This story, from People of Colo(u)r Destroy Science Fiction, leaves the reader with quite a few questions, but honestly it’s done so well I didn’t mind not having all the pieces. It’s set sometime after the world has ended—destroyed? ruined?—but begins with a small group of farmers who seem to be labouring with technology from decades ago.
The interplay of various strata of people quickly becomes clear: there are those who are architects of this artificial piece of reconstructed world—the Land—and there are those who work in the world, and both have made massive sacrifices, living in many ways removed from their own freedoms for this potential greater whole.
There’s a kind of longing throughout this story that comes from both sides—we mostly see those inside this recreation, and in particular one who would like to see more, be more, go elsewhere… but there’s also a glimpse from one of the architects as well, and that longing and loss is really poignant and so very well written.