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Spirits of Sol Pt. 3
By J. L. Young
They took the crew to an undisclosed location deep inside a concrete structure. They placed MREs from their dropship on a coffee table in the center of the room and provided water and furniture. The away team’s suits were decontaminated and hung in a corner. Diego and Rain were the last to arrive.
“Good to see we’re all alive,” Octavius’s deep, calming bass tone came from a couch near the back of the room.

“Yeah,” Rain began. “Question is… why?”

“Did they allow you to get the seeds?”

Diego cleaned his glasses with the hem of his shirt. “They eagerly helped us load the dropship. Too bad they wouldn’t let us fly it.”

“If they intended to kill us, they would have done it already,” Fleur signed, and Fadiya translated.

Octavius shifted forward, resting his elbows on his knees. “I shot at one of them and it shrugged it off like it was nothing. Then we had a conversation and now we’re here.”

“Could these be the Spirits we heard about?” Fleur asked.

Masuru tossed a multi-scanner on the couch and sat on the armrest. “I plan on asking if they’re amicable to another conversation.”

“Speculation?” Octavius asked.

“You know I don’t like to speculate. The spirits are still classified tech, even to this day. They could be… they could be alien tech for all I know.” Masuru picked up the multi-scanner. “The suits should read something. We were all outside the dropships at some point. There’s not a bit of radiation on them. Yeah, we could wash them, but there’s always some residual radiation.”

“Could the scanner be defective?” Fadiya asked.

“Sure,” Masuru replied. But every one of our multi-scanners read the same thing. I’ve done a self-test on each of them. They check out. Whoever our new friends are, they absorb radiation. It could be what supplies their power. We have just scratched the surface of such tech with photovoltaic cells. The radiation left behind by whatever it is we have done here is the kind that isn’t easily extirpated.”
“Godlike abilities?” Fleur asked.

Masuru smirked and shook his head.

Octavius stood and collected a pack of food off the table. “Perhaps we should consider an escape.”
Fleur stepped before Octavius. Her hands moved frantically. “We don’t know their intention. Escape could be unprofitable and downright deleterious.”

Octavius looked to Fadiya for the translation. “Vote. Yay, we wait and see how this plays out. Nay, we figure out how to get out of here. Wherever here is. Masuru?”



She nodded.


“I say we take our chances.”


“Let’s see what they have to say.”



Octavius took a breath. “Four to two. Like Diego said, ‘let’s see what they have to say.”

The door opened, and a figure entered. It took on the form of a human woman. She was skinned in flawless chrome, though the metal stretched and folded like skin as she walked. No textile enveloped her. The detail, excruciating. “I was hoping you were going to arrive at that outcome. Democracy is a beautiful thing.”

Gohan 7 July 1
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