Any sort of feedback is welcome. Even if it's to tell me to give it up.

Kevin woke up thirsty and aching everywhere. Like the time he had Grey’s plague he was in his childhood home with his sisters watching over him. As the son of President Amanda Dunkin he couldn’t recover in a common hospital. If this was anything like before the convenient location didn’t mean his parents would visit often.

The absence of his parents didn’t bother him. Though he might’ve paniced if his sisters were gone. He’d dreamt they’d been hurt in the quake too. Any physical danger to them, and he’d set aside his smooth image and get primitive... Even if he was the only one not to earn his self-defense key and barely got the survival one with Kate’s help. He was the male.

With only a year between each of them they were closer than most sibling. Not that it was timed so for that reason. Amanda claimed she’d wanted to get all her gestating over and done with quickly. Kevin believed she used her reproductive license to its limit simply as a status symbol. Perhaps she had wanted to deny a neighbor something they dearly wanted. Like when she bought tripple the acreage she needed to isolate their residence.
Maybe at some point I'll get this beta'd , put headers up with links and tags. I haven't got the beginning of this part right, but I want to keep going with it.

He didn’t get the chance to wonder what a name “not meant for ears” sounded like. The moment he said the words, he knew. It didn’t sound like anything. It felt wonderful.

III

It was both a physical sensation and an emotional one, like a baby’s tiny fingers instinctively grasping yours, or a lover’s first kiss. It said, ‘Hello, this is me. What is the shape of your soul?’ Kevin didn’t know how long this heaven lasted.

The dull thud- creek- thud sound of rescue-bots pulled him back to painful reality. One ‘bot commanded, “Remain still while we assist you.” His vitals were scanned and a mask was slipped over face.

After that the voices of ‘bot seemed to come in waves. Shouting one second far away the next. The audible version of those strange antique photos his mother had. He recalled giggling as a child at the term ‘fish-eye-lens.’ Was there a ‘fish- ear-what’s-it’ too? The lucid thought that a sleep-inducer was added to the oxygen slipped away like a gold fish.

The report from one of the rescue-bots that Joe seemed loud enough to cause another cave-in. Kevin wished the mask would allow him to reprimand it. Not because of the danger, it put him in. Something like that should be said in hushed reverent tones. Even if the sole living being to hear it already knew the moment it happened.
I took a nap this afternoon and managed to sleep so now I'm going to be up all night. It's cliché crap but at least I'm distracted .

II


When the after-shock ended Kevin asked, “You still with me, Joe?”

“Yes, but not for much… Can you learn my name, please? Remember it. I have no one else -- even out there. There’s nobody.”

Those words had the weight of a last request. Kevin would almost rather have had another beam land on top of him. He wasn’t the last request type. He was the type you wanted around because he was fun and looked good on holovid. Most of all because of who his mother was.

He wanted to say something to falsely reassuring to Joe. Then he felt something warm drip onto his neck. Even in the dark he knew Joe, the person who had saved his life {for the moment, anyway} was bleeding on him. He recalled a joke he’d heard recently about alien blood and he wondered what color it was. He gulped stale dusty air before saying, “Yes, I’ll remember. If I’m around for 10 minutes or 100 years longer than you.”

He didn’t get the chance to wonder what a name “not meant for ears” sounded like. The moment he said the words, he knew. It didn’t sound like anything. It felt wonderful.
SF It's un edited and probably makes no sense...



“I think I can hear the rescue-bots digging. It won’t be long.” Logic told Kevin not to talk. To conserve what little air they had until rescue. His instincts begged him to scream, call out to rescue-bots that they were alive, even though they sensed body heat not sound. Instead, he talked to Joe in a quiet desperate whisper because he didn’t want to die alone in the dark.

Joe said, “Name not Joe. Ust simpler for use.”

“So what’s you’re real name?”

“It’s not for ears.” There was a water-y sound to Joe’s alien accent that shouldn’t be there. It frightened Kevin more than the pain in his own legs. He knew next to nothing about Joe’s people but what if that was sign he was dying.

“Okay, Mr. Not-For-Ears, I can see why you go by ‘Joe.’”

Joe whispered brokenly, “Poor—joke.”

“Yeah. Well, I’m not at my best lying under half a building. Maybe I’ll get a new set of legs after this. Women think cybernetics are sexy.” An after-shock hit. He heard the building groan and debris rained down like hail on the prairie. Joe must’ve shielded him again because none of it hit Kevin.

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appomattoxco

August 2013

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