I could barely see it past my tears. The meteor collided with the Earth, a colossal mass hurtling through space at unfathomable speed. Just as quickly as it appeared, it was gone. I watched, along with the others in the space station, as what was left of our planet drifted through space, cosmic dust made up of friends and family. There had been little warning the day before, just a simple, “We’ve got something coming, Nelson. Something big." It buzzed in through the speakers, transmitted from the base back on Earth.
Two took their lives that night, both from overdose. Who could blame them? There was nothing to return to. We would float waywardly in space until our food supply depleted. Another put his suit on and went for a space walk, never to return. The remaining three of us decided to wait.
For what? We weren’t sure.
The mission was supposed to last less than a month; we had enough food for two. With the decrease in mouths to feed, we could last four months. We passed the time talking and revealing secrets about ourselves. What did it matter? We were all on a countdown. One died a month in, decided to take a spacewalk as well. We watched him float off into the distance until he disappeared from sight.
We read the same books and watched the same DVDs a hundred times over. Chess and Scrabble were the only games we had with us, I wish we’d brought more. Considering the circumstances, with the Earth floating away through space in pieces no larger than hailstones and the last of the human race trapped in a hunk of steel waiting to die, we were in stable mental health.
I’d lost track of time, but I’d say it was a little over half a year when we ran out of food. He died a month later, leaving me alone, the last human being.
I lay in my bed, my organs on the verge of shutting down, moments before being taken by death. After seven months of inactivity, the station’s speakers buzzed to life.
“We’ve got something coming, Nelson. Something big.” I glanced out the window.
“Probably some dust on the telescope lens,” I laughed.