Deep green sparks fell in the afternoon light, but Hank found himself more concerned with the man who no longer needed crutches. He would have sworn that the man’s leg had been broken in two places upon impact. Hank watched as the man walked right across his path without even a hitch in his step. The man continued walking as if he didn’t have a care in the world. ‘Pull yourself together, man, it’s been almost 3 years already.’
Hank shook his head as if that would clear his vision and started his own trek back to his pod. Watching the evening sparks would have to wait. He had more important things to do than gaze out the ports watching what should have become normal by now. He still wasn’t used to this new life of his. Hank hadn’t quite realized what he was signing up for when he registered for this ‘new life’.
When the new “Special Government Agency” had started recruiting for new explorers to help colonize the new planet, Hank had jumped at the chance to be one of the first ones to go. There had been talks about humans colonizing new planets for as long as he could remember. Once he’d reached 19, he thought it was never going to happen, but then all of the sudden, last year they’d put out the announcement. Anyone over 16 and younger than 24 could apply to be part of the first ever Colony. No one talked about the fact that they were meant to cohabitate, or rather, breed with another species for the express purpose of colonizing that new planet. Not at first. That information was handled only on a ‘need to know’ basis.
He’d been put through the gamut of tests. Mental, physical, psychological, everything. He’d been poked, prodded, tested, questioned. Hell, he’d been put through the ringer so hard that even his family had started to worry about him.
The last test had been weird. He should have known something was up.
“Imagine yourself up above your home” they had said. He’d been placed in a flight simulator then and the voices had told him to imagine never seeing his family again. His body had reacted to the stress, but he’d calmed himself by telling his body that it was just a test. Of course he’d see his family and friends again. This was just a 6 month trip. Not a life sentence.
In the last 3 years, he sometimes still asked himself if he would have changed his mind if he’d known that he’d be stuck here forever. Expected to start a new world with the other beings that had been brought here from yet another place. Humans and… the others. He and all the other men on the first ship out had been told that the females would be segregated at first. They didn’t tell them that the females were of another race altogether.
At first the government had tried to hide the fact that the only humans sent to the ‘New Earth’ were to be men. They made excuses as to why women weren’t on board, and then why they hadn’t shown up at the Space Station.
The men were lavished with everything they could have dreamed of. The strengths that they had been chosen for were used to put them to work doing jobs that they loved, their freetime filled with endless food, drinks, video games, entertainment. It was as if all the things they’d listed on the many questionnaires were solely to make their life on the new planet more like Heaven than earth.
Soon the men started to acclimate to their new surroundings, their new routines and habits. They were prime targets when the women showed up.
Hanks direct supervisor seemed to be incredibly helpful and kind. Hank and his flatmates were fairly happy with the whole arrangement. They had good jobs in the technology sector. They had a nice place to live and plenty of free-time. They were encouraged to seek out companionship with the female beings on the settlement in hopes of continuing the new, stronger species.
It wasn’t bad at all, or at least they didn’t seem to think so. The females seemed fairly receptive to communication, although none of them had been terribly willing to join forces and cohabitate, they were very happy about the fertility-based activities. The men had been more than willing to participate in those activities as well. The new female beings were exciting and new and loved to experiment with the men in all sorts of sexual ways.
Things seemed ideal. Almost too good to be true.
It was 3 days before their 3 year anniversary when Hank’s roommate met him in their room. He was pasty white and sweaty.
“What is wrong with you, Carl?” He tried to laugh it off, “Did the females work you too hard last night?”
Carl grabbed him by the arm and dragged him inside, looking panicked. “Shut UP Hank! It’s not funny.” Carl looked around, knowing that anyone in the control room could spy on them at any time they chose. He apparently decided that it was worth the risk. “Hank. We have to escape!”
“Are you crazy? Escape what? An easy job? All the sex we could ever want? The best food and drinks I’ve ever had in my life?”
Carl looked around furtively, “Haven’t you noticed that something isn’t right? It’s been three years! How many of us original settlers are still here?”
Hank thought for a moment, “Well, now that you mention it, I have noticed that some of the guys aren’t around much anymore.”
“Not around much? No, Hank. They’re GONE. I’ve been investigating for the last two months. They’re gone. No more. And I think we’re next.”
Hank laughed uneasily, pushing his friend aside. “Don’t be ridiculous. We have the perfect set up. Everything any human man could ever dream of.”
Carl tried again, “No. It’s true, Hank. I’ve been suspicious for a while. I have been investigating and something is horribly wrong. I even asked our unit Captain. When I called to check in with him a couple of months ago, he told me everything was fine, but I could tell something was up. I saw him at the pub last night and he was really drinking hard. He told me that the females wouldn’t need us soon. They have been breeding with us for the last three years because they needed us. They wanted the human DNA to mesh with theirs.”
“This isn’t news Carl, we knew that when we got here.”
“Yeah, but what we didn’t know is that they are just using us. The 5 year plan no longer includes us. They’re getting rid of anyone who questions it, Hank. They’re taking us out, one by one. They weren’t giving us the trip of a lifetime. They were fattening us up, keeping us docile and making sure we participated. I’ve seen the future Hank. The females are enslaving us. We have no more choices. Just try to escape this “dream life” I dare you. See what happens then.”
Hank felt a shiver of something creeping up his spine. Surely it wasn’t true… Besides, if something like that was actually the truth, then someone would have found out. And if someone found out, well… then they would have been called to the Bridge. Someone was always watching, monitoring them. Hank felt an uneasy sensation flood his body.
Just then the light flashed above them. A disembodied voice filled the room. “Hank Chambers. Carl Flanigan. Please report to the Captain’s Quarters immediately. This is not a request.”
This is my three part weekend freewrite thanks to Marriane West on Steemit.
It is a FANTASTIC writing exercise that takes you out of your perceived ‘normal’ and makes you just fly by the seat of your pants, never knowing where the next prompt will take you. I really encourage you to give it a try!