The Space Race

Entry by: Seaside Scribbler

22nd January 2016
At first, they were weak and stupid. They slithered out of the seas, grew legs, stood up. They adapted, procreated, multiplied, grew, evolved. This evolution: the one bit they weren't meant to do. I liked them when they slithered; easy to control, small. And, well, slithery. Once they grew legs and stood up, that was that. They were off, no stopping them. They were on one big murdering spree. If it moved, they'd kill it. If it was tasty, they'd eat it, then skin it and wear it.

If only they'd stayed in the seas... I'd watched with professional detachment, unconcerned even as they began to change. This'll be interesting, I thought. They're a fluke, a mutant gene, a trick of what they now call biology. So I sat back and let them crawl about and grow. It happened really really fast. One minute they were sliding on their bellies, a short time later they'd learned how to ride horses, plant seeds, trap animals, build factories. Chaos! The balance tilted and tilted. I once tried another mass extinction by hotting things up a little, but only succeeded in making things worse, as warmer temperatures meant they could move in yet more directions.

I played about with genes a little then. I was still relatively unconcerned, sure I could reign them in if things got REALLY bad. Then things did get really bad. In the huff of a storm, they discovered how to alter things. Change ingredients. Make things that were bigger than them. In this process, I grew weaker. My body was pillaged, burned, dug, blown up, stamped on, stripped. All of the thousands of differences I created all began to disappear. The variety that had taken a looooooooonnnnnnggg time (and a long time to me is unimaginable to them) began to disappear. Diversity takes a lot of perfecting and playing and balancing. Bang, they got rid of it with their guns and their maps and their smoke.

The smoke. My clouds are different.

They procreated and procreated and I stopped kidding myself : I had lost control.

What began as an experiment has gone wrong. They are a sickness and a scourge. Piece by piece, they claim me. They all want their own bit of land, their own bit of space. They've always fought; it used to amuse me to listen to them fighting and battling over areas of me. At first it was just little tiny skirmishes. Now they don't solely fight over space, it is my body they fight for. They have stolen what they can and they guard it, mistakenly thinking it's theirs. Someone else tries to take it. There's a war. Another group comes along and takes it back. Sometimes they wipe out whole groups of each other. What are they thinking? They're all the same! I wish they could remember how they all once crawled out of the murkiness, all the same, all a part of the same mutation.

I grow weaker quickly. They have lifetimes to appreciate; I have only a long continuation of what once was and what now is and what has come before and what comes after. It isn't time, it just IS. They made time, divided it, took that as well. For them it's long; for me it isn't.

So in a very short time I am weakened. I am also very very angry. It's a human emotion that I've come to appreciate.

IT WASN'T YOURS IN THE FIRST PLACE is what I would say if I had a voice, leave it and go back to your belly-crawling ways. I'd get rid of legs and thumbs and large brains and banish them back to that darkness where every sunup is a new fight for survival.

I have grown so weak now and lost so much control and I've had enough. Their millenia have passed and in a few cycles I'm stripped bare, struggling, gasping.

It is time to teach them a lesson.

So I shake a little here and I tilt a little there and soon, with the new warmth in the clouds, things begin to change. I pour water on their disregard and burn their homes and shake their cicites to the ground. I give pestilence and disease and take away cures and hold more tightly to my secrets. I can rise up my oceans and water my land and take them out, one by screaming one, getting back what is mine, what has always been mine. And that land they fought wars over, that is mine too so I scorch it and bake it and stop giving it life. I take it back, changed, but salvageable.

It won't take long. It didn't take long for them to divide me up and fight over me; it won't take long for me to fight back and show them that it was never ever theirs. So as they group up again in pitiful little gatherings, telling each other to save me, I've got bigger plans. And anyway, they are helping me. Burn me, I get hotter. Steal from me, I get unbalanced. Makes a little atmospheric chaos easier to get going.

I'm going to win. They just haven't realised it yet.