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For those of you who missed the talk page, this is a preview of what I have so far on one of my larger writing projects, Dead Space. I realize it isn't much, but I wanted to get an early opinion from you guys on how my writing style is reflecting the game. I personally think im sticking a *liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiitle* too close to the game content, but that's why you guys are here. Please feel free to read, reflect, and post comments on suggestions so I can improve my writing. I really want to make this a successful book and to do you guys and the Dead Space universe proud.
D E A D S P A C E
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: New Arrivals 5
“I can’t believe rotated me out but not you.” Nicole Brennan smiled. It had been about the fourth time Isaac had stated this. He was not happy at all. She took his hand as they walked through the transfer bay. Nicole’s shuttle was to arrive in a mere five minutes. “Serves you right for not marrying me. We could have claimed spousal preference.” Besides, Nicole thought. There’s no way Isaac would remain sane with that many Unitologists onboard. Isaac snorted, but smiled. The marriage humor always got him. “Very funny.” “Besides,” Nicole continued “It’s only for about six weeks. Some of the crew has been up there for two years! I’m sure some of them have girlfriends too.” Isaac glanced at the ground and then back up at Nicole. “Not like you though.” The two paused in front of the loading bay door. It was an exciting prospect to be offered a position on the USG Ishimura, but still… it was hard to leave Isaac. No matter the circumstances. Nicole turned towards Isaac and kissed him goodbye. “I’ll call you soon okay? Don’t worry about me. I love you Isaac.” Isaac nodded. “Love you too.” Nicole stepped into the loading bay. She turned, took one last look at Isaac, then the doors shut, obscuring him from her view. Nicole sighed; made sure her RIG’s log was recording, and then headed toward shuttle no. 214.
The vastness of space had always intrigued Nicole, no matter how many times she saw it. But as she gazed out the port window of the shuttle, she always thought experiencing the Ishimura was always different. It seemed to draw her eyes like a dead body in its magnificence The USG Ishimura was the most famous Planetcracker class mining vessel in service. Huge, stellar, and somewhat intimidating, she loomed in the emptiness before the shuttle, Aegis VII serving as a backdrop for the ship. It was widely known that Aegis was of more importance than it initially seemed. All over the news, reports of an ancient artifact called “The Marker” had been recovered from the planet. This attracted the attention of a religious group called Unitologists, who took the discovery of The Marker as a symbol of divine salvation, or whatever it was. Nicole hadn’t been extensively educated in Unitology, partly because Isaac wasn’t too fond of them. Even more ominous was the “incidents” on the ship since The Marker’s discovery. Reports of workers disappearing were becoming commonplace, even stories of crew members going crazy and killing themselves or others was widely known. Part of the reason why Nicole was assigned to the Ishimura was to lend medical assistance to a regrettably low doctor count. The shuttle pilot’s calm voice came in over the speakers, cutting thorough “Attention, please secures all personal belongings, and secure your zero gravity harnesses. We’ll be docking shortly.” Nicole strapped her herself and her bag into the seat as the Ishimura’s enormous shuttle bay doors slowly opened. “Docking in ten seconds, please secure all belongings. Welcome to the Ishimura folks.
=Chapter 1: New Arrivals =
CEC Mission ER529
USG Kellion en route to Aegis system...
PRIMARY MISSION ASSETS
...Isaac Clarke – Engineering and ships systems specialist...
...Kendra Daniels – Computer Specialist...
...Zach Hammond – Chief Security Officer...
Directive A: Locate mining vessel USG Ishimura
Directive B: Diagnose and repair communications blackout
Time to contact point: 3 minutes...
Isaac Clarke closed the corporate mission directives page and ran a hand across his face. He was worried. Nicole had promised to call him. It had been 46 hours or so since Isaac had heard anything from Nicole. The unusual blackout aboard the Ishimura hadn’t made Isaac feel any better either. Desperate for info, he volunteered for the emergency mission crew of the USG Kellion, all of which were on deck. Zach Hammond, a dark skinned man overseeing security on the mission. Hammond was conversing with the two pilots Chen and Johnston at the helm of the Kellion. There was also Kendra Daniels, on the port side of the deck, typing non-stop on a datapad she never seemed to put down.
