Admiral Starblayze’s voice boomed across the PA system. “Cadets, attention!”
The cadets in training froze where they were and stood at attention. They had been working for weeks, learning new concepts and skills in hopes of being able to serve among the Infinity Knights. Silence filled the training facility while Admiral paused for dramatic effect.
“I’m sure you all know that Evaluations are right around the corner. Those of you who plan to pass are probably counting down the hours. Time is running out, and if the report that Admiral Rigorius just gave me is any indication, you all have a long…”
Suddenly Admiral Starblayze was interrupted by a sharp shriek of static that blasted across the PA system. The wallscreens flickered and the image of a cadet’s face appeared.
“Listen up, I don’t have much time! I’m not sure I’ll make it out of here before they track me down. I’ve tapped into the PA system because the world has a right to know. There’s more going on than they are telling us!”
The cadets throughout the facility glanced curiously back and forth at each other, not sure what to think. They shifted their weight back and forward on their feet, trying to look around while still standing at attention in case this was part of some elaborate drill.
The cadet’s voice continued over the PA. “These practices they’re putting us through, these Evaluations… they aren’t what they seem. They’re just the tip of the iceberg! All the construction materials, the welding drones, the off-limit areas… it’s all a ruse. It’s not just a renovation of the south wing. There’s an entire bunker below us! It’s huge! They’re building something crazy down here, and they’ve been keeping it under wraps, but now the truth is out.”
The wallscreens flickered to show some hastily-snapped photos.
“Look familiar? The training simulators they’ve been running us through… they’re real! They have real ships down here, and they’re almost done being built. These simulators aren’t just creative group exercises…. they’re training us for the real thing!”
The cadets perked up. Some of their hearts started pounding in their chest. Could it be true? As if in answer to their silent questions the young cadet went on.
“Take a look. Solid tritanium walls! These bulkheads are built to last.”
“And emergency lighting too! It looks like they expect these crafts to see some serious action.”
The cadets in training were stunned. Were their eyes betraying them? It was beyond their wildest dreams to embark on a real mission, and from the look of it the ships were just about ready for launch. All they’d need is a crew.
“But don’t get too excited,” said the voice. “It doesn’t look like it will just be fun and games. Check this out… a real emergency escape hatch. These ships won’t be going on any pleasure cruises—they look like they’ll be thrown into the depths of danger. Why else would they be installing emergency hatches?”
The cadets didn’t know what to think. They were thrilled, and at the same time their heads buzzed with questions. Was it real? If so, why all the secrecy? And how did this lone cadet infiltrate the lower bunker?
Before they could get any answers, a hiss of static blasted across the PA system and the wallscreen flashed back to normal. Admiral Starblayze’s voice was back. The exciting mystery hung in the air.