Planet 84. (Sci-fi flash fiction)



The tiny pod lingered in the vastness of the universe. He was alone, barely enough fuel to make in to the surface. Sweat beaded his brow. Would he make it? Around him the pod bore the scars of its ejection through the meteor shower precipitating the end of the doomed star ship limping home, defeated, to a dying world. They’d gambled and lost. Now his species faced extinction, would he be the last he wondered, alone on planet 84?

Looking out of the window he marvelled at the glory of the galaxy around him, the neighbouring planets of solar 19. He could see it now, planet 84, his place of exile. He flipped on the analysis screen. That it had water, a breathable atmosphere, he knew, but it had yet to be fully investigated. He’d be the first human to set foot on its glowing orb, (if he made it that was…)

There was nothing he could do now but wait, wait as its radiant sphere loomed closer, glowing in the inky sky. It was not unlike his native Earth had once been, before rendered uninhabitable, pristine oceans, white cloud masses set against green brown lands. He’d seen pictures of earth, retained from the first space flights long, long ago, but seeing with his own eyes was different, a healthy, thriving planet alive with growth. What creatures would he find there? Might there be others like him, humanoid? He doubted it, in their frantic search for a new home they’d found none, only the devilish carnivores that called themselves Illumi and feasted on newly discovered human flesh, farming them like animals for their consumption. The fleet had been the last vestige of resistance, hidden in the depths of the dying earth. They had risked all in a futile attempt to save their people, but they had failed. Now, alerted to the possibility of rebellion, the Illumi would annihilate them. Tears streamed down his face, there was no one to see, no one at all.

They had entered its atmosphere. It looked like he was going to make it. Gazing down at the surface spinning past he was overwhelmed by its beauty. Turquoise oceans spotted with islands sparkled in the sun; mountain tops lifted their snow topped heads to the sky. Shifting to manual override he checked his fuel gage … It should be enough. This terrain looked familiar. He slowed a little. Three large triangles loomed through jungle canopies, definitely constructed by intelligent life, but would they be as the Illumi?

He’d seen them before, but where? No! It couldn’t be! But it was! His journey it seemed had not only been one of space but time. Below he saw the tribes people scatter as he touched down in what he knew one day would be Mexico.

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