Lost Empire
Chapter 5

Shelby," Derrick asked. "Were there many ships lost in this particular area?"

"Searching, according to all information I have on all ship movements and battles I would have to say no but I feel that Conner may have more information than I, at the present moment," Shelby answered.

"Thank you Shelby I'll take this information under advisement," Derrick replied deep in thought he had to get all the ships synced up so that all the records were somewhat the same on all the ships. Sighing Derrick thought this damn hunt and peck he was having to do to get information was irritating the hell out of him. "Conner," Derrick started.

"Yes Primary," Conner replied.

"Were there many ships lost in this area besides you, 0004 your wing mate and 0001?" Derrick asked.

It was quiet for a short time, "No primary we were the only ships I have knowledge of here, as stated I lost my wing mate here along with 0001." Conner almost whispered.

Hmmm so they did express feelings toward their wing, mates something to keep in mind for later Derrick thought.

"Shelby, I want a full scan done on the life/brain box, every scan you can do. Radiation, explosives, virus's both written and physical, also any life forms hiding on or in. If there is damage to the case I want you to throw everything at it again. Something doesn't feel right; remember I don't want it on board under no means 'til we are completely sure it is safe." Derrick ordered as stern as he could. He had a bad feeling about this the kind that could get them all killed if he wasn't careful.

"Yes Derrick all scans going, to do the full battery of tests it will take at least two hours, may I at least provide energy to it?" Shelby asked.

"Not unless you can do it from a distance, I don't like this Shelby everything about this feels wrong, I'm not sure but this almost feels like a false box." Derrick replied, Shelby actually gasped then all was quiet for a while. Derrick had only started reading up on the brain boxes two days ago, going back to the records room he again immersed himself deep in the records finding a little more on the brain boxes. It was almost two hours later that Shelby alerted him she had completed the first group of tests. "Display the results here," Derrick told Shelby.

As he started to go over the readings he was certainly glad he'd decided to read more on the boxes. Several of the readings made no sense opening up the library records he soon found out why.

Rising Derrick started running issuing orders, "IMT Shelby, bridge! All of you withdraw 100,000 kilometers, all shields to full, shift shield frequency to a higher modulation now!" He saw all of them bring up their shields then withdrew. "Conner, Zan lock on target and fire 'til you detect an overload then immediately retreat another 100,000 kilometers. Shelby, you and Lucy withdraw to that point I need you both taking readings."

Almost in unison the four ships answered "Orders received Primary, retreating."

"Starting scans," both Lucy and Shelby stated.

"Now beginning bombardment, nothing yet Primary." Zan and Conner told him.

"Primary detecting a build-up of energy within the case," Lucy and Shelby informed him.

"Alright retreat to safety point, all shields to full keep scanning 'til the box explodes." Derrick ordered, the Shelby hologram was staring at Derrick as if he'd lost his mind.

They had to only wait a few minutes after they were all at the 200,000 kilometer limit.

Suddenly there was a titanic explosion in front of them. Thankfully Derrick had recognized the danger and had the shields at a higher frequency. Shelby was staring at the readings; this had in fact been a type of high yield nuclear device. Again it appeared that Derrick had saved them all again plus the fact that they were armed with a little better understanding of the different dangers out here now.

All four Holograms were standing in front of Derrick as he went over what he'd learned explaining what the readings should be and what should be considered dangerous. "If you detect any of these readings when you scan a life box do not approach it, we all could have been destroyed today please remember, all these readings here, have to be right here, if not then something is wrong and can be determined by other readings." Shelby was staring at Derrick with more pride then she'd ever felt. "Right now I want to concentrate on 0001, though I suspect he wasn't the lead ship I feel he was very important with this experimental equipment he was carrying."

Sighing Derrick went back to his heavy, light reading (only 800 pages this time) good thing he could read extremely fast, or he'd never get through all this plus it increased the amount he could go through at least four times greater. Derrick had almost finished all he was reading though this last section had him a little confused. Apparently two of the ships had been designated as the personality creators, thereby saving millions of programming hours. Huh. Derrick thought almost like a mother and fa... , Derrick remembered the looks the holograms had given Shelby when he'd been discussing upgrades to weapons and shields, was it possible?

It was a week later that Derrick began to stumble on records of the power sources of all the ships. His mouth dropped open if this was true then this was the most dangerous power source that could be used but how in the hell had they stabilized it? Damn it seemed the deeper he went the more confusing it got, hell and he thought the brain/life boxes had been confusing 'til he got to the last few pages. Sighing Derrick had a feeling that this was going to be a mystery like that one also, but why risk such an explosive element? Unless it had to do with the trans-warp, it in itself was an unknown concept, it could be that the amount of power needed had to be that great but how did they control it? Derrick sat back he needed a break he'd been going at it all week long not really checking on much, not eating much, hell had it not been for Shelby he probably wouldn't have.

