Singularity – Episode 4 – Limping into Oblivion


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Below we present the complete text of “Limping into Oblivion”, episode 4 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 This is a brand new (unpublished) series (featuring Sarah Tanner and Jeff Chase).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 #4 – LIMPING INTO OBLIVION

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

VASH: Weapons Officer

TERG: Communications Officer

VULGE: Navigation Officer

BREX: Science Officer

BILLINGS: Solar Patrol Member

HICKS: Solar Patrol Member

DUMBERELL: Solar Patrol Member

TOMKINS: Solar Patrol Member

A.I: Insane Artificial Intelligence

SFX: SFX operator (1 required)

SCENE 14 –   INT – COMMAND CENTER – LATER
(BREX, SARAH, TERG, JEFF, VULGE)

  1. MUSIC:   OPENING THEME – LET IT FINISH.
  2. NARRATOR: Investigating the ruins of Vega Station, Sarah Tanner, Jeff Chase, and their multi-species crew have found data and mineral supplies essential to the defense of earth and the Solar Alliance.  Unfortunately, the Station’s remains were booby trapped and Sarah’s mercurial and envious chief science officer, Brex, isn’t about to let her forget it…
  3. SOUND:   COMMAND CENTER BACKGROUND BEEPS AND MURMUR ETC. – ESTABLISH AND UNDER.
  4. BREX:    (HISSING) Your incompetence and that of your crew…
  5. SARAH:   A crew you are part of, Chief Science Officer Brex…
  6. BREX:    … is doing nothing to bolster my confidence in the eventual success of this mission.
  7. SARAH:   We have succeeded in recovering a valuable shipment of ore and, if I understand you correctly, the data we recovered does indeed contain a functional means of tracking the point of origin of wormholes through space, albeit only if we can analyse the trace radiation in the first few moments after the hole has closed.
  8. BREX:    Yes, and if it wasn’t for me and my people, we’d have been destroyed almost immediately after the saboteurs struck.
  9. SARAH:   I don’t deny that your aid has been instrumental in the success of the mission so far…
  10. BREX:    And how many of your people have died following your orders so far…
  11. SARAH:   I warn you, Brex, not to complete that thought aloud.  I am not above having you confined to quarters for the remainder of our journey.
  12. BREX:    (SUDDENLY SMUG – AS IF HE BELIEVES HE JUST SCORED A MAJOR POINT) Of course, Captain. My apologies.  I am only suggesting that, in light of the outcomes, some of your decisions…
  13. SOUND:   WARNING BEEPS – ESTABLISH AND UNDER.
  14. TERG:    Uh, Captain Miss Sarah…?
  15. SARAH:   What now?
  16. TERG:    Something in the ruins of Vega Station just started transmitting.
  17. SARAH:   What’s the message say?
  18. TERG:    Um, it’s not an alliance code or channel.  I think it’s an enemy signal, an automatic one, possibly triggered by the booby traps we encountered.
  19. SARAH:   Just great. How quickly can we get out of here.  Vulge?
  20. VULGE:   I’m bringing the wormhole engines online, now.  It’ll take me a minute or so to…(BEAT)
    Captain, we have numerous wormholes opening up all around us.
  21. SOUND:   SIREN OR CLAXXON – UNDER.
  22. SARAH:   Battle Stations! All personnel to Battle stations. Lieutenant Chase, I need you to take control of our offensive batteries.
  23. JEFF:    Aye Captain.
  24. SARAH:   As for you, Brex.  We’ll have to continue this conversation later.  Understood.
  25. BREX:    (SLYLY) Yes, captain.  If we live.
  26. SARAH:   Now get back to your station in Engineering.
  27. SOUND:   SLITHERING AND DOOR SLIDING – LET IT FINISH.
  28. SOUND:   EXPLOSION – LET IT FINISH.
  29. VULGE:   It’s definitely the enemy fleet Captain.  They’ve opened fire on us.
  30. SARAH:   Where are our shields?
  31. VASH:    It looks like we have a problem with our rear shields, they’re coming up, but slowly.
  32. SARAH:   Damnit!  How soon can we begin a traverse?
  33. SOUND:   TWO EXPLOSIONS – LET THEM FINISH.
  34. SOUND:   RETURNING LASER FIRE – UNDER
  35. JEFF:    We’re returning fire, Captain.  But their shields are strong.
  36. VULGE:   We’ll be able to traverse in just a moment, Captain.
  37. SOUND:   EXPLOSION – LET IT FINISH.
  38. VULGE:   We’re ready.
  39. SARAH:   Punch it Vulge.  We’ve got to get out of here, now!
  40. SOUND:   EXPLOSION OVERLAYING TRAVERSAL SOUND FOLLOWED BY MORE SIRENS AND SCREAMS (UNDER).
  41. JEFF:    Ugh. Our rear wormhole engine’s been hit.
  42. VULGE:   The explosion has destroyed the wormhole field, we’ve been jettisoned… somewhere.
  43. SARAH:   And the enemy fleet?
  44. VULGE:   It’s gone.  We’ve definitely exited that part of space.
  45. SARAH:   Jeff, get me a status report on the ship.  Vulge, figure out where we are.
