Time's Cruel Tide


7/9/20233 min read

Five years.

Five years since Ravager, or rather Muk 'Ravager' Celestius, had switched sides and joined us aboard the Nomad. Time had moved differently since then, filled with the steady rhythm of our daily life.

We were a proper crew now, living, working, and exploring together. Our ship had seen upgrades, better equipment, enhanced hull, more advanced mining tools. We were a true mining vessel, one that had seen some incredible expeditions.

Ravager had fully adapted to his new life, his hair long, a beard giving him a rugged look that matched his history. His tough exterior had softened over the years, the once feared pirate captain now an invaluable part of our crew.

I was 21 now. My life had been a balance of two mentors, Gramps teaching me the ins and outs of mining, Ravager showing me how to survive, how to pilot, and most importantly, how to keep on living in the often harsh and unpredictable corners of space.

Our harmony aboard the ship was disturbed by a recent development. Gramps had started forgetting things. At first, it was minor things, names of the planets we'd visited, the kind of ores we had mined. But it was escalating.

He would wake up screaming in the middle of the night, disoriented, and it would take him a moment to remember where he was, who we were. I was worried, but I wasn't the only one. Ravager was concerned too. The man who had adapted so well to his new life was now fearful of any changes.

It was a fragile tranquility we had aboard the ship, and the memory lapses of Gramps threatened to shatter it. Even though we didn't talk about it much, we could all feel the uncertainty, the tension building.

Ravager was different, quieter. His eyes had taken on a haunted look, as if he was constantly expecting something to go wrong. He'd pace around the ship, making unnecessary checks on our equipment, trying to keep himself occupied.

One day, as I was running some system diagnostics in the cockpit, Ravager came in. He looked at me, his eyes betraying the worry he had been hiding so well.

"Moe, we need to talk," he said, his voice barely above a whisper. It was the start of a conversation I had been dreading, one that hinted at the unavoidable and uncomfortable truth - Gramps was not well.

I swallowed, steadying myself, "Alright, Ravager. Let's talk."

Ravager leaned against the cockpit's doorway, running a hand through his long hair. "It's Gramps," he began, his voice heavy. "His condition... it's not normal. We need to get him help."

"But we're light years away from any medical facility," I replied, my heart sinking. The galaxy was vast and lonely, and right now, it felt especially so.

"I know," Ravager said, standing up straighter. "But I think I know a way."

My eyebrows shot up, "You do?"

Ravager nodded, "There's a planet. Odesia. They're known for their advanced medical research. We might find someone there who can help Gramps."

"But Odesia is a guarded planet. They don't let just anyone in. It's notorious for its security protocols," I pointed out.

Ravager's lips curled into a small smile, "Good thing we have a notorious former pirate on board then."

Our journey had taken us to the farthest corners of the universe, and now it seemed it would take us to Odesia, a place we had never dared to venture. But for Gramps, we would do anything. The man who had been a father figure to me and, surprisingly, a friend to Ravager, deserved nothing less.

"Alright, Ravager. Set course for Odesia," I said, a mix of fear and determination settling in me. As I looked at Ravager, I saw the same mix of emotions reflected in his eyes. We had faced numerous challenges before, but this was different. This was personal.

So we were heading into the unknown once again. For Gramps, for our family. The Nomad buzzed around us, the sound of the engines preparing for the jump to light-speed echoing through the ship. We were heading to Odesia, and whatever awaited us there, we would face it together.