Bolt

Cara Riesling - 14 hours until impact

Cara ducked into another room labeled ‘ELECTRICAL’ in her search, finding another computer and promptly logging in.

She launched a few programs, trying to glean as much information as possible.

The Station was running out of power. The main generators had been shut down for months, and it was only the small backup generators keeping it running.

The artificial atmosphere, lights, air pumps all depended on the rapidly dwindling supply. The escape pods probably did too.

Cara hesitated a moment before starting to type. They didn’t need lights on in the entire station. They could survive a bit of cold. Turning off the water pumps probably wouldn’t hurt.

She activated the motion-detecting light system and shut down the computer before walking to the main generators, covered in a layer of dust.

It took a bit of poking around to find a switchboard, and she did her level best to start them up. There was a low rattling sound and she sighed, dejected.

There was a sign on the side, and she wiped away some of the dust to read it.

Allow 24 hours for startup.

Great.

“Find anything?”

Cara looked up to see Raygo stepping in, and quickly returned to inspecting the generator.

“Trying to turn the generators back on. Not really succeeding.”

He walked over, looking at the hulking machines.

“Did you try zapping them?”

She narrowed her eyes.

“Do you realize how dangerous that is?”

Raygo laughed, shrugging.

“You’re the tech whiz.”

Cara walked around the room, thinking.

“I could try. But I might just end up frying the backup generators.”

“Oh. Yikes.”

“But at the same time, I don’t know if we’ll be able to make it to the pods with the backups alone.”

“I think you can do it.”

Cara scoffed.

“I don’t know about that.”

Raygo walked towards her.

“What do we have to lose, anyways?”

“Our lives.” Cara offered, “What few hours we have left. Each other.”

She met Raygo’s gaze and his eyes softened.

“Cara-“

“Can you guys stop chatting and find a proper map?”

They both turned to see Valyria striding in, inspecting the room.

Cara moved back to the computer, focusing on the bright screen.

“I could probably find some blueprints on here, considering it’s got the electrical controls.”

Valyria walked over, frowning.

“Electrical controls? Does that mean you can shut off those damn robots?”

Cara sent a map to print and started searching.

“Maybe…I think I can at least turn off the patrol bots.”

She typed furiously, nodding.

“Yeah. I’ve turned off the maintenance robots, and some of the smaller security ones.”

“What about the bigger security ones?” Valyria asked expectantly.

Cara typed a bit before shaking her head.

“Can’t. This computer doesn’t have the clearance to turn them off. Hacking past the firewall would take more time than we have.”

Valyria grabbed the map, already moving into the hallway.

“Let’s go then. Before they find us.”

Raygo followed her out.

Cara got up and, thinking better of it, printed herself a copy of the map and shoved it into a pocket.

She looked at the generators and raised a hand, trying to focus.

If she could do it, if, it would have to be a precision job. The right amount of electricity, in the right place, timed perfectly.

It was a lot of risk. She’d barely had a few hours to learn to use her abilities. The generators were out of use.

Cara summoned the electricity in her feet and let it surge into her hand, watching it dance across her skin.

One shot.

She steeled her nerves and, taking aim, let the bolt fly.

The End

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