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Better Than Bones and Dust

The protestors were gathered out in front of the barbed wire chain link fence that kept me and my kind separated from humanity.
We had come to Earth only three years earlier. A blink in our lifetime. Blown into Earth's atmosphere by a solar flare. This planet, with its teeming life had not been our intended destination--but we were here now.
It was easy to adapt. All we needed to survive was a host. So we took the dead. It was a kindness. Or so we thought. We never anticipated how much attachment humans could have to something that was just going to waste. We were simply using what would eventually rot away to bones and dust.
There was panic at first. And then, for some, the panic turned to acceptance. To a few, we became divine. The chosen ones sent to Earth by whichever creator fit their beliefs. To others we had just become a part of the natural order. Recycling, they called us. But, for many their panic had turned to revulsion. Which led to anger and fear. Which led to riots and disorder.
It was confusing. They threw out words like love and disrespect... and abomination. Words we had no concept of. Words we still struggled with.
After two years of demonstrations and public outcry, we were rounded up and put into camps. Housed in army barracks behind guarded fences. We didn't resist. We didn't even mind. There wasn't much we needed to sustain our existence. In truth, it was easier than having to navigate throughout humanity and their incalculable emotions.
A few weeks ago legislation was passed. The bodies of the dead--all the dead--were to be burned. Even the bodies we were occupying. That was when the protests started. Humans gathering in defense of us. Fighting for our right to live.
We hoped the protestors would succeed. That they would stop the burnings. Not for our sake, but for theirs.
The fire will destroy the host body, but it won't destroy us. We can simply move on to another host. This is our home now. We are here. And we don't need the dead to survive. We were merely being accommodating. If we have to, we will take the living.
The End
This story was first published on Thursday, November 3rd, 2016

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