Dalliance of Nin-khursag

Submitted into Contest #154 in response to: Write a story featuring an element of time-travel or anachronism.... view prompt

2 comments

Science Fiction Speculative Adventure

Content warning - mature like a dirty joke

Enki is an Anunnakis, an alien who emigrated from Nibiru 'The Destroyer' planet during the last pass near Earth almost 3600 years ago. He is royal, son of Antu, mated to Anu the king. His half-sister Nin-khursag is on the planet with him as is his half-brother Enlil. He is a hunk of a man, eight feet of muscle with long brown hair and combed beard under the traditional silver crown anchoring the chain mail dropping across the back of the neck and to the shoulders. He has leather sandals and is naked except for cotton pin pants while relaxing on an organic lounge. He is enjoying a breakfast of powdered protein in hot water and an apple with his sister Nin, for short.

"I have to walk," Enki says. His natural senses, enhanced with personal viruses, nag him incessantly when he needs to burn a few calories or oppositely when he needs to eat more. He rises and stretches in the dawn sunlight filtering in through the opaque membrane covering the large throne room.

Nin only eats half of her rations provided from the food generator, planted in the corner with leaves extended through the roof, brushing the remains on the floor which is a signal for the ants and roaches to scurry out and clean up. "I would go with you but I don't feel it. I think I'll see to a few personal needs," she says, also rising.

Enki nods and stomps through a new opening made in the wall of green bush as it sensed his approach. He steps into the crusted snow but has to stop; a hill sits before him with spaced cave openings that he can barely see in the howling blizzard. It takes several minutes to reach the opening he wants. His compulsion to move has evaporated as he burnt the required calories to heat himself. Once inside he travels downslope along the tunnel to emerge into an immense cavern. He sees his half-brother, Enlil at his desk.

"More needs to be done with the destiny machine? All of our work is going to be destroyed by the approaching Nibiru. How can you predict a future on a destroyed planet with us gone?" Enki said in greeting.

Enlil paused in his deliberations and looks up with a smile. The greyish brains he is using pulsed and sparked with health, visible through the membrane tanks that contained them. "I'm running permutations on our new batch of hominids. I can't believe we didn't get a keeper from all the different beings you designed."

Enki called a dethorned cactus couch over and sat, facing his brother. "Well, it was experimental. We got giants, dwarves, yeti, mermaids, neanderthals, and monsters of every description fornicating everywhere but none of them are rising to the challenge. I'm not sure why they didn't flourish."

"Don't forget the magical," Enlil reminded.

"I will miss the faeries," he said, thinking of the winged and beautiful creatures of various sizes.

"Yeah, the enhancements didn't work out," Enlil stated the obvious. "Maybe," he continued, "it would have been different if we didn't subjugate all of them to mining gold."

"But I like gold!," Enki enthused.

"Maybe we shouldn't have gone totally green and kept some of the mechanical devices we used in the past," Enlil mused.

"Wow! Aren't you on a roll, all doubtful," teased Enki.

"Yes, well, the destinies determined that your new breed will meet with success."

"Once we are gone, the Earth will be wrecked from tidal forces during Nibiru's passing; massive earthquakes, tidal waves, flooding rain. Then our arks will depart to seed the entire earth with the most successful humans and beasts that we have built during our stay."

"Your designs look good, Enki," Enlil commented, motioning into the cave where living uteruses were lined up by the thousands, pulsing softly in a coordinated tempo. "You did adjust them per area didn't you?"

"Sure. We don't need the mining slaves any longer so these are about the same size maximized for heat or cold. Some need to be smarter than others but you know as well as I that greater intelligence doesn't guarantee survival."

"They're far apart. They shouldn't even have common border wars before we get back."

"Are we coming back?" Enlil asked. The Anunnaki being is long-lived and on top of that is the inevitable orbital stasis. They would rocket their gold and themselves back to Nibiru at its closest approach and enjoy a century as royalty before their planet was too far from the sun, engulfed in the lifeless cold of space. All life on the planet has evolved with a long hibernation of 3200 years and spends that time in frigid slumber.

Enik thinks before he replies. "I don't think I would return to Sumeria along the Mesopotamian."

Enlil nodded and a thought came to him. "Where is Nin-khursag? I thought she would be coming over here with you for last-minute inspections of the creches?"

"I guess she's working on her home furnishings. When we got here she was relaxed about her surroundings, enjoying the weather and the leisure activities available. In the last year, she has been working diligently to improve on everything. She's redesigned and now grows everything from scratch," Enik said.

"I know that," replied Enlil. "But it seems she has been spending a lot of time in her room, alone. I don't know what entertainment she found to keep her busy. I hope she's all right."

Enik agreed.

Over the next several months the aliens increased their speed until everything of value was rocketed up to intersect with their wild planet. In a year they were done just before the disruptions became unlivable. The protected fetuses weathered the storms and were automatically delivered by ark around the globe to develop into the humans of 2022.

