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  • S. B. E.

Episode 1 - Starfall

“Roj.”

“Ravella, I haven’t seen you in so long.”

“I need you to come with me.”

“Excuse me, I have to get to wor-”

“Roj, if you want to stay alive you’ll come with me. You must trust me.”

Ravella pulls Roj through a crowd of people. She seems to walk in a very peculiar manner, as if she were trying to not be noticed. Roj makes a bit of a struggle to break her grasp. Despite Ravella appearing quite weak, she grabs onto Roj as if her life depended on it.

“Ravella!” Roj said louder than one probably should, “What are-”

“We can’t be seen.”

Neither two knew what to say in this situation. Ravella just pushed herself and Roj along through all the people who likely just assumed that they had a meeting or a class or a-

“And if you know what’s good for you, say nothing more,” said Ravella in an annoyed tone after at least three minutes of dead cold silence from both her and Roj.

The two make their way to a grassy field away from civilization. No one is around but Ravella and Roj. Ravella takes out what Roj would only know as a torch.

She shines it on the ground in a very particular manner.

“What’s with the torch?” said Roj.

“This is no torch.”

After Ravella gives her comment, a small one centimeter rod appears from the ground. It spreads open, ripping apart the ground. A hole in the center of the rod itself appears and continues to grow until the hole has a diameter of five feet precisely.

Ravella demands her confused friend to jump in the hole.

Roj refuses.

Ravella pulls out a second object appearing as a torch. Roj, predicting something unwanted, runs away. Ravella waits a few seconds and zaps him with the object. He freezes still. Ravella runs with all the speed she can muster. Despite having just been running from the city, she makes very good time. She grabs a hold of Roj and she carefully places him in the hole. She follows afterwards.

Inside the ground is a rudimentary base of sorts. The walls were made of the dirt that was there prior to the construction of the base. There is only one computer, charged not via a highly efficient cord, but of cheap batteries that die in a relatively short amount of time. Papers are everywhere, both on the tables and on the ground; as if the ground is as respected a table as tables are. A group of about thirty people rome around; discussing complex topics and/or reading from the papers, most of which were caked in dirt. No one seems to mind that.

Ravella pulled out the device that freezed Roj and proceeded to unfreeze him with a combination of button presses.

When Roj unfreezes, he then promptly almost freezes in fear at this seemingly completely different location to anywhere Roj has ever been. Even his dark curly hair stood just as still as the rest of him. A man wearing a jacket so dirty that its actual color can’t be identified, but also smells of artificial strawberries approaches Roj.

“My god, I haven’t seen you in quite a long time. I’m Bran Foster”.

Roj can only respond with, “I’m Roj-”

“We know who you are and you know about half of us.” Bran continues, “You used to run this operation,” Bran pauses, “Well, not this exact location. Your’s was much larger.”

Bran pauses and is clearly thinking of something to say.

He thinks of something and continues with, “You were the leader of a group of rebels that attempted to overthrow the Federation. When we were just about to win Servalan implemented her true plan. Numerous rebels and Federation members were killed, but she won. You were brainwashed and sent back into society. Your last name was changed to Janus, so you wouldn’t be so easily recognized.”

Roj responds with, “This cannot be true. For starters, the Empress is one of the fairest leaders we’ve ever had. She got almost all crime off the streets and treats everyone fairly. Secondly, my wife’s life was saved when Servalan specifically donated her kidney when my love was ill. Thirdly I know my name-”

Bran pulls out three newspapers and throws them to Roj. All are dated several years apart and all depict a different occurrence in which Servalan donated a kidney.

“They all state they were her own and there’s no record Servalan had some put in her. Does she have four kidneys?”

Roj looks at the paper with his wife’s story. He doesn’t know what or how to think.

“Roj, it’s all an act. So much was implanted in your head with a little chip. If it wasn’t for me hitting my head and teaching others how to rid themselves of them, we would all believe the lie.”

Roj replies, “Did no one escape this chip?” Roj questions in a manner as if he’s found the fallacy in Bran’s points.

“We think many did,” said Bran, “But they must have escaped and not come back… we presume.”

Roj sits up. “How did you know where to find me?”

Bran points to a man at the computer.

“That’s Dev Tarrant, he’s a Federation officer who switched sides. He added a lot to our large, but incomplete database. It alerted us to your location.”

Tarrant stands and walks to Roj.

“We’ve wanted to leave the base for quite a while. Now that you’re here, we can.”

Roj replies, “I’m not just going to leave my life and my friends.”

