“Survivor”

451 Words

Parts of my body are coming back to life, like some long dormant machine. I don’t remember what happened to me before, not quite yet. An icy cold feeling travels through my insides, reminding me of something sterile and numb like a surgery.

I’m hazy at first. My eyes are glazed over with something like clear petroleum. Then hearing comes back to me, but what I hear isn’t something I recognize. These sounds, these voices, aren’t human surgeons waiting for me to regain consciousness.

When my eyes finally clear, and I can focus, I see my “surgeons” for the first time.

I want to scream, but my voice isn’t working well. All I can emit are half-hearted moans and soundless breath. They know I’m afraid, so they keep contact with me to a minimum. They don’t leave the room though. I am afraid, yet fascinated.

The beings gathered around the room are floating ovals, with three tentacle arms, one arm being the longer of the two. They crawl along the walls, somehow gripping it snuggly. There is a single bulbous independent eye at the center of each body, moving and twitching this way and that. A set of disturbingly insectile mandibles quivers at the base of the arms. Their skin is a constantly strobing pattern of infinite colors.

While I absorb their appearance, my fear starts to subside somehow. It’s then that I notice that their patterns are starting to synchronize. Warm, calming hues wash over their bodies, while dark bars undulate the length of their tentacle arms.

For some reason, something in my brain tells me they are saying ‘Hello’. I don’t understand how I know this, I just do.

As I regain feeling in my body, I sit up and realize I’ve lost my left arm. The rest of me is intact, and I am not alarmed by the absence. A memory tugs at me just under the surface, telling me there is a reason for the limb’s absence.

An accident back on Earth; I was stuck under rubble after a bombing of some kind. My arm was pinned under heavy rock, crushed beyond repair. They found me, and I screamed when I saw them coming. Then I blacked out.

I don’t believe they mean me any harm. I’m starting to think they may have re-wired me for communication with their species, though. I have nothing left to go back to, and even less to lose. I might as well see what happens next.

I don’t know what they want, and I don’t know where they’ve taken me, but I know something for sure now. I’m less afraid here with these aliens than I was back home.

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