At dawn on the 15th of August, the first ripples were felt. The sun peeked over the Caucasus Mountains and illuminated a sleepy town which was populated by the first witnesses to the event about to unfold. Many had been stirred awake by a perceptible rumble in the ground and in the walls. Babies’ cries and animal howls could be heard throughout the village and indeed for many miles as the ripples travelled outwards from the epicentre. An earthquake was not out of the question, the area had experienced shocks such as these before, and apart from some tired denizens being rudely awoken none took much more notice. 37 minutes later the second ripple began, this time less forceful but more prolonged and now people began to take more notice. Very few remained in bed as the rumbling continued. It became apparent that the very air seemed to be vibrating now, and a sulfurous scent penetrated walls and windows that seemed to emanate from nowhere. A young journalist and agricultural blogger stationed in the village noted his thoughts on webcam for his 558 followers on a Russian social media site.
“So, this is Samuil for Agriculture Analysis. I *yawn* I woke up this morning to a weird rumbling… Ahhh it seems to be an earthquake. We get them now and again here, usually a bigger earthquake happens further away and we feel it here and so on. I just said I would let you guys know, most of you will probably be still in bed but, you know, I was awake and I said, well, may as well make myself do something useful. So boiling some tea right now, getting food for my cat, say hello Viki! *meowing heard off camera* So, I’m just getting everything ready for the Three Hills race. I will be there reporting and checking out the market, you know the usual, and, and I hope to see you guys there, had a great amount of fun last month at *Samuil stays silent, watching the window as an audible bang is heard from far away* I do not know what that was, I may just pick up the camera. There is something going on outside, just one moment.”
What was seen by five followers of Samuil was him recording the sky above the village as more bangs followed, enough to drown out the reporter as he tries to relay what he sees. Distortion begins to affect the recording and images struggle to form. All that is seen is a blue sky with scattered morning cloud and a thin streak of light coursing across the sky.
By 7.30, the ripples could now be felt as far afield as Lisbon and trawlers beginning the dawn routine on the Atlantic. Relatively calm waters began to hum with activity and shoals of fish began to swirl bout chaotically in confusion. Disruptive effects began to cause most low energy devices to periodically turn on and off again. Larger, more insulated electrical outlets remained relatively unfazed. Sonar, Radar, weather stations and telescopes began to malfunction or give off false positives. The word got around quickly that something was the matter and no major international incidents took place though all flights and cruises arriving to their respective ports experienced some difficulty in getting messages across. None could be green-lit to leave as the distortion worsened throughout the day. By 9.15 the rumbling had finally stopped and electronics worked correctly again though not before countless amounts of damage over the hemisphere had taken place. Back in the small village, crowds began to filter out into the day and many went to a small nearby hillock to watch what was occurring in the bronze-blue sky.
A noticeable splotchy object had appeared in the sky, right beside the moon thanks to parallax. It seemed to fizz and remold itself like a great amoeba. It had the colouration of an inky brown not unlike the colour of muddy water, with small white spheres just barely noticeable through a telescope. It buckled and writhed, hanging suspended in the vast blue of space. Reports filtered out from nearby towns and it wasn’t long before news spread of this strange phenomenon. Satellite telescopes above the Earth’s atmosphere began to swivel towards the disturbance and furiously took photographs, beaming them to bewildered and bleary eyed stargazers alike. Noone on the opposite side of the globe could see it firsthand so they had to rely on pictures being sent from the area of observation. Of course the vast array of emotions available was to be seen in everyone following the story. Some feared the object and what it could portend, others stared at it blankly, paralysed by curiosity. One couple in South America had already begun furiously drawing out a plan for a souvenir t-shirt range while a boy on a central Asian hillside stared wistfully at it as one would stare at a teenage crush. Many remained going about their business, not wanting to wait around while there was work to be done. Radios, TVs, phones and laptops all remained switched on though, just to see what was happening. By 10.45 they had something to talk about.
The object opened up, pulsing slightly, contracted then widened once more. Several bursts of light shot outwards and arced to the sides of the object. It began to take on a more disc-like shape. Protrusions crept outwards from the centre and reached out into the sky. more beams of light shot out and again arced back in like great solar flares. White particles emanated from the void like a blizzard and fluorescent light shone from the disc’s edges. Debris and detritus flowed outward into space and the disc continued to grow. Much of the world stalled now to watch the event. Each person achingly curious to know what it was, yet utterly powerless to investigate further. All they could do was watch the event unfold, while family on the other side of teh world slept on, mostly oblivious to what was happening. The disc grew and grew, taking up a large chunk of the sky, and then began to bulge. Slowly but surely, a great form pushed outwards from its centre. A bulbous protrusion, flanked on all sides by tiny spindly appendages. The form was shaded as it arrived but began to light up slowly. Fluorescent nodes along the service illuminated first in straight lines, then shifted into many geometric patterns. Spirals, triangles, twisting lines, glyphs, graphs and circles all swarmed about the surface of the form. It then began to emerge and the true horror began to dawn.
