Monday, June 22, 2015

Story Seed - Unknown Outcome

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God it's cold, I thought. I trudged head down, through the blowing wind, my boots crunching through the snow and ice. I heard my footfalls through my bones, the howling wind tearing the noise away otherwise. Feeling the relentless numbing of the cold, I checked on my micro VEP once more; the readout was reading single digit power generation, which is probably by I was starting to lose feeling in my toes and fingers.

I checked range to the structure ahead once again, the weather making it difficult to gage by eye. Another half klick away. I hoped that I could get inside and out of the storm before the vacuum energy pump in my suit failed entirely. With a little luck I might even be able to affect some repairs on the device.

I bashed my helmet with my gloved fist a few times, knocking ice off and trying to reengage the HUD. I got a momentary projection, enough to see that radio was still picking up nothing, before it crapped out again. This weather was too severe, too cold, and even my grade six survival gear was not faring well against it. My local nano-net was reporting some worrying data to my optical interface, data that told me that if I didn't find shelter soon I wouldn't need to worry about signaling the rescue shuttle.

I pushed on, ignoring the growing numbness in my hands and feet, the tiredness, and the warnings from the med-nanos.

An hour later I was struggling to stay upright. My med-nanos were painting a rather grim picture of my survival chances and my suit was growing cold and heavy now that the VEP had failed entirely. I shouldered into the door of the structure, an old refinery or mining installation by the looks of it, trying to force it free of the frost encrusted frame. My attempts were weak, and the door barely even shook.

I knew I had minutes left before my core temp plunged too far to be able to save myself. The door wasn't going to open, and I didn't have explosives to force the issue. I shook my head and fell against the door, sliding down into a heap. My hands, numb and clumsy, fumbled with the emergency beacon. I managed set it off and wrapped my hands around it as best I could. I could see the cold now, a blackness at the edges of my vision as hypothermia gripped me. I set my med-nanos to do what they could with the cold, maybe they could protect my brain long enough for the rescue to find me.

Maybe ...

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