This is arguably one of the best stories i've ever written.
It was a collab with shnieder2 on DA
Hope you's enjoy it as much as the people on DA Enjoyed it
The Lost Journal
I laid curled up on my bed reading a book Father had given me from his ventures out of the cave. The book I was reading was "Lord of the Rings". It was written by a human called JRR Tolkien. I love reading human literature and I would love to one day venture into the towns and cities and see what other literature I could find from the remains of the humans that used to live here.
My name is Ash, I'm a sixteen year old bipedal dragon. I'm about six foot tall, my scales are sky blue as are my wings. I also look like every other dragon, with me having two white horns protruding from the back of my head.
My father is the clan leader of about twenty-five thousand dragons in our group, there are similar size groups throughout this abandoned world we have come across almost four years ago.
The planet was called Earth, its rich in plants and wildlife, you could say this planet was paradise. However there is something drastically missing on paradise. The planets original inhabitants, Humans. I believe I was told they seemed to have just dropped everything and left.
All their Cities, Towns, Villages...empty
For the better part of four years every dragon clan has been living in dug out caves and tunnels, but it wasn't a permanent solution, we've had some harsh winters and leaders throughout the world decided it was time to start making use of the human's abandoned homes. Towns and Cities had remained off limits, however there were plenty of dwellings that could be used as homes in the countryside.
I had been begging Father for weeks to let me join the teams going out and reviewing all potential homes that could be used. Though he's been very reluctant to let me leave the cave, I was on my way down to the main hall that was being prepared for the fourth anniversary celebration feast. A celebration we have every year to celebrate our arrival on our new home.
I was looking for Father to have another attempt at being allowed to join the exploration teams, and as I walked into the main chamber Father Immediately called out to me.
"Ash, come here." The Clan Leader said as a command.
"Yes father." I said to my father
"Don't think I know why you've come looking for me Ash." He said "Anyway you can stop the begging I'm granting your request to join the teams going out to look at homes left abandoned by the humans"
"YES!!!" I slipped out, clenching my claws into a fist
"NEED I remind you..." Father cut me off "That you're to stay clear of all the old towns and cities...We're only looking at homes in the country side...there are plenty of homes that we can use without running the risk of venturing into the abandoned towns and cities."
"Yes father I know the rules and I know the dangers." I said
"Here." Father handed me a list of sites to visit each pin-pointed on a map "Visit each of these three dwellings you'll be paired with ¬¬¬¬¬Kore and you'll be given a radio. You're to report in the conditions of each site for potential habitation."
"Thank You Father"
"Yeah yeah, now get outta here before I change my mind"
I quickly left the main chamber and headed to the equipment room to get ready to head out into the world. I grabbed a bag filled with food and water and a radio and left the equipment room bumping into my partner Kore as I was leaving.
"You ready?" He asked me.
Kore was a foot taller than and ten years older as well. He too was blue scales except his chest plates were white.
"Yeah let's get going shall we." I said.
We headed straight for the main entrance of the cave, giving notice of our flight plan and our radio schedules. I immediately opened my wings and took to the skies with Kore not far behind me.
Our first stop was a quick 15mile flight to an old farm house, by the looks of the main house it seems to have been through a fire and had been abandoned for quite some time before our arrival. The barn was in relatively good shape and we radioed in recommending that the place could be restored and there was potential to use the land to increase our food reserves.
The next stop was an impressive country home, it took us about an hour to get here. Following instructions we called in to say we arrived at our next stop and that we would report in shortly on potential.
From the outside the place looked in very good condition. The vines growing up the outside of the building gave the building a look of character. We had to bust the front door in to get into the premises, the first impressions of the house continued inside. All of the rooms were very large, it was also highlighted with the high ceilings which would make this house a perfect home for one of the dragon families. Something however was putting me off about the place, if I didn't know any better I would have thought that it was still being lived in. Nothing seemed out of place, each of the rooms was arranged neat and tidily. I shrugged the feeling off as I entered what I guess was a small library or office.
I've got a few old human stories back home and I was bored reading them over and over again. I began looking over the books that was kept in this room. Some of my friends found it strange I could easily read the human language known as English, but I didn't care.
My eyes were drawn to a book that had a very detailed drawing of a dragon, breathing fire out of its mouth. I've never seen art as good as this before, but then I have only had one or two opportunities to get out of the cave. I opened the journal and read the first entry.
Dear Diary, wait diary sounds to girly. Maybe journal, yeah that sounds better. Ok let's try this again.
Well, I'm kinda new at this whole journal thing, I'm not really sure what to write. It's not like there aren't a lot of things for me to write about though, dad never being home because he is always at work, my little brother always being a bother, school, girls, there are just so many things. I guess I should start at the introductions since you don't know anything about me. Well, my name is John, I'm currently in high school, I have a younger brother, Adam, a mom, and a dad that is never here. Adam is like any little brother I've heard about, and then some. He is more than a little annoying, he practically idolizes me and follows me wherever I go. It gets so annoying sometimes, I just want my space, but no, I have to be good and play with little Adam or I get in trouble. And my dad thinks he has the right to tell me that, he is never even home! Oh god how I hate his work, he won't even tell me what it is, but it takes him away from me and I hate that. All that I do know about his work is that he is a scientist, he won't tell me anything else. He is such a tight lipped person, and then when he is never around he decides that giving me a journal, you, would be enough to make up for everything that he missed. The only reason I'm even writing in this stupid journal is because I thought the cover was interesting. On it there is a very detailed picture of a dragon, and it is breathing fire out of its mouth. It is a damn cool drawing. I think my dad was the one who painted it, I've seen some of his drawings before, and they are really good. Painting this must have taken a lot of time and effort, so the least I could do is at least try it out. This doesn't mean it makes up for him not being here, but at least he is trying. But you know what, I'm not gonna talk about him anymore, I don't want my first entry to be some oh I am so alone and angst thing. I may be a teenager, but I'm not like that. I'm a nice guy, I get good grades, I have lots of friends, and that is pretty much all there is to know about me. Until next time.
