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Assigment to White Planet 8069 chapter eight SEARCHING FOR ANSWERS
by Chat-A-Book Group
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:::Personal comm report 14674/179 Jason Patterson..

The rig is acting jumpy on the back end, not sure what all they had me deliver this time but it seems to be weighing me down a bit. Hope there is nothing explosive in this trip. Thatís all I would need, blow my drone up out on the Ice.

Seems quiet out, and, as always, it is good to be back out in the open. At least the nightmares don't come as often while I am out, and away from everyone. Just pray I could figure out what they mean...

The ice seems to have sheared off from a cliff in Sector 11, on the route to the Outpost. Seems a cave of some sort is here, not very large but I may come back and take a look later, give me some playtime checking it out.

Jason Patterson/ end comm..

Narrator: ::: The frozen ground beneath the Survey-drone's treads crunched noisily as it rumbled across the ice, coming upon the Mining Outpost..:::
Jason Patterson: ::to himself:: While this land is barren, it will never end my amazement of it..
Astraia Mati: ::inside Outpost:: ::looks at her watch, wondering if it was time to take a break (she's incredibly bored with paperwork)::

Jason Patterson: :::Pulls in to the opening portal of the outer airlock to the Mining OutPost, calls to security for clearance, and confirmation on supply deliveries..:::
Astraia Mati: ::plasmagin beeps:: Security, Astraia Mati
Jason Patterson: Need help unloading a few things here .. can some one give a hand..?
Astraia Mati: Jason! Be right there...
Jason Patterson: ::Pulls in through Outer air locks and they seal closed behind .::
Astraia Mati: ::grabs clipboard, and heads for shipping platform::
Jason Patterson: ::steps down from the cap of the drone waving to a few crew men as they near to help off load.:: How are you Astraia? Long time no see..
Astraia Mati: Hi, Jason! How are you?
Jason Patterson: Had too much of dome life .. had to get out for a while.
Astraia Mati: Ah. Decided to pay us a visit, eh?
Jason Patterson: Give me the open air.. even if it is in a cramped cargo cabin.. :: laughs::
Astraia Mati: ::looks at cargo being unloaded:: So what did you bring me?
Jason Patterson: I have no idea... They pack it, I bring it. Was out this way, they said it was stuff needed here , so I brought it by.
Astraia Mati: Well, thanks. I'm sure we can find a home for everything.

Jason Patterson: Have some things I need to look into out this way.
Astraia Mati: Oh?
Jason Patterson: Ya... ::laughs:: Did some readings the last time I was over here ... on the back side of sector 17 .. thought I would look into it. I told the Gov'ner, he said I should look in to it as well.
Astraia Mati: Really? What kind of readings?
Jason Patterson: Well that's the thing... it was odd.
Astraia Mati: In what way?
Jason Patterson: Some sort of Radiation ... really High Levels too..
Astraia Mati: Radiation? But how can that be?
Jason Patterson: Was thinking it may be a solar flair... but it wouldn't have that level..
Astraia Mati: Hmm...
Jason Patterson: Not really sure... Thatís why I figured I would check into it
Astraia Mati: Well, the atmosphere should give us a little bit of protection from solar flares.
Jason Patterson: Yes, and the domes would keep out any more. But this kind was a Plasma radon radiation... normally used in space fire..
Astraia Mati: ::looks up quickly:: Space fire?
Jason Patterson: ya...
Astraia Mati: Interesting

Jason Patterson: Actually.. If you want the truth... Just wanted time away from the Dome for a while..
Astraia Mati: Time away? Why?
Jason Patterson: Oh.. I am sure you have heard of the group that's there.. That and the accident...
Astraia Mati: Yeah. The accident...::looks away::
Jason Patterson: I was there.. it was bad.
Astraia Mati: How's Meinta? I heard she was injured.
Jason Patterson: She seems ok..
Astraia Mati: Seems?
Jason Patterson: The doc's have her on med's to help the eyes.. And seeing she gets rest.
Astraia Mati: How badly was she hurt?
Jason Patterson: From what I was told her eyes. She just seems more tired... Drained is more the word.
Astraia Mati: Oh.
Jason Patterson: And I don't think it is all from the Med's.. True. Loosing Allara was hard on her.

Astraia Mati: I heard it happened in the research dome.
Jason Patterson: Yes. The power went out in some of the crates I brought back.. They blew as we were going past.
Astraia Mati: ::is quiet for a moment:: I'm going to miss Allara.
Jason Patterson: When the pressure dropped .. it caused them to be unstable. I must have banged one on my way dropping them off.
Astraia Mati: Oh..? Why would the pressure have dropped?
Jason Patterson: The power to the dome was gone. The pressure and temp is maintained by electric.
Astraia Mati: Right.. right..
Jason Patterson: They had a hard time getting in: no power and the doors seal shut.
Astraia Mati: And the power was out.. I wonder why that happened..
Jason Patterson: They never said, system failure of some kind.. If I hadn't been there they would not have been able to get to the outside airlocks fast enough.
Astraia Mati: Hmm...

