The flames popped and cracked as the wood was consumed, the smell of burning rubber from flaming tires ascend past the fallen skyline. The natural fall of rubble and destruction cover the bodies that once ran from such chaos. The once brilliant sunshine the world once knew was over, blackened skies of smoke and smog cover the land, nothing could live.

Except one.

The one person who has seen the beings that caused the world to erupt in flames.

She hummed a tune to herself as she skipped down the streets. Past the rubble—the decaying and burning bodies—not caring that the world is on fire. She was living her own life with a smile knowing that she was the last living being on Earth. She held a Walkman and headphones made of cheap plastic in one hand and a couple of batteries in the other. “Good ol’ Reeza needs a couple of hotsy-totsy batteries for my Walk of mans. No one else will play a tune as good as the man!”

Reeza continued forward and peered into the stores as she playfully skipped down the broken streets. “Nope, nope, double nope, quadruple nope, infinity nope, oh wait!” Her eyes opened wide at the sight of a store that wasn’t completely destroyed and exclaimed, “Now that is the duck’s quack!” Her pigtails swayed and framed her small, round face as she skipped into the store through the broken window paned sliding door. “Time to search! Maybe Reeza will find some noodle juice! Haven’t had that in a while!”

She searched and looked under and over through everything she could find—as her hope nearly diminished—she defiantly held up two batteries. “Perfect! Let’s blouse!” She turned to leave through the only exit and froze, then mumbled under her breath with narrowed eyes, “Applesauce…”

A tall, slender being that was humanoid in shape stood in the doorway. Its skin appeared to be as smooth as silk and as shiny as crystal clear water on a sunny day. Its turquoise skin looked to be cascading toward its feet like gentle waves pushing and pulling against the sand on a beach. Its sharp face had no defining features except for its hallow eyes and the long tendrils that hover above the floor, it reminded her of how the wild cats’ tails would be long enough to touch the ground, but curved enough to not to.

The being narrowed its gaze at Reeza and spoke with a soft, feminine tone, “Found you.”

Reeza furrowed her brows, “Out of the way you wet blanket!” She exclaimed as she threw a rock at the creature. One of the tendrils reflexively caught the stone and crushed it in its constricting grip.

The being let out a cocky chuckle and almost appeared to smile, even though it didn’t have a mouth, “How foolish.” She insulted. Before it could take a step toward Reeza, she scooped up some dirt and dust from the rubble and threw it at the being’s face. One tendril tried to stop it, but it still got in the being’s face. It held its face and grunted, then cursed in its foreign language as Reeza took her chance and booked it past the being. It growled and turned toward her, “How dare you!”

“You bimbos can’t ever catch me!” Reeza called back as she ran as fast as she could away from the small store and into the alleyways. “All Reeza wants in life is some good music, is that so hard to ask?” She questioned herself as she ran as hard as she could back home. She looked back to see that a couple of other beings that were of different colors were tailing her. “Horsefeathers!” She only looked forward from now on and dared not look back. She feared that seeing them would be the last thing she’d ever see. There’s a reason why she is the last one living, she had managed to avoid them since the start of this destruction and chaos, and she planned on avoiding them for as long as she could.

“Go chase yourself, why don’t you!” She yelled out as she began to huff and puff, trying to breathe as much as she could. She turned a corner and was immediately pulled to the side with her mouth covered and arms restrained. Her eyes shot wide with panic as she tried to wiggle her way free, but it was hopeless. She sat still as the foreign beings ran past her, unaware that she was so near, and continued forward.

After a short—seemingly long—moment passed, she was set free. She looked behind her—to her assailant—and sighed. Another being was before her, slender and tall like before, but a light apple green color. It knelt before her and sighed as if it were tired of everything and everyone, “You can’t keep doing this.” It claimed, its voice was lower than the other one, but spoke with a tired and raspy tone.

“Leave me alone you cancelled stamp, Reeza just wants to be on her own.” She huffed and crossed her arms at the being.

It let out an exasperated sigh, “Can you please talk normally for two seconds? I’ve helped you enough, it’s time to go.”

She stomped her foot in response, “No! Reeza is happy here!

“Don’t shout! I don’t know how many are nearby,” it whispered to her, “I’ve risked my neck for you and you can’t seem to quite grasp the situation you put me in.”

Reeza puffed her cheeks and crossed her arms, not saying another word. She just stared right back into his hollow eyes in contempt.

“Can’t you hear yourself? You’re speaking in third person and speaking absolute gibberish.” It looked at her in concern and firmly held her shoulders, “I can’t keep defending you like this, hiding you, lying to your family, they declared that they would kill me if you don’t come back.”