Now how do I end this, never had to do this, might as well stick with what I got.
Until next time.
I snapped the book shut pondering what I've just found
"Ash?" I heard Kore calling me "Ash? Everything alright up there, it's time to report in."
"Yeah everything's fine up here Kore, I'm just coming."
I have never read a diary that was written about a human's life, what confused me however was why a human diary would have drawing of a dragon on the front cover. I put the book in my bag and planned to read more when I got home, but I had no intention of showing anyone else.
I left the library and we reported in our status and the status of the country home. We then took off to our next stop.
The third and last stop for the day was another farm house. Again it was much like the first house except it hadn't been through a fire, it just looked old and run down. We entered the house cautiously we split up. I took upstairs while Kore reviewed the downstairs landing. I just climbed the stairs, but before I could start exploring the rooms, the true condition of the house was immediately discovered as the floor gave in and I went crashing through the floor to the kitchen below. I felt a sharp pain in my right foot as I twisted it on impact.
"ROOOOOAAR!!!" I roared in pain upon my landing, Kore came running into the kitchen his eyes saw the hole in the ceiling I made from when I came through it.
"Are you alright?" Kore asked me.
"No!" I snarled. "Think I twisted my right foot on landing, here help me outside this place is a dead duck, let's get back home so I can get this wrapped up."
Kore helped me up and I hobbled outside and we reported that the third place was uninhabitable. I also reported in that I was injured and was returning home. I snarled in pain again as I took off. I was glad I didn't hurt my wings from the accident otherwise I don't know how I'd get back. We got back half an hour later. I lowered my head as I saw my father waiting at the entrance for me. I landed rather clumsily and again snarled in pain from my twisted foot.
"I KNEW IT WAS A MISTAKE LETTING YOU GO OUT THERE!!!" Were the first words out of my father mouth.
"Father honestly I'm fine, it's just a sprain."
"I DON'T CARE IF YOU JUST CUT YOURSELF, YOU WERE STUPID AND RECKLESS. YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO MAKE SURE THE PLACE WAS SAFE BEFORE ENTERING, YOU DON'T ENTER ANY BUILDING WITHOUT MAKING SURE IT WAS STRUCTUALLY SOUND!!!" Farther continued yelling at me
"Now...drop your bag off, get your ankle checked out and wrapped, and then get to your room and rest it."
I didn't argue. I was just glad he didn't throw me off the exploration teams. After getting my ankle checked out and bandaged I hobbled to my room to rest it. I had forgotten deliberately to drop my bag off in the equipment room as it still had my new book in it. I placed the bag down and hobbled over to my bed and read another journal entry.
Well, in case you couldn't tell, I've finally decided on a way to start my entries into you. God, I feel so weird talking to you like you are a living thing, but since I'll be the only one that reads this, nobody is gonna notice. Anyways, I found the coolest thing today inside of you. Yes, it was inside of you, it was in-between a couple pages, and I dropped you by accident, but when I went to pick you up it was there. I guess I should tell you exactly what it was, it was a scale. I'm not sure if it is real though, because it is larger than any scale I have ever seen. I will admit that I haven't seen many scales, but from the ones I've seen, this one is a lot larger. It is about an inch long. It is also blue, sky blue to be exact and it is really hard, I can't bend it at all. I wonder if Dad discovered some kind of new species of reptile and this came from it. Ah who am I kidding, there is no way this came from anything living, it is way too large and the colour is all off. It would make no evolutionary sense to have something with sky blue scales, unless it lived in the sky. And I don't think there is anything that can do that, well I guess dragons could, but nothing real would have sky blue scales this size. Oww, I just cut my finger on this scale, it is sharp. It doesn't look too bad, just a small scratch. Guess I should be more careful when handling this thing, I just hope it doesn't get infected. I should probably keep it in a safe place and put it in something so that I don't scratch myself accidentally. I got just the idea, I'll use one of dad's old handkerchiefs that should be a good thing to wrap it in. And done, I've done it and it isn't stabbing me anymore. I take that as a triumph. Well, I guess this ends this journal entry. Surprisingly this is kinda freeing to do.
Signing off for now,
"What the heck have I got here, how can a human have a scale?" I said aloud as I closed the journal looking at the front cover with the drawing of a dragon on it. I had a lot of unanswered questions like how would humans know about dragons? Granted the drawing on the front cover showed the dragon as a four legged beast bursting flame from its jaws. Sure we could breathe fire but I don't know any dragon that walked on four legs. I really wanted to read more, but I was eyeing the equipment bag that I still had to hand in. I really didn't want another rant from father for not returning equipment.
I got to my feet gingerly grabbed the bag and headed out of my chamber and hobbled down the cave's corridor to the equipment room to hand in the bag.
Once the bag was stored away and signed back in, I headed back to my chamber, but not before I ran into father
"Ash, I thought I told you to rest that foot."
"I know father and I was." I said
"Doesn't look that way to me." he said eyeing me.
"I know...I...forgot to return the equipment bag after stopping by the medical chamber to get my foot wrapped up. I just returned it and I was heading back to my chamber to rest."
