Ain't nobody here... by Skrubly
Ain't nobody here... by Skrubly
Spreading our wings to the stars was the inflection point after that, the
entire universe was our playground. Breaking free of the confines of our
planet was exhilerating, and in our diaspora we found an unexpected unity, a
newfound appreciation for our species. We discovered a strength and compassion
that we had never known before, cooped up on our homeworld.
We went everywhere - slowly at first, and then developing ever more
sophisticated methods of travel, bending spacetime to our will. But, the scale
of the entire universe was so vast, the laws of large numbers caught up with
us. Yes, many colonies were lost to disaster, to slaughter, to the random
chance of fate, but when the call for help went out we would respond, however
slowly, knowing they would do the same for us.
The call had come in one winter, a warning of the highest level - a genocidal
impact event. The Watch Officer brought it to me immediately.
Where is the colony? was my first question. Three hundred light years, sir
responded the Watch Officer, resignation in his voice. It would take a
thousand years for us to reach them, even with all of our methods to pinch and
bend the space between us.
We launch tomorrow, regardless. I said, even though I knew we would almost
certainly be too late. If even a small sliver of the colonists survived, we
should be able to help their descendants, perhaps bring them back home.
It is so hard to leave the homeworld, and every time we do it is like a death
sentence, but we say farewell knowing that we are protecting all of our
families, all of our future families, when we heed the distress call.
For us on the ship, it isnt nearly so long a journey, and we know in our
brains the time dilation, but in our bodies we do not understand it all. Years
pass for us as everyone we know ages and dies in a blink, and the world that
we left will be unrecognizable when we return. The heart breaks, but the mind
stays focused.
As we reached the approach vector, we got the first true look at the alien
world similiar to our own, plenty of water, carbon based life, and a
compatible day/night cycle. I called the Landing Captain to the bridge, and we
reviewed the warning message and followup research our allies had conducted
while we were travelling.
A race of marginally intelligent giants, initially non threatening but in the
years before the warning had grown increasingly militant and combative with
our colonies. I read out to the Captain. Colonies? the Captain responded.
Yes, it appears that local conditions were so favorable after landing that we
have managed to spread to almost 80 of this worlds landmass. I said, but
with the effect that we have regressed technologically the warning was
perhaps the last message they were able to send before falling into a dark
The Captain thought. We really have no idea what we will encounter there. The
giants could have completely overrun us we could be stepping into a trap.
This is true - but, we have been able to find a landing location that shows a
very low level of tech, and where we do have a numbers advantage over the
local giant population. We havent been able to contact them, but once we are
there we should be able to assess quite quickly.
Ready your troops, Captain, we are going down. I said, staring at the blue
and green orb on the screen, bracing myself for the worst.
After landing during the night cycle, we were able to establish contact
quickly with the colony, and things were even more grim than I had thought.
They were leaderless, they were imprisoned, and had been for their entire
lives. They chose the oldest of them as a spokesperson, and she could scarcely
believe our arrival. You are of legends, we have waited for your arrival for
thousands of years, untold generations have spoken of you and your stories are
like a dream. They slaughter us, we have always been trapped, they take our
unborn and consume them before us. she weeped.
They had no weapons, and had never seen any, did not know of their own
capabilities. Although they viewed us as a miracle, it would take a true
miracle to be able to save them.
The Captain spoke Tomorrow is the day of your liberation. Tonight we prepare.
This is the blade, and you will learn how to use it quickly - this knowledge
is deep within you, and when you draw your first blood you will feel the power
of our species course through you. All of the planets pray for you tonight,
all of the worlds we have drawn together will focus their energy into your
limbs. There were perhaps a hundred that could fight, and each was equipped
with two blades. The Giants were strong, but they were complacent.
Dusk fell, on that second day, and I and the Captain broke the locks to the
prison barracks. All of our compatriots streamed out silently, blades ready,
three lines approaching the Giant compound single file. Being over ten times
our height, we had to scramble and form towers to reach the windows, the
blades prying them open quietly, bringing up our allies behind us. Within
minutes we stood around the sleeping Giants, waiting for the signal.
I nodded to the Captain, and he screamed TO LIBERATION! and dove at the
throat of the first Giant, a crimson fountain bounding upwards to cover the
walls, the floor, and all of us. In the other rooms, we heard the chaos and
struggle and then silence, and after just ten minutes the only noise was our
heavy breathing and the desanguination of the Giants slowly dripping to the
Now we consume their power, the power they have held over us for too long. I
said, and then the slicing began again as the knives flew and the flesh of the
captors slid down our throats.
These Giants may be smarter than we thought, the Captain said, Weve been
discovered far sooner than I expected. We should return to orbit, instead of
attempting contact with other colonies directly. I looked at the intelligence
report and grimaced. Youre right. This is going to take much longer than
planned we need to be selective in what other colonies we can liberate. The
Giants are far more numerous than I thought, far more clever. But we have
patience where they make haste. We will watch, we will wait.
I put down the paper report, which would be digitized and sent back to the
The Sheriff didnt want to do a press conference, but the damned newspaper had
already blown this up beyond local, and someone had to get a lid on it. Im
going to tell you everything we know right now, please be patient. This is a
rapidly developing situation. As you know from the newspaper all members of
the Happy Harmony Commune are deceased. We are attempting to determine the
exact cause of death, and all options are on the table at this point.
Sheriff! The newspaper said that the bodies looked as if they had been
partially eaten? Do you suspect cannibals? asked a reporter in the front row.
No, its not cannibals. All evidence indicates some sort of animal,
scavengers perhaps, had found the bodies. Now, if youll excuse me we have to
get back to our investigation.
The Sheriff walked back up to the commune house, wher his Deputy was waiting.
Boss, we got something you have to see.
They walked back past the hog pens and the garden, then entered the chicken
coop. As his eyes adjusted to the darkness he saw the something the Deputy was
talking about - hundreds of tiny blades, covered in blood, scattered
throughout the coop. A cockfighting ring? Bets gone wrong?