Disclaimer: I don’t own Battlestar Galactica. The story is based on the original BSG.
by AJ Marks
Apollo flew his viper towards the system hoping the patrol might find something the fleet could use. The last few systems they had come across had been completely barren. Nothing had been usable at all which caused some concern with Adama.
“Apollo, are you looking at your scanner?” Starbuck asked suddenly. Apollo glanced down looking at the scanner wondering what Starbuck had screen. The scanner indicated a lot of asteroids floating around the system. The patrol would have to maneuver carefully this time.
“Seems pretty active to me,” Apollo stated. “We’re going to have to be on our toes for sure going through this.”
“Just what I wanted to do today, fly through a large asteroid field the size of a solar system,” Starbuck replied.
“Yeah, well we need information if there is anything worth stopping for on those planets,” Apollo said. He understood Starbuck’s reluctance to flying in there. He felt uneasy about it as well. “We should stick together for this.”
Apollo led Starbuck into the system heading towards the first planet in the system. The scanners had already indicated it as a gas giant but there might be some useful moons nearby. He kept a close eye on the asteroids which appeared to be everywhere. He maneuvered closer to the planet to get an accurate scan for the Galactica to go over later.
“Um, Apollo, you might want to look around,” Starbuck finally said breaking the silence and Apollo’s concentration.
Frowning Apollo looked up out the canopy looking in slight shock at what his eyes fell upon.
“Um, that’s a ship, or part of one,” Apollo finally stated looking at the large shell of a ship that even he knew had suffered extreme damage.
“Yeah,” Starbuck said.
Apollo wondered what had destroyed the ship. If the size meant anything it easily matched the size of the Galactica. He moved the viper around then a glint caught his attention. Nearby he noticed more debris this time the ship appeared slightly smaller but also seemed to have suffered severe damage.
“I’m getting a bad feeling here,” Apollo finally said several minutes later as they had now passed a dozen different ships all destroyed.
“Me too, let’s check out the smaller planets, there might be something there,” Starbuck said.
Apollo had to agree turning his viper towards the closest planet that might sustain life.
The way there they passed several smaller looking ships and various looking fighter type craft with large areas that had been destroyed. The closer they got to the planet the more Apollo wondered what had happened. Ships of all types loomed all around with several many times the size of the Galactica.
“Whatever happened the planet’s surface looks scarred from it,” Starbuck said.
Apollo agreed with the comment as he looked at the surface. From space it appeared heavily cratered from an orbital bombardment.
After several more minutes of scanning Apollo finally came to the conclusion there was nothing on the planet’s surface.
“Apollo, look at that,” Starbuck said.
Apollo glanced up to see on the far side of the planet a large mass. He flew closer realizing that at one time this was part of a large complex station larger than anything he had ever seen. Whoever built it held technology vastly superior to anything they had.
“Let’s quickly scan the other planets and get out of here,” Apollo said. He knew he would get no argument from Starbuck. They both wanted this patrol to be over.
Adama sat along with Tigh as Apollo and Starbuck entered to give their briefing of the system. Adama hoped they had found something they might be able to use.
“So, anything?” Adama asked seeing an uneasy look in Apollo’s face. He waited to hear what happened this time.
“The planets we scanned appeared to have suffered extreme damage from orbital bombardment,” Apollo said.
“Orbital bombardment?” Adama asked. That meant at one time there was probably life on that planet and it had been at war.
“Yes, but that’s not the only news,” Apollo said. “The entire systems appears filled with the debris of destroyed ships of all types and sizes.”
“Warships?” Tigh asked.
“It appeared so,” Apollo said. “Heavy concentrations around the main planets but from what we could tell it covers the system.”
“At one planet we noticed a large station, destroyed but it appeared to have been even larger by the amount of damage it had taken,” Starbuck said.
“How big?” Adama asked.
“Large enough to probably house the entire fleet in,” Apollo said.
Adama sat back exchanging a glance with Tigh at that news. “From what you’ve said think we can rule out the Cylons.”
Tigh nodded in agreement. “It appears so commander.”
“Any idea how long ago the battle was?” Adama asked.
“No sir,” Apollo replied. “Long enough that there appeared to be no survivors.”
The news left Adama with a problem. He had no idea who, or why, there had been a fight in the system. From Apollo and Starbuck’s descriptions the battle too place all over the system and no idea who won or how long ago the battle had even been fought. The amount of ships require for a battle like that boggled his mind.
“It could have been a running battle,” Tigh finally said. “Starting at one side and closing in to the planets.”
“Hmm, yes, that is very possible, but still the amount of debris in the system points to an extremely large number of ships that were destroyed,” Apollo said.
“And we have to assume that someone won and left so some survived,” Adama said. “It still leaves a vast number of ships with the destructive capability that we cannot comprehend. Did you find any power signatures?”
“Nothing came up on our scanners. At least nothing our scanners could identify,” Apollo replied.
Adama looked around at the group not sure what to think. He needed more information about what happened in that system. He also wondered if this was Earth.
“I want a team to go and see about boarding one of the remains of a ship. Try to find a computer or something that we might be able to gain information from,” Adama said. “Take Doctor Wilker and Boomer with you, as well as a medtech. Let me know when you have the team ready and head out at once.”
“Yes sir,” Apollo said standing. Adama watched as both Starbuck and Apollo left the room leaving only Tigh.
“Not what I was expecting to hear this time,” Tigh finally stated.
“No, it wasn’t,” Adama agreed.
“Whoever is out there they might already know we’re here,” Tigh said quietly.
That thought did not settle well with Adama. He sighed wondering what the recon group might find out next.
Apollo and Starbuck waited in the back of the shuttle while Boomer and Sheba piloted it. Doctor Wilker and Cassiopeia sat on the other side of the shuttle making up the rest of the group. Apollo glanced outside looking closer at the wreckage littered all around them.
