Shipwrighteous bastard,” she thinks, wrestling with the submersible. It is hard to avoid the really tangly patches of kelp, now that the submersible has lost the ability to rise. It is now an ungainly hunk of machinery at this depth in the water. Phase doesn’t dare go any deeper, because she knows she’ll have to let the submersible go eventually. She curses the shipwright again, who nonchalantly assured her that the submersible would hold up for the full migration distance. Phase thinks for a nickel she’d return and mutilate the bastard, but again, she knows that she can’t, not really.

Her suit beeps. “I know,” she snarls. The suit has noticed the change in her hormones and that her immune plexus is aroused and at risk. The suit would like her to find a quiet place and meditate. “Shut the fuck up,” she mouths to the suit. The screen of her mask changes color just a little, lightening to the color that she thinks of as injured silence. She doesn’t mouth it, but thinks that the suits are too damn sensitive now.

She is thinking about the submersible and calculating the amount of energy to keep her breathing at this depth versus taking the supplies that she can carry and rising to the surface. The latter would burn less energy but without the submersible sled, she will have to dump more than half her supplies and choose between food and weapons. She will need both to complete the migration and not be eaten by the melanin whales.

She and her suit alert at the same moment, to a current change in the water and a large dark form…..

the immune plexus in the brain:

SciFiQuest 3016: Stuff What Hasn't Happened Yet.

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