Mushroom Clouds Forever

Author : David Burkhart

Only Anderson and Miller reached the concrete bunker door. The rest of the squad had fallen in a heroic attempt to reach and secure the bunker. With bullets whizzing around them, Anderson keyed in the code to open the bunker door while Miller returned covering fire. In the quiet of the bunker, they could barely hear the bullets outside bouncing off the bunker door. Anderson turned on the console and started entering information as Miller sat down on the floor with her back against the console and her rifle pointed at the door.

As the video screen came on, Anderson glanced down at Miller slouched on the floor beside him and noticed for the first time the blood coming from the corner of her mouth. Her blouse was soaked with blood. She tried to smile as they listened to the hammering on the bunker door getting louder. In a few more minutes, the bunker would be breached.

Anderson stared at the iris scanner as his eyes were examined. Passing the test, he successfully entered his thumbprint and then his whole hand-print before returning to the iris scanner. A hacked-off thumb or hand could pass the tests, but only a living eye would naturally change slightly between iris scans. The fail-safe cover retracted exposing the red firing switch.

The video screen was a jumble of static and chaos but Anderson could somewhat make out a group of men seemingly trying to talk to him but only static came out over the speakers. He spread his arms out to his side with his palms up to signal he couldn’t understand them and asking for orders. Suddenly a person he recognized as The President stood up with a sign that said, “DO IT”.

Several dozen nuclear warheads were stored in the vaults beneath the bunker. It was unthinkable to have the warheads fall into the hands of the terrorists who would soon storm the bunker. Anderson firmly pressed the red firing switch until the activated light came on and then sat down beside Miller. She had died. He put his arm around her, pulled her close and laid her head on his chest and they waited. In case the terrorists breached the bunker, Anderson pulled the pin on a grenade and held the grenade against his chest with his free hand. A few seconds later, a slight tremor in the floor was felt just before Anderson and Miller were instantly disintegrated and the particles that had made up their bodies were sucked miles up into the sky into a huge mushroom cloud.


  1. SimonJM

    The needs of the few … not a nice decision, nor action, to take.

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