I've been able to pick and poke at a couple of my short stories during this past week. Not much happened for new words, but lots of editing improvements were had during the hours at my keyboard. I've been able to sort of get a plan together for the next story to blog out, which will start November 5th if all goes well. Keep an eye here next week for the free downloads of Daion Echoes through Transglass. I hope you get to have a good weekend!
Trevor crouched to adjust her son’s jacket, making sure the brilliant green of the collar trimming complimented Lott’s eyes as well as she believed it should. She also checked that his shirt was staying tucked. The full-faced frown he directed at her was achingly similar to the expression his father wore every time she’d fussed about his appearance and she smiled to see the resemblance. This little boy in front of her was growing out of everything again and she hadn’t had time to shop for a new shirt after realizing this one was too small only an hour before they’d had to leave the house. If she’d known yesterday…
She never thought she’d one cycle live landside, but here she was, counting hours and days. Here we are, she corrected the thought and hugged her boy.
Well, we're one election down and one to go. The sham of a federal election barely concealing the attempted power grab was an expensive failure on the part of the Liberals to gain a majority seating in parliament. Thank goodness it failed. I unfortunately am one of the many Canadians who live in the majority of Canada which is not southern Ontario, and therefore is obviously not the federal "favorite child" who controls election results in our current voting system.
Ahem: <Steps onto soapbox to rant>.
As for the other election, advance polls for our city's mayorship start this coming Monday. I don't even know where to begin to look for those who are not blatantly corrupt or self-serving at these small polls. Our Premier is watching in surprise as our health care system collapses, after jumping gleefully onto every opportunity he was able to create to reach this point, and cities and townships are trapped in the nightmare of trying to keep the peace as constituents die and protest. And the main question I hear on the radio that Edmonton politicians seem to be focusing on during the past couple of weeks is: "How can we revitalize the downtown core?"
Seriously? That's their Big Question?
Bit of back story for you, friends. As warned by every city who tried to influence the decision, a downtown stadium and/or arena deters people from an area due to the crime they attract. The arena our city's politicians at the time demanded was "in the interest of revitalizing the downtown community and businesses" was voted down by constituents three times before being pushed through in a backdoor deal. It has since been a financial drain on the city and – surprise, surprise – a draw for crime activity within the downtown core, ensuring accelerated small business closures and less people visiting the remaining businesses and downtown events (and that was before Covid showed up and geared the decline to an even faster pace).
Sorry, Useless Folks Making Selfish Decisions, you killed downtown Edmonton when you lined your pockets with the money skimmed on the backdoor arena deal. Now we all have to live with that failure.
How about, instead of flogging that long-dead horse of "revitalizing downtown", you start acknowledging the growing numbers of Covid deaths and Long Covid survivors and enact useful aide and support for our community's families and victims? How about some city-wide contact tracing, and support for Edmonton Districts' schools and teachers to re-implement 2-week isolations after close contacts? What about ensuring safe access to opioids and addiction recovery support for those growing numbers of people with addictions whom our provincial government has denied by closing safe dosing locations? What steps is Edmonton taking – aside from lip service – toward meaningful Truth and Reconciliation with our local Indigenous populations, inclusive of city policing reform? And, as our federal government chokes any chance of economic recovery for the main industries Edmonton supports, how will the city ensure housing security and affordable access to retraining for skilled workers and their families?
The city is in crisis, which is doubled due to your own actions and those of the politicians before and above you, and your talking point is to "revitalize downtown" while holding an election in the middle of a pandemic. Awesome.
Just. Freakin'. Awesome.
Sigh: <Climbs off soapbox>.
“Looks like the handle for a manual hand crank,” Lissa said, not impressed.
“Well, yeah, this is,” Leo agreed. “But,” he said, drawing out the word as he gave the handle a shove and started rotating the circle in the floor. Heavy decking scissored closed across the top of the tunnel gap, covering the small pit completely and interlocking in the same pattern as emergency doors. Leo kept cranking and a smooth, third, thinner section of decking slid across the top and then lifted to be level with the floor under the current flooring. It hissed as the mechanical autoseal inflated.
“So, rather than escape the same way you got in, we’re both now stuck in here?” Lissa asked.
“What’s so important he has to stay behind to finish?” Leo asked, catching up to Captain. Mollin was leading the way using his linked smart and handheld to light the hallway ahead.
“If we crash landside with all ordinance, Dockland will take half the planet out with the explosion,” Captain replied through gritted teeth. “He’s ensuring all munitions are launched into safe orbits. Dockland crashing will be an extinction event for anything living on the surface of this world, but at least the world will still be here to resettle again later.”
Content Warning: fear, and bodily injuries.
Leo was panting and wincing, and completely grateful to see Captain had arrived. She was bleeding from a cut in her forehead and one of her arms was hanging loosely in a bad way.
“Mollin has a live link into Shiner’s systems through a handheld and his corrupted smart,” Leo explained. “Are you all right?”
“I was on a maintenance ladder for the initial impact. Do you have control of any of Shiner’s systems?” she asked, glancing toward Mollin and then scanning the room. Her boots crunched over the broken glass which had been the antique handheld’s screen as she limped past panels for NavCom and knelt to press her fingers against Lastin’s throat.
