Peace


I stand on top of the hill and watch the world end. It fell apart bit by bit as the ground shook beneath my feet and the sky turned fire red. Buildings disintegrating around me, filling the air with a deafening noise and chocking out dust. I watch the closest structures splitting as if cut by a God’s sword and their guts spilling out. The people went down with it, though their screams and cries were nothing to that of the buildings. I feel ash touching my face as the wind sweeps over me. It was my fault. I started the end.

 Eighteen years earlier

 They put me in my mother’s arms still covered in birth blood and wailing. She smiled at me for the very first time and I missed it because my eyes were squeezing out fat tears. I was cold and wet, I didn’t care. Her voice hushed me as she rocked me in her arms. Her fingers touched me then a student nurse burst into the room yelling it had been declared. World peace was official.

Peace, my mother sighed, that’s what I shall name him. Peace.

She’s going! She’s going!

I was snatched from her, my crying unable to bring her back.

The end of the world

I never knew her. I didn’t have any memory fragments of her face or voice. When I looked at the photos, it was like seeing a stranger, only with my dark brown eyes, black tangled hair and dark skin. She looked happy, healthy. She didn’t know she was going to die. I clutch that one photo of her I have always cherished and watch the sky turn a deeper shade of red. Sirens of all kinds screech out alongside the still crumbling buildings. The ground quakes, pulling the earth apart into jagged lines which swallow anything they can get. The Hungry Earth.

 Fifteen years earlier

 I was laying in my crib half asleep listening to the thunderstorm rolling out above me. My face was turned to the window and I could see the flashes of yellow light. I cried, long and hard before falling into fitful screams. Arms picked me up and soft voices whispered to me. I was taken from my room and into theirs’, which was all ways a warm, safe nest that locked out the danger. I could still hear the storm. The loudness frightened me, I didn’t understand what it was. I kept crying, unable to draw any comfort from my foster parents.

  The end of the world

 That was it. My first actual memory. I had longed for it to be about my mother or anything else from the moment I had remembered it. I couldn’t write about my fear for my homework, so I wrote something else instead. My second earliest memory, in which I had been traveling somewhere in the car. I look further down the hill and wonder what everyone below me had been thinking on the cusp of their deaths. Some of them most have known they were going to die. Had they prayed? Cried out to their loving families? No one would ever know.

Thirteen years earlier

 My world consisted of a handful of places and people. I had yet to grasp the vastness of the space around me. I was enjoying exploring everything. I understood my name, but not what it truly meant. I got a younger sister, Grace in the spring of that year and felt jealous. She was ill all the time, dying, and my foster parents were doting towards her. She was their ‘miracle baby’ and I was just someone they had decided to save. Somehow, I always knew they had regretted it. They tried to un-adapt me, but felt too guilty.

The end of the world

 I sit down, feeling the heat of the explosions warping the air. Grace is dead now. Like our parents. They were the first I killed. The bomb ripped the house apart and I ran away. I wrap my arms around my legs and watch the city burning. It reminds me of Hell, though I’m there all ready. We all are. I thought there would be more to it, more colour, more apocalypse-ness. I imagined people going crazy in the streets and the world fighting against its annihilation. Yet, it accepts the fact as if it had always known this day would come.

Eight years earlier

 Doing that homework caused my foster parents to tell me the truth. In my bedroom, away from the half-blind eyes of my sister, they present a plastic blue box to me. Inside were the possessions my mother’s family had decided belonged to me when they surrendered to the authorities. There were the photos, a blanket, a teddy bear, some money and a bible.

She named you Peace because you were born just as world peace was declared. That makes you so special. You were the first baby to be born in that time. You’ll never experience war as long as you live.         

The end of the world

My foster mother hadn’t been wrong. In my short life all the world’s countries were at peace with each other. How it had come about was never known to me. They taught nothing about it in school, nor any other war, just that we had to love and care for each other. People were banned from talking about it. I didn’t care, I was just a kid. I still don’t really care now. The world is dying in redness and screams. Nearly all the buildings have collapsed and I can see people fleeing. Don’t they know there’s nowhere left to run to?

 Five years earlier

 I wanted to die and that was how it all began. My foster parents had brought me a computer a few years ago. It was an expensive Christmas present and something to babysit me whilst Grace took up all their time. I loved playing games and talking to people. However it didn’t drain my anger and I began researching things. I met someone online who taught me things only an expert should know. It excited me and I learned the ways of a hacker quickly, but it also set me on this path.

 The end of the world

I remember everything that happened that led to this moment. Only a fool would shove the past away. I raise my dropped head and look at the sky, it’s turning black with smoke now. Below me, everyone is aware of what’s happened. Somehow the news reports have gotten though. I can hear nothing from up here, the bombs and falling buildings have left me deaf. My ears are ringing, I feel the urge to reflect on my actions. Though I know I lost the power to stop this a while ago. The world cries for a hero, but I offer them the villain instead.

One year earlier

 It was too easy to hack in and set off the stored nuclear war weapons.

 The end of the world

The final bomb goes off just as planned. The world shakes under me and I know it’s all over. As the red, yellow and black clouds roll towards me, my last thought is will anyone will find this recording and know the truth?

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