Chapter 45

 

                                                Chapter 45

 

 

Rolling over, Aaron noticed he was alone in bed and glanced towards the bathroom and not hearing anything opened his mind and found Kevin in the incubatory, of all places. Pushing the covers off, Aaron stood up and walked out of his bedroom towards the stairs. Once upstairs, Aaron stopped off in the kitchen and poured two glasses of his fruit juice blend and walked over to the med bay. “Good morning love, you’re up early,” Aaron handed over a glass of juice to the Kevin who he had startled.

 

 

Blushing, Kevin took the glass of juice, “It’s amazing isn’t it,” referring to the picture of cells dividing on the monitor. “Our son, do you know how good that sounds, I never gave it much thought, well that’s not true, I knew I was gay but yet I secretly yearned to one day have a child of my own.” Taking a sip of his juice, noticing Aaron had once again changed the blend he smiled, “This is good, a hint of chocolate,” turning around, laughter all over his face, Kevin kissed Aaron good morning, “For some reason, that doesn’t surprise me at all.”

 

 

Aaron moved behind Kevin when he turned to glance back at the monitor and pressed his body against his lover's, wrapping his arms around him, “How long do you think it will be before all these incubators are full? We started something last night that got several of the other guys thinking, I bet.”

 

 

“I foresee them all being occupied before the first son of the Clan is born,” Xon stated, as he walked into the incubatory and hugged Kevin and Aaron, and a first for him, initiated a good morning kiss.

 

 

Smiling at Xon after capturing his lips, after Xon finished kissing Kevin; Aaron let his hands roam down his taut body before releasing him, “Good morning, love.” Glancing at the clock Aaron felt Tyler stirring and sent him a message to join them in the med bay via David, time to get his resequencing started, the day was about to get very busy.

 

 

“I have to visit the Core first thing, I’ll meet up with the rest of your for morning hug duty at the farms, right after I get Tyler squared away.” Aaron kissed each of them soundly, as they walked out of the incubatory, separating long enough to pull Tyler into a hug and kissing him, causing him to go week kneed and to be uncomfortably hard.

 

 

Chuckling, Aaron released him and turned him around then swatted his butt as he pushed towards the bio-tubes, “Hold that thought, Lover, we need to get this started so hop up.”

 

 

Reaching for his hard toy, Tyler frowned and then pouted when Aaron swatted his hand away and then groaned in pleasure as he felt a warm wetness descend on his hard willie, while Aaron was keeping his hands busy, Xon had come around and captured the end of his hardness and started to tease and suck on him, as Aaron placed the sensors. Thrusting and groaning in pleasure as he fired his load, Tyler was not aware of the tube being inserted into his butt or the fact that he was slid into the bio-tube.

 

 

Aaron pulled Xon up and around as soon as he released Tyler’s spent cock and kissed him intent on capturing the last bit of the precious offering before it was all gone, leaving Xon flustered and aroused, Aaron let him go and seeing that Tyler had gone back to sleep, turned on the soma unit and quickly intubated him before activating the cycle. Lips merging with Xon once more as their tongue’s wrestled for dominance as the lid closed and sealed, Aaron smiled as Kevin lubed up in preparation for one of them entering him.

 

 

Smiling at Kevin, Aaron pulled Xon around so Kevin could position himself and reaching down, slowly lowered the hard shaft until it lined up with Kevin’s hole, moving to the side, he broke off the kiss as Kevin slid back, stopping once Xon was fully inside him. Trying to ignore for the moment, the sounds of two of his lovers expressing themselves behind him, Aaron’s fingers set the resequencing cycle and locked it in place before feeling something splash against his leg, looking down he looked at Kevin’s sweet offering running down his leg. He didn’t think he took that long he momentarily pouted before smiling as Xon increased his thrusting, grabbing some gauze he cleaned up his leg and the floor, glancing up when he heard the groan and grunt of pleasure as Xon climaxed; he shook his head before standing up, kissing Kevin and Xon before walking out.

 

 

Porting himself to the Core entry, Aaron waited for the scan to finish and to be recognized then he walked into the core chamber and laid back on his recliner, “Identify…”

 

 

After the bright lights ran from head to toe the core announced, “Identity confirmed…Aaron Stranton…Prime of Clan Stranton…King of the Empire of Altare and leader of the sixty five known worlds…”

 

 

Aaron blinked before tilting his head to the side and looking at the ceiling in thought, this is ridiculous, “Query…Number of worlds pending admission to Empire…”

 

 

“Directive Alpha 7947…thorough testing of new found worlds for fifty years with human analog and animal test subjects, once fifty year mark passed without damage or fail of test subjects world is cleared for colonization…Current worlds undergoing testing 27…”

 

 

I think I need to get Kevin down here to have a long talk with the Core to find out what else it is hiding, or what other questions needed to be asked Aaron thought, “Query…schematics of gestalt chamber file 798534A…”

 

 

Aaron looked up at the large gestalt chamber and mentally counted five recliners, well he needed two more people then, so it was a good thing he stopped to check, “Activate…Preparations for SO001…Project Step off…relocation to near Earth orbit…”

 

 

“Core directive 4…query is this a Clan Bug Out…”

 

 

Semi intelligent had its downside Aaron decided, “Negative…Response to bug out is negative…”

 

 

“Standby…”

 

 

“Downloading system files…downloading Clan Files…”

 

 

“Core directive 100 now in effect…”

 

 

Trumpets sounded and echoed off the walls as a bright intense ray of light stabbed down from the ceiling and hit Aaron in the head and he felt his mind invaded by the electronic brain. Panting and gulping back the pain as his eyes cleared, he registered the Core's words as he passed out.

 

 

“Core Directive 001 initiated…”

 

 

“Core Directive 002 Initiated…”

 

 

“Core directive Rise of the Empire initiated…”

 

 

Groggy still, Aaron started to become aware of being on the floor and wondered what the hell he had triggered now, holding his head as he sat up, he groaned in pain. The pain was quickly fading to leave nothing but a dull ache, “Dammit all to hell what the fuck was that?” glancing up at the clock on the wall, he winced he just had enough time to make it to the farms before all the kids worried over him not showing up. Struggling to his feet, Aaron swayed for a moment before he decided he was steady enough to walk out of the chamber and make his way outside to the entry. Once outside, he ported to the vet barn and smiled as he heard the screams of “Aaron,” before youngsters starting hugging him.

 

 

Pain pretty much gone now, Aaron returned the hugs and kissed the temples of practically everyone there as they basked in his love. Laughing, Aaron walked around the barn as the youngsters stole another hug before breaking up and heading to their work parties, after an enjoyable half hour, Aaron leaned up against the gestalt chair and looked at Kevin who had portation duty this morning for this section, “How familiar are you with the Core programming?”

 

 

“Well, I guess I’ve spent the most time working with the Core, but I don’t think anyone will ever truly know everything about the Core. I do know it is almost fanatical in its programming of ensuring Clan Stranton survives, why, is there a problem?” Kevin asked, as he watched the first load of eggs being brought back up from the chicken tractors.

