Abandon all hope, those who enter.

The door creaked open.

I lumbered my 1980s space suit through the doorway and found artificial gravity. I was blinded by the light.

I could tell right off that I was still inside the underground bunker. My suit could tell the levels of elements in the open air, it could measure and filter any foreign substances, and it could assist me to deal with any unwanted interruptions. I could also tell that the room, though unseen, was going to try and fool me.

When I first entered the atmosphere of the barren planet, I detected mainly oxygen. It was covered with mountains, deserts, oceans, and buildings overcome by its overgrown greens.
I remember finding a basement, one with a computer–
The door creaked open.
My classic space suit lumbered through the door, and I entered a park, one that reflected what life once was on the planet known as Earth. People jogged past me, a couple and their kids strolled by, and dogs on leashes gleefully yanked their owners along.
I watched the public antics. I found people riding bikes, some laughing at jokes on the sidewalk, a few enjoying a meal at a local restaurant, even kids enjoying ice cream–
Every person turned to stare at me. The dogs turned inside-out and barked in reverse–

The door creaked open, and I returned to the hall, three doors on my left, three on my right. I remember entering at least two of them–
The door creaked open.
A birthday party happened around my bulky suit. Twenty, maybe thirty, kids either chased each other, chowed on cake, or played around with the many amenities keeping them busy. I slowly crept through the crowd. One foot over the other, checking my readings on my wrist just so I was sure I wasn’t under the influence–

Everyone stared at me again. This time their heads moved, their bodies didn’t. Bones and necks snapped and cracked, twisted and elongated to get a better look at me.

I remembered I was here for a reason.
The door creaked open.

And I popped out of the system. The wires receded from the console and absorbed back into my suit. The simulation ended in pieces, drifted away until the original room faded into view. The console, a box strewn with every manner of switch and button, showed a single square, no bigger than a basketball, with a blade screen. Except for one blinking red light near the top left. I watched it blink for five full minutes before I decided to pack it in.

I sighed heavily. This was my last chance, and with my job on the line, I couldn’t even accomplish one console. I peered at my miniature screen attached to my suit.

Ninety-five percent. So close. Literally five percent–
The door creaked–

I swung around, my suit barely kept up with me. I thought he came from behind me. There was only a wall. I mentally commanded my suit to perform its normal checks. Everything normal. Which meant I was no longer connected to the computer. So there was no way!
The door creaked–
No. This wasn’t a connection between him and technology. There wasn’t a wireless communication either.
The door creaked–

I took off through a set of doors, turned down hall after hall, activated my jets to carry me faster and faster towards the outside.
The door creaked open–

And I found myself secluded in a dark house. Clouds of misty creatures receded to the empty corners, their beady red eyes stayed fixed on the reflections in my visor. The readings and sensors went blank. I thought for a moment that my suit had died, but I was still alive.

I held my breath. My lungs and heart stopped their work. I felt my bones curl under my skin as the red light blinked onto my screen, settling near the top left corner until it displayed two words that took me a second to translate.

My soul sank to the bottom of a river. It was supposed to happen the other way around, but I should have known alien tech wasn’t safe. That was my mistake, I suppose. And now, I was just another one added to the collection. Waiting for the next visitor who happened to stumble across the graveyard of the universe.


Next prompt: The Adventures of Sticky Nips and the Sidecar Gang

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