A Conversation at the End

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Summary

A conversation between two people as the sun explodes.

Genre:
Drama / Scifi
Author:
Lyra Rose
Status:
Complete
Chapters:
1
Rating:
n/a
Age Rating:
16+

A Conversation at the End

“Do you think they ever thought about this?”

“Who’s they?”

“Ya know, like, the old people. Like the really old people.”

“Why would I care?”

“Why wouldn’t you?”

“It’s just another star exploding, it happens all the time.”

“Well, I think it’s important. Do you wanna know why?”

“You’re gonna tell me.”

“I won’t if you don’t want me to.”

“But then you’ll get all upset.”

“I won’t.”

“Just, go ahead and say it.”

“You know, that’s where we came from down there.”

“Neither of us were even born there.”

“But like, heritage and things like that. Isn’t that important to you?′

“Not really.”

“Oh.”

“Go on.”

“Right. We came from there, all the way on that little blue marble. Our great great grandparents lived there and walked around down there. Everyday life was something completely different than it is now. Do you think they ever thought about the end?”

“Probably.”

“Wouldn’t it be scary?”

“Are you scared of the end?”

“I suppose I am.”

“You have your answer there. We should sleep now.”

“But, I want to watch.”

“You need to sleep, Sean.”

“But you only get to watch stars burst every so often.”

“Well, I’m going to sleep. You should too.”

“Casey?”

“What?”

“Do you ever imagine what it was like down there, on solid ground. Trees and oceans and all of that.”

“I think about it a lot. How different things must have been. People just went along with their lives, not knowing about all these thousands of years later their own sun would be deep frying their planet.”

“I wonder what they did. Sometimes I have this image of someone just, walking. Just some girl in her twenty-somethings walking down the street. Maybe, she walks through a park to take a shortcut. Heading to her work where she, well works”

“What does this girl do at work?”

“I’m not sure. But I’d like to think it’s important. Something like I don’t know, insurance.”

“Insurance?”

“I read about it once, it was when they made sure if something broke, they fixed it.”

“Can you please read the insides of your eyelids. I’m exhausted.”

“I just wonder if the people back then did things that really mattered, you know? That everything they did left some sort of legacy.”

“It’ll all be dust in a few hours.”

“I’m sorry.”

“It’s okay. You’re right. I guess everything ends up in the wake of an exploding sun.”

“I hope I have something to show for it all.”

“You could keep a journal?”

“I could. But something more meaningful, something that generations upon generations could still look at and touch and feel.”

“Just living day to day is enough for now Isn’t it? You don’t need anything grand.”

“Right, but wouldn’t it be nice. Like the people who lived down there, they left couches or vases for their children and they would give it to their children. It would all be very sweet, like a family heirloom for generations to remember those who came before.”

“You think a vase is gonna stave off the final moments of the sun?”

“Why do you always have to be so negative, I just meant like, something for the people around us to remember us by.”

“Sorry, it’s just how I am. You should know this by now.”

“Sean, I’m sorry. A vase would be nice.”

“There aren’t any of them left are there? The ones who lived on the surface.”

“No.”

“What about their kids maybe they are still around.”

“I think there might be one or two left on the ship? But most of them died before we were even around.”

“I see.”

“Do you still not want to have kids?”

“What? Where is this coming from?”

“I’m just asking is all, it would be some sort of legacy for us, something to live on and tell other people about us.”

“But we’d also be bringing human beings aboard this ship that’s floating out in some small corner of the universe.”

“So? We’d figure it out. Both of us make enough to support a kid.”

“Sean, can we not have this conversation right now?”

“Sure. I’ll drop it.”

“Are we at a safe enough distance?”

“We are, we’re about a galaxy and a half over. The worst that’ll happen is we’ll lose the main power for a few minutes.”

“I suppose a little power loss can’t really make up for thousands of years of human life being obliterated.”

“I guess so.”

“What do you think was the best part of life down there?”

“Sleeping.”

“I think it was probably being able to go outside, not being trapped somewhere and if you went outside you’d die within seconds.”

“You might make it for about a minute.”

“That’s the first time you’ve been positive all night.”

“I’m positively tired, but I’m not always a nihilist.”

“Only a lot of time.”

“You know me too well, I guess I don’t really find the inceration of our home planet romantic like you.”

“I never said it was romantic.”

“Not like lovey romantic, but the other kind of romantic. The philosophical one. You know where the individual rules and all of that.”

“Oh, that kind of romantic. I suppose you’re right. But, I hope they did all that they could back then and had fulfilling lives.”

“Here’s hoping, because now we have to live up here in space.”

“Can you come to bed now?”

“I’m in bed.”

“But like, actually come to bed and not just sitting there and watching such a grim sight.”

“It’s a big moment, I don’t think I want to sleep through it.”

“Well, can you just, try and be quiet then. I want to sleep.”

“Why don’t you want to have kids?”

“You know why.”

“But we really could do it, they say we could find a habitable planet in a few years, maybe they’d be able to grow up somewhere with grass, or even trees.”

“They wouldn’t have to watch any more suns explode, but rather be able to play under one of the many, non exploding suns. Wouldn’t it be great?”

“Sean, stop. Please.”

“They could play in the sun, as we sip on some freshwater on the porch of our log cabin on some distant planet.”

“I said stop.”

“What? Is it so bad to think about the future?”

“Look outside, right now. Look at what’s happening. That’s the sun, our sun. The sun that all our ancestors played under and died under. It’s exploding. The entire system will be space particles in a matter of hours. And one day, we will be nothing but space particles. Why would you want to bring a child into this?”

