The strategy was deceptively simple. Get across the exposed ground, under the cover of darkness. Find the food supplies and bring them back to the quarters. What could possibly go wrong?
Part of an elite group for the colony, I was prepared for any eventuality. But she was the last thing I’d expected to see in a forsaken place like this.
The crossing had been easy enough. The ground was under complete darkness and we were left with only our senses to navigate the expanse to whatever lay ahead. The cold seeping in through our armor, we silently made our destination.
The reconnaissance team had done a good job. The enemy was no-where near this location, at least for now. The co-ordinates they had supplied had actually panned out. Ricter had promised ‘ It’s there. I swear on my nearly dead mother’s grave! You’ll find the food at these co-knots.’
Convinced, I was not. But I’d taken on the mission. And now I was staring at the one reason that had convinced me to move to this part of the world. Amber!
She’d left me for lack of a better life, 5 years ago. Wanted to roam the world she’d said. And left, before I’d even had a chance to try to change her mind. An eternity ago.
And now here she stood shivering in the damp cold, looking like she’d been on the run since she’d left me. I wanted to reach out and touch her beautiful face but couldn’t get myself to feel the pain of rejection again.
‘Help me’ she whispered. That’s all it took. I wasn’t going to leave her there, alone. Not now, hopefully never. We carried as much food as possible and began the journey home.
That’s when the floodlights came on, drowning us in luminescence with no-where to hide.
Too late. The gas, a highly efficient and deadly neurotoxin, seeped into our lungs before we even saw it. Still running, I reached out for Amber. As I fell I felt the wind rush by me, razor sharp and merciless. I saw her then. I thought my life would flash before my eyes but all I could see was her face. I turned to face my doom, I wouldn’t die like this. Not like this…