“None of it is real or genuine,” said Bran.

“I don’t believe you!” Roj goes on, “I’m not going to leave my wife!” Roj is almost in a panic.

Roj looks at all the people in the room. Bran, Tarrant, and Ravella look back at him. Ravella slowly walks to Roj.

“I am your real wife.”

A woman sits in a chair in a room dressed in an exceptionally flashy, long black dress and holding a device that looks like a cellular phone. A message appears. “He is at the base.” The woman turns in her swivel chair and presses a button. She proclaims, “Prepare for the base, the man is there, but wait for me.” She pauses for a second or two. “I can’t miss this.”

Exactly thirty troopers, all dressed the same in black semi-bulky armor with a green metal band around their heads and the Federation emblem above their left breast, walk in sync with the woman walking in front of them. When they get to the location where Roj and Ravella were last outside, the woman takes out the same exact device Ravella used and opens up the little rod.

Bran notices this, “The only one not in here who could get in was Vila and I thought he was arrested.”

The second the door is open completely, numerous troopers storm in and start firing. Every shot hits their intended victim. They run into multiple rooms and continue firing. Ravella uses her device to scan a section of the wall closest to her and Roj. She tells him to go in the hole and he doesn’t refuse. Ravella lets Roj go in first and she follows as soon as she has the room. It doesn’t take long for the woman to notice them and prepares to enter that little hole. She rips her dress so it ends at her knees and she jumps in, going faster than Roj and Ravella. Ravella yells to Roj, “There’s a ship not too far ahead. We can use it to escape the dome.”

Roj hears this, but focuses on moving without looking back. Ravella’s leg is grabbed.

“Keep moving,” said the woman.

“I refuse,” responds Ravella.

“It will cost you your life.”

“I’ve already lost it.”

Ravella turns to Roj, “Roj, you can remember it all if your chip is broken. Learn your name.”

Roj moves forward without looking back.

“Mr. Janus, stop or be shot.”

Roj turns to see that the woman is being blocked from continuing by Ravella’s dead body. He knows he’s safe. Roj tries as hard as he can to not think of Ravella.

“Mr. Janus!” the woman said louder.

Roj takes note of the voice. He turns around and looks at her again. He doesn’t trust himself as there’s much distance between him and the woman. He thinks he’s looking at someone else.

“Roj Janus, turn around.”

Roj’s jaw drops.

He says to himself, “Servalan.”

Roj keeps moving.

Servalan hears a thud.

Roj has fallen in a hole.

“We’re approaching Cygnus Beta, sir.”

“I haven’t been here in a year or so. Prepare to land.”

“This place is almost as disgusting as Cygnus Alpha.”

“Could we be so lucky as to be there,” joked the commander.

“Should we land the ship or beam down?” asked the first officer.

“Send down Thal and Kad.”

Thal overhears.

“I don’t think that’s a good idea,” said Thal, “I didn’t make a good impression on the people there last time.”

“I have an idea,” said the commander, “Zen, is there any place with a ten mile radius of no life where we can get what we’re looking for?”

Zen, a large brown hexagon shape supercomputer, scans the planet and in just more than five seconds of the question being asked, responds with “Yes, a map will load with the most ideal spots.”

The commander smiles, “I know the place and it will be too much fun to turn down. Thal, Kad, and I will go down.” The three leave the command bridge to another room next to their own. It’s a little room with a piece of the floor a foot from the ground with lights shined directly on it. There’s a booth with a control panel.

The commander grabs a black bracelet from a rack of identical bracelets and puts it on. Thal and Kad look at their respective black bracelets and they look at all the numerous buttons and flashy symbols. Thal says, “Mine works.” Kad responds with a nod. Kad grabs a large bag which produces at least a small click or clack whenever moved.

The three file in under the bright light and Rachel, another crewman, pulls a lever on the control panel and the three disappear.

“Let’s hope for the best,” proclaims Rachel.

The planet is foggy and dirty. The three appear on the planet surface unharmed. Right after beaming down, Kad struggles to see where his crewmates are.

“We need that water,” said the commander, “Let’s go get it.”

The three scope out their environment and see a hill. They give one another a look and a smirk and they run to it. Once they get down to the top of the hill, they see what appears to be a lake. The commander commands them all to get down on the ground.

“Why do we need to get down, sir?” asked Kad.

