This was originally written in place of the first chapter, which was deleted as it was a boring way to start the book. This became the last chapter of the book, but we deleted this scene as it was a boring ending. Currently, it is planned that General Jones will talk about it in the third book.
Note that this story is a deleted scene and is not canon.
Much of this story has already changed for future books.
Corporal Malcolm Dow was in General Jones office. Jones grabbed a pad of paper and a pencil, and spoke to Ambassador Geogram on the communicator. “Now tell me everything. Who are you, and what do you know about our enemy?”
Ambassador Geogram asked, “Would you like to meet in person to discuss it?”
Jones looked at Malcolm, who nodded and asked Geogram, “Can the ship accommodate a Jeep?”
Geogram talked to the Captain then replied, “Yes.”
“General, may I drive you?”
“Lead the way, Corporal.”
Malcolm did a double-take. Oh right, that’s my new rank. I guess I’ll have to get used to it. He smiled.
Malcolm and Jones hopped on a jeep in the warehouse. The guards opened the doors, and they drove out.
As they rounded the corner, Malcolm slowed down. “This part is hard on the stomach.” Jones started to say something, but Malcolm hit the brakes; they were already on-board the spaceship. Malcolm watched as Jones looked around. They were in the shuttle bay. Malcolm had not seen this, as he turned down the tour previously.
“How did we get here?” Jones asked.
“We drove,” Malcolm snickered. They both got out of the Jeep and looked back. They saw the road they had just came from.
“We had to drive here?”
“Believe me, Sir. The walk from here to your office felt like a hundred miles.”
Jones smiled and nodded. “I bet it did! That was a brave thing you did.” Jones started to walk around the Jeep but paused and held his stomach.
“Oh, you might be feeling a little dizzy from the…” Malcolm paused, rubbed his chin.
“…phase variance.” Geogram finished the sentence. “Welcome aboard, General!”
Jones looks around. “Thank you. Your ship is invisible. Impressive!”
“It’s not my ship. Meet Captain Agugua.” He stepped aside as Agugua came through the doorway.
Malcolm wondered how Jones could remain so calm. Then he remembered the first time he came aboard and tried to play it cool, and chuckled to himself.
Agugua took Jones and Malcolm on a tour of the ship, ending in a large dome-shaped room with chairs and took a seat. The chairs reclined, and the walls and ceiling displayed images from Zalma. Wow! It’s a large TV Screen!
Geogram told the story, and the room filled in the visuals. “We are a peaceful people. We developed space travel about a hundred of your Earth years ago.” They saw images of their first spaceships traveling to other planets in their solar system.
“We are scientists, not explorers, so we thought it was faster to send out automated probes to search for life in the galaxy rather than to do it ourselves.” They saw probes flying through the vastness of space to different solar systems.
“We programmed the probes to move from solar system to solar system. If a probe found life on a planet, it would orbit it and monitor communications, continuing to scan and transmit its findings back to us.”
“Sounds efficient,” said Jones, while rolling his eyes and pursing his lips.
Malcolm looked at the General but didn’t know how to read him. Yes, it sounds efficient but where is the Zalmen sense of adventure?
Geogram continued. “We did not find many planets with life, and none had space travel until Moad. The Moadites developed space travel while we were monitoring them. We tried to establish diplomatic communications with them, but they ignored us. They traced our transmissions back to Zalma then sent a fleet of ships.”
Jones interrupted, “It sounds like maybe they did not like your probe spying on them?”
Geogram went pale. “We were not intentionally spying on them. We were just trying to learn about their culture with their public broadcasts.”
“Intended or not, that must be why they attacked,” Jones explained. “Continue.”
“As we detected them early, and we had the time, we were able to build deflectors to protect our planet. When their ships arrived, they tried to land but could not get past our defenses. So, they started firing their weapons at us, but again they were unsuccessful.”
“Impressive. Can you set up these deflectors here?” Jones asked.
“Certainly, but we don’t have all the equipment with us. We would have to bring it from our planet.”
Geogram continued his story, “Two of your years ago we detected a nuclear explosion near here, and there were no casualties. Soon after, we detected two explosions where many people died. We assumed that this was where you tested the weapon, so the people here must know how to fight.”
“Your assumptions were correct,” Jones stated.
Geogram continued. “Our leaders agreed that if you could make peace, that we would try to make contact.” Then the room filled with TV and radio news broadcasts; most of them were of the end of the war. There were also sitcoms and broadcasts in other languages from other countries. “We monitored transmissions across your planet to learn your languages, your culture, and the status of this war. As soon as you signed the Paris Peace Treaties, we sent this ship, with the hope that you would be able to do the same for us.”
“We will do our best,” Jones said confidently.
Geogram could see that Jones was telling the truth. He continued his story. “During the five-month flight, we ran millions of simulations of what we might encounter.” They saw various forms of the container and the clones/dummies. “We built an escape pod that would break upon landing and grew clones that would test your reactions.”
Next, they saw Malcolm and the Lieutenant on the screen exploring the crash site, with different graphics around each. While Malcolm’s green bar was usually high and his red bar low, it did fluctuate; the Lieutenant’s bars were reversed; more red, less green. That must be how they picked me.
“And here you are,” said Jones. “Wow! That is quite a story. Now, let’s get to work!”