Space 2315… Peace, Chapter 15

Alyssia woke up the next day to find that David was already getting dressed. “David?” she asked. “You’re already getting dressed?”

“Yeah,” he leaned over her as she reached up for him and kissed her lips. “I have a meeting with my professor, I have to get going.” He leaned over her and kissed her again. “I’ll see you later my love.” She raised her arms in the air and reached for him. “See you later, David.” She smiled as she thought about seeing him at the coffee shop after classes for the day.

As Alyssia was walking across the campus to her first class of the morning, she was minding her own business for it seemed like it was any other kind of morning on campus. The birds were tweeting, a squirrel ran across the path before her; all was well, at least, it seemed like it. She didn’t feel like she had to be on the lookout for anything bad to happen but that turned out to be a mistake on her part. She was about to reach for the door to enter campus building five when four hooded men jumped out from behind a bush and ran for her and slammed her up against the brick wall of the building.

“This is for you dating a human!” One of the men hit her square in the stomach so hard that it took her breath away. She tried to breathe in but it felt like her lungs weren’t working for she just couldn’t breathe in. Not only that but the hits just kept coming, one after another as she slipped down to the ground. She tried to fight back but every thought was consumed by how much agony she was in as each hit seemed to hurt worse.

“Help,” she mouthed as she felt a hit to her jaw.

“Nobody is coming to help, you alien bitch! You have no right to be here!” Once again, she felt a hit but this time to her right eye, and her vision in that eye became blurry. But that wasn’t the end of the attack. They continued to hit her over and over and over again. She tried with all of her might to fight back but even with her enhanced Zaltaen strength it was still four against one and she was on the losing side. And then came the stab to her chest at which she screamed in absolute agony as the knife was plunged into her not once but four more times, each one more painful than the previous one.

As the beating continued, all she could do was think about how David would react but that thought didn’t last very long at all as she felt her head get slammed against the wall and soon the light of day turned to blackness as she felt consciousness slip away from her like sand through her fingers.

But her being unconscious didn’t stop the beating, they continued to beat and kick her all without mercy until several other students who were passing by noticed the commotion and came running over which scared the four hooded men away. As they came up to Alyssia who was now on the ground in torn clothing and covered in her blood, they all gasped.

One of the two girls, Emily, was overcome with horror at the sight of what was before her. She trembled as she reached into her purse and tried to calm herself enough to press the appropriate buttons on her datapad to activate the commlink app. She continued to tremble as she held the datapad to her ear and screamed. “Campus security! We need help! We need help! We need an ambulance now!”

One of the two men in the group, Justin, knelt next to Alyssia who was lying in a pool of her blood and put his finger to her neck. “Hey!” Amy, the other girl in the group yelled. “You don’t know if that’ll work, she’s a Zaltaen. You don’t know if they have any major arteries in their necks.”

“Then what the hell should we do!” Justin screamed as he looked up. “I need to know if she’s still alive!”

“Oh my God! Oh my God!” Amy shouted as she saw a trail of red blood continue to flow from her. “She’s still losing blood!”

“I know!” Steve shouted. “But we can’t move her! She may have spinal damage!”

“Where the hell is that ambulance!?” Emily shouted into her datapad to her person on the other end of the commlink. “She’s losing blood!” He began to look her over to try and find out where the blood was coming from when he lifted her shirt to find multiple stab wounds in her stomach. “Oh, what the fuck!” He screamed. “They stabbed her! They meant to leave her to bleed out and die!” He watched as blood poured from her wounds. “Where the hell is that ambulance!” He shouted as she tried to apply pressure to her wounds but blood continued to pour out of them.

“What!?” Emily shouted. “They stabbed her?!”

“Yeah,” he pointed at where she had been stabbed at which Emily put her hands to her mouth. “Oh God,” she gagged, “I think I’m going to be sick!” She put her fingers to her lips and turned away only to throw up on the sidewalk.

“God damn it!” Justin screamed as he looked down at his hands covered in her blood. “We need that ambulance now!” Moments later the sound of an ambulance could be heard in the distance. He looked off in the distance and saw someone walking by. “You!” He pointed at her with his hand dripping blood. “Go find the ambulance and get the EMTs over here!” He raised his voice. “NOW!”

