The Student News Site of Fluvanna County High School

The Fluco Beat

The Student News Site of Fluvanna County High School

The Fluco Beat

The Student News Site of Fluvanna County High School

The Fluco Beat

Image created by Ellie Sam 25 using Pic Finder.
Ellie Sam
Image created by Ellie Sam ’25 using Pic Finder.

Destiny’s Eclipse

“Aria B. Cison,” the principal announced. I was nervous and excited at the same time when I realized it was my turn next. My hands trembled. I felt nauseous and my heart was racing. I tried not to show how nervous I was, but I knew everyone could see that I was sweating like a sinner in church.

“Now, our Class of 2074 student body president, Michelle Caddel…” he pronounced my name incorrectly, and I cowered in my seat. It seemed as though someone had punched me in the stomach. My mother’s maiden name was Caddel, and two years before my graduation, she had passed away. I wish she could’ve been at my graduation, seeing everything I’ve achieved. Everything I’d done, I did it all for her.

As I walked up the stage, I saw my dad in the crowd. He hadn’t always been there for me, but since Mom’s passing, he had changed. It seemed like he changed completely. I approached the line of teachers, shaking their hands. Ms. Brochur… don’t like you, Mr. King… no way that’s his last name, Mrs. Daisy… the best teacher I ever had. She was not only my Astronomy teacher but also one of the few who supported me through my mom’s death. I hugged her tightly. “I’m gonna miss you, Star,” she whispered in my ear. 

I loved that nickname. Star. I really wouldn’t miss anything about this awful school except for her. After hugging her, I walked off the stage, diploma in hand. I might have been imagining things, but as I walked back to my seat, it felt as though a weight had been taken off of me.

Later, my dad and I went to a Chinese restaurant. He had been putting in so much effort to fix our father-daughter relationship. Although Chinese food wasn’t my favorite, it was a step towards creating a better relationship with him. As we sat down, I was interrupted by a strong hug from Gia, my step-sister, who was the embodiment of everything I lacked: beauty, friends, a dad. Despite my jealousy, I tried staying civil.

“Mich, it’s good to see you,” Gia chimed in, with her sweet, high-pitch voice.

My dad smiled. “Look at my two girls back together, like the old days!”

I forced a smile. “Yeah, just like old days.”

I was basically forced into small talk with Gia, so I soon drifted off into thought. Suddenly, my thoughts were interrupted by a deep voice calling my name.


“Gia and I are leaving now,” Dad said.

“So soon?” I said in a fake disappointed type of way. Gia swung her head around, blonde hair almost hitting me in the face, and waved bye with an almost sad face. I wasn’t the type to feel guilty, but that hit me like a knife in the heart. I didn’t hate her; I thought she was a great girl, but when I looked at her I saw the father that abandoned his wife and daughter.

I went home and sat alone on my raggedy couch. I flipped through channels, hoping for some sort of distraction. The National News blared an Amber Alert, scaring me. After frantically searching for the remote, I turned it down. World-renowned scientist Victor Neumann appeared on the screen, warning of a recent discovery. Brushing his fingers through his salt and pepper colored hair, he spoke of the sun’s imminent end. The more he spoke, the more frightening things seemed to be. The broadcast abruptly ended, which startled me. It took me a while to fall asleep after that.

The next morning, I woke up to an awful ringing sound, wondering who could be at the door so early. After quickly fixing my knotted hair, I saw the mailman, Rodger, waiting with a handful of envelopes. Among bills and graduation cards, one from NASA caught my eye. I opened it nervously and saw the news that would change my life. I had been hired as a Spacecraft Communicator by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. I was overcome with joy.

Days later, I slipped on a navy blue suit and headed to the NASA research center for my first day. As I was driving, I thought about turning around. What if I’m not good enough? What if they don’t like me? What if I did this all for nothing?

My thoughts were quickly interrupted by the sight of a female deer. She had flawless white spots from her nose to her tail, and her large brown eyes captivated me as she stood there. There was an innocent, hopeful glow about them. I assumed it was destiny telling me to persevere through my fears and keep going. I entered the building and I was welcomed by the manager. I eagerly embraced the opportunity to immediately start working. Immersed in my work, I was determined to make my dream come true. 

About a week after starting my job, Erin, a colleague who loves to gossip, leaned in and whispered, “Have you heard about the situation surrounding the sun?” 

Intrigued, I embarked on a mission to figure out what she was talking about. After days of constant research, I made a shocking discovery. With a mixture of fear and excitement, I approached Dr. Halen with my findings. “I think I’ve discovered something. Something big,” I announced, my voice steady despite the adrenaline running through my body. 

As I explained, Dr. Halen’s expression went from skepticism to concern. “It’s like the sun is being consumed. But by what?” she added.

As I left to go home, the road got very chaotic. Cars slammed on their brakes, and people rushed out their cars, shouting about the sun. I realized what they were screaming about when I glanced up at the half-black sun and felt panicked. Soon after, a blood-curdling scream filled the air, and I saw a terrifying scene: a mother holding her bloody son. I then saw a creature that was like no animal. It had a human-like body, but it was not a human. Its face was… deformed? Craters filled the face of the decayed-looking man. It was peering over an unconscious child and his mother. 