Seeing that everyone was busy, Isaac opened his RIGLink and sorted through the database. Soon he came to a video file. Isaac pushed play, the image of Nicole’s face materializing in a square video frame. Isaac instantly recognized the shitty quality from using save stations. “Isaac, it’s me. I wish I could talk to you.” Nicole’s image looked down from the station. “I’m sorry. I’m sorry about everything.” She seemed to be on the verge of tears. “It’s all falling apart here; I can’t believe what’s happening…. It’s strange, such a little thing…” The words _end of recording_ flashed at Isaac. He closed the RIG database and leaned back in his chair. Sorry? Isaac thought. Sorry about what? Why can’t she believe what’s happening? It’s just a routine... “How many times have you watched that thing?” Isaac looked up and saw Kendra glancing at him curiously. “Guess you really miss her, huh?” Isaac nodded. “Don’t worry, we’re almost on board. You’ll be able to look her up when we get there.” Kendra returned to her datapad. “Sounds like you two have a lot of catching up to do.”
Isaac opened his mouth to respond, but was interrupted by a whoosh sound. Looking out of the frontal viewport, a nearby star illuminated the deck with amber light. It was beautiful, but eerie at the same time. Dangerous as well, there was a lot of asteroid-like debris from the recent planetcrack floating about. Isaac felt his stomach flip as one of the pilots switched to manual, navigating the asteroid field. “All right everyone” said Hammond. “We’re here. Synching our orbit now.” “All this trouble over that chunk of rock.” Kendra muttered. Hammond took his gaze away from the window and folded his arms across his chest. “Deep space mining is a lucrative business Ms. Daniels.” Hammond returned his stare to the distant planet. “Aegis VII is a gold mine according to prospector’s reports. Cobalt, Silicon, Osmium…” Isaac knew that resources were basically depleted on earth. The fact that humankind could mine extraterrestrial planets was a testament to humanity in itself. “Now…” continued Hammond. “Where is she…? Ah. There she is. We have visual contact.”
Isaac was suddenly conscious he was holding his breath. He exhaled; relieved he could at least see the ship. Nicole was on there somewhere. He knew it. Kendra seemed to be mesmerized as well. “So that’s the Ishimura.” She said, half to herself. “Impressive.” “The USG Ishimura.” Hammond corrected her. “Biggest Planetcracker in her class.” Hammond glanced at Aegis VII, at the huge crater in its side. “And it looks like they already popped the cork.” “Why is it dark? I don’t see any running lights.” Isaac looked at the ship again. Kendra was right, the Ishimura was completely dark. Ships of the Ishimura’s size were required to have running lights on at all times, as a standard safety procedure. Hammond stroked his chin thoughtfully. “Corporal Chen, take us in closer then hail them.” Chen set some co ordinates and nodded. “Yes sir.” He opened a comlink to the Ishimura and cleared his throat. “USG Ishimura, this is the emergency maintenance team of the USG Kellion responding to your distress call. Come in Ishimura.” There was no response.
Kendra tapped her thigh impatiently. ‘You’re going to need to boost the signal if their power is low.” “Yes we know.” Replied Hammond irritably. “Boost the signal.” He told Chen. The Kellion crew listened intently for ten seconds, and still nothing, save for an uncomfortable silence came in over the radio. “Never heard of a total communications blackout on one of these things.” Kendra said, pacing. “You’d think with a thousand people on board someone would pick up the phone!” Suddenly, the control panel lit up. Johnston reached for a knob and turned up the volume. Instead of a human voice, Isaac heard something that sounded like… garbled speech. Except there was something strange about it, something that didn’t fit the regular metallic crackling of communication failures. Evidently, the rest of the crew was wondering this as well. “What is that?” Chen asked. Kendra shrugged. "It's a busted array like we thought. Sounds like they're having problems with their encoder." Kendra jerked her thumb at Isaac. "You get us down there and Isaac and I can fix it, forty-eight hours max."