“What?” Irida asked. “What happened?”

“Just find that damn ambulance Irida! She was attacked!” She, of course, ran off in the direction of the sound of the ambulance as fast as she could in her shoes that weren’t at all meant for running while leaving the four others with Alyssia on the ground in a pool of her blood. Justin turned to Alyssia who was still unconscious. “Who are you?” He reached for Alyssia’s purse that was covered in her blood and reached into it to look for her campus ID card. “Oh God,” Justin gasped, “this is Alyssia.”

“Who the hell is Alyssia?” Steve asked as he hovered over the bloody scene.

“Alyssia is David Lawrence’s girlfriend! David’s the captain of the university hockey team!”

“David was dating a Zaltaen?” Steve asked, shocked that he would be dating her. “I didn’t know that!”

“Yeah well,” Justin looked back down at Alyssia. “Oh sweetie,” he brushed his hand through her hair that was all matted up with her blood, “help is on the way. Just hold on, help is on the way. Please don’t die sweetie.”

Moments later, Irida came running back over to them with several people in EMT uniforms behind her. “She’s over here, she needs help.” As she came over to where the four of them were standing over Alyssia, Irida saw who it was. “Oh my God!” She smacked her hands over her mouth in shock. “That’s Alyssia! That’s Alyssia! That’s David’s girlfriend!” At once she then ran off in the direction of the coffee shop hoping that maybe she could find Amanda to get a hold of David.

Meanwhile one of the EMTs spoke into her radio. “We have a female Zaltaen that’s unconscious with multiple contusions, possible head trauma.” Amy gasped as the series of injuries were said. “Massive blood loss from multiple stab wounds to her chest. Notify the OR that we’re coming in hot and have synthetics on standby.”

On the other side of campus, Irida ran into the coffee shop screaming Amanda’s name. “Amanda! Where’s Amanda! I need to see Amanda now!” The woman behind the counter knew who Irida was and her reputation for being a bit of a gossip queen. “What the hell do you want Irida?” She put her hands on her hips. “What? To gossip about Amanda. Go away!”

But Irida didn’t go away, she instead broke down sobbing as she collapsed to the floor screaming David’s name. “I need to find David!” she screamed.

“Amanda!” The young woman behind the counter shouted as she turned towards Amanda’s office. “You might want to get out here, Irida’s crying and screaming for David.” Amanda poked her head out of her office. “You might want to find out why.” Amanda casually walked up to the counter and upon seeing Irida on the floor in the fetal position sobbing as she had never seen Irida cry all while crying for David. “David!” She continued. “Alyssia’s hurt!” Meanwhile, others in the coffee shop looked on.

“What do you mean by Alyssia’s hurt?” Amanda asked as she put her hand on Irida’s back to try and calm the sobbing young woman. “Irida… tell me! What’s wrong with Alyssia!”

“She was attacked! They stabbed her. They brutally beat her!” Irida screamed in between sobs. Amanda’s eyes went wide open at the realization that something very wrong happened to Alyssia. “She’s unconscious and she’s lost a lot of blood! They’re taking her by ambulance to the hospital! It’s all my fault!” She hid her face in her hands as she continued to bitterly sob.

“You!” Amanda stood up fast and pointed to the girl behind the counter. “Take care of Irida, I’ve got to find David!” Amanda ran out of the coffee shop as she desperately tried to call David. “Damn it, David! Pick up! Pick up! This is not the time to be ignoring a phone call!”

Meanwhile, across campus, David kept ignoring his datapad as he continued to talk with his professor but after the fourth time he got a phone call, he turned to his professor. “I’m sorry ma’am, I have to get this. Someone keeps calling me.” His datapad kept buzzing in his pocket.

“That’s fine David,” the professor smiled, “you go ahead and take the phone call.”

David pulled out his datapad and tapped the answer button to answer the incoming call and held it up to his ear. “David!” Amanda shouted which made him pull the datapad away from his ear. “Where are you! I need to find you!”

“I’m with my professor, I have a meeting with her. What’s up?”

