7. Sounds and Sights
I. The Bridge to Somewhere
Day 10, Lower Crossing
Until ten days ago the only noises heard on Planet Alchibah had been those natural ones; of animals, insect-like things, weather events. Now the air was filled with the sounds of men and women hard at work building their future. The sawmill was operating near 12 hours a day, there was hammering, dragging, clanging, shouted instructions, and yes, some swearing.
A couple days ago the crew of the Mayflower had delivered and placed twin steal beams across two narrow spots on the river. Bart and company at the sawmill had then provided large, thick planks to set out upon the spans. While the unusual “sap” of the planks would stick to the beams, we certainly were not going to rely on that alone.
Captain Monroe had brought the Galileo back to port with a few additional supplies including a large run of steal pipe of various diameters to help the colonists layout a viable water supply system. The plan as worked out by our new Town Council was for a high-flow well within the center of Liberty for those in the immediate area. Those living some distance away would be provided with enough piping for individual wells.
Helpfully, the Mayflower had scrounged up a small bio-fueled auger. True, it was only suitable at the moment for depths of about ten feet but that should be sufficient for most areas to reaching a drinkable water table, given the location of the river, lakes, and even the ocean.
Helpful to Rocco, Natasi, Bradley Jones, and Historian — working on the bridge — was a diamond-tipped drill and large bolts also brought down for this purpose. Monroe made certain that all understood the drill was only on loan.
They had their robots with them and working in teams, cut the planks — almost four inches thick — to 12′ lengths, drilled holes a foot in on each end, and placed them across the steal spans, spaceing them about an inch apart to allow for expansion. These were bolted into the cut-outs of the beams.
It was slow, physical work but necessary for several reasons. First, these bridges would be the only practical way to cross the river and across the river is where many colonists had selected their land grants from the aerial maps of our new world. Nobody would be building anything over there until these bridges were complete.
Secondly, it appeared that some of the best farm land was located on the ‘other’ side. On this side, the town area being deforested was set upon immediately by another team who with brute force removed stumps and began preparing the ground for agriculture.
It had rained last night and the temperature had also cooled a bit, typical of the fickle springtime weather no matter what planet you’re on. This suited everyone’s senses as there were public works teams assigned by the council all over town, cutting, scything grasses and removing stones for “roads”, and a host of other projects including the inevitable ditch-diggers for the afore-mentioned water system, and the electric grid.
There was an excitement felt by everyone: We were building our new civilization!
All of the colonists had selected their home sites and many who’d chosen on this side of the river, when not working off their town “tax hours,” were already starting on their homes. Most were simple, if crude, one or two room cabins while others showed a more elaborate floor plan. All showed the love of sweat equity and whilst the majority of builders had no experience what-so-ever in construction, there were others who had and shared their knowledge willingly including that of simple plans for a home that could be quickly raised.
With the lack of any real digging equipment and given the shallow water table and proximity of the river, most homes had no foundation and were in fact raised off the ground by several feet on “stilts” or rock piles or by whatever means were possible. This gave things a bit of the look of a shanty-town but in the years to come, no doubt the first crude efforts would be replaced by more sophisticated structures.
In the late afternoons, there was a line at the public showers that had been set up near the public rest-rooms. Thankfully, a hose and pump had been laid to the river for fresh water and more thankfully initial power lines from one of the windmills had been connected to the water heaters Hamilton had thoughtfully provided in the stores.
On the negative side, drainage from the showers and sinks was collecting in a gully behind the stalls and the Porta-Potties constantly had to be moved to newly-dug holes.
Many colonists were also using the river to wash their clothing. It should be remembered that all had been limited to one large suitcase for this trip so that most only had a few changes with them.
It was suggested to the council that addressing waste-water and solid waste management should be of high priority.
The best part of the day was certainly the evenings when all would gather in camaraderie at Hanna’s for dinner, drinks, singing, and in many cases, the courting rituals of the singles amongst us. Hanna and Jules seemed to enjoy their roles, especially while bar-tending, as ‘father confessors’ to those who had a bit too much to drink.
II. Things That Go ‘Bump’ in the Night
Day 10, Late Night
It had been a hard day of training at Andrew’s “boot camp” and now, he and Wirehead were working the late night perimeter patrol. All the other colonists were sound asleep. Andy and Walt wished that they were, too.
