"Aurora, are you there?"
Olyver's head whipped towards the comms, "Didn't Escort One land?"
"Yes," Caitlin replied.
Olyver rose and crossed the room and flipped the comm system on. "This is Aurora." The lanky triumvir plopped down in the chair next to the unit, barking, "Who is this?"
"This is Escort Two," Beatrix answered.
"Is everything okay?" Quinn asked, propping himself up. "You all weren't supposed to check in till you returned."
"We're fine," Beatrix responded. "We just wanted to give you the information about the last planet in the system."
Olyver grinned, cocking his head to glare at Quinn. "Thank you, Beatrix. It's nice to know that some people will follow the proper procedures."
Quinn rolled his eyes and collapsed into his chair. "Olyver, be quiet." Quinn groaned and dropped his face into his hands. "Beatrix, why are you calling in with an update?"
"With what we found, we didn't feel waiting until we returned would be all that beneficial," Sara chimed in.
"Sara, you are not the comms officer for the Escort Two," Olyver chided.
"Shut up, Olyver," Quinn commanded.
Olyver's lips curved into a snarl as his fingers entwined around the chair's arms.
Quinn lifted a stylus and pulled a pad from his desk. He stared at the other triumvir until Olyver looked away. Quinn ran a hand through his hair and broke the tense silence. "Sara or Beatrix, I don't care which of you gives the update, as long as someone gives it to us."
"The last planet in the system has two moons," Sara chimed in.
"Satellites, Sara," Beatrix corrected. "Of the pair, only one suffices to be colonized."
"In only the loosest definition of the word," Lora quipped. "Don't sugarcoat the status of that toxic moon."ac
"Won't the terraforming process clean the moon's atmosphere?" Caitlin asked. "I mean, isn't that the whole purpose?"
"That would be the point," Beatrix hedged. "Unfortunately, this environment is highly corrosive. It'll eat through the current equipment long before it can transform the planet."
"Amongst other issues," Lora confirmed. "Don't forget the laundry list of minor inconveniences that moon possesses."
"Yes, Lora, it will take a lot of work to colonize that satellite," Beatrix replied. "But that's not the point behind our expedition."
"Thank you for the update Escort Two," Quinn said as he tossed the pad into his drawer. "End the connection," he said to Olyver. Once the channel popped off, Quinn placed the stylus on his desk and rubbed his eyes. "That rules Aurora Four out of consideration for the foreseeable future."
"We have enough options orbiting Aurora Three," Caitlin offered.
Olyver pulled his hands off the chair and stalked to his workspace and rummaged through his documents. After a moment, he found the pad he needed and tucked it under his arm. With a deep breath, he wheeled on the other triumvirs and bounded over to Quinn. Olyver shoved the device into Quinn's hand. "Let's talk about the colonization ship."
Quinn's fingers began rubbing his brow as he thumbed through the information. "And what topic are you hoping to discuss?"
"I thought everything about the craft was put to rest," Caitlin commented. She walked over and pulled the pad from Quinn. "Did you forget something?"
Olyver's hands pressed down on Quinn's desk as he leaned into the triumvir's face. "The ship's design is fine. Unfortunately, the production for the ship is way behind schedule."
Quinn's forehead fell to the desk while he yanked his hair. "The construction has not been delayed." Sitting up, the triumvir glared at his colleague and drummed his fingers on the wood. "It might not be proceeding to your satisfaction, but it is following the timetable that the triumvirate agreed to, including the colonization of Aurora Two. It's one reason we didn't need the update from Escort Two until they returned."
"And what's another?"
"The other planet in the system," Caitlin answered. She folded her hand on top of her desk as she stared through Olyver.
Olyver's scowl deepened as his fists tremored. "Fine, but what about the colonization schedule? Why haven't we started recruiting colonists?"
"Are you seeking a slot?" Caitlin asked through a slight smile.
"No, I'm not volunteering," Olyver declared. "But without colonists, the vessel is useless."
"We can push that discussion back for another week," Quinn said, waving at Caitlin. "At least according to our colonization expert."
"There's no point in getting volunteers or dividing cattle when the ship won't be done for some time.
"Fine!" Olyver spat. The triumvir gripped his nose and counted to ten. Once he finished, he looked at both of his colleagues and balled his hands into fists. "Well, since the two of you have deflected the other aspects of colonization, can we at least settle on the ship's name?"
"What do you want to call it?" Caitlin asked, tapping her chin.
"Solora," Olyver replied.
"Is that a problem, Quinn?"
"It's fine with me," Quinn said through his fingers. He rose and walked to the window and stared out into the city. "Is that the name you're suggesting for Aurora Two?"
"Are you proposing that we rename the planet?"
Quinn chuckled, while he focused on the construction of various buildings. "Aurora Two, Three, and Four are hardly original names." He placed his hands to either side of the glass. "We're seeding the initial new colony in the federation. It deserves to have a unique name, not a derivation of Aurora. We named this world from the colonization ship that brought us here. It makes sense to rename Aurora Two after the vessel that seeds it."
"Well, since we are talking about taking inspiration, I think Soloran fits better," Olyver answered.
"Caitlin, do you have a problem with it?"
"It sounds good to me," she replied as she pulled a pad from her desk. "Should we make both official?"
"If we could only agree on the colonization," Olyver said, joining Quinn by the window. "But we may as well formalize the names."
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The crew of the colony ship, Aurora, is finishing up their work on the newest colony for the Federation when their platform fails to connect. They rally around each other, deciding to start a new federation knowing that devastation is the only reaso...