Chapter 1, Page 7

I don’t know how this problem would actually be solved, since I’m just making most of this stuff up in my head but it seems kinda plausible? What else would you do with someone who is a) alive and b) unstable and c) traveling through space? You can’t let them run around doing whatever the hell they want, putting other people in danger? I mean maybe just keep them on Mars until you get to some resolution, but in the context of this story, it costs a large amount of money to keep someone on the planet, not to mention that the ideal window for coming and going is fairly small…

In my head I’m imagining just stuffing someone into a modified version of of those sleeping bags they use on the ISS and just like induce a light… coma or something…

SO YEAH I don’t know, it’s a toughie! See you Thurs~


  • River

    Brig? Guarded? I would think physical restraint in 0g would result in muscular atrophy, bone density loss…

    • shingworks

      Well, they’re all on drugs for that, and have the compression suits on and etc. Also there’s not a ton of room on the way back? A bunk, maybe? Is permanent loss of bone density a reasonable cost of being a liability in space? No matter what it’s gonna suck I guess!

    • Meran

      In the early days, just a week around the Earth in the little capsules was enough to lose bone density, so yeah, without exercise that pounds bones and joints, 180 days could make for a very long recovery period in rehab units.

      • Yup I agree that sounds stupid bc what if something malfunctions? He’s gonna be dead meat

  • Perlite

    Something tells me that he doesn’t exactly appreciate the gesture.

  • Ehhhhhhhhhhh science. I gloss over that stuff anyway

  • That guy

    from what I read the protocol for when someone goes nuts on a space station or spacecraft is to literally tape them down, with duck-tape, until they get their head back together

    • shingworks

      Hahahahaha wow, I hope that’s for real…

    • LeChatNoir

      I believe it’s more duct tape their wrists and ankles, bungy cord them to something and offer them a sedative or anti-psychotic, forcefully if necessary, though someone has to stay with them to monitor vitals, I think it’s the same is for nuke subs as well.

      • shingworks

        And now I descend into google/ wikipedia hell~

        • KigV2

          *relates uncomfortably well*

      • Ceceoh

        To heck with atrophy, it’s gonna hurt like hell when they take off the tape. Owies!

      • Julian

        Oops, beat me to it…

  • Nevermind the atrophy — he’d stink like nothing on earth, 180 days without bathing. THE HUMANITY

    • shingworks



        Although really, febreeze smells horrible on human skin hahahaha. But I suppose it’s something!

        • shingworks

          Yeah you’re right, deodorant on a paint-roller it is.

    • Lennier

      You actually reach a plateu of Peak Stink after a few days to weeks. There’s only so much skin flora you can carry.

  • I guess my initial thought would be that they’d arrange to have another person sent back with them to keep them in check, though that’s kind of a liability in itself (what are you gonna do if they refuse or get violent, fight them inside the ship??) so maybe sedation would be the best way.

    • Actually, thinking about it I imagine that sedation would be the way and they’d have signed a waiver before leaving saying that they accept the responsibility if they bring about a situation that causes them to be sent back in that manner.

  • Joel

    Antipsychotics, at a dose greater than is used by psychiatrists.


    The person could be prompted to exercise (under supervision), but could be trusted not to initiate anything, at least so long as some minimal supervision were available.

  • Ryan Schneider

    I take it they haven’t had the kind of breakthrough with cryogenics that most writers hope will be practical by such a time as this. Otherwise this wouldn’t be a problem.

    • Lennier

      Maybe they have, but the tech is super expensive, so not worth it for a ‘mere’ 180 day flight duration.

  • V

    In the last panel, you have an extra line near Michael’s jaw; is it meant to show him clenching his teeth or something similar? You’re so wonderfully detailed and deliberate with your line work, I can’t help but read it that way.

    • shingworks

      Yeah, exactly, kind of a >:| face, haha. I drew out his expressions for all these panels and erased the parts that I didn’t need after I’d figured out the panel borders.

  • poo

    EVA, huh. TIL a new TLA!

  • Julian

    You just about nailed it, actually. I don’t know the exact NASA protocol for dealing with a dangerously unstable crew member, but it generally involves duct tape and bungee cords. Haven’t heard anything about sedation – might be too dangerous.

  • Chelsey

    I just started this on referall from ngozi, and I know this is old, but that is basically NASA’s plan in case of psychosis or similar:

    • shingworks

      Oh, great find! I hadn’t seen this info before, how interesting.

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