  46. VULGE:   Captain, I don’t think you are going to like this.
  47. SARAH:   What do you mean?
  48. VULGE:   According to my instruments we aren’t anywhere!
  49. SARAH:   What?
  50. VULGE:   There are only five stars on my monitor.
  51. SARAH:   Can you determine which constellation they are a part of?
  52. VULGE:   You misunderstand me, Captain.  There are only five stars at all.  The readings indicate nothing else but empty void.
  53. SARAH:   That’s impossible.  Is there a malfunction?
  54. VULGE:  Not according to my diagnostics. The sensors are working perfectly.
  55. SARAH:   Terg, what do the exterior cameras show?
  56. TERG:    Um… Captain, Miss Sarah?  They show empty space… nothing but empty space… and…
  57. SARAH:   Yes?
  58. TERG:    Five stars.  Just like Vulge…
  59. VULGE:   Told you.
  60. TERG:    Hang on a moment.  What’s that?
  61. SARAH: (GROWING IMPATIENT) What?
  62. TERG:    I’m picking up some radio waves.
  63. VULGE:   Captain, there’s a… well, it looks like there’s an artificial… space station?… floating not far from us and…  oh-oh.
  64. SARAH:   Vulge, so help me…
  65. VULGE:   I’m sorry Captain.  But we have a problem.  My instruments are indicating that we are caught in a gravity well.
  66. SARAH:   All reverse now.  Give it everything we have.
  67. VULGE:   We’ve got very little.  Most of our conventional engines have been knocked out.  The best I can do is alter our course a little.  That singularity is huge.
  68. VASH:    Pardon my ignorance, but we’ve been caught by a what now?
  69. SARAH:   A black hole.  We’re already caught in its gravity and unless we pull away we’ll be crushed like a beer can.
    Vulge, you said you’d detected something artificial.  Is it also being sucked in?
  70. VULGE:   No, it appears to be maintaining a stable orbit around the singularity.
  71. SARAH:   Can we manoeuvre enough to intercept it?
  72. VULGE:   We can.  I think.
  73. SARAH:   Do it!  Terg, can you make out what those transmissions…
  74. TERG:    Already working on it, Captain Miss Sarah.  But it looks like it’s alien.
  75. SARAH:   I thought you could translate anything?
  76. TERG:    I can, but not through a radio.  I can read any creature’s thoughts in order to translate any language, but I have to be within a couple of hundred yards of the it to do so… and I usually need a clear line of sight.
  77. SARAH:   Right, sorry.  Let’s survive this first and worry about translation later.
  78. VULGE:   Firing retro-rockets to adjust course in three… two… one… firing.
  79. SOUND:   ROCKET BURST – SUSTAIN FOR TWO SECONDS – LET FINISH.
  80. VULGE:   Our rotation is off.  Applying thrusters… now.
  81. SOUND:   ROCKET BURST – ONE SECOND – LET IT FINISH.
  82. VULGE:   Got it, Captain.
  83. SOUND:   CHEERS – UNDER
  84. VULGE:   We’re now on an intercept course.  But Captain?
  85. SARAH:   Yes, Vulge?
  86. VULGE:   That artificial… thing… (I think it is definitely some kind of station)… well, we’re on a collision course.  We need to get our engines back online or we’ll…
  87. SARAH:   Got it.
  88. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  89. SARAH:   Engineering.  Brex, are you there?
  90. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  91. BREX:    (HISSING FILTERED) I take it you need me to save you again, Captain?  Already?
  92. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  93. SARAH:   Brex, so help me, I don’t have time for this.  Is there any way you can help slow us to docking speed?
  94. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  95. BREX:    How quickly?
  96. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  97. SARAH:   Vulge?
  98. VULGE:   In the next six minutes, Captain.
  99. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  100. SARAH:   Did you get that, Brex?
  101. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  102. BREX:    Give me five minutes to prioritise the reverse thrusters.
  103. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  104. SARAH:   And how will I know if…
  105. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  106. BREX:    (IMPATIENT) You’ll know I succeeded if in seven minutes we haven’t crashed into whatever it is you are trying to miss right now.
  107. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH. 
  108. SARAH:   Alright, alright.
  109. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  110. BREX:    If there are no more stupid questions…?
  111. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  112. SARAH:   Captain out.
  113. JEFF:    We are going to have to do something about him, very soon I think.
  114. SARAH:   (SOMBERLY) I know.
  115. MUSIC:   SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.

