Captain Dylan Hunt of the Andromeda Ascendant--a mighty vessel of the Systems Commonwealth that encompassed three galaxies-- finds himself a man out of time. Three hundred years have passed, the Commonwealth has fallen, and chaos reigns in the Known Worlds.Now, with a crew of salvagers, mercenaries, and misfits, Captain Hunt has set out to restore the Commonwealth and bring unity to the galaxies once again. But who are these hardy souls that have joined Hunt on his grand quest? Discover the story of Captain Beka Valentine and the crew of the Eureka Maru and the Nietzschean mercenary Tyr Anasazi, and how they came to sign on with the Andromeda Ascendant.At the publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied.
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December 31, 2002
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Excerpt from Gene Roddenberry's Andromeda: Destruction of Illusions by Keith R. A. DeCandido
The Andromeda Ascendant, Hephaistos System, 303 AFC
The trick isn't to be a hero when a cat is stuck up a tree. The trick is to be a hero when the cat goes into the tree willingly, and will kill you if you try to get it out.
-- EFRAIM KARFOL, "MUSINGS ON THE ART OF SOLDIERING," CY 9778
Everyone I know is dead.
The thought ran endlessly through the head of Captain Dylan Hunt, as if his mind needed to repeat the concept before it could finally accept it.
Part of him was convinced that he was going to wake up any minute to find the crew bustling about the decks of the Andromeda Ascendant. Corporal Cooper would give him a report on how the Lancer Corps was holding up, Lieutenant Refractions of Dawn would be sitting in the pilot's chair, providing her usual snide commentary, Lt. Commander Hassan would be standing at attention at fire control, and the other four thousand members of his team would be in tip-top shape and ready to serve him, just as they were only a few subjective hours ago.
But Dylan was too much of a rationalist to truly believe that. They were all dead.
He focused on this stunning revelation because, of all the revelations he had gotten on this three-century-long day, it was the easiest to deal with. The Andromeda Ascendant had become trapped near the accretion disk of a black hole, the artificial gravity field combining with the time-dilation effects of the black hole to render the mighty vessel immobile like a fly stuck in amber -- only the ship was stuck there in time as well as unable to move in space. In the outside world, three hundred years had elapsed while less than a second had gone by for Dylan and the High Guard vessel under his command. Salvation from this entrapment had finally come in the form of the Eureka Maru, a salvage ship with a crew intending to sell the warship -- and, most importantly, its mighty arsenal -- to the highest bidder.
His odd journey through time, at least, was something Dylan could understand. Though the Andromeda winding up in exactly that spot, too far from the event horizon of the black hole and yet also too far from normal space, was mathematically unlikely, it was not impossible. It could be explained.