“Remember, sweetie, always remember that mommy loves you.”

“Mommy,” the little girl on the monitor said. Billie watched as her daughter pressed her little hand on the screen. She broke into tears. Her shoulders shook as she pressed her own hand on the monitor.

“Mommy’s sorry. Mommy will always love you. Always.”

Then the screen went blank. Billie’s cries grew louder. The others had to look away. Stevenson placed his hands gently on Billie’s rocking shoulders then he guided the broken woman out of the room and into the waiting cruiser.

“We’re ready,” Stevenson said.

The pilot nodded. The cruiser roared into life. All twelve scientists, the best and the brightest, were transported to the shuttle.

“We won’t forget the sacrifice you’ll be making,” Stevenson started saying. “I…We’re sorry.”

Billie watched the shuttle from the distance, slowly growing in size as they got closer. A one way trip to save humanity.