Part 1 Preparing for Launch

P1 T1 vlog 1

Propellant loading...

Hi Everyone. Here I am; Tazz Anderson, a Geologist with a job to do. I’ve rattled up the tower in the elevator then crawled down through a hatch which they’ve sealed behind me. My ear defenders will help muffle the boom. The whole of the inside is no bigger than a large family car. And here’s me, wedged low down at the base of the cockpit in my space suit with its own oxygen supply, studying all the familiar panels and displays.

Systems propulsion...

Vehicle electrical...

Flight transmission system... GO!

The launchpad has been busy with people since dawn but now, at 3 in the afternoon, there’s no one in sight because they are enforcing the exclusion zone. I don’t feel alone though; I’m in constant contact with the ground through my friendly onboard computer MIC. MIC stands for Multioperation Inflight Computer.

Are you comfortable Tazz?


Sorry to hear that

That’s OK, MIC. It’s not your fault.

When I talk to MIC, I’m looking at a monitor with a yellow smiley face. The Tec team have made a cool graphic of a moving mouth which does make

him seem more like a human.

I’m glad you think so, Tazz

Your tuneful voice sounds a bit like my Uncle Hugo; he’s quite posh.

Hundreds of people are watching back at UK Space Agency and online in

schools; camera lenses are trained on this moment. I feel as if the planet is holding its breath to see the smallest ant, (me!), daring to climb up the tower, squeeze myself inside a spaceship and blast away.

I’ve eaten a simple last-day-on- Earth meal: cereal, eggs, a peach, before leaving quarantine where I’ve spent the past 5 days. My family could only talk to me from behind a glass screen to avoid passing on any illnesses. I wasn’t even allowed a final hug with my Shetland Sheepdog, Puzzle. Ed, my back-up, stayed there with me. He will take over the mission if I have to pull out. But that’s never going to happen. Sorry Ed!

Thanks for subscribing to my vlog. I’ll describe as much as I can for you. There’s a webcam trained on me the whole time. It will pick up everything I say, even if I turn my back. We can’t give you video all the time; the visuals would go fuzzy. So, you will see mainly Space pictures from the archive and get extra information on the trip with just occasional live footage of yours truly.

We have a clear day for launch; good visibility, the wind has dropped. There’s a window of half an hour for the launch to work otherwise they would have to abort it. That means I must to take off within that period for weather and engine reasons. But now the countdown is about to start. Please don’t let them find a tiny malfunction that makes everything stop.

I brought with me three little origami birds printed with red and yellow flowers. I’ve tied them with thread just beside the fuel gauges where I can watch them. You’ll see why later on. We don’t have many countdowns in

our lives, do we? Maybe Christmas. How many sleeps to go? Or a holiday, or a party. It’s things we are excited about...we can’t wait for them to happen. That sounds about right then.

I feel pretty warm in here, MIC.

The heat regulation system in your suit should be operative, Tazz. Your blood pressure is a little raised.

Ok. It’s probably just the excitement.

They didn’t use to design suits for women but this one has been made

specially for me; snug like a wellington boot but around the whole of me, not just my feet. I have to sit with my knees squashed up. I’m already longing to stretch. Sometimes, when a kid is little, their mums and dads countdown to force them to do something, don’t they? There’s danger in a countdown; if you don’t get that room tidied, this bad punishment will happen.

There’s danger today, of course. But there’s calm at the heart of me.


Ignition sequence is starting...

Thanks MIC

30 seconds and counting...

The smaller engines must be lighting.


Out of the window, there’s the launch platform, like a complex system of

white ladders, that will fall away. I know I’m high up in the cone of the rocket but because this space is so cramped, I can’t believe that’s where I am- the huge force rumbling below me sounds like the revving of a crowd of motorbikes. The vibration mounts.

In my head I am already gone.

I breathe, brace myself, listen to the rumble... louder...louder.

T minus 15 seconds

I’m forced down into my seat, as if an invisible hand has hold of me.


I’m jerked to the left, then right. The juddering gets more violent. The tower will be falling away. The whole cockpit shakes.

I’m sweating.

Readings for fuel pressure, steering and propellant flow flash before my eyes.


The people I love will be forever counting down...until they see me again...

I’m a cork about to shoot from a bottle...forward...breathe


The air roars

I slam back

Lift off

Blue sky switches to black. Lights drift towards me: blobs, clusters

Part 2 In orbit

P2 T2 vlog 2

Hi again.

