“The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the Lord come.” Joel 2:31
And so it happened, that on the dawn of a winter’s day in the year of our Lord, two-thousand thirteen, a great comet blocked the sun with its icy tail and plunged the earth into darkness. The moon still hung red in the sky for a few more hours, until the moment of impact, when the dust and debris from our ravaged planet shrouded it, too, in deathly clouds.
From our vantage point on the space station, we could only watch, as on the surface of our planet, some two hundred miles away, life as we knew it was slowly suffocating. A mass extinction the likes of which hadn’t been experienced since the dinosaurs. The end of all human life.
Except there we were. And here we are still.
There were nine of us on board the station when the mighty comet struck. Quite possibly the only nine humans left alive… or at least we will be, when the dust finally settles and we can return to our home.
And we are all men.
There are the two astronauts and one cosmonaut who regularly manned the station, along with the commander and flight engineer from the shuttle which had carried us here, all gentlemen. And then there are the four of us: AJ, Nick, Howie, and myself. It seems cruelly ironic that we were hailed as the first “boyband” in space. Now we represent nearly half the entire human population, all of us “boys.”
The realization didn’t come to us at first. In the days and weeks after Doomsday, as we call it, we were too wrapped up in our state of shock and grief. We mourned the loss of the families we would never see again: wives and girlfriends, children and parents, brothers and sisters. We mourned for our friends… all those people we had known in our brief lifetimes, those lives we had touched, never to know or to touch again, until we reach the place where their souls had gone, or would soon go.
Though my faith has been tested, I still believe there is such a place and that we, too, will go there one day. In the midst of my grief, I realized that that day, when the last of us passes from this life into the next, would mark the end of the human race. The day the last human being takes his final breath.
When that realization surfaced, I couldn’t help but question the Lord. How could the Creator who gave us the gift of life allow it to be taken away so suddenly, and yet, for the nine of us, so slowly, and so cruelly?
For many months, I grappled with anger and skepticism. I forsook all that I had been taught from the Bible and fell into a state of depression, depravity, and sin. The space station, once thought of us as a one-of-a-kind vacation destination, became our prison, our hell. We were condemned men. Below us, life had been snuffed out, and though we had survived, we were living on death row. And like prisoners, deprived of all worldly pleasures and women’s touches, we turned to each other for comfort and satisfaction.
The first time I let Nick sodomize me, I felt utterly vile. My guilt trip lasted days, during which I wondered how God would ever let a sinner like me into Heaven to be with Leighanne and Baylee again. After that, I just stopped caring. For awhile, I even stopped feeling.
It was Nick who taught me to feel again.
I have always loved him as a friend, a brother, but there on the space station, the love between two doomed men grew into something more. I no longer cared about being a sinner; being with Nick felt good. He was all that I had left, and so I let our relationship blossom.
And rather than punishing us, the Lord, my God, so forgiving and compassionate and kind, gave us a miracle.
I have always been taught that He works in mysterious ways, and now I know this to be true. For whatever reason, He allowed his creations to be destroyed, but not completely. Through His power, life will continue even after we are gone.
This I know, without a doubt. I can feel it beneath my fingers, as they caress my swollen belly. There is movement within it. A kick.
I gasp. “Nick!”
He turns to look at me, his two perfect brows arching above his questioning gaze. A smile stretches across my face, as I beckon him over.
“She’s kicking. Feel.”
I don’t know for a fact that I am carrying a girl, but somehow, I am sure of it. Maybe the Lord is whispering it to me. Somehow, I can feel it.
When Nick comes, I take his hand and guide it to the spot where I felt the pulse of her tiny foot. His palm feels warm on my skin, and I smile again at the pleasure of his touch. He smiles too, as I replace my hand over his, and we wait for her to kick again.
She does, and the expression on Nick’s face is priceless. I’m reminded of how I felt when Leighanne was pregnant with Baylee. Now I am in her shoes, experiencing this miraculous sensation from the inside out.
Our daughter is strong, I can tell. One day, I hope, she will use those feet to walk across our Earth. It will be a changed place, but we still hope to raise her, and the next generations, there. We are heading back now. Howie is also pregnant with AJ’s baby, only a few weeks behind me, and we both hope to give birth at home, where there is fresh oxygen and gravity. What we will find when we make it back inside Earth’s atmosphere, we do not know. We can only hope to land on a planet ready for new life.
Nick and I already have a name picked out for our baby girl when she is born. We’re going to call her Eve. It means life. It’s only fitting, seeing as how she will be the first woman on this new planet.
Howie floats up beside us, stroking his own belly, which is beginning to rival mine. Maybe he’s carrying her Adam. We can’t be sure.
Nothing seems certain, as we hang there side by side, gazing out at our planet. When the comet hit, it seemed so small, so vulnerable. Now that we are getting closer, it looks bigger, and we see it again as the majestic planet it once was. The dust has settled there, we can tell – its reddish glow is gone. It looks as it once did, a beautiful, swirling orb of green and blue, and despite our uncertainty, we are eager to return. And rebuild.
“This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; this one shall be called Woman, for out of Man this one was taken.” Genesis 18:23
This story was written for the Absolute Chaos April Fool’s Challenge in 2008. The challenge was to write a short story under an alias that was completely out of character and different from what you usually wrote. That is how I came to write a sci-fi, m-preg slash. Though it wasn’t meant to be taken seriously, I hope you enjoyed it!