My hands shake as I write this. This will be my final chronicle. I visited Russia last month. The sprawling, mysterious, unpopulated landscape had always fascinated me. After saving for months, I finally attained the necessary funds for a short trip. I stayed in a small inn in Dytyaky, only a twenty minute car trip from Chernobyl. If I had to visit anywhere during my stay, Chernobyl was it; no place laid more shrouded in mystery than that. Little did I know that the forgotten souls of the city's past were still very much alive.
When I arrived, the very sight of the desolate place excited me. What wonders could possibly await me? I was eager to discover them. The city was broken, rotting, and surrounded by a thick forest. I explored it fully. Dilapidated monuments, old vine-covered shops, demolished homes. It was as fascinating as I had always dreamed. But one place stood out to me, much moreso than the rest of the city.
It was an old schoolhouse.
The windows were all shattered, and the wooden desks were ripe with rot. Old chalkboards still had faint traces of the Cyrillic alphabet written on them; the hallways and utility closets housed an unnatural darkness. There always seemed to be a frigid, unearthly presence surrounding me, and voices seemed to come from this strange darkness. Undeterred, I continued to explore the halls, taking in as many details as I could. As I left the schoolhouse, I felt the subtle chill of the schoolhouse corridors following me. It was not as powerful as before, but the presence was there. I passed it off as weather, and returned to my inn. I spent a few more days exploring the landscape, and returned to my home in Manchester. Upon returning to my home, I noticed the chill had left me. Relieved, I retired to my bed, exhausted from the arduous trip.
I had a nightmare.
I was walking through the corridors of the old schoolhouse, but not as I had seen them. What I saw could only be described as a memory. Children, gleefully running through the halls. Teachers telling them to slow down. Sun shone through the windows, and onto an idyllic landscape. This was the city before the tragedy; full of life and happiness. I walked slowly down the corridor, taking in the scene. Nobody seemed to realize that I was there, as if I was a ghost. I reached the classroom at the end of the corridor, just as the class began. I saw the teacher pick up a piece of chalk, and start writing in Cyrillic on the board. She spoke words I could not understand, wrote things I could not decipher. I then saw an unnatural light from the corner of my eye.
It was the reactor. It had begun to malfunction.
Sirens began to blare, but it was too late. The blast came in slow motion. I saw windows shatter, and homes burst into flame. Faces of children began to melt and warp right in front of my eyes. Their eyes boiled, and their skin began to blaze. One girl out of the class suddenly noticed me, and walked towards me. She looked at me, her eyes partially gone, and her skin burnt horribly. “You forgot us,” she whispered. “Вы помните нас." I looked down at my hands. They began to burn. My skin started to peel like paper. With a scream, I awoke. It was 2 AM. I quickly ran to my laptop, and began to write what I had just experienced.
Suddenly, I felt it. The cold presence was here.
But it was inside me.
The spirit had come into my mind, and shown me the memory.
It began to speak to me.
“You didn't once feel sorrow, or stop to honor those who had died in the blast. It was just an adventure to you. Nothing more. I saw my friends burn with what eyes I had left. My mother was the teacher. You couldn't take the time to pay respect, so I'll make you remember. Forever.” As I type this, I can feel her taking me. My veins are turning black. It's cold. So cold. To anyone who reads this in time, please help m
So, you read the story? He is mine now. I will make him remember. I'll make you remember too. All will remember.