Finding Ones True Self Part 10
A Galaxy Far, Far, Away...
After a while, they cleaned up before coming out of the room to rejoin the others. As Daniel went to the map they had on a screen. Sandra turned to Maria and quietly asked, "Is he alright?" "Yes and no, but he's going to explain the 'No' part." Maria finished. As Daniel began working the screen to show the whole galaxy. Once he got it setup for the others he had them sit down.
"Before I begin, I need to apologize to you all. I've been having it rough ever since I found out some information, and I've been taking it out on you guys. Which wasn't fair, and I'm sorry." He said sincerely. They accepted his apology readily, as they just wanted him to be ok. He turned to the screen "As you're aware this is the Milky Way Galaxy. It's where we live, and for the most part hugely unexplored." They nodded in understanding. "Having shared my dreams, I guess you could call them, involving Julyna and the Derlenian race." "Wait you've come up with a name for them?" Mathew asked. "No I didn't, it's a name that I've been able to roughly translate with having to learn their language as best as I could. Anyway what I wanted to show you is why I or us if you prefer, will never meet Julyna or her people." Daniel turned to the screen and began zooming it out more and more into a number of large galaxies appeared on the screen. "As you can see this is our ten nearest neighbors in our universe." They sat there watching and listening intently. "Now let's focus in on the local group." He said as he began to zoom in. Focusing on the Milky Way, Andromeda, and Triangulum galaxies. He continued to zoom into Triangulum or more commonly known as M33. He then highlighted a smaller section of that galaxy. "Wait!" Sandra said excitedly. "You're telling me that she, or they are in another galaxy?" "Yes, this particular area is know as the Tarkeesian belt." Daniel finished as he waited to see their reaction. They sat there stunned, unsure what to say. After a moment Sandra spoke again. "I'm sorry, but I can't go that far. I know we've surveyed a few planets along the way in case Alpha Centauri was a no go, but I can't... It's just to much to take in." "Dan you do realize that is about three million light years away." Mathew said more as a statement than a question. To which he nodded back to. "Can you say for sure we would make it?" Sandra asked. "No. This ship isn't designed to travel between galaxies. At every planet we stopped at I used the solar panels to top off the power levels, as well as grab resources that the duplicator can turn back into energy." His mood was a somber one. "I only made this ship to travel to Alpha Centauri and then be converted to a housing unit for us. I never planned on having these whatever you call them, of another race of people." Everyone looked at him until Sandra spoke in a concerned tone "Then why mention this?" "Because I wanted you to understand why I've been depressed lately. I've not seen or heard from her since she join the Alliance and went to their academy." "You're still having these dreams?" Maria asked. "Yes every few days where I leave her letters to read." Daniel finished.
Sandra got up and took Daniel by the hand, "Come with me." As she took him to the medical room. She had him sit in a chair as she placed the deep scanning unit on him again and began to run tests. "What are you doing?" He asked. "I'm checking on a growth that we discovered in your cranium cavity." "Wait, what? When did this happen?" He sounded scared having not been told this. "Don't move. And don't worry it's not cancerous." "How can you be sure? God I'm so stupid to think my dreams were real." He said in a scared and angry tone. "Oh stop it! The growth in your skull is under the two hemispheres of your brain, it's called a paracortex. In parapsychology it refers to a undeveloped part of the human brain, where doctors on earth believed it was a lymph node. In theory parapsychologist believe it's what can make humans telepathic." As Daniel listened to Sandra he wondered how something like that could even happen him. Was it because of Julyna?
Mathew turned to Maria while at the table and spoke softly. "You've been awfully quiet. What's your take on all of this?" She didn't speak right away. "We just made love together, and while it helped him finally let go of his past pain. A part of me is jealous of this Julyna, and I know I shouldn't be." Mathew moved closer to her and drew her into a hug. "I just want him to be happy and be able to truly smile again no matter where he is." She finished as she leaned on him. He hugged her tightly, "We all want him to be happy, but the fact is, this trip is a huge risk. It's just the four of us starting a new colony on an unexplored world we haven't even reached yet. And here he is getting dreams or visions of another race somewhere in our universe, that even I can see he wants to be with. I'm assuming home life wasn't any good if he's running this far away from it." He said sympathetically.
"Our home life was hell. I practically raised him because our parents cared more for their religion than us. They also abused him more than me, which I've always felt awful about. One day he saw our father beating our mother badly to wear she was bleeding. Danny was only eight at the time, but he snapped and got in the way yelling and hitting him to stop and to leave her alone. By the time I got there to stop him I saw our mother turn him around and backhand him hard across the face and then yell 'GET AWAY FROM HIM YOU LITTLE SHIT!' I ran in an grabbed him and took him upstairs while they continued. The confusion in his face was so obvious, but he didn't cry, which worried me. I tried to bring him out of it, but I couldn't so I hugged him as I cried for us. He asked me not to cry, that he would be strong enough to carry our pain." She spoke softly to Mathew before speaking a bit louder with anger. "He was only eight and already wanting to bear pain he shouldn't have too." Mathew hugged her tightly again as she continued. "The day before was the last day I had seen him honestly smile. He barely spoke and only focused on getting the best grades he could. On graduation day, the school had let us use a few old robs they had laying around. Our parents didn't come because it interfered with their church time. We had worked so hard that Harvard welcomed us both with full scholarships for whatever majors we wanted to take. In the week we took to get ready for the trip by bus, our parents found out and demanded that we go to a religious college. As the bus pulled up, our father began waving a religious book in Danny's face. Danny took it and threw it into the lit fireplace and then turned to our father, and spoke for the first time in years said "Fuck your religion!" Then turned and walked out, I followed as fast as I could. Before we made it to the bus our mother came out a publicly disowned us. We ignored her and got on the bus and left never to return." Maria finished. She sat there leaning on Mathew trying to clear her head of the nasty memory. Mathew didn't know what to say, he only comforted her as best as he could. After a while she turned to Mathew and said, "I don't even know why I told you that story." "Sounds like you've needed to tell it for sometime." He replied. "I'm sorry to burden you with our past." "Not at all, I wanted to help in someway I just wasn't sure how. If being a sympathetic ear helps you feel better, I'm here for you." She hugged him tightly and cuddled against him to relax.
A few weeks passed as things began to return to normal for everyone. They had managed to survey another planet, and the only thing different about it from the others was the ruins they discovered. They catalogued everything and took some samples with them. There wasn't much in the way of writing or pictograms for them to study, just trinkets and such, and some dirt samples that Sandra wanted to try and grow plants in and see how they turned out. Then suddenly an alarm sounded...
Daniel explains his depression to everyone, as they express concern over the distance of where his visions are coming from.