Original Content Transcripts 2: Chapter 3

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Previous: https://arkmuse.org/threads/transcripts-2-chapter-2.278/

Written by Squiggle Story Studios (Michelle Hodgson), edited by Steeveeo (Steve Green)



Rynard made his way down to the docking area of the station. As Captain, it was his duty to oversee any and all incoming shipments. The job normally consisted of him looking menacingly at the transport crew and ensuring that cargo and specimens were delivered safely. He was looking forward to meeting the reinforcements and, to put them at ease, was going so far as to rehearse the welcoming speech he had prepared.

Arc and Suk were fine company and all, but they had never seen active combat, Rynard could only hope that HQ had sent other veterans like himself. Having some more experienced guards that would be able to handle Jasi’s pulses would mean he would be able to return to the more ‘relaxed’ shifts he had grown accustomed to in his retirement.

He had changed out of his steel armour regalia and into the standard Esaander uniform armour; black with orange decal stripes, his old unit number emblazoned on the front. The only thing separating him from the Company Guards.

OM Isk was already waiting at the greeting room and curiously, Dr. Jess was waiting there, too. Rynard looked down on the citizen model Sulin; reptilian much like himself, but streamlined. Her sleek figure dressed in more formalwear than what was required for a doctor, putting the old soldier on edge. She didn't normally wear anything other than the white doctor's coat and the occasional different coloured jumpsuit. So to see her put in the effort of a black coat and two-piece matching casualwear was… amusing.

She clearly was trying to hide her insecurity.

Captain Rynard folded his arms behind his back and rested his tail, looking down at his citizen employers.

“OM Isk, Dr. Jess. Captain Rynard reporting as requested,” he announced.

“And thank you for reporting so promptly!” Dr. Jess greeted, head held noticeably higher and with unsteady eye contact.

“It is my duty as Security Captain to oversee all new arrivals. Any reason why I wouldn’t be down for this one?” Rynard replied teasingly. Jess was caught off guard by the captain's light-hearted joke. Isk was not so perturbed.

“You are the senior officer and the only one with the ability to keep Subject Jasmine under control, should she go rogue,” Isk responded, “I suspect if she were not under control, you would not be here.”

Rynard snorted. “So does that mean there won't be any more threats towards my Contribution Credit scale?”

“Your invaluable contributions to the station have been noted, Captain.” Isk retorted.

“Just checking.”

“Captain Rynard,” Jess stepped forward, trying to assert a presence in front of the intimidating veteran. “Due to the unusual circumstances of Subject Jasmine’s Freq abilities, we have been forced to temporarily suspend the current chain of command. Until the full effect of Subject Jasmine’s Freq abilities can be assessed, all staff members who have been exposed to Subject Jasmine's frequency are to be quarantined.”

“Exposed to the frequency?” Rynard asked, towering over Jess and trapping her in his shadow. “What does that mean for me?”

Jess instinctively lowered her head and tried to skulk away. Isk, on the other hand, was not having any of it.

“Captain, you’ll be assessed first. But since you were able to restrain and detain the Subject without any harm to yourself, we can only assume that you have not been compromised by her intentions.” Isk rationalised, but clearly was not comfortable with the situation at all. Rynard licked his teeth and returned to his more relaxed position.

“Well, you got nothing to be pushing your bulges over,” the captain reassured, “Jasi ain't in the business of hostile takeovers.”

Somehow, Rynard's words did not have the desired effect on his employers. Isk and Jess shifted nervously to attention.

The docking procedure complete, filtered air pushed its way from the shuttle and into the welcoming hall. Seven Esaander employee assets made their way onto the station. Four Sulin guards like Rynard stepped off first, marching proudly in polished black and orange armour, emblazoned with the Esaander logo above their serial codes. Rynard took a good look at them. The serial codes were sequential and contained eight digits. He had been hoping for more experienced units but was instead granted guards fresh out of the vat. But at least that meant they would be easily impressed.

Behind them stood two citizen geneticists, Doctors Intiias and Parvaati. The geneticists were unsurprisingly Qzetillian, grey heads on skinny bodies with big black eyes. Cheaper body models by the look of it as well; the different coloured hems on their white coats being the only indicator that they were from different genecenters. Esaander certainly wasn't sending their best stock...

Lastly, the all-important Translator Specialist, Doctor Ta'na Su Yusa stepped off the shuttle. A Zenthi, female body build with broad shoulders and longer ears shuffled onto the station. She was completely covered in an isolation suit, pale blue and grey, the Kyukage logo stamped on her sleeve.

Guards and geneticists were as common as waurdess paste, but a Translator Specialist was rare outside of genecenters and progenitor companies. This Zenthi was on loan from a mega-corp.

Jess pulled her shoulder back and held her head up high, welcoming the new crew to the station.

The Esaander Corporation welcomes you to its Eastern Quadrant Research Division, Uleesia Station. Esaander Corp: Quick and Conclusive results!™" The station's computer chimed before Jess could get her welcome speech in. She stood silent for a moment before licking her teeth and starting again.