“If this is the only source of water, people might come by here to get it. We don’t want to be spotted.” The commander stops and thinks. “Kad, let’s roll down the hill and get some of the water. Thal, wait up here for a cue to act.” The three get to the ground, Kad and the commander then roll down the hill. A nervous Thal grabs the ground with his sweaty palms. His hand runs into something clearly metal. He moves the dirt out of the way and sees a big metal plate. He can’t find an end he can use to pick it up. He moves more dirt away only to discover not a side, but just how massive this thing is.

Thal says to himself, “This isn’t a plate, it’s a box.” He keeps going, fixated on the box. He runs his hand along the mystery, his hand does a relatively good job of pushing away the dirt. He keeps at it and eventually his hand leaves metal and goes down into dirt a centimeter or so.

Below the hill by the water, Kad removes a scanner from his bag and scans the sea of water by him. The commander looks on without a tool, almost as if his eyes could scan the water. His face looks almost as if he was a war veteran being photographed.

“Commander, this water needs to be filtered before we can put it in the bottle,” said Kad.

The commander’s face goes from stoic to stressed.

“Curses, I was hoping this could be quick.” Kad takes out a cylinder made of glass with a motor at the bottom and a tube sticking out the side. He inserts the end of the tube in the water and the water very, very slowly proceeds up in the container. The commander and Kad notice that the water changes color once entering the glass container. The commander looks up to Thal, sticks up his hand and shouts. “Thal get down here.” Thal is too infatuated on the metal device he has not yet found an end to. The commander almost stands up, but realizes how foolish that would be. He yells again. After no avail, he gets out his communicator, which isn’t working.

“We shouldn’t have gone to Saurian Major. Kad, let me use your communicator.”

“Yes sir.”

Thal, fascinated with the end of the box just as much as the top of it, is almost not pulled out of this intrigue when his communicator beeps. He answers it.

“Thal, what are you doing? Get down here.”

Thal signals for his crewmates to go up the hill to the box.

“Thal, this is important. What is going on up there?”

“I found something crazy. It’s huge!”

“Is it dangerous?” The commander has a serious tone for the first time on this mission.

“I don’t think so.”

The commander rolls his eyes and crawls up the hill.

The moment he is up the hill, Thal eagerly says, “I found this huge box, who knows what could be inside? Treasure perhaps!”

“This is not important Thal, get down the hill. We got water to deal with.”

Thal begrudgingly accepts. He stands to start moving down the hill. A bullet comes from what appears nowhere and Thal is struck.

A ship flies down on a planet hectically, as if the pilot had never flown a ship before. While it safely lands, much dismay is caused in the ship as some of the people and objects on board fall over.

“Marco, be careful.”

“I’m sorry, this is new to me.”

Marco moves aside as the opposite pushes a button which opens the ship’s doors.

“Welcome to Saurian Major,” said a crewman who is the de facto leader.

Five people leave the ship, including Marco and his opposite.

“Let’s move out,” commands one member. The other four listen without question. They run the empty field for an extensive amount of time. It doesn’t take long for people to start getting tired. Everyone stops except one. He turns to his group.

The de facto leader shouts, “Let’s keep going.”

The four continue to trudge along. It becomes hot to the point where some are taking off their shirts and socks to stay cool. Just when they’re about to start falling over, they come across a giant base. The de facto leader smiles. He says, “Calson, give me a gun.”

Calson complies.

The de facto leader looks at a piece of paper in his pocket, a map of the building. Each room lists the names of various people. Some of the names have “Kill” or “Don’t Kill” listed under them. One of the names is “Dev Tarrant” with “Kill” written under it. The leader points his gun at a window.

One of the crew members puts her arm on his shoulder, “Dane, be sure not to kill anyone we don’t have to.”

Dane responds, “Cally, some may have to die, but they all deserve to.”

Dane looks to Marco. “Marco, lay a track of explosives around the place.”

A person from inside the building walks out.

Dane says to Calson, “Capture that man.”

Calson swiftly runs out to the man who realizes too late what the plans of Calson are. He attempts to run inside, but Calson tackles him. Calson puts his hand over the man’s mouth. The man tries to push a button on a bracelet, Calson takes out a machete and runs it into the man’s wrist, thus removing the bracelet and of course injuring the man’s wrist.

Dane watches from the far side as another team member, Saaron, looks at various paper’s, attempting to discover who their captee is.

Calson drags the captee to Dane, Cally, and Saaron.

Cally shouts to the group, “We have to get out of here befor-”

The sound of a gun cocking is heard. A man from the top window in the building is pointing a gun at the group. He says,

“Return Raron, retreat, and no one will be hurt.”

