"Three... Two... One..."

The countdown ended, and Jamie sighed. He had a wrench in his hand, tightening some bolts around a water pipe. The good news was that he'd been able to spend a good amount of time getting his strength back. While they looked the same in this universe, experiences had differed, and Jamie had never experienced life on a wild, totally untamed planet. He still wasn't as strong as he was used to, but it was getting there.

Another technician, also fated to work over New Year was cursing his power-wrench, which was seemingly unable to secure another pipe enough to not leak. Jamie sighed again - a fairly common event in this universe, and wandered over to use his manual wrench, and tightened it further.

"Those power wrenches are no good." He said, "You'll be better off tightening it with your fingers than one of those."

"But how can you do that without a power tool?" The technician asked. He was weedy, and was sweating with over work.

"I learned to not rely on power to get a job done. What do you do if you're trying to fix the power supply for your power tools?"

The kid grunted in acceptance.

It seemed that everyone in this universe was happy to give up their manual tools, feeling confident that power was the way forward. A couple of moments later, and Jamie was back dealing with his own work, and the lights went off. Red emergency lighting flooded the corridor.

"We're under attack." Holly said, appearing on a nearby screen for a moment before power to it too was lost.

"Come on." Jamie said, getting up again. "We should get down to the engine room. If anyone is attacking, they're going to want to shut down our engines and cripple us." The two of them walked, the other guy in silence.

"What are you doing?" The kid asked. Jamie had pulled a panel off from next to the holly console, and was ferretting around in it. A spark, and jolt told him he'd found the emergency power circuit by feel, and a minute later the console powered back up.

"Holly, what's attacking us?" Jamie asked.

"Some kind of aliens. They've got a nuke on the Promenade, and they're slowly shutting down power to the ship. There's a couple of them in the engine room. How did you get this console working? System says there's no power to this deck." Holly replied. Jamie didn't answer his question, but started running off towards the engine room.

As the two got closer, they could hear weapons fire, and shouts from the crew and aliens. Phrases such as "Get that fuel pressure under control!" and "cover me!" could be heard faintly over the gunfire, and it was all interspersed by the sound of steam jets from coolant valves, or grinding pipework as the weapons damaged the engines.

"Kill them!" came a shout as Jamie entered the engine room. He ducked back as bullets ricocheted from the deckplates in front of him.

"Whoever you are, don't let them shut down the engines!" called the chief engineer, who hadn't spotted them. About a minute later, the kid who had lagged behind caught up, panting.

"Stay back, and keep throwing tools out there. Keep them distracted. I need to get in there to help." Jamie said, and threw himself out into the main area of engineering. He'd learned the layout well, and landed behind a console, and instantly started hoping it would be enough to withstand the gunfire he'd drawn.

He looked up, and surveyed the space he could see. pressure gauges were rising nearby, the fuel lines needed relief or the engine would blow and take half the ship with it. He called out to the chief.

"I'll take them down, you get the fuel pressure under control."

The response was laughter. Both from the alien soldiers who believed themselves invincible, and from the chief, who now recognised Jamie's voice, and believed him to be useless at everything. At least when they were laughing, they weren't shooting, so he launched himself over the console, and made about half the distance to his targets before having to duck behind another console.

<Will write more. Needless to say, with the engines in critical condition, the wraiths on the promenade are about to wink out.>

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