Stranded On Mars – Part Two

LOG ENTRY 4

Who’s going to read this log? It suddenly hit me the other day, you know? Here I am, stranded on Mars with no hope of coming home. The probe’s knackered beyond repair and my communicator’s bust. Yeah, yeah I know I said it was working but prolonged exposure to Mars’ wonderful atmosphere has completely fucked the wiring. And I mean fucked. I’m quite a dab hand at fixing things but even that’s beyond me. So, I tossed it into one of the chasms. And there ain’t no chance of me climbing down there. Ha! 

Sorry, sometimes I need to laugh to myself. It can get damn lonely up here. I wonder what day it is on Earth? It was January when I left. I guess it must be close to Christmas now. If only I could find some way of getting a message out to the Xena but, without my communicator, I’m a sitting duck. The team’ll be too busy to remember me anyhow. Mars was just supposed to be a short hop, a quick scavenge and then back to the ship. Had to end up with a dodgy probe of course…(for anyone who cares, I sighed at this point). 

I sifted through the wreckage last night. A couple of useful parts – mostly junk. I discovered the cause of the crash, however and it wasn’t pretty. Turns out it experienced a total and catastrophic systems failure. I was lucky to just be spat out all over this damn planet and not fried. Wait, hold up. Let’s back up a sec here, okay? I said the mission was a quick scavenge? I guess I should probably explain what I meant. 

We’ve been sending people to Mars for about ten years now. In secret. They’ve all come back so take your conspiracy theory hats off, okay? Anyway, a lot of equipment has been left on this wretched planet and the BSA (that’s British Space Agency) decided they wanted it back. Something about not littering another planet. Pahahahaha! Typical humanity, we seek out new planets and fuck them up. Just like home. So, before you start to wonder – I’m not dicking about up here. I may be stranded but, just in case rescue comes, I might as well do my job. Strictly speaking it’s a bit beneath my pay grade but I was the only one brave enough to volunteer. Yeah, that’s right, Brian – you’re a wimp! And Chloe? You just keep piloting that ship like a goddamn pro, okay? 

So, have I managed to track down any of the loose equipment yet? Yes and no. Yes, I found a pile of it just beyond the second chasm here and no I haven’t managed to take it back here. It’s heavy stuff, okay?! I’m just one man. I’m gonna try something tonight. Fingers crossed it works or I might be exiting stage left a little earlier than I intended. 

END OF LOG

LOG ENTRY 5

Fuck, fuck, fuck! Fuckity, fuck, fuck! Oh man, oh man. You don’t know how lucky I am to still be here. Damn solar wind storm last night blew the whole fucking lot into the chasms and narrowly missed cutting me clean in half. But, I guess that’s cleared up one of my problems. Still, it has raised some interesting questions…

I honestly don’t know how far down those chasms go. It could be anything – my guess is they go right down to the centre of the planet. Ha, I’ve thought of a sequel to that book, you know? Journey To The Centre Of Mars. Guaranteed bestseller. Sold the film rights for…sorry getting a bit carried away here. Christ, I’m bored. Remember when I wondered if anything would grow in this Martian soil? A big fat no is the answer. Nothing from Earth, anyhow. I only had a packet of geranium seeds so it’s not like I was gonna be able to grow a whole new food source for me. Food! That’s another thing you’ve probably wondered about. How am I surviving with no food and water? 

I’m gonna let you in on a little secret. This EVO suit I’m wearing? It’s fully equipped with a limited supply of synthetic food production and fluid. I’m not gonna lie, it’s some of the worst stuff I’ve ever tasted but hey, it’s keeping me alive so I guess I can’t complain too much. Not until I’m back home. Home. I need to stop thinking of it. 

END OF LOG

LOG ENTRY 6

So, I’ve had a crazy idea. Seems the Martian atmosphere is getting to my head a bit. Wonder what Brian would say if he could see me now? Probably give a health and safety briefing…Yeah space travel isn’t as glamorous as you might think. The BSA employs one health and safety officer onboard every trip and we’ve all gotta have full insurance. No one wants liability in case anything goes wrong. And in space that’s very likely! 

I think I can let you in on another little secret here. The BSA’s bankrupt. This was meant to be the last manned flight before the whole programme is disbanded completely. That explains why the probe hadn’t been properly maintained and also why Brian is probably doing his nut onboard that ship. Oh, I’m glad I’m not in Chloe’s shoes right now. Don’t get me wrong, Brian’s a pretty sound guy but he takes his role far too seriously. Then again, maybe if he’d been a little bit better I wouldn’t be stuck here. Hey, I let bygones be bygones and all that. I wish I could get some form of message to them…if I could just signal the Xena, Chloe would be over here in a flash. When I say that girl’s got skills, I fucking mean skills. She could pilot that ship through the Death Star trench and fire those torpedoes into the core and it wouldn’t even have a single scratch. Oh…it just hit me how much I miss films. And books. And music. First thing I’m gonna do when I get home? Watch all the Star Wars films and laugh at Jar Jar Binks’ jokes. (I’m not kidding here). 

Anyway, I’ve got a bit sidetracked here I think. I was gonna tell you about my crazy idea, wasn’t I? Well, it turns out that the Martian grass around the chasms is freakishly strong. Titanium style strength. Easy enough to rip up from the ground but that’s where the fun begins. I couldn’t tear it any further. I even tried to use my pocket knife to cut through the blade but it just shattered it. Gonna miss that knife, damn useful it was. So I wonder if you can guess what I’ve got planned? 

That’s right, I’m gonna fashion myself a rope out of this grass. (Don’t worry I’ve got a limitless supply – every time I rip up a blade, it’s instantly replaced). Mars has become a self-sufficient economy all by itself. Well, and me. But I don’t think I really contributed much towards it. Obviously it’s gonna take me a few days to finish the rope but once it’s done, I’m heading down the chasm. I need to see what’s waiting down there…if anything. 

This’ll be my last entry for a while. See you on the ice. 

END OF LOG

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