To call the sound a klaxon would be overdramatic, sure, but given the unexpected nature of its presence it might as well have been a sonic boom. You briefly try to figure out the bullshit odds of someone coming within range of a drifting ship, then quickly cast them aside as the far more important issue of "is this ship going to kill me" quickly surfaces in your mind. You scramble back to your computer, having gotten up for a brief moment to stretch your legs and do some basic exercise, and slam your fingers into the keyboard in a desperate attempt to figure out anything about the approaching ship.
It's moving slowly, that much you can gather for certain. The periodic updates on location (a feature that's technically illegal to use, but like hell you're going to tear off your dish because of some lawmakers back on Mars) let you know this, but you're still incredibly skeptical. Minutes pass, and you figure out that it's going to be a couple weeks at least until you get anywhere close enough to be at risk. Maybe they're another drifter? Hell, maybe they're just a piece of debris with a signal stuck in them? You run through possible explanations, but none of them quite feel plausible enough. After ten, fifteen more minutes, you take a deep breath, let it out slowly, and send out a brief message.
The pinnacle of professionalism, you are. Honestly, you hope you weren't too formal. After all, such genius verbosity has gotten you in trouble in the past.
Still no response. Another few points for the "piece of debris" argument- however, that appointment has more or less lost credibility given the success of your pings. A few more minutes before you try to stop tearing your hair out and give up.
Holy fuck. If you were slightly less of an asshole, and slightly more consumed by loneliness, perhaps your first thought would've been something that wasn't "god, this person sounds like they have a stick up their ass." However, you're a rude piece of shit, and you're used to the endless void that is space, so you simply roll your eyes.
The snoot-o-meter just keeps on rising. Were this ship's pilot a bit more poorly spoken, they'd fit right in with the fuckers on Qnet.
It occurs to you to ask for access to the database for the vessel code's accompanying model. It's pretty low for a VSL- definitely a Sumitomo ship, since that's what they use- but all you can get right now is worthless speculation. It's not like you're high enough to go very far in the queue.
What the fuck?
Okay, yeah, what the fuck. Is this some crazy person floating out in the middle of nowhere for no reason, not talking to anyone? I mean, you've heard of prisoner jettisoning before, but you always figured they'd just kill someone instead of wasting resources on a doomed ship. You're suddenly concerned once more that you're talking to, like, an axe murderer or something.
Okay, definitely either an axe murderer or some sort of weird masochist who gets off on being depressed. You're no longer irritated by this random pilot, more just... totally bewildered? You've never seen someone so interesting, and that's saying something, given your job's tendency to lead you directly to the strangest, most gullible of people.
"Weird depressed loser" crossed off the list, your only options now are serial killer or bank robber. Maybe they're rolling in it? That would explain the Sumitomo code, if that's what it is. Some illegal asteroid stock trader. Doesn't explain the lack of QNET, though. You decide to pry just a little.
Shit. That's a really pretty name.
So there's a loser nerd girl in a ship near you for the next, well, several weeks. This is your first time talking to someone who wasn't your boss in months, and probably your longest conversation since... well... yeah. As much as you feel like you should be annoyed by this lady, you cannot help but want to keep talking. Damned isolation.
An alarm goes off. Break time is over, back to the grind.nevadaship_: yo i gotta get back to work but like
No response. She might be occupied as well- you never really asked if there was anyone else on that ship (though, to be fair, most drift alone, and she fits the role of "sad lonely girl" perfectly.) With a sigh, you dramatically crack your fingers and get back to work.