 

 

“Because while I was down there, something strange happened, I seemed to trigger several Core directives I've never heard of and it hit me with a scanner that hurt enough to cause me to black out for several moments,” Aaron sighed as he thought about having to go over to the sea farm to finish up hug duty, the best start to the day ever invented, he thought.

 

 

Worried, Kevin looked up after porting the eggs to the Clan dining hall and city kitchen, “Do you remember what directives you triggered, I don’t think I’ve hit anything yet on Core directives in my searches of the system?”

 

 

Looking up in thought, Aaron recalled the pain filled haze of three directives, “I think I triggered 001 and 002 plus something called the Rise of the Empire, and the third one is the one most troubling.” Standing tall and stretching, Aaron felt several pops, “After this latest, it is a damn good thing version 1.0 is not around or he would be re-growing all his limbs after I pulled them off. If you think you can do it without triggering anything else, do you think you can download a list of Core directives we can skim through, I would like to know what I triggered, and I want to keep it from happening again, if I can help it...I am so not into pain.”

 

 

Pushing against the arms of the gestalt chair, Kevin rose up enough to meet Aaron’s lips and kissed him, “I’ll give it a try, if not today, first thing tomorrow. Did you find out anything else while you were in the Core about the station?”

 

 

Pulling power from the gestalt, Aaron smiled, “Well, I found out there are five gestalt recliners, so after breakfast, I’ll need two more volunteers to go with us.” Kissing Kevin once more and feeling the ache of no release from this morning, he smiled centimeters from Kevin’s face, “I’ll see you at breakfast; I have to go before I’m missed.”

 

 

Kevin stared at the spot Aaron ported out of for a moment and deciding to stay back this morning, he ported the next load to the city kitchens and made up his mind, while Aaron was gone, he and Tim would visit the Core to find out what the hell happened.

 

 

Noticing Joe port into the Clan Hall, Aaron stood up and cleared his throat to get everyone’s attention, “Well, since the Reliant’s captain is here, I suppose it is time to go, Now before Xon and Pete step forward to fulfill Pete’s wet dream,” Aaron had to wait for the laughter to die down, even Pete was laughing and nodding his head. “Seriously, there are a total of five Gestalt recliners on the gestalt deck of the SO001, so I need at least two more of those going with us to be fully trained, so I guess now is the time to let me know who is coming and who is staying.”

 

 

Pete and Xon stood up and walked over to Aaron’s side and Tim started to stand before Kevin placed a hand on his arm and pulled him back down to his seat, David stood up and pulled Derrick to his feet and walked over to stand next to Aaron and Kenny and his group of hunters who had caught Richard, and Damien ran over.

 

 

Glancing around and seeing that there were more than the three required to get into the Core if needed, Aaron smiled, “Alrighty, I expect we will be back by lunch time at the latest. Once the station is here and parked in high Earth orbit, all of the rest of you can feel free to explore it any time you wish.” Smiling at the excited faces, Aaron noticed Shoji off to the side with his brother, we really have to sit down and find out what to do about those two soon, “Shoji, can I make a request for lunch? If you can, I would dearly love if you could put together happy family, fried rice and eggrolls for lunch.”

 

 

Shoji rapidly bobbed his head up and down, “Yes sir,” as he smiled and rapidly went over menus with his brother.

 

 

Kenny looked up at his brother and wondered, “What is happy family?”

 

 

“Beef, Pork, Chicken along with Shrimp and usually scallops or other fish stir fried with vegetables. It’s really good, though expensive,” Richard whispered the explanation and giggled when Kenny rubbed his belly, the universal sign for yummy among the younger generation.

 

 

Smiling at Richard’s explanation, Aaron noticed, for the first time, he had forgotten something important, closing his eyes and concentrating, he ported a small wood box to his hand, “Richard, come over here for a moment would you, after this, we’ll be leaving, so the rest of you get anything you need, if you don’t already have it that is.” Opening the box, Aaron carefully pulled out the chain and let the rest of the Clan see the medallion hanging from it before passing the box over to David to place on the table. “I should have given you this the other day, Richard, but in the excitement I forgot about it.”

 

 

Holding up the medallion so Richard could see it clearly, Aaron smiled as Richard teared up, “This is the symbol of my Clan…our Clan and once you wear this, you are ours always and forever.” Kinetically releasing the snap, Aaron stepped forward and placed the chain around Richard’s neck before once again using kinetics to seal it, letting the medallion fall from his fingers to bounce lightly off of Richard's chest Aaron pulled him close and kissed him before turning him around and pushing him towards David as the others lined up to welcome Richard to the Clan, as they did Xon. Aaron smiled as Richard ended up back in front of him and he pulled him close and looked down with a smile, “Okay, folks time to get the show on the road, those that need a ride pair up and I’ll meet you on the Reliant’s gestalt deck,” Aaron sent a visualization to everyone, just in case and then, holding onto Richard, he ported them up to the Reliant.

 

 

Hugging Richard one last time, Aaron walked over to the railing once the rest of the Clan ported in and grinned as Joe stood there at his command chair beaming his way, “Alrighty…Captain, if you would take us Z plus five to the plane of the ecliptic I and my Clan shall do our duty and port us to Centauri.”

 

 

Letting Joe have his fun, Aaron walked back to the gestalt chairs as Joe was rapidly firing orders and people were grinning as they carried them out. “Let’s do this as a practice run of linking, David, Derrick, I’ll pull you in so you can watch what we do, so later once we are aboard the station, you will know what to expect.”

 

 

Taking his seat, Aaron touched a section of the arm and the seat reclined back and he pulled the terminal up and around and logged in, bringing the gestalt’s reactor out of hibernation. Opening his mind as he brought power up to twenty five percent, Aaron brushed his mind against his loves' and brought them into the link one by one. Once they were linked up and standing next to each other in the mental landscape, Aaron increased the power output to one hundred percent and the three of them started to pull power at an incredible rate as Aaron visualized their destination and showed them how to use their minds to encompass something as large as the reliant. “Size is not a hindrance if you are linked like we are; let our mind feel the Reliant and then knowing where we are going all of us together now, push,” and a moment later, the Reliant blinked out of the Earths solar system and two blinks later appeared above the plane of the ecliptic in the Sigma Gamma Alpha Centauri system one hundred and thirty seven light years away.

 

 

Amidst the cheers and catcalls from the crew, Aaron opened his eyes while pressing the button on the chair's arm, he let it bring his body back to a sitting position as he slowly let the link dissolve as the Clan sent their excitement to each other, even Xon mentally was jumping up and down in joy, as his first long range port was successful.

 

 

The communications officer's voice rang out over the bedlam, causing instant silence, “Sir, we are being challenged and targeted…what the hell, the Reliant just responded all on its own.”

 

 

As everyone rushed back to their stations, Joe glanced over his shoulder to see Aaron with his eyes closed in concentration and his weapons officer yelled out, confused, “We’re no longer being targeted, what the hell just happened.”

 

 

Opening his eyes, Aaron stood up and stopped when he hit the railing and looked down on the command deck, “It seems this system is very well protected, I guess I should have expected something like this.” Smiling, as Joe turned to look at him, “I think it’s time we moved closer don’t you? After all, we have a couple of hours to explore Centauri before we have to board the station and port back, it would be a shame to come all this way and not take a peek at our future home.”

