The aliens are coming. It won’t be long now.
All of the people have evacuated the city, pouring into the questionable safety of this gigantic silver sphere. On the inside, it is bustling with urgent activity. Thousands of people are here, sitting and standing on different shelves and platforms that line the curved walls. Some float. Others sit with their legs dangling over the edge. Mothers hold babies close to their breasts, fear in their eyes. Many men are still out in the city, but the clock is ticking. Soon it will read 00:00. And then it’s over.
She and he are huddled together on their own tiny platform. She has long brown hair, and she presses her head into his chest, willing herself to stay calm. She does. He has his arms around her, kissing her precious temples, remembering the taste of her skin. At all costs, they must stay together, but if they don’t… he can’t even think about it, he just wraps her more tightly in his arms.
They are like sister and brother, best friends, and lovers all at once. They are two bodies sharing one soul. Soul mates.
“Whatever happens,” he whispers in her ear, rocking her gently back and forth, “Whatever happens, we must stay together. Do not let go of my hand. We cannot be separated.” She nods, tears in her eyes, and presses herself closer to his body. They are standing together, arms wrapped around each other, as the sounds of shouting and growing panic fill the air. Everyone is in this together. They have no idea how safe they will be.
As babies cry and the door at the bottom of the gigantic sphere opens again and again to admit rushing human beings with fear in their eyes, she rests her head on his shoulder. Even in this moment of final apocalypse, she can hear his heart thumping and it soothes her. They are together. Now. She knows that somehow, somewhere, they will meet again. They must try to stay together, of course, but if something should happen… Maybe they will next find themselves together in outer space, or in Paradise, or hundreds of years later, on opposite sides of the globe, when they have a chance meeting in a dream. Will this set them to looking for one another again? Will they even remember?
The clock is ticking. He looks down at his watch.
“Don’t let go,” he says, and she feels like she is just cresting a waterfall, suspended at the very apex, the final shudder before the boat crashes over into an oblivion of thrashing destruction below.
00:02… 00:01… 00:00