<< BACK TO RELAY ONE LOG I awoke to a buzzing, not an alarm, but a tone inside my head. The Protectorate had completed several upgrades to the ship, and as we studied their history and science and they were studying ours. I guess centuries of advancement hadn't sped their analytical powers as much as I expected. Perhaps there's a hard wall as to how fast the universe can experience itself. I hadn't had any major side effects to the tests we've been running on one another, except for this tinnitus. Biological integrity, hormone generation and modifications, pheromonic communication, a list of discoveries had soon filled our datastores - which had also been adapted by the Protectorate - the efficiency of all our technologies had increased to magical proportions. Even Super Hex didn't comprehend exactly how these changes worked, but none of our interfaces had changed so we kept doing that we've always done. Their DNA was 92% similar to ours, after accounting for the fact that they had Silicon in the positions where Phosphorus usually resides. Mr Swarms lab now contained several homunculus-like chimeras, created with the help of the Protectorate and Commander Cranium, each floating in their own little jars like horribly deformed tadpoles. I have no idea how they were created, but I can't imagine it was anything I wanted to know. The Refeshlicator still worked as expected, producing my usual tepid coffee infused with the taste of sugar and cream and an elephant ear pastry. There was no natural dairy in either of them, but they tasted as fresh and organic as the finest artisanal bakeries back home. It's been 2 years since I had last set foot on Earth, and now I had started to lose hope of seeing it again; or what's left of it by now. Last I heard The Revengerists had prevented the total annihilation of Freedonia at the hands of Dr Evilus, but at great cost to New Luxembourg. Not that the rest of the planet wasn't a total catastrophe, but at least the Artic colonies had stopped battling over their borders. The Nalmykians had taken us deeper into formerly uncharted space, by our calculations we were nearly 40 lightyears away from home; and no closer to finding our way back. At least our ship had a new opalescent paint job, even if the Protectorate didn't like to be referred to as paint. The golden filigree was a nice touch, like a more organic rococo, complete with black orbs; I couldn't help but feel like hundreds of horses eyes were watching me through these peepholes throughout the Revenant.