The drink tastes terrible. It’s the only thing I can think about as I am staring at the firelight, reflecting through said drink. It’s terrible. Nothing about it tastes good. I was told that this was smooth. It’s not. It’s absolutely dreadful, and I want nothing to do with it. What compelled him to say that the drink was good? Are her taste buds not working? I didn’t know, and I didn’t care. All I knew is that the drink was fucking terrible, and I didn’t want this to be the last drink of the light. What a terrible night.
It’s so quiet now. After years of people having the opportunity to get ready, now it was the night when it would happen. The last night for us all. The last night that any person could possibly do anything. Because at roughly 6 pm tomorrow night, every single one of us would be dead. That’s not an if, mind you. It’s a fact. We are all going to die tomorrow night. Our time in this universe is going to be over, and that’s how it is. There have been the missions where NASA and whoever tried to find a way around it, but it didn’t work. I mean, where the fuck was anyone going to go? Any mission to another planet was contingent on getting shit from Earth. There was no possible way that we would survive. Maybe we could have, if the government hadn’t fucked NASA’s budget. But we did, and now it’s too late. Maybe we could have had sustainable colonies on Mars. The ones that were set up when the truth was known are a joke. This would have taken years. Now it’s over. And here I am, drinking this terrible drink. What a way to end a life.
“What’s it going to be like?” he asked.
I looked over at her. “I don’t know. From what they’ve said, it will be this insane gravitational force. The are facing the incoming planet will have all the incoming gravity smashing them. They will be crushed in seconds. All the plant and animal life will be turned to mush very quickly. The atmosphere will cease to exist, so all of us will suffocate. Then the impact will happen. I hear that, in space, it will look like the planet is slowing down as it approaches. We will apparently cause untold damage to the incoming planet, with some theorizing that it will be like what they believe happened to create our moon.”
Taking another drink, he nodded. “Grim.”
“Tell me about it.”
“So, are you afraid of it?”
I shook my head. “What’s to be afraid of? We’re already feeling the forces of gravity acting on us. The impact will happen, but I guarantee that we’ll all be dead long before we get there. Hell, most people are already dead. We’re just waiting out the inevitable.” That’s when my gaze went up. I looked at the sky and saw the massive shadow. By now, it had blocked out most sunlight to places. The bulk of the planet was freezing. Hence the fire in here.
She looked up as well. “It’s just weird, you know? That this is how it ends. I was always hoping that it would be something a little more…cathartic, you know? Like if it’s nuclear holocaust, then at least it makes some sense. We’re a violent, deranged species, so we have a violent end. But nope. It’s just a cosmic hit-and-run. We get obliterated and that’s it. No rhyme or reason.”
A small chuckle from me. “Makes you wonder what the evangelicals and whatnot are thinking now, doesn’t it? I bet it’s lots of ‘we’re about to be in heaven,’ isn’t it? All sorts of stuff about how God is coming for them. Yeah, because this is TOTALLY how the Book of Revelations talked about this, isn’t it? A massive planetary body smacking into us and turning this planet to rubble. 10,000 years of human evolution wiped from the face of the planet in a matter of seconds. That sure does sound like God had his hands on the trigger.”
His head was shaking. “I can’t help but wonder, you know? Like, what if we are all wrong? What if God is out there, watching us?”
A cold look comes to my face. “What if? I’ll tell you what if – if there is a God, that means that he is watching, right now, as a celestial body looks to obliterate his creation. And rather than poke his almighty nose out and give us a chance to live, he is totally fine letting this celestial body kill us all. His creation is going to die tomorrow, and he doesn’t have the courtesy to even tell us that it’s going to be okay. Yeah, if there is a God, he can go fuck himself right up his all-powerful asshole. Fuck that guy. Like Carlin said, if there is a God, he has to be a man. No woman would let their children end up this way.”
Long moments of somber came as I finished my drink. Thought about leaving, but where am I going to go? It’s cold out. I could make it back to my place, but it would be freezing there. Here there’s a fire. I can at least wait out tomorrow in some comfort, rather than the insane rioting that has destroyed all of civilization.
Civilized society crumbled about a month ago. Governments fell to violence. The US government just up and left. They figured that it didn’t matter anymore, so why bother trying to keep law and order. Massive gangs of violence, rape and murder, as humanity stares down the barrel with absolutely no hope of escape. That’s us. That’s where we are. So I could get home, just to wait out this in the freezing cold, and potentially being murdered on my way there. Or stripped naked and raped, then murdered. Fun thoughts. Very, very fun.
“Wanna fuck?” She asked.
It was tempting. “Nah. Not my point in it, really.”
He winked at me. “Come on, no need for condoms. Not like STDs or pregnancy mean anything. What else are we going to do?”
That’s when it occurred to me. “Let’s start a bonfire.”
“Let’s take out all the wood shit we don’t need onto the lawn and start a huge bonfire. Let’s burn the fucking world down and enjoy our one last night being able to look up at the stars. You can’t take it with you, after all. Right?”
A smile came to her face, and he nodded. “Damn straight! Let’s do it!”
The whole operation took about half an hour. We destroyed so much unbelievably-valuable furniture. Priceless paintings that were done by people who wanted to leave a legacy that would last forever. All kinds of books that were old and relics of a time gone by. It all went to burn. It was the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. The first got so fucking bit. We kept finding things to burn! We were throwing in cupboard drawers, shelving units, whatever we could find. Our massive fire to the heavens lit up the night in a way that nothing else did.
That’s when it happened. From the woods, people came. They weren’t looking for violence. They were looking to not be alone tonight. All of them wanted to know that there were people out there that were alive, like the. Almost all of them brought more things to burn. In fact, some went to get more things. After all, why bother respecting any object anymore? Made me wish I could go to the Louvre and get all that artwork and throw it on the pyre. I wanted to make every single amazing thing that humanity had done burn, so that any celestial being could know that I hate its fucking guts. But more than that, in this night, every last one of us was alive.
Around that fire, so much happened.. Talking, drinking, love-making. No one cared who or way. There was no cause. People who had spent their whole lives never testing boundaries were getting drugged out of their minds and participating in orgies. Because why not? What did any of us have to lose? Even I got in on the fun. Hallucinogens while looking up at the looming death threat. It was amazing. The most amazing night I could have ever imagined. If only it never had to end.
But it did have to. The next morning, I was up, watching the sun rise for the very last time. My companion came over, and she put his arm around me. I kissed her softly, pulling back and seeing his face.
“See you on the other side,” I said.
“Wouldn’t go anywhere without you, sugar.”
Until next time, a quote,
“The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.” -Mark Twain