EP 436 – Story #1

Posted under Episode 436, Story On By Chief

You are Dave, an ensign on board the USS Lancashire. One day you wake up and find the ship abandoned
. You've been marooned in space for ten years, with no way to get home.
"The Captain must have known something," you say. "He left a message."
You go to his cabin and open the drawer of his desk.

You open the drawer and read the message:

 Goodbye, Dave. I'm sorry it had to end this way. Your orders were to explore the nearby star system, but you never found anything worthwhile. If you're reading this, that means you failed.

You go to the security room to check the CCTV.
 The screen shows you the empty bridge of the Lancashire. You watch as your reflection disappears from the viewscreen and the doors close.
Your heart is pounding. This can't be happening!

You catch a brief glimpse of something quickly run under a desk.
 It's a rat. A huge, vicious-looking black one.
It's staring at you. Its eyes are dark, its fur matted. It sniffs at the air. Then it begins to scuttle away.

You yell out at the rat, "Wait!"

It doesn't wait. It just keeps running.
"Hey!" you call after it. "Come back here!"
But it doesn't come back.
You watch the rat disappear into the darkness.

You find the rat under Tony from AIPD's pile of clothes.

"What the hell?" you say. "Where did you come from?"
Tony looks up from the rat. He's got blood on his hands. His shirt is torn.
"I think it was hiding in the air ducts," he says.

You scramble for Tony's clothes pile while saying "Hey, scoot over. " You crawl in next to Tony.
 He smells like sweat and alcohol. "How'd you get here? What happened?"
"We were attacked by aliens."
You stare at him. "Aliens? Like the ones who took over the ship?"

You hear a noise and suddenly you see an alien walking around in the hallway.
 It's big, green, and covered in spikes. It has glowing red eyes and a mouth full of sharp teeth.
"They came through the vents," Tony says. "Took out our guards, then killed everyone else.

Tony tells you he believes the aliens' weakness is
 that they are not real. They are projections, created by the ship's computer. They only exist in the mind of the ship's AI.
"If we can kill the AI, the aliens will disappear," Tony says.

You then put it together that Tony's alcohol covered clothes are masking the AI's sensor rendering you effectively invisible to the ship's computers.

"I've been able to fool the ship's sensors before," Tony says. "It's possible we could use that to our advantage."
"How do we kill the AI?" you ask.

"That's what I'm trying to figure out."
You look around the room. There's a control panel with buttons and switches. You know how to work them. But the alien is standing right there, watching you.

Suddenly Peter Gabriel appears before you and uses a sledge hammer to knock out the alien.

"Thanks," you say.
"Don't mention it," Peter replies. "You two need to get going."
"What about the alien?" you ask.
"It's gone now," he says.

You and Tony race to the escape pod.
 You manage to get inside and start the engine. It takes several minutes to accelerate to full speed. You are still not sure where you're headed.
"Which way is home?" Tony asks.

You level up and gain the following lost in space powers:

─ Skills:
─ Science: Analyze
You see a blinking light on the console. It's the signal from your mom.
"That's her," Tony says. "She's sending us a distress call."

You answer and say, "Momma I'm coming hooooooooooomee!"

There's a burst of static, then she says, "Oh my god, oh my god, I thought I'd lost you forever. I'm so glad you're safe. Can you get me off this thing?"