Teresa Ovalle

Welcome to Me

A Piece of History

on December 14, 2015

As I traveled the highways of this country, I’ve rarely seen more than a hundred people in one location; more than a thousand would be staggering to see, let alone a million. I once read that the population of the United States in early 2014 was 317.8 million people.

Throughout history millions of people traveled this country. They rode in automobiles, trains, airplanes and a host of other modern modes of transportation, most of which I’ve never seen – nor will I ever. What was once considered modern convenience, are now rusted hulks of the past that lurk in the minds of the old – but of which the young have no recollection.

I know these things because I learned to read when I was young – not everyone was as fortunate as I. When time allows, I seek out what I refer to as an information hub – a place where books are stored and people gathered to learn and study. Some information hubs are in surprisingly good condition; their contents are in tact, and information is still readable. It’s amazing what I’ve learned.

For instance, the war that tore the country apart, referred to as The End, was from internal conflict, conflict among government entities that believed in only what they knew to be true – they cared only of their own philosophies and ideals. These entities were called democrats and republicans. From what I understand, there was a time that these factions communicated with and strived to help the people their great nation. But over many years, the factions became galvanized and refused to see past their egos. This galvanization eventually tore the country apart and created more chaos than any other time in recorded history.

The United States was a young country in 2014 – over two hundred years ago. It was many years younger than its nearest competitor, so when the implosion of the country became noticeable to the outside world, the outside world watched. It did nothing to help or to interfere. To watch such an abundant country dismantle itself from the inside was thought to be fortuitous to those observing because their biggest competitor would soon be gone. Conventional wisdom holds true, “The bigger you are, the harder you fall.”

The country fell hard. The factions did not employ nuclear weapons within the country, nor did they use conventional military tactics that killed people with tradition means. Rather, the factions employed non-nuclear electromagnetic pulse weapons on the country. They first employed the weapons in a limited capacity, such as over faction headquarter areas and population centers with the intent to destroy electronic systems critical to headquarters functions.

There had only been three employments of non-nuclear electromagnetic pulse from both sides before the entire country dismantled, and chaos ensued. Over the next several years, millions of people died from causes related to the lack of electronic use. They had forgotten how to communicate and function without their electronic devices. Everything they knew, all of their knowledge, was stored on devices that no longer functioned; so neither did they. When social media died, many people followed. Over time, those who were savvy and relied upon their own knowledge began to form pockets of civilization across the country. These groups reformed the states into territories to better manage the natural resources available.

Over time, the earth began to change. Similar to that of a person who smokes, once he quits smoking, his lungs begin to heal themselves. So did the earth begin to heal itself. The people in this country created new lives with the intent to live their lives better than their ancestors. All men, women and children were free and so determined to be equal. Children were raised by the village and were taught to respect their elders. Men and women were not divided by sex, but rather, they were divided by two categories: static and dynamic. The static were given jobs of lesser significance, whereas the dynamic were given jobs of greater responsibility, but all people were allowed to ascend or descend.

Many years later, the world divided by static and dynamic was the world in which I was born. It is a good world, but certainly not one without strife. Humanity cannot live without strife, as I have learned through my travels.




Peata Riley is a fictional character who lives in the future. Peata is the vehicle the author uses to spin a tale of common threads divided by temporal dimensions.  Enjoy.