Greetings from Europa!
Before the terraforming project, Europa’s atmosphere was virtually nonexistent due to the gravity being roughly thirteen percent of Earth’s. Now, with the aid of vegetation, the atmosphere is equivalent to living in a high-altitude region on Earth, which my lungs have acclimated to when I am at rest, but I have to employ breathing techniques when attempting anything strenuous.
The only reason I’m mentioning this is that there is almost no weather here, nothing severe, anyway, no rough wind conditions, and no harsh seasons. Yet, the sky has been shifting colors ever since a Denpa brought news of the suspicious death of Rezter, a Europan from Dery’Ylok Prefecture, who was rumored to have been beaten to death by a member of Sel’tab, a tribe that was supposed to have been extinct since the assassination of the spiritual prophet Nes’Tim.
As our community listened in bewilderment, it struck me as amazing that this simple death of one Europan in a small village could affect everyone so drastically. On Earth, it was a given that deaths occurred all the time, some natural, some accidental, and others by violent crime, so much so that unbeknownst to me, I had become desensitized to it. Yet, these gentle beings were affected enough to cause fluctuations in the mild weather, which makes me wonder about the true bond between this land and the natives, a connection that I as an outsider would never experience, never be a part of, no matter how long I lived here.
To honor their father’s passing, Rezter’s children, Kubus and Veron, are making a pilgrimage, carrying their father’s corpse in an uz cu’nal from Dery’Ylok Prefecture to the peak of Pwyll to place the body in front of the fossilized remains of Nes’Tim and pray for their father’s entry through the Gates of Juh’holl, where Europan souls are released from the flesh and become stardust in order to rejoin the universe.
As is tradition, families along the way have opened their homes to Kubus and Veron, offering food, aid and sleeping accommodations to help them along the way.
Very soon, Kubus and Veron will be passing through our village and in addition to offering them a place to rest, my youngest son, Jampi, wants to accompany them on their journey. To my surprise, his mother signed off on it and both my daughters are in agreement, so if Kubus and Veron are amenable to the idea, our family will join the pilgrimage and lend our voices to help open the gates to Juh’holl for Rezter.
If I haven’t mentioned it before, although they’re adopted, I really love my children. And though I’m not supposed to have a favorite, Jampi’s in the lead by a country mile.
But don’t tell the others, as these things are subject to change.
Until next broadcast, this is Captain Edwards, signing off.
To be continued…
Text and Audio ©2014 & 2021 Rhyan Scorpio-Rhys
Glossary of Terms
- Abogzons – Gynecological engineers.
- Cu’nal – A biological storage unit.
- Denpa – An envoy equipped with an audiographic memory that can store and recall spoken messages at will in the same voice, tone and inflection of the original person who spoke it, who travels from village to village to deliver messages from other communities both near and far.
- Egami – A docile mineral-based creatures primarily used for family transportation due to the fact they are virtually inexhaustible.
- Gates of Juh’holl – Europan afterlife; where souls are released from the flesh to become stardust and rejoin the universe.
- Ipu llqr mwyll xfrr – Abogzon credo meaning “success or death”; satisfaction guaranteed.
- Isogoles – Europan monthly day of pay.
- Jbwqnadb – Europan spelling of lemonade.
- Meis’lo – The only surviving witness to the murder of the prophet Nes’Tim.
- Micdow yl – The vessels of new life; children.
- Nes’Tim – The most revered spiritual prophet on Europa, slain by a heretic tribe who call themselves Sel’Tab.
- Pwyll – Europa’s highest mountain.
- Qik’climajh – Depending on its usage in a sentence, denotes either the act of telling a story, or the storyteller themselves.
- Sel’Tab – A heretic tribe responsible for the death of the prophet Nes’Tim.
- Shig’umfu – “Interesting world of another”; a documentary qik’climajh in which neighbors tell the story of a person’s life as learned from casual conversations.
- Spo – Food.
- Uz Cu’nal – A biological storage unit used primarily for food preservation.
- Uz – An unspeakable sexual act; a derogatory term; an insult.