The Last Roughneck Starts Fresh

Back in Alaska, my crew had quite a collection of adventure stories to tell, most of them revolving around me. I was something of a hero among that last generation of roughnecks: a feat of strength here, a dramatic rescue there. Truth is, I was just lucky. We lost too many men on that rig as it was, and every time it should have been me.

When the oil finally ran out, it was only all the close calls under my belt that kept me off the street… but I never would have guessed where I’d be headed next.

That was five years ago. It seems like just last week. They told me stasis would have that effect, though I didn’t take them literally. Waking up now, I fan away the lingering hydrogen sulfide gas and find the release button for my hypersleep chamber. The hatch pulls away, and Commander Bryce is waiting to greet me.

“Stanton!” he exclaims, and offers a firm handshake.

“Commander.” I’m disoriented. Antigravity isn’t quite what I had expected, though I suppose no amount of training can prepare a guy for that.

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