This topic is for short stories, cartoons, poetry, whatever you want to write about related to NMS. Just keep it relatively short in length. Have fun!
I was on my way back to base when an alert appeared on my terminal. Someone had sent me coordinates. No message. No explanation.
Telemon sensed the intrigue and adjusted our heading to a local portal.
What happened next would change my life forever.
As I stood before the portal, memories flooded my mind. There was a time when this form of travel was so common. Now, it was a method I rarely used. There is something about the sound of the grinding stone as the symbols are input, something about it that reaches out of the ancient past and pulls a body, mind and soul, into history. The fact that these relics still work is astounding. Travelling thru one is something you never forget. This time, the destination was something unexpected.
A trading company. I headed towards the stairs, wondering what kinds of goods are traded here.
As I ascended the stairs there was a voice from the mist.
It told me there once were great creatures here. Majestic. But now they are gone. As I entered the door, there, rising before me was a likeness of what once had to have been one of the grandest beasts I have ever seen.
What happened to them? Were they hunted? Wiped out by some catastrophic event?
Perhaps if I continue exploring this world, I may find the answer.
As I emerged into the sunlight, there was a strange feeling coming over me. Like I was being watched. Unable to ignore the feeling, I turned to prove to myself that I was alone.
The shock was almost too much. There was someone there. Could they see me? Hear me? As I raced to get a closer look, I realized I was too late. They had turned and were walking away.
What was this? A portal of a new kind? Were they just a traveller like me? So many questions. I had to move on. It seemed the ground was moving on for me. It shook with tremendous trembles. What is happening? Telemon beeped for me to look behind.
What a sight! Diplos! Certainly not like the majestic creature depicted inside but still, so many of them. And what is that in the distance?
The desire to run with the pack was too much. Filling my pockets with pellets, I jetted over to the creatures and lured them into range. Finding one of them to be especially gentle and friendly, I climbed onto its neck. Not being used to being ridden, the creature raised up its front feet, stamped and raced across the field. I held on for my life but soon gained control as the beast tired itself. The creature seemed to actually enjoy escorting me to my destination.
The sight of a traveller riding atop one of the local diplos must have made quite an impression on the locals.
The place was packed with Vy’Keen and soon they were all looking at me. Not being entirely familiar with the language, I was not quite sure if some thought that I was the consort of Hirk… Apparently, they did not all approve.
I decided it was best to move on. At that moment, my over-whelmed mind began to function more clearly. Isn’t this place I have come to built by Hirk? The Great? The Magnificent? I really must remember. It could be important.
There was a feeling in the corner of my mind when the coordinates appeared on my screen. That feeling was growing. Someone had summoned me here. But who? And why? I must keep my wits. Stay sharp. Don’t get distracted by the ‘oohs and aaahs’. Ha! Easier said than done, I need to keep reminding myself of that.
Telemon pulled me from my meditation to alert me to more structures nearby. So I called my ship from the portal and headed to the next point of interest. And then it happened again. That strange sensation of being called here. My vision began to tunnel. As if my mind was being probed. As if I was there but not there.
I ran a diagnostic on my ship and myself. Perhaps I had been exposed to an unknown agent. Telemon would have alerted me and yet, there are always things out there yet to be discovered. Nothing is found. All clear. Functioning properly. Hmm…I wonder.
As I landed at the second structure, I knew someone was leading me somewhere…but where? For what purpose? I had to admit to myself that my nerves were on edge. True, exploration has always been exciting for me but, this was something more.
Unable to resist where it was leading, I stepped into the transporter.
What a sight! What a place!
This place had been well stocked. What for? A disaster? An attack? There was enough supplies and food for many people for a long time.
And there had to be enough power generated here to keep a sizeable population going for quite some time.
Just as I was working out the numbers, I heard a faint crackling sound. Fire? I turned to follow the sound and soon found a room. Warm. Inviting.
Unable to resist the warmth, I sat and allowed myself a moment to rest. It was as if someone knew I was coming. Again, that feeling. Perhaps I should leave.
But as I approached the transporter…
I felt myself swaying. Up became down. My head. It hurt. Again, like someone is probing my mind. I must get out of here.
As I re-emerged into the sunlight, I had to shield my eyes. The ground began to shake and I turned to see yet another grand beast.
Still, not like the statue on the first planet but yet, what a creature!
That’s when I noticed something beyond. A power source?
The closer I got to it, the more my head hurt. I could feel the darkness closing in again. Telemon beeped at me. They could sense something as well. Back to my ship.
As we left that planet behind, Telemon alerted me to a nearby settlement. This was indeed a very active system. If there was a disaster, it must have happened many centuries ago.
We made our way to the settlement.
The residents were friendly.
I walked to the center of town and pulled up the status.
Founded by Hirk the Great.
Blessed by the tides and waters. Interstellar signal array? That is intriguing.
Local residents pointed me to the Overseer’s Office but, no one was there.
I headed to the bar but, it was the wrong time of day. It seems I was not going to find any answers here.
A familiar beep informed me Telemon had found another structure.
I had never seen anything like it. Again, Hirk. Who is this Hirk? Surely not the one I have read so much about in lore? And yet, there is so much history tied to these places.
This one seems to be a center for harvesting. Perhaps it was one of the places they gathered from to store the previous bunker facility. Perhaps there are some answers below.
Unfortunately, this bot is consumed with its duties. Apparently, those duties involve keeping anyone from stepping inside the red area on the floor.
