Captain Calhoun looked up from his workstation out toward the incoming asteroid. That was the moment he realized where it was going to impact the station: The very conference room he was sitting in. That impact was going to be very, very soon.
“Captain,” Captain Calhoun was remarkably calm “The universe is about to go pear shaped on us.”
Captain Grind looked up just in time to see the asteroid impact the station directly below their feet.
The icy missile impacted the station on the outer edge of the forward spinning ring, almost perfectly centered on the conference room the two captains were settled in. The station was moving away from the path but didn’t move fast enough. The impact caused a yaw to the station making it spin away from the trajectory of the asteroid and saved the second, larger ring while devastating the section of the first ring. This section was mostly conference rooms and storage that were currently unoccupied except for the one where the captains were located.
The segment between the spokes disintegrated in a cloud of debris. Chunks of hull and various supplies plumed around as the station rotated out of the path of the asteroid accelerating along its undetermined path. The station held together but the people on board were jolted around and beat up inside.
The asteroid continued to accelerate toward the center of the solar system as if nothing was in its way leaving a trail of ice and station debris.
“Sam!” Tim shouted into the radio “Who are we looking for?”
“I’ve got four people in space suits drifting away from that mess.” She made a quick scan without the camera “When do we get the last of the miners on board?”
“The last one just entered the airlock.” Tim tried to calm down “So hang on, we are headed for the station.”
“I’m strapped down.” Sam wanted to be reassuring “So just hit it and I’ll be with you!”
“Albatross Station this is Shuttle 2.” Tim announced on the radio “We have picked up 7 miners, we are currently tracking 4 suits in the station debris field and we are heading in. Have we missed anyone?”
Commander Johnson replied to the shuttle “Shuttle 2, Albatross station.” He was rattled and nervous, but he projected the command confidence “We are working to stabilize the station so be warned we may be a bit unpredictable. We show four people confirmed outside of the station and 10 un-accounted for at this time.”
“Acknowledged, Albatross.” Tim set the cameras to scan the affected area “We will keep our eyes open for anyone floating around.”
“Shuttle 2, be advised.” Commander Johnson was a bit hesitant “Captain Calhoun and Captain Grind were in the compartment that was hit.”
“Acknowledged, Albatross.” Tim had to pause a minute “We will keep that in mind as we sweep for survivors.”
Beginning of Story