The Three Realms The Three Realms (Book 3: The First Strike)

3 Realms 3-12

Rooshee was interred at the cemetery near Realmfleet Max. Her eulogy was short and to the point. After the funeral, there was still the matter of Dr. Ganshar. She was laid up in the Endeavor’s sick bay as Arsha and Aldarval stood outside. “How long’s an examination like this gonna take?!” grumbled Arsha.

“Marshii’s gotta be thorough,” replied Aldarval. “Though, she’s been in there a long time.” At that moment, Marshii stepped out to meet them.

“Captain, Admiral, a word,” she requested as she motioned for them to get nearer to her. They leaned in to hear her. “I’ll be frank, that blast hit Ganshar’s hippocampus.”

“And that is…?” ventured Aldarval.

“It’s the part of the brain that controls learning and memory,” explained Marshii.

“Memory?” asked Arsha. “Are you saying…?”

“She’s got amnesia,” confirmed Marshii.

“You’re absolutely sure?” inquired Aldarval as she gave her an intense look.

“She knows she’s a Sky Elf and how to speak Sky Elvish and All-Realm Standard,” answered Marshii. “But she doesn’t remember who she is or where she came from. She didn’t recognize the name ‘Jansha’ or any of our names.”

“We can’t send her back to Realmfleet Max in this condition,” muttered Arsha.

“You’re so right, Captain,” agreed Aldarval.

“We need to tell her family about this,” suggested Marshii.

“That’s the trouble,” muttered Aldarval. “She’s an only child and her parents are dead.”

“Then who can help her?” mumbled Arsha. Aldarval then snapped her fingers as she got an idea.

“Captain Yanstal always wanted a child!” she explained.

“The Steamwind’s Captain?” asked Arsha.

“The same,” answered Aldarval. “His wife is barren, and they’ve tried everything to have a child. This might just be what could give Ganshar another chance! Doctor, where’s the nearest comms unit?”

“Right here at my desk,” answered Marshii as she led Aldarval to her desk. Aldarval then gave her authorization code and connected to Captain Yanstal. Yanstal was a typical-looking Sky Elf, long, black hair, pale skin, and blue eyes. However, he had an eyepatch over his right eye.

“Admiral!” he greeted. “What can I do for you?”

“Captain, I believe I can get you a daughter!” explained Aldarval. She then outlined the whole situation, even explaining Ganshar’s old past.

“I promise you, Admiral, Elwai and I will give her the love she had never received,” assured Captain Yanstal. “Where are you right now?”

“On the Endeavor, just southwest of the Sacchrinda Kingdom. I hope you can give her a new name.”

“Elwai and I had long agreed on what to name our child if we could have one. Yultan if the child was a boy, and Urlee if they were a girl.”

“Then we’ll make sure ‘Urlee’ is ready for you. How far out are you?”

“An hour south of you, on the island in between the Western and Central continents. I’ll be at your position straightaway.”

“See you in an hour, then. Aldarval out.” She ended the call and sighed in relief.

“That DOES leave a problem, though,” remarked Arsha. “There’ll be someone who recognizes her. She WAS a famous roboticist.”

“Oddly enough,” replied Aldarval, “her features are average for a Sky Elf woman. She’ll blend in enough.”

“Then there’s no need for reconstructive surgery,” sighed Marshii in relief. “Good. That would have been a rush job.”

The Steamwind arrived and landed near the Endeavor. Arsha, Endea, and Aldarval waited in the warp room to welcome Captain Yanstal and his crew aboard. A teleport circle glowed green and brought Captain Yanstal aboard with a Ship-type Mechanica in pants, a shirt, and jacket with the name Steamwind and his registry number CRS-99173, and a Sky Elf woman. “Welcome aboard the Endeavor, Captain Yanstal,” greeted Arsha. “I’m Captain Arsha Royana and this is Endea, my ship.”

“Happy to be here, Captain Royana,” returned Yanstal. “This is my wife, Elwai, and my ship and First Officer, Steawin.”

“Hello,” called Elwai.

“Pleased to meet you,” affirmed Steawin.

“Y…Yeah, meeting you…is…the good,” stumbled Endea as she blushed.

“Oh?” chuckled Steawin. “Right back at you.”

“Steawin!” admonished Captain Yanstal.

“I’m just saying hello!” protested Steawin.

“I don’t mind,” assured Endea.

“I appreciate a good ‘love-at-first-sight’ story like anyone else,” interjected Aldarval, “but we have some business to take care of.”

“You’re right,” agreed Captain Yanstal. “Where is she?”

“This way,” directed Arsha. She led the group to sick bay. Marshii met them at the door.

“She’s ready,” she reported. She led Captain Yanstal and Elwai to Ganshar. It was so weird to see an infamous roboticist look so helpless and uncertain.

“Urlee?” asked Captain Yanstal. Ganshar looked around.

“Are…are you…?” she stumbled.

“Yes,” answered Captain Yanstal.

“My name…is Urlee?”

“That’s right.”

