GODZILLA: Monster Apocalypse Chapter 3

Chapter 3: Contact
 

 
From the inaugural address of Matthias Jackson, the first Prime Minister of the United Earth Government (2039):
 

 
Half a century ago, the 21st century was synonymous with hope.
 
The long-standing US-Soviet Cold War had ended, and humanity was liberated from the terror of global nuclear war. The future awaited us in the name of the 21st century, where reconciliation, prosperity, progress and development were supposed to greet us.
 
However, just as the 20th century was drawing to a close, that illusion was ruthlessly shattered. On that fateful day in May 1999, right here in New York City on Manhattan Island, we were confronted with the unknown threat of Kaiju.
 
In just over a quarter-century since the appearance of these Kaiju, we have lost the entire African and Australian continents, as well as two-thirds of the global population. But as you all know, even that was just the beginning of the calamities that befell us.
 
The Kaiju Godzilla, who appeared in 2030, ravaged North America and then scorched Western Europe. Humanity, arrogantly believing itself to be the lord of the Earth and the crown of creation, was unceremoniously toppled from its perch by the Kaiju threat, left with nothing but awaiting our own annihilation.
 
In our foolishness, even as we teetered on the brink of extinction, we could not reach out and take each other’s hands. In the United States devastated by Godzilla’s attack, multiple factions fought over their own claims to legitimacy. The same was happening in Europe, Asia, and Africa. The surviving humans fought each other over water, food, and safety, fleeing into pointless conflicts instead of facing the true terror they needed to confront. In most cases, they were crushed along with the Kaiju.
 
If we had not awakened from our folly, we surely would have destroyed ourselves by our own hands, rather than by the Kaiju.
 
That we stand here today is because we had friends who reached out to us.
 
Exif from Exifcalus, the fourth satellite of the star BD+48 740 in the Perseus constellation.
 
Bilusaldo from Birsaldia, the third planet of Cygnus V1357.
 
In 2035 in New York and 2036 in London, we made contact with these friends from the stars. “Humanity is not alone.” The moment that had been repeated in countless movies had finally become reality.
 
These two alien races had lost their homeworlds and, after long wanderings, had finally found their way to our Earth. They possessed advanced scientific capabilities that had allowed them to achieve the interstellar voyage that humanity had not even begun to master. Surely with that technology, they could have easily exterminated or subjugated the human race cornered by the Kaiju.
 
But our friends, the Exif and Bilusaludo, reached out a hand to us humans.
 
From Africa, the Middle East, East Asia, and Europe, from the East Coast of America, they rescued countless people from the jaws of the Kaiju, or from starvation and disease.
 
It was an act of utmost peril, and indeed, they suffered grievous sacrifices among them.
 
Many of you here today would not be standing if not for their selfless dedication.
 
We were able to cling to the brink of annihilation thanks to them, not only because they provided us with their advanced scientific technologies, but for an even more precious gift. Yes, they taught us that in times of greatest difficulty, we must join hands. Selfless dedication to others is the most noble thing for humanity, and the inexhaustible source of power to overcome any adversity.
 
The Exif and Bilusaludo are the benefactors of this world. But in what capacity should we express our gratitude to them? As the citizens of a certain country? Or as representatives of our own ethnicities? No, my inner voice tells me no. To give thanks to our alien friends, we must do so as earthlings.
 
It is only now that we have finally realized. Faced with the global threat of the Kaiju, race and borders no longer hold any meaning. We must confront this as earthlings, alongside our alien friends.
 
The battle against the Kaiju is still ongoing. Many around the world remain stranded under the threat of the Kaiju, or in the midst of famine and disease. We, the citizens of Earth, must unite with the kindred of the Exif and Bilusaludo to eradicate the Kaiju, rescue our brethren, and reclaim this Earth for ourselves.
 
It will surely not be an easy path. But we are no longer alone. We will overcome any difficulties and achieve victory in the battle against the Kaiju.
 
Future history books will surely write it this way – the global Kaiju war of the 21st century was a trial imposed upon humanity. Humankind overcame this challenge with the help of our alien allies, and by establishing the first unified global government, we laid the foundations for the peace and prosperity we enjoy today.
 
This day will be recorded in history as the most pivotal moment for humanity.
 
I, Matthias-Jackson, hereby declare, as the first Prime Minister, the establishment of the Earth Union government, uniting all earthlings – humans, Exif, and Bilusaludo.
 

