By Amanda Lawrence Auverigne

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They were everywhere.

The bodies.

All over the world, hundreds of thousands of Partisans died where they fell. Covered in the slime, pus and dung wrought out of their forms by the sickness.

It came quickly. The Scourge. It covered the planet as we know it in a matter of days. Those of us among the ranks of the Knowing fled. We fled the streets and the dead choked cities in a tireless trickle. We sought refuge in the country, but endless fields and rolling hills could not blight out the somber atmosphere. And the peace and calm of a sporadic and fluctuating population could not


blot out the eternal flesh of dark that hung over our minds and souls in a fetid wave.

Capernicus has fallen. The thick stench of the bloated dead rises up from the marred metropolis. The Necropolis we have left behind.

It is during our time amidst the fielded pastures when we came across the fallen vehicle of the Traveler. We gather around the beacon as the grotesque odor of the dead chokes us. The vapor is poison incarnate and one by one those among the living fall ill. Pus drips. Slime oozes. And the final ragged exultation of breath pours from the last of us.

Planetary Stories
Entry from the Journal
Page 1

Yet I still stand. Amidst the malodorous vapors that linger in the air, I remain. I climb over the mire ridden forms that twitch beneath my steps. I examine the vehicle. I step back after the opening of a door. I climb inside and shiver as I look at the endless mounds of lights, levers and whistles. I move to a chair in front of a gaping hole.

It is dark.

I sit down and hear the bang of the door behind. The darkness flashes alight and I see his face. The Traveler. The one who had come to our world as a welcomed visitor. He was the first to succumb to the sickness and shortly thereafter was the first to fall. And hundreds had fallen beneath the filthy contamination of his stead soon after. The Traveler was an unknowing messenger. He had carried it with him unwittingly. And with his passing my entire world had crumbled under the weight of this foul pestilence.

I look at him and feel a slight stirring in my chest. The image of the long dead Traveler fades imminently from my view.

I sit back as a small ball with swirls of blue and white hovers for a few moments in the dark. I stare at it. It is precisely from whence he had come. The Traveler. The Scourge. The Blight of my people. I lean forward and press at the levers, buttons and handles.

My thoughts run rampant as I struggle to recall my training. Pus oozes from my limbs and I close my eyes as the vehicle hums to life. Tight straps affix themselves to my body and the stench of


sickness is thick on me as the ship thrusts aloft.

I have set the course.

I lean back in my seat as the lulling fatigue of the pervasive sickness falls over me. The contagion breeds strong in me and I wonder at the reason why I have survived its onslaught for so long when many before me have long since succumbed to it.

I rest as the malodorous ooze drips from my body.

Sudden heat fills the space and I shudder. The vehicle halts abruptly and my form is jostled with violence. The door opens and I remain still. I have grown too weak to move. I know that I canít last much longer. But I am not alone.

There are sounds behind me. Low utterances of a language wrought of base civility. Not the language the Traveler used when he came to us. But no matter. One of them is behind me. It is silent as it looks at me.

Closer, I bid you. I beg you to come closer.

It lets out a loud sound when I turn around and touch its outstretched appendage. It runs but I can already see the dark veins of ooze rising from the thingís outer casing. I hear the sounds of others. I know not what they say. Nor do I care. For I have done what I set out to do. I have landed upon the homeland of the famed Traveler and have returned the virulent gift he had bestowed on me

Planetary Stories
Entry from the Journal
Page 2

and my race. I hear loud noises. I feel heat. I become stiff as I smell the scent of my cooking limbs. And I succumb to the blighted darkness with the knowledge that I had reached my destination.

In a matter of days, the so-called planet Earth would be no more. Heated licks of agony consume my body.

But in my state I feel nothing.

And in this act, I shall be avenged.

Luacaine III
Chief Exploration Officer
Last Sancren Man


Fillo by Jim Garrison