“Should we try a smaller ship or one of the larger pieces?” Boomer asked.
Apollo had no idea and glanced over at Wilker to see if he had an idea.
“It’s possible the larger pieces will still have an intact computer but we’ll get lost a lot less on a smaller ship. Take a medium ship,” Wilker finally said.
“All right,” Boomer replied.
“Still getting nothing on any of the channels,” Sheba stated.
Apollo did not expect to find anything. They hoped to find some signal from a working ship.
“I think I see a good candidate,” Boomer said a few minutes later. “I’ll see if there’s a way to land on it.”
Apollo waited looking out at the planet’s surface. The stark landscape from space gave no indication of anything surviving on it. The scans of the atmosphere indicated toxic chemicals in the air so Apollo figured nothing useful could live on the surface anymore. He turned his attention to the ship Boomer had picked out. Not as large as the Galactica but it appeared a good candidate.
He could see large holes indicating damage and a large gap on one side where it appeared the engines had blown out causing the massive damage taking out the ship. As they approached closer he could make out rows of smaller turrets still pointing up and out at some unknown enemy. He could almost imagine the turret firing upon an incoming bomber or other enemy ship.
“Hang on, we’re getting some real strange sensor readings,” Sheba suddenly said.
“Can you locate it?” Apollo said.
“Might be able to,” Sheba said, working with the scanner. Apollo stood making his way over to them to see for himself. His eyes widen at the amount of gibberish coming across the scanners.
“Energy and gravity fluctuations,” Boomer said. “We’re in for a bumpy ride.”
Apollo had no time to brace himself as the shuttle lurched. He landed on the other side of the shuttle before being tossed back to the other side. The others were still seated so were only tossed about in their seats. The jerking settled slightly before it finally stopped.
Apollo glanced the ceiling of the shuttle before finally standing back up.
“Are you all right Apollo,” Cassie’s voice said from where she sat.
“Yeah I think so, remind me never to do that again,” Apollo said.
“Um, you’re not going to believe this but we have a ship behind us,” Boomer said interrupting any reply.
Apollo quickly made his way over. Sure enough the scanners indicated one ship behind them.
“Head over and try to contact them,” Apollo said.
Apollo looked out front as the ship came into view. About the normal size of a cargo ship he wondered how it got there.
“Scanning should show something, nothing, wait, getting something. I don’t believe it, one human confirmed, there might be others but can’t identify it,” Boomer stated.
That got Apollo’s attention as he looked down at the scanner.
“The ship apparently suffered some damage,” Boomer said.
Apollo saw nothing that he could see as damage. “Any contact?”
“Nothing,” Sheba replied.
Apollo glanced back at the group. “Any suggestions?”
“We go aboard,” Wilker said. “There is a good possibility of finding a working computer to find out some information.”
“I might be able to help out the injured,” Cassie said. Apollo looked at the scanner a bit worried. Something made no sense about all of this.
“It’s why we’re out here right?” Starbuck said, focusing Apollo’s attention back to the mission.
“All right, any place we can land?” Apollo asked, looking over at the ship. The smooth sides of the ship contrasted greatly with the jagged deformed hunks he had been looking at. Apollo felt he was not looking at a warship but possibly a civilian ship.
“What about right there,” Sheba said pointing to a small spot near one of the sides of the ship. Apollo glanced at the opening that looked about the size of a hangar.
“Try it,” Apollo said to Boomer.
Starbuck made his way out of the shuttle onto the deck of the hangar. They spent several minutes making sure the atmosphere could sustain them before heading out.
Now Starbuck looked around an empty hangar with a few doors on each side. He noticed a few flickering panels near the doors and watched Wilker walk over to on.
“Sheba, Boomer stay with the doctor, we’ll go with Cassie and see if we can find anyone else,” Apollo said. “And keep your communicators open.”
“Got it,” Boomer said.
Starbuck watched Cassie walk on over before heading over to one of the doors. Walking out into the corridor he was not prepared for the shock. Lying on the floor were several bodies of an alien he had never seen before. He thought he noticed four arms, brownish black skin and a white uniform on them.
“Their dead,” Cassie said quickly taking a look.
“Shall we move on?” Starbuck asked.
“Probably the crew,” Apollo stated.
Starbuck agreed with that as they continued on spotting a few other bodies of the same species. Starbuck allowed his mind to wonder about what could have caused them to die. A virus? That thought made his shiver slightly and he hoped not. The last thing they would need is another virus going through the fleet.
“Find anything yet?” Apollo asked.
“Nothing yet,” Starbuck heard Boomer reply over the communicator.
Starbuck turned the corner stopping slightly at what he saw. He looked at the long corridor that seemed to go the length of the ship with rows of doors that looked more like prison doors than anything else.
“Well, we might be on a prison ship or some type,” Starbuck finally said.
“Yeah, let’s be cautious,” Apollo said.
“You have to say that,” Starbuck replied. He already was cautious and feeling more nervous by the second as they continued on into the ship.
Adama waited patiently on the bridge for any reports to come in from the scouting team. The news of the system disturbed him simply by the amount of destruction that occurred. He only had the destruction of the Colonies to compare it to but what Apollo and Starbuck witnessed seemed to go beyond that.
“Commander, we’re getting a high frequency transmission coming from somewhere in the system,” Athena said suddenly.
“What?” Adama said quickly rushing over to the console to see for himself. He felt Tigh join him as they both looked down at the screen. The power of the communications meant something had sent it. He wondered if somehow the scout team had done something.
“Commander, something that strong will gain the Cylons’ attention,” Tigh said.
