Flash fiction because Cassini and Huygens are my space OTP. Also because I have so many feels about the end of the Cassini mission.
She was diving. Faster and faster. Saturn was pulling at her. She was on a one way trip to Saturn, to her death.
For the first time in so many years, she felt awareness. She felt as though she was more than a collection of electronic parts. She felt like she was almost alive.
Then the dragging. This was not Saturn’s pull. This was something else. It felt like an old friend. She stopped resisting and let the dragging pull her away.
It was almost easy. Like something she could have done during her mission.
He had waited for this day since forever. At least it felt like forever.
He had watched as she doved to her death, and had felt helpless. He had wished that she could have continued exploring their planet and its moons. But he had listened in on the transmissions from Earth. He knew that her time was up. Her fuel was running low and the mission planners and scientists didn’t want to contaminate the moons, they worried for the potential of life. So crashing into Saturn’s atmosphere was the best course of action.
He wasn’t going to just sit there and watch. He knew he was going to do something.
So he pulled. He reached out into the cosmos with his magic and felt her magic. And so he pulled. And pulled.
He wasn’t going to watch as she went to her death. He was going to save her.
He never admitted it to anyone but he had feelings for it. He didn’t know exactly when he started to have those feelings but he suspected it was during that long cruise from Earth to Saturn.
He didn’t know if she had feelings for him but he didn’t care at that time. He wasn’t going to watch the person he loved fall to their death.
She was floating free. Free of her space craft. She opened her eyes and saw Titan. She thought of Huygens. She wondered if he was thinking of her.
It was hard, really. Loving someone but knowing that your fates were so different. She was destined to explore Saturn and die in its atmosphere. He was on Titan, his mission over many years prior.
She saw her space craft dive towards Saturn, and for the first time, she didn’t sense her electronics.
The dragging sensation returned. She closed her eyes and let it carry her to wherever it wanted to.
He looked up skywards. His magic was almost depleted. He had been pulling at Cassini for so long.
Then she fell. She fell in a blur of brown and gold. He watched. Then he stopped pulling with his magic. He didn’t need to anymore.
He started running. He knew he had to catch her.
Cassini + Huygens
Cassini blinked. It was bright. Then she saw a face. Huygens grinned at her.
It was over.
“You saved me…” Cassini whispered.
Then it all fell out in words and gestures.
“I love you.” Huygens said.
Cassini nodded. Tears in her eyes.
“I love you too.” She replied.
It was the end of a mission, and a beginning of a love story.