I quickly got into routine, time passed, morning became evening over and over again. We were woken early by Elana and her delighted voice. To awake early in the morning, happy, knowing the day had just begun, rapidly recharged one’s power meter. I didn’t even want to pretend something was wrong with my blanket in order to stay in bed. After the blanket had been removed, I dressed up in notime and after a brief look in the mirror to confirm that I didn’t look like a troll I started to go toward the center of the camp for some food.
Most of the days it was Elana who served the food and if you were not careful your food could accidentally be peppered with various more or less appetizing gossip, all said with tongue in cheek. One morning I found myself behind a young man with short spiky hair that I had not seen before. The chef poked him in the side and muttered something that forced him to look down in embarrassment and swiftly walk away from the scene. His facial color was approaching red and I couldn’t blame him since I could feel my own cheeks heating. It would be smart to be a bit careful around Elana, I decided.
After breakfast we discussed various group reports. Since I belong to the group of explorers our discussions touched new discoveries, what had been explored and how far the mapdrawing had come. To the annoyance of many explorers, the planets electromagnetic fields made it difficult for our instrument to automatically generate a map which forced us to do it manually. I was one of those who appreciated the manual labor, it offered much more excitement and uncertainty, simply put; more adventure!
Days passed. Me and Fenra met for small talk whenever opportunity was offered. Her companionship was nice and relaxing. Despite my research I could not unearth the truth about Fenra and Ylim but Fenra told me about her youth in one of the older spaceships and the day she was old enough to disembark to Nexus. Her parents were immensely proud when they said goodbye to their daughter, they would meet again in a few months, but a parent can never completely let go of their offspring. Fenra’s complained a little that she had not put more weight in the farewell as it was the last she saw of them. The ship, her parents and everyone else on board disappeared when the Dominion attacked, just days after her departure. I pressed Fenra’s arm trying to lend some comfort but couldn’t find the magic words that would ease her pain. Fenra patted my hand and with a faint smile she said that its all part of life. She pointed on her heart, smiled and said that they will always be with her, supporting and comforting but also shareing all of her joy.
Close to two weeks after landing, I went through the provinces north of the camp. The rolling meadows were cut abruptly where the forest began, which was admittedly sparse but a forest nonetheless. The wildlife seemed to have grown accustomed to our presence and I got to see many interesting creatures on the way to my goal, an unexplored piece of the map.
To get to my goal I had to walk through the forest, the moss-covered ground subdued almost all sound from my steps and I marveled at the muffled sound carpet. It was as if all thorns were rounded, everything sounded soft and smooth. After an hour’s walk, I came out into a clearing and found something that would affect us forever.