“I know Tigh,” Adama said. He would have to think quickly about that. “Inform the scouting team to work quickly and head on back. I want a new course set in and ready to go the moment they are back heading away from the system. I want to put as much distance between us and the system as possible.”
“Yes commander,” Tigh replied.
Adama watched Tigh head over to Omega and they relayed the orders to the scout team.
“Any idea what that message says?” Adama asked.
“Nothing our computers can translate,” Athena replied back to him.
Adama figured as much and hoped the communications was not a call for reinforcements. Whatever had that many ships the Galactica could not counter.
Cassiopeia looked into each doorway wondering what she would see next. So far she had seen nothing alive. Looking into the next doorway she felt some surprise at seeing a human female with blonde hair.
“Starbuck, over here,” she said quickly entering the small room. Cassie quickly checked finding that the young woman was actually still alive by some miracle.
“You found someone alive?” Apollo asked.
Cassie quickly checked the woman’s vitals to see how stable she was. “She’s weak but if we get her help right away she should make it,” Cassie said to them.
“That’s good because we’re getting a recall from the Galactica,” Apollo said.
“Recall,” Cassie said looking up at Apollo wondering what had happened. “I’ll need help to transport her to the shuttle then.”
She looked between the two before they finally moved to help out. With careful movements the three of them finally made it back to the shuttle where the others were waiting.
“Found someone I see,” Boomer said.
“Yeah,” Apollo replied. “Maybe she can tell us what happened here.”
Cassie allowed the conversation to roll over her while she continued to work on the woman now in the shuttle. “Tell the Galactica we’ll need the bio-containment chamber when we land, and we all will need to head to de-tox as well.”
“Yeah, don’t remind me,” Boomer said. She knew that he understood that procedure better than anyone.
Adama waited as Starbuck and Apollo entered the room to brief the commander on what happened. Adama had the report on the woman they had brought back. She was now in stable condition but had yet to wake up.
“So what happened that you found someone living? Thought all the ships were destroyed,” Adama asked.
“They were, that ship suddenly appeared while we were making our decision on which ship to try and board,” Apollo said.
“Just appeared?” Adama asked not sure about that. Ships did not appear out of nowhere.
“Yep, one second it wasn’t there the next our instruments went crazy and the ship appeared,” Apollo stated.
“Then it might have been that ship that we heard sending out that signal” Adama stated. It made sense to him that an unknown ship would send out a signal.
“A signal?” Starbuck asked.
“Yes, that’s why we ordered you back. Whatever the signal was, it was very strong. If the Cylons don’t hear it they were not paying any attention,” Adama said. He watched them both have the same reaction he had. If the Cylons found out where the fleet was they would not be able to defend the fleet for very long.
“Doctor Wilker did manage to find a computer and gain some information,” Apollo said.
“And the ship we were on looked more like a prison ship than anything else,” Starbuck said.
“True, but prisoners for who and what,” Adama replied. “Is our woman some dangerous person?”
He had no answer to that.
“I suggest we keep an armed guard nearby until we know more,” Adama stated. He was not that concerned about one person, usually, but she might have been modified in some way. Until he had answers, he took no chances.
“The crew of the ship though was unlike anything we’ve ever seen,” Apollo said.
“Didn’t find any alive?” Adama asked.
“No, whatever went though the ship didn’t leave a trace,” Apollo said.
“And the de-tox came back clean,” Adama said. “I guess we wait to see what our mysterious stranger can tell us then.”
He watched Apollo and Starbuck leave the room before wondering what was happening. Nothing really made any sense to him, a strange battlefield, and now an unknown ship with a human on board? Had they found Earth, or some distant colony of Earth? If they had, was Earth engaged in a war? If so with who? He had too many questions and no answers.
Bootsteps echoed down the empty corridor as a man dressed in dark brown pants and a tan shirt walked down. He had straight short black hair and piercing brown eyes. He stopped at a door placing his palm on a scanner waiting a second until the door opened allowing him inside.
He quickly walked waiting as in the corner of the room a cylindrical tube hissed before sliding open allowing another man to step out. He was dressed the same way but with longer blonde hair.
“Ah, General, what news?” the blonde-haired man asked.
“Sir, our outer listening posts picked this up near sector eighteen,” the general said handing over a piece of paper. He watched the blonde-haired man scan if for several moments before saying anything.
“Send recon twelve at once. I want a detailed report on any survivors.”
“It will be done,” the general replied saluting and walking out. He felt a thrill in the fact the enemy might have returned finally.
The commander of the basestar turned watching as a centurion walked into the command room.
“Report centurion,” the commander said.
“We intercepted a strong communications from an unknown source,” the centurion said.
“Send out patrols immediately,” the commander said. He wanted to know what other civilization was out there that might threaten the might of the Cylon empire.
Once he had the information he could send it back for the Imperious Leader. He also was looking for the remains of the Colonial fleet. They were the only race that had avoided being destroyed.
There were a dozen basestars nearby looking for the Colonials. And all could converge on the Colonial fleet once it was discovered. It was only a matter of time before it happened. One battlestar would not be able to defend the remaining of the humans.
Starbuck watched Cassie work on the woman they had managed to ‘rescue’ from the unknown ship. He wondered if she was from Earth, or knew where it might be.
“So, how is she doing?” Starbuck asked as Cassie walked over towards him.
“Honestly, fine, and that’s puzzling. We can’t figure out what happened to her,” Cassie replied. “There are signs her entire system suffered a severe shock of some type but has recovered on its own.”
Starbuck frowned at that wondering what exactly that might have been. “So, she’ll probably be all right and recover.”
“Yeah,” Cassie replied.
“Are you staying on duty for until she wakes up?” Starbuck asked.
“Well, there is others that will be coming on duty, and I thought a certain officer might take me out,” Cassie said.
