The Silence of Space

Andrea’s eyes adjusted to the dismal view of the universe’s infinite nothing out the window. Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb” played on her head set as she closed her eyes again happy to be in the chemically induced high. Maybe she would radio the Chinese guy again for some interaction. She’d been lonely on the station since Antonio threw himself out the airlock on Day 2.

She couldn’t blame him for the suicide. On Day 1, he had lost his wife and three children during the Earth’s sudden implosion. One minute the big blue ball of water and dirt was there and an hour later, it was gone, collapsing into itself . She’d only lost Misty, her cat. She smiled at the thought of Misty going crazy trying to catch the shoestring. She wondered how cats would do if they were sent into space before the drugs took hold again.

The crackling of static over the headset awoke her. She’d wanted to disconnect from the transmitter since the Aussie woman lost her mind, but she didn’t want to abandon the Chinese guy. His transmissions sounded erratic and she understood his anxiety but had no clue what he was saying. Despite the language barrier, she could feel the hopelessness in his voice and the reality of the situation would overcome her. He spoke a few words before saying “Good bye” in English and then there was a gurgling noise, and silence.

Andrea disconnected from the transmitter, swallowed more pills, and put “Comfortably Numb” on repeat. It felt appropriate that it would be the last song ever heard.

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