Welcome to Planet Moon (excerpt)

The stars burned brightly in the expanse overhead far away, illuminating the surface enough that it could be seen. However, the level of light was to low anything in color, although the dull gray white of the surface lacked much interesting color in the first place. They soon found their old footprints imbedded in the powdery dead soil of the Moon. Nothing about the footsteps had changed, although there appeared to have been lots of little pebbles and other dust that was kicked up with each step they made, little pits had been made sporadically along their old path from where these stones had fallen, or so they had assumed.

Again they took long strides to reach their far away ship more quickly. Eventually they had arrived at their dark, dead, abandoned, broken ship. Vacuum filled their ship, for they had to cut hole through the hull to escape. All the lights were off, but most of them still worked as Mark discovered when he found the switch that returned power to them.

The inside the ship felt almost overwhelmingly of cold and loneliness. Trying to put their past losses behind them, they proceeded immediately to the store room to get the spare parts. Mark entered the small room first, and was shocked to see that it had been completely emptied. Not a box nor carton nor anything of any value or use was left remaining in that store room. All the shelves and racks were bare.

Touching helmets, Mark spoke.

“This room was filled with spare parts. Now the shelves lie empty.”

“Are you sure that this room had supplies?”

“Yes. I got the cutters from this room, and it was noticeable not empty. Spare parts and tools and food were neatly arranged upon the racks and in the shelves. It’s like someone came in here after we went to the compound and took everything.”

“But that’s impossible. There could have been no one else, they would have left tracks.”

“They should have left tracks, unless they flew here,” said Mark.

“That just doesn’t make sense,” sighed Max. “So now what are we going to do?”

“We will just have to try and get the parts we need from one of the engines.”

They broke contact and left the barren supply room. Climbing down a few ladders and traveling through cold corridors they arrived at the engine room. All of the engines were dead, and it was only a matter of time before the lights drained the battery completely and the ship would be completely dark and lifeless.

Mark removed a protective plate from the side of one of the engines to get at its common feeder valve. Luckily, the engine he was raiding still had the fully functional valve, and he soon had it off and they were ready to go. However, something caught his attention. The fuel rods were missing, as were a few other miscellaneous parts, which should have been there. Even if they had been damaged in the crash, there would still be pieces of them within the engine block somewhere, however they were suspiciously nowhere in sight.