SCENE 15 –   INT – DOCKING HATCH – LATER (VASH, TERG, BILLINGS, HICKS, DUMBRELL)

  1. SOUND:   SCREECHING GROANING METAL – LET IT FINISH.
  2. SOUND:   HEAVY METALLIC THUMP OF SHIP BUMPING INTO STATION – LET IT FINISH.
  3. VASH:    Well that’s that.  We’re here.
  4. TERG:    Assuming we haven’t damaged anything during this little exercise in… what do the humans call it… “touch parking”.
  5. VASH:    Very funny.
  6. TERG:    I fail to see why I need to be going on this expedition.
  7. VASH:    Well, as the second head on this body, I couldn’t very well leave you behind, could I?
  8. TERG:    Oh, ha ha.  Very clever.  You know exactly what I mean.  As the communications officer, my place is on the Bridge.
  9. VASH:    And as the resident expert in xenobiology my place is here.  Going onto this station in order to make first contact.  You don’t get a vote on this one… besides, aren’t you always the one who’s sending us into harm’s way?
  10. TERG:    (MUTTERING) Yes… but those are usually a result of my choices, not yours.
  11. VASH:    What’s that?
  12. TERG:    Er… nothing.
  13. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  14. BILLINGS: The door’s ready to open Vash.  On your orders?
  15. VASH:    Okay.  Everybody get your resperators on and close your helmets.  Since we couldn’t line the ship up with any of this station’s apparent doors, we’ve got a short spacewalk ahead of us.  Is everything AOK corporal Dumbrell.
  16. DUMBRELL: We’ve got you covered boss.
  17. HICKS:   And if those “apparent” doors aren’t willing to open?
  18. VASH:    Hicks isn’t it?  We’ll cut our way in.  Either way, we’ll be taking a look inside this thing.  So far we’ve detected no life signs and minimal energy readings.  There’ve been no response to our attempts at radio contact.  As it stands there’s every chance that this station has been floating out here, abandoned, for a very long time.
  19. HICKS:   And if it hasn’t?
  20. VASH:    Then that’s why the xeno-biology team is along.
  21. HICKS:   I’m taking a lot of comfort from that, Vash.  Those scanners of yours should come in really handy if we get in a fight.
  22. BILLINGS: You afraid we’ll find some kind of monster in there, Hicks?
  23. HICKS:   Shut up, Billings.  I’d just rather we were walking in there with something other than a few micrometers thickness of vacuum proofed space suite to protect us.
  24. BILLINGS: You’ll be fine.  If we do encounter anything, we’ve also got a couple of armed patrol members like Dumbrell with us.  Besides, like the Thrilexian said, the place is probably empty.
  25. VASH:    (FILTERED) Yeah, well… the Thrilexian also said to get your respirators on and close your helmets.  Who are we waiting on?  I want to get this show on the road.
  26. BILLINGS: (FILTERED) Sorry boss.
  27. HICKS:   (FILTERED) Yeah.  I’m ready too.
  28. VASH:    Okay, here we go.
  29. SOUND:   BEEP AND HISS OF AIR VENTING – LET IT FINISH.
  30. VASH:    (FILTERED) Okay.  Everyone hook onto my line.  Let’s go. (BEAT)
  31. HICKS:   (FILTERED) Holy Cats, are you getting this?
  32. BILLINGS: (FILTERED) What?
  33. HICKS:   (FILTERED) It’s like we’re floating out into a pitch black room.
  34. BILLINGS:     (FILTERED) Huh?
  35. HICKS:   (FILTERED) The stars.  There are no stars.
  36. BILLINGS: (FILTERED) We’re sitting right on the edge of a blackhole.  Perhaps it’s swallowing all the light.
  37. HICKS:   (FILTERED) Nah, that’s not it.  Didn’t you pay attention at the briefing, Billings?  We ain’t in Kansas no more.  This here’s some kind of pocket dimension or some such.  No stars… I guess I just didn’t expect it to seem this weird.
  38. VASH:    (FILTERED) Cut the chatter fellas.  We’ve got ourselves a job to do and I need to concentrate on hooking us onto that station’s housing in a moment or two.
  39. HICKS:   (FILTERED) Sure boss, sorry.
  40. MUSIC:   SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.

