Emasus |||A Chapter by Charlie
Peacetime 18, 2058
A stolen boat
I've gone AWOL. I've acquired a timepiece. I stole a rowboat.
This weird guy named Olan came with me. I've offered to take first watch while he takes a nap because I'm sort of paranoid he'd murder me in my sleep. I hope he doesn't wake up anytime soon, he gives me the creeps. But he looks peaceful enough when he's asleep, and he did save my life. I don't have the heart to shove him overboard. And let's be honest, I don't have the energy either. I haven't eaten in days.
After I wrote home to Mishka's kids the other day, I wandered around for who knows how long. They dropped the bombs at noon, just like everyday, and I walked straight through the falling grenades. I'm sure I did, it was noon. But for the life of me, I don't remember it. I just remember staring at the sun, and heading straight towards it, as if my feet could climb some unseen staircase straight to the sky and out of this damned crazy world. It's a miracle I wasn't killed, but at that particular moment I suppose I wouldn't have cared one way or another. I would have been killed for sure if I hadn't been shoved out of the way of a burning piece of falling airship, a sprocket or a steering device or something. I never saw it coming towards me, and before I knew what was happening I was lying on my fool back on the hard ground, something shaking and alive on top of me. I sat up immediately, and the wide-eyed boy slid off my chest, landing on his a*s.
"You can see them," he breathed. He scrambled to his knees, coming closer. Instinctively, I backed up.
"You can see the mirrors in the shadows, can't you?" he whispered, as if somebody was listening. "Don't deny it, kid, I'm one of you. You were following the trail, weren't you? That's why you didn't move when . . ." He nodded towards the piece of metal that had almost killed me, and I noticed it for the first time.
"Um. N-no. I was just k-kinda, I w-was ups-set. My r-regiment, the wh-whole regiment, they w-were killed."
"I'm okay. I-I've always h-had this st-stutter."
"Oh." He seemed to deflate a little, and I tried not to feel bad. "For a minute, I thought you were like me, that's all." He sighed. "Nobody believes me, you believe that? I try to warn them, I really do, but nobody listens."
"W-warn them wh-what?"
He looked into my eyes, and I shivered at the fanatical intensity I saw.
"The world is gonna end with fire," he said quietly. "And it's gonna happen soon. The two leaders are gonna shake hands, and the City and Country are gonna be at peace, real peace, for about two minutes. Then the leaders will both fall back, dead, and the real Revolution will begin."
"Oh, r-right." I got to my feet, and after a moment of bracing myself, I took his hand and helped him to his. It felt like holding a large ice cube. "W-well, we should p-probably get out of here." The bombing had already stopped, but better safe than sorry.
We zigzagged through the lit-up maze of flaming debris, and when we came to the edge of the woods, which I've come to think of as safe a haven as I'm probably going to find for a long time yet. We climbed a tree and I told him to sit tight until I could think of a plan. He fiddled with the clunky thingy on his wrist while I switched my eyepatch and looked around.
There was that girl again, the one who looked like my girlfriend back home, Jessamine. She was running around like a chicken with her head cut off, looking for something, I think. I didn't stick around to find out, I switched the eyepatch back to my left eye.
"I miss Luella," Olan was saying.
"My friend. I was real sick just a few days ago. She nursed me back to health, I think. She coulda just killed me, but she didn't, she kept me around." He looked over my shoulder, squinting. Then his face bloomed into a smile. "There's my grandpa, right behind you," he said, pointing. "He's been dead nine years."
"Th-that's nice." I didn't know what else to say.
"Yeah. Anyway. My friend Luella, she disappeared last night while I was asleep. I just hope she's okay."
We talked for a while, and I found out, to my shock, he's seventeen. He's so short and scrawny he looks about twelve.
"What's that th-thing y-you've got there?" I asked him about his wrist thing.
"Ah, this? It's a timepiece."
I grabbed his wrist and held the thing right up to my face.
"Beautif-ful!" I cried. "This'll come in h-handy some f-fine day, just you w-wait!"
So that's a good thing. I've got to go now, Olan's waking up. I hope he hasn't forgotten I'm a friend and not an enemy while he slept. He sleeps with a pocketknife, and I was too nervous to take it off him when I had the chance.
© 2012 Charlie
Added on March 17, 2012
Last Updated on March 17, 2012
Threads of the World
AboutWell, I have moodswings like crazy, so beware my wrath. Chocolate and music and fried chicken sooth this savage beast. I drink coffee every other weekday morning and drink tea every chance I get. I ca.. more..