Month : May
Year : 2807
Day : 18
Location : The WorldFleet, Headed Into Space.
The WorldFleet Express began its movement into space. Due to the amount of propulsion engines it had, it was no problem for it to tear through the atmosphere to gain entrance into space. No sooner had they entered the orbital atmosphere than a ray hit them. Everyone who were just assuming their duty posts after stabilization were shaken. Everyone was thrown here and there.
“What just happened?”, asked the captain.
“I’m checking my logs and radar, sir”, replied Hank, an Indian, who was in charge of Satellite and Radar. In less than five minutes, he seemed to have identified what happened.
“Sir, we were just hit by an enemy ray, a type as that first discovered by the doctor”
“What’s the ship’s status report?”, he further probed
“Our shield’s at 95% sir. It was targeted at one of our reactors but it missed as we we’re not fully in their orbital path, sir”
“Can you get a clear view of where their ship’s located?”
“Yes sir. They’re just a few miles away sir, and they brought only one ship”
“One ship?”, inquired the captain, confused
Hank pressed a few screens here and there, then nodded his head to confirm what the captain asked. Habeeb turned to Doubois, the Cameroonian in charge of travels and jumps.
“Doubois, plot a course to take us out of the path of the enemy”
At this point, the co-captain of the ship, James (American), interjected
“Captain, why do we need to get out of here? We have the firepower to conquer this ship. We conquer it and take it for ourselves. We might even learn a thing or two from the ship”
“No, Jim, not at all”, Habeeb began, “this is all some sick trick they’re trying to play on us. They can’t have only one ship. Not possible at all. They’re trying to lure us into a trap”
“What if they’ve got only one ship?”, blasted the co-captain
“They don’t”, Habeeb replied
“And how do you know that?”, he retorted
Habeeb didn’t reply this last question. He had no time for people like this.
“Sir”, Hank panicked, “we have another ray coming towards us”
He spun instantly and turned to Doubois
“Doubois, do you have a path planned?”
“Yes sir”, Doubois started, “one goes north and the other south”
“Which planet’s north and which is south?”, asked the captain
“Venus to the North, Mars to the south sir”
“Hank, check the conditions of Venus for me”
Hank keyed in some commands and a bright display of the planet Venus came on
“Sir, its not safe right now. Venus us experiencing one of its violent storms right now. Taking the ship near that might corrupt all our nuclear power and disrupt the electricity to the ship. That spells doom for us”
“So you mean we either risk losing the ship in Venus or going towards Mars and getting attacked?”
“Yes sir. That’s what I’m saying”
The captain was in a tight place here. Both ways, they were going to get into trouble.
“Sir. Its gonna hit us in thirty seconds”, cried Hank.
The captain still said nothing. All eyes were on him.
“Aren’t you gonna decide something”, asked Jim, furiously.
Habeeb shot him a scornful look.
“Twenty seconds, sir”, announced Hank.
“Hank, Stop!”, protested the captain, “you’re not letting me think here”
Tick-Tock. Tick-Tock. Tick-Tock.
The time seemed to be moving slowly. There were two deadly choices here. The ship would be badly damaged in Venus. They couldn’t stay here around Earth’s atmosphere as they would be attacked continuously by this lone ship, and traveling into Mars might just be a trap.
“Sir”, shouted Doubois, “there’s a meteor belt around Mars right now. I can set co-ordinates for the area. We’ll be a little safe behind the belt. It’ll conceal us for a little while”
“What’s the downside?”, asked the Captain
“Well, we could get hit by meteors, but I trust that with your navigation skills, you should be able to get us out”
“Ten seconds”, shouted an impatient Hank
“Doubois, set course for the meteor belt right now”
Doubois started to enter the co-ordinates.
9.. 8.. 7.. 6.. 5
There was a click sound and the jump reactors sprung to life.
The ship managed to jump just in time to escape the full impact of the ray. It just grazed the ship’s mast, reducing its shield by about one percent. Captain Habeeb looked back just to see that the ray had hit earth. He blamed himself. He should have ordered it to be defused with a shot from their own ship before the jump. He had made a tough call, and a mistake too, and he promised himself he wasn’t going to make such anymore.
He held on to the rails for support as the jump occurred. In about fifteen seconds, they arrived in a region of multiple rocks floating around haphazardly. Beyond the rocks could be seen the real battleground, the one they were reluctant to come to but have found themselves in by a silly twist of fate and threat of life. They were in MARS.
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