The Importance of a Clean Windshield
By Sara Codair
“Scrape that off before you make the jump.” Dad’s voice crackled through the com. Like everything Iris’ family owned, it was utterly obsolete.
He faded to static. Iris imagined him lecturing her on the dangers of bringing organic, terrestrial material, like pollen and bird shit, into hyperspace.
“Will do,” she said before turning on her craft’s wipers. Just to be safe, she set to the whole ship vibrating.
“Make sure you don’t miss anything,” crackled Dad.
“I love you, Dad. I’ll be fine, and I’ll let you know as soon as I revert to real time.” Iris punched the coordinates for Great Red Eight. She was going to be attending university there and studying materials engineering, but as she prepped for light speed, all she could think about was the party scene, and what it would finally be like to make a life for herself away from her family’s antiques and eccentricities.
As the home-made hyper drive hummed to life and the stars stretched into lines in her space-craft’s windshield, Iris couldn’t help thinking of each glowing streak as a potentially awesome path her life could take. With hope brewing in her brain, Iris set an alarm to wake her shortly before reverting to real time and drifted off to sleep.
Iris woke to urgent beeping. It wasn’t the alarm she set, but one alerting her to premature real-time reversion. Blinking sleep away, she stared at the controls, holding her breath until she realized she was only seconds away from her planned reversion point.
“That could’ve been worse,” she sighed, adjusting her course.
The ship hit resistance that shouldn’t exist in space. She peered through the view screens. A giant Osprey was pushing her craft away from Red Eight.
“So much for escaping eccentricity,” she muttered before radioing for emergency assistance.