(Additional notes)
 

 
This section occupies a somewhat exceptional position within the overall narrative.
 
The testimonies gathered here are not about the monstrous enemies that threatened our extinction, but rather about the earthling who led us out of that crisis, and the distant alien neighbors, the Exif and Bilusaludo, who reached out a helping hand to us.
 
Contact with extraterrestrial life – a scenario repeatedly depicted in countless works of fiction, became reality in 2035 in New York and 2036 in London.
 
The Exif, with their unique mathematical system called Gematria that enables future prediction, and their religious devotion to altruism. And the Bilusaludo, with their advanced science and industrial technology. It was through the cooperation of these two alien races that humanity managed to cling to the brink of extinction.
 
And with the emergence of a single hero, humanity finally steeled its resolve to unite and battle the global threat of the Kaiju.
 

 
The benefits the Exif and Bilusaludo brought to humanity may seem all too obvious. The interstellar migration ships we will board would not have existed without their technology. But this easy-to-grasp aspect of their contribution may overshadow the truly vital things they gave us.
 
Or perhaps, what that individual accomplished as well.
 
If one were an Exif or a follower of their teachings, they might call it “devotion.”
 
Or it could be described with words like “brotherly love” or “philanthropy.”
 
To still strive to save others, even in the face of utter despair.
 
I believe that it was this attitude that humanity reclaimed, through the appearance of a hero and the encounter with the two alien races.
 

 
I hope that the testimonies I have gathered can convey at least a small part of this.
 


 
continue
 


2035, United States of America – New York
 
Hayato Hamamoto, UN official (at the time)
 

 
Matthias-Jackson.
 
His name, as the key figure in the establishment of the Earth Union government, is remembered as the newest hero in human history. But delving into his background, one is surprised to find that his early life was rather unassuming, hardly befitting of a hero or a great figure. He was neither a skilled politician nor a seasoned military man, but merely an ordinary person who happened to become the Secretary-General of the United Nations by chance. Many history books describe his early years as a period of patient waiting, watching for the coming day, like a wise cat keeping its claws concealed.
 
However, Hayato Hamamoto, who served as Matthias-Jackson’s close aide for many years, shared with me a Matthias very different from that “legendary” portrayal. Perhaps this account may disappoint those who have grown up hearing all the legends. But I thought the opposite – that Matthias-Jackson was simply a human being, not a distant figure. And if that is the case, then we too can aspire to become a second, a third Matthias.
 

 
At the time, the North American continent was in the throes of utter chaos.
 
The devastation wrought by Godzilla’s attacks was immense, but the most troublesome was the high-level radioactive contamination it left behind. In some areas, the radiation levels reached lethal doses, and there was a shortage of equipment to even measure this invisible harbinger of death. Extreme weather compounded the crisis, spreading famine across the entire land, and unknown diseases began to spread. No one knew which areas were safe and which were not. The United States fractured, with states, cities, and even villages fighting each other for scarce resources – a Hobbesian war of all against all. More than ten people had openly declared themselves the president of the United States back then. Over a hundred regions had declared independence from the U.S. Even San Francisco had crowned itself an emperor.
 
Canada was relatively better off, but it was burdened with taking in a flood of refugees from the U.S. and Europe, and had to deal with the troublesome “Western Axis Alliance” – a horde of marauders that I cannot bring myself to call by such a grand name.
 

 
“But what was even more serious was the profound sense of defeat,” they wrote in the book. “Despite sacrificing a city with nuclear weapons, we could not defeat Godzilla, and even the symbol of unity, the President, took his own life. People whispered that Godzilla was the beast of Revelation, and were embracing their fate of destruction.” “What was needed was a hero – one who could stand up and rally the people, telling them that we have not yet lost.”
 

 
Trite words. The one who wrote that book was not me, but a government-hired writer.
 
I never once thought of Matthias as a hero. He was just an ordinary man.
 
What do you know about him? The man who led the reunification of the United States? The first head of state of a globally unified government? The hero of human integration? Hearing him praised in that way makes me feel rather uncomfortable. Because the Matthias I know was timid and cowardly – in fact, I don’t know anyone more incompetent than him. He was so incapable that he lacked the cunning to commit misdeeds, so at least he was harmless. That’s about the level of the man who was kept as a figurehead.
 
