This is the first short story in my new Lunar Series which is set in the same universe, Remembered Earth, as the Cislunar Series. It will be available for reading until the end of February.
“Is the surface of a planet the right place for an expanding technological civilization?”
- Gerard K. O'Neill
TO THE READER
In this story (and most of my stories) I know I am using the antiquated dating system, A.D. I blame this on the book Daybreak – 2250 A.D. by Andre Norton, which I read some time in elementary school (and of which I recently bought an old paperback copy). So, I was imprinted early with that dating system and think it sounds cooler than C.E. No social, political or any other kind of statement is meant.
Men had returned to the Moon only nine years before and now the first commercial settlement was starting, though it would be a pretty modest start, actually it would be just a single structure (and inflatable at that) but it would be home to several of the company's employees over the two week day of a lunar month.
Just south of Timaeus crater in Mare Frigoris the company had sited the settlement, Tima, named after the crater. Water in the permanent shadows of the crater's south wall would eventually support the new settlement. Luna Limited was one of a handful of companies that were racing to establish mining rights, manufacturing facilities, tourist destinations, and anything else that might bring in a dollar on the Moon. No one really knew what would be profitable but everyone felt that it was time to make a move.
I was above all the action, circling the Moon in the company's space station, part of the support network for those on the surface. I would be here for three months, that was a common rotation schedule, any more and the exposure to the normal radiation of space was considered too risky to one's health. Three months should be enough time to get the habitat setup and then someone else would take over the station.