Agriculture is a cultural development that transformed the way that humanity evolved. These creatures, these ants, they farm too. We thought nothing of it decades ago when it was aphids balled up in the leaves of our apple trees; but now it’s us.
The ant overlords have discovered how to make use of us; industrially. Our usefulness is only as valuable as our compliance. These ants have no soul that is fathomable to human beings. The ant-soul is dark and mechanical – powering black-iron suits of capitalism that tower over those with the knowledge and aptitude to complete the tasks that stockpile resources for the ant colony.
This is what an alien invasion looked like to many science fiction writers of centuries past. Insect-like overlords that used coordinated power and influence over land and resources to ensure their own prosperity while securing the bondage of their servants through acts of treachery.
One day we’ll figure out a weakness; a way to stop them.
But that day isn’t today.
Many humans live in the wild; outside the farms; many live like us. They breed us like cattle. The scariest part about the whole situation is that it took not a spoken word. Billions of our human screams reacted to with silence from the beasts. At first, they herded us around the plains; eating us as they got hungry; encircling us in a ringed prison of insect legs and jaws.
Quickly we learned to please the ant overlords and avoid death. We hit fields of sugar cane and corn; and they stopped. They were drawn to the sweet glucose in the juices of these plants. We could also subsist off of such crops.
Our symbiotic relationship developed to the point that the ants showed up regularly to collect a tax – in the form of agricultural goods, from all of us.
Sometimes they eat us; or crush us; or kill us unknowingly; but these beasts leave us alone if we live only with-on our hills – laboring only for what they need from our environment in order to keep them from eating us.
The ancestors told stories of a world in which the ants were small and we were big.
Such a life, I cannot fathom.