Straehk reached the end of the path and turned to look back. This season’s crop promised to excel even his expectations, the fields full, the plants weighty with enough seed to keep the colony provided for next year and beyond. He had done his last walk-through just an hour before, trailing fingers though the heavy-headed ears of grain. Dark golden and ripe, they bobbed under his touch. It was only right that he should feel a sense of achievement in his work. Not pride, just satisfaction. A job well done. He would begin harvesting in the morning when the crew arrived, but his work here was completed and he could rest for a while.
The voice was hesitant, and held a dark note of fear but it was enough to make Alec Freeman turn with joy to the man sitting beside him.
Just that one word, that one name was sufficient to crack the shield that had safeguarded Straker from the events that had precipitated his nightmare. He leaned forward, head in his hands as he remembered the underground garage space, and then.. Continue reading →
Peter Claybourne’s mutilated body lay on the path, his blood pooling underneath him in obscene imitations of Rorschach patterns, his sightless eyes staring in horror up at clouds and light and shadows above and his handgun still in its holster. Continue reading →