"Okay fine, get going and make sure you do rest that foot or I'll think again about whether I'm doing the right thing letting you out there." He said as he turned right down another corridor and I went straight ahead heading back to my own chamber to continue reading that journal.
well, yesterday was a lot of fun. I had to go outside and help fix a leak in the roof, it was so much fun I can't wait to do it again. NOT! That job was so awful, I can't believe mom made me do that, but it was worth it because it just adds to my favour when I ask her if I can go camping after school is over. I really hope she lets me do it, but I should probably find some other things to butter her up with. What else...oh yeah, I've kept the scale in my pocket and the cloth is keeping it from stabbing me. My finger hasn't healed yet though, but it has only been two days. It shouldn't be too bad at all, sometimes these things take time to heal. Huh, am I saying that to reassure you, or to reassure myself? Well, guess it doesn't matter, I'm gonna be signing off again.
Signing off again,
This is just gonna be a quick update since I'm doing some more work around the house. Nothing really interesting has happened, but my finger still hasn't healed. It is actually starting to change colours around the area of the cut. I think it might be infected.
Until next time,
The infection has gotten worse, now the entire top of my finger has turned blue. I'm kinda scared, I hope it gets better soon. I wonder if there was anything on that scale that could have caused the infection, like some weird bacteria or something. Ah who am I kidding, it's probably because of me working outside before and something got in it. I should just wash it out a lot and it should be fine. Anyways, there is some good news. Mom said yes! She is actually letting me go camping alone this summer, I think it was me working in the roof that did her in. It is gonna be awesome, I'm gonna have my tent set-up, and if it is nice enough I'll just sit under the stars. It will be me vs. nature, I can't wait!
Signing off again,
I got in trouble today at school. I beat up Landon, but it wasn't like it wasn't provoked or anything. Landon is the school bully and he thinks that he is so superior to all of us, and then today he tried to steal my stuff. I tried to get it back from him, but he just wouldn't give it up, then something snapped in me. I acted him with an almost animalistic ferocity, I broke his wrist and I think I gave him a concussion. I don't know what came over me, but maybe I'm getting sick? I usually never fight, and I don't even know how I took out Landon in a fight, he is so much bigger than me and more experienced. Well, luckily for me, the principal knew that Landon had been doing this kinda stuff for a while, and I just got off with a slap on the wrists because I am usually a good student. Go favouritism! Mom wasn't too happy about it either, she didn't like that I got into a fight in school, but she let it slide too because apparently, Landon was the one who attacked me first. That's what everyone says at least, but I'm not sure. I don't even remember it, all I remember is just twisting his wrist until it broke. God it was an awful noise, I tried to say I was sorry. But the truth is that I don't feel sorry at all, he deserved it for every moment he tormented someone, for all the pain he caused, that was just a small token of what he deserves. God what's wrong with me, I never used to be like this, I used to be so peaceful, but hopefully it was just my anger getting the best of me and it won't happen again.
Something is wrong with my finger, it feels rough and it is still blue. I'm really scared, I haven't shown mom it because I'm afraid she is gonna freak out and have me amputate it or something. I just don't know what is going on at all. I've started wearing gloves because I'm so afraid of anyone finding out, and the area of infection has grown larger. It's now up to the knuckle. From the tip of my finger down to the knuckle it is blue, and rough. It's kinda sandpapery, but that isn't quite right. I think the best thing to describe it is the texture of the scale, but that is just crazy. Also, my nail is starting to darken, this is all way to freaky for me. I really hope that nothing bad happens and that this all gets better.
I was stunned as I closed the journal. I wanted to keep on reading, but we had a feast and I need to get ready and by ready I meant a wash. The humans may have had a need for wearing clothes but we didn't.
I limped out my private chamber and headed down the corridor to the wash room to get washed. You could say it was ingenious the way we constructed our homes from caves with miles of corridors going off in all directions. We had electricity and running hot water, but as I stood there under the hot water, it raining down on me. I couldn't help but think back to what that human was writing in his journal. He had cut himself on a scale he found in the said journal and over the course of the next couple of day he's writing that his hand is changing from a possible infection. I decided I was going to ask father some questions about the humans who used to live here. I wanted to clear up some of my most nagging questions like how did we arrive on this planet, why are we living with just the bare essentials if we arrived here on ships. I know I wasn't the only one thinking these as no one seems to have a clue how we actually came to this planet and built a basic home for ourselves.
It was only then that I noticed I had been so deep in thought that I realised I was late for the feast. Turning off the water and putting the bandaging back on twisted foot that I headed straight for the main hall.
When I got there I headed straight for the top table and took a seat next father who immediately lowered his head and said."Where have you been? You missed the speeches."
I didn't say anything at first, I just grabbed some roasted stakes and started eating
"Sorry I fell asleep and then realised I hadn't had a wash after my trip outside." I said looking over the hall every dragon chatting away about their day to day activities with their neighbours.
"Ash" Father said "Where'd you get it?"
I almost gagged on the steak I was chewing. "Get what?"
"Son I know you better than that. You're fascinated with human literature, not to mention you almost choked on your steak as soon as I mentioned it." He said with a smile on his muzzle.
"Okay okay...you win, it's a human journal or diary so to speak. I picked it up at our second stop, beautiful house and safe even if I was a bit reckless at the third stop. If I didn't know any better I'd say the place was still being lived in."
"Really...?" His tone changed and I couldn't tell what he was thinking so I carried on.
"I've only read a couple of entries, the boy who calls himself John is constantly complaining about his father always being away on work. He's always moaning about his little brother...Adam I think he names him as following him everywhere he goes and keeps annoying him. And trying to soften up his mother to let him go camping alone." I said, I wasn't ready to tell him about the rest of what this John had written. "I think its fascinating reading into a human's life."
"Hmmm, Ash I wanna hear more about this house you found this journal in and more about what's written in it. I want you to come to my chambers tomorrow and we'll talk more on it then." He then got up left the table. I watched him talk to a few dragons before he left the main hall.