“Reeza is Jake without you! She did her research; she came here to live and explore other places and everyone just gets in her way.” She pushed its hands off of her and backed away, “Go home, Rexel, Reeza don’t need you.”

Its shoulders slumped, and it looked down, “After sneaking you off the homeland and securing your location for years, you only think of me as a burden now?” Its tendrils drooped and laid quietly on the ground. Its eyes closed as it stood back up. “You’ve gone absolutely mad, I don’t understand… you’re so self-absorbed in your own world, can you not see what your presence has done?” It gestured to the destroyed buildings, the flaming cars, massive craters that litter the streets. “Our people, your family, did this in search of you. An entire race eradicated just so then you can have a little fun, was it worth it?”

She looked where Rexel pointed and thought about it for a moment. The times she talked to the people in this city, the times she got a free pastry for talking in her slang. The kids and adults she met who were concerned about her living alone as a child: it was all gone. She looked up at Rexel, “Give me until the end of the day.”

“I really don’t know if I can do that…” It hesitantly replied, “what am I to you now? Should I even help you anymore? Do you see my point? Can you even see my point?”

She held up her hand to stop it from asking her so many questions, “You’ve delayed them for years, delay them for another few hours.”

Rexel crossed its arms tightly, “You can’t expect me to keep delaying them, you didn’t even answer my other questions!” Reeza began to walk off, not saying another word to it, “I’m not done with you!” It rushed around her and faced her, “Do you really not care if I die protecting you anymore? Do you really not care if our home dies without you? We can’t live without you, did you forget that?” It held her shoulders desperately as it knelt before her, “What happened to the times that you cried at the thought of me gone? Was all of that a lie?”

She looked at it straight in its hollow eye sockets and brushed its hands off of her and said, “No, Reeza is happy here. Now go chase yourself.” She changed the batteries in her Walkman, put the flimsy headset on and played her tape as Rexel fell to its knees and mumbled to itself. She walked around it, ignoring it entirely as it held itself tighter and fell to its side, coiling its tendrils around itself. Reeza brightly smiled and continued forward without a care in the world.

oo0 – A few hours later – 0oo

Reeza made it back to her home, which was a collapsed house with only a fireplace left standing. She went around to the back of the house and opened the basement doors and walked down the stairs into her concrete home. A child’s mannequin stood next to a small CVS television with a VHS player underneath it. There were small knick-knacks and toys she had collected over the years that laid scattered around the cold floor. Reeza sighed and frowned as she paused her Walkman and put it on the floor.

“Ruining Reeza’s fun, who does he think he is…” She went over to her TV and inserted an “I Love Lucy” VHS tape into the player and slumped in front of the TV as the black and white show flickered on the screen.

As the show played, Reeza mumbled the lines to it as if she had seen it a thousand times. The show she usually enjoyed every time she watched it soon turned into something that was taking an eternity to go through. She felt her heart sink to her stomach as she thought back to her conversation with Rexel, “Why did Reeza… I, do this again…?” She looked over to the small mannequin and asked, “Will Rexel really die?”

It stood there silently, yet Reeza looked at it and nodded, “Right, I’m sure he’s fine. I’m sure he was just overexaggerating like always.” She nervously laughed to herself, then sharply looked at the mannequin and exclaimed, “What do you mean he never overexaggerates! You don’t know him like I do!” She stomped over to the mannequin and shook it by its shoulders, “He’ll be fine! He was lying! He just wanted me to come home because he… he’s…” She breathed heavily and trembled, now holding on to the mannequin to stay upright, “worried… about me. You’re right.”

She slumped to the floor and dragged the mannequin with her, she held it in her arms tightly, “Am I really wrong?” She let go of the mannequin and slowly crawled towards her toy hand mirror, then looked at herself in the dirty reflection. She looked at her human disguise, a typical, cute little girl with pigtails and a round face with big eyes. She revealed her true self, a grass-green being with long tendrils and hollow eyes. She let out a deep sigh, “I’m not human… no matter how hard I try to pretend to be… Do I miss home?” She looked at herself in the mirror and thought to herself for a moment, “No, I don’t miss home. I don’t miss my mother, my father… just Rexel.”

“Have I really mistreated you, old friend?” She caressed the mirror, as if to caress her own face, “All I wanted to do was have a little… fun.” She put the mirror back down and dragged her feet up the stairs and back outside as “I Love Lucy” continued on without her. Reeza looked outside, toward the city she ran from and remembered what it used to look like. “Was simply existing on this earth, interacting with the humans, and running from my kind, really that fun?” She thought back to her homeland, how it was so plain and boring compared to Earth.

