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   Chapter 49 No.49

LARC Transmissions - An Anki Legacies Science Fantasy Anthology for Young Adults By S Shane Thomas Characters: 5787

Updated: 2018-01-25 19:02


Lance was frozen in place. They were all going to die. He had led LARC7 to its doom and nothing could be done to save them. For the first time in five years, he wished MARC were there. The android would know what to do.

"Kira keep us on course! I'm going to get MARC!" Lance shouted over his shoulder as he raced out of the bridge.

"Hurry!" the pilot screeched. She glanced up and Lance saw a horrified expression.

Lance raced down a corridor and past several fires. He saw atmosphere venting into space before the hull's emergency plating could move into place and create a temporary seal.

"Lance, no update was available, " MARC said. His facial display remained featureless while his activation sequence finished.

"MARC, you've been powered down for five years! We are landing the colony, but asteroids are shredding the hull! Please you've got to come to the bridge now!" Lance blurted in panic.

The droid began to run without as much as a reply. Lance struggled to keep up, he had no idea the robot could move so fast. In the corridor leading to the bridge, a flash of light and heat burst through the wall to their right and Lance felt the cold vacuum pull on him, and a steel grip tighten on his ankle, before blacking out.

I'm dying, he thought, then lost consciousness.

******

Tears rolled down Kira's cheeks. She struggled to keep the colonial starship on course, but every thunderous impact tipped the vessel askew.

"Atmosphere is venting in some of the lower levels! I've sealed off the damaged zones, but I don't know how many more impacts we can take. The hull is losing the antifriction gel we need to enter the atmosphere!" Samantha shouted.

"Link up to navigation complete, " Margery's

ing and taking mental note of all the things he would never do.

Sounds from outside the shuttle snapped him from self-pity. Vince rose and made his way to the viewport. He blinked back surprise. Before him, the face of a creature with a plump barrel for a body, and eye stalks pressed against the glass. Their reports had been accurate! Not only did the planetoid have potential living conditions, it harbored native life. His thoughts of doom were completely forgotten. Vince ran to the hatch, heedless of the unknown threat in the atmosphere and cranked on the latch. It didn't budge. He couldn't get outside.

The eye stalks stared at Vince and he stared back. Would they always be separated by this pane of glass? The atmosphere would kill him slowly, he knew, but Vince wanted to have first contact. He had nothing left to lose. He peered at the creature and focused upon it with an intensity he had never before possessed.

Then, the commingling of the shuttle's atmosphere with that of Planetoid BF8733 took effect, although Vince never made the connection beyond casual suspicion. The turn of his day's events left no time for reflection.

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