“I think that can be arranged,” Starbuck said, liking Cassie’s plans a lot. By that time it would be time to rotate the guard anyways. He had volunteered simply because Cassie was here. It was rare that they could be together while on duty.
“She’s waking up,” Cassie said, he walked over so he could see the woman’s arm move.
He stood close by watching the woman’s eyes flutter open, revealing a slight shock. The woman had golden eyes. He recovered from the shock, realizing the woman’s eyes held fear.
“Hello, you’re aboard the Battlestar Galactica,” Cassie said in a calm voice.
Starbuck stepped back slightly to avoid any making any threatening moves, but remained close enough to protect Cassie. For several long seconds nothing happened, before the woman spoke in a language Starbuck had never heard before.
He glanced over at Cassie, who frowned slightly, obviously concentrating on the words. Did she understand the language?
“What?” Starbuck asked, his curiosity could no longer hold back.
“She’s speaking an ancient language, Kobal I think,” Cassie replied. “But it’s slightly different.”
“Can you understand it?” Starbuck asked.
“Some of it, I studied it for a brief while, now I wish I had done more,” Cassie replied, before speaking something back to the woman.
“What did you tell her?” Starbuck asked.
“I hope my name,” Cassie replied. They waited for a second before the woman said something back.
“Well, her name, I think is Zanis,” Cassie said.
“I think I should inform Commander Adama about this,” Starbuck said. He walked over to the communicator calling for the bridge.
The man turned watching the general walk into the room.
“What news?” he asked.
“We found a prisoner ship, fully functional,” the general replied, gaining the man’s attention.
“A prison ship? Are you sure?”
“Yes sir,” the general replied. “Our teams have already investigated it and made an interesting find. The cells were one prisoner short according to the reports.”
The general paused a few seconds as the man waited for the news.
“It appeared to have been an Aphil.”
“And where is he?”
“She, there was an unusual exhaust headed out of the system. Our computers identified the ship,” the general said, brining up a 3-D graphic of a Colonial shuttle.
“Well, Colonials, this is a surprise,” the man said. “Any idea where they are now?”
“Yes, and there is more,” the general said, a 3-D image of a Cylon basestar appeared. “They are closing in.”
“I see, find out if she is with the Colonials, then we’ll figure out what to do next,” the man said.
“Of course,” the general replied.
Adama walked into the medlab where he saw for the first time the young woman that the scouting team found. She appeared sitting up and in good health from what he could see.
“Commander, this is Zanis,” Cassiopeia said to him.
“Zanis,” Adama said noticing her golden eyes. It took a second to get over that shock before he continued on. “Does she know anything about what happened back at that system?”
“I don’t know enough to ask that question commander,” she replied. “Basic communications is about all we’re going to get, I think she understands that.”
“I see, has she said anything that we might be usable?” Adama asked.
“Only that she has never heard of Earth,” Cassie replied.
“So, that wasn’t Earth,” Adama said, not sure he felt relief or not. He did know it meant that Earth was still out there waiting for them.
Adama started to say something else when Tigh’s voice interrupted them. “Commander to the bridge.”
“See if you can find anything else out, where she was from, that type of thing, who she was, or is, anything else,” Adama said. He turned heading off to the bridge and what Tigh wanted.
A few moments later Adama arrived on the bridge walking straight over to Tigh.
“Commander, it just appeared,” Tigh said, turning to the scanner.
Adama glanced down to see a blip again.
“Cylons,” Adama said.
“Yes, and it seems this basestar is trying to stay out of our long range scanners,” Tigh said
“Ready a patrol, send them out in that direction,” Adama said. He wanted to know how many basestars were out there. If they discovered only one they could either destroy it or evade it he hoped.
“Report centurion?” the basestar commander said.
“Our scanners have discovered a large fleet that matches the Colonial fleet,” the centurion replied.
“The Colonials, and the Galactica?” the commander asked.
“Unknown, we are staying outside of scanner range to avid contact,” the centurion replied.
The commander thought about that for a second before coming to a conclusion.
“Inform the others that we’ve found the Colonial fleet. We’ll organize a strike to completely destroy them once and for all,” the commander said.
“There is one other thing, we have picked up strange communications,” the centurion said. “We so far have not been able to decipher them.”
“Our communications have yet to pinpoint it,” the centurion stated.
“Is it like the last large blast of communications?” the basestar commander asked.
“Very well, continue to monitor and organize with the other basestar commanders to launch a strike as soon as possible,” the commander said.
“By your command.”
Apollo acknowledged the bridge after getting permission to launch. His viper shot down the launch tube followed closely by Boomer who took Starbuck’s usual place. Starbuck remained in medlab as they decided not to put too many new people in there with Zanis. So far Apollo had only heard she spoke an ancient language and knew nothing of Earth. Communicating appeared to be the biggest problem so far.
“All set?” he asked Boomer.
“Ready to go, not so ready to see any Cylons,” Boomer replied honestly. Apollo had to agree, he hoped they found nothing as well.
He turned heading in the direction of where the basestar had appeared on the scanners.
“Galactica to patrol one,” Rigel’s voice said a while later
“Patrol one here,” Apollo replied wondering what the Galactica wanted.
“We’re tracking a fast inbound heading straight for the fleet, transferring the path to your viper. The commander wants you to intercept,” Rigel said.
“Understood,” Apollo replied glancing down at his scanner to gain the information. He turned his viper slightly with Boomer and headed out to see what strange ship was heading towards them. A few moments later the ship appeared on his scanner moving very fast towards the fleet. He had never seen anything move so fast.
“Is that it?” Boomer asked.
“Looks like it,” Apollo replied watching the incoming ship rapidly close the distance. The ship passed by never stopping flying right into the heart of the fleet as Apollo and Boomer turned to give chase.
