The court room was in chaos. Dozens of leaders from all over the world, and some that were not, were all raising their voices over each other. Celestia sat, the only one except her sister to be silent. Discord was arguing with a human, a gryphon, and a Starglom. Strange creatures, those Starglom's, made of pure fire, born from the collisions of stars. They had shown themselves to be ready allies though, especially in the face of the newest threat. The cause of this mass assembly, was a new race, the Telipren. Far beyond the reaches of any space dwelling peoples they came, bringing destruction wherever they went. It was under this threat that many different species now allied together. Ponies, dragons, gryphon's, other equines, humans, Starglom's, Nebulastii (another odd but strong race), along with a handful of others, who were less strong, but more numerous. The bickering and arguing finally made Celestia sigh. She offered to host the meeting, so she decided as the hostess, she should redirect the conversation. With a little pushing and shoving, if need be. "ENOUGH!" Her royal canterlot voice shook the tables, and startled more than a few of the visitors. With order somewhat retained, Celestia continued in her normal voice. "I was not aware I would be having to chaperone a bunch of school children, I was dearly hoping for some shred of maturity and mutual respect between all of the races represented here. So if you are all done yelling, I would like to move on in a more civilized manner. Any objections?" No one moved, except Discord, who slowly raised his hand. "No, Discord, you can't make it rain Chocolate Milk!" Celestia said sternly. Discord slowly brought his hand back down. "Ok, thank you. Now, if everyone will please make room, I would like to bring your attention to something that is not going to be very moralizing or uplifting." Celestia cast a small spell at the center of the room, which sprouted into a map of the explored universe. "This is the last planet of neutral beings." A planet was highlighted a bright yellow. "This is the last neutral planet as of three days ago." The map shimmered, and where there was once a yellow planet, was now a blank spot on the map. A few murmurs went around the room. "This is the current position of the Telepren." A red streak showed up on the map, slowly moving. "As you can see, it is rather large, the last fleet to go up against it could have bested any one of ours. And it was destroyed within minutes. And so I urge you to stop bickering like boys in a toy store and help one another plan out a strategy for the defense of all we know." Celestia watched with rising dread as the representatives from all the races shrugged and stared at one another. The representative from the humans, General Maltius, spoke up first. "Well, if every race here joined their whole armadas', it would be roughly about the same size as their own, correct?" A few nods answered him. "Well then I propose one of the most basic and unfailing strategies in the book. The hammer and anvil." A few different reactions were heard among the assembly. "They are so arrogant, they think that it would take an elaborate and complicated plan to defeat them. So we give them what they are not expecting. Now, which race here has the sturdiest warships?" The human general asked. A Nebulasti admiral spoke up. "If I may boast, our ships have been designed to pass through the hottest stars known to all kind. If that is not sturdy then I am a duck." A few chuckles ran around the room. Another representative spoke up. "While Carthinian ships cannot pass through stars, they are certainly able to hold their own from a defensive point. We do not have many guns though." A few nods followed the statement. General Maltius spoke up again. "See? So we can present a wall of Nebulastii and Carthin ships, with small, long range vessels to provide support, while another, greater part of the fleet surprises the enemy rear. Then we keep a small reserve, so when we begin to push in, we can send the reserve through any holes created in the wall, providing two offensive sides. Any objections?" One by one, all of the representatives agreed. But a new voice entered the scene. "If I may, I think we will need some more help if we are to win here. I propose a more dedicated search for Odysseus." A small, seconds long stretch of silence was broken by nearly all of the representatives shouting and yelling at once.

"disappeared long before I was born-"

"hasn't been seen in ages-"

"didn't he die-"

"where would he be if he was alive-"

The room died down into silence once more as Celestia cleared her throat. She looked at the dragon responsible for the sudden outbreak, graciously accepting to be shrunk to more easily fit into the room. "Do explain, Master Dragon." Celestia gave him the floor to speak again. "Well, this is a fine strategy, but we all know the only reason half of our species are still here is because of Odysseus. Yes he was a dragon, yes he was named after a Greek hero, yes he has been missing for a very long time, but he single handedly took on the fleet that threatened the world ages ago. We cannot simply bypass this chance to seek him out." A bipedal Lion voiced his thoughts next. "Where would we search? How many resources must be spent? How long do we have before we must admit it is a lost cause? Tell me this and I will offer what assistance I can." The dragon shrugged. "Those things can only be guessed. But we should search wherever we can, with whatever resources can be spared." The separate representatives fell to murmuring amongst themselves again. "I implore you to think about this option, if I cannot gain the councils help, I will do it with what I personally have at my disposal. That is all I wished to say on the matter."

