For the New Year, a story set in the far distance universe of The Planet of The Apes. Call it fan fiction if you will, I like to think of it as a homage to a great book and movie series. Where would scifi and time travel be today without the heritage of author Pierre Boulle? So to the viewers who call the originals hokey and dated, I say “Damn you, damn you all to Hell!”

3039AD by Cindy Tomamichel

My name is Nova. I have no voice with which to speak. It has taken many years to learn to read and write, skills that have long vanished from the human race. I believe I am the first for many hundreds of years, for my fellow humans remain dumb brutes, scared of the technology of the apes, scared of their own shadows. I pity them, they who I once was. I try to teach the young, and some show promise, an interest in the words that should have been the birthright of all humans. In all my years of searching this library that is my home, I have not found the reason for what happened to us. We lost it all, we who once ruled this planet, falling from grace to become dumb beasts of the fields. And the apes inherited our world.

I am old now, and I would write of the days and weeks when I knew Taylor, the man who fell from the sky, the man who could talk as only the apes could. My Taylor, my only love. Before Taylor, I had no name, all that I am now slept within me.

It is hard to remember the time before Taylor, the time before thought. I lived as all humans did, as dumb beasts without comprehension and at the mercy of the apes that hunted us for sport, captured and enslaved us. I too was captured, taken to their holding centre. It was a terrible place, the days full of torture and pain, and the nights with dumb misery, huddled on damp straw, our backs raw from the whips.

Taylor had been chosen as my mate. I found out later he and his companions had fallen out of the sky, he said from the past. I don’t fully remember or understand all he told me, the words themselves were a novelty, and concepts came much later. Oh, how he tried to teach me to speak. The longing to hear another human voice amidst the guttural apetalk must have burned within him, for he tried for so many months.

Taylor tricked the apes into letting us go. He always had a way with him, and could charm even the brutish apes. Soon we discovered a strange buried mountain, in the form of a woman. Tall and gracious with a spiked crown, she was half buried in the sand. I remember the wonder of seeing a human statue, for I had only ever seen the ape God. But after seeing that, Taylor was never the same. He became morose, angry and increasingly violent.

He dragged us back to the badlands, and he left me there, vanishing before my eyes. Alone, and frightened I panicked, running without thought, like the dumb beast I was.

One of the gorillas shot me and I was unconscious for some time.

Taylor – thinking I was dead –  unleashed the fury of the Omega bomb. Thankfully, it didn’t destroy the world as was its purpose, but the explosion of the firing mechanism was enough to bring down the underground city. Crawling through the rubble, I found my love dead, his hand on the firing button. His last act had been to try and destroy the world. I loved him, but can never understand the depth of his despair, which I think was part of the past. Perhaps the people of his time had been mad, or the travel through time and finding out humans were slaves to apes unhinged his reason.

I will never know, and neither will Taylor’s son. But maybe one day, he will read my words and know why he can talk as no other human can.

 

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For those that have not read Druid’s Portal yet, here is a link to the first chapter  DruidsPortal

Short Story: 3039AD
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