In 2018, a war broke out. Some people called it World War 3, but those who fought in it simply called it “The War.”
The brutality of “The War” increased until Russian scientists created a new strain of the flu. They called it vladychestvo (that is, “Dominion”) and released it on the United States. It was a brutal disease, killing you in 3 days - three excruciatingly painful days. A secret group of scientists in the U.S. government created new gases, basing them on the gases used in the gas chambers of WW2 German concentration camps. The military proceeded to release these gases on Russia, but they absorbed certain particulates in the atmosphere and transformed them, causing the gas to spread over most of the globe. Almost all people went into underground bunkers and entered cryofreeze - unless they were unfortunate, or maybe fortunate enough, to die from the gases. The bunkers were numbered based on their location.
The Earth soon became uninhabited by humans, and few animals survived. Those that did were mutated by the gases, and became very dangerous.
2130: the following text is based on information from the terminal in Bunker 17. The only known survivor in the bunker is an unnamed soldier from the U.S. Army. It appears that due to some kind of power failure, the bunker’s cryofreeze chambers stopped working. Most of the inhabitants had undergone frostbite while they were “asleep”, but one man, was in an experimental sleep chamber which worked through being submerged in water and having a non-toxic, non-harmful gas pumped into a breathing mask.
The power for the cryofreeze chambers had completely failed. The lone survivor, an unnamed soldier, awoke in a completely abandoned bunker. He went to the supply room and grabbed some basic weapons, food items, and other useful items, such as a M50 American Gas Mask, a bag, a flare gun, and one flare.
He ventured towards the exit, and was about to leave the bunker, when an experimental device he had picked up, not unlike a Geiger counter, said in a mechanical voice “Air quality unsafe. Protective measures advised.” Upon hearing this, the survivor put on the mask, and left the room. Of course, he was a soldier so he did the proper checks to make sure that the mask sealed before leaving, that is, he put his hand over the air intake and breathed in. The mask had sealed so he left and saw that the world was changed drastically. The surrounding area was completely leveled and was filled with rubble. He could see mist rising from the ground and there was a small desolate forest behind him.
It is utterly life changing to see the world you know gone. He fell on the ground and started to cry. After he got up, he pulled out a handgun and made sure it was loaded. He needed to find another human, because he knew that if he was alone for too long, he would go insane.
He weighed the options, and realized that his best one was to head towards the city he could see in the distance. He remembered the layout of the area, and knew that the road was not far off. He arrived at the road and saw a car that looked like it might still function. However, when he checked the gas, it was completely empty. Realizing he had no choice but to walk, he started toward the city.
In a Post-Apocalyptic world, there are many things you don’t want to have happen. You don’t want to run into a hoard of zombies, you don’t want to see everyone you love die, and you definitely don’t want to be the only sane person in the world. But at the top of that list, you especially don’t want to see your old home in ruins. Sadly, this happened to the survivor. As he headed towards the city, he suddenly recognized where he was. After a moment of thought, he realized this was where he and his brother had once lived. He was hardly a sentimental man, but the realization that his home was destroyed hurt him, maybe more than anyone could imagine. He took some time to collect his thoughts, and continued on his way, telling himself “I couldn’t have done anything.”
As he got closer to the city, he began to hear noises. They were very faint at first but they grew louder. He did not recognize the sound, but it instilled a sense of dread inside of him. He pulled out his gun, and made sure the safety was off. As he continued on his way, he began to notice some very disturbing things. The first was that in all the gutters, and on the walls of the buildings was a blood-red fungus. There were also animal carcasses, but not animals like you know. They all were deformed, like an ant infected with the ophiocordyceps fungus.
The noises were growing louder and louder and it started to sound like some kind of terrible fight between two or more wild animals. The survivor rounded a corner, and saw some infected animals fighting violently. They stopped and turned towards him, and then rushed at him. He managed to shoot both of them, but he heard what sounded like more animals headed his way. Frightened, he ran as fast as he could, towards the nearest building and then barricaded himself in.
Realizing he would not be able to leave for a while, he looked for an ideal place to set up camp. The only place that would be functional was the roof, where he found some scrap metal and wood. After constructing a simple shack, he used the experimental device to check the air quality. The machine said “air quality at acceptable levels.” The survivor took off his mask, and got out the radio he had taken from the bunker. He started to change stations, looking for signs of life, but they were all static. He kept trying, and finally found one. The same message kept repeating. “Hello… is anyone there… please, I need help. I need someone to help me… please… the gas is everywhere… plea…” It kept repeating over and over and the survivor soon realized that it was a recording from during the war.
The next morning, the survivor checked to make sure the animals were gone, and once he knew they were, he left the building. He only had one flair, but decided to use it. He headed to the city’s central building, and went to the roof.
He fired the flare, and waited. Nothing happened. In despair, he was about to jump off the roof and end his sorry existence, when another flair was fired from a few blocks away. The survivor ran down the stairs and out the building, trying to find where the flare was fired.
He finally found the street and saw a helmet. A helmet that had a symbol in it. A symbol of the enemy. Raising his gun, he was about to fire, when he saw who owned the helmet. A woman. A female soldier. A soldier who looked almost exactly like his sister. He realized that they could be the only humans alive on the planet, and he threw his gun down, and started to cry. He realized that there was still hope for humanity. That the world could be remade. And the thought of it was beautiful.