Singularity – Episode 3 – Vega Station Is no More


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Below we present the complete text of “Vega Station is no More”, episode 3 of our new Space Opera; Singularity. This is a brand new (unpublished) series (featuring Sarah Tanner and Jeff Chase). If you would like to see these new stories advance from being drafts into polished publications then please consider supporting us by purchasing one or more of our previously published titles. Every sale directly funds the production of new stories.

Space Opera - SO003 - Singularity

Space Opera – SO003 – Singularity

Recommended for mature audiences - may contain adult situations and themes

Recommended for mature audiences – may contain adult situations and themes

SINGULARITY

EPISODE #3 – VEGA STATION IS NO MOIRE

by Philip Craig Robotham

Cover Illustration by Miyukiko

Unedited Draft

Copyright 2016 Philip Craig Robotham

Creative Commons Attritubution Non-Commercial No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) Edition .

CC by-nc-nd 4.0

CC by-nc-nd 4.0

This play is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) International license. This play may not be commercially reproduced, performed, or sold. Non-commercial production, performance, and reproduction is allowed under this license so long as attribution is maintained. No derivative content or use is allowed. It can be freely shared in its current form (without change) under this license. If you would like to purchase one or more copies of this work (for your own personal non-commercial use, or to help financially support the author) then please return to http://www.weirdworlstudios.com and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

Other works by this author can be found at the author’s website: http://www.weirdworldstudios.com or through select, online book retailers.

Serial #3: Singularity

Sarah Tanner, Jeff Chase, and their interspecies team of alien crewmen have been placed in charge of the latest dreadnaught to be added to the fleet of the Solar Patrol. Charged with protecting Earth’s precious supply of the mineral essential to enable the use of wormhole technology they set out for Vega Station, the asteroid mining and research station where the ore is obtained. On arrival they find the station has been destroyed, but that those who worked there had also uncovered a key scientific breakthrough that could alter the outcome of the ongoing war with the Council of Six. Desperate to get the data safely back to earth, their ship is set upon by a pirate fleet and blasted into an alternate space that is home to a hostile intelligence. In order to get home with the data our heroes will need to survive encounters on the edge of a black hole, fight robotic surgeons, engage in a contest of wills with a dangerous artificial intelligence, and resist a new and insidious form of technological mind control. Can they escape from the starless space into which they have been thrust and return home with their discoveries intact? Tune in to “Alone in a starless sky” and be astonished as an ancient alien space-station is revealed to hold the key to the survival and victory of the human species.

Episodes in the Host Your Own “Old Time Radio Drama” series are designed to provide a fun dinner party experience for 6–8 participants. Read along, taking on the role of one or more of the characters in the story, and listen as the exciting drama unfolds. This is the theater of the mind, where the special effects are only limited by your imagination, and your participation will build a memory that you’ll treasure for years to come.

SINGULARITY

CAST LIST

NARRATOR: The Narrator

SARAH TANNER: Captain in the Intelligence Directorate

JEFF CHASE: Lieutenant in the Intelligence Directorate

LIEUTENANT KUNSTLER: 2nd in command and team 1 leader

VASH: Weapons Officer

TERG: Communications Officer

VULGE: Navigation Officer

BREX: Science Officer

SIMMONS: Assistant to Lieutentant Kunstler

TAKAHASHI: Team 2 Leader

JOHNSON: Team 3 Leader

M’BUTO: Chief Technician Team 1

JENNINGS: Team 4 Leader

SANTIAGO: Bomb displosals expert

SFX: SFX operator (1 required)

SCENE 9 –    INT – COMMAND CENTER – A SHORT WHILE LATER(SARAH, JEFF, TERG, VASH, VULGE, BREX).

