One minute after midnite everything changed. January 1st, NE2006 was the beginning of the end; for millions, soon to be billions. Human beings scurried about the planet in their little affairs, serene in the assurance of their empire over this newly captured world. Colonies spread like wildfire & abundant natural resources meant the only things they needed to import from Earth were the tools & machines to exploit them. In two decades cities & industry had already made their marks large enough to be visible from orbit. In two centuries every landmass had been populated. In two mere millennia nearly every mountain had been climbed, ocean plumbed & every scrap of soil & water cataloged, claimed & fought over. In essence, New Earth had become as Old Earth.
So much was known about this new world in little time comparative to the old one. Much as was visible to be discovered. But had they waited, had they merely studied rather than rushing hastily ahead as to a pot of gold, they might have seen enough to forewarn them. Technology may provide knowledge of where a tectonic fault line may lay but not the wisdom to avoid living there. The similarities to their home world fueled their pride & accelerated the push for dominance over nature, ignoring the history that was yet too young to be repeated.
Anson stood at the hotel window, gazing across the lights of the city at the mountains. The land was flat before them for miles before suddenly heaving up into sheer cliffs of solid stone. These were relatively new mountains in this world's time, as evidenced by the jagged peaks cutting madly at the night sky. A dark contrast to the brushed wisps of blue & green auroras that whirled & flashed about their summit. It was this view, this light show Anson liked best in all the continent & why he was in the process of moving here permanently.
The amber glow of the streets on this edge of the city softened the distance of his vision but he could still clearly see the snow on every peak not too steep for it to cling. It reflected the colours in the sky in a gorgeous natural display unparalleled by any work of mankind. He marveled in awe as he did every nite & drank in the light as it fueled his wonder.
But something caught his eye. Something more than the shifting blue to green to blue wisps in the distance. A movement; something tumbling down the mountainside. Before he could focus on it the movement stopped. He stared another minute, searching... & saw another! A large bulk falling from the peak. Sliding down the side & pulverizing itself in a flash of white on the next slope.
The peaks themselves had taken on a new shape too. The sharp blades of stone were rounded, muted in a way suggesting greater size. In the distance to the west a larger point had grown noticeably, as tho' something were gradually rising up behind it. Anson squinted & saw something was rising up behind it. Some pliable white substance was pushing itself up from behind & over the top, the leading edge now perched above the city side. It was happening all across the mountain range, large white shapes climbing up & towering over the mountain range, as if pushed by an illimitable force.
For a moment the auroras burned with beautiful intensity, a fluid wave of spectral green light washing over the mountaintops. A stunning illumination finally revealing to Anson the impossibly massive bulk of solid ice resting atop the mountains. It seemed to pause, or if any of this was actually possible it rested while more ice built up behind it... before making the plunge.
It began to descend. A million tons of ice & snow pouring down the mountainside in a relentless solid sheet, flattening the peaks, sheering the cliffs & grinding boulders to dust. Anson had a rational moment to realize just how swift the blanket of compacted ice was traveling before shock & fear overtook him. The mountains were two hours travel from the edge of the city & already the ice was reaching their wooded slopes, splintering the thick forest & filling the valleys & rivers below with a frozen wall hundreds of yards thick.
Anson never wondered what lay beyond the mountains before now. He'd only had this room for a few weeks & been too preoccupied with setting up his new life for the thought to even occur. The only thing he knew was that the city had an abundant supply of fresh water. A seemingly never ending supply. He froze, paralyzed in abject horror. Simultaneously a heavy gust of chill wind pressed against the window outside until his view was obscured with a thick layer of frost. The glaciers were coming.
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