The Nanite Invasion

The Nanite Invasion
a 50’s noire black and white film

it all began as dust, blown by the wind.
we all saw the silvery dust falling only onto the desert, it was televised everywhere.
we looked closer.
we saw tiny little silver machines being blown into the crevasses of the land.
there was a limited quantity of them. we examined them cautiously.
we knew, as a world, that they were not active. what were they?
a single one of them was so small. what could they do to us?
what did they want?

i was a scientist. my beautiful wife was also a scientist, intensely curious.
we drove through the desert, through the cheap housing track being built.
the houses looked like skeletons, silent and dead, there in the hot desert sun.
a few of them were beginning to show cheap colorful coverings.
soon they would be filled with low income families, with children playing.

we drove to the site where, in a single canyon, the nanites had blown.
nanites were named by somebody, from a science fiction tv show episode.
they looked just like toys. toys cheaply made, with not too well formed features.
what could they do?
we saw that they were moving.
we found that they were going down into the ground, digging down to hide.
they would be finding caves and caverns down there to congregate in together.
what were their plans?

armies were formed.
our plans were made by a newly alarmed, and united mankind.
somehow we knew this was an invasion, and was a battle for our very existence!
one nanite vessel was carefully isolated by my men.
after many tests, we found that it would dissolve in water!
no wonder they avoided the oceans.

back at the site, we could tell that they were active now. and growing in number!
wearing protective gear, we were going through the caves. it was like a horror movie.
stay above them! don’t let them cut you off!
they were digging into the sides of the caves and caverns to hide from us.
we could sense that they were intelligent. how intelligent were they?
we evacuated. plans were changed. a river was diverted. a dam was blown.
the water came in, down into the caves. and above, it was raining!
soon the hiding nanites were dissolving in their chambers! we had won!

we drove back through the slowly evolving housing tract. cheap 50’s noire.
we would soon find them all. we would win!
i stopped at a gas station.
my wife got a drink from the fountain. then she passed out.
at the base hospital she came to.
she was different!
her eyes!
she spoke with another voice.
she spoke of many worlds now conquered in an endless campaign.
what we thought was nanites was only their invading vehicles.
hidden inside, waiting for water to free dormant occupants, were the sub-celled nanites.

we sedated her.
my wife!
what could i do for her?
she was hot and sweaty.
i absently wiped her brow with my hand.

we made more plans.
i drove through the desert to where they had first been discovered.
the national guard was bulldozing the new housing tract.
another army was formed. a more sophisticated one, and bigger!
men in bio suits. riding in bio tanks. men armed with our best weapons!

explosions! air strikes! armed intrusions! tanks with flame-throwers!
all their hiding places on fire! all the land for a hundred miles was burned!
again we had won!

but, in the rejoicing and celebrations, chaos formed!
they lived in the fire too!
the wind was blowing them everywhere!
soon whole towns and cities were abandoned.
men, walking in the desert, walking in the country, everywhere,
aimlessly walking, touching animals and plants, and other people.

i found i was walking too, as in a dream.
i came alone into a desert compound. i still had my uniform.
many guns.
people drinking pre-nanite water.
a fire drawn from pre-nanite coals,
burning their safe, pre-nanite wood and paper.
i huddled with the rest of them around the fire.
no one spoke.
despair and hopelessness was resident on all the faces.

my personal invasion was now complete.
one sub-celled nanite, from the brow of my wife.
entering my body, taking over and multiplying, occupying one cell at a time.
unaware. painless and complete.
my body was no longer my habitation alone!
it was completely controlled and occupied by a nanite in my every cell!

only my mind, my intellect, (my soul?) was intact.
i knew! and i could do nothing!
each person invaded was now mute witness to the terror of the final end of it all.

it did not matter. these people hiding would eventually be invaded.
silent, painless, horrible, and final death.
a sullen death that leaves you wakeful, helpless, and living a nightmare!
one day, they all would be completely taken over.
every man, woman, and child.
every plant and animal, every living thing.
another nanite world, with one unified mind, and one single, horrible thought!

once this world was completely nanite, it would happen.
all living beings, their cells would dissolve, to become individual nanites.
each of them would build and launch their new little star carriers.
each of us, would watch the process begin, alone in our helpless, stolen bodies.
no way to communicate to another.
no way to give or get comfort, or hope, or love. prayer was all that was left us.
i thought i could hear some children crying nearby.
where would man go then? our souls set free from these occupied bodies?

man ruled his world completely.
he thought he was the supreme creature.
are these nanites creation’s ultimate design?
is there no way to stop them?
very soon, man’s world would be finally, utterly, empty of all life!
nothing left! no trace of us.
nothing to show we had ever even existed!

nothing left of man or of his world at all!
only nanite dust, blowing through the stars.

(Scary story! Is it possible? Genesis 8:21-22)

Roger Born

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