  1. MUSIC: OPENING THEME – LET IT FINISH.
  2. NARRATOR: Investigating a sudden communications blackout on Vega station, an isolated mining station that serves as Earth’s only supply of the mineral needed to enable the use of wormhole technology and a key resource in the war against the Council of Six, Sarah Tanner, Jeff Chase, and their crew discover they have been targeted by saboteurs who wish to betray their ship into the hands of their enemies…
  3. SOUND:   BACKGROUND BEEPING AND HUM OF COMMAND DECK – ESTABLISH AND UNDER.
  4. SOUND:   WALLA BACKGROUND MURMUR OF COMMAND STAFF AT WORK – ESTABLISH AND UNDER.
  5. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  6. SARAH:   Captain Tanner Here.
  7. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  8. JEFF:    (FILTERED) Lieutenant Chase reporting.
  9. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  10. SARAH:   Go ahead, Jeff.  How are those repairs coming along.
  11. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  12. JEFF:    (FILTERED) I couldn’t tell you Captain.  I was gathering some tools for Brex when I came across some saboteurs messing with our oxygen supply.  I interrupted them and we have them in custody, but they still managed to do some serious damage.
  13. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  14. SARAH:   What kind of damage.
  15. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  16. JEFF:    They’d contaminated two thirds of our oxygen supply before I was able to isolate the remainder.  We’re just lucky they didn’t start with the main outlets or we’d all be unconscious or dead.
  17. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  18. SARAH:   Good work, Jeff.  This is going to put a lot of pressure on our mission timeline, assuming we succeed in actually getting out of here.  You haven’t been able to identify what the contaminant is, have you?
  19. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  20. JEFF:    Not yet, I’ll get Brex onto it once the drive repairs are complete.
  21. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  22. SARAH:   All right, that’ll have to do.  What of the saboteurs?  Do we have them all?
  23. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  24. JEFF:    They’re both out cold, but before I knocked the second one out I was able to get a little bit out of him.  He seems to think the pair of them are it, but…
  25. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  26. SARAH:   But we can’t be sure.  (BEAT) Okay, Jeff.  Thanks.  You need to get back to that insufferable snake.
  27. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  28. JEFF:    It looks like no good deed ever does go unpunished.  Alright, Captain.  Out.
  29. SOUND:   LONG CREAKING METAL AND SHUDDER – LET IT FINISH.
  30. SARAH:   What the hell was that?  Vulge?  Report!
  31. VULGE:   Uh, Captain?
  32. SARAH:   Out with it.
  33. VULGE:   Something big just passed us in the gas cloud.  And by big, I mean larger than the Revenge,  much larger… and by passed I mean it literally rubbed along side us.
  34. SARAH:   Is it another ship?
  35. VULGE:   No, if it had been a ship it would have registered on my scanners.  I’m switching my scanners over…
  36. SOUND:   BUTTONS BEING PUNCHED – LET IT FINISH.
  37. VULGE:   …and it’s organic!  It’s enormous… some kind of monster sized worm or eel maybe.  It’s not the only one either.  This gas cloud appears to be full of them.
  38. VASH:    Captain, I think it’s time to boogie.
  39. SARAH:   What’s that Vash?
  40. VASH:    I’m a biologist, remember?  That’s classic predator behaviour, an initial pass aimed at sizing up the prey, and then…
  41. VULGE:   I concur Captain.  I’m looking at these things and they appear to spend most of their time eating each other… and the one that passed us, it isn’t the bigest of them either.
  42. SARAH:   Damnit!  That’s all we need.
  43. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  44. SARAH:   Brex, this is the Captain.  How much longer on those drives?
  45. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  46. BREX:    Impatient humans!  The drives will take as long as they take.  And if I wasn’t being interrupted by all these damned fool questions, they’d be done all the sooner.
  47. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  48. SARAH:   I don’t have time for your attitude right now. We have a problem, actually several, Mr Brex, that are likely to force us to break cover very shortly. I need an estimate.
  49. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  50. BREX:    (ALL BUSINESS) Very well.  The main drive is probably capable of a short hop, but there is a high risk we’ll burn it out.  The back up drives are no use to us at all until we have time for some serious repairs.  I’d prefer we had the time to get the main drive in fully functioning order but…
  51. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  52. VULGE:   The monster’s completed its turn.  It’s heading right for us and its mouth is open wide.
  53. SARAH:   Alright, we don’t have that kind of time so we’ll have to risk the traverse.  Get your people out of there Brex.  We’re breaking cover now. Captain out!
  54. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  55. SARAH:   Get us out of here Vulge.  That’s an order.
  56. VULGE:   Aye, Captain.
  57. SOUND:   MASSIVE POWER DOWN – LET IT FINISH.
  58. SARAH:   What just happened?
  59. TERG:    It’s the corrosion. It’s found its way into some of the outer power buses.  I’m re-routing.
  60. VULGE:   Better hurry, that thing is almost on top of…
  61. SOUND:   LONG STRAINING METAL SOUND AND CRUNCH SOUND – LET IT FINISH.
  62. SARAH:   Okay, what just happened?
  63. VULGE:   Um… I think it just swallowed us.
  64. SOUND:   POWER UP – LET IT FINISH.
  65. TERG:    The power’s re-routed.
  66. VULGE:   Yep, it definitely swallowed us.  Looks like we’re, quite literally, inside the belly of the beast.
  67. SARAH:   Power up all the gun batteries.
  68. KUNSTLER: But Captain, we don’t yet know the extent of the sabotage.  Using the weapons systems could be catastrophic.
  69. SOUND:   DOOR OPENS. SLITHERING. – UNDER.
  70. SARAH:   I think that allowing this creature to digest us would, with absolute certainty, be more catastrophic.
  71. BREX:    (HISSING) And I think that opening a wormhole could save us from having to try.
  72. SARAH:   Brex, you’re back.  Is it actually possible to do that while inside a living creature?
  73. BREX:    One starting location is as good as another, from a mathematical point of view.
  74. SARAH:   Objections? (BEAT) Alright, I’m sold.  Vulge, get us out of here. Terg, sound general stations.
  75. TERG:    (AMPLIFIED) All personnel to general stations.  Initiating wormhole traverse.
  76. VULGE:   Coordinates set.  Generating wormhole… now!
  77. SOUND:   WORMHOLE TRAVERSING SOUND EFFECT – LET IT FINISH.
  78. MUSIC:   NEUTRAL SCENE ENDER

