those seventeen years ago, I stayed heavily sedated for most of the four months that I underwent treatment. THe starship company whose cruiser i rode was more than generous and got me housing for several years after. I took advantage of the situation by subletting the spare room, which paid most of my education expenses. My roommate at the time was also suffering from the latent aftereffects of HFD, and we kept a close eye on each other lest we began to be a danger to ourselves.
Ben, my roomie, was a student like me, and while I was studying engineering he was trying to avoid an educaton in Chemistry. He never quite did, but he managed to drag the normal two year process out for five. Most of the time he spent laying around in his underwear, watching old videos and farting. We got along fine.
One night, when he and I were both in our cups, he confided to me that he'd wanted to be a skypilot as well, and tears welled in his eyes for a moment as he spoke lyrically of the huge deepness of space. I tossed back another shot lest I lost control myself, and poured another round. 'To lost opportunities" I toasted.
He went on to found a major petrochem company, but I can still remember him sitting there on the couch with his sweaty BVD's on, scratching his ass, picking zit scabs off the back of his thighs and absently eating them. Eyes moist from the thought of his loss, breath smelling of scotch. What happens to lost dreams that are replaced by newer, less bold ones?