“It’s Alyssia! She’s hurt!” David jumped out of his seat which startled the professor. “Alyssia’s hurt! They’re taking her to the hospital by ambulance. We need to get there! Tell me where you are and I’ll pick you up and take you to the hospital!” David ended the call and ran out of the office leaving the professor yelling after him down the hall. “David! Where are you going!?”

David turned about while continuing to run down the hallway backwards all while other students were trying to get out of his way. “I have to get to the hospital! Alyssia’s hurt!” He turned back around and continued to run down the hallway as fast as he could pushing past other students who were all screaming and otherwise cursing at him for pushing them aside while running down the hallway.

As he reached the outside door, he pushed it open so fast that it slammed against the brick nearly breaking the glass pane to find Amanda outside with her car. “Get in!” Amanda shouted. “I’ll drive you to the hospital!”

David bolted out of Amanda’s car and ran up the stairs and into the hospital’s emergency room and up to the counter. There was someone else standing at the counter however he didn’t care, he pushed the person aside at which the person yelled and otherwise called him an asshole for pushing them aside. However, David didn’t care; he needed to know where Alyssia was and if she was alright. “Where’s Alyssia!” He shouted at the attending nurse behind the desk. “I need to know if my Alyssia is ok!”

“Sir!” The nurse behind the counter yelled at David who found it all too entirely rude of her to yell at him like that. “Who are you and how are you associated with Alyssia?”

“I’m her boyfriend!” David shouted at which everyone in the room looked his way wondering why there was such a commotion at the front desk. “Where is she?! I have to know! Please,” he begged, “I have to know! Tell me where my Alyssia is!”

“Sir. Would you please calm down?” David closed his eyes and began to slowly breathe in and out and he bent over and put his hands on his knees to steady himself. However, that really didn’t do much for his composure or his blood pressure. “Alright,” the attending nurse looked over the counter, “she’s in surgery but that’s about as much as we know. We’ll know more in a few hours. But in the meantime,” she pointed out at the waiting room, “please take a seat and when we know more, we’ll let you know.”

“Alright.” David walked away from the desk defeated that he didn’t know anything more about what was going on with her. He looked about the room, some people stared at him while others sneered at him. “What?” David asked, not expecting anyone to answer. “My girlfriend is somewhere in this hospital after being brutally attacked simply for being what she is. So yes, you’re God damned right I want to know some answers and I don’t apologize at all for what I did. Don’t sit there and tell me that you’d not do the same if you were in the same situation.” Knowing why he had did what he did softened the way that the others in the room were looking at him.

Amanda walked up behind him putting her hand on his shoulder at which he nearly jumped. “What was that all about?” She asked as he looked up at her standing over him.

“These rude people were…” Amanda cut him off. “Listen here!” Amanda shouted which caused everyone to look up again in their general direction. “David’s girlfriend is fighting for her life somewhere in this hospital.” David put a hand on her shoulder. “Don’t worry, you don’t have to say anymore. I told them as such.”

“Oh.” Amanda blushed in embarrassment. “Sorry folks, you can go back to what you were doing.” The others in the room looked back down in their laps waiting for whatever or whoever they were waiting for.

David, meanwhile, found two chairs to sit down in, one for him and another for her. “Over here,” David said while waving for her to come over to him. As Amanda sat down in the chair next to him, she took hold of his hand. “You have to have hope, David.” He shook his head and frowned; it didn’t help things any for him. “What did they say?”

“All they told me,” David began without looking up, “is that she’s in surgery. As for anything else, I don’t know. They weren’t exactly very forthcoming with any news on her. They told me that I have to wait.” He lowered his head and hid his face in his hands. As he had done so, Amanda reached over. “Hey,” she caressed his back, “keep your hopes up. She’ll get through this. I’m here for you.”

He looked up at her. “I hope so Amanda, I hope so.” He hid his face in his hands again. “I wouldn’t know what to do if I lost her.” He looked up at her again. “I love her Amanda, I love her.”

“I know you do,” Amanda reached over and caressed his back again, “I know you love her.”

As the evening drew closer, more and more people left the hospital’s waiting room, and soon they were the only ones waiting in the room. What made it worse was that every time a doctor came into the room, David looked up in hope that he would get an update on Alyssia’s condition but as the evening drew on with no update, he was getting frustrated. He was about to stand up and walk back up to the desk when someone walked out wearing what looked like a pair of blue-green scrubs and a sort of paper hat on his head which David stood up immediately.

