The tide here has violet froth to its indigo depths. The sand is blue like a summer sky back home, and the sky is green like grass. Across a world double the size of Earth, islands are the only landmasses. This one under my arse is the biggest we found. All eighteen point six-four by twenty-eight point one metres of it. If this world’s lazy weather could rise to something like making a wave, this island would go under regularly. It its peak, it stands point eight metres above sea level.
On that peak, there’s a burning bush: the gases emitted by the leaves glow like fire as they react with this planet’s atmosphere.
Just below the peak there’s me. Silver environment suit, chromed green visor, big black boots.
Between me and the tide’s edge, there’s Molly, lying in the middle of a purple stain on the blue beach.
Man went to the stars. Man took technology that made us look like gods to the races we met. Man became so damn good at being just all-round wonderful that he forgot something: he’d made everything better, except himself.
Depression, mania, psychoses. They all went with us. With that marvellous tech we could do so much, except help ourselves.
Molly always said that the depression made her feel like a wine bottle. Some days she was a Premier cru, others an Own Brand past vinegar stage. Either way, she was never full. The liquid that sloshed within the bottle of her was like a purple sea, always in motion, always opaque and never fulfilling; never still. She said that even in the height of making love, she knew that tomorrow she’d be down. The constant dull ache of knowing you’re going to be worse wore on her like she carried her very own seasonal anxiety syndrome, and her seasons were daily.
When she saw this place, she said she’d come home. I hadn’t the heart to interfere in what I knew was coming.
Broken bottles have one thing in common, no matter what they held or the value they had.
They’re empty of what made them special.
Goodbye, my love.