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2200- A Choice
Her eyes glimmered, bright, as she looked around.
Pointless, of course. There was no one here, she had already ensured that. Still, she tried to postpone the moment, tried not to look at her hand, glad of the darkness her basement provided.
And yet, the metal gleamed.
She breathed in deeply, there was no more evading what must be done, what should have been done long ago, for her own good, for the good of her... child.
She leaned back, hands on her protruding belly, emotions clouding her judgment. Five months she had nurtured it, fed it, in order to bring it to the world. Her child. Only, what kind of world would she be bringing it into anyway? There was no hope for this planet, that much was known, and even missions to find livable conditions on other planets had been given up long ago.
The government's last mission while it still existed had been to let this generation of people pass away in comfort.
Comfort. She snorted. Well, there was no lack of space, that much had to be said of this world. The law banning children had been passed years ago. 22 and a half years ago, to be precise. And that was how old she was. The youngest person on the planet, born the day before it would have been illegal for her to exist. A fighter. Would the same be true of her child, if...?
But no. She must not consider that option. She tried to imagine her child leading the life she was now, a much harsher version of it. The only things she owned an air filter and a pocket laser beam-cum-gun, not that the gun had been of much use lately, seeing as how the last time she had seen an animal was a dog 2 years ago, and that was dead. Only a few days old, though. She had slept well fed the next few days. It was a good time. One could actually find something semi-edible once in a while, unlike now. She imagined her child venturing out, and feeding, only at night, scavenging through the plastic bags strewn all around, and entering deserted houses, in case anything edible had survived, and feeling lucky if s/he found a stash of H2O tablets. Apparently, they are based on something called water, which was a liquid. Water had sounded strange, but she had been told it was much better than H2O tablets, that your throat didn't hurt when you swallowed water. She wondered if her child would ever meet another human. She hadn't in the past 5 months. How many people were there left on this planet, anyway? Not more than 100, surely? Or 200, maybe.
And how much time did she have left? Fifteen years? Sixteen? And if she was lucky, seventeen? And then what would happen to her poor, defenseless child?
And just like that, her mind was made up. She dropped her laser gun, and walked out of the basement and up the stairs quickly.
She would have liked to live in this house. She would have liked to live in any house.
She opened the door, and for the first time, the sunlight hit her face.
"Beautiful." She whispered.
There was a thud, and then the world was silent.