New Questions

Mud coated my exosuit boots as I moved toward the day’s co-ordinates. My breath replaced the once-rhythmic wash of waves.

“Water levels still decreasing, decided when you’re returning?”

“Another season won’t hurt,” I glanced at the data, deep activity readings implied microscopic life, “hate to lose ground.”

The receding waters left behind new questions previous researchers hadn’t wanted to ask.

“Too much ground out there to lose.” Seated on opposite ends of the world, our laughter was dry. The comms crackled.

Rust-red soil glistened as I imagined secrets beneath the Martian surface, an expanse of hidden life, watching, waiting.

© 2021 Rebecca Glaessner

October 14: Flash Fiction Challenge « Carrot Ranch
In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that embraces the mud. What is the mud, real or metaphor? How does it transform a character or place? What happens? Go where the prompt leads!

Submissions now closed. Read the full collection here.

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12 thoughts on “New Questions

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  1. “Another season won’t hurt” Famous last words! I’m seeing something monstrous pop out of that Martian soil and do something squishingly delicious that adds to the richness of that rust-red soil before the opening credits roll.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You capture the scientist-mentality that welcomes curiousity, yet hint at the human connections brilliantly exposed in this description: “Seated on opposite ends of the world, our laughter was dry. The comms crackled.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I found myself wondering at their backstory too, but I’m just as clueless as you! I like to think this was a continuation from the Stars in the Sand prompt not long ago, the piece where she was headed to help bring water to Mars. Hmm.. now I’m wondering what else there is to this. Thanks for stopping by D, glad this one made you think.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I remember watching the sci fi movie where the guy built a garden and grew potatoes…
    This post reminds me of that. If not for the strong unpredictable winds…
    There is always more to research isn’t there. :)

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes.

        It really isn’t a new thing to do that. I remember reading about a king or pharaoh of Egypt who had is own private garden and only ate what grew in it. The pharaoh had one person whose job it was to take the royal ‘do’ and work it into the soil. And on top of that there was also a food tester. Guess when you are afraid to live… you’re paranoid and aren’t really living at all.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. That’s fantastic, I’d heard of instances throughout history where the act of using the peoples’ waste lead to sickness and disease, but the Pharaoh was smart to have a tester. Egyptian civilisations did seem to be far ahead of most.

          The Martian is the movie you’re talking of too, that was a blast of a ride. Not sure I’d like to be stranded on Mars though, despite how much life-living I’m eager for.

          Liked by 1 person

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