I wrote the rough draft of this during one of our writer groups. It was a story dice exercise. We would roll a die, and whatever came up, we had to write for about a minute. Then, we’d roll again and have to continue the story using that picture for another minute. The prompts for this one were a Skyscraper, a Flower, a Letter, a Shooting Star, and a Scarab. Try to figure out how I incorporated each one. 😉
(Please keep in mind that while I am making this story free for you to read, it’s still mine, so it’s © 2014 by J.M. Scheirer. Please don’t claim it as your own for sales purposes or bragging rights. I have a special set of skills, and I will find you, and… Well, the rest I leave up to your imagination.)
The building stretched into the sky, blocky and shiny with a sea of nothing but windows on each side. As the only skyscraper in the entire city, it stood out as a monstrosity. I guess the Legion figured it had to make sure its governmental house in this sector was the most imposing structure in the area.
I never could understand what the Legion had against a little landscaping to make their outlying centers a little more–I don’t know–welcoming. Then again, this particular world was no better than a desert wastehole, so it might cost them in precious water to keep the plants alive. On the other hand, with the funding of taxpayers from several different worlds, it’s not like they didn’t have money to spare.
I’d been to the Legion’s homeworld once. Their capital had to have been of the most tranquil places I’d ever visited. No short amount of topiary there. The main headquarter complex had been built in the center of a park. I found it to be quite the pleasant experience.
Not like here. I wasn’t even entirely sure why I had been summoned. All I knew about the job came from the brief e-mail I’d received in my virtual mailbox that told me that I had to travel to this rock in space and go to the Legion center in Melforth. Melforth. Who names a city Melforth? I shook my head and assumed I would receive further instruction once I reported.
I took in a deep breath and used my key card to enter the building. The receptionist greeted me and gave me instructions to head up to the twentieth floor. I didn’t ask him how he knew my name since I knew he’d been given that information by his terminal when I used my key card to enter. I tossed him a wave, told him thanks, and headed to the nearest lift to go to my destination.
“Ah, Simmons. You’re here,” Director Fossway greeted me when I arrived at the correct office.
“I was summoned,” I explained to him.
“Yes, well, we’ve had a bit of a scuffle here. There’s a meteorite we need you to investigate.”
“It’s a little out of my field, but I can go take a look, now that I’m here and all.”
“Here’s the thing… We think it’s from Earth.”
“Earth? How could it be?”
“When the planet blew, it shot out debris in several directions. Given how long ago that was, one of those pieces could have reached here.”
I found myself skeptical but agreed to go out to take a look at it anyway. Fossway sent for a guide to requisition a vehicle. The guide and I headed down to the garage to check out a buggy so that we could bound over the dunes to the crash site.
The impact zone wasn’t that big, comparatively speaking. It had to have been about 934 meters across, and the meteorite itself measured 52 meters. Larger than the meteorites I normally examined, I immediately noticed the sizable chunks of what turned out to be scarab fossils deep in the rock. Yup, it had come from Earth alright.