Thursday, March 30, 2017

Sunrise and The Vessel

The clocks have changed in the UK, and that's part of the reason for the eternal knackerdness, as is end of term and the Children of Doom who replaced my lovely class yesterday!  I have no idea where my usually adorable children went, but I'd like them back today.  All day they mithered and monked and moaned and poked and pinched and didn't want to work and blah. I had 3 lots of tears from them.


Today, as we say in the class, is a new sunrise, and a new day.  We put yesterday on one side, and we start again with a new page.  It's all good, my children, it's all good.

The Vessel: Write about a ship or other vehicle that can take you somewhere different from where you are now.

At first glance, the ship looks like a ship.  Her rising sides are planks of wood, steambent to shape and caulked to be watertight.  Her name, "Adventurer" is painted on the side, white letters crisp against a black background, undercut with gold to make it shine in the sunlight.  Ahead of the name, the bowsprit lances through the air of the day, ready and waiting to forge into the next trip.  The whole ship has that feeling, of impatience, of an almost visible quivering to go, to get away, to adventure through uncharted waters and discover new lands.  Her sails snap crisply in the breeze as they are unfurled, great black sheets reaching towards the azure sky.

This ship, however, has never felt the lap of water against her sides.  The wind may blow her sails, but it will never power her, and the wooden sides are a covering, an illusionary nod to times gone by.
Step on board, and the differences are instantly noticeable.

The Adventurer is a C-class Schooner ship, designed for short planetary hops.  She's not got the long haul capacity of the Barque class, but she does well enough for what I want.  She's pretty much a one-woman vessel, although I can take passengers and cargo if I want to.  Usually I don't.  I don't really like talking to other people, interacting with other people, even seeing other people is a pain in the backside some days.  Amazon drones do my supplies, the flight tower is automated, the little fuel I pay for is delivered by a taciturn cyborg who just plugs his truck in, waits whilst he dumps accel8 into the tanks, unplugs and goes.  He's only ever spoken once, to confirm my fingerprint, and now delivers when I order, whether I am there or not. 

This suits me.

I was at That Planet, when the worlds ended, and this was all that was left.  I ran, like a coward or like a survivor, depends who you are.  I took as many as I could with me, and dumped them at the nearest refugee station, and then ran, and kept running.  Always running, always waiting for the next disaster, knowing now, that the only thing that could catch up with me is far behind me, back on That Planet.

I used to talk about it.  If I was asked, that is.  I would answer the amazed, breathy voiced questions "What was it like?"  "Did it really happen like the talkies say?"  "How did you get out?"  and I would answer, give the details that those who had only seen it on the moving pictures, or on the talkies would want.  Everyone knows that the news is sanitised - not everyone realises it is for their own sanity, that it protects them from the worlds outside their planet, where things are not the same, and where the truth is not just uncomfortable, it's downright painful.

Now I don't.  Now I avoid people.  I can't deny being there, the Mark is all over me. None of us escaped that, and I am prominently cursed, so I just avoid people.  It's easier.

I board my ship, leaving the wooden outside for a smooth metal inside, electronic and clean, easy to fly single handed, easy to moor somewhere quiet, easy to care for and love, if anything like her can be loved these days.