Astronauts: Steve, Eric, Alvin, Tim, Nicole, Michael.
Nicole sighed, looking around Discovery for the last time. No! She told herself. Don’t think like that. Nicole tried to take her mind of it. “Alvin,” she ventured carefully, “do you remember the ballroom lessons from high school?” The two had gone to every grade together.
Alvin screwed up his face, trying to remember. Then his eyes lit up. “Yes! With Ms. Malonsky?”
Nicole nodded slyly, and then grabbed his hands. Her feet began to move in the steps that she remembered from long ago, her most favorite high school year. Alvin slowly copied her, but soon got in the rhythm.
Steve, Eric, Michael and Tim strode into the main cabin and stopped short. They surveyed Alvin and Nicole for a moment, and then Tim let out a loud “AHA!” and ran to the beds. He reached into his duffel bag and pulled out a sleek gray IPod.
“Tim!” Eric exclaimed. “You bad, bad man…”
“I know I had some of those old dancing songs, the ones from the fifties…”
“You mean like ‘Rock Around the Clock’?” Wondered Steve.
“THAT”S IT!” Shrieked Tim. “ROCK AROUND THE CLOCK! PERFECT!”
Tim hit a button on the dial and the snappy beat of ‘Rock Around the Clock’ burst out.
Nicole did a couple of quicker steps, then Eric sauntered over and pompously shoved Alvin on the ground. He took up Alvin’s spot and swung Nicole in a tight spin, then dipped her low to the floor.
As Nicole struck a pose at the end of their improvised routine, Tim flung silver packages at all of them—space ice cream!
Eric chomped a huge bite out of his, and Time sighed. “Eric, someone down at Mission Control is freaking out right now.”
Alvin unwrapped his ice cream, raised it up and called, “To Discovery!”
Nicole, Michael (who had been quietly watching the entire thing), Tim, and Steve “clinked” copied him and “clinked packages”.
“Thoo Disthcovawee!” Eric burst out, a little late. The others stared at him, amazed at how he could make a single sound with so much food in his mouth.
Nicole gazed out the window at the majestic portrait of the Earth, outlined against the black expanse of space. That would be where Discovery spent its days, after this mission. It would sit, watching the advance of the world from a stationary spot.
On her planet. Her home.