The Sapphire House – Part 2 Aboard The Bedouin By: Marileta Hunsford


The Sapphire House
Part Two - Aboard The Bedouin
By: Marileta Hunsford

“Very true,” the captain conceded. “And that brings us to the meat of the matter—why we kidnapped you.”

Katherine waited for Captain Otama to continue, but instead, he asked, “How long’d it take you to come up with your little computer system, Katie?”

She stiffened and said, “My name is Katherine.”

Otama looked over her shoulder at Caleb in surprise. “That’s what I said.”

“You said ’Katie’,” Katherine argued.

The captain waved his hand dismissively, “Ahh, same thing.”

“’Katie’ is a name for a waitress,” Katherine declared with indignation.

He snorted, “I have known a couple of waitresses that were named Katie. Guess you strike me as a little less formal minded.”

“You were about to say why you kidnapped me, Captain,” she urged.

“That I was. The thing is, Katie,” Katherine opened her mouth to correct him again, but he went on, “We’re looking for a particular planet and we need you to find its name and coordinates.”

It was Katherine’s turn to snort and she did so loudly, “You want the name and coordinates of a planet?”

“Yes, ma’am.”

She looked around at Caleb again to see if this was a joke, but he returned her gaze blandly. Katherine faced the Captain and said, “Why haven’t you just looked in the Union registry. It’s freely available to the public and you can access it from any computer with Web connection.”

“’Fraid it’s not that simple, Katie,” the captain sighed, “See, this planet seems to have been scrubbed from the registry. It ain’t listed in any database that’s public access. So, my thinkin’ is that it’s being protected or hidden for some reason.”

“And you don’t know it’s name?”

“Well, the name that doesn’t appear in the registry is Hebron,” he replied leaning back in his chair, “That’s what people been calling it in the discussions I been having.”

Katherine frowned and searched her memory, but she could not remember any planet with that name coming up during the data migration from the old Union system to the Sapphire Grid. Still, she must have reviewed thousands of planets, stars, and moons. It was possible she had seen that particular name and had forgotten it. She looked at the captain again.

“Do you know anything else about it? Type of climate? Grade of planet? What it’s being used for?”

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