Maybe The End Of The World Isn’t As Bad As It Sounds.

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SITE-67 GENERAL NOTICE



Life Support Systems: Critical

Electrical Systems: Critical

Security Systems: Critical

Safe-Class Containment Status: Online

Euclid-Class Containment Status: Compromised

Keter-Class Containment Status: Compromised


Researcher Ramani took a sip from her coffee. The cup was cold to the touch, the coffee having lost its taste. Yet she drank it. It was a nice feeling.

The control room was gigantic, filled to the brim with monitors and speakers, all buzzing in various tones, shapes and sizes, so variable in color, yet their meaning were always the same.


SITE-15 STATUS: COMPROMISED. REQUEST IMMEDIATE ASSISTANCE—

This is a message from Site-19. If you are receiving this message, it means that Site-19 has been compromised. All remaining Foundation facilities are to—

”-what can only be described as a ’mass of cicadas’ is visible, covering the entire mountain range—”

”… if anyone’s still listening, tell my wife and children that I love th—”


It was the end of the world. But not just any end of the world. It was all of them. Competing against each other, fighting one another to unleash hell on all of existence, unfurl their eternal wrath, because some dipshit in the 1300s forgot to slaughter a lamb and drink its blood as an offering or whatever. Something along those lines. Who even cared anymore? It was the ends of the world. Nothing mattered anymore.

Her colleague, a Doctor Adam Krug, went up and down. His movements were erratic, his face desecrated by an abundance of restless hours, his clothes soaked in sweat and stains. There were bunch of documents from Site-67’s vaults laying all around him, he analyzed every message, every broadcast. He analyzed everything there was for a spark of hope, a dim light in the every-prevailing darkness. Today was yet another of his attempts to establish contact.

”Site-81?” he spoke into the microphone, spit coming out of his mouth. ”Site-81, can you receive me?”

Nothing. Not even a whisper, the faintest of noise, nothing. Everything had gone black.

”Fuck…” He held the microphone firmly. ”Fuck, fuck… FUCK!” In mere seconds, Adam threw the microphone against a monitor, shattering both it and the monitor. Not that Ramani cared much. She was getting bored at seeing the same static for weeks now anyway.

His breaths were deep. Inhale. Exhale. His hands were clenched tight, his thoughts running rampant, and the repetitious cycle of wandering up and down was finally broken; she hadn’t seen Adam so alive for weeks now.

He calmed down again. ”Okay, okay, okay…” He tried to assess the situation, like any good researcher would. Lay out the facts, then piece together the little details. ”We should try Site-15. They’re not too far from—”

”We already tried them. No answer.”

”Then get me Site-120—”

”No word from them either.”

”How about—”

”Nope—”

”Then give me one we have not covered, for Christ’s sake!” Adam yelled from the top of his lungs. His breaths were shallow, rapid. Ramani thought that Adam would die of a heart attack right there.

Eventually, he calmed down.

”Sorry, I…” he said, rubbing his face. ”Please,” he said calmly, exhausted, ”just give me a Site we haven’t contacted yet. What about Nineteen?”

”Was the first one to go when the gate opened.”

Adam stood there in silence, in disbelief, despair, a wide range of emotions, all packed up in a little box, screaming to be let out. He kept his calm, though. He walked up and down on the spot again.

As he devised for another plan, any alternative to their present situation, a glimmer of hope, Researcher Ramani stood up from her seat and moved toward the coat hanger mounted on the wall.

”Where are you going?” Adam asked, quite perplexed.

She put on her coat. ”I’m going home,” Ramani answered. ”Back home to my family.”

”What?!”

”You’ve heard me, Adam. It was nice knowing you.”

She pulled her credentials from her pocket. Level 3 Researcher. Words, which once held so much meaning. Doctor Krug stepped in her way.

”You can’t do this!”

”Adam, please get out of my way.”

She tried to walk around him, but no matter what, Adam always stood between her and the door.

”You swore an oath to the Foundation—!”

”Adam, please.”

”—that you would protect humanity from whatever might crop up! They said that, and you swore your life for the cause! Secure, contain, protect! Have you forgotten?!”

Suddenly, he grabbed her arm. His hand tightened around her forearm, his fingers digging deep through her labcoat’s sleeves and skin. He looked her straight into the eyes.

”Let go of my arm,” Ramani said, in a calm voice, yet filled with confidence, with a glimmer of fear.

He saw how she looked at him. He let go off her arm, yet still maintained eye contact.

”Look around you, Adam!” She gestured toward all the monitors, displaying the same messages, same broadcasts, same static for months now. ”What do you want to protect? The ashes of humanity?”

”I’ve done this my entire life! I’m not going to stop now.”

There was an ear-piercing silence.

”Maybe you should.”

”You’re selfish.”

”I am,” Ramani replied.

”You’re a traitor!”

She did not say anything in response. She did not say anything at all, when she walked past Adam, entered her credentials and stepped through the door. She didn’t even give him a final glance, as the security door slid shut again.

He was alone. Completely and utterly alone. There was no one left. No one left to fight for, no one left to protect, no one left to fight against the unimaginable horrors all at once.

He walked to his chair and sat down. He looked at the monitor in front of him, exhausted, but all he could see in it was static.


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