The children hummed, one could hear them in the cocoons. The sibilant, wordless tune. One could feel them trembling. Parents wept. Their fingers stroked the shells, wondered what dreams their sons or daughters might have in the darkness. They tried to impart love to those who would forget them in the vacuum of space, in the obliterating passage of time.
“It’s for the best,” They told themselves, “This is the only way to preserve mankind. At least they will escape the inferno. At least they have a chance.”
Ironic, that the vehicles of their destruction would also provide their small chance at salvation.
Soon, they would all be dead, and the Earth burned. A tale for another day. Soon these cocoons would drift out into space, the children cold and alone and asleep, but safe.
And as they floated, fleeing the flames unknowing, they dreamed… those dreams grew into worlds with lives of their own, men and women traipsing through consciousness’ tangled growth. Purple grasses sprouted shoulder high. Amber mountains shimmered and melted, rising and falling into viscous seas. In the air hung a permanent fog, where strange lights danced therein, humming creation’s tuneless song.
Here, as they slept, they were Gods. Gods of worlds whose wonders were limited only by the boundaries of imagination. Worlds encased by chitinous skies. These worlds, like the minds that beheld them, were trapped in cocoons, drifting in space. Unmoored from any sun, they were homeless in the universe.
Like the children that created them, the creatures that peopled their surface sought meaning in the strangeness of their worlds. Like the children that birthed them, at night they dreamed of a planet they never knew, one of blue seas and deserts and green and mountains. One they knew in their hearts was home. And they mourned, for somehow these echoes, these shadows, knew this world… Earth… was no more.
And they waited for the day their Gods reached a new home and awoke, and in waking destroyed the only universes these lives had ever known.