Silence

1st in the 'The Inside Story 2020' competition

Waves crashed onto the rocks, startling seagulls nearby. The wind howled across the dark, menacing sea. Ants marched into their homes like seasoned soldiers, crabs scuttled into their sandy holes trembling and waiting. An almighty roar from the sea conjured a gargantuan storm that crackled with power. A tremendous droning noise filled the air as a cacophony of blood-curdling screams ripped through the planet. The storm unleashed a massive lightning bolt that raced across the sky and dragged its destructive fingers across the land. A thunderous boom was heard. Something emerged from the waves. Footprints appeared on the sand and all was silent.

Gideon kneeled onto the sand and whispered an ancient incantation. The storm growled and roared but accepted its fate as it slowly faded away. The sky cleared, and a blinding, heavenly light emanated from a cloud. A man descended, as graceful as a swan and landed behind Gideon. “I have answered your cry for help.” The man said calmly. Gideon took a deep breath and spoke, “I need to destroy the Earth.”

“The Earth has been irradiated after countless wars over the dwindling water sources.” He explained. “I must end the suffering of this planet.” He stated solemnly. The man from heaven reluctantly nodded in understanding. He blessed Gideon for the deadly journey ahead of him.

Thousands of unfinished holes pockmarked the surface of the Earth. Futile attempts to reach the centre of the Earth. All expeditions to harness the core’s infinite power had failed. But Gideon was determined to end the anguish and suffering. He approached a hole and peered down. Somewhere down there was the solution. He took a deep breath and jumped.

The wind screamed at him, trying to blow him into the jagged walls of the hole. Gideon was an ancient sorcerer that had foreseen the death of the world. He had pleaded with world leaders to stop fighting but no-one listened. So he decided to live in the depths of the sea until the time came.

Approaching the centre, he spread his body out. His unique body suit allowed him to freefall safety. Sweat beaded on his face and flew away, ripped off by the wind. The heat was ferocious, uncontrollable energy. A ticking bomb Gideon thought, but he was the detonator.

His feet hit the rough, compact rock. Stalagmites jutting out from the floor. The fumes were intoxicating, forcing themselves into his body. Not long now. “Clunk!” His drill whirred to a halt. He squinted from the intense heat and saw it. A small pinhole opening that led to the core. This was it. He fumbled in his suit for the explosive. A tiny ball the size of a marble that had the potential to level entire countries. He licked his lips and swallowed. Temporary relief for his dry, parched throat. His eyes watered and released several minute rivers to flow down his face. “Goodbye sweet world," he croaked as he dropped the explosive into the hole. All was silent.

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