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Adventure Science Fiction Mystery

CONFIDENTIAL PROPERTY OF UNITED GALACTIC MILITARY INTELLIGENCE AGENCY – NONDISCLOSURE ORDER IN EFFECT, LEVEL 2A; PERMANENT SEAL BY JUDICIAL ORDER OF UGMI

DISCLOSURE OF FOLLOWING RECORDS UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE SUBJECT TO CRIMINAL OFFENSE CHARGE; FELONY OFFENSE LEVEL = DEATH PENALTY

CERTAIN INFORMATION HAS BEEN REDACTED FROM OFFICIAL RECORDS IN INTEREST OF PUBLIC INTERSTELLAR SAFETY.


REYVANNES, G. AUDIO LOG #01718

[TRANSMISSION DATE: 29-04-3120, 00:12]

« Captain’s Log – day one thousand four hundred eighty…three? Huh, amazing its been that long and I still haven’t grown tired of using ‘captain’. Certainly have grown tired of chasing this fucking rock around the galaxy, but enjoying the benefits of captain status hasn’t ceased yet. Guess you have to enjoy the little things while you have them. »

« Anyway, the ship remains functional, we remain located in Alpha-4 galaxy. All systems are online with exception to the communications transmission – error reads ‘no signal’. Which makes sense for the error, but none whatsoever exists for me to record this log...[WELLNESS-]wha..? »

« Well, BE has just kindly reminded me that my mental health is an important component to mission completion. Seems another malfunction to this artificial intelligence software is the failure to recognize the irony in talking to one’s self as a sign of mental disorder…I mean, come on now, you all knew I was going to be out here for a while – you could have at least programmed her with a few jokes to pass the time with. »

« I take that back – BE knows knock-knock jokes. Stupendous. »

[[LOG MASTER NOTE: TRANSMISSION TEAM ANALYSIS HAS DETERMINED THE ABOVE STATEMENT IS SARCASM AND NOT ACTUAL PRAISE]] 

« Rations supply are in full stock – although I loathe the fact the ‘cheesy-mac’ flavored goop is still present, despite my best efforts. Fuel gauges indicate that a hydrogen restock is needed so I am steering BE to the next cloud, which is roughly five to six hours out. We will then head to our destination planet SX-80r. According to my calculations our target [REDACTED] will be passing by SX-80r in 36.5 hours – plenty of time to refuel the ship for the quantum jump to Sigma-X, during which I will take a nap. I can barely withstand hyper-speed – warp speed will surely kill me and would rather not risk being conscious for that… »

«Over and out…hehe, that’s still fun too, BE! »

[END TRANSMISSION]


REYVANNES G. AUDIO LOG #01719 RECORD DATE

[TRANSMISSION DATE : 30-04-3120, 02 :48]

« Captain’s Log – day one thousand four hundred and eighty…four? Oui, yes, eighty-four. Still not tired of being captain yet! Especially not on board of such a capable and attractive vessel…[MANUFACTER NOTICE: ANY ATTEMPTS TO-] »

« BE felt it should be known that any technical or physical tampering with FGC systems is strictly prohibited and punishable by galactic law – she’s got a dirty mind, that one… I’ll have you know, BE, that my hand and I remain happily committed to each other, thank you very much »

« …now that I am living with the mortification of my…self-relief habits being transmitted back to FGC, I will continue with what was supposed to be transmitted; hydrogen fuel stores have been replenished and we have safely completed the quantum leap. While I slept like the dead…and only slept, nothing else… »

[[LOG MASTER NOTE: QUALITY ASSURANCE DIVISION HAS CONFIRMED TRANSMISSION TEAM REQUEST TO DEEP CLEAN AND SANITIZE RECOVERED VESSEL #2038894]]

« We have safely arrived within the confines of Sigma-X, where this [REDACTED] is due to make its passage. As I record this, BE is completing the lifeform scan of the planetary cluster that [REDACTED] will come closest to. When she is finished, I intend to disembark on the target planet SX-80r and will sur…[SYSTEM ERROR-]vey…what?...[COORDINATE-] »

