July 11, 2149 – Seeker. Earth’s Orbit.
“We are all set to go Commander,” First Officer Penner said, hands hovering over the ship’s controls.
Karen took one last look out the viewport at Earth and said a silent prayer for the people they were leaving behind. “Hail the Santa Maria, please.” She fidgeted with her collar. “In my office please.”
She sat at her desk, empty except for the comp screen. It buzzed and an image of the Union president appeared. “What is it Bilson? You should be gone by now.” President Carne’s face flushed.
“Yes, sir. I just…-” she paused, wondering if she should just keep it to herself, “I want to know if you have a plan to come back and help Earth once we’ve settled?”
Carne’s red face turned crimson and a vein pulsed on his forehead. “Bilson, follow your damned orders and don’t question me again. There are plans in place that are far above your pay grade. Fly your vessel in front of us. Keep us posted and we will be a day behind as planned. If you fail to do so, you will quickly see yourself left behind, alone on the lift to Earth!” The screen went dark.
The guilt that somehow she aided in the world’s death tried to weigh her down, but she knew she had to shake it off and help those she could. The colonists were her main focus now. With a new resolve she walked back to the bridge.
“Penner, take us out.” The first officer smiled and soon the ship was accelerating quickly away from Earth and everything they’d ever known.