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Science Fiction

"You told me this would be a short trip. We've been on this wretched ship for twelve years!" Halo roared. 

"I know, but I broke the digital map and-"

"I don't care what happened! I paid you a good handful of money and I expected to be home long before now!" 

Halo had the perfect life back on Earth, but he just had to pay Mirabella almost three billion to take him to Tariphor, the most beautiful paradise planet in the galaxy. The trip was only supposed to be nine years in total, but the journey to Tariphor had stretched out to twelve! Halo had spent most of the time in hypersleep, but they had recently hit some strange turbulence that woke him. 

"Sir, I told you before we left that I was only an amateur pilot. I just got out of flight school, too," Mirabella tried to explain. 

"That was twelve years ago! You should be better by now, Mire," Halo complained.

They had left Earth when Halo was only 23 years old. He had spent his golden years of life in hypersleep and he was just as close to Tariphor as he was when still on Earth's surface.

Mirabella wasn't that happy about it either. She was 19 when they left and, unlike Halo, had actually begun to age. She wished she could've been the one frozen in some fancy tank. She missed her family more than anything, wishing she could just turn around and head back to Earth, but she didn't know which way home was anymore.

“Well, what would you like me to do about it?” Mirabella asked. She didn’t mean for it to sound as angry as it did, and was simply curious, as she had run out of things to try and was willing to do anything to get back home. 

“Well, you're the pilot. You should know what you’re doing!”

“If you don’t have anything to contribute, you can just go back to bed,” Mirabella stated flatly.  

“You’re insane if you think you can tell me, the youngest self-made multi-billionaire, what to do,” Halo said, “Now, where can I get a bite to eat?”

“We ran out of food three days ago,” Mirabella admitted. 

“Were you not rationing it properly?” Halo asked.

“I made food for nine years last for twelve, I think I did a fine job rationing,” Mirabella said defensively.

“What about that?” Halo asked. He pointed to a small blue cube placed on the chair next to Mirabella’s. He had never seen anything like it, but it looked a little like Jell-O. He hoped it was edible. After all, the backlash of waking up from hypersleep gave him quite the appetite.

“Don’t you dare try to eat him. he’s some sort of space creature, not food. I think he’s sleeping,” Mirabella said.

“It looks delicious.”

“You’ll probably flip your organs inside-out if you eat him. Then, I’ll have to find a way to revive you, and suddenly kill you again for your stupid decision… After that, I’ll revive you a second time since I really don’t want to be alone in the endless abyss of space.”

“Could you even do that?”

 “Not at all. In reality, you’d just stay dead,” she shrugged.

“How did this thing even get on the ship?” Halo asked. 

Just as Halo was finished speaking, the blue Jell-O like creature, opened its eyes. They were huge, covering half the creature’s boxy face. It hopped up onto Mirabella’s shoulder.

“I let him in,” Mirabella said.

“What if that creature tries to kill us?” Halo asked.

“He’s, like, five inches tall. How would he?” she asked. 

Halo eyed the creature warily. He didn’t really trust the thing, but Mirabella was right; it was small and Halo knew he could easily overpower it if he needed to. 

“At least tell me you didn’t name it,” Halo said.

Mirabella didn’t answer.

“Oh my God, why? Why in the world would you name it?” Halo asked. 

“I call him Berry,” Mirabella admitted, fiddling with her hands.

The creature, Berry, looked up at Mirabella when he heard his name. Halo watched as the creature snuggled down and began to purr. He had to admit that Berry was cute, but that still didn’t mean he trusted the thing. 

“You shared our food with it,” Halo said.

“I couldn’t just let him starve!” Mirabella replied. 

“I mean, you could’ve. Then at least I would have something to eat,” Halo said. Halo was a little upset that Mirabella cared more about feeding a space creature than a human that paid her three billion dollars.  

“Come on, just look at him, he’s so cute,” Mirabella said. Mirabella picked the creature up off of her shoulder and held it in her hands. 

