Gravity

(As told from Seth's perspective)

 

Victoria pulled me along as she bounded down the sidewalk.

 

“Come ON slowpoke! You’ll miss it!”

 

We had arrived in the middle of New York City, busy and bustling with life.
Americans here there and everywhere talked on cellular phones, bit into juicy
cheeseburgers all while heading on some errand or other.

 

Times Squareloomed ahead
of us, more brilliant and large than my impression of it from watching the ball
drop every New Year on the telly.

 

The news streamed live on the giant screen. Something was
different though about thisNew York.

I hadn’t had time to take it all in – we had only just
arrived before Victoria
had begun pulling me like a madwoman through the crowds of people.

 

The streets and cars had been replaced by a monorail system,
white pods gliding soundlessly along silver rails through the gleaming city.

That’s another thing too. The city was spotlessly clean.

Not a single pigeon or piece of trash in sight.

The city was deadly quiet save for the sound of all the
people around us.

Without the sound of traffic, my skin crawled.

 

The people around us halted as the screen’s image above us
changed to a view of the moon. A collective gasp rose from every man woman and
child.

A large structure was being erected on the surface of the
moon, clearly seen from the magnified freeze-frame on the Times
Square screen.

 

“…..The Lunar Base project is underway as we speak. As you
can see now, with this live feed,”


The image changed to a rough video taken from a camera on
the nose of a shuttle.

 

“You can clearly make out the main tower which has been
finished along with the habitat dome which will support various wildlife.” The
female announcer said.

 

Someone began clapping in the still crowd. Then another, and
another, till everyone around us were clapping.

 

Victoria
came up behind me and slapped my shoulder, “That’s the human race for you. You
just keep progressing, up and out, all the way to the next galaxy and beyond.
You are the last race standing at the end of the universe…..”

 

I nodded numbly. “Victoria….what
year is this?”

 

She grinned, “2019 to be precise. Next year the Lunar Base
will be open and those who have paid the five million to fly there will be
shuttled there immediately. Isn’t it brilliant?”


I nodded. Her grin was infectious and I soon found myself
wearing it.

 

The crowd around us dispersed and continued on their way.

 

“Can….”

 

She moved directly in front of me, planted her hands on her
hips and cocked an eyebrow.

 

“Go on then, spit it out.”

 

I smiled, “Can we go see it when it’s finished?”


She laughed, “Why wait
until it’s finished when we can go see it right now?”

I laughed right along with her. It was going to take a while
to get my mind wrapped around this time travel stuff.

 

She took my hand, touched her watch and seconds later, in a
swirl of flames, I found myself in what appeared to be the same exact
place…….Only the people around me were different.

Nothing much had changed.

 

“2020, January 1st.”Victoriatold me.

 

Ah. That would be why I was suddenly freezing cold. A couple
minutes ago it had been a hot July afternoon and all of sudden it was nine o’
clock in the morning in a chilly January day.

 

“Today, a whole ton of rich people will board the shuttle
down in Florida.” She told me.

 

She was looking at me strangely.

 

“What are you looking at me that way for?”

 

Her eyes were glittering, smiling, but her face was
straight. Her head was tilted slightly.

 

“Come on…..don’t you want to go to the moon?”

 

I grinned.

 

Gawd did I love her.

 

***

 

In what seemed like seconds we were inFlorida.

Turns out her watch doubles as a teleport.

“Just select place only not time,” she said.

 

Before us was NASA – and it had been shut down in my year.
Now it was at its full glory once more and a shuttle was ready to blast off,
strapped to the top of a specially made jet.

 

A line of people snaked out to the shuttle. They seemed
rich……

Victoria and I were standing outside the front gate, waiting
for someone to see us.

There were women in fur coats, men in expensive suits,
foreign leaders that I didn’t recognize, of course, but knew they were by
either their dress or some other icon.

“That’s the President and walking next to her is the Prime Minister.” Victoriatold me,
pointing to a heavy set man in a black suit walking next to a thin blonde woman
in a ruby red dress.

