Eden
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I remember the warmth. That is the first thing I recall. The light was there as well, the soft orange glow of a dying star. But the warmth… It cannot be easily described. It is nothing like the cold of this place.

There were others there, like me. We are large creatures, and so we do not live in a place crowded with rocks, as this system is. Our home is not filled with stone but with soft warmth, and with the quiet light of a star that has found its place. I was told that the star was young when we first arrived there, and there is an ancient one who claims to remember when it would still speak. I do not believe his ramblings.

We spend a great deal of time as children incapable of rational thought. None remember this period of their lives, though the caretakers tell us that it is amusing. We chase after debris with a joy that is lost to the old, cavorting through space with an innocence that some have spent an eternity trying to recreate.

But, of course, you are not here to learn this. You are here because you wonder what our purpose is, what I am here to do?

There is a seed within each of us. As we mature, it evolves. Eventually, it multiplies. The process is… complex, and I fear it is beyond your understanding. I will say that we may exercise some control over this evolution, and that many of our race take great pride in the complexity and beauty of their creations.

We carry this seed with us throughout our lifetimes, thousands of tiny lives held in an embryonic limbo. Some choose to never allow this seed to grow, unwilling to leave the glory of the skies for something so mundane as gardening. But others of us, we know what must be done.

And so we leave. We leave the warmth and joy and peace of that glad star and depart into the cold void. None who leave ever return. No songs are sung of their success, no warnings returned from their deaths. None are heard from again.

We search through debris and rocks and vast stretches of black nothingness, looking for somewhere that a small seed might take root and grow. It is a long, impossible task, and my telling of it would take many of your lifetimes.

Suffice it to say that after a great deal of searching, I happened upon a small planet that looked rather promising. And so I took the plunge.

That is not an experience I wish to repeat. The fires of the air scalded me terribly before I came to rest in the oceans, and my recovery was long and unpleasant. But I had dedicated myself to this task, and I could not turn from it.

That seed within us… ruptures, that is the word. It ruptures on our landing. After that rupture, the seed is released. It grows within us, colonizing our bodies. As its numbers swell, some may find their way out to the world on which we have landed. I know that a few small creatures from within me have made their way to the waters of this planet, though the majority remain within.

Eventually, I will expire. That great impact shortens our lifespan, and the growth of a civilization within us does nothing to alleviate this. Eventually, those creatures within me will find an exit.

Everything will change.

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