Author: Samuel Price
Frozen heads sat in metal containers with glass fronts like aquariums. LEDs on the fronts displayed names, ages, and social status.
Shelved floor to ceiling in alphabetical order, the heads ran the length of the ship. The top shelves were heads of the richest families. The people that would lead on the new planet were the same ones that destroyed Earth.
They were headed for “planet B” 100 light years away. A Billionaire’s crazy scheme was the entire human race’s only chance at survival, now.
A Sasha clone wiped the glass containers, studying the faces of each head. She was in trouble again, for moving too slowly. She couldn’t help but stare. The bruises on her back hurt beyond belief, worse than last time.
People of all social casts lined the walls of the ship. The first new humans would be the richest (and supposedly the most necessary) heads, surgically attached to robot bodies.
The scientist would grow clone bodies and mass-produce the rest of them later—a hundred thousand heads on the ship. They didn’t know how to, yet.
Sasha and Samuel clones were brought out of stasis once every year for three months.
The scientists rotated in teams so that they could work more without everyone being out of stasis for too long. The trip took years.
Sasha’s cleaned. Samuels cooked. The scientists turned a blind eye to the Sashas if a Samuel or a scientist caught them alone. Still, there was hope among these people at first.
When they finally reached the planet, they could see they’d face threats to survival. Scientists couldn’t do what they’d hoped with all the heads. The new planet didn’t have the resources Earth had.
Many heads were already in various stages of decay. The scientists said amongst themselves that by the time they got it figured out, it would be them, the helpers, and no one else left.
The scientist did their best with the resources they had on board the ship. They were able to reanimate the wealthiest people—who made the decisions—but they only had enough resources to bring back a hundred people after those first three. The scientists warned that they ought to choose wisely. The billionaires didn’t—they chose their families instead, not understanding they were sealing their own fate. They thought this was a vacation.
The terra of the new planet was like Earth, but an era before humans existed. Large fauna, larger predators. How would they build new infrastructure without people who knew how to do it?
The scientists warned them oxygen levels were higher on this planet and it could be dangerous. No one listened.
The first one killed by the predators was the youngest daughter of the wealthiest man. She was barely old enough to keep up with the adults, fell behind because the rich didn’t know how to take care of their own children, and was torn apart. Nobody had thought to reanimate the nannies (or the nurses, or the military personnel)…
The predators were invisible; creatures with sharp teeth, screaming like demons while attacking. The wounds they left in the bodies—like a shark bite.
Everyone retreated to the ship and vowed to stay there.
Supplies became dire, family members turned on one another.
They would not survive this hostile planet—and everyone knew they’d failed.
The first to eat a Sasha was the billionaire who funded it all. Then, everybody; knowing it was hopeless, the rest of the heads rotting in their containers.