What’s the date today? Write it down, remove all dashes and slashes, and write a post that mentions that number.

Inside the space shuttle he looked at the monitors and glanced at the digital clock & calendar that ticked off the seconds & minutes before blast off. His fellow astronauts were buckled in their seats and thinking of the risks that they were taking – an experimental spaceship that housed a revolutionary new engine that was faster than anything that had even been imagined. It promised to take the shuttle and it’s 3 member crew to their destination – the planetary system that was called Futura by NASA and in particular a large new-earth planet that the governments of earth and the population at large were hoping would be the new home for a species that had almost drained it’s home planet’s resources.

The countdown began and the shuttle takes off into the skies and then breaks orbit and even the crew and the NASA staff on the ground were surprised at the speed which beat their expectation. The people on the ground cheered and the millions watching it live on their tvs, computers and hand held devices all ran through the gamut of emotions – crying, laughing, cheering, yelling, hifiving, hugging and opening celebratory bottles to drink and then eat, as things seemed to be going according to plan. If everything worked out the way it was planned, the crew of the ship would reach the Futura system in 7 weeks and land on the planet and post a survey will return back with their findings. If the planet was a go to settle, the next plan was to send the first of several bio-ships to Futura for settling the planet and then in various stages send the earth’s population (people and some animals) in big ships for relocation.

Back on the ship as the crew hit the maximum setting on the speed, they relaxed a bit before they entered stasis that would enable them to sleep through the 7 weeks that it would take to reach Futura. The crew had an automated alarm that would wake them as soon as they reached the planet’s orbit. Sleep was dreamless and it seemed like it was a very short time before they woke up due to the alarm sounding. The three astronauts rubbed their eyes and dressed as the space shuttle shook as they were reaching the planet and as the lead astronaut took his seat his eyes bulged out as he glanced at the digital clock and calendar. He started hyperventilating and pointing to the display and the other two rush towards him – the year displayed was 11092015!!

How could that be? It was 2510 when they left and the trip was only for 7 weeks. But as the other two assisted their captain to the floor they looked at the planet below them as the surface became clearer. It was earth, still their earth but it was destroyed and in ruins and the oceans and seas and other bodies of water were almost dried up and where there was land and cities and towns it was charred and black and destroyed beyond any recognition. No lights were visible and it looked seemingly without life. This was the planet that they were heading to faster than anything mankind had created, seemingly the last remaining humans alive.

Prompt from The Dailypost at WordPress.com