Laura Remembers 1
September, 2011
Laura Remembers 1
15 March 2785 – 03:35

You blink a few times to make sure you’re not having a nightmare, but it doesn’t change.  Instead of seeing a soft glow from the termination point of the K-F drive filament shaft, you see only black.  The mix of fear and horror in the pit of your gut almost makes you vomit – but you’re wrenched from it by the horrendous, strained groan from the superstructure.
You shout at a crewman to take care of a fire that’s broken out in a junction about forty feet down the plant, and start looking around for your chief engineer.
You find Chief Fagan about twenty feet above you on the other side of the plant, she’s got her feet hooked under a grip, crouched against the wall, looking up at the K-F filament and rocking slightly.  Had she been any more curled up you’d call it a fetal position.  You push off your grip and float around the core.
Halfway across the shaft, there’s heavy impact somewhere on the ship, causing another wail of strained metal and dislodging a crewman from his post.  You catch him in one arm and a grip on the core in another and swing him around where he catches his grip.
“Shit!  Thanks ma’am.  Did something hit us?”
“Sounds that way,” you respond, pushing off again towards the Chief, “man your post.”
“Aye!” nods the crewman, who pushes off the core and drifts back to his station.
You land on the wall next to Fagan, hooking a foot under the same rail that she’s using.
“Chief?”  she stops rocking, but doesn’t take her eyes away from the filament.  The hull of the ship groans again, as if in pain.
“Did you see it?  Did you see the fire?”
“We can’t worry about that right now, Chief, I need you to-”
“It probably wiped out the entire filament…”
“Let’s worry about-”
“We can’t fabricate that…we can’t just weave a mile of drive filament…we just don’t have the-”
“Chief!” you shout, grabbing her by the lapels and twisting her to face you, “Of course I saw it,” you snarl quietly so those nearby can’t overhear, “and there’s not a goddamned thing we can do about it.”
Another deep, metallic groan shudders through the ship.
“What I need you to do right now is find out what the hell THAT is – sounds like it’s coming from frame forty or fifty.”
“Captain, I…”
“Move it!”  You jerk her free of the hand-grip and shove her down and across to the corridor leading out of the engine room.  You watch her until she seems to snap out of her panic and pull her way out of the compartment, then you turn back to gaze up at the K-F filament and sigh.
One of your watch officers drifts up next to you and follows your gaze.
“We’re dead, aren’t we?” he asks quietly.
“Yeah Mickey…we’re dead.”


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