Uninhabited

I am a bit behind this week, so this one is pulling double duty as a response to the invisible ink challenge of “Write a story about visiting a planet.”, and the Weekly Friday Picture prompt from The Writer’s Mess on the image below. Join Maggie as she steps onto a new world, and sees something amazing and unexpected.


Maggie stepped out of the ship, and froze. This was not the desolate rock she had been briefed on.

Fog drifted over a lush forest, as the sun rose in the distance, and that was the least magnificent part of it. She didn’t know if what she was seeing was towers, or statues, but they were huge, red and white, shaped like dolphins leaping out of the fog, only ripple in the air like they were fluid.

Before she could say anything, radio in, they began to move. At first it was a slow thing, so slow she wasn’t sure it was happening, and then it got faster, a spinning, and then a lifting, and she wondered if they were ships, taking off.

It was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen, as great fins broke free of the fog, propelling them though the air, leaving a great blue rippling wake that reminded her of the northern lights.

When they finally faded from sight, she closed her eyes, her eyelids like sandpaper, and when she opened them, it was all gone.

Not just the ships, but the sun, the fog, the forest, everything, like it was never there, but every part of her knew that it had been there, it had been real.

Even after the ships medic told her it was probably just a hallucination from oxygen deprivation, a missed pinhole in her suit. She knew though, it had been real, and she would never forget it.

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