Earth is dying. So are we. With ecosystems collapsing at all levels, world leaders and researchers alike offer a radical solution—leave the planet behind.
Dr. Lorsikka Vale knows not everyone can live among the stars, though. And nothing will stop her from rectifying the climate crisis, even if failure means losing more than her first home.
Hartem Dieb hates control. In his experience, trying to keep a hold on anything in this world is a pointless effort. Attachments only make a person vulnerable to inevitable change. Now, the entire world is on the precipice of it. He shouldn’t care, but the prospect of losing his home, again, reverberates through his mind with increasing intensity.
Where is that damn access pass?
He rummages through a drawer of the penthouse’s office as if it’s his laundry basket. Glass-encased sculptures from centuries past reflect light from his wrist comm, illuminating his way and reminding him time is running out.
Walking back to the center of the room, he listens for activity on the other side of the penthouse. Distant voices mean he still has time, but not long. Readjusting his strategy, he plants one foot firmly on the marble floor, pivoting around to brainstorm in motion.
Ancient vase—not practical, behind a painting—too risky for the artwork, Nexus pin collection…
In front of the wooden chest, he bends over in search of any lock function, but it’s too old for a digital code or fingerprint recognition technology. Through the glass top, an extensive collection of pins sits on velvety cushions, collected over decades of research and achievement. Certain pins are practical—port pins showing travel allowances, one signifying a former research position. Others are honorary pins from the leaders of various habitable regions.
“Where is it?” he whispers.