I took this as my queue to finish my own meal and head back to my chamber. Since I was going to have to speak to father about the house and journal in the morning best I could do was keep on reading, and that's exactly what I did when I got back to my own chambers.
Mom is letting me go on the trip, even with my sickness. I can't believe she is actually still letting me go on this camping trip, I haven't even been in school for the past couple of weeks. I think I haven't been to school since that week I got in that fight with Landon. God, it seems like so long ago, I actually kinda miss going to school. Being home for over a month is not fun at all. Most kids in my position would be ecstatic and happy to be out of school and for my reason to boot, but I'm not them. Anyways, I'm really glad that my teachers let me do my school work at home, mom would pick it up each day and let me work on it. It was hard, but luckily I'm smart so it wasn't that bad. What else, oh yeah, I've been getting a lot of stuff from colleges. They are all like "We know who you are and you will fit in here" It is kinda funny, I actually remember that my favourite one was from some college, I think it was MIT, that said "We aren't going to pretend we know anything about you". Needless to say it was funny. Hopefully I'll be better by the time I have to start looking at colleges, the worst part about this is my throat. It feels so unnatural, but it's getting better. Well, I think I'm gonna sign off for now, I got to get started packing for my solo camping trip tomorrow. Until tomorrow.
It only occurred to me after I finished the journal entry that it seemed like I missed something. Wasn't he just complaining about his finger? I opened the journal to a page back to see if I missed anything, but there was nothing there. It seems that the entries were ripped out. There is the journal entry on April 24th, then just ripped pages. Then there is the one I just read. Maybe if I read the next entry, it will explain what happened. I decided to do just that and started to read the next entry.
Sorry that I forgot to write yesterday, it was just so hectic getting everything together. But I am finally here, in the wilderness, all alone. I've actually been here for about 24 hours now. It is so beautiful, I haven't been outside much recently because of my sickness, I forgot how much I enjoyed it out here. The peace and quiet, and just being out here in nature alone. I think I've grown used to solitude, being home all day for a month does that to a person, but being alone out here is so much different. Because being out here, among the trees and the animals, you aren't really alone, there is some kind of life out there. Oh yeah, I found the perfect spot to set up camp, it was inside of a cave of all places. I'm not sure how I found the cave exactly, I just kinda stumbled on it, and one cautious check later I found the perfect spot to stay. It was sheltered so I did not even need to put up my tent last night. And yes, I did check for bears and such, I'm not crazy. Anyways it is a really nice cave, I haven't had a chance to explore it yet, I've been climbing in the trees. I don't think I've been able to stuff like that for years, it was just so much fun. I may have been stuck inside for so long, but right now I feel healthier and stronger than I have ever had. I actually did 15 chin-ups on one of the sturdier branches today. A couple months ago I could barely do 2. Well, I'm gonna go explore that cave now, it just seems too cool to not explore. Hopefully I'll survive my adventure.
Today is my last day out here, I'm gonna miss it out here, but dad was very adamant about me being back before dinner tonight. That means I have to start the trek back in a few hours. Hopefully it won't start raining so I can make it back in time. I think dad has some kind of big announcement to make, and he wants me to be there for it. Like I said before, I'm gonna miss it out here, it was a ton of fun. I got to climb in trees and sleep in caves, speaking of caves, when I explored the cave last night I found out that it was huge. It didn't just go back a few hundred feet, it was an entire system of caves. I wouldn't be surprised if it went on for miles, but unfortunately I didn't get a chance to explore it because I was afraid that I would get lost. It looked really confusing, I almost forgot the way back, and I wasn't that far in at all. Before I leave this place, I'm gonna make sure that I leave mark. Now what to do...wait I got it. I'm gonna carve my name into the rock, here's hoping that it doesn't break my knife. And I did it, I got it done. My name is now carved in the rock for all time, I made the mark behind a little crevice in the rock. Originally it looked like there wasn't a space at all, but then I found this space and it was perfect. Well, now I gotta get all my stuff together to get ready for this trek back home.
Missing it already,
May 31st, a couple hours after my last entry
SHIT!!! It isn't just raining outside, it is pouring. I can't even step outside without being covered in water, and I don't think it would be safe for me to go home in this weather. I can barely see 5 feet in front of me. Dad is gonna be pissed that I missed his big announcement. Whatever it is, well, I'm just gonna go to sleep now, it's not like this can get any worse. Wait, I take that back it probably can get worse. Well, now I am actually gonna go to sleep. Hopefully the weather will be better after my little nap.
Taking a small nap,
I folded over a page in the journal to mark where I had read to and closed the book. I was disappointed that some entries had been removed from the journal so I had no way to tell what actually happened to his infection. Either way I knew I was in for an awkward chat with Father tomorrow. I was going to give him the journal and get him to read the entries and see what he made of it all. But something was nagging at me that father was hiding something from our brief chat at the feast. I just then curled up on my bed and fell asleep.
The following morning I re-read the journal entries I read last night and something told me that this human once used this large network caves and corridors as his shelter when he went camping. I knew I had to go and see father but I wanted to check something first. I grabbed the journal and headed to the entrance to find this crevice where john had marked his name in the rock.
There it was the name 'JOHN' cut into the surface of the rock not far from the entrance of the cave. I couldn't believe it that at one point in the past a human had once camped here and I just happened to find his journal that confirmed it all.
I came out of my train of thought and headed off to Fathers Chamber, I wanted to find out if he was hiding something. I walked into Fathers chamber to find him looking through an old note book which he hastily put away as he saw me walking into the chamber.
"Ash my son how's the ankle?" He said.
"Still a little tender, but better."
"Good. I wanna see this house where you got that journal."