“I’ve cut into Shiner more than I ever did or could here,” Mollin confirmed, cocking half a smile at her.
Content Warning: fear, and bodily injuries.
People’s smarts were coming back on as Mollin darted out of the control room. Leo set his to max brightness and then snapped it off his wrist. “Everyone, we need some emergency lighting. If you can, snap your smarts to the walls,” he said, doing exactly that as he said it.
A line of people had strung together along one side of the hallway outside the control room; crew members who had been drawn by the counting and then stayed due to the glow from the panels. A few stood and snapped their smarts to the walls, providing hopeful lighting in the otherwise perfect blackness.
Sorry for the late update! This week has been busy enough that I'm feel like I'm back working on field construction sites lol. It makes for short hours and long days, but so rewarding because the work is ours. Making candies and shirt decals is a lot better than steel construction. (At least it is for me!)
“Dockland exists,” Captain’s voice interrupted Leo’s thinking. “This exploration exists. All Coalition worlds exist! You are in violation of Coalition non-settlement law by claiming this sector!” Captain was shouting again.
Shiner’s readings were smaller and smaller as the distance between Shiner and Dockland read smaller and smaller.
“Come on come on come on,” Leo muttered, hitting his fist to his forehead in an attempt to clear his thinking so he could figure this out. Why did Lissa want him to hear this right now?
Content Warning: This section includes description of a terror attack against a large population, depicting destruction of structures and persons.
Everyone’s smarts chimed and the report from the latest scheduled sweep showed Shiner had made yet another change in course. This latest change added an additional forty-five minutes to their route. Leo checked the still holo he’d captured and saw that, now, Shiner would arrive only fifteen minutes in advance of what Leo was gaining confidence in being the second pre-InterStel ship.
“Lastin?” Leo called, lifting the handheld off his lap and setting it aside. “I can’t find anything similar to what you’re thinking are errors. I guess keep making note of it and we’ll see what comes up,” he said. The tone of his voice almost convinced himself he didn’t have a still vid on his smart right now that showed NavCom routing of the ‘error’ following exactly along Dockland’s pre-programmed route here.
Relief flowed through the control room. Leo glanced over his shoulder when relieved comments came from what should have been the empty space and hall behind him. He hadn’t realized there were people gathering outside the control room in the hall now that Shiner’s arrival time was approaching. A grin pulled at his lips as he turned back after noting a few heads bowed low over smarts. People were looking up the records to make their own comparisons between Shiner and Dockland. The relief ran thicker as those doing the immediate comparisons shared the quick results of their searches with anyone close to them.
Mollin stood and walked over to pick up the old handheld, then leaned over NavCom as if sharing looking up something to show Leo. “Why did you say you were still scared if you know Shiner isn’t a threat? Or are you just pretending so all of us who didn’t know would feel better?” Mollin asked in a whisper only Leo could hear.
Leo picked up his fork and started eating because – face it squarely – Lissa was right. The group Trevor had volunteered onto was under orders to focus on sealing hulls and ensuring operation of the over distance engines. Component transporters were pressuring completed sections of fleet ships with safe atmosphere from their own systems, and Dockland’s remaining seven lifeboats had all undergone tethering connections being added to their life supports.
I got my second COVID shot on Wednesday! Yay! Only two weeks to maximum inoculation! I also got the reassurance that my immune system, although having had a bit of a break the past year and a half, is still reared up and ready for action. Thursday's immuno-response was impressive in how dedicated my body was to the cause. I felt like I had mono again. Thankfully I could sleep through most of the day because my kids are old enough they don't need mom. A lot of extra cookies were eaten, but the oldest made sure the youngest also got some fruits and veggies and toast for lunch. Today I'm feeling a lot better, but the sleepy brain fog is lingering so... we'll see how it goes.
This week has been a little on the "too busy" side, but my husband and I are in the final push to be ready to pedal our freeze dried wares at a trade market next weekend. "Too busy" is to be expected when preparing stock. Any time asked, in my opinion anyway, freeze dried foods prep will beat out fresh foods prep for markets; freeze dried can be prepped weeks in advance :)
Aside from food things, over in vinyl and heat transfer decal things (and on a really fun note), a local artist has been working with us to put his graphics onto shirts. It's been amazing to see the creativity, and absolutely awesome to watch our products turn into his first sales. He's been drawing for years, but hadn't ventured into selling his works until a few weeks ago. Now he's got us excited for him and what the coming years will bring. I feel like this will become a story of "oh yeah, he had us put some of his first graphics on shirts a few years ago..." as we look at his latest artwork adorning expensive walls or gracing high profile clothing.
Teal moved seats to the empty one in front of P.O.R.A. Her motions on the controls were accompanied with the ticks, beeps and tones everyone working in the below decks control room had gotten used to hearing.
Leo leaned his elbows onto the edge of the P.D.E.W. console and opened a news page. Head articles were all about Coalition Games now, and he had to scroll down to find anything about the full probe into Senior Coalition.
A weekly blog updating on Fridays with quick personal blurbs about me, as in what's going on during my life as an Author and mom, and that doles out my short stories and novellas in bite-sized parts for everyone to read for free!