The Voyage Home
Location: Captain's Quarters
Timeline: 4 Hours before 3/21/18 sim
Edra paced back and forth in their bedroom. Was this really happening? Were they looking at a real possibility of getting home? They'd been here for months...almost a year, and she thought she was starting to get used to the idea of being here. It had been tough. Going from hoping to see anything that was familiar, to realizing that it probably wasn't going to happen. And they'd found some worlds out here that seemed to resemble planets back home, but there was always something that turned that first impression on its head. Finding potentially pastoral worlds that were, in reality, hostile from the native wildlife, flora and fauna alike, had made settling anywhere a small prospect.
And that had been a kick to morale for most of the crew. It had gotten denigrating to think that even the worlds without sentient beings were rejecting your presence. And each time they found a new planet, and hopes were raised, they were quickly dashed again. If that was going to be the destiny of this attempt to return home, she hated to think of the consequences.
Outside the bedroom, she heard the door to their quarters open, and looked up, waiting to see who it was.
Henry walked in, shaking his head. "That Lieutenant keeps spouting off theories and technical jargon and all I can think of is this is why I slept through those classes."
She looked at him, he must have just finished meeting with Hartsfield. "Do you think it's feasible? Should we...get our hopes up?"
"He seems very excited about this experiment of his. I raised the whole harmonics thing and he said not to worry that we'd end up in the right place. I still don't want the crew at large to know though. A failure now may crush their morale for good."
She nodded, but she could tell he was holding back. "What do you think?" she asked, her tone indicating that she wasn't asking the Captain, but her husband.
He paused, looking out of the viewport as the stars streaked by. "I want to think it'll pan out, but I'm guarding against it. But he's so sure....he makes me believe too."
She closed the distance between them and slipped her hands around his waist. "It's a contagious feeling, the hope he gives us, isn't it? But I've been cautious about putting too much stock in it as well."
"Home." He said quietly.
She nodded, not saying anything for a few moments. The silence giving the idea a chance to sink in. "It's been hard not being able to tell the kids."
"I know. I keep wanting to promise them things on the ranch and then I stop short."
Another nod. And another bout of silence as she searched the floor, trying to figure how to broach the other possibility, with little luck.
"I known you long enough to feel when you got something on your mind."
"What...what if it doesn't work? All these people we're responsible for...including the kids..." She let it hang, knowing she didn't have to finish.
"If this doesn't work I think we need to put down roots and make the best of it. Assuming we're not blown to bits. He assures me there is only a 16% chance of that."
"That's the outcome that worries me. It seems small, it's still higher chances than I like."
"If it makes you feel any better we probably won't have time to worry about it."
She shook her head. "I don't know that it does. But either way I can't let on about it." It was frustrating not being able to react without giving themselves away.
He turned to look her in the eyes. "I can't tell you not to worry but whatever happens we're together, all of us."
"I know," she replied with a slight smile. "And if it were just you and me, I'd face it head on, no hesitation. But it's not. It's everyone we care about. It's our kids, and Ossan, and Kieran..." She had to take a deep breath to control her emotions, or at least try.
He put his hand on her shoulder. "We will get home." His tone was quiet but stern. He leaned forward kissing the top of her head.
She leaned into him, grateful for his steady support. And she accepted his words of encouragement. She had to if she was going to help him lead them back. "Thank you."