Monday, October 7, 2013
I have left Earth. I am now on a shuttle with around two hundred other people, if you count Mom in her stasis chamber. Most are the people Weln took care of, the disabled and infirm who will be treated on Kalquor, then sent on to wherever the Galactic Council decides to put them. I’ve figured out that about seven of us are lottery entrants, looking to become Mataras to clans. We are on our way to the orbiting transport that will take us to Kalquor.
My eyes ache from crying. They literally ache. Even happy-go-lucky, can’t-wait-to-go-to-Kalquor Candy is bawling buckets from time to time. Every lucid Earther on this shuttle has cried. We are wrecks, and the Kalquorian attendants are staying busy checking on us, offering drinks and sweets and even gentle pats on the shoulders and backs. They don’t try to talk us out of our misery. I guess they know we need to grieve for all we’ve lost.
I’m doing a little better than when I came to the shuttle first thing this morning. I came apart as Dad hugged me goodbye. I clung to him, my big giant of a Kalquorian father. How many times has this man been the rock I needed? Too many times to count. No matter what craziness I involved myself in, Dad was there to advise me, to hug me, to gently rebuke me. It really, really hurts to have found a father only to leave him behind so soon. I am determined that when he gets home to Kalquor, I will be right there to welcome him.
He wept like a baby himself. It kills me to see that big man cry. It’s wrong for someone as sweet as him to feel pain. Thankfully, his clanmates Bitev and Rak were there. They came to see me off too. They probably did it to make sure Nayun was okay, but I appreciated my other two would-be dads being there just for the strength they offered me along with him. Damn, I wish they all were coming with me.
Then there was Weln. He and I spent last night like the night before, making love as often as possible. There was more desperation to it this time. I felt like I was trying to not just say goodbye to Weln, but to Dusa and Esak through him. To everything I’d found that was good since meeting them. I’m going to see them when they come home too, I swear it. If only it wasn’t so far in the future!
Gosh, we cried. Earth should have a new ocean for all the tears that were shed.
I finally boarded the shuttle. Dad and Weln had to kind of push me into the open hatch because my legs couldn’t seem to carry me away on their own. I finally went and turned around for one last look.
I really wanted to see the green grass and tall pine trees one more time. Unfortunately, the Academy’s landing pad is all asphalt surrounded by tall buildings. At least there was the powder blue sky with a few cotton ball clouds to say goodbye to.
I saw a familiar figure in the distance, standing all alone, watching me. It was Commander Nang. I felt a wave of terror when I spied him, and I wondered if he would try to stop me from leaving. He didn’t move, however. He just stood and watched.
I don’t know how to feel about him coming to see me off. I don’t know if I should feel anything. I didn’t wave or acknowledge him. He is in the past now, and he can’t hurt me again.
When it seemed Nang would not move, I looked at Weln and Dad again. They smiled at me through tears.
Dad said, “Please take care of yourself, my daughter. Vid me in a couple of days after you’ve gotten settled on the transport. Make sure you visit Medical so they can verify you’re not suffering any ill effects from the smoke inhalation.”
“I will,” I sobbed.
“Make sure you also vid Dusa so he can get your contact frequency,” Weln added. “That way we can let you know when I get to Atlanta.”
“Okay.” The hatch started to close, shutting them off from me. I called out, “I love you, Weln. I love you, Dad.”
They chorused “I love you” back, and then I was left staring at the blank hatch of the shuttle. I don’t remember taking my seat, but I’m sure one of the attendants had to help me. I found myself sitting next to Candy. Our arms wrapped around each other. We clung and cried, like most of the other Earthers on board.
We felt the slight tremor of the shuttle moving, signaling our departure from Earth.
Now I must say goodbye to Earth itself. Right now I can look up at the vid window and see my home planet for the last time. I will never walk on it again, not when it’s been damaged so bad. It will take centuries to clean it up, the initial estimates say. There’s even debate if it’s worth intervention since Earth is so far away from the rest of the Galactic Council’s member planets. I hope they’ll fix it, even though I’ll never get to see that happen. Sentimental me.
Goodbye, little blue world. I’m sorry we fucked you up so bad. You will be missed.