1 – Rain

The sound was soft and soothing in her ears, it almost made her wish she could sleep in a little while. She couldn’t remember the last time she had woken to the sound of… RAIN!?

She jumped out of her bunk and started keying in her code into the emergency suit locker. Then stopped. Something was not right. The habitat was built with so many fail safes and redundancies that, if something had gone wrong, there should be some alarm blaring loudly somewhere. Yet everything was quiet except for the persistent sound of rain.

She checked all the indicators on the wall, confirming everything was working fine. Then slowly turned around. The sound was coming from the tiny kitchen area.

She walked towards the pressure door and peeked inside to find something that should clearly not be there. Over the tiny plastic table stood a shiny copper teapot beside a Balick cup and saucer. The air was filled with the scent of freshly brewed black the with just a dash of cardamom.

Had these five years alone driven her mad? The thought passed briefly thru her mind before the sheer impossibly of it all finally overwhelmed her. In an instant all reality condensed into the improbability of that kettle.

She calmly stepped into the sound of rain, unfolded the tiny seat from the wall, sat, and poured herself a cup of tea.

The rain was falling gently around the terrace. He knew he couldn’t see it thru the clouds, but he still turned towards the place in the sky where the tiny red dot should be now.

“–Five years,” he thought.

“–She must miss the rain so much.”

He smiled, poured himself a fresh cup from the shiny copper pot, and sipped the fragrant tea.