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It's a Red, Red, World

Grey stood in one of the Martian cities--he forgot the name, something vaguely Greek sounding. He looked out at the red vista displayed before him, and revelled in the slightly lesser gravity. He like Mars, just like his cousin had.


In fact, he was down here expressly to see his cousin. Dave had arrived at the station where Challenger was and dropped off his possessions on D-Deck, quarters J-3. Still no sign of his roommate yet. Then he'd taken a transport down to the Martian surface, in search of his cousin Henry Rawel.


Rawel hiked up the slope and tapped his cousin on the shoulder. "One last look?" he asked inquisitively. Grey was due to leave on the transport shuttle--not because of any real urgency, he just wanted to get a good look around Challenger.


Dave nodded. "Certainly is nice, although I still don't like it as much as Earth. I'm a sucker for the classics."


"Meh, I can do my work from anywhere I please, Starberg doesn't really care as long as I produce things that make them money. Large sums of money in particular." Henry grinned and looked out on a point at the horizon.


He said, "If you look very closely over near that point--there, see it? That's the crater that a Martian probe from Earth visited . . . Opportunity or something like that. One of the biggest space missions in history."


Dave nodded. "Is that so?"


"That is so."


Dave would miss Mars. He would also miss Earth, and the rest of the solar system. But there were other systems waiting to be explored, other potential Earths to find and nebulas to see. He wanted to know what else was out there.


And in four days, he would find out.

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