This Frozen World

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Science Fiction

Sometimes you don't have to go on an adventure to find monsters.

It was beautiful from up here, this frozen world. Its beauty belied the horrors beneath. From up here one could almost escape their past. Forget the blood on their hands. Those stains would never fade though. The blood of friends could never be washed from your hands. She had turned on her unit, killed them all. Every last one. They were sent here to explore, not to murder. To discover the secrets of this world, not to bury their own. She saw a side of the people she once viewed as friends that revealed them for the monsters they were. Homes in flames, bodies dismembered, innocent blood spilled and sadistic smiles. The briefing said there was no indigenous life, but there was. Her unit met the peaceful people with lead and flames. Butchered them in their small huts and in the snow. These people didn’t even have weapons. They knew nothing of war, of violence, of killing. Still, they were cut down where they stood. Their large spider-like bodies were so alien, but the pain, the terror on their faces was so human. Their blue blood painted the white snow in rivulets of guilt. These alien creatures weren’t the monsters on this planet, her people were. She joined the Blooded to protect the innocent, to lay low evil and ensure that monsters would be wiped from existence. Turns out she never had to leave home to find monsters. Her sorrow turned to disgust, her disgust to anger, her anger to vengeance. Never before had her path been so clear. Never before had she experienced such unflinching conviction. Squeezing the trigger of her rifle, feeling the round leave the barrel and seeing Asha’s chest explode there was a moment of doubt. A question of whether she was doing the right thing. As Asha fell, a baby fell too. Its head crushed and its blood coated Asha’s hands. No more doubt. No more fear. Her sights fell on Grenold and a round punctured the tank on his back, a fire ball sprouting from the tank and engulfing him. His agonized screams echoed off the snow and folded seamlessly into the explosion of rounds fired from her rifle as she dropped Mikael and Drogar. Clara tackled her to the ground, knocking the rifle from her hands. Clara’s face was a mixture of confusion, rage and sorrow. Clara screamed something, maybe pleading, maybe condemning. She couldn’t hear Clara though, she could only see the blue that stained Clara’s armor. Clara’s face turned to shock, the agony as her blade slipped between Clara’s ribs. For a long moment she and Clara stared into each other's eyes until Clara’s went dim. She had killed her unit. Her friends. Not her friends. Monsters. It was beautiful from up here, this frozen world. It’s beauty belied the horrors beneath. From up here, one could almost escape their past. Forget the blood on their hands. That blood would never fade though. The blood of monsters should never be washed from your hands.


Submitted: January 03, 2021

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