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Timeline: 2133

2133

[Transcript of mission log from the jumpship "Explorer", 13:27.45-13:31.22, 11.2.33]

Captain Dean Howland: All systems check. She's ready for FTL.

Traquility Base: Roger that, Explorer. All systems go.

DH: Beginning countdown to FTL drive engagement. Jump in T-60 seconds.

TB: We copy you, Explorer. Sixty seconds and counting.

DH: Anyone have a prepared speech for me?

TB: Don't you have one? [laughs]

DH: Yeah, but I don't know if I'll be able to catch my breath to read it. [laughs]

[pause]

DH: T-30 seconds to jump. All systems go.

TB: Heart rate and blood pressure register well within guidelines.

DH: Sure doesn't feel like it.

[pause]

DH: T-15 seconds. All systems check.

TB: Good luck, Explorer, and godspeed.

DH: Thanks, base. [pause] T-10.

DH: Initiating manual startup of the FTL drive. Drive check. Priming coolant tanks. Tanks check. [heavy breathing] Here we go.

TB: Five... four... three... two... one...

DH: Engage FTL drive.

DH: Holy... [burst of static] Base, do you copy?

TB: We copy, Explorer. [sounds of background cheering] You are out of Earth space. Long-range sensors place you in the vicinity of Jupiter. Vital signs are stable and within acceptable ranges.

DH: Roger that, base. We are in elliptical orbit around Jupiter. Repeat, in orbit around Jupiter. [breathes deeply] Do you copy?

TB: You bet your life we do, Explorer. Congratulations.

DH: Am I on the air?

TB: Roger, Explorer. You're on 72 networks, as well as broadband communication.

DH: [clears throat] Ladies and Gentlemen, this is the end of life as we know it. The doorway my crew and I have just jumped through is a gateway to untold spaces, races, and possibilities. The future lies through this door, and now the door is open.

TB: Good work, Explorer.

DH: Begin return jump countdown?

TB: Run a full system check first. Return at your leisure.

DH: Copy that, base. Commencing full system check. [pause] It's really beautiful out here.

TB: We see it, Explorer. It's more beautiful than I... we ever imagined.

(Excerpted from: SEA (Solar Exploration Agency) Archives, FTL test missions. [Voice of TB has been identified as Cameron Shetland.])

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