Settlers of the Void


It took me two hours to set up the damn tent. It’s supposed to be so simple, something that an even an idiot can figure out with no prior training. All you have to do is follow the numbered sequence of diagrams, right?

Nope. There were so many poles and slots and little loops of cloth that I nearly tore up the instruction booklet in frustration. I’m not good with my hands, I guess. That will need to change.

Once I finally got the tent up, I took a quick inventory of my supplies:

And that’s it.


From inside the Hierophant the sunsets seemed to last forever on PIB-1176, but outside on the ground the transition from day to night feels instantaneous. It gets cold quick – as soon as the sun drops below the horizon line.

It’s windy. Really windy, but sporadically so.

When the big gusts blow, the tent feels ready to lift up off the ground and carry me away into the air, stakes and all. It doesn’t sound like how the wind sounded in the sims. It sounds like somebody is screaming. Like a ghost or some kind of animal. But when there isn’t any wind the silence is almost unbearable. Tonight I noticed myself coughing, clearing my throat, mumbling – whatever I could think of just to hear something other than my breathing.

I guess what I’m saying is that I’m not sure which is worse: wind or no wind.


Sometime in the night I woke up to take a leak. I unzipped the tent, grabbed my flashlight, and headed outside into the darkness. When I finished, I switched off the light for a bit just to see what life would be like without it. I’m glad I did.

The stars are so beautiful out here. Clearer than the highest resolution sim, more beautiful than any of the paintings in the database. They’re perfect. Despite the cold I wanted to lie outside looking at them all night long.