Cataclysm: Road to Revolution
I can see my breath flow along with the path of the wind as I sit against a tree that has supported me for longer than it should have had to. But I can’t seem to will my body into action, or pry myself from this journal now that I have time to finally sit down and fill its pages. I would have never noticed the frail, red book if it wasn’t for me slipping on an ice covered log, that then had brought my eyes in direct contact with the book that was stuffed between two boulders on the side of a mountainous incline; hardly noticeable from an up-right person’s sight. The spine had been tinted green from the overgrowth and weather, but the cover still had the perfect red glow to it. And so I kept it.
I wish I could write this journal like most people would when I was back in school, but the truth is, I do not know the month, the day, or the year that I currently find myself in. But if knowing what time of the year it is is important to whomever may pick this up, then I can tell you that it is winter, and it is cold. Even the trees seem to shudder as we walk through, because they know as well as I that this is a chill only God could bring. It’s amazing my little party and I have made it this far to be honest. We have been through so much up to the time that we are in now; the cold, the heat, the starvation, the dehydration, and, of course, the army. But I am getting ahead of myself. Since death is possible at any minute for me, I better explain everything that has happened and hopefully continues to happen to me and my friends, so that when my time is up, maybe, just maybe, someone who cares will pick this up and know of the injustices that have happened and will happen again if not prevented in the future. After all, underestimating a few corrupt people is what leads to a state of being that I am currently stuck in.
It all started in January; a month filled with new hopes, and more changes. I had been sitting in my classroom, which could be found on the third floor, when they walked in. The classroom grew to an eerie silence, but they were obviously not there to accommodate to our obedient behavior; they were looking for a victim. They stood with a posture that clearly showed their guns, showing their ability to do whatever they wanted with us. We all innocently sat there, no one planning on making any trouble, when one of them picked up the golden cross that sat on the table in the front of the classroom. At first I thought this might be a government ordered massacre to show their power, but now I see that they were just here to defile our sacred objects and make us the aggressors. I turned to my friend Suri who sat next to me, and I wished I could tell her to hold me back if I started to rise, because I already felt my anger at a boiling point. After all, rising in the first place justifies immediate execution. The man spit on our beloved cross and threw it on the ground, and as if that wasn’t bad enough, he finished it off with a stomp, breaking it in two. Before I could make the realization of all that was happening around me, it was too late. It turns out that Suri was the one who needed to be held down. She was walking making her way up to the front of the classroom to not only yell at these Satanists, but also pick up the cross, something we all wanted to do. But she never even made it past the last row of desks before the bullet had found her head.
That was it; I, like the cross, was now broken. I didn’t even feel my legs rise as I started pointing and yelling obscenities at the group of people.. The people who had come into my class, broken my Lord’s image, and shot my friend, Suri, who was doing nothing but standing up for her faith. Now she was nothing more than a heap on the ground. Before I could even stop to think if maybe this wasn’t a good idea after all, the largest one had his hand around my throat and was carrying me out of the classroom and into the hallway. No bullet for me I guess. The shock, fear, and rush of the moment only resulted in a small struggle, but nothing that would get me loose. The man who held me picked me up and threw me against the wall of the hallway, and two of the others grabbed my arms, leaving me suspended and utterly helpless. “Well, I think we all know what should be done to you.” The man holding me said. They all found it so easy to smile and laugh, while all I could think of was how desperately I wanted to be able to breathe freely.
He maliciously drew out an eight inch knife and teasingly put the blade on my cheek. My face of horror must have been hilarious, because it sure seemed to crack them up. I tried to say no, and sorry, even though it was not I who was to blame, but all that came out of my strangled neck was a small whimper. “Shame it will be to mess up such a pretty face… oh well.” Oh well… as if I was just an animal up for slaughter. What had I done to deserve this? He slowly cut a deep gash into my face, starting at the right side of my forehead, then working his way down my eye and nose, and then finished at the bone of my left cheek. I tried to scream, but that only made breathing harder, and I realized that no one was coming to my aid. My eye immediately filled with the copper liquid, and soon my mouth had its own share of the blood.
They all released me and I fell into a mangled lump on the ground. I never thought that falling would feel so good. Of course when you have a gash to compare it to, I guess that was inevitable. The pain from the cut was immediate, not only sending pangs of pain to my head, but to my whole body. It was so fast that I had to check that they hadn’t put me on fire while they were at it. They all smirked while the large man wiped his blade on my white, uniform polo, staining it with my own blood that had been dealt by them. I was so furious yet so helpless at the same time, that whenever I tried to get the fiery words off my tongue, they just got swallowed back up. I heard their boots beating the ground as they made for the doors that led to the stairwell, and I knew any opportunity to say something for my case was disappearing. “Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.” I said with the perfect amount of sarcasm and certainty. One of the two girls in the group turned at me and said “What was that?” And so I repeated, this time more clearly for their sake. The girl whispered to one of the men, and I saw him approaching me quickly. I thought a bullet was going to be coming next, but instead I got a steel-toed boot to the stomach. Through the tears and pain I saw that the door had missed.
