Weekly Serial Book 8 Chapter 2: Diary of a Man

(Author’s Note: Early on in my blogging, to honor the old pulp magazine serials, I began a weekly serial series of various of my stories. I have decided to repost those stories. Each Friday will feature a new chapter until a story ends. Then I will begin a new story. Enjoy!)

Chapter 1 – All Is Still

Chapter 2 – I Crawl

May 26

Began crawling as soon as I awoke this morning. It’s the easiest way to forget about how still everything is. I crawled a few more precious hundred yards. At least I’m making some progress.

I hope the berries I’m eating and the streams I’ve been drinking from aren’t contaminated. It really doesn’t matter anyway. I’m probably contaminated.

I stopped crawling earlier today, knowing that my strength is giving out. Good night, or is it? Day is night to me and my days definitely aren’t good, so why should complete darkness be so much better? Perhaps because I can’t see the complete and total destruction about me. Well, it’s getting too dark to see to write so this definitely is, “Good night.”

May 27

All I did today was crawl, crawl, crawl. Don’t know how long I can take this constant pain. How much time do I have? W ill I ever know what really happened? Who am I gonna tell any­way?

May 28

Didn’t think I was even going to be able to move today, but I managed. It paid off.

I reached the bluff overlooking Town around midday as far as I can tell and just stared in horror. The city that had been considered the most beautiful in this part of the country lay in desolation. Nothing remained of Westminster Heights and the sprawling estates that had lain along its luscious, tree-lined avenues. Emerald Fountain, which had glittered like a beautiful jewel in the green velvet of abundant foliage that had surrounded it, now lay in ruins; a stony mass from which a meager trickle of greasy water ran. The mammoth office buildings that had risen so gracefully into the blue sky were no more than twisted hunks of concrete and metal.

The . .

Oh, I can’t go on. Such desolation and destruction only melts my soul within me and makes me sink into the pit of my waning existence. I know that all mortal things must return to the ashes and dust from which they arose, but why? Why so pre­maturely? “The answer’s blowin’ in the wind.”

(Originally posted here March 2012. Written in 1985 at age 18).

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