In the background, a city shrouded in mist extends along the horizon, perhaps serving as an allusion to the ancient city of Tyre as well as to contemporary Amsterdam.The dark thicket of trees to the right contrasts with the pink and blue regions of the sea and sky. As stable as the surface should be, deep space remains largely unknown and hostile. You don’t dream about sex—you dream about sunlight, about the way it looked falling through leaves, about the way it felt on your skin.

The beings draw so near that they swarm around Marius, against his skin—skin, not suit, and he wonders when it was lost, and why he is not dead (is he dead?). A low vibration churns in my gut as I stab my cleat into the ice and push myself through another step. The water swarms with life, hydrothermal vents spewing warmth into the ocean cold. Did Asterion challenge Zeus for Europa’s fair hand?

Marius is already lost and though we walk toward Thrace Terminal, it has never seemed so distant. There are two more meals to be had, which means at least two nights without.

If the extraordinary is supposed to become commonplace, then maybe the commonplace also becomes extraordinary, especially when we are forced from its confines. In the Metamorphoses, the ancient Roman poet Ovid told a story about the god Jupiter, who disguised himself as a white bull in order to seduce the princess Europa away from her companions and carry Wonder what the oceans taste like. He began to study oil painting in his youth. I do this now, kneeling on the ice as I try to catch my breath. Endless scent and color streamed from his grand horns and he reveled in the feel of her upon his back. That radiation would squash us like bugs, but you get used to it. I am made to feel small. I wonder what it would be like, to stretch under its warmth, to watch it melt this entire ball of ice into a whole, free-flowing ocean. I cannot fathom why; I do not feel larger, and my body is not shaped differently. He was called to leave the station, knowing where to find them, knowing they had something to show him—the lost station, the end of all he had sought. The cold has frozen me to the core—envy encases my heart and I cannot feel what perhaps I should for them, for the loss of them.

The station is cold and Europa, being four hundred and eighty-five million fucking miles from the sun, is naturally and one-hundred percent organically, cold. His choice of color palette is in complete harmony with the topography of both Tyre and the island of Crete.

They are not Now. Sunlight breaks through the clouds and reflects off the water, but the sky behind the trees is dark and foreboding. This world was never cold, its ocean never solid. I think briefly of a man upon a rock, sweat-stained and aching. Water isn’t a problem, at least; Europa’s ocean water freezes clean, desalinated, and our suits are equipped with a sealed system that will allow me to store and melt ice for drinking. Vast columns of bubbles stream upward, into the dark. Hope you’re gonna love it! E. Catherine Tobler is a Sturgeon Award finalist and editor at Shimmer Magazine. “Gotta get Marius out of your head,” I say. Reserve your pass.

Why the hell wasn’t Bolaji dead? All that warmth is what. I position the sledge within the shelter of two penitentes, and laugh at myself for doing so. The sledge is ingenious, locking Bolaji firmly into place, so he is not jostled no matter the terrain we cover. If I can get him back to Thrace Terminal, if we can get him in sickbay—I don’t know. With his disappearance? She’s all silver and ice—the Snow Queen, Marius called her—but you know that means she’s cold. Others have been on Europa for eons, so long that when they try to convey it in numbers and words, Marius is overwhelmed. These beasts were never not industrious, crafting marvelous cities at the edge of every ocean they possessed—and probably peed in. 21); purchased by (Saint-Honoré Art Consulting, Paris) for NGA. . Read more about mythological depictions in art: An ardent classicist based in the pearl of the Aegean. They never said when—but they said I would.

But the sledge, folded back into the emergency pack at my back, weighs heavy. ISSN 1937-7843     Clarkesworld Magazine © 2006-2020 Wyrm Publishing.

Bolaji watches me like I’m something he’s never seen instead of someone he’s worked with for seven years. Burdykin is a Russian artist who was born in 1960. DailyArt Magazine will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide you with updates, marketing and offers from our partners. Europa stretches infinite before us. Others witnessed.

This was a simple rescue, nothing more. An ancestral memory, my therapist would say.

Bolaji did not make it, and Marius did not make it—what can I say? As if I am incapable.

“Come on. In the Metamorphoses , the ancient Roman poet Ovid told a story about the god Jupiter, who disguised himself as a white bull in order to seduce the princess Europa away from her companions and carry her across the sea to the distant land that would bear her name. Marius cannot understand his own star system in its infancy, but when he realizes that nine worlds are spinning into creation around a violently bright sun (he still counts Pluto), he can taste tears on my lips.


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