SCENE 10 –   INT – COMMAND CENTER – AS THE TRAVERSE ENDS (SARAH, BREX, TERG, VULGE)

  1. SOUND:   WORMHOLE TAVERSING SOUND EFFECT – LET IT FINISH
  2. SOUND:   MASSIVE POWER DOWN – LET IT FINISH.
  3. SARAH:   Oh, how I hate that feeling.  It’s like my stomach has been turned inside out.
  4. VASH:    Captain, are you aware that you have a tendency to whine immediately after we pass through a wormhole.
  5. TERG:    (SHOCKED) Vash!
  6. SARAH:   It’s alright, Terg.  Vash isn’t saying anything you haven’t all thought… even if he does have a tendency to express those thoughts at less than appropriate moments. (BEAT) What’s happened to the power?
  7. BREX:    Like I said, the wormhole drive burned out.  It’s probably burned out the power conduits as well.
  8. TERG:    I’m rerouting.  It’s a good thing we have so much redundancy built into these systems.
  9. SOUND:   POWER UP SOUND – LET IT FINISH.
  10. TERG:    There!  We’re up and running again.
  11. SARAH:   Vulge, where are we.  Did we traverse the wormhole fully, or have we been thrown out somewhere unexpected.
  12. VULGE:   It was touch and go, but we’ve come out where I’d hoped.
  13. SARAH:   And where’s that?
  14. VULGE:   Vega station.  Since the traverse was almost certain to burn out our drive regardless of where we went, I thought trying to reach our actual destination would prove the best option.
  15. MUSIC:   NEUTRAL SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.

SCENE 11     – INT – COMMAND CENTER – LATER (SARAH, VULGE, TERG, KUNSTLER)

