5700 Years Later
rating: +189+x

The Hateful Star had lost track of when they'd stopped observing it. Frankly, it didn't really care. Let them try to ignore it. Keep it 'contained' in a web of silence. It wouldn't help them when the end came. And come it did. As the Star lazily and messily tore Pluto apart, it noticed to its consternation that the Earth was no longer inhabited. It hadn't bothered checking until now, but there it was. Enthusiasm considerably dampened, the Star hove sunwards, briskly dispatching planets as it went. It came to a halt quite close to the planet, reaching out with lines of force to keep the little world from being torn apart by its gravity well. Satisfied that it would not be disturbed, the Star began to examine the little ball of dirt. It gave the stellar equivalent of a disappointed sigh. The little mudhole wasn't doing too well. It wasn't just the broken, drifting orbital gantries that surrounded the place like a messy halo. They'd drained the oceans, too. And the cities were radioactive craters, some of them still smouldering with the energies of sundered atoms.

"What the hell did you do, Mankind? I mean I knew you liked to foul your own nest, but this is just disgusting," it pulsed to itself, looking a little closer. Ah. Now that was odd. They'd released all the SCPs. Lost control of them, more like. Those overconfident simpletons at the Foundation had finally got what was coming to them. The Red Pool was the size of Madagascar. And yes, that was 682 roaming the scorched sandpit that was Australia. The lizard looked up as the Star's mind passed over it. The Star contemptuously reduced it to vapour, then kept searching, its awareness passing over the few remaining cities and digging deep into the earth, searching for Sites long forgotten. It saw 173, the statue only the faintest blur as it roamed the crazed hallways of a broken containment facility.

The Star paused briefly in what had once been the massively-reinforced containment chamber holding 076's sarcophagus. The black stone was cracked and shattered, and near the base someone had written a short message in white spray paint.

"'We're cool now'. Pretentious and childish. Now I'm just disappointed."

The facility vanished in an eruption of energy, and the Star moved on. It paused one final time over the once-Pacific Ocean, seeing something unusual in the burnt seabed. A stone tablet, easily a kilometer square, with writing carved into its surface in a dozen languages. First, a series of stellar coordinates in the primitive system the humans were so fond of using. Then, a short message. Observe, then destroy this marker.

The Star moved away from the Earth, exasperatedly throwing its mind into the void. What, exactly was it supposed to be observing?

"When I find you…"

And then it found them. The faintest wash of energy emissions, redshifted so far they were practically invisible. A vast fleet of equally vast ships, moving away at speeds that-

"No fucking way. NO!"

The Hateful Star tore at the marker, revealing a second message- concrete letters, buried in the sand beneath.

EINSTEIN WAS WRONG. CATCH US IF YOU CAN.

An end.

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