All Is Quiet On New Year's Day

JP with Omni and Redsword

7.3.5 SW
8:47/21 SW-CP-Local Time
Sutter's World > Matron’s Coast Airfield > Aerospace Control Tower

It was New Year’s Day way back on Earth, but few people celebrated on Sutter’s World. They had only just finished their 5th revolution around 111 Tauri. Their New Year’s, Sutter’s Day, started with the Summer season. Days and years didn’t work the same on Sutter’s, hell, the months didn’t even have names yet. Instead they had a numeric Day.Month.Year SW designation.

Aerospace Controller Mike Duncan was slightly hungover from his night at Rudy’s Bar on the strip, which was what the colonists called the main thoroughfare between the hexes. It was little more than a narrow street filled with neon lights.

He flipped through his 2184 WY Corporate calendar, each new month having a photograph of some spectacle in places no one from a backwater colony would probably ever see in their lifetime, and each image depicting one of Weyland-Yutani’s products in some way or another. ‘Real subtle marketing...’

Sutter’s World was better than it had any right to be and whoever sent the photos to corporate knew not to make it look too good. The colonists wanted to save the pristine planet as long as possible, but that’s hard to do when it's viable for human life, no terraform necessary, no natives trying to stop you. Too bad they had to strip-mine the damned place.

Duncan was just biting into his donut when he heard a pip from his terminal. Leaning over the monitor he didn’t see anything on the sensor. Crumbs fell onto the keyboard as he took a quick swig of coffee from his a WY cup before sitting down and grabbing his headset. He listened.

"Please respond." came a voice over the comms channel. “I repeat, this is the USCSS Montero. Do you copy?”

‘Montero’? he thought back. Searching around his mass of sticky notes attached to the monitor, Duncan found the one he needed. The USCSS Montero was a Lockmart CM-88G Bison-Class Commercial Star-freighter. Corporate and Colonial Admin flagged it as having a special shipment. A shit ton, or better yet 200,000 shit tons of Helium-3.

It was a safe and clean energy source used throughout the colonies. ‘Yay fusion.’ But that didn't seem that special to Mike Duncan, colonies got deliveries of fuel all the time and Sutter’s wasn’t even really in dire need. Maybe the special delivery was the Colonial Marshal. He was on his way to take over law enforcement and colonial security. Hopefully the authority would be better than some of these jarheads contracted by WY.

“We read you, Montero. This is Control Tower at Matron’s Coast Airfield. The landing pad is clear as crystal this beautiful morning. Haven’t seen activity in weeks. How’s the view from up there?.”

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