  1. SOUND:   (WALLA) COMMAND CENTER BEEPS AND BACKGROUND – LET IT FINISH.
  2. SARAH:   Are there any enemy ships in the area?
  3. TERG:    There’s nothing on the scanners at the moment.  That doesn’t mean there isn’t anything floating out there with its engines baffled.
  4. SARAH:   Alright.  Brex, I need you to get back to the repair work.  See how much damage has been added to what our saboteurs already accomplished and how quickly we can get the backup wormhole generators running.
  5. BREX:    Bah!  As you wish, but don’t expect any miracles.
  6. SOUND:   SLITHERING AND DOOR SLIDES OPEN AND CLOSES – UNDER
  7. SARAH:   Vulge, can you give me an exterior view of Vega Station before we try to hail them.
  8. VULGE:   I’m sending the images to your plate, now.
  9. SARAH:   (BEAT) Aw hell!  That’s not good.
  10. KUNSTLER: Captain?
  11. SARAH:   The station has been destroyed.  It looks as if much of the station that was built into the asteroid has been torn open to space.  Vulge, can you scan for any life signs.
  12. VULGE:   There are no heat signatures whatsoever Captain.  But there are numerous bodies floating in near orbit.
  13. SARAH:  (TO HERSELF) I’m sorry Logan. You were a jerk but you didn’t deserve this.
  14. KUNSTLER: Captain?
  15. SARAH:   (ALL BUSINESS) Nothing. (BEAT) Vulge, scan for mineral storage.  See if the supply of minerals they were mining is intact.  Also, see if you can find any working atmosphere processors.  And check for the science wing and see if anything can be salvaged.
  16. VULGE:   Yes, Captain.
  17. SARAH:   Lieutenant Kunstler?
  18. KUNSTLER: Yes, Captain?
  19. SARAH:   How quickly can you prepare some teams to head into the station’s ruins.
  20. KUNSTLER: Do you think there’s a possibility of survivors?
  21. SARAH:   No. Not really, though we still need to check.  Firstly, I’ll want you to supervise hooking us up to any atmosphere processors that Vulge may find…
  22. VULGE:   (INTERRUPTING) It looks like there may be at least one that is still in working order on the other side of the asteroid.
  23. SARAH:   That will help us deal with our contaminated air supply.
  24. KUNSTLER: And secondly?
  25. SARAH:   I’ll want you to see if you can find any surviving data caches in the remains of the science wing.  The scientists on Vega supposedly achieved some kind of breakthrough in tracking the point of origin of wormholes.  If that data has survived, it could be a key to us taking this war to our enemies.
  26. KUNSTLER: Yes, ma’am.  I’m right on it.
  27. SARAH:   Lastly, we’ll need to collect as much of the mineral they’ve been mining as we can locate and carry.
  28. KUNSTLER: Consider it done.
  29. SOUND:   FOOTSTEPS.  DOOR SLIDES OPEN AND CLOSED. – LET IT FINISH.
  30. SARAH:   Terg, try and send a transmission or two to the station.  While it’s unlikely, there may still be some survivors who could respond.
  31. TERG:    Yes, Captain Miss Sarah.  Transmitting.
  32. MUSIC:   NEUTRAL SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.

SCENE 12:    INT – INSIDE THE RUINS OF VEGA STATION – LATER
(SIMMONS, KUNSTLER, JOHNSON, SARAH, M’BUTO)