« …I am reminded of a time, in this moment, where one of my many mentors had instructed me to find the silver lining in the cloudiest times of life. The only immediate ‘silver-lining’ that comes to mind in this situation is that I get to use another phrase associated with space travel, and that’s…well… Houston, we have a problem…[ID CODE: HOUSTON – NOT RECOGNIZED] »

« I swear if BE were a human, I would resign to be a murderer…»

« We have a minor hiccup in our plans; somewhere during the quantum leap process, the coordinate positioning software on the ship malfunctioned. BE is unable to identify exactly where we are, just that there are two planets in front of us…and out of those 2 planets, only one of them is habitable to humans…and she can’t seen to tell me which one it is. The only thing BE is certain of is that we are in Sigma-X somewhere… »

« I cannot say I didn’t see this coming – we are lightyears away from our solar system, in an area that has not been ravaged by human greed. Forgive me, if I sound a little harsh right now, but I almost seemed to have forgotten that BE’s limitations are also the limitations of PEA-BRAINED- »

« …Lost my temper for a moment. I’m fine…getting to my point, there is a way around it although it’s risky. Looking out the viewing window to my right, judging by looks alone, seems to be the planet which is sustainable to human life. As we unfortunately discovered last time, the portal transport from ship to planet has some disarray between drop coordinates, if the planet does not similarly resemble Earth close enough. Never again would I like to experience quicksand so intimately. I do not blame BE or the technology for this, however…just the species that created this problematic oversight… »

« It’s a massive risk – but I can force a recalibration of the positioning system by portal-dropping to the planet. From there, I can determine our precise location within Sigma-X and what planet I end up on…if I survive… »

« You would think after nearly dying so many times, it gets easier to face the prospect of such risky moves. It doesn’t. I suppose that is just another silver lining – if I still fear death after all this time, I still have a will to live, which means there is hope for me yet after all this is over… »

« This may be my last transmission…Before I go, I will set BE to depart after 72 hours of no communication from my summoning device – as contractually obligated by FGC for lawful return of property…because heavens forbid my corpse is accused of theft… »

« …If this makes it back, could someone tell – no, no never mind. It does not matter… »

« Over and out »

[END TRANSMISSION]


REYVANNES G. AUDIO LOG RECORD #01720

[TRANSMISSION DATE : 30-04-3120, 05 :55]

« Gooooooooood morning, Vietnam! This is your Captain Ahab speaking, and we have just found our bloody White Whale! WOO! »

« For those in the back that didn’t hear me – we have officially confirmed existence and location of [REDACTED] – and about damn time, too! »

« It’s a bit of a long story from where we last left off…but let’s just say I went for a swim, and then on a joy ride. I would love to go into more detail, but we are hopping from the frying pan and into the fire, folks. Phase two of [REDACTED] is now in effect. »

« BE is clocking the speed of this monster at 28 kilometers per second, but I am primed and positioned for a landing with [REDACTED] less than 150 miles out from the ship’s position. I am going to fly a few degrees to the right of [REDACTED]] and because I know you all just LOVE the drama, I’ll switch on the auto-dictation software – she’s a bit dry but BE is really a songbird when you’ve got nothing else to listen to! »

«Less than 70 miles now…let’s see if we can cheat death twice in a day…»

[AUTO DICTATION MODE ACTIVATED – ALL SYSTEMS FUNCTIONAL]

[WARNING, RADAR SYSTEMS DETECT INCOMING 480-METER OBJECT APPROACHING AT LESS THAN 30 KM/S]

[MANUAL THROTTLE INCREASE TO 21 KM/S; PITCH GRADE INCREASE 15 DEGREES]

[WARNING, INCOMING OBJECT APPROACHING. CURRENT TRAJECTORY ESTIMATED IMPACT IN 5 KM]

[MANUAL THROTTLE INCREASE TO 22 KM/S; PITCH GRADE INCREASE 45 DEGREES]

[WARNING, INCOMING OBJECT. CURRENT TRAJECTORY IMPACT IN 2.5 KM]

[WARNING, PITCH GRADE INCREASE BEYOND 60 DEGREES. ENGINE STABILIZERS COMPROMISED]

[WARNING, INCOMING OBJECT. CURRENT TRAJECTORY IMPACT IN LESS THAN 1 KM]

