I am packing the last things from my lab in Tripoint. A melancholy score plays in my head as I look out at my home for these last few years with beautiful, lush Kapenja as its backdrop. Its docking rings like welcoming, protecting arms.
I have a hollow feeling at the pit of my stomach and can’t help but wonder if I’m doing the right thing. Truth be told, I was a squatter here. But it was home. It was a refuge during some scary times, and it was a place of jubilation and triumph as we were able to shine at least a dim light into some distant fragments of history.
A random DSS started my journey back in late 114. I was just an engineer working on a project I’d been given. DSS were not something I — and many others — had given much thought to. But since then, they have become my life.
Along with my constant colleague, Hammer-BS, we have uncovered so much in a very short time. We found an ancient piece of Amananth history. We found a ship’s log from Enkido Kahn — one of the Thrice Seven that we dated to just two months before he discovered Amananth, and another one that had an actual image from the first days on Amananth station. We found another image of an early manuscript of the First Book of Hamalzah. We recovered an audio recording from a pre-collapse Solrain ship, doomed with some sort of virus, as it struggled to return home.
And those were just a few.
Sadly, I’m not sure many others were as interested in the work Hammer and I were doing — except, I guess, the people at Dorator, who now want me to do this for them. DSS, for most pilots, are still the “trash artifacts” — annoyances in the quest for AB4s, EB-3s and CM-4s. But, really, they are so much bigger. I’m not sure that Dorator, as a for-profit entity, will be as ready to share all of the information they collect. I guess time will tell. I’m kind of hoping my friend Hammer-BS can find a new partner to work with to continue that quest for pure discovery.
And so I’m ready to launch now, both literally and figuratively, into something new. Ma’at Salamm is the Quani word “Goodbye.” But it it not a goodbye with finality, because the more accurate translation is “Until I greet you again.”
So . . . Ma’at salaam!