Futures Nightmare

Author: Tom Purkiss

Do you dream?

You do? Oh good. I do too, I wish I didn’t, but I do. Do you have good dreams? Of home, friends, and family? Do you dream of crowning triumphs, or of wishes you’ve yet to fulfill, maybe a secret desire, or… A lover perhaps; one beyond you’re waking grasp?
Most likely.

Do you have bad dreams? The ones where your car breaks down in the rain, or, you wake bolt upright, feeling as if you just fell ten storeys.

How about losing your wallet and phone on a piss up at the club? That’s not a fun one, let me tell you, yet you probably do dream bad dreams.

But, what of the nightmares?

Do you suffer them? When you wake up screaming sodden with sweat? Where horrors of the deepest, darkest recesses of your conscious come to haunt you? Maybe your self-doubts manifest into maleficent phantoms- mercilessly hunting you down?

Oh, this time I’m certain you do. Everyone does of course. Oh yes, see, I have nightmares too, although not like yours. No, much, much worse than yours. Mine don’t come from conscious minuscule and mundane self-doubts. No, no, you see, mine come from the future.

I envision a strange disjointed Earth. Foreign yet… Eerily familiar. The common world I know is turned on its axis. North faces south. Up looks down. The moon shines while the sun emits a sickly glow. On this distant Earth, the planet breathes toxic fumes as great fires ravage the forests, exhaling thick smoke into the ashen sky. Hurricanes and tsunamis hammer the coasts like an elemental battering ram as floods come flying down from mountain tops- drowning the land below. In these nightmares, I have seen entire cities swallowed whole by the rising seas, or the scorching heat has scoured them with sand, leaving arid wastelands to be buried, forgotten. Billions have been left floundering, desperately grasping the thinning rope of survival as the strands are slowly plucked away by each one of nature’s conquests.

You see, it took me time to figure out, these nightmares of mine. My oh my, did it take a long time, but I did it. These weren’t nightmares, no, this amalgamation was leading to a single ubiquitous Nightmare. It offered a true glimpse of the threats we have let loose upon ourselves. Oh yes! See, you could say we stoked the beehive or poked the angry beast, but let me tell you, it is much more accurate to say we are arming a wrathful war machine with every passing day.

This hellish fate which cascades towards us plagues my every sleep, but alas, I won’t long suffer alone. You shall all soon experience the cruelty of the planet’s justice, like a scourge across the back of humanity, she will lash out with indiscriminate atrocities.

Oh yes. See, now do you understand that all must bear witness to the Future’s Nightmare?

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