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The Fall, The Rise, The End

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Everything shook. The tremors were bloodthirsty, and I began to feel as mother earth had betrayed me. The walls crumbled while dust obscured my vision. I was moving, and I had forgotten to forget exactly where to. I glanced at the crude metal walls surrounding me, suddenly appearing so weak. These makeshift walls weren't built for such treatment; a testimony proved by the fact that they were literally imploding. A lightbulb smacked me on the head as I ran with my head ducked.

I felt no remorse in seeing my home of the last six months destroyed. This shelter was crude, depressing, but more importantly a reflection of the inhumane treatment of the world around us. Wires greedily raced on the walls to boxy computers whose dim green glow set a mood of desperation in the common room. Various machines of unknown purposes hummed gluttonously as they carelessly exhaled plumes of smoke resulting in poor breathability and even worse visibility. These machines were stacked upon each other as though they were on a race to get to the top, and they would disregard and moral conviction as long as they would be above their machine brethren. Organization was lost in Home by the third day. The interior decor consisted of dark machines, screens, and wires on the ceiling, floor, and walls, complemented by tables collapsing under the weight of the machines on them. Yes, there was a ventilation system, but it was being abused, not prepared for unbelievable amount of waste we were producing. Funny how we would destroy something we built.

Lightbulbs cast a simply unappealing shade of orange and they really were never turned off. Sleep was unbearable in this shelter. Not just because of the bright lights, but the constant ringing of telephones and tapping of keyboards and stomping of feet- seriously, all the workers found it necessary to stomp around during business hours- it was virtually impossible to sleep in this an environment of panic.

Panic was the reality and I knew the end was near since the beginning. The Philippines was the first to go and the rest followed en suite despite the greatest (or most futile) showings of resilience. It was not like dominoes. No, more like a cat playing with a ball of yarn. The yarn is defenseless as the cat effortlessly undoes it with its unforgiving claws. The cat continues to rip and tear until the a single thread is produced. A thread pitifully weak, alone, and vulnerable. The world was coming undone.

The metal made horrifying sounds under the weight of the earth to the point where I felt like I was in a slaughterhouse. The scary part was I would most likely be the one dying. I saw the exit, monitored by my older brother, Dante. He was trying to look like he knew how to use the assault rifle strapped to his chest, but I knew better. This time there was no light at the end of the tunnel I was running through, for the tunnel was lighter than what was outside. As I ran I struggled to keep my oxygen mask on my face. I emerged into the no longer great outdoors and charred debris as well as a smell of burning s*** greeted me. The world was unrecognizable- what was warm and vivid was now withering and cold-much like the clammy hands of an elderly person on his deathbed.

Everyone was yelling, but I payed absolutely no attention- I really didn't even hear anything. I was now simply an animal trying to survive, whether it meant pushing, biting, sprinting, shouting, or trampling. In fact, everyone around me had abandoned their human civility; we had been reduced to a pack of savages.

I looked to the sky. "Look how far we've come,"I thought cynically . The ground betrayed me as it shook until I fell flat on my face. When I stood back up my nose was bleeding profusely, but I did not feel anything. A military esque man grabbed me and guided me to the launching platform. As I ran, I stared at the world around me. Life on earth was gone, only changes in elevation distinguished one gray area from another. But all in all everything was virtually flat except for the Chinook Mountains many miles away.

My boots clanked on the metal stairs and my oxygen mask was falling off. The space vessel really did look remarkable. Dr. Goulding kept his promise and he was going to save humanity with his genius plan (propaganda? maybe). It took some real effort for me to hoist my self in the main body of the ship; this is when I first realized how frail I'd become. A mob of people followed me, although I really didn't notice their shoves or shouts. One man managed to pull of my shoe as I was climbing in, I cursed him under my breath. The interior of the space vessel was completely white and red and resembled one of the airplanes from the 22nd century. I walked through a barren doorway in somewhat of a trance. I picked a window seat with a grin... this was going so well.

