Writer’s note: Why? Why do I even bother to make predictions and promises? They just make me a liar.
Before she had a chance to protest, Shmee was pulled away from her spot against the window. Her head bumped against her still free floating helmet, and she was able to grab at it before Perdie had towed her too far.
“We’re on our way!” Perdie shouted breathlessly into her own helmet as she launched herself anew into the hall, her little sister trailing just behind.
This time they didn’t bother switching on their lights. Helmets in hand, they thew themselves from one wall grip to the next in the diminishing light of the observation deck; trusting their sense of touch and memory as the darkness swallowed them whole. A fresh wrenching of metal bellowed deafeningly around them, and Shmee screamed as the handhold she was expecting jerked down, barking her knuckles.
Shmee heard her sister’s voice slip from above to behind her and her mind’s eye envisioned her body flipping forward in a slow tumble.
“Shmee! Are you okay?”
“I’m! I’m okay! I just lost my grip.” She held out her limbs stiffly to slow her spin. The helmet bumped against the smooth surface of the nearest wall just as Perdie’s light popped on below her. “Ah! That hurts!”
“Sorry!” They were plunged back into darkness and glowing streaks floated stubbornly in Shmee’s eyes.
“Okay, let’s keep going.”
“God damnit! If you girls aren’t back here in 1 one minute, so help me, I am willing to face down your mother-”
“We’re here!” The two figures were lit up by multiple beams of light as they slid in through the hatchway.
“Romero! Lock’er up!”
Perdie helped Shmee into her straps against the wall. As the engineer triggered the emergency lock.
“Got it! Perdie get yourself buckled up. I got Shmee.”
“Good!” Doctor Souchong barked from his perch. “Everybody, make sure your locks and straps are secured. I can’t have you bouncing around in the turbulence.”
“Turbu-?!” Romero locked Shmee’s helmet into place, temporarily muting her before the communicator could be activated.
He walked his hands over to Perdie and double checked her straps and buckles. She tried to hold a brave face while he hovered so close, but another nightmarish growl shuddered throughout the ship and left her breathing shallow gasps. Romero looked up and flashed a wry grin.
“Relax, kid. Nothing to do but enjoy the ride now.” Her universe shrank to the breathing in her ears and the framed view of her visor has he locked her helmet into place.