In our third fiction installment, Jasmine Zhu envisions the year 2114 and what effect the post-millennial landscape has on some of our current favorite pop stars.
The Millennials were dying. There was probably only a dozen of them left. The year was 2114. Synthetic telepathy was now possible, and oceans were farmed extensively for renewable energy.
Drake got out of his sleeping pod. He had reached his 127th year. He stretched and looked at himself in the mirror. The truth was undeniable—he was an old man now. “You only live once,” he said, chuckling to himself.
A moving walkway conveyed him to his kitchen. On the counter sat an iPad Air. It was cracked in several places and there were coffee rings all over it. He had been using it as a coaster for over half a century. In contrast, his Sodastream was proudly displayed on the mantelpiece—it was valued at 1.2 million BTC but he refused to part with it (although many museums had made enticing offers.)
He walked outside, basking in the sights and sounds of the new world order. The sunlight was bright, too bright. He shielded his eyes, not realizing he had inadvertently walked into a crowd of teenagers until he bumped into one of them.
“Get outta here old man,” a young teen with bright orange eyes sneered. “You’re a nothing but a Recyclable.”
Drake turned away. He promised himself he wouldn’t cry. He reminded himself that he once had over 13 million twitter followers. Those were the halcyon days.
A girl with translucent hair put a comforting hand on his shoulder before he could go. “Are you all right? Ignore Zeph—he’s going through his rebellious phase.”
Drake smiled wryly. “I can almost remember what those felt like.”
“Tell us about growing up in the old days,” she said encouragingly. “What were målls like?”
“Malls,” he corrected gently. “They were a wonderful place for socializing and commerce.”
He took the Hyperloop to L.A. later that afternoon. It was time to meet an old friend.
The hydraulic powered gate opened, and Justin Bieber welcomed him into his mansion with open arms.
“It’s been too long,” Justin said gruffly, stroking his scraggly white beard. “It feels like a hundred years.”
“It has literally been a hundred years,” Drake said.
After they threw out their backs playing mini golf they shared a Jacuzzi bath and reminisced about the old days.
“Remember the ’90s?” Justin asked, and they both high fived.
“The world might have moved on, but at least we have each other.”
“For now,” Justin said grimly. “How much longer before we accept true death or technology?”
“Shhh,” Drake put a finger to his lips. “Be quiet. Be still with me. Enjoy the moment.”
“Yolo,” Justin said.
The two old men looked at each other and smiled. Nothing was the same, and that was all right.
Artwork by Laurent Hrybyk.