Pulvis Et Umbra Sumus, Part II



Scene Title Pulvis Et Umbra Sumus, Part II
Synopsis In the fallout, something has awakened from the Antarctic ice…
Date January 18, 2010


The sky was streaked with nacreous clouds when the C-141 Starlifter rolled along down the blue ice runway outside of McMurdo Station and took to the air, the vistas offered the pilots and passengers one of mother-of-pearl colours stained iridescent across the eternal day as if some mad painter had taken a brush to the heavens in an ecstasy.

It was a beautiful sight, so long as one didn't think about the role that beauty may play in the rending of the ozone layer.

The parts of the plane not loaded with cargo were spartan, uncomfortable seats occupied by civilian and military personnel rotating out, escaping 'The Ice' for the comparative comforts of Christchurch - some of whom had just arrived, returning due to the unexpected accident that collapsed the glacier around the Amundsen-Scott Station.

None of them knew about their other passenger. The presence that lurked concealed within one of the cargo crates, listening to the annoyed grumblings and cheerful chattering of the passengers without their knowledge, that had crept onto the airstrip and the vessel mere hours after the last members of the Apollo teams had been airlifted back to the USS George Washington.

Many hours later, the C-141 set down beneath the clear skies of New Zealand, bouncing slightly against the blacktop before rolling to a halt to disembark its passengers and cargo both. It was summer in Christchurch, a balmy seventy degrees seeing the new arrivals stripping out of their winter gear in relief and inhaling air that didn't burn the lungs with frost.

The other passenger was off the plane with them before the cargo was offloaded, mingling with those who belonged while remaining unidentified, amongst them although his presence remained unnoted.

Airport security was penetrated at 1700 hours, although that breach was never to be discovered.

LAN Flight 117 to Buenos Aires left exactly three hours later, and the stowaway from Antarctica was on it.

One step at a time, he was returning. If he could still smile… he would have.

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