I slammed my fist down on the button again. There was a whirring from deep inside the engine and then a loud, metallic grating noise that sounded like metal teeth grinding against one another.
“Give it up, Saskia, the engine’s knackered.”
I knew the feeling.
“We can’t just sit here and wait, Joel.” I pushed the button again and nothing happened. Joel ignored me and radioed an update on our situation to Ground Control. I looked out at the tiny blue dot that was the home he was radioing too. There was nothing but silence on the other end.
I tried to work out how close we were not the nearest space station. I put out another distress call. Somebody picked it up, but nothing came back.
Our oxygen supply was running low and there was still no word from Earth. The radio crackled infuriatingly every now and then, but there was never any voice on the other end. We conserved our power and our energy as we had been trained to do, but we were really just going through the motions, just sitting in a metal tube waiting to die.
And then there was a knock at the door.
“What the fuck?” Joel sat upright. “No… No it’s can’t be…”
“It’s probably just the metal making noises as the engines are cooling,” I reasoned but then there was another knock and I wasn’t so sure. We went to look out of the porthole together.
A tiny blue creature with three large green eyes floated outside. It stared at us as we stared at it. Then it held up the tool we needed to fix our ship.
Our distress calls had been answered, just not buy our home planet.