Discovery part 8 by Ronald Faltus

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Visibility decreased to near nothing, his entire vision filled with slowly rolling strands of bluish mist. The scanners were also useless for tracking position, the electrometric properties of the nebula overloading the active sensors. Easing back on the throttle, he slowed the ship. At full speed, he could have easily smashed into the side of the colony ship, ending his rescue mission before it started. Safety would have demanded to slow the ship even further, but Gareth was unwilling to temper his urgency too much. Lives were at stake, each second to be the difference in the life of another colonist. Sitting on the edge of his seat with his hand tightly gripping the stick, he peered out into the thickening clouds. Glancing down, he saw the distance dwindle down too only a few hundred meters. He was almost on top...

A bolt of electrometric lighting erupted ahead in the distance. It started at the top of his vision streaking downward. But as it crossed vertically to his course, it disappeared, only to emerge lower. An object blocking the bolt appeared as a shadow, back lit by the lightning strike. It only appeared for a second, dissolving back into the mist as fast as it appeared. For that moment, Gareth saw a long cylinder stretched across his field of vision. The Heavenly Star, floating dead in space. Shooting for one end of the ship, he aimed The Scry to a point right in front of were the colony ship vanish back into the nebula and piloted further into he abyss. Keeping an eye off the port side, he hoped that he would pass right in front of the ship, and then turn to travel down the spine to the central docking ring. But as time ticked away, he began to wonder if he over shot his mark. In this mess, he could be fifty meters away and still not see it...

The Scry passed through a dense assortment of dark blue strands of stellar material, only to emerge in an opening in the clouds. Directly to the right, an immense metallic wall appeared, jutting out. It's polished black surface reflecting the play of colors form the nebula. The smooth surface was broken only by the occasional window covered blister, each spaced in a line across the beam of the craft. The fore section of the craft curved away, melting back into the clouds. Intricately layered panels covered the curve, creating lines that accentuated the glossy exterior, reflecting a myriad of different visions of the surrounding space.

Turning to a parallel course with the transport, Gareth couldn't help but gasp at the pure beauty and enormity of The Heavenly Star. A throw back to when space exploration was in its infancy, a romantic spiritual age of exploration. This ship was designed not just for transpiration, but to instill a sense of awe to the passengers. Truly they must have felt like they were riding a chariot of God, traveling across the cosmos to their promised land. So unlike the utilitarian ships launched today, this ship was designed for inspiration, to instill a deep sense of wonder. Crossing the starboard flank of the ship, Gareth watched the vessels' lines begin to merge, as the fore section of the ship began to taper into a thin corridor.

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