Thursday, May 16, 2013

Flash Fiction: The Divide

There was a sudden shift in the silence. The darkness. The lights flickered and the hull shuddered. I could feel how fragile this craft truly was, thousands of miles above the surface of the Earth. Above the solid ground. Above gravity. Above the rational. The logical.

Alone on the station, I could experience just how isolated I was. Nothing shows true separation from humanity as does fear. Pure and absolute fear. Away from all mankind. Apart from comforting arms. From words of peace and comfort.

As the shockwave hit, I felt the joints give. The whole beast of steel and aluminum and titanium and whatever else wiggled around. Wiggled! If that is anything, it is not comforting. It lends to a point of view of instability. Of lack of safety.

I stood up and walked toward the other end. Which is to say I floated. There is no gravity in space. Of this, I am sure you are aware. I walked down the halls – A1, A2, AE14, E6, E5, EF12, F11, F10. I reached the other end of the station. A small room designed to be a gymnasium of sorts. I looked around and saw nothing. I looked out the porthole and saw nothing. Then I turned my head and looked down hall FZ21. I shouldn’t have looked at FZ21.

There was a quality to the light that was unearthly. Unspacestation-ly? It was fucking weird, that’s what. I stared into that hall and contemplated traversing the distance. I did not savor the idea.

I radioed Houston. “Houston, some strange shuddering going on up here. Over”

“Steady now, ISS 21. You’ve only been up there for 14 days.”

“Only remarking on a physical happening, Houston.”

“All is well and good, 21. There are no indicators on down here. Everything is five by five.”

Ridiculous. Ri-dic-u-lous! I know what I felt. I know what I saw. I know what is there. It’s staring at me now. The weirdness. The void. The dark? Or is it the light? My eyes are red now. I’ve been awake so long. Staring at the hallway.

“21, do you read? ISS 21? Hello? Wilson? Are you there? What on Earth is going on? It’s been 8 days since you contacted last. We need to know your situ…” I break the connection. Fuck off. Nothing on Earth is going on. Bastard.

There is a hand that beckons. It is there, coming from the hall. Requesting my presence. Asking for my company. It is not connected to anything. I stare.

I consider my surroundings. There is little for me here. Will they send someone to check. Will they send someone to kill me? They did this to me. I am certain.

The hand is held open. It appears female. It has red nail polish. My libido jumps into my throat. Take the hand, it tells me. I think again. I am already dead. There is little that the hallway can do to me now.

I step forward. I take the hand. I walk across the divide. The darkness is light.

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