Just think about it. If he had been seen as a capable person, how could he have been given the position of UN Secretary-General in 2035? By that time, when Europe had been devastated by Godzilla, or even much earlier, the UN had practically ceased to function.
 
The permanent Security Council members, except for the US and UK, were wiped out, and even the US was in a state of disarray. The only major member states left unscathed were Japan, Canada, and the South American countries like Brazil. The Security Council and General Assembly hadn’t met in a long time. The only active UN agency was UNHCR, and all they demanded from the UN leadership was “not to interfere with our actions.”
 
And Marty… Matthias faithfully carried out that mandate. After his family was found dead in the ruins of Miami, he began to escape into alcohol. Day after day, he would just sit in his dimly lit office, gazing at old photos of his family. But can he be blamed for that? Even the President of the United States had fled this apocalyptic world, so why shouldn’t Matthias follow suit? Yes, it was undoubtedly a slow suicide. Cowardly as he was, he lacked the courage to put a bullet in his own head, but with that lifestyle, he probably wouldn’t have lasted more than a year.
 
The turning point came suddenly.
 
It was around May, a few months before Exif appeared over the UN headquarters. Spring was late in arriving, and clear skies had become a rarity as we lived in fear of the constant radioactive fallout. It was during this time that he “received the revelation.”
 
“I will follow the voice within me.” “My inner voice tells me so.” Haven’t you heard that before? Yes, that was Matthias’ catchphrase, starting from that May. It wasn’t a metaphor or anything – Matthias was actually hearing a voice. The voice of God. The voice of destiny. Call it what you will, but it was something from a higher being. Ah yes, like the Maid of Orléans, Joan of Arc, in medieval France. Matthias was essentially her counterpart. I can see the surprised look on your face. I know – it’s hard to believe that the impetus for the formation of the Global Union was from “auditory hallucinations.” Matthias himself rarely spoke of it, except to his closest friends.
 
How long had it been since I last spoke to a Matthias who didn’t reek of alcohol? Emerging from the seclusion of his office after weeks, he had a look as if some burden had been lifted from him… no, the opposite – as if he had been possessed by something.
 
He was the classic example of a certain type of person. Believing he had a mission given to him from above, no matter how difficult and lonely the path, he felt obliged to fulfill it, and only through its accomplishment could his life be fulfilled. Not based on any evidence, but with the eyes of one who has imposed a mission upon himself. Eyes most distant from the original Matthias.
 

 
“I heard a voice. It told me to rebuild the United States and make it the foundation of a unified global state.”
 

 
Yes, that’s what he said.
 
I wanted to laugh and say it was a joke.
 
“I will convene the UN Security Council. Send a UN peacekeeping force to the United States to restore order.”
 
But he was completely serious. His words were, in fact, logical. The United States was indeed divided, but the states on the East Coast had, fortunately, remained largely unscathed. Unlike Europe, Asia, or Africa, reconstruction was still possible there. And that was probably the last fork in the road – whether humanity, divided by the Kaiju, would descend into Hobbesian chaos and struggle, or be able to join hands once again.
 
Two weeks later, the Security Council convened, and his proposal was approved. It was all just a farce. I can say with certainty that it was all a sham. They couldn’t even properly gather the representatives of the permanent members. The Russian representative was particularly bad. They forcibly appointed a low-level Russian government official who had fled from Siberia through Alaska as the representative.
 
However, a resolution was passed by the UN Security Council. And this gave the East Coast government the justification they desperately wanted to claim they were the legitimate government of the United States. Within days, the East Coast government and the Canadian government launched an offensive against the “West” under the guise of a UN peacekeeping force. Ah, I knew it. As I said before, they were just a bunch of thugs. They couldn’t have had any grand ambitions of conquering North America or anything like that. But you see, for the unification of humanity, an evil empire is necessary. If it doesn’t exist, someone has to be made to play that role. And the foolish Matthias was able to wholeheartedly believe in that.
 
Exif appeared in New York soon after. In hindsight, it was perfect timing. Just imagine, if Exif had appeared without the formal structure of the UN and its member states, what would have happened? Exif probably would have directly saved humanity. We might have ended up thanking Exif as our savior and accepting them as our rulers.
 
Or the second extraterrestrial being, Bilusaludo, who appeared in London in 2036. I can’t help but imagine the worst – Exif controlling North America and Bilusaludo controlling Europe, with humans caught in the middle as their proxies.
 
