A Midnight Stroll

It was always midnight here.

Like an old silent film, no colors and no sounds. Of course, it was still brighter here than on the Shadowside. The guys were always joking that if Jim didn’t behave, they’d make him do the maintenance there instead.

Jim was reminded of his grandparent’s house when he was a kid, just after they’d moved out. The old empty house didn’t feel familiar anymore; a haunted house with no ghosts. There were no ghosts here either. Just dust and stars and dark— the vacuum of space took the rest.

Jim’s air tank was the only noise for miles. He’d turned down his comm: the guys were all busy with other work anyway, and he’d be done and back soon. His eyes turned to the sky. Eventually, Jim recalled, Earth would begin to peek over the horizon, its greens and blues and browns adding hue to the grays. Jim’s thoughts drifted to tides and weather patterns and tectonic plates. He thought of Barstow.

“I’m sorry,” he said, but the words vanished. The vacuum of space took his regrets as well.

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