I’ve spent 4 hours now, boiling in my suit, gazing at the panels; watching the levels of fuel and oxygen, calling out the answers to the checklist from MIC.

All going well, Tazz. We have reached 17,000 miles per hour. Pressure, fuel, engine functions all normal.


It would be hard for me to operate the controls myself with these heavy gloves on. Most of these switches are ones you flick or turn. All the vital ones are two-stage, so you couldn’t knock one accidentally and turn an engine off; you’d have to confirm, maybe even lift a flap before you could get to the main functions. They think of everything, these engineers! And, of course, the plan is that MIC will do all the flying of the ship, anyway.

I am programmed, Tazz. It is straightforward, and my sensors will warn me of any malfunctions.

Lucky for me.

How are you feeling Tazz?

OK. Excited.

It’s weird to think that only about 100 people in the history of the world have done what I’m doing now. Peering down out of my window at the Earth, I can see the continents so clearly and the amazing blue of the seas. When I was 15, I had a book about space flights. My photos of the Earth

didn’t have these brown clouds I can see today. That’s the air pollution. Parking orbit circularised.

The 3 little origami birds I brought with me start to bob about in the air. I know what this means! When I untie them, they float away, spinning over my head. Free fall. Seems like magic even though I’ve prepared for it for years. They put us in a centrifuge in training. It’s like a fairground ride. A giant revolving arm with you strapped to the end spins you at incredible speed. You tense your muscles; your face gets stuck in this massive terrified grin wondering if you will pass out. I never did. Also, they made trainees fly in a plane going in steep swooping curves. We all called it the vomit comet.

It is safe to take off the spacesuit, Tazz.


It’s in two sections so I’m doing the top half first then the legs. Woah. They are stuck to me so tight it’s like climbing out of an extra skin.

Being able to move about the cabin, at last, is fantastic; there’s hardly space to swing a cat but I’m doing some stretches, floating around... I’m doing a forward roll. Wow, that’s so easy! It’s fantastic to be up here. Fantastic but just a head is spinning now!


Oh no, I wish my last meal on Earth hadn’t been scrambled eggs!


Space sickness bags are in F14. Did you take your anti-sickness medicine Tazz?

Nope... I forgot. I’ll do it now MIC.

I’m now moving slowly about the cabin, catching the sick droplets in a towel. It’s like yellow rain; sorry, but even this is beautiful, trying to catch every bit as it floats around and trap it. Think of it like water droplets on a duck’s feathers but the wrong colour, obviously. Using the space toilet went OK. It’s all a matter of getting the suction going so the liquids all travel up a tube. Practise makes perfect I think. I certainly practised enough on Earth. Anything liquid is recycled to make my drinking water. Solids get stored in a pouch or frozen. Then they might be burnt later or just discarded into space.

I’ve been thinking about explaining how they selected me in the first place in case this is useful for any of my vlog followers who may be considering the Space industry as a career.

My background is in science; I did a degree in Physics then specialised in Geology. That’s how I come to be working for Mineralec. Training lasted two years once I got selected for this mission.

I had intelligence tests, operating robots, tests of my blood pressure and fitness; pedalling a bike and press-ups. How well could I withstand pain? How well could I operate machinery when they froze my hands? Ice water was poured in my ears to see how well I recovered from vertigo. They watched my eyes and I couldn’t focus properly and then my vision slowly went back to normal. I even remember having to swallow a rubber hose. It sounds like a lot, doesn’t it? But I told the people testing me that I liked to take risks and they nodded.

Because floating in water is the nearest to the microgravity of space, I spent many hours in a massive adapted swimming pool. You wouldn’t believe the things they had underwater: a full spacesuit with its own oxygen supply, tasks for learning underwater mechanics, using a drill and making repairs.

Lots of my training was done in a simulator which is identical to the inside of a ship where a computer can create problems that could happen to you

in space and you work through the answers. You can make mistakes safely and understand why something went wrong.

At one point, they made me float in a tank in total darkness with no light, hearing or smell for hours. I liked that. I’m good at switching my brain off.

Wilderness training was interesting. This was to prepare us for an unexpected landing in some remote place on Earth. Ed and I were left in a desert and spent several days using our wits to survive: build shelters, find water and not get attacked by snakes and spiders. The great thing is, there aren’t any spiders up here in Space. To be honest, I hate spiders.

I’m sucking a pouch of fruit juice. Everything is in pouches up here. I’ve also eaten a bit of vegetable broth. It comes in a pouch and you just connect it to a nozzle in the side of the ship. 5 minutes later it’s ready to eat.

