The mechanic—although not always thought as the most significant member of the crew—probably goes hand in hand with the captain of a ship. The captain keeps the crew running, and the mechanic, keeps the captain’s ship running. Even with the best of captains, without a good mechanic, a ship will not run.
There are certain qualities a good mechanic must have. They must have a good feel for their surroundings; know the ins and outs of their ship like the back of their own hand. They must do well with improvisation, as in passing of a stellar black hole there most often isn’t a warehouse with readily parts nearby. The last and utmost quality that every good mechanic must have, is a pair of able hands. It is the mechanic that must hold the ship and it’s innards together. Therefore, good mechanics must have small hands, and the precision of any great heart surgeon.
Tala Binder, the assistant mechanic of the Superior, possesses all these qualities, and more. For she also has a clever mind and is hardworking. Hired several months ago only as a working mechanic, she was soon promoted to assistant mechanic. You’ll often find her at the very back of the ship in the generator room, humming her own made-up tunes whilst she works. In fact, that’s where you’d find her currently, finishing up some pipe work.
A hand lifted, toying with a loose bolt on large rusting hunk of metal. Another hand soon accompanied it, only this one with the help of a wrench. A young woman heaved a content sigh, patting the ship before crawling out from underneath the space beneath the main pipeline to the generator. The woman was dressed informally—unlike most the crew—in pair of used jeans and a plain v-neck shirt (which was black as to not show stains and smudges). A belt, used to hold tools, hung proudly around the girl’s hips, as if a fine accessory rather than a required part of her work uniform. Although the woman was a mechanic, she did not suffer in the beauty department. Smudges of oil and unbrushed hair aside, she was a very pretty woman. She was slender but had none too subtle curves, although they were hidden by the loose-fitting clothing she wore. She had stormy blue eyes, and a smart mouth. Dark brown hair, slightly curled and sheared off to her chin, framed her heart-shaped face. She kept her hair short as it wouldn’t do a mechanic any good to have her wound into a rotating fan while working.
The dark blue hues inspected the rest of the generator room, as the young woman sat down on the floor.
“Tala!” She heard a voice call out. The young woman’s head turned to see a man waving. This was Sam, a working mechanic hired about the same time as she that she’d quickly befriended. Sam, seeing he had her attention, continued. “You coming to dinner?”
Tala shook her head, “I can’t. I’m on generator duty. But bring me back something would you?”
Sam crossed his arm, “Sawyer’s got you working his shift again? Probably went to spend time with that lady-friend of his, he always asks you because he knows you’ll do it. You should be the head mechanic, not him.”
“Well if he keeps shucking his duties, I might just get his spot.” Tala pointed out with a wink. Just because Tala was hired at first to be a working mechanic, didn’t mean she wasn’t smart.
“I see, working your way up to a higher salary and a permanent sign-on with this ship. Very clever.” Sam then went on to tease her, “Maybe I won’t bring you any food so I can work while you leave to eat.”
Tala laughed, “Sam, I doubt you even know what a monkey wrench looks like. I usually end up working over-time by taking your shift.” She pointed out.
Sam just grinned, and nodded, “Alright, I’ll bring you a lunch bag back.” He disappeared for a moment, and then reappeared, “Turkey or ham?”
“Turkey.” She called to him, and listened to Sam’s fading footsteps down the hall outside the generator room.
Tala waited nearly an hour and a half, but Sam didn’t return. In fact, she hadn’t seen anyone in quite a while, although being in the very back of the ship, you usually didn’t run into very other many life forms except the rats, which somehow weaseled their way onto every ship.
Tala’s stomach let out a yell of protest from having gone without food for so long. Tala finally succumbed to her hunger about five minutes later and decided she’d go get dinner herself since obviously Sam had forgotten. Besides, the generator could go unattended for a few minutes while she waited through the lunch line.