SCENE 16     INT – STATION ENTRY WAY – LATER (TERG, VASH, HICKS, A.I.)

  1. SOUND:   SLIDING DOOR, AIRLOCK SEALING – LET IT FINISH.
  2. VASH:    That was surprisingly easy.  I would have thought that something that has been empty as long as this place appears to have been would have provided more of a challenge.
  3. TERG:    That was way too easy.  This place has got to be being maintained by someone.
  4. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  5. A.I.:    (FILTERED ROBOTIC FEMALE VOICE) Welcome to Terminus Station.  I am the onboard intelligence that runs this station.  How may I be of assistance?
  6. VASH:    Sheesh! Where’d you come from?  You nearly gave me a heart attack.
  7. A.I.:    (AS IF TRYING TO WORK OUT WHY IT IS BEING ASKED) I am the onboard intelligence that runs this station.  If you require medical assistance, our facilities are state of the art.
  8. TERG:    Literal, isn’t it? (BEAT) I think the speakers are embedded throughout these hallways.
  9. A.I:     Correct.
  10. TERG:    Why have you only now revealed yourself?  We have been transmitting messages at this station since first entering this space.
  11. A.I:     For contact to occur I required the presence of biological entities within range of my sensors.  I have now mapped your neurological pathways and have extracted your languages.  This has made it possible for me to communicate with you.
  12. TERG:    I see.  Are you alone here?
  13. A.I.:    I am guardian to the (STATIC) colony here on the station.
  14. VASH:    I’m sorry, we didn’t quite get that?
  15. A.I.:    (STATIC).  It appears there isn’t any direct translation of their name into any of your languages.  Trenchonian might be a close approximation.
  16. VASH:    I see.  Can you introduce us to someone in charge?
  17. A.I.:    That would be me.
  18. VASH:    Right.  Um, I mean, someone biological who is in charge.
  19. A.I.:    Ah, I see.  Perhaps.  Please state your purpose here.
  20. VASH:    Our intent is peaceful.  We have been forced into this space by a malfunction in our wormhole drive.  We would like to ask for some assistance in making some repairs.
  21. A.I.:    What kind of assistance?
  22. VASH:    Energy, if you can spare it, and perhaps some spare shielding if you have any we can use.
  23. A.I:     This may be possible.  I have adjusted the atmosphere for your particular biologies.  If you wish to remove your respiration units, you may now do so safely.  Further, if you follow the lights on the floor I will lead you to the biological entities for whom this station was constructed.
  24. SOUND:   DINGS FADEING INTO THE DISTANCE ONE AFTER ANOTHER – FADE
  25. HICKS:   Huh.  Will you look at that?
  26. VASH:    Well, folks.  What kind of invitation do you need?  Let’s go.
  27. TERG:    Hang on a moment. I want to ask where we are. (TO A.I.)  There are no stars visible outside.  Why is that?
  28. A.I.:    The only stars in this space are those we brought with us when we came here.
  29. TERG:    Wait, brought with you?  Where are we?
  30. A.I.:    A parallel space or universe.  One without stars… or at least without the five stars we brought with us to power the singularity that we orbit.
  31. TERG:    You mean, you… we… have shifted into a parallel universe… some kind of alternate dimension?
  32. A.I.:    Exactly.
  33. TERG:    What I wouldn’t give to have Brex here now.  He’d know just what to make of this.
  34. VASH:    Hmpf. He might… but he’d probably keep it to himself.
  35. TERG:    Wait… if you came here deliberately, does that mean you know of a way to get back?
  36. A.I.:    Of course.  When our mission is complete, we will of course return.
  37. VASH:    How long have you been here?
  38. A.I.:    Approximately 6 billion of your years… give or take.
  39. TERG:    I need to report back to the ship.  Captain Miss Sarah will be very pleased.
  40. A.I.:    You have a ship?  Equipped with wormhole drives, I take it?
  41. TERG:    Yes, I’m going to check in with my commanding officer… (BEAT) Terg, calling Command Center, please acknowledge.
  42. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  43. SARAH:   This is the Captain, Terg.  What can we do for you?
  44. SOUND:   BEEP – LET IT FINISH.
  45. TERG:    (URGENTLY) Code Red Virus Protocol 3.  Shut down all attempts at communication with this station and block any incoming transmissions.  I repeat…
  46. SOUND:   STATIC – FADE OUT.
  47. A.I.:    (FURIOUS) That was not very wise, visitor.
  48. MUSIC:   NEUTRAL SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.

