Storytime: Terrachondriac.

January 13th, 2016

I think I’m coming down with something. It’s that time of year, right? It happens.
Accretion, that’s it. I’m cursed with accretion. My matter’s all clotted up and I’m forming large wads of debris. I’m coalescing day and night and none of my meds have done either jack or shit let alone both. If this goes on I’m going to clot up and who knows what’ll happen then? Swelling, that’s what. Swelling and bloating and balling, rolling around night after night until I’m the size of a thirteen-thousand-mile-diameter balloon.
Mom was right. I shouldn’t have moved all the way out here to the galactic rim.

I think I’m coming down with something worse. Can’t get a day or night’s rest by now, the grinding and tossing keeps me up all night. I think I’ve got tectonics, real, chronic, rock-hard tectonics, and it’s gotten so bad I can’t even bring myself to throw up most days; all the magma’s stuck burbling down in my guts and rumbling under my lithosphere. I’m seeing double and my cratons are grinding and chafing, and all this after I’d finally gotten over the leftover nausea from picking up a moon. And once you’ve got tectonics as bad as this, it’ll stay FOREVER. I’ll never get over this. Never.
Dad warned me about this. He said I was taking up with a real gadabout of a star, a yellow flickerer that was all promises but no novas. Good job, dad.

I think I’ve never been so sick in my life. I’ve got blizzards, I’ve got blizzards, I’ve got billions of blizzards, and they hurt real bad, thousands of open, festering blizzards all over my surface, from the poles right down to the equator. I’m pale white from tip to toe and frozen tight; locked down and shivering. It’s better than the tsunamis, at least. Lord I hated those tsunamis. Nothing worse than waking up with a wave popping off your seabeds; and now I’ve got seabeds, I’d forgotten that. All this water, all this loose and unseemly water, splattered across my surface and caking me and eroding me. It’s putting wrinkles on my face, doing what the tectonics haven’t already done – and that’s a real trick.
My sister told me this would happen. Oh, it’s all fun and games and dancing in the emptiness at first, she said, and then you just think oh, a casual swirl around that star’d be fun! The next thing you know, you’re stuck orbiting.

I think I’m coming down with something new. I’d finally come down out of my chills and what happens but my oceans start filling up with… goop. Green, glurpy, glurgy glops of goop. Matted and thatched; domed and mounded, shovels and piles and heaps and seas of thick, syrupy goop, clogging me up and making my skies wheeze. And it’s RESPIRING at me, it’s sucking up all my good, honest carbon dioxide and replacing it with alarming levels of radical oxygen. I keep telling it I won’t have that nonsense claptrap on my surface, on my terms, but it just sneers at me and turns up the volume of air filtering.
My grandmother lectured me about this sort of thing. Never let people get anything off you for free, she said. Then they’ll come back and you’re stuck with them for life.

I can barely think at all now, I’ve got it so bad. I wake up groaning from an asteroid bouncing off my head or a major anoxic event and I find new lifeforms scattered across every possible piece of my biosphere – EVERYTHING’S a biosphere now, I’ve got no privacy at all. Swimming standing strolling sculling soaring sailing scooting scuttling sliding everywhere, absolutely everywhere. I’m infested; no amount of spraying will fix this now. Radiation, climatic shifts, earthquakes… nothing’s stopped them. Why can’t I be more like Mars? Mars is quiet and clean and dead as a bone; it had a bit of liquid water but it locked that up all tight a long time ago, and it kept itself clean of biology, and it has no atmosphere, no tectonics, no buzzing, humming magnetic field to keep itself awake at night with a pounding ache in its core. Just peace, pure peace, as mild and cold as can be.
My grandfather never shut up about that sort of thing. If you’ve got to go planetary, he said, go in style. Go big, like a gas giant, for showiness and beautiful swirls; or go small, like a planetesimal, and keep out of people’s way. I’m the worst of all possible worlds.

Oh god, it’s spreading, it’s breaking out all over me. It’s on the moon now. The MOON. I’m contagious, I’m a menace, the sickness was onside me all along. No way to avoid it, no way to excuse it. I’m burning up, I’ve got a fever on my skin as well as under it, and I’m choking and wheezing on the methane and CO2 in my own atmosphere. I never signed on to be anyone’s monkey bars.
I’ve had enough. I’m getting out. This corner of the Milky Way was a mistake. I never should’ve come here and I never will again. Five billion more years to get over this sickness, to watch stupid Sol go foom and burn me out, then I’m going to laugh in its stupid white dwarf face and go home and work as interstellar debris again. An honest, meaningfully meaningless life. None of this plague, none of this rot. I’m done, I’m through, I quit.
My family always told me not to get mixed up in this, or mixed up in myself in aggregate form until I formed a large mass. And you know what? They were a bunch of snide, nasty, microwhining jerks, but they were right.

I’m so sick of my life.

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