Neither had spoken to each other for some time; Walt (’Wirehead’) was in to the North of the woman’s tent while he, Andrew, was South of the men’s.
Andy stopped to light a cigarette. At that moment, from the west of him and the tents came the sound of something, some thing on the move in the deep woods. It doesn’t take a woodsman to recognize the noise a large critter makes as it brushes against trees it passes by and as it trods on fallen twigs and branches and leaves. And, this thing was big! Thankfully, whatever it was, it was now moving away. After a time there was came the low, distant roar they had heard in the past.
The guards had, as first responsibility, the protection of the sleeping colonists, not the pursuit of an animal that hadn’t actually made an appearance or immediate threat. Still, a chill ran down the spines of the two guards. and when they met on their patrols, Walt said, “You heard that?”
Andrew said, “Yes. It’s coming closer…”
III. Things That Go ‘Thump’…
Day 11, Mayflower
It was early morning. Captain Travis was sound asleep in his cabin when the two-mile wide hollowed asteroid that was the interstellar ship Mayflower gave a sudden lurch. He was out of bed before the alarm bells had even started up.
Over the intercom, Steven, the Officer on Watch, said, “Explosion in the physics lab. All hands to physics lab.”
Jumping into a “golf cart” outside his door, he raced through the corridors to the other side of the ship. Monroe and Calver, both dressed only in their skivvies had arrived just before him and were entering the lock to the lab. An acrid smoke billowed out and drove them back. Doctors Hibbes and Chandler came tumbling out, both wearing protective masks. They were covered in dust and soot. Travis worked some controls on a panel near the lock, turning on heavy duty exhaust fans that had been installed when the old storage room had been converted into a laboratory.
Pulling off his mask and goggles, Hibbes exclaimed, “It works! Travis, it actually works!”
Travis said, “What the hell are you talking about? What happened in there?”
By this time, Glenda and Greg Bugbee had arrived, suited up and with fire extinguishers.
Chandler had removed his facial protection and said, “Oh, that won’t be necessary. There’s no fire.”
In exasperation Travis said, “Would one of you please tell me what’s going on?”
Practically beaming, Hibbes said, “The new weapon, Captain, it works.”
Monroe said, “You exploded a weapon in there?”
Travis’s fair martian skin was turning beat red from the collor up. His mouth was working but he was so angry that words weren’t coming out.
Chandler said, “Well we had to test it out somewhere. It’s only a small, limited prototype of the real thing.”
Travis finally found his voice and snapped, “You fired a weapon? In there? Inside the ship?”
Hibbes, dusting himself off with a handkerchief, obliviously said, “We aimed it at the floor so it would be going into the solid mantle of this rock. What are you so upset about? The shell of this asteroid is four hundred feet thick in this spot.”
Travis said angrily, “I felt it. It woke me up all the way over in my sleeping quarters on the other side of this fifty-million-ton boat. Did it ever cross your mind to run any of this past us before playing with your new toy?”
Chandler hopefully offered, “We did send out an email yesterday evening saying that we were planning an experiment…”
Monroe muttered, “Jeez.”
Glenda interrupted, “It’s pretty clear of smoke now, Captain. Atmosphere pressure guuges say there’s no breach.”
Hibbes said, “Come. Look, see for yourself what we’ve done.” He started through the lock.
Travis snapped, “I have every intention of doing just that, Mister!” and stormed in after him.
The rest followed them into the lab.
The lab itself was about 100 feet by 100 feet, with scientific instruments lining the walls, a small machine shop set on one long bench towards the rear, and numerous work tables that had all been pushed away from the center of the room. There, hanging from the ceiling high above was a contraption that looked rather like a glass tube about four inches in diameter wrapped in coil with other coils and transformers mounted alongside and extending out from beyond the bottom. The whole thing was probably six feet long.
Of more interest was the hole, about a half-foot in diameter and still smoking, in the concrete floor below it.
They peered into it and Monroe again said, “Geez…, well, just, geeeez…”
Chandler took a distance measuring laser and aimed it down the hole. He said, “Fifty-two feet, Mitchell!”
Calver said, “And this is just a prototype?”
Hibbes said, “Oh yes, Darren. The ones we’ll mount on the Ex-Wings will be ten times the size and a hundred times the power.”
Travis, slowly regaining his pallor said, “I want you doctors to return to your quarters and get yourselves cleaned up. I’ll see you in the conference room in exactly,” he glanced at his wristpad, “thirty minutes.”