“Hello,” the doctor extended his hand, “I’m Dr. Michael Ashcroft and I’m Alyssia’s surgeon. I have an update on her condition.” Though David wanted to know if she was alright, a part of him didn’t want to know the details of her injuries. “As you probably know, Alyssia was the victim of a physical attack. She suffered multiple contusions as well as head trauma.” David blinked his eyes. “She also sustained multiple stab wounds to her chest and abdomen and in the process, she lost a lot of blood. Since we have no natural Zaltaen blood on hand in the blood banks, we had to use synthetics.” David winced. “I can only imagine that if she were human, she’d be dead right now.”

“God damn,” David whispered. Meanwhile, Amanda closed her eyes.

The doctor continued. “We’ve stitched many of her wounds closed and gave her a triple dose of nanomachines in hopes that it would work on her physiology but honestly, it was a shot in the dark that surprisingly worked.”

“Why are you so surprised?” David asked. “Our two species’ DNA is so very similar it’s…” The doctor interrupted him. “While that may be true, that doesn’t mean that we’re a hundred percent the same; we’re still in uncharted waters when it comes to medically treating Zaltaens. We still don’t know what works and what doesn’t work for their species. The good news is that we’ve stabilized her condition however, here is where the bad news comes into play.”

“Bad news?” David asked. “How much more bad news can there be?”

“She’s in a coma.” David’s jaw dropped open. “And to be honest, we have no idea when or…” David interrupted the doctor. “Don’t say it, please don’t say it.”

Michael sighed. “All I say is that there’s no internal brain damage, a full MRI scan of her brain has shown no damage to any of her brain structures. However, she’s still in a coma and as I said before, we don’t know…” he gulped as he saw the look of pain on David’s face, “when she will wake up. That’s all up to her now, we can’t force her to wake up.”

David closed his eyes and drew in a deep breath to try and regain control over his emotions, he didn’t want to start crying in public. Without opening his eyes, he whispered. “Can I see her?”

“Yes,” Michael turned about, “I’ll take you to her room.”

“Do you want me to come with you?” Amanda asked as she had initially stayed behind in the waiting room. David was silent, the only response was that he nodded. “Alright, I’ll come in with you.”

After quite a bit of walking though the hospital’s many hallways until they came to a room, room number 358. David touched the plaque on the wall next to the door, it seemed… like everything else in the hospital, cold and unfeeling. He traced the numbers on the plaque and looked at the door before reaching for the door handle.

“David?” Amanda put her hand on his shoulder. “Are you ready for this? Are you ready to see her?”

David reached up and touched her hand that was resting on his shoulder. “No,” he shook his head, “I don’t think anyone could ever be ready for something like this in their life. However, I need to see her; no matter what condition she’s in.” He felt Amanda pat him on his shoulder. “Alright,” he steeled himself as much as he could before turning the door handle, “here goes nothing.” He turned the door handle and opened the door.

Amanda looked about the room, the inside the room smelled of cleaning products and it, like the hallways, was also cold and impersonal. The room was sparsely furnished because it only had two chairs situated in it. She continued to look about the room until she had a gasp and looked to see where it had come from and that’s when she saw David with his hands on his mouth.

“Oh my God,” David whispered as he took in the sight of Alyssia just lying in the bed completely motionless with medical machines of all kinds hooked up to her monitoring her life signs. There were screens all around her with data points including what looked like an EKG and the sound of beeps indicating her heartbeat. “This can’t be happening,” he whispered, “it just can’t be.” He walked over to her bedside and took hold of her hand. “We were supposed to be happy together. We were supposed to have a life together.” He dropped to his knees and began to sob uncontrollably at which Amanda knelt next to him and hugged him as he continued to sob against Alyssia’s bed.

Please Alyssia,” he begged as he gently took hold of her hand again, “come back to me. I love you.” Just then a nurse walked into the room. “I want to marry you. I want to have children with you. I want a life with you. I want to grow old with you. Please,” he begged again, “please come back to me. I need you in my life.” He continued to sob into her bed sheets as he held her hand. “Please Alyssia,” he begged yet again, “please come back to me, my love.” He stood up and leaned over her as he ran his hand through her blue hair. “Please come back to me, please wake up.”

