http://i.imgur.com/jUDEo1u.jpg

 

Her large blue eyes could barely look away. Even as the storm winds howled all about the surface transport. This part of the ride had always frightened her, and yet filled her with an insatiable curiosity. From her window seat, she could see them clearly. Lines of men walking about metallic planks, only held firmly in place by magnetic locks on the soles of their boots. She would watch as they tilted and swayed, back and forth ever so carefully. The tools they used created beautiful colors. Sending sparks all about as they dug away for this world's buried wealth. Their movements reminded her of flowers on a windy day.

She could never see their faces. Only an orange glow that would come from their visored helmets. And though she knew that they must be saying something, she liked to imagine them singing instead.

"Papa, what are those people doing?" she asked

Her father look at her, "You've asked me this before Samus."

He looked out the window. "They are looking for something valuable."

"But, how do they know it's there?" Samus asked

"Well," her father smiled "I think they hope it's there."

The girl turned back to the window, brushing back red locks from her face. There was a pause, and her father could see his young daughter furrowing her brow.

"Is it hard?", she asked.

"Yes Samus. It is hard." he looked out at the miners blasting their way through rocks, toiling in deadly conditions amidst an ethereal backdrop of fog, smoke and the dancing light coming from their tools and machinery.

Young Samus placed her small hands in her lap, and looked at them as if they were not her own.

She lifted her eyes towards her father, her facial expression seeming oddly beyond her years. "Papa, why do they do it?"

Yanus Aran looked out the window sadly, then back at his daughter.

"Well, they may not have choice."

He could see the confusion in Samus eyes. Eyes exactly like her mother's.

"Sometimes it can be very hard to find things of great value."

Samus sat still, her eyes searching him. Her father knew what the look meant.

He leaned forward. "You, already have something of great value right here." , pointing at her heart. "And I promise you it will not be as hard to find."

He leaned back into his seat, closing his eyes.

"Quiet your mind Samus." , he said, peering at her once more with a smile and one opened eye.

"Or your face will stay like that."

Samus eyes stretched wide, and she covered her face with her small hands. "Nooo."

Yanus leaning back once more, chuckled softly, even as sleep began to overtake him.

 

It was the shaking that woke her up. As the fog of sleep faded away, she could now hear the sound unfiltered. Loud explosions that seemed to come from all around. As she struggled to sit upright, sharp pain pierced her thoughts. She looked down at her restraints. The guard had made them too tight, and now thin red lines circled her wrists.

Vimo leaned close to her with a bitter smile.

"Morning. You woke up just in time for the show."

"You believe this? The Federation hunts us down, tries and convicts us as traitors. Sentences us to imprisonment for life, and we may die at the hands of our own."

The woman sat upright, trying to find a more comfortable position. She pushed back strands of crimson hair from her eyes. A habit she'd had since...

"We knew the risks.", Samus said "It wasn't as though we had a ch-- "

Samus stared at Vimo as though she'd seen a ghost, then turned away. Vimo chuckled, his eyes stretched wildly, then came a ragged cough. He leaned his head back, weary eyes surveying the scene outside the shuttle windows. Small explosions flashed across the planetary horizon.

"What are we doing here Samus?"

He looked at her directly now, his face suddenly still.

"I mean, really. All of this. Look around you. Does it feel like anything we did made a difference? And now? Did you ever envision a moment like this in your life?"

Samus laughed bitterly, "My life."

"Don't get me started there." She winced as she rubbed her wrists. Now there was traces of blood where the restraints dug into flesh.

"I've lived with disappoinment my entire life. I've learned when to accept loss."

"Not this!" Vimo bellowed, kicking the seat across from him. "Not this."

He looked at her with eyes full of anger.

"This is different. You know what happens if they win. It's all over, and you know it. And you know they won't stop at victory. All that bullcrap about peace, and having a unified Federation??"

He leaned closer to Samus, his face turning as red as a furnace. "They will hunt whoever is left. They will. They will slaughter anyone who doesn't share their great 'vision'. So don't look at me like I'm crazy for not accepting this as easily as you obviously have."

Samus rolled her eyes and looked back at her friend. "We're on a prison transport, VIMO. Headed to a maximum security prison colony, on a planet that even raiders are too afraid to land on. So if you have some ideas about what to do, or what my attitude should be, then please... enlighten me."

Vimo stared at her with eyes both cold and vacant.

Samus stared back.

"I ran bounties all across this Galaxy, Vimo. The things I've seen, by any standard of measure... I should have been dead a long time ago. I don't do very well with thinking about what might have been. All I've ever had is what's in front of me. Look out there, Vimo. It's a big universe. And most of the time, it wants to kill you. There are always things TRYING TO KILL YOU! So the way I see it, we're either going to find a way to survive, or we won't. And I'm fine with either. We don't get to choose our fate. Our fate finds us."

The words felt strange even as Samus said them.

Vimo cocked his head to the side and locked eyes with Samus Aran. "And why do I get the impression that you don't really believe that?"

 

 

Thanks for reading. This marks the first part of a free-writing exercise I wanted to try as a personal challenge. I gave myself a few rules. This is purely off the cuff. No planning, no outline, no rough draft. My only reference will be important facts and key information from the Metroid series courtesy of various Metroid wikis. I hope you enjoyed what you read. I sincerely welcome feedback.