The Crystal Chamber, by Maria Kelly
The second survey crew landed near an object embedded in the southern hemisphere of a dead world. They’d lost contact with the first team months ago.
The artifact resembled an enormous crystalline worm buried in the earth. A nearby cave led them down into a chamber filled with alien devices. Numerous bones lay scattered all around.
What they thought was the artifact blocked the passageway on the opposite side.
A portal was set into the construct, lined with spikes that sparkled like icicles.
They understood too late as the chamber began broadcasting black noise.
The worm was ready to feed.
The Crystal Chamber was previously published by Luna Station Quarterly in December, 2010.
Maria Kelly lives in Florida where she writes weird shit and publishes The Were-Traveler. Her works have been published in Luna Station Quarterly, Aoife’s Kiss, and with eMergent Publishing. She is currently working on her first short story collection called Kill the Crow, which will be coming out soon. Her website is http://mariakellyauthor.com. Her Twitter profile is @mkelly317. She is on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/MariaKellyAuthor.