Isaac knew a great deal about ship systems, and he knew that it wasn't a "busted array" like Kendra thought. The array was fine. Isaac could clearly hear some sort of conversing on the comlink when Chen contacted the ship. It just didn't add up. Isaac cleared his throat. "Hammond..." "Alright, you heard the lady." Hammond straightened and held on to an overhead safety rail. "Take us in, let's see what needs fixing." "Yes sir." Replied Johnson. "Gravity tethers engaged, docking procedures are go." Suddenly, the Kellion lurched forward, as if it was being pulled backwards. Isaac was nearly thrown form his chair, his engineering helmet skittering past him. He managed to grab it with his boot and hold it there. "What the hell?!" Chen shouted at the controls. "Corporal! What's happening?!" Hammond shouted. Johnson grabbed the control yoke. “The ship’s gravity tethers must be offline! I can’t keep control of them!” Isaac new this was bad. Without the tethers guiding them in, it was a big possibility that with a ship the size of the Kellion, they would smash right into the side of the Ishimura. “Corporal! Switch to manual now!” Kendra grabbed onto a system pipe as the ship gave another shudder. “ Inside the magnetic field?! Are you insane?!” Kendra grabbed Johnson’s shoulder. “Abort!” “No!” Roared Hammond. “Corporal! I gave you an order!” The viewport blast shields closed, and Isaac strapped in his harness. At first there was nothing, then suddenly came a series of explosions, bumps and jolts. There was a loud grinding noise, followed by a sudden jerk, causing Isaac’s head to smack against the back of his chair. White lights exploded in front of his eyes, and he felt the ship come to a halt.
Isaac shook his head, trying to clear it. It was dark on the deck, and then the emergency power automatically kicked in. In the dim light, he was Hammond bring himself to his feet and open the blast shield. The metal panels slid apart. Isaac instantly recognized the Ishimura main hangar bay. The ship must have just made it inside. “Is everyone alright?” Hammond asked. Isaac rubbed the back of his head. “Yeah” Kendra on the other hand, was not. “What the hell were you thinking?” she demanded angrily. “Were you trying to get us killed?” Hammond raised a hand. “I just saved our asses Ms. Daniels, if we had aborted at that velocity we would have smashed into the hull for sure.” Hammond opened a toolbox and retrieved an SWS Pulse Rifle. Loading a new clip with flick of his arm, he shouldered the weapon. “Now settle down. We’ve got work to do.” “Corporal! Report!” Hammond barked at Johnson. “Sir, we’re stuck for a while it seems, I’m not getting a reading form the port booster. I could take a while to fix.” Isaac sighed and bent down. He fumbled briefly for his helmet and put it on. The RIG menu displayed and then a loading bar appeared. A second later a blue HUD appeared and relayed his status. Here he could easily access tools and info on the ship he was going to no doubt need with the ships system problems. His biosign monitor wasn’t active, ditto with the bar on the spine of his uniform. Odd. He looked up in time to see Kendra walking towards him. “Hold still Isaac, I’m just synching everyone’s RIG with the ship.” She popped open a panel on a metal plate section and inserted a cord from her datapad. She typed in a sequence of code, and then pressed enter. The spine section of Isaac’s RIG heated, and then cooled as the bio system scanned its wearer. Isaac’s HUD automatically updated inside his helmet, now displaying his body temperature, clearance level, heart rate and overall bodily status. Satisfied, Hammond started towards the back of the ship. “Alright everyone, we’ve got a job to do, we’re moving out.”
The others passed him on the way out of the ship, but Isaac hesitated. Something just wasn’t right. He took a quick look around the empty bay. Empty? Why is it empty? Where is everyone? Where is Nicole? He blinked and selected the _record_ icon on his RIG. It was time to finally get some answers.