Evan’s letter

By Willem Klok
In the summer of 2039 Evan sends a letter to his brother. It has been a long time since they have heard from each other. But that's not strange now the new world alliances have withdrawn behind their safe borders. The story submerges you in a reality that is both frightening and logical at the same time. A beautiful story in which a letter to a family member connects you to the fate of all earthlings.

Willem Klok, third finalist TU/e Story Contest

August 24, 2039 Dear brother,

Presuming this letter has reached you well, I must excuse my- self for the lack of faith I placed upon the competence of my courier. It has been well over nine years since the connection between the continents’ common folk was seized and seven more since I have seen you last. As I am unaware of the common conception of the world in the Amazonian States, I hope to share with you the things I expect I would have wanted to know.

Mother is well. Though her memory is beginning to fade, she has grown less rebellious towards the authorities in that I no longer fear for her safety. I must admit that I too, though my heart speaks against it, have somewhat accepted the ‘new life’ we have come to live.

It was the fusion of science and governance that sparked the revolution during the great pandemic, and it is this same affair that has allowed me to access our national archives and seize the historical sequence of events I am about to present.

It all started at the dawn of 2021. The Chinese government – or Eastern Regime as we have come to call it – was the first to manipulate the products of science to justify their radical intervention on its people. They were the first to realise that taking one’s freedom provokes little opposition as long as it benefits one’s safety and health.

The first pandemic produced a mechanism of complete observation, the second was created to induce full government control, the third – which was nothing but a brilliant fantasy created to infest the mind – justified the eradication of any opposition that threatened ‘the natural response’.

The state that was created, with its closed borders and regulated life, was a wondrous creation. A Marxist state of efficiency with the trust of its people as in a perfect democracy. It is almost poetic that no man, but nature came to produce the civil formation all great thinkers could not”

There was but one problem with the establishment and continuation of such a utopian state, a continuous threat lingering in the trees' towering shadows along the borderline: the great discovery of the truth.

As even before the first pandemic, the Chinese government maintained a close grip on the digital flow of information that entered and left its country, a complete digital lockdown proved to be la minor challenge. The issue came, as always, with people. It became apparent that there could be no flow of materials – and the unavoidable flow of people that accompanied it – without risking truths from entering or leaving the country’s soil. It was possibly the most definite, complex, and difficult decision that, by the year 2026, China became completely isolated from the rest of the world.

It is said that from that point, industry was scaled down tremendously whilst grand investments were made in the more efficient and diverse cultivation of land. Slowly but surely, the Eastern Regime transitioned into complete self-dependence.

No longer a slave of the western consumer, the skies turned clearer as the work moved from factory to land. Undoubtedly, the standard of living decreased for many, now that, due to the lack of materials, some things could simply no longer be made. But who needs a television, a mobile phone, or a car for transport when your world reaches only from one doorstep to the next? People began to realise that the world had turned much bigger than it ever had needed to be.

I will refrain from sharing any more details concerning the Eastern Regime, as much of this information is merely speculation from an untraceable source. What I do know for certain is that the world had lost the engine that drove it, and that a revolution, a reorganisation of many centuries’ work, became an inevitable fact.

First to follow were those whose vastness allowed for a similar approach; Australia, Russia and the United States.

Others could not create such a system within the borders that marked their land. We joined Eurasia, your Brazil together with the other Southern American countries joined the Amazonian States. Of what happened within those newly formed regimes I know very little. I was hoping you could share your story as I share mine.

Before the European countries joined together, we were flooded with misinformation and lies. Departments were erected to mass-produce fictions serving the ‘Eurasian dream.’ The remaining fossil reserves were extracted to aid in the predisposition of a more timeless and independent energy source. Logics of the market shifted, valuing creation of long-term security over present-day wealth. I enrolled for a government-funded study in material sciences, aiding in one of Eurasian’s main objectives of realising the most efficient material recirculation system to ever grace the earth.

Our day-to-day life became less industrious. Our lack of oil made unnecessary traveling a thing of the past, our cities were flooded with greenery to cap the energy required for cooling our houses during hot summerdays. The transition to a sustainable society suddenly made sense, local shopping further reduced transport costs, recycling brought much more value than it had ever done before and technological luxury lost its reputation with the reigning elite.

We were lied to and our freedom was taken. Op- position was dealt with and friendships were lost. Silent oppression by a visionary force whose ever-watching eye could not be averted.

From the dust of our foundations we built a bridge to cross the abyss we were headed for. The fight has tired me and perhaps it has clouded my judgement, but to see this violent revolution falling into shape, to grasp what we’ve refused to observe in our past, I can do nothing but surrender my weapons and make way, for the new age we called for is finally here.

Stay strong brother, as the darkness of battle wanes for the future’s light!

Yours faithfully, Evan