Before the long journey

Rachael

 

From the gate it was a short walk to the ship, under the high protective dome which had been erected on their arrival the year before. The leader could see his crew was excited: they would find back their cubicles, their personal possessions, holograms, books, games, even the small pets they were allowed to keep on the journey. They would also find, for the lucky ones, messages from family and friends. He looked at each of them, smiling, as they stood before the door, at the foot of the small elevator. They exchanged jokes and greetings. Over half of them were humans, fourth or fifth generation colonists who had volunteered for the reconnaissance of their old world. The others were replicants, but an uninformed observer could not have guessed. He thought the replicants tended to be smaller and somehow more fragile looking, many were women for whom it was the first long range spatial experience. From what his first officer had told him, he knew already that it was them who had been the most agitated until his return. Now they were all boarding slowly and orderly the big ship.

He found the size and glow of the hull pleasing. Two thirds of the vessel were taken up by the drive, the giant fusion reactor that allowed the ship to achieve trans galactic speed. But they would use the much smaller magnetic drive to leave the earth. The leader had several hours of tests and preparations to work through before their departure. He was looking forward to this work. Himself a replicant of the twelfth generation, cosmonauts and navigators, he would steer the ship into orbit, and then out of the solar system. The entire crew, bar himself and the first officer, would then be sent to cryogenic sleep for most of the journey. This would happen about a year after their departure from earth.

As he initiated the first test programs, the leader reflected on their mission. It had been a great success. They had plenty of recordings and measurements. Non-human life was now again plentiful on earth. The machines the previous mission had left to roam the oceans had done  beautiful work of removing and destroying the plastic and other noxious material that polluted them. The atmosphere was clean.

There was more. One of the replicant ladies expected a baby. The first human being conceived on earth for three hundred years.

Picture: Rachael, Blade Runner

Is there still such a thing as a good (Vampire) story?

IMG_0755

I wrote this post as a quick flash response to #writephoto, and then thought I could build a bit more on the story. But this genre, pace Interview, has been flogged so many times that I have my doubts. Nonetheless the follow-up is here, but one word of warning: some adult content! At this point I am not sure how far I can go with this. Part of the inspiration is indeed in the streets of Berlin, and in the forests of Brandenburg, not so far from this city. As for the characters, let’s say that any resemblance to living persons etc…

Picture: Seestraße at dusk (©2019 Honoré Dupuis)

 

Murmur #writephoto

Thursday photo prompt

murmuration

 

“They are swarming, soon they will fly away toward those trees…” I said, “And disappear beyond those clouds…” you replied. It was the end of the long day, we would soon pack for the night, fold the tent, get ready for the hunt. Soon we would need to feed, even if soberly. Your green eyes turned to me. I could see the signs on your skin. I drew the sharp blade, it glittered in the dying light.

We heard an owl. The starlings had disappeared, as you predicted. “I am thirsty.” You said.  A small cut would suffice. As you enlaced me, your arms around my neck,  I saw the red of your beloved lips, felt the despair in your embrace. I held you tight, and as you drank, became as one with the monster in you.

Nothing like a five-year old manuscript

sea-mist

 

I am working on this “draft” (of drafts) again. It says I last worked on it in 2016, the first words go back to 2011, which I find both curious, and almost desperate. The plot is vague, the characters unbelievable, well, not so deep anyway. Yet I find this important, even vital: retracing these steps, pausing on the good bits, not yet editing but planning to.

This project was, at the time, very time consuming. I looked for every opportunity to work on it, despite… a rather busy life. And, now, I really want to turn it into something worth reading, not just by me, but even by others too. There is something in the story I find, again, puzzling. I think it is the geography of the thing, its way to send the characters… maybe where they want to go. Not so random.

Destination #writephoto

Thursday photo prompt

foggy-morning-019

 

You are now so close: and you know I am waiting.

The certainty to find me, at the end of this road, your destination.

You know, all that time I have been waiting, since the day, that day, when you left.

Many pages I wrote since then. Many books I read. Many cities I travelled to.

Many others I met.

Yet I too was certain: one day you would walk this tree-lined road, to find me.

Alas, much I have changed, as I know you have.

All these years, away, without each other.

And now, the end of the road, our destination.

Castle #writephoto

Thursday photo prompt

castle

 

This is your place, your home, far away, inaccessible. The lake is deep, a secret within many secrets. History has passed this castle by, and you, live on. In those dark waters, perhaps, lies a clue. But I will never know.

I cannot see you, except in one of those winter dreams. Silent, how can I be sure you notice me? You watch out, across those clouds, beyond our world, beyond eternity. Only now, only now I have lost you, do I understand who you are.

You, my love, in the castle.

Open #writephoto

Thursday photo prompt

thresholds

 

She had received the invitation just two days before. She knew the place, it had a rather dark reputation. But then, one had to chose: the appeal of the dark side, or the fear of the unknown. This was an old house, surrounded by ancient trees. She was not surprised the entrance door was open. There was no sound, no sign of any presence.

The letter had just said the owner would welcome the opportunity to show her the property, as a prospective buyer. So she was. How he – but was it a “he”? – knew that, was a puzzle.

In front of her was a long corridor. Rays of light, it was early summer, pierced through the darkness. Old wood, old walls. The air was cool, a faint smell of decaying roses and beeswax…

When she heard the voice, she knew: it wasn’t a he, “she” was the owner. The witch of her childhood, the shadow of her dreams. The voice was sweet, sweet as poison, coercing her to enter, to walk the long corridor, to meet “her”.

She knew where she was waiting, she’d seen the scene many times in her dreams. The house was open, but there was no return. She had to meet her fate, the fire, the ecstasy, her slavery. As a little girl she had known: there was no escape.

Choices #writephoto

Thursday photo prompt

small-3

 

“This is only an exercise”, he kept repeating to himself. But he knew that the exhaustion was catching up with him. He still had everything: the map, the compass, enough water, and the grains of black pepper. Black pepper… They’d told him that it would keep him going for miles… So he’d walked all night, and the day before, and the day before that. According to the map he’d already gone for nearly seventy miles, through woods, cañons and swamps. And the bag, the awful bag, some forty kilos of spare clothes and gear…

He also knew he would soon have to kill. Anything. To eat. For in front was the valley, and then he would have to go up, to climb. Now was morning, it would take him some twelve hours or more to reach the hills. He would have to rest, just long enough. Perhaps this was when he would get ambushed. No paintball then, no Sir. Just knives.

He thought back, his school friends, the barracks, at the time he thought it would be a good idea, to become a tough guy: he had choices, but, really, he wasn’t made for this.

Before dawn #fivewords

Weekly Writing Challenge #170

a0c620cf

 

A late dream,

Don’t I know what to expect!

The storm must have woken me,

And you, dear angel,

Are still fast asleep…

Yet I know: the Enemy and his minions strike before dawn,

Hiding their hideous shapes 

Behind the windows’ frames

I wrap myself in your gown,

And swear at them. 

 

Picture: from this fantastic site: http://darkdreams.centerblog.net/1396-les-nagas

at: http://darkdreams.centerblog.net