“What happened?”

“There was a shuttle explosion. You took a blow to the head from shrapnel.”

“I don’t remember a shuttle explosion. Come to think of it, that’s a minor thing I don’t remember. I can’t remember who I am.”

“You suffered damage to your hippocampus,” explained Marshii. “It’s very likely you won’t remember your whole life.”

“…I have amnesia?” summed up Ganshar as her face fell.

“Don’t worry, your father and I will help you regain what you’ve lost,” assured Elwai.

“Who am I?” asked the amnesiac.

“You are Urlee Yanstal, a well-loved daughter of the Sky Elven House of the Ulmath Star,” explained Elwai. “We are a small, but proud house. You are a roboticist like me, and you love your creations as if they were your own children. Even correction makes you feel ill as any parent would in correcting their child.”

“Someone took your work and made a robot for themselves, but they had no parental instincts,” supplied Captain Yanstal. Marshii looked on, thinking that it would cause her to remember who she was.

“…Did they have justice wrought upon them for stealing my work?” asked the amnesiac Elf.

“They died for their sins,” answered Elwai.

“And the robot they’ve made?”

“Joined with an enemy of the Realms.”

“Then, perhaps, I can construct a much-more loved robot. I just wish I can remember everything I’ve learned about robotics.”

“Don’t worry, I will teach you all that you’ve forgotten.”

“Thank you, Mother.” As the amnesiac Sky Elf hugged Elwai, the unloved Dr. Ganshar faded from history. In her place was Urlee Yanstal, a loved daughter.

“Come on, let’s get back to the ship,” urged Captain Yanstal.

“Doctor,” Urlee called to Marshii, “thank you for your help.”

“It’s what I signed up for, Ms. Yanstal,” assured Marshii. Urlee and her new parents walked out of sick bay and over to the warp room. After they were sent back to their ship, Arsha released a breath.

“Divine Ones, please let her live a happier life, unburdened by her old one,” prayed Arsha. She then bowed and turned to Aldarval. “Thank you for your help, Ma’am.”

“Just doing my job, Captain,” replied Aldarval. “Now, about Ms. Barmek…”

Bashoon and her parents were in their quarters, discussing why Rooshee blamed her and her alone. “I mean, I was only a minor annoyance. She knew Arsha was the one who was behind the whole scheme,” reminded Bashoon.

“You were the one who suggested the idea,” recalled Mrs. Barmek.

“You were also the one who brought the whole thing to Aldarval’s attention,” continued Mr. Barmek. Just then, the door chimed.

“Come in,” called Mrs. Barmek. Arsha then entered the room.

“Captain!” yelped Bashoon as she stood up. “What can I do for you?”

“Actually, I’m here to do something for you,” replied Arsha.

“…Should I be happy about that grin on your face?” asked Bashoon.

“As a matter of fact, Lieutenant, yes.” Bashoon and her parents looked around.

“…Lieutenant who?” asked Mrs. Barmek.

“Lieutenant Bashoon Barmek, of course,” explained Arsha.

“Me? A Lieutenant?” quizzed Bashoon. “Captain, with all due respect, I’m still an Ensign.”

“After the bravery you’ve demonstrated today, not anymore.” Arsha pulled out a new uniform. This one had yellow trim instead of red. “For your valuable service and your continued courage, Realmfleet has taken my recommendation to promote you! You are now an official member of the Endeavor’s security team with the rank of Lieutenant!”

“Lieutenant JG, right?” asked Bashoon.

“Nope, a full-on Lieutenant.” Bashoon blinked, then got misty-eyed.

“I…I mean, I don’t…”

“It’s a little emotional, being promoted. Now, this does mean that…” Arsha was then taken into Bashoon’s hug. A little awkward, given the still-clear rank gap, but Arsha rolled with it.

“Captain, I promise you, I will take my new responsibilities with honor and pride!”

“That’s what I like to hear!” Arsha then broke off the hug.

“Hey, let’s see how your new uniform looks on you!” urged Mr. Barmek.

“One minute!” called Bashoon as she dashed behind the changing screen. Her old uniform was soon draped over the screen and they waited a little longer before she stepped out with her new uniform on.

“Perfect!” praised Arsha.

“That’s DEFINITELY you!” agreed Mrs. Barmek.

“Now, while you DO have new responsibilities,” Arsha went on, “you also have new privileges, such as the right to wear your usual clothes.”

“Not that much of a difference between a duty uniform and my usual clothes,” mused Bashoon. “They’re just in colors that Goblins find fashionable.”

“And a little frillier,” reminded Mr. Barmek.

“That too,” replied Bashoon.

“Congratulations, Lieutenant Bashoon Barmek,” praised Arsha. “You’ve more than earned it!”

“Thank you, Captain!” answered Bashoon. “I won’t let you down!”

“No, I don’t think you will,” agreed Arsha. She left the room, then released a breath as the door closed to give the Barmeks some private celebration. “Now,” she muttered to herself, “to ask Falnii to use her abilities on me.”

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