Teaser for my first Sci-Fi work: The Ballistics Division
As Kyra Kurse stepped out of the prisoners’ barracks, she glanced around the grey camp and wondered once again how humanity had been reduced to this. The fourteen year old had spent the last seven years of her life in the labor camps of the Bugaliik Exemplaries, the aliens who had felt it was in the best interest of the citizens of planet Earth to be absorbed into their empire.
After almost two decades of the Bugs integrating with their culture, most humans had been ready to assume that the extraterrestrials truly meant them no harm - and all it took was a single year of widespread destruction to completely destroy that belief. But the Bugaliiks didn’t want to exterminate humanity... They wanted to give them a higher purpose in life, and what higher purpose could there be than dedicating their lives to serving the Exemplary Empire?
Kyra’s parents had been among those captured who fought against the attempts of co-existent servitude, and were taken to the city the Bugs had established on the Moon. She hadn’t seen them since, but their final words to her had haunted the girl in nightmares ever since:
“Protect your brother, Kyra! Whatever happens, keep Kilan safe!”
Almost as if he knew exactly what was going on inside her head, the younger boy joined her outside the barracks just a moment later, taking his big sister’s grimy hand in his own.
“Think anything interesting will happen today?” Ki asked, looking up at her with hopeful eyes and forcing an exasperated chuckle from Kyra. If there was any single way to describe her brother, it was that he always looked forward to the next bit of excitement. Sadly, living in one labor camp after another, Kilan hardly ever got his wish, though that meant the nine year old was always ecstatic whenever something different did happen.
Kyra hated to think of what happen to him when the boy reached his full maturity.
In the time since the Bugaliiks had conquered most of Earth’s civilizations, they had begun implementing surgical procedures that broke a human’s mind and made them unthinking drones, blank slates, the perfect slaves. That was the real reason that they kept youths like her and Kilan in the labor camps across the planet’s surface: as long as kids and teens were still growing and developing, the procedures were useless on them - their brains would just work around the changes, resulting in a being who still had free will.
“Depends.” Kyra said evenly, betraying no sign of her internal fears. “Maybe if Rick gets his act together today, he’ll finally stand up to Bernice and her cronies.”
“Good - he doesn’t deserve to get picked on by them.” As the siblings started moving towards the building that distributed the prisoners’ food, Kilan prattled on about the social injustices of the camp bully, which Kyra was fine to let him do. It was her own fault, in a way, telling Ki bedtime stories about brave people like their parents, who always stood up for what was fair and right.
She’d never had the heart to tell him that the real world was a very unfair place, not fit for honest or innocent people.
“And maybe if the guards weren’t such jerks, or didn’t always rely on the cameras to watch us, they’d see what was really going on and... and... Ky?”
“What’s that?”Kyra looked to the north, towards the mountain foothills that her little brother was staring at. “What’s what? I don’t see any-” She cut off her own words with a gasp, as three vehicles from the Time Before burst out from the foliage that dotted the hills, and came roaring straight for the camp.