Not Even Light

| July 7, 2016

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Not Even Light

No large-scale catastrophe–no killer asteroid or comet, global CBN war, or supervolcano eruption–triggered civilization’s hard reset. Instead, gradual processes the doomsayers had predicted would add up to a bad end did exactly that during the Long Last Days. Continuous abuse of the environment, global climate change, diminished biodiversity, squandering of natural resources, a gradual loss of resistance to diseases, unending regional wars–these factors and more overwhelmed the patchwork of makeshift defenses that humanity had spun together to protect itself from itself, and civilization slowly fell apart like flimsy cobwebs in a wind.

For the greatly reduced and scattered human population that survives in the times of Not Even Light, there had been no rapture of the future. The hopeful visions of a super-technological, transhuman paradise had never materialized. Everything had not turned out all right.

Not Even Light is a brief personal story related by Travis of Summer Aught Three Cohort in the aftermath of the Long Last Days. The Big Woods sprawls across northern latitudes. Along its trails, a wanderer is likely to cross paths with traders, scouts, resurrectionists, and other relatively friendly sorts. Meeks are best avoided, though. Their mission involves brutal conversions or death for the unredeemed. Cobots also inhabit the forest depths. Originally designed and programmed to work alongside humans, these robots have evolved into independent and sinister adversaries. And, possibly, one might encounter a Fly, one of an alien race that appeared on Earth centuries ago and then vanished. Now the shadowy bogeymen of tales and superstition, the Flies may still have a presence on Earth.

Far too independent and curious to be satisfied with a life of mind-numbing routine behind the palisades of White Cedars farm, Travis sets off alone to explore the Big Woods, and it’s not long before he and his newly found companions find themselves racing into uncharted territory to head off the imminent annihilation of the remnants of humanity. Their story of friendship, courage, and growth reveals the best of what we are and may become.

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