Allen Mark

Putting Words to Paper. Or Your Screen.


A quake shakes me awake from my dreamless state. I turn over to see a bright red “3:26” staring back at me, barely illuminating my face in my otherwise pitch black room. In roughly eight hours the next one should hit, so it’s about time to get out of bed before the day is over. Slipping out from under the covers, I trudge to the kitchen to fill and boil the kettle.


It’s been about 12 years since the tremors began. When it was discovered that the planet’s surface would turn uninhabitable by the next generation, the world powers clamored in search for solutions. Colonizing space offered the best solution, but in the given timeframe only a limited amount of high volume spaceships would be made available. Once the first private aerospace companies released their sign-up pages, the waitlists quickly grew for miles with names of hopeful members of our future diaspora. Ultimately, the luxury of space age survival fell onto the wealthy few, so while they constructed their massive vessels the rest of us had to find a different solution. When you can’t go up, you can only go down.

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The Bakery

Michael! June!

Michael: Hi Grandma!

June: Hello Ms. Duarte.

Grandma: Oh please June, you’re about to marry this young man, please call me your grandmother too.

June: Will do, Grandma. We’re both sad you won’t be able to make it to our wedding next week, so we’re glad to be able to spend today with you.

Grandma: Oh you know I’m too old to fly, and the two of you will be celebrating each other for the rest of your lives together, me missing one day is fine. Either of you want anything? I know you’d want a black coffee, Michael. June?

Michael: Ah you know me too well, Grandma.

June: Just some tea if you have any.

Grandma: Of course, dear. Come on to the kitchen, you two.

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