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Rated: E · Short Story · Sci-fi · #989151
Gold Rush 2149 continues
“How many more times do I have to take this space suit off just to put it back on again?!”

Sean looked through the airlock window, saw Cal jerking his feet down the legs of his suit. and flipped a switch. He grinned as the whole airlock was plunged into darkness and he heard Cal’s gasp.

Sean leaned toward the intercom and in his calmest voice said, “When you can get that suit on properly, in the dark, with no gravity to help in under 45 seconds, then you will have met the Captain’s requirements.”

Cal’s breathing calmed and he continued to put the suit on by feel while beginning to understand how much more he had to learn.

Sean nodded at the efforts, “I’d have expected all of this activity to be a welcome change from studying ships schematics for the last two days.”

“I did the first ten times! But I see your point. One more time and I think I’ll be ready for you to inspect everything.”

After finally getting a final check with the lights on, the airlock was closed for a final test of the suits actual purpose, airtightness.

“I’ll take the pressure down slowly Cal. You know the signs of a leak so let me know if you find one.” A yellow light came on as Sean began to depressurize the airlock.

“Sean? How long have you been doing this?”

“Well, this will be the ninth time out in less than nine years. We average eight or nine months out, then a couple refitting and resupplying. With maybe two or three months actually prospecting and mining. How are you feeling Cal?”

“Good, everything’s working alright.”

“I heard a story from old Gunter, whose place your taking. About 17 years ago a ship was coming into the Earthspace, not answering any hails. Another ship was sent out to meet it and see what was wrong. They caught up to the ship and found it was the Golden Hind, six months past due and declared lost by the Company. No one answer as they approached and docked. The main deck was airless but they found a survivor in the crew’s quarters. It seemed the shipped had been holed by a stray pebble and the survivor didn’t have his suit with him and was trapped. Lucky for him the ship was on a good course back home. Unfortunatly the rest of the crew was never found and the survivor was driven mad by the experience. So take care of your suit and it will save your life.”

“Wasn’t the Golden Hind full of treasure?”

“Do you believe space myths Cal? Like the tales of aliens and planets full of virgins!?”

“Well it sounds good.”

“Before Gunter retired he gave me clues that he took off the Hind that point toward it having found Eldorado, that mythical asteroid made of gold, and I mean to find it. But there is no X marks the spot!”
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