The Sound of the Waves
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The aircraft carrier docked after its final mission. The last order to leave the ship was more solemn than ever, as if it proved the ship's last. Everyone disembarked, leaving the noises mixed with the sound of the waves behind.

All except for one person.

Captain Gordon looked at the waves standing on top of the deck. Looking around with a blank expression on his face, he could see the beautiful dock devoid of any flowers. The fact that everything is over still felt like a dream. After aeons, humanity finally put an end to its final and worst task.

Gordon closed his eyes and clenched his fists tights. He was shaking. It felt he was up in the air.

“Do you need time to take it in, captain?”

Gordon looked back. A woman about the same age as Gordon approached him in a wheelchair. A woman that resembled her but younger was pushing it.

“Long time no see, ten.”

“Indeed. We’ve never met since I’ve surprised you at your promotion party ten years ago.”

O5-10 stood next to the captain. Waves filled in their lack of conversation.

“This feels new, continuing this peace and all.”

“I didn’t think I’d see this while I was alive to experience the end of humanity’s violence.”

“No more military ranks, too. I’d be the last captain alive, then. It would take some time to adjust. My ranks, be it a lieutenant commander or a captain, always preceded my name.”

“Do you want me to call you by my ranks?”

“You are such a jokester.”

“Thank you.”

The two exchanged chuckles and smiles. Gordon suddenly sighed and raised his head. O5-10 stopped smiling, too.

“I can’t comprehend. Not the peace itself, but my future after it. Nothing. Absolutely nothing. I thought I lived for this very moment, but there’s nothing I will do afterwards when it really came. Maybe I thought this day wouldn’t come in my lifetime. I tried the best I could, doing everything, but after it was over… I have nowhere to go. So I… I…”

“You want to vanish here?”

The command to leave the ship echoed in the waves. Gordon knew he didn’t have much left. O5-10 knew that too.

Gordon did not answer. Again, he clenched his fists and started shaking. Why, he didn’t know.

“You are hesitant.”

…He only didn’t want to believe he didn’t know why.

“Gordon, how old are you?”

Gordon looked down at O5-10, thinking why she would ask such an obvious question.

“Let me rephrase that. How old do you think I am?”

Gordon looked down again, this time thinking how he could possibly know it.

“You seem unchanged, minus the wheelchair.”

“I lived too long. I was probably here before you enlisted. I saw every battlefield and heard every gunshot. I might be the history of violence itself, an entity that remembers everything.”

Gordon listened silently. He was expecting what would come next, but he didn’t want to hear it.

“It is I who should die, not you.”

“You’re not making sense.”

“Do you think I am in despair like you? Look, I’d rather have nothing. The history of violence ended. Old histories should start to disappear. I just want my final moments to be the most decorated.”

“What about me? Can’t you see I’m here to die too?”

“But you want to live, to some extent. It’s right to die for someone willing to live.”

O5-10 spoke in such tranquillity. Affected by that peace, Gordon fumbled.

“As I said, I don’t have anywhere to go.”

A smile returned to O5-10’s face. She grabbed Gordon’s hand.

“Why not? There’s a seat. You’re accepting the resignation letter.”

“What?”

“I know too much. History turned its page today, and it calls for someone to think of the new, remembering the past, a person who can warn about the past mistakes while people progress towards the future, someone who still knows the past.”

Gordon did not speak. O5-10 told in a more serious tone.

“My life was indeed too long. Someone with this amount of history on her shoulders shouldn’t do that. I held on for my life for something seemingly impossible to end, but since it’s over, I know; as desperately as you held on to your life, you should let go when it’s time to leave.”

Waves and announcements. He wondered how much was left.

“It wouldn’t be familiar. It was for me, even now. But someday, when you hold on for dear life,”

O5-10 halted. Her voice and eyes soothed down a little.

“Yes, I lived my whole life that way until I saw this moment. I need this too.”

O5-10 closed her eyes and let Gordon’s hand go. She then looked at the waves with her mouth shut. Gordon knew this was goodbye.

The woman behind the wheelchair now guided him off the boat, holding his shoulder. While he went through the exit, he turned back at O5-10. She looked calm and serene as ever.


Incident log 7271-███
██/██/2███, all technical equipment and fighter jets disappeared from SCP-217-KO. One rescue helicopter manifested in the hangar.

O5-10 saved this to his head. He brooded over this again and again until he added his note.

It is both a pity and a marvel that humanity took this much to bid farewell to violence.

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