Star Struck

Author : Debbie Mac Rory

We’re not going to make it.

How many times have you heard that? Don’t you get fed up of it? I know I have. All manner of excuses they tried forcing on me. Poisoning me with their lies and falsehoods.

The first time I saw the new planet in the view screens I knew what it meant. It lay suspended in an ink black sky, an orb of lilac and lavender wisps in a sky that was the colour of childhood summers at the beach. It called to me of peace, of a search ended. And I wanted more than anything I’d ever wanted before to step onto the surface of that world and embrace the quiet it offered.

My colleagues didn’t believe me when I tried to share the message with them. As I spoke of the dance of clouds in the planets sky, they spoke of poisonous gases, winds that would strip metal ore from stone, forces of gravity far greater than those of earth… but even as they lied I could see the truth. They had already heard the planets message, but instead of the devotion that it had awakened it me, their hearts had hardened with malice, and they wished to keep me from my goal.

Taking over the bridge had been relatively easy. I had pretended to despondency, keeping to myself and avoiding their company as if I’d had my fill of their sympathy. No one questioned me as I wandered ’round the ship with my head bowed as if my spirit was broken. No one saw the pattern as I moved from supply room to supply room. Making a knock-out gas from the ships supplies was more than easy to someone of my expertise, and security was lax enough that the missing breathing apparatus wasn’t noticed until it was far, far too late.

They’ve started waking up in the hallway now, and I can hear them banging on the door. They won’t get in. I’ve already sealed the doors and a fire axe through the access pad is making sure they won’t crack my code. I’m sure they can tell by now what my intentions are, and that they’re cursing themselves for their foolishness for not realizing sooner that I would not simply let this lie. I’ve already forgiven them for their actions, and decided not to deny them the paradise that I know awaits me.

I can hear their screams now. Frantic high notes that strain and are swallowed by the roar from the ships hull as we begin to enter the planets atmosphere. They’re getting frantic. Even though the door is reinforced steel, I can hear their screams reach higher, hear the raw fear as the ship begins to groan and tear with the strain of entry.

‘We’re not going to make it’.

Oh but we will.

++ Status Report: Contact lost with Research Vessel Star Struck while on mission to conduct research on planet XK2935. All souls considered lost. ++

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