“What should we do? Who do we even contact about this to not spread panic?” Chloe said.
“Let’s take a few minutes to think about it,” James finally snapped out of the initial shock, not only we were not alone in the universe but the aliens somehow understood and spoke our language.
The crew of the ISS kept on discussing their next step for what felt like an eternity and when they couldn’t decide who to contact the military, their own governments, UN, go open to the public they voted and concluded that the best way was to contact their base of the operation on Earth.
Katie Garcia was their superior on Earth and they all gave their weekly reports and took their tasks, she coordinated it all with everyone down on Earth and made their life much easier.
“ISS, you have been calling me, we have no scheduled meetings for the rest of the day, what do you need?” Katie finally answered their call after several minutes of silence on their side.
“Katie,” James was the one who would break the news to her. “We have a unique situation.”
“Go on, James, what is happening, is everything ok?” She said in her calm and collected voice as always.
“You might want to brace yourself for this one,” James said and took a short pause. “We made the first contact almost half an hour ago.”
“First contact with what? What are you talking about James?” She continued in the same tone, the words still meaning nothing to her.
“Katie, I am going to be straight and blunt,” James took a deep breath. “The alien warship appeared out of nowhere and they made contact with us. They are requesting permission to board our space station.
Nothing came back, silence.
“Katie, are you there?”
“James, is this some prank you guys are pulling?” Katie asked her voice slightly shifting.
“Katie switch to video call,” James said and pointed his device’s camera outside of the huge window and the alien ship now stood clearly visible in the vast space.
Katie’s face must have changed hundreds of colors before settling on the pale white side. She stood there silenced and James knew not to speak, he just went thru the same thing, let her process this before we continue.
“Jesus Christ, is this real?” She said her voice cracking.
“It’s really Katie, we have no idea what to do, that’s why we contacted you first, you are our superior after all.
“Smart choice and they want to dock the ISS, what for?”
“They say their ship is badly damaged and they need to dock. They also said something along the lines that they need to turn their ship off or ”they“ will find them and we are all screwed.” James continued.
“Got it, let me get this to the top, this is way above me,” She said and stood up from her desk not disconnecting her call.
The crew kept discussing and theorizing what the aliens would look like, what they wanted, how they could speak clear English, and so on before James’s tablet rang again. Katie appeared on the screen.
“Crew of the ISS, I am about to connect you to the conference call with most of the world leaders, military advisors, and our International board,” She said. “I brought it only to our people, but they quickly decided they would spread it to the rest of them, this was apparently in the handbook if the first contact ever happened the presidents and the military top were to be contacted immediately.” Connecting with you now.
The screen expanded and flashed with what seemed hundreds of individual faces all with their unique look of worry breaking thru. One screen expanded over the other and the familiar face appeared, it was the Director General of the Europen Space Agency, Dr. Thomas Martinez.
“Ladies and gentlemen, congratulations on the first contact,” He said trying to keep his composure. “Can you contact the alien battleship now so we can all talk to them directly?”
“We can try,” James said and took his radio out. “Allien battleship can you hear us, this is the ISS station, come in.”
Everyone held their breath, but nothing sound came back.
“Anoi battleship, can you hear us?” James repeated and the static crackled over the radio again.
“Humans, we can hear you. Have you decided to let us dock, time is running out?” James pointed the radio towards the tablet so the voice could be heard on their call as well.
“Nothing has been decided yet, you are now speaking with the leaders of different Earth countries and organizations,” James said.
“Human leadership, this is Anoi battleship speaking, we were badly damaged in the battle and our navigation system malfunctioned while in hyperspace so it dropped us here. We need to dock your ISS and turn off our ship completely until we fix it, do we have permission.”
For a brief moment, everyone on the call was too stunned to speak, before another screen expanded to full and the Secretary General of the UN appeared.
“How can you speak and understand English,” He asked.
“Our technology is way more advanced than yours, universal translators are a norm and your English and several more languages have been uploaded some 50 years ago, we’ve known about your exitance for a long time, but with war raging on several parts of our and other galaxies there was no time for first contact.”
“How can our radars and satellites not see you, but they can up there on the ISS,” Secretary General continued.
“Once again, our technology allows us to hide from you, they can see us because we allowed them to, we could have probably landed on Earth without you being able to spot us with a fully functional ship.” The alien voice said. “There will be time for us to answer all your questions, but we really need to dock right now.”
“How can we trust you?”
“You can’t,” The voice echoes thru the room and sends shivers down James’s spine. “But you will have to. If we wanted to we could have forced our way onto the station and maybe we will have to if you keep prolonging your decision, but it’s not our way.”
The silence again.
“We will get back to you in some time,” The Secretary-General said.
“You have five minutes to decide, we are running out of time.”
The conference call went into pure chaos and the ISS crew just stood there listening. Some idiot suggested nuking the alien ship and the other suggestions ranged from welcoming them with the open arms to sending them back to wherever they came from.
Five minutes passed and the decision wasn’t any closer. Aliens made contact once again.
“What have you decided, Humans.” The voice said, cold and emotionless.
“They have made no decision yet,” James said.
“You need to let us dock now,” Anoi alien said.
None of the crew of the ISS paid attention to the window and the ship. As they turned their jaws dropped, the ship was almost at the station and it was huge. ISS at the time was around 350m long and the ship easily doubled that in length.
James tried talking to the call, but they kept arguing, and no one paid attention to them. With so many egos on one call and no clear chain of command, the decision would never be made. James contacted Katie alone with another call.
“What should we do, they will never make a decision,” James said. “Their ship is close to the station right now and I am afraid for our crew’s well-being if they decided on no.”
“It’s your decision, James, consult Chloe and Meng as the three longest-tenured and most experienced astronauts on the station.”
James took Chloe and Meng to the side as the Crew was in the awe of the ship.
“I think we should allow them to dock, they will never make any decision in time down there on earth. And my gut is telling me it’s the right thing to do.” James said to two of them.
“I agree,” Meng said.
“Me too,” Chloe added.
“Anoi battleship, you are clear to land,” James said over the radio as the voices kept shouting on the conference call.
“Finally, we are coming in Humans,” The voice said and the cracking stopped.