"What? When?" I said a little stunned at the statement.
"Later today. First of all, I want to hear more about the house and I want to have a look at that journal."
"Err sure." I said handing him the journal. "I've read up to the fold in the book. Father how would Humans know about Dragons?" I continued on, pointing out the drawing on the front cover.
"From what I've managed to piece together son is that humans were a very confusing race. One minute they're peaceful, imaginative and capable of amazing pieces of literature, art as you've seen by evidence of this front cover and the human books you've managed to get your claws on. As well as their music which can be quite breathe taking. A minute later however they can turn violent over silly squabbles on land, property, oil and religion." He said.
"You didn't answer my question" I said as I watched him read the journal he showed no emotion across his face.
"Tell me about this house." He said as he continued reading the journal.
I didn't dare talk back to him so I dropped it and started describing the house, that it was in immaculate condition, how it look like it hadn't been abandoned and was still being lived in the only evidence that showed the lack of life was that the land the house occupied was overgrown and out of control. By the time I finished telling everything I saw about the house he was just staring at the front cover lost in thought, if I didn't know my Father I'd say he was almost depressed about something.
He eventually came out of his stupor and handed me back the journal.
"I really shouldn't be handing this back to you, I think should just forget about the humans that used to live here and think about properly joining the efforts to build a working society. But I know I'd never hear the end of it from you, you're fascinated about the race that used to live here and I know you will end up using all your free time trying to find out what happened to them." He said. "Now I must attend to a few matters I'll come calling for you later and we'll go and re-inspect that house."
"Okay Father." I got up and left my father's chambers, I didn't have much planned till father came calling for me so I just returned to my own chamber to read more of the journal until it was time to leave.
She's dead. She died in my arms. MOM JUST DIED IN MY ARMS!! It was awful, to see her so weak, she was barely awake when I found her, and then I had to hold her to keep her from falling over. I can still see her eyes, those eyes were horribly bloodshot, but the worst part was that it was as if she no longer had the will to live. Her eyes were soulless. As if some kind of magical demon stole her soul from her. What am I talking about? My mother just died, it wasn't some demon that stole her soul, no it was much worse. It was my father, I don't know how he did it, but I know that he killed her. I hate him, I HATE HIM SO MUCH!! HE KILLED MY MOTHER! Wanna know how I know that that bastard killed her, he wrote a note. Here, I'll even write it in here just so that you can have it etched into yourself.
I am very, very sorry that I could not tell you this in person. The words that I write here will show you nothing about why I did what I did. It is actually a marvel what I, nay what we accomplished here today. What you are going to witness is my life's work unfold. Today at 12:00 my associates and I are releasing a virus into the air around the entire globe, nothing will escape it. We have made so much of this virus and have made so many plans and back-up plans that it simply won't fail. We have run every possible simulation, in the end our goal is accomplished. Do you wish to hear my goal, son? First let me tell you why I am writing all of this to you and not trying to hide it. This virus is going to destroy you John, not just you, but the entire human race. It will not affect any other species, we made sure of that, it will only affect humans. I know I won't ever be able to make you understand in this note, but you have to at least understand this. Humanity was going to destroy itself eventually, but it was going to destroy this world, this paradise in the process. We decided that we couldn't allow that so we made sure that we would quicken the inevitable, while letting the world stay. I really wish that I could have told you this in person, maybe then you would see that I am doing the right thing here. You may hate me for what I have done, but it was for the best. Whether you believe me or not.
How can he do this? Just what gives him the right to decide that humanity is going to destroy itself, so that he might as well do it. That isn't right, there can be no possible rationale for what he just admitted to. He is going to die as well, how someone can value life so much that they would destroy life. It doesn't make any fucking sense! I can't believe it, I am going to die. I am going to die just like my mother, and I am going to die just like my fucking father, and I am going to die just like Adam. Oh god! Adam! I can't believe I forgot about him, oh god he had so much to live for. HE WAS ONLY 12 and yet my father still went through with his plan. Adam is missing out on so much, he was so bright, always begging me to read him stories at night, always wanting to follow me around, I miss him so much. I'll never hear his laughter again, never get to teach him how to shave, or teach him about girls. I just want my little brother and mom back, is that so much to ask for? I'll even settle for me seeing their smiles one last time. But I'll never get to do that, never get to see anything again all because of my dad and his messed up reality! IT IS JUST SO FUCKING UNFAIR!! Why did you have to do this dad? Why?
I couldn't believe what I was reading, I had always wanted to learn what happened to the human race, but never in an entire life span did I expect to discover it in a journal I had taken from any old house.
But there it was...the whole reason why humans no longer existed, the boy's father was responsible for their downfall, he killed himself and an entire race. I read on with eagerness to read the young human's dying words
I buried mom yesterday. I put her right near next to the garden that she loved, she worked on that garden every day. I can't talk about it right now, it is just causing me to tear up, and right now I need to write something down. I am planning on leaving, I am going to go to the city, and then the world and see if anyone else is alive and if there is any way to fix this. I mean, I'm still alive, I don't know why, maybe the virus is slow acting on some people, and if so, I can't waste any time. I'm going to be back in a year, on the anniversary of mom's death. I'll stay for a month, 2 weeks before the death, and 2 weeks after. I think that this would be best, it gives me a reason to survive, something to push me forward and a place to collect my thoughts. I am going to start with the city, maybe there will be someone else there.