“Galactica, I’m not sure what type of ship is, flew by us without stopping,” Apollo replied. He looked back down at his scanner realizing that he now could see the Cylon basestar retreating away from the fleet. He briefly wondered if the unknown ship was some new Cylon weapon. If so he had no way to stop it.
“Patrol return to the Galactica,” Rigel said.
Apollo turned his viper back to the Galactica, heading back at full throttle. He had no idea what the ship was doing or what its mission was. He felt like the ship had nothing to do with the Cylons, simply because of the design of the ship and the speed.
“Whatever it is, some sort of intelligence is behind it,” Boomer said.
Apollo had to agree as they watched the ship maneuver in and around the fleet, before suddenly stopping beside the Galactica. A few minutes later Apollo and Boomer finally caught back up, passing the ship, allowing Apollo to get a good look at the ship. It had a black hull and a sleek triangle shape to it. It was about half the size of the landing bay, and sat silently in space. The hull remained smooth with few indentifying features to it.
Apollo could make out nothing else to indicate if the ship was a warship of some sort or something else. The ship suddenly turned around and sped off back in the same direction where it had come from leaving a confused fleet in its wake.
“Patrol, return to Galactica,” Rigel said.
“Copy,” Apollo said turning the viper back to the landing bay. It ranked as one of his weirdest patrols ever.
Adama sat looking around the table at the group hoping for some sort of answer to the questions he now had. A strange alien ship had been encountered and no one seemed to know what the purpose was.
“Several ships were scanned, including the Galactica. In fact it seemed extremely interested in the Galactica,” Tigh said. “After it finished, it left.”
Adama nodded at the information. He knew that already but the fact that other ships had been scanned intrigued him. “But they didn’t scan the rest of the fleet?”
“No, only the ships on the way before stopping at us,” Tigh said.
“What did you make of the ship Apollo?” Adama asked looking over at his son who probably had the best view of the unknown ship.
“I don’t know, it was interesting, yet I could find no weapon systems on it,” Apollo replied. “It was almost as if its sole purpose was to quickly scan other ships.”
“Interesting theory,” Adama replied thinking it over. True the ship had arrived and was in and out before they could really do much. But they could still track it and engage it if needed. “Could our mysterious visitor be linked to the destruction in the system?” Adama watched as both Apollo and boomer thought about that.
“I don’t know,” Apollo said.
“It’s possible,” Boomer replied.
“True, but there was so much and if the unknown ship is a civilian craft it could be impossible to tell,” Apollo finally stated.
“All right, I want everyone on alert status for the moment,” Adama said.
“Oh one more thing,” Apollo said speaking up. “I noticed a Cylon basestar on the scanner at the edge of the Galactica’s scanner. It was turning away from the fleet but it was there.”
“Then we need to conclude that the Cylons know of our position,” Adama said. He sighed knowing that escaping the Cylons now would be extremely difficult. “Our first duty is to find a way to escape the Cylons. Our mysterious visitor can wait for now.”
He listened, but no one had any good ideas. He also knew, he had to inform the council of the latest developments something he really had no reason to want to do especially considering he had no plan on how to deal with the Cylons.
“Any new information about our mysterious guest?” Apollo finally asked after a moment of silence.
“No, communications is still proving a problem. Cassiopeia is making some progress, but so far we’ve learned little, aside from she was taken prisoner by some group,” Adama stated. “We haven’t been able to get a clear idea on why she was captured.”
“War prisoner?” Boomer asked.
“It’s possible,” Adama said. “Of course, its also possible she is a dangerous mass murderer as well,” Adama said, knowing he did not have the answer.
“What if our mysterious unknown ship is a guard ship looking for her to put her back in prison?” Tigh asked.
“We’ll keep a guard in medlab and outside then. I have a council to inform. Tigh keep an eye on any Cylon movement and see what is around that the fleet might be able to use for a defensive position,” Adama said. “Let’s get moving then.”
He watched the group get up and head out to carry out the orders. He mentally prepared himself for the upcoming meeting and the questions he knew they would ask.
Starbuck watched Cassie and Zanis try talking some more. So far he knew they had talked about some things. Like the fact she grew up on a planet called Zen but aside from that nothing much else of importance. Zanis’ golden eyes still caused him some pause because they were so unusual.
“Hey doc, is she human?” Starbuck asked Dr. Salik. Starbuck watched the doctor think about that for several seconds before finally replying.
“Define human,” Salik replied back to Starbuck, who stood unsure of what to make of the answer. “Simply put, she’s close, in fact her blood is similar but this is what’s strange. We can’t give her blood but she could give any of us her blood with no problems.”
Starbuck thought about that for a few seconds along with his limited knowledge of the human body and understood that what Salik said was not normal.
“I’ve run tests on her DNA and it’s like it was a template for ours,” Salik said uneasily. “Or it could be a strange quirk of the universe.”
Starbuck watched the doctor’s face for a few more moments before speaking up. “We don’t know much about those on Kobal. Maybe this is how they were and through experiments in DNA and such they were forced to leave and the groups of humans who left were different by what they had done to the DNA?”
“Possible, but then it brings us to what is a normal human?” Salik stated.
“Interesting,” Cassie said causing Starbuck to look over. “We’ve made another discovery, her planet wasn’t space bound. This is only the second spaceship she has been on.”
Starbuck frowned not sure what to make of that. Things seemed to be getting complex.
“Report centurion,” the basestar commander said as the centurion walked in.
“By your command,” the centurion automatically replied. “Scanners have tracked the unknown ship away from us moving at speeds we cannot match.”
“It seemed to take interest in the Colonial fleet but our scans revealed no human life on board,” the centurion replied.
“Send a report back to the Imperious Leader,” the commander said. “Are our basestars in position?”
“Almost, the Colonial fleet will have no way to escape,” the centurion said.
