Dan Rabarts took first place in the SpecFicNZ/Wily Writers short story contest. His science fiction short, entitled “Crucible,” had to work very hard to beat its competition, but it did it! So, go have a read or a listen and find out why.
After millennia spent crossing the galaxy, spawning new worlds out of barren wastes, meteorologist Cyran considers himself no longer a man, but a god. But when his lover Kayla betrays their ship, the Crucible, Cyran must choose between love and immortality as the life he has known spirals into chaos. [28mins]
Once, we trod upon the stars, fleeing the gods. Now, we are the gods. Parsing the heavens on wings of steel and light, we sank into eternal sleep, light years unwinding around us, morphing the constellations into new mythologies. With technology already ancient we seeded new worlds, wrought civilizations on the bitter anvils of new suns. Then, again, to sleep, our cruciform vessels voyaging across lifetimes and voids of endless dead space, bearing us where no god could follow.
“And what are we now?”
I glance through the projections of atmospheric pressure and wind patterns far below our hull. “What we always were: Refugees. Pioneers. Dreamers. And it seems that we’re having this conversation again.”
“But how can we value what we create if we have no memory of loss?”
Kayla’s slipping back into one of her moods; they have been more frequent over the past few months. It troubles me. Sometimes I think she forgets how far we’ve come.