Hoping for the best,
June 1st, one year later
The world is a ruin. My father didn't lie, everyone is dead. When I got to the city almost a year ago, it was horrible, people were dead where they were standing, they were just corpses now. With no life to support them, they just fell wherever they were. It was horrible to see, these people all looked like mom, their eyes blank and soulless. I still don't know why I survived it, I couldn't find any other survivors. I searched this entire country for anyone else that was still alive, and nothing. Just dead cities and people as dead as the cities. The bodies in most places I saw were rotting, corpses, animals were feeding on them. The animals didn't seem to be affected, just like my father said. He was right, I can't believe it, he was right about everything, but one thing. I am still alive, I survived an entire year on my own, searching for anyone else. I didn't find anyone, but that is not going to stop me. I won't let him win, he is-was a madman, I just can't let him win. I can't be all that is left of the human race, I can't be the only one that is alive. Oh god it is horrible, I have nobody to talk to, I almost went mad and I tried to kill myself. I almost succeeded, I was inches away from slicing my neck, but then the note fell out of my pocket. It was my father's note, and I stopped. I knew I had to survive, I had to figure this out, I had to prove him wrong. And the start of that was staying alive. I don't know what happened to him or to his company either. I didn't go near any of those sights, I want to learn more about viruses so that I can understand more when I finally get the guts to go see it. Well, what else can I talk about? I've learned quite a few good survival things. For one, I've learned that I'm a crack shot with a shotgun, I've started hunting my own food since it is plenty and the only stuff that is still left is very processed and I can't survive off of that. I think that this is enough for now. I just want you to know, that I didn't forget about you my journal. You were also something that kept me sane, knowing that I could write something in you after all my journeys. I've glad you were here, waiting for me. This will be the only journal entry from me this year, though the things I've seen are awful and will haunt me for the rest of my life, they do not belong here. All that I put in here is my quest, my quest to figure out what happened. My quest to survive. If I can do it for one year, I can do it for another. Nothing will stop me.
More determined than ever,
June 1st, another year later
This year instead of searching for anyone, I decided to spend the time learning. I didn't search for anyone because there is no one left alive for me to search for. I still don't know how I survived the virus, the only thing I learned was that if I was exposed to the virus beforehand and built up an immunity, but I have no idea how that would happen. I think I would know if I had been exposed to a humanity killing disease. There is probably a much better explanation, but I just don't know it. My knowledge is so limited, even with all the research I did. I've spent literally months in libraries reading anything I could find about viruses. I have learned so many new things, so much, but none of it will do me any good until I see my father's research. I'm not a super genius, I haven't spent my entire life studying this stuff, but I have a basic understanding of how it all works. Maybe it will be enough, I just don't know, but I do know that I will find out soon. I'm going to go to my father's work place, and I will see it all for myself. I've been hiding from it, I don't want to go. It scares me, I don't know what I am going to find when I go there. I think the thing I fear the most is that my father was right, that whatever he did, he actually did the right thing. I just don't know, and that scares me the most. I've made up my mind, I'm going to Taggat. Taggat is the name of my father's company, the place where this virus was created. I will go there, I will find out the truth. I am going to figure it all out, I am going to understand.
Promising to understand,
That was it. There was no more entries, all I could guess was that he had suffered an accident or succumbed to the virus and eventually died. I guess I would never know, but I finally discovered how the humans died. As if father had been waiting for me to finish the journal he walked into my chamber and announced we were leaving. I got up out of my bed and followed father straight for the main entrance. Being the main leader of our group father always had an escort when he left the cave, but this time he ordered everyone to remain behind and that this was a father son matter.
He took a radio and we both leaped into the air spreading our wings and set off for the house I found the journal.
The whole journey father didn't say a word and I didn't press him, he had a painful expression stretched across his muzzle as we neared the house. I couldn't help, but wonder he knew something more than he was letting on. We landed in the front lawn...or rather I face planted the ground forgetting about my still tender foot. I got up dusted myself down and looked at father who just stood there staring at the house as if it were a forgotten memory. Before I could say anything he marched off round the back of the house I followed in his wake to an area of the garden that looked like it had just been fixed up, yesterday the whole garden was overgrown and out of control, twenty four hours later there was an area that had been worked on as someone had taken great detail to bring it back under control. Next to this gardened area was a make shift grave stone that said only "Here lies Mom, Died June 1st 2008"
Father fell to his knees and whispered.
"I'm so sorry I couldn't save you Mary."
Breaking down now as tears were flowing freely down his muzzle I stood there dumbfounded and confused at this scene. Father was quickly brought out of his emotional stupor by the sound of someone approaching the front of the house
"I thought you ordered everyone to remain at the cave." I said tensing up.
"I did." Father said still kneeling in front of the grave his voice still full of emotion.
I flew up to the roof to see who it was, before father could stop me I was on the roof of the house with my tail wrapped round an aerial of some-kind. What I saw astonished me, a creature which I would only describe as a human who I thought were long since dead was walking up towards the front door of the house. He looked fairly young, he was about 6' 1" maybe 6'2", and he had jet black hair which was unkempt. He wore clothes of dark blue jeans and a black t-shirt with another drawing of a dragon on the front of it. He had a weapon of some-kind strapped to his back, I could only guess it was a shot gun since he mentioned it in his journal.
He kept walking towards the house but stopped in his tracks when he noticed the mark I left in the ground upon my landing. I kept low to the roof as his looked up and scanned the area, drawing his weapon from his back. I looked down behind me to still see father still moaning over this grave, I found the whole scene strange.
"Psst Father." I whispered down to him. "We have company."
I looked back to see what the human was doing only to see that he was gone, I only realised where he went when I heard a gun being loaded. I looked back down behind me and there was the human with his shotgun aimed right at Father. I didn't dare move from my spot on the roof as I watched father get up still staring at the handmade grave.
"Turn Around" The Human said slowly and clearly
As soon as the human had spoken Fathers head Jerked up, he slowly turned around as soon as his eyes landed on the human he was on his knees again and I saw his wings sag.