 

 

Joe stared at Aaron for a moment before turning around, “Right, you heard him, Carson set course for near Centauri orbit, put us above the main city and start recording. I think the people back home will be very interested in getting this upload when we get back.”

 

 

Sensing the Clan surround him and press into him, Aaron smiled without taking his eyes off the main plasma as the scene of the fourth and fifth planet started to grow larger. “Aaron can we orbit the fifth planet first, I want to try out our new invention to see if it works,” Xon asked, as he interrupted Aaron’s thoughts.

 

 

Still smiling at being here in person instead of echoed memories, Aaron glanced over his shoulder, “The fifth planet?” shaking his head, he turned so he was facing Xon, “I guess I really didn't pay attention to anything other than what was stored here, no, that’s not it, every time I thought about it and wanted to sneak away to investigate, I was side tracked as another thing reared its head, so what’s special about the fifth planet?”

 

 

Xon bobbed his head once before smiling, “I have spent the last two days studying everything I could on this system, after Pete let me into the hidden terminal room so I could complete my studies. This system has two life sustaining worlds on it; the fifth planet is an ideal mimic of Earth, and the fourth planet, where our counterparts eventually settled, is a tropical paradise.” Pointing to the plasma, Xon smiled, “according to the records, the fifth planet was used for farming and should have some left over earth animals on it, the records stated that all farming operations were carried out on the fifth planet, due to the fact that Earth life was readily adapted to it and they could grow familiar crops.”

 

 

“Sir, an information packet is being uploaded to our system,” the communications officer stated, as the side screen blinked and new information appeared on it.

 

 

“Joe, head over to five and put us in orbit above the agricultural station,” Aaron smiled back at Xon and walked down the steps to the command deck. “Since you know the most about this system right now, why don’t you share it with us.”

 

 

Xon walked around so his back was to one side of the plasma and faced Aaron smiling, “We need to get Mark, Tommy and Brian over here soon,” Xon told them, as he glanced at the screen above the science station which showed the agricultural station and the world map showed this was only one of dozens.

 

 

“If we do, I’m afraid they won’t want to come back,” Aaron laughed, as he moved closer to the screen and saw how vast the agriculture stations were, increasing the magnification, Aaron froze momentarily before he pointed to the screen, “Those farms are in full production, look at all those cattle and the fruit groves.” Sitting down in the chair in front of the science station terminal, Aaron let his fingers dance across the touch screen as he pulled up information, “now just where in the hell are all those crops going?”

 

 

“Fascinating,” Xon commented, as he moved behind Aaron so he could read over his shoulder. “The fifth planet was nicknamed Farm, and in the alternate timeline, all food production was carried out here, it was a quick port over to Altare Prime and there were specialty farms over there that grew local crops…Stop.”

 

 

Xon pointed to a section on the screen, “Please scroll back and open that file.” Eyes bugging out and eyebrows disappearing into his hairline, Xon stepped back, “The fifth planet is completely terra-formed.” Pointing out the section that had DNA scans listed, Xon leaned over to get a closer look, “The archive did not mention that this world is fully Earth based in…everything.”

 

 

“How is this possible,” Xon was shocked as he turned to look at the rest of the Clan who were just as awed and shocked as he was.

 

 

“I think you need to run your experiment Xon, and then I need to go down to the fourth planet and visit the Core, the sooner the better,” Aaron pushed back from the science station and stood up, “Can you run the transporter from here or do you need to be in the cargo bay?”

 

 

Xon stood staring at the blinking information a moment longer before standing up, “I shall return momentarily, I must run the sequence from the transporter / replicator console,” giving one last look at the plasma screen, Xon ported out.

 

 

A minute later the science station plasma changed and Aaron watched as the tree Xon transported down shimmered into existence and studied the screen for a moment before deciding it appeared to have worked, sending a command to the agricultural station to monitor the tree, Aaron turned around and ordered the Reliant to move to orbit over the capital city on four or Altare prime as Xon referred to it, “Joe, place us in orbit around Prime, above the capital city, then prepare the crew for exploration duty, once we’re in orbit.”

 

 

Sensing Xon port back, “I see the initial test was a success, how soon before you can call it a total success?” Aaron asked, as he stared at the plasma and the view of the fourth planet they were beginning to orbit.

 

 

“One would assume that if no damage is noticed in one week's time, that the test was a success and we can use this technique without fail, the greatest factor in its success is the fact that the farm planet is a biological clone of Earth.” Xon replied, as he moved over so Richard and Damien could hug him, one on each side.

 

 

“I have a feeling the Reliant will be making many trips back and forth, plus the fact once the step off station is back in the Sol System, it will become easy to port back and forth. I have a feeling we are going to want to man the farm planet as soon as possible, it will solve a growing problem of our stretched resources,” Aaron smiled as he glanced over his shoulder, “I’m making an assumption that the Core will have all the data from the Farm in its memory and we might even be able to take back with us the latest harvest.”

 

 

“Sir, we are in stationary orbit above the capital.”

 

 

“Joe, have the teams port down, they have two hours before they have to be back on board with their reports,” Aaron gave one last look at the main plasma before sending a visualization to his lovers, “This is where we need to go, from there, I’ll let you explore the Clan Compound while I go visit the Core, I would take some of you with me, but I need to make sure that your DNA profiles are uploaded, so better to be safe. We’ll port in three…” Aaron pathed as he pulled Pat and Doug close and mentally counted down until he hit three and ported with them to the Clan Compound.

 

 

Joe stared at the spot the Clan was a moment before and stood up and went to the Plasma, “Carlson, you go down first, be back in an hour so I can have a chance to check out the naval command center.”

 

 

 

“Why did you hold me back?” Tim asked, as the group ported up to the Reliant for the trip to Centauri, “Something happened to Aaron, I need to know about?”

 

 

“We’ll talk in the Core, I think we'd better man it with three of us until Aaron gets back,” Spotting Brian walking their way Kevin motioned him over, “Got anything vital that can’t be put off for awhile? If not, we need you as a third in the Core, maybe between the three of us we can figure out what the hell happened there this morning to Aaron.”

 

 

Placing a hand on Tim and Brian’s shoulder Kevin ported them to the entry room and walked over to the door to be scanned and let in, “Aaron said this morning that he tripped three Core directives and it knocked him out for several minutes, so while it is a good idea to man the Core in case of needing to do a reset, I was hoping we could find out what those directives are.”

 

 

As the three of them walked into the Core, Brian went over to the recliner closest to the open weapons clocker and laid down while Tim went to the far side leaving the central recliner for Kevin, “Do you know what directives he tripped or are we going to have to ask for a replay?” settling back on the recliner, Brian looked up at the ceiling, “Identify…”

 

 

“Identity confirmed…Brain Woods Stranton…Command Authorization enabled.”

 

 

“He mentioned three of them we need to look up, 001, 002 and ‘Rise of the Empire’ so we can start with those first,” Kevin laid back and waiting for the Core to finish indentifying Tim he called out, “Identify…”

 

 

“Identity confirmed…Kevin Miller Stranton…Father of Crown Prince Unborn…Command Authorization granted…”

 

 

“I think I know what Aaron feels like when the system throws him for a loop like this, can we assume I cussed up a storm and, what the hell,” Kevin sighed as he glared at the ceiling, as he wondered how Aaron dealt with the constant surprises.

