Jared Smith cut the engine and began to unwrap the bandana covering his mouth. He found his hands shaking and fingers fumbling as he tried to undo the knot. He knew it was shock. He knew it was adrenaline. He still couldn’t process what he saw at the grocery store, what he did. The blood…the screams….he realized his hands had stopped moving and he swore at himself angrily and managed to get off the dust caked covering.
It had been about a month since the meteor hit. Each day it was getting worse and worse. The sky was not longer blue but and dusty, almost murky milk-white. Dust, debris, Jared didn’t really give a fuck what it was called. He just knew it meant one thing; doom. The earth was dying, the ship was sinking, and what was humanity’s response? Some nuke fireworks, bathing each other in manmade fire instead of suffocating as the sun’s was blocked out. Civilization already ended elsewhere in the world and now it was starting to end here.
Dierks Santiago stepped out of the passenger side of his Mercedes MMZ smartly, shutting the door behind him. With a few quick hand motions the MMZ pulled out smoothly, driving itself off on a loop until the auction was over. For a brief moment he thought of sending it to a parking garage, to save the world from one more luxury driving itself around but, as in many things in Dierks’ life, his whim overruled any considerations for his fellow man.
He watched with satisfaction as the car signaled its left turn and pulled out and away. Its deep blue paint reflecting the orange-pinkish light of the late afternoon sun. Silent and gliding a few inches off the ground it truly was more a work of art than an automobile and, judging by the heads turning as it coasted down the street, he wasn’t the only one to consider it so.
However, this idle admiration for Federated Germany’s most excellent machine was quickly replaced with deep concentration at the task at hand. Because today was the day Dierks Santiago stepped out from his father’s shadow and into his own. Today, Dierks’ conquest of the world began in earnest.
The following is a transcript of a speech delivered before the Assembly of Shackelton by citizen Elsi Badez on 25.2.2254 in response to the Federated States message sent to Luna two days prior on 23.2.2254. It has not been altered in any way other than the omission of ambient sounds for the preservation in the Shackelton archives.
“Honored citizens of Shackelton, I speak not only to you today but to all of the citizens of Luna. I speak to you in the hopes that you will stop the rumblings of self delusion and romanticism that, at the merest utterance from that world which had forsaken us, seems to have swelled over the past couple days. This is not an address, or a speech, or an appeal as much as it is a call. A call to use sense. A call not to dishonor the work of your forbears, some who’s memories are still fresh in the minds of those who stand in this very chamber today. It is a call to sever the sentimental ties that are awakening in you the desire to gaze back upon that blue and green wasteland that has kept our minds, our ambitions, and our people anchored for too long. Yes, I speak of that world where mankind spawned. I speak of Earth, of Terra. I speak of that crumbling edifice of civilization that now, when we have lived in the void and the Grey for so long, comes beckoning. For what purpose? To bend us to their cataclysmic and small wars? To chain us to their political games and engulf or tranquil, quiet home in the flames of conflict? Of death? Of ruin? Continue reading