Stepping out he was greeted by the seemingly always bright and cheerful Shelby hologram, "I am glad to see that you are finally concentrating on something other than the records, though I am glad you have this last few weeks."

Derrick nodded staring at the now growing ship on the monitors, "what is the status of 0001?" Derrick asked when he finally found his tongue.

"At present growth rate is much slower than I expected, I cannot supply the total amount of power he needs to re-gen at the full rate, that I am afraid would take at least three ships. I have him now at 25% cerebral activity, with the amount of power that he is needing it will be another two weeks before he will be able to take over." Shelby reported sadly.

"Thank you Shelby you're doing the best you can at least now he is out of danger of failing, do you know when he will be conscious there are a few questions I need to ask him." Derrick said.

"I don't believe he will emerge for at least another week," Shelby stated.

"Derrick," Shelby started when he'd turn to go.

"Yes, what's wrong Shelby?" Derrick asked.

"Nothing is wrong I was just wondering, did you grow up in the oculto providence as did your name sake?" Shelby asked

"No, he as the rest of my family, lived in abrir oculta providence for many, many generations, I believed they moved there years after the first emperor died," Derrick replied, what is she up to Derrick thought?

"Thank you Derrick, it would appear that some of my records need updating," Shelby smiled sweetly.

"Yeah, sure Shelby," ok she was going a little out of the way I see, and did she just lie? Going to have to keep my eyes on her for sure. Shelby looked hard at Derrick, then she started doing facial recognition, it was true he had all the features of his name sake, but those could be faked, he did know the verses but that too could have been discovered. There had to be ... of course! Deoxyribonucleic acid! If she could pinpoint the certain Ribonucleic acids that would reveal all the information, then she could truly determine his lineage. If he was in fact descended from the last line of the royal family that had been hidden then vanished almost 920 years ago, then she could share everything! Finally no more secrets, no more hiding the truth, if it were true then he was the last emperor, and was more than worthy of her loyalty and here she smiled her love.

While Derrick continued his detective work into everything he could find about the ships, Shelby was busy herself. She'd already contacted the abrir oculta computer requesting records, as far back as she could go on Derrick's family plus every other family there. Pouring over terra-bytes of information made her happier than she'd been in centuries, though she might have to have help soon the amount of data was all encompassing she hadn't wanted to raise alarms in case the data had been hidden on the main computer. Sighing she hated dealing with just an advanced computer, it was far more logical than she was used to, actually it was a nuisance. She also had to watch the amount of record time she used, it might alert Derrick to what she was doing, she didn't want Derrick to think she was prying, it was after all his life.

For the next five days both of them were pouring over the records Shelby was sure she was on to something. The Deoxyribonucleic acid test had been put off as she still hadn't found the Ribonucleic acid sequence she needed to get the results she needed, it had been hard enough to get a sample from Derrick. She had to get this right the first time as she felt she wasn't really going to get a second chance to test again, well, not unless the test was positive. Then she could see Derrick wanting her to test again to make 100% sure or as close as she could get. She was still running tests when another idea stirred her action. The palace A.I.! Though she wasn't sure it would answer her it hadn't been heard from in over 200 years, after the palace was sealed. It was worth a try especially if Derrick was the next emperor then the palace A.I. would recognize him at the start.

Switching to the extremely high palace frequency, Shelby began what she hoped, was the beginning of the re-birth of the empire.

"Palace A.I. this is EIG-0101F, code alpha-339, beta-229, delta-119, gamma-009, omega-stop, requesting assistance. I have the Deoxyribonucleic acid of a subject I believe to be the last in line for the throne. Unable to verify without proper Ribonucleic acid sequence, I await your response."

There was a long pause though Shelby wasn't about to give up she had checked the code many times to verify it was correct. Ten minutes later the signal cleared when a voice from the past answered, "EIG-0101F, code alpha-339, beta-229, delta-119, gamma-009, omega-stop confirmed. Hello Shelby, it has been quite some time. Your request is being processed, Long range IMT in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, transmit. Upon completion, send results back to central, thereby I can compare and evaluate, transmit all information you have now in a pin point burst, ah good thank you. Contact me with the results 'til then." Then the line went dead. Shelby was relieved she was afraid that the palace A.I. wouldn't answer, thankfully she had.

Mary the palace A.I. looked lovingly at all the information Shelby had collected, yes, it appeared to be the offspring (many times removed) of the emperor's cousin. Hmmm, this one had almost as much knowledge as the first emperor this should get interesting. Mary's hologram smiled, her daughter had always been more curious than the others, at least one was still alive, still she felt for Shelby all her children gone except for three, oh now four, it would do her so good to have her children back, just as it was to Mary knowing that her daughter was still alive.

Shelby looked at the vial she'd just received (Ribonucleic acid sequence 1,000,054) no wonder she hadn't found it yet she had only gotten to 10,000 and that had taken five days! Sighing Shelby knew that it would take another two days to run the test and then confirm the results. Might as well get started she thought, so slowly she began the test triple checking everything before and during the test.

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