The Earthrise was an older space station, a piece of junk by most people’s standards. Sure, she didn’t have artificial gravity like the newer wheel-type stations, but I had special fondness for the old bucket. Floating above the porthole, I could make out the US west coast and Baja California; the rest of the country was still shrouded in night. Hanging above that was the R.S. Hubble, a crew transfer ship, on approach to the station. It was a sleek, swept wing affair; its sides emblazoned with Harriman Enterprises signage.
Out of the corner of my eye, I spotted someone passing through an open bulkhead. I turned quickly to see Dr. Gloria McNye carrying a clipboard, her hair been trimmed short to prevent another incident with the film camera.
“Good morning! Sleep well?”
“I sure did Gloria, this zero G is definitely helping. You? “
“I couldn’t sleep, I’ve just had a lot on my mind lately. I’m worried about something, but I can’t quite put my finger on it. I’m sure it’s nothing.”
“I don’t know, last time you got like this was right before…” before I could finish, there was a loud bang, followed by the sound of rushing air as the bulkhead doors slammed shut. An alarm bell began to sound as I looked over to see Gloria scrambling for an emergency space helmet; I followed suit.
Suddenly, the outer wall of the station gave to an even larger breach, one big enough to swallow a man. Gloria flew helplessly toward it.
“Help, please, help!” She screamed.
“Gloria, Nooo!” I watched helplessly as she was sucked into the inky, black abyss beyond…
I awoke from my reverie to find my mother trying to shake me awake. I was drenched in sweat.
“Son, are you alright? You’re alarm clock didn’t even wake you up.”
“Alarm clock?” That must have been the klaxon from the dream!
“Who’s this ‘Gloria’? “
“I have no idea.” The name did sound familiar, though. I wish I could have seen the rest of that dream; it was starting to get interesting.
However, today was launch day, and I was giddy with excitement... a bit nervous, too.