156 Migration to Deck 2
Later on that day Zoey made the decision to keep the Stella Tenebris in position until the lone stranger heading their way arrived. It would take about a week, and she was curious about who it was and still had some things to take care of before they headed to their next destination.
First on her to-do list was the Asurai clan. Taigen and the others had approached her and made a request. They wanted to be useful to her in any way they could, but they did not know where to begin.
They were basically beggars, with nothing but ragged clothing and battered equipment. In the twenty days that Zoey had been in the dungeon, the clan had mostly recovered their health thanks to the food they were provided. Now they wanted to do something other than lounging around the cruiser's cargo deck with nothing to do.
So Zoey went to work. With Ssaul and Baiken helping her, she made a list of the essential things that the clan would need to begin restoring their way of life. This included things like a workshop that included a forge and tools for smiths and carpenters alike, and also tools for making fabric and other household items.
Zoey had her Aether Engineer talent and could obviously create these things at will, but the Taigen had said that they wanted to create these thinks with their own hands. She could have created anything the clan needed on her own, but she would have been busy for weeks. By setting up workshops and tools that they could use, they could keep themselves busy and it would have more meaning if they did the work.
Zoey selected one of the rooms along the center hallway of Deck 2 for the workshop, and with Max, Ssaul, and Baiken helping out, transformed the room into a proper workspace. The equipment and tools she fabricated were close to the style still used here in this world, but she modernized some of the designs and included some aether powered power tools as well.
Each station was set also up with an interface that linked to her databases, which would allow 704 to set up guides on some of the more modern tools and develop instructions for anyone wanting to use the equipment. It would also allow anyone to look for design templates and assist with pretty much any type of fabrication process.
Before Zoey installed all the panels to cover up the wall of the workshop, she installed a ventilation system to help with dust and potential fumes, and also some safety equipment for the more hazardous workstations. Each section of the workshop was separated by a wall to keep them somewhat isolated, and then the final touch was to set up transfer pads for materials to be moved too and from the cube-space.
Setting up the workshop took them most of the day, but Zoey kept going and also set up a another room as a community kitchen, complete with powered stoves and ovens, cold storage, and full plumbing.
Then it was time to show everyone the new workshop and kitchen. Zoey was a little exhausted by now, so she had Baiken and Ssaul help out by bringing the up any craftsmen or anyone that was interested to show them around. The group that was assembled was around thirty individuals that included weavers, carpenters, smiths, and more.
Custodian 704 was present to explain each area, and aside from their initial shock and surprise, the clanspeople handled everything rather well. Zoey was off to the side for most of it, but she could see the eager light in their eyes when they realized that all this had been made for them. They had been idle for far too long, and they were itching to get back to work.
Then the cooks were brought up and shown around the kitchen. 704 only got halfway through his tour before one of the head cooks started prepping food. Not long after the kitchen was a whirling mess of activity as every one of the cooks went into action. Since they got on the ship they had food, yes, but now they had food and a full kitchen, and they could not resist cooking up a feast for everyone.
That evening the cargo bay was full of laughter and singing as everyone took part in the feast prepared by the cooks. It was still very basic as far as meals went as there was no meat, and there were still a lot of seasonings that Zoey did not have in her cube-space, but they had salt, and with a little imagination and flexible recipes, the cooks had made some delicious food. The cooks made sure that everyone knew that this was all thanks to Zoey, and sang her praises long into the night.
After everyone had turned in for the night, Zoey and Max made their way back to the bridge. Max who had eaten his fair share of the food, was quickly asleep on his bedroll. As for Zoey, although she was drained from designing and fabricating so many things during the day was not sleepy, so she sat down to meditate and let her magic regenerate. She would need it for tomorrow.
The next day, Zoey created a large-scale fabricator and set it up inside the cube-space with 704's help. It was a simplified fabricator that could manage large scale production of stuff like panels for the ship so Zoey didn't have to create everything from scratch. Once it was set up she gathered a small crew, consisting of Max, Ssaul and some able-bodied volunteers, and got to work setting up living quarters on the second deck.
Both wings of the Stella Tenebris would be used primarily as housing for the clanspeople, and they had to set up enough spaces for everyone. Baiken had helped out a lot by taking a census and grouping everyone together based on how they wanted to be arranged. Luckily, the cruiser had plenty of space to house everyone in nice, compact living quarters, each with customizable privacy zones for bedrooms, and a bathroom with full plumbing.
Zoey used Baiken's census to give each room a basic layout based on the number and age of the future occupants, so everything went rather smoothly once they got going. Zoey had the large fabricator build most of the large items and walls, and her helpers set everything together. Thanks to the modular nature of everything in the ship, they were able to get a grasp on the process rather quickly while she handled the plumbing, lights and other smaller fixtures that took more finesse and adjustment.
Each housing space was fairly bare, with only the doors, walls, lights, and plumbing put in. The furniture and other household items would come later once the craftspeople got into the swing of things. In fact, they were already starting to build furniture as the housing was being set up.
The entire ship was buzzing with activity as everyone tried to pitch in to help in some way. Zoey actually had a hard time keeping up with the speed that her crew was putting the walls together, but she didn't mind, they were just a little enthusiastic.
And just like that, in a single day, they completely set up housing for all five hundred plus members of the Asurai clan. Split evenly between the left and right wings of the cruiser, a little more than half of the total space in the wings had been used up for housing. At the end of it, Zoey was glad that she had made everything so modular and easy to maneuver.
But the exciting part was that the Asurai clan could now move out of the cargo bay and into the housing units on the second deck! They were impatient to do so, and Zoey had no reason to stop them, so the migration began. It was all managed by Baiken with 704's help. They had numbered each housing unit and assigned each group to a unit, then sent them up the grav-shafts one group after the other to be guided to their new homes.
Zoey could see excitement and joy on the faces around her as she observed everything from where she had sat down near the hub on the second deck. It was a far cry from when she had found them in the canyon, and the change was well deserved in her opinion. From her interactions with them so far, she could tell they were good people. They put the needs of those around them above their own, they were kind, and they were aware that this was a second chance at life, one that thousands of dead Asurai would never have.
They had to make the most of it.