I peered down the end of the hallway to see if anyone was going to come out and help me out of my current state, but no one even peeked through the dusty windows in the doors. I suppose it was the wise thing to do, considering last time this happened it had been a trap and the savior had become the victim. Nonetheless, I realized how much I would love if someone was to come out and just bother to say that I’d be all right after all that had happened in the past half an hour or so. But that was not part of the job requirements for teachers, and certainly not allowed for students.
I began to drag myself to one of the barred windows at the end of the hall so that I could see how bad the cut really was. Through my one non cut eye I could see that my agony was justified. Half of my face was red, while the other half still fresh. I tried to touch it with my hand delicately, but by the way my hands were shaking I knew it would not be wise. I looked at it again and thought I might have seen bone, so I decided I didn’t want to see anymore. I pulled up my shirt just a bit so that I could see where he had kicked me, and found a welt that was quickly coloring waiting for me.
I knew I was on the verge of a break down as images of Suri and the foul smiles of the group came back into mind, when suddenly Blake came into the hallway. “Well it doesn’t look too bad.” He gave me a small smile to signal he was joking, as if I didn’t already know. I knew it looked horrible, but at least he didn’t freak out, because that would have been just enough to send me over the edge. Which he knew. “Yeah, well, it’s been better.” I tried to smile, but it didn’t work out as well as I had planned. He extended his hand and, of course, I took it. He put my arm around his shoulders and began to take me towards the only nurse in school who would unlock the doors when a victim came to her door.
“So did it hit?” We stopped for a second and I looked up at him. “What?” He rolled his eyes jokingly and said, “The door, did it hit them?” I looked down for a moment and then said, “So you all heard that then?” He then put his hands on my shoulders and said, “I don’t think there was anyone on this floor that didn’t.” I held my head high for as long as I could and said “Well the door missed, but his boot to my stomach didn’t.” He gave a little smirk and said, “Nice try Des, not like anyone else would have done it.”
Which I knew was a lie, because he would have done it in a heartbeat. He was the one, after all, that had taught me about what our government was doing. We have been friends since our first day in school, and ever since then, we have told each other everything. And so, I am the one who hears his rants about secret government camps and end of the world conspiracies. But I can’t say that I mind too much, because in return he listens to me, and that gives us both a bit of sanity back.
As we silently walked towards the nurse’s room, going slowly for my own benefit, I couldn’t help but think about how he had called me Des. My name is Destiny, but when we first met, he thought that Des had more of a ring to it. I have always liked how he called me that, but he hasn’t since two years ago, since nicknames may be secret codes, which were then strictly prohibited. Was it because I went through this that he decided now was the time to break that rule? I didn’t know what to think at that time to be honest, because not only was my head hurting, but straightening out his thoughts was all but impossible.
When we got to the nurse’s office, Blake did the knock that signaled someone was hurt in a way no other nurse would bother to help. The lights were off, but we both knew she was there, just hiding so that they wouldn’t find out her secret. She peered through the window and once seeing our familiar faces; well at least Blake’s; mine was a little messed up right now, and she opened the door. “Come in, come in please! Oh Destiny, I never thought I would have to be treating you dearie!” The little lady who had always treated us like her own grandchildren gestured towards the bed as she hobbled over to the cabinet. I lay down, feeling safe for the first time today. Blake sat next to the bed, ready to help me or her if needed. We both had always been the ones who came to help those who had just been beat if possible, and so we both knew how much time and effort cleaning up the wound takes.
The room began to spin a bit, but I refused to black out, because I’m pretty sure that that only leads to more problems. I felt a little bad about cutting off Blake’s circulation, but I felt that if I was to let go of his hand, I’d be letting go of my consciousness with it. So I held on.
I was feeling like death in the last minute or so, my skin cold with sweat. I guess when people feel like this they ask questions they truly want to know the answers to, because one came out. “I have to ask… why do you bother to help students, when no one else will?” She smiled and said, “I’ll tell you later, but right now let’s focus on you.” She took a warm, damp cloth and put it on my face. I could have sworn my face was sizzling, and the towel was being tainted red, but she instructed me to stay calm and relax. And so I took a deep breath and tried to forget the world around me, and even though I knew what would come next, I couldn’t seem to care. She took the needle and plunged it into my side. My world went dark.