A nutrition packet dangled from Tink's lips as she hauled cargo between pods. Her arms were bare, wiry muscle straining above the jumpsuit arms encircling her waist. The once white, shirt she wore was smudged with who knew what. It was heavy, dirty work and honestly despite the lack of mental stimulation, not all that unfamiliar nor unwelcome.
The mechanic's mind turned over the pain points on the ship as she tried to justify their potential impending layover as something more than a headache. Her ration stash was running a little low, and it wouldn't hurt to scrounge around in a Federation scrap yard for some handy replacements. If you greased the right palm, you could find choice castoffs and - if you were really lucky - an impound yard where derelicts and other ships were taken if the Feds caught them in use during the commission of a crime. Her mind wandered into daydreams about stripping out a full generator for a song. Well, for a low price or the barter of some re-imagined treasures at least.
Once, on a colony world, Tink had heard the broken mating call of a drog. It was a lot, she was given to understand, like a frog found on some human worlds. By contrast it had fluffy ears and a slime-laden tail that once set to wagging could knock a grown man's knees out from under him. Its call was something like a snoring dog wedged into a pipe organ and then stepped on while flooring the pitch pedal. Not a sound one could easily forget - and easily comparable to Tink's powerful, horrifying attempt at a singing voice.
Still, while she was the last person to want to get involved in the crossfire of someone else's fights, crime did not bother Tink all that much. Crime was something that merchants and magnates had the luxury of looking down on with disdain. It was one thing to condemn theft, smuggling, and other lines of work when you had a steady supply of food and water. Not everyone could be so lucky. Death by fighting or by execution and death by starvation were all still death. At least the illicit activity gave people hope.
She really needed to do something about the vent doors that kept jamming.
Popping the end of the ration tube out of her mouth, she set the remainder carefully atop a box and hooked her arms around a large barrel-drum, walking it back. The thing was heavy enough that she was briefly tempted to try one of her new anti-grav experiments, but decided that everyone had had enough excitement for the time being. She had cleaned out one of the bays, set it up with a cot and some other basic accommodations, and was part way through clearing away the second when a yawn caught her off-guard. Sniffing, she bounced on the balls of her feet and tried to jar herself back to a more alert state. Leaning on the console on the wall, she sang out, "Unless we want deadbolts or doors welded shut, need some eyes on these."
After a moment's pause, a slightly quieter tone followed: "Everyone... good?" She lifted her brows and scratched the inside of her arm reflexively as she waited curiously for an answer, one dusty toe kicking at the heel of her boot.