the short story project


Anna Stephens

Returning Home

Where I have been, is unlike anywhere you could imagine. They have this thing, that they call ‘life’ – and it is that any object, like us, moves through something they call ‘air’. Air is different to what we experience, you can’t see it but somehow it is everywhere. It supports this thing called life. Somehow everything in this place is connected, and all seems to function well that way, like a huge web of activity which is ongoing and ever-changing. They have insects and the insects pollinate the flowers, which grow just for the purpose of making this place look beautiful. At the end of every day- which is a way they divide something called ‘time’ – there is a huge painting which comes into being and changes the way everything looks. It’s made of all kinds of different colours, and I can never tell how it got there or who put it there. There are many things which they call ‘people’ – blobs of pink and brown, all similar yet different in small ways. Although they are so small they have taken over the whole planet, and yet despite their physical weakness they communicate to each other to build huge metal sticks all over the earth. They zoom around on metal tanks, and have not yet developed the ability to fly as many have on our planet. They grow lots of colourful things from the ground using a mysterious clear liquid which seems to be very important and useful. It is the same colour as their sky, and that is where I think they get it from.

This planet was once a paradise, and in some places things haven’t been changed and have remained in perfection, like our planet. For a reason I cannot understand, these ‘human’ things have a great skill to change this fascinating place, but they often choose instead to destroy it. There are others who work towards beauty, and honour the animals like we do. They protect and care for them, and this I see to be a huge strength of this place. However others use their collaborative power to fight each other and disrespect the animals, which is something I cannot understand.

I am returning home with lots of knowledge and understanding of this faraway land. The ‘human’ things I have spoken of have not yet developed technology like ours to allow them to transgress through space and time. They live within the cycle of their seasons. However in roughly a quarter of a space time, they will probably be able to find us.


I hope it is the ones who respect the animals and the nature, not the ones who want to destroy.

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