 

 

Tim giggled, “What I want to know is if it watched the two of you create the baby, talk about a peeping Tom.”

 

 

Growling his agreement, Kevin glanced at the ceiling, “Query…expand Core Directive 001…”

 

 

“Null Data…”

 

 

“Okay, I guess this is not going to be easy after all,” Kevin sighed.

 

 

“I was wondering is the Core intelligent, or maybe I should be asking if it is sentient, you know, aware.” Brian asked as he turned his head, “I know you told me it was partially organic so is it alive?”

 

 

“Aaron said that there were fail safes to keep the Core from becoming aware…or sentient, so I doubt it is, why,” Tim asked as he turned on his side to face Kevin and Brian.

 

 

“Well, I thought it would be helpful if you could talk to the Core like a normal person, I think Kevin got a null data return because he doesn’t know how to ask it the right way, if it had a personality or more of a fuzzy logic environment it would be easier,” Brian watched Kevin’s face as he explained to see if it was making sense.

 

 

“I would be afraid to create a personality in case the fail safes kicked in and saw me as a threat,” Kevin finally admitted, after giving it some thought.

 

 

“Query…Explain designation Core…” Brian said as he thought maybe his idea was possible.

 

 

“Core…Cerebral Organic Retrieval Environment…”

 

 

“Okay, so the system is a partial organic brain analog,” Kevin mused as he thought how to use this information.

 

 

“Redefine designation…Core system will answer to Corry in normal conversational speech and interpret speech and commands using fuzzy logic …” Brian looked over at Kevin who looked shocked, “I tell you three times…execute…”

 

 

“Authorization Validation…Tier Omega…Authorization Valid…”

 

 

“Authorization Validation…Level Bravo Omega One…Authorization Valid…”

 

 

“Enabling Fuzzy logic and speech interpreters to call designation Corry…I hear you three times…”

 

 

Brian grinned and looked over at the shocked expression on Kevin’s face, “What? I just thought it would make sense if we could just ask normally, I have no clue how to deal with all those commands and pauses to get what I want to know, plus I like the name Corry.”

 

 

Tim giggled before turning back to face the ceiling, leaving Kevin staring at Brain in shock, “Corry can you tell me what protocols Aaron tripped this morning and why they hurt him?”

 

 

“His Majesty triggered Directive 001 which establishes line of succession with the conception of his son. Directive 002 was also triggered as a result of the negative answer to core directive 4. Directive 002 sends the authorization signal to all Alteran technology along with DNA imprint of his Majesty Aaron Stranton to all Alteran Core systems giving him absolute control over them. Finally his Majesty  triggered the Rise of the Empire protocol as his intention to expand the race into space solidifies the empire and DNA samples were taken along with a Neural Imprint.”

 

 

“Oh shit, I don’t think Aaron is going to like this too much, the first time he logs into the Core I want to watch his expression,” Tim giggled before glancing Kevin’s way.

 

 

“How in the world did you ever figure out how to reprogram the system like this,” Kevin finally asked as he glanced over at Brian.

 

 

“I read it in a science fiction novel,” Brian shrugged, “Besides, it will be so much easier getting things done now,” Brian smiled as he glanced out of the corner of his eye at Kevin. Having a thought he did not like, “Corry what is the chance that your new designation could become sentient tripping fail safes?”

 

 

“After fifty three thousand years of constant use, the percent will rise to ten percent, just below fail safe.”

 

 

“I think we need to let Aaron know about that, and let him decide what to do, it’s too bad we can’t see what is going on, on Centauri, it’s going to be a killer having to wait,’ Kevin sighed as he congratulated Brian, “Good job on your idea Brian.”

 

 

“Thanks,” Brain blushed, before wondering, “Why don’t you ask, it seems kind of silly that there would not be a way for the separate planets to keep in touch besides telepathy.”

 

 

“Makes sense I guess…it does doesn’t it or how else would the Core system on Centauri know about the DNA profiles,” Kevin was excited, “Corry can you establish a connection with the Reliant or the Centauri Core so we can see what’s going on?”

 

 

“Connection being established...connection established do you wish this to be available to the rest of the city?”

 

 

“Please do, Corry make the connection available to all Alteran terminals, live feed please,” Kevin grinned as he laid back and watched the Reliant establish orbit around the fifth planet and a minute later heard the door open and Mark walk in.

 

 

“I don’t know how you’re doing it but the city is going nuts, not to mention Tommy is creaming his shorts, well he would, if he was wearing anything,” Mark laughed, “Hey can we get this information released to everyone so they can get their hands on it?”

 

 

“Sure thing love, Corry, establish permanent link to Altare Prime and Farm, and release to general terminals all non classified information,” Kevin grinned as Mark made faces as he looked around trying to figure out who Kevin was talking to.

 

 

“Permanent link established downloading data and releasing over ninety percent to general terminal access, do you require I upload all current records and data to Altare Prime Core?”

 

 

“Do so Corry,” Brian giggled, as Mark walked over and sat on the side of his recliner.

 

 

Mark looked around and not seeing anyone and recognizing the voice as similar to the Core's, “Brian, who or what is Corry?”

 

 

“Brian figured out a way to add a fuzzy logic interface to the Core so we can talk normally and get the response we need, don’t worry we made sure he was not going to become sentient by doing this,” Kevin grinned, “just think at the leaps we can make in programming now.”

 

 

“I’ll leave the programming up to you, though, do you think it is possible to have voice access in the hidden terminal room, it would be a help and then Tommy and I can get started on looking through this information and not interfere with your work,” Mark looked at Brian with a smile and leaned over and kissed him before standing up.

 

 

“Corry, did you hear the request, is it possible to have an interactive voice station in the hidden terminal room in Aaron’s library so the Clan can use it?” Brian asked, as he watched his lover’s firm tight butt walk over to Kevin and he leered as Mark leaned over to kiss Kevin, giving him a nice view.

 

 

“Temporary 24 hour access granted, under your current authorization level.”

 

 

Smiling, Mark rushed to Tim and kissed him, “Great, thanks, I have a lot of work to do, see ya later,” Mark rushed out of the door.

 

 

“Corry send a message to Aaron, please, that we are watching him by live feed,” Tim smiled at the thought, then grumbled, “Next time, even if Pete is a SCIFI geek he stays here where we can have a class one path around.”

 

 

All over the city and the hidden temple, people stopped what they were doing and sat glued to the terminal monitors as the live feed from Altare prime and the Farm planet started coming in. The Shaolin in the city smiled at each other in happiness while all over the city, those that had been rescued made up their minds to take the offer of being altered so they could belong to something greater than they were.

 

 

“Mr. President, are you sure about this, I mean this is a huge gamble,” Bob asked, nervously wringing his hands as he watched the camera crew finish setting up.

 

 

“It’s a gamble I know. But, Bob, we’ve already lost California and Hawaii and we know I’m not really in charge, even though I was elected,” shaking his head sadly the President looked up, “Aaron was right, we, or I, don’t have much choice; the country is fracturing. Any hope of keeping us together lies in me being open and honest with the American people, worst case scenario has us fracturing into ten or more countries, some of them having the bulk of the nuclear inventory. And if the extremists get their hands on them, well what Aaron did to New York will seem like a slap on the butt compared to what he would do if one of those missiles were fired towards his kingdom.”

