It's the morning of your first lift-off, perhaps it's too early to call it morning, it's still pretty dark out. As is traditional, you've been camped out under the stars right next to the launch tower. But as you wakeup, you see something you've never seen before. The ancient Nomai space station in orbit of Giant's Deep lit up bright blue and then it exploded. Nobody was ever able to get inside it when it was intact, maybe now you can get into one of the pieces. If only you didn't need to get the codes from Hornfels at the observatory before you could lift off.
“I'm using my signalscope to pick up sounds from distant planets. It's set to the Outer Wilds Ventures frequency so I can pick up the travelers' music. Last night I heard Riebeck's banjo coming from Brittle Hollow. I hope that means they're safe. I can hear different planets, too! it depends on what time of day or night it is, since different planets are in the sky at different times. Signalscopes are cool.”
"They are, what you think Riebeck is doing in Brittle Hollow?"
"Knowing Riebeck, they're probably exploring places that seem safe. They're not one for taking risks. If it wasn't for their fascination with Nomai ruins they probably wouldn't have ever left Timber Hearth."
"I don't get why the nerdy types like a bunch of half-destroyed things, but..." he shrugs.
"If not for the tech we've reverse engineered your ship wouldn't be nearly as good."
"Which is all good and great, but it still sounds like so much work when you start from ruins."
"Some of the 'ruins' are pretty intact. Maybe remnants would be a better word."
Shrug. "Anything else interesting happening lately?"
"There's the Statue Gabbro brought back from Giant's Deep. Have you seen it yet?"
"No? What about it?"
"Well based on the fragments from other statues we know they have a lot of computing hardware in them but nobody knows what it uses all that for."
Shrug. "That sounds like the sort of thing Henry would want to figure out."
"What are you hoping to find out there?"
"Me? Just the pretty sights. I am mostly going because Henry wants to do archeology in the name of The Noble Pursuit of Science."
"You two always have been inseparable. I hope you enjoy yourself out there."
Shrug. "I am a simple person. I am sure it will be entertaining one way or another." Wink.
Moraine smiles. "I expect so."
Anyway. "Do you have any other interesting facts to offer? Or should we depart ways?"
"You're the one who did all the training... I expect you already know whatever I could tell you."
Heavy back pat. "Then, see you later."
Heli and Gabe reunite, and they make their way to their destination.
The observatory beckons. The Statue Gabbro brought back is positioned prominently in the entrance, directly on their path to Hornfels.
Oh, Heli pauses for a moment to give it a closer look. He has seen it, but failed to give it proper attention.
Gabe gives it a once over from a distance. Seeing the entire thing at once.
As Heli approaches, the statue's eyes open and glow purple. Heli is unable to move or even close their eyes as what appears to Heli to be strands of symbols that might be Nomai writing flow out of the statue.
Those stands aren't visible to Gabe but they might notice Heli going completely still.
And then Helix's memories of the past 12 minutes playback on rapid rewind. All told the process takes maybe thirty seconds before the statue's eyes stop glowing and Heli is able to move again.