At first it appeared as if it was a mountain arising from the void. A pyramidal peak pushed forward with the appearance of a slow pace but with what must have been breakneck speed in truth when considering the scale involved. The peak pushed ever outward, then rose up and out towards the edge of the disc. It pushed forward ever more, until eventually a great blast of energy exploded from the edges of the disc. People watched on as the energy hurtled towards the Earth’s surface. It struck against the atmosphere with an unmerciful squeal and then an ear splitting boom. Electricity crackled across the atmosphere and lightning struck many cities on the hemisphere. When people regained themselves they looked up to see purple and pink auroras winding across the sky, and the protrusion that had breached the barrier from the void. A great mound with the appearance of a stone plateau with a mossy yellow and brown colour had poked itself out into space. The sun shining upon it gave a better impression of its shape now. It seemed to be diamond shaped with a thick posterior and a tapered point at its anterior. Crags and bulges that looked almost like drumlins lined its hide. A large indentation like a hollowed out cave nestled on one side and streams of light continued to arc in and out of it in the same curious manner of the disc. It moved from side to side once, and people could see that it was suspended by a flexible “neck” of intertwined purple and grey vine-like joints.
Screams of horror emanated from certain areas as people began to panic at the sight of the thing. Leaders and parents could only look on in impotence, unable to comprehend what they were seeing and unable to placate anyone with their words. They sat at their desks or on their chairs open mouthed and silent. It was 12.45 now.
More protrusions began to teem at the point the disc initially broke. They manage to breech without the powerful blast of energy that was initially created. Long, sinewy appendages erupted from the inky blackness, and begn to tear away the barrier into known space. Shards of the inky barrier floated away before suddenly stopping in place, suspended by an unknown force. With the barrier dissipating the celestial “snow” began to gush forth at a much more voluminous rate. The flakes struck the form’s appendages and “head” and exploded in showers of sparks that the thing did not seem to react to. From beneath its neck unfurled two extremely long arms ending in 9 digits. They arms where folded up like construction arms, and shred the same vine-like anatomy of the neck. They reached out and clasped the edge of the disc. With a tight grip, the form began to lurch forward, though it seemed to do so with some difficulty. Something held it back in its attempt to enter the solar system. The luminous nodes began to swirl again and converge at the tip of the anterior of the head. They shone brightly, almost brighter than the nearby sun, before lifting from the surface of the form. Flung out to space, they grew long, straight, wing-like protrusions. Each node left a trail of light behind it as they all flew to the edges of the disc. Once there they exploded in bulbs of energy, ripping the edge of the disc to shreds. The form now seemed to almost fall forward, and many more arms followed it out that were attached to it from many angles. More of the stone-like armour covered the body with the vines growing out from any space they could find. A tail and two powerful looking hind legs followed, thicker and more rough looking than even the head. Each arm outstretched to grip a floating piece of the shattered barrier, anchored in space.
Soon after another, invisible, silent wave of energy hit the Earth, causing major damage to buildings on its surface and outright killing several people who weren’t merely knocked over. Hardly anyone bother to get up again now they figured what was going on, while some brave souls bit through the pain enough to stand. Everyone was watching and waiting now for what was about to unfold.
At 3.05, after some time standing relatively motionless in space, the form moved enough for people to see the void behind it. Colours danced in the former disk, and the hole elft behind seemed to leak unknown quantities of a gaseous substance. The nodes that had exploded before now reformed and joined with their host again, only to fly off once more and form a circle in front of the head. They swirled around and another, more translucent disc formed. The thing stuck on of its arms through and seemed to rummage around. Astronomers looked on in horror as yet another disc formed beside a much more nearby Mars. The arm extended, disembodied from the disc and clasped one of the Martian moons as if it were a marble. The thing plucked the moon from orbit and retreated through the rift. It seemed to regard the celestial body in its hand for a moment, before crushing it to dust. Particles flew upward and were taken by the swirling nodes which had closed the gate they created. Seemingly satisfied, the thing began to spread all of its arms wide. Four extra limbs could barely be seen sprouting from its back, larger than the other four primary ones, but nigh on invisible. Only particles smashing against them betrayed their existence. At 5.50 the arms curled inwards once more and swirling tendrils of energy began to converge into a spheroid clasped in the thing’s hands. The coalescence continued to grow and grow for an hour or so, and the more it did, on Earth the vibrations and noise became unbearable. Not only that, but the very air seemed to be cooking.
By this point, it was becoming clear what was happening. What would happen, and by extension what would happen no more. The one though that entered one person’s mind as the end encroached was thus:
“It…does it even notice us… Can it even see? Can’t it?”
The waves of energy came with no precedent. More invisible energy was released the larger the orb got and one after another hit the surface of the Earth. Atmosphere, Land, Sea, Towns, People, all erased in moments as the surface of the Earth on one side was wiped bare. Those who had been asleep on the other side were startled awake but did not have time to comprehend what had happened before the thing released the orb. The final wave that resulted completely dismantled the Earth, reducing it to atoms in an instant.
A mere few hours