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Run Away


Jarx was enjoying the joyride in the new Duroxan battlecraft with his family. He had helped design this one. He wasn't wealthy by any means, but he did such great work on the design, it would have been criminal to not give him the first production model as thanks. Suddenly, Jarx was in command of a ship that he would barely be able to afford to make one payment on with the entire earnings of his lifetime. He was flying his Battleship. Granted, no weapons had been mounted outside of a simple sonic device to shatter asteroids and smaller planets.

Despite the ship having room for two thousand crew, it could easily be flown by two. Simplicity was a hallmark of the way Jarx designed.

"Now that we have home set, we can do this!" said Jarx.

His dream was the entire cosmos. He wanted to see other worlds. One of the side effects of the energy source they had discovered for his Deference Engine design, was a temporal hall effect that could throw you almost anywhere within the current cage of physics. He had tested this effect in smaller craft, and it was stunningly quick. You could float through thousands of random positions in the Universe, then immediately return home with a single press of one big silver button. He combined this feature with a temporal safety layer, that would send a ghost of your matter forward first, and ignore that position if you died (almost never happens. Maybe one time out of a billion you end up in a star. The Universe is very big). This allowed him to flip through billions of positions while checking for life. Life was what was exciting.

They blitzed through 15 billion positions, the system stopping them from becoming star fuel or embedded in planets a handful of times. Life was detected so they stopped. Life in this case was a form of mobile moss. He pressed the green 'Go' button again.

After a bit, they stopped over a beautiful blue world. His wife gasped. His children were excited. It was so much prettier than their green world. He had never seen them so happy. This is what he lived for.

"Let's scan!"

The signs of advanced civilization flooded the monitor. His family was getting even more excited. "Hold on! We need to make sure they don't have dangerous weaponry." he reminded. He did the weapons scan. It came back negative. They barely had nuclear weapons. He sighed. They were probably very docile. They either didn't care about anti-matter, or didn't have it. They had no Deference technology at all.

What they did have was spaceports! They had thousands of them! The spaceport map of the planet started showing up on the nav-globe, as the geographic features and meteorological patterns appeared. The Kyle system (also his design) started picking up their communications, and turning it into output. Moments later, Kyle got through their networks, and started passively extracting data.

"Let's let Kyle work, and rest." suggested Jarx. It was best to give Kyle as much time as you could, and it was well past bedtime for his kids.

They woke up, with the view of the beautiful planet coming through the filtered transparent ship-top. It was an amazing way to wake up. They had breakfast, while Kyle gave them its report.

"There are plants and atmosphere most similar to what you require near this spaceport. You will want samples. Their docking procedure requires you to come in to their spaceport very slow, wait for permission, then attach to one of their offloading mechanisms."

Kyle brought up a schematic, along with a map to the spaceport.

"Let's go!"

Their ship angled toward the planet, and easily slipped through their atmosphere, then under their lowest cloud layer, and lined up to dock at the spaceport. Kyle picked up what must be aligning rays from a large rotating dish, and started moving toward the gate closest to them.

They stopped short of the gate, and flashed their lights, attempting to signal their desire to land. It was a beautiful spaceport. So retro. In the language of these people it was called "O'Hare".

Their spacecraft were amazingly beautiful, clearly some homage to fuel burning...

He watched a 747 belch noxious fumes and waste incredible amounts of energy while barely achieving flight in a reasonable time.

"Oh." said Jarx. "This isn't a spaceport. Kyle, take us straight up and out of here."

They punched a cookie cutter round hole in the clouds as they left the Earth.


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