Washington D.C, Earth
Dwight was in his private study. To say he had had a stressfull few days would have put it mildly. His first few weeks in office had not been the
cakewalk he thought it would be. He knew that being Earth President had its burdons but he never thought he'd have to deal with an interstallar
war on his first full day. His vidphone rang. Dwight grimly pressed the 'reply' button. 'Yes, who is it?' 'Dwight?' Came the voice of his political
arch rival, Doohan Graves. 'Garp damn it! What the robot hell do you want?' on a list of the top ten of things that he would rather not be doing right
now, chatting to his opponant in the 3029 election would rank number one. 'Tsk tsk, thats no way to talk to an old friend is it?'
'Old friend?! I *hated* you back in boarding school, you used to steal my lunch money and give me sonic wedgies when ever you passed me!
And during the election you made fun of my hair!' 'So I'm not a fan of dreadlocks. Sue me.' 'Why did you call me, Doohan? I'm very busy.'
Graves snorted derisively ' Doing what? Hauling your own men over the coals because you dont have Thaarg close to hand?' 'I'm sorry?'
'I've spoken to Bryan Fleetwood, Dwight.He told be about your little hissy fit about the Priory. Odd, I'd thought you'd be pleased that
there are guys like Fleetwood around to clear up your messes.' Dwight was nettled 'I want my goverment to be free of secrecy and lies.
I promised that the era of 'cloak and dagger' goverment was over back in 3029. I want to live up to that promise.' 'Cuh! Boy! you wont be
around long with that attitude.' ' Look, how do you know about all this?Are you a member?' 'Spleck no! Not with my murky background!
I...run errands for them look the other way, help cover up their activities.' 'Why have you called me?' 'Because I need your help to solve a
mystery. Ever heard of a man called Gwenth Bosworth?' 'No. Why?' 'He was a coroner for the DOOP Medical Department back in 3005. He
was the guy who decleared Amy Wong dead that the scene of the Planet Expess Ship crash on the planet Threezacrowd. And he's dissapeared.'
'Where?' 'No idea. He was head of the Medical Department at New New DOOP Headquarters. Although it wasnt much of a promotion, more of a way
for the DOOP to push this embarrasing situation aside.' 'What are you talking about, Doohan?' 'I'm talking about the DOOP's possible involvement
in this whole sorry mess!' 'WHAT?!' 'I suggest you talk to Devan Tilton. He has data regarding a classified mission involving the USS Kilmarnock
and its unofficial official visit to the planet Durg in 2861.' ' You mean Captain Aldrick Warric was involved in this?! As in Aldrick Warric, the hero of the battle
of The Battle of Gabaarg 3 in 2862?' 'Of course. Pretty weird eh?' 'More like goverment-shattering! Are you seriously telling me that this whole conspiracy
goes all the way up to the DOOP?!' 'Like I said, you better talk to Devan Tilton about it.' 'What does all this have to do with Gwenth Bosworth?'
'Mostly nothing. Poor Mr Bosworth was just a victim of circumstance. But he might just be the key to ending this war.'
'Or the key to destroying human civilization.' 'Allways with the negatives with you!'
A few hours passed. Dwight had almost drained his 56th glass of Acturian Whiskey. His door knocked. In walked Fleetwood and the rest.
'Well?' demanded Dwight. Fleetwood gave a nervous cough. 'We...ahhh have the report.' he gingerly placed a large pile of folders onto Dwight's desk.
'Nevermind that now. 'Dwight said impatiantly. 'Tell me about Gwenth Bosworth.' Fleetwood blanched 'Gwenth......Bosworth?' 'Yes. He vanished last night. Graves told me.'
'All we know about Bosworth,' Fleetwood said slowly 'was that he was the guy who decleared Amy Wong dead at the Planet Express ship crash
on Threezacrowd in 3005.' 'And?' 'And what?' Dwight was starting to loose patience 'OK this covert bullshit stops here! Understood?'
Fletwood, Zennor and Tilton all nodded 'Gwenth tried to persue his 'Amy Wong died in 3005' theory further.' Fleetwood began.
'But he was rebuked by someone high up in the Central Buraucracy.' Zennor chimed in. 'OK' Dwight said 'Who was head of the
Records Department in 3005?' 'Orville Merrik. But he is retired now.' said Fleetwood.
Organized Acres Rest Home For Retired Buraucrats, Florida, Earth
'I'm sorry but the residents are playing Virtual Shuffle Board now you cant- ag!' Dwight pushed the carer aside and bardged into the VR Shuffle Board room.
'Orville Merrik?' barked Dwight the residents all stopped what they where doing. 'Who here is Orville Merrik?' Dwight barked again. A weedy bespecticaled old man
with a thick moustache gingerly raised his hand. 'That would be me.' he said 'Are you from the Sunset Squad? I aint 160 yet!'
The room they were using to interrogate Merrik was the manager's office. Goodwin Dryscol, the manager in question did not take kindly to this. But his patiotisim
won out and he reluctantly allowed them to interview Merrik 'But Nap Time is an hour and a half away!' He warned 'You have until then!'
Tilton was sat opposite the elderly pencil pusher. 'Merrik, I'll cut to the chase, who told you to not persue Amy Wong's 'death' in 3005?'
