Momentarily Displaced

Dar’leth clicked his fingers rhythmically on the armrest of his captain’s chair, marking time authoritatively. Things tended to appear more authoritative when sitting in a captain’s chair, even if they were perfectly mundane. It was one of the reasons Dar’leth had so desperately worked his way up to captain, earning the respect of his crew and enemies alike for his tenacity and dedication to a single goal. He really wanted to sit authoritatively in a captain’s chair and Dar’leth tended to get most things he really wanted. Which is why the fact that he and half his fleet were momentarily displaced in time and space while chasing something he really wanted irked him somewhat. He had managed to keep his temper in check but he knew that once his ship, Marine 3 and Mahogany 7 returned to the time and space they had been displaced from that his prize will be long gone. He still could scarce believe what had happened which wasn’t surprising since it was scarcely believable. The way the Zeppulian had moved during its escape  flew in the face of all the known laws of physics and several unknown ones. It seemed impossible and yet it had happened. He knew it had, he had seen it with his own violet eyes, eyes which were currently narrowed with impatience as he waited. He really wanted that ship and every moment spent displaced in time and space was a moment which made achieving that goal more difficult and further out of reach.


Pir surveyed her captain with a questioning gelatine look. She was concerned about how he was taking this latest setback. They had only been displaced a couple lightyears to the right and a week in the past, which wasn’t too bad all things considered. Luckily there hadn’t been anything which were occupying the coordinates they had been displaced to or things would have been… messy, Pir thought. She was all too aware of what happened when two objects tried to occupy the same space due to sudden materialisation from momentary displacement torpedoes, molecular fermion fusion. Since space is more vast than can be conceivably imagined and more empty than most people realise, fusion is incredibly rare but still mathematically possible. When two physical objects which by the laws of physics shouldn’t be able to occupy the same space are merged together, their entire molecular structure reshaped to both fit in the same space. Like the subject of most irrational fears, such incidents were so uncommon as to practically never happen but a thing doesn’t need to happen often to become a horror story. Pir let out a echoed breath as she thought of the phaser blast they dodged there. She looked back at the captain, his face pensive but with hints of frustration showing in the slight upcurl in the corner of his mouth. His fingers still authoritatively and rhythmically marked time with steady clicks on his armchair, clicks which sounded throughout the quiet command bridge since there was nothing for the crew to do but wait. Although they would return to their previous coordinates and time in a moment, the captain obviously disliked waiting for something he had no control over.  He had always been impatient, even for a Bezbulab, and his composure was only barely kept. But it was kept. His single-mindedness didn’t allow for outbursts when there were things he really wanted and his crew needed to rely on him to be a force of stability and authority in order to get those things. However his vexation simmered violently under the surface, plain as a radiant dwarf star to his first mate who knew his manner better than almost anyone. And she knew that as soon as they were returned to their own time and space, the captain would spring into action and begin issuing orders like he always did.


Duog shifted awkwardly in his chair and twiddled his tentacles aboard Aqua 4. He knew there was nothing to do but wait until the captain’s ship, along with Marine 3 and Mahogany 7, to return from wherever and whenever they were displaced. He tried not to reflect on what had happened. It made his head hurt trying to make sense of it. No ship that size should have been able to move like that, he thought to himself. He shook his prominent oval head ever so slightly and corrected himself. No ship any size should have been able to move like that, it didn’t any sense. No, no , don’t think about it. Think about something else. Something less problematic… I had really been looking forward to rewatch ‘Love Limbs Lost’. I doubt the captain would let us watch any hologrammies until that ship is captured, that’s for sure. Once the captain has decided he wants something,  that’s that. That’s that… how did it change direction so quickly without tearing itself apart? We were right on its trail, it just turned around with the sharpest u-turn in history while we were left scrambling, how did it, I don’t understand, no stop thinking about it! Duog shook his head more violently as though the troubling thoughts of what had happened could be shaken out of his considerably sized brain. He opened his large pale eyes and looked around the ship. It was obvious that the rest of his crewmates were dealing with the same mental dilemma, concerned looks adorned their faces. Even the faceless Autotauns looked distressed, although how he could discern that, Duog wasn’t sure, he just did. The faceless Autotauns were like that, everyone could just tell what emotion they were feeling even though they had no face to express that emotion. The hows and whys were better left unexamined like most things involving faceless Autotauns. They were great space pirates since they were truly amazing at following orders perfectly, even those not explicitly said, and that was all anyone needed, or wished to know about them. Duog counted Rig the Autotaun among his closest friends, not that he had many, and he knew better to pry into his species’ biology or history. Rig had never told Duog that he couldn’t ask but Duog just knew that some questions are better left unsaid and unanswered. Like how could that ship have possibly moved like that, it doesn't make sense...


Pir blinked. There was a slight pop followed by the sense of nausea you feel when you spin around too fast or get stuck in a time warp. They had returned to their own time and place. Aqua 4 and Ember 2 were waiting patiently for them, awaiting Dar’leth’s orders. Orders which Pir knew would be issued instantaneously.
“Rendezvous with Aqua 4 and Ember 2. Make sure communications are secure. I want to get us back into formation and a head count to make sure no one was lost in time or space,” Dar’leth issued. Pir nodded her jelly head, a slight smile on her elastic mouth. She knew the kicker was coming.

“And then,” Dar’Leth paused dramatically to emphasise the point, possibly even melodramatically considering how much he relished the drama. “And then we are going after that ship.”