The Headsman of Moiromma (Part #5 to The Cataverous Planets((SF))
Author: Dennis Siluk
Uhluhtc, King of Moiromma
The secret is not that an alien race
has come to earth to visit us, it is in
that it dies on a sunless planet,
someplace in nowhere.
Nameless he was on earth but as he died, he reappeared on Moiromma—his home planet, at the end of the solar system, earths so called solar system. He knew dying was not death for him, rather a time for replacement. And he had died before, and always ended back up on Moiromma, eventually, normally. Almost as if it was a punishment, an end to an end, that never ended. A butcher on earth had killed him, chopped his body up, and sold his meat portions and, oh yew, if you didn't read about it in the newspapers, then it is just as good you didn't, it was a mess.
Uhluhtc was back, back home on his frozen and sparsely red-rock planet. The real name for his planet was after a god that had won, or was given the planet to him from his brothers eons ago, called Rahsna; as the story goes, it lead into a fight, but that's another story, the planet was what earthlings would call 'Ice Death,' but really it was Moiromma, after a king and a queen of the planet, when it was not Ice Death; it was as he remembered it, the sun barely reflected its rays, on this desolated island planet, and when it did all the inhabitants would come out of their abodes for its moment of grandeur, as the sun stood still. Yes, one would absorb its rays, hues, but only small light of warmth could you expect; the rest of the time the sky was a fearsome awe, a world that had a death shadow over it, a canopy of sorts (except for a few months out of the year when it was hidden behind Cibara [a planetoid]; its own phantom like pale terrain; wherewith, it nullified everything and everybody; a planet with little horizon.
Now was his chore to let the Pack know he arrived back: should the Pack even exist anymore. As he stood there, all seven feet, four-hundred pounds of him, he stared into the night, the cold awful night sky of his planet. The planet Pluto was a distance away, he visited that particular planet a few times; it was more like a moon he thought. He could see it now, barely, but see it he could. It was on one hand, sheer refreshment and stimulation in seeing it, after forty years on earth's egg-shaped planet; although he got to liking it, especially the changing of season of it; it was always to his dismay though he had to hide from its inhabitants.
Rigidity, he knew he couldn't live on earth indefinitely, it was hideous trying to hide here and there and everywhere to avoid people, and then being in the gypsy circus: where people called him the pre-human the Neanderthal, the representation of a creature, a so-called creature from Mary Shelley's book out recently called, "Frankenstein', although in reality, he was much huger than such a creatures. That part of earth's visit was disenchanting, it brought a gloom to his face when he recalled it, but he acquired much knowledge and experiences that would account for something he figured; all said and done, he needed to speculate in his need future, which he asked, where were his people, or the people of the planet, the Pack. When he had left here, left them, there were ten-thousand inhabitants.
That was it for the whole inhabited planet, not like earth with millions on it. Nonetheless, even though there was no birth on Moiromma, people did showed up, or come back, from a death they had on another plant. And they sometimes left behind their offspring (mixed blood, making them a hybrid for their planet), and then as they grew up, sometimes they'd show up on the planet years down the road; and within time no matter how they looked they become like them, once on the planet Moiromma that is; should they have Moiromma blood to start with also; yes, I repeat myself, they'd end up looking similar to the Moirommalit's; a slow process, day after day and year after year, once on the planet of Moiromma.
What he did remember, and now was becoming clear in his mind was: he left the planet, his planet some forty years in the past now—it was foggy for awhile—just how long it had been, and he was the headsman, the man in charge of the Pack; yes, yes it was becoming clear, even its brutal moments. Surely he thought they must have found a new headmaster since his departure, whom would be the master warrior.
It was a windy day, forty years ago, when he went into combat with Nori Iron, a beast of a man. Taller and stronger then Uhluhtc, not more cleaver though, other than the odds being against him, he played with fate, a coldhearted game with Nori Iron that day and lost. From what he remembered, he had killed Nori Iron, with a sly blow to his heart, stopping it, and ripping it out, but during the process he was bit by Nori Iron's sharp teeth into his jugular-vain in his neck, also killing him; hence, both fading into the morbid global-ice sheets of the planet.
Where Nori Iron went was beyond him. But normally they ended up back here somehow, somewhere, eventually. It was their way of life, fight to the death, and look for a death-kill. Sometimes upon their return they looked more ghostly than when they left, and sometimes more hideous looking than ever, as the earth people called them demons for their appearance, it was the price for resurrections, and body adjustments on other planets, it took it toll. It ripped at the character of the body, for its cell and neurological structure, biological chemistry, all had to adjust to its new surroundings, it was taxed you could say, that is why they did not commit suicide until absolutely necessary to get back to their home planet.
