Day One\Rika Introduction


DAY 1: SCENE 1: Rika Introduction – “Sauntering from Slumber”

[Simon’s room, in bed]

I wake to a loud, rhythmic beating on the door to my room.

I have a split-second realization that I was somewhere I’d never been before. Slowly but surely, as my bearings return, I recognize the dull grays that almost seem to enclose from the surrounding walls. The familiarity both relieves me and debases me. I should put some art or something in here.

[Blurring of vision, perhaps screen shaking, etc.]

Jeez… What time did I get to sleep last night? What time is it right now? Does time even exist in space? I guess I never really thought about it until now.

The beating continues, progressively getting louder, shattering any trace of my dream-induced stupor.

Now the sounds have shifted from simple knocks to complex rhythms that match some songs that I’ve heard a million times but could never seem to name. I scrunch up a bit, moving to the cold end of the pillow to catch a glimpse of the door. Two close-set and agitated column-like shadows can be seen obstructing some of the light bleeding through the door.

I vigorously stir in my sheets before breaking free and sliding out of the bed. Wow, I’m still in the clothes that I was wearing yesterday. I must have just come in here and passed out or something. Truthfully, I don’t even recall how I made it back here.

I practically crawl to the door and unlatch it, my own legs screaming to move back into the bed. I poke my head through an inch-wide crack to be greeted by a bright, familiar figure.

[Simon’s door, small crack revealing Nolan]

It’s of course, dad, who looks like he’s just been given a million (currency. bison dollars, perhaps?).

His face radiates with an impudent smile. “Hey there, sleeping beauty.”

God, I hate when he says that kind of stuff.

“Can I expect to see you at the bridge in 30?”

It takes me a while to process what he says. I give myself enough time to devise a suitable answer.

“How would you like it if I woke you up?”

That came out wrong. The questioning look dad gives me shows that he’d rather just pretend like he didn’t just hear that.

“Well, I suppose we could always just throw you in one of the ship’s prison cells.”

I take time responding this time, giving some extra thought before opening my mouth. Are there really prison cells here?

“20 minutes. Got it.”

Dad clearly took note of my lifeless responses.

“Hey. Hey now.”

He snapped his fingers in my face. It takes me a few more seconds to process the anger generated from more of his annoying habits, like this one.

“Do you even know where the bridge is from here?”

I figure I can save myself the history lesson on “101 reasons why you shouldn’t lie to Dad”, and just give in.

“Not… exactly. It was late last night.”

“It’s late every night.”

What? I blink a few times.

Dad empties his lungs with a curt sigh accompanied by a roll of the eyes. “Anyways, see those stairs?”

I’m forced to poke my head out of my door more than I’d personally like to in order to show dad that I’m at least somewhat able to retain information.

“Those’ll take you to the experimentation…”

Was there something different about dad’s beard? His cheeks are less rosy than they usually are.

“…take that corridor, and you can’t miss the cafeteria. You’ll run directly into it. Once you get your work out of the way today, I’ll expect to see you down there, see how you’re finding yourself and others. Got all that?”

The prospect of food gives me a reason to shake myself from my own inertia.


I raise my hand to salute.

“That’s what I like to hear. See you soon.”


I quickly shut the door and retreat to my bed in the dark.

His sheepish laughter drowns out as he hurriedly treads away. As much as I hate him waking me up, he did have a point. I’m going to be commanding a ship like this one day, the least I could do is wake up on time.

Stretching, I flick the light switch next to the bed. The light only seems to illuminate one side of the room, casting my shadow across the floor and radiating it onto the adjacent wall. It was enough for me to get ready.

I hobble over to the sink and look into the mirror above. A disgruntled face stares me back. Reaching down, I turn on the sink. Cupping my hands around the water stream shoots shivers up both of my arms. I bring my hands to my face and stand still for a moment. Dropping the water back into the sink, I draw a deep breath. I gather another handful of water and run it through my hair. It isn’t as cold this time.

I make my way to the metal case in the other corner, which contains everything I brought with me up here, which isn't much. I take off my wrinkled khakis and slip into some black jeans that stiffen me out a bit, which I assume isn’t a bad thing. My shirt reeked, and I slide it under my bed after taking it off. I put on a plain cotton t-shirt and a red and white button-up Aloha shirt that my dad gave me a few years ago, which I decide to leave unbuttoned.

I prepare eyes for the light.

[Hallway outside of Simon’s room, “unfade” from very bright to normally lit.]

A blinding aurora of light greets me in the hallway. The entire ship comes alive around me as I squint to see my way. Mechanics run here and there periodically. Once in a while I’ll see a scientist oom by with hardly any regard for their own safety. Was I really that late to wake up? I make a silent promise to myself to not let it happen again.

[perhaps in this sequence, random scientist sprites can flash across the screen]

I dazedly meander from my door up some stairs that look vaguely familiar.

—I think it’s this way…?

[Short hallway, female scientist walking in opposite direction (it’s Rika, but in this situation, let’s keep her as part of the background)]

I don’t think that I’ve ever been in this hallway. It’s pretty empty up here. A single young female scientist slowly walks on the other side of the corridor, seemingly engrossed in her own thoughts. She catches sight of me and we exchange good mornings.

