The Foragers

I’m woken up, by the loud knocks on my cabinet door. “Oh, c’mon people, I haven’t slept for the last 36 hours”, I say to myself. But nonetheless, I have to comply.

“You see , no-one breaks protocols here ”, greets Gen. Joseph.

“Yeah yeah, I remember ”, “so what got you up here?”, I ask.

“The Fuel Regeneration Unit is facing some problems”, he continues, “The Chief Engineer, tried to fix it up, but to no avail . The machine just won’t start.”

“Hmmm….. Gimme  a minute. Need to change”

Welcome to my world , the post-apocalyptic world. I am Harsh Kumar, the  second-in-command, on board, The Voyaguer . Our great race has been reduced to just a few of us, forced to live as a scavenger race. Our leaders were just not competent enough to foresee the dangers of an ever-growing arms race. Well, someday, somebody was to press the button. And well, we were lucky enough, that we had prepared for the worst.

“So, whats happening?”

“Not much, the Re-fuelling injection system is still at faults! ”

“You do remember we have a timeline , do you?”

“Yeah, I do.  And, as if, that’s not enough those maggots just wouldn’t give up….”

“Hmmm…”, I smiled away. “As if you were born adduce…..”

Sometimes, sitting in a lone corner of my cabin, I think “Why couldn’t they see the obvious ? ” “Why couldn’t they give peace a chance ..?” But, a man in my position is not allowed to express. So the thoughts just get buried. We were currently positioned at XA8EE041, not exactly positioned, our target had been the Planet XA8EE042, dubbed “Blue Marbel”, but technical failures had forced us here since the last  year.

Though the civilization down there was still in a dormant stage, yet they had an uncanny knack of continuing their endeavor. It is their this characteristic of which I’m a huge fan. And perhaps, that’s why we’ve been ordered not to reveal ourselves. Just to avoid the possibility of repeating the massacre of Oracle. My father used to tell me about this massacre in which we lost thousands of our men and women. In the end, we had to run, but the loss had been incurred.

I was forced back to reality by the loud wailing of the siren.

“Emergency . All officers report to station. This is not a drill.  Emergency……”

“What’s the status ”?

“They just crossed the critical elevation limit . I would say they’re going to land !”

“That can’t be! Previously, they returned…… ” I just couldn’t find words. “How come they find about us ? ” Maybe all this while they were just pretending. I had no time. I had to make a decision.

“Prepare for evac. Code 97. Now”, I screamed.

“But….”

“Just do as I say ……” “We don’t have any time to kill”

“What about the operation module ? ”

“Don’t worry, We’ll be back …”

______________________________________

C1: “ Hey wat’s that spot of light there ?”

C2: “Don’t think too much. Must be you’re eyes playing tricks”

Both laugh.

C2:”OK. Now, let’s get the job done.”

“ Preparing touch-down in 3… 2… 1… ”

C1: “I’m going to step off the LEM now”

“That’s one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind.”

______________________________________

This post is also published at the Indian Fusion

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