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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Write in the SCIENCE FICTION genre (05/10/07)

TITLE: Opulent One
By Tracy Walshaw
05/17/07


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Alcon hurried to his desk in the empty classroom. It was a rare thing for him to be early; usually he was skidding into the door before the shrill ring of the last bell. M. Leezer wasn’t even at his desk: this already had the makings of an extraordinary day for him. He reached into the book compartment below his seat, the shiny metal cold against his fingers, and tugged at the white plastic of the cover. It finally relented and he slapped the book on his desk, pushing the obligatory green button and pulling his face away quickly, avoiding a whack on the nose as it sprang open.

M. Leezer, the ornery, ancient teacher of the class, had admonished Alcon for his failing grades just days ago, and his parent’s warning that he could not play “Asteroid Miner” on the Virtual Reality Teleport, the one thing he lived for, gave him the prod needed to try a little harder. He had attained a score of almost one point four million in the game, beating out most of his friends scores by hundreds; he couldn’t get behind now; he would be a laughingstock after all his bragging.

He looked out of the windows ahead of him, curved and expansive, with only thin breaks of white metal in between each glass. He strained a bit as he looked left, then scanned all the way to his right, sure that he could see straight to the next galaxy if he tried hard enough. His gaze fell to the text again. It told the lesson of how the galaxies began and the creation of the very earth he could see so plainly on the right side of the glass classroom in the mobile teaching unit of the space station “Opulent One”.

“In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” He closed his eyes and attempted memorizing the verses again, adding, “The Book of Genesis, Chapter One, Verses One and Two. King James Version.”

He tried to picture how it could have felt for God, having spent so long in that blackness. Was it loneliness that prodded Him to create such a beautiful thing as a whole universe, to create children to take care of it for Him and to delight so much in them that no blessing was withheld? What could have made these children listen to a simple creature of the garden tell them that He didn’t have all his marbles...that he was wrong about something? Alcon knew that if he’d been there, he wouldn’t have listened to a stupid old snake. They didn’t wonder why an animal was even talking? He laughed aloud.

Opening his eyes and feeling rather proud, he was startled to the point of falling backwards in his chair as M. Leezer stood before him, his spectacles so low they seemed dangerously close to falling right off his nose and onto the floor. The crisp whiteness of his suit gleamed collectively with the pallor of the room, blending him in so completely that only the tan of his skin divided the two. His dark eyes regarded Alcon with interest. “Well, finally heeding the impending kismet and buckling down, are we? Good to see.” he said, his hard face breaking into some semblance of kindness. “God is indeed great.” the teacher said resolutely and turned from Alcon towards his own desk in the center of the great windows.

A bit of bravery arose in Alcon, and he took the rare moment of having M. Leezer’s full attention all to himself to ask a question he had puzzled over for days. “Sir, when can we expect to return to the earth? Are the cleaners going to be finished soon?”

M. Leezer turned his back to Alcon and looked out of the glass, raising his hands on either side of his head like a young child yearning for tasty treats in a candy store. “Soon enough, young Alcon. It takes time to repair such great damage; Ozone Depletion Crews working around the clock, Sea Sifters patiently going through tons of sand a day...It all takes time.”

“I hope they finish in my time, I’d love to live on earth.” Alcon said wistfully.

“I have wished for the same...” M. Leezer murmured forlornly under his breath.


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This article has been read 601 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Lisa Holloway05/17/07
This is nicely written, with good description and concept.
M. I.05/19/07
I liked this piece, we learned alot about the POV charecter in such a short time. The description was very good as well.

Blessings,
mAndy
Jacquelyn Horne05/20/07
Very good. Well written.
Brenda Welc05/21/07
Wow this was a really good story, I was throughly entertained. Keep up the good work!
Janice Cartwright05/22/07
Excellent characterization and a fresh approach to science fiction, which normally, even if subtly, tends to dethrone the Genesis account of creation. Your story is my favorite for this level.