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Hello, whoever stumbles upon this book I wrote. I can not remember my true name, and there is nothing special to say about me, but if you insist on giving me an identity, like I gave myself, then just call me Brian.
I am a man with short hair. I wear jeans, a shirt and a pair of shoes. I am a regular person, without any unique characteristics, though I tend to be quiet most of the time.
This journal, story, diary; however you wish to call it, will hopefully guide you, if the same fate that struck me cursed you, too.
I do not know what happened before, since I seem to suffer from amnesia or have no memories to begin with, but one morning, I woke up at a beach. I had nothing with me but my clothes, and I did not know the place I was in. I was not even sure if it had any name at all or if anyone else knew about it.
I walked through a seemingly endless forest that was located right behind the small beach. It was barren of any life, and I started to feel forlorn. Everything looked so alike that after some time, I was not even sure in which direction I was heading to. Sometimes, I thought that something was following me, observing me, like I was pray for a predator, but I could convince myself that it was only my paranoia.
Fortunately, though the sun was already at its peak, I escaped the lashing branches of the trees, and I was greeted by a wide, vast plain, filled with herds of different animals. All of them were herbivores, and did not seem to be afraid of me, so I simply walked past them towards a mountain chain with the idea, that I may be able to spot some sign of civilization from the top of one of these rather small mountains.
Wandering through the ginormous grassland, something made me feel uncomfortable. They always gazed directly at me when I passed them. I replied the glances, but these animals seemed to be completely devoid of life. Their eyes were so soulless, even for animals, and it disconcerted me. Quickly, I lost their attention and was like thin air for them, and I could not say if I should feel lucky or worried about it. I decided to not care and continued to follow my set path, though I knew that these eyes were following my every step. Staring. Judging.
In the evenings, I approached the mountainous ridge, but to my misfortune, it started to rain cats and dogs. It may just could have been me at that time, but time itself seemed to flow faster at this godforsaken place, since the rainstorm came nearly instantly, and the time between noon and evening did not feel as long as it should. But maybe, it was just me overwhelmed by all the unsettling sensations and dark thoughts that grabbed hold of me.
I could spot a cave inside one of the mountains, so I decided to take shelter there. It was not too high, and I had easy access to it, and soon, I stood inside the hole of the humongous rock. It was dry inside, but also chillingly cold, but most of all, desolate. I decided to put my head on a pile of smooth grit and fell asleep, hoping that all of this was just a nightmare.
I slowly woke up in the morning and as soon as I did, something seemed to threaten me. Immediately, my heart sank into my boots, because I could feel something apparently out of ice stroking my cheek, its freezing temperature hurting my skin. Not just that, but there was this echoing whisper, that sounded like something would drown, choke or at least gasp for breath.
I opened my eyes and nervously looked at what was causing this nerve-racking sensation. All I could see with my still blurry vision was a pitch-black claw, gently stroking my face. Promptly, I jumped up and turned around, only to see that there has never been anything to begin with, but the cave itself.
I tried to convince myself that it was just a hallucination, a desperate attempt of my brain to convince me that I am not the only person in the world, but I felt the urge to leave the socket as quickly as possible, since I could not be sure.
As soon as I left it, I could see a little animal standing on an edge next to the cave, starring into the abyss. When I observed it, I felt a pain in my stomach. I was hungry, so hungry, and this lamb seemed to be the solution for my problem. But I was not sure. I was no murderer, and I had nothing to cook it with.
I eventually approached it anyway, and when I was just mere inches away from it, it turned to me. Again, it starred at me with its soulless eyes. These piercing, disdaining eyes. I hated them, and they enraged me. Something inside me simply snapped and without control of myself, I smashed my fist into its face, and the little lamb stumbled and fell into its doom, slamming into the ground and dying instantly. I was just so hungry, so, so hungry, that I did not care about anything else anymore.
I went to the corpse and only with my bear hands and some sharp stones, I pulled the wool from the young sheep and ripped out its meat. I did not care that I was kneeling in a pool of blood or what monster I seemed to portray. I did not care that my dinner was raw and slimy. I could only enjoy the delicious taste of the warm, viscid flesh.
It felt absolutely natural, like it was how it was supposed to be. I did no feel bad for the sheep. 'Survival of the fittest' echoed through my mind. The strongest survive and the weak die. I was not insane. Just surviving.
I brushed the blood aside and left the remains of the animal, so nature would do the rest. I clambered up the rampant mountain and took a good look of the surrounding area. A morass in one direction, a steppe behind it, and another grassland in the other direction. But something was different about that new plain. I was sure I could see shapes in the distance, that looked like small buildings.
I was incredibly glad that I was not all alone in this sinister place, but I began to feel bad for the being I just killed, even though I knew that animals are not aware of themselves. I intended to bury it to ease my mind, but when I returned to where I left the corpse, all remains of the sheep were gone. Did this creature that woke me up took the corpse? I had grown sick of these mysterious incidents and only wanted it to end, so I swiftly went away in the direction of the buildings, though in all honesty, I was also filled with panic and anguish.