"John" He Muttered.
It should have been obvious that this would be the human who had written the journal so I wasn't too surprised to hear father call him John. I was confused as to why father was being so emotional about being here, seeing that grave and seeing this human.
John just looked at my father his expression changing by the second, he lowered his gun and slinged it back over his back before crossing his arms and saying.
Now I was stunned so much so I lost my footing and I slid down and off the roof with the aerial in toe as my tail was still wrapped round it, I landed in a heap.
"Who's this then one of your goons?" John asked.
Father looked at me, I didn't need told to know I should keep my muzzle shut as I got up and dusted myself down. He looked back at John.
"Nothing you should be worried about at the minute. How did you survive the air borne virus John?"
"You'd probably have a better idea than I will ever have, but I've had four years on my own after watching the whole of humanity perish in your own version of Armageddon. But I've used the time to do a little research about what you did and I how survived it. It's kinda funny, that your gift was the thing that helped me survive your curse. Yes dad, this is your entire curse." He made an arc with his arms and motioned to everything around him. "You caused the world to be in ruin. That journal you gave me, it had a scale in there. Did you know about that scale that was in there?" He asked.
"No...I didn't know about the scale till I read the journal I gave you, but I think I can see where you're going." Father said, he brought his claws up to his head as he pondered this
"You must have built an immunity to the air borne virus which you got when you cut yourself on that scale. Heh I still can't believe this, you standing there looking well after all these years."
Father picked himself from the ground.
"I must say father I was rather impressed when I discovered what you really did. It was truly a miracle of science, a sick and horrible one, but it was still amazing. How much work did you put into that virus, was it 20 years of research, and that doesn't even account for all the other time that everyone else put in. I found that you came into the project in the later years, so that means this project had been going on for decades. It's amazing to think that the greatest minds on Earth were working towards this sick goal. You did it dad. Congratulations. You created a new race, you created dragons, but you did it at the cost of humanity. You destroyed the world for what? So that a select few could survive, but from the looks of it you took to it nicely, just look at you and your goon." John's voice tensed in anger, his hands curled into fists. His eyes narrowing in on his father, the anger almost palpable. "But you have some nerve coming back here, after everything you did I would have thought that you had some sense of decency to not come back here. Your plan killed them dad. It just isn't fair. Why did mom and Adam have to die? Why?" John said with tears freely flowing down his face.
"Adams not dead John" Father said
"He's...He' not?" John said in disbelief.
"Ash" Father said looking at me, he sighed and lowered his head again before raising it and looking at me. "Ash...John's your older brother"
"What?" I said
"What? He...he survived?" John said
"Ash, I think it's time to answer your questions. We dragons didn't land on earth. We were transformed from human to dragon by a virus. Only a small fraction of the population was transformed which in turn caused mass memory wipe. Only myself and the clan leaders of every dragon community kept our memories as we took a variation of the virus that we released to the general population."
I stood there lost in thought trying to take it all in. Father was responsible for the mass extinction of the human race and created a new race from the destruction. I looked over at John, the brother I never knew I had. He looked at me and nodded as if confirming everything Father just said.
"Father, I want you to do something for me. And don't even think of denying this, after all that I was put through it is the least you could do. I want you to finish it, I don't want to go back living in isolation. Do you know how hard it is to keep my sanity in isolation? I've caught myself talking to pots filled with flowers, trying to hold a conversation with a manikin. It is just so hard, I am literally losing my mind being alone. And I just want it all to end. I can't do it myself, you are the only one who can do it."
Father was silent for a moment, his face showed that his mind was deep in thought. His claw twitching, something he only does when he is deep in thought. He let out a sigh.
"John, do you want me to kill you? I don't know. I just don't know if I can do it. I may have abandoned you all those years ago, but I didn't want to. I thought that you had either turned into a dragon and were lost in the masses, or that you died. I cried for you and Mary every night after I released that virus. Somehow hoping that either of you survived. I just don't think I can kill you. Not after seeing you alive. "
"I don't want you to kill me. You are going to do just the opposite, you are going to give me life. I want you to turn me into a dragon. I know I'm immune to the air borne virus that was released. I want you to change me into a dragon using the same method you and your fellow scientist took. And this way I will keep my memories too." John said.
"You sure that is what you want John?" Father asked.
"Yeah I do want this father. I've lived alone long enough, it's time for a change."
"Before we do this Father, can I have some alone time with Adam?" John looked like he was almost pleading for Father to agree.
"Fine, I shall leave you two alone for a couple hours while I go get the virus. We kept it in a safe that can withstand anything short of a nuclear blast, so I am sure it is fine." With that, he took off into the air and left me staring at this strange human, no, not strange human, he was my brother.
The second that Father took off, the human ran over to me. I thought that for sure he was going to hurt me, but I was surprised by what he did. He hugged me, and he kept hugging me for quite some time. I don't know why, but for some reason it felt comforting, like some old memory was trying to force its way up. I couldn't see the memory, but I felt its presence, and I definitely felt John's. It was as if this hug was bringing something back that I lost, but never knew about. Eventually John let go, and part of me didn't want the hug to stop.
"Adam. I can't believe you are still alive. After all these years to see that you survived, I just can't believe it. This is the happiest that I think I have ever been, I only wish mom was here to see it. Wait I can at least show her to you. I'm sure she would be happy to see you alive and well." Tears were freely flowing down John's strange human face, but it all seemed so familiar.
"Mo...Mom?" I asked unsure of what he meant.
