The Cerulean and the Supernova
Terry lay there, alone. It wasn’t by choice that she was alone, unless you count all the small choices that she’d made every minute up to this point in her life. But it was still alone. It was the kind of alone that crept up into her hair and tugged at the front of her skull where it left a deep scar of pain in her temples. It was the feeling of needing to cry, but lacking anything specific to pour her pain into it just left her still. Still, and alone.
Through the large port above she could see bright arm of the nebula that during her lonely nights kept her company. The soft purple haze specked with a thousand million sparkling azure eyes watching over her, as she slept, or tried to sleep. The remnants of what place and it’s people long turned to dust, the shining ruble being all that was left to welcome her.
She had not known who, or really what, would be welcoming her when she arrived but in her dreams it had been less lonely. At least it was more beautiful than her inexperienced minds eye would create for itself. It only made it so much harder to fathom and accept that all she had to share this view with was her own thoughts. As her view expanded, being fed from the thousands of small cameras and collectors that were released upon arrival, the dread of being alone only grew.
Of course she’d known that this would be the likely outcome. The signal had travelled for over 30,000 years, almost 9 kiloparsecs, before humanity heard it. And a lot can happen in that time. It had only been 2000 years since humanity had first left earth and their civilization had almost come to ruin many times since. Sometimes floundering, dissipating into the stars, and sometimes coalescing into a giant angry sword to lash out at the dark, but all too often on the brink of just disappearing. But they’d made it this far, and they had heard the call. And for the first time in too long they had come together in peace, the knowledge that the void had a voice shocked them and again societies had come together in coalition of the intrigued, and the scared.