Writer’s Log: 2495

…continued from prior post

The shuttle nosed into the port at Cylinder’s central hub, briefly jetting to match rotational spin.

One of the other tourists, a fellow who’d complained of a never ending queasy feeling, whose nose dribbled constantly, a glistening dewdrop forever poised, cracked his helmet against the airlock door. “Ugh. I thought the hub was gravity free.”

“No G’s, but ya gotta match the spin.” Petr swam through the circular exit, following his sister who’d somehow beat him to it. “Cylinder rotates once a minute, you know, relatively speaking.”

Dewdrop’s fiance rubbed his helmet where she’d seen it strike. “Easy there, dear. We’ll get to our room at the outer shell where you can finally rest.”

Raina helped corral the couple through and into the antechamber that lead to reception. “As soon as you’re past this next room, you should be able to remove your helmet.” She gave them a nudge. “Hmm. You can start to smell the scent of loam. Familiar smells can help, with….”

The woman smiled weakly. “Thanks, I’ll take it from here.”

Dewdrop mumbled, “I don’t like smell of dirt…”

Raina frowned, spun and tugged her husband out of his seat. “Alexi, we’re the last to go. Unless you want to stay cooped up in here.”

“I was just checking some numbers.” Mr. Dolanoff had been outfitted with a heads-up-display within his helmet. “Looks like the mining company ran into issues while transporting the third rock.”

“Tell me about it on the way.” She shoved Alexi through the hole, giving him a bit too much momentum.

The fully suited attendant, receiving the crew, snagged him as he whipped through. “Whoa, there cowboy. The Z-G race isn’t until tomorrow.” He swung Alexi in an arc and pinned him to the wall of the chamber. He spied Raina. “Looks like you’re last. Let me seal up this first lock and then get you all processed. We’ll have your luggage delivered to your rooms.”

Reception proved a marvel. Luscious vines, and ferns, all apparently immune to zero-G, imbued the tubular enclosure, the size of a city water tank, with earthy tones and organic shapes. Light, dawn colored to match the diurnal timezone that the crew had departed, gave the feeling of an early spring morning.

The attendant, Rick, had followed them through. “You two look agile,” he said to Petr and Alsatia, “let me show you how close locks here on Cylinder.” He tucked a toe into a loop for leverage and pulled the second door closed, gave it a tug to seal it, and dogged it locked. A green glow lit up around the border. “Think of Cylinder like a big submarine. Closing hatches saves lives.”

The eight person crew followed his example when Rick twisted off his helmet.

“Ooh, the room is spinning around us.” Dewdrop gagged once. “Where’s gravity. I need…”

Rick grabbed a bag from a secret alcove, snapped it open and shoved it into Dewdrop’s face. “Some love this room. Zero-G, great aroma, jungle like. Some don’t.”

Alsatia drifted over to the wall and began rotating with it, around the others who floated in the middle. Between the planters, rows of LED lights glowed. She reached into a tangle of greenery and plucked out a brown, furry egg. “Hey look, I found a kiwi.”

“Alsatia,” Raina fumed. She turned to Rick. “I’m sorry. If that’s part of some experiment…”

“Oh, don’t worry. We grow so much food here, we pretty much don’t keep track. Not for the food we eat.” Rick did a quick acrobatic flip opposite of Alsatia and extracted a finger long cucumber. He took a bite. “But, we do expect you to eat what you pick.”

“Oh,” Alsatia said, looking embarrassed. “I’ll save it for later.” She patted her suit and finally tucked the fruit inside her stiff collar.

Her mother continued to glare. Alsatia gave her a big smile.

Rick radioed for two assistants who showed up within minutes. “Tricia, can you take the Zhangs to Tahiti Terrace? Ben, the Clarks are headed to Starry Night, and I’ll lead the Dolanoff’s down to Carousel.”

Raina, ever the hostess, bid farewell to the Clarks and Zhangs. “Take care. This is going to be marvelous.”

“Maybe we’ll see you a-round,” Alsatia chimed as the other two groups drifted through portals at the far end of the room.