'The man who gave the order was Buraucrat 1.0 himself.' 'Who was 1.0 in 3005?' 'Lucius Fiennman. He was there since 2974.'
'Is he still there?' Tilton asked. 'No, he died in 3018.' Orville said 'Who suceeded him?' 'A woman called Morgan Proctor......am I under arrest?'
'Just tell us exactly what Fiennman told you.' 'He simply said that it was a mistake and to cancel the death certificate. Thats it.'
'He said nothing about nanobots or secret genetic experiments?' 'No. I'd remember if he did.'
Central Buraucracy Head Quarters, New New York
Morgan Proctor's Office
The years had not been kind to Morgan Proctor. She had gained weight and her hair was now grey.
But her dedication to the Central Buraucracy had not changed one bit.
Morgan was going over some files at her desk when Zennor and Fleetwood entered her office.
'Do you expect me to believe this dubious story?' She said, after they had told them about Bosworth and the conspiracy.
'We agree that it is hard to accept ma'am- ' Fleetwood began but Proctor cut him off 'Hard to accept is an understatement.
This could damage the Buraucracy's reputation at a time when people's faith in it is dwindling. And all because of a
unsubstantiated rumour surrounding the dissappearence of a DOOP Medical worker.' 'We just want to look at the
archives from 3005,' Fleetwood said 'If you refuse you will be charged with disrupting an investigation-'
'I warn you, bigger people than you have gone against us and failed. I hope I dont need to remind you of the
Buraucracy Wars of the mid 25th Century.' 'Look, you just give us the archives and noone but us will ever know.'
Zennor said, in what he hoped was a even toned voice. Morgan sighed 'Very well, I will give you the archives.'
she rummaged in her desk and took out what looked like a lime green credit card.
'This,' she said 'will give you access to the Central Buraucracy's main Super Computer.' she handed it to Zennor.
'Thanks.' Zennor said. Fleetwood thanked Morgan again and they both turned to leave. 'Wait!' Morgan called after them.
'Yes, ma'am?' said Fleetwood 'Do......do you have any new information on ...Fry's whereabouts?' asked Proctor, an un-characteristic
note of concern entering her voice. 'I'm afraid that that infomation is classified.' 'Is he safe though?' 'Yes. He is safe.'
The two men left the office. Morgan sighed. Her vidphone rang. She pressed 'Reply' a low gutteral voice accompanyed by the image
of a shadowy figure on the screen appeared. 'Have they arrived?' 'Er...yes, Sir they did.' 'And what did you tell them?' 'Nothing, Sir nothing that
would get them even close to the truth!' 'Good. Because if you even think of cracking and telling them *anything* then I might reconsider
my plan to not destroy this universe.' 'I wont crack! I wont!' Proctor half screamed. 'Exellent. Be sure you dont!' the call disconnected.
Morgan was left in the semi-darkness of her office. 'Dear Garp! What have I done?' she sobbed.
Zennor and Fleetwood sat huddled around the computer. Zennor read the name on the screen
'Rudiger Neubauer? Who's Rudiger Neubauer?' he asked . 'You were too young to remember,
but during the 2960's there was this leader of this cult that thought that the universe was a giant computer program created by
super-intelligent aliens.' Fleetwood said ' He was called Rudiger Neubauer, though he called himself the Supreme Templar Of Infinity,
even signed it when ordering packages. He dissapeared in 2974 along with some of his followers
in a spaceship, they wanted to search for the 'Promised World' where they would survive the 'Time of The Great Deletion'.'
'And what does this have to do with Fiennman?' 'Feinnman was a member of Neubauer's cult.' 'And that means....?'
'Feinnman was kicked out of the cult after he refused to go on the trip. He stayed on Earth and was made head of the CB.'
'I still dont know the connection with Thaarg and the invasion of Mars and Bosworth's dissappearance.' Zennor said.
'Because Neubauer was also an investor in Thaarg's nanobot project.'
Raul Neubauer's Apartment, Hoboken, New Jersey, Earth
'I dont need this, not now. I am the owner and founder of Neubauer's Interstellar Haulage, the largest xenologistics company in NJ.
I am the most respected man here and I will not let you jeprodise that by dragging my brother's stupid little cult in to the limelight.'
He grabbed a copy of the previous month's issue of Space Freighter Magazine up from a nearby table. 'See this?' He said jabbing
his finger at the cover, it was a picture of himself smiling and standing next to what Zennor assumed was his space freighter.
'This is the second time I have been named Space Freighter Magazine's Most Profitable Business in two years.'
'You should be very proud.' Fleetwood said 'but we are not here to discuss that, we want to know if your brother told you
anything specific about how he arrived at his beilefs.' 'He said that our grandfather gave him this device that gave him these
weird memories, he called it a 'Memory Sphere' he says that the aliens left them behind so that the 'Chosen Few' would know the truth and
spread the word throughout the universe.' 'Do you beleive that?' 'Of course not! Do you?' 'We...have enough evidence that it's a possibility.
Did your brother mention anything about Emperor Thaarg or a project involving nanobots?' 'I'm his brother not his lover. Besides we wernt all that close.'
Zennor turned to Fleetwood 'This is a dead end. Lets go.' 'Wait. There was one thing. This guy was always hanging around him. Buraucrat.They were always
talking about investments and things.' 'Lucius Feinnman?' 'No, he was Jamacian.' 'Jamacian?'