|Across the Universe
Author: 42istheanwser PM
Hey! Stop scrolling! There you are. Like science fiction? Like aliens? I know you do. So why not review this? "But I don't feel like it," you say. Well, I'm afraid you must. What if my aliens are totally unrealistic? What if I description is below standard? Can you let such a crime continue? Then review! Review like the wind!Rated: Fiction T - English - Sci-Fi/Romance - Chapters: 12 - Words: 16,218 - Reviews: 23 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 3 - Updated: 06-18-13 - Published: 01-13-13 - id: 3091807
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
My ship heats up as it shoots through the planet's atmosphere. I look and sure enough, the wings are now on fire. No last-second swoop upwards then. The planet gets bigger and bigger and then everything's red and the air's on fire all in an instant and then its gone and I go with it.
That's weird. I don't feel that dead. I mean, I suppose the dead could have conscious thought, depending on your religion, but I'm pretty sure your senses are supposed to stop working. I'm also pretty sure you're not supposed to breathe. Perhaps, it's still an ability, but now that I'm dead I don't need to anymore. I hold my breath to find out. Okay, definitely still need air. Am I alive then? Good, that means I can still get back at whoever shot me. This planet is supposed to be barren, but I'm sure there's enough to repair my ship like…maybe rocks? I'll deal with that once I see how bad the damage is.
I open my eyes. For some reason I'm buried under multiple cloths, with a puffed one under my head. What the hell? What are they? And why are they here? This planet is supposed to a rock! Oh well, I'm leaving anyway so I guess it doesn't matter. I shove them off, and stand, ignoring the purple blood dripping from my abdomen. I'm in a strange cubic room, with strange square-based furnishings. There's a ratty couch that may have been a color once, but is so faded that I can't tell which one. Perched on a tiny table in front of the couch is a small metal box, no bigger than a tin of sardines, with a darkened screen on it. Two antenna protrude deftly from the top of the—whatever it was. The brick walls look even older than the couch, all traces of paint or decoration are long gone. But these aren't rocks.
I see a rectangle on the wall. An exit? "Open," I tell it. It stays shut. "Open," I repeat, louder this time. It does not comply. I kick it down to teach it a lesson, and it hits the ground with a satisfying bang. Serves it right. On Chroma, doors are far more well-trained. To my dismay, the doorway leads to another cube. This cube has something I recognize, a staircase. Why would an uninhabited planet have a staircase? I ignore it, and go to the door. It's equally disobedient, so I break it down like the first one. I hear a flurry of footsteps, getting louder as they come downstairs.
I search through my reserve of books about aliens, but none tell me how to treat an injured one. My room, or the small corner of the room I share with the others, is a shrine to science fiction and drawing. Well, as much of a shrine as you can have on my budget. The other orphans and I are given one reasonably priced present on our birthday, and one at the holidays. A star trek poster, a few alien conspiracy theory and sci-fi books, a well-worn sketchbook, and a dull pencil are all I have to my name. Or, what I think is my name.
My mother brought me here when I was a baby. All she said before she left was "Katie Sampson," though she could have been referring to either me or herself. Ms. Grivinch decided she meant me. However, she miswrote the name "Katie Samsung" in pen so she couldn't erase it, and I've been Katie Samsung ever since.
There are plenty of other girls here, but they think I'm "the crazy space-freak," so they keep their distance. Things aren't that great for me. So I draw. I draw friends I wish I had, places I wish I were in. Other planets, mostly. What I love about space is, it's infinite. There are infinite planets, infinite people, infinite possibilities, most of which are better than the ones I have to choose from. Drawing them makes them seem closer, but being closer makes them seem even farther away. But this refuge comes with a price, since I'm drawing all the time, the other girls always think I'm busy. They don't even look at me now. The funny thing about people is, if no one knows you, it feels like there isn't a you to know.
