The Gaia Hypothesis [Flash Fiction]
Date: 23rd March, 2096
Journal Log: Dr. Marsden
This will be my final journal entry. Earlier today, I powered down the facility’s generator. The battery back-up will last an hour, maybe two. After that, the computers will go offline. Oxygen will cease to be recycled shortly after. Last to go will be the lights, but I intend to be gone before then. I may very well be the last human on the entire planet, and the thought is… sobering.
Since Dr. Anton died three years ago, I’ve been alone. Many times I’ve wanted to give up; each time, I talked myself into continuing. Told myself I might save humanity. Now, I’ve learnt the truth. I finally understand. And humanity cannot be saved.
When the first Locarls started showing up and attacking right on the heels of World War Three, our finest minds believed they could be stopped. Resources which had been poured into annihilating other human beings in warfare were redirected into research to put an end to the winged menace. That was years before I was born, and I have done my best to continue the scientific legacy.
It’s taken over seventy years of research. In that time, countless millions of lives have been lost. The Locarls have been relentless, and once they latch on to a human, the feeding process is instantaneous. The creatures cannot be removed without killing the host.
I now know that these life-forms aren’t from outer space, as once believed by my predecessors. No… they certainly aren’t alien to this world.
The body of virtually every living creature has a way of protecting itself. For mammals, our strongest protection is our immune system. When our white blood cells detect a dangerous intruder, they swarm en mass. The Earth is alive in ways we never could have guessed, and its immune system is perfect in its response. The Locarls have done what our own white blood cells do: neutralised a threat to the organism. Protected the body from destruction.
Even if I had a way of destroying the Locarls, what right would I have to effectively destroy such an ancient protective system? It would leave the Earth open to further infections in the future. The planet would be unprotected. These creatures have lain dormant for eons, and I surmise that they’ll return to their long hibernation once the threat has been eliminated.
I leave this message in the hope that, if I’m not the last, those reading this log will understand the action I’ve taken. Understand that I didn’t give up: I chose to go graciously, for the good of the planet. We should all do the same, for we have brought this on ourselves.
I am leaving the facility, now. I will see the light of the sun for the first time in my life, and I know that however brief my end moments prove, it will be worth it.
Hey hey! I’ve been away for a couple of weeks doing some very scientific things (you can read all about it in Glorken’s next update to my home planet, later this week). Over the next few days, I’ll be churning out some more stuff, as well as catching up on blogs I’ve missed dearly.