Exiles of the Abyss
Planet Ifjor Minor - Borvius system - Olkarium Cluster
Sawyer looked over the vast desert expanse of rocky plains as the dull red sun Borvius started to set over the horizon. Small grey dust-devils were starting to form as the pockets of hot air near the surface quickly through rose as the as the air of the atmosphere stared to cool, forming updrafts.
It was almost time to go back to base. The negative night temperatures were very unforgiving and his exocraft would not work for long in the cold that was coming.
Swayer took one last look through his scope towards the beacon. Another day of his self imposed penitence. Three long years he had made this daily journey from their underground bunkers a few clicks away, hoping more survivors would come. Hoping against all signs that more of his people were still out there slowly making their way towards the subspace signal emanating from their beacon on a frequency that was only meant to be known by the Protectors of the Abyss.
The pistons on his left leg groaned as he stood up. He was meant to have it re-serviced again. The dust and sand on the planet's surface got everywhere and played havoc with his artificial limb. He had always refused to have another limb grown and transplanted. Sawyer felt that would be cheating. He made his way to his exocraft and drove away across the desert towards the deep canyons that cut into the planet's crust near the equator.
Some of the others felt it was time to turn the beacon off and start planning for the future. They couldn't carry on like this, simply waiting and etching a meagre existence on this forsaken rock. They had once been the elite, the largest and most powerful branch of the GDF. And now they numbered less than 10o souls living. Of course Swayer knew they were right. Three years was a long time to lick their wounds and wait for others that might have survived to joined them. Anyone still alive that held to the old order was already here. He knew that. Everyone else did to but no one dared to speak the words to their commander.
It was plain for all to see that he had taken the treason that had risen among their own ranks harder than anyone else. The truth was that Commander Sawyer was holding back because The Protectors of the Abyss were no more and apart from waiting he wasn't really sure what to do. Maybe it was time to handle the reigns to someone else. Maybe Jay, Goldrat or even JetLark Sung. Part of the old guard
Commander Swayer pushed his exocraft to the limit waiving and weaving across as he entered the narrow ancient riverbeds of the canyon. Frost was already setting across the thin dusting of black lichens that covered most the stones on the planet.
It was time to come to terms with what had happened. Put the past behind them and look to the future. Tomorrow he would turn off the beacon. No more living like exiles...