Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Microstory 1672: The Last Wars

After the two surviving Ochivari left the first universe they went to—or rather after one of them escaped, and the other was killed in the attempt—things started to get worse for the humans. They were devastated to learn that aliens were bad. Of course, they had only encountered three individuals, which is hardly a decent sample size, but they were convinced. Each country started bolstering its military might. Some allies tried to form joint militaries, but for the most part, they stayed separate. In other universes I’ve witnessed, when a culture encounters some kind of massive external threat, the people generally come together. They set aside their differences, and focus on defeating the enemy together. This did not happen here, but if it had, it may have saved their lives. For years, they sat like this. People were conscripted into the various branches of their respective military forces, but didn’t have anything to do. Unlike other versions of Earth, this one had never experienced a world war before, but it wasn’t really because they were more peaceful than anyone else. They usually tried to settle their issues diplomatically, but if that didn’t work, two civilizations might have resorted to war. If that happened, if they wanted to fight against each other, everyone else stayed out of it most of the time. The boredom and frustration was really getting to them now, though. All global conflicts were put on hold in order to prepare for the return of the aliens, but nothing happened. The Ochivari had never come on purpose, and they had no reason to show up now, especially not since they knew where the timeline was headed. They knew that the humans were destined to destroy themselves, without a sterility virus. After eight years, the signs of the apocalypse were beginning to present themselves.

For no apparent reason but they didn’t feel like they had anything better to do, the nations started fighting each other. It wasn’t the leadership so much as it was the conscripts, who felt cheated out of the time they could have spent with their families. If these former civilians had to put so much effort into learning warfare skills, then goddammit, they were going to use them. It was like a global barfight, where some people started fighting just because someone carelessly bumped into them. Country A was trying to get to Country B when Country C got in the way, so Country C fought back, but accidentally hit Country D instead. It was a huge mess, and obviously, no one won in the end. Fortunately, they had never developed nuclear weapons, because history didn’t suggest there would be any need to bomb more than one enemy at the same time, so it just seemed like a waste of resources, when nuclear power was a far more useful pursuit. They kept killing though. It turned out to be one of the bloodiest wars I have ever seen. No, it probably is indeed the bloodiest. Internal conflicts started springing up when soldiers found themselves unable to get to someone from another country. Literal neighbors started killing each other when the supply chain broke down, and there wasn’t enough food to go around. Where once they numbered in the billions, over the course of the next two decades the population dwindled to the thousands. They pretty much only stopped killing each other, because survivors were so few and far between, and they were composed mostly of people who had always tried to stay out of it, and had succeeded. Civilization never recovered from this. Those survivors eked out a living amongst the ruins, but could not significantly grow from there. Many didn’t even bother trying to propagate the species, and after several decades more, the human species went extinct.

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