I woke up on a simulated Earth and started getting ready for my day. I reached into my closet, tapped a couple floating, holographic buttons, and suddenly I was in my street clothes. I chose a hairdo in the bathroom, added my school supplies to my bag of infinite holding, and ran off to school.
If you, in the future, are reading this, on a repopulated Earth, and find it strange, don’t. It was just before the turn of the 22nd century then, and humanity was still entirely downloaded into The Simulation. The creator’s name has been lost to history, but, at the time, his interests hadn’t. Pop culture was frozen in place at the time, with everything related to the creator’s likes and dislikes, interests and loathings, pet causes and pet peeves.
He was born around 2005, just as the world had begun to fall apart. The climate was changing, countries involved in wars in the Middle East were refusing to pull out, and capitalism was running rampant. Then, in 2016, Donald Trump was elected president of the United States. Nations started falling apart, global warming was getting worse, and nuclear war seemed imminent even after Trump left office.
In 2033, there was a deus ex machina in the form of scientific proof that a human mind could be uploaded into a computer. The creator, now known by his pseudonymous avatar name, Illumino, improved on that idea the next year, by building The Simulation, where the human race could explore tens of thousands of planets in twenty-seven sectors, each 12 light-years across, arranged in a Rubik’s cube pattern. (This was a reference to Ready Player One, an early-2000s book which inspired most of Illumino's work.) Many of these planets were original, while others were knock-offs of other intellectual properties, and there was the mandatory re-creation of the Earth's entire Solar system, including the computer box where The Simulation was housed.
Apparently, Illumino had not only built The Simulation but had used the same substance he had used to form it, "IT," to prove that there were and are twenty-five Earths, with ours being Earth-22. That meant it was the 22nd-slowest-aging Earth or something like that. It doesn't matter. He only re-created our Earth to avoid confusion.
Arriving at school, I tapped a room number and was teleported into a sub-simulation. This area of The Simulation was designed so that our avatars weren't able to leave our desks or otherwise get off task, but recently I had found a loophole that let me read in class, so long as I put the book into the bag of infinite holding that I had submitted to the school as my pack for school supplies.
My watch gave a little ding, reminding me it was still a half-hour until class started. I opened a menu on the watch, chose the "chat room" option, and selected "put online." I watched my display go fuzzy as it was replaced with the invite-only room I had designed. It would probably send out notifications to my friends, who might accept or decline, and log into the room if they accepted. I laughed as my surroundings changed.