231 by Rhiannon Bird

I was told that space had a certain level of quiet, that it was much like swimming
An eerie kind of silence that filtered into your soul
They warned me of everything that I could possibly ask, everything except the screams
Screams even in a space station are still screams, are still blood curdling
Knowing that they found another crew member, knowing that they are getting closer to you
The true silence is the one in your mind when you know death is coming
No level of stars or advice can prepare you for that

Beside me is the spray-painted number 231
The 231st mission sent out across the universe
230 missions that went without a hitch
The 231st mission the only ones attacked halfway there

From here I can see the corner of the bay window
It is painted with stars that wink at me
Not a bad view to die to
The doors hiss open, shadows step through
But I won’t look at them I refuse to give them the satisfaction
My last view will be of the vast expanse of space
Not the murderous eyes of aliens

Rhiannon Bird

Rhiannon Bird

Rhiannon Bird is an Australian author who primarily writes fantasy and sci-fi. She has had a variety of short stories and poetry published online and in print across a range of genres. She spends her days writing and pursuing her PhD. When she isn't doing these, she can be found going on hikes, playing board games, and talking in the middle of movies.

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