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Monday, January 1, 2001


After alien ships have invaded the human territories, destroying planets and sending the survivors fleeing to Earth, the Terran government orders the refugees to settle a new planet. One that has just been terraformed.

Jeff Koenig, one of the few survivors from the Delious system, leads a team of scientists to the planet Dauphin to rebuild his life. They have 70 days until the ship returns with the first wave of colonists, but from Day 1 everything goes wrong.

As the days count down, the colonists watch the skies and pray that the Hurluk won't find them, or Earth, before they are rescued.

Originally published in M-BRANE #5 summer of 2009

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On the view screen the Sol System danced. Planets glowed like phosphorescent pearls in the sea of space. Doctor Jeff Koenig, lead scientist on the Dauphin settlement project, traced the image of Earth with his finger. He’d been born on Earth and left for the Delious system as soon as he could afford the emigration fees. Brilliant Delious, whose fourteen planets and all their many moons had been blasted into rubble by Hurluk world-destroyers. Only Delious Four remained, orbiting in isolation without her three moons.
He’d never meant to come back.

Now he was leaving for a second time.