  1. SOUND:   BREATHERS IN OPERATION – ESTABLISH AND UNDER.
  2. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  3. SIMMONS: (FILTERED) It looks like they tore into this place with their blasters pretty thoroughly… but there are some signs that they landed a boarding party as well.
  4. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  5. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) What do you mean?
  6. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  7. SIMMONS: (FILTERED) Some of these panels have been opened since the main destruction took place.  Everyone here is dead and its unlikely any survivors would have access to the tools or time necessary to do this.
  8. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  9. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) Understood.  What do you think they were after?
  10. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  11. SIMMONS: (FILTERED) Based on their behaviour so far?  I’ve no idea.
  12. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) Alright, keep looking.  We need to see if any of the computers in the science wing are operational.  I’ll check on how team 2 are doing with the atmosphere processor. (BEAT)
  13. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  14. KUNSTLER: Team 2?
  15. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  16. TAKAHASHI: (FILTERED) Takahashi here sir.
  17. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  18. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) How are you doing?
  19. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  20. TAKAHASHI: (FILTERED) The contaminated air has all been flushed out back on board the ship.  We’ve succeeded in jury-rigging a pump and hoses between the atmosphere storage and the Revenge.  Things seem to be going reasonably smoothly so far.
  21. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  22. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) Good work.  We’ve seen signs of pirate activity within the station so keep an eye out for external dangers.
  23. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  24. TAKAHASHI: (FILTERED) Yes, sir.
  25. SOUND:   DISTANT BOOM – LET IT FINISH.
  26. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  27. SIMMONS: (FILTERED) Sir, what was that?
  28. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  29. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) It felt like an explosion… coming from the mineral storage facility. (BEAT)
  30. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  31. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) Johnson, Ives, report.
  32. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  33. JOHNSON: (FILTERED) Lieutenant Kunstler… it looks like the main doors to the storage center were booby-trapped… I just lost six men.
  34. SOUND:   STRAINING METAL – LET IT FINISH.
  35. JOHNSON: (FILTERED) Hang on a minute, Lieutenant.  (BEAT) What was that?  No, wait.  Don’t touch that.  Don’t…
  36. SOUND:   DISTANT EXPLOSION – LET IT FINISH.
  37. SOUND:   STATIC – UNDER AND OUT.
  38. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  39. KUNSTLER:  (FILTERED) Johnson?  Johnson?  Do you read?  Damnit.
  40. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  41. SARAH:   (FILTERED) Lieutenant Kunstler?  What just happened?
  42. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  43. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) We just lost team three.  It looks like the pirates came aboard and left traps on the ruined station.
  44. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  45. SARAH:   (FILTERED) What’s your situation?  Do I need to call you back in?
  46. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  47. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) Maybe.  But not just yet.  The mineral is vital to our war preparations and, if what you say is correct, we need the data from the discoveries that the scientists who were here were supposed to have made almost as much.
  48. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  49. SARAH:   (FILTERED) Alright, but I’m sending a fourth team across to the storage facility to see if there are any survivors from the explosions.
  50. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  51. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) We’ll finish our sweep of the labs and meet them over there.
  52. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  53. SIMMONS: (FILTERED) Uh, sir?  If there are booby-traps…?
  54. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  55. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) I know.  If the panels have been interfered with since the station was attacked, there’s a good chance some nasty surprises have been left behind for us too.  Just be extra cautious.
  56. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  57. SIMMONS: (FILTERED) Yes, sir.
  58. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  59. M’BUTO:  (FILTERED) Sir, Chief Technician M’buto here.  I’ve found a terminal we might be able to get functioning.  Orders?
  60. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  61. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) Good work!  Be careful to check it for signs of tampering before you start work.
  62. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  63. M’BUTO: (FILTERED) Yes, sir.  It appears to be clear.
  64. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  65. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) OK, go ahead… but take it easy.
  66. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  67. M’BUTO:  (FILTERED) Yes sir.
  68. SOUND:   BEEPS, CLICKS, AND WHIRRS – LET IT FINISH.
  69. M’BUTO: (FILTERED) I think we can try routing some power to the terminal now.
  70. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  71. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) Go ahead.
  72. SOUND:   SOFT POWER UP – LET IT FINISH.
  73. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  74. M’BUTO: (FILTERED) We’re live.
  75. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  76. SIMMONS: (FILTERED) I’ll try to log in…
  77. SOUND:   KEYBOARD NOISE OF LOGIN – LET IT FINISH.
  78. SOUND:   BEEP INDICATING SUCCESS – LET IT FINISH.
  79. SIMMONS: (FILTERED) There.  It looks like we’re in… and I think we’ve struck pay dirt!
  80. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  81. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) How so?
  82. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  83. SIMMONS: (FILTERED) This terminal has direct access to the science officer’s main data repository.  I’ll start transmitting the contents back to the Revenge.
  84. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  85. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) Excellent.  How long will it take?
  86. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  87. SIMMONS: (FILTERED) It shouldn’t be more than a few seconds sir.
  88. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  89. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) Good, it’s about time we caught a break.  M’Buto, I’ll need you to start…
  90. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  91. SARAH:   (FILTERED) (URGENTLY INTERRUPTING) Lieutenant Kunstler, we’ve detected a whole bunch of energy signatures coming from your vicinity.  A large number of electrical systems have come on line.  I think you’d better…
  92. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  93. KUNSTLER: (FILTERED) All personnel, evacuate this section of the station immediately.  We’ve got to…
  94. SOUND:   SERIES OF EXPLOSIONS GROWING NEARER – LET IT FINISH.
  95. SOUND:   STATIC – UNDER.
  96. MUSIC:   OMINOUS SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH. 

