Day 94: The Soft Apocalypse

After the discovery of magic in the mid twenty-first century, the world was rewritten. Technologies became obsolete, governments attempted to ban magical practice, then at least tried to control it. Entire militaries became outdated by small private merc groups who were far more advanced in magical theory than any government. For once, money didn’t mean power. Knowledge did. Study did.

They called it the “soft apocalypse.” Not a sudden nuclear doomsday or a meteoric extinction, but an utter shift in power and way of thinking. When the impossible became possible, most minds either opened wide or shattered. Hundreds of millions went mad. How the different nations of the world dealt with the newly-insane resulted in further shifts in control. Whole countries warped and shifted as the different power struggles came into effect. The internet was censored almost worldwide, but the dark web continued to spread information about spellcrafting. Numerous factions of varying political affiliation distributed printed literature on advancing magical subjects and spread the information far and wide. No more would governments and the 1% be the only ones in power.

After the countless civil wars settled and the world grew accustomed to magic, people could get on with existence. But that existence was forever changed. Fallout and side-effects from the wars, from the magical tampering and mutations saw elaborate shifts in wildlife and agriculture. Mutants. Monsters. Yes, creatures of the apocalypse. But there were still countries, cities, homes. Humanity was not finished yet.

The private militaries crews, once the wars were largely complete, shifted focus to public protection, monster hunting, and other such heroics. Their reputations as liberators helped boost the public perception of mercenaries, particularly among the young, but others still saw them as profiteers at best, tyrants at worst. Yet no matter what people thought of them, one thing was clear:

They were the finest warriors in this new world. And someone had to keep the monsters and mad barbarians from the door.



Today’s three random prompt categories were, “Getting lit,” “The soft apocalypse,” and “Barbarians.”

“Getting lit,” as everyone knows, refers to obtaining literature. And the “barbarians,” I suppose, would be the mind-cracked madpeople from the beginning of the so-called “soft apocalypse”–aggressively attempting to live their lives as though magic never became real.

I’ve been doing a lot of worldbuilding in recent prompts. I promise I’m going to dive into actual stories in these worlds. Between this and The City of Leeches, I’m excited to get back into high fantasy.

– H.


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