Hello, all! I know I mentioned I would post a to-be-read list next, but I found this short story/flash fiction while I was going through my computer tonight, and thought I’d go ahead and upload it. I wrote it for a contest based around the phrase ‘capture the horizon’ and promptly forgot about it. I don’t even remember if I entered it into the contest! Anyway, I hope you enjoy!
“Please don’t leave me, Nagan.”
The words broke my heart a little bit more, and though I struggled to hold back tears, I knew it was time.
“I have to, sweetie. It’s over.”
The little girl gripped my hand, her chin quivering as she looked up at me. “I need you.”
I gently kissed her light blue hair. “I know. I know. But I have to go. The war…it calls me, Legla. I have to follow.”
She gazed out of the porthole, looking at the stars but not really seeing. “We could ‘capture the horizon’ together, Nagan, just like the Al’Ruan says, just like Yavna wrote all those years ago. You don’t have to go to war. You could steal this ship, go with me instead. We could explore the Fast Allorans, maybe even go to T-chelep. We could disappear. Please.”
“Var’esh,” I corrected gently, the corners of my mouth turning up into a smile. Though her quotation of the Al’Ruan was correct, her knowledge of the authors of the sacred book was a bit shallow. “Var’esh said that, sweetie.”
“I don’t care who said it.” She suddenly wrapped her arms around my waist, her small chest quivering with sobs. “I don’t want you to leave, Nagan. Please don’t leave me.”
“Hey, hey,” I whispered, kneeling to look into her tear-blurred amethyst eyes. “We’re Spirions, Legla. We never give up. Never. We’ve been at war with the Qloens for twenty-five holions, but do we give up? What is your name, little one?”
“Legla–but I don’t want you to go!”
I stood, straitening my uniform, trying to look like our long-dead father. “What is your name, little one?”
Slowly, she raised her chin, as she had been taught to since birth, squaring her shoulders and penges. “My name is Legla Pyonce, and I am daughter of Wetpre Pyonce, captain of the Spirion StarBattlers. I am a Spirion, citizen of Cl’lenk, and I am proud to be who I am.”
“Very good, Legla.” I bent to her level again. “Now. I will come back, I promise you this. The Qloens will not defeat me.”
“But how can you be sure?”
“Because I’ll be coming back to you, my love.” I swiped at a tear that had fallen down my cheek. “And I will always come back to you.” I wrapped her in a tight hug, knowing that it might be the last time I ever touched her. “I love you, Legla.”
“I love you, big brother.” Slowly, she released me, and I knew she had made her peace with my decision. “Fight bravely, Spirion.”
“I will, Legla.” I stepped into the lift next to the half dozen other Battlers. Before the doors closed I saw my sister grimace as if in pain, touching the claren pendant at her throat. So young, I thought. So young, and so brave. I closed my eyes, trying to forget that I might never see her again, that my eleven-holion-old sister would lose everyone in the galaxy she loves if I didn’t come back. But it would be worth it if we won this war. If she could be safe. If she could have freedom. Even if I didn’t come back, it would be worth it, and, someday, she would be able to capture the horizon.