Jason Patterson: The Drone is the only thing fast enough to get to the Outside Airlocks..
Astraia Mati: Yes.. ::nods::
Jason Patterson: And as it is they were froze shut.
Astraia Mati: So what did you do?
Jason Patterson: We... Allara and I .. went in from the outside locks.
Astraia Mati: ::nods:: Ok
Jason Patterson: We found them, Meinta and Damian.. they were out cold, Meinta was somewhat awake.. but...
Astraia Mati: Damian? Oh, he's one of the T19 group.
Jason Patterson: Some how they were in the old offices in the roof lines of the dome.
Astraia Mati: Wait... What was he doing there?
Jason Patterson: No idea why they were up there. When the Power went out they were stuck.. the doors all lock shut.
Astraia Mati: And Meinta? ::mulls over that connection a bit:: That's strange.
Jason Patterson: Ya, something about those rocks she had found.. Never did get that all clear.
Astraia Mati: Oh. She never did find out what those were?
Jason Patterson: No, not that I ever knew about ... they are pretty but not much good.

Jason Patterson: Anyway.. As we were headed out with them, Allara's asthma was acting up... Should never have had her in there.
Astraia Mati: Don't beat yourself up about it. If I know her, you couldn't have stopped her.
Jason Patterson: Ya, but on the way out I could have had her out first..
Astraia Mati: So what happened then?
Jason Patterson: As we were heading out one of the crates started to hiss, losing preasure fast, before we coulds get out it blew.
Astraia Mati: ::nods::
Jason Patterson: I must have hit one as we were off loading it.. Knocked a seal loose. Lost a good friend there, and a good soul.
Astraia Mati: ::tears start to form, and she swipes them away::
Jason Patterson: I know, Astraia... ::placing a hand to her shoulder:: But she is in a better place.
Astraia Mati: Better place? You sound like Meinta.
Jason Patterson: Well, we know her soul is not on this Iceberg anymore..
Astraia Mati: I will miss her. When my mother died, she was there for me.
Jason Patterson: A very loving and caring person.
Astraia Mati: Yes. She was generous to a fault.

Jason Patterson: After the services for her.. It has been eating at me... If I had her go out first, she would still be here.
Astraia Mati: It's not your fault, Jason. ::looks up at him:: Like I said, she was generous to a fault.
Jason Patterson: I know, and it may have gone off any way, but I still could have had her out faster. ::Stands quietly, looking down at his feet.::

Astraia Mati: So how was the service?
Jason Patterson: It was good, Mikko gave the rites.. and most everyone showed. Even the T19 people. Shows how well she was loved.
Astraia Mati: Oh, I'm glad Mikko did the rites. He's a good man.
Jason Patterson: Any way.. :::Looking in a shielded window into the supply cabin of the drone, watching the crates being removed..:: I felt it was time I got back to the Ice.. At least there I am my own worst enemy, and can't bother much.
Astraia Mati: It's got to be kinda lonely out there. I don't know if I could handle it.
Jason Patterson: Huh..? On the Ice...? Naw.. It suites me. Most can't stand to listen to me mumble to myself... ::laughs::
Astraia Mati: ::laughs::

Jason Patterson: And beside, the samples I got last time I was over that way, showed good for the mineral Meinta was wanting.
Astraia Mati: ::Watches cargo still being unloaded::
Jason Patterson: They should be getting some more samples in the next few days. But My main hunt this time.. Is those readings I saw... Will keep me out for a while I think..
Astraia Mati: Yeah...space fire, huh?
Jason Patterson: ::Shakes his head slightly.:: Not sure. It is the only thing I have ever come across that has that high level of radiation is a shipís cannon fire.
Astraia Mati: Wonder what that means?
Jason Patterson: Strange... :::Shakes his head:: It could be nothing more that a rouge ship that crashed out this way.
Astraia Mati: And then we get those...visitors.
Jason Patterson: Could you run a check on that with UU, and see if anything like it ever happened? As far as I know, that could be how they first found the place.
Astraia Mati: Yeah, sure. But, wouldn't there be debris?
Jason Patterson: Sure there would, but I won't see any until I go have a look. Mineral analysis will only show so much.
Astraia Mati: That would be interesting...unfolding a bit of our own history. But...I don't know...it doesn't feel right, somehow.
Jason Patterson: Like I said earlier, it could be a solar flair, but doubtful, you could check that as well. If it were... would think it be more wide spread. I donít know.
Astraia Mati: ::laughs:: Could be I'm just too suspicious. I DO work in security.
Jason Patterson: You get that way after a while, huh..?
Astraia Mati: Yeah...

Jason Patterson: Well, I am not security, but i think it is getting that way. First those readings, then the t19 group, and did you hear about the man we found..?
Astraia Mati: Yes... did you found out any more before you left?
Jason Patterson: Strange... If what he said was true, then he is old. That explorer group was shut down years ago.
Astraia Mati: Well, I haven't found anything yet, even about his name.