“I don’t see it,” Halo said.

Suddenly, a loud buzzer went off and the ship started to flash red. 

“What in the world is happening!” Halo shouted over the buzzer.

“I don’t know, the ship hasn’t acted like this since the map broke!” Mirabella shouted back, “I need you to hold him.” She passed Berry over to Halo who took it slowly and held it as far away from his body as possible. 

Mirabella rushed over to the control panel and began to fidget with the levers and buttons. Halo approached her slowly, still holding Berry at arm’s length, to watch. 

“What is it?” he asked. 

“I can’t tell, just give me a sec,” Mirabella replied. 

At that point, Berry hopped out of Halo’s hands and landed on a small square button. Suddenly the sound stopped, though the lights of the ship were still flashing. 

“I know what it is,” Mirabella said. 

“What, what is it?” Halo asked, dying to know. 

“We’re almost out of fuel, the ship is warning us that we need to find somewhere to land,” Mirabella explained. 

Halo looked around the ship and through the large windows. Outside all he saw was blackness, stars, and the occasional comet, not of which were big enough for their ship.

“How can we do that, there is nothing but space out there!” Halo shouted. 

“Duh there is nothing but space. We’re in space, Halo!” Mirabella shouted in response.

“We’re going to crash, we are going to crash and I am going to die. I still had my whole life ahead of me. Finding a partner, raising a family, adopting a hundred and one cats just because I can,” Halo complained. He began to pace back and forth, rushing his hands through his hair as he spoke. 

“You’re probably right,” Mirabella said, “I don’t think there is any way for us to survive this.”

“That’s not what I wanted to hear!” Halo shouted. He paused from the pacing to face Mirabella, “Instead of living out my perfect life, I am going to die in space. With nothing but you and that creature to keep me company.” 

“Well, what do you suggest we do instead?” Mirabella asked.

“I don’t know Mire, I’m not a pi- hold on what is that thing doing?”

Mirabella turned to see than Berry’s Jell-O like skin was changing from blue to red. He was also growing.

“He’s never done that before,” Mirabella admitted. 

They stood back as Berry grew more and more until he went from 5 inches tall, to 5 feet. The thing was huge. 

“What do we do, what do we do?” Halo asked, quickly hiding behind Mirabella. 

Mirabella slowly walked up to Berry with her arm outstretched. The cube eyed her cautiously as she reached out and placed her hand on its head. That must have really ticked him off because his skin began to change quickly between colors, and it seemed to scream out in pain. Mirabella quickly backed up to the edge of the ship were Halo was cowering.

“What did you do?” Halo shouted. 

“I just touched him,” Mirabella said.

“That’s it, we’re going to die,” Halo said. 

“Yes, we already agreed on that.” 

“Mire, we need to get outta here,” Halo said.

“We can’t leave Berry though, he’s my friend!” Mirabella said. 

“Your friend is a space monster, now come on!” Halo announced.

He grabbed her hand and yanked her through the ship’s door to the hypersleep pods. He quickly locked the door behind him and only seconds later they heard a Jell-O like squish banging on the door over and over.

“Alright, what’s the plan?” Halo asked.

“Maybe we can just let Berry in and the three of us can talk it out,” Mirabella suggested.

“Mire, I’m not sure if you’ve realized this or not, but that thing is trying to murder us,” Halo said. 

“He’s just scared,” Mirabella said.

“Maybe you didn’t hear me the first time, that thing is trying to murder us!” Halo said, his voice rising until he was shouting at her.

“This is all your fault. If you had never woken up, Berry wouldn’t be so upset,” Mirabella stated.

“My fault, you think this is my fault? You were the one that woke me up when you hit turbulence, you have no one to blame but yourself,” Halo replied.

“Maybe you should have been nicer to Berry.”

“Maybe you shouldn’t have brought on a weird space creature.”

“Maybe you should-” before she could finish, the door was knocked down and the giant, now green, Berry bounced into the room. 

