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Kiss Me When the Skies Turn Orange

If you only had an hour to live before the bombs drop, what would you do?

By CD TurnerPublished about a month ago β€’ Updated about a month ago β€’ 3 min read
Top Story - April 2024

A/N: Thank you so much for the Top Story pick and all your lovely comments!

I take a seat next to Martha on our patio, handing her an empty wineglass. I pour the most expensive Bordeaux we have into hers and mine. We're both in our best dresses. She has on a sparkling violet ball gown, the chiffon creating a poufy mess around her legs. I'm wearing my best gold wrap-around dress. We don't bother with shoes. What's a skeleton going to do with shoes?

"If we were smart, we'd be running to the nearest cave." Martha comments, sipping the wine, nodding approvingly.

"And then what? Being perfectly safe from the blastwave, but not from the bears who live inside. At least, the nuclear fire will be quicker." I tell her plaintively.

"Heard Charlotte was putting a bunch of Valium the dinner she's making tonight. Rib-eye steak with glazed carrots."

"How do you stuff Valium into a steak and some carrots?"

"You don't. She's putting in the desert. Big old chocolate cake. That calorie-counting bitch will probably still not eat any."

I gaze at the love of my life. We had forty good years together before the world went to hell. Our commune only knows about it because we intercepted radio signals from the Russians. It's not a question of threats, it's a definitive answer of promises. They would not be gracious losers of this war. So, after their surrender, we've been all operating under the presumption that the world is soon to end. And by the encoded signals of Russian fleets and aircraft, they're currently entering American airspace and territory.

I turn on my music player, hearing the opening chorus of "As the World Caves In." It's a cover of a cover from years ago and it seems appropriate.

"Join me for this last dance?" I ask her, standing up.

She gives me a smile and takes my hand. We hold each other close, swaying side to side in a semblance of a slow dance.

"My feet are aching...

And your back is pretty tired...

And we've drunk a couple bottles, babe,

And set our grief aside.

The papers say it's doomsday...

The button has been pressed...

We're gonna nuke each other up, boys,

'Til old Satan stands impressed."

"Satan's got nothing on the powder kegs in power." Martha says. "Honestly, this is a mercy killing."

"Some will survive. You just know it." I tell her with conviction. "We're a stubborn plague to snuff out."

"Ever the nihilist. We managed a record of 200,000 years. We sent people to space."

"Yes, space travel. Exponentially more important than feeding starving nations." I snipe back drolly.

"Jeez, I sure hope you're not this cynical in the afterlife." Martha responds.

"Oh, you still believe in that, do you?" I ask skeptically.

"It's more like a hope." she says wistfully.

Her green eyes catch the porchlight gleam, filling with tears.

"I want another lifetime with you." she insists, our foreheads touching. "I want forever with you. Two grouchy old ladies on a porch in our finery."

She sniffs, her tears flowing down her cheeks, taking the blush with them.

"Oh, girl, it's you that I lie with...

As the atom bomb locks in...

Oh, it's you I watch TV with...

As the world, as the world caves in..."

"Maybe we'll be reborn..." Martha suggests. "Maybe we're just souls who use up bodies and have to get new ones. Maybe we can be born into a reality where peace is achievable."

The air sirens start blaring.

"Hour's up..." I say through tears.

"Kiss me into the next life. I love you, Jessie." she sobs.

"I love you, too. Always."

As the mushroom cloud ascends and the blinding orange light fills the sky, we kiss one another. We want love to be the last thing we feel. Let our bones tell future survivors that we chose not to die scared and alone.

Short StorySci FiMicrofiction

About the Creator

CD Turner

I write stories and articles. Sometimes they're good.

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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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Comments (17)

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  • Flamance @ lit.27 days ago

    Congratulations πŸŽ‰ top story

  • Anna 29 days ago

    Congrats on Top Story!πŸ₯³πŸ₯³πŸ₯³

  • Abdul Qayyumabout a month ago

    Your writing is incredibly engaging and vivid! I felt like I was right there in the scene alongside the characters."

  • Andrea Corwin about a month ago

    A super story - love woven around them as they await doomsday- reminiscent of The Last of Us. Especially liked the snarky comment about sending g people to space rather than feeding poor people. Kiss me into tomorrow!! 😍

  • Thangku1925about a month ago


  • S. A. Crawfordabout a month ago

    This is beautiful; I genuinely teared up at the end. You did such a wonderful job here!

  • real Jemaabout a month ago

    What inspired the choice for your characters to share a final dance and express love in the face of impending doom rather than succumb to fear and despair?

  • JBazabout a month ago

    A sweet, with a very end of the world feel of romance tucked in the corner. Congratulations

  • The Writer about a month ago

    Congratulations πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ‘πŸ»

  • Azhar Mehboob uthwalabout a month ago

    I read your story. It was romantic story. I have story with new idea.

  • Kendall Defoe about a month ago

    Okay, this is going to have a place in my thoughts for a long while... ;)

  • D. D. Leeabout a month ago

    Congrats on Top Story

  • Alexandria Stanwyckabout a month ago

    Man, this is such a romantic story. Great job and congrats on the Top Story!

  • Melissa Ingoldsbyabout a month ago

    So tragically romantic πŸ’˜

  • Suze Kayabout a month ago

    This gave me chills of the most beautiful kind. May we all go out with love.

  • Ameer Bibiabout a month ago

    Superb amazing story excellent idea πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰

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