A Delivery in The Rain

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic
A short story with a dark ending, and a message.

Submitted: December 30, 2011

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Submitted: December 30, 2011

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Priorities. There are always priorities. Every situation has different ones. When it comes to survival, there are three basic priorities that everyone is familiar with; food, water, and shelter. In the media, survival stories always emphasize the need for water. Water, of course, is very important: we die in 3 days without it. But really, think about it: how many days could you survive without a roof over your head? It depends on the situation; in the cold, not only do you need shelter from snow and rain, you also need warmth. In heat, you need shade. The weather is unforgiving. A roof is essential. Water? I’m not thirsty. Food? Not even thinking about it. But the rain... that damned rain. It’s relentless, it’s cold, it’s unforgiving. It makes everything the dreariest possible shade of grey. It is, to the point where it is archetypal as a symbol of sadness, loneliness, and bad omens. 
 
I’ve been on the plains all day. I haven’t seen a single roof, or even an opportunity of any kind. The rain is heavy, nonstop. It is relentless. It’s been pounding me, to the point where it starts to hurt. Rocks permeate the landscape, and every step is treacherous. I can see for miles in every direction, or at least I would be able to, if the rain would just let up. There are slight hills, rocks, grass. But no trees, and no shelter. It’s cold this time of season, and even so, the snow hasn’t yet fallen. The grass, as a result, has died, and withered, leaving it’s true beige colour to paint the ground. The temperature is just above the freezing mark, and so is the rain. The sky is dark, ominous, and foreboding. The clouds churn and writhe, and they are merciless in their assault. I can’t find the sun in the sky. The wind is also quite strong; it blows the rain around in a torrent, and makes it impossible to see at any distance. 
 
It doesn’t sound fun, but I have a job to do. I’m supposed to deliver this package to a nearby town. There aren’t any roads connecting them, so I decided to go for a walk. Little did I know, I would walk right into this mess. The package I’m carrying is heavy, it must weigh around 50 pounds. The man who asked me to deliver it payed me extra to make sure I wouldn’t look inside it. He said that most of it was just regular supplies, but some of it is special, and private. I’m not going to dishonour him, without a good reason anyways. So the package is strapped to my back. It’s quite combersome, and it limits my mobility a little, but I can handle it. It doesn’t make any distinct noises when I move with it, so I figure either everything is packed together very tightly, or whatever’s in it is fairly flexible. The package itself is made out of a hide leather material, which is quite similair to the material in my jacket.
 
Which brings me to a complaint: why the hell did I decide to wear this jacket? It’s completely soaked through with rain, and it’s getting pretty damn cold outside. It’s starting to stink, too. It’ll take a long time to dry this thing out. The same can be said for pretty much everything I’m wearing; blue jeans, some old worn out running shoes. It’s all soaked. It’s getting pretty miserable. It’s soaked through my hair and it’s constantly running down my face, into my eyes. Then I have to wipe my eyes every minute, which forces my hands out of my pockets, so they get soaked too. I just can’t win. At least I know I’m going to be warm and dry once I reach the town.
 
Which brings me to yet another complaint: where is the town? I know the general direction and area it’s in, but the rain is making it nearly impossible to spot it out. It’s nice when you can see where you’re headed, and usually I can. It’s not fun when you feel blind, and you get a certain sense of helplessness, even though you’re fairly sure of where you’re going. 
 
My thoughts would be at home, with my family: but my family, namely my wife, decided to get into an argument with me before I left. She thinks that I won’t be able to pay the bills delivering packages for people. It’s too much work with too little reward. She thinks it’s a ridiculous idea, and that I should quit and find a real job. I tried to explain to her that it’s a start, that it’s better than having nothing, that I need to start from scratch and work my way to the top. But she doesn’t listen, she just wants money, and to be successful, and she doesn’t have the patience. I hope that I can prove her wrong.
 
With all these thoughts in my head, I start to realize that I’m feeling pretty miserable, mentally and physically. I take a minute to reflect. I should stop being down on myself so much. I’ve got a whole life ahead of me, filled with great opportunities, and hard work and dedication is a key factor in whether I can capitalize on them. This simple walk to town is really turning into a meditation session. Pulling out some extra energy, I continue on with a new spark in my step.
 
I’m getting happier now. The rain is kind of refreshing. It keeps me awake. With every step I’m getting more and more confidence, and I’m feeling better. After walking for another hour or so, I think it’s finally starting to clear up. The rain is letting up, and the air is fresh and crisp. I see a break in the clouds, and the sun shines through, casting a beautiful beam of light right onto my target village. 
 
This invigorates me so much, that I don’t see the rocky slope in front of me. As I step onto it, my foot gives way, and the combined weight of my body and my package is forced onto it. I collapse, and the package flies off my back. I sit on the hill, writhing in agony as I hold my ankle, water dripping still from my face. I undo my soaked shoe, and peel off my sock to examine the damage. My ankle’s definitely broken. Just when I was getting somewhere. This just started out as a simple and easy delivery, and now my life’s in jeopary. Funny how things change. The village is still a few miles away. I swear to myself. How am I going to get out of this one?
 
I think to myself, maybe there’s something in the package I can use. Looking to my right, I see the package is sitting on the hill. So slowly, I drag my soaked body over to it. It takes about 5 minutes, and I finally reach the package. My hopes are once again getting up. I untie the package slowly, and I start thinking everything will be ok. And then I open it.
 
Inside, there’s a rock. That’s it. A big rock, sitting on the bottom of the bag. I think that there must be more than that in this thing. So I pull the rock out of the way, and I find a small note sitting on the bottom. Slowly I unfold it. It reads, simply;
 
“If you’re reading this, you’ve failed.”
 
As night comes, nobody rescues me. Not a single person comes to see me. I am sitting in the open, with no shelter, and no way to defend myself.  Hearing the howling, and the growls growing nearer, I sit there and cry, accepting my fate: the wolves are coming to tear me apart. 
 
 


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