Author : Jason Branning

“Beautiful lake Sgt.” Crounty says.

“Yes, yes it is corporal. Want to go for a swim?”

Crounty laughs hard, his crackling mic fills my ears. “Nah sarge I think a non nitrogen atmosphere is enough for me, diving into pure mercury I’ll leave up to the special forces”

I chuckle and nod him along.

“Crounty make camp at nearest convenience.”

“No prob sarge.”

The platoon moves forward and I’ll catch up later. It really is beautiful. With the limited atmosphere and small size of the planet, you really do get a good look at the stars and curvature of the planet. Almost like a ant in the bottom of a glass looking at the world beyond.

We’ve been humpin this ground for months now, but none complain. I have a good connection with the men, and they me. I know their sweeties and dreams and aspirations. They know what I’ve told ’em. Mostly true. Life gets dull when there’s no one to fight, and these boys were trained to fight.

A meteorite shines across the sky and I can see both the reflection in the mercury and it itself. What a marvelous sight. I revel in the glory of what is, and what could be. I revel in all the things we don’t know and may never know.

One of these days I’m going to have to tell them there is no going home. There is no home. I wonder which of of my troopers will be the last to look at this sky?

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