SaTuon was an Ice Planet. That was about all anyone knew about it until now.
Nothing But Ice
“WE ARE ABOUT TO DESTROY SATUON,” shouted Diance.
No one there looked at Diance. They continued staring at the large monitor in front of them. And the ice planet of SaTuon they were headed for. “I don’t care about SaTuon. I’m more worried about us being destroyed too,” said Transport Leader Windim loudly.
Windim wasn’t shouting. But he almost had to do it to be heard above the alarms that were going off all around them. And the multi-colored light that flashed individually throughout their transport. “Someone, turn off these alarms and lights.”
Suddenly, the alarms and lights went dead. Except for the bright red one within their large monitor. It kept flashing. Getting more frequent as they got closer to SaTuon. “Since we can’t slow down, make us go faster. Our only hope of surviving this is by going through this ice planet.”
No One responded to what Windim said. But they did start to go a lot faster. At first, it wasn’t too fast. Then everyone there was pushed back in their chairs and their faces and body started to quiver and shake as they started going a whole lot faster toward the planet they were about to crash into.
"What do we know about this planet?” asked Windim.
Laidron didn’t take his eyes off the small monitor in front of him as he pushed buttons on the control panel under it. “That’s the problem. There is very little that anyone knows about it.”
“All that I have been able to find out is that it’s a lifeless planet made of pure ice,” continued Laidron. “There are a lot of tunnels and caverns within it. But no one has been able to live on or in it for as long as anyone knows.”
“That’s why we are heading there,” said Windim. “We don’t know what kind of a signal it is. But we have picked up a faint one from somewhere near the center of SaTuon. It’s up to us to find out what that signal is.”
Just then their transport started to shake and rattle violently. Pieces of it within were already starting to shoot across the insides. Forcing those there to get out of their paths while trying to stay off their feet or in their chairs. “What’s going on?” Windim asked.
“I don’t know,” answered Diance. “According to our systems, there is nothing wrong with our transport.”
“I’m happy that we didn’t do it,” said Windim. “But why didn’t we shatter this planet into a zillion pieces when we crashed into it?”
Their transport had just crashed into SaTuon. But instead of destroying it, it just continued going through it. Until it finally stopped. Most of the exterior was either completely gone or partially missing. Jagged sharp edges within small to large holes throughout it.
Windim saw that on what was left of their large monitor as he started to get up. He also saw their transport leaning upward against an ice wall that had already started to crack and break. Each crack or break caused them to stumble and lose control of their fallen state.
Especially, the breaking. Every time that happened, it caused their transport to shift according to it. That made them lose they're getting up again. It was very hard for them to get on their feet again. But slowly they were doing it. At least most of them were.
“Is everyone okay?” Windim asked. Five of the seven others there answered differently. But they responded the same thing. That they were okay. All except for two of them.
“The outside of our transport doesn’t look too good. And our inside isn’t that much better,” said Windim.
Windim sighed. “It doesn’t look very good for us. But we need to know how bad it is before we can do anything about it.”
Slowly, Windim started looking around what little was left of that part of their transport. He shook his head sadly. Nothing was where it was supposed to be. The chairs were turned on their sides. None of them looked like chairs anymore. They also couldn’t be used as chairs anymore, either. That’s how bad they were.
None of their equipment was the same either. Everything was open and exposed. Wiring was dangling everywhere. If not for the cold of SaTuon, those wires would be flying about and sparking electricity. “I hope the rest of our transport is better than this control room.”
Windim stopped looking when he got to his leadership chair. He picked it up and tried to sit in it. But the jagged seat in several places stopped him from doing that. Windim finally settled for sitting on the only arm of it that was still mostly there. Leaning over slightly he used the upright back of it.
“There isn’t enough of our transport left for us to leave here on our own,” said Windim. “But we still have most of our food and supplies that are still useable thanks to the cold of SaTuon.”
“It’s not too much,” continued Windim. “But it should last us for a few months. That should be plenty of time for The Maindom Three to rescue us.”
Windim couldn’t take his eyes off of Hivda and Jaddon as they lay on what was left of a couple of beds. “That’s not why I’m here, though. I want to know how they are doing.”
Health Professional Quinni looked at Hivda and Jaddon. Then she looked back at Windim. “I’m not exactly sure when he died. But Jaddon died when we crashed into SaTuon. As for Hivda, she just died not too long ago. But she was in a lot of pain before she did it.”
“The rest of us are going to be okay in time. But I don’t think that we have a few months. If we don’t get out of here within the next several days, we will be as dead as Hivda and Jaddon.”