Without a single bead of sweat dawning, a brow raising, a hand shaking, or any other sign of a worry in the world, Dane shoots the man dead. Dane gives his crew a quick glance and they all seem as if a lengthy piece of information had been given to them. Dane, Calson, and Saaron run to the base as Cally focuses more on dodging bullets than attacking.

Calson and Saaron enter the base and it doesn’t take long before people start bleeding.

Dane, at the front of the door, alerts to Marco to set off the detenations. He pulls a lever and runs for his life.

Marco and Dane enter the building.

A man is blocking the stairs to higher floors. Calson tosses his weapons on the ground and quickly removes that person as a threat. Saaron runs up the stairs as if on a personal goal. Calson follows. Calson seeks out specific people whom he kills without even the suggestion of mercy. Saaron runs by with two long blades sticking out in an attempt to kill anyone unfortunate enough to walk by. She kills no one, but that was not her primary goal, as she doesn’t much mind. She arrives at the top where the gunman firing at Cally is. Saaron proceeds to throw him off the building on the ground. She then gives Cally a thumbs up.

This being the first time Cally got a break from avoiding bullets, she looks very long and very clear at the situation at hand. She continues to look and stare as if it was the only thing of importance. While the particular aspect Cally was focusing in on was the least important part of both her mission and the image she’s seeing, to her it was the most important thing she had ever seen.

Cally gets a chance to look at the horror of this. She is baffled that her crewmates have essentially sentenced these people, many of which they don’t know, to death. She may not agree with the victims, but it all just seemed so unnecessary. A vehicle drives away, hits one of Marco’s explosives, and smoke and fire suddenly burst about. Cally runs a little bit back.

One man leaves the building in an escape vehicle. Like many others, his was a big red truck with a thick metallic coding. He escapes the explosives and right as he’s about to leave fifty or so feet of the building, he turns down his window, pulls out a gun, and fires at Cally. He misses, but Cally notices. She wonders if he is the terrorist she was told of, or someone defending their life from terrorists.

More people get in escape vehicles. Cally secretly hopes that they escape safely.

Though Cally does not know this, her teammates had snuck in the vehicles and their acts likely could not be imagined by Cally.

Dev Tarrant, having escaped the mayhem caused by Dane and his team unscratched, receives a notice on his phone. The notice says, “Come to Earth where the followers are. We know Ravella found where he is.”

Dev Tarrant rolls his eyes and sets course for Earth. The vehicle’s tires retract and Dev flies off into the sky in his escape from Saurian Major. Once arriving on Earth, Dev goes to the outside of the rebel base, takes out the torch-looking device and jumps in once able to. He’s greeted by his colleagues and they await Roj.

Roj, having been captured, is sent to a holding bay. Roj sits on a bench, slouching, and thinking about how quickly he went from an innocent citizen to being in a cell with many actual criminals. He sees many sitting around and speaking to one another. One man is doing something very particular. He’s attempting to break the chip that makes people believe in the alternate history that Roj had heard of. The man then walks to Roj.

“Sir, do you know of the chip in your head?”

“Quite the way to introduce oneself,” thought Roj.

“I know of at least one,” said Roj, chuckling at how ridiculous he sounds.

Roj follows up with, “I know Bran Foster.”

“I know how to disable the chip that blocks memories,” the man responds.

Roj looks up to the man and says, “That’s the one I know about.”

“May I help you?”

“I got nothing better to do.” Roj is about to laugh.

“It would be easier to get some assistance,” the man signals for two people to join him, “These are two friends I made in here, Jenna Stannis and Olag Gan.”

“But what’s your name?” questioned Roj.

“Vila Restal,” said the man.

Vila bends Roj down and inspects his head very closely. When he notices a very faint scar, he rolls up his sleeve to his elbow as Jenna and Gan hold Roj where he is. Just as Vila’s about to strike Roj a Trooper comes.

“A Roj Janus has been called on by his lawyer.”

Roj is led to a room with just one man and an armed Trooper serving as a guard. The man, like Roj, has curly hair and a straight face that has seen a recent lack of joy. The man says, “Janus, I am your lawyer, Tarrant. I will be assisting you the best I know how. However, the court does not look kindly on those who assault children.”

“Excuse me?” said a confused Roj.

“Do I need to repeat myself?” said Tarrant.

“I’ve never harmed a child, I’ve never been accused of harming a child, what does this have to do with anything?”

Tarrant throws a piece of paper on the table.

Roj looks at it. The paper correctly details his name, date of birth, gender, race, and all the other information that as far as Roj knows, is correct. All except for the section that very specifically and graphically details crimes against children that Roj thinks he knows aren’t correct and one other.

