Sargent Julius’ Top-Ten Survival Tips Every New Colonist Should Know

Submitted into Contest #74 in response to: Write a story in the form of a top-ten list.... view prompt

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Science Fiction Suspense

Welcome aboard the New Horizon Colonization Mission. Earth applauds you, and more importantly the United State’s government applauds you. For whatever reasons, you have chosen to leave behind everything you’ve ever known in favor of experiencing the brave new world that is the US Hope Titan Colony.

You will make history as one of the first residents of the first permanent settlement on Titan, which is of course the first permanent non terrestrial human settlement. A little slice of America orbiting Saturn. You are no doubt feeling a little nervous about this new experience. To help you prepare for this life changing event, here are some tips compiled by Sergeant Julius Smith of the US Space Corp, the only man who has come back from the icy ball not once, not twice, but  three times.

1..If you get seasick, you will get space-sick

I really hope you at least thought about this one before. While this 6 month rocket trip won’t exactly be like 6 months at sea, you can still get motion sickness. Mainly, when we take off, when we land, or if we have to make changes to our speed or our direction at any point throughout the flight. Don’t worry, in addition to sickbags every ten steps on board, dramamine will be freely and widely available. 

2. If you get altitude sickness, you’ll likely get gravity sickness

If you’ve ever gone up to the mountains and have gotten sick, get ready for a rough first year. Titan’s gravity is about 1/6 of Earth’s. All structures are pressurized and heated of course, but there will be an adjustment period as you transition, as we will not be able to mimic Earth’s atmospheric, or really any Earth, conditions. Once again, free promethazine will be available if dramamine is not doing the trick for you.

3. The military has one job, and it’s not to babysit you

There will be a strong military presence at the colony. The boys in green are there to protect you from the planet and from each other if the need arises. While they are not your enemies, they are not your friends. Give them their space and follow any and all directions given to you and you should be fine.

 If you do ever have a problem, don’t bug them with it. If it’s between you and another colonist, work it out. If the two of you can’t come to an adult solution on your own. Or if this problem is strictly a you problem, take it to one of the friendly colony team leaders that you will meet at the launch.

4. If you had problems on Earth, they will have most certainly followed you to Titan

Look, everyone hopes a new start means a clean slate. It does not. You are not leaving your old self back on Earth and getting a clean reset. If people didn’t like you then, people will not like you now. If you made any decisions that lead you to taking this opportunity, you will still  have poor decision making skills once you reach Titan. You are not going to magically change, so buck up and only cry on the inside.

5. Do not touch the local animals or plants, they will touch you back

Yes, the news got it right, after we broke through the atmosphere, we did find alien life. Now, as far as we can see, there aren’t any advanced life forms here. A few of the creatures are self aware, but most aren’t. While you will be in a suit or behind glass everytime you encounter the local wildlife, it is still not a good idea to go around tempting the local wildlife. Most of them will leave you alone if you leave them alone. The ones who don’t, well, that’s why the military’s here. Also, don’t bring back unauthorized samples into the colony. Jerry learned that the hard way... just don’t.

6. Be a team player, you’ll be stuck with the same 200 people for the next ten years

If you don’t make friends, it’s going to be a rough decade for you. Only 200 people are going. If you decide you don’t like them a week into the trip, tough. Do you know how expensive this all is? Even without providing for all of your living expenses, this is a one way shot. There may be a few new faces here and there as needs arise and specialists are flown out, but for the most part, turnover will not happen as the next colonization ship is not scheduled until 2120. And only if this colonization attempt goes well.

7. Remember, the government is the only one sending new supplies

When everything is so far away, it’ll be easy to feel disconnected. Just a fair warning, any talk of insurrection or renouncing your American citizenship will result in the next shipment of supplies being canceled. If you do feel any mutinous or unpatriotic impulses, those are the only problems you can take directly to the boys in green.

8. As the first generation of native Titanians are born, expect the unexpected

Of course, one of your main duties is to try and increase the population of the colony and see if this is even viable. Our top medical experts have been consulted and children born in the colony should be healthy... enough. However; we can’t guarantee that there won’t be any birth ‘abnormalities’. But please, start shacking up. You can even start on the ride over.

9. There is no going back, the only way off once you get there is death

Now, not to get too dreary, I mean, we all die at some point. If you buckle down and don’t cause any problems, it shouldn’t happen until the end of your natural lifespan. This is a one way trip, you could not imagine the logistical nightmare if there was any process where you could request a spot on a supply transport to come back home. Remember, after you, all ships coming to and fro are going to be military vehicles and well, see tip 3 for more information on that.

10. Remember you signed up for this, now make the best of it

Now look, I know that you might be a little nervous and maybe are having second thoughts at this point. But remember the circumstances that made you sign up in the first place. Be it government coercion or signing under duress, all contracts made to go on to the US Hope Titan Colony are legally binding at time of signing with the minimum penalty for breach of contract being life imprisonment. There is no way out of this, so make the best of this.

December 30, 2020 18:39

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2 comments

M Dover
15:24 Jan 06, 2021

Haha this is great!

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Katie Moyes
18:53 Jan 07, 2021

Thank you :)

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