She kept checking her phone and email, wishing someone would make contact. Lilith closed down her communication band and scrubbed her hands over her face in exasperation with a groan. She pushed away from the monitoring station and stood. She stretched, leaning her head this way and that until her neck popped.
“It’s not like I’d hear them anyway,” she muttered.
Lilith picked up her equipment and unsealed the hatch as the hour chimed. The monitors and her tablet screen provided the only illumination available within the tight space. The background thrum of electricity intensified as she crossed the threshold from monitoring station to main corridor.
After resealing the hatch, Lilith pulled a flashlight out of her tool belt and thumbed it on. She squinted against the glare of it until her eyes adjusted, and then she began her inspection. Turning the flashlight’s beam on the walls, Lilith searched for any hint of moisture or fatigue within the structure.
The rhythmic thrumming in time with her heartbeat might have lulled her to sleep if it weren’t so loud. She thought it odd how it could be soothing, irritating, and creepy all at the same time.
Her inspection rounds took about an hour for her to complete when nothing was amiss. Lilith thought she might manage to finish faster after a few weeks making the rounds three times each shift, but she returned to the monitoring station seconds before the hour chimed again.
Lilith sealed the hatch and sighed as she sat down at the monitoring station once more. She brought the screens back up and checked her email out of habit.
A message from her baby sister was waiting. All it said was, “Call me when you get the chance.”
Lilith’s heart raced and her thoughts whirled with a million and one reasons they’d want her to call after forgetting she existed for weeks. Her hands shook as she dialed.
Gracie smiled back at Lilith from the screen a moment later.
“What’s the matter?” Lilith searched the background for any clue what was up she could find, but it was the same disaster of a shared room she’d left behind.
“Nothing,” Gracie answered, looking confused. She grimaced. “Sorry to interrupt your solitude, but I just had to make sure you knew.” Gracie bounced in her seat.
“We’re in the news!” Gracie giggled. “Everyone’s all in a tizzy over this project Dr. Daedalus’ daughter’s trying to get started, and Grandma Peter’s signing up!”
Lilith’s head spun as she tried to follow what her sister was saying. She ran a search for Delphinius in the news online and went back to something else that was bothering her. “Why hasn’t anyone called?”
“You wanted time to yourself,” Gracie answered with a shrug. “You weren’t exactly subtle about it, so we’re leaving you alone.”
“I was an idiot,” Lilith groaned. “I’m lonely and bored half to death. Please interrupt my solitude!”
“I won the bet!”
Yes, I'm back in the Icarus verse this week. Sorry. Still, I hope you enjoyed this little side story. As of yet, this will probably be all you will see of Lilith and Gracie, but the prompt brought cramped and lonely conditions within the geothermal domes that supply the Atlantic Coalition with power to mind. It gave me an excuse to explore that bit of the larger universe, which may or may not prove useful in the future.
Each of the flash fiction stories in this series are 500 words or less, and I get the prompts either from a random first line generator or reader suggestions. So far I've had to use the generator exclusively, but I really want this series to become more interactive. I have a feeling reader prompts will be much more fun to write.
If you have a prompt you'd like to see me do, please leave your first line in the comment section below. I'll screen shot it and add it to the bank I have going. Reader suggestions will be given priority over random generator prompts.
A. B. England is a small business owner, home-schooling mom, novelist, all around geek, and avid crafter. She loves fantasy, mythology, and all flavors of science fiction.
Yekara Series Book 2
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Yekara Series Book 3
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