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Dianne opened the door of the flat, “I’m home” she called taking off her coat and shoes in the small hallway. “Oh Steven have you not done anything again today?” She asked aware her tone was winey and nagging. She looked around at last night’s dishes on the table, now added to with Stevens’s breakfast and lunch dishes and then to the clothing discarded all over the floor.

Steven was sat in his pyjamas with his laptop in front of him “Is it that time already?” he yawned “Sorry I’ve been engrossed in this, did you know that a footprint on the moon will remain undisturbed for centuries?”

Dianne switched off halfway through his fact explanation and started picking up the dishes “You know your redundancy money is not going to last much longer, it’s been three months now, you need to be more proactive about getting a job. Have you updated your C.V yet?” Dianne pressed.    “I was going to do that today, it’s on my list, I` ll get round to it after dinner”. Steven answered still engrossed in his lap top. “Have you sorted anything for dinner?” Dianne asked hopefully.                     “Er, no sorry, shall we just have take away?” Dianne bit her tongue and started opening the kitchen cupboards looking for something she could cook quickly.

***

After dinner and some television Dianne’s eyes started to close. “I am going to bed now are you coming?” “I`m just going to have half an hour at the telescope then I will join you” Steven answered glancing at his pride and joy. Dianne sighed her brother, Mark was an astronomer with Spacebit, he had sold Steven the telescope cheap and given him a few pointers of what to look for. Dianne had not been impressed with him spending so much of his redundancy on the telescope but she thought a hobby while he was looking for a new job might keep his spirits up. Little did she know it would turn into an obsession.

***

The alarm clock was making its usual jarring noise. Dianne stretched her arm out of the bed and on the third attempt managed to turn it off. Her other arm patted the empty space in the bed next to her. She got up and walked into the living room. “Steven, you haven’t even been to bed”. Steven was scribbling notes in his astronomy book. “Sorry love, I’m just on my way now. I think I’ve just made a discovery.” Stevens face was full of excitement. “I think I may have found a new sea on the moon”. Dianne looked at him in disbelief “Steven you’ve only been studying the moon for two months, there’s thousands of people all over the world including my brother who do this for a living. Don’t you think they would have found it first?”  Undeterred Steven continued “I’ve been studying the same area now for a while. I wasn’t sure at first but now I am positive, I’m making notes as we speak.” Dianne raised her eyebrows and went to have a shower.

As she left for work Dianne shouted “Make sure you update your C.V. today”. Steven didn’t even look up.

At the end of a long and tiring shift Dianne opened the door to her flat. She called out “Steven?” but there was no reply. She looked around the flat, nothing had changed from this morning, her heart sank, but maybe he had got a lead for a job. That would be really good news.

The key turned in the door “Dianne” Steven shouted excitedly. “What is it? Have you got a new job?” Dianne ran to greet him in the hallway. “Job? Oh no” he dismissed. “My moon discovery, I` ve been researching all day, I really think I am onto something”.

Dianne felt a sinking feeling she didn’t want to upset Steven, he had taken his redundancy quite badly but she wasn’t sure how long she could keep paying the bills and manage with his dwindling money.

After half listening to Stevens ramblings Dianne pretended to have a shower and rang her brother. “Mark this is your fault, you have to help, you were the one who sold him that telescope and encouraged him to study the moon and now he thinks he has made an amazing discovery.” Mark agreed to pop around later and take a look. “Let him down gently Mark, you know he been a bit sensitive recently.”

Steven was engrossed in his laptop with books spread out all around him. “Marks popping around later, you can tell him all about your discovery” Steven looked up suddenly “That’s a great idea, if anyone would know for sure he would”.

When Mark arrived Steven jumped up to greet him. “Come and see this mate, I think I`ve discovered a new sea on the moon”. The two of them sat down by the telescope. Dianne took her leave and went into the bedroom to watch a film. When she got up for a drink two hours later they were still there talking. Mark rose to his feet. “I`ll speak to people at work tomorrow and get back to you Steven”. He gave Dianne a little wink. “Right, so it definitely could be something couldn’t it?” Steven pushed. “I`ll get it checked out and get back to you tomorrow I promise” Mark answered non committaly.

***

The next day Mark came by at 6.30pm as promised. Steven rose to his feet expectantly. “Sorry bud, we checked it out with the highest powered lens in the lab and it’s not a new sea, it’s just a disturbance that has happened as a result of a recent impact.” Steven s face fell “Oh, I was so sure”. “Never mind Steven”. Dianne put a comforting arm around his shoulder. “On the plus side I`ve got two tickets for a show I can’t use tonight, why don’t you two go out and have a good time”. Dianne took the tickets “Oh thanks Mark, we could do with getting out for the night, Steven go and get changed”. Dianne thanked Mark as he left “Hopefully now he`ll put this behind him and start looking for a new job”.

Steven changed quickly and they were about to leave the flat when Dianne remembered she had left the Television on “I` ll just nip back and turn it off”. She hunted under the cushions for the remote just as the news was finishing “British scientists have today announced that a new sea has been discovered on the moon. They are naming it the Sea of Markstar”. Dianne stopped in her tracks, was this a strange coincidence or had Steven been right all along?

May 21, 2020 11:27

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1 comment

Kate Enoch
06:06 May 28, 2020

Great idea! well executed.

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