“This is the last transmission we received sir,” General Moberly informed the President.
“I feel so immature, but if you must know, my last thoughts here are of the ending of the most recent War of the Worlds film. The one with TC. You know the part I’m talking about, right? The part when nature does what man couldn’t do. Yep, that’s what I’m thinking about right now. It’s kind of funny really. Three nine-month one-way trips to a distant planet. Three successful landings. And we’ve been here for six years, nearly thriving. All twelve of us. And now this.
“No, it’s not martians that are going to wipe us out. No, it’s not bacteria. No, it’s not a lack of supplies. What’s killing us is an asteroid that’s arriving in a few minutes. Of course, it’s not going to hit us directly. Instead of a nice clean death, we’re being told that we’ll see it, feel the Mars shake beneath our feet, and then within minutes the aftermath of debris and shock-wave will rip apart everything we’ve worked so hard to build. First, the dust will erode the domes, then our suits, then our skin, and finally our bones. Apparently the cosmos doesn’t like us humans squatting wherever we damn well please. Well, I say fuck the cosmos. Sorry ma. But whoever’s listening needs to know that everyone here knew the risks and is content with this end. Don’t stop exploring. You can’t let this change anything.
“Okay, this is it. Wow. It’s so bright. I didn’t expect it to be for another two-minutes. I’m sorry for everything! I don’t want to die!”
“Is that it?” asked the President, “Everyone’s dead? The base is destroyed?”
“Well, then. It seems to me there’s only one thing to do,” the President continued.
“What’s that sir?”
“We’re going to honor their wishes. Get me NASA. And schedule a press conference. We’re going to Mars.”