Woken after 18 years of slumber, the 486 runs its onboard diagnostics, tests its connections to the satellite's systems, and takes initial supervisory control of the telescope. Reloading its operating software from a multiply redundant solid state device that has survived nearly a generation in an almost pristine state, Hubble resumes it's primary mission.
It swings a graceful arc across the inky infinite, past the ghostly silhouette of a moon in shadow, and drifts further on to take in the Earthrise that has captivated space explorers for nearly 50 years. It slows, then stops - ponderous, like an ocean liner, yet graceful and precise like a clockwork ballet dancer.
Circuits, unsparked since they were last tested in a secret underground laboratory by silent, nameless, scientists, come alive and wake the football sized nuclear reactor hidden within a tangle of camouflaging wires and dummy electronics.
A reaction begins - controlled only insofar as it was begun with full knowledge of what it would become - and in the blinking of an eye a tsunami of pure energy rushes through precision optics to become a focused beam of terrifying intensity. The satellite shudders, folds in upon itself, then disappears in a cloud of its component molecules - but not before it has done its terrible work. 500 miles away, upon the spectacularly beautiful and serene earthscape, a patch of ruddy brown becomes an unbearably intense white before settling to an ashen black. Its shroud - a billowing smoke becoming, at its edges, a dark and greasy haze - is drawn lazily into one of the many storms that amble over the East European Plain this time of year.
Moscow today and, before the dawning of the second millennium, the unholy Soviet empire will kneel or perish. The Gipper and the Iron Lady wish it so.