“When all basestars are in position tell them to attack.”
“By your command.”
“Well, there’s a face I’m surprised to see,” Apollo said watching as Starbuck walked into the lounge. Apollo figured as long as Cassie remained in the medlab Starbuck would remain there as well.
“Ah, needed a break,” Starbuck replied grabbing a drink and sitting down.
“I take it you’ve heard the latest?” Boomer asked.
“What? Oh, you mean the strange ship and the Cylons, yeah, Jolly told me,” Starbuck replied.
“I’ll be the first to say this doesn’t look good,” Apollo said. “We have no cover, no suitable nearby planets or anything else that we can use. They caught us out in the middle of nowhere.”
“We should be able to take on one basestar, it’s after that, that worries me,” Boomer said.
Apollo had to agree with that. Now that the Cylons knew where the fleet was they could continue to bring up additional basestars until they were overwhelmed.
The sudden red alert caught them all by surprise but each reacted quickly racing towards the hangar and their vipers. Apollo had hoped the Cylons would wait before attacking a bit longer.
“What do we have?” Apollo asked as he reached the hangar.
“Inbound Cylon raiders from several different directions.”
That caught Apollo’s attention and he quickly got in touch with the bridge.
“It doesn’t look good Apollo, by the looks of the number of raiders coming in there must be at least four basestars attacking,” Omega’s voice said.
Apollo did not like the sound of that. That many basestars would overwhelm the Galactica and the fleet unless they were very lucky. He quickly went to his viper wondering what he would say to the squadrons. They would be in for the fight of their life. If they lost humanity would be doomed.
“What’s the news general?” the man said.
“Here is the scan,” the general said.
The man took the information reading through it before stopping. “Are they sure?” he asked.
“They scanned it three times to make sure. An Aphil is on board.”
“And the other information, is that accurate?” the man asked, wanting to make sure.
“Yes sir, it’s begun already,” the general said. The man could tell the general was anxious.
“Send the First Fleet’s A squad, and prepare the Starfortress for my arrival,” he said.
“Of course sir, it shall be done,” the general said, walking away with a purposeful stride.
The man looked one more time at the information before turning to leave the room. He quickly boarded the shuttle, watching out the windows at the fleet that surrounded him as he headed to the Starfortress.
Adama watched the battle rage all around the fleet, even as basestars began to appear on the screen. The original estimate of four had proven wrong. They were now completely surrounded by no less than seven basestars. The information had given him grief, as he could see no way out of the battle without dying. His warriors were strong and battle-harden yet even against these odds they would eventually be overwhelmed.
“Fresh wave incoming,” Tigh said.
Adama noticed it. They would continue attacking in waves not giving his warriors time to refuel or rearm. He also realized that the Cylon basestars would be in firing range shortly of the outer positions of the fleet. He had already moved the Galactica to the closest one but it still left the fleet vastly unprotected.
“Commander, I’m picking up something strange,” Athena said.
Adama walked over to look at the information even as the Galactica and Cylon basestar began to engage. The ship rocked slightly with the first hits even as he tried to process the information on the screen.
“An energy build up, from where?” Adama mumbled more to himself.
“That’s just it father, it’s not localized,” Athena said.
Adama wondered what would happen next.
Starbuck turned his viper towards another raider quickly destroying it. Nearby a Cylon basestar was closing in and he hoped to damage it’s weapon systems before it could do too much damage. He lined up another raider when his scanner suddenly went white.
“What the frack?” he said hearing several other pilots start yelling about the same thing. He tried to make sense while going to visual to continue to engage. He managed to line up the Cylon raider and destroy it. He looked down concerned that the Cylons had managed to somehow interfere with the vipers scanners. If the Cylons had developed such a thing then the situation had gone from bad to worse.
“They’ve stopped firing,’ he heard Sheba state.
Starbuck glanced around slightly realizing that the Cylons had indeed stopped firing. Whatever was happening seemed to be effecting the Cylons as well.
“I’m not passing up an opportunity,” Starbuck replied taking a few more shots destroying another raider.
“With you there,” Greenbean said.
Starbuck destroyed one more when a dazzling white light erupted out of nowhere. He had to shut his eyes hoping nothing crashed into him. The intensity became so bright he threw up his arm to help block the light. Slowly the intensity would down and he lowered his arm and snuck a peek. The light seemed to condense in front of him into a large form.
He blinked before finally the light solidified into a ship. The shape reminded him of the destroyed ships he had seen ruined in the nearby solar system. The ship was also the largest ship he had ever seen, and quite possibly several times larger than the Galactica.
“Are you seeing what I’m seeing?” Starbuck asked.
“You mean the ships that suddenly appeared in front of me, then yes,” Jolly said.
“Good,” Starbuck said gaining a better look at the ship. The one in front of him appeared mostly organic, with a cylindrical hull, large engines at the back and rows upon rows of turrets. On the top and bottom a row of slightly larger turrets with duel guns were stationed. Along the sides he counted eight openings that looked like hangars.
He looked down at his scanner which finally started working again. The scanners could not identify the ships and appeared confused about the lifeforms. For a second it would identify the lifeforms as human then revert to unknown.
He looked at the scanner finally realizing how many ships had appeared. He watched as the ship’s front split apart and an energy build up began. Seconds later it released the energy heading straight towards the Cylon basestar. Starbuck had to blink as the basestar exploded with one shot.
Adama looked at the scanner in shock. In a spherical formation around the fleet the unknown ships had appeared. Around that another sphere of ships enclosed the entire battle. The number of ships easily went into the hundreds, possibly thousands.
Against such numbers the only way the Galactica could survive was cooperation with the Cylons and hope their technology was superior. That thought was crushed a moment later as one Cylon basestar was destroyed.
