Apollo Seventy-Eight

Chapter 1

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The team sat in the shuttle nervously. They all knew that this mission was dangerous, in fact they might never come back home to Earth. Brian, the commander looked around at his team. There was Mary, who sense of direction was spot on. That's why she was one of the best navigators you could ever have. Adrian was the pilot, he used to be in the United States Navy. He was an excellent pilot without a doubt. A bit temperamental but his talent made up for it. Ronald was the engineer of this team, if anything went wrong with the mechanics the teams life was in his hands. Brian was okay with that.

"Ten, nine, eight," the countdown starts. Brian leans back in his seat, he sees Mary bracing herself for the blast from the corner of his eyes. "Three, two, blast off."

Fire comes out of the rocket, propelling it into the atmosphere. They were going into space. Brian closes his eyes, the speed of the rocket was nauseating, closing his eyes helped some.

After a while the rocket stills, Brian opens his eyes and is met with an awe-inspiring sight. Brian had been in space four times before, this was his fifth time now. Still the beauty of the planet Earth from outer space was beautiful.

"Commander are you there?" Brian hears a female voice in his ear. It was Karrie from Mission Control. "Check," Brian replies. "We have exited the Earth's orbit. All is well." Around him Brian hears his teammates telling their Mission Control consultant the same thing.

"I will be taking over on the ground now," Brian hears Karrie say. "Now we need the pilot and navigator to start heading past Mars towards the asteroid belt. A wormhole should be appearing soon."

"Mission Control, is there a map that we can follow?" Brian hears Mary ask. Mary always thought things out, which was a good trait to have. "It is appearing on the screen right now." As soon as Karrie says the words a highly detailed map appears.

Brian knows its time. "Check, pilot go forward. Navigator direct." As commander Brian didn't really have to do anything right then, Mary and Adrian had it under control. Soon the rocket is past Mars and is heading towards the dangerous asteroid belt.

"We aren't exactly sure of where the wormhole leads or even how much time will pass. The wormhole is straight ahead." Karrie's voice cracks though the teams headpieces. The unspoken goodbye.

Brian is trying to think of a way to say good bye to Karrie. Why is it so hard to say a final goodbye to the one you love? "Tell David that his father loves him very much," is what Brian finally comes up with. "I love you honey," he adds on to Karrie his voice cracking with emotion. He imagines silent tears rolling down his wife's face. She always was strong. Brian hoped his son inherited that trait.

"Commander wormhole strait ahead," Mary interrupts. Brian sighs, he knows that Mary feels bad about it but he also knows that the interruption was of the upmost importance. "Pilot drive strait through." And brace yourself, Brian silently adds on.

The team shoots unreasonably fast though the wormhole. The wormhole was...different. Brian was sure they were moving faster than they should be allowed too. The speed and force should have crushed the capsule and it's passengers. But it didn't. Brian could tell Adrian was struggling to keep control of the ship but thankfully that control didn't wane. Brian's already high respect for the pilot deepened. Ronald just looked on edge.

Suddenly everything is still again. "Mission Control?," Mary asks timidly. There is no answer, only static. Everybody denied it, but the fact was undeniable. The team was on there own in this strange place filled with the unknown. The thought of it was enough to cause terror to spread.

"I see land ahead!" That came from Ronald. "Lets go check it out," Brian sighs.

As the team looms closer to the land they see it looks familiar. It looks like Earth. Except that were the oceans and seas were on Earth, they were land on this planet. What was land on Earth was water here.

"Strange," Ronald muttered. Yes it was. What was this place? Brian knew there was only one way to find out. "Let's suit up," he says with an impeding sense of doom.

Suddenly the headpieces crackle to life. "Apollo seventy-eight is that you?" It's a male voice, not a female. Brian feels crushed. "Mission control this is Apollo seventy-eight."

"We are activating the camera attached to the ship. Get photos, they will immediately be sent to us. We have waited a hundred and twenty-two years for this."

The world spins around, that's so much time. Everything they knew was gone, Brian realizes. If they could even find a way back home, everything would be different. And that's when the tears start. It was already over.

However the team had a job to do, they were astronauts. The first to ever make it though a wormhole into another galaxy or maybe even dimension. Brian, Mary, Adrian, and Ronald had a job to do. Once that job was completed then they could mourn and wallow in their sorrows. Until then it was unacceptable.

The shuttle heads towards the unknown planet, the camera ready. All of this just for a couple of pictures? Was science really worth this?

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