The Enemy Within

The Enemy Within


You look back at your life when things go wrong, trying to remember the moment that changed it all…

I was thinkin’ that it was a thoughtless word, a clumsy action, or just desperation.

Kleneptra was so nice to us. Everyday, she’d greet us with a delicate smile, offerin’ food an’ water from her shrinkin’ supplies. She seemed kinda shy, didn’t speak much neither.

If she weren’t tryin’ to fix her ship, she’d sit on her own, singin’ these sad but beautiful songs.

I think maybe it started when she decided to go explorin’. I guess she never told us to come, but we tagged along anyway. We found more water but I think she wanted to find somethin’ else. She kept on like she never got tired, but we couldn’t keep up. Chan would shout for her to stop, but she’d smile and keep goin’.

I dunno, somethin’ snapped I guess. Chan really lost it, he shouted and screamed at her. Told her she had to stop or we’d die, cursing her for letting all those people die, for letting Ambrakh die, for letting Carlin die.

She kinda stood there and blinked, I think that hurt her. Chan seemed crazy, maybe it was the heat, but for a moment his hand was raised, I thought he was gonna hit her.

So we turned round and headed back for the ship and nothin’ was said for hours afterwards.

Now I think ‘bout it, it was a few days later when I’d been ill with fever. I woke up to find Chan looking dishevelled and tired. I thought maybe, his arm was givin’ him a problem, but it looked like he’d been in a fight. I saw a crack in his body armour; looked like somebody had punched him there. Man, it looked like a train hit him.

I asked him what happened but he wasn’t gonna tell, like he was in some kinda shock. I tried askin’ Kleneptra but when I caught her gaze, she’d just look away; at other times though, I’d see her looking at Chan. It was the look of a predator, regarding its prey.

From then on, the air was poison.


SP3 figure with the Desolation Earth Nomads outfit using customised textures

Downed spacecraft is an original model created in Truespace and Hexagon. Terrains created in Bryce

Final image composition and rendering in Vue 5 Pro Studio. Post processed in Photoshop CS2.

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Updated: 15 October 2006

© Mark Hirst, 2000 - 2018