Jarn’s Journal, Day 350

Jarn is a very human-like alien, a R’il’nian, who was stranded on Earth (Africa) some 125,000 years ago. The beings he thinks of as aliens are early humans. His Journal, from which this extract is supposedly taken, gives the background for my two science fiction novels, Homecoming and Tourist Trap, both actually set only a couple of hundred years ago, but not on Earth. A longer version of this day’s entry can be found on my main blog. The full contents of the Journal to date are on my Author site.

Day 350

I think she will live.

I had some real worries as to whether the antibiotics I brought, which work well on my own species, would work on this alien child, but already her fever is reduced. Anesthetics were not among my supplies, but I managed to straighten and set the bone while she was still unconscious, and I believe the swelling and inflammation is down a little today.

I stayed with her last night, in the hut where her fellow tribesmen left her. I think the warnoff did more than the thorns to keep us safe, and I was reluctant to teleport back to my own shelter and trust to the thorns alone to protect her.

I could treat her much more easily back at my own shelter. Certainly I would be far more comfortable! I actually had to sleep – or rather try to sleep –on the ground last night! And the insects! Luckily I had the warnoff set to repel insects from actually biting, but with the clearer light this morning, I found that it did not stop them from laying eggs – the child’s leg was crawling with maggots before I cleaned it out yesterday, and I found flies trying to lay their eggs in the wound when I rechecked it this morning!


About sueannbowlingauthor

Sue Ann Bowling earned a bachelor’s degree in physics at Radcliffe/Harvard and a Ph.D. in geophysics from the University of Alaska. After thirty years of teaching, she retired to focus on writing. Bowling has lived in Alaska for fifty years. Visit her Web site on canine color genetics at http://bowlingsite.mcf.com/Genetics/Genetics.html.
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7 Responses to Jarn’s Journal, Day 350

  1. Ergh – the maggots! I felt I understood the set up much more this time round.

  2. gayleramage says:

    Ew, maggots! Great snippet. I really like the premise of this story.

  3. Oh how terrible! 😦 Poor child.

  4. J.A. Beard says:

    Ack. I really feel for the kid and the alien anthropologist just trying to save this kid.

  5. Jarn’s not an anthropologist; he’s a starship designer, an engineer who’s been stranded when his new ship proved to have some flaws. He’s mostly just trying (not very effectively so far) to keep alive.

  6. Great first line! There’s white space above it, but that space is immediately and effortlessly filled in with so many images of pain and trial.

  7. pippajay says:

    I like how he’s struggling to cope with this ‘alien’ world, and yet still feels compassion enough for a human child to not only treat her but to suffer the discomforts of her home to keep her safe.

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