“This is Colonel Becker of the Agamemnon.
By now, I am sure you have realised that the ship you sent to the station to signal Mr. Black is not coming back. And you are probably also aware that your attempt to take the Agamemnon failed. You have, so far, lost four ships to us. You do not have sufficient food to make it through another year, and by now, your men must have started to feel sick from radiation poisoning. Unless your team got the message off, you have no way out of the system. And even if Black did get your message, there is no guarantee he’ll bother to pick you up. You did, after all, fail to find the treasure you are looking for.
I am willing to make you another offer. Once. Think very carefully about your answer, because there will be no second chances.
I am offering you a chance to surrender. If you do, when we have successfully concluded our business in this system, we will take you with us when we leave, and drop you off somewhere less rural.
Think about it. The alternatives are either that you are stuck here for the rest of your lives, or, if the message went out, that Mr. Black arrives, expecting you to have something for him. Which you don’t.
Don’t answer yet. Think about it. Consider your options carefully, and the consequences of each choice. In 24 hours, I will listen at this frequency, and you can give me your answer.