In Verse Proportion; Chapter 15, Brown 200

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Stories from the Verse
In Verse Proportion
Chapter 15:  Brown 200
Table of Contents
Previous chapter:  Slade 172

The officer’s galley was directly below their quarters, two levels.  Once he knew how to get there, Derek took Vashti and made the trip.  The place was vacant, apparently the same fear that kept the indigs off the bridge kept them out of officer sections.  That, though, meant that there was no food prepared and no one to prepare it; but the freezers and cupboards were as well stocked as those in the kitchen they had previously explored, so Derek set about putting together something they could eat.  He was getting better at cooking, recognizing foods and flavorings, and making them into palatable meals.  Still, it took a good hour to get something made, and recognizing that they were going to be hungry again before they returned to work and if he wasn’t smart he’d wind up spending most of his awake time making food, he used his leftovers to cobble together something like sandwiches, which he packed in a sealable container and took with them back to their quarters.

His next step was to set up Vashti in the room he had decided to use for their office, setting the computer to Arabic and finding a basic review course in mathematics that would take her through algebra.

“I expect this will take you several days,” he told her, “but take your time and make sure you know it.  You’re going to need trigonometry for navigation, I’m sure, and maybe also calculus, but you’ve got to have the foundation for that first.  We’re also going to have to get a tutorial on the navigation station controls, but there’s only so much you can do in a day.  When you get tired, come to the bedroom; I’ll be working there, but we’re going to need to sleep before we return to shift.  We’ve only got eighteen hours, but their hours are a bit shorter than ours so figure it will be about sixteen total, and we’ve already used one and a half getting food.”

“I’m feeling a bit, I don’t know, useless?” Vasthi said.  “It’s like I can’t do anything.  The weird thing is that’s always been true, but it never mattered before.”

“And it wouldn’t matter now, even if it were true.  You’re not useless because I love you and you make this worth doing just by being here.  But apart from that, you’re smart, you’re going to help me solve some of the problems here, and you’re going to learn how to fly a spaceship.  That’s got to be useful.

“And maybe I’ll teach you how to cook, too--but then, I’m only just learning that myself, so one thing at a time.”

He decided he should take the math review course, too, because even though he had already learned trig he didn’t know calculus, and he’d never really used the trigonometry in any serious applications, which he was probably going to have to do to help navigate the ship.  So he started with that.  It was dull review at first, and his mind wandered a bit.  One thing to which it wandered was whether he could find recipes or even cooking classes on the computer, to help him figure out what all that food was and how to make more palatable meals.  He resisted the urge to search for it, although he wished he had set up his laptop to connect with the mainframe in their rooms so he could have it work on one thing while he was working on another.  That would be a project for another day.

Eventually Vashti came in and interrupted him.  It was time to get some sleep.  He figured out how to set an alarm on the computer to awaken them, then they used the officer’s bathrooms (a tight fit, but they managed), ate their snack, and snuggled down together for what was probably going to be about seven hours of sleep by their reckoning.

Next chapter:  Chapter 16:  Kondor 177
Table of Contents

There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with twenty other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #432:  Whole New Worlds.  Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter.  It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.

As to the old stories that have long been here:

Verse Three, Chapter One:  The First Multiverser Novel

Old Verses New

For Better or Verse

Spy Verses

Garden of Versers

Versers Versus Versers

Stories from the Verse Main Page

The Original Introduction to Stories from the Verse

Read the Stories

The Online Games

Books by the Author

Go to Other Links

M. J. Young Net

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