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Rated: 18+ · Short Story · Sci-fi · #2199935
The world was in crisis and only one small utility ship could save the day.
“It always was crazy.” Henry Spaffer floated before the entrance to the wormhole, checking it for size, confluence, and spatial integrity. He didn’t want any slip-ups when it came time to leave. Recording the final end to his home planet was dicey and a one time opportunity. He didn’t want it to become his end as well.

Martha Spaffer was too busy feeding the ‘earth’ worm its anti-matter scraped up from a leftover Nova harvested from the Magellanic Cloud to do more than listen. Controlling these strange surreal creatures was almost as hard as directing the holes in space they created in their endless hunt for energy.

They lived near Black Holes, had only been discovered with spectral analysis uncovered their anomaly and no other explanation explained what was going on. One taking a bite out of the Sun meant they only had eight precious seconds to corral the wild beast and get out of there.

“You got this pretty precious pet of yours harnessed and ready to act as bait?” Henry squirmed around in the tight quarters where you had to be in love with the other person working there or have the heart of a monk. Their bodies contorted against each other so often in so many ways it would have been impossible to exist together otherwise.

“Hmm,” Martha nodded, poking her head out from under Henry’s armpit and nodded. Her ankle pod blinked green as the Earthworm completed its circle with one tip of its elongated mass touching the other. “Go.”

Henry shot the hornet out of their vessel's tractor beam into its own flight. There was no sound, only a beautiful cartwheel, and the flash of rainbow colors pulsing in every spectrum of energy known to man.

Their own Earthworm rippled with fake hunger after just being fed. The hornet was the tastiest gourmet treat ever offered a worm. The reaction of the wild one was immediate and nasty. “Seven Seconds,” Martha remarked.

The tension was palpable. Henry could feel it in every micro-movement she made against him. She smiled, sharing a kiss as their lips met in passing. It was just distracting enough to shave another three seconds off their time table. “Cocky aren’t you.” She winked.

Martha liked watching her mate wield his talent with the hornet. Her man had to link with their ship’s A.I. to trap the worm before it could hiss into action. Another wormhole crossing the path of their own might seal their doom. Where time and space were concerned anything could happen, but usually nothing pleasant. There were really no survivors to tell.

“Got it.” Henry hammered the blinking red button on his right wrist. Instead of deploying the gravity warp net the light kept blinking.

“What’s wrong?” Martha felt Henry’s bones turn rigid allowing her no movement at all.

“There. Whew.” Another precious second flew by at what felt like the speed of light. Every sensor on the ship called forth a cry of warning. Martha and Henry’s fingertips struck the capture control together.

A massive implosion sucked the Wild Worm into the gravity net. Their pet Earthworm kept it from struggling and harming them or itself by diving back into the wormhole that had brought them here. “Did it work?”

It had been such a close call, only their A.I. recording equipment could tell. Henry slow-mo’d the last eight seconds into something they would remember for the rest of their lives. “There. Look.”

The bite taken out of the sun by the Wild worm met the hornet’s energy shield. The rainbow held, pulsing the Sun’s atomic cloud away from the planet revolving safely in space. The corona effect scattered and faded as fast as the event had taken place. “They’ll never know what saved them.” Henry laughed, settling into the long ride back.

“A lot of religions will be taking credit.” Martha laughed, settling comfortably into Henry’s lap and giving him a lusty hug. Doing the job always made her feel fiesty when an assignment was done.

She switched on the remote monitors tracking earth’s biosphere. The A.I. would take care of the rest of the gathering of the necessary information to be sent to their superiors. Their old planet and its even older sun had many more revolutions of limitless time as humans knew it, to count away their journey together creating whatever future the two might enjoy.

The worlds of the Infinium were colonized well enough not to miss the passing of mother earth, no-one lived there anymore, except for a few stewards and wandering tourists. It was rather a historic attraction than a popular one. But it still touched the hearts of the people’s seeding the universe and it always would be as long as the two lasted.
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