|About the Book|
The craft was now entering the system and he could feel that now familiar compression begin as the ship started to decelerate. Another four days of this to endure before the ship was in orbit around its target planet. Somehow he felt that theMoreThe craft was now entering the system and he could feel that now familiar compression begin as the ship started to decelerate. Another four days of this to endure before the ship was in orbit around its target planet. Somehow he felt that the training, whilst preparing him for this discomfort didn’t really cover all the minor details of everyday life on a ship. He must try to take the mind off the discomfort. Now he was out of the warp bubble he could get a closer look at his new planet, the one which would now be his home for the rest of his life. He started the power up of the onboard systems which allowed him access to the photonic sensors and to see what information could be gleaned from this distance.Back at home they had of course scanned the planet, but from so far away there was very little, other than the basic information, that they could give him. Oxygen nitrogen atmosphere, no intelligent life, abundant plant life, a cool temperate climate and a single orbiting moon. It should be perfect for human life, almost too perfect and nothing like home. There would have to be something wrong, which is why they had sent him, to seek out the unexpected, solve the problems and prepare for those who might come later. That is of course if he survived, but he had made it this far and he was the best that Mars had produced. He was physically very fit for his age, a polymath, a problem solver and most of all a loner that rare and useless ability on Mars that made him the perfect fit for this mission. How he survived on Mars, where everyone was on top of everyone else and they all knew everything about each other was puzzling. It could have been the prospect of this mission that kept him going, the chance to get away from all those emotions and unpredictability that so distressed him. Whatever it was he was here now and would deal with whatever else was to come.The initial sensor reports on Hope were starting to feed in. The first thing that cropped up was a slightly higher than expected carbon dioxide reading. The reading was still within the margin of error that the remote sensors had provided, but they were well towards the top end. It could be there were some forest fires or some increase in volcanic activity. The prospect of making a landfall during a period of high volcanic activity didn’t thrill him- so many things could go wrong. Then, if it came to it, waiting it out in orbit till volcanic activity returned to normal didn’t thrill him either. Still hydrogen sulphide, hydrogen chloride and helium readings were well within the expected parameters, so further investigation of the atmosphere would have to wait until the ship was closer. Whilst that was on the backburner, the sensors were also now starting to feed back information on the land masses which might start to give him an idea where to make landfall.