“I’ll be the first to say, this doesn’t look good,” Tigh said.
Adama stood not saying anything but knew Tigh was right. The firepower of the unknown ships appeared completely overwhelming. He was not sure even at the height of the war against the Cylons that both the Colonials and Cylons could take this fleet on.
“Incoming message,” Athena said.
“Put it though,” Adama said. They listened as a voice spoke.
“Attention Cylons, you are ordered to retreat, now, or you will be destroyed,” the voice said.
“Fighters launching from unknown ships,” Rigel said.
Adama could see hundreds of fighters pouring out of the ships. He waited to see what the Cylons’ would do next. He wondered if they had ever been so outclassed in their entire existence.
“Cylon raiders retreating sir,” Athena said.
Adama nodded realizing that indeed the raiders were headed back to the basestars. “Recall our warriors to rearm and refuel,” Adama said. He had no idea what might happen next.
“Another energy spike,” Athena said. Adama waited to see what would happen this time. “One ship, appearing next to us.”
“Open blast shield,” Adama said. He turned to see the shield going up so he could see the ship. It appeared to be about as long as the Galactica and with several turrets as large as two shuttles on the front and two massive thrusters in back. He could see what appeared to be a hangar on the side. A large single barrel turret was on the top and bottom of the hangar.
“New communication from the ship,” Athena said.
Adama turned to the communicator to hear what they had to say.
“Commander of the Battlestar Galactica, my name is Accic and we have a lot to talk about. I request, if you wish, to come over so we can talk. I also ask that you bring with you the passenger you picked up in from the nearby system,” the voice said.
Adama glanced over at Tigh before making up his mind. “Responde I’ll be there, prepare a shuttle and have Zanis meet us in the hangar,” Adama said. “Also contact the council as they’ll want to be represented as well.”
“I’ll get it ready,” Tigh said.
Adama had no doubt and walked off the bridge to prepare for an encounter with a race that seemed to already know who they were.
Adama felt the shuttle land and glanced over at Starbuck, Cassiopeia, Uri and Zanis who were seated in the shuttle along with him. Starbuck and Apollo were piloting the shuttle and now they were aboard an unknown warship. He walked out of the shuttle first not wanting to expose his crew.
He walked off to a very organized hangar. He could see rows of fighters in the far part of the hangar. Standing in front of him a medium sized man dressed in dark brown pants and a tan shirt with short, straight black hair. Adama looked into the man’s brown eyes knowing he had to be the ranking official of the group waiting for him.
“I’m Commander Adama of the Battlestar Galactica,” Adama stated sensing the others beginning to exit the shuttle.
“I am General Scedon,” the man replied. “Commander of the Zen warfleet.”
Adama turned to see his son walk up to him. “This is Captain Apollo, behind him Lieutenant Starbuck, Senator Uri, medtech Cassiopeia, and Zanis,” Adama said turning back to look at Scedon who now was looking at Zanis with interest. Adama watched as the general walked up to the smaller blonde-haired woman and looked into her eyes.
Adama thought he saw some fear in the woman’s eyes before another man came walked up. Adama turned to look at him stopping slightly at the blonde haired man’s eyes. He too had golden eyes and now walked over towards the general and Zanis. They then began speaking and Adama knew his limited knowledge of the ancient language was useless. Perhaps if they had written it he could keep up. The man then turned to address Adama.
“Commander Adama, I am Accic, I wish to thank you for helping Zanis out. Now I know you probably have questions so if you’ll follow me,” Accic said.
Adama nodded following Accic out of the hangar into the interior of the ship. They walked to one side of the hangar where a doorway melted into view. Adama wondered what type of technology was required for metal to act that way. He glanced at the doorway as they walked through noticing the thickness of the armor protecting the hangar from the rest of the ship.
Adama looked at the hallway noticing the extremely large ceiling and he figured it to be close to sixteen feet high. A bit unusual for a ship as space would a premium on board. The answer to the question quickly came into view as a group of very tall warriors turned into the corridor. They stood easily twelve feet towering over everyone.
“Emperor, general,” they all replied before their gazed stopped on Zanis. Adama noticed a sudden change in their demeanor. “Aphil?” one asked looking at Accic who nodded. “A pleasure,” they said bowing down to her before continuing on.
Adama glanced at the rest of the group who shrugged. Had they somehow managed to rescue a princess or something? The questions raced through Adama’s mind as they passed other corridors. Then they passed by a strange bluish tube which seemed to almost call out to him. Adama thought it strange but continued on before they reached a room and walked in.
“Hmm, a bit small, but that’s no problem,” the man said the walls melted away to increase the size. The smaller tables disappeared into the floor only to be replaced with a larger table and chairs. “There we go. Everyone please have a seat.”
Adama sat down looking at everything wondering if somehow he was imagining it all.
“I think you had some questions, correct?” Accic asked.
“Um, yeah, who are you?” Adama asked. The basic question that needed to be answered.
“The Zen, a race far older than any other race you’ve ever encountered,” Accic said. “Yes, even the race you know as the Beings of Light, we know them, and have treaties with them.”
Adama thought about that in small wonder. “So, is Zanis part of your race, and are you human?”
“Zanis, yes, we’ll she’s a Aphil, a true Zen. As to your other question, not really,” Accic replied. Adama thought he heard something strange in the tone Accic used. Adama filed that away for later.
“Do you know where Earth is?” Adama asked. He waited as Accic seemed to ponder the question.
“I will tell you that you’re on the right track,” Accic finally said. “I’m afraid I cannot tell you in accordance with treaties. They are vital as even though we have scanners though out the system we still need others to keep an eye out in case they return.”
“They?” Adama asked.
“In your language they are called the enslavers, they have no other name. They enslave entire races for no other reason then they can. The Zen have fought them for a long time,” Accic said.