There was another side to why most of the planets inhabitants that were on other planets did not rush to get back home, it was a repugnant life on Moiromma, to say the least, and just knowing you'd end up back there time after time and have to fight the elements after being on earth in particular, was not a bright homecoming, as one can see at this point. No one hooting for you at the train station, for there was any trains or planes. It was like the Arctic. And the only thing to keep ones mind separated from this awful planet was to furnish stories that broke one's imagination, thus swallowing one up so he did not have to face the reality of this arctic planet.
He could remember many stories of his clansmen coming back and sharing them. He wished he could have done as much. But who would want to hear about a planet that used him as a freak show, Earth. That would be a classic. And to be a headsman at that, they'd all say: "Where you been, at some dance…" Life was different on Moiromma, no sex for the most part [platonic for the most part, for many had both sex parts], no one ever went to the toilet but excreted waist out of their porous that is why they had a scabby body, that also kept them warm; it was like sweat, syrup thick.
As Uhluhtc looked about walking mile after mile on his new found planet, a bit smaller than earth's moon, he called about names he remembered, one in particular being, Jokaneen. She was more female than male, and was the last person he saw in his minds-eye before he died; she was cheering him on during the war battle with Nora Iron. And so he called and called and called her name until his voice could not call no more. He knew he'd not freeze to death, he never had before, his scab-like body kept that from happening, it protect him from the cold, the utter freezing to death cold. Although it could make a person uncomfortable, and in old age, it could kill you, should it get past 60 to 70 below? But the planet seemed to have a spider web of currents surrounding it, which drew on the blood of its inhabitants not allowing the cold to freeze the blood solidly, or the heart, or the lungs, thus allowing the flow of thick blood to continue, with often times the pain of the cold, should one be of a very old age. In essence, it wasn't easy to die here, and you never knew where you might end up should you die. So no one really wanted to die, too many variables. It was if a god some place was using them for his purposes on other planets, especially when they became too aggressive. Perhaps it was this god called Rahsna, or was this hell for them, as the earth people had explained to him, humans go to. Maybe each planet had their hell, and each solar system a hell planet. Possibly creatures like him went elsewhere, who knows, maybe this planet was his hell from another time. Everyplace has it hidden history, its secrets, and Rahsna was no different.
Strangely enough, as he was about to yell again, a voice came echoing back to him, a high pitched voice, it called his name: "Uhluhtc, Uhluhtc! Is that You!!" Then all of a sudden she spotted him, and started running to him, and saying many things in her native tongue, "Yaha to-mo ha, [welcome back]" and"Toaw wow a la [I've missed you]." And she surely was a sight for sour eyes, if not sore eyes.
Uhluhtc was insistent they find a place within the ice they could talk, a place they called: 'Uwabam ma," meaning, an ice cave that had volcanic waters within it keeping everything to a moderate temperature. And so she took him to her "Uwabam ma," and explained that Nori Iron had not returned, and after he had left [like himself], everyone went into cells on their own, kind of in smaller packs, if you will. She had gone on her own, herself she explained: being more female than male it seemed safer, lest she be used for fun and played with like a toy to take away boredom; for many of her kind would seduce the weaker inhabitants, for pleasure, a pleasure they could sense more than feel, providing one could work the imagination properly. By and large, there were only a few like her, more female than male that is, they being the odd ones, and much in demand on this humdrum planet.
As the hours passed, the reuniting took a different beat, Uhluhtc explained to Jokaneen about his venture on earth; that, regrettable, he was used as a haughty, if not scary pagan vile creature from their inhuman past; she simply absorbed this as a fantastic story, one beyond any others that she was told, not sure if she should, or could digest it as truth.
As unexpectantly as it was, it was believable nonetheless that the once kingdom he ruled was no more than a pack of dogs stretched across the wasteland of this arctic sphere in outer space; a world barrenness without roads or trees; a people who came and went like the swirls of dust, dust that circled the globe. With its gray nights and pale days; fluctuations that stirred with the winds; yester-eve was leafless, as was this evening, as the two, and only two, trees [on the planet] blackly bare, twigs and branches about, as precious as the moment of sun-light each day was. An alien race that visited earth, and other planets, no secret to them, the secret was to the other plants that they lived on a sunless planet, something they'd never understand, or would want to understand. And one had to die to get to it, what an adventure he told himself.
