A grim discovery

“I’ll take engineering” Cass volunteered “Although I’ve got to say I’m not mad keen on us all splitting up – I’ve seen too many teen slasher flicks to think that it’s ever going to be a good idea, and I’m worried as well that trying to chase around after the key might be the wrong thing to do - Are we sure that Holly is really going to relinquish control of the ship if we go waving the thing around in the drive room? He may be mad and bad, but he’s still bloody clever – it might be a trap…”
Seymour rolled his eyes
“Every silver lining has a cloud for you, doesn’t it? How do you even sleep at night?”
<end snip>
"No" Jay said "We're not sure, but we don't know that it's NOT a trap either. What if he's telling the truth? You're gonna travel through the ship, facing smeg knows what just to get to engineering to find you can't do a damn thing without the key? Then what?"
"Good point!" Solvay butted in.
"Thanks." Jay said, "And those simulants have been aboard for a while, and in all that time have never managed to get the ship powered up, you think they've not been to engineering and tried to get it started? Sim's are pretty good with machines, if there was a way to get the ship started without the key, I'd bet they'd be the ones to do it. "
Davie nodded in agreement "He's right, have you ever seen any of the torture devices they build...works of genius. Couldn't do it without knowing a thing or two about engineering"
"Exactly" Jay replied "I share your concerns about splitting up, but I'd think we were being foolish if we hedge our bets on the hope that Holly's lying..."
White Wolf opened his mouth to speak again but was interuppted by a noise outside the cargo bay's door. ".....what...." he said "was that?"
"What was what?" Seymour, asked, White Wolf realized that he was being met by a series of confused looks.
"I heard something..." White Wolf's keener senses had picked it up before anyone else, but sure enough, Jay and Davie soon picked up a blip on the motion sensors on their rifles.
"He's right....we've got company guys, look alive.." Jay said, raising his rifle to face the door.
"And more, over there!" white wolf snapped suddenly, pointing to the door on the opposite side. "They've got us surrounded!"
Davie wheeled around to aim his weapon at the other door.
"How many?" he asked.
"20...maybe 30...." White wolf said, "about the same at that door..."
"We can't fight all of them..." Solvay said
"...speak for yourself..." Jay and Davie said together
"We need to find a way out of here!" Seymour shouted
"On eet!" assured Gomez, as using a multi-tool, he removed the bolts holding a floor panel in place.
He lifted the panel free, revealing a maintenance tube below. "Go! Now!" Jay shouted, still aiming his rifle at the first door.
"Jones and I will cover you"
"Will I?" Cass asked
"Not you - Davie!, GO!"
White Wolf, being the most agile in tight spaces leapt first into the hole to lead the way through the pipes, followed by Cass, Solvay and Gomez.
"What about me?" Seymour asked, glancing down at his wheelchair.
"Can you crawl?" Davie asked
"Well..yes, but I'm not going to dirty my knees like a commoner..."
“Oh for smeg’s sake Seymour!” Jay holstered his gun and dashed across the room, violently shoving Seymour into the vent and falling in behind him, Davie was quick to follow, grabbing the floor panel to re-seal their escape route but as he did so, the weight in the tube became too much and it gave way, falling through the ceiling of the deck below, and tossing the group out high above the floor of the much larger cargo bay below them. Davie hung for a few minutes from the ceiling, his hands still holding the floor panel, which now fit snugly in it’s housing before dropping to the floor.
Jay was the first to get to his feet and took a look around. “Oh god…” he said, his voice rather less chipper than usual “This is just……oh god..”
“What?” said Cass, standing up and dusting herself off before seeing what Jay was seeing. “Oh…”
All around the room lay the skeletal remains of humans, all in JMC uniforms.
“They must have sheltered here….when they couldn’t get to stasis…” Jay said sombrely. “There’s hundreds of them…Holly must have cut off the life support when the last of them died……preserving them…”
“They’d have been safe from the radiation for a while here..” White Wolf said “But not forever….”
Jay glanced at the nametag on the withered uniform of the nearest skeleton and clasped a hand to his mouth. “Jenny Wildflower….” He said “smeg….she…..and i…shit..” he turned around to the rest of the group. “This is a tomb now…show what respect you can, but find us a way out of here….quickly…”


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