 

 

Sighing, Bob sat down heavily in the chair across from the President out of range of the cameras, “I know, it’s just I’m nervous as hell, this will either work in our favor, or blow up in our faces.”

 

 

“Look at it this way Bob, if we continue to work with Aaron like this, and it blows up, we can at least appeal to him for help, because we did the right thing,” the President tried to drive the point home and after seeing Bob slowly nod his head, he let his breath out slowly.

 

 

“Thirty Seconds, Mr. President.”

 

 

EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE…”This is the activation of the emergency broadcast network…please stand by…” EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

 

 

All over the United States, the emergency broadcast network was activated for the first time not related to weather alerts. The President sat watching the signal screen on the monitor as countless Americans scrambled to find their television or radio stations and listened in as the tone told them to stand by.

 

 

The President watched the cameraman motion with his hand and when he got to one finger he looked up. “My fellow Americans, a crisis has hit our great nation, the likes of which our founding fathers never dreamed of.”

 

 

The President took a big breath and let it out slowly, “For me at least, it all started several weeks ago when I met with the King of Altare, I had invited him to meet with me at Camp David. Or should I say I should have met him at Camp David, but instead I was transported to his jet after watching the FBI, and CIA along with several Secret Service agents complete what they thought was an assassination of the King, in their bid to get their hands on the Alteran’s technology, so they could control the American people. That was the day I learned that even though I was elected to serve the people, I was never in control. In fact, the President had lost control to a shadow government, long ago.”

 

 

Sighing, the President looked away for a moment, “From what we have been able to piece together so far, this shadow government took control fifty years ago, and slowly over time has been building up their members and infiltrated all levels of government. Their aims are simple, to have total control over every aspect of each and every American's life.”

 

 

Staring into the camera, the President’s next words were harsh, “From behind the scenes, they have controlled all information being given to the highest levels of government. Without the full unaltered picture, decisions have been made that are not in the best interest of the country or its people, a large portion of the information was fabricated, and I believe the attacks on September eleventh were orchestrated by this group so that you, the American people would be willing to trade freedom for safety. But what no one realized was that the safety that you all were trading away was not originating from a foreign source.”

 

 

“Early last night, the states of Hawaii and California voted for secession from the union. In the past we fought a civil war over that simple fact, but not on my watch. As of this moment, the United States recognizes the independent states of Hawaii and California. I understand Hawaii has already been accepted as a territory of the Kingdom of Altare.” The President sighed, “This is not easy for me, and after reading and watching the goings on in New York, I think the festering of corruption from the claws of the shadow government is almost all encompassing.”

 

 

Picking up a pen and signing the top sheet of paper on his desk, the President looked up, “From this moment on, no person or agency can act by my word without being told face to face, from my own lips my wishes, so that means if a special agent of the FBI is told the order comes from me, unless they witness in person the order coming from my lips, it is to be assumed it is a false order and an act of treason.” Picking up the sheet of paper and turning it around so the cameras could zoom in on it, “Executive order 2004-11, I just signed it into effect, here in front off all of you, and it states in simple terms that all federal laws placed on the books since 1954 are invalid. That does not roll back all laws country wide, but if any laws the states enacted are funded by federal money, they will no longer be so funded.”

 

 

Glaring into the camera, the President waited a moment to let his words sink in, “I fully expect to have the shadow government try to have me removed, even impeached, but I will only step down when I am impeached by a fully loyal government to the American people, ones that have passed telepathic scans, like the ones done over the past three days in New York. All the rhetoric and bullshit is over, the time for politics is over as it is past time for the American people to take back their lives.”

 

 

Picking up his pen once more, the President signed another piece of paper and then held it up, “Executive order 2004-12, I herby order the branch of the federal government known as the IRS to only collect ten percent of an individual’s earnings, and fifteen percent of a company or corporation. The American people have been taxed to death and have wanted for a long time, a flat tax and the time is here. From this day forth, a flat tax is in effect.”

 

 

“Let’s be realistic folks, this is not going to hurt the poor like all the political infighting about this issue and the politicians tell you, common sense tells you if you only make five thousand dollars a year, that means you pay five hundred dollars in taxes, and if you make fifty thousand dollars a year you pay five thousand dollars in taxes.” The President looked into the camera, “no matter what anyone tries to tell you, it will not hurt the poor or the country. We will take in the same amount of money on a flat tax as under the old system, but it will be fair to one hundred percent of the people or businesses in America.”

 

 

“The last document I want to show all of you is the treaty signed by President Roosevelt in 1941 with the Kingdom of Altare. For a treaty it is surprisingly simple and easily understood. Though the shadow government buried it from sight and until I met with the King of Altare, even I did not know of its existence. Luckily, the Queen of England was at the meeting and she recognized it and advised me on what it means. This document has been broken by people of the United States government a total of four times to my knowledge, broken by people that have been told it was by my orders that they did so.” Sighing as he let the document drop to the desk, the President looked out the window for a moment, “I want to show you something, this footage was found in the Vice Presidential vault, not the Presidential vault where it should have been.”

 

 

The President took a drink of water as the screen cut away and the film showed and his hand shook as he set it down and watched along with the American public the meeting between the foreign government representatives as the Alteran King laid down the law and the devastating attack as the device being deployed by the Alteran King, who looked like Aaron’s father, completely destroyed all life on several islands and a stretch of ground here in the U.S. turning it into a desert. Once he noticed the film was over and he was being taped again, he cleared his throat.

 

 

“It is a strange feeling to know that your own second in command was part of this shadow government, and when we investigated the Vice President's vault so much was revealed to us. But for purposes of this conversation, we as a people are lucky that the King of Altare is someone who cares, and someone who is giving us this chance as he realizes that the government is not doing these attacks.” The President let a tear finally fall and trail unnoticed down his cheek.

 

 

“At this moment in time, as I sat down here to address all of you, I feel ashamed to call myself an American. But with your help to root out those out to overthrow the government, a duly elected government, we can stand strong and proud once again.” The President looked down before looking up with a plea on his face, “Together, we can get through this, together we can take back our country and move forward to a proud future for all Americans. As I leave you this morning to think about what I have said and to demand those you elected to represent you actually do their jobs, I will leave this last thought with all of you.”

 

 

“We have all watched on the television, events unfolding in New York when the local out of control government invaded a foreign embassy, my advisors were all for a matched response when news had reached our ears over the invasion, but then the truth came out, and I ordered no intervention.” The President was back to glaring at the camera, “lest anyone forget this man…this nation has sixty four worlds in its empire, and the technologies to make us all look like Neanderthals.”