SCENE 13:    INT – COMMAND CENTER – SAME TIME (SARAH, JENNINGS, TAKAHASHI, SANTIAGO, TERG, JEFF)

  1. SOUND:   COMMAND CENTER BACKGROUND – BEEPS, MURMUR ETC. – FADE IN.
  2. SARAH:   Lieutenant?  Lieutenant?  What’s your situation?
  3. SOUND:   STATIC – ESTABLISH AND CUT OUT.
  4. SARAH:   Damnit!
  5. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  6. SARAH:   Rescue team four, are you there?
  7. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  8. JENNINGS: (FILTERED) Med-Tech Jennings here, Captain.  Was that…?
  9. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  10. SARAH:   Yes, we’ve lost contact with team one.  What’s your status?
  11. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  12. JENNINGS: (FILTERED) We’ve just arrived at the Storage area.  There’s a lot of debris and we’ve accounted for all of the members of team three.  No survivors.
  13. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  14. SARAH:   (SUBDUED) Alright.  I’ll need your team to see if any of team one made it.  Don’t take any unnecessary risks though.  I don’t want any more deaths here today.  What of the storage itself?
  15. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  16. JENNINGS: (FILTERED) Well Ma’am, it’s complicated.  There’s a huge bomb attached to the inside of the bay doors.  It was rigged to explode with the initial booby-trap but failed.  We’re pretty lucky.
  17. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  18. SARAH:   What do you mean?
  19. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  20. JENNINGS: (FILTERED) If that bomb had gone off, it would have released all the energy in the minerals this station has been digging up.  At a guess it would have vaporised us, the station, our ship, and a large portion of the surrounding asteroid field.
  21. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  22. SARAH:   What’s the complicating factor?
  23. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  24. JENNINGS: (FILTERED) While it failed to go off, the bomb is still live.
  25. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  26. SARAH:   Do you have a munitions tech with you?
  27. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  28. JENNINGS: (FILTERED) Yes, ma’am.  We’ve got Santiago. She’s examining the device now.
  29. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  30. SARAH: Okay, pull all your people back and check out what’s left of the science wing for the remains of team one… if any.
  31. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  32. JENNINGS: (FILTERED) Yes, Ma’am.
  33. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  34. SARAH:   Captain out.
  35. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  36. SARAH:   Santiago?  What’s the status on that bomb?
  37. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  38. SANTIAGO: (FILTERED) Captain, with all due respect, you might want to tread a little more gently when making contact with someone who’s examining a device that could turn us all into our component atoms.  I nearly soiled myself.
  39. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  40. SARAH:   Noted. (BEAT) I still need that report, Santiago.  Are you having any luck with the bomb?
  41. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  42. SANTIAGO: (FILTERED) Yes, captain, I am.  It hasn’t gone off yet.
  43. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  44. SARAH:   (MUTTERING) The entire alliance to choose from and I get a bomb expert who thinks she’s a comedian.
  45. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  46. SANTIAGO: (FILTERED) I apologize, Captain.  It appears the device is quite simple in nature.  It doesn’t look like they took a great deal of time setting it in place.  As a result, I should be able to neutralize it fairly quickly and with minimal risk. (BEAT) Do you wish me to proceed?
  47. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  48. SARAH:   Hmmm.  We’ve lost too many lives already today, but yes.  Those minerals are an essential resource.  Go ahead.
  49. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  50. SANTIAGO: (FILTERED) Yes, Captain.
  51. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  52. SARAH:   Captain out.
