The Verity shook like a baby’s rattle as it sliced diaginally through spacetime. Well, it wasn’t exactly diagonal. When you have many more than two dimensions, some of which are rolled up smaller than atoms and others popping into and out of relevancy, diagonal is not the technical term. But the process of bisecting all dimensions at once was difficult to name especially with the changing number of dimensions at play, so diagonal became a catch-all term for what Pilot X was doing.

“Prohibited” and “dangerous’ were other words used to apply to what he was doing. All space-time travel was governed by the Alendans and meant to be very direct. While threads of timelines were known to exist and the principle even exploited, it was not permissible or even a good idea to cut across them. Even worse was the idea of traveling diagonally across all of them.

Fixed points in spacetime made this very dangerous. If a diagonal trajectory was not plotted exactly right, the traveler would bounce off a fixed point like a rubber bullet off a steel wall, damaging space-time in the process.

Pilot X felt OK risking all this because of what the society had told him. The society of the Allendan Core refused travel through time. Because of this it gave them a unique perspective on events that happened up until the point you talked with them. They never knew the future with certainty but they had a much more thorough and complete knowledge of the past, because they lived through every moment of it without skipping around. They’r projections of the future from their perspective were fairly accurate as well.

So when the Core had asserted a secret Time War was raging and gave him a display generator with documentation and projections, he didn’t believe them but he took them seriously. As good as they were, the idea that his own people, the Allendans, along with the Progons and the Sensaurians could hide a raging war across time and space by manipulating the threads of time, was rather hard to swallow.

Well, it was hard to swallow until he took the spoonful of sugar that was the display generator they gave him filled with documentation, graphs and projections clearly laying out a time war that was in existence in the past and would be again. The Core had lived through it.

The generator they gave him also served as a guidance system for diagonal space-time trajectories. It was the only way to travel into the war zones without being stopped by the Allendans or destroyed by the Progons and Sensaurians.

Pilot X had placed a lot of trust in that generator. If it failed him and the Verity— well he’d hardly know as his essensce would be scattered across many millenia and alternate threads of time. In intriguing legacy but not one he really wanted to leave.

The rattling subsided into a shuddering adn the Verity reported she would be dropping into fixed flow space-time shortly. Pilot X relaxed a bit and prepared to get a first view of the first alleged war zone. The society suggested this one as the first to visit, since it was the least active point int he calmest of the zones. It would give him a chance to observe with minimal risk.

As The Verity dropped out of time travel, he saw why. Wreckage filled his view from a gargantuan battle. Only salvage operations moved through space. A planet was destroyed and littering itself into a belt of debris while another one hung spit in half coalescing into two versions of itself.

Proximity alrams came on but they were all from salvage operations alerting him of their prior claims. He was assumed to be salvage himself, thus making it safe for him to poke about.

He recognized Allendan ships of all ages and classes along with Progon warrior bodies and sensaurian hives.

“Did that world contain life?” Pilot X asked The Verity.

“That is the third planet in the system. Some pre-sentient on the third wiped out,”she replied. “Most water vaporized. Chance for recovery minimal.”

“What about the other worlds?”

“1st world non-life supporting. 2nd-world pre-sentient dying with runaway volcanic reactions leading to greenhouse ruin. Third world pre-sentient life destroyed with water vaporized. Fourth planet sentient life destroyed with atmosphere stripped. Fifth planet sentient colonization destroyed. Planet destroyed. Outer gas planets minimally affected.”

“What can we do?”

“Projections show second and fifth planets unsalvagable with current means. third and fourth planets minimally salvagable with water addition.”

“Then we do it. Let’s get some ice rocks from that outer cloud and seed those two and hope for the best. After that, we stop this war.”