Day 288 – Jupiter’s Children – Part 8

(Okay I’ll upload the part I wrote in Germany soon! I totally forgot I hadn’t done it yet!)

Word count: 643

Henry collapsed back on to his bed half drunk, half asleep. It had been a fantastic night. There had been much drinking and merriment. He had not had as much fun in months. The room above him spun in that fun fairground way. Fiona and Tammy had gone home too, as drunk as he was. It was strange. It was so strange. They were on the brink of a discovery of a new species. Who might they have been? Did they have feelings, culture or were they just animals like tigers, birds and slugs? How long ago had they ruled the skies? Did they advance onwards into another species?
Henry’s dad always used to tell him stories of strange aliens on strange planets when he was younger. The idea of something so fantastic tantalised his dreams. All those sci-fi shows from the earlier centuries, were they a template to what was actually going on in space? Was there interspatial transport that didn’t take years and years? Was there whole civilisations out there ruling the orbits or far away planets, battling for supremacy or searching the skies for answers?
Henry’s dad was better at telling these stories. He had such an imagination. He was not in science for the glory of discovering new things; he was here to experience them; to live on an entirely new surface, to breathe air that had never been breathed before. The stories were amazing. He used to tell Henry of magical colonies fighting for survival, of species reaching up to the stars and communicating across the solar systems. Henry used to lie awake at night and think up histories to the people his dad told stories of. In fact, now that he thought of it, his dad wrote all these stories down. Where did Henry store them?
Henry jumped up and hailed the home-computer.
“Search Father’s belongings, stories,” Henry instructed the computer. It displayed the search screen on a nearby terminal.
“Please find your father’s belongings in the upper compartment to this dwelling,” the electronic voice returned the search term.
Henry instantly knew where it was – buried deep in the attic along with the rest of his dad’s belongings. He raced upstairs and opened up the hatch for the attic. It was dark in here, but the dim neon lights lit up just enough for him to see easily. There were boxes and boxes of stuff that Henry couldn’t even remember what they contained. But the little corner devoted to his father was not mistakable.
Kneeling down next to one of the boxes, he began to extract the contents. Pictures, diaries, keys, letters, notepads and a whole assortment of strange things. It was odd looking through them all. A channel back to the past. Henry even had his dad’s journals for when he was away. He picked on up. It was tattered and very used. This must have been one of his longer journeys into Europa.
Back in the beginnings of the colony, they sent out expeditions to explore the moon now that it was suitable for humans. They sent the scientists and some military personnel. Nowadays they had dedicated teams scouring the moon and for the major sites of discovery they had permanent manned bases.
Henry flicked through the pages of the bottom one in the pile. There were crude drawings and scrawled, indecipherable notes written beneath them. He turned over pages of pages of the same until one page flopped into view. There was something solid attached to it. Looking more closely at it, he could see that there was a sliver of stone taped to the page. The stone had a strange pattern to it, a faint line of a skeleton or something. Beneath the stone itself was a description that was made all-the-more clearer by the underlined pen.

~ by S.G. Mark on July 21, 2012.

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