There was a crash and a roar. The ground quivered with a deep bellow that seized the small house and shook it violently. I jumped up from my bed, tossing the covers on the floor in the process, and rushed to the window to find a ball of fire simmering in my backyard. There was yet another explosion of flame as I looked on in disbelief and horror. Then, from within the orange and yellow blaze, the shape of a man emerged. He was engulfed in the fire, which he quickly extinguished by rolling the ground, and then he was motionless.
I grabbed a robe to make myself more decent before rushing out to investigate this strange occurrence. The glow being emitted from the wreckage allowed me to see the V-shaped schism in the trees created by the object as it crashed through them upon descent. This kept my attention briefly, for the man on the ground began to move. He raised a quivering hand towards me and spoke in broken words.
“Please…I need help.”
I immediately recognized him as human and I was taken back. Humans were not supposed to be in this area, let alone in my own backyard. Martian government policy demanded that I report the incident, but I was to first “take care” of any survivors, by any means necessary.
“Human, I can’t.”
“Please, I was sending distress calls for hours, but no one would help. Even my allies close by said aiding me was too risky. You’re my only hope.”
He was a sorry sight, burned and weak and broken down, but aiding such a person would mean social isolation, at the least, if I were caught. Still, I had my morals. I knew what was right and what had to be done.
“Come on then, hold on.” I placed one of his charred arms around my neck and lead him to the house. I didn’t know much about human physiology but it was easy to see he wasn’t going to last long without medical attention. Luckily for him, I had a friend not too far away who was a doctor. And not only a doctor, but one who had spent years studying human biology while working in the military.
After retrieving a blanket from my house, I wrapped him up in it and loaded his fragile body into my car. He was conscious but not speaking, probably trying to focus his energy towards breathing, and he remained that way for the remainder of the trip. I was driving in constant paranoia, always looking for the military vehicles that patrolled the area but finding none.
Dr. Illa’s car was sitting at the dock as I approached, so I knew he was home. I pulled in quickly and shut off the lights, trying to avoid any chance of being seen. Picking up the human, I carried him to the front door, knocking nervously once there. The lights inside came on instantly and I could hear soft footsteps approaching.
“You didn’t,” he said as he saw the man in my possession.
“I couldn’t leave him, you know that better than anyone.”
He sighed, “Bring him in, hurry.”
Once inside, I placed him on the couch and searched through my pockets. Finding a liberal amount of money, I handed it all to Dr. Illa.
“Do whatever you have to do. If this isn’t enough, let me know. I’ll come back later. Take care.”
He agreed, and walked me to the door. The night air rushed in and made us both shiver, or maybe it was the thought of being caught that brought it about.
“You know what will happen if we’re found out, don’t you?”
I nodded, “Yes, but I also know what would have happened had I just left him there. We’re above racial differences, aren’t we doctor?”
He agreed and withdrew back into his house, closing the door gently behind him. I pulled myself back into the car and headed down the highway. There was still a chance my actions would be uncovered, but it didn’t matter. Government regulations can only govern so much of a person until they realize they’re actually subjected to a higher set of rules, rules imprinted on their hearts by a power not of their own. It was those rules that I had followed, and therefore had no regrets.
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