S1Ep1 - "Welcome Home" Part Two

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[[Segment 1, Galactic Hub Serreven]]

Angn stepped out of the fresher, marveling at how clean he felt. There was no trace of the Mallowmarg's blood, and the travel funk that had carried with him from the elevator was nowhere to be found. The idea of a mandatory sterilization when setting foot into the station-proper was alarming at first, but it made sense as the station was a closed ecosystem and a balance had to be kept to prevent viruses from decimating the population. It also helped that the fresher was complimentary and didn't need to be paid for out of his own pocket. A nice, quick shower and freshly laundered clothes made him feel like new. Now he was ready to begin his new life.

Angn stood near a planter and rummaged through his backpack. His brow furrowed as he dug through it. "Where'd I put it? I swore I put it in the bag before the fresher-"

He pulled out a small cylinder with a button on the end. "Ah, here we are."

Angn studied it - it was about three inches long and silver. He recalled Bargo's instructions to activate the button when he was at the station and ready to be guided through his new job. He held the cylinder close to his face, studying it carefully, and then mashed down on the button with his thumb. He stood there a moment, confused, wondering why nothing was happening.

Then he felt his feet lift from the ground and felt his internal organs shift ever so slightly upwards. He felt the absence of gravity around him and noticed curious onlookers shrink as he rose higher and higher. He peered upward and noticed a large orb floating above him and his trajectory leading him to a closed-off spiral hatch. He closed his eyes, hoping that the hatch would open in time.

When gravity returned in the darkness his heart leapt into his neck, but he grew relieved to find that he had only fallen about an inch before his feet touched the ground. He found himself slightly off balance, but quickly recovered.

An artificial, aristocratic voice filled the chamber, "please step out of the gravity buffer. Standing directly on the hatch is a surefire way to a long drop."

Angn's eyes widened and he leapt off the hatch into the surrounding, tube-like chamber. The light flickered on and he saw that the room itself was unremarkable. He made his way to a doorway which opened as he approached. He was slightly disoriented from the gravitational field.

The control room was rounded and about fifteen feet in diameter. Banks of monitors and control systems blinked and displayed data, wrapping around the room, and near the center of it all sat a mobile chair. Next to the chair, however, was the source of the voice. A rounded orb was at a control bank, tethered to the ceiling via an umbilical cord, with two dexterous hands frantically at work.

Angn stepped forward, still trying to shake the dizziness, "what the heck was that?"

The Artifici did not turn around as he responded, "a transit beam, Administrator. Most frequently used for cargo."

"I'm not exactly cargo."

"That remains to be seen, Administrator."

Angn moved to the central chair and took a tentative seat, noticing the control panels at the end of the arm-rests. He gave the buttons and switches some cursory flicks and the chair responded with short, jerky motions. The Artifici made an audible sigh. He turned toward the chair and Angn noticed he resembled an eye. His casing was orange, but a jade, eye-like structure sat exposed in the middle of the body. Angn couldn't help but think of a tangerine-tinted Wot. He was astounded by the emotive properties of the simulated brow-line and lid.

The Artifici gestured to himself with a flourish of dexterous fingers at the end of long arms. "I am DICC, the Serreven's Dynamic, Interactive, Command Console. I am designed to facilitate your administrative duties. At the moment, I am busy with several important gravitational computations. I have taken the liberty of compiling a start-up-guide for you."

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