These things tend to be short pieces that may or may not be the beginning of something else. Originally they were 101 words only. I’m less strict about that now. They dont always finish, I just like to try and evoke a certain feeling or scene.
I’m going to tie them to M’s prompts this month. The prompt was “Jumping Jupiter can’t get stupider”. I didn’t get much further than the idea of Jupiter. Let’s see if I can continue the story with it.
The Callista’s comms crackled into life as the roar of her huge primary engines fought to steady her descent into orbit around Ganymede. Saturn’s gravitational pull was massive but if they could land on the moon it would give them the protection they needed to work on replenishing their hydrogen supplies.
“All crew standby for important comms” it ordered.
Henderson sat up in his bunk and reached for his chewing tobacco. Stuffing a wad into his cheek he banged a fist against the bottom of the bunk above.
“Marcus, wake up” he shouted. “You’re going to want to hear this.”
Marcus stirred, mumbling incomprehensibly.
“Serious man, wake up.” Henderson barked.
“Okay, okay” Marcus said throwing back his blanket and swinging his legs over the edge of the bed. “I’m awake see. God man how serious can it be after what we just witnessed?”
Henderson chewed slowly before responding. There are some things you’re never going to forget seeing and what the Callista had just done was one of them.
“They’re going to say it was for the best, you’ll see. They will have some excuse for what they did but there is no justification for it. None at all. You don’t do that to an entire planet you just don’t.”
Marcus jumped down from the top bunk and walked over to the small sink in the corner of the room.
“What do we know man” he said filling a cup with water. “Things have been messed up for so long now.
“Messed up?” Henderson snapped. “My god Marcus what we just did goes way beyond just ‘messed up’ surely you see that.”
“Honestly?” said Marcus taking a drink.
“That a question?” Henderson asked.
Marcus put the cup down on the edge of the sink. He was a tall lean man, about 6 foot 2 with broad shoulders and a narrow waist. A large green and black tattoo of a snake across his right shoulder seemed to writhe as he moved.
“You know how I feel about Earth” he said, “it’s not my home and they are not my people, I’m a colonial and I’m proud of it. My allegiance is to my family and my clan and the only reason I’m on this ship is because I need the money.”
“Do you really feel nothing? ” Henderson asked. He knew Marcus was an off worlder and like so many of his people he hated Earth but even he must feel something, surely.
“Sorry no, I don’t” he said defiantly, pulling out a chair at the small metal table in the middle of the room and sitting down. The ship lurched suddenly and then, with a roar of the engines , was again steadied. “Earth have done nothing but steal from us and use us Henderson” he continued, “I almost feel relieved that it’s over. Things will have to be different now.”
Before Henderson could respond the comms sounded again.
“This is Captain Grenville” it began. After a lengthy pause it continued. “Today you witnessed the destruction of our home planet…”