Pushing though the jungle they reached the peak to gaze at an alien sky.

“Which one do you think is Terra?” Kara asked.

“That one,” Timish said, holding out his finger and pointing at a particularly bright spot of light, slightly off centre above them.

“Are you just guessing?”

He laughed and she punched him from across from the fauna that came close to resembling grass on this planet. Neither of them had ever seen Terra, birthplace of humanity, except in old vids, but it was all the children could talk about. The place their ancestors had come from. Somewhere above them, the light of a distant Sun was shining on their dead homeworld.

“Will they miss us?” she asked.

Timish rolled onto his side and looked at her profile, silhouetted by the light of the moons. The air was still this high, the gravity too weak for anything resembling a storm to kick up enough force but thinner as a natural byproduct. They’d pushed their way up through the jungle below. Trees, again a biological approximation, grew so tall their canopies seem to stretch infinitely upwards.

But the ground rose and they had worked their way until they passed the crowns of the trees and could see the night stars uninterrupted. The colony would go on without them for a few hours. Eight days a week, and all forty two hours and thirteen minutes of each day. At worst, the cells in their arms would grow warm, a call to return home. And then the flesh would glow and they would know they were wanted. If the skin pulsed. Well, it didn’t do to stay out past curfew.

“Do you ever think we’ll go back there?” Kara asked.


“It’s home.”

“My home is a prefab on the eastern edge.”

“You know what I mean,” Kara said.

“I don’t know why you care.”

“I don’t know why you don’t.”

He sighed and a small lizard picked up the sound, repeating it with an uncanny knack for replicating sounds. This particular sound wouldn’t attract prey tonight. It only served to emphasise Timish’s tiredness.

“They’re gone. Dead men on a dead planet. It’s time we forgot about them.”

“One day they’re going to come back.” Kara held up a finger, blotting out the stars. Could she snub a world out that easily?

“We’ll be ready for them.”

Prompt originally posted by TheDocks on reddit and received 2 upvotes.

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