Posts Tagged ‘lead. airlock’

I apologize for the reflow from Word.

4/19/11

Prompt:

“But he’s golden! Completely golden.”

The Captain stared out of the window at reddish purple cloud looming ominously on the horizon. For some reason his gut was telling him that the cloud had something to do with it. The Scientist, he knew, had it all wrong, as usual.

The Captain punched some keys on his tablet and watched the computer monitor light up with information that he already knew. He had run the probability matches two dozen times already.

“Wilson, you’re up!” The Captain spoke into his headset.

He watched the grainy image on his computer screen; the man named Wilson hadn’t moved in over an hour.

Inside the airlock, Wilson sighed. He knew that he being sent on what was essentially a suicide mission. So far, three of the crew had followed The Captain’s orders and all three had failed to return. Wilson didn’t want to go, but he really had no choice other than to mutiny and he knew that wasn’t going to happen since his only compatriots were now trapped outside.

Wilson nodded, contemplating his options.

“Suit up, go naked, I really don’t care. Just get out there, pronto!” The Captain said. “We need that data.”

Wilson walked over to the small round window set into the inner airlock door. He peered out, past the outer room window, at the face that only hours before was the same color as his own. The expression wasn’t so much of fear as it was surprise. Wilson shuddered.

“But he’s golden!” Wilson said. “Completely golden.”

As the words left his mouth he knew he sounded like a whining child. But then again, this wasn’t what he had signed up for. Why should he risk he life? And for what?

“That’s because he didn’t have faith,” The Captain replied, his voice a metallic rasp over he intercom. “You have faith don’t you Wilson?”

Wilson sighed; he didn’t know what faith was anymore. He held up the small device that blinked off and on like a Christmas tree, it was no larger than a bar of soap.

He knew that he had no choice but to follow orders, but the one thing still bothered him, and The Captain’s hollow words of faith and duty to his country did nothing to assuage Wilson’s fears or address his concerns.

“Now is not the time to have second thoughts about the mission, soldier,” The Captain said.

Wilson cleared his throat.

“Just explain to me why Scott and Edwards are gold and Ignacio is gray, sir?” Wilson asked. “I’d really feel better if–“

“Lead, private,” The Captain said. “We think that Natcho’s lead. But we won’t know for sure until you go out there and get his and the other soldier’s data recorders.”

Wilson looked down at his hands. He imagined them gleaming in the sunlight.

“Time isn’t a luxury that we can afford to waste!” The Captain added.

The Captain looked out at the angry cloud that now filled the sky. Just then, the portal doors opened with a hiss and a man stepped onto the bridge. It was The Scientist.

“Captain, we need to wait for the static cloud to pass,” he said. “We can’t take anymore chances; he’s our last man.”

The Captain sat back in his chair, his tablet computer resting in his lap. He watched Wilson stand and walk over to the inner airlock door.

“As Science Officer, I just want to make it clear that my position is to wait for the static cloud to pass before releasing the subject,” The Scientist said.

The Captain tapped on his tablet computer and analyzed the readings that it displayed. Everything appeared normal, as it always had.

“Understood,” The Captain replied. “Covering your ass.”

Despite the fact that El Dorado was a smaller planet than earth, it shared many similarities: Magnetic poles, water, and compatible atmosphere, all orbiting a singular yellow sun. Theoretically, El Dorado would be the perfect planet to colonize. Except for this one anomaly, which was so far was completely inexplicable, which was a term that The Captain avoided using with his superiors.

Wilson activated the airlock door, stepped through into the outer room and crossed himself. Watching through the window, he saw the sky darken as a cloud the color of a broken heart passed over the ship. He closed his eyes and heard the hiss of the outer door as it opened. The rush of air smelled sweet and familiar.