 

 

“I was given the option of filing a petition to request the return of the state of New York after forty eight hours, after ninety six hours the option would be removed and the state would forever remain a territory of the Alteran Kingdom by right of conquest and their laws would be the law of the land.” The President leaned forward over his desk, and everyone could see he was serious, “I have a little over twenty nine hours left before I have to make that request, or lose the right. I am telling the American public here and now, I will NOT be making any request. Those in New York almost caused the death of every man, woman and child in this country. I refuse…if the people wish, they can move out of the state. I am sure there will be plenty of people who want to buy up their homes and live under Alteran law. If congress and the senate wish to make the request, so be it. But it will go in without my signature on it. I realize this may be my last official act, so I hereby order all federal agencies to be examined by telepathic scan, starting with congress and the senate. At least then, by lunchtime, the American people can be assured that the people in office have the best interests of you the American people in their hearts.”

 

 

The President stared into the camera until the monitor went dead; sighing, he stood up, “Well Bob, the shit has hit the fan, now it is out of our hands.” Glancing at the secret service agent by the door, he simply said, “Do it, send them in.”

 

 

“Excuse me sir’s, the order's been given, you have a go,” the secret service agent told the team of FBI and Alteran Security officers as he opened the door and escorted the orange and brown clad people into the capitol rotunda.

 

 

Glancing around the Clan Compound, Aaron was surprised by the outwardly at least similar layout of the Clan Hall back on Earth, looking for a clue to the location of the Core entry room Aaron went searching around; as he walked into the larger house, he was confronted with a hologram.

 

 

“Hello Aaron,” the shimmering hologram spoke up and Aaron felt a pang hit him in the chest as he recognized the voice from his other self’s memories.

 

 

Staring at the hologram, Aaron silently cried as he saw several figures long dead and in this new timeline still living and having fun finding their way in life.  “Long after our Aaron decided to go back in time, we decided to rebuild these worlds for you and this program and message was activated when you came here on your own, to expand, not to hide and regroup.”

 

 

Another voice started and the image smiled at him, “I hope you are pleased with what we have done for you, when your other self went into the past, we became masters over time. And it gave us another seventy five years to prepare this place for you. This system is the single most well defended place in the entire universe, weapons and technology that had never been seen before, things we discovered, we placed in the Core here, deep underground in preparation for this day.”

 

 

Xon along with the others, who had been called by Kenny, strode forward and placed a hand on his lovers and leaders shoulder as they watched in awe the love the others had felt for Aaron rivaled their own.

 

 

“By traveling into the past, or more accurately, by sending our equipment into the past, we completely terra-formed the fifth planet so it is a clone of Earth. Down to the smallest of species, we stocked the rivers, lakes and seas with DNA clones of species long lost on our Earth by the time we moved here, and we stocked it with the most advanced automatic farms in existence.”

 

 

“We know our Aaron planned to give you some of his memories, especially about us, but we hope that you found love on your own and are here now surrounded by those you love.”

 

 

“When you enter the Core for the first time, tell it to activate Phoenix. It will activate our last and greatest gift to you,” the only one who had not said anything smiled as he told Aaron this. “We know you better than you know yourself, and since this message is the one being played for you, we are happier than you can imagine. This means that the timeline has shifted in such a way that the world we came from can never occur, and for that alone you have my love. The other thing is that the Clan does not include any members of the original Clan from our timeline, knowing you have a select few of our Aarons memories, I must ask you three times…” the image paused for a moment before continuing, “I must ask you three times Aaron, the one who wears the body of my lover and father of my children, if those of us that were your Clan in the other timeline are altered, NEVER…NEVER induct them into the Clan. Respect what we were, not who we remind you of, and respect those who have captured your heart now.”

 

 

The youngest looking one stepped up and smiled at them, “If you are anything like our Aaron, you will be crying your eyes out right now, then later on, after our surprise, you will be shocked, and maybe…” he laughed, “Just maybe you will forgive your would have been future self for what he did to you, just remember, he was trying his best to prevent the future we lived through from happening, so he not only embraced what we foisted onto him, he passed it to you; forgive him and us, but it was the only way to ensure the future you are living right now.”

 

 

“Just remember, Aaron, use your anger and stubbornness when dealing with the other nations and because this message was played and not one of the ten others we left, I can gladly say this,” the image smiled, “Don’t give them a chance, Aaron, if they cross you, put them down hard and fast. Move here to Altare Prime as quick as you can, and skim off the best and brightest from earth to colonize the other worlds. Make this a grand Empire that will last for thousands of generations.”

 

 

As the image of the three people started to fade away a voice could be heard as the image went out and another took its place, “This is the core entry chamber Aaron, go there with our love and respect. Remember us fondly, and love and cherish those you love now.”

 

 

Aaron wiped his eyes and hugged the Clan to him as they hugged him back, after several moments, Aaron smiled, “Well, one thing they asked me to do, I already had decided to do on my own. I was not about to invite into the Clan any of the timeline 1.0 people, it would not be fair to them or me, and certainly not to any of you. Staring at the visual image Aaron closed his eyes and concentrated, yes he thought I can get there.

 

 

“You guys take off and explore, I’m going to go to the Core now and get this place up and running, maybe find out what surprise they left me,” Laughing, Aaron hugged everyone in turn, “This way, I get to cuss them all out without anyone eavesdropping on me.” Grinning, Aaron stepped back and waved as he closed his eyes and ported to the room he had been shown.

 

 

Glancing around the room, Aaron walked forward towards the only visible door and stopped when a beam of light descended from the ceiling to scan him for entry, once he had been scanned and the door opened, Aaron walked through. Taking a moment to look around, Aaron noticed a set of rooms around the central core, walking around and poking his head in each doorway, he was slightly shocked to find everything from living quarters to a med bay to a weapons locker that put the one on Earth to shame. Deciding exploring could be done later, Aaron went over to the raised pedestal and made his way to the strange recliner in the center and sat down before leaning back into the egg shaped top, resting his head against the pillowed back. “Identify…”

 

 

“Identity confirmed…King Aaron Stranton, leader of the sixty five worlds and Emperor of humanity…”

 

 

“I’m almost afraid to ask, and I know I’m afraid to utter the request,” Aaron mumbled to himself, and sighed as he thought maybe it was not too late to just go back home and make love to his lovers and close their borders after putting his head in the sand; let the rest of the world go to hell. Sighing, he knew that would not be something he could ever do, after all if he did that, he would lose Andrew and Edward and he was not willing to give them up just yet, if ever.

 

 

“Activate…Activate Phoenix…”  Aaron called out, while thinking; I’m really stepping in it now. Closing his eyes and crossing his fingers, toes and legs Aaron listened for anything and slowly peaked out through one eye before seeing an image appear and stare at him, grinning.

 

 

“I gave myself several moments to make sure you opened your eyes back up, my lord, before speaking, I am the first of many surprises in store for you, I am an interactive hologram interface designed to be a tutor as you learn the new systems.”

 

 

Aaron made himself comfortable as he stared curiously at the hologram, wondering what he had in store for him, “And the first of these surprises they left for me, not to mention what do I call you?”

 

 

“You may call me Jeeves, my lord; I believe one of the programmers mentioned something about a search engine,” Jeeves smiled as he waved his holographic arm towards the plasma. “Before we start, I should inform you that I have a message from Kevin relayed through Corry that your discovery of the system and the exploration the Reliant’s crew is doing is going back to Earth live. The images of what you and your Clan are doing though are going back live to the Core chamber on Earth only.” As Jeeves said that the plasma came to life and Aaron was confronted with an image of Kevin, Tim and Brian laying on the gestalt recliners and starting back at him.