That scenario was averted, I believe, because Matthias was able to demonstrate the relevance of the UN as the representative of the world’s nations, even if it was only a formality. This was the most important of Matthias’ accomplishments; the rest were mere performances.
 
From 2036 onward, with the help of Exif and Bilusaludo, the reconstruction and reintegration of human society began. All the resources remaining in North America – including human resources – were concentrated on the East Coast, and preparations for the reconquest of Europe commenced. The UN peacekeeping forces, UNHCR, Exif, and Bilusaludo worked together to rescue refugees from around the world.
 
And what was our Matthias-Jackson doing? Nothing. He lacked the leadership abilities to take charge there. It’s doubtful he even understood the basics of military logistics. So he simply dumped everything on his subordinates – and I was one of those who were dumped on – and went on his infamous “pilgrimage.”
 
Yes, the “great pilgrimage.” He walked at the head of the UN peacekeeping forces, retracing the path of destruction left by Godzilla. Miraculously, he wasn’t crushed by Kumonga or Kamacuras along the way, despite being just a common foot soldier accompanying the UN’s highest leader.
 
And…it was effective. There were many independent factions within the United States. We needed to integrate them as intact as possible…one evil empire of the West was enough… But from the other side’s perspective, the UN forces were still the ones who had abandoned them. Now they were coming back, ordering them to leave the land they had carved out and move to the East Coast, with the threat of the alien saucers.
 
That’s why Matthias had to go and persuade them in person. An unarmed, shabby man in a tattered suit, begging the survivors in the wilderness to lend their strength to humanity’s reconstruction…and the battle-hardened survivors would lower their guns in bewilderment. Such scenes were repeated countless times, and the surviving television networks broadcast it like a reality show.
 
Some cultural anthropologists apparently call Matthias’ actions a “re-enactment of the American founding myth,” but to me it’s just nonsense.
 
Anyway, he crossed America in three years. Without proper equipment, he traversed the radiation-contaminated United States and secured the bloodless surrender of the “Empire” of San Francisco.
 
And he became the symbol of the unification of humanity, beyond just the United States.
 
Everything was perfect, as if it had all been orchestrated…until the very end.
 
In 2039, as he ordered the establishment of the Earth Federation and the launch of Operation Eternal Light, the European Reclamation, he collapsed. Acute leukemia. Over those three years, he had been ravaged by radiation poisoning.
 
He was nothing but a figurehead all along. He had no real authority, and in truth, no one would even care if he were to die. This is the perfect timing then. It’s best for the hero to die at the height of his glory, yes, before some blunder strips away the veneer of heroism. That way, he can become an immortal idol, and his achievements will be eternal.
 
What was the voice that Marty had been hearing?
 
It was most likely just auditory hallucinations, and Marty was simply a pitiful man who had lost his mental balance.
 
But what if. What if the voice he was hearing was truly something divine, or the hand of fate, or some such higher power. How cruelly ironic that would be.
 
Fate had used him up completely, including his death. That hapless man who couldn’t even deceive others, who was just a good-natured fool.
 
To me, Marty was just an incompetent coward.
 
The world will record him as a hero. That is what this Earth needs now. There is no room for waste of resources here. Whatever is useful must be thoroughly utilized, even if it’s a corpse. But I, for one, want to remember him as the man who sat in his office, head in his hands, weeping. I never truly disliked that side of him. Yes, isn’t it fine? That even in humanity’s darkest hour, there were those who could do nothing.
 
The true tragedy is that a man who should have ended his life that way has instead become a hero.
 


 
continue
 


 
2034, Heartland of the United States
 
Reverend Joseph-Paul (at the time)
 

 
The impact of the Exif teachings on humanity, whose spirit had been shattered by the successive appearances of Kaiju and the unimaginable terror of Godzilla, and who had nearly lost the will to resist their own annihilation, is immeasurable. Since the Exif visited Earth in 2035 and began proselytizing their religion, their teachings have seen an explosive growth in followers. Joseph-Paul, who represented the followers of the largest Exif church within the United Government in Rio de Janeiro, was one of the earliest humans to embrace the Exif faith. His testimony seems to shed light on why the Exif teachings were able to gain so many followers so rapidly.
 

 
Do you know what the most precious thing that Godzilla took from us Americans was?
 
It was the tragically large loss of human lives, vast territories, and countless cities…
 
Yes, the sheer scale of what was lost was a terrible tragedy. But we who survived should have still been able to nurture new life. We could have rebuilt our ravaged lands, and established new cities. But Godzilla took from us the very driving force we needed to rise up again.
 
