Just an Ordinary Trip into Space

April 20, 2011
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“T-minus ten minuets to launch,” a voice says over the loud speakers. I’m nervous even though I’ve trained for this all my life: an expedition to the distant planet Argon. This planet has been found suitable for human life. It has a dense atmosphere, average of 73 F climate, even water, although not as much as here on earth. Our mission is to test what gasses make up the atmosphere, test the soil, and other technical tests. We will also need to see if there is some form of life on this planet, other than our own.

As I wait nervously, I get the signal that everything is ready to go. All that needs to happen is for me to hit a red button labeled “Launch.” I look back to my crew and I'm reassured because they look almost eager. This gets rid of the butterflies in my stomach. I know the captain is supposed to be strong, so I put on my strongest face, one of determination. I activate the thrusters because I hear the countdown start. I position my hand above the launch button, “Five, four, three, two, one,” I slam down my fist! I feel my body pushed backwards hard into my chair. I try to look around although because of the immense force of us leaving earth, I can only move my eyes, but I can still see what’s going on, everyone that I can see is just as uncomfortable as me, the monitors are simulating the status of the ship. I feel another jolt. This means the huge two rockets mounted to the side of the shuttle have fallen off. Only a few more seconds of gravity left. I feel myself shift forward, no longer smashed into my seat, by the gravity of earth.

I unbuckle and drift towards the window, no matter how much training my crew and I went through, we weren’t prepared for this.
“The zero gravity machine wasn’t even close,” says Skeeter, my second in command.
“This is so much better,” says Esimay, the communication specialist.
I drift over to the window to take a look at our earth. The land is grayish-brown, and the water has a green tint to it. I think back to the stories that my grandmother told me. How the water was a beautiful blue and how the land was covered with forests. How she could just go for a walk and enjoy the air. Nowadays I have to watch my back just going to work.
The land is now covered with factories and high-efficiency farms. The only time I’ve ever seen wood is in the White House when the President gave a speech about finding new life.
“Whacha lookin’ at Raphael?” I hear one of my crew members say. I turn around seeing that they’re all watching me.
There are seven of us, eight including me. There’s Skeeter and Esimay, John, he’s in charge of security. Jona, he’s our navigator. Max and Mary they run all the fancy equipment that will show us if the planet is safe. Joe, he keeps track of the supplies and cooks for us, and me, Raphael, the captain. It’s my job to keep the mission running smoothly.
“Completely clear of the earth’s gravitation pull!” Jona yells, “Activating warp drive, everyone buckle up!” I do as he says, and soon I feel myself being smashed against my seat. Suddenly, I’m thrown forward into my seat-belt. I don’t know how long it’s been; time works differently at warp speed. Then I see it, Argon, dark gray with crystal clear water towards the south. Our shuttle starts rocking furiously as we enter the atmosphere. I get pulled by the gravity. We slow down suddenly as the thrusters engage. Then bam!
We hit the ground; it’s a hard landing since the gravity is heavier here, which I immediately feel when I stand up. I stumble for the first couple steps, but then I get the hang of it. John mans the turret but soon gets down because it’s obvious that there is nothing out there. Max and Mary are loading a cart with equipment, and everyone else is suiting up, so I suit up too. I pull on my helmet, activate the oxygen, and wait for everyone else to get ready.
When they all give me the signal, I open the door to the air-lock. Everyone is in, so I shut the door. I reach for the button that opens the door to the outside. I hesitate. Everyone is giving me reassuring looks even though feeling the same way as me. I smash the button so I don’t get time for second thoughts, and brace for what will happen next. This is nothing of course except for it being slightly warmer.
As I step down onto the squishy ground, Max is telling me what the atmosphere is made of and what concentrations that the elements are. I learn there are high oxygen levels but dangerously high amounts of CO2, but on the bright side plants will love it. I guess there are also small bacteria in a nearby pool, the building blocks of life.
We all hop into a golf cart type vehicle and start to explore. The landscape is slightly hilly, and in the distance there is something abnormal jutting out of the ground. So I decide to go check it out. As we come up to it, I know it’s not natural; it could be where a meteor hit. The cart stops and I jump out, as I start to walk up to it, I see the looks of surprise and what worries me, fear on some of my crew members. John pulls out his gun, so I quickly go to the edge. Then I see what lies on the inside.
The age old question has just been answered; we aren’t alone in the universe. There’s something else out there, smart enough to make a spaceship! It’s about 40 ft long and 20 ft wide, has a rounded front and tapers off in the back. There are two large fins on each side and has large thrusters on the end, almost as large as the spaceship. There is a very strange alien design that is green with blue details. There are small circular windows along the side of the fuel cell lodge, with a large dome-like window in the front.
There is landing gear well above the ground in the back while the nose end is half buried. I suspect that the gravity was much more then they intended, and brought the space shuttle down just a little too quickly.
I look around and see that there is no other evidence of disturbance. So I conclude that they never made it out of the spaceship. I’m hesitant at first not knowing what’s going to happen next. The hull of the ship seems to be made out of some weird type of metal that is almost like a rock.
Skeeter looks at me, and I nod to him. Then Skeeter, John and I walk up to what looks like the entrance to the ship. There is no visible handle, but John just shoots the hinge type looking things and the door falls open. The entrance looks ordinary enough. It looks like something similar to our air-lock. Skeeter and I climb up into it. I turn the handle, and I hear a hiss as the air floods into the ship. I push with all my might on the door and it opens suddenly to the inside of the ship. All my years of training could never prepare me for what waits on the other side.

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