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Chapter 348 of Book 3 is in the queue

September 11, 2015
Posted at 3:27 pm

This week with Arlene and Jeff:

...Just as Diana started to say something, several massive in-system drive units began to register. A few seconds later, a truly enormous one appeared on her sensors, then many other drive units popped into existence. None of these were freighters, but were military drive units larger than anything she had ever heard of. In addition to those drives, there were numerous smaller drive signatures that were obviously accompanying and probably surrounding the larger ones. Before the AI was able to respond, Diana exclaimed, "Oh, shit. Unless I've totally lost my mind, those have to be the drive signatures of some type of gigantic capital ship and its escort group, and two of the biggest signatures are probably frigates - relative giants themselves, but by the drive signatures, only a fourth the size of the monster. That means that some of those signatures have to be destroyers and corvettes, along with all the support craft for a small fleet. We've managed to maneuver ourselves into a hornet's nest."

"Hornet?" the AI asked.

The Second shook her head. "I don't know what it is, either. It just came to mind."

She knew she should wake Selina, but she also knew that Selina, like Diana had been before her nap, was to the point where sleep was an absolute must. They will have to stumble on us to have any chance of finding us. Everything that can be is shut down and our stealth is functioning at one hundred percent. I'm going to let her sleep. She's going to need it for the decisions she has to make when she wakes up.

To the AI, she said, "Well, we'll soon find out whether the planetoid we just detected is the one with the supply base on it or not. For darn sure, the base is where that massive drive signature - whatever the hell it is - will be headed."

The AI, its voice somehow different, said, "After assessing the new data and performing a risk assessment, I have determined that there is a near certainty that we will not be returning to the station. We should release a message torp containing the information we have recently obtained."

Have a goodun;