The weapon was one more indictment on Jacob Probo’s leadership. Much too large for antigravity shipping, it rolled towards the domed refugee fortress on multiple rows of gigantic wheels. It took no less than fifteen cruisers with their hover jets and carbon composite chains to tow the massive object. Directly above, fighter jets patrolled the air. On the ground, dark energy beasts marched in a loose formation. Their skin bubbled and boiled with the energy of their bodies, and their eyes glowed from the excess of that dark radiation. For Jacob, watching from inside the fortress, it meant he had failed his people.
“These walls won’t hold.” Jacob’s political rival, Aidan Scelestus, was tall and manly, his black hair combed straight back. The other refugees gathered behind Aidan. When the weapon blasted the wall, the ground shook so hard that Jacob’s bad hip gave out. He collapsed to the ground at Aidan’s feet.
“They’ll break through that wall soon enough,” Aidan said down to him. “What are you doing about it?”
When Jacob thrust his feet back underneath him, the crowd yelled their fear and anger to his face. He pushed through them, limping to the square building at the center of the community. On his way, he passed long rows of crammed apartment towers, hastily constructed of graphite fiber boards. The air was coated with their dry coal dust, making breathing difficult. Worse, the hordes of people crowded into the confined area made for a terrible stench.
Another crush shook the compound. Jacob stumbled through the door of the square building where a long row of fiery plasma balls blazed in a large open room.
“Gov Probo hasn’t done a thing,” Aidan’s voice yelled from outside. “He’s left us imprisoned behind these walls.”
“Shout it out, Aidan!” another voice said.
“Now we’re sitting ducks,” Aidan yelled louder. “We can’t go anywhere. We can’t even defend ourselves. We’re a big fat feast for those beasts!”
Jacob gazed desperately at the plasma balls, each a fusion reactor magnetically reinforcing a particular section of the wall. It would be a tremendous gamble. If he was wrong, he could doom the last remainder of humanity. But he might just save them. Decision made, he attacked a termination board, rewiring thick black cables so that all reactors were paralleled onto a single circuit.
“What are you doing?” Jacob looked up as the angry reactor engineer entered the room. “You’ve just shut down our only defenses!”
At the same time, Aidan addressed the crowd outside, pointing to the square building. “So where did Gov Probo go?” Aidan yelled. “In your greatest hour of need, your fearless leader is hiding in that reactor hut!”
Despite the engineer’s protests and Aidan’s ranting, Jacob clamped the last of the cables and threw the switch. The combined current punched a hole in the fabric of spacetime. For the briefest moment, there was nearly infinite mass in the tiniest region of space. But then, just as quickly as it had been created, the paralleled reactors short circuited. The rubber of spacetime snapped back again.
The extreme stretching and restoration of space’s fabric was like a tsunami of gravity. It generated a massive gravitational tidal wave, compressing everything with tremendous pressure. Now it is no mystery that gravity is the opposite of dark energy. So like gravitational Pasteurization, the momentary wave purged dark energy while limiting any harmful consequences of extreme gravity. The dark energy beasts assaulting the compound were neutralized. One moment they were monsters, the next moment their darkness was gone.
When everyone realized that the compound been saved, a thunderous cheer followed. The people shouted and danced. Spouses kissed each other and embraced their children. They were simply happy to be alive. Then they seized Aidan and thrust him into a chair, carrying him on their shoulders throughout the compound.
“Aidan Scelestus!” everyone hailed as he passed by. “Aidan Scelestus is our savior!” Jacob was perhaps the only one to stand apart, watching the spectacle from just outside the reactor building. Of course, Jacob lost his re-election bid. But Aidan was gracious enough to provide him with a meager retirement.
Bio: I am an electrical engineer from North Idaho working in the electrical utility industry. My writing is a bizarre mixture of theology and theoretical physics, and follows the theme of dark energy. Please read more on my website, www.dominsions.com.
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