“How bad are our communications?” Windim asked. “Can we use it to contact The Maindom Three?”
Laidron shook his head sadly. “No, way. Not with the supplies that we have.”
“What about Portable Communications?” Windim asked. “Can we use that to contact our spaceship?”
“I might be able to do that. But we will need to be on the surface of SaTuon when we try to use it.”
Windim taps his left shoulder. “What about Personal Communications? Do we still have them?”
“We still have them,” answered Laidron. “But even they aren’t too good because of the cold of Satuon.”
“I have just been told we don’t have any external communications. That we need to get to the surface of SaTuon to contact The Maindom Three. We need to leave here as soon as we can. I want us to leave here within an hour.”
Laidron looked at Windim with wonder in his eyes. “What aren’t you telling us? Why do we need to leave here so soon? Are we low on food and supplies?”
“We aren’t low on anything,” answered Windim. “I just want us to get back to our spaceship as quickly as can.”
“Sadly, there is one more thing that we need to do before we leave here,” said Windim. “I really don’t like doing this. But I’m not letting you stay here for the rest of your afterlife.”
Windim pointed his hand weapons at them. One was aimed at Hivda’s head. The other one was for Jaddon. He fired a single red ball out of each one of them. Those balls hit their heads and formed around them. Then that redness started engulfing the rest of the body. Starting with their head and ending at their feet.
Suddenly, the redness disappeared. Leaving a black powdery substance in the shape of their bodies. Windim replaced his hand weapons with two long ones with a small clear cylinder in the place of the handgrips. Holding those handgrips he pointed them at the forms of Hivda and Jaddon.
After he tapped a button on the side of those weapons, a light green light came out of them to hit what remained of Hivda and Jaddon. That powdery substance started traveling up those lights to collect in the clear cylinders. It only took about a minute to fill those cylinders with them.
“Keep trying to contact The Maindom Three,” said Windim. “I know that you probably won’t be able to do it until we reach the surface. But the sooner we can do it the better.”
Windim led the others as they slowly walked up a steep tunnel. Each step they took caused the ice beneath their feet to crack slightly. Not more than about an inch in any direction. But as they continued to walk each additional step made the cracks bigger.
“I don’t like all this ice-breaking,” said Diance. “We have been walking for hours. How much longer before we get to the surface?”
“I’m tired too,” answered Windim. “But I think that it’s safer for us if we don’t stop to rest.”
Windim started walking on the other side of that wide tunnel. The other five were right behind him. “Don’t think we need to worry anymore. I can barely see it. But there is an opening not too far from here.”
“All we need to do is to keep going from one side of this tunnel to the other every few hundred feet and we will be okay. In about an hour we should be out of this tunnel.”
“Still can’t contact The Maindom Three,” said Laidron. “And I don’t understand why I can’t do it.”
Laidron started checking his Portable Communications again. “It’s not this. I have checked it three times. And there is nothing wrong with it.”
“What about where we are at?” Windim asked. “Are you sure this ice planet isn’t somehow preventing you from contacting them?”
“I’m sure SaTuon isn’t doing it now that we are on the surface,” answered Laidron. “We should be able to do it anywhere. But we can’t. And I don’t know why.”
Windim sighed and shook his head slowly. “I hope that I’m wrong. But I think I know why we can’t communicate with The Maindom Three.”
“It’s because they are no longer there to communicate with. I think that for some reason they left us here. And I don’t think that they are coming back to get us.”
Looking up at the sky there all Windim could see was the darkness of Space. A few white spots were visible from where he was at. But other than that, nothing but darkness. Windim cupped his hands over the outside of his eyes. And slowly he started looking at the sky above him.
“They probably thought that we all died when we crashed into SaTuon,” said Windim. “Especially, if they scanned us and saw Hivda and Jaddon dead. Probably figured the rest of us were dead too.”
Windim continued walking around the surface of SaTuon. “What are we going to do now?”
“There is nothing that we can do,” answered Laidron. “We are all going to die within the next three months.”
“I’m not giving up yet,” said Windim. “There must be something else we can do.”
Diance shook her head sadly. “Our only hope is if either The Maindom Three returns or another spaceship comes this way.”
“I think that it’s worse than us dying within three months,” said Quinni. “That’s because I don’t think we have that long.”
“While we were coming up that tunnel, I noticed the cracks behind us started returning to become solid ice again shortly after we made them. And I think that I know why.”
Windim suddenly stopped his walking to face Quinni. “What are you talking about? Why do you think that we don’t have three months to live?”
“It’s because SaTuon isn’t a planet. I think that SaTuon is alive.”
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