The first thing I saw was red skies and gray clouds.
My name’s Seth. Seth Gibson. Once I was a photographer. A hotshot one at that! Now, of course there’s nothing nice enough things left to take photos of. The Earth as you knew has changed a lot. People have died; there are no green plants left. It is now miles and miles of poisonous wasteland.
And I’m writing this – sitting holed up inside this cave like structure – by the light of fire I made using some fat I stole from the beasts. Who knows whose belly it belonged to? I can’t be sure of a guess? In this world of chaos and confusion you can’t be sure of anything, anymore. You are lucky enough even to be breathing – feeling the warm oxygen (or whatever the gas is) reaching your lungs and contracting them. You are lucky enough to feel alive.
I don’t know why the planet has kept me alive as its last warrior. I’ve been loitering around in these parts ever since I woke up from a head-injury induced coma (at the absence of a doctor, that’s what I think it was). Nothing was ever the same after that – now everywhere I see crushed, burnt and blackened rocks. The air smells bad and toxic but I can’t do anything but breathe. Breathe to live, to scrape out another few minutes from death’s grip.
The sun can’t be seen anymore – there is just a bleak orange spot spreading a reddish hue.
Every single day is a new struggle. A non-stop game of survival. Food is scarce and finding uncontaminated water is like fighting another war. You’ve have to steal it from the beasts sometimes. They are those humanoid creatures with a brown torso joined to four legs. They remind of that character Firenze in Harry Potter books but these guys just aren’t the same. You’ve to kill someone to live yourself. Rules of survival apply now – survival of the fittest.
It’s been ages since I woke up to a bleary world. I’m not sure of the day-count; nobody can be – when they have led all their lives reading time with the flick of wrists. Those things don’t work in this barbaric world. Guessing days and nights by keeping a look-out for that sorry excuse of a sun is what left of the word time. Sometimes that orange shit just vanishes when you know – it should be noon. It returns again when according to your knowledge it should been night. Cycles of day-night have changed now; you see what I have to live with.
You want to know the one thing I’m sure of. I have not seen a single human since I woke up. By God’s grace, not one!
Have you ever felt the life in you crush bit by bit? I feel that now. Last night I was injured by one of them. I don’t have a left hand anymore. There’s just a stiff bloody stump where it should’ve been. A greenish, yellow fluid has started oozing out of it. It smells bad; it smells gross, of pus, gangrene? (Can’t be sure, never had to watch this kind of a sight in my previous life). And I feel weak, weaker than I am most days. What more could I expect after getting a hand bitten off by those monsters. As I told you before – I’m lucky enough to be alive. Just for now.
This is how life in Earth is, now. A constant, daily struggle.
I think mine has finished. My journey on this planet is over.
—– Bhaskar Maji