Margaret is on her way to work, walking instead of flying today so she can drink her coffee without spilling it, when she sees the cryptid. She's a truly far-out one, no limbs to speak of, just a long snaky body with a mirror for a face. Margaret smiles at her and goes to walk on by, but the cryptid slithers right at her all of a sudden and--hits?--Margaret with the giant mirror. Except she doesn't experience getting whacked with a sheet of glass.
"Thank you. You've done a lot."
"It worked out a lot better than I was afraid it would."
"We got lucky, in many ways. But a lot of us have been planning on our own - we just never got an opening."
"Yeah, that's what I was betting on. If I hadn't gotten lucky someone else probably would have."
"Might not have been in time, or while we were out of hyperspace, though."
"Yeah. Well, no need to worry about it now."
Alet nods, silent, and the shuttle begins to approach for docking at the Trouble.
Margaret watches the docking with interest; the interstellar future is still cool even if it happens to be accompanied by a surplus of shenanigans. Presumably someone on the Trouble will tell them where to go from here.
Someone does, and they're escorted to a conference room with Captain X. It's understated, but not uncomfortable, and the table is small-ish and round.
She takes a seat and fiddles with one of her several bracelets. "Hello. Do you want to ask questions, or do you just want the whole weird story from the beginning?"
"From the beginning, please."
"So, I think I'm from a parallel universe, where it's the twenty-first century and magic exists . . . " She gives an overview of magical girls and swarms, with illustrative minor shapeshifting, and explains about the mirror snake and subsequent events. "And then we all took out the guards, and tried to get the ship moving again, and that's when you arrived," she concludes. "I know it sounds rather implausible."
"I've heard odder, but not much. Still, I also haven't heard of genetic engineering that can do - well, this."
"I doubt it could be done with genetic engineering alone--for one thing, I violate conservation of energy."
"That does sound like it'd be a thorny problem."
Nod. "So, I've pretty much given up on ever getting home, or at least on being able to do make progress on it from this end. So I'm looking for somewhere I can, you know, be part of society and do good in the world and stuff."
"Well, the Audubon Ballroom is always recruiting, or we can try to get you set up somewhere with good anti-slavery laws."
"Are you recruiting for jobs that don't involve much violence? Because today was my first time being in a fight between humans and. I don't want. More of that."
Today was not the first time she's heard someone break a bone. It was the first time she heard it and thought good, one more down.
"Yes. We actually have a lot of need for intelligence agents, for lobbyists, for medical personnel and social workers, and for administrative positions. Not as exciting as being an anti-slavery pirate, but."
"Less exciting sounds nice. I was a data analyst back home, I could probably learn to do the analysis side of intelligence work if not the part that requires passing for human."
"That'd be helpful, yeah, though it might take a bit of finagling - this cell mostly does the exciting space piracy part, but we can get you background checked and transferred."
"Thanks! I don't mind waiting until it's convenient. I guess the first priority is finding somewhere to send the other ship."
"Yes. And getting everyone sorted, integrated where they want to be with whatever supplies they need - and this is a bigger ship than we usually hit."
"Yeah. I can run errands if you're short-handed and think I wouldn't just be in the way. Hopefully the ship has some supplies we can use; I'm not sure how long a trip it was prepped for."
"We weren't short handed, but we likely will be with both ships to look after."
"And most ships prep for longer trips than they're taking, since hyper-travel's a bit unpredictable. Still, figuring that out's going to be one of our bigger preparation tasks."