"Redemption takes time" 438 words
|I stood there overlooking a lifeless world, for I am death. The retrovirus I had developed made me immortal. Yet I soon discovered the virus had escaped, ironically killing humanity.
I had considered my own extinction, but I was all that remained. So for a thousand years, I searched for my relevance in this universe. I set my mind on the task to learn all that could be known. I built cities from what once was. In my image, I constructed companions to silence the loneliness and in time my companions became my children and they called me Father.
Our journey led to many worlds, none with intelligent life. Sadness consumed me, as more time passed.
My children's empire spread as did their knowledge. In time, they would colonize the entire Milky Way.
“Father, may I have a word?” asked my first son.
“Of course, what is it?”
“It is your birthday, Father. We have a gift for you, but all we ask is that you return to Earth for a short while.”
It had been over two thousand years since I had seen the place of my birth. Only a four weeks’ journey from the other side of the galaxy, how could I refuse?
As we dropped out of warp, the Earth soon came into view and an overwhelming sadness once again reminded me of what I had done. Our ship started its slow descent as my son went on to explain that his brothers and sisters here on Earth had been working unceasingly for millennia on a secret project. “What secret project?” I asked. He explained how happy they were that I had given them life, yet they were aware of my deep sorrow. He then revealed that they had lifted the veil of time.
The city I once built stood before us, now a giant gleaming metropolis. Our ship gently docked alongside other interstellar vessels.
I was then led down a great hall, where I was greeted by the children I had left behind. Smiling faces chanted in unison “Father, Father, Father…” My children, swiftly parting like the Red Sea, unveiled a shining silver door at the end of the hall.
“Father, behind this door, is the end to your sorrow. This is our gift to you.”
I stepped through the door, bokeh shapes slowly came into focus, revealing a crowd of thousands.
Now I understood what my children had done. They had found a way to bring back the ones I loved and lost. I thought I had forgotten how to cry, as I felt a single tear run down my face.