Svana sat at the window scowling


It had been a couple of weeks since the ice breakers had departed followed by an armada of cruise ships and navy vessels. Everyone had abandoned their beautiful homes to the advancing ice. Hinrik had obviously gone with them as he hadn’t been round to see her since the ships departed. Now the planes had stopped and the ice looked so thick the ships couldn’t get through even with the biggest ice breakers.

She had watched the ice come and slowly cover everything, huge icicles hung from the roofs and the wall of ice on the sea towered over the buildings near the shore. With it had also come silence, a deep lonely and chilling silence like nothing she had ever experienced, punctuated by the groans and howls of the sea ice. Even the puffins were gone, oh how she had adored those little birds and it broke her heart to think she may never see one again.

All around the world the most northerly communities were emigrating south to makeshift refugee camps in any countries willing to accept them, but everyone knew it would be only a hand full of years before the entire world’s population would be trying to cram into an ever narrowing band around the equator. The super powers were preparing their armies for war, everybody knew but nobody spoke of it.

Everything had happened so fast the scientists were still bickering over theories, global warming, the earth’s magnetic field flipping, strange never before seen solar activity, even aliens were being blamed. But the truth was nobody really knew, it could be all of them or none of them. One fact remained, the planet had suddenly and catastrophically changed; ocean currents had changed or stopped completely, the polar temperature was dropping by several degrees a year.

* * *
Svana sat at the window scowling. She had sat at the same window every day since she was a child watching life go by in Reykjavik a few minutes at a time. Now she was 81 and spent most of every day sat at the window. Hinrik had come twice every day for several years now to look after her, he wasn’t a relation just a helpful neighbour. They had been neighbours for many years and he was getting on in years himself now. Svana smiled recollecting her good friend and neighbour and some of the good times they had together. It was certainly more interesting than the view of the town. Nothing had moved in Reykjavik for over a week, not a car, bike or person had been seen

* * *
Svana was close to death after two weeks without food or water. Her frail form sat slumped in the old arm chair surrounded by a fetid pool of her own excrement. She longed for death, wanted an end to her torment, an escape to a better place. Actually she had wanted this for years now, ever since her frail body had robbed her of her mobility and dignity but Hinrik had done a great job of looking after her and refused to listen to her pleas to let her go.

Consciousness was a fleeting thing, which was a blessing. Svana was convinced she was the only person left, everyone else had gone leaving her forgotten and alone to die. Before she did though she cursed them all, cursed them to a life of misery and a slow lingering death. Then her last breath eased its way through her thin cold blue lips. Her eyes slowly faded and she was free. Leaving behind a world about to be locked in its deepest darkest war, a genocide like no other, possibly even the end of humanity itself.

A Flash Fiction set in the Hope Universe

By Ian J Wilson

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