Our days are numbered. The fireball in the sky will make sure of that. It’s too bright to look at, but I stole a peek through my fingers. The glowing sphere is larger than the sun; yet it’s light years away. Keplar’s Supernova, in 1604, was the last time something like this was recorded. It was 20,000 light years away and visible in the daytime for three weeks. That little kitten has nothing on this tiger.
I don’t go outside anymore. My air conditioner hums at full speed, on the coldest setting. The house shimmers with heat. I touch a wall and feel the heat fight its way through the plaster. I wonder how long the power grid is going to hold up under this much strain. My guess is, not long. Already I hear the drag of the motor as it tries to stay ahead of the temperature.
Water is rationed and only turned on for a few minutes a day. Usually it runs dry before I fill all my bottles. The plants give up one brown, crinkly leaf at a time and surrender to the pull of gravity. A crunchy carpet, that used to be grass, borders my sidewalk. The pond at the end of my driveway is a puddle surrounded by octagonal slabs of dried mud. Koi carcasses guard the edges and watch me with hollow eyes. I haven’t heard a dog bark or a bird chirp in days.
They say the shock wave will obliterate our solar system. Of course, life on earth will be gone long before that happens. The destruction will wipe out our corner of the galaxy with the energy of a thousand suns. It will be goddamn spectacular.
I’m not one who clings to false hope or prays for divine intervention. I don’t want to see the oceans boil and my skin melt. I’m not waiting.
Need more flash fiction? Need a horror fix? CHeck these out:
Melting – from Sanity’s Threshold
The Basement, from Unconfined Delusions, coming Oct. 20th
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