Orbital Sciences Files #1

“T.S.O.S.D. Administration office, this is Gonzo speaking.” I put away the research paper I was reading, one of many on a pile that seemed to become larger every second…

“Sir, there has been an -uhmm- minor inconvenience at the hangar,” a nervous voice said on the other side of the line. “What happened?” I inquired. “It’s the hamsters, sir. They…, it… *beeep*” with that the connection terminated. I got up and made my way to the converted missile silo now functioning as a hangar for the Rocketship 1 among other research projects like giant catapults, models of a space elevator, high altitude balloons and preliminary designs for orbital platforms.

I got to the hangar and found myself in front of a locked door, the wires of the access terminal had been chewed through. A bunch of hamsters ran past my feet into an air vent. I decided to follow them to get into the hangar.

After crawling through the tight space of the air vent I arrived to a weird scene of hamsters preparing the Rocketship 1 for launch, with most of the human crew incapacitated, a few Robots seemed to take orders from the hamsters now… Let me be clear on this; Rocketship 1 is just a mock up so if the hamsters want to go to space, they’ll have more luck with the catapults or balloons…

I heard some squeaks over the intercom and saw a bunch of hamsters sitting in the control room, apparently giving orders to the rest. I decided to sneak to the control room, and stop whatever they were trying to do.

I made it to the control room without any incident. The hamsters seemed to busy with their work, I must admit I was impressed of their effort, how futile it might be.

Inside the control room there was a hamster sitting with a weird small helmet on, with wires going into the machinery.
“I am George, King of the hamsters,” appeared on the console screen. “Give us access to space,” was the next message.

I was confused, first of all: Who in the name of Steel would create a hamster-thought translation helmet, without considering the dangers. Second: Why?
“Do you understand me?” I asked.
“Yes.”

“Okay then, what is your purpose with this whole operation? You should know that Rocketship 1 doesn’t even have a rocket engine yet, it’s just a mock-up so the hangar doesn’t look empty.”

“Really?”
“Yes.”
“Oh…”

The hamster looked disappointed, I petted King George of the hamsters to console him a bit.
“Could we come to a compromise?” appeared on the screen after a long pause.
“Maybe, what would you like to suggest?”
“Access to space, once a rocket is built.”
“Just once a rocket is built? You could take part in the testing process before that…”

The hamster seemed excited with my last remark, maybe he shouldn’t be because testing can mean a lot of things…

After some nose twitching and me offering him a treat, the hamster agreed. Hamster king George squeaked a few times in the intercom microphone, and the hamsters began retreating back to wherever they hide. “Bye” said George. And he took off the helmet and scurried after the rest.

I ordered the bots to clear up the mess the hamsters left, and after repairing the main entrance console I went back to the pile of paperwork waiting at my desk.

Engineering Report #2

Engineering report for the TSU. Date:  27/11/’14

Engineering Report #2 – Researching the device.

Whatever I had done to the mysterious box by ripping it out of the hole it was stuck in, it was not working anymore. I had taken it to my workshop and opened it up. Some glowing pulsating parts were particularly interesting, some green, some red. After careful examination of the glowing tubes, this definitely seemed to be plutonium.

“Oh dear, I’ve radiated myself again…”

When I got back from putting on some protective gear, the plutonium tubes inside the device seemed to pulsate at an extremely random pattern. I went to inspect the device a little more. It seemed some of the plutonium power-cells had run out, and some were malfunctioning, nearly going into a meltdown. I had to get to the wires on the back and fix whatever severed cable was causing the problem!

Some wire measuring and deduction later,I was not close to an answer on  how to stop the meltdown and it was getting awfully hot in there. As hot as going to ComicCon in full armour suit, I’d imagine!

“It’s time for desperate measures!” I thought. I pulled out the only red glowing plutonium tube, and watched the pulsating tubes slowly fade down and synchronize again.

I heard a soft static noise coming from the box, and looked at the front. There were some dials, and a numerical display… I turned the big dial and heard more noise. Ah! An antenna is what I need!

I looked for the traditional antenna sign on old devices and attached a rod of copper to it.

Succes! There were faint noises of people talking. I turned the dial again: music, lovely!

I turned the dial some more and noticed one of the plutonium cells going out slowly, and the sounds faded with it…

I need to figure out how to reproduce this plutonium power cell to get this thing working again!

(Credits to Lucas Usagi & Captain Sari Alwinn)

Engineering Report #1

Engineering report for the TSU. Date: 18/10/’14

During maintenance on a malfunctioning console I heard a strange noise coming from behind the cable patch panel. It sounded as if something was generating a static noise. I have performed maintenance here before, but never heard anything other than the small buzzing overhead from the energy generators. Digging through the cables, I found older and older looking cables going to different tubes leading in different directions. I managed to get through the – what seemed like a hundred or more cables – managed to detach the patch panel, and found a hole of which I couldn’t reach the end with my arm. I felt something like a box, I could feel with the tip of my fingers that it was something with square edges.

I adjusted my uniform LED’s brightness to get a clearer view of what could be inside that hatch. It looked like a metallic, rusty and old box. From what I could see it had some kind of dials on it, and it seemed that the box was the origin of the strange noise, I needed something to reach for the box, as my arms were just a few centimetre too short…

After getting some tools from my workshop I returned to the hatch, but when I tried to reach for the box the sound suddenly changed and I heard a melody I hadn’t heard in ages! It was Dr. Steel’s song: Secret Message, it seemed clear I was dealing with some kind of audio device, an old cassette player or some kind of radio maybe? I had to get to this thing. Working with a pinching tong I could grab an edge of the box and managed to wedge it forward a few centimetres until it got stuck. At least I could reach for it with my hand a bit better now and started to feel around the box, I touched something that felt like a dial and accidentally turned it, the Dr. Steel song disappeared but now I heard a woman voice announcing a string of numbers. I quickly grabbed my notebook and scribbled down the numbers:
6,2,8,8,6 – 6,2,8,8,6 – 1,3,2,9,7 – 1,3,2,9,7 – 6,0,3,1,8 – 9,7,7,0,2 – 9,7,7,0,2 …

After that the sound ceased. I was baffled, what could this mean? What is this thing? I lifted the box a little, and tried to pull it toward me some more, I heard some creaking behind the box and suddenly something snapped and I fell backwards with the box in my hands. It turned out to be a very old and rusty radio. This thing must’ve been down here for ages, by pulling it out of the hatch, I had snapped the cables that were connected, but were very damaged already by the hand of rust, dust, and probably some hamsters gnawing at the cables. I put the box in my bag, and finished maintenance on the faulty console, placed the panels back and returned to my workshop.

Back at the workshop I unscrewed the rusty screws, opening up the radio. It was a very old looking electronic circuit, still generating energy even though it was not connected to any external power source.

Here’s what those insides look like:

Gonzo's Radio

It seems I have a lot of engineering to do before I can begin to understand that weird device, but I will keep you informed about my progress.