I tried to warn him. Tried to tell him that accepting living fire from an alien we hadn’t fully vetted was a bad idea. But did he listen?
Caught up in the thrill of an (apparently) successful first contact scenario, he accepted their gift, brought it back aboard our ship, entrusted its care to me.
At first, I thought the fluctuations in the power grid were a result of the ion storm we’d passed through. Then I realized that the living fire was also fluctuating.
I took a couple of specialists down to the engine core, and that’s where we found them. An entire pod of the same chalk-white aliens.
Reynolds and Morris never knew what hit them. One minute they were flanking me, weapons drawn; the next they were dead, and the chalk people were sucking on their bones.
Me, they kept alive.
I’m not sure if it was because I’m a woman or because they’d never seen rainbow-colored hair before. Maybe both. But they made me their liaison.
Please if you get this message, do not let my ship approach your world. The chalk people use living fire as their portal. It’s how they conquer other races, how they spread their seed into the cosmos.
Our weapons have been destroyed. Our crew – what’s left of it – is being fattened for an Arrival Feast.
I beg you. Destroy our ship. Destroy it in orbit. Make sure it’s blasted to bits and then consign the debris into the sun.
Kill it with fire.