Harrigan took in all the activity in silence. His thumb remained on the comm, and I knew that the crew was still across the entire ship, poised as they anticipated the captain’s words. He waited until the overseer flashed the final prompt onto my screen — the confirmation that would take us on our last jump to destinations unknown — before beginning his ship-wide broadcast.
“Ladies and gentlemen,” he began. His voice resonated throughout the ship, reverberating off every bulkhead and panel. “Your vote of confidence is overwhelming. We go forward now as ambassadors of the human race to meet this new species and so to expand the borders of the known universe. Know that your trust has not been misplaced.”
He looked at me, thumb still on the comm. His next command — and my response — would be broadcast to the entire ship. “Take us to jump, carto,” he said.
“Aye, sir,” I replied.
I touched my keyboard, confirming the request. The overseer fired the engines, and we jumped — not for the last time.