Observations of The Urban Spaceman

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Sanjay grumbled to himself as he followed the path of the stream. The water echoed him in solidarity, a soft grumble of water against bedrock. Each river spoke with its own voice, and this little stream’s voice was as annoyed as Sanjay.

Tom fiddled with the small dial labelled ‘red’, tweaking it millimetre by millimetre until the sky’s hue was a more pleasing shade of deep pink. Everyone thought Atmospheric Controller was a purely technical job. ‘Boring’, most deemed it. Kids didn’t even glance twice at his stall on Careers Day.

“Excuse me, Madam President, but it’s time.”

At Naomi’s whispered prompt, the world’s first female president tucked the well-creased piece of paper bearing her own handwriting into her breast pocket and squared her shoulders. Out there, behind the purple curtain, Earth was waiting. A crowd so large that SolSec had needed to pay for a thousand guards to work overtime.

Emperor Kral held out one of his four hands towards she-who-would-one-day-be-Empress, his most beloved child and only daughter, Princess Kiani. The Princess, resplendent in her marriage gown, watched him coolly in her typically womanish way before settling one of her hands on his.

They stepped out from the doorway, into the forest clearing where a thousand suitors waited. Princes and Kings and Overlords and Chief Executives from across the galaxy had come to supplicate themselves at the feet of Princess Kiani in the hopes of being chosen as her future husband.

This will be my final journal entry. Earlier today, I powered down the facility’s generator. The battery back-up will last an hour, maybe two. After that, the computers will go offline. Oxygen will cease to be recycled shortly after. Last to go will be the lights, but I intend to be gone before then. I may very well be the last human on the entire planet, and the thought is… sobering.

Dear Malisia

Please forgive me. Last night, as my soldiers lay exhausted and bleeding in an impromptu reprieve from battle, I realised it has been almost a month since my last letter to you.

The group of histourists moved closer together as Clancy Deville led them along a familiar path through the ruins. As he walked, he pointed out features he knew would impress, and waited patiently as they snapped shots with their ocular visors.

Emporium was quiet for a Saturday night, but then, it tended to attract a lot of Espers. Dunno why. Maybe they like the music. Maybe they like that the bar staff don’t ask How’s your day been? as soon as you pull up a stool. Maybe they just like the soft-light ambiance. Emporium wasn’t really my scene, but I didn’t feel as uncomfortable there as most simple, honest folk do.

“Are we doing the right thing?” Fran’s voice quavered around the laboratory. “He’s been gone for so long. What if we can’t bring him back? What if something goes wrong? So much has changed since he was last awake—”

Personal Log: Captain Aloysius Wren 2617.9.26 GSD There’s a saying my great-grand-pappy liked to churn out when things weren’t going his way: Up shit creek without a paddle. It’s a saying I’ve only had to use three times in my life—until today. As figures of speeches go, it’s a pretty damn apt one right now. I’ve nobody to blame but myself. Shouldn’t have tempted fate by taking a shortcut through the Voltire Nebula. Ten… Read More