Chester Harper: The Mission

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The Mission 

By Chester Harper

Leaving our beautiful, becoming overcrowded, blue and green planet, we were filled with optimism and excitement. Our most learned scientists had found a planet, only three systems from ours, that had atmospheric and planetary characteristics that made it habitable. 

Our mission, as a survey team, was to assess the planet for resources; observe any indigenous people, and evaluate for possible colonization. As we approached the planet, our scanning technology indicated many areas of possible habitation. We steered clear of all of these and set down in a beautiful valley full of flowering vegetation and snow-capped mountains in the background. Overall, it was almost as stunning as our home planet. 

After assessing the natural resources by taking core samples, and analyzing atmospheric and water quality, we were pleased with our findings. Pollutants were present but not in significant or irreversible quantities. Flora and fauna were abundant in all areas surveyed. The final analysis was to be of the indigenous people. 

We chose to land our ship in a large, plant-filled clearing in the midst of a large urban area. Our presence was immediately noticed by the natives. They could not approach our ship due to the large area our thrusters had burned into the landing area. We hated to mar the landscape, but we needed our thrusters to slow our descent and align our landing. It would be twenty-four hours before the area cooled enough for us to exit the ship and attempt contact. In that time, we would monitor the archaic transmissions we had detected upon landing. 

Analysis of the transmissions was very disturbing to our peace-loving minds. It seemed there were major factions that met in large meeting halls to discuss issues. We were unable to fully translate the language and relied upon physical cues provided during animated discussions, however, the factions seemed to be unable to agree upon any issue. While they sat in the meeting halls and conducted these disturbing meetings, other natives performed ritual sacrifices to their obviously bloodthirsty gods. Not even the unborn were safe from these sacrifices. It was soon apparent that our peace-loving civilization would never be able to assimilate into the current civilization and would not be welcome here. 

Sensors set off alarms within the ship. Natives in large vehicles, as well as natives on foot, had surrounded the ship. Analysis of the vehicles and the unusual metallic objects carried by the natives on foot indicated that they all contained explosives. For the safety of our ship and crew, we would need to leave the planet. Perhaps, in the future, we could return when the indigenous people had had time to evolve into a more peaceable civilization or, more likely, had destroyed themselves. 

As we fired our thrusters, unfortunately incinerating the vehicles and people surrounding our ship, we set our scanners to receive one of the stronger signals we had encountered. Focusing on this one signal and applying boosters to the signal, we should be able to monitor it for quite some time during launch. We would save all transmissions received for our scientists to analyze. Perhaps they could translate the strange language and help us interpret what we had experienced. 

This is a readout of the final transmission we received as we were leaving the planet’s gravitational pull: 

Today, in an obvious act of aggression, the unidentified aircraft that landed a little more than twenty-four hours ago blasted off from Central Park in an inferno that mortally wounded all of those within several yards of the blast. Peacekeeping troops that had surrounded the aircraft and were attempting communication with the occupants were all killed. It is unknown, at this time, the origins of the rocket. Russian or Middle Eastern origins have not been ruled out, although that is doubtful. It is unknown which countries possess the technology to have performed such a flight and such a heinous attack. Stay tuned for updates as they become available, and join us in remembering those courageous men and women who were lost today and their families left behind during this difficult time for our nation. This is Lester Holt reporting.

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Please visit Chester on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/C-W-Harper-Author-101485477895994/

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