MENTAL ESSENCE
PAGE 152
" There you go Handy, extract the data please. "  Trent requested as he laid the console on the floor.

" Scans indicate they collected the gravitirium and any organic material. "  OM stated.

" There is a large cargo container arriving from Annum.  There are four Ulavet transports attached to it using their engines for power instead of the engines used by  the Annum in their own system. "  OM stated.

" That strategy would provide far less travel time to almost anywhere. "  Said Pace.

" The lack of suitable shielding not withstanding, even with the combined shielding of four transports.  Their communications are not coded.  Listen to this. "  OM thought.

" Put it on the speaker. "  Said Pace.

" Landing pad selected and lock in. "  Came a transmission from one of the Ulavet transports.

" Receptors in place, you are cleared for emediate  contact. "  Came a transmission from the space dock control office.

" Did you bring back anything interesting? "  Said a voice from adjacent transport.

" We have harvest granuals and hob gobblems or something like that. " Came a reply.

" What's a hob goblin? "  Asked the being in the other transport.

" Well, they bite and smell terrible.  I think someone should note that if more are ever ordered. "  Replied the pilot of the incoming transport.

" What do they taste like. "  Joked the other pilot.

" They will be ready for harvest in six months.  Then you can lick one. "  Stated the incoming pilot with short laugh.

" They sound average enough. "  Said Trent.

" I wonder what they mean by ready for harvest. "  Thought Trent.

" I wonder how the crews of those Ulavet transports survied the voyage for Annum. "  Said OM.

" Perhaps the Annum give the container a push, and the Ulavet pick it up in transit when it gets close. "  Suggested Pace.

" What would a solar flare do to their sensors? "  Asked Pace.

" That could provide enough interruption to let you in undetected. "  OM said to Trent.

" So can you create a solar flare?  Pace asked OM.

" No. "  OM replied.

" How about overloading one of the monitors, and when someone comes to fix it, Trent could attach himself to that transport for the return flight. "  Pace said.

" Now that is worth a try.  OM, zap the closest outer most monitor. "  Ordered Trent.

OM rendered a monitor useless.  After five days no one came to fix it, so OM zapped another one.  After another seven days, still on one had come to make repairs.

" If they monitor their monitors, they might think something more then electrical failure is responsible if we take out another one. "  Said Pace.

" Pace, perhaps you should initiate the gel process while we wait until they send a repair crew.  It seems as though it might take a while. "  Thought Trent.

Pace went into stasis.  It was five months before a repair ship arrived.

" Pace, the repair ship has arrived. "  OM thought.

" It looks like an awfully small ship to ride undetected. "  Pace said on her way to the pantry.

" It will have to do. "  Said Trent.

" The upside is there is only one of them. "  Said Pace.

" OM, if I am detected target their reactors and space ports before they can initiate a defensive posture, and deploy a probe behind me, it might get through without being discovered. "  Trent said.

" It's now facing away from us. "  Pace thought.

" On my way. "  Said Trent as he entered the airlock.

" He's attached. "  Pace said.

An hour after attaching to the repair ship Trent was on his way to Ulavet.

" Entering the atmosphere.  I am going to try drifting with the cloud to get a night time landing position. "  Thought Trent.

" There are fewer monitors two hundred miles along your present course of drift. "  Thought OM.

" I have landed on a rather poorly lit road, and several creatures with disturbing characteristics staring at me from a tree.  There is an electric fence ahead, and there are monitors everywhere.  I am going to elevate from here until I can land on the other side of the fence. "  Thought Trent.

" No Ulavet around? "  Thought Pace.

" No one. "  Trent thought back.

" I believe the primary seat of power in eight thousand miles to the south of your location.  The news broadcasts are centered around the best action on specific monitors, and where to get the latest food deliveries.  You are going to encounter electric fencing where ever you go.  I believe there are different types of creatures in each fenced area. "  OM thought.

" There is a vehicle coming up the road toward me. "  Trent thought.

" There are many transports of similar design every five miles or so.  They are most probably security patrols. "  Thought OM.

" They drove past me and waved. "  Trent thought.

" You will not be able to travel faster than the average Ulavet do to the number of monitors. "  Pace thought.

By daylight Trent had made his way to a small town.

" We might have the Ulavet misidentified.  Different looking beings have forced what we have identified as Ulavet into a transport. "  Trent thought.

" What do they look like? "  Pace asked.

" OM, log on to my brain for a visual. "  Ordered Trent.

" Logging on now. "  Thought OM.

" They are quite muscular, perhaps genetically engineered for law enforcement or military.  Their oval eyes and heavy cranium show a definite species difference, and I am logging off. "  OM thought.

" Why not stay logged on? "  Pace asked.

" When we are linked my knowledge base is shared with his.  That much information makes it hard to think with a brain as small as his.  No offence to us meant. "  OM thought.

Trent approached a several beings standing on the other side of the street.

" Excuse me, but do you know what those gentleman did to be treated like that? "  Trent asked a Ulavet standing on the other side of the street.

" They are guilty of being Comons, what do ya think. "  One of the beings said. 

" I apologize.  I received a head injury.  I do not remember much.  What is a Comon. "  Trent said trying to appear slightly dazed.

" Oh.  So what do you remember? "  The being asked.

" I do not remember my name, where I live, or what I am supposed to do.  When I first woke I could not move or talk. "  Trent said.