Lissa walked barefoot across the cold, wooden deck. Icy air pimpled her skin with goose bumps, so she wrapped her arms about her body. No stars shone in the inky, overcast sky. A single globelight swung back and forth ahead of her.
Silence engulfed her. Her steps made no noise. No orders were shouted, no sound of work being done, not even the creaking of the ship's timbers. Something tickled in the depths of her mind. This wasn't right. She tensed. Where had the crew gone? Why wasn't the deck moving under her feet?
A figure emerged from the shadows. His heavy, green robe brushed the deck at his feet, and his head was hidden within its hood. She took another step and stopped. To one side stood a pedestal supporting a bowl, from which grey dust poured, cascading endlessly and spreading out across the floor. With a start, she remembered the man with the gnarled fingers from the command deck.
"What's happening?" she cried. "Hello?"
No sound came from her mouth.
The figure slowly raised his arms. She gasped at the sight of his hands, tiny and not wrinkled or scabbed. The hands of a woman.
Her arms trembled in the cold air, and her heart thumped when he lifted his head and looked her way. Red, alien eyes glowed fiercely from the pool of darkness inside his hood. She screamed but made no sound. Slow and deliberate, he slipped the hood from his head. She saw herself within the green robe, her eyes flickering pools of scarlet, and her flowing auburn hair sparkling with blues and purples. Her hands flew to her mouth.
An incessant whisper shattered the silence, first one voice, another, and finally a whole chorus, seemingly surrounding her. She whirled about. No one was there.
Stumbling, she fell backwards.
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