It all began the year the Mayan calendar caused a panicked frenzy about the world coming to an end. As December 21st approached, more people failed to think with reason or logic. Chaos ensued. People made drastic decisions born of fear: selling everything they owned; quitting jobs; engaging in risky sexual relations. Some would die from sexually transmitted diseases, and some would end up homeless and addicted to alcohol or drugs because they’d given up everything and would turn to the streets. Others would lose spouses and friends.
The world was so preoccupied with this day—whether to ridicule and laugh, or tremble and prepare—that no one recognized how the real end of the world was upon us.
The end of our world as we knew it.
The United States was being torn apart by our own people, and the dividing line was purple. On each side stood citizens too stubborn in their ways to see the harm their endless bickering would cause. No one foresaw this.
Yet they should have. We all should have. But people were too caught up in the supposed prophecy of doom set into motion five hundred years ago. They failed to think about our more recent history, to remember a young country divided a mere hundred and fifty years ago.
Nobody stopped to think what a civil war in these times would mean. It wouldn’t be an isolated event, fought between two demographics on the same soil; no, a divide this deep and wide wouldn’t be ours alone—our enemies would use our division to our destruction, and unlike a hundred and fifty years ago, they now had the technology to do it.
And so they did.
The first state to secede the union was Texas, and ironically their breakaway became official on January 20, 2013, the day the President many held responsible for the divide was sworn in for a second term. More states quickly followed, and the United States was united no more. A second government formed. Military was divided. The country became lopsided in power and in resources, and when our enemies realized our vulnerability, they struck.
Of course, our allies got involved, and our civil war became World War Three.
I set my pen down and turn away from my notebook. I can’t bring myself to write about the first bomb, or the endless people who bloodied the streets of our nation. Candlelight makes it possible to write these words—words that nobody will ever read. The power went out days ago. My apartment is cold and dark, and that somehow makes the sirens more dismal.
I know it’s coming soon. My end of the world. No barricade of furniture will keep the end at bay. Hysteria and screaming slice the night, growing louder the closer it gets. Glass breaks, and the floor shakes as a bomb lands nearby.
I bring my hands together, close my eyes, and pray to whoever is listening. A blanket of peacefulness settles over me, and I don’t hear the next explosion.
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