They were all tired.
They had been working all night in the archives, trying to find any hint of another with the mind controlling abilities of the lich. So far, they had made little progress with only Princess Bubblegum able to read the strange writing. Finn and Jake were left grasping at straws as to what the books said.
What they did understand were maps. The ancient masterpieces were spread across tables and scanned for landmarks. Jake was the one to notice the similarities between mountain chains on the map and the ones they themselves had traveled. All of ooo was accounted for with certain exceptions.
Finn noticed that the ice kingdom, candy kingdom, their treehouse, the surrounding forest and plains were on a place called RUSSIA. PB found that the candy castle was built on the remains of a UNIVERSITY, which was a place where people gathered to learn things.
The archive itself was the only thing left of it. Strangely enough there were no stories of anything lich-like or of any of the normal creatures of ooo. No vampires, no candy people, no house people, no whywolves, no wizards.
Princess Bubblegum came to the conclusion that back then there was only one dominant "species" or at least only one in RUSSIA. It took a little digging and a few pictures to find out who it was.
Unbelievable. Finn could not understand this, it was impossible. He was the last human, well except maybe Susan, but she didn't really count. To think that there used to be only humans was beyond even his wildest dreams. But it was true, all the pictures were of people with two eyes, two ears, two arms, two legs, and hair that was just hair. Skin came in varying shades of pink and brown.
It came as a shock to Jake and the Princess as well. Jake couldn't imagine a world with so little variety. PB immediately returned to the books to find a way for the world described to change so completely to the ooo they knew today.
"I don't get it," Finn murmured in shock, "If humans were everywhere, where did they all go?"
"I don't get it either man; it just doesn't make sense," Jake wrapped an arm around him in comfort. The loss may have been centuries ago, but it really hit him that he was alone now. There was hope though.
"If there were humans back then, then there have to be some left somewhere! They couldn't have just disappeared!" He would not give up, not now. He had a starting place, but he would need to find everything about his ancestors first.
"PB I need you to tell me everything these books say," he sat down ready to devote his full attention to her.
"Aah Finn, there's way too many books," she gestured to the shelves around them, "It would take years to find anything that could help you."
"But what about this?," he scrambled over to the gap in the floor and pulled out The Antiquarian's Guide, "It was all hidden away so there has to be something important in it."
Princess Bubblegum took the book from him and flipped through it again. It only had things about collectables and artifacts that could be treasure. Not a thing about the way humans died. Finn went back to the hole and stuck his whole arm in.
"Give me your secrets!" he yelled in frustration, "You were hidden for a reason!" His jerking motion tore the floor up further. He reached as far as he could, trying to find something, anything left in the hole.
"Wait, I think I- YES! I found something!" he pulled his splinter covered arm with a beat up book clutched in his hand, "Look it's different from the other ones. The writing's not the same."
"Let me see it," PB gently set it on the table, "It's a journal." She opened the to the first page.
My name is Simon Petrikov. This journal is a collection of my findings of the effects of recent politics on our country.
"What does that mean? Politics, POlitics, poLItics, politICS. It sounds funny," Finn giggled.
"It's fighting, but with words and not telling the other person that your actually fighting, but you know it anyway," Princess Bubblegum explained.
"That is really confusing," Finn feined punching someone, "It's way easier to just beat people up."
"Oh hush," PB read the next page.
~~~June 24, 2012
I have noticed in the last decade that Russia and the world at large has been on a decline. My neighbors have been saying that it is all America's fault for stealing the worlds resources. I know that our rivals across the ocean abuse the earth on a daily basis, but are we any different? Our factories pump out the same polutants and we use the same water. I refuse to blame America for everything.
The people with a wilder imagination say that the world will end on December 21 because that is when the mayan calender ends. I put no stock in those silly mayan predictions. The end of their calender is very simply an end. They did not want continue it forever so they just stopped.
I think it is merely the fact that so many of us inhabit the earth. There is no way that it can support us all. The famines, drought, and natural disasters are byproducts of our own actions.
The interactions of the top nations are what truely scare me. I am afraid that soon some mishap will spark World War III. The first two left an unholy amount of dead and caused so much damage. Here in Russia we are still dealing with the aftermath of nuclear warfare. The chernobyl site is still quarentined years after the actual incident.
Now that nuclear power is so common, I fear that there will be no place left untouched.~~~
"Princess, what's he talking about. There are no wars, sure a lot of people fight, but no wars," Finn beseeched. PB shrugged, she had heard of wars before, but not on the scale that this Simon described.
"I don't know, but this might be what wiped out all the humans. This journal could tell us everything that we don't know about the past. Why haven't we found this before?" PB was on a learning high, excited to have discovered something nobody ever knew before.
"Look guys, there's something in the book!," Jake exclaimed. He upturned the book and shook it until the unidentified object came out.
It was a picture, several pictures in fact. It appeared that Simon had left a few snapshots of himself with the journal. He was dark haired and brown skinned, he wore an odd sweater and a bow tie. In the first picture he was standing in front of a large building with snow capped mountains all around. The other two showed him with a lady with dark pink hair and a green sweater.