Hibbes said, “But Captain–”
“Now, Mister.” Travis snapped and turned to go. As he and Monroe left the laboratory they could hear the doctors muttering something about “space jockeys” and “non-scientists.”
Monroe said, “Like peas in a pod.”
Travis grumbled, “More like nuts in a shell, Larry.”
Thirty minutes later,
in the conference room.
The conference room was, of course, the lounge where all meetings were now held. Two tables had been pushed together and behind them sat Travis, Monroe and Calver who were now in uniform, and, at Travis’s invitation, Dr. Andrews, who was still on board awaiting a ride down to Liberty.
A golf cart pulled up outside the open double doors of the lounge and Doctors Hibbes and Chandler entered, looking rather sheepish.
Travis had calmed down completely and said to the doctors, “Please be seated.” while nodding an indication to the chairs facing the seated officers.
“Captain,” Hibbes began, “I really do apologize.”
“Chandler said, “Yes, it was wrong of us to experiment without properly warning you all.”
Travis said, sternly, “Even if you had warned us, explained to us, I wouldn’t have allowed it. You could have breached the ship.”
Hibbes said, “But–”
“Doctor,” Travis said, “You’ve got a whole effing belt of asteroids out there, far denser than back around Sol. You could have outfitted a shuttle and tested it there.”
“There’s no fuel left until the NIFT returns from Alc4.”
“You couldn’t wait two days?” Travis asked him in mild exasperation.
“Well,” Hibbes stumbled, “Yes. In hindsight, Captain, as I said, I’m very sorry about all of this. We’ll accept whatever punishment you mete out to us.”
Travis sighed and said, “I’ll have to defer the lashings for now, gentlemen; we need you working as fast as you can.” He paused and then with a slight smile said, “So what the hell is that thing, anyway?”
“I thought you’d never ask!” said Hibbes, “We have created a set of quantum-frenzy fields that pinch the four standard plus seven curled dimensions of Calabi-Yau space and create a transition flop in–”
Travis held up his hand to stop Hibbes and turned to Ashcroft saying, “Now you know why I wanted you here. The physics I learned in Flight School was enough to understand how to fly a rocket — nothing more. I figure that you can decode what he’s saying.”
Hibbes said, “Let me explain it more simply, Captains. You know how a typical Zap-Gun works, creating a miniature ball of plasma, really ball lightning.”
Wincing at the memory, Travis said, “I know only too well, Doctor.”
“Just so,” Hibbes continued. “These plasma-balls are held together when in the strong gravitational field of Earth, or any planet, but fall apart when in space.”
Monroe said, “Because there’s no gravity?”
Hibbes said, “Well actually there is, but from too many different directions. None of them strong enough to orient the plasma-ball on their own but the stars, planets, moons, asteroids, the Mayflower, even the particles of space itself each exert conflicting gravities and pull the ball apart after a short distance. Still keeping it simple, the answer then is to fire that plasma-ball within a controlled magnetic field out to a short distance from something like the Ex-Wing, and then move it to someplace lacking any gravitational fields at all. There, it travels in an arc, keeps to that arc by the spin imparted to it by the combination of magnetic fields it just left, and then re-enters to strike the target.”
Ashcroft said, “Re-enters?”
“Our universe.” Hibbes said, simply.
Calver shouted, “What?”
Hibbes said, “I’m sure you all know that common theory is held that there are multiple parallel universes, called branes. If our math, and John here was a big help to me, if our math is correct and the extra focused fields we are creating are doing what we think they are, they create a small tear in the fabric of our universe, the plasma-ball scoots through to the space between our universe and the next one, and then when it completes it’s arc, it re-enters ours.”
Chandler said, “Of course, it’s far more complicated than that but for your purposes it should do.”
“Between the universes,” Hibbes said, “there’s nothing at all. Some have postulated a sort of space foam but our math shows that if something like that exists, it still has virtually no gravitational influence. What we’re really doing is using a combination of magnetic and gravitational fields to move something from point A to point B using nothingness as the medium. I’d go into greater detail but your eyes seem a bit glazed over!”
“Mphm.” Travis said.
Monroe said, “But since there’s gravity here on the ship–”
Chandler piped in, “Centrifugal force, actually.”
“Then what did your theory actually prove?” Monroe asked. “All you did is fire a plasma-ball.”
