Yesterday’s recording is my first memory of the Par, but I’m going to back up just a tad more to where it all began for me.
I am Commander Elinor Sturgeon: Destroyer of Galaxies, and so the best equipped to record the history of the Vokkna War. This is not a history of the human race as a whole. Better to let that nonsense fade into oblivion. This chronicle will be a record of how we came into contact with the Par, and our place in the Vokkna Wars.
Humans, and my actions specifically, changed nothing and saved no lives. We merely perpetuated the very cycle of death we fought against. If you learn only one thing from these chronicles let it be this; one species by itself is meaningless. The glorification of my species is a lie, and without the assistance of the Hurran and Par warriors we would have failed in every aspect of the fight; like we have so many times before.
I suppose I was asked to create this historical document as a sort of homage to myself, but what is history besides the documentation of someone’s pride? What is a hero without a villain? The Vokkna are the central characters here. Villains get things done! Heroes just sit around waiting for a foe to vanquish. Main characters are commonly unimaginative in their approach, and jump to unnecessary conclusions far too often.
Despite all of this, I will comply with the elder's wishes and record these historical logs. I have little left to do with my time in my old age, and the history would most certainly be lost without my recollections. I will begin about 75 rotations back when I was young and foolish, and not yet aware of the Parʼs existence.
I was locked in stasis, hurtling through space in a small orb of a ship with nothing but my thoughts for company. No need for a physical description at this point. Iʼm sure you can find any number of pictures of me in the historical logs.
My official position among the humans was Searcher, and the many years I spent in this position enabled me to come to the conclusion that the human mind is an unfathomably boring conduit of information. Once a human has been forced to spend an excessive amount of time with their own thoughts for company it becomes painfully clear that we have very little to say, even to ourselves.
I was in my forty-eighth year of life; half asleep and contemplating the inner workings of my foggy young mind as I floated unknowingly toward a pivotal discovery, and I had come to the conclusion that I no longer had anything unique to think about.
I lay out in my semiconscious state of stasis and wondered if there was going to be any flour, an ancient grain, left on Kepler by the time I got back. I hadn't had a pancake in the five years I had been off planet and was craving something fluffy, gooey, and unnaturally sweet. Humans ate synthetic food imitation while out searching but I was usually able to get my hands on good solid grub when back on planet.
When I set out on my Searcher mission there had been one functioning green house and three functioning duplicators left, but over five hundred mouths to feed. Kepler hadn't had real meat transported to planet in over fifty years, and since Kepler was unfit for mammalian life this was the only way to supply fresh animal flesh. The animals on planet could not reproduce in the atmosphere and had been duplicated so many times--who knew what they were made of anymore. The last terraforming tractor had been dismantled for parts and energy the week before I left. I didn't know if I would find anyone alive let alone the ingredients needed to make the fluffy pastry I so desired.
My upbringing was like any average Kepler native. Home schooling by artificial intelligence, long bouts of seclusion punctuated by small moments of human interaction, and then a job assignment upon becoming sixteen. My formative years were spent in isolation and I grew to prefer solitude to forced interaction. My brother, Judas Sturgeon, was born eight years after me, and five years after Earth was declared dead. Judasʼ life was a consequence of my parentsparents’ attempts to stop hating each other, a complete accident, and the ultimate cause of my mother’s death. Her body had been primped and pulled, and surgically made unfit for childbirth. The few nurses in training were not prepared for the task of cutting my brother from my mother’s tiny form and ended up flaying her in the process.
By that time most people were more worried about what had happened on Earth and if we were officially the last of the colonies, but my parents had been raised to ignore the pain of the populace, plus they had shit-tons of money so what the hell did they care about bringing another pair of lungs into existence. I was born into a wealthy governing family and after Earth failed, everyone located in the colonies began to starve or suffocate but my family maintained normality by hiding away in their ivory tower.
When they came for my father I was ready for them. My brother, myself, and our caretaker Ming - yes, the very same Ming Lee that fought beside me in the Vokkna Wars, but she was a gangly 19 year old girl at this time. We were the only people in the house other than my father, and when the cries came from the door we knew they had come to kill him. I stood in the entry way with the only blade I could find and waited for the mob to break down the door to our compartment. Judas, small even for an eight year old, clung to Ming in the corner of the front room. I knew my father would die that day, and was fully aware that he deserved to die for misuse of the colony and its funds, but I refused to allow them to kill him without a fight. I was able to slice the throats of the first two men through the battered doorway before Ming disarmed me and pulled me into the corner with her. I was spared purely because of her cries for mercy. My father, John T. Sturgeon, died in a pathetic heap at my feet and I did not cry for him.
I got to keep my job as a Searcher even thoughbut up until 75 years ago I had yet to find any sign of life in the surrounding solar systems, and by the time I set out on what would be my final Searcher mission there was only enough fuel left for one more trip past Andromeda. But of course, something happened, or else this wouldn’t be a very interesting chronicle.
- R.T. Kilgore