[MANUAL LANDING GEAR DEPLOYMENT. EMERGENCY BRAKING SYSTEM ENGAGED]

[WARNING, SYSTEM FAILURE – GRAVITATIONAL STABILIZERS DISABLED]

[ENGINE MANUAL OVERRIDE ENGAGED. EMERGENCY BRAKING SYSTEM ENGAGED]

[WARNING, INCOMING OBJECT. IMPACT IMMINENT]

[WARNING]

[WARNING]

[WARNING]

[WARNING]

[WARNING]

[WARNING]

[WARNING]

[WARNING]

[WARNING]

[…]

[[SYSTEM FORCE-STOP]] [END TRANSMISSION]


REYVANNES G. AUDIO LOG RECORD #01721

[TRANSMISSION DATE : 30-04-3120, 10 :34 ]

« …ugh… [SCAN COMPLETE-HEAD INJURY SUSTAINED-] …I’m alive? »

« Well…as it happens, we have more-or-less successfully landed on [REDACTED]. The success being that I am alive and BE remains in one piece, if not for some wear and tear on us both. The engines remain offline, likely a result of the gravitational stabilizing system remaining disabled – which means we’ll be cruising the [REDACTED] for some time until I can fix it. Meanwhile, it seems I may be growing a horn out of my forehead – a gift from the control panel that keeps on giving. »

« BE is measuring the surface temperature for [REDACTED] as two-point-four Kelvin, a remarkable point three difference from standard space temperature…it’s a miracle that the landing gears stuck to this hunk of ice instead of sliding off… »

« I’ll work on the ship system diagnostics for as long as I can – I’ve got a nasty headache and though I am sleepy, nurse BE is here insisting I stay awake lest I have a brain hemorrhage. To keep me occupied, I’ll send out one of the exploration rovers to get a layout of the terrain. »

« Commence day one of Project [REDACTED] »

[END TRANSMISSION]


REYVANNES G. AUDIO LOG RECORD #01722

[TRANSMISSION DATE : 01-05-3120, 15 :48 ]

« Captain’s Log, day two of Project [REDACTED]. Although I have barely slept, thanks to BE’s constant nettling…at least my headache has subsided a bit… »

« We sent out the exploration rover last night to get some more information on [REDACTED]. According to the data it’s sending back, it has already picked up high levels of carbon, mercury, iron, and aluminum, peppered all over this rock – as we expected »

« Here’s something unexpected though…well, two things really. The first is that it picked up traces of unknown biological substance. They were small enough amounts that both the rover or BE could not identify what it was. My guess is that [REDACTED] probably obliterated smaller asteroids, moons, or even planets, on its tyrannical warpath through the universe, and those are remnants of the collision. Nevertheless, the rover collected the samples for further analysis when BE and I make our return to Earth »

« The second unusual thing – during the rover’s exploration, it appeared to become obstructed by something. The radar suggests it was about five to six meters wide and cylindrical in shape. Since this rover model is without camera function I was not able to see it. But it was cylindrical in shape – likely a high-walled crater from something else smashing into [REDACTED], but still worth checking out with the other rover… »

«…I think I’ll give them names! Wouldn’t that be fun, BE? [ERROR: FUNCTION NOT SUPPORTED]…of course you don’t support fun as a function. All work and no play… »

[END TRANSMISSION]


REYVANNES G. AUDIO LOG RECORD #01723

[TRANSMISSION DATE : 02-05-3120, 08 :01 ]

« Captain’s Log, day three – I think – of Project [REDACTED]. Rover one, also known as Molly, has returned from her travels and we are going to send out Dolly soon to take a better look at things on [REDACTED] – that’s Rover two, for all you slow-pokes that have a hard time keeping up. »

« On another note, BE has kindly reminded me that I have reached another year in age on Earth and graced me with her rendition of ‘Happy Birthday’, along with a count on how many tubes of cake-flavored rations paste we have left. Although I am not sure how accurate her time keeping is, given all the system resets and multitudes of galaxies we have traversed in time. »

« But, on the off-chance she is correct, that means on Earth it is the fourteenth of May, year two-thousand and fifty-two…and I am thirty-six years old. »

