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A Bedtime Story

"'And they rode away into the sunset...'"
"What's a sunset?"
"Well, I don't know, but my granddad saw one once."
"Then what is it?"
"It's when the sun goes behind a planet."
"Dad, that's an eclipse."
"You have to be on the planet's surface."
The child rolled his eyes. "The gravity would crush you."
"Well," the father paused. "That's true." Then he suggested, "Perhaps it was a very small planet."
"Like an asteroid?"
"Perhaps."
The child frowned. "It's just shadows? And it still doesn't explain riding."
"You heard. They clung to animals."
"It would unbalance it," the child said. "They would go into a spin."
The father frowned. "Maybe they were special animals?"
"Like a big bird maybe?" the child said, brightening. "In an open space, or low orbit around a gas giant? That would be fun."
The father smiled. "Yes it would, but it said these had legs."
"Legs?"
"They say our lower arms used to do that, that we had them. They were different."
"Oh," the child said, ready to give up.
"Really."
"If it says," the child replied, unconvinced.
They floated in silence for a bit, until the child frowned.
"And why did they walk, clinging to the back of these animals facing the sun?"
"That does seem strange," the father replied.
"They would lose their eyes!"
"Maybe we could just skip that part?" the father said, hopefully.
"It would take weeks to grow new ones."
"True."
"These stories aren't very good," the child muttered, and pulled his crash web up.
"I suppose not. They are very old," and tipped the bookmark towards the hole.
The End
This story was first published on Monday, July 2nd, 2018

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