We sleep during the day, because anywhere but under the second skin it’s too hot to do anything else. At night we rise, to continue construction of The Project. Some talk of redefining the words ‘night’ and ‘day’ to reduce confusion, but I think that, for me, it would increase it.
Tending the algal ponds falls to some. Others extrude sheets to extend coverage of the planet’s second skin.
The topside of the skin is solar cells for power generation. The underside has lights and rainmakers. Some progress has been made on adding soothing imagery such as cloudscapes for night-time and starfields for daytime. I’m glad of that, because the unrelenting gunmetal grey is soulless.
We finally have enough Coverage that we can begin to allocate some space to wilderness. Not enough, naturally. I sometimes wonder if there will ever be enough. But at least now some creatures are being released into this wild space. Of course they have to be resurrected first, using the germ plasma banks. I watch them sometimes on the videofeeds, and wonder if they, too, find their current sky miserable.
Bots record our progress, and present us with feedback on how we’re doing. The numbers say that Coverage is proceeding at just under 1% per year, which means that stage 1 of The Project will be completed in about fifty years. If we survive that long.
Then, we’ll have to learn how not to forget. Some folk talk of putting big, very visible doors in the skin as a constant reminder to us that there is a universe beyond. I suppose that might work.
Word count: 269
Prompt: Why Build Orbital Space Colonies?
Here’s Zager and Evans to play us out….