"Do you have any idea how mind-numbingly pointless this is?"
Yeah, I said.
"Why do you keep doing it?"
Rage. Hate. It's an incredible high.
"This isn't about how you feel. 'It's about the human race.' Wasn't it you constantly spouting that trash?"
"Then why are you helping build weapons to kill people?"
Everyone is dying. There won't be any more babies to replace us. I figure, if there are aliens out there who find our dead world, by the time they get here they won't have anything to sift through but ruins, so they can say "Look how mighty these people were! Look how intelligent and full of potential! And they squandered it all away, done in by their own selfish need for individual power, unable to set aside their differences and work together!"
And it's a lie; a lie that abides because the truth is too complicated to be found in bones and shattered concrete. How do you even explain to another human across the centuries without using words, or pictures, or feelings?
We didn't kill ourselves; they did. Maybe they didn't know any better, but seeing as we make contact with them, and we get fucked and they keep on living and laughing and making babies… maybe they really were at fault. In their carelessness and arrogance, they destroyed us.
Whether they meant it or not, they can't just wipe their hands clean and move on to the next curiosity. They need to remember, now and forever, that we were here. And we're no longer here because of their actions.
They need to accept responsibility and learn from those mistakes. And if those people are the same sorts of people as us, it's a lesson that won't be learned until it's been hammered into them.
"And how does throwing shit through the wormhole show future aliens that we were so high and mighty and fell victim to a sleazy parallel-universe version of ourselves spreading odd viruses to make us infertile?"
Maybe they find the hole. Maybe they go through it, see humans on the other side. Maybe we leave behind some message, a bunch of pictures showing how the hole appeared and everything went to shit.
"You know how I know when you're lying? Your lips start to move before you say anything, like you're sounding out how your lie will sound."
I'm not lying.
"Come on. You've never cared about those people before. You told me it was a blessing, that all that mattered was the human race, and that it should keep going on, no matter where it was."
I swear I'm not lying.
"I also know when you're lying when you start to mumble like that. You're too easy. If I keep pushing enough, you'll crack."
Okay, so I don't care about actually hurting them.
"Then why are you working on these weapons?"
I just need something to do. I don't want my life to have been a study in mediocrity. I wish I could've been a singer or a dancer, so I could bring people some bit of pleasure, and they can say "Well we're fucked, but wasn't that girl just the best?"
But making weapons is all I know.
And if it feeds their lust for vengeance or just plain violence, what difference does it make? It's what I'm good at, and I just want to be good at something for once in my life. Even if it's at killing people.
He stopped talking to me then. He doesn't look at me anymore. He can't stand the sight of me.