After some time had passed, Amanda had fallen asleep in a chair in the room. He couldn’t blame her though; it had been a long day for her. Hell, it had been a long day for him too, but he wanted to make a call to his parents. He took out his datapad and called his mom, he hoped to God that she was still awake back on Mars. He wiped his eyes as best as he could to try and make himself presentable for a video call with his parents. “Mom,” he sniffled, “I don’t know what to do.”

“Son!” His mom screamed. “What’s going on? Why are you crying like that?!” The sound of his mom’s voice startled Amanda and woke her up.

“Mom, it’s Alyssia. She was attacked while on campus and now she’s in the hospital.” He watched as the look on his mom’s face turn to absolute shock as he aimed the camera on his datapad in the direction of Alyssia lying in the bed. “She’s in a coma and the doctors don’t know if or when she’ll wake up. Mom, I don’t know what to do. I love her. I need her. I want her back.”

“David, your dad and I’ll be there as fast as we can.” With that, the commlink ended at which Amanda stood up from her chair and came over to him and hugged him once again. “I take it that you called your parents.” David nodded. “Yeah, I figured.” She rubbed his back. “I don’t blame you; I’d probably do the same if I were in your position as well.” David backed away from her. “Don’t act so surprised. Friends are one thing, but family is another when it comes to situations like this.” He closed his eyes and nodded. “But I think we should get going.”

“Go?” David asked as he watched Amanda walk across the room. “Go where?”

“Do you think that Alyssia would want you to be uncomfortable?” David began to think as Amanda had said. “She’d want you to take care of yourself so that when she does wake up, you’ll be strong enough not only for yourself but for her as well.” He began to nod slowly because she was making sense. “And that starts with getting enough sleep and eating, not torturing yourself.” She was about to continue when David interrupted her. “I get it,” he rolled his eyes, “I have to take care of myself if I want to be able to take care of her later.”

“Right!” Amanda exclaimed. He felt her put her arm around his shoulder. “Come, David,” she tried to smile but a smile just didn’t come to her face, “I’ll have dinner with you so that you’ll have someone to eat with instead of eating alone.” His eyebrow rose. “Hey, I’m not going to let eat alone. Alyssia would want the two of us to take care of each other in this situation. Remember, she was my friend way before you came along in her life.” She kissed him during which he closed his eyes and turned away. “Hey,” she playfully slapped him on his back, “don’t be like that. You’re my friend too you know.” She hugged him. “You may love her and all, but you can have friends too you know and I’d like to think that you still think of me as a friend too.”

“Thank you, Amanda.” He too tried to smile but it just wouldn’t come to his face. “Thank you for being here for me.”

“Sure thing.” She caressed his back in efforts to comfort him during what she knew to be a very painful and traumatic experience in his life.

“I don’t know what I’d do without…” Amanda shushed him as she gently caressed his back once again. “Don’t mention it, David. What are friends for if you can’t call upon them in times like this?” David nodded as they walked out the hospital room door. “But let’s get out of here and get something to eat, I’m starved. I’ll pay for dinner tonight.”

Meanwhile, on Mars, Amy jumped out of her chair and ran into the living room where Steven, her husband was sitting watching that night’s baseball game. “We need to get to Terra!” She shouted. “Our son needs us!”

“What!?” Steven jumped up from the couch as Amy threw his coat at him.

“We need to get to Terra, David’s in the hospital.” A look of absolute horror came over Steven, the thought that his son was in the hospital was terrifying to him. “What happened!” He screamed. “Did he get injured in a hockey game?”

“No,” Amy stuffed her arms into her coat sleeves, “something happened to Alyssia and she’s in a coma.”

Irida sat down at her datapad at her desk and sighed as she thought about what had happened that day, about how Alyssia was lying in a hospital bed in a coma. She reached for a tissue and wiped her eyes and began to think about what she would write for the front page of her website. What could she say? A young woman was attacked for no other reason than for being what she was. She sighed and put her hands on the keyboard and began to type.

