2 - Visitor
April 24, 2373
Seth sits on his bed, looking out the window, looking up at the moon, and thinking about his visit to the moon base.
His mother sits down beside him, leaning over to give him a hug and a smile. “Seth, tomorrow morning, one of my friends from the CMG is going to drop by for a short visit.”
Seth’s eyes widen and his mother gives him another hug, laughing softly. “Don’t worry. I know that Saturday is our day. I promise, just a short visit and then …” she gives him a little squeeze, “it’s pizza time!”
April 25, 2373
Seth looks out the window of the flat’s main room, looking up at the sky.
His mother sits on the couch. She glances at the flat’s gate and looks over at the time, displayed on the vid-screen. Looking at Seth, she smiles. “I’m sorry Seth. It shouldn’t be long now.” She gives him a wink as he turns from the window to face her. “Then, we’re off to the mall.”
Seth nods and returns her smile before turning back to the window. He didn’t mind waiting for the visitor. They never had many visitors. Seth could only remember a few times that some visitors had come to eat dinner. That was always on Sunday, in the evening. This was Saturday, in the morning.
He hears a familiar, low, “snap” sound, and turns to face the gate.
A woman with blue eyes and long, dark hair, steps from the gate. She wears Seth’s mother’s badge. Seth recognizes her. She was one of the friends that his mother met with at the market in the mall last Saturday.
The woman looks at Seth’s mother and smiles. “Naomi.”
His mother stands “Tristan”. They approach each other, embracing briefly. She turns to Seth and smiles. “Seth, this is my friend, Tristan.”
Tristan walks to the window and crouches down, taking Seth’s hand in hers and giving it a shake. “Hello Seth. It’s very nice to meet you.”
Seth stares for a few moments, looking at her long, black hair, her light, blue eyes … like stars in a dark sky. He nods. “Hello.”
Tristan smiles, touching Seth’s nose with the tip of a finger before standing, and turning back to his mother.
“Seth, I’m going to talk to Tristan before we go to the mall. How about you watch a vid in your room for a few minutes?”
Seth nods and walks to his room. He touches the screen. He had watched the moon base vid more than 20 times. Now he’d been there, and it was time to move on. With another touch, he brings up another vid, detailing the colonization of Pegasi 51. His eyes widen as he sees the volcanoes and glowing lava.
His thoughts are lost in the red glow, the conversation between his mother and Tristan, a soft buzz in the background. The minutes go by …
Then, he hears a word in the buzz … a name … his father’s name. His attention turns from the vid to the conversation. He hears his mother’s voice …
“… didn’t want me to know. For my sake … and Seth’s”
Tristan’s voice … “Where are these records, Naomi? Do you have them here?”
Seth hears sadness in his mother’s voice … “No, Tristan, not here. It’s been five years. They’re somewhere safe.”
“Naomi, you know that we have to see them before we can do anything.”
“Yes, I know …”
The conversation goes quiet for a few moments. Seth moves a bit closer to the open door of his bedroom, listening …
Tristan … “Don’t worry, Naomi. You’ve really handled this well. If even half of those records prove to be true …” A pause. “Take your time. As you say, it’s been five years. Only the four of us know anything about this, and at your rank …”, Tristan laughs, “I doubt that Jennifer even knows who you are.”
Seth’s mother laughs weakly. “I’m sure you’re right. It’s just that last Saturday, after you left the mall …” she sighs, her voice growing softer, “Sometimes I wish I hadn’t brought it back. After William died, I spent the next year trying to bury it … forget it … pretend it really didn’t matter … concentrate on my happy memories, my career … and Seth, especially Seth.”
“Naomi, it really does matter. You know that, don’t you?”
“Yes, I do. Let’s all meet next Sunday. I’ll bring the records.”
“Alright. Try not to worry. We’re here for you.”
“Thanks Tristan, I know. I’m glad that I decided to come to you first. I don’t mean to rush you out, but I promised Seth we’d have our day at the mall.”
“Of course, Naomi.”
Seth listens to his mother approaching. She stands in the open doorway, giving him a smile. Her eyes are a bit red. Had she been crying? She looks at his vid-screen and blinks, looking back to him, a combination of amusement and surprise in her eyes. “Pegasi 51?”
Seth smiles and nods.
She takes his hand, giving it a little squeeze. “Let’s say goodbye to Tristan, then we’ll go to the mall.”
Tristan stands by the gate, smiling. “Goodbye Seth. I’m sure we’ll meet again.” She gives him a wink. “Enjoy your pizza. I’ll see you at the marketing meeting, Monday morning, Naomi.”
“See you then, Tristan, and thank you.”
Seth smiles and nods “Bye.”
The mall isn’t as crowded as it usually is on a Saturday.
Seth takes another bite of pizza, listening to his mother talk. He always got to choose the topic of conversation. Today, he had lots of questions about volcanoes and lava.