“Cause it’s not like we’re ever going to see us land on a livable planet ever again, maybe our kids would be able to.”

“Only after living in this floating coffin for who knows how many generations.”

“It’s a legacy, we need to leave some sort of legacy. Or else everything we’ve done just gets dusted like that earth.”

“What are you even saying, almost no one on this ship even remembers what the surface was like, people don’t know what it was like down there. It’s been so long that all kids grow up with stars and the looming threat that one big rock could kill the last sanctuary for humanity. So we sit here, and we do what we will. Other people will have kids, we won’t.”

“But why? Because you’re afraid?”

“Yes!”

“Well, I’m sorry that your parents weren’t around. But we’d be better.”

“Shit, Casey I’m sorry.”

“I really am, I didn’t mean it.”

“You did mean it. Or else you wouldn’t have said it.”

“I really just want to go to sleep.”

“Okay, I’ll let you sleep. I’m sorry.”

“They didn’t just leave me, you know.”

“I know, it was tough. I’m sure they didn’t want to leave you.”

“But that’s just the thing if we have a kid who’s to say that one of us doesn’t just disappear.”

“We wouldn’t.”

“You can say that all you want, but we wouldn’t really know would we. Any moment a little pebble could hit out the window and suck us both out into space and we’d be dead in seconds.”

“That’s a dark way to think.”

“But that’s the sort of thing that can happen, people can die from anything, anywhere. I don’t want to make more orphans than there needs to be on this ship.”

“Wouldn’t it still be worth it to give the human race another person.”

“You keep talking about this idea of worth like it means anything.”

“Well, it does mean something.”

“What does it mean?”

“Something different to everyone, I guess.”

“So what does it mean to you?”

“It means that I did something that pushed things forward and that people that came after me would be helped out by what I did.”

“So, a child would help that how?”

“I suppose they would just be able to keep going on after me. I like to imagine them as if they were around long after me and they’re a teacher or something. They are sitting at the front of the class, telling all the starry-eyed students about the world that came before them. The triumphant human race who came from earth to the colony ship floating in space, to the new planet they’re at now.”

“It sounds like a long lost dream. I’m not sure how you can be so optimistic in the face of all of this.”

“What good does being nihilistic do?”

“I’m not being nihilistic, I’m just being realistic.”

“I think there’s a really fine line between the two. One that you cross frequently between.”

“My bad.”

“It’s okay, I love you anyway.”

“Do you even at this point? With how much you want a kid, and I won’t go along with it.”

“What are you even saying, of course, I love you. Do you remember the first time we went on a date?”

“Hardly call it a date.”

“Well, in my mind it was.”

“In your mind, watching the sun explode is a great time to make a baby.”

“Is it not?”

“No.”

“That first date, we went down to what, sector fourteen?”

“Twelve, actually.”

“Doesn’t matter, I remember how nervous I was. The pretty gal from the upper floors.”

“Oh come on, that’s not how it was.”

“But it really was, everyone wanted just one little date with you. I’m the one who got it, and I was exceedingly lucky.”

“Go on.”

“Well, you came on down and I took you to this little tiny restaurant owned by my parent’s friends cause they said they’d give my money right back after you left.”

“You never told me that.”

“I was 17, think I had that sort of cash lying around?”

“Fair point.”

“I was so nervous I spilled water on you, you didn’t even care. You just laughed and called me clumsy.”

“You still are.”

“Very funny. But you’re right.”

“Why are you being nice all of a sudden, weren’t we arguing like, 2 minutes ago.”

“I guess we were.”

“I’m really sorry, Sean. I know how much you want this.”

“I do want a kid, I’ve wanted one for way longer than I can even remember. But I guess watching the sun explode has a bit of an effect on me.”

“It’s not like I’m immune to it, I guess it just has the opposite effect.”

“What does it make you feel?”

“Hopelessness. Watching all that we once were and where we come from being burnt to a crisp. It’s not like I remember anything out what it was like down there. But sometimes, I feel like I miss it.”

“I know how you feel. Like, there’s just something you want to go back to, and now there’s no chance of that.”

“Exactly. It’s all very depressing. And I’m scared.”

“What are you afraid of?”

“I’m afraid of losing this, my parents cared so much and worked so hard. All it took was one tiny mishap and then bam, I’m left alone to try and carry on their legacy. It’s so unfair. It could happen to me too. Or you.”

“It won’t happen to me.”

“You don’t know that though, you have no idea. I’m sure the people who lived down there never thought that their entire species would be floating out amidst the stars.”

“Well, it doesn’t mean that I’m going to leave you.”

“We don’t have any control over that, the universe does things however it wants. Doesn’t like earth anymore? Incinerate it. Maybe the universe doesn’t like how you wear socks in bed, and next time you go out to salvage a rock hits your suit and tears through. I don’t know how I’d keep going without my idiot.”

“Casey, you don’t have to cry.”

“I’m sorry, you just have done so much for me. I wouldn’t be able to bounce back if I lost you. And I can’t even give you what you want.”

“Are you still on that? Listen, kids or not I’m here with you. You’re not gonna get rid of me that easily.”

“Okay.”

“Try to take a deep breath.”

“I’m alright now.”

“Good. I’d like a dry pillow to lay down on.”

“Jerk.”

“It’s sort of pretty once you get over the apocalyptic value.”

“It sort of is. Wait, aren’t you supposed to be sleeping?”

“I think that ship sailed a while ago... Can I stay up and watch with you?”

“Of course.”

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