~ * ~
Lock didn't need a participant in his conversation so Renna listened. She liked the organization and felt the first surge of optimism in ages. She could acclimatize to the colorful interior. The crew was a strange group, but someone knew ship business. Dom Jake’s influence? The unseen Zak? Or Cutter’s? The ship wasn't as desperate as she first thought, well supplied. Not the newest equipment, more tried-and-true with much well-applied sub-work. She felt comfortable with an existence of pared-down, yet adequate technology. If the crew was experienced, they might very well do in numbers. She let out a low, pent-up sigh of relief.
“Life-support, pumping station, ventilation, and climate system, and access to lateral engines are along here. This is Ezry's hydro-farm.”
He pushed the hatch open and walked into a lush, brightly lit compartment filled with plants. Ezry worked there. The dark woman gave Lock a slow smile which vanished when she saw Renna. Her expression was a look Renna recognized from her other short runs, one shouting, ‘you’re not wanted here, podder.’ She felt lucky hydroponics wasn’t listed in her work repertoire. Lock and Ezry exchanged disrespectful words for a few minutes with outrageous impertinence.
“Crazy bitch,” Lock said as they left. Ezry’s laughter followed them out of the compartment.
“We'll go aft now to the main engine compartment.” While he talked, Renna examined the ship. Even here, color danced on the partition surfaces. She wanted to touch the surfaces, to see if the color made her feel as alive as the partitions looked.
“Ship Dog! Showing the new crewman around,” Lock shouted as they entered the engine compartment. The burly engineer turned from where he disemboweled a console’s innards. He abruptly left for the far inner reaches of the compartment.
~ * ~