Roj sharply looks up to Tarrant.

“There can’t be evidence of this, can there? I know I haven’t done these egregious acts.”

“There’s plenty of evidence against you, but most damning are the interviews. The children were interviewed with tears down their face as they discussed all the terrible acts. It was horrible.”

Roj sits dumbfounded on what to do. He follows up with, “On this date, I was at my job as an accountant.”

“Not from what the facts say.”

As Thal’s lifeless body hits the ground. The sound of tires begin to be heard from Kad and the commander. The commander takes Thal’s communicator and contacts Kad.

“Kad, one of us needs to stay for the water.” “Please let me stay.”

“Kad, are you sure?”

“Please commander, go.” Kad flicks a switch on his bracelet and removes it.

A frightened commander, firmly grasped to Thal’s love, demands to be sent up. Rachel pulls forward a lever with a handle on the control panel.

The commander and the metal thing appear on the spot where the commander and company were sent down. Rachel and the first officer watch in surprise. Once the teleportation is completed, the ship bends down and begins to approach a planet.

“Rachel, Bod; join me and beam down.” “Commander!”

“Now! Two hours, the nearest planet!”

Rachel goes to a variety of places on the control panel. Little buttons are pushed, things are typed in. She types in “7200”, which is the number of seconds in two hours. Rachel pushes a button and pulls a lever at the same time. She quickly joins Bod and the commander, they all are beamed to the nearest planet.

“Rachel, where are we?” said the commander.

“How should I know?”

The commander rolls his eyes.

“We have to figure out what this thing is.” said the commander.

Bod circles the object. Still just as wide as Thal had observed, but not exceptionally tall.

“I think this is only a foot in height,” said a surprised Bod.

The commander, looking on the top of the structure for a hole, dent, door, etc, does not notice Bod’s observation. Rachel however, does.

“Perhaps it’s so oddly shaped as it’s to deceive people,” wondered Rachel.

“Maybe something very long is in it,” said Bod.

The commander, still not listening, shouts to his crew, “I found no doors of the sort. Let’s turn it over.”

The commander gets off the thing and the three attempt to turn the box over, but fail due to its exceptional weight. The commander kicks the box in anger.

Roj is sent into a cold courtroom without even a single picture, mirror, or anything else to give even the slightest bit of character to the solid white walls, the brown tables, and the black robes worn by the judges and jury. Roj, from what he believes, has never seen a courtroom before. It matched up to what he’s heard, 19 jurymen, 2 judges, a team of lawyers; so many one could wonder what three-fourths of them do. The bland nature was unexpected by Roj. It almost made him nauseous. Roj was grabbed by a trooper and strapped into a seat. Throughout the proceeding, numerous people asked questions, but it felt so manufactured to Roj. He didn’t think it was at all natural, like it was scripted. His lawyer, Tarrant, was repeatedly interrupted when he was making any reasonable point. Prior to the jury being excused to discuss Roj’s fate, a surprising witness came out; Dev Tarrant. The brow of Roj’s lawyer grew significantly. He clearly recognized Dev.

Dev coldly stated, “Roj admitted to me all the horrific acts. He said if I told a soul, he’d have my head on a stake,” Dev stands, “I am risking my life as Roj’s incarceration is too important to the good of all your children,” Dev points to the jury, “You will not only be saving me, but us all.” Dev looks beyond Roj. Roj notices a camera behind him. When Dev gets up to leave, Roj spots the torch in his pocket. He grabs his lawyer’s attention and says, “Tarrant, inquire on that thing in his pocket.”

Roj is dragged off to the prison cell he occupied before.

After the commander kicked the box, Bod noticed something that both the commander and even Rachel had not. The box moved in with the kick ever so slightly, so slight most would not notice, before moving outward to the original position it was in. Bod runs over to a nearby rock and picks it up.

“I have an idea,” Bod said, “Commander, Rachel, both of you push on the box.”

They both comply. Bod then runs the rock into the side with all his might. As before, it moves in, slightly more than before, but not a significant amount. Bod then asks his associates to go to a different side and they repeatedly do variations of where they are. They try the top, all the sides, they try multiple sides at once. Eventually the combination of two specific adjacent sides work. The four sides detach from the box and create a large thud on the ground. The top of the box is supported by four legs that remained standing. Inside the box, was a smaller box made of wood. The commander grabs for it. Before Bod and Rachel can tell him of the risks he would take by opening it, he opens it. Inside are six small objects that appear as and are the size of phones that must be flipped open or close. An ecstatic commander is fascinated by them.