Today a most heinous crime happened here on campus. Alyssia, a young Zaltaen woman who’s attending our university was brutally and savagely beaten within a centimeter of her life today. And for what? You may ask. For simply being what she is, an alien. A Zaltaen. A Zaltaen who was simply trying to live her life and have a bit of happiness while in a relationship with a human.

She didn’t ask for this nor did she deserve being nearly killed.

Please, I beg all of my readers here, please pray for Alyssia and her boyfriend David. They need all the thoughts and prayers they can over the next few weeks as she makes her journey along her long road to recovery. Right now, Alyssia’s in the hospital in a coma. I’ll soon make another post on my site with details as to how you can visit the two of them in the hospital and pay your respects.

The next morning David woke up and looked up at the ceiling and looked to his right where Alyssia usually slept by his side and closed his eyes. He folded his hands across his chest and for the first time in a long time, he prayed. “Please God,” he whispered, “I don’t what to do without my Alyssia in my life. I need her God. Please help her. Please send her back to me.”

He sighed as he threw the covers and stood up from the bed and began to get dressed after which he checked his datapad to find a message from his mom saying that they were on the way. It didn’t take long for him to get dressed and as he stepped out into the hallway, he saw Amanda standing outside the room. “You ready to go back to her hospital room?”

“No,” he shook his head, “but I know I have to.” He began to walk beside her. “You’re coming with me?”

“Yeah,” she put her arm around his shoulders, “as I told you last night, I’m here for you.”

“Yeah,” he smiled as he put an arm around her, “thank you. I suppose that I’m going to be needing my friends these coming days more than I’ve ever needed them if I expect to stay sane.” Amanda turned to him. “And you will, you will have your friends by your side. Though I do have to ask,” she looked down the hallway, “what did your parents say?”

“My mom and dad are coming here to Terra.”

“Really?” Amanda asked as she pushed the elevator button. “But don’t they live on Mars?”

“Yeah?” David asked as he walked into the elevator and held the door for her. “So?” He once again asked as he pushed the G button for the garage. “My parents have always been there for me when I needed them the most.” Amanda nodded. “I got a text message this morning saying that they’re on a flight here to Terra as we speak. They should arrive here in Germany in the next couple of hours.” The elevator dinged as the door opened to the underground garage.

“You plan on taking them to see Alyssia?” Amanda asked.

“Of course!” He exclaimed. “That’s why I called them.”

As Amanda and David approached Alyssia’s hospital room, they saw a crowd of people standing around her room. “Hey, Amanda?” He reached out with his hand and pointed at the crowd as they were walking down the hallway. “What do you suppose that’s all about?”

“I may have,” Amanda reached up and nervously rubbed the back of her neck, “told Irida what hospital room that Alyssia was in.”

“You did what?!” David exclaimed.

“I told her what room she was in and from the looks of it, they’re here for the both of you.” David looked at the crowd of people and nearly every one of the people in the crowd was holding some kind of flower, teddy bear, or a card in their hands. As David came up, Irida stepped forward. “Yes David, I did publish on my site where Alyssia was.” She turned to the crowd behind her. “They’re here to give you and Alyssia support in your time of need.” She turned back to the crowd. “Right?” They all hummed in unison.

“Thank you,” David said as he bowed his head, “I don’t know what to say but thank you.”

“You just did,” Amanda put her arm around his shoulder. “That’s more than enough to say.”

“Why aren’t you all in her room yet?” He asked.

“We were waiting for you David.”

“Alright,” he closed his eyes as he walked up to the door and reached for the door handle, and once again steeled himself for what was behind the door. He breathed in and whispered. “Alright, here goes nothing.” He opened the door and walked in with Amanda behind him.

He looked to Alyssia who was still exactly where she was the night before, she hadn’t moved a centimeter. “Hello, my love,” he bent over her unconscious body, “I’m back. And look,” he turned to the crowd of people who had just walked in, “you have people who want to see you.”

The others in the room looked on in shock at the sight of Alyssia lying motionless in the bed.

“Please wake up my love,” he took hold of her hand, “people want to see you. They want to talk to you.”

