Here are our First Runner Ups for the contest – “Zero G Corn Pier”, by Astrid Amara, and a lovely cover by Bronwyn Heeley. Enjoy!
Zero G Corn Pie
It didn’t surprise anyone. Last week the air conditioning broke, and now all one hundred twenty researchers onboard walked the hallways in their underwear. And while this was a sexually attractive side effect of the ship’s impending doom, the subsequent failing of the automatic chef system was less sexy. The autochef now only produced corn pies, which was particularly alarming since “corn pie” had never been a menu option in the first place.
Oren drifted upwards and gently hit the hallway ceiling. As his head was softly embraced by a floating sock, he realized it was all at an end.
And if they were going to die, there was someone he needed to see one last time.
Oren floated through the vessel trying to avoid the years of detritus that had spontaneously taken flight. He couldn’t go five feet without being smacked by something offensive. Still-wet toothbrushes, partially full condoms, toenails, all that had slumbered on the floors of each cabin now drifted about the crews’ faces.
He met the gorgeous communication officer Tavi in the maintenance shaft.
Tavi inserted a light pin into an open circuit slot. He was in his underwear. He stared at Oren.
“We’re doomed,” Oren said, hoping it sounded as good as he imagined it could sound. “And I know I’m not that attractive right now. I slept through ‘shaving in zero G’ and corn pies make me bloated. But I’ve been in love with you for a year now. So before we’re reduced to cannibalism, I thought I’d ask if I could kiss you.”
Tavi said, “I finally made contact. Our vessel’s been discovered. We’re going to be rescued.”
Oren cursed his rotten luck. “So no kiss then?”
Tavi put down the light circuit and leaned in.