Getting Your Moneys Worth

by 

Author : Trevor Fitch

“Listen Captain, I’ve saved up years for this trip, and if you don’t get me there on time, I’m going to have your head! The rest of the passengers and I are in complete agreement on this. We paid for a trip of a lifetime and we want our moneys worth. My lawyer and my representative of the Intergalactic Senate will be hearing from me!” Finishing his rant, the irate customer stormed off the bridge.

With a sigh, Captain Diggs looked out into the nothingness just ahead of the ship. There were no stars, no planets, no space dust… just nothing.

“Captain, sensors still aren’t showing anything out there. Energy… matter… radiation sensors, all register a null reading. I had the sensors tested for errors, but everything checks out.”

“ETA until we drift into the… whatever that is?”

“Approximately 10 minutes sir.”

The Captain sighed. The cruise had been a miserable one. Over 500 passengers were on board on their way to see the Rings of New Saturn. These trips were extremely popular because as the planet approached the systems sun, the ice crystals in the ring began to sparkle brightly. It was quite beautiful. This trip was to be extra special as a comet was going to impact the planet while they were there. The impact and plumes of dust would be visible from space. A once in a lifetime experience.

However things had not gone well. They had left a day late due to engine trouble, and only a few hours before they were going to approach the prime viewing spot the hasty repairs had failed. To make matters worse, this trip represented the last of Captain Diggs’ money.

He had mortgaged everything he owned to make this trip. Business had slowed as more competitors had appeared and started taking passengers to the Rings. Now that it seemed likely that he would not make it to the Rings on time, the thought of more complaining customers and their eventual request for refunds gave him a migraine. At the moment he could not think of a way to keep the ship, home for him and his crew, from being put on the auction block.

Now this. Out of nowhere, a “hole” in space had appeared directly in front of them. Ships had been encountering these from time to time over the last few hundred years. But the “holes” did not last long, usually a day or two at most. And they were rare, so little hard data existed about them, and no one had dared enter one.

Without engine power, the ship was drifting directly towards it.

“Does the computer have any idea of what these things are?” The Captain asked.

“Nothing certain. We could be looking at a parallel dimension or some sort of rip in space-time. Maybe even some sort of portal.”

“What happens if we enter it.”

“I don’t know. The potential outcomes range from ceasing to exist, to coming out somewhere else in the universe, to entering a parallel universe. The possibilities are endless.”

“Cease to exist?”

“Possible… but unlikely. Most of the data that we have says they lead somewhere, they are just too rare and short lived to get an empirical answer.”

“What is our engine status?”

“We’re working on it. We have maybe 10% of maximum power available. I don’t think it’s enough to stop our drift in time.”

The Captain paused for a moment. “Take us in.”

“Sir?”

“Like the man said, they paid for the trip of a lifetime, let’s give them their moneys worth.”

___________________
This is your future: Submit your stories to 365 Tomorrows
365 Tomorrows Merchandise: The 365 Tomorrows Store
The 365 Tomorrows Free Podcast: Voices of Tomorrow

Next Story ·
Previous Story ·
Random Story · Messana

Comments are closed.

I’ve Seen Things…

365tomorrows launched August 1st, 2005 with the lofty goal of providing a new story every day for a year. We’ve been on the wire ever since.

Our stories are a mix of those lovingly hand crafted by a talented pool of staff writers, and select stories received by submission.

The archives are deep, feel free to dive in.

Tomorrows Past

A Point in Time

October 2014
M T W T F S S
« Sep    
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031  

What is Flash Fiction?

"Flash fiction is fiction with its teeth bared and its claws extended, lithe and muscular with no extra fat. It pounces in the first paragraph, and if those claws aren’t embedded in the reader by the start of the second, the story began a paragraph too soon. There is no margin for error. Every word must be essential, and if it isn’t essential, it must be eliminated."

Kathy Kachelries, Founding Member