Jason Patterson: Well thatís the last crate... Think I will grab dinner, and head out..
Astraia Mati: Ok, I need to check this stuff in.
Jason Patterson: Do I need to sign anything..
Astraia Mati: Umm...::rifles through papers:: Yeah...sign here ::Hands him a paper to sign::
Jason Patterson: :::scribbles a J. Patterson on the sign sheet..:: There you go.
Astraia Mati: Thanks
Jason Patterson: No problem, Astraia. Well take care.. see you on the return trip.
Astraia Mati: Ok. Hey, you take care out there, too. Don't want anything to happen to you. Call in if you need anything.
Jason Patterson: Will do that. :::Heads across the Mining compound for the Common area, and a Hot meal..:::

Narrator: That evening Jason lay sleeping...

Jason Patterson: ::Tosses in his bed, shuddering from the dream that haunts his sleep, seeing times in his past revealed again in such vivid color, as to seem real. Even more so for it was his own memories the dream fed upon.::

The child was woke by his father, shaking him gently, he sat up in his bed, looking around as if lost for a moment. "You were mumbling in your sleep son," his father said, trying to comfort the child, "having a bad dream? It is ok, you are safe, it was only a dream."

"It was odd," the child said, still have asleep yet remembering the vision, "it wasn't a bad dream father, just strange."

"Oh," his father said, "and how was it strange?"

"I saw a man standing in a cavern, underground," The child said, slowly recalling each moment of the vision, "there was a large shining doorway behind him. And, as he stood there, guards started coming in, from a set of stairs in front of him. They started shooting at him, but the shots seemed to go right through. In his hand he held up a small silvery rod, about maybe 6 inches long, and it looked like a switch button on top."

"Here it where it got odd" the child said, "a bright light shown around him, and giant wings started growing from his back. Great golden wings, like an eagle's, but more like the were made of real gold. Then he smile, and pressed the switch in his hand, and things started exploding all around him, and the cavern started collapsing. The door frame was closed off and the guards were being buried. Then he spoke, but I couldn't hear what he said."

"Just a dream child," his father told him, brushing the hair back from his small fevered face, "nothing more than a dream."

"I don't know father," the child said, laying back down, trying to think of it as only a silly dream. "It seemed so real. What was the man, father, was he and angel.?"

"Now son," his father said, pulling the blanket up and over the child, "There are no such things. They were a legend millennia ago, that man had devised to represent messengers of an unknown god of some kind. We now know the truth now, such things do not exist."

::Tossing again as the dream changed, to another point in time. A last meeting of an old friend, and counselor. One he would never forget, even more so for the fact that he was put to death for being a subversive of a dead faith.::

"Tell me of the Place again, Gabriel," The young man asked, "the coming of the Secret Place?"

"Now, now, my boy," the old man said with a laugh, "you know this by heart yourself, and know also not to tell it openly as well, I hope." Looking sternly at the young man of 20 years, who nodded with a dreamy smile.

"I know, I know," he replied, "but tell me again, I love the way you tell it."

"The secret place, huh?" the old man said, sitting himself down beside the younger man, "Ah, the land of Norkue, Remlios, Valhalla, by the ancient Norsman. Shamayim, by the Hebrew children, or by the ancient Tibetans, Shangri-La. Paradise, my boy, the Golden Valley of Hope. A place of freedom, where peace reigns in the heart, and all men are filled with the blessings of joy, handed down to them by the love of the Creator Himself. No eye has seen nor heart perceived the great things that are yet in store for them who seek Him and His ways."

Just then Guards in the Universal Police rounded a corner, shouting out, and pointing in their direction. Gabriel stood up and started to move, faster than his age would account for, even in fear for his life.

"Run, my boy," the old man shouted, "run, and don't look back, and may God's blessing be with you, Jason."

::wakes as the sounds of gun shots echoe in his mind, knowing it was but a dream, but shaken all the more for the reality of it. He rises up out of bed and reaches across the cabin of the survey drone, pouring water into the wash basin. Splashes it's coldness into his face, and washes the sleep from eyes, praying he could remove the memory of the dream as easily.::

::Reaches for the plasmagin comm to send message report of the previous days findings::

mission com.. 14675/179


In sector 17 now, the plasma levels here are out of this world. And I am also getting a higher concentrate of the sulphuric. The soil seems richer in iron here as well. Are you sure this place wasn't manned before, it comes in near ovoid sections, of .25 kilometers. Just like the farming domes back at the base.

Scans of sector 20 show even high radiation fields, but the hills due north seem to cause interference. will try getting a better scan from the other side, then send it along.

Have your dad check those files again to see if any life forms were registered in this part of the system. I have a bad feeling about this. Will know more when I get a better scan.

Requesting farther investigation.

J. Patterson..out.

End com...

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