A New Age of Shadows
The Collapse was a worldwide event that brought the end of life on the surface of Earth to an end as people knew it. Hundreds of nuclear and chemical warheads were deployed in the year 2152, poisoning oceans and land masses the world over. Water levels rose, large portions of the leftover landmass were turned to barren desert, and the population that survived the cataclysm was forced underground – to live in gigantic cities that were sealed off from each other and the surface until such a time as it was possible to return.
In the middle of the twenty-first century, a massive world war broke out. Humanity, having failed to learn from the mistakes that created World War I, engaged in the act of forming secret alliances across the globe. When these alliances were realized, a majority of the world’s major powers were called into a minor conflict that began on the edges of the Baltic states. Russia, acting as an aggressor towards the Baltic state of Lithuania, invaded the tiny country in order to secure a large vein of natural resources. Thinking it a simple task, the Russians did not commit a large force to the conflict. They assumed incorrectly that the only force they would have to contend with was the Lithuanian army.
However, Germany had negotiated a treaty with the Lithuanians that created a symbiotic relationship for the two nations. Germany would set up the machinery that the tiny nation simply did not possess to extract the ore and in return would receive a cut of the ore, while Lithuania would benefit by being paid for both rights and the ore itself. When Russia crossed the Lithuanian border from Latvia (a country they left largely alone in exchange for safe passage), the German army mobilized, and the two armies met first in the small city of Utena. While the first shots of the coming war were fired, Russia declared war on Germany. This provoked a response from Britain and the United States, who entered the war by declaring war on Russia a month later. Of course, this started a chain of events that brought numerous countries into the fray by honoring various agreements.
Germany and her Allies:
- The United Kingdom (Britain, Ireland, Scotland)
- The United States
Russia and her Allies:
These are only the major players in each region. Mexico, France, Italy, Spain, Greece, Libya, South Africa, Argentina, Chile, Brazil, and several others all became involved in one way or another as the war dragged on.
Regression and the Contingency Plan
As the five year mark came and went, construction projects were undertaken on each of the continents to build ten underground Bunker-Cities. These cities were designed to sustain themselves in the event that they had to be sealed off from the outside world. There were underground reservoirs constructed to hold massive amounts of water, and farmland set out to grow crops and sustain domesticated animals. The cities themselves were designed to house five hundred thousand people each. There was one way into these cities (and obviously one way out), and it was designed to become airtight if the city had to be sealed. These projects were all completed some time in the year 2150 or 2151. These became humanity’s contingency plan.
After ten years of war, the United States was forced to withdraw from the Euro-Asian front and defend their own borders. Mexico and Japan launched a coordinated strike against the southern border and the western seaboard, successfully invading a country that had remained untouched by the boots of its enemies for the better part of three hundred years. Russia and China pressed the advantage and struck deep into Europe, meeting the British, French and German armies somewhere west of the Ukraine.
As the year 2152 approached, the war had been dragging on for twenty long years. The United States (with the help of Canada) had successfully pushed back against the Japanese and Mexican invasions, and pushed into Mexico to eliminate them from the war. Russia and China, with the help of Pakistan, defeated India – solidifying control of the Indo-Asian subcontinent. Israel, Italy, Greece and Saudi Arabia had defeated the Egyptian and Iranian armies, and secured dominance for their allies in the Middle East. However, with each passing year, the threats of nuclear and chemical retaliation grew. Few thought that the governments of those involved would actually launch their vast stores of weaponry against each other, and the world.
Cataclysm and Collapse
On August 9th, 2152, the first detonation ignited the sky over Utena, the small Lithuanian city where the conflict between Russia and Germany had begun the third World War. Eight hours after that, detonations began in a chain-reaction across the globe. No one is sure, to this day, who fired the first weapon over Utena – as it obliterated both armies who were fighting there. Seven of the underground cities across the globe were never closed because of damage taken from weapons launched in their area.
By August 10th, 2152, all fifty-three of the remaining Bunker-Cities had been closed and sealed for at least twelve hours. Twenty-six million five-hundred thousand people were sealed into the depths of the Earth, with no idea when they would be able to see the surface again. Or if they would. The seals on the cities wouldn’t open for another three hundred and fifty years.