This morning I woke up in a house that was mine, though unfamiliar, in a room with four large windows facing the world. I rolled out of bed and started to check my email, but then a sound made me turn toward the open windows to find that the world had been replaced by an arctic ocean in the night, the wavelets lapping at the sill. The house was not moving, so it was not afloat. Icebergs dotted the waves, the sun beaming down on them. Abruptly a great blue whale launched itself from the water and crashed down, sending a huge wake pouring into my room, carrying with it a bedraggled, barely conscious man, shaggy hair and beard strewn with seaweed and rimed with frost. As I dragged him onto the bed, I heard guttural shouts, and looked up to see several rafts full of bestial, manlike creatures passing in front of the windows. I wavered between hiding the man so they wouldn’t come seeking him, and defenestrating him in hopes they’d take their prize and leave me be. For some reason, they didn’t seem to notice either of us, however, and passed beyond my view.
Some days later, my room had accumulated a crowd of refugees, and I decided we had sufficient numbers to attempt the trek toward the city in hopes of finding an enclave of some kind, or at least provisions.
In the city, I encountered a strange masked girl who seemed sometimes helpful and sometimes antagonistic.