Well bank holiday weekend has come and gone and my plan of writing 500 words was severely interrupted by some gorgeous weather (with sun drenched beer drinking) and an impromptu but very welcome visit from my family yesterday. So I did in fact end up being around 500 words short of my target. Back to work today with the post bank holiday blues hitting home hard and all I can think about is being at home in the sun, drinking beer once more. So my way of escaping is spending my time valuably by updating this blog. As I have no new material, here is a bit more of the plot, the exposition:
The Starship Bliss is a holiday cruise ship upon which Semperites can go to take time away from their planet in the deepest reaches of space, where morals are loose and intoxication and debauchery are common place. Reefe Fervar is one such holiday goer. We begin with Reefe in the ship’s bar, where he is attempting to make conversation with an attractive female crew member, Lowena. Their conversation introduces both characters to the reader, whilst also giving the opportunity to introduce the background/history of the planet. A bond is struck between the two over their shared belief that the derogatory stories passed down about Southerners are inaccurate and that they shouldn’t be regarded as cowards that deserted the planet, but perhaps they were pioneers far more technologically advanced that those who remained. We also at this point see that Reefe is a government official as he brandishes he government communication device during the conversation.
Bliss is manned by an entirely commercial crew with no military or government presence on board. It is also much further away from Semper Nova than any military ship. The ship receives a mysterious message, simply saying ‘TEST’. It doesn’t appear to be of Semperite origin, so the captain Donil Shear contacts the government back on Semper Nova to inform them. They are already aware of the message and inform Shear that the message appears to contain Southerner code. At this point the ship’s crew notice another ship appearing on their radar and quick analysis shows it to also be of Southerner origin. There are no military ships within days of them and Bliss is not equipped with any weaponry. The ship and the government need a secure communication line to prevent the foreign ship from monitoring their conversation, and as Bliss is a commercial vessel, they don’t have the capability. They check the passenger manifest and see that Reefe is on board, so they despatch a team to locate him so that they can use his communicator which will provide a secure line.