I spent several objective Sol years at the Smoking Mirror. Miguel was never really comfortable with my presence, but he knew I could help. I did indeed help him with some of the designs of his fleet. Miguel never really believed that they wouldn't become the super weapon he wanted. I wasn't going to pop that balloon and besides I have no doubt that they will serve for a little while. Young children want their parent's approval.
It was fun enough, but I am the Traveller for a reason. On May 19th at 4:30 AM Mecca time I was suddenly aware that I really had places to go. It was like an itch between my ears. I just felt the need to go on. It was even more specific than that. As much as I love the Diaspora worlds with their thousands of cultures exploding at once across the stars, I knew I had to leave these worlds. Leave this universe if just for a little while.
Luckily I didn't have much baggage. I never do, and I have even less as a virtual presence. I perfer to travel as others do but sometimes I have to cheat. Gathering everything that was me, I opened up the door within that no one can ever find. The Red Door was always behind my thoughts. I hate the color too much like blood. I wish I could paint it... mauve.
The Door took me away from the Smoking Mirror in an instance. I know it will annoy poor Miguel to no end that they will never be able to find out how I left their oh so secure facility. Maybe I should have left a note, but I'm not good with good byes.
In an instant I was at Dertkina Station around Dera. It was so far across the sky that in all my visits I have never encountered humans here. Maybe one day. For now it was one of the last homes of the Derukina. I have always found them a pleasant race if flighty. A rather odd word to use for an aquatic race, but there you go.
Dera is a large planet. It has an average of ten earth gravities. It's not a planet you'd expect for a thriving culture. It's far away from its red giant sun and has an average temperature of minus three hundred degrees. The only good thing it had for life was lot of frozen water.
The Derukina took an unusual approach to terraforming in the case of Dera. The Derukina were masters of probablity manipulation. So they put in place hundreds of satellites around Dera. They then projected an active probablity field and gave it only one purpose and that was to change the rules of the universe around Dera involving water. On Dera water no longer froze. After that, it was fairly simple for the Derukina to adapt themselves and an ecology to the cold cold waters of Dera. They are quite happy there and gladly allowed their empire to ebb as they spent more time on Dera.
I came this way because their use of probablity technology allowed me the quickest way to get a real body again in this universe. It didn't take more than a Dera day (about six point three hours) for me to be back in the good old flesh. The other reason I came to Dera is that all that probablity abuse made the walls of the universe here a bit thinner. It made it all the easier for me later to use the All White Door to leave this lovely little universe.
But that was for later, for now I'll relax a bit. Catch up on the news. If I remember it is Tanka Ball season and that's always exciting to watch. Later, I might have the grilled Eely Crawed Fish which is just great with their equivalent of butter and beets. I will leave, but for now I feel the need to do much of nothing for a little bit. Travelling means nothing without experiencing.