And the Earth is Consumed

January 5 “Call Me Ishmael” – Take the first sentence from your favorite book and make it the first sentence of your post.

At first I was unsure of where to go with this prompt. First I realized that I don’t own my favorite book anymore and then when I picked out my favorite among those I do have, the first sentence looked nothing like I would write in a typical post. So I went with it.

The first sentence comes from The Collection Short Fiction of C.J. Cherryh

On the whole land surface of the Earth and on much of the seas, humankind had lived and died. After the great poles had melted into the oceans, water had flooded the trade cities and had continued to push onto the land until only small parts of major continents remained. Much of the population was spared from drowning as volcanoes erupted, and lava had poured out, burning and smothering thousands. The earth had rumbled and broken, swallowing up more cities, towns, villages, forests, and deserts. Then the water had rushed in and to any being looking upon the earth, it appeared as a ball of water. The Koralians referred to the earth as the water world. The Koralian people peered through their glass, watching in wonder as the world continued to spin, its fire star continued to shine a dull light on the waters, and the moon lit up the darkness.

Their place was of a whole other dimension. The inhabitants of Koralia were entranced by the universe on the other side. Their eyes were drawn to the Earth and they peered in fascination as it had formed and been covered with all manner of living things. Of all they had seen, it was humans that had drawn their curiosity the most. Why would a people who had been given so much destroy their own world with gases and smoke until the land cried out and the atmosphere dwindled?

 In the last days, the few who had remained huddled together in small parts of the world. The beasts they kept starved. Some of the people had taken to eating the rotting corpses of the animals and after that meat was gone, consumed their own until the rest expired in agony. The Koralians continued to watch as souls drifted out and melted into oblivion.

The scientists believed life on the water world would begin anew. Until then, they turned their eyes to another world. The world of rings and storms had calmed. Life on the ring world was just beginning. They held their breath in anticipation.

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