Eternity’s Return

It’s Rachel Ritchey’s blog battle time again. This weeks  word is Tango and the rules are here:


  1. 1000 words max
  2. fictional tale (or true if you really want)
  3. PG (no more than PG-13) Content – let’s keep this family friendly!
  4. Your story must contain the word(s) from the theme and/or be centered around the theme in a way that shows it is clearly related
  5. Go for the entertainment value!
  6. State the Genre of your story at the top of your post.
  7. Post your story on Tuesday, by 11:59 PM PST
  8. Use the hashtag #BlogBattle when tweeting your story, put a linkback to your #BlogBattle Short Story in the comments section of this page, and/orinclude a link to this page in your own blog post(it creates a “ping-back” which will alert me and our friends to your #BlogBattle post)
  9. Have fun!


From behind the bulkhead doors Science officers Adam Wright and Emily Cortez watched through the thick glass ath the object, barely visible with the vapour streams that were re-filling the cargo bay with breathable air. The hissing sound was deafening, they could barely make out the computer’s voice eching out above the din.

“Environment replenishment 10 percent complete… 20 percent complete….” As the environemnt reached 70 percent complete, the noise subsided.

“Wright – Cortez, what’s the status of this object?” rang out the ship commander’s voice over the intercom.

“There’s not much to report yet commander” Cortez replied.

“What’s next on your plan?” The commander asked.

“Were going to have a closer look, maybe get some material samples.” Cortez repled. The computer was still reading off the environment level in the cargo bay, now  at 90 percent. Nearly there.

“Keep me informed please” the commander signed off. The safety crew had just arrived, they were there to watch from outside and give assistance if needed.

“Environment in cargo bay 2 has been restored” the computer announced. Wright and Cortez put on the protective coats and gloves they needed. Not just from any physical damage, but a newly restored atmosphere is cold – damn cold. The bulhead doors slid open with a heavy mechanical clank, and the cold hit them all.

With their insturments pointed in fron of them Wright and Cortez moved towards the object. It was dark, cub shaped and as they got closer they could make out more and more markings on the face of the cube. They weren’t in any human language . Silently they walked around it, their instruments collecting size, composition and energy output data. Apart from size data the cube was not realeasing it’s secrets… yet. Just then the intercom burst into life with the commanders voice, he had come down to see what was going on.

“What have you found out?” He barked.

“Not a lot” Wright replied. We know each face is 5.73 metres square, there’s a lot of marking on here, but I have no idea what they mean, there’s no energy output at all – in fact it seems to be drawing in energy if anything.”

“Drawing in energy? from where?” asked the commander – now a little concerned. Their mission had been to retrieve this object, this cube from Saturn’s rings. It had been well hidden, but a survey ship had found it while mineral prospecting. He stood there, staggered and wondering it’s origins, it’s purpose.

“We don’t know” replied Cortez. “Hold on” She stepped closer, reaching out to a human hand shape in the middle of one of the faces. Around it was the depiction of a snake eating it’s tail. Some force of nature she couldn’t control made her put her hand into the shape.

“Emily – no!” Wright shouted. Too late.

Cortez was stood there, frozen a voice in hear head said in clear English “state you name”

“Cortez” She replied, then expanded “Charlie – Oscar – Romeo – Tango – Echo – Zulu”

Wright stood there, listening to her read out here name. “Emily? Take your hand off girl – come on”. She did, she seemed to be reeling from something then opened her eyes and said “I can understand these markings now”

Wright stood there, looking at Cortez with an expression of concern “what do they say?”

Cortez turned and read off “Pandora’s box – Eternity’s return”. Just then an intricate and thick set of hatches started to open, blue light from within the box shone out, until the four door quadrants were open. Wright looked about, he could see the commander and the safety crew, looking through the glass. There was something wrong though – they were totally motionless.

“They are locked in time” Cortez announced “Come on” she prompted to Wright as withut hesitation she walked into the cube. Inside were two seats, Wright hesitated, worried until Cortez took his hand and pulled him in.

“What are you doing? Asked Wright

“Taking you with me – There’s a great task we are destined to perform, this same scene has played out countless time before and will play out countless times again. Sit down here and you will understand” Cortez motioned to Wright and he sat, feeling unusually calm. Cortez sat in the seat next to him. She took his hand re-assuringly “It will be ok – I promise” she told him.

It was then that it hit them both, images telling a story in their minds about creation, time and the human race. This was pandor’s box that they were sitting in and this was a machine that tranceded time and space. It was a vehicle to take them to the far corners of the universe and time. It’s dicovery no accident. The doors closed, then it was gone.

The commander un-froze – from his point of view these events hadn’t taken place, they were gone in a flash “Where did they go?” he asked, never to get an answer.

On an aging Earth, over a thousand years from when they had left their spaceship orbiting Saturn. Wright and Cortez stepped onto a land ruined and broken. Tall but thin and weary humans walked towards them, iquistive and yet fearful at the box that had just arrived. One of them stepped forward and spoke in a language, familiar, yet strange. Cortez spoke to them in their own tongue – “let us help you with your eternity”

Copyright Simon Farnell 2015

No ownership claimed on image





16 thoughts on “Eternity’s Return”

      1. The thing I like about the Pandor’s box myth is the possibility that the legend is there to stop us from opening it, when in fact it might a power that man is not ready to weild.
        There is always next time… or another time 😉

        Liked by 1 person

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