photo prompt by A Mixed Bag


Burden of Mankind

Liam and I waited for airlock pressure to equilibrate before disembarking. The comm system in the EV suits generated a clear signal for a running argument between lovers confined in a flying can the past month. Though both of us clearly hormone-driven, I couldn’t complain about the sex.

“Don’t worry about me,” I said.

He turned so I could see his face through his visor. “You’re kidding, right?”

“Why is this pressurization taking so long?”

“Why are you evading a medical check?”

I swung to read the barometer. “I’ll go, but the first task is to find that ship dealer, Cam7.”

“I disagree.”


His sigh drifted through the speaker. “I love you.”

I turned back. His arms hung loose. His EV suit draped as on a manikin sapped of virility. All the brute wanted was to protect me and our baby.

“We’ll visit the clinic first,” I said.

His suit stiffened with a backbone. His arms animated, and his boots anchored solidly on the deck. Responsible not just for the life in my womb but for Liam’s, too, I wondered if all pregnant women felt the burden of maintaining mankind.


Sunday Photo Fiction: 200-word stories