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Del Rion [userpic]

Empty Dead World

September 29th, 2009 (04:49 pm)

Story Info

Title: Empty Dead World

Author: Del Rion (delrion.mail (at) gmail.com)

Fandom: Heroes

Era: Post-Heroes, approx. 200 years into the future

Genre: “AU”, drama, angst

Rating: T / FRT

Characters: Peter Petrelli (, Claire Bennet, Angela Petrelli)

Summary: The expiration date for planet Earth is coming closer.

Written for: Heroes_Contest’s (heroes_contest) One-shot Challenge 18: Voltaire quote: “Every man is guilty of all the good he didn’t do.”

Warnings: Dark thoughts, depressing vision of the future.

Beta: Mythra mythras_fire

Disclaimer: The show, its characters, its places, and everything else, belong to Tim Kring and the other respective creators and owners of ‘Heroes’. I have made no profit by writing this story, and make no claim over the show. There may be severe scientific inaccuracies in this story, but this is all fiction – and may it stay as such!

Feedback: If you feel like it, drop me a line; thoughtful, constructive, pleased, happy, or sad. As long as if it is fair, all things considered, I thank you!

Theme song: Marilyn Manson: The Last Day on Earth (album: Mechanical Animals)

About Empty Dead World: What humanity is doing to our planet is so sad and heartbreaking that one doesn’t even really want to think about it. We are going downhill too fast, and although it might not be this generation, or the next, or the one after that… we are going to kill this planet for sure.

This is an alternate universe look at how things might turn out. If this is realistically possible, I don’t know, but I felt like writing something angsty.

Story and status: Below you see the writing process of the story. If there is no text after the title, then it is finished and checked. Possible updates shall be marked after the title.

Empty Dead World

~ ~ ~

Written for Heroes_Contest’s (heroes_contest) One-shot Challenge #18 (Voltaire quote: “Every man is guilty of all the good he didn’t do.”)

Theme song: Marilyn Manson: The Last Day on Earth (album: Mechanical Animals)

Empty Dead World

The world as he used to know it is dying.

It’s like one of those sad symphonies his mother used to listen to when she was still alive, more and more so when she got old. Peter always wondered if they somehow reminded her of the life she had led, filled with fear, despair and lies. Or maybe it was reflecting what she saw when she looked at the world.

Peter couldn’t see it then, but he can definitely see it now. The failure called life – or to be exact, human existence.

It all began so many years ago that he doesn’t care to remember. Sure, it has been less than two centuries, far less, but when he doesn’t think of it, he manages to feel less guilty, somehow; if he doesn’t breathe too deep, or look too far, he might be able to forget that he, too, is responsible for the world he lives in today. The world they all live in.

He takes a breath, and sighs in disappointment, resisting the urge to cough. The air is so much… less than what he used to breathe. As a rule he avoids the cities these days because one cannot walk there without feeling a pressing sensation of suffocation. The sight of the giant smog cloud hanging over the cluster of buildings disgusts him; it used to be bad in New York, but with the rise in the population, traffic and pollution… It is almost like walking into a gas chamber.

Some ten years ago others seemed to notice it too because pedestrians and bicycles were moved underground – a decision that was soon adopted all over the world. Peter, who has long had a fondness for the open sky, liked cities even less after that. Too many people crammed together, going on about their daily lives as if nothing had changed.

But Peter knows… He would fly past cut-down forests, and some years later he would watch crops dying because the climate kept on changing and the pollution crawling across the sky eventually came down in the rain, poisoning the earth deeper than they could dig each year. The forests left standing kept either dying or changing because their natural habitat was altered. And eventually… there were so few trees that Peter no longer wondered why he felt so out of breath all the time. They are having global meetings every month now, trying to find a solution to the poor quality of the air.

It’s all too late, though. The people are already desperate and afraid. Just thinking of the food riots… Peter still remembers the first look of fear on an average American’s face when he or she realized they might actually die of starvation in this modern day and age. Because crops need to be grown, livestock fed, and there are so many people, demanding food… so much less food than there are mouths to feed.

Beneath the sky covered in smoke and ashen clouds, worry is beginning to brew. The rain that used to give life now tastes tangy, and whenever Peter flies past the clouds to greet the sun he can’t see all that often these days, he can see just how dead the earth looks from high above. The land… and the seas.

The seas are empty. Like so many animals that went extinct because of the environmental changes or hunting, fish also suffered from the temperature changes – and overfishing. As much as there was to be done for the climate change, man’s hunger to claim more from the sea than the sea had to give was what drove the situation to what it is today. So many species disappeared which were important to the underwater balance, sending a ripple effect everywhere. Now the water is inhabited by species that cannot be used for food, and most of them are destroying what is left of the ecosystem that used to cover most of the planet’s surface.

Sometimes Peter feels like he should find a time traveler, but at the same time he knows it wouldn’t change anything. As much as the movies used to try and convince the audience of the human race’s capability of great change and self-sacrifice, it isn’t true. Even if he went back and told everyone… nothing would change.

Every day Peter can feel his ability slipping further from him because the empathy he used to feel for his fellow man is slowly dying. He tried so hard to rediscover his original power to harness more than one ability at a time, and when he did, he didn’t imagine he would lose it again. Not like this.

He has felt disappointed with people before, his family more than anyone else, but he always believed everyone could right the wrongs they made; no mistake would be final. But this grand mistake on a global scale seems to be the existence of humanity itself. Sure, there are some who are still trying to fight for a better tomorrow, to save their home planet, but even Claire, when Peter last saw her, was already giving up. She actually spoke of suicide because she felt tired of it all.