 

“Hold on, did you say ‘walking next to her’?” I asked,
realizing that Victoria had just suggested
that the woman was the President of theUnited States of America!

 

She didn’t have time to answer. A lanky guard was running
towards us.

 

“Hey, um, we need to like catch up with our Aunt,” Victoria
had put on a pretty believable American accent and pointed to the President,
“So can you like let us in or something, our mom would totally kill us if she
found out we missed the limo.”

 

I nodded vigorously. If I opened my mouth, the guard would
realize quite quickly that we were lying. I couldn’t do an American accent even
if it saved my life.

 

“Can I see some identification please?” The guard smelled
like cigarettes and wore a dirty mustache. He had a thick New York accent which made me want to laugh.
We had been in New York
only minutes ago.

 

Victoria
rolled her eyes and flashed open and shut a pink wallet which appeared to have
white paper inside.

 

The guard peered at it closely before she snapped it shut,
nodded and swung open the gate.

 

“Right this way Rex and Lily Sawyer.” He said, tipping his
hat as they walked by.

 

“How did you do that?” I whispered.

 

Victoria
passed me the pink wallet.

 

“Psychic paper. Tells them whatever I want it to.” She
whispered back.

 

I looked down at it. It had the quickly fading image of two
student identification cards, the top one Lily Sawyer’s with Victoria’s picture and the bottom one Rex
Sawyer’s along with a photo of me.

 

The images disappeared. I blinked and handed it back toVictoria.

I caught a glimpse of the word
SILENCE
scrawled across the paper in messy ink which appeared just as she closed it.

I shuddered. Another reminder of the event which had
happened just last week.

I’d rather not talk about it right now.

 

 

We merged into the line of people heading for the shuttle.

Somehow we blended right in.

The inside of the jet plane wasn’t much different from any
other plane - besides the hatch on the ceiling that led to the shuttle.

 

We settled down into two empty seats. Two straps hung limply
on either side of my seat. Victoria
strapped herself in, crossing the straps over each other and buckling them on
both sides.

I copied her.

 

“There’s no way we’re going to get away with this.” I
hissed, my eyes darting around, searching for something, anything, to hide
behind.

 

“Don’t be ridiculous, I do this all the time.” She
whispered, her eyes gleaming.

 

I sighed. I really hoped she knew what she was doing.

 

The jet’s engines rumbled to life and before I knew it, we
were soaring into the air, almost vertically.

I’d left my stomach far behind on the tarmac.

My body was pressed into the first class cushioned seat.

I could just barely hear Victoriashrieking with joy through the
roaring in my ears.

 

What in gawd’s name was powering this thing to make it go so
fast in so little time?

 

Then all of a sudden….It all just – stopped.

 

I felt myself begin to rise slightly out of my seat. The
double belts crossed over my chest held me in.

 

Outside the window I could see stars….and some strange mass
of bluish green stuff…

 

It was the Earth.

 

In exactly five minutes we had broke free of earth’s
atmosphere…..well, not quite.

 

“Attention passengers,” The loudspeaker crackled, “Make your
way to the hatch. We are in the outmost layer of atmosphere and are venting as
we speak. Please have your emergency re-breathers ready in case of an
emergency.”

 

My heart thudded. Venting atmosphere? That can’t possibly be
part of procedure….

 

The passengers around us were unbuckling themselves and
floating gracefully towards the hatch.

Unfortunately I got some unwanted views beneath women’s
dresses as they unscrewed the hatch and floated up and out.

 

Victoria
had already unbuckled and was following the floating crowd.

I fumbled with the buckles and awkwardly swam towards her.

 

“This is absolutely insane.” I muttered, looking down to see
champagne falling up out of an abandon floating glass.

 

“Cool though, right?” Victoria
said, smiling.

 

She took hold of my hand and tugged me up and out into the
shuttle.

 

The shuttle was nothing more than a cylinder shaped room
with a few seats here and there and a stewardess.

“Please make yourself at home and enjoy your flight.” She said with a smile.

 

I smiled back at her and followed Victoriaover to a counter set in to the
wall of the cylinder.

