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Rating: 2 votes, 4.50 average.

Prepping to leave SRC

Posted 07-15-2013 at 09:52 AM by PhantomCruiser

“You must be out of your mind!” exclaimed Kirby “You don’t seriously think you can put up a fully functioning space station inside of thirty days?”
Victor Hugo finished the last of his shrimp fried rice and reached for another eggroll. “Not out of my mind, and yes it’s perfectly doable”. He paused long enough to search the small coffee table, finally finding a small bowl of hot sauce “Ah! Remember now, it’ll be functional, but far from complete.” Swirling the eggroll around in the sauce “But we can get a crew on station in a matter of weeks, not months.” We’ve also got the benefit of more than one space agency to draw on.”
“I do hate going to the government for help, they’re just not that reliable.” sighed Kirby.
“I agree, on point. But the ‘government’ is looking for some good press on this. With the additional shuttle flights NASA sees it as a way to extend its reach into the commercial market.”
“And the Russians?”
“The cold war is over; it’s been over for quite some time, they have to find a use for Buran beyond what they’ve done already. They’ve not had any really well publicized use for it outside of their own program.” Victor paused to finish his eggroll and reached for his beer “This is a way to get into the game at in international level, plus they’re cutting us a really good deal.”
“So we’ve got NASA and Roscosmos both trying to get our business, and neither want ‘something’ out of it?” asked Kirby.
“There’s the rub. Russia has a magnetic imager with no space-based mounting point for it and the Americans have a science module they’d like to put up. In short, they both want to lease space on our station. It’ll be win-win for all involved.”
Kirby leaned back from the table and looked out into the small yard and could spy Nancy, Cleveland and Maria returning from their after-dinner walk. “What’s this about the Eridanus?”
“That’s the Italian space plane; they want to open a door into commercial flights too.”
“It’s smaller than the shuttle, what’s its pedigree?” Kirby asked.
“It’s flight proven, and there is another one on the way. It doesn’t have the cargo capacity as Buran or shuttle, but we’re only going to haul cargo and a few smaller items. We can use it for crew swap too.”

Their discussion broke up as the three walkers barged into the room, Nancy and Maria had given over into hysterical giggles as Cleveland blushed as much as his coal black skin would allow.
“What have you three been up too?” asked Kirby cautiously.
“Inside joke, never you mind” Nancy answered between spurts of laughter.
Maria fought to control herself, only to look over at Nancy. A split second later they both erupted into laughter again.
“You know” said Cleveland with mock indignation, “I don’t have to put up with this.”
“Awww. Baby you know I’m just teasing” Nancy snaked her arm around Cleveland and planting a kiss on his cheek.
“I can’t believe you two are still working” Maria said, struggling to control her breathing. “All work and no play?” she asked, giving Kirby a single raised eyebrow.
Kirby thumbed a gesture towards Victor, “Boy genius here says he can give me an operable space station inside 30 days.”
“I can and I will” said Victor as he started collecting paperwork off the table, and floor, and spare seating. Every horizontal space within reached had some sort of documentation covering it.
“Standard wager?” asked Kirby.
“You’re on.”

Nancy looked over at Victor, “Have you given him the news?”
“Not yet” said Victor, “I thought you might like to be the one to break it to him.” finally clearing off enough space for everyone to have a seat.
Nancy put her hand on Kirby’s knee “Sweetie, you know how we’ve been having a difficult time getting Gus back from Copernicus?”
“Yes, he threatened to quit and take a job with Spectre Mining” Kirby replied.
“Well, we’ve had some interest in a few universities about setting up a science station at Hadley Rille.”
“It’s more than ‘some’ interest, they’re already putting up the money” Victor interjected.
“At any rate, Gus wants to stay up there. He’s got the experience and the team wants to stay together” Nancy leaned back.
“I sense a ‘but’ about to be mentioned?” Kirby asked.
“Yes, you need to get on a plane and head to England.” Nancy said “You got to meet some people and sign a whole mess of paperwork.” Stealing a quick glance at Maria, Nancy added “You don’t need to be there immediately but it is something we need to get moving on pretty soon.”
Victor finished stowing the last of the presentation in his carry bag, “Not just England, but Tennessee and Texas as well.”
“I guess I need to call Karen and get her working on an itinerary.” said Kirby
Cleveland studied a handout that Victor had missed, “You need to try to be back this way soon though. At least close enough to hop over to Sagan for the first launch, and, hey look” pointing out to Maria “the second flight launches from here. You wouldn’t want to miss that.”
Maria looked over the manifest, “I’ve seen Energia launch a few times, but never with Buran.”

Nancy started digging around in her travel bag “Maria, we’re going to need some glasses” she said as she extracted a bottle of Appleton 21 from its depths. “If we’re going to pry Kirby away from you, we’re going to have to make it something special.”
“Whoo Hoo!” Cleveland relieved Nancy of the rum and started working the cap “My favorite.”
“Well,” Kirby eyed the bottle “Victor, you need to arrange for a few supply runs. If I’ve got to leave out of here for a while I need to make a few impressions before I go.”
“What do you mean?” asked Victor.
“Sand, I need a lot of sand.”
“Sand?” Maria asked with a confused look.
Nancy and Cleveland answered in unison “Beach Party!”
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  1. Old Comment
    PhantomCruiser's Avatar
    The first set of missions is about 95% ready to fly. Phase 1 of Syracuse construction is 6 missions. I had to rearrange the build sequence a bit and I'm still not sure that I'm happy about it.

    I figure 1 maybe 2 more "domestic" episodes until Syracuse takes flight.
    Posted 07-15-2013 at 01:21 PM by PhantomCruiser PhantomCruiser is offline
  2. Old Comment
    SiberianTiger's Avatar
    Can I read the story from the beginning somehow?
    Posted 07-19-2013 at 12:59 PM by SiberianTiger SiberianTiger is offline
  3. Old Comment
    PhantomCruiser's Avatar
    It should all be here on the blog-thingy. The story started to evolve into this format somewhere just before "Phantom Takes Flight".

    Going back to read the early stuff, I hear Miles O'Brien's voice from "This Week In Space".
    Posted 07-19-2013 at 08:15 PM by PhantomCruiser PhantomCruiser is offline
  4. Old Comment
    n122vu's Avatar
    Yeah just click 'PhantomCruiser' up where it says "Orbiter-Forum > Blogs > PhantomCruiser » Prepping to leave SRC"

    The posts are in reverse order from there, so go down to the bottom of the page and click the last page (4 I think) to get to the beginnings of Phantom Mfg. Phantom Takes Flight (Chapter 1) is on page 2.
    Posted 07-19-2013 at 08:23 PM by n122vu n122vu is offline

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