I had been aboard the Skylight for months, I had travelled countless light years. We were on our way down to their planet to finally meet the leader of our unexpected benefactors.
Their planet we called The Aurora. Its atmosphere and magnetic field interacted with the winds from their star in such a manner that their whole sky was constantly shifting through the spectrum of light, creating beautiful rays of extraordinary colors.
I was on my way down from the Skylight, in and individual capsule, 5000 km above their surface. The colorful and bright planet contrasted with the black backdrop of space, the surface was green, brown and blue. In the silence, and stillness of space, it was overwhelming.
I was there only once, to thank the Aurora people for their help against the wretched creatures from planet HQ-733901. But sometimes, I still dream of the time I went down. If only everyone could be so lucky.
I was assigned to a case of drug smuggling that was going on from Lunar District 3 to Earth. I had been on the case for about 7 months when this happened.
I left my home in downtown New Angeles at 11 AM.
The day started off with heavy rain and thunder. I took my usual bus to the shuttle central station where I bought my tickets. I made small talk with an older gentleman about the weather, and how those damn Lions just couldn’t manage to win a game this season.
“Exploring isn’t what it used to be” said Bob, “they used to pay us to get out there and find stuff, pay us good, I remember when good ol’ Pat found that icy asteroid. Shit, they paid him a ton.”
He paused, and sighed.
“Now nobody cares about those things, I loved it though, and I’ll tell you who else does too, my son!”
“Where is your son anyway?” asked Hank.
Last night we were attacked. As you can see I didn’t fare so well either, the bastards got us good.
Today I need all of us to get our minds together and think of a way out of this, we must plan a counter attack, and reinforce our defense positions.
Charles, you’ll be in charge of the west gate, get those boys ready!
Jane, you come with me, we’ll plan the retreat of the injured soldiers.
John, you and Isis’ve got the north gate, make sure we’re damn tight there!
Everyone one else, shoot everything with a head bigger than John’s, and go do something useful.
And one last thing, someone get me some god damned coffee!
I’ll tell you what I worry about the most, what’s most important. Not losing my mind.
Twenty three years ago I was a regular old chap, I was thinking of retiring. I had been working for a long time making shoes, it’s what I did, I didn’t mind it very much.
One night at home I was sitting outside with my wife, watching the cars drive by our house. Most sped by so fast we were barely able to see the people inside. The sound the cars made, it was soothing, it’s like rain. There were so many of them, it was as if we were looking at a long exposed photograph.
My whole life changed that day, as we sat there, looking at the cars.
John Stone was sitting next to Commander Peter Wilkins on a comfortable red leather couch in the Dawn Star’s observatory. They were looking out the enormous window, bewildered. Radiant white clouds stretched out in every direction, like an ever expanding storm.
“Some sort of nebula?”, asked John.
“It’s not like any I’ve seen before”, said Peter, “There doesn’t seem to be an end to it, the ship’s scanners show nothing ahead, except for an extraordinary amount of radiation”.
“Like a barrier?”.
“Yeah, something like that, what do you think?”.
John paused, walked up to the window and peered out.
“I don’t know what to make of it, it’s like we reached a dead end”, he paused again, “We should fly on it, just over it, there’s got to be an end somewhere, it may be we are witnessing a new kind of star, or black hole covered in dust”.
“Unlikely, we are not registering any gravitational pull out here”, Peter said.
Peter walked over to John and put his hands on the glass, admiring the vastness of their new discovered cloud.