Launch off was rushed, and the entire ship was shaking around me. I tried to relax with closed eyes and long breaths, but this method's futility became evident quickly. Human screams perverted themselves into an unbearable drone; I began to cry. I managed to pull myself together enough to fasten my straps: I attempted to make them tight enough to numb me and, thus, the pain. Questions were swirling through my head while space vessel shook more and more violently. This looming mass of people still on the platform, they were just to be forgotten? My mother was situated next to me, and she was virtually unrecognizable. Her makeup wasn't even dripping or anything; it was just applied terribly making her wrinkles stand out more. She was in denial of our situation, she pretended not to notice the people on the platform.

Suddenly, it all clicked. During one of my countless sleepless nights, I decided to explore my makeshift home. It was hotter than usual, and I was sweating beads under my cotton pajamas. I walked, not stealthily or anything, into our unit's kitchen for some milk. That's when I heard the murmur. Yes, there was always the whirring of computers and buzzing of various machines, but this murmur stood out for some reason. I started down this wide hallway leading to a meeting room I had previously explored. One the murmurs became dangerously loud, I crept to the door leading to the meeting room and lied down. I recognized my father's voice immediately and subsequently realized he was addressing Dr. Goulding.
"What do you mean there's not enough space?"
"I don't have the resources or time necessary to build a space vessel large enough for our entire Home population!" Fearsome and desperate.
"So you expect me to leave a a third of these people behind... I am a Ranger, for God's sake. I leave no man behind."
"You were a Ranger."
A moment of silence after these cold words.
"Listen here you sack of s***..."
That's when I heard the footsteps behind me and ran.

The space vessel was filled over maximum occupancy- people were sitting on other people, some were trying to get settled without a seat- I knew lift-off would be horrifying. We finally began the ascension. It was surprisingly fluid, if not smooth. I felt amazing, better than I ever had in my life, we were going to survive. Tears rolled over my lips as they shaped a smile. Of course there were moans and screams, but I felt as though I'd risen above fear. We reached a great speed, great enough for me to forget about those we had left behind.

The rush of just fleeing a situation we had corrupted beyond any hope for repair. It was scandalous and wrong, but law and order wasn't really a part of society anymore. The distinction of right from wrong blurred as anarchy overpowered the people.

The straps were constricting me- I thought they were going to suffocate me right now. I giggled when I realized the ridiculousness of these words. I was in hysterics. My laughs rose above the screams, my perverted humor adding to this living hell. The ship was not holding up, things were falling as though the ship was unraveling like a once sturdy rope. I didn't feel like any blood was circulating my body. In fact, I didn't feel alive.

My emotions were changing as quickly as the space vessels altitude. I heard the murmurs of the older man in front of me with greasy, untamed grey hair. He rubbed his bloated belly as he talked to himself. He seriously had gone insane.
"Th... the... trash. What the f*** is wrong with us. We just th... throw it wherever!"
His face grew violent, crudely complementing his bulging, red eyes.
"The r..ring. It will be the death of us. J... just you wait. Ha! Ha ha ha! The ring full of your f...f***ing s***! Yes! This is... perfect.
Beads of sweat rolled down his face.
"You think S... Saturn's ring is impressive. Wait t... till you see ours. Ha ha ha!"
The man flayed his arms in the air.
"Wake up ev... everyone! Karma! Yes, yes it was all a matter of time time. You know th... that s*** doesn't just disappear. We can't pass through this... ring."
He whispered, "It's perfect."
The vessel was being tossed around relentlessly as masses of waste collided with it. There was no longer control. Only screams while a few tried to take control of the situation. Earth's ring of garbage was going to be the death of us.
Finally, a mammoth tear was inflicted upon the ship.The tear revealed the beauty of outer space sullied by unidentifiable scraps of metal, plastic, and glass. I stared into a star in the blackness of space which seemed to be framed by the trash floating aimlessly around it. The star shined on, almost proudly. This was all, of course, moments before I was sucked away into blackness.





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