"Where am I?" asked Jolene, as she took some hesitant steps toward the elevator. "Am I on the moon?"
"You are not on the moon," was the response. The voice seemed to come from all around her. "You are on a spacecraft. The Earth as you know it is uninhabitable."
"What? Why? What happened?"
"You will find out later," it said. "Take the elevator to the highest floor."
Jolene entered the small enclosure and pressed the button marked '35'. There was no 36.
"God will ask you a series of questions," the voice continued. "If the answers are incorrect, he...
2070. Man enters final stages of the information age! The shortest technological age of human history. With the global bandwidth of each home computer reaching a collective average of 1GB per-second, cell phones capable of literally recording an entire persons life, from womb-to-tomb, and neural implants giving humans longevity and superior thinking processes. The information age, though a short yet potent time, is nearing it's end. Soon we will be entering the space age. With the completion of the atmospheric tower, which will eliminate the need for rocket propulsion in order to leave our beautiful planet.
In the harsh twilight, he knelt and dug.
In the bottom of the phoenix-grave, he spread the spores that would feed on and support the beginnings 0f all life.
In the sharp, glassy soil, he placed the seeds of a new planet.
In the unmeasured, empty space of an hour, he changed the course of the universe.
In the flat gray expanse of weathered silicates, three thousand potatoes rested.
In the dead methane-carbon dioxide atmosphere, the harsh actinic sun slanted down, undimmed by ozone.
In the cool, moist air of his time machine, he left the dawn of the world,...
She didn't look at him.
He didn't look at her. They had an understanding. The only way to succeed was if they didn't show the mark that everyone in the room was absolute strangers.
Glasses clinked, the lounge pianist droned his snooty song, polite ladies left to powder their noses, and she stood directly under the chandelier's magnificent crown. In a few seconds, the lights would fizzle out, he would pull the cord, and she would lie dead, crushed by the weight of the crystals and copper.
Or they would make it. They would make it to the mark, take...