Title: Natural Observations
Theme: History Always Repeats Itself
Word Count 635
Disclaimer Not Mine
Suppose there was a creature from a far off star. If it had an interest in natural science, it could see here two interesting specimens. It might well peer down curiously. It might even take extra-terrestrial notes.
These two were good examples of their kind. The star creature might sense the strong steady beat of two hearts. Blood coursed vigorously in them, through the brain and lungs of them, out to the ends of fingers and toes. These beings had clear eyes, and strong teeth. (Some of the teeth were locked down in the jawbones still, and would be trouble later.) The star creature might be aware of the chemical cloud the two beings bore with them. On a level that they themselves could not sense, these beings were delicious. Mosquito's would sense it, as would girls. But here, they were miles away from either. The beings were male. They were no longer children, but they had not achieved quarter mark of life.
The smaller one was climbing. He did it about as well as it can be done by the hairless sort of ape. His movements were efficient, and graceful. He was sweating lightly. His hair was medium brown and utterly straight. His brow was clear, untroubled. His feet were bare. They were dirty and strong. They seemed to find grip and balance without instructions from him at all. His gaze was turned up. His hands were strong too, and the skin thickened by use. He thought nothing of this, all the beings here had such hands.
The other one was somewhat larger. His hair and skin were lighter. He was immobile in the heights. He had found position he found comfortable, and had not moved in hours. This second being was breathing more slowly. His blue gaze rested on the heaving horizons. He was reasonably content, although hungry. His stomach was empty. His thoughts were far away.
“Jack!” The climbing boy called from below.
“Hullo Hen.” Jack Aubrey peered down, without moving. “Have you come up to sit with me?”
“Lieutenant Watson says you can come down. Your masthead is concluded.” Henage had achieved a level with Jack by now. He did indeed sit, arranging his bottom on the thick horizontal line.
“Did he say I can come down, Hen, or that I must come down?” The two smiles bloomed together.
“I believe he said can.”
“Hmmm, well then.” Jack gave a contented wiggle, and rested his chin on his crossed arms.
“I hoped you would say that. Still, you should not provoke him. He's going to catch on you know. If he finds out that you don't mind it up here, he will do something you like a lot less.”
“Anyway. He sent me to retrieve you. He had not realized it was your birthday. Seemed to make Mr Watson rather misty. He said that tonight there will be plum duff, and it would be a shame if you missed it. And he said I was to ask you how you like being 15.”
Jack looked down at his dirty feet, they obscured the tiny ant men on the deck below. He wiggled his toes in the warm breeze.
“Feels just the same. Always does.”
“Maybe Mr Watson's birthdays are more dramatic. He has so few of them left. He must be...45 at least.”
“Dramatic? Mr Watson?” Jack wrinkled his nose in mirth. “Hen, you're a stitch!”
“Oh.” Henage Dundas groped in the pocket of his coat. “I brought you this. Happy birthday Jack.”
“Thanks Hen.” The cheese was covered with pocket lint. But Jack ate it anyway.