[[LOG MASTER NOTE: TRANSMISSION TEAM ANALYSIS HAS CONCLUDED, WITH CONFISCATED RECORDS, SUBJECT #06 OBSERVATIONS WERE LIKELY CORRECT AT SOME POINT]]

« Now, those cake paste rations are nothing to be excited for, but I appreciate the sentiment. The thing to really be excited about are these strange samples that Molly brought back for us. It’s a gelatinous looking cube, silver in color. Impressive that it wasn’t completely frozen over given [REDACTED]’s habitat. Definitely requires further study…I hope to bring Dolly back to the spot where it was found today so that we can get a better look around. BE’s windows have completely frosted over, cant see a damned thing…like my ex without his glasses…heh »

« …I remember my last birthday on Earth. Gerard tried to bake a cake for me that night – he’s a horrible cook, and an even worse baker. He ended up nearly burning down the loft. Poor Gerard was more upset about it than I was…although looking back, I now realize his anguish may have been for different reasons entirely…I wish I could have seen the signs that he wasn’t happy sooner…»

« I think I’ll have some of that cake paste now… »

[END TRANSMISSION]


REYVANNES G. AUDIO LOG RECORD #01724

[TRANSMISSION DATE : 02-05-3120, 12 :24 ]

« I am done wallowing in self-pity and Dolly has been deployed! At first glance, it’s a lot like looking a the lunar surface of Earth’s moon – the exception being the clouds of frost emitting from within the [REDACTED]. It’s impressive, really – you would think [REDACTED] is made of nothing but ice… »

« In fact, I am willing to bet one of these chimney stacks is what Molly was stuck on the other day…its worth getting a closer look…standby for video-data collection… »

«…»

«…my god, is that?...no, it can’t be… »

[END TRANSMISSION]


REYVANNES G. AUDIO LOG RECORD #01725

[TRANSMISSION DATE : 03-05-3120, 16 :48 ]

« …you all lied. [REDACTED] is not a comet – its [REDACTED] »

«…and now they’ve found me… »

[END TRANSMISSION]


[[FINAL AUDIO LOG RECEIVED FROM SUBJECT#06, ALIAS G. REYVANNES, TO ‘FRENCH GALACTIC CONSULATE’, ALIAS FGC (STATUS: DISBANDED)]]


[[RECOVERED VESSEL #2038894 - IDENTIFIED AS ‘FGC SPACECRAFT #128', ALIASES ‘BONNE ETOILE’ AND/OR ‘BE’, QUARANTINED FOR INSPECTION]]


[[SUBJECT #06 WHEREABOUTS: UNKNOWN]]

[[REDACTED SUBJECT WHEREABOUTS: UNKNOWN]]


[[END RECORDS]]

April 26, 2024 23:18

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10 comments

20:44 Apr 30, 2024

Wow, how creative and expertly executed! Loved it! Was gripped from the beginning.

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21:14 Apr 30, 2024

Thank you for reading, Melissa!

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Alexis Araneta
13:51 Apr 27, 2024

Natalie !!! Such a creatively written piece. The format is so fresh. Great world building too. Splendid work !

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15:14 Apr 27, 2024

Thank you Stella!! I had a lot of fun writing this one 😁

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William Smith
22:52 May 04, 2024

Oooh I wanna know what it is! Suspenseful. I like the reveal of why the main character calls it BE at the end, and the use of the notes to explain things that the protagonist doesn't talk about.

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02:19 May 05, 2024

Haha, thank you William! Hopefully there will be a prompt in the near future where I get to explain what our character found ;)

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Sherri Moorer
15:13 May 02, 2024

Excellent story. Glad to see that somebody else took a futuristic approach to this prompt. Well done!

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15:26 May 02, 2024

Thank you for reading Sherri! I am glad you enjoyed it

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Kristi Gott
05:49 Apr 29, 2024

I was feeling engaged in the story and curious to see what was next as I journeyed along with the main character! Very immersive. Creative and unique. Well done!

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16:42 Apr 29, 2024

Thank you for reading, Kristi! I'm glad you enjoyed it

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RBE | Illustration — We made a writing app for you | 2023-02

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