Hibbes said, “Well of course there’s a lot more work to do but we proved the theory most important to the whole thing.”
Travis waited and finally prompted, “Uh, what was that, Doctor?”
Again with marvelous understatement, Hibbes said, “We tore a pair of holes in the universe. The plasma-ball disappeared two feet from the end of the tube and re-appeared just before striking the floor below.”
Travis said, “This tearing holes in the fabric as you call it–”
“It’s perfectly safe, Captain,” Hibbes said glibly, “As our calculations had shown that the universe, ours at any rate, heals itself, the string fabric sort of stitches itself back up. At the other end of the arc, the plasma-ball easily enters back into ours — from nothing into something and then the pressure of our universe pushes the puncture back together.”
Once again Monroe could only say, “Geez!”
“Geez indeed.” Travis said.
IV. Things That Go ‘Gup’…
Day 11, Lunchtime at Hanna’s
Historian, Natasi, Rocco, Kara, Bart, and several others were seated at one of the picnic tables that had been built and set outside Hanna’s, enjoying slizzard-burgers and French fries. The smell of cooking was thick in the air.
Kara suddenly motioned with her hand towards the sky. Everyone looked up and sure enough, there was what appeared to be a flock of pink birds, about ten of them.
Rocco said, “I think those are the first birds I’ve seen on this planet.”
Historian said, “They’re heading North, migrating? Wait, now they’re turning west, towards the ocean.”
At that, one of the birds broke away from formation and spiraled down to circle just above the luncheon crowd. Finally as if reaching a decision, it coasted down and landed right on the picnic table where they sat!
Up close, it was clearly not a regular bird as they knew of them. About 14 inches tall, instead of feathers it had leathery wings covered in a soft, short fur much like a bat’s. It’s coloring was outlandish and almost comical except for some razor sharp talons at the ends of it’s feet.
It said, “Gup.” in a sort of throaty, deep, parrot like voice.
It looked at them, one at a time and then again said, “Gup.”
“It’s so cute!” Kara said.
“Certainly is fearless enough,” said Bart.
“Well, no reason to fear us,” Historian said, “Yet!”
“Gup!” it said, eyeing the french fries.
Rocco held out a couple fries and the thing plucked them out of his hand with it’s long beak and quickly swallowed them.
Historian said, “Look at the twin peaks on it’s head. Sort of looks like the devil.”
Kara said, “Let’s call them devils. Good devils of course.”
“We don’t know that yet,” said Rocco. He held out two more fries and said directly to the devil, “Fries?”
“Fries!” it said and then plucked at them quickly.
A crowd had gathered around their table and one of the colonists said, “I’ll be damned, it talks!”
“Gup.” And with that, the devil flapped it’s wings and took off, heading in the direction the others had.
“Well,” said Historian, “Well!”
They all laughed over the incident and resumed eating. Ten minutes later they were startled when the devil returned, clutching a curiously shaped object in each clawed foot. It dropped them directly in front of Rocco and then lighted onto the table.
It said, “Cappi.”
Bart picked one of the objects up and said, “It looks like some sort of shellfish, presumably from the shore.”
The devil again said, “Cappi.”
Historian said, “I guess that’s what they’re called.”
Bart put the shellfish down. The devil walked over to it, pecked at it with it’s pointed beak and broke it open. It then pushed it back towards Rocco and said, “Cappi. Fries!”
Kara said, “It wants to trade with you or pay you or something.”
Historian said, “His food for our food.”
Rocco pushed the last of his fries over to it.
The devil greedily ate several of them and then with several more in it’s beak, took off towards the coast again.
Bart took the unbroken shellfish and rising, said, “I think I’ll drop this off at the bio-lab. It could be a good source of food.”
After he left them, the others finished eating.
Historian said to Rocco, “We’re just about done with the lower crossing bridge.”
Natasi said, “Now we start on upper one.”
Historian said, “Yes.”
A few minutes later as they got up to go, Kara said, “I don’t believe it, look!”
The entire flock of devils were now coming in for a landing, each of them clutching two of the shellfish and crying, “Fries! Fries!”
Turning to Rocco, Historian said, “Look what you’ve started!”
V. People That ‘Huff’…
Day 11, Late Afternoon
The Surprise cruiser landed at the field and as they exited, Travis said to Ashcroft, “Thanks for all of your help. The mad doctors seem quite pleased with your equations for the new shields and Monroe expressed confidence in your communications firewall.”
