The final installment of Inktober

The Inktober prompts that inspired this piece were buddy, hide, music, float, shoes, ominous and crawl.

Tasha slinked along the side of the space station’s central corridor. Her black t-shirt and leggings stood out sharply against the white and silver features of the space around her. Mentally cursing her forgetfulness, she reminded herself that camouflage worked a little differently here than back home on the city streets. It would be impossible to miss her dark form if someone walked by. She needed to act quickly.

Crawling across the floor, she made her way toward the main computer station. The precious thumb drive felt heavy in her pocket. Tasha was no wizard with a computer and it had cost her a pretty penny to have the proper coding placed onto the quarter-sized plugin. This better work, she thought.

She was a mere two yards away from the computer station when two worn boots appeared before her face. Looking up, she found herself eye to eye with Ivan. His red T-shirt somehow managed to blend into the space more naturally than her black one. Tasha held back a groan.

“What are you doing?” he asked calmly. There wasn’t even a hint of humor in his face.

“Searching for something I dropped.” Tasha stood and dusted off her pants with her palms. “I think it’s lost for good.”

Ivan quirked an eyebrow, unconvinced. He remained a stone wall before her. She peered around him to see if the computer remained unused.

“So, you going to let me by?”

Ivan said, “Why should I? You reek of trouble.”

“Come on, buddy. Be a pal.”

He was clearly not a fan of this approach. Tasha wasn’t either, but it had been worth a shot. A red switch caught the corner of her eye and a new, more devious method of getting what she wanted occurred to her.

With a shrug, Tasha said, “You’ve left me no choice.” Then with a single swift motion, she flipped the switch, bent her knees, and then sprung into the air just as the false gravity gave way and all that was not tethered to the ground began to float. With the technique of a trained swimmer, she made her way to the computer station. Struggling to stay close enough to it, she did her best to steady herself by gripping the desk with one hand as the other fumbled to plug in the thumb drive.

“Tasha, get away from there!” Ivan commanded, but it was too late. Suddenly, ominous music blared from the speakers throughout the space station. Tasha watched as Ivan slowly realized it was Darth Vader’s theme.

“Happy Halloween!” Tasha cheered, a childish smile taking hold of her lips. She unplugged the thumb drive, but the music kept playing, looping again and again through foreboding notes. Slipping her illicit cargo back into her pocket, Tasha said, “Until Star Wars Day!” She gave Ivan a two-finger salute and then floated away to bask in the confusion, dismay and levity that was taking over the space station’s populace as Ivan fumbled to find the way to turn the music off.

To his surprise, his efforts only brought a pre-loaded message onto the screen: a black and orange digital poster that read, “Come on, Ivan! Cut loose; take a moment to embrace the dark side. This is all for you, buddy. All for you.”