SYSTEM SHOCK 3: SYSTEM FAILURE
THE NEW THREAT
Robotic voices relayed distordedly in the back of my mind. The
reminiscent flashes of the holo-briefing room are still fresh in my
head. I had been updated on the Von Braun incedent, everything that I'd
forgotten. The replayed me voice clips from the AI's vocal sub-systems.
Im not worried really, about her anymore. TROIKA
(Tetra Re-organized Octilion Interval Kyron Access) is the wave of the future.
SHODAN (Sentient Hyper Optimized Data Access Network) is an obsolete
piece of shit, when compared to TROIKA's magnificence.
It is the year 2144. Roger Heints is the name, and warfare is my game.
Im in the marine infantry. Training for ICARUS (Interplanetary Classified
Assault and Rescue Universal Soldiers) was a pain in the ass, but hell it was
worth it. I am a cyborg. My code name is G-6543-2. I am a UNN operative
and a sole survivor of the Von Braun incedent. I was rescued during my
hibernation aboard EP-0832 (rescue pod) in a decaying orbit around Europa by
the old of the ICARUS team. They are a crack team of space marines, naval
technicians, and MINISTRY Psiber-Operators. They recovered my half dead and
unconcious body severely damaged inside a cryo-pod aboard the rescue pod,
and had to make major repairs using GEL-I technology.
I brought my optical information screen up in my vision,"PADO?"
"Yes Roger,"said my built in AI PADO (Personal Assistant and Data Organizer).
"Please locate the report of my rescue."
"Yes sir." "They tracked shuttle EP-0832 in Neptune-space about to slingshot
around Triton to our position. It came in through the Pluto-bound worm-hole
at 0323. The Triton base has been forced to disable and purge all
GEL-Intelligences. What we know is that there are 2 bio-signatures with an
estimated P-13 Psionic signature, but this absolutely impossible and should
be verified. The pod itself is a modified variant of a Tri-Optimum Executive
Mini-Cruiser model with Trans Alloy Composite armor, anti-meteor batteries,
and CRAVEN Inc., particle sweepers. Ship registries indicate departure from
missing Von Braun on 13.jul.2114. If the ship is what we think it is, and not
another trans-dimensional phenomenon, then this is a CODE23.b situation, and
should be objectified accordingly."
I was lying in my bed when the transmission ended. I was in my personnel
headquarters in the Terran Sector in the AGAMEMNON Sector at the
SCARSBOUGH Station. As I stared into vast space through my sky light, I
slowly drifted off into my recharge state. I woke up early the next morning to the
sounds of PADO softly saying,"Wake up Roger, time to get up."
"Yeah, hi PADO," I said.
"Hello Roger, time to get up."
Suddenly the room lights flared on and almost blinded me. My eyes soon
adjusted. I turned and cracked my neck, and then crept lazily out of bed. I
walked to the other side of the room, to the quantum outlet on the wall. I
took my cybernetic arm, opened up the utility orb on the and of it, and out
emerged my quantum plug. I inserted in the outlet and I heard several beeps
and whirrs. Suddenly, readouts scattered in my vision. It was all code at
first, but then it turned into English. It read:
APPROX. SLEEPING TIME: 9H.43M
APPROX. TOSSES AND TURNS: 12
APPROX. SLEEP WALKING: 0
APPROX. BODY TEMP: 52DEG. F
SYSTEM STATUS: 100% FULLY OP.
"Excellent," I exclaimed. So, I got undressed and hopped in the shower.
Inside the shower, there was a digital touch screen inside to regulate water
tempurature and jet settings. After I was done in the shower, I dried off
and put on my uniform. I walked over to my front door, and enter in the
passcode in the numeric keypad. The door hissed with CO2 spraying out from
under it. I walked outside into the hallway. The hallway was dimly lit,
with spread out numeric keypads and a metalic grating floor. I could also
hear the hum of the engines and the pressurization running through the inner
hulls of the space station. I walked all the way down the hallway, to the
messhall. Waiting there for me was my friend and colleague Mario Lopez. He
was gorging himself on pancakes. Soon he looked up and noticed me there,
and waved for me to sit with him. I sat down across from him. "Top of the
mornin' to yah," I said in a cheerful manner.
"Uh.....Yeah," he replied.
"So, whats goin' on, any news for me."
"Yeah, we have an assignment."
"Really, what is it?"
"Not sure, we have briefing soon." v
"ATTENTION! ATTENTION! WILL ALL THE ICARUS CREW MEMBERS PLEASE REPORT TO THE
BRIEFING ROOM ON DECK 5, TOP SIDE," boomed a recorded voice over the
intercoms. "Now," Mario added with a sly grin on his face. So we both got up and headed
to the briefing room on deck 5. The briefing room was a dimly lit room, with
a long metallic table in the middle, and a mini-titontron screen in the back
to give visual briefing. Already waiting for us was Cpt. VanBuren, Sally
Jonis, Sean Meyers, John Takamura, Quinton Agorelli. "Now then," said
Vanburen. "Now that were all here, we can go over your assignment. You've
all heard of the new starship Resolution. It is the second ship ever to go
at faster than light speeds, the first ship with time travel capabities, the
first ship to use the new SARA drive(Sub Adhesive Reticle Atomizer), and the
first ship ever to use the new AI TROIKA. Now, the ship was first tested out
several days ago by the first crew of 12, and 3,000,000 passengers. Cpt.
James Larken was running the ship. They warped themselves to the
constollation of Kappa Fornacis, an unknown constallation 700 trillion units
away(a unit is 100 million light years). The reason for them going there is
because thats were we think the Von Braun might have gone. So they were in
search for the Von Braun. We were in communication with them before they
warped. We have a recording of it." Cpt. VanBuren inserted the mini-disc in
the drive, and it played:"This is Cpt. Larken of the starship Resolution. We
are seconds away from warping to the mysterious constollation of Kappa
Fornacis. We hope to make discoveries that will change history forever.
We are ready to warp in 5...4...3...2...1...0...----------------------
.....AAAAAHHHHHHHHHH...---------- ...NNNNOOOOOOO... -------------...IT CAN'T
BE...-------------... DeAtH iS cErTaIn...LiFe Is NoT...--------------------."
The transmission just went dead with static. That was the most terrifying
thing I've ever heard in my life.
"What in god's fucking name was that," cried Meyers.
"Well thats where you people come in, you're going up there to find out,"
"I don't know, I got a bad feelin' about this."
"It's not like we've got a choice," piped Sally Jonis.
"Right," VanBuren agreed. "Now get your things packed up, and meet me in the
pod bays at 0234. We leave today. Dismissed."