"We toiled hard and we toiled long. When she left us on the planets, she told us that hard work would be rewarded. She’d visit us weekly, taking off our products, paying us handsomely and bringing us gifts to reward our efforts.
But slowly her visits started getting rarer. First weeks would go by without her visit, then months. The occasional trader visiting our planet would bring us news from other regions of the cluster. Of great wars, of mighty heroes. But no word of her. She was not featured in news, she did not make her name on the fields of battle. Months turned into years.
We still toiled hard and we still toiled long. We had enough supplies and recyclers to last lifetimes, and we had nothing else to do. But without surveys, without scanners, without the command authorisation to redeploy our mining rigs, slowly and surely our production ground to a halt, even as our warehouses filled to the brim with our products.
And then one day she returned. Our youngest had been born and learned to read and write in her absence. To them she was a fable, almost like a god. When her ship finally arrived again in the system, we told our children of the glory and rewards that she would surely rain on us in gratitude of our efforts.
But no word came from her. Instead, every display in the colony started flashing a message: ‘this command center has been decommissioned.’ It flashed for a day. And then all power was lost.
We now sit in the darkness. Our recyclers have ceased to function, our life support is fading away. We can eke a living out of this harsh world, but it won’t be easy. And we’ve lost the one thing we had to offer our children: A future."