Back in the Python. Jumping en route to the Witch Head, closing in on the rekindled war, the burning stations.
Six jumps between me and the rescue vessels. The Probable Rescue
is no explorer, so it takes some time.
Time in between. In Witch Space.
The hyperspace instability hits the drive hard. I stop breathing.
The ship breaks out, no way to control it. Spinning, I have seconds to react, but nothing to react with. Heartbeat accelerated now, I see the electric systems of my ship die. Force myself to breath. Tell myself, that I survived back then. Learned to fight them, here, in between. The Probable Rescue is not equipped for that – but that was a different breed. Another breath. Just stay calm.
The old memories speak of another generation of interceptors, the swarm immediately released, the weapons blazing from the first moment. Of witch lights burning deep into my body. The Cobra breaking up. I drifted in space too long, back then. Nearly died. And the worst scars… those that stayed deep… they were not on the skin.
Eerie sounds. The scan. Just stay calm, even eye to eye. No aggression. Even eye to eye – no aggression.
You really don’t remember, do you? What we did to each other? How far we went?
Then they turn. Three of them. I regain control of the Python as it flickers back to life, but it is too late.
Just a wake that we cannot read, that opens no doors.
It leaves me empty. Concluding the journey, touching down on Landing Pad 07 on just another rescue vessel, I already think of the fires, not able to forget their lights.
We all came back. But to what?