Peter shares her weariness. They have lived long enough to see every step of the disaster that is now escalating all around them. Their generation is long gone, and the generation after that, and neither of those seemed to think their time was coming to an end. Now their children are struggling to live like their forefathers never had to.

Yes, he is weary of this all. Watching the ecological balance come apart like a badly constructed house of cards fills him with such anger and desperation. He knows he can heal people, but he cannot heal the world. He tried, and he failed, because he used to think that it was the people who mattered; people who could change, to make better decisions. “One day…” they said – and that day never came. Peter is growing tired of waiting.

And he isn’t alone; the Earth is tired… so very tired.

The End


Posted by: Anansi (anansie_s)
Posted at: October 1st, 2009 03:15 pm (UTC)
peter petrelli

I really liked this (as opposed to 'enjoyed', heh - the theme song you picked is particularly fitting for the mood here). Very interesting choice to put together 2 things that seem fantastical -- Peter's abilities, and an impending environmental apocalpyse -- except that the latter isn't fantastical at all, which creates an interesting tension in your story. Because this is quite accurate:

Even if he went back and told everyone… nothing would change.

Every day Peter can feel his ability slipping further from him because the empathy he used to feel for his fellow man is slowly dying.


If this is realistically possible I don't know

It's very possible -- your descriptions of species extinction, ocean degradation, food riots, air quality, deforestation -- well, those things are happening already. The only thing I'd say is that New York (or at least Manhattan) supposedly won't exist anymore in 2 centuries, since most small low-lying islands will be submerged eventually with rising ocean levels due to climate change.

Posted by: Del Rion (del_rion)
Posted at: October 1st, 2009 03:57 pm (UTC)
Milo 11

Yeah, it is sad how one race is so close to destoying this planet... do I dare say "our" planet, since it apparently means to some part of the mankind that it is ours to use as we like...

Anyway, thank you for the fine observation! Indeed, Manhattan might take a beating, so to speak ;) (As a non-American, I didn't really even think about such a thing, so thanks for bringing it to my attention! ♥) But do you really see them just allowing that particular part of the city sink to the ocean? :P I think they would try everything in their power to elavate it, or something... maybe build walls around it XD

Glad that you liked the story, and thank you a lot for your fantastic comment ^^

Posted by: Anansi (anansie_s)
Posted at: October 1st, 2009 04:21 pm (UTC)
die sylar

I think they would try everything in their power to elavate it, or something... maybe build walls around it

Oh, good point! Yeah, probably. It would make ... economic sense to wall it. Poor little Tuvalu, on the other hand, will be a goner.

Your Peter icon is pretty :)

Edited at 2009-10-01 04:23 pm (UTC)

Posted by: Del Rion (del_rion)
Posted at: October 1st, 2009 04:32 pm (UTC)
Milo 11

Yeah, a lot of places will disappear... but places like Manhattan... the national pride is too great to let them go, me thinks :P

Oh yes, Peter is pretty... or actually, Milo is :D

Posted by: miss_miso (miss_miso)
Posted at: October 3rd, 2009 11:05 pm (UTC)

Wow. This was haunting and beautifully written. I adore the mixture of imagery and emotion:

Beneath the sky covered in smoke and ashen clouds, worry is beginning to brew.

Lovely and tragic. Now, please excuse me while I go and sort out the recycling :)

Posted by: Del Rion (del_rion)
Posted at: October 4th, 2009 10:38 am (UTC)
Peter Petrelli 23 (burning tree)

Glad you liked! Lol, recycling is good. At least you are trying (me too, as much as I can) =) Thanks for reading the fic and dropping me a line ^^

Posted by: Lady Paynes Grey (quirkysmuse)
Posted at: October 9th, 2009 04:57 pm (UTC)

Wow, a lovely take on the theme, with wonderfully dark imagery flowing throughout this. Great work.

Posted by: Del Rion (del_rion)
Posted at: October 9th, 2009 05:02 pm (UTC)
Peter Petrelli 23 (burning tree)

Thank you ^^ I'm glad it worked! Thanks for reading and commenting.

Posted by: sarkywoman (sarkywoman)
Posted at: October 10th, 2009 09:19 pm (UTC)
underjoyed Peter

You have a flair for the bleak and depressing, which I mean in the most positive way possible.

Posted by: Del Rion (del_rion)
Posted at: October 11th, 2009 06:08 am (UTC)
Milo 17 (ponder)

I guess bleak and depressing works for me right now :D Or maybe it is actually my "thing", and I've only discovered it now.

Thanks for reading ^^

(Deleted comment)
Posted by: Del Rion (del_rion)
Posted at: October 11th, 2009 06:07 am (UTC)
Peter Petrelli 23 (burning tree)

Thank you ^^ glad that you feel guilty... sort of :P

Thanks for reading and commenting!

Posted by: andystar101 (andystar101)
Posted at: October 13th, 2009 03:08 am (UTC)

I think your story was well written and I congratulate you on that. It is also a very interesting twist and something that we all need to think about.

Posted by: vukitoss (vukitoss)
Posted at: April 15th, 2011 07:10 pm (UTC)

I don’t bookmark sites but i will bookmark this! LOL!

Posted by: Del Rion (del_rion)
Posted at: April 15th, 2011 07:32 pm (UTC)
Milo *smirk*

:D Well, I feel honored, so thanks!

(Deleted comment)
Posted by: Del Rion (del_rion)
Posted at: November 4th, 2011 06:14 am (UTC)

I'm glad you liked, although there was no scientific research made for this to exist... just things off the top of my head, and the things I fear are likely to happen because we, humanity, do not know when to stop or draw the line :/ Thanks for reading and dropping a comment!

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