Image of the North Carr Lightship:
What is a lightship?
In our present day reality, lightships combine two of my lifelong fascinations, lighthouses and boats. A lightship is, basically, a lighthouse on a boat, able to move around to where it’s needed. Advancing technology has largely replaced them, but they do still exist, and I was lucky enough to get to look around one when it was docked as part of what has now become the U-Boat story attraction in Birkenhead. Back in the early days they only had the rusted hull of the U-Boat (which you couldn’t go on), a Royal Navy submarine (which you could), a Royal Navy warship and the little lightship. And back then I was fit enough (and light enough) to get round all of them!
In the setting of my story, the lightship is a spaceship that acts as a beacon (or lighthouse) to mark any area as it is required. Just like our present day lightships, it’s being overtaken by technology and is due to be decommissioned, which is where the story begins. With the lightship as the setting, the story combines combatants in a long-running war between Humanity and the alien Fris, and an unwelcome, and undetected, visitor on the lightship itself. The rest I will leave for you to find out by reading the story.
Fascinating! Thanks Neil!