“We’re taking these with us!” said the commander.

Roj, revisiting the prison cell a second time; for him two times too many, sat in the corner of the cell, awaiting his fate he believed to be so unfair. He looked around at all the people. Two men were playing cards, one person was digging at the walls with his fingernails, one that was especially noteworthy to Roj was another person alone in a corner. He had an empty face, despite looking under 40 years old, it was as if this person had seen the most vicious of horrors. Roj was prone to chuckle at the short cut hair and beginner’s training armor over a common regulation dress shirt. Roj’s eyes continued their trail. Vila, Gan, Jenna, and a fourth prisoner were doing the chip trick on another prisoner who Roj doesn’t believe to have been there on Roj’s first stay. Vila elbows the prisoner in the head as hard as possible. He falls to the ground and Jenna holds his mouth closed to mask the screams of pain. Gan puts his mouth right up to the spot where the prisoner was hit and breathes heavily and deeply. The four of them pick the man up and lay him on a bench with his head hanging down. Vila looks over to see Roj. He runs over.

“Why didn’t you tell me you got sent back here?” said Vila.

“I guess I didn’t think much of it,” said Roj.

“Would you like to be next?” said Vila.

“I got nothing better to do,” Roj smirks, as if he’s had this conversation before.

Vila turns to his little team of people and says, “Jenna, Gan, Arco, get over here!”

Jenna and Arco run over while Gan says, “I’ve got to make sure Selman’s okay,” Gan uses his arms to direct attention to the most recent patient in Vila’s chip breaking series. Vila walks over to the man sitting in the corner.

“Can you help me with something?” asked Vila.

“Are you still breaking chips?” clashed the man.

“Yeah, your aid would be appreciated.”

“Well, I may as well return the favor.”

The man gets up. Vila, Jenna, Arco, and the potential new friend do the song and dance to save Roj. Roj loses consciousness. Vila checks his pulse.

“He is alive, but he’s out cold.” Vila turns to his team. He calls upon Arco to help with Roj. Arco runs over and the two immediately look for any issue Roj could have. Jenna stands by with the man who assisted them.

“They’re looking so close, they’d find a scratch on his leg from thirty years ago,” said the man, amused.

“They do do great work,” replied Jenna.

The two stand in complete silence for several seconds, just watching Roj being flipped around and poked at.

The two sentences Jenna and the character shared was enough for them to be out of things to say… then the obvious came up.

Jenna turns to the man and asks, “What’s your name?”

“Avon.”

The man didn’t even look at her. She wondered if he had responded to someone or something else based on how little he seemed focused on her. She shrugged her shoulders and sat on a relatively-clean spot on the ground.

Tarrant walks through the city to a little building made of red brick with a door and one window. He walks in without knocking and shouts, “Honey, I’m home!” A woman walks from a little kitchen into the living room to great her boyfriend.

“I’ve missed you, Del,” said the woman. The two give each other a quick kiss.

“I missed you too, Maja,” replied Del.

Del loosens his tie and lies on the couch.

“You’ll never believe who I saw today,” said Del.

“Who?”

“Dev, my brother.”

“I haven’t seen him in years,” said an interested Maja.

“At a trial, he showed up to speak against my client.”

Maja was unsure of what to say, but by her facial expressions, she clearly wanted to hear more and Del noticed this.

“I know this must sound terrible, but I didn’t believe him. My client, Roj Janus, appeared innocent.”

They both looked at each other in silence, then Del continued with, “I really wanted to ask Janus what he knew about my brother as I haven’t seen him in so long. Maybe he knew what Dev was up to.”

Del’s eyes widen greatly as he remembers the torch on Dev’s person that Roj pointed out.

Del stands.

“Maja, I need to talk to Dev.”

“May I come with you?!”

Del thinks about it. Before he can answer, Maja runs to a closet and takes out a light green jacket. Maja opens the door and takes a step out, “Let’s go!”

The two run out to a Federation office building. They meet a guard waiting at the front of the building.

“Who goes there?” proclaimed the guard.

“I am Del Tarrant and this is my partner, Maja Tarrant. We would like to look up some things.” Del Tarrant removes a slip of paper from his pocket that states on it that he is a lawyer. The guard lets them in.

The two walk up to a computer with a screen just over two feet tall and three feet wide. He uses the keyboard to look up, “Dev Tarrant”. The computer reveals him to work for the Federation as an officer.

“Why wouldn’t Dev tell me this?” Del spoke to himself quietly.