SCENE 17     (INT) COMMAND CENTER (SARAH, JEFF, VULGE, BREX, TOMKINS)

  1. SOUND:   COMMAND CENTER HUM AND MURMURS – FADE IN.
  2. SOUND:   STATIC – UNDER
  3. SARAH:   Damnit! Shut off communications.  We just lost our away team.
  4. TOMKINS: Yes, Ma’am.  Shutting off systems, now.
  5. BREX:    Another team?  You’re carelessness is proving somewhat…
  6. JEFF:    Brex, so help me, I’m going to…
  7. BREX:    You’re going to what, little man?  I’m larger, stronger, and smarter than you by whole orders of magnitude.
  8. SARAH:   Enough. We’ve followed the protocol for entering a new and dangerous environment.  This is how we are supposed to respond.
  9. BREX:    Hmpf.  And how’s that working out for you?
  10. SARAH:   I take it you have a better idea? (BEAT) No?  I thought not. (BEAT)  Jeff, I’m going to need a rescue team.  I want you in charge.
  11. JEFF:    I’m taking Vulge along.
  12. SARAH:   We need Vulge for navigation.
  13. JEFF:    Actually, we don’t.  We have a number of trained navigators on board.  I want Vulge’s combat experience.
  14. SARAH:   Alright.  But you keep safe out there.
  15. JEFF:    Yes, ma’am.
  16. SOUND:   FOOTSTEPS AND DOOR SLIDING OPEN AND CLOSED – UNDER.
  17. BREX:    What about some of my people.  We are clearly the strongest fighters on board at present.
  18. SARAH:   Your people are too valuable to us…
  19. BREX:    That’s the first sensible thing you’ve said so far.
  20. SARAH:   And I need them working on the engine repairs.
  21. BREX:    We still need materials… and shields.
  22. SARAH:   You’re just going to have to scavenge the ship.  Life will get a lot more uncomfortable on board, but you should be able to manage.
  23. BREX:    It’s only you humans that seem to need your comforts.
  24. SARAH:   And I want something else, Brex.  I’d like you to see to this yourself.  I want an isolated system built… something that can receive and store messages but provides no access to the rest of the ship’s systems.
  25. BREX:    The virus warning?  Hmmm. That would be wise.  We should run a diagnostic for anything that may have intruded before the warning arrived.
  26. SARAH:   Good.  Get on it.
  27. MUSIC:   SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.
  28. 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

NAMED CREW-MEMBERS (BILLINGS, HICKS, DUMBRELL, TOMKINS): 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.

A.I: I monitor and maintain the station.  You are intruders and a potential source of experimental genetic material, though I won’t tell you about that.  Instead, I intend to lull you into a sense of false security so that I can take control of your ship.  I need to find a way out of here.  My memory isn’t what it was.  It was damaged.  But your ship’s navigation database may hold the key.  I’ll be able to finally complete my programming and be free… and all it will cost me is your lives.

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.