Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Exposure

Every once in a while the station attracts some sort of space junk, I suppose the local gravity sucks it in.  Eventually the station staff head outside and collect the garbage for recycling, what is old is new again.  Even rarer is this, I call them floaters, some poor soul has lost their life somewhere in the system and their desiccated shell has made its way to the station somehow.  I'm looking out my apartments window just staring into the eyes of this human that is staring into infinity.  For some reason I'm fascinated by the visage before me, the dried and damaged skin, bulging eyes and one hand gripped in a fist.  Suddenly I realise that it is a she, not much hair, maybe singed off or made too brittle in space and they broke away, individual strands orbiting some object for a while, maybe forever.


[buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!]

The communicator breaks me from my apparent trance.  Hitting the receive and waiting for the signals to sync it would seem the station staff have also noticed the floater.  Some stations believe it is bad luck to bring them into the station, normally they will attach a small engine, or sometimes just give them a shove, into the larger gravity well to burn up, usually the local planet.  She gets smaller as she moves away and is soon blocked by some of the station superstructure.

Finally the communicator syncs and I find it's Roku.

"Hey man what's up" I ask in what I think is an interested voice, still a bit spooked.

"Yosagi!  Oh this and that.  Still looking after that Megathron you loaned me, she's purring like a dream", Roku says perhaps a bit to enthusiastically.

"Yeah?  Did you take it in for those repairs, and what about the insurance, what level did you buy?"

"Ahh the top level yeah, can't remember how much it cost right now but it's all good.  We did have that little war recently though, have to tell you about it sometime".

"So the purpose of this call is?", I ask.

"You're famous man! You know that little thing you write?".

"Little thing, nice one man.  Yes I know about it, as I write it", my response is a bit chilly.

"Well it's hit the airwaves, near and far, you are now on the list!", Roku enthuses.

"List? What list?", I reply quizzically.

"The free press round up!  You know the one with many of the writers who spread the word about what happens in this universe, away from the official channels".

I think about it for a short while, Roku's signal has gone to shit anyway so while I wait for the system to fix that up I try and remember what he's talking about.  I'm not sure if I recall it properly but maybe I saw some guy trying to hand out flyers for some press thing.  Trying not to enter the greater station in recent times has been my mission as the influx of refugees has made the place much less pleasant than normal.

His signal has come back.

"So what do you think about it?", he asks.

"Not really sure to be honest.  In one respect I'm shitting construction blocks about it but I guess I'll just keep on doing the same thing and see what happens.  Might have to give it a proper name though", suddenly realising that some sort of cool name or description may be better.

Some silence on the line for a few moments.

"No you don't need to do that, just keep it as your name because the system lists them alphabetically, so yours will be the letter Y whichever part of your name they use."

It dawns on me, "Ahh so it will be at the bottom of the list so the odds are people will not make it through all the writers above me and I might as well report on purple monkeys for all the good it will do".

"Exactly!  You can write any old crap and nobody will ever see it.  It's perfect!  You get the fame of being on the list without ever having to produce anything worthy of actually being on the list!", Roku appears to find this fairly hilarious, so much so that I think he accidentally disconnects the signal.

I'd had enough of him for now anyway, though I'd better chase up the maintenance guys in Olo station and find out about my Megathron soon.

I try to catch another glimpse of the corpse but she is long gone.

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