“What do we do, and don’t try and approach it again, that just made it angrier,” Halo said.

“Hey, Berry,” Mirabella said, “How are you buddy. I know that Halo can be kinda mean sometimes-”

“Hey!”

“Shut up,” she whispered harshly before continuing, “But just because he’s a little mean, it doesn’t mean you should kill him. We can talk through this, I just need you to shrink back down, okay buddy?”  

The creature took a step closer to the two humans. Halo grabbed Mirabella’s hand and tried to pull her back to him, but she stayed standing in front of Berry.

“I don’t think this is working...” Halo said.

“What do you suggest we do instead, we are going to die anyway, either by this creature or by crashing!” Mirabella shouted. 

“So we should just give up?” Halo asked.

“Why not? It’s not like we have anything left to fight for. Even if by some miracle we manage to get out of this, we still have no idea how to get home,” Mirabella said.

“We can figure that out,” Halo said. He couldn’t explain this sudden spark of hope came from, but he really didn’t want to die here, especially at the hands of a blue cube. He wished he would have thrown out the cube while it was still small, but it was too late now for ‘what if’s.’

“I’m gonna let him eat me,” Mirabella said. She yanked her hand away from Halo’s grasp and stood her ground.  

“You’re gonna what?” Halo asked, shocked. 

"I let him onto this ship, the least I can do for it is provide him with a final meal,” Mirabella said.

“What about your family?” Halo asked, trying to convince her to stay. 

“It’s been twelve years! Halo, what’s even the point of going back, nothing will be how it was. People have probably forgotten all about us,” Mirabella said.

“How could anyone forget about me?” Halo asked.

“Halo, listen, we don’t have a plan to get back to Earth. We don’t have a plan to land the ship. We don’t have a plan to calm down Berry-”

“We could kill him,” Halo suggested.

“We are not killing him. My point is, in the last moments of our life, we might as well do something for this little creature.”

“I wouldn’t call him little anymore.”

“Are you with me or not?” Mirabella asked. 

She held out her hand for Halo to take. This was insane! He couldn’t believe that he was actually thinking about joining her. Mirabella was crazy to even want to let Berry eat the two of them, and yet, Halo couldn’t stop himself from grabbing her hand. 

Mirabella smiled before the two of them turned to face Berry. Halo closed his eyes as they walked towards the creature. He could feel himself being absorbed into it before he lost all control over his body and blacked out.

Halo awoke with a gasp, he was breathing heavy. Did he really just do that? Was he dead? Was this heaven? He was sitting in a bed, hospitalized. He looked around the see Mirabella was laying in the bed next to him. There were wires and tubes all around them, some of them going into his body.

Then Halo spotted it. Berry was sitting on the nightstand, once again five inches tall. He had taken back his original blue color and was staring up at Halo. Where was he? Had this all just a dream?

The door to the room opened and a doctor walked in holding a clipboard. 

“Ah, Mr. Tharen, you’re up,” the doctor said. 

“Please, call me Halo, and can you explain to me what happened?” Halo asked. 

“Of course,” she began to walk around the room, checking the tubes and making small notes of her clipboard, “It’s been fourteen years since you left Earth, though, by the looks of it, you barely aged a day. Most people here thought that you were dead, died in a crash or something, but two weeks ago, this creature-” she nodded her head over to Berry- “brought you back. We’ve been reviving you and Miss Miller ever since.”

“You mean to tell me that creature... saved me?” Halo asked. 

“Yes, it appears to have a soft spot for you. It never even left your side. Tell me, are you feeling alright? Do you need anything?” the doctor asked. 

“Just some water,” Halo said.

The doctor left. Halo turned and stared at Berry who just stared back blankly. A small smile appeared on Halo’s face.

“Thanks,” he whispered, “Thanks for bringing us home.”    

January 17, 2020 13:37

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2 comments

Amelia F
15:17 Jan 21, 2020

great story!

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Cory Pines
16:34 Jan 23, 2020

Thanks, I think this one is my favorite

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