"Yes, mom." He nodded to me and pointed over to a little mound of dirt with the makeshift gravestone. He sat down in front of it and motioned for me to sit down next to him. I did. "That's where I buried her, right next to her garden. Hey mom, look who I brought to see you. I know he may look a little different, but there he is. There is your youngest child Adam. He survived mom, he survived the virus. He may have forgotten, but he is still alive. Isn't that wonderful? I'm glad you can see him. She really loved you, I just want you to know that, and this garden, well she loved that thing almost as much as us. Do you remember the times she would yell at us for playing in her garden?"
I tried to remember what John was talking about, I really did try. But I couldn't think of anything, it was all just mist to me, nothing that I could grab a hold of, just know that it existed outside of my perception. "No John, I'm sorry, but I don't remember. I don't remember anything."
When he heard me say that, it was as if his heart stopped for a moment. That those words hurt him more than any claws strike could, but then the oddest thing happened. He looked straight at me, smiled and said "That's alright. We'll just have to make new memories together." He then put his arm around me and just left it there.
We didn't talk for the next couple hours, just enjoying the others presence. Me, enjoying the fact that I found out that I had a brother that I never knew, and him enjoying the fact that he found the brother that he had lost. The silence was finally broken when I heard the rustle of wings signalling that father had come back.
John got up and walked over to father, he knew that these were going to be his last moments of his humanity. And it wasn't just his last moments either, after this, there was going to be nobody left. He was the last of his kind, a kind that will soon only be a memory. John took one last glance at his-no our mother's grave, then looked at our father and nodded.
Father motioned to John to go inside the house. He then told me as John entered the house "Ash, I want you to stay out here. While John is undergoing his transformation I am going to tell you everything. I feel that you should be allowed to know the full truth."
I did as I was told and sat outside next to the garden. It was truly a beautiful sight, the flowers all in bloom. This must have meant a lot to John and Mom for them to put this much work into it. I didn't notice father walk up to me until after he patted me on me the shoulder. He told me that John was undergoing his change right now, and that he shouldn't be disturbed. I could hear John's screams all the way outside, I knew that it must be an awful pain, but this didn't distract father. After a couple minutes of the silence being broken with only the screams of John, Father said "Its time I told you everything. You are ready to hear it. I guess I'll start at the beginning..."
Father finished explaining everything over the next couple hours and they transformed my knowledge of everything that I had thought before, and during those very same hours John was undergoing his own transformation. Father explained to me why he and his work colleagues did what they did. As he put it, they were confronting the inevitable on their own terms. I also learned the real reason why we were all forbidden from going into the towns and cities was due to the countless bodies that have been abandoned and left rotting in the cities. They didn't want anyone to know of what had transpired, they wanted everyone to think that this was how it always was, and that the humans were long gone before we "came." I didn't know what to think, it was all too much for me to handle at once. I almost broke down crying after I heard everything, but something stopped me. It was the sight of the door to the house opening, I saw John. He looked just like me, only older and very exhausted. He gave me a smile and stuck his claw in the air, something told me that he was giving me a thumbs up. Then he just collapsed.
I've finally learned how to write this human language. John's been teaching me it, and it did see, familiar, and now I can do it. And as payment for John teaching me how to write other things about humans, I'm teaching him how to hunt, how to use his wings, basically how to be a dragon. He is a really fast learner and we have bonded a lot. John has tried to spend as much time with me as possible, trying to make up for lost time. I don't mind, it is fun to spend time with my brother. Oh yeah, John's letting me write in his diary, this is the one that led me to him. I'm surprised that he is letting me keep it and even add to it, but he just shrugged it off and said "It doesn't belong to him anymore. It's moved on."
What else should I write about? Well, I could start out about right after John's transformation, after he collapsed that day, Father and I carried him back to the clan. Father made up some lie about how his son had been living with a different clan, but because of some sort of natural disaster he got separated while on a scouting mission and came looking for him, and that he was out there for months alone. Which he used to explain his non-existent manners. It was an awful lie of course, but it was for the best. Nobody questioned why John suddenly appeared and why he acted so odd. The really funny thing, and I mean really funny is that he became popular with the dragonesses. They all wanted a piece of the mysterious son of the clan leader that appeared out of nowhere, having survived on his own in the wilderness. Those dragonesses just eat that kind of stuff up, I've had him hide in my room a couple times just because they started chasing him and wanting him to be with them. I've warned him though that is going to be a lot worse when some of them go into heat, his face was hilarious when I told him that. I don't think he realised that dragon's have heat cycles, ah well. It's all for the best, he's learned, and so am I.
There is one odd thing though, well besides every dragon really being a human, but got turned into a dragon. That odd thing is that John understood Father's intention. . He told me so on one of those days that he was hiding. He understood that Father was just trying to save humanity by destroying it, but there was something John said that really stuck with me. It was that the ends don't justify the means. And I think I understand why John still harbours anger towards Father, they both agreed that something needed to be done to stop the destruction of the world, but John didn't agree with the means that Father used. But John's life wasn't all anger, he was happy that he no longer had to live alone, but he did make one more condition for Father. He joined our clan on the one condition that the whole population, every single dragon, would be told the truth about what happened. That they would learn everything that I had learned when the time is right. Whatever that means.
Well, I think that's all. There isn't much else to say for a first entry. Wait, I got something else. My life really changed when I found this journal, looking back at it, it seems almost like fate. That I would be sent to go to the one house that I used to live in, the house that my brother so happened to leave his journal in. That it would be me to find it, that out of everyone who could have been picked for the scouting mission, Father chose me. It's amazing that when I found this journal, I also found my brother. Thinking about it some more, I think Father at some level knew that I would find something there, I think that is why he sent me to that house. But in the end, that doesn't matter. Be it fate, or just luck, I have a brother I never knew, and a truth I never expected. Who knows what the next thing I find might unlock?
Happy with it all,
December 21st, 2012.