As they parted, Travis headed towards the lower crossing where the bridge was now complete. He informed all that the NIFT had returned, a day early, with it’s load of He3 and had now departed on another run. He also apologized to all but insisted that Natasi was needed on the Mayflower.
After they left, Historian, “B.J.” (as Bradley told us his nickname was,) and Rocco packed up the tools, putting them into the large makeshift wagon, one of many that a couple enterprising colonists had built, complete with large wooden wheels. They were clumsy, especially in the rough terrain in many places but they got the job done as long as the robots helped out with pulling it and of course, the robots had no choice…
As they were about to head north towards the upper crossing to begin work there on a bridge, Les Reye went stomping past them towards the bridge they had just finished. He was carrying a coil of rope, stakes, and a sign.
“What’s up, Les?” Historian asked.
“Just preventing access until the railing is up.” he said as he pushed stakes into the ground around the end of the bridge and began tying the rope to each of them.
“We’ll get some railing up eventually.” Rocco said, “it’s just not a priority right now.”
“Well when you do get the railing up,” he huffed, “Then the bridge will be open for traffic.”
“Oh for God’s sake, Reye, the damn bridge is twelve feet wide. Paint a line down the middle if you think people can’t navigate it.” Rocco said angrily.
“Safety first.” Reye replied.
Rocco said, “Well I plan on dragging the first of my building supplies across there tonight and over to my property.”
“I forbid it!”
Rocco said incredulously, “You forbid it?”
“That’s right. As town manager I insist on protecting citizens from coming to harm and a bridge with no railing is dangerous.”
Rocco said, “So your plans for Liberty are to settle it with a bunch of pussies, right? There’s no railing all along the banks overlooking the river. Are you going to pansy all of us about that, too?”
“There’s no need for that tone of voice, Mr. Williams, I’m only doing this for safety reasons.”
Historian said, “And who appointed you building inspector, Les?”
“Somebody has to do it,” he said, “and it might as well be me.”
“That’s not in your powers, Les.” Historian said.
“Well you can bring that up at the council meeting the night after next,” he said, “Until then, I have a duty to protect the good citizens here as I see fit.”
Shaking his head as they turned back North, Rocco said, “Histy, look what you’ve started…”
VI. People That Dream…
Day 11, Late Night,
Bank of the River
Historian and BJ were sitting on the bank overlooking the river. Elsewhere there were still many patrons drinking up at Hanna’s and others had already turned in.
Historian lit a cigar and then said, “Travis asked me to look after you, you know. I’m glad you selected a plot of land near mine.”
BJ said, “I suppose he told you what I had told him?”
Historian said, “Yes, but I’d rather you told me in your own words.”
“All my life I’ve heard things, usually when I’m asleep,” he began, “and as best I can tell, it’s things others are thinking. Sometimes it’s just an image and sometimes it’s of something that is going to happen.”
Historian puffed for a moment and then said, “Travis says you’ve had a couple rather vivid dreams of late.”
“Yes. I’ve never had such peace of mind, to coin a phrase, as I do here. That’s one reason I left Earth — wanted to come here. To get away from all the voices of the billions of people there. As soon as I was on the Mayflower, it was like a quietness had entered me with only a stray thought or voice now and then.”
“Tell me about the first incident you had.”
BJ sighed and said, “It was on the Mayflower, after we’d all been woken up from cryo. I remember the first night of normal sleep but I kept getting the feeling of great anger from someone. That’s usually the kinds of things I pick-up, intense emotions. This was someone in an absolute rage.”
“What about?” Historian prodded.
“About Dr. Van Vogt, his killing. I guess we had all heard about it by that night. Someone was furious and vowing revenge.”
“On all of us. I don’t think this person wanted us to escape, to make it here.”
“Was it a man?”
“I don’t know. It’s tough to tell gender with the impressions I receive. Sometimes I can tell but not this time.”
“Have you heard or felt anything since then from this person?” Historian asked.
“No.” BJ said. “I think they must be suppressing it, controlling himself. . .if it’s a he.”
“What was the other thing?”
“Now that’s funny,” BJ said, “It was just an unpleasant vision I had — of a beach and a small ship and. . . death. But, it wasn’t something that was going to happen.”
“What do you mean?”
