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On the Other Side, Pt. 2

Posted on Tue Dec 21st, 2021 @ 5:20pm by Colonel Sehan t'Varis

Mission: Chapter V: The Calm Before The Storm
Location: ???
Timeline: ???

Raven woke with a start. She must have fallen asleep as Munin was slowly drifting in space, she realized, as the stars outside were slowly moving past. "Computer, status."

"Short-range sensors restored. Short-range communications restored. Navigation systems partly restored. Estimated time until life support failure, four hours."

Three hours. Raven shook her head. There was an EV suit in the back of the cockpit, but even if she was able to put it on, and if it was still fully operational, it would only provide another six hours. With a sigh, she activated the navigational display. The computer's statement that it had been 'partly restored' proved to be rather optimistic. While now able to display the vessel's speed and heading relative to the galactic centre, that still didn't tell her where she was, or where she was going. With a curse, she switched to the sensor readout, showing nothing but empty space. In her head, she quickly calculated the distance she would be able to cover before life support ran out - and it would bring her barely beyond the current scanner range.

"Computer, distress signal status."

"Distress beacon is active and broadcasting."

Suddenly, she realised something. Although most of the ship's identifying information had been rewritten to designate it as one of Ourainavassa's small craft, the distress beacon was still sending out its original, Terran registration. Whether that would turn out to be a good thing or a bad thing was yet to be determined. Either way, she had better chances of survival if a Terran ship picked her up than drifting in space with life support running out. The oxygen recycling system had been damaged, and so she had to rely on the ship's limited emergency supply. At least the temperature control was still able to keep her from freezing, she thought with a dry chuckle. Silver linings, eh? Still, maybe there was a chance. She stretched herself and got out of the pilot seat, moving to the access panel in the back, next to where the EV suit was kept. Most of the maintenance access to Munin was on the exterior, but maybe, just maybe, she would be able to get to the O2 recycler.

Those hopes, however, were quickly dashed. When she opened the hatch, all Raven found was a burnt out mess of wiring. This would take an engineer far more skilled than her to fix, she realised, as she turned to the EV suit. It did not take her long to remove the suit's oxygen tank, which she took back to the access panel. "Computer, locate auxiliary oxygen port. Light it up for me if you can, please."

Immediately, a panel next to the maintenance hatch slid open, revealing a small port for a hose. "Yess", Raven whispered, as she connected the small tank to the inlet. "Computer, confirm oxygen status."

"Recalculating. Additional oxygen supply confirmed. New estimated time to life support failure: seven hours, seventeen minutes."

So the tank had not been full, Raven realised as she returned to the pilot's seat. Still, she had gained some time. "Computer, redirect all non-essential power to propulsion. What's the status of the impulse engines?"

Maybe her luck would get even better - Munin's self-repair capabilities were, after all, rather impressive. The advantages of technology from several centuries in the future.

"Redirecting power. Impulse engines now available at twenty percent."

Perfect. Her chances of finding, well, anything, had just greatly improved. "Computer, full impulse. Redirect ninety percent of power from thrusters to impulse and hold course."

The small fighter jerked forward as the impulse engines came back to life, and the stars outside visibly accelerated. The navigation display confirmed that it was now moving at almost 2% of the speed of light - still nowhere near fast enough to get Raven to safety, but still far faster than she could have flown under thrusters alone.

With a sigh, Raven made herself comfortable in the pilot seat. For now, there was nothing she could do to help her own situation. Suddenly, a chime from the sensor panel caught her attention.

"Nearby vessel detected. Identification, I.S.S. Poseidon, NCC-42635. Currently not in communication range."

Raven nodded. "Set intercept course, maximum speed. Continue broadcasting distress signal on all channels."

Maybe, just maybe, she was saved.

 

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