Sunday, June 30, 2013

Sudden Short Story 50

"A decision has been reached," spoke the image of a woman on a lonely Earth-like planet on a remote star in the Sculptor Dwarf Galaxy.
"I expected as much," said the man helping his equipment to put itself away.  "Would I be correct in thinking that the entire Milky Way, including its satellites, is to be incorporated into humanity?"
"The satellite galaxies will indeed be included.  Technically, you have a choice in the matter:  You are permitted to leave the affected area."
"OK," he said, hoisting a smallish now-boxed machine into a hatch on his ship, "I'll do that, then."
"The resources of the entirety of the galaxy will join humanity.  This includes stars, planets, asteroids, comets, nebulae, dust, and gas.  You may be able to leech off uncaptured light energy for a time, but there will eventually be nowhere in the main galaxy or its satellites from which to derive resources, unless you rejoin humanity."
The rest of the machines had put themselves away.  The ship was now as heavily laden as it could be, save for the weight of one human body and its clothing and accoutrements.
"I know.  That's why I'm going to Andromeda.  I'm going to sling around a few stars on my way out, unless you can give me a better boost."
"The gravitational energy from this stellar neighborhood will not be needed for some time, so you may do as you wish, for now."
He walked around to the door to climb in, taking full advantage of the feeling of being in a body.
"She's not out there, you know," spoke the image.  "You will be the first human to have left the galaxy.  We know that you are an idealist, but you will not find love in another galaxy."
"I don't intend to," said he, "but, as you said, I'm an idealist."
And with that, he climbed aboard his ship, shut the door, and left, not to set foot upon a planet again for a very long time.

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