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I’ve never been a morning person, I prefer moonrise to sunrise, and most of the sunrises I’ve seen were on my way to bed. Military organizations have a different approach, attack at dawn and use all day for fighting. Naturally when the attack came, I was fast asleep.
After the crystals starting falling, America had become a battle field. Crystals fell from the sky and then started to move toward each other. They would create structures, strange structures with no known purpose. The individual crystals evaded any understanding, when opened they would turn into water. Close scientific examination confirmed that it was water, based on isotopic analysis it was earth water.
Building a society is hard and slow, destroying a society is easy and fast.
The American government knew the crystals for a threat, what threat no one knew; the military was dispatched to destroy all crystal structures. The crystals fell, built a structure, the military blew up the structure, more crystals fell and everything repeated. Entire cities had been leveled. Virtually all the causalities were civilian, a few soldiers had died in training or friendly fire but the civilians got a beating.
Civil disorder was rampant, the economy had collapsed, infrastructure decimated. The civilian gun-nuts had turned mercenary, roaming in gangs killing and stealing. Whenever the military cornered one of these self proclaimed paramilitary freedom fighters they were annihilated. It was best to keep moving, no defense would stand for long, stay low and keep moving.
We had gathered family and friends, everyone over thirteen was armed but bullets were at a premium, we avoided all conflicts. We had moved out of Houston, heading south, planning to make Mexico in a few weeks. The interstate highway was a killing field, so we traveled overland. The farms had been abandoned, most had been burned down. A single family had no chance against the roving gangs. Living off the land we scavenged, traveled light and keep moving.
Two nights ago we had found a farm with a vast number of crystals, more moving in from every direction. They appeared to be building a satellite array atop a geodesic dome. We moved back about two miles, an air strike was inevitable, we watched all night and at dawn the air strike arrived, even at two miles the concussive shock wave was powerful. Some of the crystals fell near us. I gathered a few crystals for examination. An infantry scouting team would come to collect the crystals, I dropped the crystals and we moved out. We planned on making twenty miles.
Last night I had sentry duty, I loved the night, the sky was full of shooting stars as more crystals entered the atmosphere, at three in the morning Rick relieved me and I went to bed. At sunrise the attack started. Overnight an enormous crystal structure had self assembled about 5 miles northwest and it was hit with a combined air and ground assault. Heavy weapons fire is a good motivational tool, I didn’t need sleep, I needed to be gone.
The government was slowly reestablishing civil society. Most of the paramilitary groups had been disarmed or killed, the establishment of order had started in the big urban population areas, what used to be cities, and then the military captured large agricultural areas to provide food. The interstate highways were cleared of wreckage and patrolled by armored Hummers with mounted 50 cals.
We had liberated five SUVs and packed everyone on board, now we followed the Army Hummers in close order. This allowed for relative safety in our flight for Mexico. At night we debated our wisdom. Continue south or turn back for Houston?
The American government had ceased its war on Crystals, joining the Europeans in scientific research. A Russian scientist had conducted an extremely clever experiment that proved the Crystals converted neutrinos into energy and an Indian scientist showed that the Crystals modified the local gravity field. All this showed that our understanding of physics was deeply flawed.
The safest place for the family was behind Army lines and we decided to enter San Antonio. We descended on one family member, a native to San Antonio, thirty two family and friends clustered into one house. This was the best we had experienced in over two weeks, finally a dry warm place to sleep. The very best was having coffee. I had been fighting coffee withdrawal and losing.
Coming together and reviewing the remaining resources I felt the best I had since the night of the first shooting stars.
The news was bad. That is an understatement, the news was terrifying.
The government had tried to suppress the news, as always, the secret came out, a secret know by hundreds of astronomers.
A meteor was inbound for earth, 30 miles in diameter and moving at 60,000 miles per hour. The dinosaurs were killed by a meteor only 10 miles in diameter, now this one was at least three times larger, nothing bigger that an amoeba would survive. The meteor would land in two days, Friday, September the thirteenth, when the tip hit the Atlantic Ocean the tail would still be in space.
Somehow the Crystals no longer mattered.
I set dazed, watching news programs confirming the worst reports. The news anchors lacked animation, reporting in a stupor all the suicides and work stoppage. No one reported for work, police stations stood empty, soldiers walked away from their duties, fire trucks without drivers, all had lost hope.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 13th
I had moved through every emotion possible, now I stood in the backyard watching the sky, the end was near, every person present knew the precise moment of predicted impact. With two minutes left we started to hug each other, some confessed pass secrets, some cried and some prayed.
At the moment of collision nothing happened.
The meteorite had turned aside. The crystals had warped gravity and directed the death of mankind into the sun. Then all the crystals had melted. Not one crystal continued anywhere on earth.
10 YEARS LATER
After years we still know nothing, we do not know where the crystals came from or what created them, or even how they worked.
The second amendment of the American constitution had been repealed; armed fools no longer walked America. The government maintained a strict monopoly on violence.
Religious leaders claimed the crystals as an Act of God, scientist had no answer, but they were working hard and were fully employed.