A small piece of ‘Harmony’

‘Beneath mangroves’ by Matthew Potenski

Since I’ve been blogging, I’ve been surprised and delighted to discover that the act of blogging itself, and comments from my lovely readers has lead me to write more. I’ve been working recently on a short story, inspired by responses to ‘Dr Who Creatures who missed the cut’, and ‘Are Humans Necessary?’. You can find an illustration of a hoverbeest at the former post.

It’s too long to post here in it’s entirety, and is still a bit rough, but please find a short excerpt below. Hope you enjoy it! 🙂

Having given vent to his feelings, Plevo breathed the fumes of the swamp deeply, and felt a kind of calm return to him, his logical mind reasserting itself. Looking out over the land, a new emotion stole in, of a respect for the loveliness of his planet. Light shone through the ever present steam, refracting into a rainbow of colours. The mangroves stood tall and majestic, their gnarled branches seeming to frame the view of the next settlement, glassy and delicate on the curved horizon. Beyond the city, Plevo noticed the sky darkening, and knew it was time he returned to his own home. Fluttering his villi, he rose from his skirt, and glided out over the marsh. Only ripples showed where he had been.

Getting closer to the settlement, he could feel the warmth of the group-mind reaching out towards him like an invisible quilt: comforting, familiar, and occasionally a little stifling. He had often wondered what it was like for the psiders, with no apparent telepathic ability. They must feel so alone. No wonder they all huddled together at night: physical proximity was the only way they had of feeling comforted in the same way. Plevo noticed a few of them now, travelling on one of the walkways which had been constructed solely for them, its span as fine as spun sugar. They seemed to huddle together at the sight of him, and one called out, but he was travelling at such speed he did not catch what it said.

As Plevo rounded under another walkway, and into the shadow of the institute, which rose high above the marsh, he started to feel the minds of his team more clearly. They were intent on something, but not in accord, so probably not currently designing. He cruised on to a platform, and allowed himself to settle on to a moving plate which raised him high into the transparent structure. The fading light caught edges and corners, making them flash. Soon the moons would rise, giving the whole a silver sheen.


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