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Anno Domini 2150 - Prologue

by EthanHoover


General Verias gazed out the glassteel viewport to the marbled blue surface of the planet below. Genesis. Humanity's last hope. Or, quite possibly, its greatest folly.

The planet below closely resembled Earth in its ancient times. Six green continents, not including the poles, sprawled out against the blue oceans. Sandy patches of desert identified the lower regions, and the snowy peaks of mountains marked the highest points.

Verias had seen simulations of his own world when it resembled this one, but Genesis was nothing like Earth today. He thought back to the world of ocean he had come from, with only the once-snowy peaks of mountains remaining above sea level. There was probably even less now.

How could such a small land mass support the massive, ever-growing population of man? Verias knew the answer all too well-- It couldn’t. That was, after all, why he was here.

He saw the glint of the exploration craft descending to the planet below. In it, two men-- far braver than Verias-- drifted down to the unknown surface of Genesis. He could only speculate as to what lay in store for them. No one even knew if the planet was inhabited, or, if it was, by whom. The general certainly wasn't eager to trade places with either of them.

General. Verias hated that title. He was no leader of war, no hero in battle. In fact, Verias was a pacifist. He was simply the best-suited scientist courageous-- or, perhaps, stupid-- enough to embark on this, the most important mission man had ever attempted. He knew full well that the fate of humanity rested on this planet.

But what if this was no mere planet, but rather a world? Verias dearly wished Earth retained that innocence. Humanity had thrown that away the moment it tried to touch the stars. The universe was humanity’s world now.

But if Genesis had no colonies? If it’s inhabitants had never breached into the deadly blackness that was space? If everything they knew rested comfortably, safely, inside that gentle blue sphere?

That was a world. And Verias couldn't let anything, not even his own crew, destroy that.


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Sun Jul 05, 2020 10:53 am
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HarryHardy wrote a review...



Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening/Night(whichever one it is in your part of the world),

Hi Ethan. Discovered this on a search for works to review. And well...you know what happens next.

First Impression: Well rather interesting prologue you got there. Pretty interesting concept. Are you from the future?

Anyway let's get to the nitpicks,

General Verias gazed out the glassteel viewport to the marbled blue surface of the planet below. Genesis. Humanity's last hope. Or, quite possibly, its greatest folly.


I don't think that's a typo nor have I ever heard of it so is it something you created?

Verias had seen simulations of his own world when it resembled this one, but Genesis was nothing like Earth today. He thought back to the world of ocean he had come from, with only the once-snowy peaks of mountains remaining above sea level. There was probably even less now.


Looks like we're several hundred years in the future by the way the Earth has been changed that much. About a couple hundred years before my own time but I've read the history books.

He saw the glint of the exploration craft descending to the planet below. In it, two men-- far braver than Verias-- drifted down to the unknown surface of Genesis. He could only speculate as to what lay in store for them. No one even knew if the planet was inhabited, or, if it was, by whom. The general certainly wasn't eager to trade places with either of them.


So they can spot the desserts and mountains of the planets but have no way of looking for any technology of some sort? If there is no technology then Verias would pretty much have confirmation that the inhabitants never took to space so by his own moral code he wouldn't attempt to make contact with that sort of planet.

General. Verias hated that title. He was no leader of war, no hero in battle. In fact, Verias was a pacifist. He was simply the best-suited scientist courageous-- or, perhaps, stupid-- enough to embark on this, the most important mission man had ever attempted. He knew full well that the fate of humanity rested on this planet.


Lots of courage goes hand in hand with being stupid sometimes Verias. Don't worry.

That was a world. And Verias couldn't let anything, not even his own crew, destroy that.


Well that's a great line to end a prologue on.

And that's it for this one.

Overall: Very interesting prologue there. Gave us just enough context without vomiting out a bunch of exposition. You've developed a very light outline of General Verias' personality which is about how much you want to see in a prologue. Grammar-wise I didn't see anything much wrong with it.

As always remember to take what you think was helpful and forget the rest.

Stay Safe
Harry




EthanHoover says...


Hey Harry, thanks for the review! Yeah, I am worried about the fact that they don't have any kind of scanner or Google Earth-style tech, because they're so advanced and we already have most of it. It's important for plot that they don't know what's down there. The same thing applies to their communication tech in later chapters. I'm thinking of ways to fix this. Thanks again!



HarryHardy says...


Your Welcome!!
Ahh...that's a common problem. How do you build that tension of the unknown when you're protagonists are meant to have technologies that can find all of it out? Good luck in solving it!!



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Thu May 28, 2020 12:24 pm
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Shadeflame wrote a review...



Hi Ethan!

I really liked your story, even though I don't normally read that much science fiction. I didn't see many problems with the punctuation or grammar and overall it flowed smoothly.

One spot where there was a slight grammar problem

If it’s inhabitants had never breached into the deadly blackness that was space?

I believe that "it's" is supposed to be "its." I know that they are both really confusing to try and use but one way to check is to mentally substitute "it is" instead of "it's." If it makes sense, then you've used it correctly. If it doesn't make sense, then you should take out the apostrophe.

I look forwards to reading the rest of the chapters!