Excuse me, Tazz, I have your parents transmitting...

That’s great MIC. Put them on.

Hi love.

Hi Dad. Hi Mum. I’m fine. Everything’s great.

Can you hear me?

I can hear you fine. It’s just a bit slow. There’s a time delay.

Hope everything’s going well. We watched the launch. It was spectacular. Then we were interviewed. Are you properly in space now?


And everything’s going the way it’s supposed to?

Yes. Completely. How’s Puzzle?

She’s fine Tazz. Romping in the back garden, chasing the squirrels.

You’ll spoil her rotten.

We’re so proud of you. Get plenty of rest tonight; you’ve been through a lot.

I will. Send everyone my love. I’ll be home soon.


Transmission over.

That was great.

Time to get some sleep. Wake me if there are any issues, MIC

Going to lunar transfer orbit, ready for your mission, Tazz. Rocket engines are now firing to 25,000miles per hour.

Sounds good.

Spitting is a very bad idea because anything liquid will float in droplets, so I swallow the toothpaste. I wash using a pouch of water and a bar of no rinse soap. I squirt a bubble out through a straw, catch it and rub all over my hands and face then towel dry. Short hair is so much better than long which drifts into your eyes. That’s why I have mine spiky.

I have a card wishing me good luck from all the guys at work and some photos I’ve saved for this moment: my dog Puzzle rolling in the cherry blossom in my parents’ back garden; Ed and I climbing on Ben Alder, a Scottish mountain; Mum and Dad and Puzzle on a beach in Cornwall on one of those endless sunny days.

My sleeping bag is attached by a bungee cord to the side of the ship. It’s like a cocoon and very cosy with arm holes and a hood. I’m like a caterpillar now.

My sleeping bag is rocking and floating away from the wall. It’s very soothing. Good night everyone!

Part 3 Destination Moon

P3 T3 vlog 3

Hi, everyone. Big day. Today I get to really use my skills. All trace of my motion sickness has died away now, and I feel ready for anything. I said I was a geologist. I’m an expert in rocks; that’s why Mineralec sent me. Geologists research and record the Earth’s history. But the mission today is to collect a particular rare mineral, Dysprosium. We need it to operate our Smartphones. It’s true; on Earth, it is in very short supply and hard to mine. But we think the source is better on the Moon.

My home is filled with boxes of rocks and I’m always heading off on another expedition in some remote part of the world. I’ve a pack of tools which travel everywhere with me: my little pick for hacking at rock, my eye glass, my knife. And today’s my best ever expedition, except that all the work has been done for me. I’m really just the collector.

I’ve always loved the Moon. When I was little, I used to listen to a story about a hedgehog who thought the Moon had fallen out of the sky because he could see it in a puddle. I used to gaze at the gleaming Moon in the sky and then at the Moon’s shining reflection in my book and I loved the idea of the Moon being made of foods like cheese or honeycomb with secret and mysterious places.

So, in a way, preparing to go down to the Moon’s surface today feels like I must have dreamed it.

Some parts of the Moon are exactly the same as they were 4.5 billion years ago. The Moon is the brightest thing in the night sky. In all the years there have been humans on Earth, people have come up with so many strange beliefs about the Moon. The Egyptians even named it as their god of death and imagined it fighting the sun and winning a battle, day after day. Now we believe the Earth and Moon are roughly the same age and the Moon formed from a collision of huge objects in Space. But the only

reason we know that is because of the Space missions to the Moon; because of the samples of rocks and dust they brought home. The Genesis rock, the oldest rock known to exist, helped us to date our whole solar system. Imagine that!

Engines firing for approach.

My face pressed right up against the window, I gaze down through the blackness at the grey surface, like plaster on a ruined wall. Everything is black, white or grey, like an old film. Some boulders here are as big as houses. Looking down on them makes my heart flip. Craters are dotted about as far as I can see, some the size of football pitches. Hey, imagine playing football on the Moon!

We’re slowing down.

I’m suiting up. First, I pull on a cooling garment, like a vest and long leggings; this will be under my spacesuit. You know the packs you have in your freezer to keep your yoghurts cool on a picnic? Well, today, I’m the yoghurt pot; the Moon temperature rises to 200 degrees plus. Then my spacesuit in its two halves...step into the boots... helmet sealed. I sit back in my seat for landing. MIC has precise coordinates for this, based on the last two missions; it’s a plateau in the centre of a wide crater. We’ll avoid rocks and hills. Lots of the craters were named by the first astronauts. Lacus Mortis: the lake of Death. Daedelus and Icarus; those are characters from legends. Icarus flew too close to the Sun and fell to Earth. And Pasteur and Einstein craters; great humans who changed the course of human history. Ed would name a crater after his football team, wouldn’t you, Ed?

