Task Force

Image by Nicole Mason

The earth disgorged something alien. What could not be ascertained was whether the alien-ness was interplanetary or evolutionary, introduced or home grown, for it radiated across the electromagnetic spectrum, swamping radios, drones, satellites, film and eyes over hundreds of miles. No sensor could reveal anything more than its existence.

It was not within our borders, but we raced in, following our blindness towards it, hoping to be the first to stumble upon it, to prod it with poles, scrape it with knives and, if still alive, to slide an arm outside of our suits and feel it, run our hands over it, find its form, its texture.

Our truck collided with a rough-barked tree. We had been travelling at speed. We climbed out into the sound of wind in branches. All we could see was bright grey, which glowed subtly brighter in one direction. The truck was abandoned. We sent Jackson back on foot to report the situation, then set out at a jog, poles tapping in front of us.

We fell many times. We always regrouped and continued. The grey of our vision was growing brighter. The air grew cool and we guessed it was night. We paused to eat our rations in the animal silence. Over our chewing we heard the crunching of someone running nearby.

We called out. It was Jackson. He had circled around. We had circled around. In all directions the grey of our vision was constant. We were close but hopelessly, irretrievably lost.

This story is taken from Words For Music For Films, a collection of short stories inspired by the tracks of Brian Eno’s album Music For Films. Read this story along with its sound track.

Who wrote this?

I’m a Sydney Copywriter who occasionally tweets.

If you like this story you will like the other stories from the same project: Aragon, Slow Water, M386, Quartz, or Patrolling Wire Borders.

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