“Oh God,” a girl in the back of the crowd began to cry. Another had spoken up. “Who did this? Why? What did she do to deserve this senseless beating?”

“I don’t know,” David said without looking up while shaking his head, “though I hear that the people who found her and called for the ambulance that one of the people who attacked her yelled the phrase ‘For Terra’.”

“For Terra?” Someone asked while others in the crowd made sounds indicating that they didn’t know what that meant. “But isn’t that the calling card of The Blue Earth Movement?” Someone else asked. “But I thought that they had crawled into the gutter where they belong?” Yet another person asked.

“They’ve crawled out like rats from whatever gutter they crawled into and attacked my Alyssia,” he took hold of her hand, “for no other reason than because of what and who she is. It’s disgusting that they think that way. I’ve never once seen my Alyssia as anything less because of what she is or where she came from, I love her just the same.”

Meanwhile, in the back of the crowd, Sofie Taske began to think. I have to wonder if this was a result of my article on Irida’s website. She shook her head and balled her fists up. “Damn it,” she whispered, “I have to get to the bottom of this.”

Irida came to the front of the crowd. “David, all of us are here because we wanted to know that you’re not alone in your suffering. A lot of us know Alyssia.” The whole crowd nodded. “We’ve seen the two of you together and we wanted to show you that we care.”

“Thank you,” he looked up all while trying not to tear up at the overwhelming outpouring of compassion not only towards him but Alyssia as well. “Thank you to all of you, it means a lot that so many of you care.”

“Of course, we do.” A girl in the front said. “Alyssia’s a classmate of mine, she’s helped me many times in my classes.” Others began to chime in on their encounters with Alyssia and how much she meant to them. For David, it was all too overwhelming to hear how important she was to so many people on campus. “Needless to say, David,” Irida spoke up, “Alyssia has a lot more friends than she realizes.” They all in the crowd nodded. “But I’m sure you want to spend some time alone with her.” David simply nodded as he wiped his eye. “Alright, let’s do what we all came here for.”

One by one, each person in the crowd placed either a card on a table in the room or a flower arrangement of some kind and a teddy bear somewhere in the room and afterward approached Alyssia’s bed and took told of her hand. Some students simply said that they were thinking of her, others appeared to have said a prayer in silence as they held her hand and looked up at the ceiling. David, meanwhile, watched with awe at what was happening.

As the last person left, Irida approached David. “It’s the least I could do for her and, of course, you. She didn’t deserve this to happen to her.”

“Thank you Irida,” David looked up at her, “all of this meant a lot to me. I can’t thank you enough for organizing all of this.”

“Yeah,” Irida reached out and touched his shoulder, “you take care of yourself. And be careful out there, I wouldn’t be advertising that you’re from Mars with these crazies lurking about. None of us who come from other human worlds are safe here right now.” With that, she walked out of the room and as the door closed, he turned to Amanda. “I have to admit, she’s right.” He rolled his eyes and shook his head and sighed. “Just when I thought that humanity was turning a corner and realizing that hate isn’t the way, this,” he pointed at Alyssia, “happens.” He sighed yet again. “I guess that old saying is true.”

“What saying?” Amanda asked.

“That it’s going to take more than two hundred years to evolve a better humanity.”

“Sadly,” she sighed, “they’re right.”

Just as he said that the door opened and in stepped David’s parents. “Mom! Dad!” He exclaimed as he saw them walk into the room.

“I’ll see myself out.”

“Yeah,” David hugged Amanda before she left, “see you later.” Meanwhile, his mom and dad watched as their son hugged the young woman.

“So?” Amy asked as she watched the young woman walk out the door. “What’s up with her?”

“She’s Amanda, she’s a good friend of Alyssia and me. If it weren’t for her, Alyssia and I wouldn’t be together. She’s,” he sighed, “been there for me since the moment all of this happened.” David hugged his mom. “I’m glad you’re here mom, I…” he started to tear up. “I don’t know what to do.” He looked back at Alyssia who was still motionless in the bed. “I look at her and I feel so… so helpless.”

“I know son,” Amy held her son in her arms, “nobody should have to be going through what you and your girlfriend are going through. And all because…” David sniffled. “All because of what she is, a Zaltaen.” Amy hugged her son tightly. “I know, it’s sad to think that hatred is still alive and well in the collective hearts of humanity.”