We’re bobbing about a lot. Inside their padded gloves, my hands clamp down on the arms of my seat.

All systems ready, Tazz.

Grey swirls past my eyes. We sway, then land squarely down on solid ground. Engines shut down.

Silence. There’s just me and that strange grey world out there.

I undo the belts and clips holding me still and leave my seat. I enter the pressure lock area and move down towards the hatch.

Hissss. Behind me, the cabin seals itself. I flip the catches and activate the opening of the hatch, ready to step outside.

Part 4 Ready to Mine

P4 T4 vlog 4

Airlock engaged. Here I stand.

A world in black and white.

One boot print here will last a million years. Are you alright, Tazz? Do you copy?

Copy MIC. It’s just... so vast and lonely. It looks abandoned. I feel as if I shouldn’t walk on it.

(sound of breath)

I feel like a slow clumsy animal.

The Earth looks so small down there... so blue... so precious

My breathing sounds loud inside my helmet. The beat of my blood pumping pulses in my ears.

Do you have a visual of your vehicle?

Yes, MIC. Just going over there now.

Movements are hard in my suit; I bounce and grey sands puff out in clouds around me. It feels like I’m half-flying. I stamp, I leap, I swivel. Wow. I am light as air on the Moon’s surface; I could be on a bouncy castle. I feel about 5 years old.

The mining area is a quick drive from here. I settle in the seat of my Moon buggy and familiarise myself with the controls. Two cameras operate at the side and top of the vehicle, swivelling to check for obstacles.

Good to go.

The Moon buggy will stop automatically if it detects a hazard.


It’s not like roads at home, then. No other cars. Yippee! I’m steering across the bumpy surface towards the parked equipment with the Mineralec Logo.

It’s incredibly easy. And fun. No road. Big fat insulated wheels. I risk speeding up, bouncing over the surface, dust flying up in clouds. It seems so strange to think these rocks I’ve come to collect have been undisturbed for two years since they were excavated by the machines. Nothing moves on the Moon unless it’s struck by something.

I arrive at our boxes of rocks. They’ve been mined in the nearby craters and caves. My company are expert in designing robotic machinery which can drill and excavate here without the need for humans to be present. We won’t be certain we have Dysprosium until I can analyse the samples back on Earth but there’s a dark bluish glint that makes my heart leap. There are 20 small crates. I busy myself collecting four at a time and ferrying them back to the ship.

Gazing back at the Earth from here is the strangest loneliest feeling. The Earth is more beautiful than I had ever realised.

(I further day spent on Moon’s surface for research).

Part 5 A moment of Reflection

P5 T5 vlog 5

So much of our life on Earth is about the balance between the natural world and the people. Even my mission is about gathering something that people need to live their lives. How would we live without our Smartphones? Now I’m leaving the Moon, the Earth down below me seems more extraordinary but also fragile. So fragile. I feel very small in the universe. I’m not sure where these words came from but they sum up how I feel.

I’m the Woman on the Moon, looking down at the Earth. No man here, just bits of space kit up ahead No world of cheese, rice pudding, honeycomb. Only grey and black rock, dusty, dry. And, of course, the Earth hanging in the sky.

When I look down, when I see the oceans, The rivers; the green and blue beauty of Earth. Brown pollution clouds my view Wish I could gather up our Earth And hold it to me, safe. A great blue bauble, tarnished by time.

So, reaching out my protective gloved hand. Across the black velvet sky. I pluck our planet, like a plum. Dust it off, clean it and hang it back there in the sky. Never to die.

What is this? I don’t understand. What am I to do with this?

Don’t worry MIC. It’s just a poem. It’s something humans do.

Preparing for lift-off. All systems are go.

Successful mission, Tazz?

I’ll tell you when we get home MIC.

I’ve sealed the Moon rocks in liquid nitrogen-filled containers. Moon rocks are often amazing. I have a piece of one encased in Perspex in my office and it is staggeringly beautiful. The mineral is a midnight blue, like sky at night. It looks like someone shattered glass then pressed it all back together into a dark snowflake. But, when I cut a thin slice and put it under a microscope, I find rose pink clusters and blood red and grassy green tubes and flecks.

