Wasted on the Dead


  There’s a satisfying click that resonates throughout the ship as the freighter docks, locking into our hull as if it was always meant to – design passing for destiny. Two puzzle pieces floating through this sea of stars. Sas and I are at the airlock, waiting eagerly for our new guests. The captain is sulking in his quarters.

  We have a box of provisions with us and I can’t help but munch idly on a Twinkie as we wait. We peer through the glass, across the decontamination chamber inside and at the heavy door on the far wall, behind which rests their ship. It’s static nature births dread in the both of us.  

  "Are we too late?" Sas asks. 
  I swallow uncomfortably before I reply. "No, my math was perfect. If they’re not coming out…" I trail off.
  "God I hope they come out," he replies after a brief silence. "I hate it when they’ve been husked."
  "Yeah," I murmur in agreement.
  "There’s just something about exploring an empty ship that’s oh so Alien, you know?"
  "Original or Japanese remake?" I ask, still watching the door intently, imploring it to open. The captain must be loving this.
  "Japanese one – I didn’t know there was an original?"
  "Yeah, it’s super old – twentieth century, I think. Back when they only used the first gen color spectrum and physical media."
  He laughs. "Oh God, I can’t bring myself to watch that stuff. Is it any good?"
  "Yeah, it’s alright," I say, reluctantly accepting our fate, "we need to suit up."
  "Yeah. I know."

  We sit in silence a bit longer, neither of us wanting to buzz up to the captain for permission. He’ll give it to us; he has to, it’s just we don’t want to give him the satisfaction. Anyone who stumbles across a hollow needs to check for life. For clues as to what happened there. For what exactly is happening in our galaxy. We never find anything but coal-black corpses and remnants of absolute zero.  

  The door still hasn’t moved. The distress beacon is still ringing in the control room down the hall. There’s a killer amongst the stars and it is bigger than us all.

  We make the call.


~ by Joseph Blame on September 9, 2010.

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