“It’s something that already did happen, years gone past.”
“Something that happened on Earth?”
“No,” he said, staring out into the darkness across the river, “It happened a long time ago. Here on Alchibah.”
VII. Things That Disappear…
Day 12, Early Morning
Bridge of the Mayflower
Travis was again soundly asleep. He was dreaming of the ocean, of sailing across it in a small skiff under a cloudless sky. From somewhere there was a buzzing noise. It seemed to be getting louder. He looked all around the horizon but could see nothing but waves and blue sky.
He woke with a start. His wristpad was buzzing. It was Monroe, Officer on Watch.
“Yes, Travis here.”
“Sorry to wake you, Captain, something has come up.”
“What’s the problem, Larry?”
“The signal from the sentinel we left at the exit of the wormhole, Captain, it’s stopped transmitting.”
VIII. Things That ‘Rumble’…
Day 12, Late Night Patrol
All was quiet in Liberty, the colonists fast asleep after another day of hard work. Jaisa looked at her wristpad and noted that it wasn’t even midnight yet. She was guarding the southern flank of the tents, the ‘barracks’ as everyone referred to them. Somewhere on the North side Jack Seaworth was standing watch. It was very dark out and a fog had settled in. The glow of her flashlight was dim and offset only by a very few widely scattered outside lamps.
Jaisa grinned to herself and thought, “So this is the glamour of the militia.”
As she walked back and forth she grinned again, thinking of the return of those ridiculous bird-like creatures, the devils. They had come back at lunch today. How they knew when it was lunch time was anyone’s guess. All of them were clutching shellfish which they deposited on one of the tables and then, almost in unison squawking, “Fries, Fries!” they had stood there looking at us.
Her Father went into Hanna’s and returned with a heaping plate of the french fries so suddenly in demand. Satisfied, the devils had left us.
Mariana had already analyzed the shellfish, which we had taken to calling “Cappis” since that is how the devils referred to them, and declared them not only safe but pretty tasty when steamed.
We’d then tried the ones the devils had brought us yesterday and they were indeed good. This latest batch went right into a pot. Hanna said something to the effect that fries were cheap and she was getting the best of the deal.
Her wristpad chirped. It was Jack Seaworth. She said, “Hey, Jack, what’s up?”
“Did you hear anything?”
Jaisa said, “Nope. What should I hear?”
“Nothing, I guess. Just my imagination playing tricks on me. I feel like I’m being watched from the woods.”
“You want me to come there?”
“Nope,” he said, “I’m just getting spooked. I wish Hanna’s was still open, I’d grab a quick drink. Over and out.”
Jaisa resumed her patrol. It was eerily quiet and then she realized what was wrong, it sent a chill down her spine. All the normal sounds of the night creatures, the insects, the creeping things, everything had stopped. It was dead quiet and she had a bad feeling. She flicked on her wristpad as she started towards the west, to circle around the tents.
“Jack,” she said into the pad, “Jack, are you there?”
Then she did hear something, a rush of heavy steps, not human steps, incredibly fast. A shot was fired and then she heard a scream that will live with her forever. A human scream of agony and death.
Lights were coming on in the tents, there were straggled, half-asleep shouts.
She had rounded the back of the tents and was running North. Ahead, about 200 yards, she saw it but it was so grotesque and different from any other creature she had ever seen back on Earth that her mind couldn’t make sense of it. It was huge, deadly, a mix of ten different beasts from mythology, carrying the limp and torn and very dead body of Jack.
Her heart hammering, she dropped to one knee, aimed, and fired over and over at it until her magazine was empty but all the monster did was drop the body it was carrying, turning huge evil eyes at her, and then headed off at astounding speed into the woods. From where he disappeared, a rumbling roar issued forth, fairly shook the ground under her.
By this time colonists were pouring out of the tents, many carrying firearms. Some wanted to follow the creature but wiser heads prevailed and said that the night was the natural element for this beast and they could track and hunt it down far more effectively in the morning after a strategy was devised.
The crashing sounds coming from the woods were already far, far off. There came another, distant roaring howl. Suddenly, the woods that had promised so much to the colony took on a sinister, frightening aspect. Many of the colonists began having second doubts about the voyage. Several children were sobbing. Families and friends held tight to each other. Nobody slept the rest of the night…
–From The History of Colony: Alchibah
3rd Edition, 2088
Author: The Historian