Del continued to look in, discovering that Dev had recently stopped a rebel hideout area. It also referenced the recently concluded, “Roj Janus Case”. Del went to a page specifically on the “Roj Janus Case”. Listed was a picture of Roj, as well as information on it. Del looked for the supposed victims to Roj’s act. The information was confidential. Del removes a card from his pocket and a scanner scans it. A little box appears on screen to put in a password, which Del does. Listed were the three children’s picture, name, birthdate, and various other information. Maja noticed “Attendance record”.

“Del, look.” Maja points to the Attendance record part. He clicks on it.

Del’s brow raises.

“This student’s only missed one day of school, the day prior to the assault.”

Del goes to the next child’s attendance record.

“Same with this one,” says a dumbfounded Del.

He clicks on the last student’s record.

Del sees the same thing as with the other two students and he looks at Maja with his jaw opened and his eyes widened. Del clicks a few things on the screen and prints out a copy of the page.

“Maja, I need to get something from the store.”

Having spent quite a while sitting patiently, at exactly two hours after arriving on the planet, the commander, Rachel, and Bod are beamed back aboard their ship. The commander, holding all these strange toys of his, held onto each and everyone of them.

The commander noticed that Kad had not been beamed up.

The commander presses a little green button on the control panel, “Kad, respond.”

There’s no response.

“Kad, respond!”

No response.

“The bracelet must not be closed,” said Bod, “Do you think he was attacked?”

“He took it off, but I don’t know why he wouldn’t have put it back on,” replied the commander.

“Thal wasn’t beamed up.”

The commander, realizing that, has a mix of emotions in his head and a slight eye widen on his face.

“I have to go down,” said the commander.

“Don’t you think whatever force attacked Thal and Kad would easily attack us?”

The commander looks at the devices they all recently obtained.

“I don’t know what these are, but maybe they are weapons or they’re valuable.”

The commander grabs a few extra bracelets and stands on the platform for teleportation.

“Commander, this is too reckless!” said Rachel.

“Send me down!” said the commander.

A large bang is heard from the side of the ship. The trio are slightly disoriented by this.

Bod goes into to the ship’s bridge. He specifically looks at a door being dented.

Bod looks to the ship computer and shouts, “Zen, what is going on out there?!”

“We are being attacked.”

“By what?”

“Unknown.”

“Zen, we need to fly away.”

“No!” said the commander, “What about Kad?”

“If this ship is destroyed, all of us including Kad are done for!”

“Alright,” said the commander, “I thought of a compromise. You and Rachel hide while I go to get Kad. Both of you arm yourselves.”

Once they had left the store, Del took out the paper with the “Roj Janus Case” information and directed Maja’s attention to the location of Roj’s job. Once there, Del walked in and asked to see the security footage. He removed his card that said he was indeed a lawyer and he was allowed access. He played them in a room of the building. On the day Roj supposedly assaulted the kids, Del noticed that the tape, which covered a whole day, was significantly shorter than twenty-four hours long. When he played it, the video made several awkward cuts and transitions.

“What’s that in the background?” inquired Maja.

Del looked carefully and saw Roj at his work in the background.

Del ran out of the building with Maja following.

Del pulls out the paper with the information on the case.

“Where are we going?” said Maja.

Del points to the location of the rebel’s base.

“That’s where we’re going.”

As it gets darker outside, Del and Maja get faster and faster. They continue on their way to the base. Both notice that as they progress, more and more Federation Troopers happen to be around. When they arrive to the location, which is covered in Troopers, Del and Maja hide behind a bush and wait. After what to Del was at least an hour, but to Maja was thirty minutes, Del sees Dev arrive.

“I knew it,” Del says to himself.

Dev removes his torch and does the same ol’ trick to get in. Del runs and in a matter of seconds, manages to jump in the entrance. Maja follows behind and is just as successful. One Trooper says to another, “What is Del Tarrant doing here?”

None of the Troopers appear to care about his involvement in the base.

Dev Tarrant walks around the base, looking at the bodies of the various rebels scattered about. He chuckles to himself. He redirects his attention to a stack of paper. He pulls out a lighter and prepares to light them all on fire. Just then, Del Tarrant flies into the base followed by Maja.

Dev looks at Del with surprise on his face, before calming it and saying, “What are you doing here?” in a tone that suggests nothing of note has occurred.

Del lightly taps his pocket with his middle finger before asking, “What were you doing at the trial?”

“I was testifying against a monster, a twisted, perverted criminal.”

“Dev, you’re a Federation officer, right?”

