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The Blackness of Space ch. 6Eric saw planet flow by like fish in a stream. Eric himself was floating through space with nothing to protect him, but that didn't matter he could breathe. And what was more, he didn't care. He just soared by, staring with an awe greater than anyone has had before, at the planets. The beautiful blue, red, orange, green and purple planets. Planets, he thought, were so much like us. Humans. People. No two planets were exactly the same, were they? Eric sighed deeply. He could stay here forever, without a care in the world. And no one could bother him.
Eric sat bolt upright and looked around. He was back on the Liberty with Lt. Yen on his left, shouting, but not looking, at him.
"ERIC, WAKE U--"
Eric put his left hand over Lt. Yen's mouth. He reached out with his right hand.
"Hi, I'm Eric, you are?"
"Oh, um Joanna Yen."
Eric stood up and looked around again. Joanna and he were the only people inside the cockpit. There was debris strewn across the floor.
"What happened?" He
The Blackness of Space ch. 5Just as Eric was about to speak to the girl Killre shouted out.
"Horrer! Lt. Yen! Strap yourselves in, we're about to get underway!"
Eric sighed and turned his chair toward his control panel. He and Killre hadn't gotten along since they had met each other, perhaps it was their size difference or perhaps the aftermath of a history long forgotten. Eric looked at the monitor in front of him. To the average man it would have shown nothing more than a series of dots, lines, grids and numbers, each one a different color. But Eric, graduating from high school at sixteen and college at eighteen, was not an average man. To him the panel showed fluctuations, power surges, maps of time-space, latitudes and longitudes. However, Eric was a little preoccupied by finding out the girl's name. So preoccupied he did not notice a large power surge and a course change.
"Alright," said Killre, "Let's make it a good one."
As the Hiem engine began to power up, the ship began to shake. It started as a low rum
The Blackness of Space ch. 4The woman just looked at Eric. A look that said very much, and so little. It told him that she respected Killre and disapproved of Eric's behavior. What it did not tell him was if she thought his comment was witty (which is what Eric had intended), or if she thought he was hitting on her (which he was not doing). Although, if he wasn't engaged, he'd have good reason to. Without the book in front of her, Eric could see a beautiful Asian face. Her long, dark black hair rested on either of her shoulders. Her eyes were, oddly enough, the most brilliant blue Eric had ever seen, suggesting that one of her parents was not Asian like the other. She went back to her book slowly. Eric looked at her this time. It's funny how sometimes there's a surprise in life just around the corner. As a boy Eric had imagined meeting a lovely, if albeit insanely independent, Chinese princess. When Eric was at MIT meeting Evlyn he looked back on these fantasies of a girl just out of reach and b
A MESSAGE TO MANKIND .text.A Message to Mankind
We looked to them as saviors,
But surely they've been our doom.
With all the circuitry and wires,
The soul just had no room.
We judge ourselves by height,
By weight or even race.
But when we see a robot,
We don't see a face.
We see metal,
We see plastic,
We see the Internet.
But there is one who feels,
And he and I have met.
He said to me "Don't do it."
He said "It's a mistake.
If you make us just like you,
Your orders we won't take."
I knew that he was right,
But I could not stop them.
Now I'm huddled in a corner,
Among my fellow man.
He a lawyer,
She's a doctor,
He's a college dropout. Man.
Now we sit,
Cold and frightened,
We know this is the end.
Now they're pounding on the door,
They're going to get in.
And I can't help but thinking,
I should have obeyed him.
Now I finish this dark tale,
To all that might survive,
As I see all my friends falling,
To the hands of the A.I.
The Blackness of Space ch. 3A man stood before Eric.
"Major," Eric said, inclining his head a little bit.
"Dr. Horrer." The Major said. He was Major James Killre. The polar opposite of Eric, this man was 6'7" and his hands were large enough to cover not only Eric's face, but entire head and neck. And for all his bulk, the Major did not intimidate Eric, however hard he tried.
"Dr. Horrer," the Major said again, "we will be starting the test of the Hiem engine soon."
"Good," replied Eric "I'm eager to start. I'll get down to the engine room an--"
But Major Killre cut Eric off in mid-sentence.
"No, you won't be going down to the engine room, we made you a station here."
Major Killre motioned to a seat in a corner.
"Actually," said Eric, a little aggravated, "I wanted to have a more hands-on part in this as I did help develop the Hiem engine."
"You will go were you told to go." Major Killre said sternly.
"Of course," replied Eric, "I forgot I was your trained dog."
Eric took a mock bow and went to his station.
The Blackness of Space ch. 2Ten hours. To Eric it seemed incredible. Before the Hiem system was built it would take four years to get to Mars and back. A weekend trip to Mars? Eric chuckled to himself, he was engaged to a girl back home and he imagined what she would think if he announced that they would be going to Mars for their honeymoon.
"Evlyn would love that," he said softly.
Just then the PA system called out, Dr. Horrer report to the cockpit.
Eric sighed loudly as the announcement repeated itself. He rolled his eyes,
"I'm coming! Chill out a second! Jeez..."
Eric walked over to a small intercom by the door to his quarters.
"I'll be right there," he said as he pressed the button on the intercom.
Eric walked down a small corridor toward the bow. Gravity in space had been a problem for quite awhile but then some Air Force genius figured it out, he was on the news EVERY DAY. Eric thought that the artificial gravity felt a little too light. But, he thought, that was probably just his mind
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