[Part of a series called Collector]

A man was standing in the middle of an alley way, back towards me. Fog was surrounding him as if it were their duty to shroud him in mystery. He looked back at me. I blinked and there was no one there. I turned, and I saw snow gently falling down. I looked up, marveling at the wonder. It was supposed to be a warm that day…

Months passed by like a blink of an eye whilst the temperature kept on dropping. Snow kept on piling on top of ice, serving as its safety blanket.

“The temperature throughout the world keeps on decreasing, and it is very unsettling. At this rate, we may even reach absolute zero,” echoed the television.

“I hate wearing our winter coats inside the house,” moaned Skye. “It’s only October!”

“It’s because it’s only October that we have to wear them,” mom chimed in.

“Boo poo.”

“I’m going to the store to get more supplies!” I yelled, slamming the door shut.

And that’s how I usually start the week. Eventually, food and water supplies were low enough that people started to fight over it; although some started to emigrate somewhere. I don’t know where but it’s probably better than here.

Electricity was the same too. First, we’d have black outs from time to time, then it’s all the time. We barely scrape by with our generators but like anything else, they don’t last long either.

Sooner or later, mom started isolating herself. Being cold and hungry too long can do that to a person.  It usually begins with small things like being in her room for an hour day, then it was several hours a day. Finally, she just didn’t come out anymore. Skye and I coaxed her to leave her room for once but we would always get silence in return.

I came home one day and saw mom and Skye in the living room. Plastic bags were over their heads. Looks like mom really lost it there and she obviously didn’t want to be alone in her suicide either. She just had to take Skye with her. “Skye must’ve been so scared,” I thought. As I looked at their bodies closely, there didn’t seem to be any signs of a struggle with Skye. Mom had her left arm around Skye’s shoulders while Skye’s covered head was leaning on mom’s chest. It looked she agreed to it. Maybe it was a double pack suicide. Maybe mom tricked Skye that that was the only way that they could go to heaven. Whatever the case, I was now alone…

I wanted to scream, to curse, to kick but I didn’t. I couldn’t. They were the only ones that kept me going through this harsh son of a bitch winter. This never ending fucking winter left me alone to fend for myself.  The only thing left for me now is myself. I don’t want that to be my end-game. If I’m going to die anyways, I wanted to at least leave my mark on this world. The very same world that denied me of that in the first place. One thing is clear though; that man I saw. It all started when I saw him back at that alleyway. I have to find him.

I went to my room and grabbed my backpack, then to the pantry to grab whatever food we – I guess I should say “I” – had. When I was done, I turned to the front door, passed the living room. I hesitated in grabbing the door knob, wanting badly to turn around to get one last look of my “family.” But I didn’t. If I did, I’d have regrets about leaving them like that. I know I shouldn’t have but I can’t waste any more energy in burying the dead or else I’d get hungry too soon. I have to leave.

As I threw my old self away in that house, I looked over to my left, where my snow-covered car was. “I wish I could drive right now,” I thought. Nowadays, the snow on top of the ice is piled up so high that it’s impossible to drive at all. Because of that, almost no body lives on my street much less the city. Last I heard people have been going to the south. It did make sense since birds migrate south to a warmer climate to have their eggs.

I head out to main street. Trudging through this snow kept wearing me down so I stopped next where a bench used to be. I dropped my bag and looked at my right. Ell pond used to be so beautiful during this time of day. Now, it just looks forlorn… Melancholic… It’s not even a pond anymore. It’s just a pile of snow. I sat down next to my bag, just watching a pile of snow get bigger. My eyes started to get droopy and the next thing I knew was darkness taking over me.

When I came to, fog was surrounding the outskirts of the “pond.” Something’s coming…

~Inspired by Vanished Truth by Yuyoyuppe feat. Meramipop

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