One of the main sources of my inspiration, Macchu Picchu.

What if: Umbilicus!

(Note: This post is for CTIN 532: World Building.)

Umbilicus is a vast land covered with dense jungles, like an Amazon rainforest. Within this rainforest sit complex ruins of a society, completely empty. Somehow, the rainforest has not engulfed the area, and only plains and moss surround the giant stone buildings. This area, however, is not all there is – The jungles sit at the base of an immense crack in the world, a hole that used to be a volcano. This hole is miles deep, and has developed its own set of flora from the rich volcanic ash and soil that has collected over the hundreds of years.

I was initially intrigued by the story of the first worldwide extinction in Earth’s history. At one point, evolution had given way to thousands of microbe-sized species that lived before oxygen was part of the atmosphere. These organisms didn’t use oxygen to fuel the processes of life, and in fact, oxygen was toxic to them. Thus, when oxygen was introduced in the a

tmosphere, the entire set of organisms died instantly. Of course, evolution restarted the system again, and today Earth is a vibrant place full of creatures.

But what if it had progressed far beyond that? What if larger creatures, and a civilization, grew from those first single-cell organisms? What if they didn’t know this extinction was coming, and had no way of preventing large-scale natural disasters (like we do now?) What would that world look like to a second set of society?

This world didn’t suffer the same fate of over-oxygenation, but some sort of disaster happened, and the society, which didn’t realize science on the scale of being able to read the nature around it, died without much of a chance. Its buildings, being made from non-organic materials, only crumbled from lack of use, but otherwise stood tall for thousands of years. I am not sure what the deep crevasse has to do with this society, and I’m curious to find out.

One of the main sources of my inspiration, Macchu Picchu.


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