Terrified, I fled to my car and yanked the door shut, only to be confronted by another creature. In its eyes, I saw a familiar glimmer: my mailman. Because of the horrific amount of blood and rotting flesh, I was hardly able to recognize him, but then I noticed the brown suit, which had blood splattered on it and a huge rip that exposed his ribcage. The only visible part of the uniform was the name tag: Roger Jackson, USPS Senior Deliverer. I gagged at the rotten meat stench coming off of him. It entered my car through the little crack in my broken roll-down window.  I desperately pleaded with him, but he was lost to whatever horror had happened to him.

My fight or flight instincts slammed the gas pedal and I drove away, even though I wanted to stay and help him. In my rearview mirror, I saw the once-loved, kind-hearted mailman silhouetted behind a limp deer. Running at a race car speed, he fell on her. The last thing I saw was him tearing into her; the once hopeful glimmer had vanished from the doe’s eyes. I raced to my sister’s house, pounding on the door in a frantic manner. “Gia, open the door!”

“Go away, Michelle, I don’t want to see your face.”

“Gianna Grace, open this door right now, it’s urgent!”

She heard the urgency in my voice and slowly opened the creaky door. I quickly walked into the living room.

“Gia, listen carefully. Where’s dad?”

“What? He’s just at the supermarket.”

As we sat down, I explained the news about the sun’s demise affecting humans.

“We can work through this together, Michelle,” Gia said, attempting to comfort me. A weakened knock interrupted us. It was dad, his arm bleeding.

“Damn thing bit me!” he yelled.

After patching him up, Dad recounted an incident at the store where something snuck up behind him and bit into his shoulder. His detailed description of the feeling of teeth crunching into him made my stomach turn. Gia and I helped him upstairs to his room, where he quickly drifted off to sleep. Hours passed until Gia’s scream jolted me awake. Bursting into dad’s room, I saw him attacking Gia. Reacting impulsively, I grabbed his high school baseball bat sitting in the corner of his room and swung it until he collapsed to the ground. Trembling with fear, I cautiously looked down at him. He lay there, blood pouring from a large gash on his head. Gia, horrified, started to cry out. The realization sank in that these creatures had overtaken the ones I loved. I couldn’t stop asking myself, “How did this happen?”

Gia’s tear-filled eyes pleaded with me for answers, but I had none to give. Keeping us safe was all I could do. We couldn’t stay in the house with Dad, or whatever he had become, lurking around. Gathering what few supplies we had, we made a quick run to my car, leaving behind the home that was once filled with happy memories.

Driving frantically, we tried to avoid the chaos spreading throughout the city.People ran through the streets in terror. I spotted familiar faces: neighbors I’d grown up with, kids I’d babysat for a few dollars, old ladies who comforted me when my mom passed away, and middle-aged men who’d playfully teased me. They had all turned into awful creatures. I fought back tears, focusing instead on distracting Gia from seeing the horror. We had a feeling that we were trapped in a nightmare with no way out.

We needed a strategy, I thought as the sun set below the horizon. Gia and I spent several hours searching the last few websites that were still running for any information that might provide clarity on what was going on. We came across news stories of humans changing into mindless, terrible creatures with a hunger for destruction. However, we discovered a ray of hope. There had been reports of survivors uniting to form areas of protection against the creatures. Gia and I, inspired by their bravery, scavenged supplies and searched for more survivors.

During our journey, Gia and I found ourselves being chased by the creatures. We turned a corner, only to be met with a dead end with only a dumpster and a wired fence. Acting quickly, I boosted Gia onto the fence, but not without a struggle. Just as she reached the top, a creature sank its teeth into my leg. With Gia’s help, I managed to climb over, trying to ignore the excruciating pain. Driven by the urgency of survival, we carried on knowing we had to stay on the move or we would both be lunch. 

When the sun started to set, we settled down in an abandoned garden shed. I didn’t want to put Gia in danger from me turning, so I kept watch outside for the night.

The following day, we met up with a small group of survivors.  They told us they saw the bite mark on my leg. I should have turned by now, they told us, so I must be immune. Still shocked, they proposed a plan to utilize mine and other immune survivors’ blood to create a cure. Despite Gia refusing, I offered reassurance, reminding her in our determination to save the world.

As night fell once again, we gathered around a flickering campfire. We shared stories and laughter knowing most of us would soon succumb. When it was time, we all stood up and said our goodbyes.

Gia stood over me while the doctor of the group injected me with some yellow liquid. The pain of the shot was quickly interrupted when I saw a deer. The deer. Her flawless spots still shone like a lamp in the night and she had the same glimmer of hope in her eyes. I knew what I was doing was right. It was my destiny.

As I lay in an old rundown barn, I heard my sister’s soft voice, “Please don’t go, I can’t lose you,” her tears softly hit my cheek.

“And I can’t lose you. I love you, sister.” I drifted off gently.

The next morning, I woke up, surprised I was still alive. Our efforts had paid off. Hope was restored as the blood of the immune was spread, killing the infection. Expecting a dark sun, I glanced upwards into the sky. It was strangely back to normal.

“We saved them,” I whispered.

“You saved everyone,” Gia replied with a teary smile.

“And we did it together,” another survivor added, pride in their voice.

As we looked out at the half-destroyed world, hope sparked in us. Whatever we needed to do next, we were ready for it.


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