My first entry into the "Pilots League" in the Insurgency. The fifth episode in my series. Please comment, rate and enjoy!
About this creation
Corresponding text underneath each picture.
23rd DECEMBER 2094: PRESENT DAY
I was hurtling wildly through space, switching from being partially in control to being madly out of control.
I’d never flown a ship before in my whole life! I’d had no practice, no experience, nothing!
I’d only ever been in a cockpit once before and that was sitting in the co-pilot’ seat! I didn’t do anything even then! I’d just sat there.
That was after my first escape from jail. Jarred had flown the ship and I’d just sat there and watched.
I’d not had any experience before going to jail of course, I was far too young. I’d never even been in a space ship back then.
The closest I’d got to flying was being in my parent’s hover car when I was a child.
… My parents…
My mind drifted to the past and I lost control of the ship again.
I don’t know whether it was just me being an awful pilot or whether there was something wrong with the ship?
Surely I wasn’t this bad? Had it been damaged in the escape? Had one of the guards shot something important?
As far as I could see there were no warning messages on the controls anywhere. There again, I didn’t really know what I was looking for; all I could say is that there weren’t any large, red, flashing signs.
That’s always a good thing.
I was aware that I was heading straight towards a planet, but there appeared to be nothing I could do to prevent it. The navi-computer helpfully informed me that the planet was Etrion and then, as we hit the atmosphere and something broke off the nose of the ship and flew over the windscreen in a little burst of flame, the controls finally bleeped out a warning.
Control System: “Warning! Warning! Impact imminent.”
Tank: “Oh thank you so much, that’s most helpful!” I shouted sarcastically as I struggled to regain control.
Control System: “Prepare for crash landing.”
I ignored the warning and continued to try and get the ship under control but to no avail.
I saw the ground rushing towards me and the ship began bleeping,
Control System: “WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! WARNING!” repeatedly.
I froze, knowing that this must be the end.
I sat staring out of the windscreen and moments before we hit the ground, I muttered to myself,
We hit the ground hard and if I’d not been strapped in, I would have been flung into the air. The windscreen shattered, spraying glass everywhere. I shielded my face as best I could as the craft bounced once then hit the ground again, jolting me once more.
We slid along the ground in a wave of sand, littering parts of the ship behind us as we went until eventually we skidded to a halt.
The ship jolted and I gasped for air. Luckily, after the Shift occurred, explorers from Earth, aboard the HMS Galactic, visited all of the new neighbouring planets and reported back that every one of them had breathable atmospheres.
I was bashed and could feel a cut on my cheek but other than that, I seemed to be thankfully okay.
The controls were still flashing warning signs at me but thankfully the voice had stopped. The ship was smoking, which I took to be a bad thing and so I unstrapped myself and clambered out of the smashed-up cockpit.
I slid down the side of the craft and fell to my knees. The ground around me was sandy and soft and reminded me of the hot side of Iapra. I knelt there for a moment, catching my breath and then staggered to my feet.
Looking around I couldn’t see anybody nearby but I could see not too far in the distance a large town, maybe even a city.
I took a last look at my ruined escape craft, silently thanked it for it’s usefulness and then headed off towards the distant buildings.
It took me the rest of the day, but eventually I arrived at what turned out to be a ruined city. I had been hoping to find shelter and transport here but after walking along the dusty, deserted roads for several hours, realised that I was unlikely to find a ship of any kind here.
I took shelter for the night inside an abandoned grocery shop, eating a packet of dried meat strips for my dinner.
The next morning, I set off looking for a map of the local area, and luckily found one after not too long. It was stuck up outside a public information office and from it, I discovered that there was an airstrip at the other side of the city.
As with before, it took most of the day to walk there, but by late afternoon, I had arrived.
I looked both ways up the deserted runway before climbing up and over the wire mesh fence and dropping down onto the cracked tarmac.
I couldn’t see any ships anywhere outside and so knew my only remaining chance would be to check the hangers.
There were three hangers, two of which were small enough to only house one plane and then a larger one, which looked like it could hold several.
With great effort I slid open the doors of one of the smaller hangers to reveal…
It was empty.
I cursed and moved onto the next hanger, the bigger one.
This hanger had a normal door set within the larger ones and so, although it was locked, I used a piece of scrap metal I found lying around to unlock it and stepped inside.
Again, empty and again, I cursed, throwing the scrap metal across the huge empty space.
Now my only hope was the final, small hanger.
I walked up to the doors, silently begging for some good luck.
I slid open the doors and stepped into the dark.
I squinted into the darkness but then automatic lights pinged on along the roof and I whooped with delight as I discovered an old-looking viper jet, sat patiently in the middle of the room.
I ran over to it and clambered up onto the nearest wing. It clearly hadn’t been used in a long time as the windscreen was thick with dust. I wiped it all off and peered inside. It looked okay to me so I jumped back down and inspected the rest of the ship. It all seemed to be in good working order so I climbed back up and pulled the cockpit release.
It slid open and I climbed inside. I took my time looking at all of the controls and then, using some more scraps, keyed the engine into life.
It roared into action and then settled down to a satisfying hum. Checking all of the instruments, I discovered that it was nearly out of fuel, so I turned the engine off again and climbed back out.
Luckily, I discovered some tanks of fuel in the back of the hanger and so after filling her up, I climbed back into the cockpit and closed the lid over me.
Tank: “Well, here we go. Attempt number two.”
I took hold of the controls and slowly made the viper hover slightly.
Tank: “Yes….” I muttered, pleased with myself.
After a little while playing with the controls, getting used to the feel of the ship, I decided I was ready to try and take it for a proper flight.
I slowly flew out of the hanger and hovered in the open for a moment.
Tank: “Here goes everything…” I mumbled aloud and pushed it into forwards.
The viper began to fly along the runway, gaining speed and I pulled back on the yolk and within moments I was flying upwards and away from the runway.
Tank: “YES!” I cheered with delight.
I took a little while to get used to flying in the air and then decided it was time to leave. I aimed us upwards and we jetted towards the sky. Just minutes later we were out of the atmosphere and were heading out into space.
The crash site.
The airport fence.
Tank's new ship in the hanger.
As my series is going to be jumping around though time, I will include a date on each episode and add it to the timeline at the end of each episode so that you can follow it.