Prize winners were awarded Amazon vouchers and the chance to see their work published online. Thanks to comedian Jack Carroll, author and comedian Phil Walker and David Baddiel for supporting the competition.
Well done to all pupils who entered and especially to the prize winners. You can read the winning entry below:
Borealis-By Lucas Bedford, 8S, Brighouse High School
Log entry-Day 1- Mission day 1279: Well, humanity is done for. I’m done for. I lay in bed pondering this thought, then thought better of it, and got out. I don’t know if anyone will read this, but I might as well explain it to you. I was part of the Borealis mission, an attempt to save humanity from their own mistakes after centuries of global warming increasing, humanity gave in. I’m pretty sure that I am the sole survivor of the human race, and if it wasn’t for the advanced life support, it’d be none. After thinking about all this, I activated my co2 filters and walked outside. A barren wasteland stretching out across the whole planet. Welcome to Antarctica.
I ran diagnostics on the surroundings, I know it’s unnecessary as it is done by the AI but it keeps me sane. Keeping myself same is also the reason I decided to write this log, it’s good to have a conversation with someone, even if it is a bit one-sided. As I headed inside, the depressurisation system malfunctioned. Nothing new, it had been coming on for a while now but I knew how to deal with it. I was fine. I should probably tell you about the interior of the “unit”. There are countless machines to make supporting life possible such as the matter printer which alters the structure of biomatter to create an edible paste that honestly doesn’t taste too bad, the sanitiser, which automatically purifies urine and converts it into water. My favourite place it the unit it the garden. It is exactly what it sounds like, it is just a garden, but it lets me remember just what Earth was like before chaos reared its head at mankind. At least its peaceful here, I guess.
Log entry-Day 4- I know I said that I was done for, but karma and irony really pulled a fast one on me. It was on day 3, and I was just heading inside from doing a basic EVA, and I made the idiotic mistake of using the malfunctioning airlock (what can I say, it was the closest) when it blew up. The whole airlock was detached and flung through the air like an invisible toddler was having a tantrum. Landed with a crash as both the airlock and my arm shattered. I experienced more pain than I thought possible, but even though the agony took most of my brain’s constant focus to keep under control, the rest of my body gave a brief flicker of worry that that was not everything. I soon found out what it was. My breathing mask had detached. Franticly, blinded by pain, I searched, but it was to no avail. As a last-ditch effort, I dashed back to the unit and entered through a different airlock, and no sooner than it has pressurised, I fainted.
I woke up flat on my face and stayed there, I did not want to face what I had to do. However, doing nothing gave me the opportunity to think things through, and by the time I had re-cooperated the energy necessary to get up, I had formulated a plan. Firstly, I made my way to the medical bay, making sure not to pass through the now depressurised room, and grabbed a syringe of bacta fluid and injected myself in my broken arm, I would need it. To anyone that hasn’t stepped foot in a hospital for a decade, bacta is a fluid that accelerates the healing process and strengthens white blood cells to quickly heal major injuries and combat otherwise deadly virus’ (such as the second Covid-19 outbreak). My broken arm, where the bones had shattered into many small fragments, was fully functional after about 5 minutes. Now for the next part of my plan. Still in the medical bay, I found a large sheet of strong canvas, and; a new breathing mask, a backache and far too much duct tape later, I had covered the gaping hole, making sure not to leave any room for air to escape. Now for the test. Pressurising the room, I had my fingers crossed in hope that my toil was not in vain. It held, and, as I breathed a sigh of relief, I felt a sudden urge to go to sleep. Clambering into bed, I turned on the communications array for no reason whatsoever, and immediately got a strong signal. I paused. Perhaps I am not the only person left standing on earth. Smiling, going to bed so the next day would come sooner, my eyes closed, and I fell asleep.