Late in the evening, I approached the apparently small village. It consisted of several wooden houses, some yards that were used to grow food, a water supply well and a building made of stone, that was maybe the town-hall or something like that.
But from the second on I entered the dirt track that was supposed to be the walkway, I knew that my hopes were in vain. All the doors were open, and after searching for a while, looking for other human beings, I gave up. The village was abandoned, probably for quiet a long time, since the cultivated areas in the yards were already filled with all sorts of food, though strangely, non of the buildings were overgrown or damaged at all.
The sun rose past the horizon and the moon, alongside an ocean of stars, filled the sky. In the gloomy night, I could spot flickering lights inside some of the buildings in the town. Electricity in this primitive, lost village? I did not question it and considered it a sign of hope, since light meant warmth and protection.
I calmly walked through the streets, but for no apparent reason, I stopped next to the well and leaned over it. I watched the weak reflection of my own face inside the water. It felt so weird, like it was the first time in my life I had seen my own face. Another thing started to bewilder me as well. I had never been thirsty since my awakening, and I still was not. This place follows its own rules, like an anomaly in the real world; something that should not exist. I put my arm in the water, just to relax for a moment and enjoy the coolish sensation of the water on my skin.
I looked at the reflection of my head, when suddenly, it began to deform itself. I saw my own face slowly decaying. It colored changed into a rotten green brown, its eyes disappeared, leaving only black sockets behind and pieces of flesh fell out. I starred at it in shock, when out of nowhere, to my unimaginable terror, the reflection jumped out of the water and grabbed my arm.
This thing was a putrid version of myself, like a zombie replica, and it wanted me. It tried to drag me down into the water, but I was stronger and was able to escape his grab, though I stumbled and fell on my back.
As I tried to stand up again, I could hear it. It groaned in such a disgusting and painful way, that it nearly made me puke. I could see it slurping out of the well, realizing that it was clothed just like me as well, starring at me with its black, hollow, frenetic eyes. I knew it wanted me dead.
Fueled by panic and the will to survive, I rushed into the next building with a source of light inside and closed the door behind me. I cowered in a corner, far away from windows next to some shelves. It banged against the door with such a force that it was a wonder it did not break apart. My heart pumped my blood so hard, it drowned every other sound off, and I was close to hyperventilation, but I put myself together. Passing out could easily mean death.
After what seemed to be an eternity, it stopped and silence ruled the area. I was save inside and I breathed a sigh of relief. It was gone and I was tired. My body calmed down and drowned in tears, I laid down on the ground and closed my eyes, trying to fall asleep in the hope that next day, I could go outside safely. I was not sure, but I thought that in my dream, I sometimes could hear its groan. Its ferocious, ravening groan; near me, just outside the window.
I woke up to find myself alone in the village, with the exception of some animal herds that grazed not far away from here. As long as I was save, it did not bother me, though I avoided eye contact.
I found out that the sources of light are not bulbs, but small fires that burned away a very long-lasting material attached to the walls. I realized one thing. Knowing that things like bulbs and electricity exist must mean that I must have memories from a life prior to this hell. At least I thought so. Maybe they were just my imagination. You may know.
The place I woke up in was the village's library. I determined myself to find out more about this place, but not before eating something. Luckily, I did not have to end another animals life, since there was enough food growing right next to me. Grabbing out some vegetables, leaving some seeds in so they could grow and feed me later, cooking the food over a fireplace and eventually dining a delicious mush.
I was sort of proud of myself. I survived so many obstacles, even monsters, and I knew that with the given resources, I could hold on in this abandoned place for a long time.
I began to read through the books of the library, since like I said, I wanted knowledge, because everyone knows that knowledge is power. I found out that the former villagers seemed to be aware of monstrous creatures like the one I fled from, and that light could shoo them away, though only intense sunlight could truly scare them back into the dark.
I immediately acted and took some of the material used to fuel the flames and placed it all around the village. I ignited it with sparks emitted from smashing stones into teach other. The light settled my mind, and I could at least feel save when the shadows of the dark engulfed the town once more.
Sparse descriptions of their behavior and appearances were included in the books, though they were nugatory, as I have already beheld one of them with my own eyes.
Unfortunately, there was nothing about this black thing that observed me that one night. Considering what happened last night, I was sure that it was not just my imagination playing tricks on me. Or maybe everything was just a hallucination, and in reality, I was stammering in a white, comfortable padded cell, suffering from some sort of schizophrenia. I did not know. I could not be sure. It did not matter. I would survive, no matter what.
I found an empty book and a feather with some ink. I needed to express myself, so I started to note down everything that happened to me. My memories are somewhat fragile, but I remembered everything that sought my demise.
Maybe, if I would not survive, I could at least warn others who might be cursed by the same cruel fate. I used the first page to sparsely introduce myself. I knew that maybe one day, I maybe would need it as a reminder of what and who I truly am.
