Astronaut Daniel Stevens never expected there to even be life on planets, let alone for them to take him in when his spaceship crashed. He was surprised how similar to humans they acted; they slept , like humans, they ate like humans (albeit, the food was a bit funky), they even felt and showed emotions like humans. He found the place surprisingly homely and familiar. The whole planet was donned in bright neon coloured crystals. He always felt short of breath. He wasn’t sure whether this was due to the different levels of oxygen in the air or if it’s the fact that he was constantly in awe of his new surroundings. It wasn’t, however, all as fun as it sounds. He wasn’t a free man on this planet. He has to shuffle around, hiding from the government like in those alien movies he used to watch back home. Only two people knew he was there; Gaia and Helvetica. Despite how much Helvetica assures Daniel that she can be trusted, he couldn’t shake the fear that she would report him to her coworkers at the government office. She only worked in taxes but that didn’t offer much comfort to him.
They were sat around the dinner table one day, eating a dish that Daniel couldn’t pronounce even if he tried, when he heard it on the radio. Earthling rumoured to be in south Gohtns area.
“It might not be about you.” Helvetica declared, his monotonous voice rang through the large dining hall. Daniel furrowed his eyebrows in frustration and continued to spear a food that looked like a carrot made out of glittery purple gemstones.
“Did you do it?” Daniel accused, sending a pointed look towards the purple skinned woman. She scoffed, indignantly, returning the harsh glare.
“Why would I do that?” Her voice was nasally and grating according to Daniel. If he’s being completely honest, he didn’t like her very much but he felt like he had to be nice to her for her brother’s sake.
“You never wanted to take me in! You’ve wanted rid of me since I came here.” He was screaming now, red in the face and shaking. He received silence in return, a move so powerful that he found himself moving away from the table before his brain had even caught on.
They hadn’t spoke of that for months, not until they heard a forceful knock on their front door late one evening. Daniel hadn’t had time to process what was happening before he was shoved into a coat closet and informed to stay incredibly silent. There was a small crack in the door which he was able to see out of. There was 3 men, all dressed in, what Daniel assumed was, military uniforms. They stood at around 9 foot tall each and had an incredibly muscular build. They looked as though they had been carved out of onyx and wore a harsh and foreboding expression when they spoke. Despite this, Helvetica was able to keep his cool, crossing his arms and leaning against the doorframe to emphasise this.
“Is there a problem officer?” He asked, gently batting his bejewelled eyelashes at the uniformed men.
“We had a report that you’re hiding an Earthling in this property.” One of the armed officers informed him.
“I hope you do know that is a serious crime.” Another warned. Daniel assumed that this was them giving him a chance to surrender. Nonetheless, Helvetica stuck to his original story.
“I’m sorry to waste your time but I haven’t heard of any Earthlings round these parts. Besides, what would I benefit from bringing one in?” Helvetica raised an eyebrow and a smug smirk spread across his glistening cheeks. For a moment he thought he had outsmarted them but a few seconds later, they pushed past him and began searching the house. Panic and fear growing inside him, Daniel shrunk back behind the coats and the scarves.
He didn’t know how long they were searching the house for. He had found that the idea of time seemed to melt away from him in those moments of anxiety. It felt like an eternity yet also a mere couple of minutes. He felt his heartrate beating in his chest when he heard the staircase creaking and footsteps approach the closet door. He held his breath and closed his eyes and prayed with everything he could. But it wasn’t enough. They burst through the door and grabbed him, they blindfolded him and shoved him into the back of a police ship before leaving the house without a single word.
Helvetica couldn’t bring himself to say anything that evening, or for the following fortnights. He merely sat in his room and hated himself all over again. He should have done more. He could have done more, is the decision he comes to in the end. Daniel was his friend and they just carried him off like a common criminal. He became sick with worry for his friend, someone he saw as a member of his family.
It was three weeks later when he started to return to himself again. They had stopped parading his broken and abused friend around on all of the news sites. It was then that she told him.
“I did it.” Gaia blurted out one morning at breakfast.
“What?” He choked out, his purple eyes locked with hers. They were full of pain and sorrow and aguish. Acidic tears began to fall onto the metallic table, burning straight through to the floor.
“He accused me of doing it in the first place, I had to teach him a lesson.” She bit into her food as she said this. She didn’t care and that’s what made Helvetica the angriest.
“How could you? He was my friend.” His voice was barely above a whisper. He kept his eyes fixed on the hole melting in the table.
“Mama told me to look after you. You’re lucky you weren’t arrested, Helvetica.”
“He was my friend.” That was all that he was able to say, that was all that he wanted to say.
“I was doing what was best for you.” She was filing the gems on her hands now.
“I don’t think we should see each other as family anymore.” Helvetica’s voice cracked when he spoke. Gaia scoffed when she heard this like it was the most ludicrous thing she had ever heard.”
“Are you disowning me? Seriously? After everything I’ve done for you!” she was yelling now. Helvetica simply nodded and began to pack his things, deciding that he would rather try his luck on the streets than with someone who sent his friend to his death.
“You wont be able to survive without me.” This was the last thing he ever heard from her. Unfortunately, she was right.