The Purple Planet
“Who pushed the button?” A supervisor in the Goose Pond Nuclear Power Plant screamed. All alarms in the facility blasted simultaneously as red, blue and orange lights blinked furious warnings.
Goose Pond was in trouble. Jared, recently hired, had moved his elbow, trying to swat a gnat. His cuff scraped the emergency button. All hell broke loose.
Soon the entire world knew. Social media buzzed, videos by vacationers at a nearby park went viral.
But the web was soon useless. The blast, caused by friction from the dreaded button, triggering atomic reactions with lightning speed, spread waves of lethal radiation within hundreds of miles.
In a domino effect, other nuclear facilities blew up in rapid succession. Leaders of nations, fearing a war was on, ordered all long range missiles activated.
Within thirty minutes, the entire planet was fried to a crisp. The seas evaporated in a dazzling array of crystals and rainbow colored steam.
Mountains sank in purple lava like masses, forests transformed to ashen lumps. What had been green and blue a short time ago, was now a gooey spread of orange, violet and gray.
Not even the poles were spared. Ice melted to water, which quickly turned to super-hot steam.
When fission and fusion had done their work and the steam and dust settled and dispersed, the planet could be seen quite clearly.
Turkey Charlie was sitting on the porch that evening. Being that he lived way out in the country, he could see the sky very clearly.
“What the..” he said, almost dropping his can of beer.
“What’s the matter, Turkey?” his wife said. She was in the kitchen washing up from supper.
“Dang,” Turkey said. “Coulda sworn I saw somethin’ really weird up there.”
His wife, wiping her hands on a faded apron, came out into the musky summer evening air.
“Don’t see nuthin’ ,” she said blankly.
“Looky over there,” Turkey pointed toward the west, about fifteen degrees above the horizon.
“Well, I’ll be,” his wife said. She wiped a strand of sweaty hair from her forehead. “It shore is a purty purple, ain’t it? Looks like they done discovered a new star or something.”
“You suppose?” Turkey said.
They decided to call the local police to see what was going on. Turkey’s wife brought the phone from inside the house, dragging the long cord onto the porch.
“What’s de matter, Turkey,” the night sergeant said. “Are de poachers at it agin?”
“No sir,” Turkey said. “Worse dan dat.”
“Puple, ye say? Yeller?” The sergeant thought for a while.
Well,” he concluded, “I heerd they wuz sendin’ a rocket up dere. Looks like it blew up the darn thing.”
Turkey was satisfied with the answer.
“Well, maw,” he said. “Don’t matter to me effen de skies haff red, blue, green or purple planets. “Long as dey don’t mess wid our little earth down heer.”
“Come on in, Turkey,” the wife said. “De skeeters are biting the heck out of ya.”
“Purple,” Turkey said, scratching his head. “Dang!”