When I entered the ship through the airlock, the moon dust fizzled on my boots and a burning bonfire smell filled my nose. That’s the smell of the Moon I’ll take away with me. I’m letting myself think about home. Now I have the rocks safely collected, there’s no reason not to. We’ve completed the checks.

Part 6 A bad cup of coffee

P6 T6 vlog 6

This coffee tastes terrible.

I am told the tea is more successful.

Now that is where you’re wrong. The tea isn’t much better. It’s the powder... not having proper milk. Ed always says it tastes like fish tank water. Not that I’ve ever... (buzzer begins) What’s that noise?

Sensors have identified an accelerating mass approaching from our starboard side.

What? What do you mean MIC?

Cannot confirm. I am attempting to construct a configuration... The most likely object is an asteroid cloud approximately 15 metres across.

What? Repeat please, MIC

The most likely object is an asteroid cloud approximately 15 metres across No! What? Heading straight for us? It can’t be. That’s huge.

Cloud density and composition unconfirmed. Estimated speed 34,000 mph.

I... I... can’t think straight. Think... Think... Is everything inside here Ok... I mean, in the ship? Are we OK. Cabin pressurisation? Status update MIC.

Affirmative, all systems are normal.

What about fuel levels MIC? What’s our speed? Current speed 23,000.

But, if this thing hits us...? I mean, would we... can we... would we be OK? Collision is inevitable.

What? Repeat!

I can confirm. Collision is inevitable, Tazz. Our structure is only capable of withstanding moderate impact.

What’s moderate impact?

In a calculation of mass to speed, dependant on density, composition... a projectile of approximately...

Forget it. Look, can we speed up to avoid it?

Negative. Our fuel cell and acceleration capacity is not sufficient.

So, how about we slow down? Get out of its way?

Negative. Estimated collision time now one minute and thirty seconds...debris density increasing...

But there must be something, something we can do to. We can’t just sit here and... Surely there must be something... MIC? (plink... plink sound effect of storm beginning). We’re shaking. Oh help!

Impact collision now estimated in twenty seconds.

Woah. I’m... just about holding on to my seat! There’s flashes of orange light. Oh. It’s like... a blizzard but... flashes... flecks... blazing trails of fire... bright orange... fizzing green... Oh my God! 10 seconds... closing rate 5o feet per second.

Malfunction... (alarms sounding sound effect-reverberating bang- bangs whizzing plinks continue) 9... 8... 7... 6... 5... 4... 3... 2

Oh, please... make it stop!

Mechanisms compromised... Corrosive potential... Debris density increasing... No regular pattern. Our defense shields have been compromised... Deflection failed... Fuel levels critical. The lights are flickering.

Everything’s shaking. (Screams) MIC!!

Part 7 Post Impact

P7 T7 vlog 7

The gauges are flashing different levels... fuel dropping, no, it’s rising.

Speed... falling... 75,000... 22... MIC? Status update?

Insufficient information. O2 at 20% Is there anything you need?

The lights are flickering. There has to be damage to the ship. We’re tumbling. We’re definitely off course. I’ve checked the sensors, speed gauges... everything is flashing different readings. The others are all over the place too. The fuel gauge is reading one third then almost full then back to a third again. I can’t trust anything!

Blabbit... bahara... monet... supreme... volume... override... override

No! MIC! What does that mean? Don’t you break down on me now!


I have to sort this alone. MIC is giving the wrong information. I can’t even make out what he’s saying.

I’m switching to manual. I press to select. Confirm. Blebbewwwww... ... ...

The lights are still flickering. I can’t stop shaking.

Think. Come on, Tazz. De-pressurisation? OK, so how will I know?

Check each window? I can’t see the sides of the ship. What can I do to make things better? No point worrying about damage. I wish I knew, but I’m not going to know. Just a second, if we were really depressurising, things would be sucked towards the source. And I’d have about 10

seconds to live... which is already up.

My pulse is racing. I’m sweating. I don’t know if I’m cold or hot. Calm down. Think of the next step. Breathe... ... ...

I have to sort out the rolling, get back on course. It’s risky if one side of the spaceship stays too long in glare of the sun. I’ll have to do a controlled burn to get back on my flight path. How do I know which are the correct readouts?

I’m shuddering. If the air con fans stopped working, does that mean there isn’t enough fuel to power the ship? And what about the fans? CO2 suffocation?