And that was our faith.
 
The United States of America was the most wealthy and technologically advanced nation in the world, the standard-bearer of scientific civilization. But it was also an exceptionally devout religious nation. The Puritans who had fled persecution in the Old World to seek a new land had shaped this country. Schoolchildren pledged allegiance to “one nation under God, with liberty and justice for all,” and the President took his oath of office with his hand on the Bible. That was the essence of this nation.
 
The people somehow believed in it.
 
That this country was under God’s grace. That it would surely be protected from the threat of the Kaiju.
 
And Godzilla shattered that.
 
If there existed a being that the wisdom of humanity’s nuclear fire – our atomic weapons – could not kill, then who other than God could defeat it?
 
And yet, if the saving hand of God was not extended, what did that mean?
 
It could only mean one of two things.
 
Either God does not exist? That was a conclusion the people, bereft of all that Godzilla had taken from them, could never accept.
 
Therefore, the answer had to be the other.
 
Godzilla must be the emissary sent by God. This must be the time of the Apocalypse as foretold in the scriptures. It was God’s punishment upon humanity, and annihilation was our destined fate…
 
The Godzilla Faith, the Nuclear Warhead Faith, the Doomsday Faith…
 
We were called by various names. There was no unified doctrine, no organization to unite the believers. It spontaneously erupted everywhere… Yes, because we still clung to belief in God, this was an inevitability, a kind of epidemic, if you will. Yes, it was a more pernicious contagion than any disease. Was that truly religion, faith? A sickness that drove humanity’s wisdom and power towards destruction.
 

–Us.
 
Yes, I, too, was ensnared by that sickness.
 
In the streets where everything was burned to the ground, where there was no water, food or fuel, and the silent radiation poisoned the air, the people still flocked to my church merely because there was a cross raised there. Orphaned children who had lost their parents. Mothers cradling infants. Elderly women wrapped in bloodied bandages. Faced with the pleading in their eyes, I uttered the forbidden words. Instead of exhorting them to confront the reality and the difficulties, I gave them false solace.
 

 
“This destruction is our destiny. Let us quietly accept God’s judgement,”
 

YOU ARE READING STOLEN TRANSLATION. READ THE ORIGINAL TRANSLATION AT GADGETIZEDPANDA.COM

 
Just as in Asia and Africa, the collapsing western United States also saw infighting among humans, with leaked nuclear warheads scorching the land. What made the U.S. case unique was that the missiles were not fired at an enemy, but turned inward.
 

 
“The souls purified by the flames of nuclear fire shall have the gates to the heavenly kingdom opened to them.”
 

 
This kind of “doctrine” spread from somewhere, and multiple nuclear warheads detonated in the heartland, incinerating thousands, even millions who sought liberation from this world. I too believed in such teachings, sending many young people to their deaths on a quest for the “holy grail” of nuclear warheads. They never returned, except for one couple.
 
……Only one couple came back, led by that person – the Exif priest who carries the seal of the seven-pointed star and preaches the path of devotion.
 
I, along with a large number of fanatical followers, surrounded them. Heretics who did not accept nuclear purification had to be executed. But that person showed no signs of fear. Calmly, with eyes full of compassion, they asked us:
 

 
“Why do you seek to destroy yourselves?”
 
“Why do you reject the path of devotion?”
 
“Every person is born to fulfill their duty. Why turn away from that?”
 
“Let us put an end to this fear.”
 

 
These were the words I should have said when the people flocked to my church. I found myself kneeling before them, scales falling from my eyes.
 
Ah, yes. Even though it was supported by the foolish madness of the Godzilla religion, we had at least forged a small community. So why couldn’t we use that to live, rather than die? There was no need for despair. Nothing, nothing was lost. With love for our neighbors and a spirit of devotion to others, we could reclaim it all.
 
This happened in 2034.
 
We were probably among the earliest earthlings to convert to the Exif teachings.
 
Ah, that’s right.
 
I was saved by him before the Exif made official contact with humanity in 2035.
 
Unlike the Bilusaludo, the Exif people had actually been in contact with earthlings for a very long time, perhaps since ancient times. Isn’t it more than just a coincidence that the Gematria calculation method used by the Exif has the same name as the ancient Hebrew numerology? It was likely that the ancients tried to imitate the Exif’s wisdom. They had long been with us, perhaps even among the great figures and prophets mentioned in the myths and faiths of various nations.
 
