120 Captain on the Bridge
After looking over the data on her interface one last time, Zoey pressed the button to bring the ship to life.
For a moment, nothing happened, then the luminescent glow from the reservoir grew stronger for a brief moment. Following that, hundreds of arrays lit up on the surface of the pyramid with a green glow, lighting up the room. The complex geometric shapes and lines gave the pyramid an alien look when the green light of the energy flowed through them.
Zoey was closely watching her interface in case something went wrong during the energy conversion process, but everything went smoothly. Through the entire procedure, only 2% of the energy was lost in the conversion process. This meant the arrays she had placed had an efficiency rating of 98%, and Zoey could already see where she could improve the process.
Happy with what she saw, Zoey moved on to the next step which was distributing the power to the rest of the ship. On her interface she pulled up a holographic representation of the cruiser that had all of the power conduits she had placed highlighted. Then she opened the system, allowing the power to flow from the reservoir out through the conduits. As her interface showed her the power flowing, the exposed conduits throughout the ship also lit up with pulsing green lights, signaling that power was now flowing through the ship.
There were no faults found in the conduits, so Zoey continued on. Currently, one of the few systems she had hooked up were the lights, so she wanted to test them next. The lights she had installed were actually made from a luminescent crystal that mimicked sunlight. Zoey's hope was that it would give the cruiser's interior some warmth.
She wasted no time, and flipped the switch to allow power to flow to the lights. Soon, the room she was in was lit by the pleasant glow radiating from the fixtured she had placed during construction, followed shortly by the other areas of the cruiser. Zoey made one last check on the fluid reservoir before leaving the room to walk around the ship, not realizing she had a grin on her face from ear to ear.
She was like a child with a new toy, practically skipping down the main hallway as she checked so see if everything was operational. Of course her interface could tell her the same, but she wanted to see it with her own eyes.
Each of the three hallways on the middle deck had multiple rooms on either side, all of which were currently empty and unused save for the room directly to stern that contained the newly functioning power reservoir of the ship. Zoey checked all of them to make sure the lights worked and nothing was going awry now that the power was on.
There was quite a bit of empty space on the hundred meter long cruiser, but eventually she happily made her way through all the rooms on the middle deck before arriving back at the hub where all the hallways met.
Next, she powered up the grav-shafts to the lower deck and tested them. They were outfitted with some rather robust array coding that could individually target anything that entered into the shaft and gently lower or raise the target to the specified deck. They were additionally outfitted with a gate that blocked entry if the shaft was occupied already.
The first time Zoey stepped into the grav-shaft, she was slightly disorientated by the sudden feeling of weightlessness as the Gravity Rune array lowered her to the lower deck below. But once she took the ride back up in the other grav-shaft, she was already adjusted and used to the feeling. She adjusted the arrays a little to make the trip less jarring, then did the same for the second set of grav-shafts to the top deck.
Speaking of the top deck, this area was different from the other two decks below. The grav-shafts that led here opened into a similar hub to the one on the middle deck. From this hub, there were two hallways that went to the port and starboard wings, and one more that went forwards towards the ship's bow. The difference here was that there were no rooms that split off from the hallways aside from the ones at the end.
Zoey had modified the original ship design so that at the end of these hallways were armored gunnery platforms similar to a bunker that could be opened to the outside if needed. At the moment, there were no weapons for those platforms, but Zoey had some plans for that!
Aside from the access hallways to the three gunery platforms, there was also access to the bridge. On either side of the hallway leading to the forwards gunery platform were two additional grav-shafts that led up to the bridge that was located just above.
These grav-shafts were different than the others in that they didn't just have a gate, they also had an airlock that could seal off the grav-shaft, and of course there was a very good reason for this.
You see, Zoey had made some rather extreme modifications to the original ship design, and the bridge had not been spared. Not only was it the hub from which the entire cruiser was controlled, the bridge could completely separate from the main cruiser, and was fully flight capable on its own!
That's right, the bridge was actually a smaller ship that was built in to the larger cruiser's structure. When necessary, the bridge could separate and both vessels could fly independently, although both were still controlled from the bridge.
When separated, the bridge resembled a smaller version of the main cruiser, with the same arrowhead shape, a sleeker profile, and a 25 meter length from tip to tail. The considerably smaller vessel only had a 20 meter wingspan and was more agile than the aptly called mothership was, and could fit into smaller spaces if needed.
Zoey eagerly hopped into the grav-shaft to the bridge after she adjusted the arrays. She arrived on the bridge and took a quick look around to make sure everything was in order. The grav-shafts were near the back of the bridge, so the moment you stepped onto the deck, you could see the whole area.
At the moment, the bridge was dimly lit by floor lights, and was rather empty, with only a single command seat placed directly in the center of the bridge. The chair was fairly ordinary and had several adjustable monitors off to one side and a small control panel on the armrest. It also featured a retractable harness for safety in case it was needed.
Zoey calmed herself down as she approached the chair. She had been on ships like this back on Gaia, but this was her ship. She had designed and built it, so she was very attached to it, and the fact that she was about to sit in the Captain's chair had her rather excited.
After a moment, Zoey calmed down and finally sat on the chair.
It was rather comfortable.
Zoey figured it ought to be since she designed it for herself. She smiled, then used her interface to send out some commands.
Suddenly, light flooded the bridge. Zoey squinted from the sudden brightness and a hum could be heard around her. The humming was the sound of the armored shutters covering the windows retracting, allowing Zoey to look out from the bridge.
It was quite the sight! The bridge had a 270 degree view of the surroundings, and its elevated position allowed Zoey to look out across the upper surface of the ship and admire the view beyond as well. But Zoey could not remain idle for long as excited as she was.
After a moment of taking in the view, Zoey checked her interface to make sure the bridge's power supply was functioning. When the bridge separated from the cruiser, it had to be able to power itself, and Zoey had to make sure all of that was running properly. Thankfully, it was all functioning very well, giving Zoey some peace of mind.
After all that, Zoey was starting to wish for some fresh air. It just so happened that the bridge had a small airlock near the back by the port side grav-shaft that allowed access to the outside. Zoey cycled through the lock, and stepped out onto the top of the cruiser into the open air. She made her way around the raised, aerodynamic shape that formed the bridge while she inspected the plating for defects.
From the outside, the bridge windows looked exactly like the rest of the hull plating, giving no indications that the bridge was even there. This was all thanks to a clever adaptation of some chameleon material that Zoey had used in the fabrication process.
Zoey reached the front of the bridge and leaned back against the slanted window with a satisfied sigh. She was relieved that everything had gone well. It was a considerable weight off her shoulders now that the cruiser had power, and she would have more Aether Crystals soon.
Next time some fool noble tried to chase her down, she would have no qualms about crushing their Kreppelins into driftwood with her cruiser.
Only... there was one thing left to do, and that was to get the giant hunk of metal airborne!