• The metallic clanging of the magnetic boots on the tri-partian alloy floors filled the empty dock. Two imperial soldiers slowly moved forward. The soldiers had their weapons at the firing position, slowly sweeping the dock with their sights. The flashlights attached to the bottom of the rifles cut through the total darkness. Stopping and kneeling down, weapons still at the ready one of the soldiers called to high command.
    “Command, this is Shadow reporting in.” the soldier said within his helmet. The sound of this voice reverberated in the empty hallway causing an odd sounding distortion in the speaker of the other soldier next to him.
    “This is command. Go ahead Shadow.” A female voice said.
    “We have arrived at sector Hotel Bravo 1598. No contact so far. Request permission to move deeper into the target area.”
    “Request granted. Proceed to Whiskey Alpha 3302, then call in to receive further orders.”
    “Understood. Shadow out.” Both soldiers stood up.
    They moved forward weapons steadily scanning the halls in case of any movement. According to the reports the station sent out a distress signal. When the closest vessel went to investigate and perform rescue if necessary, they found that the station was completely empty.
    When the Imperial army heard of the report and sent in two of their top soldiers, Jancic Lokk and Wesp Grasth, for reasons only known to the top commanders in the army. Only told to search the facility and expect anything, the soldiers were shipped out under total secrecy. They were smuggled on a freighter along with a specially designed pod that was to take them to the science lab. When the freighter came nearest to the facility the soldiers got in the pod and left the freighter in order to land on the station.
    The two soldiers came to an air lock door which had an old computer keyboard to type in the password to open the door from the outside. Jancic looked to Wesp and nodded to him. Wesp went to the keyboard and started typing on the keyboard while Jancic kept his weapon trained on the door.
    Thirty seconds later Wesp turned around and gave the thumbs up sign to Jancic. Pressing the Enter button the doors rolled open. Both walked in rifles ready, fingers on the triggers. The flashlights cutting in the pitch blackness of the station.
    “I wonder if they have lights here.” Wesp said into his mic making sure that the frequency was only so Jancic could hear him as to not overload the communication system at the command center.
    “I couldn’t tell you.” Jancic replied.
    They both moved forward. Since they were in the air locked facility and not a loading dock they did not have to use the electronic magnets on the bottom of their boots. Moving through the facility they realized that the room they were in was the main storage deck.
    “Hey. We should find a room to get situated in and so I can get into the security systems to see what is going on around here.” Wesp said.
    “All right, that would be quite helpful… how about that door there?” Jancic replied.
    “Works for me.”
    They walked in a room which was about the size of an average classroom. Several old computers sat on the desk. Turning one on, Wesp determined that this room was used to keep an inventory of all the equipment and supplies on the station.
    “Ok… this will only take a few minutes. Is there a light switch?” Wesp asked Jancic.
    “Ummm… hold on… yeah… here is one.” Jancic said while flipping the switch. Both soldiers squinted as the room was bathed in light.
    “Well… that works.” Wesp said while trying to blink out the spots in his vision.
    Removing his gloves Wesp started typing on the computer. Jancic turned on his mic and called to high command.
    “This is command. Go ahead Shadow.” The female voice said to Jancic.
    “We have set up a temporary command post in the facility.” Jancic turned to Wesp. Wesp looked up and nodded. “We have now established a link with the security cameras to give us a better picture of what is happening here. Still no contact.”
    “Understood. Continue on present course. Command out.”
    Jancic clicked off his mic. “Any movement yet?” he asked Wesp.
    “Nothing yet. These cameras are motion sensitive so if something moves the camera will turn on and send a live feed to this terminal.” Wesp replied. “I am going to link up our helmets with these cameras, so if one turns on we will know about it. Plus it will give us a bigger picture when the ones that turns on when we walk by.”
    “Ok. Sounds good to me” Jancic said.
    “That’s done. Let’s get moving. I really don’t like the feel of this place. I feel like something is here, and we don’t want to meet up with it.” Wesp said while putting his gloves back on.
    The walked out the door and shut it behind them. The soft glow of the computer screen radiating underneath the door crack. Turning on the flashlights they scanned the room a little more thoroughly.
    After exploring the room they moved on to the main laboratory. Walking as quietly they could they listened for anything that hinted at anyone still on the station. A few flickering lights were running along several machines. Wesp kneeled down to inspect some of the still running machines.
    “Do you see anything?” Jancic asked Wesp.
    “No, but there are several machines still running.” Wesp replied.
    “Ok, I’ll double check the area...” Jancic trailed off while turning around. He stopped dead in his tracks when he saw what was illuminated in front of him. A human body – or what was left of it, was strung up to the ceiling. Glancing up, Jancic saw about 10 more bodies that were strung up the same way.
    Immediately he raised his weapon and started glancing around to see if there was any trace of the killer or killers.
    “Crypt?” Jancic called out.
    “yeah?” Wesp replied.
    “You might want to come see this… like now”
    “Hold on, hold on… I’m coming.”
    Wesp walked over, weapon at the ready. He glanced up and almost jumped backwards.
    “What the… what? What happened?” Wesp sputtered.
    “Heh, you expect me to know?” Jencic said.
    “We better call the higher ups”
    “You got it.”
    While Wesp kneeled down, his weapon ready to tear holes into anything that moved, Jencic got on the mic with high command.
    “Command. This is Shadow. Come in command. Please respond.”
    “It is useless. There must be a special alloy cutting off our coms. We would have to go back to the computer room to get them back on the speackers.” Wesp told Jencic.
    After cutting down the bodies from the ceiling, the two soldiers took a closer look at the corpses. Each person they cut down had all similar traits. They had been severely burned and then had their limbs dismembered by what looked like a toothed saw. But the stumps had been sealed shut to keep the victims from bleeding out, keeping them alive longer. Each corpse had their eyes removed by gouging.
    “This looks like torture through and though. And who ever did it knew what they were doing.” Jencic said after inspecting the corpses.
    “Yeah… and I really don’t want to be around when the killers come back to inspect their work.” Wesp replied.
    “I hear you on that one. I think we need to take one of the corpses to command so they can inspect it more thoroughly.” Jencic stated.
    Shouldering one of the corpses they headed back to the loading dock. After getting in the pod they set the corpse down on the floor and quickly punched in the course to the planet Ograth – which is where high command was located. Taking off, the two soldiers took on last look at the dark station, silently rotating in space.