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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Season(s) of a year or life (01/13/11)

TITLE: Beyond the Stars
By Sarah Elisabeth
01/19/11


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From this distance, the stars actually twinkled. Jamie leaned forward with her arms crossed on the railing after a quick glance behind her. No one from the party inside the dome had wandered onto the patio. She was safe to drop the formal air and gaze at the stars like a little girl.

The moon in Quadrant 11 hung much like Earth’s moon. She sighed. Homesick? No. Except wishing she were back on the Galactic Eagle, already on the next mission. Instead, she was enduring the formalities of swearing in new dignitaries.

She couldn’t be excused from the festivities much longer, but pulling herself away from the stars had never been easy.

“I would call this an act of cowardice.”

Jamie didn’t flinch at the voice. Nine years of intergalactic travel had taught her to rely on her senses. She’d felt her friend Martin’s presence. He crossed his arms on the railing beside her.

“Yep,” Jamie replied. She straightened and tugged at the scratchy pink fabric of her gown. Maybe it was “in”, but she’d take old fashion silk or cotton any day. Her eyes shifted to him. “By the way, congratulations. If not for your negotiations, Bethatos wouldn’t be swearing in new officers. The planet would still be picking up pieces from their twenty-five year war.”

Martin shrugged and nodded to the sky. “The Bethatoseans may think I’m something, but the stars came out in full salute just for you.”

Jamie shook her head. “I’ll just be glad to get back.”

“Why hurry? You haven’t been on solid ground two straight days in – how long?”

“I like space. I’ll never wanna leave it.” Jamie faced forward again. Martin shouldn’t see her clouded expression.

Her friend chuckled. “You talk like a captain being forced to retire.”

“I may be someday.”

“Sure you will. Why, you’re already Lieutenant Commander Jamie Kindle, third in command of the Galactic Eagle-“

“No, I mean about…” Jamie reached with both hands to tuck loose strands of hair behind her ears. She found the slight breeze annoying. “I won’t be on the Galactic Eagle forever. What comes after that? A desk? Nothingness?”

Martin grunted. “That’s a long ways off, Jamie.”

“Maybe.” Jamie waved a hand to the stars. “I’m never afraid of the great unknown in space. But the great unknown called life scares me.”

Martin’s fingers interlaced and pulled apart again. He kept his gaze to the sky. “Do you believe God exists in this galaxy?”

Jamie straightened, almost defensive. She forced herself to remember she was talking to an old friend. “Yes, I do.” She smiled, a calmness overtaking her. “His spirit in me didn’t stay behind when I left Earth.”

Martin half turned to her, still leaning on the rail. “Few believe God is everywhere.”

She cocked her head. “What do you believe?”

“That you doubt it yourself.”

Jamie dropped her eyes to the blue glass platform and struggled for an answer. She didn’t question God’s existence. But did she really trust His plan for her life? All she’d dreamed from childhood was to travel the stars. Not only for adventure and romance (that had died her first mission), but it seemed like she was honoring God and His creation. She believed she belonged in space, exploring the mysteries of how ever many galaxies God had created. But what if this wasn’t her purpose at all and she’d wasted the life He had given her?

A memory flashed through her mind. She was standing on the observation deck of the Galactic Eagle. In her sight was nothing but the steel floor and the stars at three hundred and sixty degrees. She was alone. The overwhelming presence of God filled her as she sang His praises.

Like a shooting star, the image was gone. It was replaced by somewhere in the future. She was alone, yet she was not alone. His spirit remained in her.

Jamie realized her eyes were closed and she opened them to meet Martin’s solemn face. “I don’t doubt Him, Marty. I doubt me. But I know no matter how far – or not – that I travel in this universe, I will never be out of His reach.”

Martin stayed in his leaned position. “You sure?”

Jamie glanced at the wonder of twinkling stars, and let an easy smile play on her lips. “Yeah. We’d better get back inside. Can’t have the Bethatoseans accusing us of cowardice.”


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This article has been read 472 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Rachel Phelps01/21/11
What a unique take on the topic! Really great sense of detail and your characters were so relatable. Great work!
Verna Cole Mitchell 01/21/11
Good job here with sci fi. I really like your mc.
Henry Clemmons01/22/11
We will never be out of His reach. Such an encouraging message told in a unique and well written fashion. The stars always facinated me. I enjoyed your story much.
Laury Hubrich 01/22/11
Very nice SciFi entry. You would think that God would feel all the more closer to us the higher into the Heavens we get. Nice job!
Virgil Youngblood 01/22/11
Amazing, isn't it, that in the vastness of the universe God knows even the number of hairs on our head. He cares for us, wherever we may be in His creation.
Allison Egley 01/22/11
I like this. A touch of sci-fi, but still very relevant, and something people can relate to. Nice job!
Connie Dixon01/22/11
Loved your successful attempt at Sci-fi. You brought me off the earth, but not so far out that I couldn't follow what was going on. Great job!
Marita Thelander 01/23/11
I didn't really get the sci-fi-ish feel to it other than generalities. Could just be me. But you piqued an interest in me of a sci-fi story that proves God's existence using science and creation.

Good job stepping out of your comfort zone and venturing into new territory. Keep searching for multiple voices. You are a talented writer!
Beth LaBuff 01/23/11
I love your creativity! From the name of the species, "Bethatoseans" to when she was "standing on the observation deck of the Galactic Eagle" and could see the 360* view of stars..(I wanted to be there with her.) Can we have another chapter? :)
Carol Slider 01/24/11
Very creative angle on the topic. I really think that Christian Sci-Fi is an unexplored field. This is a story that could be developed into a novel. How would a space explorer deal with questions of faith? Well done, and well worthy of a sequel!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 01/25/11
I enjoy YA novels so much. I think it's my favorite genre, so I could easily see this being for teens or adults. It did vaguely make me think that with some adjustments this would fit into the next PeP book. I can't remember if you've been apart of them before, but it might be the way to go. I really enjoyed the setting and your details. The MC was perfect too!