At some point, they’d figured out how to pilot the ship. “I see a planet in the distance. We’ll have to land there.” Halon decided.
I’d entirely quit what little effort I’d been putting into keeping myself together. There was only so much a girl could deal with at once, and I’d reached my limit.
Before letting my thoughts move on to analyze Talon, I spent what felt like an eternity thinking of Chase. Besides me, Chase had been the youngest of the crew at twenty four. A former interstellar fighter pilot, he’d gotten an honorable discharge from the army at nineteen after sustaining an injury in combat. He’d never told me why, and I kind of didn’t want to know, either.
“Are you still thinking about that boy?” Cotto asked exasperatedly.
“Chase, actually,” I mumbled.
Halon laughed unexpectedly. “I don’t think Chase ever expected to live this long anyway.”
“Why not?” How could Halon think Chase wanted to die?
“Chase didn’t live like anyone else, Marina. He wanted to have the most fun that he could and do everything the world could offer. I think he expected to get himself killed a long time ago. In Chase’s terms, he probably already considered himself an old man.”
“I guess that makes you ancient.” Cotto snickered.
“Oh, haha, you’re hilarious Cotto. You should quit private shipping and become a comedian. I’ll tell everyone how privileged I was to know you.” Halon’s voice dripped with sarcasm.
“Maybe I should. Bet it pays better.”
“Yeah, getting a 45/350 lay is just awful, isn’t it?” Halon rolled his eyes. “How ever do you survive?”
“Because being your first lieutenant is so much easier than just sitting around yelling at…” Cotto and Halon’s joking conversation cut off. Halon had always liked to pick on Chase, and Cotto had barely managed to stop herself from saying his name.
An awkward silence ensued. “We’re probably going to be able to land soon.” Halon noted. “Wonder what planet that is?”
Out of bored curiosity, I craned my neck to see out the window. I was surprised to recognize the red and blue planet. “That’s Baltienna.”
“Your home, right?” Cotto recalled.
I nodded. “It’s been a long time.”
“Well then, you’ll get to show us around, right? Maybe I’ll finally get to meet your mom. Hello Ms. Marina’s mother, I babysat your daughter for four years. Can I have some free food?” Cotto giggled, squinting out the window.
“I doubt you’ll get that lucky. My Mom’s never home. She’s always off doing her art thing. I don’t even know why she has a house.”
“It’s your house too. Maybe she keeps it for you.”
“I don’t think she cares.” I admitted.
Halon moved to take the controls. “So which way is your hometown?”
“The port at Sieta.”
“I think I remember where that is.” He jerked the wheel sharply to the right. “This is your captain speaking. We’re headed for a turbulent landing.” He held up an imaginary walkie talkie.
“You do know how to land this, don’t you?”
“I’ll figure it out.”
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