Short Stories. 30-1-15 Explorer.
Ninth January Blog.
Bar’Barr’a stared at the wealth of stars. They glittered and glinted through the thin atmosphere that surrounded Pirac Three. He could see the Serpent just above the western horizon and to its right, in the north eastern quadrant, he could just distinguish the vague outlines of The Ring Bearer. The Ring itself was not visible from Pirac Three. You had to be closer in towards the Firene Nebula for The Ring to show itself in all its iridescent and glowing glory.
Had Bar’Barr’a more time, he might have stayed there all the dark shift trying to name the various less discernible constellations. Nothing like the view, it was said, from old Earth on the Outer Rim of the Galaxy, or where what was left of old Earth remained since its dramatic collision with the Gormga Meteor.
A reminiscent tug of long past chronicles about where men began, glimmered in his mind. Thinking about his species beginnings was a touch of antiquity for him and any other captain that managed to get that far out. All history now. How many centuries had man finally beat a path across the flat disc of the Galaxy to hop from one viable planet to the next, gaining knowledge, ship power. Changing! Evolving.
Historians, and there were few, told of the variations that would have happened if you saw the stars from old Earth now. They said the stars would have moved so much that those old stories would be invalid today. Hermes, Virgo, Leo. Just names to Bar’Barr’a, but names that conjured up a wealth of imaginative shapes, designs. They had lost most of the pictorial views, so guessing became a game to those few captains whose interest was piqued, was occupied in such a manner. They did have a record of the diagram, find and name the giant. One deep sigh then Bar’Barr’a turned his massive bulk, an easier task in the low gravity atmosphere of Pirac Three, left the viewport and made for his cabin.
Sleep was next, then as the light shift began, he would set up for his needs. Bar’Barr’a wanted to find a new engineer and that would not be an easy task. Few spare crewmen waited for work on Pirac Three and he needed a good engineer. His cargo vessel was ageing fast but it had to last a while longer before he would have enough credits to upgrade. The new crewman would also have to fit in with current members of his company. His men were skilled but they were also very individual and seldom took to new members easily.
He sighed as that thought flitted across his mind. The sigh did not last for whatever happened, a clever engineer was imperative and he would not leave without one. At any cost!
The walkway gleamed dull and metallic as the captain opened for business. He had put himself on display behind a purple-coated mach’da, a sure sign Bar’Barr’a was open to offers. Discreet advertising was allowed on the walkways.
After some time and a few stoppers, Bar’Barr’a was getting worried that he would never find an engineer. Those that had slapped were not qualified, mostly ruggers or hefters and he had those aplenty.
Hunger punched him in the gut and he was about to ‘turn’ the mach’da when a likely looking man sauntered up and slapped his toopla down with style. He was a Rimto Engineer, First Class. Why was he for hire? Personal business was the answer. That could mean he was a trouble maker.
Bar’Barr’a looked over the man’s invent., it was impressive. When quizzed, the Engineer (Derro-to by name) stated that the last vessel that held his toopla had been run by a madman who was finally apprehended in the Deep Triagarold Field. He had hitched ships, posing as a rugger until he had reached Pirac Three. He was good. He was available.
Bar’Barr’a wasted no more time. Snatching the Engineer’s toopla was tantamount to a short term contract, but Bar’Barr’a laid down a wad which meant the Engineer was contracted for the duration. Both men clasped mitts, grins lighting up their countenances. This next lift promised to be an interesting voyage.
Copyright Evelyn J. Steward. January, 2015.
Excerpt From: Evelyn J. Steward. “Explorer.” iBooks.
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