Bryan Beal

Self Realisation [Trigger Warnings]

The wind whipped his dark hair around, sometimes slapping him in the face with little flicks. The hill offered no shelter from the air. Even at a distance, he stood out on the plain slope in the armoured body suit that supported him in this God-forsaken place. He scanned the valley below, not believing that it was once home to thousands of his ancestors. The clean air was a small compensation for the miserable darkness that cloaked the land.

Deciding he had taken enough risks, he squatted down inside a dip in the hillside. He heard strange calls in the waning light, eerie whispers that reached through the shadows of his memory.

Drevar dared a look over the rim of the dip. He noticed that all the lights below were flames of the atrocities he had committed in his zealous youth. The males, the females and the offspring were the plumes of acrid smoke rise and drifting towards him on the wind.

He averted his eyes and saw the ripped apart remains of Gayle Fine. At least she died instantly. The towns below had kept some of their defences, even though humans were supposed to be long gone from this planet. A needler, set on auto, had emptied its ammo into her, each needle expanding as it tore through her flesh at hyper-velocity.

He could not claim that for those who burned below. Incendiary missiles rained fury and napalm on their precious towns. A carpet bombing from the arse of Satan himself. Drevar took a few minutes to notice the tears dripping down his face at what he had become.

Sure, they told him this was not just a symbolic act, but one of strategic value. At the back of his mind, the voice of reason argued otherwise. Humanity could not have it, so no one else was going to. The United Federation was not all that far removed from its embarrassing ancient history of Sol-bound wars that wiped planets clean of life. Including this one.

It seemed humanity had not learned from its history, fulfilling its doom to repeat it. This time, there were new victims. As if that made it acceptable. Drevar looked at the pistol in his hand. It was a vicious, Marine issue Dread Assault Weapon, nicknamed the Door for its ability to blow holes the size of doors in most organic things.

His dad always said, “If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem.”

Drevar's face imploded with the twenty mil round's passage through bone and cartilage. He remembered falling and then the shadows of the ground swallowed him. A red mist slowly drifted down behind the falling bits of bone and brain.

#SciFi #ShortStory #Gore