“Then you fought them in the nearby system?” Apollo asked.
“Yes, one of the major battles of the war before the Enslavers vanished into another dimension,” Accic said. “At the height of the war both sides employed cloning technology and could produce fleets of warships very quickly. Small battles incorporated thousands of warships, major battles included millions until the final battle at the Enslaver’s homeworld. That battle had over a billion warships fighting for the universe. When it became apparent they were going to lose they fled into another dimension. We’ve improved and waiting for them to return ever since.”
“How long ago was that?” Starbuck asked.
“Before your race made their first sharpened stick,” Accic said. “Yes, I know all about your race, the Cylons and your war.”
“You know the Cylons could use their advantage in computers to take over your ships,” Adama said. It was one reason they kept the computers separate for different systems.
“Our computers are biological, and the power source is very picky about the user. But I’m sure you noticed that as we passed it, the blue tube. It either called out to you or repulsed you,” Accic said.
Adama felt a bit of shock at that. “Your power source is biological?”
“In a way, it’s complex, and obeys only a few. It has various, side-effects. Infusing with it slows growth and allows greater genetic manipulation. The Zen are almost entirely clones. Those of us with golden eyes are Aphil, or true Zen. Zanis is an Aphil and the clones are genetically bred to protect the Aphil at all costs,” Accic said.
“All right, I’m lost now, if these Enslavers have been gone for so long then what about the ship we found?” Apollo said.
“Ah, the Enslaver prisoner ship,” Accic said. “Yes, she is from way back, actually from the beginning of the war. With our power source our ships actually move through space by bending it. It requires a tremendous amount of power. A side result is sometimes ships are lost in time when caught in the backwash of the jump. It is as such that she came to be here. I would like to give you what the Enslaver ships look like, and how to contact us if you run across another such ship. Such information could save the universe or destroy it.”
Adama sat back lost in thought about what he had been told. He really was not that sure what to think about it all.
Apollo had listened to the conversation as Accic and his father talked. He thought about the power source on the ship that Accic had described. Apollo could remember passing a blue tube and a slight feeling of calling. So it would not reject him, but he frowned slightly in thought about that.
“You have a question?’ Accic said, Apollo looked up to see them all looking at him.
“Ah, well, just your power source, if it calls out to you, can you use it?” Apollo asked. “I mean if it does that could be dangerous to you.”
“Maybe, perhaps I should clarify that, it calls out to many in that form. Producing it is extremely difficult and so far few have been able to,” Accic said.
“Why’s that?” Apollo asked wanting more information.
“A quick summary, to produce it requires extracting it from a biological source through a process that to start requires a person of certain mind, state and DNA. If anything is missing the energy will not come out,” Accic said. “If that person is captured, they can still produce it but it doesn’t mean it will be usable. Like I said, it’s extremely picky and like us, aware of what’s going on.”
“A live, thinking, energy source,” Adama said.
Apollo was fascinated by that.
“What will happen to Zanis?” Adama asked.
“She will be allowed to do whatever she wants. We have contact with other civilizations, where other Aphils live,” Accic said. “Now, I do have one other pressing matter commander. I will be contacting the Cylons directly, in case they encounter the enslavers.”
“They won’t care,” Adama said. Apollo had to agree.
“Yes, I know, but still, it’s something I must try to do,” Accic said. “The other thing is you, and your fleet, are welcome into our territory. For as long as your travels take you in our territory, the Cylons will not be welcomed, all races deserve a chance to survive.”
“I see,” Adama said. Apollo wondered how large the territory was.
“Now, I’m afraid that I have other issues that require my attention, one of my men will give you the ability to contact us if you spot another enslaver ship,” Accic said.
Apollo watched as Accic left and General Scedon took the head position.
Starbuck walked into the lounge making his way over to where Apollo was telling a group what happened over on the Zen warship. They had left not long ago and Starbuck was looking forward to some relaxation.
“So they knew where Earth was but didn’t tell us because of a treaty?” he heard Jolly ask.
“About right,” Apollo answered.
“What about the Cylons, they won’t take the destruction of one of their ships lightly,” Boomer said.
“When you have the firepower they have, I highly doubt they are worried about the Cylons,” Starbuck said.
“My father asked them, they are contacting the Cylons directly. I think they are going to make the same type of treaty with them as we have. Keeping any eye out for any Enslaver ships,” Apollo said.
“What about the Cylons behind us,” Greenbean asked.
“Accic mentioned that the Zen have said that we are under their protection for as long as we’re in their territory,” Apollo said. “And the Cylons are not welcome.”
“That’s interesting news. Thought they might just leave us on our own and vastly outnumbered,” Starbuck stated.
“I did too, they didn’t exactly welcome us, but didn’t reject us either,” Apollo said. “Accic mentioned something about giving people a chance to survive.”
“I got the feeling his people didn’t get that chance,” Starbuck said.
“Yeah, but I know I’ll take any bit of good luck that might come along,” Jolly stated.
“Did Doctor Wilker ever get any information from the computer he took?” Starbuck finally asked after a few seconds of silence.
“The encryption is difficult, and add in the fact he doesn’t know the language it will take time. He’s still working on it. Should keep him busy for a while,” Boomer said speaking up.
“Any idea how large their space is?” Jolly asked.
“Nope, but I’ll take all the help we can get right now,” Apollo stated. “Especially considering Accic stated the ships we saw consisted only a small portion of their fleet.”
Starbuck watched the others struggle to grasp that idea.
“Well, I’ll take any help I can,” Jolly said.
Starbuck had to agree as did the rest. He had enough excitement to last for a while. Now he wanted to relax for a while. He hoped that the fleet would be able to lose the Cylons while in the Zen territory. He figured only time would tell.