The hallway leads to a dead end with some stairs leading down.

[Large room with scientists in it, part of background]

Now I’m somewhere completely different. Down the stairs, I’m in a crowded room. Nearly everyone here is wearing labcoats and goggles.

Researchers and engineers seemed to be putting final touches on [Mineral Resource] equipment. They work quickly and efficiently clacking away on keyboards and running tests. I could never have the patience to do something like this. I hate admitting to myself that I’m lost.

I’ll just walk quickly…


My eye just happened to catch a glimpse of a banner over a doorway.


I head in the direction of the arrow.

To the left of me, a window opens to the beautiful expanse of space, and on the right, I wander past a few thinly partitioned rooms that finally give way to a wide staircase. Taking carefully placed steps down the stairwell proves to be a spectacular challenge this early.

At the final stair, I spot a woman across the lab who seems to be caught up between eying me, looking down at her clipboard, and surveying the group of scientists in front of her that were reviewing test results. Suddenly immersed between the three, it’s almost like I disrupted her entire train of thought by simply entering the room. She whispers a something quick to a white haired man in front of her, earning an assuring nod. She turns to her reflection in a window to her right.

She swipes the black hair out of her face and adjusts her glasses frames. Turning around, she starts towards me with a half-smile I recognize as a questioning one. She looks familiar.

Wait… she’s the girl I said good morning to in the hallway a few minutes ago.

[Enter Rika]

She sets her clipboard aside to give me another head-to-toe once over.

“Hey, didn’t I see you a little while ago? What are you doing here? Lost or something?”

“I’m just headed to the bridge–”

“Well you’re not supposed to be here!”

Her voice takes an irritated tone.

“I’m sorry, I’m just really tired, my dad is looking for me so I really can’t–”


The agitation melts away from her face, quickly replaced with embarrassment.

“Sorry, but, are— are you Nolan’s son?”

“Yeah, he’s looki–”

“I should have known! He even told me that you’d be here! You look so much like him…”

She trails off like she’s waiting for me to pick up where she left off. There are a few seconds of silence before I decide to pick up the conversation again. She almost looked helplessly lost in the conversation now.

“What’s your name?”

Her face brightens as I asked her. She proudly points to her overcoat where a nametag lay. I hadn’t even noticed it until she pointed it out.

“My name is Rika. Rika Sullivan. I’m a chief navigator and research specialist.”

She’s actually pretty young to be a navigator. Younger than me, for sure.

“That’s interesting.”

She looks kind of disappointed that I’m not more impressed.

“…I’m Simon by the way. This is my first time here. I’m in training to be a captain one day. Sadly, I can’t even figure my way around the ship.”

Rika was looking away as I told her my name, but didn't seem to be preoccupied with anything. She hesitantly flashes her eyes towards me and smiles expectantly, but she still isn't completely facing me.

“Well, it’s nice to meet you, Simon. I’m new as well. This is my first deep space project. The stars are practically my second home. It’s kind of hard to get readjusted to this space life from being on Earth for so long, isn’t it?”

“Tell me about it. I was the same way my first time up here. I'm still kind of the same way.“

She laughed a bit at the fact that I had obviously just woken up. Maybe she was just laughing at my Aloha shirt.

“Are—are you excited to land on [Planet that the ship is en route to]?”

“Since I’ll be doing it, I guess I have no choice.”

Silently giggling again, she picks up on my sarcasm. She brings her hair out of her face with her hand and at last faces me with a nervous smile.

“I look forward to it as well. I love being a part of new discoveries like this.”

She scans left and right of her, and left again. Her voice lowers to a sly whisper as she leans in, as if to tell a secret.

“They say that [mineral] is going to change the way the world functions. I've overheard the other scientists saying that it would bring in [lots of money] per [unit of measurement]. And not only that. Doctors around here have found that fragments of [mineral] have the potential advance skin tissue regeneration and healing substantially. This is the big break I've been waiting for. (These are, of course, just simple ideas that I'm putting out there for the reason that they're searching for this mineral in the first place.) I was even the one that picked up on the initial signals in the first place! You know how fantastic it would be if this were all true?”

She seemed genuinely excited. I guess she really likes this science stuff. I'd heard all of these rumors as well, but I was unsure if they were true or not. For her sake, I hope they are.

“I have high hopes for it. My dad thinks it'll be the breakthrough that finally gets more people into space.”

Dad. I forgot all about him. Rika suddenly looks really nervous.

“I'm really sorry, I just remembered that my dad has been waiting for me up at the bridge for ages. I need to get up there before he blows a gasket. It was nice mee—”

She reacts with a cross between relief and surprise. She gathers herself once more and practically walks by me before responding.

“Oh, I got a lot of work to take care of anyways…”

She speeds away before can I tell her goodbye.


Written By Doak


Editing notes round 4: Changed and added new dialogue in the beginning. Added plans for dinner with Nolan for the evening of Day 1.

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