March the 1st 2013, Day 1
It was a sunny day when the world started to end. I always thought that at the start of Armageddon there’d be great roiling black clouds in the sky, storms converging from across the earth and rivers of blood flowing freely through the world. It’s strange that, our opinion of how Earth ends, you just assume don’t you, that everything will have gone wrong, that even the weather was on God’s side.
But no, it was a sunny day, one of the first of spring, a season of fresh greens and light blues. A season of rebirth. I had decided to travel to London that day to visit BlueWater shopping mall. The end of the world didn’t start in New York or Washington DC, no, it started in London.
I had a Ford Mondeo at the time, a nice clean silver colour with fabric seats and seatbelts that didn’t work properly; but I loved it anyway. The traffic as you know is always horrendous at BlueWater, the wait for parking spaces taking several hours longer than the drive to get there. The car was hot; the air con had broken two weeks before and I was waiting till my next pay cheque to fix it all up.
They had just installed a large, no sorry, very large T.V screen just outside the main entrance, always playing adverts but you watch it to pass the time anyway. Anything is better than sitting in a hot car on a sunny day, looking at parking spaces barely a hundred yards away but that would take at least another half an hour to reach.
As I was saying, I was watching this very large T.V when suddenly the channel switched to BBC 1. You could almost hear the sighs of relief from the cars in front and behind; finally, something interesting to watch.
Suddenly the traffic update turned itself on on my radio but I quickly switched it off. I know where the traffic is; right in front of me. The News reporter on the large screen was talking about, I know this’ll sound weird the first time but just hear me out, alien contact? I was surprised as anyone, what the hell! Yeah right, and I’m the president of America...
But it was true. I didn’t know it then but it was true. They talked about a species that called themselves the Mantis. Satellites, so they said, had picked up almost one thousand very, very large, ships orbiting the earth.
They showed us a photo next and by now I was thinking April Fool’s day is ages away; what are they doing?!
Then the pods started dropping. By this point, nobody knew just what was going on, were we unpaid extras for a movie or something? The pods were absolutely massive, shaped like great curled up ants they slammed into the earth with such incredible force that I felt my car almost tip over.
They were everywhere. The line of traffic simply stopped moving. One thing I’ll always remember is the amazement on that child’s face as he watched the pods. The amazement that turned to fear as one landed in the middle of BlueWater. I’ll never forget the expression of that child as he was blown away, as he was killed by a great blast of rock, fire and metal.
At moments like these your mind doesn’t know how to react, how to feel. It just watches with, well, I don’t know as your entire world is ripped apart. And that second really did last an hour; it lasted days, years even. You don’t know what it feels like. I saw a child die. Damnit I saw a child die!
There’s no time for tears or sorrow, no time for anything and in those years of seconds you don’t feel. You’re a blank slate, a clean page. No, actually I retract that statement. An incredibly bloody page.
My car literally flew. You’ve seen James Bond in an Aston Martin do it, now imagine me in A ford Mondeo.
The car landed with a sickening crunch and the ground came very, very close to my head. As you may have guessed, it landed upside down.
Oh my – what the – what is hap – how the he - crap.”
Fear is foremost in your mind at that point, running like a scared fox away from the hunt. I thank whoever is actually up there for making my seat belt work at that moment. I scrambled out of the car, kicking the already shattered pieces of glass that were in my way.
I emerged into a shattered world. A world no longer ruled by humanity. It was at this point I started to run. I wonder if I ever did stop.