I accidentally did so and was warned with a very loud series of beeps and blurts. It was quite funny and I found myself laughing as I walked outside to take in the view.
Telemon’s familiar beep alerted me to yet another structure.
This structure was only a short distance away. It was amazing. Like a palace.
I wondered if it was Hirk’s. It almost made me wish I actually was one of his consorts. I laughed out loud. Then looked to make sure no one was around. Silence. Thank goodness. I breathed a sigh of relief and began my exploration.
So many rooms.
I stood amazed and overwhelmed at the sight of it all.
I found myself in some sort of power generating room. This room led me outside where I discovered even more generators. What is all of this power for? There was not that much to power within the palace. Perhaps they are tied in to each other. Across all the planets. Perhaps focused on powering something else…but what?
As I exited the cave, again, the feeling of darkness. Of someone entering my mind.
I struggled to walk up the hill. Wishing so much that I was back inside my ship. As I struggled to lift my head, I could see one of the largest generating points yet.
I struggled to fight the darkness. My head was splitting.
Just as I managed to walk away from that point, another one was looming in front of me.
My head! The pain! The darkness! I was struggling with each step. So focused on using all of my strength to move forward. How long had Telemon been beeping me? Telling me to turn and move towards the knowledge stone. Good and faithful Telemon. I approached the stone, managed to reach out and touch its smooth surface.
In an instant, my mind filled with words. They seemed to scramble and then unscramble.
The stone had done it! It broke whatever was gripping my mind. Threw out whatever invader was pushing its way in.
Finally free of the darkness, I made it back to the landing pad where I was greeted by a merchant. His ship was called The Pride of Death. This was not comforting.
He took one look at me and informed me that I had been called by Hirk. How could he know that? Even I did not know that for certain. I asked him that question. He just looked at me and then shouted in Vy’Keen. He said he had just uttered a traditional blessing for those going thru the passage. Then he left. The passage? I was starting to wish I had stayed home…and yet, I had to go on. There was no turning back. Questions must be answered.
Back in my ship and back in space. It felt good. But, it did not last. Telemon beeped out the coordinates of another structure. I really hope this one gets me some answers. I locked the coordinates in and hoped for the best.
A temple? It feels like a temple.
I wonder what is offered here? Not travellers, I hope.
This felt final. These steps would be the last. Not sure how I knew that. Just a feeling deep inside. And an ache returning to my mind.
A storehouse. Star charts. History.
This should definitely net me some answers. Surely some clue here. What happened to the grand creatures? To the people who tried so hard to survive whatever disaster that overtook them?
First, I must take a look around. I noticed a doorway and exited down a short flight of steps. At the bottom, a container filled with swirling insects caught my attention.
The warm glow calmed my racing heart, soothed my aching head. I was so enraptured that Telemon’s beeps were barely audible to me. Telemon said to turn around.
In one unanimous voice in my head, they called me to them. I resisted. I argued that I had done nothing wrong. My legs began to force me closer. Closer. Closer.
It was them! They are the ones in my head! What are they doing in there?!
Go! They told me. Go!
I found myself at the end of a hallway. What is that at the other end? A face? My head was hurting so badly! I could not make out what I was seeing.
As I walked closer, I could feel it again. Someone is watching. I heard my name. Turning to see what it was, there they were! Again! Too late! They are walking away!
My head did not allow me to think of it any more. I had to obey and Go!
It was not a face. A room. Desks. Perhaps a school. Leaders of this ancient world met here perhaps. I felt compelled to turn and continue down the hallway.
Something is there. I can feel it. It is in my head already. Yet, the more they are there, the more comfortable I am with them being there. Perhaps they mean no harm. Perhaps it is just my own fear that is harming me. I rounded the corner to face the conclusion.
They beckoned me to sit.
They related to me why I had been summoned. How they had been the keepers of the history of this place. How they had searched the ages for ones like me to pass their knowledge on to. Even with all the power being generated to keep them alive, that power was fading. After so many long years, their time was coming to an end. They needed travellers like me to keep the memory alive. To carry the knowledge forward and add to it with my own discoveries.
They beckoned me to come closer.
I could feel their mind entering the deepest parts of mine. I let them in.
In an instant, so many memories flooded in. Planting themselves deep within my own memory banks. It was as if I had lived another life time. The knowledge was overwhelming. It would take time to process.
They informed me that most of the knowledge was stored away and I would remember it a bit at a time. As I discover bits of the past, bits of memory would come to light. This was the only way they could pass the knowledge on. Too much at once and I would surely lose my mind.
They told me to proceed down the hall to a sanctuary where I would receive a guide to help me on my way.
I thanked them for the honor they had bestowed upon me.
As I entered the sanctuary, I began to wonder what lay ahead for me and how I would find my way to unlocking these memories I had been gifted.
As I turned from the altar, I saw it! My guide!
They fluttered and flew down another hallway. I followed and was led to a room which reminded me of the great history I was about to uncover.
I then turned and followed my guide outside.
There was a craft. Ready and waiting to help me begin this great journey.
Which way? How do you start a journey like this?
Then I saw them. My guide. Over this hill is the first step.
They fluttered ahead of me as I raced over the hill after them.
I am so thankful to Hirk the Great for making this possible. My journey has just begun!
So many thanks to @dersvr for the bases and the inspiration for this story. Your bases are very inspiring!