Jude's Last Ride
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I. There are six evils in the world. The Karcists, the Monsters, the Mad Men and the S Theologians.

October 15th, 2017

I was a base 5 about to die.

I could not hear that I was dying. But what I did hear was a sound like prayer.

I opened my eyes and saw a white line cut across the landscape.

Two studded men with thoracic fields crouched at a brown edge, watching over the dark. Their voices were hushed over me. Their faces stroked in time with my breathing and heartbeat.

I could not remember their names, but I did know their faces. They were Hy-Brasilians, or – as their legends have it – Moon Fathers.

"What in heaven's name is your faith?" the most observant man conducted me before I passed out. I muttered back, but his eyes darted across the face of my dying patient. Two blind trees. A black wound running across their cheeks.

"This is it, I tell you," the other man remarked. He leaned forward slowly. "I sleep in a box on the Moon. Do you believe it's true?"

"It's no longer armor. You have already died. I have lost my faith. In this dying hope, you will find us progress."

I had heard the prediction countless times. But I had not died, and looked forward to the day when I would die again.

"The Karcists."

October 17th, 2017

I had heard the prophecy countless times. But I had not died. I was about to die.

"The Monsters."

October 18th, 2017

"The Mad Men." Those six devils had been on my side. They wanted to kill me, but I had been faithful. There was still hope for me to return.

"The S Theologians."

October 19th, 2017

I have not died. But it was nearing the end, and I knew I wanted to die. I had been suffering from nightmares, reminders of old flesh scraps enough for the thin line that I did not consider normal.

But none of them were enough. Every second past a cycle, I would cry.

I looked over my patient's hands and took comfort in the fact that I walked away with him in death. But I did not want him to die. I wanted to give him back.

Dr. Tilda Sky

Director, Site-64


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