2-Episode 2: The Unknown

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Episode 2: The Unknown

written by M. Sydnor Jr.


PHEA

“My people must be warned.” Phea gazed at the blue planet outside the window.

“It’s too late,” Etos warned her.

But she ran off anyway, flying through the cockpit’s doorway and zipping down the corridor like she was being chased. In the same manner that she was when she had been attacked by the cyclops. Different circumstances, but a similar feeling. A fear of losing. Not her life like before, but the Schlorans she’d saved from that very monster. Phea gave them their freedom, well, sort of. She liberated them from the radicals that would’ve sacrificed her and gone to war with anyone in their way, putting the innocent women and children in danger. She’d brought them to Blue. With a commanding officer that would likely prefer them dead rather than alive. She had Etos’ trust, though, and she was working on gaining her fellow race’s faith. That wouldn’t work if Blue crashed and most, if not all, ended up dead or seriously injured. She had to get them back into the cargo bay. Where it was safer than being out in the open.

As she reached the lower levels, balance on the ship was impossible. Blue was rocking back and forth, side to side in an unpredictable pattern that sent Phea crashing to the floor. Her people were nowhere on the corridor deck. An empty hall with same faint screaming from the end of it.

She attempted to get back on her feet, but the turbulence was too much. So, she crawled.

The other bay doors were sealed shut with no way to get in, Bay Four was where she headed for. She had gotten the hang of her balance when the beeping intensified.

The illuminations in the steel floor flickered and the overhead lights powered off. She had reached the outer-frame of the bay entrance, it was open, unable to close now…because of Kee.

She gripped the frame and pulled herself into the room where she saw the Schlorans huddled together in the all corners, grabbing on to each other and anything anchored to the walls and floors. Phea used the doorway as a crutch and pulled herself to her feet. A man to her left was arms-length away. He was alone, gripping a steel handle with more than enough room for her and anyone else.

“Help,” she pled.

The man scowled then looked away.

She scanned the room and they all shared the same sentiments. Ungrateful Schloran Scum. She was even thinking like Etos now. She didn’t feel bad for thinking it, though. She had other things to worry about. The ship was coming close to a strong stop. She could feel it. The crash would likely kill her, the way she was just standing out in the open. Her grip failed on the frame with every shake, slipped with every bump. It was just enough to keep her upright and not flying into one of the walls. Just as she was about to lunge for the pipe handle that had her name on it. A little girl from across the bay scooted along the edge of the room, grabbing onto the limbs of each Schloran man and woman.

What is she— “Hey, little girl? Be still now,” she yelled. Phea seemed to be the only one interested in stopping this girl from doing what looked like a daring attempt to help her.

She grabbed hold of the man’s leg and reached for Phea.

Her heart melted, but there was no time to capitalize on this mushy feeling she had for this little angel. She reached and grabbed the little girl’s hand. Then pulled herself to the handle. She’d hug her right now if the ship weren’t about to break.

“What’s your name?” Phea asked.

“Azima,” the little girl said with a big smile.

“Okay, Azima. Hold on to my waist, and don’t let go.”

Azima grabbed her…hugged her.

Then the shaking and bumping reached its peak. Blue crashed.

ETOS

Multiple alarms, different sounds and volumes were the maddening racket Etos woke up to.

He had a wicked headache that got worse once he unstrapped himself from the chair and leaned forward. He grunted as he rested his arms on his knees. “Kee, alarm off,” he shouted.

Nothing happened.

“Kee—” he yelled, then he remembered her status.

As he pulled himself to his feet, the throbbing in his head transformed into pounding. He wasn’t sure if it was the crash or the noise, but he sauntered past the Schloran elder, who lay unresponsive, and manually shut off the alarm control on the ceiling behind the pilot chair.

There was instant relief in his head and he stood there a moment to regain his strength. He took a deep breath, then returned to the front.

Tigus’ upper half was slumped over, the strap keeping him from dropping to the floor. Etos pushed his back against the chair and checked on him; felt his head, pressed on his neck. Alive. He didn’t know why, but he felt some sort of relief knowing that. His shoulders dropped, his breathing calmed down and even the headache was almost gone. It was early, too early. Perhaps the old man was growing on him.

