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Nebular Mist

Nebular Mist
Nebula 231

Commander Trajan of USS Rodman had been working at his desk for hours on end, checking the data regarding the nebular mist in Nebula 231 that continued to appear on his monitor.  The information was extremely interesting, and coming a little too fast for him to keep up.  Talk about excited science officers! 

Most of the crew, whether they were regular ship’s crew or masters of science, had been focused on the soft, wispy hues of pale pink intertwined with beige, cream, aquamarine, deep yellow, vividly glittering gold, light blue, and mixtures of several other colors that swept across the main viewscreen, vanished, then reappeared on the other side of the ship.  It was almost like the ship drew the mist to them, but it wouldn’t be the first time that happened.

The swishing tails of nebular mist reminded Trajan of his childhood, especially the first time his father pulled him from bed in the dead of night to witness the most spectacular aurora borealis that had ever appeared close to earth’s north pole.  

Mind if we join the party?”

Jerked out of his reminiscence, Trajan looked up, then laughed. 

“Hey, Ling,” he said to the commanding officer of the science ship USS Chi Song. “Took you long enough to find it, didn’t it?” 

Eh,” Captain Ling replied with a broad grin as he leaned forward to fill the screen.  “Wǒmen yīzhí zài děng nǐ dào zhèlǐ. Nǐ zěnme zhème jiǔ?” **

“Oh… it’s the opposite, and you know it, Ling,” came his chuckling retort, as he stepped closer to the main screen, arms crossed.  “First come, first served.  You were several parsecs away from us when we entered the nebula. And cut out the  Wǒmen yīzhí zài děng nǐ dào zhèlǐ, or I’ll throw some Rihan at ya.”

Ah… you have been studying. And in Mandarin.  I am impressed, Commander.  As for Rihan?”  Ling shrugged. “I never did get that far.”

Trajan returned the shrug with a chuckle.  “Anyway, I imagine that Agincourt will be here soon.  It’s been…” He checked the chronometer, then frowned.  “...almost two days now?  They were following us for a while, Captain, then banked off without warning.  Did we miss a call?”

I certainly did not.  I haven’t heard from them for several days.  In fact…” Captain Ling leaned away from the screen to query the operations officer, then turned back, brow furrowed.  “None of our reports have acknowledged receipt.  Have yours?

Trajan’s questioning look at the Ops officer gave him the answer.  “We haven’t.”

Ling leaned back in his chair, stroking his beard in thought.  “Commander, I was going to suggest that we separate to investigate this nebula.  Instead, we will stay together until we find the Agincourt and receive acknowledgement from Starfleet Communications.
**We've been waiting for you to get here. What took you so long?


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