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No Place Like Home

by Rob Nelson about a year ago in literature
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Chapter One

No Place Like Home [Chapter 1]

by Rob Nelson

Nurse Jean walked with confidence and poise, the soles of her shoes quietly touching the surface of the floor. Her duties are virtually stress-free due to the latest technology available to modern science.

The patient almost motionless; his chest moving each time as his lungs gratefully accept the generous supply of oxygen offered by the breathing apparatus.

The purpose of the artificially induced comatose state is to replicate a "deep sleep".

All in preparation for a future trip to Mars.

The patient, Captain Trebor Noslen, is a childhood friend. Friends, know him as "Turbo".

Back in the day, an intimate group of classmates enjoyed sharing tales of Turbo's "youthful exuberance".

[static electronic adult male voice] "This is Main Tower Control...attention. Main Tower Control. Stand by.


Ignition. Rocket deployed, count one, count two, count three...

[adult female voice] "...Uh, uh, uh, oh, yes, yes...! ...giggle...

[adult male voice] ...chuckle...

[adult female voice] "I like the look in your eyes when you are...ready..."

[static electronic adult male voice] "...count four...count five...count six..."

[adult male voice whispering] "Hey...Tarzan...? You wanna do it again?"

[static electronic adult male voice] "...count seven...count eight...count nine...all systems engaged..."

[Turbo's voice]...snow flakes are made by very, tiny crystallised water, frozen ice pellets..."

[child's voice] "...nooo Daddy...I want snowflakes from Santa Claus...!"

"Please engage W.I.M.P. (Wake In Monitoring Procedures) to full consciousness, while I attend to another patient next door."

"Yes, Major Johns," replies Nurse Jean.

Now Turbo is waking from his comatose state; computer monitors marking the moment by blinking lights indicating the stage of "R.E.M." (Rapid Eye Movement).

Turbo opens his eyes and acknowledges his old friend, Nurse Jean, with a "Hello".

"Good morning, Turbo," is Jean's warm reply.

Demonstrating his witticism, he offers a casually, yet measured, "...do you remember the last time we were here for this experiment? Mr. Pony almost broke through the 'stable doors'..."

Her gaze follows Turbo's sight line to the area of concern, then raising one of her hands, failing to suppress a giggle which manages to escape from her mouth.

"Hmm. I suppose the present condition of...Mr. Pony...suggests you slept soundly and your energy is peaking at optimal levels."

Turbo offers his reply with a chuckle, "Yes, indeed, if memory serves..."

Jean quickly resumes her professional demeanour. "Major Johns will be in shortly to review the latest data and answer any questions you may have."

She relaxes the stoic look on her face and offers a smile with "...well, tiger, you are already aware of routine."

Turbo clears his throat. "Thank you, Nurse Jean. We'll see you tomorrow night, at our place, for supper, Mrs. Noslen prepares a 'killer' lasagne."

"I am looking forward to it, and seeing your daughter, 'Boo-Bear' , " says Nurse Jean, with an equally engaging smile of her own as she makes her graceful exit.

Major Johns asks, "How are you feeling, Turbo?"

Turbo looks up with his trademark smile, "...like a million bucks, Johnson!"

Major Johns offers Turbo a large grin, his face briefly turning crimson red because of Turbo's use of the nickname "Johnson".

Everyone has been working on this project close to five years; camaraderie growing to become a "fraternity" of love and respect offered to all members and their families.

"Very good. The accumulative data offers some promising results at this point ..." Johnson announces.

"I feel very refreshed after each session ... totally alert within seconds of regaining consciousness ... but ... dreams ... are ... weird ... " Turbo's voice trails off with a puzzled look.

Johnson is pleased and nods his head with a, "Mm hmm."

"My daughter for one thing ... when she was about four years old ... overly protective of the tiny fragile things in life ... " another one of Turbo's trademark smiles appears on his face.

Johnson interjects with " ... your observations are quite intriguing ... "

"I'll say ... ! ... dreaming about sex with my friends ... I am happily married ... SEX ... BOTH genders!" Turbo exclaims, eyes glaring with mock bewilderment.

Johnson's response is slow and deliberate, "Turbo, I am not surprised considering you have been working with the same personnel for five years, day and night. Our minds store unique interpretations, specific to life events or personal memories which accumulate and manifest themselves into ... dreams."

Johnson continues, "Turbo, since 'Hominid Man", human memory banks have developed in the sub-conscious. We refer to this as 'basic memory instincts.' Here at the Academy we aspire to recode that sub-conscious to reference less of the past and reflect more on future experiences. In other words, one day you will wake up and recall those visions as longing and desire for your future home ... Mars."

"That is very interesting ...," Turbo offers, pausing, to consider something.

"Johnson, now an old saying springs to mind."

Turbo continues, "There is no place like home."

Johnson's reply is a simple nod of his head.

Turbo continues,I wonder, hypothetically speaking ... and I am dedicated and committed to our Mars project ... "

Johnson interjects again, "Certainly Turbo, Please, speak freely ..."

Turbo pauses to find the right words, "Johnson, why invest so much in building a new home on Mars when Earth has been our home for so long?"


About the author

Rob Nelson

Start writing...Creative writing is a gift we create for ourselves and to be shared between us. Good luck. Please stay safe and warm, Everyone!

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