In the few days that followed, it was agreed that the Hammer and Anvil tactic should be instituted, and messages were sent to all available fleets to regroup and assemble above Delta-Atari 9, an un inhabited moon that held a large space installation in orbit. The next issue to be resolved was the search for Odysseus. While only half of the present council supported the notion that said mission would be successful, it gave them a little more hope to know such a possibility existed, so the search was approved. The dragon that offered the notion summoned his own son, Artekæ, to accompany the expedition. Celestia wrote a letter to Twilight, asking her to join, to which a speedy acceptance was replied. General Maltius also asked his son to go, and with him came a young captain, who would provide transport if the occasion arose. Along with them a Bipedal leopard named Ornlisco, a Starglom named Flash(his parents were big fans of the comics), and a Nebulastii by the name of Jostian who had astounding training in the medical field also joined. And so the search for Odysseus was started, aboard the ironically named Argo.

Twilight hopped from hoof to hoof, standing outside the U.F.E. Argo, waiting for the others to arrive. She was nervous, she had only been in space one other time, and most of her experiences with dragons other than Spike were not very welcoming. A sudden gust of wind ruffled her feathers and caused her mane to go crazy. She looked up and saw a dragon bracing against the wind to land. To her surprise the dragon landed almost silently, and laughed a little when he had to pull his tail in to keep it from getting in the way of hangar personnel. Then, Twilight grew doubly impressed, as the dragon began to shrink, slowly but surely condensing. He stopped when he was only about two or three times the size of Twilight, instead of fifteen or sixteen. "That was amazing! I wasn't aware dragons were capable of altering their body structure to resize themselves." The dragon gave her a toothy smile. "It is something we don't usually get the chance of discussing, for various reasons. Whom do I have the pleasure of meeting?" Twilight stepped forward a bit and offered her hoof. "Twilight Sparkle, Princess of Friendship. And what is your name?" The dragon gently shook her hoof, careful of his claws the whole time. "Artekæ, unfortunately, I am not a prince, but I can make a mean fajita." Twilight stopped short. "Artekæ? THE Artekæ? The Artekæ who wrote on the theory of magnetic disruption in flight patterns?" The dragon gave a dramatic bow. "The very same." Twilight gave a rather un-princess like squeal and and clapping her front hooves together. "We have so much to talk about on this trip! Oh, this is so great! I have been dying to meet you and discus your whole paper!" Artekæ took a small step back, worried at the sudden change in character, when he noticed the Nebulastii and Starglom walk up, with a leopard in tow. Jostian, Flash, and Ornlisco got introductions out of the way, before the group lapsed into silence. "Where are those two Humans? They should have been here before any of us." Ornlisco growled in a soft voice. On cue, a tall, brown haired human came running from the loading bay, not pausing to introduce himself, yelling, "we're going to be late for tea!" As he ran up onto the Argo. "That solves one issue. I guess we should follow." Flash resolved, taking lead of the group and walking aboard after the human.

They found their charge about to press the open button on the door to the bridge. He saw them and put a finger to his mouth, and the group fell silent. He opened the door, and strode in quietly. "Ok lady's, we've been cleared to get this bird out of the nest. Get the engines prepped, and make sure you get everything secure this time people, we don't want another Jell-O incident." A young woman was shouting orders on the main deck of the bridge, unaware of the new arrivals. The man crept closer, standing up straight right behind her. "BOO!" The woman jumped, and screamed, before punching the man in the arm, and launched into a stream of curses that made most people on the bridge raise an eyebrow. Twilight was glad Spike wasn't here. "Ugh, you idiot! For the last time stop doing that!" The woman screamed. The man just laughed, and spread one arm to the assembled group. "Is this the way you act in front of guests? I'm embarrassed to be associated with such behavior!" The woman's face paled, as she looked at the small group standing behind them on the bridge. "Oh, I'm sorry everyone, heh, ahh... So, I am Captain Andrea, welcome aboard the Argo!"

Once Captain Andrea had gotten the ship into orbit, and out of the way of interplanetary traffic, the party sat around in a conference room, deciding where to go next. "So, we know that Odysseus is no where on Equiz, nor our planet's moon, nor the next two closest planets, Earth and Galatyr, so the next closest would be Great Havana, here." Twilight explained, pointing to various planets. "The only problem with that, is Great Havana is almost solely a Human populated planet, and any scans will most likely prove no traces of dragon." Everyone nodded affirmative. "So, the small question here, is spend the time scanning, or move on to a more probable area?" Everyone lapsed into silence. Jostian began floating, while Ornlisco continuously checked his claws. Flash opened up a flame resistant comic. Captain Andrea was looking at the map, but everyone could tell she had fallen asleep with her eyes open. No one knew how though. The man, Jorayn, was cleaning and reassembling a small firearm. Artekæ was reading over Flash's shoulder, and twilight was still going over the pros and cons in her head. They weren't the most decisive group, that's for sure.