• KL Forslund

In Space, Noone Can Hear You Poo

“Carson, did you see that streaker?”


“What? Just now?”


“Yes now. Do not clown on me.”


“This is Tokei, Mokoaji,are you sure?”


“I saw a flash in the corner of my eye.”


“Do a suit inspection, I’ll ask Houston what the weather’s like on the other channel.”


“Crap, we can finish this, Don’t make us waste the last nine hours.”


“Better safe than sorry Carson. Tokei out.”


“Let’s get it over with. Mokoaji, do a slow 360 so I can see.”


“Fine - how’s my pirouette looking?”


“Looking good. No signs of damage. Did you take ballet back in Kenya?”


“Yes, when I was a little girl.”


“Houston says you’re nearing an old satellite collision zone. Risk is minimal. Should be able to finish repairs on schedule.”


“Carson here, Moko’s clear and she’s re-tethered. Clip off and starting my twirl now.”


“He is spinning now - should get a look at his bottom in 3..2..”


“Just finish the check, Mokoaji, I’d like you two back on Excelsior someday.”


“Yes, of course. He is looking - hold on. Carson can you do another turn?”


“Why? What is it?”


“Just keep the spin - ah that is a worry.”


“Mokoaji, what do you see.”


“What? Is there a puncture?”


“I see a faint emission - um - brown?”


“Shit.”


“I see Carson took an impact in the POT-T after he used it.”


“It’s a ten hour spacewalk, that’s what it’s for.”


“I’m merging channels. Tokei to Houston, we, uh, have a problem.”


“Houston to Excelsior command, please clarify.”


“Can I stop spinning?”


“Yes, grab the rail and retether.”


“Tokei to Houston, it appears the streaker damaged the POT-T. There are visual indicators. Please advise.”


“Houston to EVA-328, can you describe the flow?”


“This is Mokoaji, it looked like a fine brown stream.”


“Houston to EVA-328, return to Excelsior.”


“Moko, just use the patch kit, we can still keep the schedule.”


“Houston to EVA-328, negative on that. Just get back to the barn.”


“Roger that. Carson and I will change tether to the SLED and depart.”


“You go first Moko, I don’t want to spray you with-”


“Carson, this is Tokei, your vitals just spiked”


“Woah, I’m a little dizzy, must have been all that spinning for Moko. Oh!”


“Carson! Carson bumped and missed the SLED, he’s untethered - The stream changed color.”


“Moko I don’t-!”


“Houston to EVA-328, what is Carson’s status?”


“Carson is adrift, and the emission from his suit is pinkish now. ”


“Carson this is Tokei, do you copy?”


“He is not responding. I am mounted on the SLED and tethered, ready to unclamp from the satellite, am I clear to recover him?”


“Tokei to Houston, Fallen Angel. I repeat, Fallen Angel. Mokoaji bring him home.”


“Roger. Going to angle for his right side and avoid the spray.”


“He’s picked up a little speed and tumble. Almost there.”


“What’s happening? I must’ve blacked out.”


“Carson is conscious. I am coming on your right. You are free falling.”


“Oh yeah, hey look at those sparkles behind you.”


“Houston to EVA-328, be advised we’re tracking proximity increase to the debris field.”


“Thank you Houston. I am good on stress for now. Carson can you grab my hand?”


“Trying, Damn! Can you get closer?”


“Huh, Ooof. I have you. Can you get on the SLED?”


“Give me a minute, Feeling light headed and my strength is gone.”


“Take your time’. Mokoaji to Tokei, I have the angel.”


“There, I’m tethered.”


“Alright hang on, Excelsior, we’re-”



---

The fire crackled as Tokei Akemi pressed stop on the micro-player. Crickets chirped and all eyes watched her. This camping trip was supposed to build up the astronaut candidates, but they didn’t know how bad it could be. “That’s what scares me. You probies know it’s dangerous. But up there, among the stars and the satellites and the nothing, it’s just you and your crew. And little tiny bits of trash. And three feet of Carson’s intestine when the POT-T got hit, shorted and sucked it out.”


One of the probies, Wash, raised his hand. “That mission wasn’t in the records.”


Mal gave Wash a bump with her shoulder, “I bet it was a classified mission. Did you sneak this out?”


Tokei gave a slight nod. Wash wouldn’t relent, “Did they make it back?”


Tokei brought her gaze to the infinite vastness above them. A streak of light raced overhead. “Yeah, but a part of him will always be up there. And some other shit.”




 

I wrote this bit of sci-fi horror back in 2019 for the Scary Dad Horror Con fiction contest. DIdn't win, but made it to their website for a year. The inspiration came a few years earlier when I heard NASA had a contest for space suit toilet inventions. So it's a crude subject, but something astronauts could have to contend with. I opted for the dialogue only approach because aside from the movie, that's all we had of the Apollo 13 crisis. Radio, back and forth, and I liked the sense of isolation and imagination running wild with what could be going on up there and how bad could it really be.


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