People say I converted to the Exif teachings. Of course, it’s true that I was saved from the madness of the Godzilla religion. But if the Exif had been in contact with humanity long ago, guiding us, then perhaps all that we had believed in was really just one and the same.
 
That’s why the Exif teachings were so readily accepted by so many people.
 
If we had not been able to reclaim our faith, the establishment of a unified global government would have remained a mere dream. Let alone a plan to evacuate only a small portion of the population from the Earth.
 
God, devotion is the path to salvation.
 
That teaching will sustain the people, even on the lonely journey through the absolute vacuum of space.
 
You, the crew of the Aratrum, together with the crew of the Oratio, are the symbols of humanity’s devotion.
 
May your journey be blessed.
 


 
continue
 


 
2036, United Kingdom of Great Britain – London
 
Gilbert Mouche, Hotel Employee (at the time)
 

 
One year after the arrival of the Exif, humanity made its second contact with an extraterrestrial intelligence – the Bilusaludo. They are recognized by many as a group of scientists, technicians, and disciplined military personnel, masters of advanced science and technology. But Gilbert Mouche, who witnessed the initial contact with the Bilusaludo, shared another aspect of our alien neighbors.
 

 
The Exif and the Bilusaludo were truly contrasting beings.
 
The Bilusaludo, who valued rationality, were a race of technicians and soldiers, adhering to the principle of practicality and strength. The Exif, on the other hand, were all devout religious figures, embodying the doctrine of devotion to others.
 
This difference also manifested in how they interacted with us humans.
 
While the Exif actively mingled with common people to spread their teachings, the Bilusaludo mostly worked within the military hierarchy, so the opportunities for regular people to interact with them were quite limited. I’m aware that some have described the Bilusaludo as a cold-blooded race, as heartless as machines, in comparison to the Exif. In my opinion, that’s simply nonsense.
 
The people of Bilusaludo had their home planet stolen by a black hole, and since then had been on a long, wandering journey. To endure that journey, they must have forged not only their bodies, but their very spirits, as hard and cold as rock. But I know this: beneath that exterior, there flows warm blood, the same as ours – no, perhaps even warmer.
 

 
This was the only thing I was able to bring from France.
 
Romanée-Conti, 1945.
 
It was the most precious bottle, carefully preserved in the hotel where I was the manager.
 
In 1945, France had only just been liberated from Nazi Germany’s grip, and the world was still in the throes of the Second World War – certainly no time for winemaking. And yet, ironically, that summer was unbearably hot, the ideal conditions for wine. With a shortage of manpower, the grapes harvested were only about half the usual amount. But from those precious grapes came the crowning achievement of Burgundy wine, the 1945 Romanée-Conti.
 
In the autumn of the year Japan surrendered and the war finally ended, this bottle was served as the victory wine at a celebratory banquet attended by the great Charles de Gaulle himself, and one bottle was left in my hotel.
 
Long before Godzilla ravaged Europe, my hotel had ceased operations. At first, it had been opened to the steady influx of refugees. And after Godzilla’s invasion of Europe, it was seized by the EU Allied Forces, becoming one of their command centers…
 
When the EU Allied Forces were defeated in their battle against Godzilla, and the fall of Paris became inevitable, I knew I had to take this one bottle with me. It was, in a sense, a symbol of my hotel. And my mother had been born in the Côte-d’Or region, where the Vosne-Romanée village, the source of Romanée-Conti, was located – it was a part of my roots. With the appearance of the Kaiju and the succession of extreme weather, many vineyards had been forced to close. The vineyards of Romanée-Conti were no exception. So at least this one bottle…
 
How foolish a decision I had made.
 
I regretted it over and over again.
 
When I fled from Dunkirk to England, clinging to life, the only thing I had with me was this single bottle of wine. My wife, who should have been holding my hand, and my sons, were gone.
 
If only I hadn’t thought to bring such a thing, perhaps my wife and sons would have been safe.
 
I thought countless times about just smashing the bottle.
 
But I couldn’t bring myself to do it.
 
Thinking of my predecessors who had guarded this wine for nearly a century, I simply couldn’t bring myself to do it.
 
I threw myself into my work, trying to forget everything. I found refuge at a renowned hotel in Britain, which, like my own hotel, had become a temporary shelter for refugees. My language skills came in handy, and there was no shortage of work to be done for the people fleeing from all over Europe, and indeed the world.
 