I read myself through everything that was necessary and gathered items from the houses. They for sure will be useful, especially the bucket to water the vegetables.
I tried to leave the village and scouted the surrounding area, but every time I left the comfortable warmth of the lights, I began to feel forlorn and unprotected, like a infant who is unable to leave the soft grab of its mother. And every time I looked down, I saw more and more footprints, sometimes even scratches, on the ground.
Every time I sleep in one of the comfortable houses, I know that these creatures are gathering around the village, staring at me with their demonic eyes, lingering for my flash. I'm always assuring myself that I am strong and that I am save inside the village, but I know that these thoughts will soon be overshadowed by trepidation.
I just feel so alone here, yet I know I never am.
I could see it in the night. This black, to some extent humane being. It's real. It's real I tell you.
I stared at it trough the windows and it stared back at me. These eyes. These eyes that desire to haunt me. These shrouded, dark eyes. They are like fire in eye sockets, so threatening, yet so appealing. I felt the urge to come closer to these beautiful eyes and touch them.
This thing is stealing my sanity like a Nixie, and I love it for doing so. Sanity is a weakness in this world. Instinct is the only thing you need to survive. I wish it would have stayed longer, but as soon as I blinked, it was gone, though I knew that it was still somewhere out there, watching me. And I was eagerly waiting for it to come.
I am not alone anymore! There are people in the village. I talked with them all day long, and I must tell you, they are very good listeners. And even though they are often so shy that they won't reply, I still like them, knowing that I can always count on them.
They seem to be very clunky and stiff, but if you get to know them a bit better, you will understand that they are just taking a break from all the hard work they do. Just standing in one place, like garden gnomes.
And they are always very friendly, too. They always have this joyful, wide grin on their face. The only thing I don't like about them is their somewhat strange habit to always look at me and not blink when I pass them by or talk with them. What should I say? I guess they are just a lovely bunch of jesters.
It is great to socialize again. I can sleep now without worrying too much, since I know that my friends are out there, all the time, always having an eye on me, no matter where I go.
I extinguished these stupid lights. They hurt my friends and me, too. I was afraid of the night, but for no reason. Its dreary atmosphere is so incredibly delightful, it's a shame I did not realize that earlier.
And every night, many new friends come into the village and party through the night. They are always banging against my door and want me to join them, but I am no party animal, so I rather rest in my home and enjoy all their pretty faces starring at me through the windows. Starring at me with their bewitching eyes, all the time. They really want to play with me and I would like to play with them, but unfortunately, they are always gone when the sun comes out.
I stopped counting the days, as it just doesn't matter anymore. I left the village a couple of days ago. I gathered everything I needed and left. It was a difficult decision, but I had to move on. My friends started to annoy me, so I got rid off them. But everywhere I looked in this dratted village, it reminded me of my pals. It just bugged me. I just wanted to be alone.
Well, not completely alone. Since some days, fog always covers everything up. I can barely see anything that was not just a few inches away from me, with the exception of a special someone of course. Every now and then, I can spot these beautiful, blazing eyes, sometimes far away from me, sometimes extremely close to me. And when I am lucky, I close my eyes and can feel its gentle claws stroking my cheek.
Even though I have no idea where I am going, I know I am in good hands. They would always be there. These beautiful eyes. Guiding me. I wish I could have such pretty eyes like my friend.
I am free, unbound from anything. My friend showed me a place so unbelievably beautiful, you cannot even imagine it. It is just beyond your comprehension. A world beyond your dreams, yet a place your heart will painfully desire for all eternity.
And there were so many others, that were just as beautiful as him... or her. And they all greeted me and cheered for me. They were so kind to me, like a family, a family I never had in this lonesome world.
They brought me to a spring, and they wanted me to drink their nectar. It tasted so good, and it made me feel so unburdened. I knew they were my friends and happily, as I wrote these last words, I fell asleep in their arms.
I woke up in a place I could barely remember, but quickly, I got reminded. It was the beach. The beach where everything began.
I felt weird, like something inside me changed. But it was no bad sensation. No. It was absolutely ecstatic. I felt so powerful, so divine. It was their gift, even though it cost me their friendship. Again, I am all alone. I don't need all this junk I carried with me for such a long time, so I will just leave all these things here in a box I carved out of wood
I went to the shore and it was then I realized the true extend of their gift. It purified my soul and heart. They gave me something I always desired. I have so beautiful eyes, free from weaknesses, free form the burdens of life. I have everything I ever wanted.
I will leave you know, stranger. I will take my path, though I don't know what exactly it is or where it will lead me. Maybe, we will meet one day and I can give you the same beautiful present this world gave me, too. Though for now, it doesn't matter. I... I won.
I was a nobody, a piece of dirt, a filthy animal; but became someone with my new existence. My new existence as Brian. I, Brian, am stupendous, no, I, Brian, am the apex. The pinnacle of survival and existence. I am the first limb of the food chain of this world... my world... where everything belongs to me, and only me.....
I am Brian, its hero...
The hero... Brian...