It was odd being back at the helm of a vessel in the intergalactic fleet after so long. There was no feeling in the world that paralleled this one, the feeling of sitting astride thousands of tons of machinery that bucked and churned and roared with flames to rival the old sun of Terra. She let a slow smile come to her lips, settling the interface helmet down over her short-cropped hair. Ship and Commander were once again one in mind and heart. Together, they would once more commune with the stars. But this time, they would not perform the deadly dance of laser grid defenses and high-grade ordinance. Those days were over, a shadow on the reverse thruster cameras and nothing more. This time, their cargo was the future and their destination was hope.


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