And then, in 2036,
 
the Bilusaludo’ saucer appeared in the skies over London.
 
I saw five spaceships hovering over the newly rebuilt Westminster Abbey.
 
“We are the Bilusaludo. Our home planet, the third planet of the Bilsardian binary star system, has been consumed and destroyed by a cursed black hole. We wish to immigrate to this third planet of your solar system. In return, we offer to destroy the greatest threat to your human race: the Kaiju Godzilla.”
 
I can still hear their voices, speaking in English.
 
Strangely, I didn’t feel much surprise. Perhaps it was because the Exif had already arrived the previous year, and their appearance wasn’t so different from ours. Or perhaps my senses had simply become numb.
 
If it were true that a gigantic, fire-breathing Kaiju could incinerate both America and Europe, then the arrival of extraterrestrials would not be so strange. I didn’t fear being conquered by invaders from space, nor did I hope for them to be saviors who would protect us from the Godzilla threat. The reactions around me seemed to be the same – when one has been subjected to such prolonged, desperate terror, the human emotions of surprise, joy, or fear seem to wear away entirely.
 
I unexpectedly found myself involved with the Bilusaludo when it was decided that my hotel would be provided to them. Along with the confusion, I remember feeling a small sense of pride. They had come to Earth after a long journey, and as their hosts, it was the hotelier’s pride to welcome them.
 
Before that, a dinner was arranged between the EU leadership and the upper echelons of Bilusaludo for preliminary preparations—the formal dinner took place at Buckingham Palace, with the British monarch in attendance.
 
However, the chef seemed to have struggled a great deal. Strangely enough, there was no decisive difference between the Bilusaludo and us Earthlings, despite their bodies being enhanced with advanced science and technology to endure long voyages… Most human foods were consumable for them. However, in their culture, eating was merely for nutrient intake, and they lacked the culture of enjoying cuisine itself. When inquired, the only response received was something like:
 

 
[The following substances are prohibited for oral nutrient intake]
 
[There is no problem as long as there is no significant deviation from the standard intake of various nutrients]
 

 
…As if brushing it off with a wooden nose.
 
We knew too little about them. If your homeland is swallowed by a black hole, and you have no choice but to wander aimlessly through space for a long time, you can’t afford to have likes and dislikes. We didn’t understand such obvious things.
 
Still, the chef managed to prepare the menu for that day, and on the morning when the preparations were ready to welcome the Bilusaludo, I suddenly thought of that bottle.
 
The first contact between humans and aliens.
 
Could there be a more fitting occasion to offer that?
 
In any case, it’s not that I didn’t have doubts.
 
I had heard that alcohol consumption was possible, but would it suit their taste buds? What if, by some chance, I offended them and led to Earth being conquered by them? Are you laughing at me for worrying too much? But at that time, we knew nothing about the Bilusaludo.
 
The dinner began between the five EU leaders and five Bilusaludo, including their leader Dolu-do.
 
“We are not familiar with the customs of this planet. Please forgive us for any improprieties.”
 
Dolu-do said so, but their manners were polished, and it became clear that they had conducted considerable research not only on our language but also on our Earthling culture.
 
Eventually, the seal on that wine was opened after nearly a hundred years.
 
I watched from the corner of the room, swallowing hard, as the deep red liquid went down Dolu-do’s throat.
 
“Perhaps this is something special you have prepared for us. Unfortunately, our race does not have the habit of enjoying the effects of psychoactive substances, and we have even acquired a tolerance to such effects. So please forgive me if it offends us.”
 
After that preface, he said:
 
“To ferment organic produce and age it over time, what an irrational and inefficient endeavor. However, perhaps this is what it means to be prosperous. It may be something our race lost when we lost our home planet… or perhaps even long before that. If we, together with you, can drive Godzilla away from this planet… perhaps our race may be able to regain what we have lost.”
 
Those words made my eyes inadvertently well up with tears.
 
It was because we were the same. Vineyards being destroyed to build military bases, traditional Parisian streets being reconstructed for strategic reasons… Despite such desperate resistance, it was all crushed helplessly before Godzilla…
 
At that moment, I understood.
 
They were the same as us.
 
Those who had lost their homeland and culture.
 


 
continue
 


 
2036, Former Russian Federation – Inland Region
 
Emil Jansen, European Refugee (at the time)
 

 
“The reason I’m here today is because Exif came for us.”
 
