Milk run. Four hundred tonnes of palladium, high-security Fed system, lot’s of nice green blips on the scanner…
So I screw myself up and come right out with it: ‘Hey Tige. You ever meet my old man?’.
Boom! Interdicted. Coupla pythons with a bad attitude. Now, we’ve gotten into this routine where we submit and turn tail starwards but of course THIS drag is within one KLs of the station. Where’s the cops???? Nowhere is where. Immediately we’re in big trouble. I’m trying to plot a route outta there, Tige’s on the horn offering them pretty much everything we’ve got while kicking the ‘bejesus’ (his word) out of the console as if that’ll make the FSD spool up any quicker.
Short story is we made it. Just. Hull looks like a pepper-pot and although I have to admit it was my fault, the landing gear sheared away on the port side as we touched down. Touched down! Smashed into the pad with all the grace of an earthquake is more like. Grease-monkey at the repair station says no way. Not for any amount of the green stuff.
Fan-bloody-tastic. You remember where we got this ship. So no insurance. What we have here as they used to say, is a prime snafu.
Tige’s gone off – says he might have a few contacts – but he’s ALWAYS got ‘a few contacts’….
And does he know the old man? I couldn’t say…Aaaarrrgh!
So okay, I have (had) two choices. Buy another ‘heavy’ – at least this one’d have insurance, or sit tight and wait for Tige to get back. Turns out he’s not even on-planet anymore. Boy was life simpler a wee while back. So I went with choice three. You guessed it right? I’m sending this from the seat of my latest Asp. Funny thing though, I was just chatting to Port Authority, about to request clearance for take off when they say they have a private message for me, just came through. From Tige. And it said? Geological Survey. That’s all. No ‘where’, no ‘why’, not even a ‘what’. Nothing. Huh? I guess the ‘when’ is now though, so….
So now I have an SRV in the hold. Took it for a bit of a test-drive. That sucks. Biggest problem seems to be keeping the damned thing on the ground. And as for steering. What steering? And where’s my ever-lovin mentor? And why rocks?
Just wait ’til I see him is all.