Portar, the Benzite scientist, emerged from the turbo lift. He quickly walked around the bridge looking over the shoulders of the on duty crewmen as he evaluated each of their efforts. He passed in front of Captain Dorra d’Hexplora before taking a seat beside her. He leaned towards her and said, “The experiment is ready. It’s time to begin, Captain. May we proceed?”
Golekna picked herself up from the floor at the foot of her command chair. The Scarran female was angry as she demanded, “What kind of treachery is this? Is it some kind of new peacekeeper weapon?” The dumbfounded expression of her crew told her all she needed to know. She stomped to a nearby console and shoved the Kalish that operated it out of the way. She tapped the controls. Another explosion rattled the ship and nearly knocked Golekna to the ground. It was nothing like the massive jolt they had experienced a few moments before.
“I do not know,” the Kalish replied as he got to his feet.
Golekna turned to the quivering little man and reached a hand out towards him. Heat radiated from it that drove the Kalish back down to his knees. “Find out!” she demanded, lowering her arm and allowing the puny humanoid with the red eyes to get back to work. She stomped across the bridge. “I’m waiting. Someone tell me what the frell just happened?”
“Weapons are offline. We’ve got hull breaches on all decks from section 30 to 65. Emergency bulk heads are holding, but our reactor was damaged. It’s going critical. We’ve got fifteen microns before the ship explodes. We must abandon ship.”
Golekna approached the coward that suggested that they run from the peacekeepers. She grabbed him and flung him across the room like a rag doll. He crashed hard against the wall and slumped to the ground. Before he realized what had happened, Golekna was upon him again. She snatched him up by the throat and sunk her long boney claws into the flesh of his neck as she looked him in the eye. “You Kalish are all the same – weak and pitiful. You’d rather run and hide than fight. You’re worthless little creatures.” Golekna snapped his neck and discarded the carcass. “Tell me what has happened here, or I’ll be glad to hasten your journey into the afterlife.”
“We’re being hailed, by the peacekeeper command carrier.”
“They’re probably going to gloat over their new weapon, but at least they will have answers. I want you to transmit the message back to the Emperor. He must know what the peacekeepers have done here today. Now put that Fekkik on the viewer.”
The image of Captain Molayne appeared on screen with his best poker face. “Scarran dreadnaught –“
Golekna interrupted him. “I demand to know what kind of weapon you used to attack my vessel. This is an act of war against the Scarran Empire. Your kind will be wiped from the face of the galaxy for your treachery.”
“If you are finished with your senseless threatening,”Molayne replied, annoyed. “Or would you like another demonstration of our newest weapon,” he lied. He had no idea what had happened, but its destructive power was evident. Even the Scarrans would be stupid enough to ask for another demonstration.
As the two captains spoke to one another, Scorpius entered the bridge. He walked from station to station, glancing at the data they had collected. With the information committed to memory, he moved on to the next workstation and the next. He was absorbing everything he could in order to determine what had happened. If he could figure it out, perhaps he could continue to demonstrate his value to Peacekeeper High Command.
“The Scarran Empire will not allow the peacekeepers to possess a weapon as powerful as this.” Another explosion, much closer this time, rumbled throughout the ship. Golekna held onto the console in front of her to keep from falling. She looked into the viewer with determination and hatred. “We will raise an army the likes that the galaxy had never seen. Mark my words.”
Scorpius approached Molayne and whispered in his ear. “If I may, Captain, I know what happened here.” Molayne agreed with a nod. He was eager to hear the Sabacean / Scarran hybrid’s theory.
“Golekna,” Scorpius replied shaking his head. “It’s good to see you again. I must apologize for stealing your Predator Fighter, but you understand that I needed to escape. However, that was some time ago, and this is a whole other matter. Did you really expect to enter Peacekeeper territory unchallenged?”
“Scorpius …” Golekna hissed. “If I had known that you were onboard the vessel, I would have opened fire the moment you came within our firing radius.”
“If you had, perhaps our roles would have been reversed. However, your delay was your down fall. Your foolishness created an opportunity for us to test my latest project.”
“Yours? You did this to the Scarran Empire?” Golekna released a deep growling laugh, “Your head will be presented to the Emperor for your treachery and the Sabacean race will be wiped from existence for aiding you.”
Scorpius grew angry, his voice shifted into a deep growl as he met the Scarran threat with one of his own. “Do not test the power of our wormhole weapons, or it will be the Scarran Empire that will be razed from the pages of history.”
Golekna recoiled from the words, just as another explosion ripped through the ship, only a few decks away. It was only a matter of microns now.
“I know that the Emperor is listening to this transmission. Let me send him a warning not to violate Peacekeeper space again, or we will not hesitate to use our formidable new wormhole weapon.” Scorpius turned his back to the viewer and walked away, leaving Golekna and Molayne both speechless and staring after him.
Before Molayne could order that the transmission be terminated, another explosion, this time on the bridge of the Scarran Dreadnaught, ended the transmission permanently. Molayne turned to Scorpius and demanded, “Frell, Scorpius. What have you committed us to?”
Scorpius strolled over to the large holographic table that displayed the anomaly and the final moments of the Scarran Dreadnaught’s life as it disintegrated in a series of slow explosions. “What we have here is a wormhole, Captain Molayne. These readings are too precisely organized to be anything other than artificially created. We have seen its destructive potential. Therefore, I believe what we have just witnessed was a wormhole weapon.”
“A wormhole weapon? No one can create a wormhole,” Molayne replied is disbelief. “Wormholes are more myth than reality, and you expect me to believe that someone just created one?”
“I believe the evidence is indisputable,” Scorpius replied. “Our sensors recorded a probe of some sort emerging from the wormhole a few microns after the wormhole appeared near the dreadnaught.”
“Who could have created such a weapon?”
“I do not know, but I believe we will meet them soon enough.”
“What makes you say that?”
“I believe the small craft that just emerged from the wormhole holds the answers we require. I suggest that you take the ship aboard and allow me to question them using the Aurora chair.”
“Very well, Scorpius,” Molayne replied. “You have my permission to proceed, but I want regular status reports.”
Scorpius nodded his acceptance of his orders and left the command center to greet his guests.