“Welcome to Uleesia station! I am Acting Executive Director Kyda Jess. Doctors Intiias, Parvaati, and Yusa, if you would follow me and my Operations Manager Au Isk, we can give you a proper induction.”

The new arrivals separated themselves; the doctors following Jess and Isk, the guards staying behind, standing at attention in the presence of their senior officer. Rynard waited until the citizens had left the room before addressing his new recruits.

“Guardsmen!” Rynard barked, watching as all of them stood even more at attention at the order.

“Relax, men!” The old soldier laughed, “I'm not sure what you were briefed on, but this may be the easiest assignment of your short careers…”

The guards looked at one another in confusion for a moment before the natural leader of the bunch moved to express his concerns. He twitched his tail erratically from one side to the other. Rynard noticed the movement and nodded his head.

“Permission to speak granted, guardsman.”

“Captain, we were told this would be a prime target for Pirate attack…”

“Negative. We’re the prime target for a possible attack. But more than likely you’ll be on escort duty of our newest specimen.”

The new recruits tilted their heads in confusion.

Rynard grinned widely. “Let me tell you guys all about Jasi…”

-*-

Jess tried to be more comfortable in her new role as Acting Executive Director. She knew what the role entailed, she had studied the position since the beginning of her academic career, and it was, ultimately, a position she had always strived for.

But, standing there in the bio-engineering department, she couldn’t help but feel that the victory tasted bittersweet.

The universe had granted her this position, but it had taken so much in the process. What rubbed her scales the wrong way was that there was still so much for her to accomplish. Where once she was happy to attain the position and dignity of a Director’s title, knowing that an unlimited Contribution Credit score was within her reach was a challenge too tempting to ignore.

Becoming Head researcher for a First Contact species?

That would get her more than just an apartment on Clentessia.

That could get her a progenitor company on Clentessia!

She was almost salivating just thinking about the prestige. It was what they had always wanted.

It was what she had always wanted.

Jess preened the scales on the back of her head, smoothing out the already silken scales as she introduced the new doctors to the facility. The bioengineering lab was one of the largest on the station, the room needed to have as many computers running at all times and took up most of the station’s power.

A dozen or more cubic servers stood side by side, normally with an attendant at each one. However, after Subject Jasmine’s Freq-Bomb, only a handful of staff were available to keep the data running.

Dr. Intiias and Dr. Parvaati were looking to the overworked and stim-twitching Dr. Ceaan who was going over the ‘User Sequencing’ Project from the main terminal, debriefing the pair on the work they had completed and what still needed to be done.

DH Dr. Duuarn had been out of commission as head of the department for nearly [5 days] now, but it was still an unsettling sight for Jess to see someone else behind his desk.

Standing where he should have been standing.

Dr. Jess approached the three grey-headed Qzetillians frantically scouring through the terminal, and watched the new arrivals’ faces as they came to realise the gravity of the task before them.

They were overwhelmed, consumed by the task at hand.

“Dr. Intiias, did HQ not inform you of the level of work required at this posting?” Jess inquired, trying to get Dr. Intiias’ attention.

At first, the new Doctor didn't answer, as he was too caught up in the data presented to him. But he almost snapped his own neck when he realised Dr. Jess was waiting for an answer.

“The data here…” he managed to sputter out while his black, almond eyes crept back to the screen, “...this is UNIVERSE tipping!”

Jess smiled politely back, “Indeed, we’ve all been very excited with these developments. Which is why I was wondering: what will you need in order to cope?” A leading question, she needed to give the impression such a feat did not intimidate her like it did him. Establishing dominance in her own subtle way.

“Not without a constant supply of stims that for sure!” Dr. Intiias exclaimed with a nervous chuckle, trying to make light of the situation.

“So, a great deal of work ahead of you, then?” Jess replied, adding more pressure by implying that the responsibility of failure lied solely on their shoulders. Dr. Parvaati’s wide eyes lifted from the display, and just barely managed to splutter out a reply.

“From what Dr. Ceaan has shown us, the project has barely begun! The computers have only just finished the sequencing of one of the specimens, and there are MILLIONS of genomes to filter through and isolate! It might take the entire department weeks just to categorise them all! Never mind cross-examining for trigger switches or neutralising combinations…”

Dr. Jess nodded her head, and then let them know that the amount of work was no excuse.

“Unlimited stimulants will be provided. Was there anything else you needed to complete your work?”

Dr. Intiias clicked his toothplates together nervously, looking to his companions, but Dr. Parvaati had already fallen back into the information black hole on his screen and Dr. Ceaan, despite being second on the project, was looking to Intiias for guidance.

“N-no Director, that will be all,” Dr. Iniitas replied.

Satisfied that her presence and position as Acting Director had been made clear, Jess made a note on her dataslate for Isk to grant the bioengineering department free-reign on stims and whatever supplies they needed.

_*_

Along with the geneticists Dr. Duuarn had requested, Dr. Xant had put in a formal request for a Specialist Translator. Since most GC citizens and GCR military alike were installed with a translator organ in vitro, it was only the Arvas who had it installed after maturity.

