posted on Sep, 16 2006 @ 08:01 PM
A hurricane of dust blew across the screen, rust red, the sound of particles assailing the ship sounded through the hull. With a slight shudder we set
down on Mars during one of the strongest storms the red planet had seen for many years.
The Castle,as we liked to call her was large enough to absorb everything Mars had to throw at us. Still it was a close call, after three and a half
months there was talk from Earth of abandoning the whole expedition because of the storms raging across the planets surface. Communication with Earth
had ceased as we entered the atmosphere, no going back now.
After a good nights rest and external testing it was decided that the winds had dropped sufficiently for deployment.
Archie, Jack and myself were chosen from the crew of six to take the first walk. Archie of course was the first to step upon the surface of mars,
there was no argument, if anyone deserved the honor he surely did.
After a bit of fun for the camera's and the usual sampling for the scientist's back home we decided to head north to an interesting rock formation
about three kays away. What amounted to nothing more than an apparent lava extrusion which raised itself about forty feet above the surrounding
landscape greeted us, surrounded on all sides by drifts ten to fifteen feet deep around its base.
While Archie and i set up the equipment and tents Jack wandered about the site.
Through our headsets i heard Jack exclaim, and i quote, " Holy # ".
At the base of the rock formation on the north side, hidden from the ships view Jack had found a doorway, seemingly uncovered by the storms for there
was a line of dust above it's frame. The doorway was about eight foot high but only two and a half feet wide mounted on four stone hinges.
After clearing away a foot or so of sand still at the base of the doorway we were able to swing it open by grasping two indented hand holds at the
top and bottom, strange.
Barely able to squeeze through the opening in our gear we managed to get through by carrying our oxygen manually and replacing it on our backs once
we'd reached the other side.
Here it opened up to five feet wide and descended at a forty five degree angle into the depths of the ground. The edges of the tunnel were as smooth
as glass, reflecting our distorted figures as we moved slowly down it's length, torches ablaze. Archie reckoned we had descended about forty yard's
when we came to a large cavern about the same distance around with the continuation of our passage on the further most side.
It was decided by mutual agreement to spend the night here and set up a secondary base. Trish and Rick moved from the Castle to our first base camp
leaving Sonya in the ship itself.
The deeper we descend the less we speak. Five minutes ago we passed the first of the etchings upon the walls, strange beasts cavorting across an
alien landscape, grotesque tree's and leering figures etched three dimensionally in the background. One figure in particular made me shudder, tall
and thin, face like a mantis, all jaws and bony contusions. Its arms are long three jointed limbs hanging from a humanoid torso with four spider like
legs and a whiplike scorpion tail, truly a thing of nightmares, though shown reverently in the fresco's upon the walls.
At last we reach the end of the corridor, Archie say's we are two kilometres below the surface.
We are in a cavern hundreds of feet across, surrounded on all sides by statues of the tall thin beings, and between them smaller figures with human
shapes but large expressionless eye's.
The whole cavern is well lit by some type of phospherescent mould which cover's the whole roof and parts of the floor. In the centre of the room is
a huge array of crystals and what looks to be a sacrificial altar. Thats the only description i can think of for it, it's a huge rock slab with
gutters running down either side and a drain hole at the foot of it. Dark stains pattern it's surface, the gutters darkest of all.
We set up our tents and collapse exhausted into them.
Sometime later i awake, Archie and Jack are asleep within their tents still, but i cannot sleep. The singing woke me and i move slowly around the
cavern searching for the source. It sounds so loud within my head that i wonder how Archie and Jack can sleep at all.
The background is a low moan, barely audible, as a sibilant whisper snakes it's way up from the depth's. Soon the whispers are joined in chorus by
a sweeping high pitched ululation, sending chills down the length of my spine. As the song reaches a crescendo the crystals surrounding the altar
light the room brightly, above, the phospherescent ceiling lit now by the crystals reveal their true purpose, the patterns of the mould shaped into
A star map.
The music now becomes words, insinuating their way within my head. The truth is revealed to me, a barrage of images, thoughts and desires assail me
from without and within. A million years of history fed into my primitive brain. The pain. The futility. The hunger. The birthright.
Jack's naked body lays upon the altar, his blood runs freely down the gutters into the drain, which feeds itself into the crystals. I stare in
amazement at my handiwork, Archie tied at my feet looks at me in disbelief. I try to speak to Archie but the noises that issue from my throat are not
words he would understand, sibilant, coarse, primevil. The knife in my hand is not made for sacrifice, it's edge dull, caused Jack much pain, for
that i'm sorry and i wish it would not be so, for Archie must also feel its blunt caress. He struggled manfully but i'm infused with another
His eye's implore me as i draw the knife across his jugular, sawing away as though cutting into a tough steak. The crystals burn now with an inner
fire and the statues all around watch me reverently, aware of my sacrifice they sing my name, as they will for another million years.
Trish and Rick were no match for me, they had no inkling that i had betrayed our race, i did not gag them as i had with Jack and Archie. Their screams
seemed to lend me strength and i laughed as i bled them dry.
The song sang to me the rite, eons old, and i daubed the statues around the cavern with the blood from the slab, sigil's and signs of power. Sonya
was the last and as the others before, knew too late her fate. This time it would be different, so the Fathers sing to me, a seed must be passed.
Sonya writhes upon the altar arousing within me that which must be done, precisely. Our union is short and not pleasant, the knife rending her flesh
open as i deliver the seed, the song is exultant now, intense.
The ship is automated and i disconnect all communication equipment after i send a quick message toward Earth detailing electrical problems.
I settle back into my bunk, Sonya's corpse beside me, though it bulges and writhes from time to time i have been assured that they will not leave
their womb until we are safe on Earth. My children are base, primal and would not think twice about enslaving or eating their father, as it should
The meek shall not inherit the Earth.