The Green Place

by Benjamin, age 11
The Green Place Benjamin is 11 and lives in Brooklyn, NY. He loves to read science fiction and fantasy stories.

“He saw the stars over his head. For the first time in his life, they weren’t animated. His family had been on the camp’s waiting list for exactly 12 years: his entire life. The day had finally come, and he was camping. This was the only place left on Earth with greenery.”

Andy woke up one morning. He saw the stars over his head. For the first time in his life, they weren’t animated. His family had been on the camp’s waiting list for exactly 12 years: his entire life. The day had finally come, and he was camping. This was the only place left on Earth with greenery. The rest of Earth, besides anything historical, was either a factory, hover lane, or skyscraper.

There was no need for water, since the great reservoir had been put on the moon in 2159. His great-grandpa had actually worked on it too. It was something he had always bragged about to his friends, but now, he was regretting that he did. Because of that reservoir, all the farms were put on Mercury so that there could be more space on Earth. There was no need for plants on Earth, with water coming to Earth from the Moon and oxygen generators which were invented in 2239. But some botany activists worked their butts off for years trying to save this old piece of land, or as it was known as a few hundred years ago: the Amazon rainforest.

Andy lived on what was known as Halley’s Comet about 200 years back, but now it was a huge city, or one huge, glass building surrounding the comet completely. His house was newly connected to Earth by the flexible spaceway from the comet. His dad took the hover car to work every day. He was always really busy, especially now with his new invention of teleportation. This was known as teleX and was now in beta testing.

But Andy was here now, and he had two more nights left here at this camp, which didn’t even have a name. Well, it did, but the makers wanted it to be be as peaceful as possible, and they thought a name would hurt that in some way. Andy did not understand any of that. But really, he did not care. However, from the second he got there, he just called it “The Green Place.” A spinoff of the oldest ever recorded history of what historians called television. Anyway, the show was called “The Good Place” and he loved it. All 17 seasons.

Andy was depressed because he was going to go back to the comet early. Something had gone wrong with beta testing on teleX. They had to cut their trip short by one day. Something had gone wrong with the dark matter core on the planet x-38stv, a deserted planet where if the core exploded, there would not be that many problems. It had a direct tap of hot water from the moon’s reservoir to star in x-38stv’s solar system. This was because if the dark matter exploded, it would freeze the star, as his dad had told him as a joke, “That might not be that good.” But Andy had a feeling that he might not be kidding.

Later, he asked his science teacher about it, and she said that it could possibly cause a black hole only 1,934 million miles away from humans’ only intelligent life form connection. That could suck a planet into a black hole. This planet was inhabited by the alien species Qatari from the planet Quart. There were thousands of discovered life forms, but the most intelligent one resembled the Earth’s ape species and had shelter in trees. The Qatari had a highly advanced society, but was on shaky terms with Earth and were highly superior in technology. If the star froze and the Quart was destroyed, it could spark a war with the remaining colonies of the Qatari.

Andy had tried to talk his dad out of this invention, and even got his older sister Steff, short for Steffany, on board. Steff almost always disagreed with Andy. But his father assured both of them that there was nothing to worry about. However, his eye twitched, and Andy knew that his father’s eye twitched whenever he was lying.

Andy knew he had to get some information, and he had to act fast. The next day was a weekend, but his dad still had to work. Andy hid in the trunk of his dad’s hover car and flew down the spaceway to Earth. At Interstellar Labs, there were two soldiers guarding the entrance to the garage. They were going to check the car. He heard footsteps slowly advancing closer… and closer… and closer.

His dad was very high ranking at the company, so he had just gotten out when the guard opened the trunk. But they found nothing. He slammed the door of the trunk. The valet worker drove the car to the garage, parked it, and stepped out and walk away. As soon as he heard the worker leave, Andy crashed to the bottom of the trunk with a loud thump. He had managed  to cling to the top of the trunk and hold the position for five minutes. He lay down and dozed off for a short nap. He woke up in the trunk at 2:54. His holo watch informed him that he had been asleep for almost five hours.

Andy hopped out of the car and crawled out of the garage. He ran into the elevator and went to the 284th floor. This was in the middle of the lab building. He ran into his dad’s lab, hid in a closet, and looked through a crack in the door. It was 17 minutes before his dad came back with two astronomers in bright white coats and three military escorts with what looked like the chief of the Earth’s military behind them. Andy took out his new recorder download he got from his dad for his birthday. How ironic, he thought, with a smug look on his face. He then pressed the button and started recording.

The two astronomers were telling, fact after fact, about the location of the possible black hole and how in 1.263 seconds the planet Quart would be sucked into it. They also said that there was a 89.35% chance of teleX freezing the star, which the General heard and grinned at. After all the information had been spoken, his father simplified it and told it to the General. The General nodded and asked how quickly could they get teleX operational. He said they had new intel that the Quart we’re planning on attacking Earth in 17 days, and the Earth’s military, he said, would lose that battle.

Then, the General asked if they could plant an explosive in teleX to make a 100% chance that the star would freeze. One astronomer said that would be impossible. An explosion would cause the star to overheat and explode, creating larger damage, but in a smaller radius that would not affect Quart at all. The general nodded and said to start operation IAA in 15 days and come up with a plan B if it failed. With that, he stormed out with two of the three guards, leaving one to secure the area. His father then yelled over the loudspeaker that there were 12 hours till launch.

Suddenly, the guard pulled open the door and grabbed Andy by the shirt.

“Andy!” his father yelled.

His father was up against the glass opening in the door.

His father yelled, “You are not going to tell anybody. Do you understand?”

“Of course I am!” Andy angrily yelled back.

“You are not leaving this room until you realize what you’re doing,” he yelled and the lock clicked shut.

He stormed off and a guard walked in to take his place.

 

There were four minutes left until TeleX was turned on. After that, the army would release them to tell the public what had happened. But they were not there to say the truth. Instead, they were to lie to the world, say that they had no idea of the possible outcome of teleX, and that they would like to deeply apologize to the Quarti and blah, blah, blah. The speech was already written, and his father was probably memorizing it.

Andy suddenly hated his dad. He did not care about any of the good his dad had done. Rage slowly filled his body, engulfing him in a fire fueled by the hate for his father. It had been hours since that door was opened, and he was shoved inside. He knew he had to escape, and he set his mind to it.

He quickly assessed his surroundings. There was an air vent on the ceiling and a table in the corner. That was it. A plan had started to form in his mind. Inch by inch, he quietly moved the table to the spot right below the air vent. He then climbed on the table and took his lightweight, metal wallet out of his pocket. He got it for last Christmas. He threw it as hard as he could at the grate, and eventually, the grate fell into his arms. He hopped up and climbed through the grate system. Then, after what felt like hours of climbing downwards, the ground suddenly fell out under him. He fell out. He was falling for what felt like eternity, but he actually hit the ground in less than just two seconds. The grate exit was on the first floor.

He got up and could feel the deaths of millions of innocent Qarti; it shook him to his core. He knew that the best thing he could do to avenge them was to let the truth be told to the world. With that, he ran with his head held high to the news building.

As he reached to the news building, a reporter had his holoscreen on and was typing while walking home. He ran up to him and caught a glimpse of what the reporter was typing. The reporter had almost nothing written down, but the title was standing out to all willing to read it.

“Planet Destroyed,” it read.

This reporter was desperate for information. Andy could see it on his face.

Andy said, “I know what happened to planet Quart.” The reporter’s ears perked up. And with that, Andy told his story.

 

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