 

 

“Hello loves,” Aaron smiled up at the plasma and he saw them smile in return. “I see you found a few things out for yourself, I do have one question though, who is Corry?”

 

 

Brain smiled and waved, “This is so cool, live two way communication. Oh, Corry is the new designation for the Core system here on Earth, and before you get all wrapped up in whatever, you should know that Mark and Tommy are in the hidden terminal room working up plans for the Farm planet.”

 

 

Aaron laughed before shaking his head, “Well, we wouldn’t want them to get their priorities out of order, would we?” glancing back at the hologram, “I need to get the rest of the Clan down here, is there a protocol in place that will keep out those who have not passed their ordeal like the system on Earth?”

 

 

“No my lord, as this is the Clan bunker, a failsafe point for the Clan, no such condition exists here,” Jeeves explained to Aaron’s smile and then frown.

 

 

“I hope there are other bunkers for the other Alteran’s then?” Aaron pathed Xon, “Xon if all of you would prepare to be ported down, I am going to bring you to the Core.”

 

 

“Of course there is, my lord; we would never leave the Clan as the only survivors of a calamity,” Jeeves replied.

 

 

Aaron, chuckling at Xon’s excitement sent back, “prepare to be ported in three…” and when the count got to one Aaron ported all of them into the chamber and waved, “Up here, guys.”

 

 

Kenny ran up the stairs and skidded to a halt as he took in the hologram, “Whoa another future dead guy, these guys sure liked to make video’s of themselves.”

 

 

“Kenny…” David yelled at his brother sternly, “That’s not nice, you know.”

 

 

“Well they did,” Kenny shrugged as Aaron laughed at him.

 

 

“This is not a video, it’s an interactive tutor created to help teach us how to use what they left behind, I guess they wanted to make sure we knew what to do with all the toys they left for us to play with,” Aaron pointed to the empty seats and looked back at the hologram, “Alright Jeeves, what is the first surprise that was activated for me from the project Phoenix file?”

 

 

“Oh that is too funny,” David laughed and noticing Xon’s expression, “Ask Jeeves is an internet search engine very popular right now.”

 

 

“Well my lord, there are many surprises in store for you, but only three major ones. The first of course is the creation of eleven more SO series stations, ten of which are already positioned in their respective systems. The largest of course is here in Centauri and hidden behind the primary, though after activation of project phoenix, it is on the way to station keeping above the plane the ecliptic between Altare Prime and the Farm.”

 

 

Holding his head up with one hand as he stared at the hologram; Aaron finally said, “Okay, I can see the use for those, in fact it solves a problem or two and will allow our colonization efforts to proceed at a rapid pace,” shifting so he was laying back once more, “What is the second surprise, then?”

 

 

“This one is a little trickier, my lord,” Jeeves told him, “a way was developed to travel dimensions safely and bring over planetary objects, the fifth planet is not a result of terra-forming but as a result of the direct replacement of the planet with an alternate dimension Earth that developed no animal life other than what the remotes imported from other dimensions to support the fauna, the two planets were switched and this new Earth was restocked with life forms we stole from other dimensions.”

 

 

“I can’t say that I like it, but it would be hard to yell and scream at the ones who did it, or even punish them as they are not alive,” Aaron sighed, as he looked around the room at his lovers. “If that was the tricky one, and while not liking it all that much, I’m afraid to ask about the third surprise, I was told I would not like it at all.”

 

 

“True, my lord, the third surprise comes in two parts; a huge fleet has been built and a warship has been recovered and rebuilt after being modified,” Jeeves actually fidgeted.

 

 

“The fleet might be nice and I’m sure very useful as we go out exploring the universe, it is the way you said a warship was recovered and rebuilt, that worries me,” Aaron had a sinking feeling in the pit of his stomach.

 

 

“This vessel was recovered in another dimension and studied and rebuilt, the original, of course, was left in the dimension it was found in and I believe that it eventually fell into a stellar mass,” Jeeves paused for a moment before pointing at the screen and the warship on the screen.

 

 

“That looks like something out of the movies, how big is that thing,” Pete jumped up and moved so he could look at the screen, “and what does it do?”

 

 

“It is ten miles long and half a mile high,” Jeeves looked at Pete, “this ship is a world killer, the only purpose this ship has is to destroy whole worlds with one shot, it is also capable of crossing dimensions and is the first line of defense if an attempt would be made to plunder from us across the dimensional barrier.”

 

 

Aaron looked agitated Xon thought, as he watched him and was not surprised when he told them, “I don’t like it; in fact I am very much against it.” standing up, Aaron walked over to face the hologram, “I want that thing locked down tight, there is not to be mention of this monstrosity anywhere in the database. This is now classified as a Clan Secret and that thing will never be activated as far as I’m concerned.”

 

 

“We are in the business of saving people, not destroying whole worlds,” Aaron took a deep breath, “Maybe in some twisted future we might need that thing, but for now, I want it hidden and safely locked up.”

 

 

Aaron looked to the monitor at the weapon, “They were right, I don’t like this, maybe it was too easy for them to kill, after all they spent all those hundreds of years in a war, but this is different. This thing takes out the innocent as well as the guilty, surely they would know me and my reaction, was I that different after all those years?”

 

 

“I do not believe you have considered this from their perspective,” Jeeves offered, as he turned to face Aaron, “They built this not out of anger or need for war, but out of fear,” the hologram pointed at the ship on the monitor.

 

 

Pete, curious and shocked at Aaron’s demeanor cocked his head, “Fear?”

 

 

“After discovering and perfecting the way to easily move things across dimensions, they remembered the Scree, and they came up with a solution that would not cost a universe its life,” Jeeves looked at Aaron as he said this.

 

 

Finally, settling down somewhat, Aaron shuddered at the mention of destroying a universe, “The order still stands, lock it down, but if we meet another version of the Scree, I won’t hesitate to unlock it,” glancing around at his lovers, he tried to smile, “Fair enough?”

 

 

“Let’s change the subject to something more pleasant shall we,” Aaron smiled at the nods of acceptance from his lovers, then he faced Jeeves, “Jeeves, what happens to all the harvests from the Farm planet, where are they stored?”

 

 

The hologram blinked in and out of phase and then Jeeves replied, “All production to this point has been geared towards increasing the area under cultivation, or in increasing the livestock under care. The first actual harvests can begin at any time and only needs your authorization for the automatics to start processing the harvests instead of disposing of them.”

 

 

Brian, who was scrolling through a listing, looked up at the ceiling and called out, “Aaron looking through the reports, there is a lot of food that was harvested this morning maybe you can bring it back with you.”

 

 

“Will do Brian, that will save us a lot of trouble finding people to raise food for us; I was beginning to wonder if we would have to find a way to replicate food,” Aaron smiled up at the plasma, “We’re running out of time on this trip as it is. Jeeves, can I use you as an interface with the Core or do I have to go through the Core direct.” Thinking about it for a moment he added, “And what is the command line I want to change?”

 

 

“Unfortunately my lord, you can not use me as a command interface, but you wish to change the parameter of harvest bio-disposal to harvest shipment,” Jeeves phased and blinked once more as he shifted programming.

