Earthrise

By Jeff Buchanan All Rights Reserved ©

Scifi / Thriller

Blurb

The future. Mars has an atmosphere. But the powerbrokers who have funded the multi-trillion dollar experiment are anxious about an untimely event. A detective has been dispatched from Earth to investigate the red planet's very first murder.

Chapter 1

tHE SURFACE OF MARS had been stirred to a violent fury, the virulent winds rousing the sands in blinding wrath, blotting out the sun and making mad the riot with red. The thrashing tumult made cruel play of a chain-link fence, threatening to uproot its poles from their deep moorings of cement. Clinging to the rungs in rebellion against the assault a tin sign rattled in metallic staccato. In descending order down its sandblasted and scarred face, six languages warranted the myriad, towering smoke stacks beyond streaked with rust and spewing acrid plumes that flattened against the wind. Arabic tiered the order, followed by Farsi, then Hindi in Devanagari script, the distinct symbols of Chinese, then Russian. Lastly, the faded letters of English:

NO TRESPASSING

TERRAFORMING STATION NO. 344

The brutal winds reshaped the dunes in their harsh play, revealing long dead plants buried beneath the ocean swells of sand. The various species of seedlings, imported long ago from across space, were harsh reminder of man’s failed attempts to green the great elsewhere of Mars. The ceaseless winds pounded the brittle forests with a tireless ebb and flow of burials and exhumations.

Today, the winds were mischievously uncovering something else hidden in the sand. Entwined within the decaying undergrowth the fingers of a human hand, frozen in rigor mortis, reached statuesquely skyward, the ashen skin drawn taught against the bones in a diaphanous glove.


The mad play of the winds had subsided. They had taken their folly elsewhere. The calm of the new Martian day, just begun, had awakened to perfectly groomed dunes of sand-muted quiet, as still as the bottom of a deep and waterless ocean. It was but an ephemeral gift, existing only briefly in the lull between tumults.

Out of the immaculately brushed sand, barely discernible among the small forest of dead branches, rose the alabaster hand, the delicate fingers frozen in grotesquely elegant posture against the dawn. The winds had further exposed the forearm, which was wrapped with a length of oxidized chain that anchored it in puzzling malice to the thick roots.

Leaving cascading trails in the sand, a group of scientists descended the slope from where their rover was parked, fanning out into the ancient riverbed in private paths of study. They came once a week, dressed in their white jumpsuits and wide-brimmed sunhats in anticipation of the water that was slowly coursing its way down from the Martian pole to wake this riverbed from one million years of sleep. Advancing in her work, one of the researchers was unwittingly headed to imminent discovery of the mystery the Martian winds, in their childish play, had ruefully uncovered; a mystery that would inevitably beg answering.


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Further Recommendations

jennamsevcik: ......................

Tiscon: Fast-paced. Chilling. It was a great story and I hate nitpicking at great stuff. However, maybe dropping mysterious hints as to what happens next could have been done a little less conspicuously? Through scary incidents rather than the protagonist sharing her bitter feelings about the ordeal?It's...

dominieion: Taking readers on the rollercoaster of love,hate, obsession and friendship. The characters blended together to make this story more powerful. I really love this story,it is amazing. The author really knows what she is doing. It is a wonderful work

Missy Hembree: Great keep writing

naaakle28: Great story, love your work keep it up.

kncol43@bellsouth.net: A great story

bernicewairegi9: Awsome fantastic non predictable n very interesting and emotional

~Tashi~: Absolutely enjoyed reading this book, it keeps you on your toes and has so many twists of emotions. I loved this book and can’t wait to read the second one

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Brandy Vazquez: Good so far, building a great start so far..so many questions!

Jessie Messer: I cant get enough! This author is an amazing and gets five stars all the way around from me! I love this series and hope she plans on doing similar to this when she's completed with this series!

patricefatherley: Great read

starPhoenix: brilliant story brilliant read this story isn't finished just yet but i hope i gets finished soon.

shambhavi061: It was an amazing book not like other usual werewolf books we read . Great plot. I love tai n zoe♡♡♡♡♡

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