Asteroid 1997XF11

Wordcount: 636 words.

Thick, opacus clouds littered the sky. Everyone in the city below knew that today was the day, and were acting accordingly. Churches were packed, as well as bars, and the entire world mourned. It would only be a few hours now, and tension sparked throughout the globe.
It couldn’t be stopped or diverted, not for lack of trying mind you, and many had accepted their fate. Many more hadn’t, but it didn’t matter.
The asteroid would hit soon.

The asteroid was huge, and fast. Its course had been known for years, and it was too late that people realised the course was wrong. Its name was 1997XF11, and it was predicted to pass dangerously close to earth but still miss it in the year 2028.
Turned out that we had miscalculated, or something had moved it, but largely it didn’t matter. It was going to hit us, hit earth, and all life would be wiped out.
It is the year 2027, and humanity will face its doom with solemn honour. Or panic and mayhem, but again, it doesn’t matter.

Asteroid 1997XF11 was about 1,6 kilometres across, and is going to hit the earth at about 48 280 kilometres per hour. It will hit with the energy of a 1 million megaton bomb. The sheer magnitude of that kind of explosion is unimaginable. To put that in perspective, the bomb dropped on Hiroshima was 20 kilotons. The largest nuclear bombs made today reach about 70 or 80 megatons.
So, you get the idea. We’re fucked, royally so.

At first, most people thought it was a hoax. Then they got angry, and protests and looting broke out in numbers never reached before. The damage would take decades to repair, they predicted, and we would not live long enough to see those repairs.
Globally, everyone went through the five stages of grief. Some got stuck at the stages along the way, and crime rates skyrocketed. Eventually, people calmed down, and decided to fight their fate.
I’ll let you guess how that worked out.

We couldn’t destroy it, we couldn’t move it, we couldn’t move ourselves. We tried them all, and each one failed. Our attempts at colonisation were the hardest to watch fail, or rather, listen to. The transmissions from our dying space-farers were heart-wrenching, and I figure you could have heard our hopes dying too if you listened hard enough.
The world collectively sighed, wept, and prepared for the end.

Of course, the looting picked up again, alongside violence and debauchery. For years, the world was in turmoil. When we entered into our final year, things seemed to calm down. Relatively speaking, at least.
People realised that they would die, and they couldn’t stop that. Some sought God, others sought solace in drugs, some gathered up family and friends and strove to make their final moments worthwhile.
That brings us to today. With hours left.

The clouds are swirling, making way for the sheer size and force of what is about to strike. We can all see it, in person or on TV. It would land in the ocean, and cause massive tidal waves along the coasts. The dust and debris kicked up would block the sun, and suffocate our planet.
Not all of us would die today.

Small (comparatively) pieces of the asteroid have broken up, and chunks the size of houses and apartment buildings are striking the globe. The impacts are easily felt, as small atomic bomb worthy explosions rock the world.
It’s strange, to hear 11 billion people screaming together.

After the explosion, people will struggle onwards. Desperately clinging to life on a dying world, sunless and smothered in ash.
Breathing will be hard, let alone doing all that’s needed to survive.
The end of the world, and it seems the popular saying was wrong.

The world ended in a bang, and then a whimper.


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