It was a rather grueling day in early March. The clouds were nowhere to be seen as the sun’s harsh rays poured down on New York City. People everywhere were scurrying about like frightened mice, hurrying to get to their jobs. Beeping cars were everywhere, honking their horns and crowding the streets. There was a low hum in the midst of the hustle and bustle of the city, almost as if the city itself sang a tune. In the parks, birds were whistling their own tune, separate in each’s own way. The squirrels were chittering and chattering away, gathering nuts and storing them in their little hollows. All the wildlife seemed teeming with activity as spring approached.
On this particular day, March 15, 2014, citizens of New York City decided to bury a time capsule. People from all over New York came to Bryant Park, all wanting to add something of their own to the time capsule, in hopes of the future generation of New York to see what things were like 100 years in the past. So, the scientists and mayor of New York City buried the time capsule, hoping the future of New York would find the contents inside. But…
…That was 500 years ago.
Year 2514, September 16, New York. The city is in ruins, the wildlife has fled, and everything is in shambles and only one question remains. How did this happen?
Skip back a few years. On January 18, 2114, Rook’s famous science lab in New York City had a terrible accident. Dangerous amounts of neuro-plasma flooded the streets and homes of many all over New York. The side effects of this outbreak were devastating. Hundreds of thousands of people were ill and dying.
On February 18, 2214, the amounts of the people that were lost decreased dramatically, but with dropping numbers also came rising ones, too. The people who did survive this tragic incident became well again, and though that may be a good thing, they weren’t quite the same. They moved like robots, thought like them, and spoke like them, too.
On February 27, 2214, something passed over the streets and homes of New York. The people who were intoxicated by that neuro-plasma became like zombies, moving slowly and mindlessly wandering, without a purpose. And that was only the beginning.
Of course, things only got worse from there, and now here is where our real story begins.
Kim dragged her feet. They had been walking for ages. Jen strode along quietly beside her. “Aren’t you tired at all?” Kim asked as she stopped briefly.
Jen looked at her. “Of course I’m tired, there’s no doubt about that,” Jen whispered, gripping his worn and tattered backpack tightly.
“So, anyways, do you have any ideas in that big head of yours about the shelters?” Kim asked, rather bored.
“Not at the moment,” Jen replied, “But I do have plenty of flaws with the plan to point out. Ow! What was that for?!” Jen simpered a few steps away from Kim.
“Stop being so pessimistic, Jen. Lighten up a little!” Kim chuckled. “Besides, you should have seen the look on your face!”
Jen glared at Kim, and was about to tell her off, when they heard a shuffling of feet.
“Quick, hide!” Kim grabbed Jen and pulled him behind a worn-out dumpster. Out of the corner of her eye, Kim saw a person approaching. Jen took a step forward, but Kim put a hand in front of him, preventing him from going any further. Kim stared intensely at the approaching person. She wasn’t entirely sure it was still human.
The creature approached, very slowly, but soon enough Kim was able to make out distinct features.
“Stay low,” Kim mumbled lowly, watching the person intensely. It was a Scorcher, she was sure of it.
The creature stopped right in front of the dumpster.
Jen was shaking, Kim could feel it. Kim looked back at Jen.
He sat there, petrified, staring into Kim’s eyes as if silently saying, ‘What are we going to do?’
Kim went back to gazing at the passing creature. It hadn’t seen them after all. Kim breathed out a sigh of relief but kept her position.
Jen had crept up next to Kim, staring at the fading creature that was mindlessly wandering through a pile of rusty old scrap metal.
After the creature finally disappeared, Kim and Jen silently crept out of their hiding positions.
“That was close, Kim. They’re finding out our routes and hiding spots,” Jen whispered lowly as he looked over his shoulder to see if the creature had come back.
“We always have Route 2,” Kim said, checking a side alleyway before the two kidz –as they were called now- started down it.
“But that route was infested with Scorchers last time we went there! We lost Fred and Kylie there!” Jen countered, stopping to look at Kim.
“They died bravely! They did what they had to! Besides, what other option do we have now? We see more and more Scorchers everyday down this route! If we stay any longer, they’ll catch us!” Kim glared at Jen from the corner of her eye. Jen sighed.
“Although that’s true, it’s still really risky,” he said, staring at his worn and battered shoes.
“Well, whether you want to join me or not, it doesn’t change that I’m going down Route 2 tomorrow,” Kim said, passing under an old car garage’s high support beams.
The place reeked, with a small hint of burnt rubber. The old concrete seemed old and crumbly. Faded tire marks lined the car garage as Kim and Jen walked down the sloping entry way. The old green signs that hung on the ceiling were scratched and faded, with little burn marks on the corner.
Kim and Jen wandered still, passing old burnt cars, scrap metal, and old misshapen pieces of concrete that had fallen from the ceiling. The kidz passed onward, carefully watching for any invaders. In the distance ahead of them, Kim saw a piece of the ceiling crack and shift as it fell and hit the ground in front of them. Kim was about to dismiss the thought when she suddenly caught her foot on something and fell flat on the concrete. The 16-year-old girl picked herself up before analyzing what made her trip. Kim was in utter shock when she realized what the thing was.
It was a time capsule.