I’ve always been a bit of a fantasist, making up stories with friends to entertain each other, which is probably why I’m here now, to reconnect with my creative side that enjoys writing.
Our weekend getaway was turned into a nightmare by an uninvited guest.
We drove up the snowy, winding road towards the cozy A-frame cabin. Me and my best friend Jake had decided to book a weekend break in a small cabin in the forest. We had known each other since elementary school and we had done everything together, but for the last few months we had both been distracted with work and family commitments and not had the opportunity to see one another, and this weekend was meant to help us reconnect. We had left just after 2PM on Friday, but after a couple GPS malfunctions, reading a map upside down and an abundance of traffic, we didn’t get there until it was already dark. Even with snow chains and my headlights on full beam I still had to drive cautiously so I didn’t get stuck or end up driving off the road as the heavy snow made it hard to see. Finally the headlights illuminated the sight of an A framed cabin getting closer, I smiled to myself when it came into view, happy that the long car journey was finished, and at the thought of a nice cool beer next to a warm fire in a cozy wooden cabin. I stepped out of the car, the snow was almost shin deep. A faint feeling of unease hit me as I stared up at the cabin. It stood in the middle of a small clearing surrounded by trees with no lights on. The darkness gave the structure an intimating, almost creepy atmosphere, but I brushed those thoughts aside and reassured myself I’ll feel better once we’re settled. I threw the front door key to Jake, which he expertly caught with one hand.
What lurks on the surface of Europa?
“Nobody can hear a scream in the vacuum of space, or so they say. Well this clearly was the case for the crew onboard the New Horizon.” Commissioner Jemma O’Donnell addressed the conference room that evening. Sitting at the table to her left were search and rescue team leader Nikki Adams, who as usual was listening intently to the words of her higher-up. Next to her sat James Patterson, sitting with his elbow on the table and face resting in his hand looking bored also as usual. On the other side of the table was mechanical engineer Anthony Tailor, and the newest member Alex Briggs, who was trying his best to look like he was paying as much attention as possible. “The New Horizon took off from the Intergalactic Research Institute’s new space station on Mars on its expedition voyage to the Jupiter moon Callisto.” O’Donnell continued, pointing to a large flat screen on the wall with a map of Jupiter and its moons. “It’s last known location was somewhere here.” Gesturing towards the moon Europa on the map. “Orbiting around the Europa shortly before losing all contact. It is presumed that something mechanical went wrong onboard the New Horizon and the craft had to make a crash landing.”