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24th May
posted by amber


You asked me to describe what our life is like here on Antio. If you receive this info bud, here is the answer.

We mostly stay in the human compound.  We’re more comfortable with the gravity there, and we don’t need to wear the nasal plugs.  We can work from our terminals, we have the cafeteria or the supply kiosks if we prefer to cook in our personal areas, we have the entertainment and exercise rooms. Antio is a beautiful planet but we’re not as comfortable here as we were lead to believe we would be.

Our children, however, love Antio. The heavy gravity is all they have ever known, and every one of them agrees, when they reach the age of consent, to undergo the surgery to implant gas converters in their lungs, so they don’t need nasal plugs. They come and go freely through the gates to the human compound, they go to school and play with the Antian children.

Not a one of us was over the age of 24 when we signed up to come here. They said they wanted married couples so that we wouldn’t be lonely. Our children are reaching adulthood en masse, and we had our first request the other day to allow the surgery enabling sex between a human female and a male Antian. Thank god I have no daughter, but I see by the interest my sons show in this case that they may soon be asking for the surgery for their gender.

We don’t know if our compound is monitored. The Antians have seemed indifferent to us from the moment of our arrival, and not a few of us wonder about the useless nature of the work they invited us here to do. But we are the ones who hated our own societies and planet enough to agree to leave them forever. When we voice our doubts, our children point this out, and speak of their happiness with this beautiful world, the ease of the life here and the exciting new friends they have made.

The Story 365 project is a year-long marathon of short story writing, with a new story posted every day on this website from May 1, 2011 – April 30, 2012.  Stories must be a minimum of 200 words.  Please help me by adding first line suggestions in the Comment section.

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