Author : Pavelle Wesser

When she first appeared to him in the dead of the eternal night, her tentacles undulated in bluish silver tints that reflected the twinkling lights of his ship. She slithered silently toward him while he was out performing an errand. Until he saw her, he had never questioned working in silence and alone. It was when she slid that first tentacle around his waist that he stared into the endless night and neglected his mission, turning to face her as she wrapped more tentacles around his body. Later, he could never remember how they became two beings writhing on the surface of sand so soft he could have sworn that it sifted through the pours of his skin.

It was then that her first tentacle pierced his flesh and entered his body. He stumbled back to the ship feeling ill, and threw up at some point during the eternal night. His initial malaise turned to raging desire by the time he was sent on his next errand. She appeared to him as he collected pitted rocks, her tentacles wrapping themselves around him, requiring nothing of him other than that he willingly surrender to the sensation of slime slithering over his skin. This time, when they connected, electrical currents charged through his body. They were mild at first, but escalated, causing his teeth to chatter and his hair to stand on end.

“How can you do that to me?” But she did not answer, just as she never spoke.

It was then that another of her tentacles pierced his flesh, wrapping itself around his internal organs, squeezing, squeezing, until he felt so ill that he didn’t have to wait until later in the eternal night to throw up. He would have been sick for days, had time been measured in anything other than the phases of the multiple moons that hovered overhead. He lay in his cot suffering fevers, chills and muscle cramps, wondering how she could possibly leave her tentacles inside of him. Didn’t she want them back? How could she live without them? How could he live with them?

They sent him on another mission, this time to collect the weeds that grew in the eternal night. His body shook as he donned his spacesuit, for now he was afraid. It wasn’t long before she appeared, slinking noiselessly, her tentacles extended toward him. A cold, sick chill descended.

“Look,” he said, “I think we need to call this off.”

A tentacle slid down his throat, and he realized the choice had never been his to make. He thought he might gag but as her other tentacles caressed his body, he experienced thrills of pleasure that escalated until he felt as though he were an electrical conduit through which an overload of energy was being transmitted. When she had done with him, he understood that just as the night was eternal, she herself would never end. He turned to face her.

“I think I’m in love with you,” he said.

Another tentacle wrapped itself around his heart. Cold and icy, it squeezed the living breath out of him. Feeling the dying pump of his most sacred organ, he wheezed out his final words:

“Is this what you’ve wanted from me all along?”

She didn’t answer, just as she never had. And as her tentacle writhed and twisted about his heart, he thought of a home he’d never known, of a love that had never been true, and a spaceship that would soon depart, leaving him alone to die in the eternal night.

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