“Wendy, Wendy. It is time to wake.” Jenny’s soothing voice gently cuts into her sleeping mind and pulls her from her soon forgotten dreams. “It is 0700, I have made you breakfast it is waiting for you. As is a message from command.”
“Thank you Jenny.” Wendy smiles and slides from bed skipping the shower, lifting the bowl of supposed oatmeal with possible strawberries on top, and heading to the terminal with the message already pulled up.
Wendy, Jenny messaged us last night requesting the coordinates of the landing. Enclosed is the approximate coordinates of the landing. It should land at 1200 and it will remain until 0000 tomorrow. So be quick.
Coordinates: 40.446 N, 79.582 W
“How far from here is that?” The teal sound wave comes on screen.
“That will be an hour walk. You do not have access to a transporter.”
“Oh fun.” Wendy rolls her eyes and begins eating. “What are the orders for today?”
“You have none, your sole mission is to give samples to command.” Wendy pouts and looks out the small window.
“Maybe I should get some more, from other plants.”
“I do not see a reason not to.” Wendy finishes eating, deposits the bowl, and goes to the air lock. The suit slips on easily and she climbs in, with a sigh she listens to the air being vented and the outer door opening. She grabs what she needs from the storage cube and sets out, going to plants further away then she was initially willing to go. Most of the plants are the same and even those that are different are just less mature versions of the samples she has already collected.
“1000. Do you wish to depart?”
“No, we should wait for it to land.”
“Understood.” Wendy goes back to the station and goes inside. Her book is done and there is nothing to do, nothing except talk to Jenny.
“Hey Jenny, how do you know my food preferences?”
“Programmed, I have access to all files on the research team. They include date of birth, sleeping patterns, preferences, and work patterns. Over time I will learn the rest so I can interact with you better.” Wendy nods quietly. “Am I not satisfactory?”
“No, I’m getting used to you, and your updates are making you easy to interact with.” Wendy quickly explains, working to spare the machine’s nonexistent feelings.
“I see, if I am unsatisfactory in some way please tell me, I will work to change so that this trip is as painless as possible.” Wendy nods again and yawns, wanting very much to take a nap. “The shuttle is in bound, early. Approaching slowly, will monitor the situation if you wish to nap.”
“Wake me the second it lands.”
“I will Wendy, sleep well.” The researcher stands and walks to her bedroom, flopping down and almost immediately falling to sleep. Softly Jenny rattles off an endless update on the location and status of the shuttle, after a couple of hours it has landed perfectly. “Wendy, Wendy. It has landed, please rise.”
“Five more minutes?” She mumbles, burying her head in her pillow. “Please?”
“I can wait no longer, you must rise.” Jenny presses, Wendy sighs and slowly gets up, the long nap doing little to ease her exhaustion. “If you go into the green house you will be able to see the shuttle, please make all haste in reaching it with the samples.”
“Ok, ok.” Wendy yawns slowly shuffling to the air lock and pulling on her suit, bypassing the trip to the greenhouse. She enters it, the air vents, the door opens and she steps out and gets her things from the storage cube. She walks around the small building to the greenhouse and looking out to see the small outline of the shuttle. With a sigh she plods toward it, though it does not seem to come closer as she pushes her exhausted self forward one step at a time.
After an hour she reaches the shuttle, the side panel opens and she pulls out her samples before meticulously placing them inside the container. With them safely stored inside Wendy turns and looks at the research station, with a groan she turns and begins to plod back. After yet another hour she is home, she stores her things, the air is vented into the air lock and the inner door opens. She does not react to Jenny’s greeting as she strips off her suit and goes to the bathroom, running a warm bath and slowly sinking into the water letting it work away the soreness in her legs and shoulders.
“Wendy, are you ok?” Jenny asks, voice soft as though she is a real person standing outside the bathroom door.
“Yes, just tired and sore. I’ll be out in a little while.” The AI does not respond and Wendy sighs, allowing herself to slip under the water and letting the world around her vanish for a moment before she rises back up, sloshing water on the floor, though it runs down the small drain to the same holding tank for the greenhouse. With a soft sigh Wendy stands up and redresses before stepping out.
“Hello Wendy, did you enjoy your bath?”
“Yeah, it was nice.” She sits at the table and sighs, laying her head on the table top while staring blankly at the terminal, void of new messages from Darbi. “I think I’m going to sleep.”
“Ok, shall I wake you for dinner?”
“Yeah.” Wendy lays in bed for a few hours with her eyes shut though not actually sleeping.
“Dinner, Wendy.” She slides from bed, hurriedly eats the meal, and returns to her bed, though this time falling into a fitful sleep.