As a means to double their chances of controlling the outcome of the colony as well as a covert show of force and resources, America commissioned the Ingles for Mars as well. However, as the Ingles was designated the ship of the devout, America made quick work of packing the crew with Atheists to minimize the chances of a holy war on one of their ships.
These are the brave men and women assigned to man stations on the ships, ferrying the equally brave men, women and children, who shall colonize Mars to their destination. Some are there for a round-trip to Mars, then right back to Earth. Still others are not just officers, but colonists, themselves.
A homesteading mother and wife, she’s the herbalist for the Ingles, with much in the way of knowledge of dietetic healing that need not require a doctor’s trip all the way out to town. She’s protective of her youngest daughter, the baby of the family, Bobbi, who is far from a defenseless baby. She’s mothering to everyone, as it’s just in her nature.
Midshipman Sydney Lockhart
He’s the Bahamas agent and drummer for the Ingles. He’s got his eyes on everyone and is a bit more intelligent than most people give him credit for. He can think and communicate covertly, while apparently being simplistic. He quickly learns Darice’s Patois so he can speak in code with Darice, when necessary.
These are the colonists who have much to offer on Mars, but have little to offer when it comes to running a spaceship, aside from an ability to adapt rapidly and learn.
Lieutenant “Chaplain” Hector Warner
The Chaplain of the Ingles, a man who has studied every religion in existence and is willing to look at all religions objectively from a more scientific analysis perspective. He’s the kind who knows the power of faith and uses that to the best of his ability. He works to guide his flock into a tolerance of the wide range of religions represented by telling stories much as Jesus did. He uses this to point out how each religion allows for respecting the religions of other faiths. He’s a gentle man, with a captivating voice that can hold his audience’s attention and calm soft demeanor that enables his sermons to be absorbed without being threatening.
The carpenter for Mars colony and a homestead farmer, William is Rita Montgomery’s husband. It was his carpentry skill and degree in literature that got him passed the investors as an educator and his homesteading skill that got him passed Sanka Doug and onto the Ingles as agriculturalist.
Peter “Pete” Hawkins
The ring-leader of a group of four rebels who had a friend die from anti-depressants added to New York City tap water. After the death, this group put together a plan to orchestrate a hijacking of a military drone. Successfully hacking in, the group took control of the drone and landed it in front of the white house using security footage to live-stream the entire event on Facebook along with using hacked audio stolen from multiple speeches of the president to explain their protest actions. After this, the NYU students made their escape to the Mars colony launch site, having hacked in and added themselves to the manifest, armed with homemade electricity weaponry. It was their hacking skill and ability to thwart the authorities, without taking lives, that prompted the quartet to be allowed by Darice to board at take-off, taking the place of a couple ‘experts’ who backed out at the last minute, given the threat of sandstorm. Pete is the brains, leader and one who is always determined to make things right, a man of high moral standing, despite his rebel tendencies. He has little patience for stupidity, but admires intelligence.
The electrical expert who wired together the energy weapons out of nerf guns and electrical wiring, with a couple simple batteries. He’s the most introverted and least likely to do dumb stuff, but is easily impressed with the kind of confidence he wishes to have.
He’s the voice of reason. The referee. The guy who holds everyone together during disputes with common-sense. He’s loyal and the guy to have in your corner when the going gets tough.
The cockiest of the group. The one who spends most of his life glued to a computer screen and as a result has almost zero skill at interacting like a real human being. To him everything is digital. Everything. As a result when he tries to interact in real life his overconfidence ends up costing him, dearly. But as a hacker, you can’t ask for better.
The School Children
These are the children of colonists, several of whom are indeed the reason their parents got to go to Mars. They have the innocent vision necessary to see life the way it is and are the motivation needed to keep the adults dedicated to the colony’s survival.
The blonde, teenage girl, homeschooled on a homestead. A hotshot who knows more about the structure of an atom, biology, genealogy, history, physics, guns and evolution than most scientists. And no. Her parents are not religious. At least not homeschooling for religious reasons. Agnostic describes her family well. Commanding and dominant describes Bobbi well. As does crack shot. She’ll take on any enemy no matter how “superior” if her survival or that of her family is threatened.