Distant Vista Part One: Welcome to Wherever
12th - 14th November 2004
Overstone Scout Camp, Northampton
The Pax vessel is huge, dwarfing your own ship many times over. Its vast threatening bulk hangs in space, moving ponderously slowly away from the rent in primespace that it has just emerged from. Warning claxons sound within the bridge, as the vesselís mass starts to play havoc with your navigation. From this distance you can see the huge shuttle and fighter bays, count the weapon ports. Even thought the Pax Ship is only a System Defence Cruiser, and by no means the largest thing Pax Battlefleet can field, thatís cold comfort to you as the multiple warning lights wink on and off like tiny eyes in the inky black.
Your console screams an alarm as it registers the powering up of the SDC defence screens and itís weapons. You watch the power readings fluctuate up and down the electro-magnetic scale. You can almost hear the whine of the laz-batteries firing up, the distant sun glow of the pre-firing check almost visible in the mouths of the weapons arrayed against you.
You think of running. But it has military spec engines, more power and more thrust. Itíll catch you before you could get to minimum safe distance for a jump, assuming it didnít just start shooting. Perhaps jinking, trying to evade it, hide somewhere. The scanner and lidar sweep out over nothing but empty void. Just primespace. No rocks to hide behind, nothing to provide a distraction. The Pax ship scanners have already got you locked. You watch the various turrets and antenna twisting and realigning on your position. It probably knows how many people are on board your ship. Itís not going to loose an entire vessel in open space.
Your mind thinks about fighting. Images of twisted metal and expanding clouds of ship debris, the firey and swift wings of destruction, or perhaps the few moments of numbing cold as your body is exposed to vacuum.
"Unidentified ship. The Is The Pax Humanis Vessel SDC TK442 ĎRommelí. You will transmit your ID beacon and operating details immediately. You will hove to and prepare to be tractored aboard the Rommel. Any resistance will be met with deadly force. Do you acknowledge?"