SFF Music Video of the Week #19
Lorn was having a really bad day.
It had started out normally enough - jump in, run radio and spectrographic scans on the highest-
probability planet, the usual procedures for a scout checking out a new system. The scans had come
back with a good 02/N2 mix, decent hydrographics, and only the usual background noise in RF.
There were tags showing chlorophyll based plants - generally a good sign that the ecology was
going to be broadly human-compatible.
She was checking those results when the targeting alarm went off. Somewhere another ship had lit
her up with radar, and the only reason for that would be - there - heat plumes, accelerating fast.
Missiles. And more of them than her little scout ship could hope to deal with. She was too close to
the planet to jump, and not fast enough to outrun them. She had one chance.
Using pure brute force, her little ship killed as much of the orbital velocity as it could, and Lorn set
the autopilot on a fast re-entry. Looking at the figures, it was still not going to save the ship from the
missiles, but it might be enough to save her.
As her ship hit the atmosphere, a ball of plasma formed, and Lorn left the tiny bridge. In the aft hold,
an even tinier floater sat. Normally used for exploring planetary surfaces, it was not intended for
high-altitude work. Tugging on her helmet, she quickly strapped in, and hit the emergency hatch
release at the same time as releasing the hold-downs.
The blast of air tossed the floater out, and into the maelstrom of plasma, the gravitics providing a
wafer-thin shield as Lorn drove them to maximum power - and then she was clear. Moments later,
an even dozen missiles flashed past her, and slammed into her ship, only a handful of kilometres
away. The resulting blast shattered the scoutship into countless fragments.
Finder-of-Unnoticed-Details, was having a good day.
Her tribe had moved on to the next stage of the annual migration, and she would join them in a day
or two. For now, she was content to wait.
Last night she had seen a new star appear. This was not unusual, but unlike the others, it had not
been followed by a long needle-cloud, and the arrival of the sky raiders. This one had stopped and
drifted across the sky.
It rose several times throughout the night, always content to drift from horizon to horizon. As it did,
she looked to the lake, watched the insects, and her mind drifted.
In the distance, her tribe. Further away, her family's tribe. Further still, trading partners, rivals, and …
there! A single faint glimmer. Searching, questioning, seeking answers. A scholar? No, an explorer.
A scholar as well, but at her (her!) heart an explorer.
Finder was intrigued, to say the least.
Finally, as dawn approached, and the star bearing the explorer made another pass, it suddenly
changed direction, swooped across the sky, and erupted into a mass of fire and fragments. And a
continuing gem of bright fierce focus.
The mass of fire and debris continued across the sky, vanishing in the direction of the copper
diggers. The bright gem of focussed thought, though, that was following a different path, and not
entirely one of the explorer's choosing.
The valley beyond the forest. That is where it will come to rest, Finder decided. Standing, she
gestured to her horse, and, when he came to her, whispered in his ear, and he trotted off towards the
Explorer or not, someone was going to be feeling very alone soon. And Finder-of-Unnoticed-Details
knew exactly how to fix that. She gathered her clothes, dressed, and started slowly walking after her
This week we have Uh Huh Her, and “Human Nature”, from the start of their post-label period.
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