I hear crashes and bangs coming from downstairs, and thank God that I'm grounded. Ms. Grivinch and the other orphans are at the zoo today, but I'm on lock-down, so I had to stay behind. It's Sarah's fault. She stole the…unflattering cartoon I did of Grivinch and showed it to her. So that means they weren't here when a UFO crashed outside, and weren't here to tell me not to bring the alien inside. It sounds like he's (he looks like a guy, but since he's not human I don't know for sure. Do aliens have genders?) up now. I rush downstairs to what he's doing.
I don't know what his species is supposed to look like, but he's a mess. His armor is cracked and ripped, the clothes underneath in tatters. He's covered in cuts and bruises, including a particularly nasty gash around his middle. The floor is practically painted purple with blood, I wonder how much he has left. He can barely stand up, even though he's using the wall.
I'm surprised how similar he looks to a human. He has the same shape, and general facial structure (once you get past the alien scaryness, he actually has a pretty nice face), though with a few key differences. Two horns poke out of neon blue hair, which at the moment is glowing like a light bulb. Surprisingly, the snarling sharp teeth aren't what alarm me, it's his eyes. They're black. I don't mean dark grey, I don't mean brown, I mean black. And they don't look happy to see me.
He crouches in a defensive stance, fangs bared. " " he demands. I have no clue what he's saying, but he sounds angry. "Uh, what?" I ask. " " he shouts, taking a step towards me. "I don't know what you're saying," I say, slowly. He gives an irritated sigh, and presses a button on his wristwatch. The face opens like a lid, and from the machinery underneath came what appeared to be a microphone. He holds it out to me.
"I still don't know what you mean," I say. "I still don't know what you mean," my voice replies from the microphone. "Language base identified. SVO. Initiating translation," the microphone drones, and launches four miniscule rings into the air, which fly into our ears. "What the hell are those?!" I shriek, shaking my head in a futile attempt to get them out. "Translators. Get over it. Can you understand me now?" he glared. "Y-you're speaking English!" I stammer.
"No, I'm not speaking English, you're just hearing it, idiot. This planet is supposed to be uninhabited. What are you doing here? More importantly, what am I doing here?"
"Uh, well, you kind of crashed in the yard, and you didn't look so good so I brought you in. And, this planet is extremely inhabited."
"That can't be right! I should check the amount of lifeforms to be sure though…" he presses another button on his watch, and pauses, taken aback by the number. "Well, damn!" he manages, "This planets WAY off! Some species have only forty members, but others have…oh my God, seven billion?!"
He talks to himself now.
"Your species is doing a terrible job taking care of this planet. Fortunately, I'll call home and we can take over. But seven billion's too many, there could be resistance. What we need do is gather all unnecessary lifeforms, the unfit, the old, the sick, the stupid, etc. etc, in a relatively empty area such as…" he pauses as he summons a holographic globe of Earth from his watch, "Wyoming. Then we just incinerate them, and since there's always so many that will clear out room for the colonists. Planet saved, Empire expanded. Everyone wins!" he ends, with the helpful air of someone handing you the library book you lost.
"Now that I think of it, I could probably get the job done right now! My ship's shield probably protected it, I have the same thing installed in my armor and I'm okay, so if you'll show me where it is I'll just get the lasers ready-"
"No! You can't go around killing people!"
"It's just a bit of spring cleaning, we need room for the colonists."
"Well it's incineration or mass sterilization, take your pick."
"How about a third option? One where we keep our planet, and you help us fix it? We could repay you, we have amazing resources, we could show you how to use them. With your technology and our raw ingredients, we could do amazing things!"
He pauses. "That is a valid argument…" he says, slowly, "…but an alliance with such a lowly species…or an alliance at all is unheard of. The Chromish have only had two allies in history, and those were so they wouldn't suspect we were planning an invasion! But I could take you back to Chroma, and you could ask the warlords. They have brains the size of watermelons—I'm not kidding, they actually do—they're the ones who would decide such a thing. However, the bastard who made me crash shot my warp engine. It'll take a year to get back, and once we're there you'll probably have to stay permanently to negotiate trade and things like that. Are you willing to leave?"
At first I want to say no, but then I wonder why. I have no friends. I have no family. I have no future. I've always dreamed of aliens and space, and here it is.
"I'll go pack."