Meanwhile, Steven walked over to the bed where Alyssia was lying and looked down at her motionless form. “My God, she’s beautiful.”

“Yeah,” David walked to Alyssia’s bedside, “that she is.” Amy walked over to where he won was standing and looked down at Alyssia and touched her hair and ran her hands gently through it. “Yeah,” she smiled, “she is indeed beautiful.”

“Yeah,” David reached down and gently took hold of his girlfriend’s hand and held it, “that she is.” He closed his eyes after which his mom watched tears fall down his face. “She’s got a kind heart and soul. She didn’t deserve to be beaten like this. Not at all after everything that she’s lost, all the pain and sorrow that she’s endured in her life.” He turned to his mom. “I just want to give her the happiness that she deserves.”

“I know honey, I know it hurts.” His mom took hold of her son once again as he began to sob into her shoulder. “I’m so sorry you’re having to deal with this. It’s never easy to have to see a loved one in a hospital like this.”

“No,” he held his mother, “it’s not. I love her mom; I want to marry her. I want her back mom,” he buried his face in her shoulder, “she’s the light of my life.”

“I know honey,” she caressed her son’s back, “I know.” Meanwhile, she had to wonder if her son knew what he was getting into. Did Alyssia even want to marry him? Did she understand what love is? Did she understand what it means to marry someone? She was an alien after all, no matter how David seemed to not look at her like that. Amy closed her eyes for she couldn’t help but to worry about her son’s future with her.

Steven bent over Alyssia’s bed and ran his hands through her blue hair and kissed her forehead. “Come back Alyssia,” he whispered as he once again ran his hands through her hair, “my son needs you. Please come back to him.” He looked up. “Who did this to her?” Steven asked.

“We suspect,” David backed away from his mother as he wiped his eyes, “that this is the work of the Blue Earth Movement seeing as how the people who attacked her shouted ‘For Terra!’.”

“The Blue Earth Movement?” Amy asked, surprised that the hate group was still active. “I thought they went into hiding after the media and the people turned on them a few months ago.”

“Apparently,” David spoke up, “they crawled out of the hole they were in like the rats that they are.” He turned to his parents. “So I’d suggest you two be careful and don’t say anything about being from Mars, they’re on the rise again.”

“We will,” both Steven and Amy nodded, “we’ll be careful. We’ll keep our eyes open while we’re here on Terra.”

“You two better,” David hugged his mom, “I can’t lose you too.” Amy wrapped her arms around her son and kissed the top of his forehead. “You won’t lose us.”

“How long will you two be here on Terra?” David asked while hoping that they’d be there for a while. “As long as,” Amy hugged her son, “you need us. We’ll be here for you and,” she looked to Alyssia, “her.”

“Thanks, mom,” he hugged her tightly, “I really do appreciate it.”

“Do you want anything to eat?” Amy asked as she held her son in her arms. “We can go get something for you and bring it up to you if you want.” He nodded against her. “Alright,” she let go of her son, “Steven and I’ll go get you something and we’ll be back soon.”

David watched his parents leave the hospital room and sat down next to Alyssia’s bed and took hold of her hand. As he had taken a hold of her hand, he felt it twitch ever so slightly. “Come on my love, you’re almost there.” He whispered. “I’m here for you.”

Meanwhile, on Zalta, Alyssia’s sister, Alydia, screamed. “She was attacked!”

“What!” Ayenda shouted as she ran into the room. “What happened!”

“Alyssia was attacked! She’s in a hospital on Terra where, according to this blog post, she’s in what humans call a coma.” She jumped up from her chair. “I have to get to Terra! I have to see my sister!” Alydia ran out of the room before Ayenda could react. Ayenda, looked at Alydia’s screen as she read the words that Irida had posted and shook her head.

“I swear to the Great Maker that if she doesn’t live, I’m going to make sure that the people responsible for attacking her will pay dearly for their mistake.” She headed for the door. “We will press charges!” She reached for her commlink and called the Queen herself.

Continue to Chapter 16…

Last updated on Tuesday, November 29th, 2022 at 2:13 AM.