Intro the Pan


Xen peered out the small porthole. He craned his neck to catch a glimpse of his new home. There it was. A tiny marble floating in the vastness of the void. It looked like earth. Or it looked like all the pictures Xen had seen of it. Blue oceans and vast green continents, and white poles.

Tok leaned over as far as his seatbelt would allow towards Xen.

“Scared?” He said with a sly grin.

You always held your pockets around Tok and his twin Raguan. They had a reputation aboard the ship as thieving pranksters; an accusation both would deny with a twinkle in their eye.

“There’s nothing to worry about, we’re only goin’ about a million miles an hour headed straight for a giant rock.”

Xen ignored him with a small scoff. He leaned closer to the window, examining his reflection now, rather than the approaching planet.

He was thin, but strong, and tall. He had green eyes and black hair that swept across his forehead.

He looked around the room. It was a small square made of blank metal. Three bunks were set into the wall, one for him, and the others for Tok and Raguan. Across from the beds was a table with chairs, for eating freeze dried meals. Against the adjacent wall was a door and a TV screen. On the last wall were three large chairs, with seatbelts protruding from the wall along with hooks holding a pressurized helmet supplied with oxygen.

The three boys were all strapped in, when the TV flicked to life.

Words started scrolling across its surface: Please, equip pressurized suits, apply safety belts, and place helmet in the correct, locked position on suit.

The boys clicked their helmets onto place on their suits. They were form fitting and tight, with a large visor that covered the face. Dark green with black trim. They had large packs built into the back of the suit that held an oxygen tank and an air filtration system.

The chairs had holes for the packs to lock into, and had padded panels sticking out to protect one’s head and neck.

Words kept scrolling past the screen, “Please, prepare for atmospheric entry.”

Xen glanced at Tok and Raguan, both clutching handles that protruded from their seats. Xen’s forehead began sweating. He gripped the handles and clamped his eyes closed. The ship started rattling. Then shaking. Jerking and rocking. A roaring sound filled Xen’s ears. He reminded himself that the ship was bound to make sound as it hit the air surrounding the planet.

They were the first to attempt to land on Marvel. The earth was desperate. The ship was humanity’s wild card. A last hope, flung into the void. They didn’t even know if the air was breathable. They just knew that the planet was warm enough to live on and had liquid water.

The earth was gone, or so it seemed. Trash, piled everywhere. They shoveled it into the oceans once the landfills couldn’t hold any more. Then wars broke out. Fighting over the minimal resources left. Nations collapsed as they exhausted their water and food sources.

To be continued. . . .

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