Press 9



Also Featuring:


Scene Title Press 9
Synopsis On the eve of a Wolfhound operation, Avi receives a voicemail.
Date January 9, 2018

There is no light pollution to hide the stars anymore.

Vast, open stretches of desert roll away to the ends of the horizon where the black shadows of mountains look like the backs of great, slumbering beasts. The moon hangs low over one such ridge, a sharp sliver of white against a midnight canopy strewn with glittering starlight. Here, it is peaceful and serene.

But that silent serenity is cut by a soft chirp of a cell phone alert, forcibly intruding on the quiet emptiness.


The Pacific Southwest Dead Zone

January 9th

10:15 pm

Backlit by the interior lights of the Tlanuwa’s cargo bay, Commander Avi Epstein cuts a broad shadow that stretches out across the flat of the desert. Noises in the distance are the sounds of Wolfhound setting up temporary shelters for the night; tents being erected, perimeter alarms staked into the ground, it's like the interstitial moments during the war out here. Avi had only just turned his cell phone back on since they left New York. Now, its sceeen shows one new message notification with a tiny, dancing envelope.

1 Missed Call: Em

Avi closes his eyes, slouches his shoulders, and taps the play button on the message and brings his phone up to his ear.

«First Message:»
«Sent: Wednesday January 9, 2019»
«At: 11:12 AM»

He sighs, softly.

«"I don't know if it's good or not that I haven't heard from you yet. Whatever. I'm calling you instead."»

«"Devon wouldn't leave me alone until I let him apologize. He got more agitated about it after New Year. Sounded like you'll be up to something dangerous … again."»


«"Come home safe? I've got something I need to tell you when you get back."»

«"I love you, Dad. Call me back when you get the chance."»

Avi lets his arm go slack and covers his face with one hand, shielding his face with his palm. The tinny, automated voice chirps audibly through the phone’s unoccupied speaker.

«End of message. To replay this message, press 5. To delete this message, press 7. To save this message…»

No one is around to hear him cry.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License