“Ice Dragon, auto drive. Enter the center zone.” I’m not confident in my driving skills. Better have Ice Dragon be in control.
“Sure. A wise choice,” Ice Dragon mocked me.
*Vroom!* The engine roared and the entire spaceship shuddered slightly. Suddenly, Ice Dragon accelerated, moving at an obviously much higher speed than before. When we flew past the main cockpit, it was slowly descending.
“The blue crystal energy system is in your seat,” Ice Dragon said. I looked at him in shock, “What?!”
Ice Dragon continued to explain, “Your seat is like the battery. The main cockpit has now separated from the blue crystal energy source, so it wouldn’t be able to receive any energy."
His words made me worry about Harry. “Wouldn’t Harry be in danger then?”
“There is reserve energy in the main cockpit. If he were to be in danger, there is sufficient energy for him to return to Noah City. However, he wouldn’t be able to control anything else or head anywhere further.” Ice Dragon flashed a sly smile. “But Harry is so annoying. Why do you care about him?”
I was stunned. Ice Dragon even knows how to sow discord between us. This AI is insane. His existence is so confusing. I can’t even tell if he is a real person or a bunch of systems. He is a true embodiment of AI.
I looked at him and said, “We are a team. No matter how annoying he is, he is still my captain.” Then, I looked ahead and ignored Ice Dragon with a sly smile of my own.
Although there were trees scattered here and there, the landscape still looked rather desolate. In the boundless vista, the trees looked like burnt humans who stood in agony and became statues on the scorched earth. The trees looked small from my angle as we flew high above but they should be very huge.
“Do you want to see how it originally looked?” Ice Dragon asked.
I immediately looked at him and said, “Sure!”
Small dots emerged across the spherical windshield, then slowly disappeared as an image formed. Under my feet, the floor became transparent too. It was as though I was floating in the sky. The world was slowly recovering before my eyes.
In the blink of an eye, a city from a sci-fi movie appeared before me. There was no longer any barren land or scattered trees.
Towering buildings stood erect on the ground, soaring up into the sky like spring bamboo shoots!
Metallic exteriors and gold titanium glass shimmered under the sunlight. The buildings towered under the bright blue sky like giants, so tall that they pierced through the clouds. Ice Dragon and I were flying in between them.
There were transparent, covered bridges that connected the buildings. The scenery looked like a paradise. Between the sky bridges, there were covered parks with beautiful musical fountains and fresh flowers laid out like a carpet, as well as neatly trimmed bushes and trees. There were even people walking around.
This world used to be so beautiful.
The covered bridges encircled the towering buildings like ribbons, forming many skyways. Flying vehicles and UFO-like shuttles shuttled to and fro while elevators zipped up and down the buildings, as though they were about to fly into outer space for people to enjoy the view of the galaxy from the top of the planet.
“Before the end of the world, Star Kansa had already reached advanced civilization,” Ice Dragon started explaining casually. Before me was the civilization and technology on this once magnificent planet. She was called Star Kansa.
“Due to the population issue, they were preparing to kickstart an interplanetary migration plan. Silver Moon City that you are seeing now is the embryonic form of the interplanetary migration starship. But the end of the world suddenly descended, and the interplanetary migration starship became the only escape boat. It rescued some of the scientists and people who could save the world and brought them away from hell. Those people were also viewed as the last hope of the world. Technology has stopped since then and the migration plan has been delayed ever since. At the time, a scholar of religion had suggested a theory.”
Ice Dragon paused for a while and said, “God...doesn’t let us leave this place.”
“Is there really a God?” If there is, I am not from this place called Star Kansa either, but another planet called Earth. Why drag me here to suffer out of nowhere?
Blame me for praying for nonsense. I made some stupid wish on Mount Putuo back then. Now, I really want to give myself back then a tight slap!
The sky depicted on the windshield suddenly grew dim. The clouds started churning, turning into a layer of roiling crimson. Suddenly, a ball of flame descended from above, leaving a long trail of fire and black smoke across the sky. It flew forward at a high speed. In the middle of the ball of flame, a faint blue light shimmered like starlight.
An explosion cut through the silence, and blue light shone across the sky. Then, the blue light exploded in the sky and flowed towards me like a huge wave!
Instantly, the blue light pierced the building in front of me. Then, it went around Ice Dragon and me, and flew behind us quickly!
I spun around. The entire cockpit had turned transparent and I couldn’t see the storage cabin behind me anymore. It was as though I was sitting out of spacetime as I watched the moment come.
The blue light continued to pierce the buildings behind me like an unstoppable tsunami. However, at that moment, the buildings weren’t damaged at all!
I spun towards the front again. There was a huge wave of dust. The entire world was filled with dust along with flashes of lightning, and it formed a huge wave of darkness that covered over me. I subconsciously raised my hand to block. In an instant, the entire world was in darkness.
Seconds later, the image started to fast forward. Dots of light blinked among the dust while Ice Dragon continued to travel forward. The world looked like a sea of fire, just like hell!
The towering buildings started collapsing. One hit on the other and it became a sea of flames.
The fire gradually went faded. The building remains weathered away into the soil. It was as though some sort of huge energy had broken them apart and sped up the deterioration process. The steel-like buildings wavered then scattered into the wind.
The weather worsened as the remnants of buildings were washed away in extreme storms. They started melting like ice cream and vanished into the rain.
In the blink of an eye, the once magnificent civilization with its towering buildings had vanished before me. Although it was on fast forward speed, I was still astonished. The realistic replay made it seem as though I had gone through the experience personally!
“Every-everything is gone. What could there still be in the center of the radiation zone?” I was confused.
“That’s why it was named God’s Punishment.” Ice Dragon put his palms together, saying in a reverent tone. “Because ironically, the point of impact, now known as the center of the radiation zone, did not have the slightest bit of damage and everything in there remained perfect. However, no humans can go near. It is as though God left it there to either mock humankind or to enlighten them."
“What?!” Although I’d only graduated from junior high school, I knew that anything like an atomic bomb would turn any place it landed on into a flatland.Previous Chapter Next Chapter