Damage Control by Gordon Savage (Teleportal 2)
English | 2020 | Fantasy | ePUB | 2.8 MB
The first attempt to open a TELEPORTAL into another universe ends with a disastrous explosion.
Despite the government ruling that the explosion was a matter/antimatter interaction, intelligence analyst and Marine Corp veteran, Samantha Pederson, is certain the explosion was deliberate and not caused by the teleportal.
Plus, injured in the blast, she isn’t about to let the bombers who nearly killed her get off Scott free. She defies upper management and sets out to see that justice is done and undo the damage to teleportal development.
But damage control can be hazardous. The more evidence she uncovers, the greater the danger she finds herself in. Drug dealers target her with hired guns. A mob kingpin orders her executed. And the bombers themselves, well … she’s found out who they are, and they’re coming after her with a vengeance.
Now all she has to do is get out of this explosives vest before it goes off….
In minutes most of the occupants of the safe house had gathered in the room with us. Only the guards were missing. Greg’s son, Kevin, glanced back and forth between Melissa and Troy. “What’s all the excitement about?”
Melissa choked out, “Somebody is calling us.”
As far as any of us knew, the only working teleportals were in the room with us. Questions exploded: “Who?” “How?” “What do you mean?” All the chattering made it almost impossible for anyone to answer. Troy silenced everyone with a piercing whistle.
He passed control of the room over to Melissa. “Mel, would you explain to everybody what this means?”
Melissa still appeared to be in shock, but despite being dazed, she responded with metered words, “As unbelievable as it sounds, we seem to have made contact with an alternate universe. That’s the only rational explanation I can think of.”
The room remained totally silent as the group digested what they had heard. Then the excited babble returned. Melissa had to wave both her hands above her head to get quiet again. When the noise finally subsided, she continued, “This is an incredible opportunity, but we have to be careful. We can’t delay too long in responding, or the whatever-they-are at these coordinates may think it’s just a glitch and turn off their invitation.”
“Don’t we have their coordinates?” I asked.
Melissa nodded. “True, but if they’ve moved on, they might not respond to us. We don’t know how or why this came about. If we don’t act quickly, we might lose the chance to make contact. On the other hand, we can’t just open the interface. That could be an invitation to disaster.” She looked at Troy. “I can’t see any reason why we can’t open the interface in visual only mode, can you?”
“Radiation. Heat. Glare, but other than that, no.” His humor went over most everyone’s’ head. “It would be safer to respond to them without opening the interface in any mode. Maybe we could send a pulse pattern through the call-in circuit. They could tell from the pattern it wasn’t natural and know it wasn’t some kind of glitch. In the meantime I can adjust the opacity of our teleportal so none of that nasty stuff could get through.”
He turned to me. “Sam, would you send the pulses?”
“Got it.” I sat down at the computer and started sending a dot-dash pattern where the number of dots and dashes increased and then decreased. I was in my second repetition when the call light started flashing with incoming dots and dashes.
I almost jumped out of my seat again. It was Morse code, “HELLO”
I felt like a kid who had just aced my first test in school. I responded with “HELLO YOUSELF [pause] WHO IS THIS”
In those few seconds we were waiting for a response, Troy finished adjusting the teleportal parameters so the interface bandwidth was limited to visible light and the transmissivity was opaque. Then he nodded for me to accept the call-in. I had to wait for the incoming response to finish. It said, “YOU SPEAK ENGLISH.”