‘The Meek’ by Jedah Mayberry

Let’s project some fifty years into the future. The ozone layer is nearly depleted. The planet’s natural resources continue to be steam rolled by generations of wanton consumption, denial, neglect. Society is on the verge of collapse. Having been on the brink for so long, mankind has learned to make daily concessions. Humans engineer new solutions to maintain a basic level of subsistence. They accept artificial substitutes for a host of depleted natural resources. They evolve. They make do. Only now the planet has begun to fight back. An angry sea rages, nipping at a frayed coastline with each storm surge. On the intervening days, the rainclouds at bay, a parched wind blows raw, dustbowls emerging in places once teeming with life. Melanin is the only reliable protection from the sun’s rays. Dark skinned children are sought to regenerate a more resilient populace. It has been prophesied that a girl child shall one day inherit the earth; her offspring assured relative longevity in this increasingly harsh environment. GO-Arditrons have appointed themselves to safeguard the source of our future progeny, a child’s biological parents powerless against kidnappers bent on a new strain in human trafficking. The future of the planet will depend on their success for generations to come.

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