Dev doesn’t answer immediately, but then says, “Yes,” after a few seconds.

“Do you know why the kids were absent from their school a day before the assault?”

“I was not alerted of this, it must have been a coincidence.” Dev maintains being calm.

“Do you know why all these people were killed?” “They were terrorists who kidnapped Federation officers. The officers themselves have been moved out for a burial.”

“What does that torch do that you used to get in?”

“It does a lot of things, like get me in this pigsty.”

“Why did you leave without saying anything…” Del pauses for two seconds, “...Brother.”

Dev, having very slightly become less cooled in his voice says, “I was-” Del interrupts.

“Do you know why Roj said so little at the trial?” Del had a plan.

“He must’ve been shocked at being told he assaulted children.”

“How did you know he learned that so soon?”

Dev smirks.

“Congrats Del, you got me.”

They both stand still for several seconds.

“Why have Roj arrested despite him being innocent?” said Del.

“He was against the Federation. We pride ourselves in keeping this society under our thumb.”

“So you would imprison any that oppose you?”

“Not necessarily, we might just kill them if the risk is to high. That man’s death would make him a martyr to the people that know of his past existence,” Dev points his hands to the bodies, “Like these people here.”

“Why are you telling me this?”

“I just missed my brother.”

Del took down his head.

“I am taking a risk, but I’ll let you go.”

Del slowly walks to the way he came in. He presses his middle finger to his pocket.

Dev sharply demands, “What is that?”

Del turns around, sweat is in his hair.

“Turn your pockets inside out.”

Dev pulls out a gun and points it at Del.

Del turns his pockets inside out and an audio recorder falls out.

Dev says, with stress in his voice, “Kick that to me.” Dev points his gun at the audio recorder.

“No,” said Del.

“Now!” says an angry Dev.

Both stand still for two seconds.

Dev moves his gun to Del’s head, pulls the trigger and it’s empty. As Dev reloads it, Del takes out his gun and fires.

Maja screams quietly.

Del walks to Dev, lying on the ground. “What would Deeta think?” said Del.

“I wouldn’t exactly call Deeta a respectable figure,” replied Dev.

“I don’t know what to think, Dev.”

“Think what good a duo we could’ve made, Brother.”

Dev passes.

Servalan is in her office. She looks at the time.

“14:00, just in time fo-”

A man storms in, producing a loud noise by opening and closing the door. He walks up to her.

“When will he be on Cygnus Alpha?” said the man with anticipation and need for his question answered. “In a few days, Travis.” “I have been looking for this man for a very long time. You don’t know how badly I’ve been anticipating our chance to meet again.”

Servalan lies back her head.

Travis points to the large eyepatch on his head. He shouts very angrily, “That man was responsible for me losing my eye!”

Servalan’s face suggests she’s heard all this before.

After a minute or so of Servalan listening to Travis talk about revenge and what he’s done for both the Federation and Servalan specifically, she calmly says, “How about you go to the ship he’s on, personally kill him, and get arrested. The ship is called “The London”.

Roj, as well as the other prisoners, are loaded onto a prison ship. Everyone is handcuffed and the cuffs are attached to a long chain. They are lead blindfolded into a little cramp room with a row of seats. Whenever a prisoner is unconnected from the cuffs to go to their seat, the guards grab them very hard and force them in in an attempt to prevent any chance of escape. When it’s Roj’s turn, he does not hesitate but is treated the worst of them all when being put in his seat.

When everyone has been seated, the ship very quickly takes off and flies far and fast away. It flies much faster than any of the commercial ships that Roj has known or been on in his life.

Roj looks at all the faces of sad, sorrow people. He specifically looks at those he’s met; Jenna, Avon, Vila, Gan, Arco, and Selman, all in a row. They are all in their own little world, except for Jenna, who briefly looks at Roj, but makes no face or hand gesture to distinguish him from anyone else. Roj looks back at Earth. A guard walks by and observes him.

“Took a good long look Janus, this is the last time you’ll ever see Earth.”

Roj looks up to the guard.

“Actually, it’s Blake.”


Starfall

By S. B. Ely


ROJ BLAKE

DEL tarrant

MAJA tarrant

DEV tarrant

SERVALAN

the COMMANDER

BOD

RACHEL

THAL

KAD

ZEN

VILA restal

JENNA stannis

olag GAN

ARCO SELMAN AVON

CALLY

DANE

MARCO CALSON

SAARON

RAVELLA

BRAN foster

TRAVIS

RARON

GUARD

FEDERATION TROOPERS

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