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Wrecked, Part 1

posted Jul 30, 2014, 6:51 PM by Christopher Ellison
This is the first draft of a short story I wanted to write up purely as a writing exercise.  I'm doing this mainly to work just starting to write and actually getting something on paper.  I allocated 30 minutes to write this and plan to throw another 30 at it later to finish the story, which I'm deliberately keeping very short.  The timebox is mostly to keep me focused while I work on it and to give me some kind of gauge for how much I can write in a set time period.

Already? Fuck this, I need 10 more minutes.  Dana grumbled internally.  Reflexively, her left arm shot out to slap the snooze button on her nightstand.  As soon she moved her arm, though, pain lanced through her entire back.  The jolt of electric agony shot her fully awake.  Her eyes snapped open, but as the jagged daggers of light pierced her throbbing brain, she squeezed them immediately shut again.

She wasn't in her bed, and that wasn't her alarm clock.  It was all coming back to her now.  The jukes, the twists, the panicked maneuvers as 2, then 4, then 6 SAMs flared to life below her.  The shuddering jerk of impact that nearly slammed her face into the yoke as first one, then two of the antiarmor missiles found the starboard engine.  The struggle to flare, even a little, before the nose of the t-bird plowed into the mucky jungle floor.  Then blackness.

How long was I out? Dana wondered as she tentatively reached forward to shut off the master alarms.  Her arms were okay, but her left leg was definitely broken; her milspec bioware must be doing its job or she was certain she'd be screaming in agony.  She was too wedged in to the wrecked center seat to turn and face the cabin, but she could hear soft groans and scrapings over the complaining creak of the bird's frame.  At least some of the team must have survived the crash.

All right.  Calm down.  Assess.  Build your checklist, then execute.  She forced herself to clear her mind and take 5 deep breaths before moving.  Step 1:  Get out of this chair.  I'm gonna need a splint....

Five minutes later, Dana finally pulled herself out of her seat.  Seems to be holding, she thought, delicately testing her weight on her inexpertly-applied spraycast.  She limp-shuffled to the cabin door and peered into the darkness, waiting for her eyes to adjust.  "Pauley?  Timo?  Jenssen?  Case?  You all right?"

To be continued...