Since I took a workshop with Dean W. Smith (Ideas to Story), I have been writing out the stories from the openings that came from that workshop. It was there that I became enamored of a humorous character from The Green Knight Terraforming Company. One of the other openings was Land of Gehenna.
I picked Gehenna because it was a metaphor for suffering from the Old Testament. Gehenna was a trash dump outside Jerusalem where they burned all their garbage. It smelled extremely bad and had everlasting fires. In my story, a colony ship has had to land on Gehenna, a desert world. I don’t give the reasons. The people suffer because of the lack of water and because of a predator that already owns the world; these colonists can’t find their own water so hope is lost. This is the point where I get interested in the story– I have been to the point where hope is lost. It usually signals a change in my life. For instance when a nurse walks into my room and tells me to get my affairs in order because I am dying.
Palti is not a hero. He is very ordinary, but he is chosen for the ceremony.
*WARNING* This is a short story–
Land of Gehenna: In the seventh day of the seventh year of our landing, the seventh son will be led to Mt. Aramis and we will be delivered.
Captain Hunt of the ship Discovery
A colony ship landed in the world of Gehenna, named for its desert like environment. The thermal images seen from the ship are not proof of water, but proof of wraiths, who are inimical to the colonists. It has now been seven generations since the landing, and the colony is failing.
Palti the last of Captain Hunt’s heirs is given a last chance to bring
water and life back to his people. This is a short story.
Bonus Story added: The White Snows of Russia.