Eliminate unhelpful thoughts. Stop worrying about the fuel. Do the things you can do. I’ve been thinking for half an hour. I’ve been studying the flight manual.

The temperature must have been falling. We have reached the dew point of the air. The instrument panels are dotted with beads of water. I’m soaking it away in a towel. Some of the ship’s vital functions have broken down or they are only operating at a minimum level. Or the readings are just wrong. Maybe the only problem is the electronics.


There’s a procedure for manual operation. I’ve tried it and it’s not working.

So, I can work it out myself. I’ve had all the training. OK, first I have to sort out the attitude. That’s the direction we point in relation to the sun. I have to get this ship back on track. I’ll use the periscope... that hasn’t failed me so far... the sun sensors, the star trackers, the magnetic sensors... and if I set the correct angle in relation to the Earth’s horizon. I lift flaps. Press Confirm. Yes, this is what I want to do, what I have to do. I study the flight attitude indicator... it’s a little dome in front of me crisscrossed with angle

markings... correcting my position... slowly... slowly... lined up.

One of my trainers at the British Space Centre said that getting the correct manual angles for a ship’s re-entry is like aiming to post a letter through a letterbox from four miles away. If I come in too steep, I’ll burn up.

Too shallow, I spin away from Earth entirely.

Just... spinning, forever and ever... ... ...

Part 8 A letter to the world

P8 T8 vlog 8

Tazz letter to the world

So, this is Tazz Anderson. I don’t know if anyone can hear. It doesn’t really matter. I’m sending you this message. It’s like... My letter to the world.

Hi Mum and Dad. And Ed. Hi all.

This is for you. Maybe you won’t get it quite as we planned but... I just wanted to record this... even if things don’t work out.

A few hours yet to destination Earth. Whatever happens, I want you to know that I have enjoyed every minute of this mission and the training and, Ed, don’t stop aiming high. Always believe that anything is possible. Believe that, Ed.

I was going well until we hit the meteor storm. Or it may have been Space debris. There’s a lot of it, they say; bits of machinery and junk from previous space flights. Like dropping litter on Earth. Except this stuff is potentially deadly to a small ship like mine. I may never discover what it was that hit, 3 hours ago. It certainly might explain the other failed missions.

Hi Puzzle. I’ve only had you a year, but you have really changed my life. You’re so friendly and so warm to hug. I’m thinking about all my favourite places to walk in and explore with you and there are so many on my to-do list.

I’m ready for what happens next.

And mum and dad, I’m glad you pushed me. All my loves to you. Hug Puzzle for me. Keep her safe.

I’m coming home.


I’m shaking.

Keep positive. There’s no more I can do. I’m putting my suit on.

Engage engines in 5... 4... 3... 2... 1

Part 9 A controlled burn

P9 T9 vlog 9

I think the controlled burn put me on the right course. There’s only moments to go before I find out. If I’m wrong, the ship burns up.

Another countdown. 10... 9... 8... This is the big one. I’m in my pressure suit. I brace myself. 6... 5... 4. A huge rushing sound fills the ship, like a train coming. A steep final dive. The outside fills with red blazing flakes. Heat is all around me.

My breath is tight. When I try, I can’t... press... any... buttons... my hands... no strength to... move.

Sparks fly up past the windows. Red gives way to orange... now pastel pink. Finally, the outside turns blue.

I feel the pull of winds. I am drenched in sweat.

My parachute inflates; I feel it yank the ship. I clench my teeth as my seat slams upwards. My ship slows.

I am rolling. I press to release the rockets, feel us lurch as they shoot away to slow me down more.

Something bright pink plinks on my helmet: an origami bird, then another, then another. Splash

I am dragged to one side. I clutch my seat as I flip upside down.

I take little breaths... in... out. My whole body has changed to a heavy lump; my arms are dead weights.

I feel the ship bobbing about.

Have I done it?

Am I safe?

Who will be there? I’m thinking of Mum... of Dad... the hug I’ll give Puzzle, pictures flashing before my eyes.

(gap of sound and noise)

The air buzzes with machine sounds. I hear the hatch seal opening.

Voices; “Tazz. We’ve got you. Welcome home!”

My helmet is off. So many new smells pour into my nose; a charcoal smell... air!

Living things. My heart races. I feel new-born.

Arms grasp me and pull me up from my seat. I’ve turned into a floppy puppet.

I am pulled up and into... can’t believe it, it’s actually... sunshine!

I’m home.