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Clear and Cold, the Rising Moon...

by Oonah V. Joslin

The suns had set. The velvet purple sky, sprinkled with sparse starlight, was almost tangible. Two voices peopled the warm air, on an invisible rock at the on-set of darkness - arguing.

“It was your people who brought the plague to us.”

“Oh please! This disease was born out of the mingling of both our cultures. We civilized you. When we came, you were little more than cannibals!”

“A vile calumny! My people never consumed each other’s flesh!” The effort of this rebuttal caused the speaker to cough painfully.

“We noticed that taboo did not extend to other beings!” The speaker found it difficult to draw the plenteous air into his diseased lungs.

“So what if it didn’t? Do you restrict your intake to vegetation? First you raped the resources of your own planet and then came to ours, bringing the plague.”

“We had no idea our presence would present any threat. We were willing to co-exist in peace.”

“Co-exist in peace? Ha! You tried to farm us, then to take us as pets and finally to enslave us. And when none of these succeeded, you resorted to hostility.”

“You exaggerate, Omeg. Believe me, if I could change things I would, but our world was dying. We came only in search of a new home!”

“And very soon now it will be home only to the wind,” said Omeg bitterly. He drove his reptilian claws into the rock and spat a clot of violet blood. He hated this mammal and all his immigrant species, but both their peoples were dying from this plague. What was the use of carrying such a feud into the dust?

They fell silent and asleep.

Clear and cold, the rising moon dominated the sky. But there was no one left to see it.

Copyright © 2007 by Oonah V. Joslin

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