(Note: It's best that you at least glance at my A to Z Plan before reading unless you want to go into this story completely cold.)
June 24, 2096
June 24, 2096
Ephraim was young and, frankly, stupid. He almost got thirty-six people killed. Or was it thirty-seven? It was fifty years ago, and yet it feels like something he should remember.
He was late leaving his room that day. When he opened the door, the Base’s chief biologist—Lira or Leona or Lisa, maybe—was leading one of the aliens down the hall. Ephraim didn’t understand. He threw the biologist into his room and drew a utility knife. Likely, the blade couldn’t have even pierced the alien’s hide, but Ephraim was young and stupid.
“Is this a sign of aggression?” the alien asked gravelly.
Ephraim muttered something about protecting his comrades or some such other thing that sounded a lot more gallant in his head than it did at the end of his tongue.
The alien pushed the knife down with one wing. Huffing air from his long, strange mouth in a defective copy of laughter, he slithered on past.
Ephraim went back to bed, not at all suspecting that the alien he had let pass would very nearly kill everyone he had come to love. There was a pistol at his belt. He should have used it. But how could he have known? He was young and, in hindsight, he was stupid.