Laika

She disconnected the heart and pulse monitors and smiled. “There,” she thought, “That’ll make them think I’ve gone.

Back in Moscow the sensors flatlined. Dr. Petruzhev turned to the rest of the crowd and sighed, “We have lost her. Laika is dead.”

She reached under her belly and slipped out the crude joystick she had fashioned out of plastic from her dish. She wriggled it into the hole near the center of the control panel to her left. Grasping the end in her mouth she twisted it slightly and smiled as she heard the external thrusters kick in. “Stupid Humans. If this was a one way trip, why put thrusters.” she laughed to herself.

Remembering what she had read in those star charts she kicked the ship 30 degrees to the west. Once turned she fired the external thrusters to full. She should make the dogstar in 23 hours.

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