All the Things You Want
by Andrew Peery
Kate is outside weeding the garden. Watching her from orbit, I can see the fine hair of her
arms and the wet flecks of dirt between her fingers. Every few seconds the telescopes adjust to
filter the quiet glare of an explosion. Unfortunately, the missiles launched at my ship are too small
to be seen from the ground.
I wish the bombs would burn brighter. I would vent hydrogen from the reactors if Kate
would just look up at me, but she is focused on pulling up the dandelions that I had always rather
liked. "They look like flowers to me," I would tell her.
"Weeds," she would say back, shaking her head.
The handful of satellites attacking my ship are too small to cause much damage. The SS
Euclidian is over a mile long, and she is the first vessel ever built for travel outside the solar
system. She is still fitting out and has yet to go anywhere, but her hull plating is rated for one
tenth light. At those speeds, interstellar dust is more destructive than any munitions currently in
Kate is working in the herb garden beside the back porch, so I remember the smells of
rosemary and basil. The porch door is off angle from where the dog got excited and crashed
through it, and there is a loose board on the steps I've been meaning to fix. If I was home Kate
would have me on the roof, which is as bad as she always said. From this angle, the rusted gutters
are so full of pine needles that I'm surprised they still drain.
It is July, and Kate is sweating through a grey tank top. She is brunette and fine-boned and
she weighs ten pounds more than she wants to. Even through her shirt, I can count out the knobs
of her spine. She wears her com ring on her right hand, and I can hear the pop song she hums
while she pulls things out of the ground.
I guess Kate isn't my wife anymore, but I won't let that stop me from taking her to the