GAIA's digitized voice cut through her daydream "Jump Complete. Full stop, all gravitational emiters: on full, all decks reporting: nominal, sensors at maximum output: no external lifesigns detected. We are currently at the Supra Orbital edge of a Binary star system Delta Pi Niner George Seven. Located in the Horsehead Nebulae. All crew may now release Grav belts and go about their duities. Yellow shift is in the middle of their rotation, Green shift will take over in 4 Hours and 26 Minutes."
Berinike unbuckled the grav harness and stepped out of the form fitted chair wich had cushoned her body during SupraLight speed deceleration. During Supralight they had to work in zeroG, but at sublight speeds and during fullstop they could use the grav.
"Hey Nike! You going to the LazRange tonight?" One look over the shoulder wasnt enough for what was coming. Berinike had to turn around fully to appreciate the bouncing babe coming her way. Kouneli was making her way through the access corridor against the traffic of women headed to the dispensary for dinner. Her body diddnt swish like some women, she wasn't lith or narrow hipped like Berinike, her body was all soft curves and she litterally bounced. The uniform she wore as ship mechanic had straps and tool belts and barely contained her volumptous figure.
"I don't think I"ll have time tonight! I have to recheck the water filtration system, the GAIA says we are at 89% reclaimation. If I dont get another 10% out I'll have to take the whole system apart and you know how much Apollinia looks forward to dressing our department down for inefficiency."
Kouneli grabbed Berinike's collar and pulled her down into a soft but agressive kiss. Her mouth was ripe and sweet and reminded Berinike of the taist of peaches. "I was hoping we could get some time together, maybe when our shift is over?"
"I think I have to do a EVA, want to be my spotter? We can go have a steam shower afterwards, you know how being outside the ship covers me in a cold sweat."
Kouneli just nodded in response, her eyes eager and shining like the stars. They walked together to the Airlock nearest the Water system. Most of the filter system was inside. There was one point in the process however when the water was super heated through the engine core. It was then exposed as a mist to the cold of space long enough to freeze it before it was sent as micro particles of ice into the water storage. Water was denser as Ice, and therefore took up less space, also micro-organisms could not survive both the boiling hot and the freezing cold process. Somewhere allong the system they were loosing water, and that was a serious problem for a starship.
Restocking the ships supplies was a dangerous mission, you never knew what you would run into on a planet even with containment suits and LazGuns. Any time you brought foreign materials back to the ship you ran the risk of contamination. Occasionally there were RefuelDepots but there you had to deal with other life forms, whose customs and habits were repugnant to the Amazon way of life. Often this was even more dangerous than foraging on strange planets, the chance of all out warfare on a RefuelDepot due to cultural misscomunication was very high.
Berinike suited up for her EVA with Kouneli assisting scilently. Kouneli stripped off her yellow WorkUni and helped her slide into the form fitted VaccuSuit. Tiny Microfiliments in the suit would keep her at the acceptable temperatures she required for survival in deep space. The Helmet clamped onto the suits neck ring, it was akward due to the carbon filters on either side wich would circulate breathable oxygen through the helmet.
Kouneli wrapped her arms around her shoulders and pulled her head down so that she could have one last soul searching look into Berinike's eyes. Then she winked, patted Berinike's narrow posterior and released her to check on the monitor for her vitals. After a moment Kouneli gave her the thumbs up signal wich told her she was good to go.
Berinike walked into the airlock, and closed the hatch she turned to the external door and punched in the decompression sequence, clipped in her safety line, and then released the outer hatch.
GAIA's claxxon cut into the activity on the bridge like a axe. Everyone froze and listened to the report wich followed. "Ship detected coming out of NegSpace: Classification unknown. Energy profile: unknown, It is not sending out any signature beacon. Incoming message: 'Drop shield, power down engines, prepare to be boarded.' The ship is powering EM Cannons and Stasis feild generator."
Captain Appolinia ran back to her seat wich automatically buckled her in place, she turned to the monitor and punched the shipwide intercom "All crew to jump stations! Strap in if you can if not hold on tight!" Her bridge crew started making there reports on the ships size and obvious purpose. This ships whole design was made to capture. It had a cargo hull wich was opening its massive bay doors wich could easily fit the whole Amazon ship. The stasis feild generators once fully charged would be able to render her crew completely defenseless, and the EM cannons would shut GAIA down permanently. Both weapons would not damage but disable systems and crew to the point where they could be captured intact.
"Our only chance is to make a quick jump away, are co-ordinates set?"
"Captain! Kouneli reports that Berinike is on a EVA checking the water filtration system!"
Appolinia shook her head scilently, her eyes not leaving the monitor. Everyone on the bridge knew, the Captain would make the sacrifice... she had to.
Everything happened at once, one minute Berinike was making her way allong the ship towards the water system, when all of a sudden the Jump engines started, Berinike let go of the ship, a reflex action brought about from years of drills and lectures about what to do when on a EVA and this situation arose. Better to float in space untill the ship can make a return jump to rescue you than to have your arms ripped off trying to hold onto a jumping ship.
The ship jumped, Berinike felt a momentary snap of the saftey line, and then she saw it. The other ship was massive, it was amazing that the Amazon had hidden it from her perspective at all. That was when Berinike knew... The Amazon wouldent be coming back... ever.
Authors note: Experiment in Science Fiction. Im a huge fan of the Genre. I love techno-babble and wanted to see if I could write some. The source image is from a 50's (?) magazine "Sixteen" where there was a futuristic article about applying makeup in space... weird! I thought the helmet was great except for the fine wire mesh on the sides.. whatever that was for it certainly wouldent hold up to any kind of abuse.