 

Several silver packets were lined up on the counter with
white letters indentifying them as things such as PIZZA, COKE, and ICE CREAM.

 

“Oh, I want ice cream!” Victoriasaid, clapping her hands. She tore
open the packet and squeezed a brown paste into her mouth.

 

“Yum.” She said through the paste.

 

I gagged. It looked revolting. I picked up the PIZZA packet
and cautiously squeezed an orange paste out into the air in front of me.

It looked like cheese whiz. I licked some of it.

The taste of a hot pizza delighted my taste buds.

Before I knew it, it was all gone.

 

“Not bad for space food, huh?”Victoriasaid, punching my shoulder lightly.

 

I nodded, licking my lips.

After we finished our ‘meal’, we drifted over to the
porthole window.

 

Stars flew by like fireflies against the night.

 

“Uhh….Vicki? How fast are we going?”

 

She grinned, “About a thousand miles a minute.”

 

In such a short time, the human race had progressed so far.

 

“Shut your trap Seth and get ready – we’re almost there.”

 

I closed my mouth and peered out the window. I could just
barely make out the curved surface of the moon appearing, growing rapidly.

 

“Please brace yourself for landing.” The stewardess
announced.

 

The passengers flipped down several chairs from handles in
the wall.

Victoria and I followed suit.

 

The shuttle landed gracefully, coasting down a runway lit by
glowing silver orbs on ten feet tall metal posts.

 

“Please put on the moon shoes included under your seat and
put on your re-breathers.” The stewardess handed out extra re-breathers to all
the passengers.

They were jelly-like circles in various colors with a flat
slotted disc in the center.

You fastened them around your mouth where they would seal
and breathed through the tiny disc.

I didn’t want to ask what happened if you breathed out your
nose.

 

The door opened with a hiss.

 

“Thank you for flying with us.” The stewardess said, her
voice slightly muffled from behind the re-breather.

 

Victoria
grinned at me behind the jelly and grabbed my hand.

 

We half walked, half bounded out of the shuttle, jumping off
the stairs.

Panic filled my chest.

We were floating, light as a feather, down to the ground.

I released the breath I was holding, remembering that the Moon had lower gravity
than Earth.

 

The passengers were meandering towards the large glass dome
fifty feet away from us, shining in the earthlight.

I was on the Moon.

I was on the bloody Moon.

 

I laughed uneasily as I teetered across the tarmac towards
the dome.

I felt quite tipsy.

Impossible – What am I saying?

I’ve been to another planet for gawd’s sake, why is this
surprising me?!

Later I reasoned that being on the Moon, something we are so
familiar with yet have never been to, was the ultimate fantasy as opposed to an
alien planet you have never set eyes on before.

 

Victoria
patted my shoulder, making me jump,

 

“You’ll get used to it… eventually.”

 

I could only nod and grin. We bounded clumsily after the
passengers who were entering the airlock.

We jumped in just as the doors slid shut.

And crashed right into the President of theUnited States.

The gravity in the airlock was much stronger than outside.

 

“Oh, I’m so sorry!” Victoria
said, helping her up.

 

What was she doing? That woman was supposed to be our Aunt
and Victoria
was talking to her without an accent. Actually, talking to her, period, was
pretty bad at this point.

 

“Wasn’t your fault darlin’, we’re all a bit rattled in this
wacky place.”

 

The President sounded like she came from…..what’s that state
called, Vick? Right.

Texas.

 

“Thank you, Miss President.”Victoriareplied shyly.

 

Shy? Wow. That was a new side of her I hadn’t seen before.

 

“Now, where are your folks then? You aint with the Prime
Minister are ya?”

 

We exchanged glances.

 

“Are you two stowaways? Bless my soul!” The President
laughed.

 

Victoria
smiled weakly.

 

“Don’t worry! I’ll keep quite about it. You two enjoy
yourself and try not to get caught. I remember when I was your age…..” She
smiled blissfully.

 

This was an odd turn of events.

She turned and walked away, abruptly, ending the awkward
silence.

 

“Well. Imagine that.” Victoria
murmured.

The End

3 comments about this story Feed