The trees back on the home world looked like the naked trees on Earth, except they never grew any foliage and were stark white. The architecture was curved and pointed, almost random. The cities on Earth were methodical and logical, it made sense. Her kind feed off of the light and water, yet the humans and animals need produce and each other to sustain their life styles, it was interesting to experience. She looked back at the home she had taken residence in and remembered how beautiful it once was with its brick-red walls and simple windows with rustic furniture inside. The family that once lived there. They had a baby before her kind invaded.

But all of that is gone. All thanks to her. And her curiosity.

“Back home, I did so much research. I read all the history that Earth had to offer. I read the oral tales of Gilgamesh and Beowulf, I know the names of the people who changed your culture, your livelihood. All I wanted to do was experience Earth for what it was. I didn’t want to just know about Earth, I wanted to feel it.” She knelt on the ground and felt the dry soil slip between her fingers, “My heart is heavy with darkness, yet it feels empty, yearning for something to fill it. Is this what guilt feels like?” She clenched a handful of the soil and abruptly stood up, then began to walk forward; back to the city. “There is a tightness in my chest, I haven’t felt it in so long.” She placed her dirt filled hand over her chest, as if to try and relax herself. “I’m in the wrong, and for that, I am sorry, my friend.” She let the soil fall back to the ground and rushed forward. She ran to the city, determined to find a way to end this suffering she has caused.

Faster and faster she went, her human form limited her capabilities before, now she traveled as fast as she could. Passing the smoke, the flames, the destruction, she focused on one thing and one thing only. She spotted her target and her eyes widened, “Rexel!”

He was slumped forward and walked along a broken path, only to turn around and look at her in shock, “Reeza…? What are you doing here? What about your disguise?”

She held his shoulders tightly and looked at him, desperately wanting to say a thousand things at once and apologize to him, make things right. She choked on her words as she felt her face warm up and her hollow eyes were heavy. She closed her eyes and took a deep breath, “I am so sorry Rexel, I should never have put you in harms way.” She lowered her head and squeezed his shoulders. She took another deep breath and opened her eyes to look back up at him, to see his confusion and concern over her. He still cared. She didn’t deserve him. “I grew to be selfish. I wanted to actually live here, as a human and get away from our boring world. I didn’t care what happened to anyone else, I just wanted to see this world for myself.” She felt the beating in her heart hit her chest like drums, “You have only helped me while I risked you dying just for protecting me, I don’t know what happened to me, I don’t know why I became so selfish.” She let go of his shoulders and traced his arms to his hands and held them lightly. He intertwined his fingers in hers and looked at her, as if he was trying to find the answer to resolve all of this.

He squinted at her, trying to come up with words to say, but can’t quite get them out. He ultimately sighed and slowly let go of her hands and said, “Reeza, don’t say things like that. I helped you because I wanted to—”

“Shut. Up.” She pulled her hands back and held herself, “All of this,” she gestured to the burning city around them, “It’s my fault. I have to atone for this.”

“What do you mean atone?” He questioned, “How do you plan on…” The cogs slowly turned; his eyes widened. He held her arms and looked at her in disbelief. “No, you’re the lifeblood of our people. You can’t—”

Blood spurted out of his chest and onto Reeza, her eyes were wide as his grip tightened on her arms for support. His chest popped open and showed turquoise colored tendrils. The sounds of flesh being torn and bones cracked and ripped apart filled Reeza’s ears as she saw her lifelong friend be torn in half by the being that was hunting her down earlier. Golden blood splattered on Reeza’s body as she knelt down next to Rexel and hesitantly stroked his face.

“Fools,” the turquoise being spoke, “both of you. Betraying your kin, how disgraceful.” Reeza couldn’t reply, nor look at her, Reeza held Rexel’s face in her hands and couldn’t fight back her tears. “Get up, it’s time to go.” The turquoise being spoke to her. She cocked her head to the side as Reeza laid down next to Rexel to hold his arm and cry on his shoulder. “Reeza! Your home needs you!”

“You are not my home,” Reeza softly spoke, “He was my home.” Reeza looked up at her, “and I plan on restoring what I ended.”


Reeza closed her eyes and moved her head to be in the nape of Rexel’s neck while using her green tendrils to wrap and pull his body together and closer to hers. Your body will be the water that will sustain every living being in existence for Earth. Your bones will be the soil that will never dry. Your blood will be what creates the living, breathing creatures that will evolve and cultivate this Earth. Your body will meld with mine and I will be the lifeblood of this planet. I will make sure that this planet never dies. This is my gift to those I have ended.

And that is how I created humanity in my image.