Atlas

This is an excerpt of ATLAS by Gabriel Berm, enjoy!

 

The Great Crisis

There’s this moment in history when things can’t just hold a minute more, everything was falling since our own existence, we’ve always had the necessity of a civilization, at least our last ancestors. All the world powers were getting weaker and weaker, the United Nations wasn’t taken seriously anymore. Our love for guns and violence reached the limit, governments started falling and nobody is sure about what started all of this because it has always been in a decaying process. More than 90 nations were divided into smaller ones, civil wars were something people got used to hearing on the news. Anarchy was the law of the land, although atomic bombs were still forbidden. The governments, scared about the future, made a call for all the countries on Earth to stabilize the situation. The reunion was called “World Stabilization Summit”, after days of negotiation they all signed a treaty called “The Pacem Accords”, the “Pacem Accords” basically says that wars are forbidden and proposed ways to fix the world economy with the help of each other. The treaty kind of worked for a few decades, the stock market reappeared and people started to feel safe enough to invest and innovate. Multiple technology companies were created, and the most powerful at the moment was “Maxwell Advanced”, with a net worth of $900B, the weaponry company controlled the 86% of the international weapon market. Because people feel safer in a country with atomic weapons, the Israeli-American corporation grew at an uncontrollable rate. Years ago, Maxwell Advanced helped the Israeli government take control over Palestine, and because of the neighbor countries, Maxwell Advanced designed the “כיפת ארס” or Ares’ Dome. The Ares’ Dome is the most advanced missile defense system in the world, capable of protecting the State of Israel from the best weapons the Arab world had to offer.

20 Years ago

The U.S Government discovered that Russia, North Korea, Iran, and Iraq have been successfully testing hydrogen bombs in ultra secret test camps. When the president got the information he called experts from all the U.S government departments. And NASA wasn’t involved at the very beginning but it was just a matter of time. President Jackson called the NASA director David Gates and told him about the ultra secret mission called the TEC. TEC stands for Titan Emergency Colonization. Titan is Saturn’s largest moon, it isn’t a viable second home, but that’s the only place we can go (apart from Mars, that during the past years, hundreds of asteroids have been hitting the surface of the planet, evaporating every single drop of water, apart from that, the surface is -because of the asteroid impacts- terribly damaged and the planets heat increased in a 348%) Titan isn’t a paradise at all,  Titan’s gravity is 1.3 m/s2 compared to Earths 9.8 m/s2, it’s pretty different, also, Titan’s regular temperature is -179.5 C. But the reason the government considered this crazy idea was, the fuel, actually three-quarters of an average polar lake is ethane, with 10% methane, 7% propane and smaller amounts of hydrogen cyanide, butane, nitrogen, and argon. That’s hundreds of times more natural gas and other liquid hydrocarbons than all the known oil and natural gas reserves on Earth. So, a lot of fuel can power huge machines and technology that can make human life sustainable there. The water problem can be easily solved, there is water on Titan, but is frozen, so the crew onboard the first space shuttle will have to assemble a machine that liquefies and purifies Titan’s water. The project will start in two years with the design of the space shuttles and the logistic of the plan because nobody can know that the U.S knows that the world is about to enter into a nuclear war and probably no-one is going to survive.

19 Years and 6 Months ago

President Jackson suspended the missions, because of the costs and because of the crazy idea to emulate President Kennedy’s actions on the Cuban Missiles. According to the president “If America is responsible for the death of thousands of citizens again because of a nuclear bomb, we will no longer be a respectable nation but a miserable one”. The president started with Russia, he visited the Kremlin Palace in Moscow and talked to the Russian president Alexei Ivanov, Ivanov is popular for his eccentricities, he owns a couple of tigers and has a considerably longer hair than President Jackson. They talked for hours, but President Ivanov rejected Jackson’s Nuclear Neutrality Treatment. President Ivanov is actually proud of his “DT 893”, the world’s second biggest Hydrogen Bomb, according to Alexei, is about 6 times more powerful than the AN602 or “Tsar Bomba”  tested in 1961 by the Soviet Union. The Tsar Bomba created a mushroom that raised 40 miles, that’s over 7 times the height of the Mount Everest, it’s said that the explosion could be seen 1,243 miles from the event. World’s biggest hydrogen bomb (at the moment) is a property of the United States, the bomb called “HADES 1”, that according to the tests, is twice as powerful than the “DT 893”, but that could change in the next years. While President Jackson was talking to Alexei, a specialized group of CIA agents managed to gather information from the place. When the reunion concluded, both presidents parted really hypocritically. Onboard the Air Force 1, President Jackson received a call from Howard Neeson, CIA director, Neeson told President Jackson that the information gathered from the Kremlin Palace is jaw dropping. Then, Neeson proceeded to list a few data. “Constant calls between Moscow and Pyongyang, emails from Sung Lee (Director of North Korea’s Nuclear Weapons Program)” Neeson said, “What do the emails point at?” Jackson replied, “Well… I’m,’ I’m gonna read a fragment to you: Our latest test was successful, we tested the DT 893, and it is outstandingly powerful! we’ll be giving you the progress report of the first cargo of bombs. -Sung Lee”, “Damn it, Damn it!, Damn it!!” Jackson said with an increasing voice tone. “You want me to read the other email, sir?” Howard said, “read it”, “…The first 23 bombs out of 40 are perfectly positioned in Wonsan (North Korean East coast) pointing East…”, “No, no, no, no, you’re telling me that these asshats are pointing 23 DT 893 to the U.S?”, Jackson interrupted. Howard continued “…Pointing East, we estimate that the distance between Wonsan and San Francisco is 5,515 miles in a straight line, the impact will certainly destroy the state of California (San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego). We’re sorry to tell you that the range on the DT 893 is only capable of impacting California and maybe Seattle if we improve the launch pad probably we could be able to impact Washington soon.”. “We’re done.” , Jackson said.

“Sir, there’s still a possibility that this is a complete hoax.”, Neeson said hopeful, “It’s not…” Jackson replied hopelessly. “how many years they have been preparing this?” Jackson asked, “The first two bombs were assembled 10 years ago, they need one whole year to build one viable bomb, but maybe they doubled the production a few year ago. Data from Pyongyang suggests that the bombs are meant to be finished in 17 or 18 years.”, Neeson finished, “So, we’re on time” Jackson said, “On time for what?” Howard replied, “On time for the TEC”, Jackson finished.

© Gabriel Berm

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