Sunday, 22 February 2015

The Four Stars Chapter Thirty Seven

Previous chapter: Sinope Macaroon.

Chapter Thirty Seven: Percussive Maintenance.

As Isabel and Francesca watched through Hera's window, the blue-eyed woman in question was working at a steady pace to finish her rocket set. She carefully hammered in the joints and sealed them with solder, making sure each joint was covered before going to the next one.

She had finished the base and body. Now it was time to set up the top from inside the rocket.

Hera climbed up very carefully as she brought the parts up through the rocket's internal ladder. She fixed them in place, haphazardly at first, then carefully after consulting the blueprints.

"It's like a giant vehicle model," Francesca whispered to Isabel. "Can it fly?"
"You should ask Hera," Isabel replied. "Something that big? If it doesn't have any motors, then Hera's wasted her money on a giant sculpture."

A gigantic spire of metal pointed to the sky when Hera put the finishing touches. She made sure all the joints and soldering were in place. "It can fly through the sky, but not actually in space," Hera said, reading the manual again. "It needs its computer in place before I can fly it."

Francesca went out to see the rocket for herself. Hera was still repairing it, whistling Fur Elise this time. The younger woman stared at it, impressed. "What a wonder!" she said.

"Thank you!" Hera replied, still paying more attention to the rocket. "What time is it, by the way?"

"It's almost six, time for dinner."

"Who's cooking today? I forgot, honestly."

"Isabel is. Spaghetti tonight in half an hour."

"Good to hear," Hera said, as Francesca watched her. "Not worried about sunburn, are you?"

Francesca shook her head.


That evening, over dinner, Attie made some personal remarks about Francesca's choice of underthings. "Attie! How could you ask such a rude thing?" Francesca asked, shocked. Attie looked away and bit her finger.

"I thought you wouldn't mind at all," Attie said. "Since you talk about clothes with Isabel sometimes."

"I don't ask her about underwear!" Francesca said with a huff.
Embarrassing personal remarks.
"I think I'll continue upgrading the rocket over the week," Hera said in a bid to make things less awkward. It worked.

"So you finished your rocket kit?" Attie asked. "That explains the banging noises over the last few days."

"Just the exterior. I still have to put in the computer, check its engines, and make sure all the joints are welded nicely. Can't have it fall to bits halfway."

"Yeah, you're not designing a half-finished game that you can charge full price for," the Lion said with a big snort.

"Someday, I'll make a game or project that is complete enough to be worth its price. Fran, got any ideas?"

"The ones I have involve our SuperHeroQuest characters, and you know how the admins gave up on it," Francesca replied. "Maybe they could retrieve the artifact that was stolen. That has a ring to it, Demoliri and the Three Musketeers."

"Sounds like a plan. Are you sure the admins are okay with it? Copyrights and all that stuff can be messy."

"They were okay with it, but they won't bother to endorse it. We'll have to promote the game ourselves."

"Right then," Hera said after swallowing the last of her food. "I'll draw up a time table to make that project, after I finish my rocket."

Next chapter: The Scent of French Perfume.

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