We are now officially just over a week through National Novel Writing Month. I’ve been playing catch-up since day three, but I’ve almost managed to claw my way back to an even keel. If I can write approximately 3000 words today (*nervous laughter*) I’ll be back on track, and then if I can do that another one or two times (*even more nervous laughter*) I’ll be feeling a little better about my prospects.
I have to admit, the story isn’t going the way I had planned, and will probably need a major gutting and possibly an entire rewrite by the time I’m finished, if it’s ever going to be publishable. But even still, I’m having fun. So here’s another little excerpt, in which our narrator, Clover, discusses some of the details of the day the world ended.
It began as strange reports on the evening news. I didn’t understand much of it at the time, and my parents seemed unable to explain it in a way that made sense to me, but the long and short was that a hole had appeared in the sky above Russia. Authorities were flabbergasted; scientists from all over the world rushed to study the anomaly. Aircraft were sent up to get a closer look. Pictures on the news showed an unfathomable phenomenon; the aircraft could fly up above the black mass and look down on it as though it was a giant inky disk just hanging in the air. The most advanced machinery could get no readings. It seemed to be exactly what it looked like – just a huge black nothingness.
Eventually the authorities had to try something different. People were freaking out and they needed to learn something, be able to at least give the public some idea of what the hell this thing was. So they sent some specially trained men up and they attempted to make contact.
I don’t remember much, but I remember that broadcast. My parents were on the edges of their seats waiting to find out what would happen when the men approached the anomaly. There were all kinds of theories floating around; people were wondering if it would be solid, or if perhaps it would prove to be a portal to another world. The truth answered none of the public questions and was the most terrifying shock of billions of people’s lives. When the men who had been trained and prepared and sent up to this truly unbelievable experience reached out and touched that anomaly, what they received was a reaction. A violent reaction.
People screamed in horror from both sides of the television set as the huge black hole in the sky became an angry huge black hole in the sky. It writhed and wiggled, and it pulsed with a power that sent the trained men flying out of their craft to hurtle back down to the ground. Before the viewers could get over the shock of watching a group of men plummeting to their deaths on live television, the hole began to expand. It grew and grew, blotting out the sun above the camera crew, covering all of Russia and moving on to the surrounding countries. I remember being amazed at how fast it happened. The news lady had barely recovered enough to begin recapping what was happening when the sun began to fade above our farmhouse. The strange black hole had expanded from Russia to Canada in less than ten minutes.
And then everything was darkness. All over the planet people panicked and prayed and lost their minds because the sky had vanished behind a wall of black nothingness.