State of Decay

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

A man coming home.

It was near twilight, in the abandoned town whose name was forgotten to all but one. The lonely man walked down the empty concrete street filled with weeds growing from the cracks. For no one has lived here since humanity was dying off. Now this man may be the last man on earth, whether others existed scattered throughout the planet, he couldn’t have possibly have known. For as far as he was concerned he was the last and dying. It was fall although nearing winter, so the plants and growing trees that have been slowly consuming the houses and buildings were dead with their leaves blowing in the wind. That and the sounds of birds were the only things he could hear, as he was walking down (oh let’s call it memory lane) the dead silence of Memory Lane for the last time of his life. His purpose was to rest in his old childhood home before the end.

When he was getting nearer he started humming an old tune from simpler times. It was a sweet tune that for some reason gave him the image of a sunlight day and walking through rows of apple trees as a child, or just walking through a plain meadow out in the middle of nowhere also as a child. These were the stuff that sweet nostalgia was made of in his eyes, although he didn’t know if these were actual memories or just simple images his mind has conjured up over the years from the absolutely mundane. It didn’t matter though, the emotions were there regardless.

When the house was just in sight, he stopped humming for there was no need to anymore. Each step he took felt like a joyful leap through the air even though he was just walking all the same. By the time he got to the door, the emotions became that of peace and serenity as a smile came over his face. He turned the doorknob and walked in. Somehow everything was exactly how he left it when his parents died years ago, except for the accumulated dirt and dead tree limbs that have burst through the windows along with their leaves scattered over the floor.

Each step he took brought back such happy memories, although he would later chuckle and admit that they were most likely being seen through rose-tinted eyes. But at this point, it doesn’t matter what the actual events of the past were fully happy or not. At one point it might’ve had, but that point has long passed now. As he was walking through the memories with both of his parents and that of his siblings, He, at last, came to the door to his own room. Then with a simple push of the door, he could see his bed and art equipment all right where he left them. He took a quick look around and remembered all the frustration and satisfaction he got out of his creations and laughed at it all knowing that it all only meant something to him and those close. For all of his paintings were gone, the only thing that mattered was the effort and the rewards he gained through that.

He left his room and walked upstairs, there wasn’t really much up there, for it was simply his parent’s bedroom. However, it was always a punch in the gut when he remembered they weren’t there anymore. In the end, it was just him standing alone out of everyone else he was the last one standing. There will be no comfort for him in the end outside of his own.

It was nearing Sunset now, luckily his parent’s room had a nice size window for him to open and look outside of. When he did, the blast of cold wind that hit his face felt pleasing to his tired state of being. So for the last time, he watched the sunset on this cloudy day at home. The beautiful reds and oranges in the sky and clouds soothed him along with the sounds of the wind, the birds, and the rustling of the leaves. As the sun went down and darkness consumed the sky, he went back downstairs to his old bedroom. However, before lying down, he took out the only remaining canvas and brush. He saw that the only paint that was left was black, so he dipped his brush into the black paint, then went to work. Although he didn’t try to create a picture of any kind, this time it was just some simple words. He looked at it one last time and gave a sweet little smile. By this point he was getting really tired, so he laid down in his old bed and curled up under the blanket then drifted off into eternal sleep.

In this old forgotten town down Memory Lane, there lies an old house and in this old house whose stuff in it belonged to the last owners of the house, not to the man (or his parents) who now lies dead in the bed of some stranger he didn’t know. However, there is a canvas with words hastily painted onto it reading “NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS, I WANT TO BELIEVE THAT THIS WORLD IS BEAUTIFUL”.


Submitted: March 13, 2021

© Copyright 2021 Araya Souren. All rights reserved.

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