  53. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  54. SARAH:   Team two?
  55. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  56. TAKAHASHI: (FILTERED) This is Takahashi, Captain.
  57. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  58. SARAH:   How goes your mission?
  59. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  60. TAKAHASHI: (FILTERED) We’ve succeeded in re-filling the air reserves on the Revenge.  We’re just about to head back to the ship.
  61. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  62. SARAH:   Excellent work.  Hold your position, I may need you to take over  In the meanwhile… stay safe.
  63. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  64. TAKAHASHI: (FILTERED) Yes, Ma’am.
  65. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  66. SARAH:   Captain out. (BEAT) Terg, how much of that data were we able to get before Team One stopped transmitting?
  67. TERG:    I’m still checking, Captain Miss Sarah… but it looks like we may have all of it.
  68. SARAH:   Well, that’s at least one thing that has gone our way.  That data is precious!
  69. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  70. JENNINGS: (FILTERED) It’s Jennings from the rescue team, Captain.  We’ve accounted for all of team one.  There are no survivors.
  71. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  72. SARAH:   Thank you Jennings.  Recover the bodies of our people and make your way back to the ship.  Captain out.
  73. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  74. SANTIAGO: (FILTERED) Santiago here.  The bomb has been taken care of Captain.
  75. SOUND:   DOOR SLIDES OPEN.  FOOTSTEPS AS JEFF ENTERS – UNDER.
  76. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  77. SARAH:   Good work.  Rejoin rescue team four and come on back. (BEAT)
  78. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  79. SARAH:   Team two?
  80. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  81. TAKAHASHI: (FILTERED) Here, Captain.
  82. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  83. SARAH:   I’ve got the all clear from our bomb expert.  Go in and get that cargo of minerals onto our ship. Do it as quickly as you can
  84. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  85. TAKAHASH: (FILTERED) Yes, Ma’am.
  86. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  87. SARAH:   Captain out.
  88. JEFF:    Looks like you’ve been keeping a lot of balls in the air, captain.
  89. SARAH:   We lost two complete teams down there.  The enemy seeded the station with booby traps.
  90. JEFF:    Damnit.  I’m sorry, Captain.
  91. SARAH:   It is what it is.  Lieutenant Kunstler was among those killed so I’m promoting you to X-O in his place.  How go the repairs?
  92. JEFF:    Those snakes are magic with technology.  They’ve repaired all the back-up drives and have made good progress on jury rigging the main drive for the journey home.  We should be in good shape shortly and Brex will join us to give you a report.  I understand that they’ve also managed to get our weapons and defensive systems back online… but…
  93. SARAH:   Yes, Jeff?
  94. JEFF:    The snakes are up to something.  I think there’s trouble brewing.
  95. SARAH:   That’s all we need.  What makes you say that?
  96. JEFF:    They’ve suddenly stopped insulting members of the crew and turned very conspiratorial.  I’ve walked in on them to hostile silences more than once during the repairs.  Something’s up?
  97. SARAH:   It’s too much to hope that they’ve made their peace with working with humans I guess?
  98. JEFF:    Yeah, I think so.  It looks instead like they’ve got some kind of plan brewing.
  99. SARAH:   Mutiny?
  100. JEFF:    Maybe. When properly functioning, this is the most powerful ship in our fleet.  Taking it over would certainly grant them significant leverage in a coup.
  101. SARAH:   That’s a pretty dire scenario.
  102. JEFF:    You know what they say: hope for the best but plan for the worst.
  103. SARAH:   Yep that’s what they say, alright.  You’d better give me some contingencies.  We need to get back to Earth as soon as possible.
  104. MUSIC:   DRAMATIC SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH. 
  105. MUSIC: CLOSING THEME AND CREDITS – LET IT FINISH.

