Every Friday I write a story based or insired by a song. This week, the song came after the start of the story. “We All Made of Stars,” by Moby popped into my head while writing. Check it out.
When she left me to start training for the space station, she told me that it was probably best if we just broke up. She said, “I don’t know how good of a girlfriend I’ll be these next few years. I have a year of training then will be in space for a long time after that. And this is if things go well. It might take me longer to get through training. It might take the next crew longer before they are able to take off and relieve us.” She didn’t want to say it, but her face told me that she was also thinking about the possibility og being the victim of equipment failure, that a rocket could explode or the space station oxygen systems could break down. The probabilities of her dying were much higher than most other people in the world. None of this mattered. Alli was one of those women that everyone was attracted to, even when they didn’t want to be. She was tall and thin, with strong arms and legs, small breasts and ass, but all of the personality that told you it made sense for her to be in space.
I let her explain why she was trying to do this to me, that by breaking up, she was giving me a chance to find someone else. I said, “I don’t want someone else. I will wait for you to conquer the stars and come back to conquer me.” She kissed me, and maybe this was the test I was taking and I passed. While she packed her things into my car the morning she was report to training, I watched her shove her bags into the trunk and thought that this was going to be a long, lonely few years, but it would be worth it.
We saw each other sporadically through training, a weekend here, a few hours there, and those moments were wonderful and cherished. During her first few months in space, while I waited for a time when she could video call me, those memories were all I really had to lean on. We had one video call, less than five minutes, before the Civil War started.
There were many events leading to the second fracture in our country, many things that would be taught in history books for generations to come, if there were any more generations in the United States. All government resources refocused toward the war effort, and since water and food was renewable on the space station, Alli and the other American astronauts were somewhat forgotten. We were not able to use video calls anymore and we limited to emails. She was getting more and more distressed by the situation. “I’m tired,” she said. “I’m tired of all of the uncertainty, of the routine every day, of eating the same food over and over, and I’m tired of not being able to have someone in my arms when I fall asleep. This is what I miss about you most. Your arms.”
I told her that I missed her too, and I really did, not only as a companion but as someone who could help me navigate all of the current events. There was a movement of people gathering in Atlanta, with the idea to burn the south all of the way to the White House where they would lynch the rich man-child in the oval office, and the crowd was growing stronger every day. With a curfew, it was now unsafe to be out after dark, and honestly I didn’t want to face this world anymore without her. I said, “Is there a way to get a ride on a ship from another country?”
She said, “I’ve been asking, but I’ve also been told that leaving here without permission is akin to deserting my post, and there isn’t anyone in charge telling us what to do. We are kind of stuck in this limbo.”
I tried to go to the headquarters of the sppace program, so that I could get some answers, but without any sort of credentials, I was turned away by the military guard at the gate. The only real option was to wait for the war to be over. “I don’t see any end in sight,” I emailed her. “It seems as if things are only getting worse every day.” We were not able to video call, but I was able to send her pictures in my emails. I took many selfies, many pictures of me lying in bed, my arms outstretched, waiting for her to return to me.
She said, “The pictures make me miss home so much, make me miss you so much. I think about you and about earth all of the time. I wish I could change things. Some of the lights are starting to flicker and I think some of the motors are starting to wear out. We need parts and tools. We have a 3D printer, and we could make the parts, but nobody is there to send the programs. I need to find a way home before it’s too late.”
I tried to think of what I could do to help. The only option was to figure out a way to Russia, to talk to the embassy there. The problem was that the US was in such disarray that I was unable to get a passport. My only option was to sneak into Canada, find my way to Alaska, and slip over the Baring Strait. They say this was how the indigenous Americans came here, so it made sense to me that I would find my way to save someone’s life in a reverse journey. I had to get her home. Any way possible.