Short Story · Writing

Untitled Story

This is supposed to be a short science fiction story. I am thinking maybe around 5000 words. Not sure it actually feels like science fiction, though. Oh, I have references to ships and weapons and all, but this story takes place on the ground, largely in the wilderness. Hmm. It would be easy enough convert it to fantasy, I think. At present, it has no name.

I only have the first 250 or so words:

He watched the sun rise over the distant mountains and despair settled over him like a shroud. He would die today. There was no way he could make it back to the scout ship before sunset. It was all the way at the opposite bank and a few kilometers north. The river waters flowed past, placid and serene, but so huge he could barely see the other bank. He wasn’t a strong enough swimmer to swim across that much water. Or brave enough either; the damn river was filled with predators. He needed a boat and he was a long way from getting one. He had half a day’s lead on them, but that wouldn’t last. They couldn’t fail to find him in all this open grass and they were far better at tracking. At least now that the rover was dead, no plume of black smoke would give him away.

His blaster’s charge was only good for maybe half a dozen more shots and he had only six quarrels left for his crossbow. When his ammunition ran out, maybe even before, the damn tribal warriors would be on him like jackals. They would rip him to shreds. Not that he blamed them. The captain had double crossed them. No one liked to be betrayed and these people took betrayal more seriously than at home. They had killed the captain two days ago in revenge. They wanted him dead, too, no matter how he tried to explain he’d had nothing to do with the betrayal. Hadn’t even known about it, in fact.