Clara is the feisty young female lead on the Iraq dig located deep in the desert. It is nestled below foothills along Mesopotamia. The hills around the flatland are riddled with caves. The caves are eerily similar and spaced vaguely equidistant. Clara maintains her leadership with a no-nonsense work ethic that she expects everyone on her team to emulate. She retains the distance between the officer and enlisted religiously. Her staff knows to ignore the pretty shape of her face, the strait white teeth, the cleanliness of the bunned brown hair, the curves within the sweat-wicking sun shirt, or the twitch of her first class bum, impossible to mask, encased in khaki shorts. A mobile command center was delivered soon after the initial discoveries and it functions with gasoline generators powering genetic sequencers, computer banks, communications, and air conditioners that puff the polyester walls outward.

Clara entered the big tent early on a Tuesday morning where Tim, the research lead, meets her. They exchanged pleasantries and walked both rows politely inspecting the four lab workers without interfering with their duties.

They found thin sheets of decayed vegetation when they followed the shallow lead of unusual caves on skimpy funding. In a desperate attempt to justify their expedition they ran DNA sampling to find out what was blooming back in the day. The results were inconclusive, an unusual result, allowing Clara to delve deeper into the mystery and requisition the expensive mobile lab.

"So, did we find anything yet?" Clara asked.

"Indeed we have," Tim allowed. "These aren't natural plants! They all have partial matches. Some are bushes but most are cacti with genetic coding two and three times longer than a general cactus. The extra code is synchronized, it doesn't appear to be junk but we have no idea what it does."

"Maybe these were trained plants," teased an excited Clara. Tim glared as deeply as his status allowed.

"Janet!" he called. The analyst rose from her stool to join them.

"Please show our leader the new discovery," he grouses.

Janet opened a locked box to remove a small white eggplant, returned and handed it to Clara. She looked it over discovering a small ingrown stem. It felt like a vegetable but she strangely intuited a tool with hidden power.

"An albino eggplant? Hmph, did you waste time on a workup?" Clara asked.

"I did," Janet confessed. "But the eggplant stopped me."

"Say again?" Clara demanded.

"I couldn't get a sample. I couldn't even get a micro slice with the laser scalpel. A scraper didn't work either," Janet said ending with a shrug.

The thing seemed to be warming while she held it. "Where did you find it?"

"Justine found it in on the floor, alone, in the second cave. It was brown and shriveled but quickly turned white and healthy when exposed to sunlight," Tim told her.

Clara joined them as they hemmed and hawed sharing empty thoughts when her phone buzzed in her pocket. After she looked at the ID she asked for privacy and Tim led her to the door of his office. She entered and closed the door unconsciously carrying the object with her.

Twenty minutes later Janet and Tim both heard, as they milled about the door waiting for Clara to emerge, a blood-curdling scream that reached a crescendo and tapered to a whimper before stopping. Tim and Janet rushed to the weakly locked door without hesitation and entered to save their boss, but what they saw stopped them short. Clare was sitting in a recliner adjacent to the desk facing them with her head thrown back. She sat immobile with wide staring eyes, mouth gaping with drool, and arms were thrown out on either side, apparently dead. Oddly, her shorts and panties are piled neatly beside her along with the silent phone and the eggplant. The chair fabric is soaked between legs thrown wide offering a lewd and unflattering view of parts abused to a swollen purple.

Janet is the first to recover from the shock and rushes forward to grasp a limp arm. "Call the EMS!" she screams. The other workers are now crowding the doorway. They are in the desert, there is no EMS and Tim moves forward with a shrug.

"Get a doctor! We need help!" Janet screams, now listening at Clara's chest. There is no doctor. Tim picks up the vegetable and quickly drops the slime-covered clump.

"Get the defibrillator!" Janet commands. One is furnished with the tent, by law, but Tim doesn't remember where it is stored. One of the onlookers peels off to find it. Tim gets a towel from the adjoining bathroom and picks up the eggplant again. Even through the cloth, he can feel the soothing warmth and vibration. He sees it moving, pulsing, alive.

"Damn!" wails Janet as she moves into place to try CPR. Tim gently pulls her back and shakes his head no. They both see a new twitch of Clara's lips and the mouth closes a bit. Her eyes blink. Tim retrieves a second towel and drapes it over the still unresponsive privates.

"She'll live," Tim tells Janet gently. She doesn't understand. The crowd at the door doesn't show any signs of understanding either. He eases them all outside and closes the door taking the eggplant with him. He tries hard, with all his strength, but he can't completely quell his spreading smirk.

July 13, 2022 18:53

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2 comments

Graham Kinross
09:43 Jul 20, 2022

Clara makes me think of the Doctor Who companion. I like the Stargate style ore-human advanced aliens. Ok, that’s a wild twist. Set up like it’s some alien nonsense and really it’s just her enjoying “personal time”. She should have waited though. I can see this appealing to guys more than women. Probably depends on the women though. I can see some women laughing at the end actually. Have you heard of the video game Horizon Zero Dawn? It’s got a story about twisty human evolution, no aliens but there are some huge story twists that seem lik...

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John Hanna
14:36 Jul 20, 2022

Hi Graham, Always look forward to your comments. I've mostly moved to a serialized venue but I should spend more time on Reedsy. I like Reedsy but only so many hours in a day. My young grandson likes to spend time with me and I suck that up while I can get it. I have a wife, daughters, and granddaughters. I like them, love them, but women differ from men - thank God. Anyway, I have no intention of insulting women but I am not one and might err. I suspect some of both genders will think this story amusing and some of both genders will be ligh...

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