Nothing was happening.
Like nothing… when they say space is quiet – that is an understatement and a lie, funny enough.
It was Day 37 of this relative quiet streak. Only the solar radio waves splashed across the ships primary transceiver with occasional quiet blips back from the deployed probes.
System awoke from her sleep. She rolled out of her bunk. She had decided things were so quiet in this distant J space she would risk sleeping dry.
She wasn’t crazy though. The ships Cloak had been active now for 17 hours and she had parked it at a random AU from the Sun and a mid-warp spot between two of the 7 planets in this star system.
The walk from the bunk to the kitchenette took her past the hydroponic bay and she plucked the next to last Pear from the vine it hung on.
When she arrived at the kitchenette she sat down and sliced the Pear with a vibra-lade placing the pieces into a bowl of yogurt and sprinkled some Papreek seed across it. She had done this so often she did not even realized the ritualized preparation was being done as her mind was on something else.
For the last 37 days she had drifted in and out of cloak, in and out of J spaces, and in and out of consciousness. The monotony, solitude, and quiet was starting to get to her, starting to play games with her mind.
She worked out for nearly 2 hours after breakfast both running around the small vessel and plying her muscles against the gravimetric weights working up a sweat and an aching body. It was a good ache that meant her muscles and bones were still solid and young.
This last clone body had been the most youthful feeling one to date, even though they were always the same age when she awoke in them. Maybe it was just her mind that made it feel so young.
After a swift clean in the cleanser, System walked to the lounge and checked her logged communiques.
Not a single new Eve-mail in 37 days. Not even a corporation notification about some fool hardy war declaration being announced or rescinded by Concorde.
System shut down and restarted the computer terminal and started diagnostic and debug software to confirm it was functioning correctly.
The morning seem to draw on and on with small inconsequence tasks until she realized she had not eaten in nearly 7 hours.
After consuming some packaged food she reclined and took a quick nap on the hammock she had strung between the bulkheads in the forward observation lounge.
Then more nothing.
She awoke in a cold sweat, heart pounding with adrenaline pumping through her body. She was ready. After a few seconds of all attentive sensing her surroundings she realized there was nothing threatening or demanding her attention.
The quiet hum of the ships systems silently whispering to her their oppression.
System made herself a hot pocket of faux carne and red sauce and wandered around the ship just hoping to find something out of place so she could have something to do while she ate.
She spent the next 4 hours re-cleaning the air and liquid refresher systems only to find no dirt nor dust nor even a fingerprint out of place… but she did find relief from the monotony by her futile and unneeded labours.
Tired she decided to take a warm gel sleep in her pod. Maybe she would sleep longer there than in her dry sleeps, though she was likely to have the pod dream terrors. She was looking forward to a scary pod dream, it would at least be entertaining if she could realize she was dreaming when she was suspended in the fluid.
She went to strip off her clothes in preparation for entering the pod when, looking down, System realized she had been stark naked for the last two weeks.
She laughed under her breath.
Good thing this was a solo voyage. Only ALLISON could see her, and ALLISON did not judge her. If anything ALLISON probably was jealous that she even had a body… well, if ALLISON could feel jealously that is.
Funny how something like that could slip her mind. She was alone Trillions of AU from anyone she knew, as far as she could tell, there in the quiet j spaces in which she travelled.
She slipped into the pod goo like a lover falling into the arms of their beloved. It’s warm embrace engulfing the silence, soothing and drawing her into the alternate reality.
For the first time in three weeks she felt alive, ready for whatever may come.