The view through the front window was now water. Blue water. Bluer than any ocean back on Uridia, and he didn’t spot any signs of sea-life. Hmm. Maybe they scattered.

The sight was magnificent and he wanted to step forward, look some more at this beautiful water through the window, likely surrounding him—Blue, but they’d just crashed. The realization hit him like a bomb, and he snapped out of it and rushed out the cockpit. Phea?

Once he ran out onto the corridor, there was a slant he could not fight, and he fell forward and skidded down to the ladder. There was no stopping his momentum, no gaining control of his body and in rolling down, his shoulder slammed into the ladder door. He scraped his stomach and back pretty good, too, but fought the pain to check on his partner.

His partner! All he had left in the world now. That’s how he viewed Phea. The Schlorans were her people, yeah, but she was his family. And he’d give his life to save hers.

The way the ship tilted in the water, there was no going down the ladder at this angle, only over. He crawled across it to get to the lower level, surprisingly no water had spilled in. Now, he just had to climb up the walkway, and there was light at the top. Natural light coming from Bay Four.

He stuck his fingers through steel grates and climbed up. His heart raced as negativity penetrated his thoughts. How could she and the others survive the impact of the crash? There was nothing to keep them safe, strap them in; he halfway assumed that there’d be bodies all over the place. He climbed to Bay Four, and it was as empty as it was before they took on the guests. And the bay gate was open to the outside. How? Where?

He continued his ascent to the opening of the gate and stood on the edge. Like in the cockpit before, everything in his mind took a backseat to the view. Beautiful water everywhere, with a tiny speck of land dead center. The air was quiet, warm, but most importantly, breathable. He took in a big whiff and closed his eyes as he exhaled. He opened his eyes and looked up. There were no clouds, no birds, the sun was likely behind him from the way the light shined on the still water, and there were two moons. A chill ran up his spine and that smile straightened out. For the first time since this journey began, Etos felt homesick. Uridia had two moons.

This could be it. This could be the new Uridia. But where is this? Where—

Chatter interrupted his thoughts and he looked around the sides of Blue for a better view. Nothing but water, stretching out as far as he could see, in both directions. But he heard it, he was sure of it. So, he looked in the water, took a chance and jumped off the edge.

The water was warm. He wanted to stay in it, play in it like he used to back home when he was younger. That’s how he felt, like a kid. So much, he wanted to live in this stress-free feeling and just be. But he couldn’t, not now. Never. He swam from the back of the ship toward the front, then popped out of the water with a better view than he had on the cockpit. There, he saw a world in front of Blue. Not like the land he spotted in the distance, no, no, no… this was a continent.

That beautiful green that he saw before the ship crashed, trees…forest-like, and before it, a beach. On the beach, the Schlorans.

Etos swam over, fast as he could, and crawled onto the sand. Even the sand reminded him of home. He stood and scanned everyone. They seemed fine, a little shaken up and no injuries as far as he could tell. They noticed him, but the forest had most of their attention.

Before he could walk closer, look harder, a lovely voice brought joy to his heart.

“Etos!” Phea screamed from his left side.

He looked and she came running out of the trees, a little girl trailing her.

A weight fell off his shoulders and he nearly floated over to her. She ran at him, jumped up and he caught her, embraced her and spun her around. “I thought I lost you,” he cried.

“I thought I lost me,” she laughed.

Then, he saw that the Schlorans across the beach had stopped looking at the forest to watch them. Some of them even whispering to each other. He could care less what the Schloran scum thought, still, this made him uncomfortable. The way they were gawking…plotting.

He dropped her on the beach, at the edge of the tide, and looked at the little girl shadowing Phea.

“Who’s this?” he asked.

“Azima.” Phea reached back and pulled the little girl to her side. “She saved my life.”

Then, a large cranking sound exploded from Blue. The tide shifted. And the ship rocked.

Etos stepped in front of Phea, instinctively, and pushed her and Azima, further back onto the beach. The rest of the Schlorans gasped.

Blue was face down into the ocean when they crashed. Seemed the ship wanted a better view, too, as it rocked and splashed until it settled on top of the water. Thankfully, it didn’t float away.

“Where are we?” Phea asked.

“I don’t know.”

written & created by
M. Sydnor Jr.

read Season 2, Episode 3

copyright © M. Sydnor Jr.

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