Five men and one woman trekked towards a Norwegian base camp where food and shelter awaited them. Shining in the distance behind them was a silver life craft. The air was crisp and clean and the sun was shining. When they reached the base camp they found it was unoccupied. There was fuel and food stocks to last at least a year, considering the base camp would normally accommodate ten times their number. The snow cats were all there and ready for use.
Seated in the canteen and eating their first cooked food for nearly a year, the crew tucked in to the hot meal with a relish.
‘You were right commander.’ Tokugawa said. ‘Once the planet had cooled down and levelled off, the temperature in the troposphere would have been affected. The creatures they would have been subjected to freezing temperatures, so as each layer of creatures froze and fell to earth, the next layer would have been subjected to the freeze, they couldn’t go any higher to escape as the temperature in the stratosphere would have frozen them there.’ So Mother Earth wins again.’
‘Pity we had to lose over 7 billion people before it happened,’ Sharon said.
‘You realise we could be the last six people on earth,’ said Moretti. ‘That’s not a big enough gene pool to re-populate the planet. So when we die that’s the end of humanity. The earth will become a garden of Eden again. Evolution may start all over again. Perhaps humans as we know them may never develop at all, but some new species.’
‘Anything has got to be better than us,’ Sharon said. ‘After what we did to the planet and to each other we don’t deserve another chance. And don’t even think about me becoming Eve because you lot are certainly not my idea of Adam.’
Everyone laughed. Henderson opened a bottle of brandy.
‘So, what’s the next move, Commander?’ asked Tokugawa.
‘We stay here for as long as it takes and monitor the situation. We have all the satellite data we can access. As the planet warms up there’s going to be a lot of bad weather and floods as the weather systems begin to recover. When it’s stabilised enough we move southwards towards the equator and search for survivors, if anyone has survived. If I know anything about the human race there will be survivors.’
They all raised their glasses as Henderson called for a toast. ‘To the continuation of the human race.’
The Human Race
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