Eventually It Shattered by Laura Herbst

I poured myself a long drink from the most expensive bottle of bourbon in my collection. It would be worthless soon. “Son of a bitch finally did it.” I muttered to myself as I plopped down on the couch. Brian always said he would end the world, ever since we were kids. I never thought he would actually do it. I never blamed him when he wished the world could restart. It was a shitty place we lived in. But to actually watch the world crumble down, buildings fall, nature die, and life in dismay, all at his hands, was the hardest thing I’ve ever seen. 

The first time my heart broke was when I saw Brian surrounded by his own destruction. It finally shattered as I realized that this has been coming for so long, and I did nothing but encourage it. I never believed in real villains as a child, but now as I watched another building crumple, I know that’s what he’s become. “Wouldn’t this world be so much better if we just got a fresh start? Yanno what I mean? Like just wipe out everything and start completely over, new people, new animals, new discoveries, maybe this time they’d actually do it right.” I remember just nodding along in agreement, not taking him seriously. I should have, I could have prevented this. But the worst part isn’t even knowing that the world was over, it was knowing that I’d never get to see my closest friend ever again.

It started simple I guess, one day Brian just disappeared. No call, no text, it’s like he just fell off the face of the earth, and there wasn’t anything I could do about it. Just when I had finally come to terms with his vanishing, he showed up again at two AM at my doorstep. “I have a way to make everything work! Danny this is it! This is gonna be the redemption. I made a friend who’s working in the very inside of the government. He has access to things we’ve only ever made up while playing Call of Duty. He agrees with everything I’ve been saying for years. This is it, our moment. We can finally end this madness. Are you in?” I shook my head vigorously, “Brian you have to be joking. You can’t just blow up the world and expect it to just start over better than before. It’s never going to work. Don’t be this stupid; you’ll end up thrown in jail.”

Maybe it was the wrong thing to say, but it needed to be said to him. I knew nothing would stop his plan. He backed away slowly and laughed as he left my house, only stopping to smile at me and say, “then watch as I finally accomplish my dreams Danny boy, if only I could have had you by my side during the process.” Just like that he was gone again. The next time I saw him was when a ‘DANGER! Take cover immediately! This is not a drill.’ appeared across the screen with a picture of missiles set to go off all across the world and Brian and a guy standing next to him.  

All the fine things I collected; from the 1980 wine collection, to my original comic book collection that hung on the shelves, none of it mattered anymore. In just a matter of hours I would be dead to or at least dying like the rest of the world. Only half the missiles have gone off so now it was just a matter of time until the other half lit up the sky. It was no use running around and panicking like some people, or the other people who just killed themselves to save themselves from the impending doom. I just waited, drinking my bourbon, thinking about how long this has been coming. Brian finally cracked. He finally did it, and now I had to watch the world fall apart without my best friend by my side but instead watch it because of him. Standing in his own destruction, probably off somewhere planning how the very last bomb would drop on himself, because god forbid if Brian were to ever live in a world alone. Living up to the very villain arc stereotype, he was quite a lonely person, and that’s what made me wonder if that was the cause behind all the madness. 

But sitting around and thinking about what could’ve been wasn’t going to save me or get me my best friend back. I was not ever going to see him again. 

Taking the last sip from my glass, I opened up the bottle and took a swig from it. Brian never regretted anything he ever did, so at least if I couldn’t agree with him, I could try to live vicariously through him for just a while longer. I could feel when my world began to collapse, it wasn’t slow or sad,but it just began to burn, everything around me, dying slowly. I hoped he was happy with everything that he had accomplished. Maybe he was right after all, that humankind did need a fresh, new start to living. Maybe that’s what will happen, and in the future somewhere I’ll meet him again as a different person, and he will be happy with how life turned out. 

The world was officially over, no life left crawling around, even at the depths of the ocean. A new start to life started in fire and explosions and missiles and bombs. A villain believing he was the good guy. Eventually everything shattered. 

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