Keep writing!
-Shade




EthanHoover says...


Thanks shade! And oof, yeah, I'll fix that, thanks for noticing.



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Thu May 28, 2020 10:53 am
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lanseloot says...



Great beginning! And ending - i like how there is a note of something foul, sort of like a passive aggressive comment in the last sentence.

I don't have much else to say, it's polished, and a great hook, so i'll get to reading the chapter one :)




EthanHoover says...


Thanks, lanseloot!



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Wed May 27, 2020 6:25 pm
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Que wrote a review...



Hi EthanHoover!

I really like this prologue, and how you subtly hint at how earth has changed (presumably as a part of global warming!) until the need for a new planet is of huge importance. :) I just have a few things to comment on here.

The planet below closely resembled Earth in its ancient times. Six green continents, not including the poles, sprawled out against the blue oceans. Sandy patches of desert identified the lower regions, and the snowy peaks of mountains marked the highest points.

Verias had seen simulations of his own world when it resembled this one, but Genesis was nothing like Earth today. He thought back to the world of ocean he had come from, with only the once-snowy peaks of mountains remaining above sea level. There was probably even less now.

I wish I'd seen more of a reaction from Verias here! Sure, he's seen the simulations, but this is probably more land/greeness than he's ever encountered. I think it would be great to have some more surprise, some emotional connection with what he's seeing. I'm sure there will be more as (presumably!) the planet will be explored, but first reactions are always good. I do love how back on earth, people are living just on the mountains! It gives a good idea without explicitly saying how much the seas have risen.

There are some things I wonder about earth--maybe you'll get to them later, but I just wanted to put my questions out here so that you can think about them if you want. :) How many humans are left on earth, at this point? And how did they find this planet, how long did it take to get there? If it's the last hope, why not bring all humans with them? Anyway, I'm just thinking here. You're doing a good job of getting me interested and curious to find out more!

General. Verias hated that title. He was no leader of war, no hero in battle. In fact, Verias was a pacifist. He was simply the best-suited scientist courageous-- or, perhaps, stupid-- enough to embark on this, the most important mission man had ever attempted.

It seems to me that if Verias is the main scientist of the mission, he'd be important but not the general--there might be someone else to lead, and he just gives the information. Maybe this works better for you, but I just wanted to let you know it seemed a little strange to me at first. I'm interested to see how this leadership role plays out!

But if Genesis had no colonies? If it’s inhabitants had never breached into the deadly blackness that was space? If everything they knew rested comfortably, safely, inside that gentle blue sphere?

That was a world. And Verias couldn't let anything, not even his own crew, destroy that.

Hm, this sounds kind of ominous, but I'm not exactly sure what he's saying. Humanity's world is the universe, and it shouldn't be? Maybe you could make it a tad bit clearer. Planet and world seem very similar to most people! :)

Nice start to your story! I'm glad that you've already posted the next parts so I can keep reading. I think you've got a pretty good setup for a planet exploration space adventure, I'm excited to get into it! Let me know if you have any questions. :)

-Q




EthanHoover says...


Hey Q, thanks for the review! I definitely will expand Verias's reaction to seeing the planet, that's a great idea, and I know just what to say, too.

I never decided just how many humans are left. Probably less than we have now on Earth itself, but with the colonies included, a total of 8 billion or so? And massively overcrowded.

I say later on that this planet is four years away by a ship equipped with a "magdrive". Don't ask what the heck a magdrive is, I just made it up on the fly.

Yeah, I can see how him being a General could be confusing. It was supposed to be a little hint at the way culture has changed now that the world is united without enemies. A General is no longer a tough guy with cigarillo and 30 years of combat experience, now it's a gentle scientist who cares about the inhabitants of a world he's never even set foot on.

Yeah, that little talk about the difference between a planet and a world comes from one of my midnight trains of thought that just seemed so awesome at the time. It's what made me start writing the novel, so I didn't want to cut it, but it certainly could be worded better. What I was driving at is that a world is the limit of everything a race can comprehend, as where a planet is a big rock in space. Now that humanity has touched the stars, the Earth is no longer a world. It's very debatable if that's good or bad, but Verias says it's bad.

Anyway, thanks again for the review! I have ideas for how to expand his reaction to a much more satisfying degree, so a special thanks for that particular suggestion!



Que says...


That sounds awesome! Thanks for all the explanation. :D



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Wed May 27, 2020 5:27 pm
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JesseWrites wrote a review...



HOOVER!!!!!!

Okay, let's begin.

Your punctuation is quite good. I don't see anything to add on, or get rid of. It's just fine. Everything is neat and done well. Dang, good job.

General Verias gazed out the glassteel viewport to the marbled blue surface of the planet below.


Corrected to glasteel, which I believe is the correct version as the original was underlined in red on both Opera and Google Doc.

That's all I found from a search through.

Now I'm onto Chapt. 1.

Have a good one,
Haley x




EthanHoover says...


Thanks Haley! That's funny about glasteel, I had it that way until just a minute before I published. I guess my brain thought there should be more "s"s in there because of the root words. Thanks!




How can I be king of the world? Because I am king of rubbish. And rubbish is what the world is made of.
— Kate DiCamillo, The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane