Unnamed Journal Volume 2, Issue 3 - Page 31

Void, Chapter 5 Then it was Jae's turn to think. She pursed her lips together. Lang looked at her lips and had involuntary carnal thoughts about them. The thoughts satisfied him that this was indeed Jae floating before him. He hadn't really questioned that, but it was reassuring anyway. She was real. "Okay," Jae said at last, "We find out that I'm wrong, we leave the Vulture to the whatever-this-is, fly back to Proxima in this rig. Between the insurance and the value of this prize, we might even make out okay." "I hadn't thought of that," Lang said. He hadn't thought about success or failure of the voyage in a while. It was a higher-order problem. "If I'm right, though," she paused for breath, "and this ship is a fake, and the source of the .... infestation, let's call it, then we blow it up." "How?" "It's got a warp drive. Spike it and let the chain reaction do the rest." "What happens to us?" "We float away and get back to the Vulture the same way we came." "And then what?" "We improvise, Skipper. Look, we don't have the luxury of planning everything out. We need to take action, or else we're just sitting here waiting to be ... devoured, or whatever." Lang clicked his tongue. She had a point. "Okay," he said, "So should we both check the duct out? Should one of us stay?" "I don't know." They both looked at the duct that led down without stopping. "Do you need to test the systems before we try to make them work?" said Lang. "Yes," said Jae. "Then you stay here and do that. I'll go check this duct out." And without a further word, he shoved himself down. The going was slow at first, and he had to guide himself down with his hands, army-crawling like an infant down lower and lower. Periodically he would check in with Jae, and she would respond. His light kept shining down on nothing but more duct.