It was strange, at first.
Strange and terrifying. If there’s one thing I’ve learned through this it’s that us humans are capable of adapting to just about anything.
I always wanted to believe in a god or the God or ghosts or aliens or anything really…anything more than just…this. I’ve always been too much of a skeptic. I can’t believe in something I can’t see or feel or touch. The funny thing is that nothing has really changed. We all still just go about our daily business like so many insects. Hell, even more so, now. But what are you supposed to do? You and your family still need to eat. You still need to go to work. You still go bowling. You still hang out with your friends or catch a movie. You still take that trip to the shore. Things are just…a little more unpredictable now.
No one ever really wants to think about what it would be like to no longer be at the top of the food chain. No one wants to think that maybe aliens or gods or ghosts are somehow innately superior to us. In this day and age half of us believed we were our own gods…we worshipped only man and our skyscrapers, our cities, our technology were a living testament to our own narcissistic self-devotion. I’ve never considered myself the arrogant type, but it’s hard not take a little bit of pride in being the pinnacle of what creation has to offer.
How we fall.
Maybe we are a bit more than ants to them, but certainly no more than dogs: occasionally amusing pets that sometimes need to be punished.
The violent and the unreal . The smell of electricity and the sound of the rushing wave. The calm at the center of a nightmare storm. The heat and glow of molten rock. With all of these things I was now familiar.
When I was a kid, I remember looking at a globe and thinking, ‘so this is what the world looks like,’ with a sense of concrete permanence. Something stable, something true. Something not open to interpretation.
The world map has been redrawn 3 or 4 times since then. Valleys are forged and rivers are cut. Tectonic plates shift and collide and the continents draw closer together. A massive mountain spirals towards the heavens in the middle of the Atlantic. “They” call it Olympus II.
No one really knows what happened. They certainly aren’t telling us and our scientists are baffled. One day they just…woke up.
I was 22 when it happened. I don’t know if it was fate or luck or maybe the opposite of both, but I found myself at ground zero. Some friends of mine wanted to go see Wrestlemania in Miami and we had flown out for the weekend. In retrospect, they must have been watching us for a while…why there? Why then?
HHH had just entered the ring and was calling someone out for a grudge match of sorts when the clouds above the open air arena coalesced and formed into a giant human face. The face spoke in a language I couldn’t understand, which I would later come to recognize as Greek, and a lightning bolt struck the stage in a furious blast of light and sound.
When the smoke cleared a man had appeared in the opposite corner of the ring as the wrestler and he was clothed in crackling electricity. The man spoke again, this time in English.
“I am Zeus,” he said, “and I accept your challenge.”