 

 

Glancing up at the ceiling, Aaron worked the command string out in his mind, “Core…Initiate status change…harvest output designation Farm planet…status change…harvest equals process for shipment…initiate…”

 

 

“Standby…”

 

 

“Farm system change in progress…”

 

 

“Status change…positive…”

 

 

“Farm outputs now designate ship, first shipment ready to be transported in fifteen minutes…”

 

 

“We better get moving loves, people will start wondering where we got off to, shortly,” waving for the others to join him, Aaron visualized the Reliant’s gestalt deck, “We better port directly to the Reliant,” smiling as he was hugged by both Pat and Doug, Aaron gave one final glance to make sure everyone was partnered up and then ported out.

 

 

Appearing on the gestalt deck, Aaron looked around and smiled down at Joe who looked a little worried, “Well, it’s about time you showed up you lot had us all worried when all of you disappeared off the monitors.”

 

 

“Sorry Joe, but we entered the Core and that is not something that will ever be broadcast,” Aaron smiled, “But I think you will like a few of the surprises we found out about down there, anyway, if you can move us over to the SO001 and ignore the 002 which is moving into position we can set up shop before bringing up this morning’s harvest from the farm planet.”

 

 

Not taking his eyes off Aaron, Joe motioned for Carlson to move them closer to the station, “I already have a manpower crisis, is this surprise that you think I will like going to cause me more headaches?”

 

 

Laughing, Aaron held onto the rail, “I imagine it will, especially if you ever wanted to be a fleet admiral…Admiral Mandelin.”

 

 

Joe stared at Aaron for a moment before screaming out, “Are you fucking nuts!!!”

 

 

Smirking, Aaron pulled Xon and David close, “Of course not, I have more than enough people to fuck that are sane than to have to resort to the mentally challenged.”

 

 

Xon lifted one eyebrow, “Indeed, one has to wonder if it was your intention to besmirch our sanity in this way.”

 

 

Carlson couldn’t hold back any longer and as his laughter boomed across the deck, the rest of the crew joined in as Joe stood there open mouthed and blushing.

 

 

“You enjoyed that, didn’t you,” Joe accused before giggling, “Fine, make me an Admiral, but if you think I’m giving up the bridge to become a paper pusher, I’ll…I’ll put salt peter in your food.”

 

 

Smiling, Aaron noticed they were on station, “I think you will like the new ships in the fleet, plus, as soon as you get back, you can start recruiting from the Shaolin, as it will be a while before the fleet is retrofitted to Xon’s exacting standards so you have time.”

 

 

 Tapping his communicator, Aaron’s voice rang over the ship, “Attention Sol Station’s crew, port over and standby for deliveries, T-minus fifteen minutes to relocation to Earth’s orbit.” Closing the channel Aaron smiled at Joe.

 

 

Joe looked at Aaron and the smile on his face, “Crap, you’re about to get cute and nasty all at once,” he said, as he fell back into his command chair.

 

 

Smile getting wider Aaron placed a hand on his chest, “Me…where do you get these notions, I’m cute and lovable ask any of the Clan.”

 

Getting serious, Aaron stood up tall as he stretched, “On the other hand, your right. When we port back I want the Reliant to go to full battle stations and move to near Earth orbit, in fact, I want you to enter the Mesosphere and orbit very slowly. My version of a dog and pony show with saber rattling. Then we are going to hit them with the appearance of Sol Station.”

 

 

Joe stared at Aaron for a minute as he digested what he was being told with what he was leaving out, “You’re making a statement, aren’t you?”

 

 

“Very much so, one that tells the world it is not a good idea to fuck with us,” Aaron sighed, as he stared at the station on the monitor, “Fate or some divine intervention seems to be trashing every schedule and plan I spent all that time coming up with. It went from ten years before I stepped foot on Altare Prime, to maybe six months, now it’s down to days.” Knowing this was being transmitted back to Altare, and the city, “All my schedules are now trash, so, as a message that was left from the other timeline suggested to me, I am going to skim off the best and brightest Earth has to offer, and leave all the closed minded bigots behind to wallow in their own filth. Though I expect in the future, I will have to conquer the Earth to bring order and reason back to the human race.”

 

 

“How aggressive do you want me to be when we hit orbit?” Joe was thoughtful as he was thinking about what Aaron said and could not find a flaw in it anywhere, at least not yet.

 

 

Holding his hands out to Pat and Doug, Aaron prepared to port, “Consider this a full scale training exercise, maybe you should consider this a training exercise on how to invade a planet. at the first sign of nuclear weapons going hot though, I want them taken out.” After Aaron and the Clan ported out, Aaron’s last words rang in the ears of everyone, “It is long past time for the humans to grow up and act like responsible adults.”

 

 

Arriving on the gestalt bubble on the Sol Station, Aaron smiled as he found himself surrounded by jungle.

 

 

“All stations report ready,” Kenny called out as he walked over to one of the monitor screens in curiosity and then smiled, “Hey the guys that came over before us have almost finished porting up all the food.”

 

 

Kissing Pat, after being handed an energy drink, Aaron moved around looking over the gestalt recliners as he waited for everyone to catch their breath, finishing, he moved to the center recliner, lay down and closed his eyes a moment, thinking about the changes that were about to happen, this one move would change everything once again, he had to wonder though, if the universe could handle the rapid changes it was foisting off on them, or was there some higher purpose to what was happening?

 

 

Opening his eyes, Aaron smiled as Richard moved over to cuddle next to him and he saw all the others had moved to their recliners and had a cuddle partner. Pulling Richard in tighter, Aaron linked with the rest of the Clan one at a time and smiled as he activated the inter-ship channel and watched a hologram spring up from the floor in front of them showing the bridge of the Reliant. Powering up the gestalt generators to one hundred percent output, Aaron protected the younger ones, as he pulled power and the gestalt bridge practically glowed; and being linked, all of them spoke at once, even Kenny and his two hunters.

 

 

“Reliant, prepare to be ported in three…”

 

 

Joe stared at the monitor in shock as the many voice that was the Clan, warned him what was coming; he was awed at seeing what they could do.

 

 

“Reliant…porting in Three…Two ..Porting.”

 

 

All over Sol Station, the Alteran’s looked at each other in wonder and awe as they watched the monitor feeds showing the gestalt deck, and the Clan had the same exact expression on each of their faces, they were smiling in pleasure, and then the order came over the speakers in one voice, “Prepare to port.”

 

 

“Porting in Three…Two …Porting,” the Clan said in unison as they left the Centauri system and appeared above earth.

 

 

 

 

Editors section:

 

 

Scott’s musings:

 

 

RadioRanchers Musings: My goodness, a Holographic teacher, What will they think of next, a holographic Doctor?  Oh wait, they already have one or somebody does, oops. Let's see, we have a very smart computer called Corry, on earth, and we have a holographic interface on Centauri prime.

 

We have the President stating publicly that he has no intentions of taking New York back from the Alterans. And to top that off he has flat out told everyone that he wants all of the public officials telepathically scanned.  Things are looking better.

Darryl AKA The Radio Rancher

 

 

A/N”