“If not for Bilusaludo, I would have been monster fodder.”
 
During my investigations, I heard countless such testimonies. For people who were only waiting to die from starvation, disease, and the terror of Kaiju in the bitter cold of Siberia, the barren deserts of Eurasia, and the equatorial regions of Africa, the appearance of the Exif and Bilusaludo spaceships as a rescue was an unexpected aid, an impossible miracle. The following testimony is just one example.
 

 
Eastward. Eastward.
 
That was the only password.
 
To cross the Eurasian continent all the way to Japan. America and Europe had been devastated, but I had heard Japan was still safe. Few people probably realized how reckless that was. Most were driven by fear—wanting to get as far away as possible from Godzilla in Europe. That’s all they were thinking.
 
Why didn’t we escape to Britain? There was no guarantee that Godzilla, who had scorched the continent, wouldn’t head to Britain. If that happened, there would be nowhere left to run. In that case, the Eurasian continent still had some chance, I thought. Also… I couldn’t swim. How many people tried to swim to Britain only to drown and get eaten by Manda…?
 
When we set out, there were tens of thousands, no, hundreds of thousands, maybe even millions of people.
 
The refugee line packed the Siberian railway tracks shoulder-to-shoulder. That’s when they attacked us. To those Kaiju like Megaguirus and Rodan, we were perfect prey. Like an ant trail, we were helplessly devoured. The refugees were torn apart, shredded to pieces.
 
It wasn’t just humans who feared Godzilla—the other Kaiju were the same.
 
The Kaiju lurking around the European continent all fled eastward at once.
 
We were trampled, eaten, and ravaged by them.
 
Every town in between had been annihilated by the Kaiju.
 
Some of the starving refugees became looters, attacking their fellow man.
 
And the Russian winter…
 
One by one, they fell.
 
In the snowy plains, like tombstones, the snow-buried people lined up.
 
I saw so many mothers frozen like ice sculptures, clutching their young children.
 
Seeing things like that was truly painful.
 
I also saw groups that had stopped walking, saying, “The UN will send help.” They probably just froze to death like that. I didn’t believe it. There was hardly any information. I didn’t know what had become of Godzilla. Maybe it was chasing after us. No, I was sure of it. Driven by such fear, we just kept heading east.
 
Our food supplies had run out.
 
The wild beasts, the fish in the rivers—all had been completely wiped out by the Kaiju.
 
If there was any food in the luggage of fallen refugees, it was a godsend. But that hardly ever happened.
 
On the frozen ground, with nothing to eat… but we had to eat something.
 
At times like that…
 
…You understand, it was to survive. We had no choice.
 
The teachings of Exif forgave me. They said it was their dedication.
 
“O Lord, dedication is the way of man.”
 

 
…Some say Exif and Bilusaludo came to invade Earth.
 
That they originally targeted Earth for invasion, but since the planet they were supposed to invade was destroyed by Godzilla, they had no choice but to lend us a hand.
 
I’m sorry, but even if that’s a joke, I’ve decided to punch them.
 
The day I barely survived the second winter, only one companion remained with me, out of those who had walked together from Germany. In our haste to cover as much distance as possible during the brief summer, we had let our guard down. On the open plain with nowhere to hide, we were attacked by Megaguirus. Was this really how it would end, as dragonfly prey after coming this far? We closed our eyes, embraced each other, and waited for that moment. But it never came. Hesitantly opening our eyes, we found ourselves engulfed in the shadow of something massive—a flying saucer, like in a sci-fi movie. It was an Exif immigrant ship. It had become our shield.
 
For them, it must have been an irreplaceable, precious ship. And not even a combat one.
 
Yet they had dispatched it to the Eurasia continent, teeming with Kaiju, to rescue us refugees. The Bilusaludo were doing the same thing in Africa, I heard.
 
What about the others?
 
The ones on the East Coast of America. The ones who fled to Britain. The ones in Japan.
 
Everyone was preoccupied with their own problems. No one came to help us.
 
So many comrades froze to death. Starved to death. Everyone became monster fodder.
 
My brother too. Everyone. Everyone.
 
Elena and I would have been among them too. Without a doubt.
 
Only the aliens came to rescue us.
 
Only the homeless aliens risked their lives to save us.
 
When all of humanity abandoned us, only the aliens didn’t abandon us.


Chapter List


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