Subsection: 15 August 2101 Up Section: Earth Subsection: 1 November 2101 

28 September 2101

On arrival we have a VR conference for all of Vesta and the station. EDI and Nanodynamics staff will be returning to Earth in a few weeks; for now, the area is returned to EU law specifically with reference to SAI right.
There are plenty of local projects that are not ethically dubious, and effort’s being shifted towards them – as well as pay increases for all workers. But first there will be a lot of business with auditors and lawyers.
Grigory Volkov turns out to be the original human mind used into the UAI. His hardware situation is… complex, though Exogenesis has been working on it. His current hardware is an optical emulation of his original neurostructure; he’d like to switch to a biocomputer. It seems that he was one of the hive lifestyle pioneers…
There are Exogenesis cybershells active on Triton. They will have to be informed of the situation. And they will be building larger shells from indigenous materials. Before we send recall orders, we see what’s being transmitted from there… there are occasional status packets, so we reply, with several hours of lag. They are dubious about our claims, but at least willing to keep talking.
There are also concerns about retrieving Nanodynamics employees from Io; the ship that was capable of traversing the plasma torus has been assigned elsewhere. We consider the possibility of adapting an asteroid into a high-impulse rescue craft: the engines used to put Vestal Station into position seem like a good start. We will need fuel, but Nanodynamics regard this as a cheaper option than bringing back the specialised ship.
Young and I settle on a suitable candidate asteroid, with a solid structure and even some previous drilling for engine mounts. The rock will become friable under radiation bombardment, but this should not be a worry over the lifespan of the vehicle.
Young will take command of Edmond Halley, with Patel to marshal the rescuees and Stewart in case of difficulties.
 Subsection: 15 August 2101 Up Section: Earth Subsection: 1 November 2101