Within Jokaneen's ice vault of dark-blue hoarfrost, lo, an idea came to mind, she wanted to search and see if any of her old friends were still nearby. Feeling safe or a little safer since Uhluhtc was by her side now. Before they ventured outside again, they ate some long ice rats, and ice worms, with long tentacles that looked like weeds—this provided fate for them, a food the planet had an abundance of, if you could catch them. The worms lived in the ice, and the rats above, on the surface. Although it was seldom they needed nourishment: that is, unneeded on a regular bases, in the sense if you didn't get it, it wouldn't kill you for a long time, just weaken you, it was needed for ongoing strength though: but death would not normally take place: save for the fact, the psychological triggers to hunger for that would remain, the cravings a body goes through. Their bodies were like long lived camels in a way. On earth, Uhluhtc gained some one hundred and fifty pounds from the abundance of food.
An uncanny wind was now crying eerily as they both left the abode to search out other life, the cells of the populace they once knew; Jokaneen had said she believe the population was not much different than before possibly a few more, maybe thirteen-thousand at the most, for many had returned from far off places most recently.
As they walked and looked about, the skies were looking witch like, as their bodies started to get covered with a frost, as they silently kept tracking over the desolate region; Jokaneen was familiar with most of the terrain, yet they found nobody.
Something accrued to Uhluhtc, noticing there were no life signs on the surface of the planet, none what so ever, "Possibly," he explained
to Jokaneen, "just possibly the inhabitants might have left the cells, and are individually dying within their own ice abodes, or trying to die and can't." She nodded her head in agreement, saying, "Anything is possible I suppose."
It was over a hundred miles they had walked before they stopped to rest. Said Uhluhtc, with a bit of wisdom to share with Jokaneen, which was another story from earth:
"I had once met a man on earth, a man by the name of, A. C. Htims, who once talked to me in my own language, after putting me into a spell like atmosphere, as in hypnosis, when I had come out of it, A.C. Htims, had told me in our own language, that when he was a young boy (Uhluhtc quickly inserts: '…and he imprinted this in my brain so I'd remember when I'd return, this is why I'm telling you…), his grandfather told him about the Prison House of Gloom, that Moiromma was his home planet, but he was taken off this planet to someplace else, which was of course earth in a spaceship, never to returned; while others were left to survive on their own on the scorched, and dead planet. He said most of the inhabitants had died that were left behind some one-hundred million had died, leaving about 10,000. Well, the old man, that is Mr. Htims, had mentioned this House of Gloom, where certain things were stored within the peaks of the mountains on Moiromma, in its underground tunnels (once sea-beds) where also things called 'suns', that were stored. That they were hidden their so this world of ours would not melt and during its evaporation stage, they felt the weight of the inhabitants would eventually create a possible crust distortion, which might cause the axis of the planet to crash into asteroids, or like planets. And so they hid the sun's rays to deflect from the planet directly."
She looked at him in disbelief, and even if she could believe him two people could not change the course of the planet to be anything other than a dead snow ball in space, like that of a comet 200,000-million miles away from a sun. So she smiled to appease him, and did nothing to change the flatness of her unemotional face.
But Uhluhtc was full of spark, energy, ideas, and was proud he had remembered all the details. Thinking: therefore, if they could find this hidden treasure, this Prison House of sorts, life could possibly resume back to normal, whatever normal was before. All this made good sense to Jokaneen—but it was just a story, like so many people told when they came back to the planet, another speculative story, no more than that, but a good one to her nevertheless. In all reality, to her what was normal was the moment, and in this moment she could not understand Uhluhtc's mystery voyage at all. She looked at him puzzled, but kindly.
She asked in her native language, "Howkalia dela savoay," meaning: can you destroy us. She was scared, frightened for the moment, thinking he may have come back with some supernatural powers.
Explained Uhluhtc in the simplest of terms:
"Life is not necessarily the same on other planets as it is on Moiromma, gravity is different, things are heavier or they can be lighter, days are not all the same length; but I understand this is just too much, way too much for you to tackle." She gave a sigh, although he did not answer her question, he gave a humble monologue; one she felt save with. As they walked back to their abode, to rest and get some sleep, in which they only needed but a few hours, possibly an hour or two deadly sleep every few days, and then they'd be good for a promising few days more, Jokaneen was quite taken by what Uhluhtc character to the point that when Uhluhtc went to sleep, she took a sword of deep dark condensed hard blue-ice, as sharp as a saber-tooth rat's jaw, possible six inches long, and stabbed it into his chest, and ate him sum total.
Author/Poet Dennis Siluk http://dennissiluk.tripod.com
Thanks CommonSense http://www.blog-king.info/