CASTING SHEETS — MAJOR CHARACTERS

NARRATOR: Hello, I am your narrator. I introduce the cold stormy nights on which our stories take place, the dark alleys, and darker personalities who inhabit the lonely city. It is my job to set the scene and establish the serious tone of suspense and intrigue that will carry the story forwards. It is also my job to remind listeners of what came before in a calm, trustworthy voice and ensure that everyone is oriented to where we are and where we are going.

SARAH TANNER: I come from a long line of military personnel. It’s an honour to serve… in any way possible. I do my duty and I stand by my people. I’m loyal to Admiral Ferris personally. I owe him a lot… and since I joined the solar patrol I’ve been right in the thick of things – and in the thick of things is exactly where I want to be.

JEFF CHASE: I’m Sarah’s right hand man. We competed constantly throughout our cadet training, but she always came out ahead. I keep her grounded. I don’t let her head get too big and, when it counts, I follow here lead. I’m smart mouthed and quick to pick a fight. I’m also diplomatic enough to keep my mouth shut when it’s called for – but never otherwise. I look for the fun in my job and I’m not above a little showing off, but my recklessness has meant I’ve been injured on the job more than once.

VASH: They say I sound like a new york cabbie. I’ll have to visit there one day and see what that means. I handle this bucket’s long range scans, and the weapons systems. I also have pretty good knowledge of xeno-biology and combat medicine. I’m also the oldest head of a two-headed Thrilexian (the other head is called Vash). I guess you humans would call us brothers. We get along pretty good – we have to since we’ve only got one body between us).

TERG: I sound like someone called C3PO, apparently. I’m the diplomat and thinker in our little group. I’m always polite and would, according to the humans, make a fine valet or butler, if it weren’t for my other head (who is, admittedly, rather coarse). I have no idea whether the humans are joking when they say this or not. I work as the Chief Communications Officer in the command center of the ship. I’m a natural translator and, like all my species, create a telepathically generated field that allows all creatures within close proximity to understand one another.

VULGE: I sound like a female Austrian body builder. All the humans on board keep asking me to say “I’ll be back”. What’s with that? I am an astro-navigation expert as well as an expert in combat and heavy weapons. People keep referring to me as a turtle. I’ve seen turtles. They are small and slow. I am huge, strong and fast and my shell is big and well formed.

BREX: (HISSING) I am a predator, and don’t you forget it. I have lived long and risen to the highest ranks within my species. My wingspan is mighty and my fangs are long. In several thousand years of life I have become one of the foremost scientists in the galaxy. You should all be working for me. If my people have our way, you humans will one day be our slaves. And if I ever hear you referring to me as a “snake” again, I will gut you, skin you, and hang your carcass upon the wall of my sleeping quarters

CASTING SHEETS — MINOR CHARACTERS

LIEUTENANT KUNSTLER: I’m a professional soldier and member of the Solar Patrol’s Navy. I’ve been assigned to Captain Sarah Tanner’s multi-species crew. They all know each other and seem to work as a team. I’m the new comer, but I’m getting to know how things work. I don’t understand how I came to be Tanner’s second in command instead of Lieutenant Chase, though. Fortunately, he doesn’t seem to be harbouring any ill-feeling towards me.

NAMED CREW-MEMBERS (SIMMONS, M’BUTO): I’m a member of the Solar Patrol.  I follow orders, but I’m not a robot.  I think about things.  I expect my expertise to be considered and listened to.  I am confident enough in my abilities to provide my superiors with advice.  My job is an important one and I do it well.

TEAM LEADERS (TAKAHASHI, JOHNSON, JENNINGS): I’ve been trusted with a job and a team of crew-members to get the job done.  It’s dangerous work… being in the Solar Patrol is always dangerous.  We know the risks and we’re willing to take them.  But that doesn’t mean being reckless.  I want to get all my people back safely if at all possible.  My job description is simple… go in, do what has to be done, and don’t take any unnecessary risks.

SANTIAGO: Okay, I get it.  I probably should mind my manners a bit more when I’m talking with the brass, but I defuse bombs for a living.  That’s not a line of work that comes with a lot of job security.  Most of the folks in my line never get to retire, if you know what I mean.  I figure the, very real, possibility that I won’t be hear tomorrow earns me the right to be a little plain spoken.  And yeah, I get that all that means to some folks is that I’m crazy.  In the end, though, a little crazy simply means I fit in.  Or didn’t you notice just how nuts this particular crew is?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Philip Craig Robotham grew up in a house full of books and has held numerous jobs as a teacher, computer programmer, graphic and web designer, e-learning consultant and, most recently, writer. He currently lives in Sydney, Australia with his wife and two sons. When he was younger and fitter he enjoyed martial arts, but in recent years his hobbies have tended towards more sedate fare (board games, movies, books, and role-playing games).

He is extremely grateful for the encouragement he receives from his biggest fans — his wife and two boys — all of whom read and enjoy his scripts and in general make his life worth living.

You can contact the author regarding performance rights (or simply to say hello) through his website: http://www.weirdworldstudios.com.

Don’t forget to check out the free sample portions of our titles at http://weirdworldstudios.com/product-category/our-products/ .

This post and all its content is copyright © 2013 Philip Craig Robotham and has been released under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) license. This play cannot be reproduced, shared, or performed commercially without the written permission of the author. The production of derivative content, merchandise, or creative works and materials is expressly forbidden under this agreement. However you may share, reproduce, and perform this play freely so long as authorship is acknowledged, no money changes hands, and the play is not modified in any way.