?Won?t deny it,? Lirssa said as she crawled out from the conduit, ?you?ve an impressive ship. I wondered how you managed to break the past the time space issues and relativity. I?d really rather not return to Rhy?Din three hundred years after I?ve left.? Every joke has a grain of truth, they say.
Ship?s engineer, Tatiana McClure, chuckled. ?None of us wants to return to our homes with everyone we love gone just because we have a need to be out in the stars.?
Everyone gone. Lirssa smiled, nodded, and focused on the machinery around her instead of what the woman had said. Except the last phrase kept echoing in her head: ?...need to be out in the stars.?. Lirssa knew she still had that need. And there was going to be no way to fulfill it. The tension in her shoulders wound tighter. She took a deep breath, and gave Tatiana a grin. ?None of us wants that,? she murmured in echo.
?So, yeah, the transient tunnels we create through the polarized quantum cores of the engine get us going pretty far and keep our time more consistent. Quantum cores really made the difference.? Tatiana ran her hand down the sleek side of the ship wall before turning from the engine room. A touch of affection. It was something Lirssa had done more times than she remembered to the walls of her own ship.
?Thanks for showing me around. I know you?re busy.?
?Well, your information about your home sector convinced the captain to take you aboard. Just wish it had convinced him to take you there and not just close by. How many ships have you gotten passage on so far??
?Three,? Lirssa chuckled. ?I?m doing better than I thought. And it shouldn?t be more than two more after Thestra. I?m really grateful.?
?Anything interesting about those other ships? Something that could help us here??
Lirssa twisted her mouth. She would, in fact, be breaking some rather deep set rules if she shared technology information from one society with another. ?You know, I doubt it. But even if there were, you wouldn?t want me sharing what I?ve seen here with others. Apologies, it is just better if--?
?No, of course.? Tatiana?s face flushed. ?I wasn?t even thinking.?
?Yes, you were.? Lirssa did not accuse. She knew exactly what Tatiana was doing. ?You were thinking about your ship. No one is going to blame you for that. Still, with you all wandering close to each other, obviously or I wouldn't be getting as far this fast, that information will come about the right way with the right people. Better if I don't spin a web, as I don't want to be a spider and it doesn't last.?
It was the same warning she had given the other captains. She hoped they listened.