lets try manually openi..." again... nothing. 'Well that is very odd' thought Xray. Remembering that he took the internal elevator to the bridge rather than the bridge elevator from the lower bridge he knew he'd be able to lower himself to the lower bridge and maybe get more luck from there. Once in the lower bridge Xray slid into the main pilot seat and began to see if he could access the ships systems in any way. Getting more frustrated every press or flick of a switch did nothing. "WHY WON'T YOU WORK..." Xray said out loud frustrated at his new found helplessness. A sharp and shrill screech rang out through the ship. Suddenly all the MFD's came to life and the same ten sets of symbols appeared across all the MFD's one set at a time.
With no way of noting it down in the system Xray resorted to the only thing to hand. A scrap of a journal he had been writing and a pressurized pen. Noting down all of the symbols Xray pulled away to assess what he was seeing, very quickly putting his head in his hands.
Where do i start...