Dr. Ta'na Su Yusa was a highly specialised scientist from a progenitor corporation. Should a translator organ malfunction or be installed within a void-born pirate, she could grow one from scratch to meet the individual's needs.

Jess didn't approach right away, but Dr. Ta'na Su Yusa was a Zenthi, so no doubt the new doctor had already felt her presence.

Giant glass incubators bubbled with life-preserving liquids, others filled with exact quantities of amino acids and binding agents. An exact and delicate science was worked in this sterilized room.

The Doctor herself was inspecting the pristine equipment, unused since Esaander had not yet received its Progeny licence. Much of station was built in anticipation of the 8,000 staff capacity.

“Is Everything to your liking, Dr. Yusa?” Jess inquired, hoping to get a better read on the guest.

“It is adequate” The visiting specialist replied, “I trust the necessary genefiles will be delivered to my terminal.”

Jess faltered, she had been quietly gathering all the information she could of Subject Jasmine, and knew for a fact that her gene-sequencing had been put on hold in favour of processing the ‘dogs’ first. “As soon as they are available, Doctor.”

Dr. Yusa’s ears flattened in concern. “Are they not readily available from the initial examination?”

“We have the bio-samples available, Doctor, but the Subject’s DNA has yet to be put to file. Shall I can give you access to the medical scans and research documents of the Subject?” Jess offered.

“If you please,” Dr. Yusa nodded, “I was given very little data in regards to the Subject, just that it was of the utmost urgency.”

Jess had suspected as much. Information between companies was often sold at incredibly high prices; Kyukage corp had probably charged an obscene amount of credits to loan Dr. Yusa out.

But the chances of Dr. Yusa returning once she found out exactly what it was she was working on were microscopic. The chance to create an entirely new organ to tailored alien genetics was a career-making opportunity!

“Then the first step would be for you to read the research we have available on Subject Jasmine, for you to truly understand the scope of your task.” Jess flicked the audio and image files over to the terminal from her dataslate.

“Interesting…” Yusa murmured, peering at the visual files, “Is it a new Qzetillian variant?”

“No,” Jess smirked, unable to hold back her excitement any longer, “Subject Jasmine is not of GC origin!”

A stunned silence hung in the air. “Not of Galactic Council origin?”

“From the data gathered and confessions of the Subject herself, Jasmine isn’t a lost species from the Painful Dynasty, but a complete independent evolutionary strain!” Jess announced proudly. “I’ve been keeping a close eye on all the reports thus far and it is the most reasonable conclusion. The amount of anomalous behaviour she displays, as well as the more confounding aspects of her biology is the reason for your assignment, Doctor.”

Dr. Yusa’s ears stood on end and her body stiffened as Jess presented to her an almost unheard of situation.

“So you’re saying… You need me to create a completely new variant translator?”

“From the amino acids up!”

Shaken, Dr. Yusa continued looking through the data on Subject Jasmine, skimming the basics of what she could to get over the shock.

“The Subject is missing both broadcaster and receiver organs,” Dr. Yusa began, “Such a condition is very rare. It was completely ignorant of Freq, yet your team had designated creator level intelligence?” Yusa looked to Jess for confirmation.

“That is what Dr. Xant’s reports say,” Jess replied, quick to assume a leadership role. “I have not had the chance to meet with the creature myself but, if it helps, the physiology of the Subject was paired with a Zenthi translator without too much difficulty...” Jess muttered off-handedly as she began running through her own hypotheses.

“That does help immensely.” Dr. Yusa muttered distantly, scrolling through Krydon’s medical notes on the surgery. “I will need to incorporate an Arvas grade 3 receiver to the organ, to see how well it meshes with the Zenthi broadcaster. I will put in a request for the patents and begin on creating prototypes. Does your company have the resources for this process?”

Jess fidgeted. “We’ve been allocated a projected profits budget. How long do you think it will take?”

“If she truly is outside of the GC genepool, then this is unprecedented science, Director,” The Specialist replied, making Jess’ tail wag happily with the use of her new title. “Without testing it on the Subject, we have no way to know if my calculations would be accurate, or even safe for both us and the Subject...”

“Jasmine was fitted with Freq-band, it monitors its vitals and Freq capabilities along with the other staff members. Would that data be of any use to you?” Jess offered, cementing herself as the ever-helpful leader.

“Yes, all data at this point would be invaluable. Thank you, Director.”

Again, Jess’ smile got wider and her tail wagged a little too much, quickly tapping on her dataslate making more notes for Isk.

“Then I shall have it organised, so make sure to take your scheduled rest periods. I would like this organ to be fitted with care so as to avoid another careless incident.”

“Another careless incident?” Dr. Yusa’s ears perked up at the implication.

Jess froze on the spot.

“All taken care of and under control!” Jess quickly dismissed the topic, “Captain Rynard has the Subject confirmed and quarantined, nothing to concern yourself with!” Jess spun away on her tail before she should let slip any more... inconvenient details, leaving Dr. Yusa apprehensive of the task before her.


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