Work Therapy (Day 2 Evening - Outside Lunar Veil)

The galley cooktop filters were a grease fire waiting to happen.

Did he get the kids away?

Even after dark, the oppressive heat and humidity of Greenleaf didn’t break. Marisol had wheeled the two heavy warehouse fans down onto the tarmac in hopes of providing some encouragement for her filters to dry. After scrubbing each in a detergent bath, she’d blast them with the water hose, before setting them down before the roaring fans. The portable work lights cast a harsh glare upon the scene. Adjacent to the nearby jungle as they were, every now and again the mechanic would look up to see a pair of eyes glittering reflection in the treeline.

She’d stripped off the bulky coveralls. Marisol wore one of her sleeveless undershirts, her work boots, and a pair of boxers she’d liberated from Dorian’s room. Regardless, the lighter clothing was now soaked in sweat, clinging to her legs and torso as she scrubbed. A shower would never feel so good, but if she were lucky, that shower would be several hours away…unless a neighboring boat complained of the noise.

Are they still hunting?

Engineering had been a disaster. The purple bellies had dumped every parts bin, every tool case, anything that might have contained something else, onto the deck grating. This sent a myriad of the little pieces raining down into the bowels of the ship. All it would take was one screw landing amid moving parts to wreak havoc. She’d spent the entire flight ridding the multiple deck space of all the loose objects, before the tedious chore of separating them back to their appropriate bins could begin.

The infirmary was actually not difficult at all, though she understood it to be a double edged sword. The simple round screen slipped back into its’ original location, and the sliced cable from the Alliance raid proved useful in pulling the original conduit along its’ in-wall channel to the squat equipment box she’d re-bolted to the counter. An easy job, but having been a patient, she could appreciate the healing power they’d lost. Restoring the old exam table hadn’t been fun, but once she had it propped on its’ bolts, the work proceeded without incident.

What about Maria? Just stay busy.

Dorian’s room was a minefield of shattered glass bottles and the sickly odor of stale bourbon. The Alliance thugs had ripped the pages from all of his books, before littering the deck and the bed. Try as she might to salvage them, the liberal soaking of whiskey had glued paper together and caused much of the ink to run. In the end, all she could do was help him to scrape the mess into a trash bin and devote herself to getting his living space usable once more.

As for her own, there were hidden advantages to using one of the smallest living spaces on the boat. The purple troops had taken her guns…bothersome, but not crippling.

Mi Dios, let mis hijos be safe….let them be safe. Stay busy…what am I doing here?

Considering an average rate of one filter every six minutes, she’d given herself sixteen hours to either clean or replace each of Lunar Veil’s one hundred forty-seven individual filters. Some of them had proven to be in pretty bad shape, requiring extra time.

Despite the constant work, she couldn’t shake the icy core of fear from the pit of her stomach. She couldn’t reach out to Lyen. The sister had only been seen in brief glimpses…adrift in a sea of orange kasaya robes. At sight of Marisol, the religious escorts would steer her away, their faces set, stony eyes looking right past her as they swept their sister to a new confinement. The hurtful thing about it was that Lyen appeared to succumb to the groupthink. Her eyes would touch Marisol’s, and just as quickly avert. As if she were ashamed…like we’d done something wrong, the mechanic puzzled as she bent over the washtub. Maybe I did, she reflected. Shouldn’t have let myself need her…

Just stay busy…

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