Will the End be Today?

December 4, 2009
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The Day of Doom

A blazing missile whipped past Henry Jones’ sweat drenched face, smashing into the wall where he had been merely seconds ago. He fell to the floor, and half deaf, was unable to rise for what seemed to be an eternity.
Finally regaining his feet, he surveyed the battlefield. More than sixty monstrous green warriors, clad in rusty iron, were viciously determined to reach their seven prey, but were continuously held back by the protecting steel wall they had grown to despise, and an array of weapons superior to their own, assumed efficient, small caliber firearms and limited missiles.
Henry’s own six men were still fighting, running on pure adrenalin. Two of them had been shot in the previous hours of battle, but didn’t seem to notice the agonizing pain Henry knew they were bound to be experiencing. Suddenly a scream came from his left. Simultaneously spinning to determine the source, and firing at the nearest Martian, he himself experienced the crushing agony of a foreign bullet slamming into his chest.
Realizing that the balance of power had once more switched against him, he ordered the evacuation of this second room. Dragging the previously wounded man and firing at the advancing aliens, the seven men successfully made their retreat. As the first door closed between the opposing forces, the last glimpse the humans had of the invaders was of them scrambling to repair their devastated tunneling machine. For the moment, they were safe.
22 Hours Earlier:

Remaining controlled and unexpressive in the chaos around him, the figure of Henry Jones stood silhouetted in the dim light radiating from his, long thought impractical, state-of-the-art panic room. The forty-eight year old’s mind was inflexibly fixed on a single entity. Barely audible to those nearest him, he incoherently muttered what the entirety of his will had now been sure of for several moments; “Let’s see those Martians try and survive me.”
Almost grinning, and completely detached from the agonizingly terrifying reality around him, Henry was abruptly whipped back by the loud scream of a fourteen year old boy frantically scrambling down the, now desolate, two-car brick lane. “They’re here! It’s just like the radio said! I just saw two of their giant cylinders crash into my house! They’re now unloading over that way! Everyone, run!” Supporting his grim tidings, a gruesome pillar of death-like smoke rose from the direction he had pointed out.
Henry once again took charge of the chaotic situation, preventing the inevitable death of any who had followed the teenager’s sophomoric advice. In thirty second’s time, he successfully escorted his wife, six year old daughter, and three year old son, as well as an assembly of thirty or so neighbors, the very ones that had, only two days prior, made him the butt of their jokes, into the 1000 square foot entrance into his version of a paranoid man’s storm shelter.
Last to step into the room, was Henry himself. Gloomily surveying the tearful crowd around him, he subconsciously entered his twenty seven digit security code into the glittering keypad of strange symbols that seemed to hover just in front of the wall. Almost at a terrifyingly slow rate, thirteen massive, cold, solid steel doors slid soundlessly to a close above their frightened masses. The only sound to be heard in the room was the blend of a small child’s weeping, and the far off moan of destruction being wreaked on the once ideally tranquil city.
With a decisive bang the closing of the thirteenth door announced the successful completion of first, and most apparent to the captives inside, the sealing of themselves into a depressing oubliette, and secondly, and most import to Henry, a complete and utter abandonment with the world outside of his own control. Their only contact with the world outside of the underground box was through three cameras mounted sixty feet above their heads, and displayed on a giant screen at the back of the room.

Henry’s ultra-modern panic room had been entirely his own creation, and had taken the engineer twelve years of his life to create. It consisted of a series of four consecutively smaller rooms, with each being separated by a similar component of thirteen doors, meeting in the center, as closed them off from the doom filled world sixty feet above them. The only way to get to a back room was from a front one. Along the back wall of every section, there stood an unmoving four and a half foot wall. It was situated so that anyone entering from the doors above would not see them until after they were already in plain sight. The paranoid Henry Jones had added this feature in the unlikely event that he would have to fight anyone somehow able to get through the impassible barrier of doors. In the back side of the wall there was a stash of various military grade weapons, all of which Henry’s extensive Marine background taught him to use.
“Take all those who can’t fight to the back room,” Henry said generally, while once again typing in his extensive code. A kaleidoscope of doors seemed to open before them. When no one went forth to do Henry’s bidding, he took it upon himself. Once again he said, “All those who do not feel like protecting your own lives, follow me.” Sluggish with despair, they seemed to move forward simultaneously. When the group reached the final room, they were given instructions to remain absolutely silent until otherwise told, “No matter what the outcome may be, don’t lose hope, and more importantly make sure these doors stay shut.”
As Henry was closing his disheartening speech one of the six men left in the main room yelled in a chilling voice, “No…no it can’t be! Henry get over here now!” Turning swiftly and mouthing farewell to his family, he first initiated the closing of the doors, then walked decisively back to the group that was to be his army.
“Lo…loo…look,” another man stammered upon his arrival. Directing his attention towards the massive screen now behind him, his feet almost failed him, for what was not to be the last time. …
Positioning themselves behind the wall, they waited. Their first plan of action was to destroy the drilling machine, while ensuring that the invaders did not advance. The very moment the inner door was perforated, an array of flames and bullets engulfed the apparatus. Before the mechanism had made it entirely into the room, it gave a great sigh and shut down.
For eight more grueling hours, the two entities battled back and forth. The six men fighting beside Henry proved to be surprisingly battle worthy. For the two wounded men on the human side, over forty green bodies lay motionless on the metal floor. When Henry experienced his own debilitating injury, and realized he was no longer in control, the word was given to move into the next section of his defense.
Suspecting that the enemy’s machine was irreparable, he knew that the next move of the foreign invaders would be to pry the doors open. His former thoughts that this was an impossible task were now quieted. Searching his brain for an answer to this problem, he finally was able to secure a solution. Opening the metal cabinet of weaponry behind the wall he handed out six flame throwers. Taking up his own, he gave the orders to direct an intense wall of flame at the point where the two parts of the door met.
After twenty minutes he gave the order to stop. Henry breathed a sigh of relief when he saw that his hypothesize had proven to be correct. He had successfully welded the door together, and he now stood before a solid wall of steel. Would it work? Joining his family, he could only wait. But he was unworried. He had won.

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