I got it into my head to set up an old list of songs I haven’t heard in a long time, and boy is this a window into the past. I haven’t remembered my younger self this strongly since the credits of Star Trek: Beyond. Except this time I’m just looking in and back, and seeing, well, me. So much of what I built then is still standing, and I hadn’t really fully realised quite how much of the old framework is still in there. Or how much I built atop it.
I also just went off to tidy some things, knocked over an old penholder that recently reappeared from my Boxes O’ Stuff, and discovered several whiskers from one of my old cats when they fell out along with a shower of drawing pins. (Ones she shed in her lifetime, not ones I clipped or anything.) I’d forgotten I did that. Apparently, when confronted with a full understanding of mortality, my response was to make sure I was able to memorialise and/or clone my then fairly youthful cats against the day, years in the future, when they were going to die. I’m not actually sure those shed whiskers have enough DNA in them to clone my cat, and in fact I wasn’t even sure then: I was banking on advances in technology, I think.
(This particular cat, incidentally, was called Tabitha. The other was Frisky. I have what’s probably one of his whiskers somewhere too: I remember my other storage place for them was an old film canister, which I labelled neatly with its contents. I haven’t found that yet, though.)
In other news, The Fused is about to come back online, as I’ve just been writing up the next chapter! The Tuesday posting schedule should, unforeseen issues notwithstanding, resume this week. More is about to be explained…
It happened again, I’m sorry. So busy. NaNo coming up, too…
So there it is. At last we know the purpose and destination of the vast starship that is Lindsi’s home. It’s been travelling for hundreds of years, long enough for its people to stop caring about their destination, long enough to become another self-contained little world all its own. The Ship remembers its mission, but the people aboard do not.
Generations have passed, out there in space. Beneath the vaulted, sky-mimicking ceilings of the Habitat Domes and in the halls and corridors, people have been born and lived and grown old and died. They’re missing a lot that they don’t even know they’re missing — how could they, never having known it? Animals other than a very small number of medium-sized pets are essentially unknown: other than humans and pets, the only residents are bacteria, fungi, plants, and a few modified insects and suchlike, necessary to keep the soil ecosystem ticking over. Even they cause more than enough trouble when they periodically escape into the rest of the Ship and have to be eradicated.
That the Ship has a destination isn’t unknown. What it is and where it is, or how far away it is, is almost entirely forgotten. As far as the residents are concerned, the Ship has been travelling long enough that it might as well forever, and will presumably be continuing for just as long.
But the day has come when that’s no longer true. The Ship’s wide-flung telescope array can actually visually resolve its destination planet, and soon they’ll be entering the solar system. The generations-long Horizon Mission is finally nearing its end. And what will this mean for the Ship and its people…?
Tuesday brings us another chapter of The Fused, and there’s one final surprise in store for Lindsi and our narrator! The list of questions will be complete by the end of Chapter 31: Captain on Bridge. And it’s here in the command centre of the Ship where maybe, just maybe, at least some of the answers can be found. At the very least, the first thing they find here will be a good start.
Generating all these links is the worst part, because after typing them in enough times, they stop looking like words any more! But now it’s time for a different one: I’m not the only person posting serials on a Tuesday, and to find a few others, check out TuesdaySerial.com… though the site won’t update with this week’s stories until well into Wednesday!
Oh yes, and I had to edit Chapter 9: Solar Strip slightly to fix an erroneous description of the Bridge that had survived from an early conception of the Ship. Nothing major has changed, but I’d feel bad if I didn’t note that there had been an edit.
And this story probably isn’t quite regular enough for me to legitimately say “and you know what that means”, but…what the heck! The Fused is here! Lindsi is back, and back inside the Ship, and her problems just seem to keep on getting bigger. How much longer can she carry the weight of it all?
It’s finally happened! Though it took some time, and I was away running a Convergence RPG over the weekend, which worked out better than I hoped! It was amazing fun to run, although that’s the first full-weekend game I’ve ever done, but I’d love to do it again once I’ve prepared the next jaunt for my chrononauts.