September 7, 2023

BRING! BRING! The alarm screeched, waking Zainan up with a start. He muttered, “I’m up, I’m up,” before remembering that he was, in fact, talking to an inanimate object. Sighing, he woke up, stretching his arms. 

He turned the alarm off and then went into his bathroom to brush his teeth and take a hot shower. After that, he went to the kitchen to grab some hot breakfast before glancing at the time. It was 6:45 already, and he had to leave for school.

Zainan walked outside. It was a beautiful day, a quiet, sunny morning. In fact, it was a lot quieter than normal. Zainan thought that his life couldn’t get any better. After all, what was better than walking to school on a tranquil morning with birds chirping and barely anyone awake?

School was starting earlier that day. There was an important play in a week, and the students had to rehearse for it endlessly. Zainan was lucky: he only had one line in the play. That meant that he got to talk to his friends and fool around for most of the school day. The main characters weren’t as lucky. They spent hours and hours rehearsing.

What was unknown to Zainan was the fact that his life wouldn’t get any better than it was at that very moment. That morning was the calm before the storm. 

A B-2 stealth bomber flew over the city. The pilot pressed a button, and the bombs came down on Zainan’s city. Except there weren’t that many bombs. Actually, there was only one bomb, but that bomb had the power of several bombs.

The nuclear bomb came down just about a quarter of a mile away from Zainan. He vaguely remembered feeling terrified, and then he blacked out.

The city was in a terrible state. Some countries sent aid as soon as they could, and war was declared on the Orithia. Orithia and its allies responded by declaring war on Minoa and its allies. 

The reason for this war was another one of Minoa’s policies against trade with the Orithia. This policy reduced the number of factories that Orithian companies could manage in Minoa. Furious, the Orithia decided to handle the situation in the worst possible way: by blowing up a city.

Minoa was a new country, one that had split from Mina for political reasons. The country of Orithia was similar, it had split up with the Orsia.

This was just the beginning of the end for the whole world. A fierce nuclear war started, devastating several nations. Every city was required to have a fallout shelter in the center of the town. Many houses made their basements connect to this shelter. In the case of an attack, they would fill up their tunnel with rubble as they ran through it to make the enemy think that it was simply debris. Once they reached the shelter, they would seal up the tunnel with concrete and wait for the others.

Life inside a fallout shelter was not terrible. The poorer cities would have a rough fallout shelter, dug out using a backhoe. They would then put several beds and enough supplies to last thousands of people for several years inside. On the other hand, the richest cities would have a massive shelter, some with twelve levels and fake windows which were actually images of the city before the devastation. These bunkers could last forever, with a self-sustaining farm. Even with all of this, everybody hoped that the war could end soon.

Prime Minister Jetoi walked around a room in a shelter, restlessly. Finally, he looked up and spoke to his council. “You’re all idiots.”

The council seemed appalled by this declaration. “Oh, don’t act like you don’t know what I’m talking about. You shouldn’t have passed that trade bill. I vetoed it, and you still managed to pass it.”

“But sir, that bill was in our best interests,” one of the council members said.

“Was it?” Jetoi asked. “It caused a terrible nuclear war. Was that in our benefits?”

“But sir, you can’t blame us for this.”

“Really?” Jetoi was furious. “I would have done the same in Orithia’s place. If a bunch of bumbling idiots passed this bill, I would blow up their whole country!” Jetoi was practically yelling now.

“So do we surrender, sir?”

“Yes!” Jetoi exclaimed. “Ask for forgiveness and surrender! That’s what we will do. Let’s draft a letter now. Come on, bring the –,” he was cut short by a gunshot. Jetoi fell back, dead.

“We will fight until they lose!” one of the council members yelled.

“Hear, hear!” they all yelled.

This would only mean one thing for the citizens: several more years of torture.

* * * * *

You can read the next part here: Part 2

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