It seems that fall is my time for learning about writing and I am yet again taking a writing course. This time it is the Story Puzzle with David Farland/Dave Wolverton. Below is the result of the first assignment.

Marli woke up to the sound of engines. Or, to be more precise, she woke up to the sudden lack of the sound of engines.

“Get it up,” she muttered, still more than half asleep, her mouth tasting like some long dead thing.

Marli counted to 100 under her breath and when the comforting, sub-sonic rumbling didn’t start up again, she got up muttering curses. Her nanobot-colony tickled as it rearranged itself into something more durable and protective than the light sleeping configuration it had been in just moments before. Her Brainlux turned on illuminating the room in an eerie, gray light, multiplying the weak light her eyes were receiving. Somewhere inside her head the Brainlux let her know that while she had been sleeping, someone had sent her six messages. They could wait. She adjusted her nasal canula to make sure it was secure before exiting the hab she shared with her daughter and her partner. He kept on sleeping, his light snores filling her ears and with a last look at his sleeping comfort she walked out.

She made her way down to the lower levels along the outer hull. She ran her fingers against the ferrous rock of the hollowed-out asteroid worn smooth by generations of people before her doing the same. The scent of sleeping bodies wafted into the corridors as some of the bleary-eyed inhabitants came out to see why the engines had stopped. Many of the younger adults had completely forgotten to put on their own nasal canulas and Marli privately longed for the time when she could still be so carefree with the ever-changing atmosphere of the ship. Of course, her colony might have been able to keep her from suffocating but that was no kind of life.

The door ahead of her slid open at her approach and she put all thoughts out of her mind as she stepped through to the engine command hub. The buzzing activity always looked like chaos for outsiders but to Marli it was beauty personified. The men and women all strode around with purpose, capable and sure, chattering constantly to make sure others knew what they were doing. The distinct smell of well-oiled machines somehow always found its way up to the command hub even though the engines themselves were secured into four separate bays two full decks below them. Apprentices were running around delivering tools and supplies, even a few sandwiches here and there, still young enough to be able to breathe the air on their own. In a decade or two the atmosphere would match the one at their destination and hopefully the next generation would never need help to breathe.

“Engineer Marli Becker reporting for duty, April 21st 2512, year 412 of the Voyage,” she said, activating her Brainlux’s work interface.

Her vision filled with things requiring her attention marked in red overlays, warnings in yellow overlays and people approaching her as if she were some kind of angel arriving on wings of salvation.