"I know this is gonna sound weird, but they seem familiar," Finn rubbed his head.
"Yeah, I know what you mean. Have we ever met them?" Jake smacked himself, "Wait, they're dead, we can't know them."
"I think it might have been one of the books we read," PB turned the the enormous piles scattered across the floor, "He might have been somebody important."
"Then why's his journal under the floor? It doesn't make sense? Wouldn't it be with the other books?" Jake asked.
"We could try again tomorrow, lets get some sleep. I'm tired," Finn left the other two standing in the library. He needed to be alone for a while, to just sort out his thoughts. Jake and PB just stared for a minute before heading to their respective beds.
When the night was over, the sun rose above the few remaining clouds and shined down through a window to dance among the golden locks of a sleepy boy.
Finn woke with a start, the constant booms and crashes had vanished leaving behind a eerie silence. The suddeness of it had startled him out of his dreams.
"Wha-?" he sat up and rubbed his eyes, the whisps of his dream slipping away with the darkness. There had been fire. Fire everywhere, so much so that the ground had burned an angry red and the sky turned black from billowing ashes. He shuddered slightly at the disturbing image.
"Hey dude, get up!" The door crashed open to reveal Jake and more importantly BREAKFAST! Finn was out of bed and chowing down in a flash.
"Wahs ghowinn um?" he mumbled, eggs spewing everywhere.
"Gross dude!" Jake wiped the spittle off his face, "What did you say?"
"I said 'What's going on?" Finn licked the plate one more time before setting it down, "Did Princess Bubblegum find out who Simon is?"
"Naw, everyone just got up. It stopped snowing did you see?" he pulled aside the curtain to reveal a white blanket covering everything in sight.
"Well let's go now, we're wasting time!" Finn grabbed Jake and sped down the many hallways. At the archive door they had to stop, the latch was nowhere in sight.
"What are we supposed to do?" he craned his neck to see down the hall, "Did you see PB on our way over here?"
"Yeah, she's in her lab. Let's go get her," They sped down the hall and skidded into the lab. She was once again bent over the strange whirring machine next the the window. Right now a side panel was half open and had a rainbow of wires spilling out the edges.
"Ah PB," Finn called from the doorway, "Watcha up to?"
"Oh good, you're up!" she exclaimed, "Can you help me with this?" She pointed to the machine which had started smoking.
"Sure, what exactly do you want me to do?" He couldn't see how he could possibly be able to help the poor machine. The thousands of buttons were very intimidating.
"I need you to punch in this code," she handed him a paper covered in colors. Finn may not have known the code or even what it meant, but he DID know colors.
"RED, BLUE, ORANGE, GREEN, GREEN, YELLOW, PURPLE, RED, GREEN, BLUE, PINK, BLUE, BLUE, BLUE, BLUE, GREEN, RED, YELLOW, RED, BLACK, PURPLE, BROWN, BLUE, ORANGE, RED, WHITE, BLUE, WHITE, GREY, YELLOW, RED!" he yelled as he slammed the buttons down. Jake danced to the beeps that followed.
"Haha this is mathmatical!" Finn danced a little jig and kept putting in the code. This unintended button dance party continued for about five minutes until the last button was pushed.
The machine immediately burst into flames.
"AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!" Finn leapt back screaming, "What happened?! I swear I did it exactly like it said!" The machine started to lean toward the side, melting in to a puddle of black goo. Little jolts of electricity would sporadically appear over the pile with the flames.
"Yes, yes you did," Princess Bubblegum said turning towards a closet, "That was the self destruct code. My weather machine has been acting up lately and I'm replacing it." She heaved an exact copy of the the old one out of the darkness and towed it over to the window. She pushed a large button on the top that set the machine humming. The radio antenae on top spun in a slow circle.
"Why do you need a weather machine Princess?" Finn questioned. If he needed to know the weather he just went outside; it was common sense.
"I like to know the weather that's coming that way I can warn my people if they need to hide or something," she lectured the advantage of preparedness.
"Well, it's sunny now so why is that important?" Jake asked. It was true, the short, violent storm of the night before was long gone. The weather had returned to a balmy warm.
"It might change, I want to know if a big storm like the last one is coming again," Princess Bubblegum turned away from the machine, now assured that it was in working order, "Didn't you need something earlier?"
"Oh yeah," Finn smacked his forehead, "Can we go back to the archives? Me and Jake tried the door a while ago and couldn't get it open."
"Do we have to sing for this one?" Jake groaned.
"No it only opens for royalty silly, that's why they're called the Royal archives," she giggled, "We can go later, right now I want to check on the Ice King."
They traveled down the hallways toward the kitchens, stopping every once in a while for PB to greet one of her subjects. This slowed them down considerably so a great deal of time later, they made it to the room.
"What happened?" Finn gasped. The blankets were thrown on the floor, sheets a tangled mass at the end of the bed. Cracks raced up the walls from 5 different spots. The only window was smashed open and fudge was everywhere.