“Ugh,” Petr groaned. “Is that how it’s going to be?”

Rick, stroking his shaved head, joined in. “Round is my favorite.”

Alexi followed the attendant as he led them through yet a third air-lock. “Come on you three. Save your puns for gravity.”

Alsatia grinned. “Heavy, man.”

“This is gonna be a long ride,” Petr said, his own grin settling in. He was here, in the most incredible structure humanity had ever created. A place only a fraction of the nine billion souls on Earth would ever experience. “A wild, wicked ride.”

~~~

This is a link to an online calculator for determining rotational speed and G-forces for spinning cylinders…

https://www.tomlechner.com/outerspace/


17 thoughts on “Writer’s Log: 2495

  1. One of the other tourists, a fellow whose constantly dribbling nose left a glistening dewdrop of snot forever poised on its end and who’d complained endlessly of a queasy sensation that never left him, cracked his helmet against the airlock door. If you don’t want the run-on up could add word count with (.) He was also the one who’d complained etc.You could also use a leaky water faucet simile.
    And the kid, being hip to surf lingo, could say, “Got a greener hangin’ there, pops.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. SOC – Stream of consciousness. Acronyms, as stated above, are a PITA. The professor, grading a paper where an acronym sufficed for a “source,” asked Alexa about said acronym and got 11 choices. Like most things, it’s about context.
    This is mind bending, particularly now that your last edit (which killed those four useless last words) has now made it one big block of text – One of the other tourists, a fellow whose nose dribbled constantly, a glistening dewdrop forever poised, cracked his helmet against the airlock door. “Ugh. I thought the hub was gravity free.” “No G’s, but ya gotta match the spin.” Petr swam through the circular exit, following his sister who’d somehow beat him to it. “Cylinder rotates once a minute, you know, relatively speaking.” Dewdrop’s fiance rubbed his helmet where she’d seen it strike. “Easy there, dear. We’ll get to our room at the outer shell where you can finally rest.” The man had complained endlessly of a queasy sensation that never left him.
    Can you lasso the first line and last line of that ADD intro and add the middle bit logically? Like dude with runny nose defined, coddled, then start the convo?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So, is it the interlaced dialog with description? Three different speakers, three different activities? All dispersed?

      I’m guessin’ that might be it. And this is probably a general tendency of mine. Until there’s a real conversation occurring, that’s how I assembled it. Maybe you want more paired up dialog.

      As always, I’m looking for general trends that either work or don’t and how I can train my brain to instinctively compose them differently.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Simpler than that. Describe the guy in one go with his event by adding the last line to the I think the second in one good sentence, follow it logically with the convo, keep moving.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. KAP? Had to look her up. Spaceship of Fools? Despoiling Judas? Not sure of what you speak.
      If you refer to this YA Space-Tripe being thoroughly devoid of literature appeal, guilty.
      I attempt this with the intent of replicating Andy Weir’s stories, albeit in my nutrient barren, nerd-candy way.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. KAP was a reference to your last installment that presented as one block of SOC text. As long as paragraph content in her work remained in context no lines were broken for interior/exterior dialog. But she was brilliant, and we are not. So white space serves a purpose for those of us less likely to get a reader to follow us through a brick laying moment.
        Nerd candy it is. Except for the short population paragraph that came out of left field all is what it is.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Damn. I really want to understand the error of my waze. Can you pinpoint your references? Block of “SOC”? Short population paragraph.
          I’m afraid I’ve got Rust on the brain, all initialism refer to software: “Standard Operating Control”?

          Like

            1. If it were SOX, an actual acronym, I’d have to wonder what Sarbane-Oxley violation I’d committed. But SOC? Security Operations Center? SOP maybe: Standard Operating Procedure?
              Ah, I think I found it: Stream of Consciousness. Which would fit with the KAP reference who, from the scant tidbits I found, looks like she often wrote in God-Mode, global 3rd person, dipping into the minds of all her characters, at-will. (But, only having limited exposure, I’ve probably assumed wrongly.)

              Liked by 1 person

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